Thursday, April 5, 2018

B2BCyCon 2018: Horror Midnight Marquee



Visions of infant twin boys, clouds, a young woman taking her own life, and a collision of space, time, and realms...

On the eve of Summer Solstice in 1844, four men in different areas of the world share an experience that impacts not only their own lives, but those of the future generations. The first man is Nicolae Ganoush, a young Romany fugitive from a slave village in Wallachia. The second is Jonathan Blake, an eighteen-year-old Irishman in the American Midwest who finds himself falling in love with a young woman from a nearby Sioux village. The third is James Livingston, a prominent figure in colonial America, and the fourth is Hector de Fuentes, a sixteen-year-old from Tuxpan, Mexico with special gifts and visions enhanced by a mysterious and wondrous cave. Each man carries his own inner battle, unbelievable ancient truths deep within their lineages, and demons that are much closer to home than any of them would like.

Later in 1931, seventeen-year-old Dorothy Blake, a descendant of Jonathan and his Sioux wife, is living in Plains, New York, the town founded by James Livingston. The notorious Fleming Orphanage has long fallen into disuse but kept by the town as a landmark. The buildings loom high on a hill, overlooking the town, taunting the townsfolk with its lore. On Halloween night, Dorothy ventures up with friends, and the group of six expects nothing more than a good time along with a few laughs. But they fall into a dark, brutal evil; one that extends beyond the orphanage and town of Plains, far back into history. Their descent is only the beginning…

The Birthrite Series is an epic journey into the vast unknown, plunging deep into the dark crevices of the mind, begging the question of what sanity really is and if the insane truly are. Are we really shown the whole truth of what surrounds us or is it an illusion? It also tells of deep-rooted love, planted centuries ago and a story of family, forgiveness, and redemption.


Dorothy Elizabeth Blake was born inside an old mid 19th century home in Plains, New York, a small suburban town outside of the city. She came into the world at the stroke of midnight on December 1, 1913, letting out her first cries as the grandfather clock in the hallway tolled the twelfth chime.
Dorothy’s parents are Matthew Charles Blake and Elizabeth Alice Blake (nee, Winthrop). Her father is ¾ Irish and ¼ Native American (Dakota Sioux with a touch of Ojibwe). He is a grandson of Jonathan, a young Irish immigrant of the earlier part of the 19th century, and Kimimela, a young woman from a Dakota Sioux encampment who married Jonathan. Circumstances surrounding the family of Dorothy’s mother, Elizabeth (or “Liz” as Matthew calls her), is one of several shrouded mysteries haunting the family. Dorothy is also an only child as Matthew and Liz had much difficulty in conceiving. Even Liz’s pregnancy with Dorothy was a difficult and high risk one (she was confined to the bedroom during the last months until after she gave birth).
Growing up, Dorothy was a quiet but precocious child and the light of her parents’ life, especially her father who was quite protective. For a reason he can’t explain, the old Fleming Orphanage that had been abandoned since the latter part of the 19th century is an area of town that he feels strongly repelled by and a place he does not want Dorothy going near. Matthew’s second cousin, Tahatan (a full-blooded AmerIndian who is a spiritualist and healer following in the footsteps of their great-grandfather Howahkan), confirms the validity of those fears, though can’t fully explain why as of yet.
As Dorothy grows, she spends much of her childhood in Plains, playing with her two best friends Linda Parker and Gail Carr. While Gail is the most outspoken and brash of the three, Linda exudes being softer, more feminine, and very high maintenance. Dorothy’s strong but quiet energy offers them a balance. While she and Gail share a lot of opinions regarding politics and women’s issues, Dorothy is more reserved and not as bold as her friend. When it comes to Linda, Dorothy doesn’t get the concept of having one’s life completely revolve around cosmetics, the latest fashions, and one’s boyfriend (Linda views her boyfriend Jimmy Kratz as her entire world), but she does have romantic feelings for Carl Turner, one of their classmates and a popular though wayward young man. Feelings she harbored since their freshman year of high school. Her crush on him is revealed to Gail and Linda just prior to their senior year and of course Linda, who has been determined to find a guy for Dorothy, intercedes in getting the message of her friend’s feelings to Carl.
At first, Dorothy is horrified and furious with Linda, but that horror and anger subsides when Carl starts showing a little interest. Shortly thereafter, Carl and Dorothy start going together and slowly build their relationship.
As their relationship builds itself and the feelings the two have for one another grow, events also begin to unravel, including dark events from Carl’s past and the mysterious events haunting and hovering over Dorothy’s family. Their relationship and feelings the two have for one another is put through what seems like a neverending test. When all hell starts to break loose and the supernatural reveals itself, there seem to be forces that will stop at nothing to keep the young couple apart, and the question of why they are being targeted is raised.

In Descent (The Birthrite, #1) and throughout the series, the devotion that Carl and Dorothy have for one another faces one challenge after another, and the question of how the two will stay together, persevering against the odds and their love remaining unconditional is constant.


Dorothy slowly opened her eyes, wincing at the pain throbbing in her temples. She had no recollection of where she had just been, but telltale leaves, cold air, and earth beneath her back indicated that she was lying on the ground. Outside.
As she struggled to sit up, her vision adjusted to see the surrounding bare twisting trees. A haze weaved about, giving the forest a luminous, silvery shimmer. Where am I?
When her eyes turned upward, she jolted at the site of the giant pale moon hovering just above the trees and casting a dull, gray glow. Various craters and deep canyons on the orb's surface were visible.
Dorothy was mesmerized; she had read a few science articles that presented different theories regarding the moon’s surface along with possibilities for future travels, but seeing it this close was an experience she wished her friends, particularly Reginald and Gail, where present for. Reginald and Gail...?
She slowly started regaining memory of the events from that evening, recalling a fainting spell in the Plains Cemetery before becoming detached from her body…and being surrounded by stars…
Dorothy rose to standing and searched for any clues to her whereabouts. Memory of being in a dark washroom with Gail seeped in, followed by other happenings from the Fleming property. The fog's density seemed to thicken, and a sudden urgency to get away pulsed inside her blood. From behind, footsteps approached, crunching over the dry leaves on the ground. Dorothy slowly turned and let out a gasp when she saw a small boy standing in front of her. He appeared about twelve years of age (the same age Nathaniel Fleming was when he died…) and wore simple dark trousers and a shirt. The clothes were ragged and suggested a century prior to the one Dorothy lived in. His hair was black, slightly long and moppy. His darker skintone and features also suggested a heritage one might associate with a Gypsy. Like Heathcliff in Wuthering Heights. Dorothy felt her stomach drop; this young boy strongly resembled the image she always formed of a young Heathcliff anytime she read the book. The two studied one another as the fog continued to flow and dance about.
“Are you lost?” she asked, flinching at the shallow, tin sound of her voice.
The boy stared at her, as if attempting to comprehend her words. He lowered his eyes and shrugged.
She tried again. “Where are your parents?”
The boy turned his gaze back up to her, and a lone tear escaped down the side of his face. As his body shook with silent sobs, she knelt down and gently took the child by the shoulders. His distress and hopelessness was felt throughout her being. Without another thought, she folded the boy into a comforting embrace, which the child allowed.
“My brother…” he finally said.
“What, sweetheart?” She pulled away and gazed at his tear-stained face.
The boy sniffed and slowly looked around. “I cannot find my brother.” His language seemed a cross between Eastern European and Arabic, a language Dorothy would not normally understand but seemed to perfectly here.
“Do you want me to help you find him?” she asked, and immediately felt silly for doing so. I don’t even know who his brother is or the child’s name or where we are...
The little boy appeared puzzled before his gaze shifted over her shoulder. She turned her head and stopped short upon seeing a dark figure outlined in the fog only a few feet away. Despite her growing dread, she rose and attempted a closer look. The figure appeared to be a woman wearing a long, dark dress with a black hooded cloak to cover her face.

“She found you,” the boy whispered.





It is the summer of 1933 and nearly two years since that fateful Halloween night in Plains, New York.

Born and raised in Dayton, Ohio, eighteen-year-old Cletus Blake spends his days working to help his family through the massive economic recession spreading throughout the United States and many other areas of the world. As society struggles to accept that the economic surge of the 1920s are long gone, Cletus also clings to the memory of his last phone conversation with his cousin Dorothy. Having formed and maintained a relationship with two of her close friends - the recently married Reginald and Gail Carr Johnson - the three find solace in regular communication with one another.

Like Dorothy, Cletus possesses supernatural abilities inherited through his bloodline. His vivid dreams and visions - including ones of a beautiful young Romani woman and twin baby boys - continue to increase in strength. Meanwhile, Reginald and Gail begin falling prey to dark adversaries that have been lying in wait.

Evil surrounds at every turn, old friends race to help, and ancient evil re-emerges. A war between worlds brews beneath the surface, threatening to rip the protective seams that keep the portals sealed.

Then in the midst of it all, Cletus happens upon a caravan traveling through his Ohio town. The very familiar Romanichal family's history ties not only to his own past, but to all the kin of the four men that experienced worlds outside of their own on that summer solstice in 1844. All are linked to a future that will reunite the Blakes and the Livingstons, two families that at one time, shared a very unlikely friendship.

Kindred is the second full-length novel in The Birthrite Series. Picking up from where Descent and Sacred Atonement: A Novelette left off, the story continues to challenge all that is known about light and dark, good and evil. Passion, intrigue, and secrets abound as history unravels. Revelations uncovered in previous installments are given new perspectives, taking the reader on a thrilling ride into a world where nothing is ever what it appears to be.

EXCERPT from Kindred:

His eyes darted about and breath hitched when he saw the property of the Fleming Orphanage surrounding him. The summer breeze turned into a crisp, autumn chill as the song flowed with the wind that carried it. Leaves fell from their branches, blanketing the ground, seeming to undulate with the notes being played.
He was compelled toward the woods, feeling Dorothy's presence and the grave danger she was in by being here. Confused and disoriented, he looked around, calling out to her, but she was nowhere in sight.
His voice was getting lost in the wind stirring up as it carried DeBussy's song. The woods and empty buildings of the former orphanage took on menacing shapes, as if they were alive and mocking him. Every fiber of his being wrenched when he heard a distant howling from somewhere in the woods. His breath grew rapid as his lungs took in the icy air. The song to the moon faded and the sound of someone humming another familiar tune took over.
 All the Pretty Little Horses...
Cletus tried moving in the direction of the hill, knowing that it would take him away from the property, but the wind increased in strength and invisible arms seemed to hold him back. He heard the howling again, only this time, it was much closer, sounding unlike any animal he knew of. A foul stench started crawling out from the buildings as the windows radiated a deep red glow.
(Like blood...)
The glow pulsed, spreading throughout the property as the stench of death and decomposition engulfed him. His body stiffened upon hearing a bloodthirsty growl closing in behind him.

He tried to run, but his feet were planted to the earth. He could sense it inching closer, crunching over the cold, drying leaves. The creature's rancid breath assaulted his nostrils before it let out a deafening roar. Then the creature pounced, pummeling the young man forward…


Maxine Rosalind Fleming was born in the year 1834. Her birthplace and birth parents, as are those of her brother Nathaniel, are unknown as both were adopted as infants by Cedric and Margaret Fleming.
As a child, Maxine lived well as her parents were among New York’s wealthier class. They were close friends with the Livingston family and Maxine got on well with her older brother, Nathaniel. The two had a close relationship until he passed away at the age of twelve after being stricken with scarlet fever. Nathaniel’s death seemed to leave a rather troubling imprint on Maxine. She would frequently be seen talking to herself and referring to an imaginary friend named Nathaniel. Many familiar with the situation decided to shrug it off as a child simply dealing with the loss of her dear brother, her father Cedric claimed that it upset her mother Margaret. Therefore, he very harshly put a stop to it.
When her parents opened the Nathaniel Fleming Orphanage in the small town of Plains (just outside of the city), the remaining family moved onto the property, living in a lavish apartment on the fifth floor of the main building. Maxine’s imaginary friend “Nathaniel” seemed to disappear and all was well for several years, especially as Maxine started training to be a classroom assistant to the very handsome (and married) Christian Andrews.
Christian ended up being Maxine’s first (and seemingly only) love. Their affair carried on for two years before they were caught by his wife and her parents. Maxine was also carrying Christian’s child at the time.
She was sent upstate to deliver the baby, which was taken from her by Christian’s wife after the birth. Christian was not permitted to be present.
After falling into a depression, Maxine threw herself into her work as she studied to not only become a classroom instructor, but also priming herself to take over running the orphanage once Cedric and Margaret were no longer able to. She seemed to recover well from the incident with Christian (which was kept private by both families) and even spoke of a suitor that was a mystery to everyone else.
Everything seemed to be running smoothly at the orphanage until Cedric and Margaret were discovered dead in their fifth floor apartment on Halloween of 1867. Maxine took over running the orphanage, bringing in her cousin Jared to assist her. It was also rumored that the two were more than just cousins and Maxine’s health and well-being seemed to spiral downward. A few years later, all hell seemed to break loose on the orphanage property when Jared was found hanging in the front hall of the main building apartment and Maxine was rambling about the ground, claiming to have seen her deceased brother and claiming that he had the Devil’s eyes. It was also said that her eyes had gone black and her hair stark white.
The orphanage was closed down and Maxine was sent upstate to an asylum were she spent her remaining years until she died mysteriously at the age of sixty.
It is questioned whether Maxine was truly insane or it perhaps she was simply opened to a reality that few humans are able to see. And the story of Maxine Fleming and her family is far from being over…


Four years later when Nathaniel was stricken with severe illness, Maxine had a sickening feeling that it had something to do with the dream. As Nathaniel lay dying, he seemed to take on the form of the doppelganger he described. Just before leaving their natural world, he weakly beckoned to her, whispering faintly in her ear that he would return for her. Then he drew his last breath, his body stilling and his eyes fixed and staring at his sister before they were shut by the preacher.
After his funeral and burial, he materialized only to her, warning her to be careful when talking to him.
(Heaven forbid someone might see and throw her into an insane asylum)
Nathaniel’s warning rang true on the day he had been with her in their old bedroom. As brother and sister conversed, their father overheard her giggle, saying Nathaniel’s name after her brother told a joke. She remembered that joke, too…
Two men are in a graveyard and one walks up to a grave. The second man asks, “who is in that grave?”
The first man points to the grave and says, "Brothers and Sisters I have none, But that man's father, is my father's son." 
Who is in the grave?
“It was he who was in the grave…”
Maxine had no idea why she, as a small child, found such a joke funny, much less understood why Nathaniel saw it fit to tell it to her. But she had laughed, causing Cedric to burst into the room.
Their father harshly scolded her, raising his voice so loudly before grabbing and slapping her. That was the first time she had ever been afraid of her father. In that moment, it was as though another being was inside him, for after realizing what he had done, he seemed to emerge from a trance, practically in tears and begging a poor confused, terrified child for forgiveness.
As she allowed her distressed father’s embrace, Maxine looked over to where Nathaniel was, seeing a rather cold stare on the boy’s face. After that, her brother emphasized rather harshly on keeping their playtime a secret.

For a long while after the incident with their father, Nathaniel came only at night and the two would whisper their conversations to each other. Then when her father and mother moved with her to live in the fifth-floor apartment at the orphanage, Nathaniel’s visits grew less frequent. It was as if having all the other children around made him feel less relevant in the lives of his parents and sister. But Maxine missed her brother dearly and even while growing into womanhood she could feel his presence hovering. On occasion, she would dream of him, and his words of returning whispered to her just prior to his death reverberated through her being.



Tiffany Apan is an award-winning Symphonic Celtic Folk Rock artist and author of Dark Romantic Fantasy Fiction inspired by history,
mythology, ancient texts, and lore. In the thick forests of Northeastern Pennsylvania, 
Tiffany started honing her musical and artistic abilities with the help of her musician 
grandparents. She was taught guitar, violin, and accordion before taking up classical 
piano at age 9. Her interest in history and mythology also began when she was quite 
young as she was the only one in her fifth grade writing class obsessed with Vikings 
and Norwegian sea legends to the point of writing poems about them.Tiffany was also 
highly active in other parts of the artistic community, starting dance lessons at age 3 (ballet, and later 
tap, jazz, and hip hop) and formal classical voice training at age 12.  In addition, she appeared in numerous musical theater and operatic productions. Then upon moving to Pittsburgh (Southwestern, PA) in her college years, she landed supporting roles in 
indie films and started writing what would later be her 2008 debut album, Poet.
In 2008 and into 2009, Poet enjoyed much success, receiving enthusiastic response
from music fans and critics alike. Ray Dorsey of Ray’s Realm called Poet “one of 2008’s
best albums”. Others have referred to Tiffany’s sound as music of a high standard, commenting on phenomenal classically trained vocals. Her music has also been featured
on several compilation albums, in film, and in 2010, the music video for her adaptation
of the traditional song, “Scarborough Fair” won first place in the Music Video category
at the International Indie Gathering Film Festival. Then in 2012, her writing received recognition when her screenplay, Driving Nowhere won Best Horror Short Script at the same festival.
Since then, she has released EPs and singles, acted in film and theatrical productions (favorite roles include Hodel in Fiddler on the Roof, Sally in You’re a Good Man,
Charlie Brown, and Maria in The Sound of Music) while planning her next musical
project titled, Antiquity, which will involve gothic and Celtic symphonic metal songs
inspired by her Dark Romance Fantasy series, The Birthrite. In 2015, she started honing
her passion for history by involving herself in the living history and reenactment world
and met her current 18th century bandmates, Wayward Companions, when they came
to a living history museum tavern night at which she was entertaining and singing
tavern songs (alone!), something that made her a rather popular staple at such events. Shortly thereafter, she joined Wayward Companions as a vocalist and percussionist, and became part of the Pittsburgh Historical Music Society’s Orchestra, serving as a vocalist
and stand-in percussionist. Outside interests include fitness, holistic health, antiquing,
and making her home look like a vintage/antiquity paradise.
Through music and writing, she enjoys merging the past with the present and is looking forward to releasing new music as an individual artist and with Wayward Companions in 2018.

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