The third book Thatchenstein, in Jack Strange's trilogy of strange horror & parody is to be published by KGHH Publishing on Friday the 29th of September 2017 : PRE ORDER THE BOOK HERE:
THE STORY SO FAR…
In Celebrity Chef Zombie Apocalypse, Professor Ted Forsyth, an inventor, made an amazing medical breakthrough. He created a machine called the ‘Lazarus Engine’ which could bring the dead back to life. Forsyth and his nephew Robert Turner tested the machine on a dead cat called Henderson, and a dead celebrity chef called Floyd Rampant.
They soon discovered that the Lazarus Engine had unforeseen side-effects. It brought Henderson and Rampant back to life all right, but it also turned them into sex-crazed flesh-eating zombies.
Rampant killed and ate the hapless inventor and his nephew, and then embarked on a crusade to conquer the world by making an army of undead celebrity chefs who would do his bidding.
His plan was thwarted by Tarquin Camemblert, the British Prime Minister.
Camemblert lured Rampant and his zombie army to the little-known town of Huddersfield, West Yorkshire and then sent RAF bombers to the town to bomb the zombie chefs out of existence.
The town centre was reduced to rubble by the bombing, and the zombie chefs were all killed.
All, that is, except for Rampant and his two lieutenants: the gorgeous pouting Kat De Vine, and the moustachioed Gary Fletcher. Henderson, the zombie cat, also survived.
Wally Pratt, a distant relative of Professor Ted Forsyth, inherited Forsyth’s house, and the Lazarus Engine with it, after Forsyth’s tragic death.
Pratt was a member of an extreme right-wing political party called NS18. He was desperate for advancement within the party. In fact, he was so desperate that he made a creature who looked like Margaret Thatcher to help him to earn the recognition he so badly craved. He made her from recycled body parts taken from corpses, and he brought her to life using the Lazarus Engine.
Although she looked like the young Margaret Thatcher, she had the body of a lingerie model.
She was called Thatchenstein.
Pratt got the brain for his creature from a young woman called Kaz, who was a fellow member of NS18. He had fancied Kaz, but had killed her by accident when the brakes on his car had failed and he’d run her over.
Pratt kept Thatchenstein in the cellar of his house (formerly Forsyth’s house), where he fed her on a diet of raw meat and played her videos of Margaret Thatcher’s speeches over and over again to brainwash her into believing that she was a leading right-wing politician.
It soon became apparent that Thatchenstein’s appetite was insatiable and that she needed to eat human flesh.
Pratt had two gay neighbours who lived next door to him. They were called Richard and Darren. In order to supply Thatchenstein with the human flesh she needed, Pratt led Richard and Darren into the cellar of his house and introduced them to Thatchenstein. He expected that she’d make short work of them.
Now read on…. (actually we jump to chapter 3 - as chapter 1&2 might get this website banned)
Back in the cellar, Pratt struggled to his feet. No sooner had he done so than his creature had grabbed him by the throat. He was horribly aware that her strength was such that she could snap his neck like a matchstick if she wanted.
She thrust her beak-like nose up close to his and fixed him with an unflinching grey-eyed stare. He turned his face away from hers. She’d become too menacing for him to meet her gaze, so much so that he daren’t even look in her direction.
“You ghastly little man,” she said, in a deep voice that was all too familiar to him. “What do you think you’re playing at?”
“Wha-what do you mean?” He spluttered.
He was barely able to get the words out due to the pressure on his windpipe.
“Look at me.” She said. “Look at me!”
Slowly, he turned his head, until his eyes were staring at her face, but still he avoided her gaze.
“You stupid ignorant little pleb,” she said. “Look at what I’m wearing.”
Pratt rolled his eyeballs so that he was looking down her cleavage. Perspiration began to form on his forehead, and at the same time, frightened though he was, he felt a stirring in his nether regions.
“Do you think this is a suitable way for a politician to dress? Do you really think I can go around making speeches looking like this?” She bellowed.
Pratt couldn’t help but notice her yellowing skin and teeth, and the stitch marks where her arms and head joined her torso.
“Er, no,” he said. “I don’t think you can.”
But it’d definitely get my vote, he thought.
“Then you better do something about it.”
She pointed to one of the screens in the cellar that was showing non-stop footage of Margaret Thatcher in her prime. “I want you to go out and get me some clothes like those I’m wearing on the television. And get me some makeup, too. I look decidedly unhealthy. I need something to put the colour back in my cheeks. And be quick about it. I can’t go anywhere in public looking like this. Is that clear?”
The pressure on Pratt’s throat had become such that he could no longer speak, even though she was trying not to injure him. He nodded in agreement, tears running from the corners of his eyes due to the agony he was in.
Thatchenstein relaxed her grip and he squeaked plaintively, like a mouse realising that the cheese it’s just nibbled is the bait in a trap.
“I’ll go get those things right away,” he said, in a somewhat croaky voice.
He turned to go, wondering if he should break into a run.
“There’s something else I need,” she added.
He half-turned back in her direction.
“Food. Get me some food. I’m famished.”
“I’ll get it as quickly as I can,” he replied, before setting off up the cellar steps like a runner in the Olympic final of the 100-meter sprint.
He felt lucky to get to the ground floor in one piece. Once he was safely there, he slammed the cellar door shut behind him and fastened the four hefty bolts that secured it. For good measure, he took two keys from his pocket and turned them in the two sturdy locks that were fitted to the door.
“Thank God,” he muttered to himself. “I’m safe now.”
For a moment he wondered what Richard and Darren might be doing, but he put that thought to the back of his mind and drove to the shops. A couple of hours later he returned, armed with several bags full of clothes, and some hefty chunks of meat he’d bought from the local butcher.
The evening sky was dark blue in colour, almost black, with a full moon glowing brightly above the silhouettes of the rooftops on Acacia Avenue. Pratt saw it and shuddered. He wondered if it was an omen of sorts, and a bad omen at that.
He took his shopping indoors, opened the cellar door with feelings of trepidation, and went slowly down the stairs, ready to turn and flee at the slightest hint of any threat. When he got to the bottom, his creature was waiting for him, and thankfully, she didn’t seem minded to hurt him.
“Put everything on there and leave me for now,” she said, pointing to one of the two chest freezers in the cellar.
Pratt quickly did as he was told, then he went to the kitchen for a stress-busting mug of tea. He was half-way through it when he heard a slow, heavy knock on the front door. It sounded, to his experienced ear, like the knock of a policeman, so he went to his front room and peered anxiously through the window. He saw exactly what he’d been dreading: two constables standing on his path. One of them knocked ponderously on the door again. Pratt felt his insides churning. His knees began to buckle with stress.
They’ve come to get me for killing Kaz, he thought. What can I do? Maybe I can lure them into the cellar, and with any luck, Thatchenstein will have them, and that’ll give me the chance to go on the run.
He made a supreme effort to compose himself, then he opened the door and attempted an ingratiating smile.
“Good evening constable,” he said, in the most obsequious voice he could muster, while wringing his hands in a manner reminiscent of Uriah Heap, “How can I help you?”
“Evening,” said the policeman, a huge burly specimen with a barrel-like torso. “Are you Mr. Wally Pratt?”
“That’s right,” said Pratt nervously, with a good deal more hand-wringing.
“I’m Sergeant Gripper, and my colleague here is PC Phipps. We’re making some enquiries. May we come in?”
That was exactly what Pratt wanted.
“Please do,” he said, stepping back in an exaggeratedly welcoming way to allow the policemen entry.
They both stepped forward into Pratt’s dank hall and looked around with sniffy disapproving glances, then they saw the cellar door with the four bolts on it, and they glanced at one another.
“May we take a look in your cellar, sir?” Gripper asked.
Pratt couldn’t believe his luck. They hadn’t mentioned the car accident in which he’d killed Kaz, and they were asking to do the very thing he wanted them to do. He hurried to the door, undid the bolts, and unlocked it.
He pulled it wide open and stood next to it, then, with a grand sweep of his arm in the direction of the steps, he said:
He was planning to shut the door and lock it as soon as they’d gone through.
“Thank you sir,” said Constable Phipps.
He began descending the stairs.
Sergeant Gripper took hold of Pratt’s skinny upper arm with one of his huge hands.
“What are you doing?” Pratt cried. “Let me go. You’re not allowed to do this, I know my rights.”
“Rights, be damned,” said Gripper. “You’re coming with us,” and he dragged Pratt down the steps with him.
They got to the bottom and saw a woman with her back to them. She was wearing a powder-blue twinset and sensible shoes. She turned to face them. They saw then that she was gnawing on a huge hunk of raw meat. She lowered it from her mouth and addressed them.
“Good evening, gentlemen,” she said, in tones that were surprisingly deep and unladylike. “What can I do for you?”
Gripper and Phipps stopped abruptly and looked at each other, eyebrows raised. Pratt squirmed, attempting to free his arm from Gripper’s fist, but without success.
Phipps took a small notebook and pencil from his pocket.
“We are the police, namely, we are Sergeant Gripper and Police Constable Phipps, Madam,” said Gripper, “and we are in the area making enquiries. We have heard reports that this young man here” (at this point he shook Pratt in much the same way that a large dog would shake a rat) “has been illegally detaining a woman in his cellar and holding her prisoner. Would you know anything about this alleged prisoner Madam? Would the alleged prisoner be yourself?”
It was Thatchenstein’s turn to raise an eyebrow.
“A prisoner? In this cellar? There’s no-one here but me, and I’m no prisoner as you can see.”
Gripper contorted his face into an expression that was reassuring but at the same time made clear he would brook no nonsense.
“Are you by any chance being detained against your will, madam?” He asked. “Speak out if you are. You cannot come to any harm if you do. PC Phipps and I will protect you, if Mr. Pratt here tries to intimidate you in any way.”
He shook Pratt again, more vigorously than before, to make it absolutely clear that he was more than capable of dealing with any threat that Pratt might pose.
Thatchenstein watched them, then she threw back her head and roared with laughter. Gripper noticed, not for the first time, that the raw meat had left blood stains around her mouth.
“Do I look as if I could be intimidated by that useless little wretch, Sergeant Gripper?” She asked.
Gripper ran his eyes up and down the large but rather attractive creature in front of him, then he glanced at the rat-like and pathetically small specimen he was holding by the arm.
“Well, now you come to mention it, no, madam. You do not look as if you could possibly be intimidated by this useless little wretch, not in a million years.”
“You can rest assured that he isn’t holding me, or any other woman prisoner in the cellar, or anywhere else for that matter; he simply isn’t capable,” said Thatchenstein with a wry smile.
Gripper decided that Thatchenstein must be right. He let go of Pratt’s arm, and Pratt rubbed it and scowled. He felt insulted and hurt by the suggestion that he wasn’t capable of keeping a woman prisoner in his cellar or anywhere else. For a moment he considered insisting that he was more than capable of holding a woman prisoner if he wanted, but on reflection he realised that wasn’t a good idea.
“Very good, madam,” said Gripper. He turned to Phipps. “I suppose we ought to be taking our leave, constable Phipps,” he said.
“I suppose we did,” he said, putting his notebook and pencil away.
“Goodbye madam. Goodbye Mr. Pratt,” he said.
“I’ll be complaining to the Police Complaints Commission about you two,” said Pratt, “I’ve heard they’re coming down hard on police brutality.”
“You young people today,” said Gripper, smiling and shaking his head, “you don’t know what police brutality is. I wish we were back in the seventies, because if we were, I’d be able to show you some real police brutality.”
He looked knowingly at Thatchenstein and she smiled in agreement.
“Young people,” she said.
“They don’t know they’ve been born,” he replied. “Anyway, we should go. We’ll let ourselves out.”
He turned and ascended the stairs with Phipps close behind. When they safely were out of earshot, Phipps said:
“What did you make of that?”
“It was one of the oddest things I’ve seen in thirty-nine years of policing,” Gripper replied.
“She was eating raw meat.”
“It’s not a crime, thank God. If it was, we’d have to fill out a report, and you know what a pain that is.”
“Too bloody right I do. You know something? That woman reminded me of someone.”
“I know just who you mean: Margaret Thatcher.”
TO BE CONTINUED - PRE ORDER THE BOOK VIA THE LINKS BELOW AND READ THE BOOK WHEN IT COMES OUT ON 29TH SEPTEMBER 2017