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A New World: The First Installment of the Mark Henson Trilogy

By Lois Withers All Rights Reserved ©

Romance / Fantasy

Blurb

Oh just your basic story of Angels, Demons, and Gaians? Small town Sheriff Mark Henson thought life couldn't get any worse with the death of his son, the death of his unborn daughter, and his wife leaving him. That is until the girl of his dreams literally falls out of the sky splitting his truck in two. Demetria, Princess of the Gaians, explains to him that God is about to start Armageddon and she will do anything to stop it. Mark soon discovers that everything he thought he knew about the world around him is about to disintegrate, and will have to choose between saving his own soul or the girl of his dreams.

The Beginning

Slowly I walk down the sidewalk in a daze, as I try to figure out what is going on with the town. Lying on the road is a pair of legs kicking frantically from behind a car. I walk up and see a man pinned down by some kind of creature. I go over to help but one of the creature turns around letting out an inhumanly squawk. Not even going to lie to you, I had to do a double take on this thing.

My jaw drops at the sight of this horrendous creature. This thing has the body of a much starved creature. Bones protrude though tightly stretch skin. The skin almost reminds me of a human. The texture makes it look human. No body hair is on this creature. The eyes have no color, just pure white. Excess skin stretches under the creature’s arms fusing to the hips. It looks like it forms some kind of sickening wings.

The most repulsive part of this creature is what is on the face. It comes to a triangular point with thousands of tiny razor sharp fangs, that when closed, interlock with each other. It almost reminds me of a bird’s beak, but nothing is covering its fangs. It squawks again making my stomach turn. The smells of rotting flesh and rotten eggs blast me in the face.

The vulture like creature turns back to the man. It slowly peels away the flesh from the victim. I watch as it chomps down on the meat. It moans in delight to the taste, as blood seeps from its teeth.

I look around seeing these demonic vultures pick the bones clean of the fallen. Slowly, I look all around. People are running everywhere and anywhere in complete chaos. Screams echo everywhere. Cars are smashing into everything. I even watch as one drives straight into the funeral home. No matter what they did, these demons would catch their prey.

What is happening? What do we do? Has the Apocalypse finally come? So many questions run wild in my mind, as I try to process all this. The horror just keeps coming. In the sky the demons are tearing up their victims, limb by limb. Body parts are falling, hitting everything and everyone.

A torso hits the ground in front of me. Blood splatters onto me, covering me. I can see pieces of guts on my shirt. Desperately, I try to wipe it off. The blood just smears all over. The chunks of guts just ball up sticking to my fingers.

The ground gives a short jolt I can feel softly in my feet. An earthquake in Illinois is highly unlikely. In all of my years living here, we have only experienced one. The ground just keeps shaking more violently. Thud. The sound gets louder. Thud. Another shake to the ground, this one much stronger. THUD. I fall to the ground.

There, in front of me, is a gigantic pair of feet. I crawl out from under the protection of a wooden over pass. A huge blob demon walks the street, smashing buildings with its disgusting arms. It stands twenty feet tall, weighing about five tons. Everywhere you look on this blob, huge fat rolls just overlap everywhere on it. No body hair is anywhere on it. I couldn’t even tell if it had eyes or not. The fat from the forehead just folds right over where eyes should be on a human. Only a tiny slits are there.

A deafening inhuman roar is heard comes from above. I watch as the people running for their lives are lifted up in the air. One by one the helpless victims go, screaming for help.

About thirty more types of demons go scampering past the blobs. This time, there are more female type creatures than men. I only say that because these creatures did have some form of breasts on the bodies. Each of them are more gruesome and grotesque than the next to follow. One stops in front of me and pure terror is all I feel. It has no arms. The legs are that of a snake’s body. The eyes and nose are gone. Instead the mouth covers the entire face. Fangs line the mouth as a snake like tongue slithers out to me. It turns slithering away from me.

A darken blur swoops down snatching up a person that just comes running right in front of me. I run out looking up in the sky. Another type of vulture demons are flying around grabbing anyone. Their skin is charred and cracked. The wings, oddly enough, are made up of blackened steel. Again they have no eyes, only empty black sockets take the place. They have razor sharp fangs. Their fingers are stretched to double their original size, and the tips are about four inch long razor claws. The claws sink deep into the victim’s flesh, ripping chunks off. The demons are feasting and even having fun as they do. The sheer delight on their faces make my stomach turn.

The stench of death and fire make it hard for people to breathe. I pull my shirt over my nose to try to breathe. I still end up coughing hard. I stumble through the streets covered in blood, dirt, and sweat. Everywhere you turn is utter horror. Hell has come to Earth.

A woman and her young son go running past, almost knocking me to the ground. A crawling type demon runs tackling both of them. The boy rolls across the pavement scrambling to his feet. He screams for his mother. Meanwhile, the mother fights for her life screaming for help.

My instincts take over, as I run over to the woman. I tackle the demon off her. She gets up running away with her son. The demon and I roll onto the blood soaked pavement. I manage to get on top of it. The only thing I can do is punch away at its face. With every blow, the demon just laughs hysterically at me. I watch as its bloody hands grab my arms throwing me across the street. I roll over seeing the demon lunge for its next victim.

A torso falls in front of me, blood and guts explode all over me again. I wipe it off my face. I sit there stunned, watching everything as if it is in slow motion. The slaughter and bloodshed won’t stop. I stumble back to my feet leaning on a post.

“What have I done?” I hear myself say. I walk tripping over a dismembered body falling on top of it. All I could do is stare into the corpse’s horror stricken face. Fear sets inside my soul. I scramble off the corpse, frantically running.

I didn’t know where I am going, all I know is that I had to run. A leg falls on me, knocking me to the ground. I stand brushing off the pieces of flesh. A bone chilling growl comes from behind me. I freeze feeling the cold sweat fall down my face. My breathing is rapid as a new fear sinks into my soul. Slowly I turn seeing my five year old son, Lucas.

“Hi daddy.” Tears run silently down my face at the sight of him. My sweet baby boy completely untouched from the car accident, as if it never happened. “Play a game with me daddy?” I watch as he pretends to think, a sadistic smile creeps over his lips. Something is really wrong. His eyes go cold. “Oh I know! How about we play cutters? Do you know that game daddy?” Slowly he steps towards me. Such evil hatred is coming through his eyes towards me. I slowly back away from him. My heart shatters at the sight. “Here, let me show you.”

Lucas’s face changes into a blackened skull with razor sharp fangs. He lunges at me, slashing away at my arms with his claws. I try to hold him back but he keeps coming after me.

“See what you did to me!” Lucas speaks in a demonic voice. He lunges again, slashing a huge gash on my arm. I grab him, pinning him to the ground as blood pours everywhere. I tremble with rage filled pain as I stare down at him. What did they do to my baby boy?

“Lucas what happened to you?” He thrashes around snapping his teeth at me. His breath reeks of rotting flesh.

“You cursed me in this world! I must kill!” He snarls. My sweet baby boy has been reduced to this.

I watch as his body begins to change. His neck starts to stretch. Bone chilling snaps and skin stretching rings in my ears. Lucas demonically laughs at my disgust. His head is now level with mine. The demonic laughter echoes in my ears. I stare into Lucas’s blackened eyes. My body trembles from fear.

“See you in hell father!” His mouth opens wide like a snake. Razor sharp teeth line his mouth. Slowly Lucas stretches his mouth over my head. The teeth nick all around my head. I hear a demonic roar from inside his mouth. I look up seeing a huge fire roaring as screams come the closer I approach flames. It is like staring down the tunnel to Hell. The smell of death is all around. Slowly Lucas sinks his teeth into my head. I feel my skull begin to break.

“Lucas please!” I barely choke out from all the pressure. Pure evil laughter comes from deep inside. I close my eyes afraid of seeing what is about to happen to me. “God please forgive my son! He knows not what he is doing! Accept him in your light and help him find his way!”

Lucas sucks my entire body into his mouth. I fall down into the vast abyss of fire. The closer I get, the more I pray. My soul can be damned for all I care, some of the things I’ve done in my life I can understand. My son though is only five years old. Let him be embraced into the arms of God. The fire is only inches away as the heat grows more intense. All I can do is wait for pain of death.

I wake in a sweat on the floor beside my bed. I sit up in a panic, as my body shaking from fear. The dream was so realistic. Coldness falls on me, as my breathing is rapid. I take a deep breath trying to calm myself but I just couldn’t stop from shaking as I climb back into bed.

I lean back on the head board. Nightmares are all I have since Lucas’s death. No parent should ever know what it’s like to have to bury their child. Death is better than to feel this pain inside. It’s a hole that only grows bigger and harder to swallow.

I look over at the empty right side of the bed. My beautiful wife, Kelly, has not been here for the past four months. I’ve despised her. Part of me blames her for Lucas’s death. I know I shouldn’t think that way, that this is all part of the grieving process. I need to help myself and Kelly through the darkest time in our lives, but I just don’t have the heart for it. Especially since four doctors, three nurses, and a pharmacist tells you not to drive when being on such high narcotics and you load up your child to go for a country drive all because you couldn’t sleep. Here lately she’s been at her friend Lily’s house. To be honest, I wouldn’t blame her if she left me. If someone treated me that cruel, I would have left a long time ago.

I run my hand down the side of her bed. The coldness is starting to get to me. I miss her so much. I sigh turning away. This inner battle in me is driving me mad.

I glance over at the alarm clock. It’s reading three in the morning. Slowly I run my fingers through my hair in frustration. So many thoughts fly around in my head about the things going on in my life. I’ve messed up so badly with every aspect of my life.

My cell phone goes off. I grab it seeing that Tom, my twenty seven year old deputy, is calling. Curiosity comes over me as I answer the phone.

“Henson here.” I am a little groggy answering.

“Sheriff we got another one.”

“Damn it!” I run my fingers through my hair again in frustration. “I’m on my way.” Three murders in one week. This town will be in an uproar. I just don’t want to deal with the drama from it.

I get out of bed putting on my uniform. Unfortunately, this job is the only thing keeping me sane anymore. I hop into my truck and fly down the road. You see in a small town there is one major rule to follow when you are the sheriff. If anything goes down, you have to get there quick or the whole town will be in a complete uproar with twenty different versions of the truth.

I pull up to the crime scene with a huge cloud of dust fogging my headlights. Cop car lights and road flares light up the darkened forest sky. In the distance, cops search the woods for any sign of clues, as their lights flash all around the ground and trees. I get out of my truck with my flashlight in hand.

“Glad you’re here.” Tom says with a very sickened pale expression.

“What’s the story?” He leads me back to the crime scene.

“Two campers called it in. Mark, we’re dealing with a real fucking sicko here.”

We approach the body. My eyes scan the scene. Amazingly I’m so use to these things, that none of this fazes me. The body is just like the other two, nailed to a cross, burned to a crisp, and no evidence. The pain radiates through the victim’s facial expression. Permanently frozen in screaming out in pain. I slowly circle around the body examining it, trying to find anything else different. The smell is something that I’ll never forget. Burnt flesh clings to your clothes and your nostrils.

“You think.” I say to Tom.

“One of the campers is studying Latin over at the university. He caught only parts but the parts he did.” He trails off fighting back his urge to puke. “It’s not good.”

“What was said?” I had to know no matter what.

“Something about casting a soul into Hell.” I turn to Tom completely taken aback.

“What the hell?”

Headlights come flying up the road. I look up groaning as I hear the sounds of people scrambling out of their vehicles. The press is here. In the distance, you can hear them trying to get answers out of the officers that are pushing them back.

“Fucking press.” I say sighing. I turn to Tom. “Get me the reports as soon as you finish up here. I’ll go deal with the insects.”

“Good luck.” I walk out of the scene and approach the crowd. The lights instantly turn to me, blinding me. They frantically stick their mics towards my face rambling out questions. I just push my way through saying no comment. Unfortunately, they follow me to my truck.

“At this time we have nothing to report. We cannot prove that this is connected in any way to the other murders. When there is more to tell, someone from my office will get a hold of you.”

I hop into my truck and take off through the dark. My tail lights gleam down the road as the dust trails behind. This is going to be a nightmare when I get to the office. All the paperwork plus the strong possibility that the FBI will be getting involved. There is always a rule of three. Three murders in a short period of time means a serial killer. I truly hope it doesn’t come to that.

I pull into my driveway completely exhausted. I get out seeing that Kelly’s car is there. This isn’t going to be good. I massage my head groaning.

“Not now. Please God not now.” I sigh. Inside, Kelly is sitting at the table drinking coffee. Her face is blotchy from crying. She looks up from her coffee, seeing my face. Tears stream down her face as she bravely stares at me.

“We need to talk Mark.” She calmly says to me. I just sigh and get a cup of coffee. I slowly sip on it trying to enjoy it.

“What about?” I still can not figure out why I’m cold to her. I know it wasn’t really her fault about Lucas, but I still blame her. Well sort of, I mean how many more times can someone be told something before it sinks into their memory.

“Mark I can’t keep doing this anymore. I want a divorce.” Rage immediately takes over me. She takes the life of our son and now acts like a coward that runs away when facing the consequences.

“What?” She instantly becomes angry at me for my own stupid rage.

“Ever since the accident you’ve treated me lower than shit!”

“You killed our son!” I scream at her.

“You don’t think I don’t know that!” She screams right back at me. “You don’t think that I don’t remember! I live with it every God damn day! The fucking nightmares play over and over in my head! I see him everywhere I look Mark! I’m fucking going bat shit crazy over all this!”

“Don’t expect any sympathy from me! The damn doctors even told you not to drive while taking those fucking pills!”

“And where were you Mark? At work, like you always do when it comes with dealing with anything hard that comes your way!”

Kelly breaks down crying. Frustration comes over me. I set the cup on the counter sighing. All my rage fades away as I walk over to her. I try to comfort her but she recoils from my touch. I retract my hand backing away from her. She bolts for the door. The takes hold of me again. All I could do is stand there watching the door and listen to her leave.

I finally snap. Anything I can grab is thrown. Holes are being made as objects smash into millions of pieces. I grab the coffee pot throwing it hard into the wall next to me. The glass shatters as hot coffee splatters on me. This finally snaps me back. I fall to the ground breathing heavily as tears roll down my face.

I hang my head low running my fingers through my hair. I just couldn’t deal with the situation. I’m thirty years old. My only child I had to bury. Three murders in a small country town. The press aggravating for statements. Now my wife, my high school sweetheart, is leaving me. I look up seeing the room is completely trashed. I shake my head getting up.

“Please God I beg you. No more. Please no more grief. You took my son for a higher cause that my simple mind cannot handle, not including the baby girl you didn’t even let have a chance at life. I try to control the rage deep down inside, but I’m not having much luck with that. Maybe you could ease up a little bit, just so I can get things in order.” I beg for any mercy.

I leave the kitchen heading upstairs to my room. I pull off my clothes as I flip the shower on. Under the hot steamy water, I stand emotionless. I look down at my left hand seeing my wedding ring. I twirl it around my finger remembering that day.

* * * * * * * * * * * * *

Kelly and I enter into the honeymoon suit. She is still dressed in her wedding gown. I lift her up in my arms as she lets out an exciting gasp and her sweet laugh. I use my foot to close the door and walk us over to the bed. Kelly frantically turns kissing me.

I lay us both on the bed. We lustfully start pulling at each other’s clothes. I pin her on the bed. We part staring at each other panting hard. My manhood is throbbing for her and I know she wants me. She wiggles her hips slowly trying to kissing me. I smile down at her.

“I love you.” I say to her with such happiness. She smiles up at me.

“I love you. I’ve never been this happy before.” She says.

“Me too.” I get off of her sitting on the bed. She lays there rubbing my arm. I open the bottle of champagne pouring us each a glass. She sits up beside me taking the glass.

“To a very long and happy life together.” She says holding it to mine.

“Filled with love and laughter.” I ting her glass. We drink down the champagne in one gulp. We look at each other and laugh. I pour our glasses with more. This time though we just sip on it. Kelly takes my left hand kissing my wedding ring. All I could do is laugh. She’s just so adorable in this moment. I pull her tight to me. I take the glasses from us setting them on the table. Gently I lay us back down on the bed staring into her gorgeous brown eyes.

“Are you tired?” I ask her.

“A little. You?” She flashes me such a flirty smile. I return her smile with a devilish grin.

“Oh baby not even close.” She laughs. I could listen to her laughter all day. She turns facing me as she begins playing with my ring again.

“Everyone says that we are too young to be doing this.” She says with a little worry behind her voice.

“We probably are, but I can’t imagine being with anyone else. That ring is never coming off my finger.” She fights back the tears as much as possible, but a few roll down her flush cheeks.

“Oh Mark.” I lean over kissing her tears.

“Hey now. Don’t cry. You know I can’t handle a woman crying.”

“I’m just so happy. I love you so much.” I lean down kissing her passionately. She wraps her arms around me responding to my touch.

* * * * * * * * * * * * *

I stand still under the stream of the hot shower, twirling my ring. Silent tears fall down my face as I stare down at my wedding ring. Slowly I pull it off my finger and set it on the side of the tub. My heart breaks into a million pieces. All I could do is stare down at my bare finger sighing.

I love her but this is my fault entirely. I put all the blame on her. I even put the death of our baby girl on her. I deserve to be alone. I deserve to be damned.

I arrive at the police station only to wish that I haven’t. The place is swarming with the press. They are like flies on rotting flesh. Until you get rid of the rotting flesh, you won’t get rid of the flies. I try to make it to my spot, which is proving to be a little difficult. They swarm my truck the moment they see me pulling into the parking lot. I crack my window.

“Hey you idiots! If you back away so I can park my truck then I’ll be able to answer your stupid questions!” I shout at them. Slowly they part enough so I can get my truck parked. “God damn!” I hop out, and just like before, I’m swarmed. Slowly, I push my way through the crowd making it inside the police station.

I get inside the station slamming the door shut. I lean against the door to catch my breath. Seems like the older I get, my body ages twice as much at times. Instantly I’m annoyed when I see Tom coming my way. He really is a great deputy, but my personal life is starting to follow me to work and things are making me want to snap.

“The Feds are waiting in your office.” Tom says to me. Just perfect.

“Joy. Do you have the reports?” I ask. We start walking down the hallway to the break room. I need coffee in order to deal with this.

“Coroner will fax his over when he’s done. The scene reports are waiting on your desk. The Feds already have a copy. They want copies of the other reports.” Finally coffee. I pour a huge cup taking a good size gulp.

“Go and get them. I’ll see ya in there.” I head off to my office as he goes off to his desk. Inside, the Feds are studying my board on the murders. “Pretty twisted for a small town.” They turn glaring at me. They didn’t even hear me enter the room. I stretch out my hand to the younger looking agent. “Sheriff Mark Henson.”

The agent takes my hand shaking it weakly. I know that this guy is going to be the one giving me trouble. My grandpa always had a saying, “You can always determine what a man is made of by the way he shakes your hand.” This agent is going to be snotty and a dick about things.

“Special Agent Townsend.” Townsend releases my hand. I turn to the other agent and shake his hand. He is a little older but his hand shake is firm and strong. This guy is going to be the one to deal with. He knows what he is doing and isn’t going to be a dick about things unless he has to.

“Special Agent William Blaum. So what’s the story?” I go over to the board and begin to point out pictures.

“Well first victim was Nicholas Clemmon. No real story behind him. Just thirty one years of age and homeless. The second victim was Jacob Hunter, age twenty five. He’s a known drug dealer. Busted only for dealing pot. They don’t have anything connecting them to each other. They didn’t even know each other.”

“And the third victim?” Blaum asks.

“Don’t know yet. I’m waiting on DNA reports. I’m hoping maybe this one will help put all this together.” A knock comes on my door. The agents and I turn seeing Tom enter the room.

“What’s up?” I ask Tom.

“Lewis called off. We don’t have anyone to cover the night shift.” Tom is completely nervous. I turn back to the agents as they return their attention to me.

“Excuse me gentlemen. If you need anything just ask Mary up at the front desk.” Tom and I leave the room. We walk half way down the hallway stopping. “Okay can you cover tonight if I send you home early?”

“I wish I could but it’s Emily’s birthday. I’m taking her out to dinner.”

“Damn it. I forgot. I’ll just cover it. Let them have access to whatever they need. I’m going home.” Tom nods his head and takes off down the hallway. I head back outside to the press. They swarm me still asking the same questions over and over.

Do you have a suspect? Are the victims connected? Are there any clues? Is this the work of a serial killer?

I finally make inside my truck. Slowly I back up and drive off. There are a couple of times though that I almost hit a camera man. It wouldn’t bother me. These fucking people are like maggots.

I drive through the small town in silence. All the stress and emotions weighing down on my shoulders. I don’t know why, but I glance down at my left hand. I see my bare finger. That little white mark signifying my heart break. I shake my head pushing it to the back of my mind. I just couldn’t think about this right now. I need to focus on this damn town. Three dead people and no suspect. Now I have the Feds to deal with on top of it all.

I finally make it home. Inside I see that the entire house is clean, but all of Kelly’s things and most of the furniture is gone. There is a note on the fridge in her handwriting.

Mark,

I know it must seem like I’m a coward, that I’m bailing out on our marriage. I just can’t take the cruelty anymore. I love you with all my heart. I was so happy when we first got married. When Lucas was born I thought life couldn’t get any better. Then when we were going to have our little girl I was in heaven.

It was an accident. I just fell. From that night, it’s been a downhill nightmare. I blame myself for the death of our daughter. Then came the lost of Lucas and you working all the time. I needed you and you weren’t there. When you were there it was like dealing with some stranger. You are not the man I married twelve years ago. You are someone completely different.

I have to live with the fact that I killed our son. I have to live with the fact that I was a clumsy idiot and killed our unborn baby girl, but where you were? You were working like you always do. Instead of staying home with me and being a strong husband to help get us both through the darkest hours of our marriage you ran away to work. You blamed me and ran away.

I love you Mark but I just cannot do this anymore. My attorney will get a hold of you.

Kelly

Rage comes over me. I crumble the paper up in my hands. Tears fall down my face. I throw the paper off to the other room. I take a deep breath calming myself. It was just a matter of time with her. There is no one to blame but myself on any of this.

All I could do is just sigh and head up stairs to my bed. I strip down to my boxers and lay there staring up at the ceiling. I truly do wish things were different between Kelly and me. My heart is torn. Part of it wants me to run over to her and do anything to get our life back together, but the other part wants justice for what happened to our children. I truly deserve to go to Hell for these thoughts. Right now though, I need to go to sleep. I must focus on this town before I can get my own damn life put back together. Slowly I fall asleep.

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