Where is Gronk? (and who is he anyway?)

GronkA little shameless publicity here.

‘Where is Gronk?’ is a four page story written by myself with Art by Nigel Dobbyn. The story was published this month in the longest running 2000AD fanzine, Dogbreath, issue 31.

This is my first published Comic Strip. I’ve been published previously in Dogbreath issue 28 which ran interviews with the creators of Gronk, John Wagner and Carlos Ezquerra.

I’ve been published in other forms including by a Roleplaying Games company both with prose stories and character creations.

But who is Gronk and why did I write a story featuring him?

In this article I give a brief history of the character and a little detail in to this story. There are also comments from the Artist, Nigel Dobbyn and some ‘behind the scenes’ images, peppered through the article, some will look a little unclear as they are pencil sketches but you can see them clearer by clicking on them.

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Sally’s Dying Sailor – an original Poem by Steve Hargett

chachoThis story came to me today when thinking of a work of fiction I have been developing for a number of years. This is the backstory for a support character in part of that work.

The project as a whole is called The Rift and involves Dimension Travel, Demons, Knights, Warrior Monks, New York Detectives from NYPD and more.

The image in this article is of my son, Saul, portraying one of the lead characters in The Rift – Chacho, The Stormrider.
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There Are Others Out There – Part Four – by Neil McClements and Steve Hargett

Others 4

Davith walked alone in the long night, darkness lifted by the full moon which spread silver light all around. Ahead of him lay the Tower of Knowledge and Wisdom, still standing despite the recent raids of Darkling warriors.

Ahead, hanging from a branch of a Cycle Tree was a growing cocoon. Another Elder had fallen in the realm of humanity. Davith weeped for the Land of The Young. Ties to the world of man were being severed more and more and the strength of the bond was growing weaker.

As he walked towards the Cycle Tree he could feel echoes from the land of man. A great evil was in the Old Forest, an evil that followed no ruler but hid in plain sight among the followers of the Nazarene. Continue reading

There Are Others Out There – Part Three – by Neil McClements and Steve Hargett

Others 3Sébastien stood on the steps of the Abbott’s keep, beside him was the spectre of a Templar. The man it had once been had died earlier this night and had been re-animated by the sword carrying so that his task could be completed.

Now that task was complete.

The nature spirit lay dead on the stairs at Sébastien’s feet. The creature’s form was already starting to decompose. The soft tissues inside were dissolving and a green-brown ichor seeped down the steps, through the stones and permeating the earth below. Continue reading

There Are Others Out There – Part Two – by Neil McClements and Steve Hargett

church5_zps1006f61aSébastien felt it behind him as it closed in for the kill.

He leapt upwards, higher than a human should be able to. The Ancients of this land called it a Salmon Leap, Sébastien received his powers from elsewhere and had no need to name the move.

The creature’s swipe cut the air beneath his feet. Sébastien came down hard on what passed as a wrist for the foul beast. There was a cracking sound but the limb didn’t give way. Continue reading


I like writing and I decided I needed to flex my skills a bit. I am a member of the 2000AD Forum and there are loads of skilled artists on there. So i came up with an idea.

I posted a challenge to Artists. I asked for an original unpublished picture, preferably with non-copyrighted characters. My side of the bargain? Within a week I’d write a 500 word story.

500 words isn’t a lot, that is why I didn’t really want any copyrighted characters. To get the feel of, for example, Spiderman you already lost words in the word count. To get a feel of a unique character, much less wordage required. After all I wanted to try to get a decent story to give as trade for the art.

Archie brought me a great image, one I instantly had connection with. A few years ago I created characters for the game Darkwood from Tower Games. Some of my work ended up in free handouts, one made the final rule book. I’m credited as Play Tester in the Rule Book, for that is what I was. I also did a short story that was up on the website.

Darkwood is set in 12th/13th Century Britain and is centered around Nottingham. The idea is that the players in the RPG are fighting evil nasty Normans and end up being part of the Robin Hood myth (without ever doing anything actually from the Robin Hood story, just that kinda thing). So when I saw the picture Archie had drawn… well you’ll see why I came up with the idea I wrote.

(Edit Saturday 10th May 2014)

Part 3 is ready. There may be a bit of a gap between parts 3 & 4 as Neil is busy. I hope anyone that reads these is enjoying them. I’m certainly enjoying writing them.

The idea is now that we’ll continue doing these for as long as we are satisfied with it.

(Edit Sunday 18th May 2014)

Part 4 wasn’t delayed as you can see… Neil took a new direction, I think I took it a bit further – take a read and see what you think

totc06_zps92926e2eThere Are Others Out There – Part 1
by Neil ‘Archie’ McClements & Steve Hargett

A recently abandoned monastery in the forest miles from Nottingham. Something has been killing off the Monks and Sébastien has been sent to find a solution.

church5_zps1006f61aThere Are Others Out There – Part 2
by Neil ‘Archie’ McClements & Steve Hargett

Mano y mano the two adversaries come to blows. Sébastien stands victorious with the missing sword in hand. Perhaps the Templar arrived after all.

There Are Others Out There – Part 3Others 3
by Neil ‘Archie’ McClements & Steve Hargett

Sébastien smashes through the roof of the Abbott’s Keep surrounded by mystical energy.
His companion mutely looks on, unable to come to his aid.

Others 4There Are Others Out There – Part 4
by Neil ‘Archie’ McClements & Steve Hargett

Davith realises that not everything is good in the world.

In fact he is concerned about the future of two worlds.


There Are Others Out There – Part One – by Neil McClements and Steve Hargett

totc06_zps92926e2eSébastien paced the chapel silently, as he breathed out slowly his breath misted in the early evening air. The Templar was late, what could have delayed him?

It was getting dark and though Sébastien was used to his own company the sounds of the nearby forest were unusual to his ears. Raised in Paris, trained in Rome he now resided in Nottingham. He was used to the noises and smells of a city and its streets, not the wilderness of Britain on a cold autumn evening.  Continue reading

The Honey Joust (part 3) – An Integra of The North story – by Steve Hargett

(continued from Part 2)

Dawn woke Integra, she had slept lent against the back of her Great White Bear’s back. She stood and stretched, a simple awning was all that covered them. She dipped hands in the barrel of water she had bought and drank deeply, she then dipped her hands in again and poured water over her head to refresh herself after sleeping.

She was hungry, Engelbert for his part was quite satisfied with the belly full of raw belly pork he had devoured the night before. Continue reading

The Honey Joust (part 2) – An Integra of The North story – by Steve Hargett

(continued from Part 1)

Integra and her Great White Bear, Engelbert, drew a great deal of interest from others that were camped nearby but none would come close. Both rider and mount were hungry and the heat of the South had left their throats parched.

“Stay!” she commanded the Great White Bear and the mighty beast lay on the ground with a grunt. He eyed the crowds nearby, a glint of hunger in his eyes. “No eating the neighbours,” she added with a wicked grin.

She walked towards the main camp looking at the many foods that were on display. The group of ruffians she had spotted were watching her closely. there were half a dozen of them and she had no doubt they were footpads, cutpurses and burglars. There would be hundreds of thieves here, not all as honest enough to look the part as these did so well. Continue reading