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Simply put, AmberPax™ Collections are groups of five stories centered around a specific theme. Each story within an AmberPax™ is released individually, on the same day as the others, and can be purchased separately, but these five stories can also be purchased as a single unit (the full AmberPax™) at a discount, currently 25%. Generally, an AmberPax™ is similar to an "anthology" of stories, but instead of the titles being released in only a single volume (file), they are also available individually. These AmberPax™ Collections are sold exclusively through our website and only in electronic format.

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Thursday, 19 March 2015

Morphing Into Pandemonium by Darcy Abriel

Pandemonium: a place or scene of riotous uproar or utter chaos.  Bedlam.  Turmoil.  Babel.  The capital of Hell.

I saw a cave, I saw two men, and I began to write, and I called this piece, “Dragon City.” I let it take me where it wanted to go.  Crispen had heard the rumors, but until this moment, he hadn’t believed they were real.

One sentence leads to another, one thought follows, and barrels into the next.  The man glared at him steadily until Crispen was certain he could see flames in both his eyes.  He reared back, landing against the wall.

And suddenly a premise materializes: It was the animals who ran the asylum and the humans who served.  But tied into that premise is the next: that humans are sometimes the savages, the predators.  And thus the crazy world of Pandemonia began to morph.

“You have no life anymore.  You belong to me now...”
“Forfeit,” Crispen said.
“For as long as I want it.  Isn’t that the law in Dragon City?”

And so it began, the morphing of a world, the shaping, the creation, the defining of character.

Pandemonia is a dangerous future, where earth is now made up of prison colonies and societies are not what they once were.  Pandemonia is controlled by a conglomerate of scientists called the Nucleate.  And mutants, such as Drayce, one of the gen species they gleefully, maniacally create, have been incarcerated in Pandemonia when the end of the most recent intergalactic war ended their usefulness to the interglobal councils.

Societies and civilizations turned and twisted, no longer recognizable, laws of humanity mutilated by needs, instinct, and the powers of the Nucleate.  This is the world of Pandemonia, a future world gone reimagined darkly.

Here’s an excerpt from the most recent story in this series, part of the AmberPax Kiss of FirePandemonia: Combustible.

*     *     *

"What do you think the crazy bastards are up to this time?" Zadrian Rigel, Drayce's second in command, asked.

"Who the fuck knows? Some abomination they want to parade out in front of us," Drayce responded. He should know, he was dragogen after all, patterned after a species millions of years old. Spliced DNA from biological material discovered in 3939 through a discovery made by archeologists. And Zadrian was caninogen, a wolf-like creature. They were both products of an experimental program at a time when the world had no hope of combating its feral alien enemies. Now incarcerated in this electronic grid-locked hell hole.

Drayce glanced around at the surly crowd. Saw a knife fight break out. In another corner, a prostitute plied her charms. And in another, a gang of children worked the crowd in hopes of eating tonight.

Paris, a city of the Old Earth, part of a separate country once known as France, was simply another quarantined sector of Old Earth, which was now no more than a prison planet after the last peace treaty ceded the administration of the Old Earth sectors over to the powerful Nucleate. The majority of law-abiding citizens had been transported to other planets in other solar systems.

Old Earth had become a dumping ground for criminals, toxic waste, and anything else that most civilizations considered refuse and of little value. But it had since grown into a society with generations of families now confined within its borders. And its residents now included mutant discards the governments had subsidized but had no further use for, such as men like Drayce.

The giant screen flickered to life, and Drayce returned his attention to the screen. A long view of the main room and choir came into view, with the top scientists seated along the sides, arrowing past the stained glass windows flooded with light, and then focusing in on a modern podium, where a man in a white coat, looking, as usual, self-satisfied and smugly superior stood.

These scientists, ranging from biologists to physicists, chemists to mathematicians and geneticists, had eagerly sought these positions, able to come and go at will, able to perform experiments without government control, per se. A core, select representation of the Nucleate appeared on screen. There were others, though, who had been exiled on Old Earth, a part of the criminal system itself, who were allowed to continue their deviant experimentation on the throwaways of other societies. And they did the grunt work, but received none of the recognition.

Drayce looked at the rows of seated scientists in their pristine white coats. Each one with a human "disciple" leashed and kneeling beside him or her. Male and female humazoid companions chosen from the masses to serve as diversions from their work, personal servants to attend to their needs. Sex, body servant, spy, whatever they wanted. In contrast to the scientists in their sterile white coats, each servant sparkled with expensive jewels and silky designer attire. Hair fashioned elegantly, faces made up, each scientist obviously trying to outdo his associate in elaborate flesh and blood disciple display.

Drayce's attention was caught as Dr. Francois Beljon, the assistant director of Scientific Interrogations stepped to the podium, his leashed humazoid trailing behind, holding a stack of papers, head bowed.

"He's new," murmured Drayce. He wondered what had happened to the last disciple he'd seen with Beljon three months ago. Used in experimentation, dead, released to the streets? Could be any of the above, or all.
Drayce peered closer at this new toy of Beljon's. Young, pretty, athletic but lithe. Bronzed body. Not the usual. Beljon usually enjoyed more brawny types. This one seemed a rarer sort.

Beljon reached behind him for the sheaf of papers and the boy obediently handed them to the scientist. But Drayce wasn't focused on what Beljon had to say. These semi-regular broadcasts where more to show the Nucleate's far-reaching power than anything else. All Beljon was going to do was read the list of the latest additions to the Pandemonium community, and their crimes. Which of late always seemed to be more political than anything else.

Drayce watched the disciple, who stood still as a statue, gaze cast downward. Drayce's cock began to stir as he studied the boy. There was something about him...something different. He stood in a subservient pose, just as the others did. But there was a tightness in his lithe body, an awareness, almost a pride, that the others lacked. And it made Drayce curious.

"I think I want to know more about him," Drayce murmured. "Things have been far too quiet of late. We need some excitement to stir the blood."


"No. The trained whelp. He might be useful. There's some oddity to his manner. Some value in him."

"I wouldn't think so. Beljon changes disciples as often as he does his underwear."

Drayce slid a glance to Zadrian, hearing the lingering bitterness in his voice. "That was a long time ago. You should move past it."

Zadrian didn't respond for a long time. "Beljon doesn't forget. He twists the knife at every turn when he can."

"You're free of him now. At least as free as one can be in a place like this. It doesn't pay to care, you know that."

"One would assume I've learned my lesson," Zadrian responded. "But he doesn't give up you know."

"Obsessed is a word I'd use when it comes to him."

"I won't go back. You can count on my loyalty."

Drayce refocused on the screen. Beljon had completed his list. He turned back to the whelp. He patted him on the head like a prized pet and then they moved off to the side, and another pair took his place. This one spoke of the recent death sentences that had been carried out.

The scientists droned on. Drayce scanned the crowd, wondering who would be the next to die by the decree of the Nucleate. A new lottery would likely occur within the next month.
"Find out more about him," Drayce said. "I want him. He means something to Beljon, and so I mean to have him. Beljon will throw a tantrum, and I love when that happens. He always makes mistakes."

"Poking a stick at the bear can bring you nothing good. I think you're making a mistake," Zadrian said. "Don't let that dragon cock of yours lead you into doing something you're going to regret."

"Just get me the intel on the disciple. Then we'll go from there."

"Whatever you say, boss. But leashed like he is, it's probably not going to be easy to get to him. Not if Beljon has taken a shine to him for the moment."

"You'll find a way. You always do," Drayce said. "And I want him before Beljon decides to mod him."


Pandemonia: Combustible by Darcy Abriel is now available at Amber Allure.

If you'd like the chance to win the entire pax collection, just leave a comment on today's post. On Saturday, a winner will be picked at random from all the comments made this week on the blog. Comment on all, and that's multiple chances to win!

[Image: Pandemonium circa 1825) by John Martin (1789-1854); Wikimedia Creative Commons]


  1. My favorite shifter+favorite genre (dystopian novels)...

    1. Congratulations, you're the winner of our giveaway this week! If you can email me at vivien_dean@yahoo.com with the ebook format of your choice, I'll see that you get your prize as soon as possible.

  2. Very cool idea for a story.