What Next

A few minutes ago, I spotted a news article about a robotic “dog” that was herding sheep. Don’t tell Bandit, my dog/sidekick, he won’t take the news–

BANDIT (Translated from Dog for your convenience):
Did you see this?! Now the robots are taking over our herding jobs! First, they take over the sidekick work...I can't tell you the number of Supers that are using robo-dogs as companions! Now, they're taking over the herding jobs! What's next?! Witches with robotic familiars!? (growls) That's it! I'm out of here!

JOE (Me):
Where you going?

BANDIT:
I'm going out! I've got to find a mail carrier to bite before they take that job too!

(Door slams)

I knew he wouldn’t take it well.

Until the next wormhole…thanks for reading!

Copyright Joe Rover 2020. All rights reserved.


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Sky Hog

A couple days ago, Buddy (aka Copycat) told me how he ran into some trouble when he was out for a flight over the city. He was enjoying the feel of the air and listening to the soft wiping of his black cape as it moved through the air. For a few moments he could forget all his troubles.

And then something speed by him nearly knocking into him. He hit a pocket of turbulence as he tried to right himself. Finally, he regained his footing as it were. 

“Sky hog!” he shouted at the offender.

The offender slowed and faced Copycat. It was a pig with wings. Copycat gasped in surprise before it snorted a piggy grunt and flew off towards the skyscrapers.

Once Buddy finished his tale, I rested my hand on his shoulder in a show of support. “Yeah…Those atmos pigs think they’re so grand just because they’ve got an adynaton. But, it’s Heck’s Oinkers you’ve really got to watch out for.” 

Until the next wormhole…thanks for reading!

Copyright 2020 Joe Rover. All rights reserved.


Good news! The Smashwords Authors Give Back Sale has been extended to May 31! 

You have another chance to buy The Beast of Camp TimberWolf, Gift of the Minion, and now Who Pranked JR for 60% off!

The Idea | Chronicles Short (St. Patrick’s Day Post)

Accessing BLT Head in the Cloud 

Please enter password

*****************

Welcome, Joe Rover. Which memory would you like to download from our cloud network?

Downloading…

One St. Patrick’s Day, after a long night of orange juice, smooth jazz, and a game or two of Chess AR, Brain jolted awake from his crash landing on the Doghouse couch. 

“I’ve got it!” he exclaimed.

“Got what?” I asked, trying to rub away the brain freeze I received from drinking my St. Patty’s Day mint milkshake too quickly. 

“My next brilliant invention! I can inject our food and drink with nanobots. These nanobots could alter or absorb the unused material created from digestion. We would then remove the nanobots through perspiration or exhaling. No one would ever have to go the bathroom again!”

End of file

Thank you for choosing Head in the Cloud for all your memory saving needs.

Do you have too many memories and not enough space? Consider upgrading to our $9.99 a month plan…

I closed the holographic web browser with a mental command to my Omni-Cuff. I tapped my chin in thought. Now, why did I upload that memory into the cloud?

“JOE!”

I flipped around, startled by Brain’s voice. My Omn-Cuff headset nearly fell off from around my ear.

Brain crossed his arms and tapped his foot at me. The last time I’d seen him this angry was when I hacked into the training simulator and swapped the level 10 setting with the level 1 setting. “I thought we agreed to never access that memory again.”

I snapped my fingers. “That’s right. Now, I remember. The next day we all uploaded the memory into the cloud bank because we all agreed that was the silliest idea you ever came up with. I’m glad you decided to go with the blankets that could sing lullabies idea instead.”

Brain tapped his foot again and screwed his lip into an unhappy snarl. “Where did you get the idea to down…Never mind. I know. DANNY!”

Danny poked his head around the corner. “Be right with you; I got to share this memory file on PostBook first.”

“Daniel Smith, don’t you dare!” Uh-oh, Brain’s using contractions; he must be irked. Brain stormed after Danny. “Give me that Omni-Cuff right now!”

Danny was already at the door; he stood half in and half out. “You’ll have to catch me first,” he said in a sing-song voice before shutting the door behind him. A moment later, I could see his retreating form from the window.

Brain continued to yell after him as he exited with a door slam. I moved to the couch and flipped on the holo-vision set. “I’ll give it till they make the news before I interfere.”

Until the next wormhole…

HAPPY ST. PATRICK’S DAY EVERYONE!


Copyright Joe Rover 2020. All rights reserved.

Mysterious Space Signals

The following is inspired by a news article about signals from space that return every 16 days. You can read the article here.

Brain yelped a cheer interrupting my nap. 

Ever since the news story about strange signals from space every 16 days, Brian’s been at his equipment trying to decode the blips and static. It was interesting for about the first 15 hours. 

“I did it!” said Brain. He adjusted dials and knobs as I yawned and scratched my head. “In a matter of moments, we will discover the nature of these pulses.” Brain continued to adjust wavelengths and double-check readouts; I moved from Brain’s cot to the seat next to him. “Scientists are debating if the pulses are caused by an orbiting object blocking the source or if the source is orbiting an object. Another possibility is the source itself is pulsing.” 

The machine whined for a minute, which woke me up even further.

“Translation of cosmic pulses complete,” said SPOT, the artificial intelligence.

Brain and I fell into a deep hush. The machines beeped a couple times before the answer came.

“Eat at Joe’s,” said a friendly voice bouncing out of the speakers like a used car salesman who’d spotted a customer from across the lot. “Save 20 percent on your first online order. Offer expires 500 million years from broadcast date–Galactic year 2151.”

A hologram calendar appeared above my watch. “Drat!” I said. “It expired yesterday.”  

“Remember,” the ad continued, “if your order doesn’t arrive in 30 parsecs, it’s free.”

I sighed. “Why does everyone get that wrong? Parsecs are not a measurement of time!” I glanced over at Brain; he stared forward like a fish that’d just learned hooks are bad. “What’s wrong?”

“The greatest scientific mystery of our age…and it is a commercial.” He covered his face with a hand. “Why is the universe such a cruel mistress?”

Until the next wormhole…thanks for reading!

Copyright 2020 Joe Rover. All rights reserved.


Ode to February | Poem

The holidays are done
yet winter remains.
What can stop this refrain?

School starts anew.
The bills are due.
Taxes wait by the door.
Please end this winter sore.

Will shadows appear,
Caught by creatures dear?

Can love's undying light
Cause a fire to ignite?

Hold them close,
a love's careful cheer
can break winter's evil sneer.

Laughter in the snow
ends an icy blow.

Winter's trials sack the land
united in love, hand in hand,
spring comes early...
if you love sincerely. 

Until the next wormhole…thanks for reading!

Copyright Joe Rover 2020

All rights reserved.


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Always Dripping | Poem

Drip.
Drip.
Drip.

Always. 
Drip, drip, drip.

Kevin sits curled,
head covered.
The sounds echo.

Drip.
Drip.
Drip.

Winds howl.
Bats screech.
And always...
drip, drip, drip.

Stalagmites. Or stalactites? 
His mind tries to focus
on anything other than 
the dreary now.

Does anyone miss him?
Does anyone care?

They should.

It'd make the news.
"Field trip cave-in,"
Kevin's mind wanders.
Anything to escape the
drip,
drip,
drip.

Should have stayed with the group.
Couldn't.
The bullies push and shove.
The never-ending laughter.
Always the laughter.
Like water.

Drip. Drip. Drip.

Should have stayed.
Would be safe.
The rescuers come for them.
Not him.

Drip, drip, drip.
The sound still mocks.

Kevin curls further in.
No one misses him.

Drip, drip--

Kevin unfolds.
That horrid sound...
Quiet.

A new sound.

Digging!

The rock breaks!
A figure appears!

Kevin knows that cape and howl.
Dogboy.

A friendly paw helps him stand.
Safe arms hold him well.
A single step, the boy is safe.
Parents greet with warm love.

The job is done,
all are found--
thanks to the Heroic Hound.

Until the next wormhole…thanks for reading.

Copyright 2020 Joe Rover

All rights reserved.


It was a dingy, stormy day; the kind of day that makes everything seem black and white. Johnny Blewz played his sax over the radio filling my office with jazz music.

Who Pranked JR. Releases Mar. 24, 2020. Pre-orders at many eBook retailers.

Salesman | Dogboy Reborn Side Quests

The villainous Glue laughed wildly within his hidden lair. “Ah-hahahah!! That fool Dogboy has taken the bait!” Glue twisted and squeezed his hands in excitement. “Soon he’ll be in my clutches. Now, what deathtrap should I use?”

Glue gazed over his wide collection of deadly machines. There was the giant mousetrap. There was the classic tank of sharks. “Maybe the Spinning Blades of Doom!” said Glue.

Bzzzzt!…Bzzztt!

“Oh, now what?” huffed the villain.

Glue stormed through his lair as the doorbell continued to buzz. Glue grumbled, “I’m coming. I’m coming.” He passed by gold statues of himself and walked under the 15 foot portraits of himself. He kidnapped the famous artist, Art with Sam, in order to commission them.

Glue flung the door open. “WHAT?!”

“Good evening, malicious sir,” said the man wearing a tweed overcoat and brimmed hat, which he tipped in greeting. “My name is Salesman. I am a lair-to-lair salesperson for the Omega Institute. Would you be interested in–”

“NO!”

SLAM!!

Glue followed his door slam with a door lock. He grumbled some more then turned. “GAH!” he yelped with a jump that made it look like he’d just seen a spider in his shower.

Salesman tipped his hat again.

“How’d you get in?” asked Glue.

The man held up a small black circle. “With the handy-dandy Portable Hole. You just stick this little beaut on any surface and voilà instant hole.” The man sat down his sale’s bag. With a click of the lock, he opened it and began riffling through it. “I’ve got boxing gloves on springs, acid spraying squirt flowers, gasses of all varieties; and of course, the ever popular freeze ray,” the man said, pulling the items out one by one.

Glue folded his arms. “Not interested.”

Salesman would not be deterred–his commission rested on getting a sale. “For the more modernist villain: I have swords that can slice an atom. I have bombs with misleading timers. I’ve got drones, spy cameras, and backdoor codes to various government databases.”

Glue let out an annoyed and warning sigh. Salesman either ignored him or didn’t hear him. Instead, he put a hand on Glue’s shoulder. “But, I can tell you are a…” He surveyed Glue’s black and orange containment suit. He could hear the sloshing of glue within. Without the suit, Glue would be a large glob of dried glue. “…uh, man of tradition. I’ve got cartoon bombs and sticks of dynamite…two for one.”

Glue groaned.

“How about some exploding pies?”

“What flavor?”

“Coconut creme.”

“Ew-yuck! I hate coconut creme. How about an ejector trap made to look like floor tiles?”

Salesman lifted his hat enough to scratch his head. He glanced down at his sale’s bag. “Gee, I don’t think so.”

Glue grunted a quick, dry laugh. “I do.” He tapped a button on his wrist computer panel.

SPOING!!

The spring loaded ejection title under Salesman launched him into the air and out through the hole in the roof–Glue had opened the roof; he didn’t want to clean up the mess.

“You’ll regret thiiiiiisss…” said the trailing voice of Salesman.

Glue closed the roof hatch then clasped his hands together. “Now…where was I?”


If you’d like more adventures starring Dogboy, check out the Joe Rover eBooks–available at many online retailers.

Until the next wormhole…thanks for reading!


Copyright © 2019 Joe Rover

Dogboy and related characters Copyright © 2016-Present by Joe Rover

All rights reserved. No part of this post may be used or reproduced in any manner whatsoever without prior written permission of the author/publisher, except in the case of brief quotations embodied in reviews or as a repost/share with link to the original post.

All characters, organizations, and locations in this post have no existence outside the imagination of the author and have no relation to anyone bearing the same name or names. Any resemblance to individuals known or unknown to the author are purely coincidental.

All rights reserved.