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Steve Roach

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  Short Stories and Novellas

 

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A group of friends are randomly approached in the street and asked if they'd like to participate in a TV show.  They agree and are taken to a large warehouse for the filming of an incredibly dangerous variant of a 'Total Wipeout' style programme. 

They soon realise they have landed themselves in deep trouble and it dawns on them that maybe they weren't approached at random after all.  The next few hours will mean the difference between life and death and the survivors will learn there is a definite reason they were chosen - their past is going to catch up with them in a most horrific way.
 

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The Hunt + The Brown Sweets + The Davison's Party

Three twisted and disturbing tales from one of the UK's most entertaining independent writers. Mixing elements of horror and dark humour, these tales are a perfect introduction to Steveís writing.

 

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A pestilence is abroad, a darkness spreading across the country and engulfing all it finds.
People flee in terror, desperate to avoid the blades and bullets of those already affected. In the city, Michael Greaves hosts a gathering of friends and business associates. Down in the renovated basement area beneath his house guests mingle and drink wine, occasionally casting nervous glances at each other as the deep rumble of nearby explosions penetrates the festivities.

There are things in this world that cannot be lost. Men like Michael Greaves do what they can to hold back the tide of darkness, to stop the pestilence destroying the way we live now. But sometimes, men like Michael Greaves become casualties.
 

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Dougie Whipp lives alone, a miserable old bastard nearing the end of his life with nothing but hate to keep him going. Hate for his fellow man, hate for the world around him but most of all hate for the endless swarm of brutish seagulls populating his part of the city.

One day, Dougie wakes to find a seagull chick in his garden. Helpless and afraid, pathetically calling for its mother. He canít help but think of what this chick will become, a vicious monster that would soon join the ranks of its brethren. Dark thoughts swirl through his mind, things that no sane person should ever contemplate.

In a drunken rage, Dougie acts out his terrible thoughts and unleashes a nightmare from which he will never recover.
 

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As a youth, one bad tapas causes Wilf Butterby to strain so hard on the toilet that he births a pile. Too embarrassed to seek medical attention, he suffers well into old age, unable to lead a normal existence. For fifty years, the pile grows bigger and takes control of his life, causing him to remain unmarried and childless. As a pensioner, with the pileís insults ringing around the inside of his head, Wilf is a sad and lonely figure.

When the Tobias widow takes an interest in him, Wilf decides that enough is enough. The haemorrhoid must be destroyed, whatever the cost. Sensing a chance of happiness, caught up in a flowering romance with the delightful widow, Wilf makes an appointment with the local doctor.
But the pile isnít going down without a fight.

 

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With very little else to occupy his mind, Ben Goodman spent every evening down his local pub drinking six pints of ale. Never five, never seven, always six. On the stroll home, heíd stop and lean against the low perimeter wall of the old school, and let out a loud belch before throwing up. The area of waste ground directly behind the wall had been splattered with endless pints of grisly sick from the churning balloon of Benís stomach. Strange, organic compounds bubbled in the darkness, fermenting.

And then, one night, the decades-old puddle of stinking sick heaved itself up out of the ground and stood there swaying in the darkness. It took the shape of a man, of Ben Goodman, its Creator. As Ben walked on, some distance ahead, the vomitgšnger heaved itself over the wall and slowly followed, leaving a trail of wet footprints behindÖ
 

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Anti-Claus + Elf Abuse + The Christmas Party + Glitter
Four micro-shorts with a Christmas theme.

Christmas canít be jolly all the time!

In a twisted universe where Santa comes once a year to take instead of giving, where old people get up to the most depraved things imaginable and a man walks the streets looking for dog shit to sprinkle with glitter, take a break from the traditional side of Christmas and revel in a few stories where things really arenít Ďnormalí.
 

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Every time he wakes up, the man has no idea where he is. Or who he is. All he knows is that he must find the killer of his family. Dressed in a long black coat and a fedora hat, his only possessions are a photo of the murderer and a loaded handgun. He will keep looking until the killer has himself been murdered.

Sometimes, when it looks like his mission may be over, he ends up getting his brains blown out and the whole search begins again in some other place he's never seen before. Endlessly, the search continues for 'Mr X'.

 

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An experiment to define the true nature of humanity, where children are raised with no contact with the outside world. In a government owned facility, scientists observe a number of test subjects and file daily reports, all stamped with a blue butterfly symbol before being archived. As the years go by, strange things begin to happen and our very nature is called into question Ė are there dormant powers buried deep within us, forgotten in the modern world?
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Schwarzesloch remains in the city as Katrina strikes, holed up in his house as the world seems to collapse around it. Once the storm is over, he is forced to abandon his property and take to the flooded streets. As he makes his way towards the perceived safety of the Superdome, he meets an unlikely travelling companion and, during the next few days, they do whatever they can to escape the city. The authorities seem to have abandoned New Orleans. Nowhere is safe. There is no law. Society has broken down and only the strongest will survive.

Thoroughly researched, the events in the story interweave with the actual timeline of hurricane Katrina and its aftermath - although a work of fiction, it is also an account of the 2005 disaster and the response of the city and the emergency services involved.
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In 1519, HernŠn Cortťs leads an expedition of six hundred men into the New World.

They reach the city of TenochtitlŠn, where the horrors of human sacrifice are a daily occurrence. When relationships with their hosts turn sour, Cortťs and his army become trapped in the city, and suddenly find themselves at the mercy of two million Aztec warriors, all intent on ripping the Spaniards' still-beating hearts from their chests.

 

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In Manaus, English teacher Francis Marks befriends Eduardo, a local tour boat operator. Eduardo tells him that he needs investors for an audacious plan to head out into the jungle and look for Inca gold, smuggled out of Peru centuries before.  With details agreed, they head deep into the jungle, taking a number of local labourers. The work will be long and hard, and will involve endless digging, day after day in the sweltering heat.

The jungle is the kind of place that seems to bring out the worst in men. It brings out their violent, brutish natures. Tempers fray, and relationships turn ugly. Danger lurks everywhere, from the creatures circling the camp to the hostile human visitors intent on seeing them leave. When men begin dying, and escape is ruled out, the mere act of survival becomes more valued than any amount of hidden gold.
 

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An old man searches the world for a place he can call his own, carrying a sack filled with seeds, pods and bulbs. He finds what he is looking for in the middle of the desert, a bleak and lonely spot where the animals come to die. He helps reduce their pain by slitting their throats and bleeding them into the ground.  In time, tiny red flowers grow and an Eden blooms.  The animals now come to this place to live.

One day, a monstrous bird falls from the sky and takes up residence in the crater-lake. It becomes the bane of the old manís retirement, a vulgar and graceless murderer that preys on the other animals without mercy. The old man realises that Edenís are always flawed and forces himself to accept the presence of this evil creature.  But sometimes, worse things can be just around the corner.
 

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They fought inside their motherís womb.  They fought throughout their childhood.

Twins Alexei and Vasily lead lives consumed by a terrible hatred for each other. When they both fall in love with the same woman, the hatred erupts into murderous violence, and only one brother will survive the confrontation.

With Vasily dead, Alexei builds a happy life for himself, and it seems that love can conquer all of his problems.  But when Vasily finds a way to come back, and destroys Alexeiís happiness, it leads to a new series of escalating confrontations where even death itself canít hold back the power of hate.  How many times can a man be killed? How many times can he find a way to come back?
 
 

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Mary Kinsey makes a decision to walk home alone after a night on the town, and the consequences will change her life forever. After surviving a violent attack, she locks herself away in her house, fearing the world and everything in it.

And into her world comes a child. Her child.
He will not drink her milk.
He never smiles.
It seems, for all the world, as though the child hates her.
 

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A lonely fat man discovers an unwanted visitor in his stack of bananas - a spider the size of a man's fist. In a reflexive move borne from terror and disgust, he raises his boot to squash the little beast and is frozen with shock when it let's out a cry for salvation.

Instead of killing it, or throwing it out, he takes pity on the beast and lets it stay for a while, but only under certain conditions. It is the beginning of a magnificent friendship.

A fat man and a spider can learn a lot from each other, it seems.
 

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When the Masters go out one day and never come back, old dogs Horace and Bilbo are left to fend for themselves. Locked in a kitchen with no food and a diminishing water supply, days go by until help finally comes.  Itís too late for Bilbo.

Horace recovers from his ordeal and is taken in by a new family, keen to introduce their young son Andy to the concept of looking after a pet. Andy is really excited at the thought of getting a dog, but his excitement turns to crushing disappointment when he sees how old it is. Itís not long before Andy begins to take his anger out on Horace.  Confused, unable to settle, Horace spends his nights dreaming of his loving, absent Masters and his days hiding in terror from the boy.

But Horace will only be pushed so farÖ..
 

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In 1852 the whaling ship Nautilus leaves New Bedford and embarks upon a route to the South Pacific, a journey that will lead them to the hunting grounds of the magnificent sperm whales.  Once there, they set about their business of killing whales, a task that Captain Grice relishes beyond any other Earthly pleasure.

But one of the whales they hunt is different.

Sick, already dying, the men attack it and find something inside, something rotten and dangerous and alive. Itís a thing that will bring about the destruction of the Nautilus, and bring doom to Grice and the crew. It appears that Grice is not the most formidable hunter these waters have ever seen Ė something else is out there, hunting whales, and it has been this way for centuries......
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xShort Story Bundle Offers - only £1.99 each on Amazon

 

 

ANIMALS
Four short stories and a novella.
Includes the following:

The Whaler
The Farda
A Dogís Life
Fox
Ruiner

 
 

 

Six short stories.
Includes the following:

Bebe
Twins
The Superhero of Small Things
The Beast
The Lottery
Fishes and Engines

 
 

 

Two novellas.
Includes the following:

People of the Sun
Conquistadors
 

 

Two short stories and a novella, all set in New Orleans during the time of hurricane Katrina.
Includes the following: 

Down in New Orleans
Quinton And The Attic
The Way Out Is Through

 

 

7 short stories.
Includes the following:

Mr X
Terrorzoid Attack!
Wexley
Soundslaves
Trifucta
Experiments With Human
Planet of Maniacs
 

 

3 short stories and 1 novelette.
Includes the following:

The Seagull
Bonsher
Vomitgšnger
The Haemorrhoid

 
 

       

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