A Boy & His Corpse
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.
Alan forced a smile, but saw flames behind his eyes. He even started to smell fire. Something was very wrong.
“I’m fine, Mrs. Hi—”, he began, but his tongue suddenly felt like wood in his mouth. His line of vision turned green.
“Run,” James said out the corner of his mouth as everybody turned to look at him. “You’re starting to glow.”
“I think I’m going to be sick,” Alan said, heeding his friend’s advice. He rushed out of his desk and darted out the room.
With the speed of a Ferrari, he sprinted down the hallway. Along the way, he collided with Mr. Steele, the history teacher.
“Hey!” Mr. Steele shouted, but Alan kept running until he reached the bathroom. He shoved the door open with his shoulder.
Once inside, Alan looked at himself in the mirror and gasped. His afro, which had always been wild and untamed, now stood straight up as if he had been electrified. His eyes also had no pupils at all. They were completely green and empty.
Did anybody else see me like this? He worried.
Worst of all though was the green aura that encircled his body. His skin was on fire and he scratched at it. He smelled ash everywhere and his ears rung with cries of “Please stop!” Was that his father’s voice?
Calm down, Alan. Calm down.
But it was hard to calm down with the sound of footsteps coming down the hallway toward you. Alan dashed into the nearest stall and closed the door behind him. He layered the seat with toilet paper and pulled down his pants before he sat down. He counted backward and took sharp (but quiet) breaths.
Ten Mississippi, nine Mississippi, eight Mississippi…
The bathroom door slowly opened, and Alan saw brown dress shoes underneath the stall.
“I know you’re in here,” Mr. Steele said. Alan didn’t really know Mr. Steele since he taught the juniors.
“I’m sorry,” Alan said. “I didn’t—”
“You almost ran me over out there.”
Alan bared down as hard as he could and a giant, overbearing fart came out of him, followed by a plop in the toilet that splashed his butt cheeks.
“Sorry,” Alan said. “I didn’t want to crap myself.”
“Pheeeeew,” Mr. Steele said on the other side of the door. Alan imagined him swatting the air in front of his nose. “You weren’t kidding, kid. God. Okay, just watch it next time, okay? Good Lord! What did you eat?”
Mr. Steele rushed out of the bathroom and Alan let out a sigh and slumped back against the toilet. Shortly thereafter, the greenness left his line of vision and his heart slowed down.
What the hell was that? Alan wondered as he slapped the roll of toilet paper beside him. As soon as he wiped up and washed his hands, he dug his cell phone out of his pocket and dialed his dad’s number. Something was very wrong.
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.
Richard has a love of movies, video games, and comic books, and all three influences come through in his writing. He currently lives in Clifton, New Jersey with his lovely wife, Rona.