GtPGKogPYT4p61R1biicqBXsUzo" /> Google+ Character's Court: Author Peter Welmerink vs his pissed-off military characters | I Smell Sheep

Monday, September 21, 2015

Character's Court: Author Peter Welmerink vs his pissed-off military characters

What happens to author Peter Welmerink when his military characters decide his fate? It ain't good folks...


soldier, Transport, Peter Welmerink, artwork
Hotter than hell today. Humid too. Doesn’t help that the Grand River has flooded and the sun is simply cooking it up like a pan of water over flame.

“Mr. Welmerink, may I have your attention,” LCpl. Loutonia Phelps snaps her fingers in my face, drawing my attention back to her.

We sit atop the HURON, a 72-ton massive, armored HTV (Heavy Transport Vehicle). We are on the west side of Grand Rapids, the side where the larger, barricaded LIVING part of the city retains its “local” undead. A large group of rotters groan and hiss at one side of the big vehicle, behind me, as I sit handcuffed to a rickety chair placed precariously close to the edge of the transport’s rooftop.

Again, Loutonia snaps her fingers in my face, drawing my full attention upon the black woman dressed in sweat-stained military garb. Her sleeves are rolled up, exposing her well-muscled arms. Though she consists of womanly curves, for the HURON’s driver, she looks like she might be able to lift the damn thing.

“You sit before a military tribunal, who has brought you here to question you on your activities putting us through what you have scribed in your books,” she said, folding her arms across her chest.

“I say we just kill the son of a bitch now,” Sergeant Stokes said, stepping up around the woman. The hairy, sawed-off, muscular Front Gunner (he reminds me of a Silverback Gorilla) of the HURON gnaws on the stump of a unlit cigar, gritting his teeth, murder in his eyes. “I can put him out in the street and put a few dozen rounds in him with my quad 30’s.”

I looked beyond him, towards the front of the massive vehicle: a cluster of 30-Caliber machine guns stood stanchioned at the front gunner’s position.

“Problem is, Welmerink could be standing right in front of ya, and you still wouldn’t be able to hittum,” LCpl. Eddie Mulholland said standing beside his squat gunner companion. The tall Alabama boy, looking like a stretched-out, freckle-faced Jimmy Olsen, cradles a big sniper rifle in his arms. Unlike Stokes, I know I could be two city blocks away and the kid could still nail me with a single tap of the trigger.

Stokes growls at Mulholland.

Loutonia rolls her eyes, and proceeds: “Mr. Welmerink, the charges are that you have put us through many instances of uncalled for life-threatening situations. From having us covertly transport the lakeshore high commissioner, William Lettner, through hostile territory; for putting us smackdab in the clutches of that insane bitch, Rebecca Regan; pitting us against a giant, mutated creature in Allendale, and causing our captain undeserved strife with making us stop at his old homestead where his wife and child are buried…”

Sweat dribbled down my forehead and nose. And it wasn’t from the hot sun or sitting perched over a brooding swarm of the city’s undead.

“…for creating drug-carrying zombies using the city’s own shamblers, and dumping them in the swollen Grand River, having us chase them down, going after one of our own military cohorts, pitting us against him and his Abrams tank, us with only a 25mm cannon… a popgun versuse his 120mm death dealer…”

Loutonia’s furrowed brow grew deeper, meaner, more dangerous, as she continued on.

“And for the things you put our good Captain Billet through,” her words come out with a feral snarl. “In the third book. How you abused him, beat and bloodied him, tormented him, left him to wander alone while you pit us against our own zombie troopers, taking us all the way out to a shattered Lamont outpost to try and save the city’s mayor as he returned, by rail, from Muskegon…”

Loutonia chewed her lip, fought hard to keep her emotions in check. She clenched and unclenched her hands.

Stokes stared at me with murder in his eyes, smiling sinisterly, his teeth flecked brown from his gnawed on cigar.

Mulholland, a good kid through and through, glanced nervously back and forth between his crewmates, looking at odds with the charges.

“How do you plead, Mr. Welmerink?” Loutonia said, shaking, barely able to contain her rage and sorrow.

I opened my mouth to answer.

“I can tell you,” Captain Jacob Billet said, turning from his spot where he’d been standing silently with his back to us. He pushed his way through his crew, nodding at each, calming all but Loutonia.

The dark-haired commander of the HURON, his face and flesh of his exposed arms lined red with old scars except for the one, long, oozing, torn ribbon of flesh across his forehead… He looked at me, glanced me up and down—expressionless at first—drew up close to me. He leaned down, going nearly nose to nose with me, and growled with finality: “You’re f**king guilty, punk.”

Snapping upright, he put a muddy combat boot to my chest, and launched me off the roof deck of the HURON.

I howled as I dropped into the mass of the waiting, local, undead citizenry of Grand Rapids. They clawed at me sluggishly, but they did claw and bite.

A rotting old gent in a gas station attendant’s blue coveralls leaned down right in my face, and said in a gurgling raw voice, “I have a full service oil change and a set of new white walls for a deal at my station.”

It wasn’t his sinister, the-joke-is-on-you laugh that made me scream.

Interior artwork

cover image, zombies, horror, military, book
Hunt for the Fallen (Transport Book 2)
by Peter Welmerink
Captain Jacob Billet
Journal Entry – Sunday April 5, 2026

It’s raining, it’s pouring, the undead are roaring…

Amassed at the UCRA east end enclosure, the dead strain the fence line while soldiers keep watchful eyes, the survivors on the opposite side of the rising river about to lose their minds.

It’s a crazy time: nonstop precipitation; everyone’s up in arms; paranoid city council members with an asshat City Treasurer. Water, water everywhere. Zees dropping into the churning drink. Troops afraid of being stitched up and thrown back into the fray as Zombie Troopers. Tank commanders getting itchy to head out on their own after drug-laden shamblers. Reganshire insurgents trying to extract our west side civvies for some unknown reason, possibly pushing the city into taking heavy-handed action against them.

Then there’s some black-haired dead dude staring at me through the fence, grinning like he’s off his meds.

And I thought Lettner was a headache.

All this sh*t might give me a heart attack.

Hunt for the Fallen is Transport Book Two

...great cover...
...absolutely love the interior notch...
...impressed with the caliber of the writing in this one...
---Bee's Knees Review

...faced with the two most common threats in modern horror, zombies and basic human does not feel like something we have seen time and time again...
---The Rage Circus vs The Soulless Void Reviews

...far more compelling than most of the zombie stories you’re likely to pick up...
...a fascinating sign of where zombie narrative, road narrative, and narrative in general might be moving...

---L. Andrew Cooper's Horrific Scribblings

About the Author:
Peter Welmerink was born and raised on the west side of pre-apocalyptic Grand Rapids, Michigan. He writes Fantasy, Military SciFi, and other wanderings into action-adventure. His work has been published in ye olde wood pulp print and electronic-online publications. He is the co-author of the Viking berserker novel, BEDLAM UNLEASHED, written with Steven Shrewsbury. TRANSPORT was his first solo novel venture. He is married with a small barbarian tribe of three boys.

No comments:

Post a Comment