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Thursday, May 26, 2016

The Witch Wars: Character Dossier #1 - Caspian Zane

Real name - Caspian Zane
Age - 21
Species - Human
Skills - Driving, thievery, foul mouth, ladies man
RPG Classification - Rogue


Notes:


Caspian "Cas' Zane is one of The Twins selected by the wizard Merlin to oppose Morgan Le Fey.  Unlike his sister Cassandra, Cas was not gifted any celestial powers.  This doesn't seem to bother him much as his motivations are women and speed.


Deep down, he cares deeply for Cassandra, though he shows it in his own way.  He is the older of the two twins by about a minute, but you'd never know it.  He also doesn't speak about his parents, as they died in a tragedy some years prior to being recruited by Merlin.


Cas has some skill with knives and isn't afraid to take on demons given his limitations.  He also enjoy using firearms but his real skill is his driving ability.  Behind the wheel, Caspian Zane is second to none.


Look for more dossiers to randomly pop up between now and the release of "The Witch Wars: Jacoby's Revenge" later this summer/early fall!


-Jack
jack.crosby25@gmail.com

Monday, May 23, 2016

Excerpt of Merciless - A Grimm's Reapers Short Story

Last week, Merciless - A Grimm's Reapers Short Story was released as part of an anthology.  A few of you wanted a sneak peak at the book to see what I was exactly up to.  Well, you can't say I'm not a man of the people.  So here it is!  Enjoy!


-Jack
jack.crosby25@gmail.com

Chapter 1 – Ahoy Matey



“Cappin’ Fletch, we got a vessel approachin’ we do.”


I pulled out my brass spyglass and looked in the direction First Mate Anders pointed in.  Sur enough, off the portside of the ship was a merchant cruiser.  “Anders, get the boys ready.  We got ourselves a pay day coming!”


Anders looked alive.  “Aye aye cappin’!”


The short man scurried off to rouse the crew.  I knew my band of bloodthirsty animals would be willing and ready to do whatever it took to capture that ship.  With that in mind, I retreated below deck to my quarters to grab my pistol and blade.  None were as feared on these waters as me, Captain Argus Fletcher.  Though those who knew me just referred to me as Captain Fletch, the Merciless.


When I returned topside, Oggles was steering my ship, The Black Cat, towards our target.  “Get us in range of the long cannon.  I want to make a good first impression.”


He gave me a lumpy look and spun the wheel hard.  As the ship turned, I looked down and screamed, “Prepare the Cat’s Tail!  I want these merchants to cower in fear.”


The Douglas Triplets signaled at my command and began preparations.  The thrill of the chase and capture was on.  I returned to the highest point, ready to watch everything play out.  The Black Cat was the fastest pirate ship on the Eastern Seas.  I had no fear that my target would escape.


The winds favored us this day, blowing hard with the ship, allowing us to gain great ground.  Through the spyglass, I could now see their captain shouting orders to his crew.  I couldn’t read lips, but I gathered he was giving them orders to prepare to be boarded and to protect their cargo.  Good – I never liked it when sailors gave up without so much of a fight.


“Prepare to fire!”  It was one of the Douglas Triplets, but I didn’t know their individual names.  Hell, I didn’t care to be honest.  “Fire in the hole!”


A few seconds later and the water rocked with the sounds of the Cat’s Tail.  The long cannon sent its ammunition towards the other ship and the aim was true.  The iron ball shattered their main mast, leaving them a downed duck in the water.  With nowhere to go, it was time to fight.


In no time, our ship caught up to theirs and the boarding party was ready.  I joined the team and tossed the first rope across.  No one wanted to be the first, but if the captain was willing, his crew was inspired.  At six foot one and close to two hundred pounds, I had little fear of being overpowered.  Two sailors rushed me as soon as my feet touched down on their wooden deck.  I shot one in the chest with my pistol and engaged the other with my sword.


He was skilled no doubt, his sword play kept me on my feet.  As we were dueling, my crew stormed forward and fights were breaking out everywhere.


Parrying away the sailor’s blow, “You have good form.  It’s a shame it won’t serve you much longer.”


“Fuck off ye bugger!”  He lunged with a jab, leaving himself wide open for a counter.


I slapped away the attack and sliced him from chest to hip.  Shock appeared on his face and for good measure, I kicked him overboard.  The amount of blood rushing out of him would no doubt attract sharks to complete nature’s cycle.  With that attacker out of the way, I continued forward.


Hacking down opponent after opponent brought me face to face with the captain.  He was an older man, chiseled hard from a life at sea.  “So, you be Fletch the Merciless eh?”


“That am I captain.  Command your crew to stand down and no more need to become chum in the water.”


He had a duty to his employers, but dead men have no masters.  “Aye, we’ll stand down.”  He hollered his directive to the crew and each of them after a moment laid their weapons down.  “The ship is yours.”


I circled my finger in the air, giving my crew notice to take everything of value.  “Your mast is broke but Sannigel Island is not but a day’s row from here.  Send for help.”


“Merciless they say, yet you’re giving me a chance to live.”  He looked on skeptically.  “What’s in this for you?”


I did a quick count; he had about ten survivors left on his ship.  “You spread the word about my pirate crew.  Your recollection of this attack will strengthen my grip on the Eastern Seas and leave no question what ship is the most dangerous.”


He comprehended my wishes.  A pirate’s reputation is his calling card.  Having fear before we even come into view is a victory in itself.  With this captain telling his story, mine would increase tenfold.


When we had plundered all we could, my crew returned to The Black Cat, all except for me.  “What is your name captain?”


“Levenworth.  What’s it matter to you?”


I would commit that name to memory.  “Whether you believe it or not, you’ve made a friend today Levenworth.  I appreciate a man who is honorable, but knows when to yield.”


As I returned to my ship, I gave one last glance to the disabled ship floating.  The crew would have to wait a bit; three great whites were fighting over the remains of the body I sent to the depths.  Once the sharks left, they would be clear to row to help.  They may call me Merciless, but I’m no heathen.

Chapter 2 – The Hurricane





We made good time returning back to Lost Haven, the pirate port town at the far reaches of the Eastern Seas.  Few pirates called this port home, which made it perfect for me.  My crew, filled with pride after a successful raid, stormed off the ship to their favorite watering holes.  As for me, I still needed to add up the total haul and plot our next course.


A strange wind blew across the deck of The Black Cat.  I wandered out of my quarters to take measure of the breeze.  As soon as the wind buffered my face, I had a very ill feeling.  “Mother Nature, you wicked vixen!  It is far too early in the season for a hurricane.”


I’d been on the seas far too long to be surprised by any occurrence.  Still, spring was no time for weather like this to whip up – unless there was something supernatural behind it.  The seas were filled with hidden spirits and monster alike.  Though what would cause this to happen, well even that was beyond my purview.


Based on the speed and direction, we maybe had five to six hours before the powerful storm hit the island.  That was plenty of time to get the ship ready, even if I could only scrounge up two or three of the crew.


“Cappin’!  I have ill feelings in me bones.”


I located the source of the voice, Anders.  The first mate was as reliable as any could be.  “I’m glad you returned Anders.  We need to get The Cat prepared.  I’ll begin the preparations while you go get some of the crew.”


He gave me a half drunken salute and ran off into the streets.  In no more time than it took me to get the first mast tied down, Anders returned with the Douglas Triplets and Oliver, our youngest member.  They needed no direction and the five of them went to work like busy bees tending to The Cat.  In less than an hour’s time, we finished and were off ship.


The Black Cat had been my ship since the previous captain wiled it to me.  Long John Shanks was my mentor to the pirate game, but he succumbed to a bad case of the plague.  Shanks had no reservations about eating suspect meats and drinking spoiled wine and it caught up to him.  I wouldn’t make the same mistakes.


With the ship secure, I sent the crew back into the night for more debauchery.  The tavern life never really suited me, but this evening called for a drink.  I followed the cobblestone street up to the last establishment in town, Whore’s Tap.


The name was very misleading; there were no whores in the bar.  The keep, Finnegan, was an old Irishman who was hiding from the Royal Navy.  He preferred to be left alone, hence the bad advertisement.  I too enjoyed the quiet, so we bonded over quality ale and lack of spoken word.


My second ale had been poured when another entered the establishment.  It was a lady, but she wasn’t dressed like a proper wench at all.  She wore an open tan shirt with leather pants and proper pirate boots.  Attached to her belt was a long thing sword, a rapier I believe they’re called.  She took off her hat and put up one finger.  Without a word, she sat down next to me.


Red hair cascaded down her pale face.  There was something of amusement in her eyes as she kept gaining my attention.  After her first sip of ale, “Argus Fletcher, I’ve been watching you.”


I tipped my cup towards her and drank as well.  “Well met my lady.  And who do I have the pleasure of sharing a beer with?”


Her laugh was angelic, not fitting her figure at all.  “Honestly, I doubt you’d believe me.  For the meantime, please just call me Roxanne.”
To Be Conitinued in Merciless!


Friday, May 20, 2016

Anthology Released!

Well today is the big day, the anthology I am a part of has been released into the world.  So, why should you as a Jack Crosby reader want to buy this book?  Excellent question!  Well for starters, as you might know, my story in the anthology is a pirate tale starring some yoyo named Argus Fletcher.  In his adventure, he meets up with some old girl named Roxanne and tragedy ensues.  I'm not going to tell you everything, but for the low low payment of 99 cents, you can find out yourself!


The second reason to grab it is I included the first chapter to my next series The Witch Wars.  Book one will be entitled Jacoby's Revenge, so in addition to Roxanne's little tale, you'll get the very first look at the start of the next series.  Our pal Oz will be leading the charge this time and he's almost as bad as his dad, Derrick.


So do I have you intrigued?  Okay then.  I guess the final thing for me to do is set you up with the link: https://www.amazon.com/Twisted-Sinful-Stories-Morganna-Williams-ebook/dp/B01FWZYU26?


*Quick Update


The Witch Wars: Jacoby's Revenge will be out this fall.  Later this summer I plan to upload chapters 2 and 3 here, so be on the lookout.  I'm sure I'll have a cover reveal at some point too.  Well until next time,


-Jack
jack.crosby25@gmail.com

Friday, May 13, 2016

The Return of Roxanne

Greetings my friends and a happy Friday to you.  The weekend is close at hand and I know I'm looking forward to it.  You want to know what else I'm looking forward to?  The Epic Return of Roxanne!  Next Friday, May 20th, the tale Merciless: A Grimm's Reaper Short will be part of an anthology called Twisted and Sinful Stories.  In fact, my story will be the very first one, kicking off this awesome assortment of mischief.


I know what you guys need - a free sample.  Well, ask and you shall receive:


My second ale had been poured when another entered the establishment.  It was a lady, but she wasn’t dressed like a proper wench at all.  She wore an open tan shirt with leather pants and proper pirate boots.  Attached to her belt was a long thing sword, a rapier I believe they’re called.  She took off her hat and put up one finger.  Without a word, she sat down next to me.

Red hair cascaded down her pale face.  There was something of amusement in her eyes as she kept gaining my attention.  After her first sip of ale, “Argus Fletcher, I’ve been watching you.”

I tipped my cup towards her and drank as well.  “Well met my lady.  And who do I have the pleasure of sharing a beer with?”

Her laugh was angelic, not fitting her figure at all.  “Honestly, I doubt you’d believe me.  For the meantime, please just call me Roxanne.”

Roxanne, a name fitting an angel or a devil.  “A pleasure to meet you miss Roxanne.”  I saw she was empty as was I.  Finnegan remedied the situation for us.  “I’ve not seen you on the island before; did the bad weather bring you this way?”

The first sounds of the hurricane echoed across the harbor, the wind starting to pick up.  I looked worried as did the barkeep, but Roxanne drank as if nothing was out of place.  “I’m here because of the weather, yes, just not in the way you think.”

“I’m intrigued and that doesn’t happen often enough.”  I leaned in closer.  “Care to share your twisted words?”

She waved her hand and everything around us froze in time.  Finnegan was in mid-pour, the beer hanging in the air unnaturally.  “There are certain truths you’ll have to understand.  For one, I’m not human as you just put together.”

“Bloody hell…”
That's just a snippet of the fun you can expect.  But wait, that's not all!  When you grab this Twisted and Sinful Stories Anthology, you will get the first look at Oz's story.  Chapter 1 of The Witch Wars: Jacoby's Revenge will be inside too.
Like I said, look for the anthology next Friday on Amazon and to keep things on the up and up, it'll only be listed at 99 cents.  Along with my stuff, Jeremy Croston, Jeff Trelewicz, and Morganna Williams will have their own works in there.  Hell, maybe you'll find another author that you'll enjoy.  Anyways, that's it for today.  I'll be back next week at some point.  Until then, keep it real.
-Jack

Monday, May 9, 2016

The Itch Doesn't Leave

As I sit here in my hotel, far away from Chicago, I'm feeling the need to write.  I'm tired from working all weekend in a small cramped space with no air circulating.  I have a headache from a very annoying man who won't give me the space to do my job.  I should either be drinking a beer or trying to sleep, but I have this need to write.


I miss my characters.  I miss the antics that the Grimm's Reapers cast gave to me.  Oz's story is in my head.  The story idea I bought off my buddy has been consuming my thoughts.  If I don't do something soon, I'll go nuts.  I honestly thought it was for the best not to try to keep up my author pursuits while I was expanding my day job.


I can man up and say I was wrong.  My tablet isn't going to cut it.  Today I'm going to go to this little specialty computer store I found and build the perfect lap top.  I'm going to email my buddies Jeremy and Jeff to see what dates this fall are open for a book release.  Then I'm going to start Oz's story.


Damnit people, Jack is back.


-Jack
jack.crosby25@gmail.com

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Monthly Update

You've probably been wondering where your good pal Jack's been huh?  Well, to keep it short, I've been just about everywhere the past few weeks.  The IT consulting firm my dad and I started is really picking up steam, so my day job has been robbing me of opportunities to write.  Honestly, it could be awhile before my next book comes out and for that I apologize.


Now don't be mad at me as I offer some exciting news.  An original short story entitled Merciless will soon be available as part of an anthology on the Kindle.  Everyone's favorite Lust demon is coming back for a pirate tale for the ages.  The main character Captain Argus Fletcher will be the human she's helping out this time and it's full of cannons, cutlasses, and orgies.  The anthology will be out in May sometime, so as soon as I know for sure, I'll relay it to you.


Well that's it for now.  If you're looking for another bad review taken to task, I hit the road on Friday so cross your fingers that tomorrow might be a Good Day to One Star.


-Jack
jack.crosby25@gmail.com