Blog Archive

Armed and Dangerous Book 1 and 2 "Links to all chapters"

Below you will find chronological links to all 17 Chapters of "Armed and Dangerous," A G.I.Joe Origins Story.  At the bottom of th...

Friday, June 14, 2019

New Book Available on Amazon Today!!!!!

Hello everyone.
I am ecstatic to share with you that my new book, "The End of Realms," Book 1 of the Lancer Revival series, is available for purchase on Amazon.  If you like fantasy, Dragons, zombies, mythological creatures, all with a modern-day flare. 

You should check it out!

As always thank you for your continued support!

Cheers,

Drakov

The End of Realms


Wednesday, June 12, 2019

Fantasy Novel "The End of Realms" Book 1 in The Lancer Revival

"The End of Realms" Book 1 in The Lancer Revival will be available soon. 
Final revisions are being made on the server and the eBook will be ready for purchase by the end of the week.  More information available soon!

Monday, June 3, 2019

"Society's Cesspool" Book 3 Chapter 4



Chapter 4

Stalker and the other Joe recruitment officers had taken a liking to Lieutenant Alkeenen. He was a promising young officer with an outstanding dossier. He came from a military family extending back for the last four generations and his commendations were numerous for someone so new to the service. He was almost too perfect. How had he missed garnishing the attention of the Joe team sooner? The army ranger was starting to have some reservations.

“Alkeenen, gear up I’ve got an interesting little adventure set up for you today.”

“Sir, yes sir!” The lieutenant hustled over so that he was standing in attention before his Joe mentor.

“Today’s training mission is based upon a recent event overseas. You’re going to need to infiltrate a Tunisian crime family without weapons, a lift a laptop from the oldest son’s personal safe house replacing it with a dummy unit. Are you up for it?”

The undercover master of disguise scoffed to himself. Was he up for it? Really? Is this what America’s highly-trained special missions force did on a daily basis? This would be child's play for him. He tried feigning nervousness and excitement as he saluted the ranger.

“Absolutely sir. When do I roll out?”

“Bus leaves at 1300 hours. Be back here and ready to go.”

“Sir, yes sir!” Zartan had been deep undercover for nearly a year trying to gain access to the G.I.Joe inner circle, but despite his hard labors, he had not granted anything more than probationary status on the team. There had been little chatter on the Cobra front and he began to wonder if he had been wrong concerning the threat that the terrorist group presented. It might be high time to plan his egress and take back control of the Dreadnoks back home. Perhaps, he would see to it that this latest training mission would be Lieutenant Alkeenen’s last.

It had bothered the undercover mercenary that his exemplary efforts had been ignored while the upstart Armed and Dangerous had been made a full-fledged member of G.I.Joe. He didn’t understand how this was possible. Could someone be on to him? He had been careful to tie up any and all loose ends. He had even held back from being too good at what they asked him to do. Was he now being paranoid? He pushed the thoughts from his mind and began to focus on the importance of the laptop he was being asked to obtain, in Tunisia no less. If he died in Tunisia, he would be considerably closer to his home in Australia. But why Tunisia?

Stalker had a final meeting with Duke and Hawk concerning the mission. He had voiced his opinions both positive and negative about the probationary recruit before. The two ranking officers had agreed that it would be prudent to keep the unusually-talented lieutenant on restricted clearance until they could be sure that he was for real. Something smelled suspicious to the veteran ranger, but it could simply be the result of recent ongoings around the globe concerning terrorist attacks. If Alkeenen could successfully carry out this newest mission, the team would be resigned to reevaluate his abilities and possibly recommend full membership. Stalker had been played out before. Several times in his past, there were outstanding soldiers who ended up being nothing more than elaborate spies or turncoats. He had fought both against and on the side of the Oktober Guard. Tommy Arashikage had once been a trusted member of his platoon overseas before his reinvention as the ninja Storm Shadow. Another time, the Baroness had posed as a high-level army operative and stolen top-secret plans from G.I.Joe headquarters. Each time he had had a gut feeling about the person in question, but Alkeenen was different. The ranger felt like the man was holding back purposefully at times and couldn’t understand why. The other thing that bothered him was the fact that he associated with no one, ever. While the other recruits were using their free time to call home or hang out in the mess hall, Alkeenen was nowhere to be seen. What was he hiding?

The bus pulled up at 1230 hours. It was driven by a seldom-seen G.I.Joe by the name of Skidmark. Stalker was nearby watching as Alkeenen and two other recruits walked up.

“So Alkeenen, are you ready to do this?” The man’s face was stoic as he turned to regard the ranger.

“I’ve never been more ready, Sir. So, who will I be meeting up with once I get to Tunisia?” Stalker handed the man a sealed manila envelope and a small briefcase.

“Everything that you need to know is in that envelope. It will need to be decoded using Epsilon-Zeta protocol, and once you’ve deciphered it, it must be destroyed. I suggest reviewing the material during your flight. When you touch down, you will be a civilian tourist. The dossier contains recent photos of known Tunisian radicals and their aliases.”

“Got it. So, I’ll be on my own?”

“Not exactly. We have an internal asset, but it’s above my clearance level. That info is also in the paperwork. Good luck soldier. Make your nation proud.” The ranger saluted and the lieutenant was more than happy to oblige before tossing his bag in the rear of the humvee and climbing on board.

“Welcome aboard soldier.” Alkeenen gave a half-smile then moved back a row in the vehicle. The other two operatives jumped on board a few minutes later. He didn’t know either of them but studied their faces nonetheless. The master of disguise couldn’t help himself. He was a constant thespian, always searching for his next mark. He would make small talk on the way to the airstrip, find out the nature of their missions, and tuck that information away into his mind’s Rolodex for the future.

Skidmark started the engine and put the truck into drive. “Alrighty, everyone. We’re off. If you look out the window to your right you can wave to all your friends as we ride off into the mountains up ahead. To your left, as the crow flies, you can see the scenic Cascade Mountains. They are home to Bufo boreas and Taricha granulosa. For those of you not fluent in herpetology, those are the scientific names of the western toad and rough-skinned salamander. Believe it or not both species are known for their ability to secrete toxins through their skin so that predators leave them alone.”

Zartan mumbled under his breath. “No one cares about your lizard fetish.”

“Well, just to be clear here, son. They’re not lizards. Each one is an amphibian. Reptiles like lizards have scaly-skin and claws. Amphibians don’t. Listen up. You might actually learn something.”

I can’t believe this lamebrain heard me. I know what he’s trying to do. He’s keeping us from talking to each other about our missions. The Joes are craftier than I thought.



“Now, if you want to know about some reptile species, here’s a fun fact. The Cascades are home to both the Northern and the Southern Alligator Lizards as well as the Northern Pacific Rattlesnake. Their genus and species names….” Skidmark continued to drone on and on. It was going to be a long trip.

Wednesday, May 29, 2019

Society's Cesspool, Book 3 Chapter 3

Chapter 3

Lolita and Carlos completed their car ride with the Headman in silence while tied-up and locked in the trunk of a Lincoln Town Car.  The Headman needed time to think about his next move and also wanted to be sure that his Headhunters had cleared the basement of the Vargus Syndicate’s apartment building before doing anything else.  He had become paranoid about a possible hit on his life ever since the sniper attack at the loading dock.  The Vargus’ are dead.  Gristle and I killed them ourselves.  But who else were they working with?
He had more questions than answers at this point in time and wasn’t sure where he should go with his soon-to-be new business partners.  He knew that the feds were probably checking traffic camera footage as he drove and he needed to find a secure location in which to lose their surveillance. Then he remembered the tunnels.  He knocked on the glass partitioning between the front and back of the limousine.  His second in command promptly lowered it.
“Yes, boss?”
“Take me to the place Danimal.”  His chauffeur knew the code to be for the network of tunnels connecting his old neighborhood to the subway system.  The place also had an underground garage to ditch their car and egress to safety away from the prying eyes of the feds.
“Right away maan.  Shall I call ahead for an escort?”  The Headman chuckled every time he heard the word “escort” as it elicited memories of many of the trashy girls he had been with over the years.  Then he refocused on the real meaning.
“Just request Alpha and Epsilon in plain clothes for our rendezvous.”
“Will do boss.”  The silence was broken suddenly by the sound of pounding in the trunk.
“And would you do something about the rats in the trunk?”  Gristle nodded and pressed a red button on the center console. The Headman heard a groan come from his passengers hidden behind his seat and then silence.
*     *     *     *
It had taken Burnout several days to weed through his contacts and gather some useable intel of the Headhunters organization.  His latest bit of information led him to the parking lot of Bacro Industries in a small suburb of Hartford, Connecticut.  It seemed like an odd place for the Headman and his cronies to set up shop, but it had been his most promising lead to date. He parked his Harley in a numbered spot and proceeded to enter the building through its main entrance.  He was greeted by an upbeat and mildly attractive receptionist seated behind a higher-than-average hardwood desk.
“Welcome to Bacro Industries sir.  How can I assist you today?”
The Dreadnok spy had taken measures to blend in with the area trading in his gang attire for a two-piece suit and designer sunglasses.  He flashed a charming smile at the young woman before introducing himself.
“Good afternoon to you as well.  I am here in reference to the advertisement placed on your webpage regarding a ceramic engineer.  Am I in the right place?”
“Let me check into that for you Mr..?”
The name is Jones.  Doctor Walter Jones.”  The secretary took down his name and searched through her database to locate the correct contact liaison.
“OK, thanks.  You’ll be meeting with Doctor Randolph Frankenstein.”  The twisted look on the man’s face spoke volumes.  “Oh don’t be concerned.  That’s the normal response to his name.  And yes, we do actually have our own resident Doctor Frankenstein, but he prefers to be addressed as Hotwire.”
“Got it.”
“Have a seat and I’ll let him know that you’re here.  Can I get you something to drink while you wait?”  The well-dressed man waved her off with a smile and sat down to peruse the latest issue of Motorsport.  A short time later a buzzer went off at the secretary’s desk.  “Yes, doctor.  I’ll escort him in to see you.  Follow me, Dr. Jones.”
The pair passed through the security door and down the hallway to a door labeled Conference Room.  Upon entering, Dr. Jones was greeted by a younger man with wild hair wearing a white lab coat.  “Welcome, Doctor Jones. It’s a pleasure to finally meet you. I am quite familiar with your work on the thermodynamics of organic ceramics.  Please have a seat.”
*     *     *     *
The mechanic looked around the newly retrofitted assembly line.  His expertise combined with the funding of the Headman had accomplished a somewhat impossible task in record time. The next stop on his checklist was to check the manufacturing machinery for the purification and refinement of the street drugs that the Headhunters were pedaling. His employer wanted to be able to synthesize his product as soon as possible since the costs of importing the raw materials or finished products from foreign countries was not only expensive but deadly to the overall life span us their potential clientele. As he passed through the doorway of the main processing room he was greeted by another familiar face.
“Oh, good afternoon.  You’re the Chemist...correct?”  The man dressed in a white lab coat and donning a surgical mask pulled it down from his mouth to address the other man.
“Yeah, that’s me.  It’s been awhile, Mechanic.  Who would have thought ten years ago that we would still be working for Declan?  I was confident that he would have caught a bullet by now.”  The burlier rugged-looking man shrugged with indifference.
“Honestly, it makes little difference to me.  In this profession, you don’t get too attached to people and there will always be someone else willing to profit at the misfortune of another.  So, what’s your assessment of the machinery?  Does it meet your specifications?”
“I’ve only just started to look them over, but this is leaps and bounds above anything I’ve observed with the competition.  This is some high-end hardware.”
“Well, the boss did say to spare no expense.  So, can I assume at the moment that everything is status quo in the department?”  The chemist picked up a clipboard from a nearby counter and glanced over it quickly before replying.
“Do we have an ETA on the centrifuge and crystallization extractors? Without them, I can’t fully evaluate the workings.”  The Mechanic nodded and checked the screen of his cellular device.  After several moments of scrolling, he too replied.
“DHL shipping report says they’re in transit with a delivery time between two and six this afternoon.”
“Excellent!”
“Alright, I’ll send someone up with the equipment to find you once they have arrived.  So, if you would excuse me I need to see to some other things.  Good seeing you.”  The mechanic offered his hand to shake, but the chemist politely declined.
“No offense buddy, but I don’t do handshakes.  It’s a lab thing.” Once again the mechanic shrugged and exited the room.  His checklist listed the lower levels, the wi-fi access, and the fueling station outside.  It was going to be another long day.  He closed his eyes envisioning how nice it was going to be once this project was complete and he was relaxing with a cold alcoholic beverage in hand on a beach in Bora Bora for the next three months.  He loved his job.
*     *     *     *
“So Doctor Jones, I am interested in hearing your thoughts on using industrial strength ceramics in an organic capacity.  The job focuses on and around the development of biodegradable containers to store and deliver fertilizers and insecticides gradually over a typical growing season.  We hope to be the first company to do this in an ecologically-friendly and conservative way.  The idea is to make something that will leave behind no harmful contaminants.”
Burnout tried to convey as much interest in the project as possible.  The job sounded dreadful compared to the work he regularly did.  The speed junky preferred automobiles and motorcycles and had dabbled in ceramic engineering to produce parts for weight reduction, but never in this capacity.  He began to wonder if he would be able to feign his skills and actually land the job, but Zandar had successfully created a fully-searchable online persona just in case this opportunity ever arose.  The Dreadnok nation was always planning ahead.
“That is a truly ambitious undertaking on the part of Bacro Industries and something that I would be excited to partake in.  I have done some research using chitin-based sealers that breakdown in the presence of 45% or more humidity.  I could envision one of these substances being used to contain the substance.  The challenge will come from the proper pairing of the container and the delivery system so that they don’t contaminate or deactivate each other.”
“Interesting idea, but don’t worry Doctor Jones.  Man, this is really weird.  Do you mind if I call you Indiana?” The undercover Dreadnok infiltrator smirked...he almost expected the comment at some time from the overly eccentric interviewer.
“Whatever, but if you start throwing a ball and asking me to fetch it, we’re going to have a problem.”
“Fair enough.  So when can you start? Is tomorrow too soon?”  Burnout was partially surprised and it showed on his face. “I’m kidding, of course, I still have to run your credentials passed the big guy.  He has the final say on all things hiring.”  Burnout nodded his understanding while regaining his composure.  “Give me a day or two and I’ll be in touch.  I have a good feeling about you Indy.”
The make-believe Doctor Jones extended his hand to his host. “I look forward to hearing from you.”  The interview ended with the two men shaking hands and Hotwire showing him to the door.  Chitin-based water-soluble sealants.  That’s ingenious!  Why hadn’t I thought of that? The biochemist was truly intrigued by the prospects.  If this was his idea for the proposed agricultural project, what other ideas might he have in regards to the F.A.C.E. program?

Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Current works

Good day fellow readers,

      I am writing to you all today to provide you with some insight as to my current projects.  My novel (working title) "the End of Realms, is still being reviewed by a potential publishing company.  In the meantime, I have been working tediously on four additional manuscripts.
     Book Three of the Armed and Dangerous series in coming along nicely.  I am trying to tie up all the loose ends that the previous two books have created.  PFC Kordos is back, this time as an active member of the DEF, a division of the G.I.Joe team created to tackle the threat of the various drug cartels stationed around the world.  The main threat is that of the Headhunters, led by the infamous Headman.  Expect cameo appearances from Cobra Commander, the Dreadnoks, and even the Eco-Warriors.  This will be the final chapter in the story arc and hopefully, leave room for future stand-alone stories.
      In addition to G.I.Joe fan fiction, I have also been working on a second book to continue the adventures of Jeff Larson, the last Golden Lancer, and the hero featured in my fantasy novel.  My opinion is this: Once you finish one story, the next one is simply waiting to be written.  With just over six chapters written, it is shaping up nicely.
      I have also been toying around with a Christmas Carol type tale as well as a new children's story about a pet tarantula.
     Well enough about me for now.

Cheers!
Drakov

Monday, May 13, 2019

Society's Cesspool Chapter 2 Book 3

                                                                        Chapter 2
The hit had been thorough and after several hours of investigation, fifteen bodies were recovered from on or around the pier.  Three additional bodies had been dredged out of the bay. Many of the victim’s remains showed fewer than two bullet wounds, and two of the cadavers had their brains splattered by what was most likely a sniper rifle.
“This was a planned assault and ambush. Body armor or not, these men never stood a chance.”  Bulletproof placed a laser-emitting device on the ground and adjusted its trajectory to match the suspected flight plan of the head shot that had dropped the body laying before him.  “There were two well-concealed sniper nests. One there, the other one there.” He swung the laser beam and allowed it to land on the two sights while instructing Shockwave and Claymore to inspect the areas for any other clues as to the identities of the shooters.  “They planned for every possible scenario. Including their enemies possible escape plan.”  He then pointed to a dead body slumped over the steering wheel of the speedboat still fastened to the lower pier.  
A few minutes later, Shockwave returned with several spent bullet casings in his hands. “I found several more of those distinct bullet casings up there. Each has the engraving HH on it.”
HH? I’ll eat my flack vest if that doesn’t stand for the Headhunters. Are they really that arrogant?”  Mayday inquired.  
“You’ve seen the footage pulled by Bombstrike.  Do you need any other affirmation?  The Headman is a pompous and arrogant individual.  He would want everyone to know that his organization had taken out the Vargus Syndicate.  He’s sending them all a clear message.”
“What’s that?  That he’s a fashion disaster?”  Muskrat’s joke elicited a slight chuckle from those in attendance, but little more.
“Be that as it may.  He clearly isn’t hiding this hit and truth be told, if this is his level of accuracy, then he’s more dangerous than ever.”  The Major’s solemn response was supported by sheer body count alone.
Bulletproof, I found some more of those DHM bullet casings behind these crates.”  The team went over to investigate “This appears to be the escape route used by the Headman and Gristle.  The trail of spent casings continues off to the left and then back into the center of the road.  Tire marks match that of a Lincoln Navigator with twenty-two-inch tires. Luxurious, but still able to blend in easily with the neighborhood. The other vehicle as you can see, a top-of-the-line Cadillac Escalade, never left the meeting zone.” Cutter’s assessment made sense.
“If you ask me, it looks more like swiss cheese.”
“Again with the jokes Muskrat?  Did anyone find any identification on any of these other goons?”
“What can I say, Major?  It’s just who I am.”
“Anyone else?”
“Negative Major.  The last guy didn’t even have fingerprints.”  Longarm’s response unnerved the veteran soldier.
“Well, we know that these two unfortunate souls are Manual Vargus and his little brother, Victor.  These guys have been on the DEA’s radar for nearly a decade, but we have no record of the rest of these guys.”
“They’re probably just hired muscle.  Come on Bulletproof, it’s not all bad.  Maybe the Headhunters did us all a favor by taking these guys out.”
“I’d like to agree with you, Muskrat, but this isn’t good.  With the Vargus Syndicate out of the picture, the stage is now set for a turf war involving rival drug factions for control of their area.  We also don’t know who, if anyone from the Vargus Syndicate, survived this bloodbath. Any survivors will most likely regroup and seek revenge.
I would wager that the Headman is far from done here and will be making another play for dominance over the region if he isn’t already orchestrating another hit as we speak.  Bombstrike, where are we with the satellite tracking?”
The attractive blonde-haired, forward observer looked up briefly from her computer screen to address the Major’s question.  “Give me another couple of minutes to splice all of this together for you, sir.” She went back to clicking away on her keyboard.  “Laserbeams! I got it! Take a look at this. By triangulating the signal of the twelve tactical and government satellites in the area, and downloading their content which I ran through using a face and vehicle-recognition algorithm.”
“Layman's terms Bombstrike, please.”
“Alright, alright. I forgot that you guys don’t speak my lingo.  I was able to piece together a time-lapse video of the Lincoln Navigator’s route after it left the gunfight.”
“Well, let’s see it.  Where did our suspects end up?”  
“The last piece of footage I was able to retrieve put the vehicle heading east on Route 80, crossing the GWB and heading into Connecticut.  But, that wasn’t before they made a pit stop about eight blocks from here.”
“Excellent work, Bombstrike!  Do you have a twenty?”
“No, but what I do have is a satellite image of the building they entered and when they came back out.”  The technical prowess of the computer hacker had given the team a clear view of the last place the Headman and his cronies had been.  “Upon cross-referencing the image with real estate information and known databases of property sales, I was able to determine that the building landlord was none other than our dearly-departed dastardly drug demon, Manual Vargas.  I love alliteration!”
Many in close proximity to the final comment rolled their eyes.
“The address please?”
“Oh yeah, 248 Port Street.”
“Well, that means one of two things.”  Bulletproof’s glance was enough to refocus the team and was stern in his delivery.
“Yeah, that’s either the location of our next crime scene or where we’ll find Headman’s newest allies.”  I was quick in my assessment of the situation and the other members of the D.E.F. nodded in agreement.  
“We’ll need to get a tactical team over to that address pronto.  If there’s anyone there that’s still alive, they might be able to help us piece together the next steps in the Headhunter’s plan.

Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Fantasy novel, "The End of Realms," possibly moving forward

Hello all,
       Great prospective news.  I received a letter from a publishing company regarding a recent query letter.  An Indie company I will not name presently has expressed an interest in reading my entire manuscript.  I have in turn provided it to them for review.  One of three things can happen from this point moving forward:
     1.  The manuscript can still be rejected.
     2.   It will be accepted pending recommended revisions.
     3.   It will be accepted "as is" with edits.

Either way, it is an exciting time for me as an author and I can not thank my audience, friends and family enough for their support.  Here's to staying positive.

Cheers!

Drakov

Friday, March 22, 2019

Book 3 EXCLUSIVE!! First full chapter "Society's Cesspool"



Chapter 1


The Headman’s adrenaline was pumping. In between labored breaths, his mind continued to replay the events that had just transpired. Did I just take out the prime members of the Vargus Syndicate? This is insane!” Gristle looked over at his boss who was deep in thought. He was speaking, but the Headman wasn’t hearing him as his ears were still ringing from the barrage of close-range gunfire.


“Boss? Boss?! Are you hearing me maan?”


“What?” Declan cleared his thoughts and refocused on the situation at hand. By now his trusted chauffeur and bodyguard was yelling quite loudly.


“Where to now, boss?”


“We need to finish the job and quick.” His second in command nodded in agreement and knew exactly what he meant. The black SUV though speeding at first, had now assumed the correct speed limit as it turned the corner leading into the industrial complex a half a mile away. They needed to blend in and not to attract any unwanted attention.


“Turn left here. Then pull up into that driveway.”


“Right away boss.” They had driven through the complex in order to emerge in a more residential area. The building in front of them was little more than a run-down tenement building housing some forty section-eight apartments. The front of the building housed three small businesses: a shoe repair shop, a UPS store, and a family-owned bodega.


“Seriously, who gets their shoes repaired in this day and age?” Old man Vargus was very traditional in his upbringing. His nostalgia for the ways of the old country had him establishing storefronts that were relevant back home forty years ago, but not so much here in the U.S.


The shoe repair shop had been his intended entrance, but it was well past regular store hours which meant he would have to find another ingress. He walked around the back of the building until he came upon a service ramp and a security door with a keypad intercom. The ringing in his ears had almost subsided. One’s initial impression of the building would be that of a fortified business, but the Headman knew differently. Back in his younger years, he too was running product for the Vargus Syndicate and had become quite familiar with their operations. He flipped up the keypad and after trying several four digit codes, the internal door lock clicked allowing him easy access inside.


“Cover me.”


He pulled out his chromed revolver and stepped one foot inside. Gristle instinctively reached for his employer’s shoulder.


“Are you crazy boss? You’re going to get yourself killed!” He took his pointer finger and made a small circular-motion on the side of his left temple.


“Please, Danimal. If anyone was going to shoot at us, they would have done it already. All of the Vargus heavy was eliminated back at the piers. The only ones that are going to be left here are his accountants and spies. You know...the exact kind of people we would want joining up with us.”


“And if they don’t?”


The Headman released the locking mechanism on his revolver barrel in order to examine and count his bullets. After a brief pause, he spun the barrel and then flicked his wrist to snap it shut.


“Then they’ll be joining their former employers in the morgue. Enough talk, stay here and keep a lookout. Send in four stormtroopers as soon as they get here. Have the other headhunters follow regular deployment procedures and secure the premises.”


“Will do boss, but I still think you should wait.”


The Headman scoffed at the thought, then slipped quietly inside. The interior was well-lit and littered with dozens of large cardboard boxes and several large wooden shipping crates. A card table was set up in the far corner with poker chips and three face-down hands laid out on the surface. The place seemed abandoned, but once more recalling his past experiences, the Headman knew better. Seconds later, his phone trilled with a new text message. They’re here. Less than a minute later, four heavily-armored stormtroopers entered the building to catch up with his current location which was no more than a yard or so away from the door.


“Excellent! You guys were quick. Follow me and stay sharp!” He used the two fingers of his left hand to point at his eyes and the area in front of him. They immediately flanked their leader at his six, three and nine, but allowed him to keep point. The floorplan was almost exactly as he had remembered it nearly eight years ago, and he had no problem finding and undoing the latch leading to the lower levels. He pushed the faux wall to his right which exposed a locked door. He stepped to the right of the doorway using the door frame to shield his body before knocking. Thud, thud, de thud thud!


The guard slid back the peephole cover. “Who is it? And be quick about it.”


“Your new best friend.” The well-dressed man answered coyly although he still remained obscured from view.


There was a brief pause before the locked flipped and the door opened outwards. A familiar-looking man stood in the doorway with his firearm drawn. Immediately, the stormtroopers cocked their weapons showering the man with four well-placed green laser points. The guard wisely threw up his left arm while slowly bending down to place his pistol on the floor.


“Don’t shoot! Don’t shoot! I’m unarmed!”


The Headman stepped forward and placed the muzzle of his pistol into the man’s chest, but didn’t fire. After a brief moment, he removed the tip of his gun from the man and motioned for him to stand up.


“Well hello, Carlito. Fancy seeing you here. How long has it been? Five? Eight? Ten years is it?” The man shifted uncomfortably from one foot to the other, not sure of his fate just yet.


“Relax amigo, I’m not going to kill you. Well, at least not yet. In fact, I might not kill you at all if you can prove that you’re beneficial to me.”


Carlito leaned forward to peer at the well-dressed man with the mask a bit more closely. “Declan? Is that you?” The drug lord once more placed the muzzle of his gun into the man’s chest and scowled.


“It is, but I no longer go by that name. I’m the Headman now and you’d be smart to quickly learn that.”


“What...what are you doing here? Have you rejoined the syndicate?” The man holding him at gunpoint began to laugh.


“No, my dear friend. I AM the Syndicate now. So say hello to your new boss. The Vargus boys had an... unfortunate accident.” After a slight bow, he turned his gaze back to Carlito who seemed completely surprised by the proclamation. “You seem perplexed. You mean to tell me that you didn’t know?”


“What’s to know? The Vargus boys rarely come here. Everything here is handled by Lolita and Chavo.” It was now Carlito’s turn to observe the look of surprise on the Headman’s face. “Should I let them know that you’re here?”


The Headman pointed towards the camera directly to his left. “I’m sure they already know.” A moment later he heard the faint click of a gun’s safety from among the shadows.


“I know you’re there. It doesn’t have to go down this way. We can all be allies, or the lot of you can all be dead.” Unbeknownst to his would-be-assailants, ten heavily-armored headhunters had silently made their way inside and already had their night vision sights trained on the mystery shooter. “Besides, if you were going to shoot me, you would have done so already. I’m sure you know of me and that I can be a more than reasonable employer.”


From the shadows, a voice replied. “Fair enough. I’m putting down my gun. Please, don’t shoot.”


“Very well.” The remaining lights in the room suddenly went up and the Headman could now clearly see the person previously addressing him from the shadows.


“Chavo? I presume.” The man straightened up at the sound of his man. He stood roughly five foot eight and was dressed in a long leather trench coat. Most likely kevlar-lined. He couldn’t be more than twenty-five with barely a five o’clock shadow of facial hair. Perched on top of his head were what appeared to be night-vision goggles. He in turn offered his own bow to the Headman and a second later, the lights went out leaving the room in complete darkness.


“Do you really think me that naive, that I would show you my face Headman and allow you to live?” This time the voice came from another corner of the dark room.


There was a single gunshot followed by the sound of at least ten silenced rounds. Thuck, Thuck, Thuck! Then there was a loud thud. A flashbang went off a second later and then the lights went back on. The Headman stood over the prone body of Chavo, his gun placed up against his left temple. Two stormtroopers in night-vision goggles held a Hispanic-woman with dark-hair and fair skin at gunpoint, while the would-be sniper laid dead in a puddle of his own blood in the far right corner of the room.


“You would have been smart to shoot me when I entered the room instead of waiting. A pointless game of cat and mouse. Now, you’ll all pay with your lives for wasting my time!”


“Mercy, mercy, please!” The cries came from the woman across the way. He’s my little brother. I’ll do anything, just don’t kill him.” The cartel lord turned to regard the attractive young woman never once removing the muzzle of his gun from her brother’s temple.


“Senorita Lolita, I assume?” The woman nodded. “I’ve been told you use the moniker Lethal Lolita. What happened darling? Did you think I was some two-bit punk?”


Being held at gunpoint, she could do little more than shrug.


“Bring her to me, but secure her hands first.” The two stormtroopers zip-tied the woman’s hands and patted her down for any possible hidden weapons before forcing her over to the Headman. “So, you’re this ugly, little thing’s sister? How did that happen? Different mother?” He eyed the exaggerated curves of her body then caressed the side of her face. She flinched at his touch, but wisely did not pull away from her captors.


“Please, my brother knows not what he has done, but he can still be a valuable asset to you. You will need him if you wish to know the location of the Vargus’ other real estate and routing numbers to their offshore banking accounts.” The well-dressed man chuckled.


“I don’t need him, just the thumb from his left hand and his right eye. Both of which can be taken easily from his cold corpse.”


“That is true Papi, but if you allow him to live, I can persuade the remaining members of the Syndicate to swear their loyalty to you and the Headhunters.” The Headman stared pensively at the young woman then back at the man at the end of his pistol. Without so much as a warning, he pulled back his arm and pistol-whipped the kneeling man, knocking him out cold.


“Tie the two of them up and search the location. We don’t have a lot of time before the feds are onto us. Take anything of value and torch the place!”


“No! Please. There are innocent families living above us. Women and children who know nothing of this organization. You would kill them all?” Lolita pulled away from her captors in an attempt to assault the arrogant, well-dressed man. Two semi-automatic gun muzzles were immediately pressed to either side of her head and a third in between her ample breasts.


“Do you seriously think I care?” The woman quickly halted her advance and lowered her voice to a seductive whisper.


“But why destroy the place? It is actually quite lucrative. I can sign the lease over to someone in your organization. No one else has to die today.”


He pondered her words for a moment. He was first and foremost a business man and any additional collateral would be valuable. “You make a good point. Gentlemen, simply remove any trace of the Syndicate. Then we must definitely split.”


“Yessir Headman!” The stormtroopers all answered in unison and began the process of clearing the rest of the underground rooms.


He turned back to the curvaceous young woman standing before him. “They live... for now. As do you, but you’re both coming with me. There are several things... that we need to discuss.”

Friday, February 15, 2019

Book 3 "Society's Cesspool" Teaser (Extended Version)


Chapter 1
The Headman’s adrenaline was pumping.  In between labored breaths, his mind continued to replay the events that had just transpired.  Did I just take out the prime members of the Vargus Syndicate?  This is insane!” Gristle looked over at his boss who was deep in thought.  He was speaking, but the Headman wasn’t hearing him as his ears were still ringing from the barrage of close-range gunfire.  
“Boss?  Boss?! Are you hearing me maan?”
“What?”  Declan cleared his thoughts and refocused on the situation at hand. By now his trusted chauffeur and bodyguard was yelling quite loudly.
“Where to now, boss?”
“We need to finish the job and quick.”  His second in command nodded in agreement and knew exactly what he meant.  The black SUV though speeding at first, had now assumed the correct speed limit as it turned the corner leading into the industrial complex a half a mile away.  They needed to blend in and not to attract any unwanted attention.
“Turn left here.  Then pull up into that driveway.”
“Right away boss.”  They had driven through the complex in order to emerge in more of a residential area. The building in front of them was little more than a run-down tenement building housing some forty section-eight apartments.  The front of the building housed three small businesses, a shoe repair shop, a UPS store, and a family-owned bodega.
“Seriously, who gets their shoes repaired in this day and age?”  Old man Vargus was very traditional in his upbringing. His nostalgia for the ways of the old country had him establishing storefronts that were relevant back home, but not so much here in the U.S.
The shoe repair shop had been his intended entrance but it was well past regular store hours which meant he would have to find another ingress.  He walked around the back of the building until he came upon a service ramp and a security door with a keypad intercom. The ringing in his ears had almost ceased. The initial impression was that of a fortified business,  but the Headman knew differently. Back in his younger years, he too was running product for the Vargus Syndicate and had become quite familiar with their operations.  He flipped up the keypad and after trying several four digit codes, the internal door lock clicked allowing him easy access inside.
“Cover me.”  
He pulled out his chromed revolver and stepped one foot inside.  Gristle instinctively reached for his employer’s shoulder.
“Are you crazy boss?  You’re going to get yourself killed!”  He took his pointer finger and made a small circular-motion on the side of his temple.
“Please, Danimal.  If anyone was going to shoot at us, they would have done it already.  All of the Vargus heavy was eliminated back at the piers. The only ones that are going to be left here are his accountants and spies.  You know...the exact kind of people we would want joining up with us.”
“And if they don’t?”
The Headman released the locking mechanism on his revolver barrel in order to examine and count his bullets.  After a brief pause, he spun the barrel and then flicked his wrist to snap it shut.
“Then they’ll be joining their former employers in the morgue.  Enough talk, keep a lookout and send in four stormtroopers as soon as they get here. Have the other headhunters follow regular deployment procedures.”
“Will do boss, but I still think you should wait.”
The Headman scoffed at the thought, then slipped quietly inside. The interior was well-lit and littered with dozens of large cardboard boxes and several large wooden shipping crates.  A card table was set up in the far corner with poker chips and three face-down hands laid out on the surface. The place seemed abandoned, but once more using his past experiences, the Headman knew better.  Seconds later, his phone trilled with a new text message. They’re here.  Less than a minute later, four heavily-armored stormtroopers entered the building to catch up with his current location which was no more than a yard or so away from the door.
“Excellent! You guys were quick. Follow me and stay sharp!”  he used the two fingers of his left hand to point at his eyes. They immediately flanked their leader at his six, three and nine, but allowed him to keep point.  The floorplan was almost exactly as he had remembered it nearly eight years ago, and he had no problem finding and undoing the latch leading to the lower levels.  He pushed the faux wall to his right which exposed a locked door. He stepped to the right of the doorway using the door frame to shield his body and knocked.
The guard slid back the peephole cover.  “Who is it? And be quick about it.”
“Your new best friend.”
There was a brief pause before the locked flipped and the door opened outwards. A  familiar-looking man stood in the doorway with his firearm drawn. Immediately, the stormtroopers cocked their weapons showering the man with four well-placed laser targets.  The guard wisely threw up his left arm while slowly bending down to place his pistol on the floor.
“Don’t shoot!  Don’t shoot! I’m unarmed!”
The Headman stepped forward and placed the muzzle of his pistol into the man’s chest, but didn’t fire. After a brief moment, he removed the tip of his gun from the man motioning for him to stand up..
“Well hello, Carlito.  Fancy seeing you here. How long has it been?  Five? Eight? Ten years is it?” The man shifted uncomfortably from one foot to the other not sure of his fate just yet.  
“Relax amigo, I’m not going to kill you. Well, at least not yet.  In fact, I might not kill you at all if you can prove that you’re beneficial to me.”
Carlito leaned forward to peer at the well-dressed man with the mask a bit more closely.  “Declan? Is that you?” The drug lord once more placed the muzzle of his gun into the man’s chest and scowled.
“It is, but I no longer go by that name.  I’m the Headman now and you’d be smart to quickly learn that.”
“What...what are you doing here?  Did you rejoin the syndicate?” The man holding him at gunpoint began to laugh.
“No, my dear friend.  I AM the Syndicate now. So say hello to your new boss.  The Vargus boys had an... unfortunate accident.” After a slight bow, he turned his gaze back to Carlito who seemed completely surprised by the proclamation.  “You seem perplexed. You mean to tell me that you didn’t know?”
“What’s to know?  The Vargus boys rarely come here.  Everything here is handled by Lolita and Chavo.” It was now Carlito’s turn to observe the look of surprise on the Headman’s face.  “Should I let them know that you’re here?”
The Headman pointed towards the camera directly to his left.  “I’m sure they already know.” A moment later he heard the faint click of a gun’s safety from among the shadows.  
.”

Friday, February 1, 2019

Book Three

Hello everyone,
     I have been busy as of late in terms of my writing.  I am working through final revisions on my fantasy novel, "The End of Realms," and will hopefully be getting my query and sample chapters out to prospective publishers in the next week or so.  But since all work and no play makes Drakov a dull boy,  I have also been indulging myself in some fun-filled G.I.Joe fan fiction.  I have decided that even though Kindle worlds is no more, I will still be writing the third book in "the Armed and Dangerous" trilogy.  The current title for this WIP is Society's Cesspool, and you guessed it.  It will be picking up right where "Enter the Headhunters," left off.

     The DEF task force has been called out to investigate a recent hit on the Vargus Syndicate, a powerful drug cartel prominent in the tri-state area.  All the team has to go on is some blurry surveillance footage and spent bullet casings engraved with the initials HH and DHM.  The stage is set for an epic turf war on American soil.  Will anyone be able to stop the Headman and his band of ruthless Headhunters?  And what of the super secretive Cobra organization slithering in the background?  Only time will tell in this action-packed conclusion to the series.

     The story has been coming together nicely with roughly three chapters already written and my fingers have not been able to keep up with the thoughts running through my mind.  If all goes well and time permits in my busy schedule, I envision this new book being available by early August.  I will post more information on this and my other projects as it becomes available.

     As always, thanks for your support because without each and every one of you reading these stories, I would be nothing more than an unknown, but highly-entertained unread author.

Cheers,

Drakov

Friday, January 18, 2019

The history of "the End of Realms."

        I understand that most of my readers associate me with G.I.Joe, but I am also a fantasy writer who is an avid admirer of authors like Tolkien, Salvatore, Cunningham, Gygax, King, and Greenberg (to name a few).  I started writing the above book at the age of seventeen while working nights as a gas station attendant in Glen Rock, NJ.  The original hand-written manuscript is a total of thirty-seven pages and still in my possession after all these years.  I did an initial edit of the piece about four years later and typed it up on my computer at the time, save it to at least three floppy discs, and forgot about it.  I revisited it about two years ago and it has grown into a two-hundred and fifty-page novel and roughly 50,000 words.
      I have created at least five new noteworthy characters and feel that I have further developed the main characters to a point where they are no longer just fictitious people, but ones I feel others can connect to on other levels.
      This has been a labor of love for me as I would really like to have this published the traditional route by someone who markets fantasy books similar to the Forgotten Realms.  I will be spending the next month or so editing it chapter by chapter in an attempt to further polish and improve it. I am currently revising chapter four.  The prologue and chapter one have been posted for review and comment if anyone would like to share their thoughts. first impressions would be greatly appreciated.

     SynopsisWhen Jeff Larson landed a dream date with the most desirable girl in his high school class, he could never have imagined that his date would end in him being transported into another world. One where an evil blue-eyed beast has been awakened and forming an army of magical creatures hell-bent on complete domination over all the realms.  In the midst of the chaos, Jeff's link to an ancient line of heroic paladins known as the Golden Lancers will be revealed, and with the help of the wizard/warrior dwarf, Mamatar, and some other newly found friends, be called upon to be their champion.

Cheers!
Drakov

Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Chapter 1 Teaser "The End of Realms." Hell Night

Chapter 1:  HELL NIGHT
            In a faraway realm, Jeff Larson had just entered Georgina’s Italian Ristorante, the most beautiful girl he had ever met, clinging to his arm.  She could talk a lot and at times she seemed to drone on and on, but she was absolutely gorgeous.  Even though she had captured the eye of every man she had walked past, it was at this moment, that he started to believe his mother’s words, that looks really weren’t everything.
            As they sat down for dinner, she started critiquing the menu items.
            “Oh my god! The broiled lobster Oreganata is to die for! You should order that and then you and I can split the stuffed mushrooms and Porterhouse Pizzaiola.”
            He glanced down at the prices and swallowed hard. 
            “I think I’ll pass, I’m more of a chicken parmigiana type of guy, but you can get whatever you like.”
            She rolled her eyes but didn’t miss a beat.
            “Come on Jeff, live a little will you?”
            It was then that the waitress approached the table and began to recite the daily dinner specials.  Evelyn asked at least a dozen questions before finally deciding on a salad and the Spiedini Alla Romana.  Dinner arrived in a timely manner and Jeff was surprised that she could eat anything due to her constant conversation.  They eventually ordered dessert and cappuccinos.  Jeff calculated the cost in his head and realized that he had not brought enough cash to cover the bill.  The whole time she continued to talk about herself. The car her parents would be buying her and their vacation home in the Hamptons. In between, she would complain about random aspects of the dinner. He barely noticed that she had changed the topic until it was almost too late.
             “Why don’t you take me to the movies later? There’s a late show at eleven, and then maybe we can go ice skating at the 24-hour rink in Hillsfare.  My friends say it’s great. Well?”
She tapped her spoon on the table to get his attention.
 “Excuse me...What are you waiting for?  You know... I don’t go out with just anybody!”
            “Huh?” Jeff stammered.
             “Haven’t you been listening to a word I’ve said?  Oh, Men! You’re all the same.  Stop staring at my tits and let’s go do something fun!”
            Jeff simply smiled and nodded as he finished the last bite of his raspberry chocolate cheesecake.  After paying the bill with his credit card, and listening to her complain about tipping the waitress, he finally led the annoying, ungrateful girl back to the only reason she had agreed to this date in the first place, his mint, black on black, 1969 Chevy Camaro SS.  When they got into the car, Evelyn reached into her purse for a pack of cigarettes and a pink lighter.
            “Hey!  You’re not smoking in my car!”
“Oh, don’t be such a pansy, Jeff!”  He didn’t much care for her choice of vocabulary and even less for her actions which left him feeling quite insulted.
            “I’ve spent countless hours and a lot of hard-earned money restoring this car.  Have a little respect, will you?”  She thought for a moment to confront him, but the scowl on his face made her reconsider.
“Fine!” she scoffed, as she flicked her smoke back into the pack before slamming them both angrily into her purse.  This was the precursor to what would be some awkward silence.
 What a date this had been. This was definitely not what he had had in mind.  All she did was bitch, moan, whine and complain.  Her dinner was prepared with too much garlic, her soda was not the correct temperature, and her server was too slow at removing her finished plates.  It became apparent that she truly didn’t appreciate anything.  She was nothing more than a vapid, self-centered, insensitive little brat, who was in desperate need of a reality check. 
It was at this point in time where he seriously considered just dropping her off back at her house.  It wouldn’t be too hard as both destinations could be reached from traveling on the same highway. As he hit the right signal lever and turned onto the ramp for Route 143 West, he reached for the knob on the stereo in an attempt to dispel the silent treatment initiated by her recent tantrum.   He figured it wouldn’t last long and had a feeling this wouldn’t be the only time tonight that he would feel the need to turn up the tunes. As the lack of conversation persisted, he began to sing along to the music.
            Along the side of the road, from atop a huge pine tree, Sawertez, the great owl, loomed.  Although considered diminutive in size in his realm, the owl appeared much larger here. The location dweomer of his recently cast spell had indicated that ahead of him on that very road, was the one he was sent to retrieve.
But how would he do it?  And why was this particular human so important? And what of the other human in the strange metallic capsule?”
  He ruffled his thick, dusty feathers, loosening some of the older encrusted cobwebs, opened his mighty beak and produced a piercing screech as if an arrow had been shot straight through his beating heart.
The bird’s cry coursed with magical energy causing the sky around him to slowly grow darker as unfriendly storm clouds formed mysteriously on the not so distant horizon.  The previously, brightly-shining, full moon was quickly enveloped by the fast-approaching storm.  There was a flash of lightning and a deafening rumble of thunder as the darkened skies opened and the rain began to fall.  Smaller droplets quickly became a deluge as the storm grew in intensity.
            “Aw, man. Come on!  I just washed my car!” 
Jeff protested as he turned on the windshield wipers and the raindrops started to form tiny puddles on the freshly polished paint.
            And then, the totally expected response from Evelyn.
“Will you relax? It’s only a little rain. Besides, the movie starts in twenty minutes.  So, you’d better step on it if we‘re going to make it there with enough time to get popcorn and another soda.  You know how much I love popcorn with extra butter, don’t you?  John, Lara, and Kristin are probably there already.”
             Jeff flipped on his high beams, increased the speed of the windshield wipers, and once more reached to turn up the stereo.  The road ahead of him, however, didn’t look right.  It was too dark, too eerie, and he got an awful feeling deep down in his gut.  As he dropped the transmission into third gear to round the approaching turn before the next incline, he suddenly made out the outline of a downed power line and the darkness immediately made more sense.  The electrical line was blocking his way and bouncing wildly over both lanes of the westbound side.
             “We’re going to have to turn around.  The movies will have to wait.”
As they approached the live wire that was arcing and dancing like a firecracker in the middle of the road, Evelyn began to gripe.
            “But you promised!”
As he slowed the car to a stop, the moisture in the air caused the carbureted vehicle to stall.  As Jeff desperately tried to restart the car, he could see the lights of an approaching vehicle barreling up the other side of the hill, on the wrong side of the road. The headlights, however, were glowing in a strange shade of blue, unlike any color he had ever seen before. The crash seemed inevitable.  

Sawertez, the Owl King, watched with awe-filled eyes as the two vehicles seemed destined to collide.  He quickly alighted himself upon powerful wings in order to glide in closer once the inevitable accident occurred.