Captain Napalm Shall Rise!

Okay, to get this out of the way, my first announcement:

This Saturday, September 27th, from 10 AM to 5 PM, I will have a booth at Mighty Con Comic Show at the Dupage County Fairgrounds in Wheaton, IL.  If you’re anywhere near the Chicago area, come on out and say hi!

Now, on to my other big news…

Captain Napalm Volume 2 is under way!

Whereas Volume 1 pitted the good Captain and his sidekick, Sam the talking roc-phoenix, against the powerful but incredibly stupid menace of the grungious Gundabad…

Volume 2 throws him against a far more ferocious enemy: The World’s Evilest CAT!!!

Trust me – you do not want to be in Mr. Napalm’s shoes for this one.  But you won’t want to miss his adventure!

What’s that you say?  You haven’t yet read Captain Napalm’s first volume?

Then here – try out the first chapter, on me.

 *****

I

A Monster in Metropola

 

It was a bright and warm and happy day when Gundabad came to Metropola city. The sun was shining, the lattes were foamy, the birds were nonexistent, and all was right with the world.

Little did the good people suspect the terror in store.

It arrived in the form of a mutated hunchback of a man-thing, with a large underbite and big teeth and bad body odor and a bad attitude to boot. At seven feet two inches tall it cut an impressive figure, if anyone cared to notice.

“I’m Gundabad!” the man-thing said to no one in particular. “This town was in my way. But it’s big, and pretty, and I kind of like it, so I’m going to stay here.”

No one objected to that, for no one was paying him any attention. Just another large crazy man jabbering in the street. A typical Tuesday.

Gundabad strode to the center of town, pausing only for a coffee and a donut, which he stole from a cop he shoved in a dumpster. (He also stole the cop’s newspaper, but since Gundabad couldn’t read, he used it for a less savory purpose.)

When he arrived at market square he looked up, and up, and up, at the tallest building he had ever seen: the Terrapin Sky-High Hotel. Drool dribbled down Gundabad’s chin.

Three leaps put him at the glass doors to the building. One punch smashed them in.

“Oh mannn…” said the janitor. He shuffled off to get a broom, grumbling to himself.

Gundabad laughed. “Breaking stuff is fun!” he announced. He marched to the elevator, but since the car wasn’t on the ground floor, he tore open the doors and climbed up the shaft.

The elevator car, coming down, met Gundabad coming up. He had to use his fist again.

What remained of the elevator car continued to go down, and Gundabad continued to climb up, until the shaft wouldn’t go up any further. He pried one more set of doors open and stepped into a lush hallway. A hallway with only one door, which he opened. The penthouse suite.

Niiice…” Gundabad said, growling appreciatively.

His eyes took in the spacious space. It had a master bedroom with a double-king size bed, silk draperies, a kitchen with marble countertops, gold toilet seats, a fake fireplace, and a huge corner office with windows that looked out at the whole city. And a stairway to the roof.

“Home,” the man-thing said. He scratched himself and yawned. Then he called for room service.

 

Philmore Millman frowned at the mess on the lobby floor. It wasn’t anything he hadn’t seen before; he’d been the hotel’s manager for years, after all. “What was it this time?” he asked.

The security guard looked up from his paper and shrugged. “Didn’t see it.”

Millman sighed. He looked at the guard’s mustache, his wrinkles, his upside-down name badge that read ‘DERF’. “Alright, Fred,” he said, “who did see it?”

“I did,” said the janitor, walking up with a push broom. “Some crazy drunk dude smashed it with one punch.”

“Thanks, Roger,” said Millman. “Where’d he go?”

Roger shrugged as he started sweeping glass.

Millman ground his teeth. “Well, what did he look like?” He would have to file some kind of police report, and he might as well get his ducks in a row.

“Big,” said the janitor, “ugly. Naked. And he smelled bad.”

“Oh, him,” said Fred. Millman turned to the guard, who grinned proudly through his ‘stache. “I thought he was one of those Hollywood hotshots on a bender.” He pumped his thumb over his shoulder. “He went that-a way.”

Millman’s eyes followed the thumb to the wreck of the elevator doors, and the wreck of the elevator behind them. He let all his air out and slumped like a deflating balloon. “I hate Tuesdays.”

 

The door knocked.

Gundabad ignored it.

It knocked again, louder.

“Go away!” he said.

A minute of silence passed. Then the door handle jiggled. The bolt held, though, so the knocking started again, and this time it didn’t stop.

“Mmmrrrarrgggllllprrpptthhh…” Gundabad said, and followed it with a string of curse words from languages he didn’t know. He stood up from his bath, which had become a pool of brown sludge. “I’m coming!” He left the bathroom and walked to the door, still naked. “Ready or not,” he whispered.

The knocking stopped as Gundabad yanked the door open, snapping the lock off in the process.

A skinny, bespectacled man stood in the doorway, his hand poised to knock again. His nametag read ‘James: Asst. Manager’. A taller, broader, balder man stood next to skinny in a Security uniform, his arms crossed.

“What?” Gundabad grunted.

“Sir,” James the Assistant Manager began, “you can’t be here.” One finger pushed the bridge of his glasses up on his nose, but he kept his eyes above the man-thing’s waist. He cleared his throat. When the man-thing gave no response, he repeated his statement: “SIR. You. Can’t. Be. HERE.”

Gundabad moved his glance slowly down to his feet, then back to the man’s glasses. “Can too.”

James shook his head. “You cannot – rather, you may not be here.”

The large naked creature sneered at James like he was a bug on a pizza. “Go away.”

“I’m afraid I can’t, sir. See, this floor suite is booked for someone else this weekend – a very important guest. Since you don’t have a reservation, I’m afraid I must ask you to leave.” He checked his watch. “You have ten minutes to collect your things. Anthony here will escort you out.” The big security guard nodded. James bowed politely and turned to go, but stopped after a step to look over his shoulder. “And… er… get dressed. Please.”

A grin split Gundabad’s massive mouth. “Nah,” he said. “I have a better idea.” He grabbed the scrawny man by the collar and yanked him up so he dangled in the air, his face a nosehair from Gundabad’s own.

“What are you – ”

“Room service.” Gundabad’s grin grew even wider, ‘til his jaw seemed to unhinge.

“Anthony…” James the Assistant Manager said. Then Gundabad chomped his head off, and he said no more.

“Hey!” Anthony began, stepping toward the man-thing. But Gundabad raised his hand for silence while he chewed, so the guard closed his mouth.

“Now,” said Gundabad, after spitting out the glasses and swallowing everything else, “you were saying?”

“Umm…” Anthony looked at his boss’s decapitated corpse, and back at the troll-mutant-whatever-it-was that had taken the penthouse suite. He took a step back. “Anything else I can get you, sir?”

The monster thought for a minute as he picked his teeth with a bone. “Ale,” he said at last. “Barrels of it.”

“Yes sir. Right away, sir.” The guard shuffled his feet and turned to go.

Gundabad let out a belch that would bring down an opera house, and a great ball of fire burst out of his mouth and hit Anthony in the back, setting the man’s hair on fire. He screamed as he ran out the door and tumbled down the stairs.

The ale was delivered half an hour later.

 *****

So what do you think?  Want to find out how Captain Napalm combats this monstrosity, without sacrificing his dignity in the process?  (Well, too bad!)

If so, pick up Captain Napalm today (only $0.99, for a limited time)!

Also, don’t forget to sign up to my mailing list for free books and to be the first to hear about what I have coming up next.

Thanks again for reading!  You’re the best.

– Luke

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