The Demons Beneath Week – W.D. Jackson-Smart [Excerpt]

Author: W. D. Jackson-Smart
Title: The Demons Beneath [D.I. Graves Thriller]
Publisher: Cranachan Publishing
Publication date: 1st June 2019


I’m so excited to be working with Panther Publishing to celebrate the publication week for W.D. Jackson-Smart’s new thriller, The Demons Beneath.

Panther have kindly asked me to run an excerpt – it throws you straight in at the deep-end and promises to be a dark and sinister read.



When a bloody corpse is discovered in a North London park, Detective Inspector Daniel Graves is the man tasked with finding the killer. With no clues and no suspects it seems like a dead end. Then another body turns up and this time it looks like it could be his fault. Has his investigation caused the murderer to strike again? Is he dealing with a serial killer?

As the case gets ever more complicated, a report comes in of another suspicious death but this is nothing like any other Graves has dealt with. All involved are convinced that something supernatural is to blame. A demon. Daniel is no believer but could he be wrong?

With two cases on his shoulders and the truth behind each beyond his grasp, Graves must race against time before both killers, human or otherwise, strike again.


Chapter 1

Janine Morris was wide eyed and pale, her body shaking. Her shoulder-length hair was a mess of mouse grey, the dark circles under her eyes pronounced and aching. Her brain throbbed and she felt weak. She was aware of the neighbours hovering nearby, all eyes on her and the small but very noticeable camera crew outside her house. Her stomach was rippling and she wanted to sit down, worried she would pass out at any moment. She regretted not having made herself more presentable but had to dismiss the thought. There were far more pressing matters at hand.

“Thanks Bobby,” the maroon-suited woman holding the microphone suddenly piped up, the hollow early morning sun glinting off the huge lens of the cumbersome video camera next to her. Janine snapped her attention back to the professional vlogger, tried to rally her body for the task at hand as the woman continued. “I’m here in Arnos Grove, North London with local resident Janine Morris, who claims her family is being haunted thanks to a string of mysterious events. Thank you for speaking to us Mrs Morris. Tell me, what exactly have you and your family experienced?”

The microphone was thrust into Janine’s face with conviction and again her stomach vaulted. Her mouth was suddenly as dry as the cracked paving and browning sprigs of grass under foot and she struggled to get her words out around her tongue.

“Well, erm, it… it began… last week, last Saturday. My youngest daughter, Emma, she came running into our bedroom, screaming and crying. She said there had been something in her room with her, something watching her.”

“Oh my,” the interviewer answered dramatically, her lips a ring of glossy lipstick. Janine felt horribly self-conscious, could feel the blood hum around her body. She flexed her fingers, trying to push out the nerves.

“She was terrified. Wouldn’t go back in her room. In fact she hasn’t been in there since. My husband Darrell checked it over but there was nothing there. We dismissed it at first but she just wouldn’t go in there after that. Then the rest of us began to feel things in the house too.” Janine could feel beads of sweat dripping down her back and started to wish the interview would be done already, but she knew she must finish. It was too important.

“What sort of things?” came the natural question. A few of the neighbours had edged closer to her front garden. From somewhere Janine registered a camera flash and she squinted as she tried to maintain a semblance of composure.

“Freezing cold chills even though the windows were closed or it was sunny outside. Strange smells that we couldn’t find the source of. And you know when you see something in the corner of your eye but when you look there’s nothing there? We found strange marks in the back of Emma’s closet, like claw scratches or something but couldn’t find any trace of an animal that might have done it. We’ve been trying to ignore it all but the kids are so worked up and it’s really starting to affect us. We’re barely sleeping and now all the kids want to sleep in our room. It’s a nightmare, truly.” The woman pulled a face of exaggerated mock fear as she glanced to the camera, and Janine could tell the woman thought she was crazy.

“Wow, that does sound scary, like a horror film or something. Do you not think there is just a simple explanation for everything?” Janine heard the camera whirr as the lens zoomed in on her. She knew people would doubt her, doubt the stories, maybe think she had lost the plot entirely but she couldn’t let that get in the way.

“No. No I don’t. I can understand why people wouldn’t believe us. I really can, it sounds, well, nuts, but I cannot shake the thought that what if Emma didn’t imagine it. What if something really was in her room? We didn’t imagine those smells, the cold chills, the marks.” The muscles in her shoulders were rigid with tension and as the woman turned and spoke to the camera once more, breeze fluttering through her curled blonde hair, the same thought spun around Janine’s mind, screaming.

Someone please help us!

Find out more about The Demons Beneath

You can find out more about The Demons Beneath and Panther Publishing by visiting their website.

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Pen and ink

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