A snippet from Monster Hunter Vendetta

Recently Toni Weiskopf from Baen suggested that I needed to post some snippets of upcoming works.  Monster Hunter Vendetta is the 2nd book in the MH universe, and will be released in Fall of 2010.  This is from the unedited version.

“When monsters have nightmares, they’re dreaming about us.”

-MHI Company Handbook

 

 

 

 

Monster Hunter Vendetta

Chapter 1

            It was less than a year ago that the illusion shattered and I got my welcome to the real world. Up until that point I considered myself perfectly average, living a normal life, with a regular career. That all changed the night my accounting supervisor turned into a werewolf and tried to eat me. Now there are basically two ways to deal with such a problem. Most people confronted with something so hideously impossible tend to curl up into the fetal position and die. On the other hand, those of us destined to become Monster Hunters simply take care of business. He almost ended my life but I tossed him out a fourteenth-story window. He died, I didn’t. That makes me the winner.

            After that initial encounter I was approached with a job offer. Apparently survivors like me aren’t that common, and as a result killing a monster is a real resume builder. I was recruited by Monster Hunter International, the premier eradication company in the business. We protect mankind from the unnatural forces that come crawling out from our darkest nightmares, and in return, we get paid the big bucks. 

It wasn’t that long after I started my new job that MHI came up against an unfathomable evil from the past. It took everything we had to survive, but in the end, the Cursed One was defeated and I literally saved the world.

I was employee of the month.

#

            The biggest chupacabra in the pack was only four feet tall, but what they lacked in mass, they made up for in sheer ferocity. Being unable to get to their dinner was making them even surlier than usual. The peasant girl had been futilely tinkering with the engine of her broken down Chevy Vega when the first chupacabra had come sniffing onto the jungle road. Her screams at seeing the little demon-lizard-insect-thing hopped down the dirt lane like a demented miniature kangaroo had driven it into a frenzy, and she had barely managed to dive into the car ahead of its snapping jaws. Her continued cries from behind the locked doors of the old rust bucket had attracted the rest of the pack, and now there were a dozen of the creatures clambering on the car.

            Chupacabras do not normally attack people. The puncture tubes that jut from their mouths could pierce a human skull like a screwdriver through a milk jug, but instinctively they stick to preying on small animals. Once a chupacabra pack has tasted human blood, however, they absolutely will not stop, and killings become more and more frequent. From what I have seen in this business, people must be either extremely tasty, or addictive like monster crack.

            The creatures were scratching and clawing at the car’s windows and roof. The girl just kept on screaming. She had a remarkably good set of lungs for this kind of thing, which is why we’d picked her. Her cries spurred the monsters on, and they all began to shriek as well, echoing across the dark jungle canopy for miles.

            The four-footer jumping up and down on the hood of the Vega was pissed. It had to be the pack’s alpha male, and it couldn’t figure out why the glass wasn’t breaking. I watched it carefully through the night vision monocular.

            “I think he suspects something,” Trip Jones whispered.

            I nodded. They might be clever for creatures with brains the size of tangerines, but the goat-suckers had never run into bulletproof glass before. Finally the alpha hopped off the car and scurried over to the side of the road. I almost keyed my radio, but he hesitated there, looking for something, and came up with a rock. He crawled back on the hood, raised the rock, and started banging away at the windshield. The others cheered and hooted him on.

            “Hey, I didn’t know suckers knew how to use tools,” Milo Anderson said over the radio. He was positioned on the other side of the road. All of us were wearing ghillie suits and had been lying in the underbrush being eaten by insects for hours. The foul smelling grease that we had rubbed on ourselves earlier to hide our smell from the chupacabra’s sensitive noses also served as seasoning for the region’s bugs.

My radio crackled. “We’ll have to update the database,” Julie Shackleford replied, the roar of the chopper’s engine could be heard behind her. “Tool use… That’s fascinating.”

            Apparently our fake peasant, Holly Newcastle, didn’t think it was nearly as fascinating from her position as bait in the front seat of the Vega. The theatrical screaming stopped for a moment. “Uh… guys…” The rest of us could hear the glass cracking in the background. “Guys?”

            We had three members of Monster Hunter International hiding in the brush, one in the decoy car, two more on the rapidly approaching attack-helicopter, carefully positioned claymores along the roadside, piles of guns, thousands of rounds of ammo, state of the art night-vision and thermal imaging equipment, a lot of attitude, and a general dislike of evil beasties.

I keyed my microphone and unleashed hell.

“Execute.” 

            My name is Owen Zastava Pitt and I kill monsters for a living.

50 Responses

  1. Damn it all Larry!!!! Now I have to wait till FALL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    You’d better tell Bean to pick up the pace on publishing or a bunch of us may have to pay them a visit….

    They don’t want us to pay them a visit.

    • YEAH WHAT HE SAID!!!!

      Maybe an early run is in order…

      tweaker

      • I am going to have to hurt you now.

        You just had to taunt me with that didn’t you.
        You had better not tell me there is no way to get more before then. You can’t get someone addicted to that type of literary crack and then stop giving us our hits. That’s just cruel.

  2. So … when is an MHI operator going to throw a silver-wire wrapped frag into a Twilight-tard’s party room?

  3. I knew this was a bad idea now I want more. Hurry up damn it! And yeah Baen really doesn’t want a visit from most of your fan base.

  4. Great stuff…..now for the waiting….why oh why must we wait…..lol

    keep up the good work chief :-)

  5. YAY!

  6. Why the teasin of your fan’s Larry? Really, MHI is like crack and I’m a junkie lookin’ for a fix. I guess I’ll have to go read Weber and Ringo’s respective latest books each, jeesh!

  7. Why do you do this to us, Larry? Why? Why must you tease us with excerpts from your works and then force us to wait months, MONTHS, to be able to read the whole thing?

    Can’t wait until fall.

  8. Can’t wait for the new book. I have given a few copies of mhi as gifts, and everyone has really liked it.

  9. Yes!!!!
    High explosives, full auto, and attack chopppers.
    That’s how to kill monsters, I can’t wait for the book to be released.

  10. OK, I’m hooked. When can we pre-order?

  11. Toni Weiskopf is an unrepentant tease!

    Now we have to wait almost a full year to find out what happens. Not cool!

  12. I need a bigger fix!

    sincerely,

    MHI junkie.

  13. Glad to be of service. :)

  14. Oh my God, I want the rest of the book NOW! I can’t believe Baen wants us to wait until 2010, yesterday seems like a better date for a release to me.

  15. Jim (RIP) and Tori have been teasing me like this for years.

    I have $15 set aside for the Advanced Reader Copy (ARC). I suspect that sometime next fall I will be huddled in the bathroom with my iPhone and Mossberg reading MHV instead of doing whatever honey-do I have been tasked with.

    In case any of you nuts out there are wondering, NO, I don’t normally take the Mossberg with me to sit on the porcelain throne but when reading one of Larry’s stories, you never know what will come crawling up past the p-trap!

    Larry, I am glad to hear that my favorite publisher has picked you up. I have spent literally thousands on webscriptions.net. It is funny some how missed the month MHI was included in the webscriptions. I just ran across a dead-tree copy in Border’s up here in Logan (yes, I am a neighbor) last week. Didn’t buy the dead-tree copy, but I had purchased the August webscription that included it before via my iPhone before I left the store.

    For those out there who are not familiar with Baen Books, http://www.webscription.net is Baen’s web page on which they sell electronic books. You can pick up an electronic copy of TMI for $6.00 on that web page in any one of about six unencripted formats. With many books (I am hoping MHV), they will offer readers a chance to purchase an “Advanced Reader Copy” (ARC) about four or five months before the physical (dead-tree) book is released to book stores. They charge $15 for the ARC instead of the $6.00 they charge for the book after it has been released in book stores.

    • You mean you don’t have a dedicated shotgun to keep in the bathroom? I went with remington marine magnum model for the added corrosion resistance that’s required in a room that sees so much humidity. It’s very important to be armed when you’re at your most vulnerable.

      • Far be it from me to disagree with a Marine Magnum as your choice of bathroom guns but…

        My wife is a very smart woman. If I used a Marine Magnum, I would have a hard time explaining to her the large amount of “Hoppe’s 9″ I keep in the bathroom. She knows that with the Remington’s “Black TriNyte® Corrosion Control System” I would never need the gallons of “Hoppe’s 9″ stored in my bathroom. I have told her that I need it there to maintain my Mossy in the harsh environment of shower steam, snake guts, perfume vapors, drano, etc.

        The reality is that I just like to use “Hoppe’s 9″ as cologne. The more the better.

        And then there is the fact that Mossberg sold me an extended length choke with the “tactical turkey” barrel that came with my 535. When I saw that choke I knew just what I was going to do. I took a plunger and unscrewed that useless wooden handle and using a little left-over JB Weld I had left from when I fixed my jeep’s radiator, I attached the plunger to the business end of the choke. Then I grabbed my reloading gear and a fist full of used 2 3/4 cases and loaded up blanks with some slow-burning black powder.

        You yahoos in the peanut gallery may laugh at me, but when my 11 year old plugged up my throne with the remains of thanksgiving dinner and a half roll of Charmin, I just screwed in that choke/plunger, chambered one of the blanks and BOOM!! NO CLOGGED DRAIN!!.

        It was a bit messy for my mossy but the “Hoppe’s 9″ came in real handy for cleaning the barrel and hiding the odor of the blow-back that landed on my shirt.

        I kid you not.

      • Actually, this is @ RJ’s post below.

        Hmm, there’s a story idea–Larry, any monsters small enough to swim up through a sewer and a toilet? I can just imagine Milo, Owen & Co. doing this with silver buckshot instead of blanks… and wouldn’t be surprised if Milo already had a “percussive plunger”. LOL

        Gives “Shoot the S**t” whole new meaning, though, ya gotta admit… :D

    • Ohhhhhhh.
      I would so give up an easy $20 for an advanced copy. I do most of my reading on my phone anyway.

  16. Aw, drat. Larry, I went and read the intro when I can’t grab a snack and keep reading the rest–until next year! I should know better by now, dangit. ;)

  17. Mossy? Sorry, the only shotgun for the job is Saiga. Specifically, a two-tone-brown-tiger-stripe one with integral bayonet and attached grenade-launcher…

    Yes, I mean ABOMINATION.

    Oh, you don’t have one? My bad. :P Once the prototype’s built, Larry has a parts-list and I’ll offer him access to my shop notes if he’s up for a spinoff “Abomination Operator’s Manual/Construction Handbook.”

    Speaking of, Larry… any chance of seeing the MHI Company Handbook published?

  18. need more book now. you go print book. bring back, sell many copies. do now! do now!

  19. [quote]Oh, you don’t have one? My bad. :P Once the prototype’s built, Larry has a parts-list and I’ll offer him access to my shop notes if he’s up for a spinoff “Abomination Operator’s Manual/Construction Handbook.”[/quote]

    You know, that’s actually a brilliant spin-off. Even a guy like me, who probably won’t build an Abomination clone, might shell out for that booklet, especially if Larry added notes in the persons of Milo and Owen and whoever else along the way. It would sell similarly to Howard Taylor’s doodled /autographed editions, but it would be unique and completely focused on the gun nut audience.

    • I’ll take a copy of the MHI Employee Handbook and the Abomination Operator’s Manual/Construction Handbook to keep me alive till MHV comes out.

      As for guns in the toilet, a shotgun might be a tad cumbersome. I would go with 2 handguns: A Taurus Judge loaded with silver pellet shotgun shells and a S&W 500 Alaskan for the heavy duty monsters. and instead of the fuzzy toilet covers, a custom made cowboy-like holster 2-gun rig attached to the toilet seat. That way you can read and draw a weapon if necessary.

  20. Hey, can I criticize for a minute here? It drives me nuts the way everybody keeps saying “Unleash hell on this” and “we unleashed hell on that” in MHI. If it has to be there, can somebody at least get snarked at for recycling Russell Crowe’s lines? Maybe Myers could do it, so he shows a little sharpness and doesn’t turn into Colonel Decker.

  21. I cant wait for the pre-order

  22. Awesome.

    Consider this post a pre-order. Can’t wait!!!

  23. Awesome. Now I just have to wait another year . . .

  24. I’ve got my Saiga 12 but currently waiting to get the $$ for first of Abomination mods of the Vangcomp treatment. :D

  25. Hooorah,

    Finally.

    I will take a small taste of candy to remind what it was like.

    I have been denying myself things for years, probably why so many bad people are still alive, so I can wait.

    Sure I can.

    Muhahahaha

  26. I’m not sure which is harder, waiting a year to see MHI:V now that we know of the wonders of MHI itself, or waiting all those years between Larry first discussing MHI and the book actually coming out.

  27. Nice snippet of MHV. I think good works of fiction are like fine wine, they get better with age. Plus we don’t want the sales of MHV to detract from MHI. :-D

    Larry may I shamelessly pimp my work in progress “Alone” here?

    Thanks.

  28. Moose, sure post a link.

  29. Awesome.
    Any word on which version of “Hold The Pig Steady” is going to be recorded?

  30. G’day from down under.
    Larry, I love your book and am really looking forward to MHV.

    I would also love to get “Abomination Operator’s Manual/Construction Handbook.”, but if I tried to build one down here, I would probable get locked up in a super max and they would throw away the key.

  31. Larry you gonna let Joe Buckley post your snippets?

    As far a guns go I prefer the 3″/76 myself for “light work”…

  32. Small note, but because of the tense change it sounds like Holly’s screams are hopping down the road, not the goat-sucker.

  33. Arg. Now I’ve got a hankering to read MHI again, but I’ve loaned it out to a friend. Do we really have to wait till next fall to get our grubby hands on the sequel? They need to speed up the presses! Oh, and Merry Christmas!

  34. “…in the end, the Cursed One was defeated and I literally saved the world.

    I was employee of the month.”

    Wow, what does it take to be Employee of the Year (not posthumously) at MHI?

    Seriously, I am sooooo looking forward to MHI 2, although I don’t know if I can wait until Halloween. Maybe I can go to Alabama and get first hand stories?

    Charlie, on the 14th floor, Dallas (looking for silver)

  35. Seriously, shotguns in the crapper? Think tactically, what if you go into a powder room? You’re going to have trouble with that long barrel in those tight confines. I’d go for the stainless .45 or a wheelgun in .44, .45, .454 or some other grizz class caliber. Doesn’t mean it has to be a dedicated honeyhouse gun, it could just be your everyday sidearm.

  36. I know I’m probably too late, but will there be any chance of upgrading abomonation to an MPS AA-12, and the snub nose 357 to a Taurus Judge in the next book????????

    • Who says those are upgrades? :)

      • I just thought Owen Z Pitt would like the versitility of a 410 shell along with the accuracy and range of a 45 all in an ankle rig, cause come one, who wouldn’t?? And I’ve seen some video of the AA-12 in action, and it made me “grin like an idiot!”

  37. dam it correia you just had to do it now all i can think of is mhi 2 and also i think im the only scottish guy on this site you all sound like americans oh yeah and get ur figer out bean print faster

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