The Street is Lava | Dogboy Chronicles Short Tail

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“This is Sally Pine reporting live for WAG News. I’m here with the driver of the car that’s been dangling over the edge of Wackmore Bridge for nearly six hours.”

Danny turned his head towards the driver’s side window so that his Omni-Cuff camera could record what he saw. The driver, a college-age male with a baseball cap and Van Dyke mustache, waved. Danny returned his view to Sally.

“Mr. Brinks,” said Sally.

“Call me ‘John.’ Mister is my father.”

“John, you’ve been hanging here for almost six hours…”

“Five hours, forty-nine minutes, and sixteen seconds, but who’s counting.”

“…what has been going through your mind?” Sally finished.

“Hmm…” John tapped his chin a couple times. “Not much. It’s kind of boring actually.”

Sally wanted to make sure she was hearing things correctly. “Boring?”

“Sure, the first hour or two, I was terrified, but after some time the adrenaline wears off. Afterwards, I read some books, watched a movie, and beat some Russian at Chess: Battle Royale.”

Danny switched the view back to Sally so she could ask her next question. “Any idea why it has taken rescue workers so long?

John yawned then shook his head like he was fighting off sleep. “Probably has something to do with the lava.”

The video zoomed in on Sally; she raised an eyebrow. “Lava?”

John pointed over the bridge–the best he could without causing the car to rock more. Sally and Danny peeked over the edge. Orange-red lava bubbled and popped below.

Danny kept his eyes on the lava so his camera could continue recording the street full of lava. “What do you know?” he said. “There is lava.”

“But why is there lava?” asked Sally.

John leaned back in his seat and turned his eyes to the sky. “The police said a semi carrying lava for Vulcan Labs overturned.”

“Why would someone be shipping lava?” asked Sally.

Danny didn’t break eye contact with the driver but did answer Sally. “I think Vulcan Labs is owned by Hephaestus.” 

“Oh,” said Sally feeling foolish for not knowing. “Never mind then.”

Hephaestus, the Olympian smithing god, was used to working inside a volcano. Made sense he’d want some lava in order to feel at home.

Sally was about to ask another question, but the sounds of the crowd breaking into cheers interrupted her. Danny and Sally turned towards the sound. The Dogcar, a white and purple vehicle that looks like a dog in car form, rolled to a stop. The gull-wing doors opened; I stepped out. The crowd cheered with whoops and wows followed by chants of “Dogboy! Dogboy!”

I approached Sally and Danny. The claws on my feet, which stick out from my black boots, clicked on the bridge’s concreate.

“What kept you?” asked Sally.

“I had to stop Blackfeather from stealing mail,” I said.

“Why on Earth would he steal mail?” asked Sally.

“He didn’t want to pay for the Cheese of the Month Club.”

Danny chose a groan from his Omni-Cuff digital sound board. 

I walked over to the car’s bumper.

“What’s up, dawg?” said the driver.

I knelt to pick up the car.

“Remember to lift with your legs,” said Danny.

I grabbed the bumper and let the telekinetic energy flow into the car. Golden lightning traveled down my arms and into the vehicle. The lightning was barely visible as it surrounded the car. I lifted the vehicle. It wasn’t heavy, but it wasn’t light either. It was like lifting a bed mattress.

The phantasmic/psychic energy kept the car from falling apart under its own weight or from gravity.

I sat the car down. The cheering and applauding of the crowd drowned out the creaking and groaning of the car as the telekinetic energy faded from it and “normal” physics took hold.

“Thanks, Dogboy,” said the driver as medical workers assisted him.

“Yes, good job, Dogboy,” said Sally trying to stay professional but also wanting to cheer. “Now, what are you going to do about the lava?”

I glanced towards the edge of the bridge. “Does anyone have an ice pack?”

Copyright Joe Rover 2021. All rights reserved.

Until the next wormhole…thanks for reading!


The latest DOGBOY CHRONICLES book “The Lost Files: Episode 1” releases April 27.

Check out my links page for where you can order a copy!

Superhero Yoga | Dogboy Chronicles Short Tail

The Clubhouse, the base of the International League of Super-Transbeings located on Freedom Isle…

A group of heroes milled around chatting. I stood between Glop and Turbo waiting for the class to begin.

Boo-whip!

The hologram of the instructor appeared before us. He wore a brightly colored unitard with a headband and leg warmers. His hair poked over the edges of the headband.

“Alright, heroes,” he said in a voice that should only be reserved for fitness instructors and car salespeople, “let’s begin today’s hero yoga poses. I hope everyone remembered to warm-up before class.”

I doubted anyone warmed-up; my suspicions were confirmed by the amount of muttering, whistling, and loss of eye contact.

“First,” said the instructor, “the landing pose.”

We all got low with one leg out and one fist on the ground. We held our other arm straight up.

“Now, the explosion power walk.”

We puffed out our chests, raised our heads, and walked in place slowly.

“Remember not to look back at the explosion,” said the fitness instructor. “Next, the up, up, and away.”

We held one arm skyward, bent the opposite leg up towards our chest, and rested the corresponding arm next to it with our fists clenched. We looked skyward.

“Excellent. The classic.”

We stood straight and put our hands on our hips.

“The team power pose.”

Glop and I flanked Turbo. He stood stiff with his arms stretched but slightly away form his legs. Glop and I stood with our backs to him; we raised one arm and one leg trying to make ourselves look like lightning bolts.

“The epic crossover team up,” said the instructor.

Everyone in the class stood in a circle back to back. We made various poses as the camera (aka the instructor) moved around us in a circle.

“Tighten up your stomach, Ripper,” said the instructor. The young hero sucked in his gut.

The hologram returned to his position at the front of the class. “The reveal.”

We pretended to rip open our shirts. We puffed out our chests and arched our backs.

“Powerful action pose.”

We threw a hook punch like we were hitting a villain’s face; but instead of relaxing, we held the pose.

“Heroes together.”

As one, we punched the sky with a heroic, “YEAH!”

“Victory pose,” said the instructor. 

We placed one hand on our hip then flexed the other arm and smiled for the camera.

“And finally, the Easter egg.”

We pretended to hold a car over our heads and smash the front bumper into a boulder.

The instructor clapped overly enthusiastically as the class relaxed. “Excellent work today, everyone! Don’t forget to practice your poses at home. We’ve got to stay fit for our battle against evil. See you all Thursday!”

The instructor hologram vanished with another boo-whip; the students immediately started chatting again.

Copyright Joe Rover 2021. All rights reserved.

Until the next wormhole…thanks for reading!

The Adventures Continue in the Dogboy Universe!

Action, adventure, and sci-fi fantasy await within the pages of the Dogboy Chronicles.

Join Joe Rover and his friends as they protect their hometown from the forces of evil…and the forces of daily life.

Click below to find a store or follow me on Amazon for book updates.

Shedding Problem | Dogboy Chronicles Short Tail

Dogboy Chronicles is now available in paperback through Amazon!


I sighed. The Doghouse couch creaked slightly from my shift in weight. “Too many adventures, not enough time. I have hero duties, schoolwork, chores, and I’d like to have something that resembles a social life.” I scratched Bandit behind the ears then sighed again.

“Hiya,” said a voice.

I jumped out of my seat. “Zak?! What are you doing here? Didn’t we like…merge into one person?”

The teen ran his fingers through his white hair. “Yeah. So, how can I say this delicately?…You’re shedding.”

“What?!”

“It’s all right,” said the two-years-younger-than-me-parallel-counterpart. “Dogs do it all the time. And you’re half dog.”

“But they don’t shed a whole other being,” I said trying not to speak too anxiously.

He tilted his head in a goofy way. “Are you sure? Have you ever cleaned up after a shedding dog?”

I glanced down at Bandit, who was still sitting on the couch. “You have a point. With all the fur I collected from Bandit just yesterday, I could build another dog.”

Hey! said Bandit telepathically. It’s a medical condition!

Zak held his hands straight out to me. “There you go! You wanted some help…here I am. The others and I can drop in and help you with missions, chores, and other things.” He pretend to nudge me with his elbow; he winked. “I’m sure there are other Shards that’d love to go on a date with Sally.”

I rubbed my chin in thought. “Hmm…”

Bandit rolled his eyes. Oh yeah, this’ll end well.

Copyright Joe Rover 2021. All rights reserved.

Until the next wormhole…thanks for reading! 

Rage-Appropriate Activities | A Short Tail

B&N/Nook readers

Use the coupon BNPSAINTPAT50 to save 50% at checkout from 03/15/2021 to 03/19/2021 on Dragon Reign


“Hello, I am Dr. Tony Slick. We all get depressed, frustrated, and lonely. The world is constantly trying to bring us down. Anger is a natural emotion. That is why I created Rage Against the Machine.

“Rage Against the Machine is a simulated landscape where you can do as you please. You can destroy anything with no lasting consequences. You can smash beds, wreck cars, or blow up mailboxes.

“The simulation also comes with robots equipped with holographic rendering. These robot doubles can look like anyone allowing you to fulfill your wildest dreams of mayhem against your boss, ex, or in-law.”

A large, spiked baseball bat appeared in Dr. Slick’s hand via a series of digital hexagons. “Remember, I’m not just the president…I’m also a client.”

He went on a rampage destroying everything in sight with his baseball bat.

As he slugged a mailbox, an announcer spoke. “Rage Against the Machine is not responsible for any action taken outside the simulation.”

Until the next wormhole…thanks for reading!

Copyright Joe Rover 2021. All rights reserved.

Don’t Look a Gift Child in the Mouth | A Short Tail

Everyday Gift Child is forging new ways for you, our most valued customers, to receive the child of your dreams. 

Founded in 1879, Gift Child has been at the forefront of child procurement.

No task has been too great for us.

Did your neighbor’s child catch your eye? No problem. We’ll bring them to you in a matter of days. 

Need to transport a child across the border? Not an issue for Gift Child. We have agents all over the world.

Is your new child unruly? Always complaining about wanting to return to their “real” family? We have many available brainwashing techniques.

***

A man steps forward as the presentation ends. He clears his throat. “That was the past,” he says. “This is the future.” 

Video plays of DNA strands. The man continues. “We can now provide you with the perfect child thanks to genetic modification. Gone are the days of child abductions, trafficking, and brainwashing.”

The man paces the stage as images of random happy, smiling children appear on the screen. “We can now create the child you’ve always dreamed of. He, she, it, or they can be created any way you want. Perfect hair, perfect health, perfect personality.”

The man stops. New images of happy families replace the previous images. “The sky is literally the limit. A child that is athletic, artistic, or even more animal than human is right around the corner. The happiness of the customer is all that matters.”

The screen and stage go dark. A new voice says, “Gift Child, a subsidiary of Dark Net Unlimited, we breed children so you don’t have to.”

Until the next wormhole…thanks for reading!

Copyright Joe Rover 2021. All rights reserved.


B&N/Nook readers

Use the coupon BNPSAINTPAT50 to save 50% at checkout from 03/15/2021 to 03/19/2021 on Dragon Reign

Milk | A Short Tail

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Milk. It’s been a loyal companion for centuries. We like how it makes us look. We like its mustache. We like asking if someone has any. We like how it helps us find those who are lost. 

But now, milk is in danger thanks to BLISS. Unlike BLISS, milk strengthens bones. Milk is healthy. Milk goes great on cereal. Milk has no side effects (unless you’re lactose intolerant). Milk is available at any store instead of some dirty back alley.

Next time you need a cool drink or help finding a lost child, think milk…the only true bliss.

Until next wormhole…thanks for reading!

Copyright 2021 Joe Rover. All rights reserved.

The Internet Fairy | A Short Tail

Is your Internet running on potatoes? Does it seem like a hamster could power it better?

Come down to the Internet Fairy. Our full staff of fairies are waiting to transform your pumpkin of an Internet into a carriage fit for a princess.

That’s the Internet Fairy located at the corner of Elm and Blockwood.

Please remember to bring the appropriate honey and crackers as payment for services.

Until the next wormhole…thanks for reading.

Copyright 2021 Joe Rover. All rights reserved.


Dogboy Chronicles is now available in paperback through Amazon!

The Secret Origins of La-Zar | Writing Warm-Up

The origins of La-Zar, an alien ninja marksmen and member of the International League of Super-Transbeings. La-Zar’s costume completely covers their body, so it is impossible to tell if they are male, female, or something else. The ILOST members use male and female pronouns trying to get a reaction out of La-Zar; it never works, so they call La-Zar male or female interchangeably.


La-Zar was trained to be a bounty hunter ninja by the Whispering Monks on Mount Silence on Planet Bob. Technically since it was on Planet Bob, the monks were called the Bobbing Bobs who resided on Bob Bob, but that name annoyed everyone else in the galaxy, so they were called the Whispering Monks of Mount Silence because they hadn’t spoken a word in over 2,000 years. Not that anyone cared because if they did speak it’d only be “Bob,” or maybe an occasional, “Bobby.”

The bobs (people) of Planet Bob were born with three eyes, but the third eye remained closed. Only through mediation and adherence to the commandments of their god, Jeff (go figure), would the eye open. Once accomplished, the bob reached their full potential.

According to their religion’s origin, one day a bob was able to say the word “Jeff.” The other bobs took it as a sign and decided “Jeff” was a sacred word spoken only by the chosen ones of Jeff.

The Whispering Monk ninjas teach their acolytes not to speak because if they did then everyone would know they came from Planet Bob which defeated the purpose of being a secretive ninja.

Hmm, maybe that’s why La-Zar never speaks. Maybe he/she is really a Bobby. Though some believe La-Zar came from the planet Australia. The rumor is that a gang of kola bears killed his/her parents. She/he wandered the desert plains until the kangaroo pirates found her/him. He/she joined the pirates until he/she learned of the Whispering Monks. La-Zar believed the Monks could teach him/her how to get revenge on the kolas that killed his/her parents.

After graduating, La-Zar received her/his first assignment. He was to kill Baron Hawk. The assignment and pay came from the ruling class of the planet Crunch.

La-Zar tracked her prey to Earth where she learned that Baron Hawk was an ILOST alpha. The rulers of Crunch wanted him dead because he inspired the 99 percent to revolt against the one percent. The rulers were losing the civil war and wanted vengeance while they still had the resources to do so.

La-Zar was unable to complete the mission. This resulted in La-Zar being exiled form the Whispering Monks. Fortunately, Baron Hawk knew of La-Zar’s existence and saw his potential. He offered him a place among the International League of Super-Transbeings heroes.

Copyright 2020 Joe Rover. All rights reserved.

Until next time…thanks for reading.


Smashwords End of Year Sale Dec. 18-Jan. 1

Dino Mall | Behind the Scenes

I had a silly and crazy dream. It starred this couple who were close to divorce. They accidently uncovered that their local mall has cloned extinct animals, such as dinosaurs, so they can operate the mall. The extinct animals make the food and maintain the building, among other chores.

Over time the couple learns that the owners, also a husband and wife duo, have cloned some cavemen/cavewomen to run things like the stores and food court thus kicking out the ones who used to work at the mall. They also replaced the mall cops with their own tougher security guards.

The dream ended with an epic battle between modern animals, like tigers and elephants, versus the extinct animals, like saber-tooth tigers and wooly mammoths. There are also teens in food vendor and department store uniforms battling the cave-workers. The mall cops were also there battling the security guards. The hero husband and wife took on the mall owners.

I woke up about the time the two forces collided.

“What on Earth did I eat before bed to get that dream?” I thought. I think it came from a mixture of watching the “The Golden Years” episode of The Commish on IMBd TV and the Jurassic Park dub video by How It Should Have Ended.

However, that being said, I am working on refining the dream into an upcoming story.

Who do you think would win in a fight between a tiger and a saber-tooth tiger? Let me know in the comments section.

Until the next wormhole…thanks for reading.


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Hostage Night | Story Sample

The following is a sample from my current work in progress. It is unfinished so the final product may look different.

A 4,112 word short story about a date night gone wrong. Joe and Sally go to the movies but the theater is soon under siege.


“Oh wow!” said someone nearby. “You guys are seeing Dragon Reign?! That movie was great! I really liked the part when…” A holographic gag appeared over his mouth with the word “Spoilers” written across it. Even though he continued to speak, we couldn’t hear him.

Sally glanced over at me while the man waved his arms in excitement. “I love the new spoiler warning feature added during the latest Omni-Cuff update.”

Finally, the spoilers gag disappeared. “I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.” The man waved then faded into the crowd.

Copyright 2020 Joe Rover. All rights reserved.


Who wouldn’t want a spoilers gag feature added to their mobile device?

Until the next wormhole…thanks for reading.


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