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The Land Beyond All Dreams

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Some people don’t know when to stay dead.
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Author: Bryan Fields
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The Land Beyond All Dreams

by Bryan Fields

Series  sequel to Living with a Fire-Breathing Girlfriend

Genre Urban Fantasy

Tags Dragons, magic, zombies, urban fantasy, mummies, cats, pagan, sword-fighting

Imprint MuseItUp

Release September 8, 2014

Words 59256

Pages 212

ISBN 978-1-77127-567-5

Price  $5.50


Back Cover

In this sequel to Life With a Fire-Breathing Girlfriend, David Fraser has a world of trouble on his hands. Well, more like three worlds of trouble…

His mother is dying of lung cancer. His employer’s experimental weight-loss drug is turning people into flesh-eating psychopaths. And Ingrim Thain, an undead necromancer, has murdered the program’s research director and taken over his body. If all that weren’t enough, a cat with working thumbs just moved into David’s house.

Thain doesn’t even want to be enemies—he offers David wealth and power beyond anything he’s ever known. He even offers to cure David’s mother and spare those he loves from the coming war. All Thain wants is for David to stay quiet about the drug’s side effects.

Do the right thing and his mother dies. Do the wrong thing, and his mother lives while billions of others die.

For David, the solution is simple. Thain’s appetite for conquest endangers not only Earth, but Rose’s world and every other world Thain learns about. Thain must be stopped.

But how do you kill someone whose will has already proven stronger than death itself?


Excerpt

A boy who looked about fifteen sat down at the table next to me. He looked perfectly normal, except for a livid rope burn around his neck. It ran under his jaw and raised a bunch of ugly associations in my mind. He placed his hands on the table, palms down, and said, “Let’s all be nice and civil, shall we? It would be a shame to damage this lovely building.”

I nodded. “Thain. Did you kill this boy yourself?” Inside, I focused on Rose, urging her to hide her nature and try to pass as Human. From the look she gave me, I was pretty sure she understood.

Thain looked offended. “Of course not. Without form, I cannot harm the living. This boy killed himself just as I found myself in need of a new body. He’s been an adequate host, and soon I will be able to reconstitute my own body. After that, he can rest in peace.”

I unclenched my jaw and kept my voice low. “You’re ruining my appetite. What do you want, dead man?”

He spread his hands and smiled. “You wound me. I’m here to help you.” He gestured toward Mom and added, “And by that I mean you, Mrs. Fraser. Even in this state, I can heal you. All I ask for is David’s word he will not oppose me until the war begins.”

Mom’s fingers tightened on her cane. “Go to Hell.”

Thain held his hand up. “Allow me to explain. Your son has somehow acquired a level of magical ability unprecedented for this world. He survived judgment by Ma’at, the feather of truth. It revealed him to be a true and upright soul, the kind of man who can seize glory during the times to come. He could lead your world’s resistance, and I would be honored to be tested by him. Allow me to heal you, and you will live to see your son become the world’s savior.”

Rose’s lips pulled back into a snarl, and I could see her nails starting to transform into talons. “Why should we wait? The smart thing to do would be to destroy you now.”

“Where’s the fun in that?” Thain shook his head. “Certain destruction is boring. Why do you think I’ve allowed David to live? Besides—” He gestured toward sounds of kids playing in the park across the street. “—do you really want to start something while we’re surrounded by innocents? Please, think of the children.”

The waitress brought our food and set a glass of water in front of Thain without really looking at him. Thain watched her walk away and sighed. “Speaking of reasons not to rush the end of this world…”

“Why us?” Mom leaned forward and tapped her finger on the table. “Why this world? Why don’t you find a world that’s already lifeless and conquer it?”

“This world invited me here, Mrs. Fraser. The preoccupation with zombies in popular culture, the energy put into dreaming of a global war against armies of the undead—they drew me here like a beacon. All the people out there who are suffering and failing under the dominant social structure crave a new world. One where the rules are simple, more understandable. No banks, no government, no little robots spying on you from the sky. I’m fulfilling that wish.”

I stood up. “No deal, Thain. Get out of here.”

Thain looked at Mom. “Last chance to change your mind, Mrs. Fraser. I urge you, think about what beautiful children your son and his lady friend will have. Choose life.”

Mom took my hand. “I’d rather die.”

Thain stood up. “Oh, you shall. So soon, in fact, I regret the need to hasten it. You cost me physical form, David. Observe and learn the price of your foolishness.”

Swirls of wind whipped through the trees and flowers surrounding the patio, and all around us the trees and flowers collapsed into acrid black grit. The grass, the trees in the park and along the creek, every plant we could see for blocks around us, all dissolved into the same grit.

Birds, squirrels, and a host of other small animals fell from the sky or ran out of their hiding places, screeching in agony as they, too, were consumed. The water in the creek turned into noxious, green-black sludge, and the fish flopped around in it until they vanished as well.

In the middle of it all, Thain stood there, jaw clenched, staring at us through a dead child’s eyes. Black splotches spread across his face and arms, spilling out black grit until the lesions ate him away, leaving nothing but black sand mixing into black sand.


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"I am not even sure where to begin with this one, so this might just be a bit of a ramble because there is soooo much in my head with both this book and these characters!!!  All i can say is  .. YOU HAVE TO READ IT!!"

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"...this book is perfect for the younger crowd. It gives them the fantasy of a fairytale, the elements of a mystery and just enough of a love story not to "gross them out""

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