The Changes Never End

Okay, so I’m planning to publish Any Tomorrow: The Culling, the final novel of the Any Tomorrow Trilogy, in January.  Everything is ready to go.  The problem is that a few weeks ago I started working on what I thought would be a new novel tentatively called The Last Pope of Antioch.

The Last Pope of Antioch was intended to build on the trilogy, but as I started working on it, I realized that this new story answered some questions I’d had about the timeline for Any Tomorrow: The Culling.  So I need to decide whether to keep my self-imposed publication schedule or postpone publication and work this new story into the existing novel.

It’s a tough decision because I think the story has great potential either way.  Here’s how it starts:

The red convertible flew down the dusty, empty road like flame seeking something to ignite.  The driver concentrated on his task.  Seeing far beyond his horizon, far past his destination, he stared out through the waves of heat reflected from the road surface, sunglasses that wrapped around his face, seeming to form themselves to the contour of it.  His face was angular, giving the impression of sharpness.  Although it had been days since he had shaved, his pockmarked skin, possibly an artifact of the ravages of youth, showed no sign of stubble.  The truth of it was that he had never developed a beard, so common in other men, and he counted himself lucky to be spared the razor, that dragging of sharp steel across unprotected flesh.

It may have been a reflection of light off the red convertible, complete with a red interior, but his skin had also taken on an unnatural redness.  It was redness more than just exposure or windburn.  The redness stayed with him and was part of him.  Contrasting with the redness was a gold ring that complimented his left ear and a dark, flat, wide-brim hat turned low in the front to shade his eyes. 

He drove on through the wasted land, never turning, never stopping, never caring for what or who might either be by or in the road.  Had there been a what or who, he would have simply gone around or through, never slowing, never losing his fix on that which his sight, not his eyes, showed him.  His eyes sometimes failed him, but his sight was perfect.  With his sight he saw the city, but before the city was…

If you’d like to read more and even leave comments I have a copy available for review at  No Google login is required.

This is only a draft, but I’d really appreciate your honest thoughts and comments.

Shameless promotion:  My novels, Any Tomorrow: The Calling and Any Tomorrow: The Curse, are available from leading eBook distributors such as Amazon, Smashwords, and Barnes & Noble.  You can find my short stories in eFiction Magazine.

If you would like to share your ideas about what I’ve written, feel free to contact me either on my blog or using other social media.  Thanks.


About Kevin_Fraleigh

I am a novelist, and much of my writing is predicated on the concept that within each of us is a hole. For some of us, the hole is a divot, shallow and insignificant. But for many of us the hole is a cavern, deep and expansive. We try to fill it with sex or drugs or religion, but the cavern has an insatiable appetite. This is where the dark things live―the things that fill our nightmares. The things that claw at our minds. The things that inspire the stories of horror, madness, and twisted realities. From the depths of that cavern come the seeds of my stories. Won’t you join me in the dark edges of reality? Learn more about me from my blog at You can find my novels at,, and most eBook retailers. You can also read some of my full length short stories at
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