Thursday, October 18, 2012

Filling the Void

That night, we occupied the bar in the windowless room within B-'s favorite mansion, before the curtain that led to the door that would almost end the world. For the past few weeks I had been handsomely paid to tend the bar at these events, to ask no questions and spread no tales; tend the bar I did, and if I had questions or tales I kept them to myself.

As had become the custom of late, Charisse stood blindfolded on the low table at the center of the room. For the amusement of all, one of the ladies had gifted Charisse with leather underthings, and of course there were always fresh stockings. The heels were the same that she'd been wearing the first night, when the men had taken her.

Roger was piloting Charisse, blindfolded himself. The better to focus, he had told me the first time I had witnessed the exercise of his talent. Privately, I had always thought it an affectation, but given how this all ended--well, perhaps I was wrong about that, too.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Scary Story in Three Sentences

Moonlight through your baby girl's window and the doll’s cradle by her bed crawling with chittering white-toothed shadows; for just a moment, even before you start to wonder how they got there in the first place, you can’t understand why the fuck the rats are eating the doll.

And then the bloodshitfeardeathsulfur reek, the empty toddler bed and the broken circle, the realization that rats don’t have tentacles.

And the whispers in your head like screams that never end.


Chuck Wendig asked to have the shit scared out of him in a three sentence story of less than 100 words.

I think this one's okay.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Black-Clock Dreams

Yuri learned of the old man from Gregor, who had it from Peter Samovitch, whose prababushka forbade him to tell anyone what she knew. Ordinarily this hearsay would carry all the consequence of a sugar cube, but everyone knew Peter's prababushka for a witch, and a powerful one at that. When she finally died at one hundred and thirty-two, baking cookies for her pravnuks, the residents of every village for fifty kilometers had braved the bitter cold for her pogrebal'nyi. Hers were not words to be taken lightly.

And so the distance has passed under wheel and under foot, and now Yuri finds himself a hundred and fifty kilometers north of Volsk, standing outside the old man's door, one gloved hand in the air and the other clenched around the pistol in the pocket of his fur-lined parka. A large black bell hangs from the iron hook by the door.

Yuri inhales deeply so that the cold bites his lungs. When he exhales, the moisture turns to snow that whips away on the wind. He breathes again. He is not ready for this.

Just Curious

Do me a favor, would you?

If either you've come across this blog serendipitously, or if you've initially arrived via link but have come back because you like what you find here, do me a favor and either say hey in the comments or click one of the vanity radio buttons at the bottom of this post?

If you're only following links and don't plan to come back unless I shove another link in your face, I'm glad to have you... but I'd love to have an idea, a couple months into this project, if my stuff is being read by anyone just 'cuz they like it. :)


Coming Home

Truck paused at the base of the stairs to look up into the shadows. The light was out at the top. Dory wasn't expecting him.
That shouldn't have hurt, but it did.
The smell of boiled cabbage and fatty meat hung in the air, oppressive as poverty. His fault. If he'd stopped for that light--
Truck stood the Mulick kid's bike up against the wall, and started up. The wooden stairs were sticky. They creaked underfoot. By the time he was halfway home, he was clutching the railing, his heart pounding, the darkness blurry before him.
"Stay another night," Dr. Simkins had urged him. "Just for observation." But Truck had been in a coma for seven months, and another night was a lifetime.

Friday, October 5, 2012


The wicker basket is precisely centered on a table in the back of one of Atlanta's better steakhouses. The scaly black talon that prods at the rolls within is attached to a multi-jointed arm. The arm terminates out of frame.

"Well, that's unsettling," Coop mutters into the earpiece in John Hartlesby's left ear. "Give me Three."

Hartlesby teases the joystick to back Three's focus away from the table, so it takes in the human diners immediately around the pair. He taps a button and the display on the main monitor shifts. The diners are being paid to eat, and they do a wise job of ignoring the players. Eye contact is strictly prohibited.

The guards, of course, have been coached where to stand to remain off-camera.

"This lowly one simply does not understand how one monkey could have so long evaded us," Chirp says through the translator bug in John's right ear. "But you have found him, magnificence. And, by your leave, this humble one finds himself hungry."