Title: A Boy & His Corpse
Author: Richard B Knight
Series: Stand Alone
Genre: YA Horror Comedy
Publisher: Self Published
Release Date: Sept 24 2014
Edition/Format Available In: eBook & Print
Like any fifteen-year-old, Alan Chandler has to deal with the horrors of adolescence—social awkwardness, joblessness, and a father who drives him nuts. But there are some not-so-typical horrors too: His father’s job is to resurrect people as anti-terrorist soldiers. Even though his father keeps warning him that the day will come when he’ll need to take over the family business, Alan is more interested in starting an Undead Wrestling Federation—if only he could keep a corpse on its feet for more than a minute at a time.
Meanwhile, troubles are brewing in the Middle East. A mad dictator threatens to start World War III, and Alan knows that if his father leaves for war, he won’t be coming back. Not alive anyway. With the future at stake, Alan must choose between his adolescent dreams and becoming the leader his father needs him to be. He needs to find himself and understand how his powers work...before it’s too late.
~ * ~
James Krompholz grunted and tightened his grip around the neck of the corpse. Alan Chandler watched as the semi-rigid neck began to stretch as James flexed his pudgy bicep
“Yo, loosen up on him, man,” Alan said. The basement walls grew fuzzy before his eyes. “You’re starting to give me a headache.”
James looked over at his friend, but didn’t release his hold.
“Yo…chill!” Alan demanded. His thick brow began to furrow.
To say the ladies didn’t love Alan was an understatement. He was flabby and pimple laden and insisted on wearing baggy clothes that only made him look fatter because they were comfortable. The distinct funk of an ill-kept afro and deodorant-resistant BO always proceeded and trailed his movements. And he wasn’t an intellectual heavyweight, either. His grades made him look slow, at best. Alan Chandler was the kind of mouth-breather most people wouldn’t even want to sit next to on the bus, let alone be their friend, and he knew this. Good Lord, did he know this. If not for one discernible talent, James probably wouldn’t even want to be his friend.
But Alan did have a special ability—he could control a corpse with his mind. He could even feel what it felt when it took damage. Alan’s father, Herbert, could do even more than that. Alan had seen it with his own eyes.
“Come on, man. Don’t give in,” James said with sweat glistening on his beet red forehead. “If we’re ever going to get corpse wrestling off the ground, you’ve gotta get stronger with controlling Mort. Now, come on. Break my hold.”
“You’re pulling too hard,” Alan said. His shoulders dropped and tears welled up in the corners of his eyes. “I can’t breathe!”
“If you can talk, you can breathe,” James said. He raised his right eyebrow and smirked. “You also need to be able to take a blow. Like this!” He put his leg behind the dead man’s and fell backward with him. The blow of the corpse’s head hitting the ground made an audible chock sound on the cold cement.
Alan screamed as he stumbled forward. Purple splotches popped behind his eyes and his chest felt like it had been slammed by a battering ram.
“Alan,” James said. His voice sounded like it was underwater. “Hey, man. Are you okay? Just take a deep breath. Oh, man. I didn’t think you’d go down like that.”
~ * ~
Richard B. Knight (The "B" stands for "Brandon") teaches Language Arts during the day and writes fiction at night. He decided that he wanted to be a novelist back in the fourth grade. It was all quite spontaneous. Back then, his teacher asked all of the students what they wanted to be when they grew up, and while many students chose "doctor", or "lawyer", or "astronaut", Richard, wanting to be funny, chose "drag queen garbage man". It wasn't until his peers starting reading off their choices that Richard decided that it would probably behoove him to write down another profession. He has stuck with "novelist" ever since.