Here is the introductory snippet of my tale GARDEN OF LEGION
McHenry wagon train, bound for California, persevered through prairie
fires, buffalo stampedes, Indian attacks, and even a bout of
embarrassing dysentery, but their greatest struggle was when that
flower of the prairie, nineteen year old Fannie Burton, became
recollected the pretty little blonde dabbled with an ensorcelled
Ouija board stolen from a New Orleans juju man. Her mother claimed
the girl was bewitched by a Navajo skinwalker, and still others said
she had taunted Satan himself late one night around the buffalo-chip
campfire after refusing to say grace. Regardless of the sinister
origin, something hideous held the girl in demonic thrall.
once shy and reserved Fannie swiftly took a rough frontier situation
from dreadful to dire and finally to disastrous. She ripped apart the
Conestoga’s, devoured the pitiful food supplies, guzzled or smashed
their water caskets and, astonishingly, ate a pair of oxen…alive!
The company attempted to subdue the normally weak girl many times,
but even a dozen of their most able-bodied men were overpowered by
the maiden with a newly developed voice that was deep as the pit of
or It, or Them,
seemed determined to force the desperate McHenry party to die in the
wastes, reveling in their cries of desperation and misery. Each day
they grew weaker and she, It,
or Them grew stronger.
All hope seemed lost in the blossoming desert of the American
southwest. Tormented by a devil in a black dress, it seemed the
party’s bones would soon bleach under a merciless sun.
good Christian folk, they prayed for deliverance and a man they later
called the desert prophet materialized. He appeared to be of late
middle-age, medium height and build, walking barefoot upon the
scorching earth and, most important, he could exorcise little Fannie
Burton of her demons.
the holy man’s approach, the girl cried aloud and wallowed in the
powdered dirt, frothing, vainly trying to hide in a baptism of
entire wagon train listened in hushed amazement as the desert prophet
communed with the throng of evil spirits inside Fannie. “You don’t
belong here. You must leave. I command you in His
us to enter into another set of the living,” came the bottomless
well of a voice from the convulsing waif. “Even, He,”
it gnashed, “was so accommodating.”
may enter into whatever lives on the other side of that nearest
mountain,” allowed the mysterious holy man.
vile grin split the girl’s face as her body shook one last time. An
almost imperceptible mist spouted from her frame and flew like a
swarm of ravenous locusts to the far side of the mountain.
own true voice restored, Fannie spoke hoarsely, “Thank you
stranger, but who’re you?”
of three who tarry,” he answered, drawing her up from the baptism
of fine powdered earth. “The demons shall not trouble you again. Go
your way in righteousness.”
ran to her waiting mother and father. As the rest of the McHenry
caravan came out cheering from behind their wagons, a dust devil
sprang up out of the dunes and the desert prophet vanished.
McHenry party never caught his name, his tracks vanished into the
shifting sands. Their problems were over, but two mountains away, the
hell on earth was about to begin...
This weird western (One of my Porter Rockwell's) was a lot of fun and I'm glad it's finally out.
David J. West writes dark fantasy and weird
westerns because the voices in his head won’t quiet until someone else can hear
them. He is a great fan of sword & sorcery, ghosts and lost ruins, so of
course he lives in Utah in with his wife and children.
The Heroes, by Joe Abercrombie This Crooked Way, by James Enge The Arabian Nightmare, by Robert Irwin The Darkeness that Comes Before, by R. Scott Bakker Tides of War, by Steven Pressfield Night of Knives, by Ian C. Esselmont The Pirate King, by R. A. Salvatore Deadhouse Gates, by Steven Erikson El Borak, by Robert E. Howard Swords Aginst Death, by Fritz Leiber Lies of Locke Lamora, by Scott Lynch Lord of the Silver Bow, by David Gemmell Bloodstone, by Karl Edward Wagner
Heroes of the Fallen Book Trailer
“An epic tale of valor and degeneracy where heroes are beset on every side by wicked schemers whose plots, like a flood, threaten to drown them all." (Daron D. Fraley, Author of The Chronicles of Gan: The Thorn)