Book Teasers

Dr. Slubgob’s Letters

Slubgob

The fireplace crackled softly in his quiet mahogany themed office. He had just returned from a class graduation ceremony and he was too lazy to move from his chair behind the desk, even if he was starting to get a chill from the lack of heat in the room.

He often blamed his age for his inability to stay on his feet for long hours, but it was simply a lame excuse. The fact was, Slubgob had grown to be rather sluggish after his retirement and it was not a trait to be celebrated, unlike his apathetic personality. Nobody could blame him though, for he had nothing else better to do these days. He was filled with head knowledge and the lack of fieldwork left him reading old dusty books to kill time.

Having surrounded himself only with books, Slubgob was rather surprised when he received the invitation to the graduation at Tempters’ Training College for Young Demons. He actually thought the invite was out of respect. But when he found his seat three rows from the stage, among the bored, agitated and noisy parents, Slubgob knew he was there to be made fun of. Makallous, the newly appointed principle, had invited him just so he could whisper among his fellow subordinates of how the ‘old one’ had finally left his glory days to rot in an office.

When Slubgob realised the childish plot, he decided to keep his ego and remained seated throughout the ceremony. He didn’t want to give Makallous anymore joy in seeing him leave.

Joy, what do any of us know about joy, Slubgob thought.

Finally finding himself so close to a sneeze, Slubgob hurried to the fireplace and added more wood. The temperature was fluctuating these days and Slubgob could only suspect more victories from the enemy. He hoped their father below had not suspected the change, for if he did, they would all be in trouble. Though none of them would end up taking a beating as bad as Makallous.

The imagery of Makallous being punished made Slubgob smile. Why would Slubgob be in trouble when he did nothing, nothing at all?

This sedentary lifestyle isn’t so bad after all, Slubgob concluded silently, returning to his desk.

As he reclined in his chair, ready to catch a shuteye, he noticed a letter sitting on top of his stack of reread books. Scribbled on the brown envelope was his name and when he turned it over, he saw no seal or name of whom it was from.

Slowly taking out the letter, oddly finding himself not at all interested at what it had to say, Slubgob found himself staring down at three words, so poorly written that he started to wonder if he now needed glasses.

“Please help him,” Slubgob read aloud, after a few attempts of trying to piece the alphabets together. Signed beneath the three-word letter was an initial, one he recognised all too well.

That would explain the bad handwriting, Slubgob thought.

Bledbrush was a very old friend who fell from grace. He lost both his hands after he failed a special assignment that was personally handed to him by their father below.

Perhaps he wrote the letter with his feet. The sudden flashes from his rusty imagination made Slubgob laugh.

“Oh Bledbrush, this is your job,” Slubgob said with a sigh. Slubgob did not need to guess whom the letter was referring to as he began thinking about his godson.

Bledbrush had a son named Vilefire. Vilefire was part of the graduating class that morning, and at the memory, Slubgob recalled not seeing Bledbrush among the group of parents.

Where was Bledbrush? Was he in trouble?

Bledbrush used to be a good friend, until he messed things up. The community was kind enough to accept his son, but Bledbrush was no longer welcomed at family barbeques or invited to any festive celebrations. He went from the number one Tempter to the number one outcast, and in Slubgob’s honest opinion, he deserved it.

Bledbrush was to lead his patient away from the enemy, but instead, he lost him to the enemy. That patient ended up leading an entire generation in the enemy’s ways, wasting all efforts and destroying all future chances of winning any of them back.

Pitiful… Pitiful Bledbrush. Should I help him? Slubgob asked himself.

With such a father, Vilefire had no choice but to fend for himself. Forced to make up for his father’s abhorrent reputation, the boy could definitely use Slubgob’s help.

“That’s a poor way of asking for a favour, Bledbrush. The enemy forbid, your manners are appalling. But… I’ll help you anyway,” Slubgob said, as though speaking to someone across his desk.

Just as he had decided on that, a knock came from his office door.

“What is it Mrs Gregious?” Slubgob asked, slightly annoyed at the disturbance. His caretaker knew better than to disturb him at any time of the day.

“I have a letter for you, sir,” Mrs Gregious said, as she opened the door and hurried to his desk to hand him the letter.

“Another one?” Slubgob was surprised at the amount of attention he was getting that day.

Mrs Gregious nodded and left without saying another word.

Not hesitating, Slubgob tore the letter open and read.

Dr. Slubgob,

This is to inform you of the disappearance of former Tempter Bledbrush.

If you have any information on his whereabouts, you are to report immediately.

Demons who withhold information will not be spared.

Signed,

Dartloath

(Captain of the H. G Security)

“Ah. Well done Bledbrush, you angered our father below. You should think twice about making it a hobby,” Slubgob said, as he shook his head in disappointment.

That explained the letter from Bledbrush, and Slubgob was glad that Bledbrush’s letter was just that. Anything more would get him in trouble.

Contemplating on what to do next, he decided to give Dartloath a call. If Mrs Gregious decided to speak about the mysterious letter he received earlier, he would not be able to have a day without the Hell’s Ground Security knocking on his door. So, he decided to come clean.

That night, Slubgob invited Dartloath over for dinner. Dartloath was not as old as he was, but the towering demon was well into his age. He also had a scar on his right eye, making it the eye no one dared to look into.

“Doctor, I know you are one with little friends and surely I am not one of them. What is the reason for this dinner?” Dartloath said, just as he emptied his glass of wine.

“You have enjoyed my food and now you fear not in jumping into questions and reasons. I respect the thickness of your skull, Dartloath.”

“I waste no time. I am a busy one.”

“Of course. Well, earlier today I received a letter from Bledbrush, he-”

“Does it say where he is?”

“No. He simply asked me to look after his son, who happens to be my godson. But, I think I do know where he is.”

“You do?”

“Yes.”

“What are you waiting for? An invitation to dinner at my house instead?” Dartloath did not like waiting, it seemed.

“Tell me this first, what are you planning to do with Vilefire?” Slubgob replied, as he took another bite at his red meat.

“We’re keeping him under surveillance. Bledbrush might attempt to contact him and vice versa. We-”

“Now, tell me what Bledbrush did that made him run,” Slubgob interrupted, completely ignoring the steam that was rising from Dartloath’s head. Literally.

“It’s confidential. Our father below gave orders not to disclose any information on Bledbrush’s offense.”

“How interesting.”

“So, where is he?” Dartloath snapped.

“Well, since Bledbrush is not down here, he must be up there, frolicking with our fellow patients,” Slubgob replied with a smile.

“Do you think this is funny, old one?”

“No. I’ve simply told you all I know. Now if you would excuse me-”

“Where’s the letter from Bledbrush? I want to see it,” Dartloath interrupted him this time.

“You won’t be able to read it. He writes with his toes now that he has no hands,” Slubgob casually replied as he got up from his seat. “Just take my word for it. I called you here, didn’t I?”

“I’m not sure what your reason is for such an invite. You know, it is true what they say, a lonely, bored old one is what you are,” Dartloath replied without hiding his spite. As he stood up, he tugged his suit and left without even thanking Slubgob for the delicious meal.

Not taking any offense, Slubgob returned to his office and decided to write a letter to Vilefire. With a mystery as such, he foresaw less idle days in his office and it excited him. Slubgob could also put his knowledge to the test and do a real field task at last. If it got him in trouble, he could always pretend to be senile.

Pulling out his favourite fountain pen from his desk’s drawer, Slubgob stared briefly at the flickering shadows that dominated his office before he began to write.

Dear Vilefire,

You are probably wondering why I am writing to you. To be honest, your father sent me a letter asking me to help you. I suspect it could mean to help you in your new assignment, but it could also be a plea to keep you from harm’s way, now that he has fallen from grace again.

I know I have not been a very good godfather to you, but I am not one to build relationships. As you might have heard from your lecturers in college, or even your fellow classmates, I am as unfriendly as an alligator and as cold as a snake.

Oddly, I find myself writing a letter to you, hoping to do your father one last favour. He was once a good friend and a good Tempter, and you would do well not to forget that.

Of course, I will not barge my way into your mediocre life, but if you would like my assistance, I am sure to have more head knowledge than anyone you have met.

Write back to me once you have decided. There is no rush, only the time wasted to do great things for our father below.

Your willing Godfather,

Dr. Slubgob

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You have just read Chapter 1 of Dr. Slubgob’s Letters. Want more? Grab the entire novella HERE!

Original Works

The Devil’s In Town

As promised, a new book has finally clawed its way onto my digital bookshelf. I now present to you, Dr. Slubgob’s Letters!

Dr Slubgob

When a demon flees, a favour is requested, and the hunt begins, the truth becomes the only answer. 

After the disappearance of former Tempter Bledbrush, Dr. Slubgob receives a letter of plea to guide Bledbrush’s son, Vilefire, in his new assignment. But that short letter stirs up curiosity in the old demon’s soul and his quest to find the truth of Bledbrush’s disappearance begins.

Set in the world of The Screwtape Letters written by C.S Lewis, get ready to dip into the boiling waters of hell and uncover the fate of these fallen angels.

Sounds interesting? You can grab the e-book HERE at 1.99$.

If you’re one of the first few to read this post, then you’re in for a treat. I’ll be giving away 10 free copies using the code: devilsadvocate. The first 10 to use it will get a 100% discount off the book. So be quick!

Aside from that, I would like to give a shout out to Jason Lee. He is a graphic and motion graphic designer and he designed this book’s cover. Click on his name to check out his portfolio. Should you need his expertise, be sure to tell him I sent you 🙂

That’s all for now. I hope you enjoy this new novella! If you would like to leave a review, you can do so on its Goodreads page. Happy reading!

*Dr Slubgob’s Letter was initially a blog series that ran on this blog in 2013. After much editing, it is now in the form of a book. 

Original Works

Spirit Animal

Spirit Animal

It began on a chilly desert night, ten years ago.

“His spirit wolf jumped out from behind the bush and raised its claws at the enemy. What was once a fearless warrior, now trembled at the sight of this ghostly animal. But would he let him cross?” his mother read.

“The warrior had no choice. He had to let this young man pass or he would lose his life. So with his arms raised, he backed away,” I paused. A question dawned on me just then.

“How can I get my own spirit animal?” I asked my mother.

“You don’t need one, Roeman,” my mother answered.

“I do. How would I find this kingdom of gold if I don’t have one?”

My mother simply smiled before nudging me to continue reading. As I shuffled under the fur covers, I cleared my throat ready to finish the only book I owned. The story of a lone wolf that travelled the world in search for what he called heaven had been my bedtime story ever since I was born. I was never bored of it, and my eleven year-old self would agree.

“Suddenly, the earth shook and a…” my voice trailed off.

No words escaped my lips after that, as the world of my childhood hero began to fade away. My mother said nothing as well, and the two of us sat frozen. A few seconds later, my mother whispered, “Go to your bed and stay there till morning.”

Her order sent me to my feet as I jumped off my parents’ bed and ran to the other corner of our large tent. Peeking out of a series of folded cloth from the ceiling was a rope, and I quickly reached for it. When the rope extended downwards, I did not hesitate to climb up.

My father made that haven for me. It was a little nest held together by the folding of colourful cloths. No stranger would walk into our tent and realize a boy was resting in it, and no stranger did on that bloody night.

As quietly as I lay, I listened to the shouts, screams, and cries of my people. There were moments where I wanted to be a hero, but I knew I would only die trying. Not a muscle in my body moved as the horror continued when the barbarians entered my tent to steal from us. I heard them make a mess and after what felt like eternity, they left.

It was still dark outside, but I obeyed my mother’s last words and waited for the sun to arrive. The moment I could feel the heat of day, I climbed out of my nest and held back my tears. Denial was impossible the moment I left my chaotic home, as the blue morning sky could not hide the dead from my eyes.

The sand was soaked in red and the vultures had already began feasting. I wanted to look for my parents, but I did not want to confirm their deaths. So, I made up my mind to leave. With nothing left to take with me, I started my journey in hopes to escape the memory that has scarred me for years.

One step after another, I made it through where death had plague my people. I did not look back and I kept going forward. It might seem foolish to travel the harsh desert alone, but I desperately needed to leave the horror behind. Miraculously, my body lasted the day… but night, held a different fate.

As the wind blew a cold ghastly breeze, my fingers froze and my heart gripped with fear. The breeze was unusual and I knew what was coming. A sandstorm. There was no way I could survive a sandstorm. Realizing that I was done for, I fell on my knees and shut my eyes. I was ready to die; ready to be with my family again.

A rumbling sound grew and I felt a strong blow of wind brushing past my face. I expected myself to be buried within minutes, but strangely it was taking longer than it should. When I finally decided to open my eyes, I was immediately struck with awe. A pair of giant ghostly wings created a shield around me. Wind was swirling in this ball of protection, but not deadly enough to suffocate. I stood in shock for a very long time, and then I heard a voice.

I am yours. And you are mine.

It was deep and strong, yet gentle and delicate. When the sandstorm finally died down, the wings spread widely and the body of a giant eagle rose from the ground. It ascended into the night sky and hovered over me. Not really sure on what to say, I muttered, “I’m tired.”

As though it had heard me, it returned to the ground and wrapped its wings around me. There was a warm tingling sensation as I felt its ghostly embrace, but I dozed off too quickly to question what it was. When day arrived, my new friend flew above my head and led me to a magical oasis. It shaded me from the glaring sun and watched me as I devoured the bobbing fruits in the lake. It all felt surreal and I was convinced it was my spirit animal’s doing.

My spirit animal taught me to fight and hunt, and it sheltered me for years. It was also my compass, guiding me to a location I could only assume was the kingdom of gold. Now ten years later, it has finally brought me to where I should be. Standing on a sand dune and overlooking the river that split the endless desert and a glorious city, I could feel my heart pump in excitement. Unfortunately, something vile was standing in my way.

The river was guarded by the ones that murdered my people; they now stood between me and my new life. Pulling out my blades, I looked up at my protector. It had been a long journey and I was so ready to face my demons. Can one man take them all? No, but one man and his spirit animal can.

“I am yours. And you are mine.”

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We all have a spirit animal, but we only see it in times of trouble. What does it encompass? Our courage, faith, determination, and hope. Those traits that are a part of us makes up this beast that will fight by our side. But even though we have it with us, the journey of recovery will not be an easy one. Sometimes it will take us years just to face our demons, but no matter how long it may be, remember that you have what it takes to beat them. Fight for the kingdom of gold, you were born a fearless beast!

I hope you enjoyed this short story. Be sure to let me know what you think about it in the comments below!

© 2014 Jeyna Grace

(For more short stories, click HERE)