Underdogs are GO!

At last! Dear Reader, the Underdog Anthology is available for you to read…

the-underdog-anthology-front-and-back

In paperback or on Kindle, even a hardcover version is available if you’re feeling rich and saucy…

32 stories by nine authors across a wide range of genres – most of which are certainly not suitable for children. Sex, violence, blood, gore, booze, drugs, cowboys and smoking – this book has it all. The first anthology of Underdogs contains something for everyone and a few things that are probably for nobody. It’s a lucky dip… If you’re feeling lucky.

*You what? …/concentrates on assistant’s clicks… No, really? What is it, fucking Christmas or something? …/sigh… No matter…*

Dear Reader, apparently if you avail yourself of the ‘Look Inside’ feature from Amazon, you will be able to read my three Anthology stories in full. However, if you want to find out what happens at the end of John Duffy’s story ‘The Wheel’, you will have to buy the book…

*Oh give over… /rolls eyes…*

*******

 

the-fall-by-frank-davis
‘The Fall’ by Frank Davis

‘Til the Fat Lady Swings

“They’re at it again!”

John’s eyes briefly flicked up from his newspaper, taking in the bulk of his wife peering through the net curtains, before returning to yesterday’s racing results. You’re at it again, he thought but decided it was safer to respond with “Who are?”

“Next door.” Sheila pursed her lips. “They’re having another one of their gatherings,” she hissed.

Sheila craned up on the balls of her feet and twitched the curtain back further to get a better view. Oh how she wished they lived in something taller than a bungalow. The fence and bushes obscured most of the neighbour’s garden but she could just make out the tops of two heads moving toward the rear. Toward the shed. She could hear the low drone of their conversation but not their words. The shed door first creaked, then thumped.

She turned back toward her husband and snorted impatiently. “Are you listening to me? Next door have got people in their shed again. They’ll be burning things, you mark my words. Goodness knows what they’re up to.”

John put down the paper and reluctantly turned his attention to Sheila. It hurt to look at her; he had no idea where the beautiful, happy girl he’d married had gone to, but he suspected the spectacularly fat harridan stood in front of him had abducted and eaten her.

“I am, and I think you’re overreacting. In all likelihood it’s nothing. It’s just people living their lives.”

“Nothing?!” Sheila squealed incredulously. She brandished her notebook at him, the one she’d been detailing all their comings and goings in. “Strangers traipsing through the garden at all hours of the night, bonfires – that’s nothing? The noise and smoke? That’s nothing?” She resumed her watchful position at the window. Whatever the reasons for next door’s social gatherings, it was bound to be no good.

John caressed the plump armrest of the sofa with the palm of his hand. There was no point arguing with Sheila when she had a bonnet full of bees. He stood up and puffed out his cheeks. “I think I’ll go to The Crown.”

“Go on then, go. Leave me here alone with that lot,” Sheila spat out contemptuously to the retreating figure of John. She heard the front door rattle shut. “Coward!”

John stopped to light a cigarette before strolling into the balmy evening light. The sun was just setting and he was in no rush to get to the pub. Custom at The Crown had dwindled a lot in recent years, especially in the winter months, but there might be some in tonight. He lived in hope. In any case it was better than sitting at home with Sheila and her paranoid fantasies. Just about.

His hopes were dashed as he stubbed out the last of his smoke and entered the cool interior of the pub. In one corner a group of teenage boys stood huddled round the fruit machine, whooping and smashing buttons. In another, Tom and Barry sat silently nursing their pints, but apart from them The Crown was empty except for Alice. The landlady stood behind the bar, dressed to her usual nines, polishing glasses. She saw John and smiled broadly.

“Evening John. Usual?”

John sat on a bar stool and watched Alice pour him a pint. She always looked good, despite her advancing years. Fitter than Sheila, who was half her age. “Quiet in here,” he said. “It’s a lovely night, I thought it would be busier.”

Alice frowned and cocked her head. “No darling, just the boys’ brigade and dad’s army in tonight.” She set a full glass in front of John and took the fiver from his hand. “I’m not going to be able to retire to the Algarve on them.”

John pulled deeply on the frothy liquid; Alice always pulled a good pint.

Her long, manicured fingers wrapped round his wrist as she gave him his change. “Say, I’m dying for a whiz and a fag, John. You wouldn’t keep an eye on the bar for me whilst I pop upstairs? Len’s off night fishing, so I’m on my tod.”

Alice disappeared and John surveyed his local. Time was when The Crown had full time bar staff, and Len and Alice would sit out with the customers all evening. A time when the fruit machine’s pings and whirls were mere background noise and the kids with soft drinks sat outside. Now they made do between the two of them, with occasional staff at the weekend. For Len and Alice, Portugal couldn’t come too soon.

John sighed and sipped his pint. He was wrong; this was worse than being at home with Sheila. She may be a bit crazy but this felt like sitting in a rotting corpse. At that thought, the fruit machine burst into a frenzy, pumping out a stream of dirty coins to the teenagers’ delight.

Jackpot! John sneered to himself.

When Alice returned he bid farewell to her bright, stiff smile, and tried to ignore the hurt in her eyes that he was leaving so soon.

“Sorry Al, I only came in for one. I’ve got to get home to Sheila.”

John shrugged and laughed with embarrassment. “She thinks next door are domestic terrorists or something. I dunno.”

“Didn’t she think they were devil worshipers?” Alice tried to entice him to stay with her playful reply but John was resolved to leave.

“No, that was last week. Next week they’ll be cannibals.”

Happy to leave on Alice’s bark of amusement, John waved from the doorway before lighting a cigarette for the return journey. Darkness was now falling but the night remained warm. With any luck Sheila would be in bed by the time he got home. If he walked slowly enough.

Sheila wasn’t asleep when John got back. As he turned the corner of his road, he spotted her rapping smartly on the neighbour’s front door. He stopped and quickly retreated; he didn’t think she’d seen him.

“Fuck!” John whispered furiously to himself. The last thing he needed was Sheila making a scene. For a moment he wished he’d stayed in the pub. He decided to sneak a peek and caught sight of his wife’s ample rear entering next door’s house. The door closed and John breathed out heavily, unaware he’d been holding his breath.

What to do? John lit another cigarette and considered his options. He could go back to the pub and come back later. Sure, Alice would be pleased to see him, but he’d already used Sheila as an excuse to leave. No, best get home unnoticed and feign ignorance when she returned from her rant. Finishing his smoke, John walked briskly home, hands in pockets and head bowed, as if it somehow made him invisible.

Safely inside, he rushed to Sheila’s favourite position, the lounge window overlooking the garden. Parting the net curtain, he peered out.

There was nothing to see – just the garden, fence and bushes. And the roof of next door’s shed. He took a step back when he heard its door creak and thud.

Tired of the drama, John slumped down on the sofa and felt something dig into his backside. He pulled Sheila’s spiral-bound notebook out from under his bum and opened it. He’d not looked at it before; she always kept it close.

The room was dark but he could make out his wife’s neat block capital writing against the white pages. He flicked through them with growing dismay. Times, dates and descriptions gave way to suspicions, theories, lamentations and solutions. Sudden fear gripped John’s stomach as he read the last entry:

ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!!!

“Oh, you’re home early.” Sheila’s greeting was flat but her eyes looked white with surprise against the gore streaking her face. John shrieked and turned in his seat, pointing at the bloody weapon in her hand.

“It’s next door’s axe for cutting up firewood,” Sheila stated dully.

John cringed away as his wife waddled past, on toward the window. Sticky fingers smeared the net curtain as she twitched it aside.

“It’s okay now, John.” Sheila reassured him as her eyes scanned the garden. “We don’t have to worry about the neighbours and their smoke any more.”

*******

There, Dear Reader, my efforts are quite tame compared to the rest of the stories in the first Anthology volume from the Underdogs. No, it’s really not a book for children at all…

Have a Song ❤

 

 

22 thoughts on “Underdogs are GO!


  1. Good luck Limey dingleberries! ❤

    I hope you sell a billion copies and get record deals and movie deals and low airfare deals and McDonald's Happy Meal deals and shit like that.

    Bring it on home!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. WTF? 😀
    SMF.calm…
    “Site gone forever. Christ will win in the end. Instead of wasting your time here, read the Bible.”

    Must be doing some maintenance. ROFL.
    /me shrugs
    I took a screenshot just in case. 😛

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Yeah. Every time I click on it…I get a new message. May be an IP ban or something.

        Oh well. Good luck with the book. ❤

        Liked by 1 person

          1. Welp, they are back up, but if I login, it says there are no boards. Guess they are still working on it. You prolly noticed that tho. I know she said there was some issue with their BB software no longer being supported, and I noticed Raybeam lurking yesterday. Sounds…deadline-ish. Maybe hosting problems because of the software they use?

            I know that if people don’t start to wise-up about all of this hacking and cracking bullshit…we’re gonna lose it all. /me shrugs…what do I know.

            That gets me to thinking about a documentary I tried to watch yesterday…till I started throwing up in my mouth and turned it off.
            Indian Point: Imagining The Unimaginable
            http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0426493/

            The entirety of the film, or at least the part that I watched, was all about “SECURITY, SECURITY, SECURITY!!!” It got so bad, that I had to turn it off. The talked about this nuclear power plant’s proximity to New York City, they talked about “the financial capital of the world/US”, they talked about the trillions in property, they talked about the 20,000,000 people…lotta…ones and zeros there eh? They talked about how you can’t fly over the Superbowl and Disneyland and Disney World, but you CAN fly over the Indian Point nuclear power plant. They talked about ramming planes into the containment domes, they talked about ramming planes into the control facilities, they talked about ramming planes into the spend fuel pools, they talked about the shitty security force(s) that would be unable to repel ground attacks because they were a bunch of old people or fat people that could not stand up from the prone position…it was fucking creepy. They flew around in a helicopter near the plant and boasted on how they had been flying around the plant for almost 30 minutes, and had not been “shoed away.” They talked about how the plant had been build on top of an amusement park for kids. They talked about the checkered past of the plant with safety violations and fines. They talked about the plant getting the worst safety review in the history of the US. They talked about the plant being sold by Con Edison to some other company, just two days before 9/11/2001. They talked about this company only buying the plant, because operating at 100%, the plant would generate over $720,000,000 a year in revenues. Then they would reference the 20,000,000 people that could be affected by a terrorist attack.

            What scared me the most? Something I already knew. The spent fuel pools are FULL of spent reactor rods, that must be kept in these pools for… …at least 600 years.

            Yep. We have little Fukushima’s and little Chernobyl’s fucking EVERYWHERE on this planet. And much worse. And we are STILL pulling Uranium out of the ground, turning into a gas, which is then shipped in HUGE container ships across our oceans, turned back into…whatevz…then whoevz does whatevz or whatevz. Doesn’t concern me right? None of my fucking business.

            Yeah…I was gonna write some this morning, but the forums are down. Sorry for “venting” here. (har, har, har)

            I have some better ideas regarding those spent fuel rods, and nuclear power. Well, not yet…but I’m working on it.

            Liked by 1 person

            1. Originally it used a Thorium-based fuel. My understanding (limited, I know) is that Thorium was never properly pursued for nuclear energy production because it can’t be weaponised…

              ‘The gang anticipate the opening of a theme park while clam collecting on a nearby beach. But when the theme park’s lights come on and the rides start running, when the park is supposed to be closed, they try to find out who is doing it, and find the shenanigans are being caused by a strange man who walks like a torpedo.’

              *Yikes! Clicky, I remember that episode…*

              I’m glad you’re working on a solution to the spent fuel rods, Cade… somebody has to 😉

              Like

              1. That’s the one I was looking for. The fuel/process who’s byproducts were not able to be weaponized. I think that I posted a link in “my” thread with respect to a documentary that talked about the salt reactors that were much safer, less prone to…erm…problems of varied and various natures.

                They’ve dug out all under the great lakes and elsewhere in the world. I wonder if that salt could be put to use? There’s more than one way to salt the earth. 😛

                I guess this is that part where…”growth that can be measured in the areas you want, and not so much in other areas that you want”…start to make a little more sense with respect to…”the difference between a shitload and a fuckton” eh?

                I guess we’re all right and wrong at some point. Sometimes, at the same time. (sounds like me in a nutshell)

                I dunno. I prefer lurking in the shadows. But I have my reasons…just like anyone else.

                I prefer being in the shadows of giants, as opposed to being on their shoulders.

                Thanks for the pointer Roob. ❤

                OH! And I wonder if they are gonna make everyone re-register over at whatchacallit forums? I could login, but I could only browse when NOT logged in. I know they've had a lot of registrations over there recently. (Tee hee…a lot…meaning like 30). Anyway, I seem to recall this being a method of pruning users without actually pruning users. You could re-register a new name using the same old email address as way of proving that you are you, without all of the superfluous bullshit processes and whatnot. It kept people from re-registering the same name over and over because they did not exist in the database/the admins would delete them without creating a "banned" table or just perma-banning them. It's administrative nightmares common to forums I guess. Free is a nightmare eh? lol Start charging a fee for shit that is free…suddenly…fee becomes…fees.

                It's like…bringing a hand-grenade to a fistfight.

                Liked by 1 person

                1. Before we were so rudely interrupted yesterday evening, Clidky was going to post you a Song at Sync Miss…

                  ‘The group was formed by the five finalists of the ITV talent show Popstars who failed to make it into the group Hear’Say.’

                  I posted an XS of Xsis at Merovee the night before, and you’d mentioned at Sync Miss that there’s always an excess…

                  Like

    1. Yep, now ‘Gone’ with a note saying ‘Have you heard the good news? Repent and your soul will be saved!’

      I was in the middle of writing a comment…

      Like

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