© Copyright 2009 Chris O’Kennon and BKP Books
The people, events, and places in this book are a work of fiction or used fictitiously, and any resemblance to persons, events, or places living or dead is purely coincidental. This book may not be copied or distributed without permission.
Published by BKP Books, an imprint of Big Kahuna Ventures LLC.
PO Box 1146, Mechanicsville, VA 23111
If you die in the Commonwealth of Virginia, I know about it. I am the Herald of Death. Lives flow through my fingers like sand, and I laugh at their petty existence. Men call me Andy. Andy McFaden.
I know, it’s a little over the top. But what do you expect from a guy raised on Dungeons and Dragons, comic books, and Twinkies? A little embellishment never hurt anyone. But I suppose I should stick to the mundane truth. Mundane is good. Mundane is predictable, comfortable, and safe. Most of all, safe.
Let’s start again. My name is Andy McFaden, and I’m a state employee. My exact job title is Information Technology Specialist I, and I work for the Office of Vital Records in the Commonwealth of Virginia. Until recently, I spent most of my day going through various media files and making a list of the names of people who had died the previous day. I match those names up with their social security numbers, and every evening send off a file to someone in another office so they can add it to a master file of dead people. It’s boring, tedious, and monotonous, but it’s important that it gets done. Everyone from insurance companies to banks need to know if someone on one of their lists is as alive as they say they are. And no one wants to be the state agency that allows a dead social security number to be used to get a fake ID and blow up a plane or a FastMart. In the era of post-911, being responsible for thousands of deaths is still one of the few ways to get shit-canned from a state job.