My new novel, Destroyer is out now.
When Rudolph Hess flew to Britain, he was on a secret mission — to give Nazi spies in Britain the secrets of an occult ritual that would win the war for the Germans.
With the fate of the world at stake, Alan Turing, Dennis Wheatley, and Ian Fleming have to find the occultists and stop them. But what is Aleister Crowley’s involvement? And how can they decode the ritual in time?
It can be bought in hardback from Lulu. The Kindle edition is available from here (UK) and here (US), and the paperback from Amazon UK and US (I’m trying Amazon’s self-publishing for my paperbacks, though hardbacks will remain with Lulu). Non-Kindle ebook versions will be available from other stores over the next few days. This Books2Read Universal Link will, once they’re available, give you links for your preferred ebook retailer. My Patreon backers, of course, get a free copy — here’s the link for Patreon backers.
(One thing I should note about this, because many of my readers will care — every character in this book is male. I thought long and hard about doing that, and the nature of the genre it’s pastiching would make it even more problematic to actually include anyone of another gender. I understand if this puts readers off, but want you to understand that it was a choice I thought about and didn’t take lightly. My next novel, out *very* soon, will hopefully make up for this.)
I will be serialising it here, one chapter a week, over the next forty weeks. Here’s…
May 1941. A cold, dark, night. The pilot is determined that the plane will reach its target, bearing a cargo that could determine the course of the war, and the fate of the entire planet. Maybe even more than that. Nothing is more important than this. Not even the pilot’s own life. His life, after all, is only that of one man, and he has already decided to put it in service of the greatest possible cause. If he loses it, so be it. There are worse things than death. And he, who has been so willing to send others to their deaths, can’t balk at the idea of his own.
May is supposed to be a warm month. A month when the days are finally growing noticeably longer after a long, dark, winter, when the sun is finally up long enough to heat the ground below. A month when you can feel the flowers bursting from the ground, and everything coming to life. May is meant to be spring.
But flying across the North Sea, at night, in a one-man plane, is cold no matter what the time of year, and the pilot can see his own breath in the air. He shivers, and smells the aeroplane fuel, a scent that fills him full of wonder, even as the fumes make him slightly dizzy. The aeroplane is a marvel of modernity, of Aryanism. It is the greatest marvel of a century of wonders. The plane allows a man to fly above the world and, if necessary, to rain death down upon it. The aeroplane is everything that National Socialism is working towards – soon the whole world will be controlled by those who create such machines. The future that is coming is one where such technological marvels will be commonplace. But that future depends on his actions tonight.
The Reich and Britain should not be enemies. The Aryan race should not be divided. The pilot knows this, deep in his heart. The two great empires should be allies against the Communist threat. All other concerns should be secondary to that. And his great work would bring the day of peace closer. All he has to do – all that the golden future requires of him – is to get his plane to Scotland. After that, he can rest. His job will be done.
That would be a simple task in most circumstances, but right now there is a war raging in Europe – a war that the pilot hopes to end, but which may take his life before he has the chance. Not only will the enemy attack him if they can, but his own side may not realise the nature of the mission with which he has been entrusted. They, too, may attempt to kill him. They may even succeed.
No matter. He is only one man. Millions have died already. And millions more will die before this is all over. His only task is to ensure that those millions will be the enemies of the Reich, and that they are a sacrifice for the best of causes.
It is the darkest of nights, in the darkest of times, but the pilot is bringing the light. Soon this conflict will be over, and soon the glory of the German people will be obvious to all. This fallen world will rise up again, and become worthy of the Führer’s genius. It will come through the fire and be purged of its impurities, the pure metal fit to be forged into the shape the Führer has anticipated.
The twentieth century is the German century, and the pilot knows it. He is the bearer of a cargo as important to the future of the world as the Holy Grail itself. He is Parsifal, carrying the spear that will heal the wounds in the Aryan people and unite them against their common foe. His plane, like that spear, is a weapon that does not serve the purpose of weapons. It will unify rather than tear apart.
The cargo is only a handful of documents, but what documents they are! They are the culmination of his life’s work. The pilot had never been the most ardent of mystics – his devotion to the cause is a personal one, not an ideological one – but nonetheless, he understands the import of this moment. It may well be the most important moment in the history of the world. He feels genuinely humble, even while acknowledging his own role in history. He is not the important one. He is just a vessel.
The documents he is carrying will change everything. Given to the Reich’s allies, they will allow the civilised world to unite against the lesser men, the dwarves who are determined to destroy everything good about civilisation. His allies are noble men. They will know what to do with them.
The storm rages around him. He’s dizzy now. His heart is racing with excitement, and the blood is rushing in his ears so loudly it almost drowns out the sound of the plane’s engines. He bites his lip, and feels the salt, metallic taste of his blood in his mouth mingle with the smell of the plane fuel. He closes his eyes, just for a second, and allows himself to become one with the plane, to feel what it feels, to experience the air rushing around him and the ground pulling him towards it. To know the freedom of the air, and realise that it is only with a superhuman effort that such freedom can be maintained.
The pilot knows this mission, the most important of his life, must succeed. He has been entrusted with this mission by the Führer, and no-one else can possibly know its true purpose. Even Rudolf Hess, himself, the pilot, doesn’t know all the details, although he is the one who oversaw it all personally. He desperately needs to see the Duke of Hamilton, the only man he can trust. He needs to get the documents to him, and to relieve himself of this immense burden.
The plane starts to head towards the ground. Hess knows that the plane will not survive the landing, but he is sure that he will remain unharmed. The hand of destiny is on his shoulder.