Tag Archives: Czech Repubic


13 Nov

A GSP release from Author of the Week: Stephen DeBock.

Morgen by Stephen M. DeBock

Two months ago, college junior Lori Stark was found dead of unknown causes alongside the Appalachian Trail. Today, the police bring a beautiful girl to the grieving parents’ door. She appears around Lori’s age; is amnesiac from an as yet mysterious trauma; and her only link to her prior life consists of two words: Lori Stark.

Lori’s parents take the girl—whom they’ve named Morgen—into their home and eventually into their hearts. The arrangement is intended to be temporary, until her memory returns. But time and the girl’s near perfect nature draws the parents into her sphere, resulting in Morgen’s blinding them—and binding them—to her dark purpose.

When something seems too good to be true … it is.


It was obvious when Nate answered the bell that the policeman facing him was uncomfortable. The officer’s car was parked at the curb, even though the driveway leading to the single-car garage was vacant. At least the lights weren’t flashing. Flashing lights made Nate’s knees weak.

Standing next to the uniform, and a half step behind, was a young woman. A hooded gray sweatshirt hid her hair, and her head was lowered, as if her shoes fascinated her.

“Good morning, Professor Stark,” mumbled the cop. He was youngish, with blue eyes, apple cheeks, and sandy hair. He looked like he might have just graduated from the academy. “Sorry to disturb you. I know it’s early.”

“Not a problem,” Nate replied. “I’ve been up since five.” He gestured toward his sweats. “Jogging.” He glanced at the cop’s nametag. “Collins. I know you, don’t I?”

“Yes, sir, I was one of your German students about five years ago.”

“Uh . . . huh. I remember. And I’m sure that your knowledge of German makes you invaluable in your job.”

The officer returned the smile. “Not really, but it did help me get a bride.”

“You don’t say.”

The girl might as well have been invisible.

“Right after graduation I decided to backpack through Germany, staying in hostels. Your classes paid off when I got to Berlin.” He grinned. “See, I met a certain Fräulein there . . . and now she’s my schöne Frau.”

“Wunderbar.” Nate glanced at the girl. “I assume this young lady isn’t your bride?” Little Gray Riding Hood, he thought.

The girl tilted up her head. Her eyes, Nate observed, were startlingly green. She wore jeans that were as unkempt as her sweatshirt. The hair that peeked out from her hoodie was dark red.

“No, sir; sorry, got sidetracked there.”

Nate said to the girl, “Have we met, miss? Were you one of my students, too?”

“I don’t know,” she whispered, her eyes not quite making contact with his. Her voice was weak, almost a whimper. Tracks made by dried tears were evident in the smudges on her cheeks.

“Why don’t we go inside?” Nate said. “It’s only September, but already there’s a chill in the air.” He turned and called, “Ellen, company.”

Nate ushered them into a tidy kitchen and bid them sit at a circular table. His wife looked at her guests nervously.

“Is anything wrong?” Two months now, and she still grew apprehensive in the presence of the police.

Nate said no, introduced her to the officer, and then said, “I didn’t get your name, miss.”

The girl’s lips parted, as if she were about to speak. Then she simply shook her head.

“That’s what I need to talk to you about, Professor. She was picked up late last night wandering around the Criterion campus. She didn’t seem to know where she was or what she was doing there. Campus security brought her to the station. It’s like she’s got amnesia or something.”

Nate frowned. “Amnesia? Really?”

Ellen said, “Amnesia? This is beginning to sound like a scene from a penny dreadful.”

Collins continued: “We checked her out as well as we could; there’s no record of her fingerprints on any law enforcement files, which means she has no criminal record. We sent her photo to the missing persons database; again, no joy. Meanwhile, she doesn’t match anyone on the university’s student photo file either.”

Ellen said, “No evidence of physical trauma?”

“We took her to the hospital. The doc said there was no sign of sexual assault.” He looked at the girl, embarrassment in his face. “I’m really sorry to be talking about you like you weren’t here.”

She nodded, but said nothing.





The Witch and the Squirrels

8 Oct

Today’s post goes to author G. E. Stills. Welcome to the GSP Halloween Promo Gary.

I live in the southwest with my wife, dog and a cat. I have grown children with children of their own. In the past I was a mechanic and then a business owner, retired. I have always loved to read and enjoyed writing stories from an early age. Most of my time now is spent in front of my keyboard writing or sitting back and thinking about a current WIP or a new story to write. When not engaged in my favorite pastime of writing, I enjoy boating and camping.

My stories primarily deal with paranormal, fantasy or science fiction and all of them, thus far, involve romance. The heat levels vary from non-erotic to sizzling. Most of my characters are strong and assertive; many are outspoken. Many of my characters have magical abilities or are normal people in abnormal situations with a strong sense of justice. My villains are, well . . . villains, doing villainous things.
The book we promoting for this promo is The Witch and the Squirrels.

As a fireman in a small town, Chad’s life is laid back, easy going. The worst problem he has is tolerating Jerry, his so-called friend. Jerry sees himself as a gift to women. He’s a player and Chad has a difficult time dealing with that. Chad’s life is destined to become much less peaceful and serene when Heather appears in town. From the very first time they meet, he is strongly attracted to her. To his consternation, Jerry imposes himself between them and tells lies about Chad in order to win Heather’s favor.

Jerry vanishes, as does Heather. Then one day on the way home from work, Chad encounters her again. Having discovered Jerry’s lies, she invites Chad to join her for dinner. Cheerfully, Chad accepts. With Jerry out of the picture it’ll be just the two of them . . . but things are about to get very interesting for Chad. 


Chad resisted the urge to break into a run when he passed the run-down house. If not for the fact it was along the route he used when he walked to work . . . You’re a grown man, not some scared little boy. Still—something about the place gives me the willies.

Cold and dreary-looking, the dilapidated two-story structure sat on a lot that encompassed the entire block. An unkempt yard, overgrown with vines and shrubs, surrounded it. Nobody had lived in the place for years.

Not since old lady Jameson vanished a number of years ago.

That was long before he’d moved here.

His steps carried him away, putting the house behind him. The somber feeling of foreboding lifted from his shoulders as the distance increased. Two blocks farther, he entered a two-story eight-plex. Taking the steps two at a time, he then paced down the hallway to his apartment door located on the left near the rear of the complex. Soon he forgot the eerie feeling. Changing out of his uniform, he put on faded blue jeans and buttoned up his sport shirt.
Locking the door behind him, he left for the small bar a short distance away. When he opened the door, the smell of whiskey and stale cigarettes assailed his nose.

Why do I come here?

He answered his own thought immediately.

Because this may be a hole in the wall, but they have an excellent burger. He usually treated himself to one at the end of his shift. The bartender poured a glass of ice water and set it in front of him on the counter.

“The usual, Chad?” the bartender asked.

“Yes, thanks.”

The bartender walked away to place his order.

“What’s up, Chad my man?” a familiar voice said. He stifled a groan when Jerry sat down next to him.

Why me?

“Not much. Just got off work.” For some reason, Jerry had glommed onto him from the start.

Maybe because I was new in town. Maybe because I didn’t know him any better. That, and the fact he has an apartment in the same building as me. And he and I are both single.

“Wanna come to the club with me tonight? There might be some fresh meat there. Ya never can tell, with that new catalog ordering center opening up. I hear they’ve hired a number of women. About damn time this shitty little town got some new businesses.”

Translated, new women who don’t know you and what a player you are, Jerry.

“If you hate this place so much, why do you stay? Why don’t you move to a larger town?”

“Maybe I will someday, but in the meantime I haven’t bedded all the eligible ladies in this one.” He winked.

And some that are not eligible, Jerry.

Chad shook his head and smothered his sigh of disgust. Even after all these months of knowing Jerry, he found it hard to believe his attitude toward women. He found it even more difficult to accept.

“So what time should I pick you up?” Jerry asked.

“I’m kind of tired. Just got off my three-day shift.”

He should have known that Jerry would not be discouraged that easily.

“Aw, come on. You don’t do anything but lay around over there unless there’s a fire.”

“We do other things besides fight fire in this town, you know.”

“What, rescue cats from trees?” Jerry scoffed.

He rolled his eyes and bristled at hearing his job belittled. “It’s not worth arguing about. I just don’t feel like going out tonight.”
More information about Gary’s books and where to get them:

The Anvil Ghosts winner is Anne Sutton.