So you can read my books

Sunday, February 26, 2012


Alex Cavanaugh held his head. “Ow! Where am I?”

I said, “I can explain ….”

His eyes popped open. “It’s never good news when you hear those words.”

The ghost of Mark Twain chortled, “Alex, old boy, you just set back and enjoy the ride. Captain Clemens is at the wheel.”

The wheel in question was straight off a Mississippi riverboat. Sadly, we weren’t on the Mississippi. We were in the Shadowlands of outer space.

Alex started to spring out of his seat, but the safety harness stopped him. His eyes went wider as he took in his surroundings. We were on the command deck of a space ship. Or what Hollywood thought a space ship to look like in the 1930’s.

We were not alone.

Tied not too securely was Princess Ardala from the 80’s BUCK ROGERS show. She was muffling outrage through her gag. Ming the Merciless was out cold in the seat beside her.

A large teddy bear was busily half-doing the ropes on him. The teddy bear was dressed like Mr. Spock.

“A Hoka!,” gasped Alex. “An honest to Gordon R. Dickson Hoka!”

“Commander Spock,” squeaked the Hoka, whose race lived to imitate all that fascinated it.

Princess Ardala spat out her gag, “You dare?”

Mark Twain beamed, “Why, ain’t you the feisty hellcat? Don’t worry none about your daddy, Ming. I just needed his space boat here.”

“He is not my father, moron! I am having a tryst with Ming!”

Mark frowned, “I don’t see any pastries.”

“Tryst, imbecile! T-R-Y-S-T!! We are having an affair!”

Mark Twain’s cigar dropped from his mouth. “With that honey dew melon?”

Ardala was about to spew something forgettable when the Hoka inserted the gag back into her snarling mouth and waddled to his blinking console.

“What?,” sputtered Alex. “Where? How? Why?”

Mark Twain cackled with pleasure, spinning the wheel, sending the poor Hoka tumbling as I answered in reverse order.

“While we were guzzling Romulan Ale at Meilori’s, you mentioned you yearned to go into space in a real space ship.”

“This isn’t a real space ship! This is the movie set of Ming the Merciless’s space ship.”

Mark Twain twirled the wheel again, sending the Hoka tumbling across the deck in the opposite direction.

“This is as real as it gets, Alex! This is the Shadowlands where everything thought of by Man exists for deadly certain.”

I groaned, “Would you stop spinning that blasted wheel? My head is killing me.”

“Son, I’m trying to keep those Klingons from doing that to all of us.”

“Klingons!,” shrilled Alex, finally getting his harness undone.
He and I both looked, mouths ajar and eyes wide, at the view screen, showing the Klingon Bird of Prey preparing to blast us into tiny disbelieving bits.

The Hoka cocked its big head. “Most odd. Rudolph’s nose is glowing, and it is not even Christmas.”

Alex picked up the Hoka, shaking it while shrieking, “That is not a nose, you little Furball! That’s a plasma cannon!”

The teddy bear tilted its head. “Alex Cavanaugh, do I look in need of fluffing to you?”

Alex sputtered incoherently, dropping the Hoka.

The teddy bear muttered, "You were more fun drunk."

Alex started for Mark Twain when the view screen changed to show a confused Klingon who growled at us.

“Your vessel … it is being propelled by a wire on top?”

Alex stopped in mid-step. “What?”

Mark chortled, “You keep asking that question, son. That’s the way Hollywood got this danged thing to fly in the 30’s so that’s how it flies now.”

“No matter,” grunted the Klingon. “You are invading Klingon space. Prepare to die!”

Alex shrilled, “Twain, do something!”

Mark turned to the Hoka, “Commander Spock, you have a plan?”

“He’s a teddy bear!,” shrieked Alex. “What kind of plan could he have?”

“An excellent one,” smugly smiled the Hoka, flipping a few switches. “I have taken control of their vessel.”

Alex danced in place. “Great! You’re turning off that cannon, right?”

The teddy bear frowned. “That would be rude.”

Alex’s eyes looked as if they were preparing to leap out of their sockets. “Rude? RUDE!? ”

The teddy bear sighed, “Really Alex Cavanaugh, your emotions will be the death of you.”

“That cannon’s going to be the death of me, you fuzzball!”

“No,” smugly said the Hoka. “Klingon Poop is the most devastating stench in the known galaxy. Observe as I re-route their sewage system through their ventilating shafts.”

Streams of thick brown ooze flowed through the vents above the Klingon Captain. Gagging wetly, he grabbed his throat, sinking to his knees along with the rest of his crew.

“H-Have you no shame, no honor, human?”

Mark Twain smiled wide as he lit up a new cigar. “No. That’s how I win, Turtle Brow.”

He turned to the Hoka. “Mr. Spock, the Borg Sector, if you please. I always fancied that Borg Queen to be a sexy little thing.”
“Nooooooo!,’ Alex and I wailed.

Alex began clicking his heels. “There’s no place like home. There’s no place like home!”

Buy your own copy of CASSAFIRE!
Want to read more of the Hoka (used copy for only a penny!)
Oh, Erin Kane Spock (no relation to the Hoka!) just let me know that I have been shortlisted for the the finalists in the 4th campaign's first challenge. Neat, huh?


  1. Hi Roland and Alex .. well that was one fun post - loved your take on Alex and his CassaFire .. I'm sure I learnt something .. like killing of gremlins with sewage .. but how on earth you get your brain to work like this Roland .. I have no idea - it's brilliant .. wonderful to read .. Did you really grow up? Sounds like something my brother would have wittered on about when we were on a car journey .. beyond the pale - but now reading it from you .. it kind of makes the brain have some sense! cheers to you both - Hilary

  2. Thanks, Hilary :
    Here it is 4 A.M. in the morning, and I am still at work! :-(

    Ah, yes, Klingon Poop is a terrible weapon! LOL.

    I will probably never grow up, but I will not dry up either!!

    Your brother and I probably have made fabulous car journey partners!

    I have a sequel rattling around inside my head about Alex and the ghost of Mark Twain being abducted by the grey aliens and rescued by the hero and heroine of CASSAFIRE and cowardly me. But it is too long for the guest post I will do on March 16th. Ah, word limitations are my bane! :-)

    Cheers to you, too, Roland

  3. Hi Roland .. work at 4.00am .. well no wonder you have Klingon Poop everywhere!! I suspect you'd now enjoy his company .. I'd hate to be in his brain!!

    The sequel sounds interesting .. ideas come when we're driving along - I don't do any now .. I'll get back to it in due course ..

    Hope your night finishes sometime soon .. byeeeeee Hilary

  4. hahahaha. this was the first fanfiction I've read in a while, and I lurved it :D Cool that you have Mary Sued yourselves, except without the perfection. :P

  5. That was hilarious! I think using the Klingon poop far ruder that shooting at them but I wholeheartedly approve of the tactic.
    Thanks for the entertaining trip into space, Roland!

  6. What a drop-dead gorgeous post!!!

    You are a true fan of Alex and his books.

  7. That was such a fun read! Roland, the forth pic, the red one, is that actress Ornella Mutti? I remember her from my days watching Italian comedies in Europe. She certainly knew how to turn heads! Anyway, a bit of trivia, I suppose!

  8. Oh my gosh, that was super bowl commercial worthy. Most entertaining promotional post ever!

  9. This was great :D

    I've tagged you on my blog - with some questions

  10. This was so entertaining Roland. Every time I read something of yours I am blown away by your creativity.

  11. Very entertaining, Roland. That will teach Alex not to drink to excess.

  12. That was hilarious! Thanks for the fun romp.

  13. Genius. You are a genius. My sides are hurting :)
    Laura x

  14. Hilary :
    Yes, Saturday was a draining 20 straight hours of being a blood courier. Whew! May this new week be healing to you in many ways!!

    Trisha :
    Sigh, I can't reach perfection even rendering myself a Mary Sue. Alex can be forgiven -- after all he awakened like the characters in THE HANGOVER with some terrifying revelations!!

    Alex :
    I thought you might enjoy being the central character in a Sci Fi version of THE HANGOVER!

    edFanoB :
    Not only a fan of Alex and his books but a cyber-friend!! Thanks for liking my tribute.

    Jack :
    Wasn't Ornella Mutti something? Olivia Wilde's looks remind me of her. Understandable why even Ming the Merciless let his guard down around her enough for Mark Twain to shang-hai his ship!

    Cassie Mae :
    Super Bowl Commercial worthy? Wow. That is indeed high praise! Thanks for the very kind words!!

    inspirenordic :
    Thank you for caring enough about me to tag me. Alas, having worked 20 hours straight yesterday and very long days as a rule as a blood courier, it will be a challange to answer your questions. Thank you so much for the blog nod! :-)

    Wendy Ewurum :
    I laughed my way through writing this. I am so glad you and others found it amusing too! Your compliment made my weary afternoon!

    L. Diane :
    I'm happy this entertained you. Yes, poor Alex should have learned this lesson from THE HANGOVER!!

    Christine :
    I hoped my sense of humor would ring true for my friends! Glad you like this romp through space!

    Laura :
    Humor is so ticklish (pun intended) I was afraid I wouldn't hit the mark. Your hurting sides say I didn't miss!! Thank you!! Roland

  15. Roland, thank you again. I am really honored - I made it into one of your stories!

  16. Oh my gosh, that was HILARIOUS! The brown ooze, the teddy bear, Twain...holy cow. Thanks for the laughs!

    Hooray for Alex, and that trailer is AWESOME!

  17. Alex :
    No, thank you for being a friend. This was my early CASSAFIRE BOOK TOUR post. I will leave it up through Tuesday to coincide with the start of your CATCH FIRE book tour.

    Julie :
    I am so glad you enjoyed it. My applause to Alex and gesture of great wishes for his new book release. EVERYONE, BUY A COPY OF CASSAFIRE. I have. I also "liked" it at the top of his book page, Roland

  18. Holy crap... Two seconds ago I was so tired I could barely keep my eyes open & now I'm cracking up making my hubby read his. Sooooo funny! Haha... You rock, Roland! :D

  19. This was a fun ride since I was watching the action or lack of it from my screen, safe and with brains intact. :)
    Really enjoyable, very creative and love this kind of humour that gets you to wonder Poor Alex has been under the weather.
    I can still hear the Klingon Captain trying to get the brown ooze to cling off and his fading words, "smart humans, should have followed your habit of washing dirty toilet paper in public".

    Thanks for visiting my blog.

  20. ...hang in there, Alex, Roland had me grappling for dear life not too long ago myself ;)

    Truly a fantastic ride, well done to both of you!

    Wishing you the very best of sales, Alex! A well deserving accomplishment.


  21. O...M...G. That is the coolest post ever! I want those Star Trek bears!

  22. Haha! That's certainly an original post. Go Alex! Go CassaFire!

  23. Hi Roland
    I came via Alex's. Had to read a story about him. So funny. You did a great job. Have a great day.

  24. Wow, Roland! This was great! Now, off to buy a Spock teddy bear...

  25. Hi Roland! That was great. Honestly, I think I had a dream like that once. And I wasn't even hung over!! LOL!

    Alex, awesome honor to be in one of Roland's stories :D I hope your headache is on the mend and you finally made it home alive!


  26. Roland, thanks again, and from the comments, you have a winner here!

  27. Morgan :
    I had a fun time writing this. I'm happy you chuckled through this. I hope your hubby found it fun, too!

    Rek :
    Loved your addition to my Klingon escapade!

    Thanks, Elliot :
    You always have a standing invitation at Meilori's. Stay away from the Romulan ale though!!

    Ellie :
    Here's the link on ebay to one of them (so far only $20) :

    Your enjoying this means so much to me, coming from a sci fi fan like you.

    Thank you, Talli :
    Happy you liked this post. And I'm joining you in wishing the highest of sales to Alex!!

    Traci :
    Glad you enjoyed this sci fi version of THE HANGOVER!

    Nancy :
    Alex was a fun guest to have during a space adventure!!

    Adrienne :
    I used to sell those Spock bears when I had my store. They were popular little critters! Here is that ebay link to one of those Spock bears :

    And no, I am not getting a commission! LOL. I'm just happy that one of the few things to survive my house fire was my very own Spock Bear. He adorns the refrigerator top in my apartment of exile right now. I'm such a big kid.

    Jen :
    Alex is finally home -- though he and the ghost of Mark Twain did get kidnapped by those pesky grey aliens from THE X-FILES. But Byron, Althee, cowardly me, and the Bruce Willis character from THE FIFTH ELEMENT did manage a rescue ... of sorts.

    Maybe I will detail it here someday. It's a bit long to be my guest post on Alex's blog this March 16th.

    Alex :
    No, you're the winner, Alex. They came to see you in very own space adventure. I wish you a continuation of that winning streak with the very highest sales on CASSFIRE!!

  28. Very amusing! Now I want a Star Trek bear.

  29. This story has something for everyone, and is quite an adventure! Thanks Roland, and best of luck Alex! Julie

  30. Bahahaha! Oh, man.
    Alex is hard core.

  31. L. Diane :
    eBay is always selling one or two versions of the Spock Bear. Trick is to catch one that is inexpensive!

    Julie :
    I tried to give everyone something to chuckle at! Yes, Alex is the new sci fi Indiana Jones.

    Jo :
    Really happy you enjoyed Alex's Big Adventure!! Alex deserves high sales! Roland

  32. This was great! Turtle brow, haha. A lot of fun, thanks for this.

    Shannon at The Warrior Muse, co-host of the 2012 #atozchallenge! Twitter: @AprilA2Z

  33. Shannon Lawrence :
    Yes, the ghost of Mark Twain liked that term. The Klingon? Not so much. LOL. Roland

  34. I rather liked the image of Alex clicking his heels together :)

    I laughed all the way through this Roland. It made my day.


  35. seriously? unbelievable! that was a ton of work! what a friend!

  36. Simply great, Roland!!! I'm so far removed from the blogging community at the current moment. Blah! is how I feel. But, congrats on being a finalist in the campaign (I opted out this one.)!

    I've been a terrible blog buddy, but I'm on the road to recovery, so look out world...I'm almost back!

    Alex, you're buddy, Roland did an outstanding job with this one!!!

  37. Donna :
    Thankfully Alex has a great sense of humor!! Glad it made your day a little brighter.

    Tara :
    Wait until Wednesday's sequel : Close Encounters of the Worst Kind!

    Candy :
    I'm so happy to see you here! You pace yourself. Victor, Alice, and I are pulling for your quick recovery! Roland