Tuesday, 20 September 2016

Publication Day: The Iscariot Sanction


Exciting news! The Iscariot Sanction is out today, in all good bookstores. A prequel to The Lazarus Gate, this book tells the story of the Othersiders, and how they became so delightfully wicked.

Amazon Link

Waterstones Link

Titan Publishing Link

If you buy it, read it, love it, please do pop over to Amazon or Goodreads and leave a review, however short. It really does make a difference.

And don't forget to check out the Alternate Realities Blog Tour!


And if that's not enough to whet your appetite, try a short extract. I spoil you guys, I really do...

***

‘Everything is ready as you requested, sir,’ said Mrs. Bailey. She sounded weary. She had been working all day to dress the drawing room for Sir Arthur Furnival’s latest soirée. Velvet drapes ran floor to ceiling, gathered double like something from the Lyceum stage, while long tables were adorned with black cloths and silver candlesticks were dotted about the room, supporting a hundred candles.
‘Splendid!’ Sir Arthur replied. ‘That will be all for now, Mrs. Bailey. My thanks again for working so hard at such short notice.’
The middle-aged woman made a small curtsey and left the room. Sir Arthur continued fiddling with his cravat, when finally he saw in the mirror his valet enter the room.
‘Ah, Jenkins, there you are. Be a good fellow and help with this cravat. It really is proving quite irksome today.’
Jenkins looked grave, and strode forward with a letter in his hand. ‘I’m terribly sorry, sir,’ he said, ‘but I think preparations might have to wait. This just came for you.’
Sir Arthur took the letter, and knew instantly what it was. The wax seal on the envelope was imprinted with a cameo of Apollo, and that could mean only one thing. He tore it open while Jenkins adjusted the cravat. Within moments he looked quite dapper again, but his spirits were somewhat deflated.
‘I think you had better send apologies to my guests, Jenkins,’ said Sir Arthur. ‘I simply can’t conduct a séance the day before an assignment.’
‘Of course, sir. It does so take it out of you at the best of times, if you don’t mind me saying.’
‘Oh, don’t fuss, Jenkins,’ Sir Arthur chided. But his valet was right. Sir Arthur’s powers as a medium were celebrated amongst London’s intelligentsia, but it was a dangerous path that he trod. And a lonely one at that—beyond the séances and club meetings, he was shunned by society, as were all his kind. And normal folk were right to do so, for since the Awakening the path of the psychic had proven to be fraught with danger. How he longed for those days when he’d simply been the awkward boy with ‘unusual’ talents. It had been frightening at the time, but at least then the world had been ordinary. Who would not crave a little of the ordinary in these troubled times? But what was done was done. He tried to push such thoughts aside, and focus on the here and now. ‘By the way, Jenkins,’ he said at last, ‘did you enquire as to who my assistant might be this time?’ Over the years, Jenkins had almost become as much a member of Apollo Lycea as Sir Arthur himself, and his inside track with the club’s messengers and servants proved most useful.
‘Yes sir,’ and again Jenkins looked most serious. ‘It is Miss Hardwick, sir.’
Sir Arthur sighed, and sat down in his favourite armchair to read the letter more carefully. ‘After the last time, I’m surprised the old goat lets his daughter anywhere near me. Although it was she who damn near got me killed.’
‘And saved your life, sir,’ Jenkins reminded his master, helpfully.
‘Yes, that too,’ Sir Arthur muttered. He looked up at his valet, a sense of foreboding creeping over him. ‘I need to prepare myself. Send word to the guests first; tell Mrs. Bailey she is excused for the evening, and give her my apologies. In fact, best not mention that the séance is cancelled; the poor woman has worked very hard today. And then prepare my case.’
‘Very good, sir. You’ll be needing etherium, I take it? How much shall I pack?’
Sir Arthur’s eyes blazed for an instant before he replied, coolly, ‘If they’re sending me out with Lillian Hardwick, you’d best pack it all.’

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