These are just a few snippets of the books for you to have a read of. Some of them have not been edited so they may not remain exactly the same in the books once they are published, but I thought I’d give you a quick glance at some of my future books as well as Living a Nightmare and Veil of Anonymity.
Living a Nightmare
The clock on the dashboard reads 5:29. I see a car in the distance. The clock turns to 5:30. Grandad flicks the headlights back to normal or the brightness will blind the oncoming driver. The car hurtles around the corner straight towards us. Headlights beaming full. Grandad squints, his eyes close … he swerves. Terror strikes me like lightening as I realise it’s too late. The last thing I see before impact is beaming headlights.
Unbearable pain racks my body. I hear metal crunching and glass shattering around me.
Blood is dripping from him, down onto the fluffy, cream carpet. More blood streams down the side of a baby’s bottle and on down the stairs. Drip, drip, drip. I’ve been here before, seen this man before. He’s injured, covered in blood, but not quite dead. I can hear heavy breathing behind the door. A soothing sound, the baby must be asleep. The man takes a deep breath and lifts himself up from his slouch against the wall. A deep, red puddle is beginning to form beneath him. He looks in a bad way, though that is probably because he’s horrified of what his wife will say and what excuse he can make to explain the mess he’s in. I don’t think he’ll tell the truth.
I cry for my dad, bang my head against the wall, scream to him for help, like I’d done when I was little. And I wish he was in heaven, but now I know he’s only going to hell. This is no dream. It’s a nightmare. And I’m living it.
Veil of Anonymity
The locker room fell silent; eyes drilled into him. Marcus knew. The bully knew to the second when Marcus realised. It was the moment he saw the spark in Marcus’s eyes flicker out, his face blanche, saw him stop in his tracks, flinching a millisecond, as if violently winded. Marcus stepped resolutely onwards to his locker, aware of eyes boring into him. Blood drained from his body leaving him incapable of blushing, but this was beyond embarrassment. He looked ill. Like death. A walking corpse. His lips shone a red-ish purple, contrasting with the deathly white of his face. With each hesitant step Marcus took, the bully watched his body tense, especially his jaw, the cheesy grin gone, lost. The bully never saw it again.
Marcus raised a trembling hand to his locker; no one dared breathe. Shaking so badly he couldn’t grasp the handle, all that could be heard was the faint rattle of metal. Marcus took an audible breath, willing his hand to steady. He slung his bag into the dark, damp space and slammed the door shut, the clatter of metal making everybody jump. He turned and fled the room. With each step he gained pace, desperately retreating from piercing eyes, gulping, struggling to hold back tears. It was only the bully who spotted Marcus’s glazed eyes. As the salt water filled his eyes, it was only the bully who saw one single tear roll silently down Marcus’s right cheek.
It was as though Jess had shot him, right through the heart, just like she’d said she wanted to. He couldn’t believe it. Ice cold tingles raced through his body, zipping into every vein. His blood froze. His body shivered. He switched his glance from Jess’s nervous face to Marcus’s shocked one and back again. The freezing sensation dissipated, replaced by white hot fury boiling in his gut, his blood rampaging through his body, destroying any good sense he may have had remaining, leaving only devastation … space for evil to multiply, dictate and rule. He stormed out of the room in delirium, refusing to look at anyone. The door whooshed open as he barged through but was caught before it slammed shut.
“Mate … hold up,” Sam was right behind him. He didn’t slow down or look back. Jess was shouting his name and it was killing him, the fact that she was following him muddled his brain into a confused mess. He opened the music practise room door on his right and closed it hard behind him.
“Leave him alone you bitch.” He heard Sam shouting as he dropped to the floor and put his face in his palms.
“I want to talk to him,” was Jess’s reply.
“Well, he doesn’t want to talk to you. You led him on and played with his head, you evil little slag.”
Before she’d even had time to blink he was on her. His coat sleeve smothered her mouth, his other arm locked around her neck so she couldn’t turn and see him. Releasing his grip on her mouth he launched his fist into her face. Semi-strangled and in shock, unable to breathe, unable to scream. Another fist to her jaw. A further to her nose. He felt them crack with the force. He jabbed his knee into her ribs, and struck another blow to her head. One twist with his foot around her ankle, followed by a backwards jerk and she hurtled to the ground, landing with an ear-piercing ‘crack’. Then he ran, not looking back at her broken body sprawled on the slabs. He kicked a random bin down, scattering rubbish. He smashed his fist through a car window, fragments of glass showering him. The alarm sounded and he sprinted off into the distance.
I’d been watching them for some time, knowing I’d get the sack if my manager caught me. I took my phone from my back pocket regardless, concealing it behind the booking table I was standing at. I wanted a good shot. I needed evidence if any woman was to believe her husband was cheating on her, and wouldn’t have a better opportunity. The restaurant was slowing down for the night and they’d finished eating. They could leave any minute and I wanted the slimy bastard caught. I turned off my phone flash and took a couple of shots. The photos weren’t brilliant, only the back of her head but his face clearly visible, plus, it was clear they were holding hands across the table. Besides, Lynette would have no reason not to believe me.
Five minutes later my boss asked me to collect the bill for table nine … their table. Up until then I’d successfully avoided contact with Declan, and I knew he hadn’t noticed me … his eyes were glued to the cleavage opposite him. I approached the table professionally, (I didn’t want to kick up a fuss and lose my job) waiting to see if he recognised me. We made eye contact. He said nothing, his face impassive. After waiting on another table I headed for the cleaning cupboard next to the toilets. I was aware he’d been watching me sorting out the bill. I tried not to look at him but felt his eyes tracking me. I was opening the cupboard door when I heard the door catch behind me. In a second a hand held my wrist tightly.
“Laura, is it?”
“Lorna.” I corrected him and turned to face him, letting go of the cupboard handle. His face was centimetres from mine in the dark, small corridor. I felt very uncomfortable.
“Lynette won’t be happy when she finds out,” I said, shrugging free of his grip around my wrist.
“And how will she ever know?” He snarled. I took my phone out of my pocket and showed him the picture I’d taken.
“Delete it!” he demanded.
“No. Lynette is a good person. She deserves the truth. Deserves better than you.” He made a grab for the phone. I stepped back and fled into the ‘ladies’, hoping he wouldn’t follow me. I was wrong. He barged open the door behind me and grabbed my arm. I gripped onto my phone as tight as possible but he was stronger. He snatched it from me and hurled it against the wall. Its case flew off and bits of phone fell onto the floor. He picked up the bits and dropped them into the toilet.
“What proof now?” He smiled. Rage boiled inside me. “And if I see you anywhere near my wife it won’t only be the phone that gets it.” He walked back out into the restaurant. My phone had sunk to the bottom of the toilet bowl. I grabbed some paper towels, grimaced and plucked my phone out of the toilet. I dried it as best I could knowing it would be ruined regardless. Picking up the back part of the phone from the floor my mouth curled into a smirk. Alongside it lay the memory card.
Not long after, a loud roar outside grabbed my attention away from the TV. I looked out the window and saw three large motorbikes charging in through the open gates. The noise of their powerful engines was disturbing in the country quiet. They pulled up on the drive. One biker had a passenger. All four people dismounted and approached the house.
I stood staring, in shock. By the time I’d left the living room they were in the hallway; I’d left the door open for Kate. My heart pounded in my chest as the huge man in front of me took off his helmet.
“Hello, Lorna.” His voice was gruff, his black eyes looking me up and down. His face was round and scarred. A snake tattoo slithered up the side of his neck and onto his shaven head. He reminded me of a pitbull dog, solid muscle under his biking leathers.
“Who’re you?” I tried disguising my terror.
“Your worst nightmare.” He grinned, flashing sparkling white teeth.
I’d told myself it was an adventure and forced myself to feel a nervous excitement, trying to keep my mind focused on Kate, on how scared she’d be. I had no choice but to help her. She was the reason I was doing this. As I walked deeper into the woods however, my ability to control my thoughts disappeared … along with the light … and my sanity. The trees stood taller and closer together, the ground became rougher, branches wilder. Cries of pain escaped my lips every so often as branches scratched at my face, pulled my hair, scraped my shins. I’d never find Kate. She might already be at the hospital, but basic common sense told me she’d never have been able to fight her way through this.
Sleeping Reality – the sequel to Living a Nightmare
Spoiler alert! If you haven’t read Living a Nightmare don’t read the below passages.
A gunshot cracks through the air.
No one has time to react before another shot is fired. Chaos erupts with the second blast. I duck in my wheelchair. The two doctors run inside the church pushing Maddy with them. Auntie Sheila throws herself to the ground. I hear shouts and yells but the noises spin in my head.
“Jack!” Auntie Sheila screeches as her husband is still stood up, a hand to the back of his head, in a complete daze, he seems ignorant to the rest of his surroundings. But she manages to grab his wrist and pulls him to the ground with strength I never knew she had, just before a third shot is fired. I see the flash of a bullet soar through the air just above my uncle, in the same spot as where his heart would have been a millisecond before.
Time slows to a near halt and the sounds reach my ear as distant echoes. Uncle Jack’s body falls to the floor. Auntie Sheila cradles her arms around him, unaware that she has just saved her husband’s life. Behind them I see mum’s mouth open in a scream I do not hear.
He has left me to watch the horrors that are about to unfold. I hear the sirens of the police car as it speeds towards the death trap. It feels like I’m melting into the floor, the hopelessness collapsing my body. Seconds later I see the red and blue flashing lights. See a glance of the driver in the final seconds of his life. He doesn’t even have time to brake. The cars collide and the police car rips through the stationary vehicle, belting it back into the bushes. The tremendous crunching of the metal ringing through my ears. The police car rams into the hedges and stops moving. Seconds of nervous, near silence follows as the petrol works its way up to exploding…
“You don’t look like a murderer’s daughter.” He says the words so unbelievably calmly as he studies my face and comes to his conclusion. On the last syllable he turns on his heel and walks away from me, leaving me physically incapable of going after him. I am beyond words. It’s like he’s shot me, my chest has tightened and I don’t realise I’ve stopped breathing until my lungs are screaming. The softly spoken, almost childlike tone repeats again and again. What did he expect me to look like? It angers me almost as much as the betrayal from Mae. That hurts… really hurts.