Brotherhood of the Wheel - Tor/Forge Blog

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Sneak Peek: The Brotherhood of The Wheel

The Brotherhood of the Wheel by R.S. BelcherIn 1119 A.D., nine crusaders became a militant monastic order charged with protecting pilgrims and caravans traveling on the roads to and from the Holy Land. In time, the Knights Templar would grow in power and, ultimately, be laid low. But a small offshoot of the Templars endure and have returned to the order’s original mission: to defend the roads of the world and guard those who travel on them.

Please enjoy this excerpt from The Brotherhood of the Wheel by R.S. Belcher.

CHAPTER ONE

“10-31”

Jimmie Aussapile’s Peterbilt tractor trailer thundered down dark I-70, relentless as an ugly truth. The big rig’s engine was the booming voice of an angry octane god, demanding you lead, follow, or get the hell out of the way. Jimmie navigated the shifting maze of weaving cars. He blew past the shadowed towers of other 18-wheeler cabs, the faces within illuminated by the ghostly green light of instrument panels, speaking their tales to their brethren across the ether of Channel 19. Long-haulers wired on caffeine or meth or song or sweet baby Jesus. Whatever it takes to keep the gears jamming, the cargo flowing, and the rig between the lines.

Jimmie was a tall man, still in decent shape for his age. He had been lanky a long time ago, but now he cultivated a solid beer gut. His hair, what was left of it, was blond and had completely abandoned his head except for the fringes and the long ponytail that fell between his shoulder blades. His bare head was covered by a gray mesh baseball cap that had a hideous character from a cartoon called “Squidbillies” on it. The cap had been a Father’s Day present from his little girl last year and Jimmie wore it whenever he was on a run, for good luck, regardless of how much shit he got for it. His eyes were a fierce green that seemed to glow brighter than the lights from his instruments. He wore a pale scrub of a “road beard,” and he had a lump of chaw in his right cheek. His teeth were yellowed from the habit and a little crooked. He wore a black T-shirt that sported a faded Harley-Davidson logo on its pocket. Over that was an open denim work shirt, and over that was a black Air Force–style crew jacket with a patch of an American flag on the left arm. He wore a wallet on a chain, attached to his worn jeans, and a straight razor was tucked away in one of his steel-toed work boots.

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