of the Undead #2
Parnormal, suspense, urban fantasy, vampires
Teen Publishing, 30K words
“You know now that monsters are
real. Whether they have recently risen to reach for your flesh, or have chosen
now to step from the shadows; you are surrounded by them. You also know that I
am one too, but I’m all you’ve got and time is running out…”
There’s no rest for the wicked,
especially in a zombie apocalypse. Britannia has used every vampire skill at
her disposal to keep those she cares for safe, but with old enemies and unseen
adversaries moving against her, she will have to push herself to both her
physical and ethical limits to survive. Britannia is changing, but will it be
for the better?
**Please note this
is the second book in a series that should be read in order. **
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14+ due to violence and
“If there’s someone there,
you’d better show yourself. Unless you want me to cleave off your head,” I
shouted. I heard a cough and saw a tall, well-built man slip from the shadows.
He wasn’t bad looking, but his dark hair was styled with cement-like gel and
his eyes were far too blue to be natural.
“Apologies. I wasn’t sure if you were
friend or foe.” He nodded at me.
He was a vampire, probably a little
younger than me.
“Who are you?” I asked.
“My dear, you are the one trespassing
on my territory. It should be me asking questions of you.” He gave me a sly
smile, as if he was trying to get away with something. Like he’d farted and was
waiting for me to smell it.
“If this was truly your territory
you’d have attacked me, not slunk in the shadows like a sniveling child.” I
pulled my axe back so I held it by the handle and it rested on my shoulder.
He put his hands up; he was unarmed
and laughed beneath his breath. “I now understand the Elders rule.”
He was referring to the old, no
female vampires rule – misogynistic t scumbags. It was then that I got a good
whiff of blood, live human blood.
“Have you got people here?”
“Why yes, we’ve collected a few to
take to the Highlands. Would you like to join me for a drink?”
And he’d been openly feeding off
“No, I’ll give that a miss. Where are
“In the store room, back there.
They’re uninfected,” he said with a sweeping invitation with his arm. “I must
say, I’ve never seen a female vampire so beautiful.”
Good grief, did he think this was
some sort of date? That we would sit back and watch Dawn of the Dead whilst
munching on scared survivors? What an asshat!
I narrowed my eyes and walked to the
door he was pointing to. He smiled and gestured for me to open it. I did. Now I
was fully aware that this could have been a trap, but even if a hundred
vampires descended on me, I still had an axe to Red Queen their asses back to
“May I introduce myself?” he said
“No.” I stepped through the door and
was hit with the smell of both old and fresh blood. I took in the large
warehouse back quickly: boxes were piled high with electronics, gadgets and God
only knows what other useless items, but there were also people crouching by
them. They were blindfolded and roped together with a thick unforgiving plastic
vine. Some were still bleeding from where he had fed off them. Some were
whispering prayers in ragged voices. Some slowly pulled at their bindings, more
like they were an itch than a problem. But all cowered when they heard his
voice. There was a collective shiver that even caught me in its terrible wake.
Whoever this vampire was, he was truly living up to monster status now.
“Here,” he said as he lifted the
plastic rope and pulled the nearest person toward us, “have a drink.”
I looked at the young boy bound and
blindfolded before me; he had blood all down his Simpson’s t-shirt and he’d
pissed himself, probably days ago now. This was what the Highlands were going
to be like, just with slightly less feeling and more order.
“My name is Ludwig. What’s yours, my
blonde haired vixen?” He pushed the boy at me and I moved so that I was stood
“What?” Ludwig’s eyes widened. He’d
heard of me, the lack of blue hair had been what had put him off the initial recognition.
If I’d looked more like my old self he’d have run from me, or attacked me in
the shop. I might never have discovered his little person larder.
“Yeah, I was forced into a make
under.” I smiled sweetly at him, “Ludwig, you have something on your sleeve.” I
swung the axe so hard that it cleaved his arm straight off. Blood sprayed
across me, splattering my face and streaking the front of my hair. Unlike human
blood, vampire blood is cool, smells metallic and tastes like sea water, kind
of like your blood tastes to you. Some vampires get a taste for their own kind;
those were usually the ones that the Elders sent me after.
Ludwig’s look of shock was only
matched by his girlish scream. He clutched at his leaky stump and shuddered. I
lifted the axe again, this time to cleave off his head, but he must have
regained a modicum of resolve, as he caught the axe’s blade in mid-swing. I
quickly slipped my hands down the handle and, palms up, slammed it vertically
so that its blade crushed against his skull. I heard a sickening crack as bone
crumbled against the force. He keeled and stumbled back through the shop’s
doors. I edged forward and crouched, sweeping my leg out to trip him over. Once
he lay sprawled on the floor, I lifted my axe a final time and off rolled his
head. It tumbled down the flat screen TV section.
The tethered humans were now
desperately pulling at their bonds. I guess the big bad that had just killed
their torturer was probably not someone they wanted to stick around and have
tea with – better the devil you know.
I moved carefully toward the nearest
boy. I gently took his blindfold from him and he blinked a few times and
recoiled at my presence.
“It’s okay,” I said, hands out, palms
up, “I’m here to help you. I won’t hurt you.”
The boy edged further away from me,
pulling on all their ropes. He particularly dragged all of the survivors onto
the floor. I suddenly had an image of me leading them like a chain of dogs
through the streets. If Satan had been on a leash, he’d have died. If I couldn’t
do that to a dog, I’d be damned if I was going to be responsible for leading an
all-you-can-eat zombie buffet conga line.
“Look, I know you have no reason to
trust me, but…”
“You’re one of them,” said the boy,
looking past me to Ludwig’s twitching corpse. He must have been old; it can
sometimes take a while for the magic to leave older vampires.
“We’re not all the same you know.” I
stepped to his side and took a blindfold off a nearby woman, “Wait a minute,
The woman gave me a quizzical look,
“There’s another one. He had red hair and a posh accent; like from Downton
Okay, now time was of the essence. I
pulled out my pink handled knife and sliced the rope between all the humans. I
removed all their blindfolds and counted them: twelve.
“Right, here are your choices. You
can say here and wait for Red, whoever he is, to come back and drink you dry,
or you can follow me and I can get you the hell out of zombie central.”
“Zombies?” they all said together.
“You haven’t noticed the slathering
zombie masses?” I asked.
“No,” said an older man, who had
managed to pick up a plank of wood and hide it behind his back while I wasn’t
“How long have you been in here?”
The man chose then to swing the plank
at me, which I caught and crumbled in my grip. The small crowd gasped and I
think they were just about to all fall onto me, when the bell at the door of
the shop chimed.
“Oh no, it’s him. He came back for
us.” A young girl of no more than thirteen cowered near me. I turned to her.
“I won’t let him hurt you. I told
you, we’re not all the same.”
She bit her bottom lip and squeezed
out a fat tear that rolled down her ruddy cheek.
“My name is Britannia. I know this is
all a bit…” I struggled for the right word, “…weird, but I’ll get you some
place safe. You just have to trust me.”
“So, let me get this straight.” The
boy whose blindfold I’d took off first edged toward me. “You’re a friendly
blood sucking demon, and there are zombies outside. But you’ll protect us? At
what price, you gonna feed off and kill us one by one like your friend there?”
He motioned at Ludwig’s now still body. I kicked the vampire’s corpse out of
the door and into the main shop, out of the eye-line of the humans.
I didn’t have time for this. I needed
to get a new radio, some food and get back to the zoo. I needed to tell Tate I
was alive and for Josh and Jack to know I was on my way to them. I hadn’t even
bothered to ask these humans’ names and here I was trying to protect them,
while they challenged my ethical code. I was just about to give the boy what
for, when a rumbling groan echoed through the store. I peered out to see a
group of zombies shuffling toward Ludwig’s body. Once there, they began to rip
him apart like an overcooked turkey. There were stuffing- and cranberry
sauce-like substances cascading out of the yawning cracks they were making with
their bare hands. I gagged and quickly closed the door.
The cast of Bad Timing.
When I write, I find casting an actor as a main character really helps for visuals and consistency, so here’s a brief recap on the major characters in the Battle of the Undead series, and the dream cast who plays them in my mind:
Britannia – Emma Watson. I think that she is an amazing British actress and just perfect for Britannia. She could make her both funny and serious at the same time.
Nicholas – Andrew Garfield. Perfect to play a dark, brooding but slightly comical complex character that has more to him that meets the eye.
Josh – Liam Hemsworth. Hunky solider who takes action in his stride and turns Britannia’s head and heart.
Phillipe – Tom Hiddleston. Great actor who can play the loving guardian to Brit one day and the evil Vambie chaotic killer the next.
Jack – Nicholas Hoult. A truly brilliant young talent who can embody Jack’s sensitive and caring nature that helps Britannia take back a precious part of her soul.
Now, for the newcomers…
Ichabod – Orlando Bloom. Although I’ve only ever seen him play the villain once, I think he could breathe dark life into this vengeful vampire who has more than one axe to grind.
Lyle – Jeremy Irvine. Cheeky, calculating but above all loyal. This talented War Horse star could give Lyle the depth he deserves.
Tate – Daniel Kaluuya. I loved him as Tea Leaf in BBC’s Psychoville and was always Tate in my mind. Strong, caring and totally determined to protect those he loves.
Xyla – Sandra Bullock. Ironic casting as it’s said more than once that Xyla looks just like the bubbly US actress.
Mariah – Hayden Panettiere. My guilty pleasure is Nashville and I think that this beautiful blonde’s strength and confidence will make Mariah a character to be reckoned with.
Betty – Elle Fanning. Although only briefly in the book, Betty deserves to be played by a rare actress who exudes sweetness.
Now, all we need is a big pot of money and a director who has a thing for vampires and zombies…
Thank you for having me on your blog today! Nicx
Have you ever wanted to star in a YA book?
Here’s your chance! In honor of the release of BAD TIMING, the second book in Nicky Peacock’s Battle of the Undead series, she will choose and feature a character created by one lucky reader in the last book of the series, BAD KARMA.
Contest details here:
**Series is a must to be read in order, make sure to get your copy of #1**
Battle of the Undead #1
Britannia. I am your protector. I will fend off the hungry hordes of undead
hands that reach toward you. I am your steadfast defender. I will stand between
you and the zombie masses as they try to taste your flesh. I am strong,
unyielding, and dedicated to your survival. All I ask from you… is your
blood.” A 500 year bloody game of vengeance will need to be put on hold if vampires are
to survive the zombie uprising. Bitter enemies, Britannia and Nicholas must
work together to save un-infected humans, delivering them to a stronghold in
Scotland.Unable to drink the zombie blood, vampires need humans to stay alive. But will
they tell the survivors who they are, and what they want from them? Will
Britannia be able to hold back her vengeance? Is survivor Josh the
reincarnation of Britannia’s murdered true love? And can she bring herself to
deliver him to the safe hold?Survival instincts run deep, but bad blood can run deeper.
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About the Author:
Nicky is a published author of both YA and adult urban fantasy, paranormal romance and horror fiction. She lives in the heart of the UK, where she has run a writers’ group for over 4 years to help new writers find their feet on the path to publication. A member of both the Society of Authors and the British Fantasy Society, Nicky has had over 30 stories published in various anthologies.
Bad Timing is her second book in the Battle of the Undead series published through Evernight Teen. She loves to talk to readers, so please feel free to either get in touch with her through her blog, or on any of the social media below.
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Giveaway: $10 Evernight Teen GC
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