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Thursday, 29 November 2012

Chpt. 20 - Don't Shoot the Messenger by Daniel Grant Newton (SEASON FINALE)

For the previous chapters of Daniel Grant Newton's online book Don't Shoot the Messenger, click below:

Chapter 1      Chapter 2      Chapter 3      Chapter 4      Chapter 5      Chapter 6      Chapter 7      Chapter 8      Chapter 9      Chapter 10     Chapter 11      Chapter 12      Chapter 13      Chapter 14     Chapter 15     
Chapter 16     Chapter 17     Chapter 18     
Chapter 19

Irene and Jude took their hands off the ancient chest and peered into the darkness.
“This is different,” whispered Jude, cocking his gun.  “When is this?”
“Well, I guess we are with the box just before Alexander bought it,” Irene replied.  “That was our intention.”
The lights overhead blinked on, temporarily blinding them. 
When their eyes adjusted to the brightness, the two time travellers were face to face with a room full of soldiers in black jumpsuits, with the Nordic Mjollnir (Thor’s Hammer) symbol emblazoned on the front of their uniforms.
The soldiers held futuristic-looking rifles at Irene and Jude that hummed and contained glowing cartridges. 
Someone approached the two visitors.
It was Alexander, dressed in a long black gown and gloves.  He wore a silver pendant of the same symbol as that on the soldier’s jumpsuits.
“Just on time,” he said, greeting Jude and Irene.  “Beauty and the beast are here as I said they would.”  He rubbed his hands together.  “Welcome to the year 2043.  I thought I’d bring you both back here to show you what you helped create.”
“What’s going on Alexander?” said Irene, after exchanging a glance with Jude.
“You all played your parts perfectly,” he scoffed.  “Naturally, having to read the probability hologram by myself meant I was never quite sure which outcome was most probable, but this one was a good one.  I did think at one stage having a scientist help me read it could be useful, but I couldn’t risk them getting all ethical on me, now could I?  Just as no one, including Spider, could be witness to my entire master plan.”  He beamed.  “Doesn’t matter, anyway.  I had a plan for every possibility.”
“Jesus didn’t die,” Jude muttered.  “So your plan failed.”
“You are part right, my friend,” Alexander nodded.  “Jesus didn’t die.  But the Roman Empire did, and so did Christianity.  Well, there are a few pockets of those who follow the teachings of Christ, but I am gradually quietening those rabble makers.  Killing them for the good of the whole.  I am still considering on going back to kill the pest you guys failed to kill, but as it is, Christians are a minority that hide in the alleys like cockroaches.”
“I don’t understand,” said Irene, shaking her head.  “You destroyed the Roman Empire and wiped the Christian Church from history?”
“Correct.  It was all part of my master plan, as aforementioned.  The team was delivered a number of bombs through the chest the day you both split from the rest of the group.  One was meant to blow Irene and the temple up, but the rest were nuclear weapons given to a nasty resistance group.  I believe you met their leader, young lady.
“Anyway, this group was shown how to detonate the bombs in the letter Spider gave their leader, and they were also given the artillery to get them into the heart of Rome, supposedly in exchange for your capture.  Without Rome, Christianity as you both knew it could not spread.  The note also requested they kill the two of you and any of the team you didn't manage to kill.  I do hate loose ends.  But in the end the only one they killed was Kofi, because you do what you do so well, Jude.”
Jude and Irene stood in silence.
“Your majesty,” said one of the soldiers, bowing his head to Alexander, “shall we lock these time outlaws away?”
Alexander nodded and the soldiers stamped their feet signalling that they accepted the order.  Irene and Jude were grabbed from behind by a number of soldiers.
“Your majesty?” Jude exclaimed, squirming his muscular body out of the hold of the four soldiers around him.  “What does he mean by that?”
Alexander moved right up into Jude’s face.  “Do you really think I got to where I got by being nice, Mr. Stone?  By helping people?  The three missions I sent you on were all designed to give me the opportunity to inherit my kingdom.  And get back what fate had stolen from me – the Mjollnir Kingdom.” 
He turned to the men holding Irene and Jude.  “Lock them up.  Tomorrow morning we will give them a public execution to honour the Great Odin.  I want the message to be loud and clear: No man shall pass through time without my command.

To be continued...
Season 2 coming in 2013...

If you have not already, Shambhala hero, subscribe so you do not miss it, and so you can enjoy the many upcoming stories planned.

And do not forget to tune in on Monday for the first part of The Last King of Shambhala.

Tuesday, 27 November 2012

Holy News Stories, Hero! Message straight from the Shambhala Cave to your Shambhalan Transmitter

NOTE: "Vegitables" are digital vegetables for those playing at home.
Beep beep beep...

Shambhala Hero, listen up.  The season final of Don't Shoot the Messenger will be posted in two days time.

Holy Ending, Daniel.  I hear you say.  Which is not only a clever reference to Burt Ward's version of Robin, but also perhaps a little bit sacrilegious considering the content of the story.

But do not fear.  A new story is here...

I have decided to release The Last King of Shambhala, chapter by chapter, every Monday, Wednesday and Friday (starting next week).  In addition to regular programming, stories and insightful ramblings.

Yes, The Last King of Shambhala is the story that has had top reviewers raving, been rated as one of the best independent books of the year, and had been given approval by this guy.

So join us next week, same bat time, same bat channel.

Oh, and The Last King of Shambhala is still available for pocket money on Amazon, if you want to support your favourite writer's hopes and dreams, or you want to find out what happens ASAP.


Saturday, 24 November 2012

Chpt. 19 - Don't Shoot the Messenger by Daniel Grant Newton

For the previous chapters of Daniel Grant Newton's online book Don't Shoot the Messenger, click below:

Chapter 1      Chapter 2      Chapter 3      Chapter 4      Chapter 5      Chapter 6      Chapter 7      Chapter 8      Chapter 9      Chapter 10     Chapter 11      Chapter 12      Chapter 13      Chapter 14     Chapter 15     Chapter 16     Chapter 17     Chapter 18

“Yēšûă,” called Jude, as the mystic had finished his speech.
Yēšûă turned from the crowd and made his way off the mound he’d addressed them on.
Jude called his name again, and this time he nodded at the soldier and moved towards him.
The mystic spoke in Aramaic to Jude, but the soldier interrupted him.  “Look I need you to come with me, you are in grave danger.”
Yēšûă put his hand on Jude’s shoulder, smiled widely, and then started to make his way to the crowd.
Jude pulled his sleeve back.  “You don’t understand, I know that.  But you must come with me.  I don’t have much time to argue in a language you can't speak.  Irene has been poisoned and doesn’t have the time left for us to argue.”
This time Yēšûă nodded as if he had understood, and gestured for Jude to take him.
The soldier dragged him through the crowd with one hand while keeping the other one clasping a pistol.  The people followed like magnets.
As they came around the corner of the street where Jude had sat Irene up against the side of a building, they dashed to her side.  She had collapsed face first in the mud.
Jude rolled her over and put his fingers to her throat.
“She’s got no pulse,” he began to whimper.  “It’s too late.”
His face became stiff.
Yēšûă brushed a hand through her hair and her eyes began to blink.
Seeing this reaction, Jude ripped the antidote out from his jacket under the cloak and tipped it down her mouth.  Slowly she became more animated, if a little weak still.
“We got here just in time,” said Jude as he turned to face Yēšûă.  But the mystic was gone.
Down the street stood Maria.  She smiled at Jude and nodded, before disappearing into a building.
Irene groaned.  The soldier turned back to her.
“Jude,” she whispered.
“Don’t speak,” he replied.  “You’re okay, but you need to save your strength.  Yēšûă is back in hiding and will likely evade Spider now.”
“Jude, we need to get back.  Spider and Alexander are going to commit horrible atrocities.”
“What do you mean?” Jude asked.
"They've given modern weapons to a rebel group in the hills."  She coughed a lungful. 
“Alexander is crazy.  He wants the group to topple the Roman Empire to prevent the spread of Christianity.  We need to go back to just before Alexander bought the machine and stop him or anyone else from purchasing it.  It is too dangerous,” said Irene.  She put a hand to Jude sooty cheek.  “Where is the box?”
“It’s connected to all our minds.  The physical location is still back in Alexander’s labs, but we can access it by…”
Jude was interrupted by the sound of a gunshot and screaming.
“Yēšûă,” Irene gasped.  “They’ve killed him.”
Jude pulled her up, and holding her sluggish body to his side, hugged the wall and inched towards the corner.  He ducked his head around.
“I don’t get it,” said Jude, pressing back up against the wall.  “There are a lot of people crowding around the man who has been shot, but it’s not Yēšûă.”
“Who is it?” Irene asked.
“Kofi,” said Jude.  “He and Spider were the only two that I wasn’t able to take out before Yēšûă finished his speech.  But why would Spider kill Kofi.”
“Perhaps he was attempting to shoot Yēšûă, and in the struggle got shot himself.”
Jude shook his head.  “Unlikely.  He’s been shot in the back of the head.”
Irene’s eyes widened.  “The rebels?  I don’t know exactly how much was delivered.”
“We need to access the box before Spider does.  If we get back first I can mentally block off his access.”  Jude held Irene to his chest.  “Now …”
Jude swivelled around to the floor, letting go of Irene, who tumbled on top of him.
He felt blood gushing through his shirt, and raised his vision to see a blood splatter on the wall behind him.
“Killing Kofi out in the open like that is hardly your style,” came a voice.  The owner of the voice hidden by the late afternoon glare.  “It gave away your position.  You’re losing your touch, Jude.”
The man stepped in front of the sun.  It was Spider.
“I didn’t kill him,” Jude snarled.
“Well, I wouldn’t have killed my own man, now would I?”  Spider smirked.
The two man glared at each other.
“Which one wants to see hell first?  You, or your little girlfriend?” he taunted, waving his gun at the two of them.
Neither of them spoke.
“I could kill the doctor first, to see the pain in your eyes as she closes them for the last time,” sniggered Spider.  “Or I could kill you first, and then do what I want with her before putting a bullet in her brain.”
“You always were sick, Spider,” hissed Jude.
“Strong, not sick.  I can do things you can’t bring yourself to do, which makes me stronger than you, not sicker.”
Jude scowled.  “You’re wrong, Spider.  That’s exactly what makes me stronger.”
“You know, Judey-boy, I respected you, but then I discovered your weakness.  Now I pity you.  You could’ve been the best if it weren’t for your Achilles’ heel.”  Spider slowly swaggered towards them.  “Your Achilles’ heel that screwed you over in Brazil, and got those innocent people killed.  Not to mention screwed you up in bringing down those large criminal organizations, which no doubt are still funding drug trafficking rings around the world, and putting mummy and daddy killers at the wheel.”  He chuckled.  “And it’s the same ‘strength’, as you call it, that is getting you and the doctor killed.  Your emotions cloud your judgments, son.”
Jude reached behind him and grabbed a handful of sand.  “I disagree.”
“You disagree with what?  You disagree that that is what is getting you both shot, or that you are weaker than I am?  Because either way, you aren’t really in a position to argue it right now.”
Jude straightened his back and squared off with Spider.  “I think you are the weaker one.  And that’s why I was always chosen ahead of you for the biggest assignments.”
“I know I should just blow both your brains out right now, but I got to ask…”  Spider’s finger twitched on the trigger.  “What one reason could you have that could even suggest you are the stronger one?”
“You aren’t good when things don’t go to script,” croaked Jude.  He threw the sand in Spider’s eyes and slapped the pistol out of the soldier’s hand.
The gun fell into the hot sand.
Jude flipped up, but as he did, Spider hit him across the face with a fist making his head spin and a vibrant red streamer flick out from the corner of his mouth.
Jude turned back around and spat out a mouthful of blood.
Spider snarled and round-house kicked Jude in the arm he had been shot in.  He grunted in pain, but before Spider could give another blow, he pushed the giant Brit backwards with his foot.
Jude moved forward, but when he was in range of Spider’s reach, he was taken off-guard by a series of punches and fell backwards.
The two faced off again.  Spider put his meaty hands up to cover his face, but Jude kept his hands by his side and widened his stance a little.
This time when Spider threw a punch, Jude evaded the attack, and smacked him in the face.  Two teeth flew out from the tall soldier’s mouth.
Jude then struck Spider in the kidney and the solar plexus in quick succession.
Spider shoved Jude back, and ‘spun on a dime’ to collect Jude in the face with a turning kick.
The two fighters moved in towards each other and threw a series of elbows and punches that the other one evaded or blocked and countered, before finally Jude landed a punch.  He followed this up with a kick to Spider’s knee, a kick that lowered the big man, and then a backhand across the Brit’s face.
The towering soldier spun to the floor.  But as soon he touched the sand, he rolled back onto his feet, picking up the pistol in the process.
Before he could point it at Jude, the Australian did a crescent kick, once again knocking the gun out of Spider’s hand.
He bared his teeth at Jude.  Then, in a fit of rage, threw a punch, and then another punch, and another, which were all knocked away by Jude’s quick feet.
Jude then kicked sand up to mask his attack, and using the force of his leg coming down to launch himself into a jumping spinning kick that threw Spider to the ground.
Jude held his wounded arm as he watched Spider get to his feet and pull out a jagged-edge dagger.
The two men circled each other, before Spider lunged at Jude with the knife.
Jude caught the attack up in his cloak, before driving a punching counterattack.
Spider stumbled onto Jude, and as he did, he stabbed himself in the chest.  He attempted to lift himself off Jude, but couldn’t.
Jude let go of Spider and the big man slid to the ground in a pool of his own blood. 
“It’s done,” Jude said flatly under his breath.
He walked to Irene’s side and knelt down beside her and put a rough hand on her forehead and flushed cheeks.
Her olive skin looked pale.  “I’m fine, Mr. Stone – Jude.”
He nodded.  “You had me a little worried there…”
“I know,” she said, interrupting him.
They stared at each other in silence.
“I am glad you're okay,” she said, raising her eyebrows.  "I thought of a really good line about you being the missing link, and I thought I would never get to … you know … say it when you do something stupid in the future."
“I think I might be falling for you, too, Irene,” he responded warmly, which made her smile and her complexion take on a pinkish tinge.
He leant down and kissed her, and as they kissed, they were pulled back into the future.

Friday, 23 November 2012

Chpt. 18 - Don't Shoot the Messenger by Daniel Grant Newton

For the previous chapters of Daniel Grant Newton's online book Don't Shoot the Messenger, click below:

Chapter 1      Chapter 2      Chapter 3      Chapter 4      Chapter 5      Chapter 6      Chapter 7      Chapter 8      Chapter 9      Chapter 10     Chapter 11      Chapter 12      Chapter 13      Chapter 14     Chapter 15     
Chapter 16     Chapter 17

“If you bring forth what is within you, what you bring forth will save you. If you do not bring forth what is within you, what you do not bring forth will destroy you,” Yēšûă announced to the crowd, his arms spread wide.
The crowd were silent, transfixed on the man before them.
“Today men are here who wish to kill me,” he continued, to the gasping and whispering of the crowd, “but they do not realise that I do not have your key to the Kingdom of Heaven.  I said it when I arrived in your village, and I shall say it again, the Kingdom of Heaven is within you.  And so my message will never die, as it is not of flesh and blood, but will live on in every fibre of your physical and spiritual being.  And live on in every generation hereafter.  The message is immortal.”
“When do we get to kill him?” growled Kofi Nelson under his breath, a former Ghanaian-rebel-turn-elite-spy for the United States, and now working under Spider’s team.  “If we kill him now people will know he has been murdered, and his legacy will grow.”
Kofi Nelson closely shadowed Spider’s movements through the sea of people.
“That is why we’ll make him disappear,” Spider smirked back at him.  “Jude is out of the picture, perhaps finding out whether the Kingdom of Heaven really is inside himself, and we have all the time in the world.  We’ll follow him after the speech, and take him and his followers out.”
Spider put his two-way radio to his mouth.  “Team ‘A’ come in, over,” he called.
As he pulled his finger off the speaker, all that could be heard was static.
“Come in Team ‘A’, this is Spider, over,” he said again.
His eyes darted about the square and surrounding building tops.
“Team ‘B’, come in, over,” Spider spoke into his radio.  However, there too was only static on the other end.
“Come in Team ‘B’, over,” he repeated the order forcefully.  Still no answer.
Spider motioned for Kofi to move around the perimeter of the crowd.  “Jude is not dead, apparently.”
“It takes a lot to kill that man,” Kofi said.
“Screw you, Nelson,” said Spider, spitting his chewing gum on the dirt.  “Just go find Jude and kill him.”

Click here for Chapter 19... but prepared, the most thrilling is still to come.

A thank you note to YOU

Thursday, 22 November 2012

The Last King of Shambhala is "an absolute must read" - 5 stars from Critique de Book

Dear Shambhala Hero,

Guess what?!?  If you guessed that I got a five star review from the acclaimed book review bloggers Critique de Book...

Then you were right.  I'll take one of those stars and put it on your hand.  And what the Thule, four of your friends can have one too.

That's right, because I got five stars!  How many stars?  Five!

It even kept the reviewer up at night it was such a page turner.

You can read the review here.  And be sure to explore their website too, because these peeps do a great job reviewing a whole load of books.

And naturally, if you want to check out The Last King of Shambhala, and you "absolutely must" :-) ... here is the Amazon link to that too.

Five Star Author and your favourite blogger

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Don't Shoot the Messenger Official Blog Trailer

Hey Shambhala Hero!

As promised, here is the trailer (with Anabel) for my blog readers.  I have held off from posting this, but now, in celebration of Don't Shoot the Messenger Season One coming to an end next week, I thought it would be the perfect time to share it with you.

And don't be mistaken, this one I am posting here just for YOU - my blog readers - no one else.  So if anyone goes to the Don't Shoot the Messenger website - it won't be there.



Monday, 19 November 2012

Chpt. 17 - Don't Shoot the Messenger by Daniel Grant Newton

For the previous chapters of Daniel Grant Newton's online book Don't Shoot the Messenger, click below:

Chapter 1      Chapter 2      Chapter 3      Chapter 4      Chapter 5      Chapter 6      Chapter 7      Chapter 8      Chapter 9      Chapter 10     Chapter 11      Chapter 12      Chapter 13      Chapter 14   
Chapter 15      
Chapter 16

Jude carefully weaved through the crowd gathering in the square, analysing each sweaty robe for concealed weapons.  His eyes searched the surrounding building tops for snipers.
“Yēšûă is about to go up there,” he muttered, staring at the blazing sun.  “Where the hell are they?”
A boy in a white cloak smiled at Jude, revealing a set of buckteeth, and put his open hand on the soldier's abdomen.
Then with the other hand, the boy placed a note in Jude's hand, and skipped down a backstreet. 
The note simply read:
The message of love, or the one you make love with?  You have five minutes.
“Damn,” muttered Jude.  “Spider's got Irene.”
Jude raced through the streets, shoving people and objects out of his way.
“Irene,” he screamed, pulling doors open up and down the narrow streets.  “Irene.”
“Damn, damn, damn.”  He scratched the back of his neck.  “Where would Spider...”
Jude’s eyes stopped upon the monolithic dome towering above the buildings of mud and stone.  “The temple.”
He sprinted towards the structure, skipping through the crowd shuffling towards the location for Yēšûă's speech, and the aimlessly wandering cows and goats.
Jude galloped up the stairs of the temple and through the arched doorways.
Inside were pews, extravagant religious items, and limestone walls that stretched to the dome above.  But no sign of Irene.
The soldier scanned the walls for an imperfection in what was very precise craftsmanship.
He then bounded over a pew, and then another, and dashed to the front of the temple.  He stopped before the back wall and traced his hand over a loose stone.
Digging his fingers in he was able to pull it out and reveal a set of stairs that led down into a dark chamber.
“Irene,” called Jude down the hole.
“Jude,” came a faint, groggy voice.  “Is that you?”
“Wait there, Irene,” called Jude, shifting the rest of the blocks to get down to her, before bounding down the stairs to her side.
Irene’s body was limp.  She was not even being able to lift her head to look at him, but she did manage a small smile.
“You've been poisoned,” he stammered, loosening the rope tied around her.  “You'll be okay, Irene.  I have something in my backpack that can counteract it.  We only bring one type of poison on any given mission, the same tasteless, odourless, untraceable poison, and I’m the one charged with keeping the antidote.  I’ll get you to my pack as soon as possible.  It’s only a few blocks away.”  He repeated, perhaps more for his sake than hers:  “You’ll be okay, Irene.  You’ll be okay.”
He froze.
“What's wrong?” she croaked.  “Is Yēšûă safe?”
Jude was very still.  He gradually lifted himself up off his haunches.
“What's wrong?”  Irene became still and her eyes widened.
“The rope is attached to a bomb.  Any great force could cause the bomb to detonate early.”
“Early?” gasped Irene.
Jude followed the rope to a large cylinder with a timer on it.  The numbers raced down.
“We have two minutes to get out of here,” Jude whispered.  “Don't move.”
“Can you cut the red wire or something?”
“This device is much too complex for me to even guess how to disarm it.”  He paused, and circled her seat with his eyes transfixed on the explosive device under it.  “Every bomb expert has a signature, and I recognise this signature.  It was built by a man named Andriy Vashchuk, one of the world's best bomb engineers.  His bombs have about four different security 'layers' you need to crack before you can even get to the bomb itself.  If you get one wrong, the bomb will explode.”
“How did they even get the bomb here?” Irene asked, her eyes darting about the room.  “You know what, I don’t care how they got it here.  What on Earth are we going to do?”
“They must've brought it in pieces.  But unless Alexander sent reinforcements I didn't even know he had access to, I cannot see how they could have assembled it so perfectly.”  Jude glanced at Irene.  “Irene, I've undone your knot as far as I can without triggering the bomb.  Do you think you could really carefully slip your hands out without pulling at the rope?”
“I'll try,” Irene swallowed.  “How long do we have?”
“18 seconds.”
The two were silent, their eyes fixated on each other, as Irene gently tried to wiggle her hands out of the knot behind her back.
As soon as her hands were free Jude tried to pull her to feet, but she collapsed at his feet.
Without saying a word, Jude heaved Irene up into his arms and raced up the stairs, through the hole and to the entry way.
The illuminated digits of the bomb counter fell: 0.03, 0.02, 0.01, 0.00.
Fire balls leapt through the temple, obliterating the walls and roof into a cloud of debris that covered the village.
Jude lifted his head as a shower of soot rained down upon Irene and him.
“Jesus,” mumbled Irene, her consciousness flickering in and out.
“I know,” Jude coughed, “that was bloody close.”
“No,” breathed Irene, shaking her head.  “Jesus.  You must save Jesus.”
“You need to be treated,” he said, grabbing her sooty forearm to pull her up.
“No,” she said, “I’ll hold on.  Save Jesus.”
“Alright, but I’ll get the antidote on the way.”
A close escape!  But could this be Jesus' last supper?  Will Irene hold on?  Can Jude outwit a team of elite soldiers?  Keep repeating your prayers and keep your fingers crossed.

Friday, 16 November 2012

A GIANT thank you to YOU!

Dear Shambhala Hero,

Wow!  Just... wow!

I have been overwhelmed by your support - and have literally been floored by the increasing number of cool cats from across the globe that have begun following my free book Don't Shoot the Messenger as a result of 'reader recommendations'.

I cannot express my absolute appreciation for you enough, and how much it means that people are really taking to this story.  I was thinking if this all went well, I might put up more stories for you to read... however if things keep going the way they are going, and we keep growing this underground but loyal movement of Shambhalans, that won't be a question to ponder but go straight to the top of my 'to-do list', just above cure cancer and start training to become a future citizen of the first colony on Mars.

In fact, as a way of saying thank you, I am working hard on an online comic as of today that I'll put up as soon as possible on this blog.

Keep dreams alive,

danielgrantnewton (at) gmail (dot) com

It is now scientifically proven that readers of Don't Shoot the Messenger can be completely distracted from giant stomping robots from the 1980s that crush buildings with an air of disdain and apocalyptic destruction...