A month of great reviews

It’s been a week of great reviews for my books CTHULHU ARMAGEDDON, STRAIGHT OUTTA FANGTON, and THE RULES OF SUPERVILLAINY. I want to thank everyone who was involved in them and share some of the best of the bunch.

Cthulhu Armageddon Reviews

The Audiobook Reviewer (4 out of 5 stars)

Brian’s Book Blog (4 out of 5 stars)

Book Lover’s Life (4 out of 5 stars)

Grimdark Magazine review (4 out of 5 stars)

The Grimdark Alliance (4 out of 5 stars)

Blogin’ Hobgoblin (4.5 out of 5 stars)

Beauty in Ruins (4 out of 5 stars)

Fantasy Book Critic (4 out of 5 stars)

Shoggoth.net (5 out of 5 stars)

Straight Outta Fangton Reviews

Fantasy Book Critic (5 out of 5 stars)

The Rules of Supervillainy Reviews

The Bookie Monsters (4 out of 5 stars)

Blogin’ Hobgoblin (5 out of 5 stars)

Two essays by me for the Fantasy Book Critic!

Hey fans,

The FANTASY BOOK CRITIC has been a big supporter of my work. It’s probably my favorite review site on the web right now. One of the things they’ve done for me is they’ve shared two of my essays on writing which I recommend to both of you.

TO MYTHOS OR NOT MYTHOS – An essay which talks about whether or not to do works set in H.P. Lovecraft’s Cthulhu Mythos when you’re a new horror writer. It’s how I decided to do CTHULHU ARMAGEDDON.

GIVING BACK VAMPIRES THEIR BITE – An essay which discusses the nature of vampires in recent years and how they should be treated to get the maximum effect from their horror/sexiness. An essay related to STRAIGHT OUTTA FANGTON.

I hope you guys will enjoy.

Interview with C.T. Phipps on THE FANTASY BOOK CRITIC

Awesome,

The FANTASY BOOK CRITIC was very good to me this month and did a kickass interview with me about my books STRAIGHT OUTTA FANGTON, CTHULHU ARMAGEDDON, and LUCIFER’S STAR. They asked a lot of really good questions and I got a chance to talk about details I wouldn’t normally be able to talk about.

Check it out if you want to learn more about my books!

Available for reading here.

The Fantasy Book Critic reviews Cthulhu Armageddon and Straight Outta Fangton!

I’m a huge fan of the Fantasy Book Critic because they’re my number 1# source of interesting new independent (and not so independent) book reviews. So it was a real honor that they took the time out to give CTHULHU ARMAGEDDON and STRAIGHT OUTTA FANGTON a once-over.  Better still, they liked both novels and had a lot of interesting thoughts on both.

Check out their review here.

STRAIGHT OUTTA FANGTON is now available on Kindle

Hey folks,

Great news! I didn’t expect it to be released so soon but Crossroad Press (and specifically, it’s Macabre Ink division) has released STRAIGHT OUTTA FANGTON this week. STRAIGHT OUTTA FANGTON if you remember is my horror comedy urban fantasy novel series where I attempt to send up the supernatural the way I did comics in the Supervillainy Saga.

Peter Stone is a poor black vampire who is wondering where his nightclub, mansion, and sports car is. Instead, he is working a minimum wage job during the night shift as being a vampire isn’t all that impressive in a world where they’ve come out to mortals.

Exiled from the rich and powerful undead in New Detroit, he is forced to go back when someone dumps a newly-transformed vampire in the bathroom of his gas station’s store. This gets him fangs-deep in a plot of vampire hunters, supernatural revolutionaries, and a millennium-old French knight determined to wipe out the supernatural.

Sometimes, it just doesn’t pay to get out of the coffin.

I hope people will pick up a copy!

Available for purchase here

Update for August 2016

Hey folks,

Today has been an absolutely fabulous week for me as I’ve got a bunch of wonderful reviews as well as a few announcements to make. I hope everyone enjoys what I have to share and I think it is the start of something wonderful (which is a lovely way of saying I’m with a new publishing house with more books coming out).

The first bit of news is I’ve begun a relationship with Crossroad Press, publisher of the audiobooks for authors like Clive Barker and Brian Lumley, who will be doing STRAIGHT OUTTA FANGTON, CTHULHU APOCALYPSE, and LUCIFER’S STAR.  They’re a machine and basically have readied my books for release amazingly fast.

STRAIGHT OUTTA FANGTON is a comedic vampire novel which I think is probably my best work since The Rules of Supervillainy. At least in terms of making a reader laugh their ass off. Fans of that book are going to love it and we’ll have a release date soon.

PETER STONE is a poor black vampire who is wondering where his nightclub, mansion, and sports car is. Instead, he is working a minimum wage job during the night shift as being a vampire isn’t all that impressive in a world where they’ve come out to mortals.

Exiled from the rich and powerful undead in New Detroit, he is forced to go back when someone dumps a newly-transformed vampire in the bathroom of his gas station’s store. This gets him fangs-deep in a plot of vampire hunters, supernatural revolutionaries, and a millennium-old French knight determined to wipe out the supernatural.

Sometimes, it just doesn’t pay to get out of the coffin.

CTHULHU ARMAGEDDON is a book I never expected to see print as it was my first novel which I’d rewritten three or four times trying to get the right voice for it. Then, amazingly, the right one came to me and I created my post-apocalyptic sci-fi western horror novel set in the aftermath of the Great Old Ones’ destruction of the Earth.

“Under an alien sky where gods of eldritch matter rule, the only truth is revenge.” 

Cthulhu Armageddon is the story of a world 100 years past the rise of the Old Ones which has been reduced to a giant monster-filled desert and pockets of human survivors (along with Deep Ones, ghouls, and other “talking” monsters).

John Henry Booth is a ranger of one of the largest remaining city-states when he’s exiled for his group’s massacre and suspicion he’s “tainted.” Escaping with a doctor who killed her husband, John travels across the Earth’s blasted alien ruins to seek the life of the man who killed his friends.

It’s the one thing he has left.

LUCIFER’S STAR isn’t quite ready for a reveal but is in the process of editing now. I look forward to sharing it as well.

I’m hoping Jeffrey Kafer will continue his amazing talent at doing the voice work for these novels as he’s done for The Supervillainy Saga and Esoterrorism. The ebooks will be released first for them, followed by the paperbacks, with audiobooks released last.

Stuff about my books online

Beauty in Ruins review of The Rules of Supervillainy

Bob Milnes is one of my favorite reviewers on the web and everyone should check out his Beauty in Ruins website. Here, he gives a great review of THE RULES OF SUPERVILLAINY novel. He’s not really a big fan of superhero literature so the fact he sings my book’s praises is really high, well, praise.

My World…in words and pages review of Esoterrorism

One of my other favorite reviewers is Melissa as she has done me an immense number of favors reading all of my books. I also give her website credit for announcing my cover for STRAIGHT OUTTA FANGTON. I love her review of ESOTERRORISM here and hope everyone checks it out.

Audiobook Reviewer reviews Esoterrorism and The Rules of Supervillainy

The Audiobook Reviewer is a great website and provides some of the best reviews for, well, audiobooks you’re going to find on the internet. I really think everyone wanting to purchase audiobooks on Audible should check out this site first. The reviews here are extremely good.

Grimdark Magazine 8# has an article by me

I have an article in Grimdark Magazine which I’m very proud of called “Is the Aliens Trilogy Grimdark?” as well as a review of Wolfenstein: The New Order. I think fans of mine would be remise not to check out this title. I love this magazine.

Tim Ward interviews me about Straight Outta Fangton

Tim Ward is the author of some great post-apocalypse science fiction and I recommend you check his stuff out. I described his Sand Divers series as “Fallout meets Dune.” He was nice enough to do an interview with me about my upcoming book STRAIGHT OUTTA FANGTON and his questions were hilarious!

Book Lovers Life reviews Esoterrorism

The number of good reviewers I know just never seems to end. Book Lovers’ Life is another site I’ll never get tired of reading and they’ve flattered me with some truly great words here. I think you’ll enjoy them too.

Seth Skorkowsky article about Audible

Seth Skorkowsky is one of the most promising fantasy and urban fantasy authors out today. Today, he decided to flatter me by using THE RULES OF SUPERVILLAINY as an example of how Audible is a great place for getting ratings for your books. His numbers for my books are way-way lower than their actual numbers, though, which is hilarious given they’re still great.

Purchase The Rules of Supervillainy
Purchase The Games of Supervillainy
Purchase The Secrets of Supervillainy
Purchase Esoterrorism
Pre-Order Wraith Knight

STRAIGHT OUTTA FANGTON’s cover revealed!

Straight Outta Fangton II

STRAIGHT OUTTA FANGTON is already set up for release this October and we’re making good progress. Here’s the cover for my comedic value novel which chronicles

the adventures of Peter Stone. I really like it and heartily recommend the artist (James at www.goonwrite.com).

PETER STONE is a poor black vampire who is wondering where his nightclub, mansion, and sports car is. Instead, he is working a minimum wage job during the night shift as being a vampire isn’t all that impressive in a world where they’ve come out to mortals.

Exiled from the rich and powerful undead in New Detroit, he is forced to go back when someone dumps a newly-transformed vampire in the bathroom of his gas station’s store. This gets him fangs-deep in a plot of vampire hunters, supernatural revolutionaries, and a millennium-old French knight determined to wipe out the supernatural.

Sometimes, it just doesn’t pay to get out of the coffin.

An interview with C.T. Phipps (me) by my fans

Hey folks,

I posted on my Facebook page a request from my fans to give me their questions. It’s been a year since my writing debut and I wanted to see what people thought. They gave me some amazing questions and I’ve answered them all here to the best of my ability.

Writing

How do you write so much?

Simple answer. I don’t. I actually got started writing in 2010 but it took two years to get my first books done and ready for submission. They were picked up by Permuted Press for a year of non-publishing before we decided to part ways. Then it took another year for Amber Cove and Ragnarok Publications to publish The Rules of Supervillainy and Esoterrorism. I’ve been writing that whole time. Authordom is not for the faint at heart. It’s also why you shouldn’t quit your day job.

Supervillainy Saga

What was the deciding factor to make Gary Jewish?

Gary is a singularity of comic book influences. The decision to make Gary Jewish seemed natural with Siegal and Schuster as well as Jack Kirby all being brought in. It felt right for his character and gradually helped shape who he was. It also felt more appropriate than just making him another WASP protagonist.

There are many characters who are of the LGBT community on both sides of the Hero/Villain line. There seems to be a greater percentage that are in the real world. What prompted the push?

I don’t actually think it’s all that different from reality with the LGBT characters being Mandy (bi), Cindy (bi), Adonis (bi), The Human Tank (trans), The Bronze Medalist (g), and the Black Witch (lesbian). This is in comparison to all of the dozens of other straight characters spread throughout the book like Diabloman, Ultragod, Ultragoddess, Guinevere, Tom Terror, and so on.

I did make a conscious effort to avoid making everyone lily white and cis straight as is typical, though. I figured my universe should be representative of reality and if there’s more gay or bisexual characters in my world than normal then it’s a balance against all the other fiction where they’re nonexistent.

In an endless series like the Villainy Saga, where do you decide to end one book and begin another rather than just one huge novel?

I generally try to do a resemblance to actual comic books. I try to divide the books into two-parters with the first book setting up the plot and the second book finishing it. Each book containing micro-plots which play into the larger plot. While some might argue it would work better as a single large volume, I feel these work better for a comic book feel. Also, it helps get them out quicker.

The dead don’t just stay dead in this world. Just like the comic books.  Is this going to be a recurring theme?

Actually, I’m going to genuinely keep the dead dead in these books because, unlike Marvel or DC, I have total control in my book. Certainly, Gary is going to try to break the rules as much as possible but actual resurrections are always going to be rare. It’s also going to have lasting consequences for the world as the deaths of heroes and villains results in dramatic changes to the status quo of the universe. Is the end of the Age of Heroes and Villains or the the start of a new one?

As an example, Arthur Warren a.k.a Cloak is never going to come back as the Nightwalker. While I routinely brought back the supervillains Gary killed in The Rules of Supervillainy and The Games of Supervillainy, that was for humorous effect and they’re dead-dead now. Likewise, Falconcrest City is going to be permanently affected by the zombie apocalypse which happened there. So, death isn’t an absolute in my books but it’s not a revolving door either.

Once you’ve saved all of creation, what’s next to top that?

I don’t think you actually need to always go up and at em in terms of comic book plots. I think you can mix them up as much as you want. Superman saving the world is fine but so is Superman saving Lois Lane or a bunch of guys threatened by gangsters (with Kryptonite I presume). I generally think of Supernatural as my go-to-example. The Winchester Brothers defeated Satan in Season 5.

They didn’t need to keep fighting equally powerful evils in subsequent seasons as personal enemies would do just as well. It’s not like a hero is going to be less motivated to save one person over a hundred.

When Death appears to have affected a powerful character, it appears they may not stay that way. Why isn’t Death more jealous of her charges?

The Supervillainyverse’s Death is a cosmic inevitability. She knows she’s eventually going to get everyone even if there’s sometimes reversals. It is, however, Gary’s “official job” (when he’s not robbing banks) to eliminate the undead as well as help souls cross over. Raising Mandy from the dead as a vampire seriously screws with his power level for example and damages his connection to his “kaiju-toasting” fire powers.

Gary has his work cut out for him, making the entire Society of Superheroes submissive enough to hear the truth and killing POTUS.

The Society of Superheroes’ opinion of Gary is less than glowing after the death of a certain character. As far as they’re concerned, he’s just another criminal and none of them are particularly interested in defending his Batman/Catwoman (in reverse) relationship with Gabrielle. Ultragod knew Gary was fundamentally harmless, for some definitions of the word, but most of the others only see his body count. It doesn’t help that the Shadow Seven, the team Gary most often works with, is primarily composed of ex-supervillains itself. As for the POTUS, he’s not the real President. There’s a clause in the Constitution against time-traveling Nazis from the future.

Diabloman appears to be loyal to Gary, but he also seems to be doing many things in the background. Should Gary be more attentive to him?

Diabloman was in a very bad place in The Rules of Supervillainy which Gary helped him out of. Gary also successfully saved the world (so he could conquer it for himself) and made billions from the events of The Games of Supervillainy. As a result, Diabloman is back in the game and has even had some of the black magic damage done to his body repaired.

In a very real way, Diabloman would be comfortable going back to being an A-list supervillain destroying lives and taking names. However, he’s come to view Gary as a kid brother substitute for his dead sister Spellbinder and is determined not to torch that relationship.

The thing is, Diabloman is pretty much a Satanic Deathstroke meets Bane and that’s not really a good combination to ignore the dangers of. But yeah, as far as I’m concerned, Diabloman is back to attending Legion of Doom meetings off-camera.

Esoterrorism

What are the fast rules for the world of the Red Room? 

The Red Room universe is a combination of action movie spy universe and urban fantasy universe. As such, you could probably say it’s best thought of as what you’d get with the Dresden Files merged with the Illuminati/Men in Black/X-Files and James Bond. Magic is a functional tool in this world and the House has used it to become the movers and shakers behind the scenes of a hostile violent supernatural world.

Unlike what the conspiracy nuts would say, though, the House functions like any other bureaucracy with lots of incompetence as well as underpaid civil servants. The House basically does its best to intimidate or kill the supernatural threats of the world so they don’t “come out of the coffin” like in Anita Blake or Sookie Stackhouse but this is an ongoing job for them. Plenty of monsters resent this and strike back at the House or humanity in general. Worse, the House is corrupt with its upper tier members using their position to enrich themselves and their families.

I loved the main villain. Can his legacy continue through the series?

In a very real way, the Wazir won when he arranged for Derek to start his war against the House’s corruption. Karl Bjornson’s goal was to destroy the House and eventually lead to the revelation of the supernatural to the public. This is a goal which Derek is not opposed to and he hates the House every bit as much as the Wazir, just is also protective of the people involved. In a very real way, the enemy has moved from the terrorists to the corruption in the government.

The accent of Shannon changing, hints of something, but what?

It’s a statement that Shannon isn’t who Derek thinks she is and much of her personality is a construction. Shannon appears to him as a redheaded Irish woman meant to appeal to Derek’s preference for them. This is because she’s trying to seduce him. Only when they’re closer and the barriers have begun to fall does Shannon reveal she’s actually Scottish with dark hair as well as hint everything she’s told him is a lie. Really, Shannon has been living so many lies and false identities, even she doesn’t know the truth anymore.

Now that Derek is in a position of power, how is he going to have any adventures?

In Eldritch Ops. we find Derek has been ice-skating uphill the entire time he’s been in the Committee. He hates what the job is turning him into and jumps on a chance to personally oversee an investigation he should have no business getting anywhere near. This mission will lead to events spiraling out of control for the House and dramatic world-changing events in the final volume of the series, Operation: Otherworld.

Agent G

So what is Agent G: Infiltrator all about?

Agent G is a science fiction espionage series starring the titular character. G is a assassin working for the Society which is an organization that contracts for the government, corporations, and other groups as long as they can pay their exorbitant fees. The Letters are twenty-six agents who have had their lives taken away from them by memory-erasure and cybernetic enhancement.

Rather than being remorseful about his actions as his past is used to blackmail him into compliance, he’s all too comfortable with the decadent murderous life provided him. This all changes when he’s sent undercover with the murderous Carnivale where he faces just what his life might be like if freed from the Society’s control. Oh and he finds out just who he was before the Society made him into the world’s most dangerous killer.

What’s its genre?

Agent G is a present-day cyberpunk series. It’s sort of the reverse of your typical urban fantasy series with all sorts of monstrous critters underneath the world. Instead, the world is full of science fiction technology, conspiracies, and weird organizations. The ManTM is doing his best to keep the Little GuyTM in his grip and the best part is they don’t even suspect just how much they’re under his thumb.

Straight Outta Fangton

Can you tell me the flavor of your Straight Outta Fangton book? Horror comedy, um horror, mystery, comedy?

Fangton is a horror-comedy in the same vein (hehe) as The Rules of Supervillainy. The world is entirely serious and a homage to Dracula, Underworld, Anite Blake (pre-porn), Blade, True Blood (or Sookie Stackhouse), and even a little Twilight. However, the characters are overthetop in the same way Gary and company are.

In the case of Peter Stone, he’s a poor black vampire wondering why he’s working minimum wage despite ultimate power in a world where other vampires live like celebrities, including his also black sire. Peter gets his chance to make his mark and its sadly against an angsty vampire hunting vampire who has wiped out large portions of his race. This may not have been a very good idea.

Wraith Knight 

Tell us about Wraith Knight again. Every time I hear it, it makes me think of Ready Player One or the Play to Live series.  Those are 2 of my other favorites. Do you have any plans on writing a Virtual Reality series?

Wraith Knight is one of my non-comedy series and a straight dark(ish) fantasy novel. It’s premise is deconstructive, though, as it’s basically from the perspective of a Ringwraith. Jacob Riverson was once a legendary hero before he fell in battle and got raised as a general of the King Below. Centuries later, the Dark Lord is destroyed and he regains his free will in a world where the former good guys have run the world into the ground as well as lost the peace. He ends up teaming up with a woman, Regina Whitetremor, who hasn’t quite grasped the solution isn’t overthrow the ex-heroes as the new villains.

It was partially inspired by my thoughts the orcs were every bit Sauron’s slaves and victims as everyone else and either the heroes would try to commit genocide against them or have to learn to live with them in peace.  Just about everyone who has read it basically says it does read like the classic Warcraft 3 plotline, only Thrall is Arthas. I’m not sure if that’s a compliment or an insult. 🙂 I was also inspired by Rhianna Pratchett’s Overlord games.

Is Wraith Knight a stand-alone or the first in a series?

Three novels. WRAITH KNIGHT, WRAITH LORD, and WRAITH KING.

With the upcoming series being released in November, what is the status of the other installment?

WRAITH LORD is finished and with Ragnarok Publications and WRAITH KING is still in manuscript form. Current plans are to release them roughly the same time every year so it’ll be 2019 when the series is finished.

Purchase The Rules of Supervillainy

Purchase The Games of Supervillainy

Purchase The Secrets of Supervillainy

Purchase Esoterrorism

Pre-Order Wraith Knight

JULY 7TH, 2016 UPDATE FOR WRITING

Hey folks,

I wanted to give you a heads up on the progress of what’s going on in the wonderful world of my imagination, writing, and business sense.

New Releases

THE SECRETS OF SUPERVILLAINY is out today with the audiobook coming in just a week or two. Stay tuned to this website or my author page for updates on that. The third volume of the Supervillainy Saga accompanies Gary Karkofsky on his quest to cure his wife of her fangy affliction as well as accidentally attracting the ire of the President of the United States (whose secretly a supervillain, who knew). We also get to meet Gary’s surviving family! Oh dear.

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New Projects

I have another book series in the works along the lines of the Supervillainy Saga in STRAIGHT OUTTA FANGTON. This is a novel about a poor black vampire dealing with the fact his transformation into an undead creature of the night hasn’t exactly improved his prospects but has given him a whole lot of new enemies.

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Worse, everyone in the undead world is afraid when the world’s most terrifying slayer of the undead arrives in town to claim their blood. Add a newborn vampire being found in the bathroom of his place of business with no maker in sight and you have a really bad day for Peter Stone. It does for the supernatural what The Rules of Supervillainy did for superheroes. Which is to say not much but with a lot of laughs.

I submitted LUCIFER’S STAR (A Spacer’s Saga) to Tor Books but, sadly, it was rejected. Thankfully, this may be a blessing in disguise as I’ve submitted the document to Amber Cove. With any luck, we’ll slice the 100K book in two and round it out to have two more books for 2017. Describing it in simple terms, I go with, “What would it be like to bea TIE pilot after Return of the Jedi when you realize, hey, Hans, are we the baddies?”

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More precisely, it’s a dark space opera following a ex-pilot drawn into a massive conflict between the occupiers of his nation and the terrorists who seek to revive a government which doesn’t deserve to be revived–plus romance, bioroids, and sword-fighting aliens.

Novels

The fourth Supervillainy Saga book THE SCIENCE OF SUPERVILLAINY, is currently in the works.

ESOTERRORISM’s audiobook has been released to great success and I’m very pleased with Jeffrey Kafer’s handling of my first novel. Technically, The Rules of Supervillainy was released first but I wrote Esoterrorism first. The sequel, ELDRITCH OPS will be released early of 2017, and follow Derek’s dealing with piratical vampires, his new position as a Committee member, and the fact his brother is kind of the Antichrist. Oh and the Horseman of War is in love with him. You know, the usual.

The Red Room series will then finish in an explosive finale to the trilogy in OPERATION: OTHERWORLD, set for release in 2018.

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WRAITH KNIGHT is still set for release on 11/8/2016 by a combination of the Independent Publishing Group and Ragnarok Publications. Wraith Knight is the first book in the Three Worlds trilogy which will chronicle the adventures of Jacob Riverson, a heroic figure of the previous age who wakes up in the new one cursed as a ghostly Ringwraith-like being.

AGENT G: INFILTRATOR is set for release this November by Amber Cove Publishing. That is my science-fiction spy novel following an agent with a missing memory working for a murderous corporation that promises to restore it after ten years. All he has to do for his next assignment is take down a ring of Italian cyborgs and their small army of minions. The sequel, AGENT G: SABOTEUR is set for next year.

Novellas and Short Stories

I’m going to have a short story in the anthology collection, HUMANITY 2.0: EMERGENCE, which is about a Wildcards-like event which bestows superpowers on millions of humans worldwide before leading to a transformation of society. I, of course, write about one of those individuals who decides to turn to crime. 

Conclusion

Now you may wonder how I’ve managed to get all these books out or ready to be coming out and the answer to that is simple: I didn’t get anything published for my first three years of writing. That gave me ESOTERRORISM, ELDRITCH OPS., THE RULES OF SUPERVILLAINY, and THE GAMES OF SUPERVILLAINY. It’s a lesson to all you writers out there that you sometimes (as in almost always) have to sit on a manuscript before you find a home for it. I also advise you to write when inspired, no matter how far off genre. It helps that I write relatively short 60K novels for the most part instead of 100 or 150K ones like some fantasyists. Whatever the case, thank you for your interest and I hope you’ll check out my upcoming work.

2016

THE SECRETS OF SUPERVILLAINY: NOW AVAILABLE!

AGENT G: INFILTRATOR: 9/15/2016

WRAITH KNIGHT: 11/08/2016

EMERGENCE (Humanity 2.0): 09/13/2016

2017

THE SCIENCE OF SUPERVILLAINY: 3/15/2017

ELDRITCH OPS: 4/15/2017

AGENT G: SABOTEUR: 5/15/17

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LUCIFER’S STAR

STRAIGHT OUTTA FANGTON