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5:02 Slaughter Time

GLENN patted his shoulder.

“You’re doing alright, lad,” he beamed.

Scott Cross was pleased too. When he arrived on HARVESTER FARM the dawn had not long broken. Glenn, a burly, middle aged farm hand had seemed intimidating at first. As he laid down the law for Scott and the other boys. His booming voice and formidable stature caused Scott and the other boys to pay attention.

The choice for them had been Jefferson Hall Youth Correctional or honest hard work in the northern farm lands. In Scott’s case he had been prosecuted for car theft. It wasn’t uncommon in the Shanties – the part of town Scott hailed from. It was a way of life for the poorest in the city. He had taken his first joy ride at fourteen. Prosecuted at seventeen, prison was the next logical step. When lawyer, RONALD OWEN took note of the amount of youths coming through his office from the Shanties under similar circumstances he decided to use his influence and family name to set up a ‘steps to work’ program. He felt the boys would stand a better chance of becoming better citizens under the influence of men like Glenn.

His feet hurt, his hands ached but he did feel pride in his work. He had moved most of the milking herd from the east acre to their main plot. He even came to know three of the main milking cows – Debbie, Shelia and Angie. His favourite of the animals though was the large stud bull named Gordon. Like Glenn, Gordon seemed aggressive at first but after asserting his authority over the teenager with a wave of his horns he settled down.

Glenn was leaning on the fence watching the stud herd graze. Beside him was another farm hand named CURTIS. They had a beer each.

“All set?” Glenn asked.

Scott smiled. A coach was arranged to take the boys back to the Shanties bus station.

“If shoveling cow shit doesn’t scare you straight I don’t know what will,” Curtis commented. He would know. He had been brought from Coldford Correctional A.K.A The Boss on a similar program.

Glenn shoved Curtis. “Don’t you listen to him. You keep your head down, work hard and you’ll do well.”

“Have a beer,” Curtis offered, reaching into the blue cool box at their feet.

“He’s too young,” Glenn protested but in jest.

Scott was a typical Shanties boy. He had had his first taste of alcohol at twelve. Curtis threw a bottle to him. He caught it in both hands. He unscrewed the cap and allowed the amber fluid to sooth his throat. It eased his aching body. He sighed with relief.

“Mmmmmmooooo,” grumbled Gordon. He had lifted his head from his grazing and was shaking it disapprovingly at them.

“Shut up, Gordon,” Glenn called back. “You heard me object.”

Scott chortled at the way the farm hands spoke to the animals as though they were people. The mild herd and stud herd all given suitable names.

Gordon snorted but he returned to his grazing.

The sun spilled over the Harvester Farm in a blanket of warmth not seen in the city – especially not in the Shanties. It was quiet. The crying of the cows in the distance was much better than the noise of traffic. Standing between Glenn and Curtis, with a beer in hand Scott felt like a real grown up, a real man. He watched the way that Glenn leaned on the fence and did similar. Over in the paddock facing them was a solitary goat. He was skipping around merrily until the entrance to the meat herd’s enclosure on the west acre was opened and farm hands started leading a few selected out.

The little goat became agitated. He butted against his fence as though he was trying to stop the other animals being led to the slaughter.

“What’s happening?” asked Scott.

Curtis looked at his watch.


“He gets a little upset when the slaughter time approaches. It’s like he knows.”


“We’re a dairy and meat farm, lad,” Glenn informed him. “We have our own slaughter sheds and butchers. Gary the goat there doesn’t like seeing his pals getting taken away.”

“Maaaaah!” Gary screamed.


He butted against fence, desperate to get the cows.

“Gary seems to know when there’s death in the air.”


Scott watched as the selected cows were led to the slaughter sheds. The abattoir machines would be fired up already.


The first of the herd was killed. 5:02 had always been the slaughter time on Harvester Farm – provider of the finest dairy and the finest meat in the Shady City.

Coming 2020

When the doctor bought over the Harvester Farm brand he was delighted at how well it could work along side his Harbour House project.



Julia Harvester is a nice girl. She is kind, sweet and used to being posed in all the best positions. She is the perfect artist’s muse. Click HERE to read the full story.


Taking PRIDE in What I Do.

Since it’s pride month and in light of the celebrations I thought I would give a shout out to my LGBT friends. Hey guys! How are you all?

There’s been a lot of talk of the STRAIGHT PRIDE movement. (Yeah, I know. Have you seen the flag? What a mess right?) and whilst I’m happy to see anyone celebrate who they are they seem to have lost the point of why there is a PRIDE MONTH in the first place. For those in the back you may want to listen up. No one has ever been chastised for being straight, not in the way LGBT people are. Straight people don’t generally feel fear, experience persecution or have been told they can’t marry the person that they love. All this has been brought to the forefront lately and there’s probably nothing I can add here that hasn’t already been said so I will just leave it with this – in a world where love is already so limited I will never understand why we would want to make it even more difficult. In my personal opinion if it’s between two (or more – you never know) consenting adults then who the Hell are we to be telling people what they should and shouldn’t be doing.

Someone said to me lately, “I don’t mind gay people. I just don’t like it being flaunted in my face.” What exactly is being flaunted in your face? Love? Affection? Poor baby. That must be awful. Besides that to me is like saying, “I don’t mind black people as long as they sit at the back of the bus.” It’s an outdated mentality that has absolutely no right to belong in our modern age. Grow up.

I’ve been asked more than once in the past if I myself and am gay because I include LGBT characters in my books. Well no. I include those characters because as an author I feel it is my job to capture as much of the human experience as possible. As a cis straight woman it shouldn’t be beyond me to identify other beliefs and sexual orientations right?

So on that note. Happy Pride Month to my amazing LGBT friends, relatives and readers. Thank you for making the world that bit more vibrant.

Enjoy some of Vivika Widow’s thrilling novels that feature LGBT characters.


Click HERE to read MAESTRO and book your music lesson with Mr Baines.

Click HERE to read MUSE and join David as he tries to salvage his reputation in the art community.


Is your neighbour a monster? SURVIVAL HINTS AND TIPS

Popular media would have us assume that around 80% of the population are either a werewolf, vampire, ghost or zombie.

Statistically you are more likely to be living next door to a centuries old vampire than you are to a non horror fiction writer. That sounds like pretty damning evidence to me so how do we combat this? Well here are a few tips that I have found quite effective:


Ah the blood sucking, immortal creatures that have been the subject of many different books and shows. In the elder days it was the young engaged couples travelling alone who really had to bother with this but thanks to the exploits of Dr Van Helsing, that variety of carnivorous fiend seems to be long gone. His little helper Igor chewing away on flies all by himself and disappearing back into the pages of Bram Stokers novel, mumbling about simpler times when a vampire master was in need of a lackey.

Nowadays, it is with the young teen girls that we have to concern ourselves. Just when father’s across the globe had enough to worry about their daughter dating now there is this inexplicable influx of young heart throb vampires keen on the young girls (who only look their own age). So parents, lock your doors and bar your windows because that pale faced yet handsome little blighter, who moved next door and is only seen at night, may just be planning on making your daughter his eternal companion.

TIP: Invite them for a dinner laced with garlic. Not Christian? Doesn’t matter, get those crosses up!


Many cultures around the world have their own legend of the werewolf but we can get down to brass taxes and assume that we have adopted the Germanic folklore.

In a time when all one had to do was stay out of the woods on a full moon to avoid werewolves, the half man and half dog could co exist quite peacefully (providing the predator was well fed on deer and elks).

Nowadays, for three nights a month the rampant calling of werewolves can be heard from the city streets to the moors of England. Like the vampires the new breed of werewolf seems to have adopted a more boy band styled approach to his daily life. They may seem pleasant on the surface (a German Shepard dog can be too until it rips your face off) but they are essentially dangerous creatures, at least whilst the moon is high and fat.

If your neighbour disappears for three nights a month or if you hear strange calling from their home it may very well be that they are a werewolf. This also means that a vampire could be lurking nearby because apparently after a tumultuous courtship the two now get on famously and there can’t be one without the other.

TIP: Stock up on those silver bullets! (and a gun to shoot them would be helpful).


Okay so these particular neighbours tend to be more nuisance house guests but all the more reason to be prepared for them.

If you pass a little girl in eighteenth or nineteen century dress on your way to the bathroom during the night, then it may very well be your house is infested with ghosts. Most people make the mistake of calling the priest in for an emergency exorcism but going by past experience that just makes them mad. So unless they are rattling their chains and keeping you up all night or unless they continue throwing tantrums or playing peek a boo to the point of distraction just leave them be. They won’t really take up much room and its not like they’ll eat you out of house and home.

Ghosts are nothing if not consistent. They seem to enjoy old fashioned costuming and that has changed very little over the years. You are still more likely to find a spirit of a Victorian Chambermaid than you are of Mrs. Prettin down the road who died just last week aged 92. Little kid ghosts can be the worst, especially if you have kids yourself. They will roll bright red balls up and down your corridors, sing creepy lullabies and follow you into every room.

TIP: If they are being a true nuisance the best thing is to just accept defeat and move. That is what many people have to do.


The end of time has been predicted by thousands of philosophers and holy men. The Mayans had their views. Nostradamus was certain of it. However, for some reason we seem to be at a huge risk of a zombie apocalypse. Maybe its all the nuclear material being passed around like a kids party or maybe its just that viruses are onto us. If it is a slipshod scientist dropping a vial in a laboratory or its a nuclear attack one thing will be certain… supplies will run out, all men will become gun toting action heroes and all women will be scantily clad and unable to function without said action hero (there are a few exceptions of course).

So if there is a rise in the brain eating mutant beings it is likely you will be at most danger from your closest neighbour. Perhaps that is where it all began … Patient 0 if you will. To ensure you are effectively protected make sure your doors are closed over (zombies can’t function door knobs) and secure yourself in an upstairs room (zombies have trouble with stairs too).

To prevent this you may want to keep a close eye on your neighbour. Do you see him/her scuttling about in a white lab coat at all hours of the night? Do you see strange packages being delivered at all hours of the day? if so there is a chance that you have a mad scientist in your midst and the chances are he already has a pet zombie.

TIP: Aim for the head.


Only really relevant if you live in Egypt, or close to a museum but lets face it these creatures have had centuries to wake up so its safe to say that they are in no hurry.

TIP: Learn to read Hieroglyphics.

So there you have it, my darlings. Those are my tips on what to do if your neighbour is a monster.

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