Death's Door

Death's Door

by Kelly Johnson PhD


Publisher Page Publishing, Inc.

Published in Science Fiction & Fantasy/Fantasy, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Literature & Fiction, Literature & Fiction/Contemporary

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Book Description

The story of Death's Door is one of triumphs and tragedies, carrying the reader through the life events of three significant characters, brothers Britt and Anniken and their lifelong friend, Eva.

Adventure, love, and tragedy fill these pages, challenging its characters to rise above it all, only to find sometimes the quest for victory leads to ultimate defeat.

Sample Chapter

The doors we open and close each

day decide the lives we live

Flora Whittmore

Here lies the legend of Death’s Door, the grand and ageless cave where many a tale has been told of the lost souls of dead men haunting its inner core. The raging waters surrounding Death’s Door, so powerful with its rogue waves and ferocious typhoons, could easily pull passing ships onto its rocky edges, mercilessly destroying them and sending them to their watery graves.

But despite the tall tales, over the ages, many a man has dared to tempt Death’s Door, sailing their ships near the cave’s grasp or diving into its inner sanctum in search of obtaining great honor for their bravery, only to feed its insatiable appetite for the flesh of man.

It is said the cave is cursed, passed on by the stories the old men tell to their grandchildren while sitting around the fire on a cold wintery night, frightening enough to raise the hairs on the back of their necks. Stories of their ancestors, brave Viking warriors who lived to tell the tales, spoke of Kraken, the raging and brutal monster of the Viking seas who is believed to have made Death’s Door its lair.

It is said Kraken was so enormous that he could rise a hundred feet from the waters, wrapping his eight gigantic arms around the biggest of ships, tossing them as if they were a child’s toy and killing every man upon it.

Many a man, be it a brave and bawdy Viking or a humble and peaceful fisherman, feared the devil’s beast. Many believe it is here where the caves accomplice lays in wait, hiding menacingly beneath the shield of Hell’s Gate just beyond the entrance of Death’s Door.

Hell’s Gate was given its sinister name because it is here where the Norwegian and North Seas meet and the joining of these seas created a violent tempest.1The surging whirlwinds create an undertow so powerful that no man can wrestle its hold once it has wrapped itself around him, its current tossing its catch like a rag doll through the cave’s gaping door, where it hungrily devours its next victim.

Over the years as time passed, those who seek the ultimate adventure come to Death’s Door, attempting to dispel its superstitions and folklore, most to die in vain.

It is now the belief the only way that it can be conquered is by not passing too close to it’s infamous boundaries by boat but by approaching it underwater, diving deep below its torrential currents, sneaking and maneuvering with great caution and superior technique around Hell’s Gate to enter Death’s Door.

There are only two men in all of time who have outwitted the beast and mastered Death’s Door, and this is where our story begins.

Chapter I

In a remote Norwegian village along the rugged and pristine coastline, if you listen very closely, you can hear the tap tap tapping as children play above its dangerous and rocky cliffs. From crudely made wooden swords, brothers Anniken and Britt played atop a grassy knoll and recounted the Viking days. “To Valhalla,”2 bellowed one as he fell awkwardly to the ground, ”where will I gather with my comrades and avenge my death!” With that, he let go a heavy sigh, closed his eyes, and rolled his head to one side.

“Bravo!” chimed a little girls voice. “You have beat him on again, Baron Britt. You are worthy of my hand, “ she said eloquently and with a drawl reminiscent of olden days. She rose from where she sat among the tall grass and straightened the skirt of her pale-blue dress. Smiling brightly, she held out an ivory hand toward her victor, tipping it ever so slightly as if she were a royal princess.

With one full swoop, Britt turned to her and gallantly slipped his toy sword into the belt loop of his trousers. He graciously took her hand and tipped his head to her in satisfaction of a deed well done. The little girl giggled and threw back her head, her golden locks dancing in the warm coastal wind.

Anniken, the befallen one, rose from the “dead” and rested his hand on one bent knee. “Hey, Eva!” he shouted. The young girl turned her head, smiled at her friend, and playfully said, “Hus, Anniken. You are supposed to be dead.”

Britt then dropped to one knee, Eva's soft hand still in his, and bowed his head. “For you, Princess Eva, I have killed the rogue,” he said in his best Viking warrior voice.

Just as the words left his mouth, his brother, in one swift move, tackled him to the ground and sent the two of them rolling down the hill, finally coming to rest in a hedge of billowing sea oats. The wind picked up their childish laughter and carried it out to sea, and pretty little Eva skipped down the slope to join them.


Excerpted from "Death's Door" by Kelly Johnson PhD. Copyright © 2016 by Kelly Johnson PhD. Excerpted by permission. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher. Excerpts are provided solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
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Author Profile

Kelly Johnson PhD

Kelly Johnson PhD

​As a consultant for 20 years, I authored a number of engineering reports, in the "hundreds." But during that time, I also wrote creatively for fun, completing five novels (sixth will be done soon), many short stories, and numerous articles. I have even prepared technical presentations for groups like the medical profession.

View full Profile of Kelly Johnson PhD

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