By Christopher D. Abbott
‘You think, sir, that unless this document is recovered there will be war?’
‘I think it is very probable.’
‘Then, sir, prepare for war.’
Sherlock Holmes to Lord Bellinger, taken from The Second Stain by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
When it comes to war, I think we can all agree that no matter the reasons why we end up fighting, the business of it is, well… nasty. Like most people born after 1945, I cannot truly understand the horrors of it. Some 85 years have passed since its ending and despite the many terrible situations our world has faced since then, those horrors have diminished. We will remember, we say. But do we honestly recount the specifics of those who lost their lives so horrifically? I don’t think we always do.
When I wrote Progenitor for Crazy8Press, I decided on horror as my theme for the narrative. It made sense, since I set it during that terrible war. Yet the story itself isn’t about the war. It’s about a different kind of struggle under hideous circumstances, with a sci-fi(ish) twist.
Anyone who has read my work will know that I’m a character driven writer. I prefer dialogue and interactions over swathes of descriptive texts. Watching old sci-fi TV shows from the 50s and 60s, I find myself embroiled in their situations, lost inside a strange world that I can recognise… almost. And that’s what I wanted for this book. A sense of the real world, coupled with a terror that is far removed from it.
Progenitor, then, is a sci-fi horror mash-up with a little detective work thrown in for good measure. A story set in the backdrop of war, yet far enough away from it that it hardly features at all. A cataclysmic event in Washington, DC., finds the city destroyed by monsters. A few lone survivors, led by General William Marshall, escape to a facility that they hope they’ll be safe in. They couldn’t be more wrong.
The premise was borne from stories like The Thing and Alien. Combining the two, I put my heroes in circumstances that would test their strengths and weaknesses. Along the way, they come to understand that their world has changed. But there are still those misguided men who persist in holding onto their selfish and hideous ideals. Our heroes find themselves locked within a facility they thought would protect them. But they are not alone. They have to deal with an unscrupulous monster who has zero empathy for them or their predicament.
I hope that you enjoy the tale I’ve written. It has been a genuine joy delving into this genre. I, therefore, invite you to take a walk with General Marshall and his ragtag bunch of survivors but beware… the terrors that lurk within the pages, are not for the faint of heart.