A Shield Against the Darkness
– REVISED EDITION –
April, 1925 finds ace pilot Jack McGraw fleeing hostile fighter planes and a mysterious zeppelin over the skies of New Jersey. Then a woman from his past invites him to dinner at Thomas Edison’s home and drafts him into the A.E.G.I.S. foundation.
And that’s just Monday.
Jack’s mission is to fly an experimental aircraft and lead a crew consisting of his comrades from the Great War against a well-funded secret society bent on pillaging history’s great treasures and amassing dangerous power.
Together with their crewmates, Jack McGraw and Dorothy “Doc” Starr encounter sky pirates, Haitian voodoo, terrifying creatures of the deep, an Amazon tree-city, rocket zombies, and an ancient temple where Aleister Crowley attempts to open a dimensional portal and summon a bloodthirsty demon!
Based on the Airship Daedalus comic strip by Todd Downing and Brian Beardsley, A Shield Against the Darkness is the origin story of the Daedalus crew, and a prequel to Assassins of the Lost Kingdom
by E.J. Blaine.
It’s a retro-pulp action yarn in which mages, mad science, secret societies, occult threats, and lost worlds meet globe-trotting, sky-high aerial action and two-fisted heroism, like the pulp novels of old!
Assassins of the Lost Kingdom
July, 1926 finds ace pilot Jack McGraw and scientist Dorothy “Doc” Starr, hot on the trail of evil agents murdering prominent captains of industry—a trail that leads them to face an old enemy they thought vanquished. With the backing of Thomas Edison’s A.E.G.I.S. foundation, Jack and Doc use their light reconnaissance airship Daedalus to travel to the Himalayas, where a deeper mystery unfolds. Together with their crewmates, suave English radioman Edward “Duke” Willis, curmudgeonly Bronx mechanic Carl “Rivets” Holloway and laconic Cherokee sharpshooter Charlie “Deadeye” Dalton, they delve into local customs and ancient lore surrounding the “Eye of the World”, a hidden kingdom in the heart of the mountains known as Shambala, where the only antidote to the world’s deadliest poison still grows wild.
Based on the Airship Daedalus retro pulp comic strip by Todd Downing and Brian Beardsley, Assassins of the Lost Kingdom is the first novel from author E.J. Blaine, who brings the fun and excitement of classic adventure stories to the fore. Mobsters, mad science, secret societies, occult threats, and lost worlds meet globe-trotting, sky-high aerial adventure and two-fisted heroism, like the pulp novels of old!
The Golden City
A lost airship. A buried city. A new threat.
April, 1927 finds adventurer-pilot Jack McGraw and occult expert Dorothy “Doc” Starr extracting a priceless Celtic artifact from a long-sealed tomb on a windswept Scottish island.
Following a shootout with Silver Star commandos and a desperate dogfight into the eye of a storm, the airship Daedalus limps back to London – only to discover a former crewmate has gone missing, along with his own airship and its crew!
Using nothing but a few scant clues and their own wits, Jack, Doc and the Daedalus crew must locate the airship Percival and their old friend “Duke”, encountering myriad dangers along the way – and culminating in a chaotic battle through ancient ruins beneath the Egyptian desert.
Legend of the Savage Isle
The hunt for an elusive enemy becomes an epic voyage of discovery & horror.
May, 1927 finds the combined crews of the airships Daedalus and Percival in coordinated pursuit of the Silver Star commando forces that murdered Duke’s original crew and took Rivets hostage.
Intervening in a tribal uprising in Kenya, “Captain Stratosphere” Jack McGraw & Dorothy “Doc” Starr find their replacement mechanic in the form of a young Kikuyu woman and technical prodigy.
Fighting their way through the markets of Bombay to the streets of Bangkok, braving storms and enemy attacks at every step, Jack, Doc, and the rest of the Daedalus crew must voyage to the far side of the world, where a mysterious island and its inhabitants are in dire peril. Along the way, they must learn to trust new allies and set aside old notions of empire.
The Arctic Menace
A fierce battle at the top of the world, against a most ferocious enemy.
November, 1928 finds Dorothy “Doc” Starr and Jack McGraw raising their daughter Ellen on a ranch in the Hollywood Hills, when the local AEGIS bureau chief taps them for a new assignment – investigate the source of a strange radio signal originating from somewhere off the northern coast of Greenland.
When their home is attacked by agents of the Silver Star, they know Aleister Crowley has gone on the offensive.
In an upgraded Daedalus, the crew recruits an Inuit guide and heads into the Arctic expanse, where they encounter savage storms, ravenous predators, Russian mercenaries, the mysterious descendants of Viking explorers, and hordes of the reanimated dead.
With wounded crewmembers, a disabled airship, and the Silver Star in the vicinity, Jack and Doc must race to find the source of the signal and prevent a ghoulish apocalypse.
Raiders of the Red Storm
A cat-and-mouse game across the skies.
A summoned apocalypse.
The fate of the world hangs in the balance.
June, 1929 finds the Daedalus crew in the Peruvian mountains, working with an old comrade to retrieve a sacred artifact stolen from a native tribe.
Handed one last mission by Edison himself, “Captain Stratosphere” Jack McGraw, Dorothy “Doc” Starr, and the rest of the crew head to Seattle, where an aerospace innovator will re-fit the Daedalus with a weapon system for testing off the coast of British Columbia.
But the routine mission becomes a perilous fight for survival, both on the ground and in the air. For Aleister Crowley and Maria Blutig have summoned a storm which threatens to open an eldritch dimension, ending the world as we know it.
Can a haggard and wounded crew fight a war on two fronts, while a secret strike team raids Crowley’s lair, in the desperate hope of staving off the apocalypse?
Eight authors. Ten stories. A world of possibilities.
The AEGISverse just got a lot bigger.
Based on the setting and characters of Airship Daedalus, A.E.G.I.S. Tales collects exciting new works of fiction written in the style of the pulps from the 1920s & ‘30s.
Thrill to the adventures of stunt pilot Wanda “Wings” Jensen, ghost hunters Jim Holland & Mandy Hart, undead prizefighter John Mabry, The Gunshade – ghostly scourge of the underworld, psychic detective David Li, secret agent Brandeleine Reed, tech-spy Felix Fogarty, ex-rocketeer Alyssa Swanson, Italian archaeologist Maria Caruso, and South-Central LA whiz kid Ada Mesmer!
Enjoy tales of supernatural horror, hard-boiled mystery, super-science, and two-fisted heroic adventure in this anthology of spine-tingling retro pulp fiction!