Here is an excerpt from my first book for Hero Sandwich entitled Hold the Mustard. The book will be a mix of narratives like below mixed with collections of traditional comic strips and a few comic book style web comics. For the latter, I will be searching for an illustrator to assist me. Anyone interested can contact me with a link to their portfolio.
Enjoy the following sneak preview…
Introduction: Winds of Autumn
Summer at my grandparents are treasured memories. True treasures richer than the gold mines of the Witwatersrand Basin. I still remember in grand detail the night my grandfather changed my life forever. Twas the night Gramps bestowed a wealth of information upon me. Unearthing a truth thought forever hidden in the dark past which blanketed our world for so very long.
It was a late, dry night so Gramps had the window opened just a crack. The window’s wire screen protected us from the Gulf Coast mosquitoes which were the size of horse flies. The storm shutters mounted on the outside of the window which are supposed to protect the room against the raging Gulf storms unfortunately shielded most of the crisp evening breeze that swept across the flat plains.
“Gramps! Read me a bedtime story”, I begged for I loved listening to my grandfather’s voice when he read fables from Grimms or Anderson. Gramps was able to put such emotion into every single word as though he lived the drama himself.
“Well, all we have here books for little kids”, my grandfather responded. “You are too old for ‘The Fox who wore socks’ or ‘The Goat Who Couldn’t Sing a Note’.” Gramps obviously was being silly. Who ever heard of those stories. My grandfather was so very witty and could drop a punchline in at a moments notice.
“You are just too old for silly nonsense”, Gramps concluded.
“Oh, that’s okay Gramps”, I disappointingly sighed.
“Well… there is a tale from my heart… a true story about heroes. Me and my old comrades… my friends… dear friends… family. We were super heroes who briefly walked the earth… some of us even flew… some fifty years ago”, muttered Gramps as if unsure of the believability of such an idea. Or was it because the revelation was a hidden treasure, a secret, of which Gramps was afraid to reveal.
I laughed! “Super heroes aren’t real!”, I snickered with a sense of bewildered curiosity. As much as my disbelief grounded me, my imagination spiraled me into a glimmer of wishful wonderment.
“Oh yes!”, my grandfather confirmed. “Super heroes were real. Very real! I was the mightiest of all, Captain Action! Why you grandmother…”
“Mark!” interrupted my grandmother as she bolted into the room. She had such a frightened look upon her face. It was the only instance I ever recall of seeing my grandmother with a look of fear, or was it extreme sadness. No, I take it back, it was one of two times. The second time was a few years later when Gramps passed away. It was the same look.
“Mark!”, repeated Granz. She grabbed Gramps’ arm so tight that his hand turned white. “Conference… NOW!”
I recall the excitement, the fear and the sheer sense of unbridled wonderment as Granz yanked and pulled Gramps into the other room. I listened so quietly as Granz whispered with such passion to my grandfather. My heart was beating louder than her secreted breath. My own breath was sounding louder and louder as well, all in all making eavesdropping on my grandmother’s private pleas near impossible. All I could make out was Gramps interjecting “But momma”. Gramps always referred to Granz as “Momma” following the birth of their first child, my uncle Aaron.