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[TMG3] Madame Trudeau – Edmund Stone

Madame Trudeau

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“The boundaries which divide Life

from Death are best shadowy

and vague. Who shall say where

the one ends, and where the other

Begins?”

—Edgar Allan Poe

Madame Trudeau

By

Edmund Stone

  Lightning strikes filled the night sky illuminating the old house on the hill. Thunder made an unsettling groan afterward. Jonathan longed for such a night and this house was a ghost hunter’s paradise. The camera crew had been here a few hours, setting things up. They’d already reported crazy shit happening inside. Things staring through the window; a couple of items falling and crashing to the ground. Your typical haunted house nonsense. But he knew there would be more. This was the house Madame Trudeau haunted. The same lady who hacked up about a hundred people after inviting them in for wild orgies. Jonathan planned to have a séance tonight. What fun that’s gonna be! The crazy old broad would be sure to show her face. Maybe she’ll be holding the knife she carved them up with? If he could get that on film, he’d be famous. But he wouldn’t go it alone, oh no. He had invited some friends. He smiled, as headlights shined from behind him.

  “Right on time,” he said under his breath. The car came to a stop. A priest and a woman stepped out.

  “Padre, Jose! How’s my favorite drunken priest?” he said, as the two men embraced.

  “I’m fine, but I gave up drink for Lent. Well, after Mardi Gras that is.”

  “I’ll bet. And who do we have here?” staring at a striking brunette.

  “Oh, this is Evelyn Chambers, the…”

  “Chicago Medium,” Jonathan finished. “Jose said he was bringing a guest, but I had no idea it would be you. I’ve watched your show and I have to say, I’m impressed, skeptical, but impressed.”

  “Well I do have a large following. My ratings are through the roof.”

  “Yes, they are,” Jonathan said, looking at her legs and ample bosom. He assumed people were tuning in for more than her medium abilities.

  “So, this is the house, hunh? I’ve heard a lot about it.”

  “The Trudeau Mansion. Madame Antoinette Trudeau to be exact,” he said.

  “Didn’t she kill hundreds of men and women by luring them in under false pretenses? Made them think she was their lover, then murdered them?” Evelyn said.

   “They weren’t false. She delivered the goods. After a night of every sexual desire possible, bondage and whips to be precise, they were given as sacrifice to the demons. Who knows?”   

   “Sounds interesting, perhaps many demons have possessed the place, as it would be a welcome harbinger of evil,” Jose said.

  “Well, tonight my friend we will find out! My film crew is already set up inside. Shall we?” Jonathan said, motioning toward the mansion.

  A lightning strike filled the sky. The façade of the house lit up revealing the balcony on the second floor. A figure stood there, a woman, looking to be in her thirties. She had pallid skin and a powder blue dress with ruffled ends on the sleeves and collar. Her hair was pinned up giving her a formal look.

  “Did you see her?” Evelyn said.

  “Who?” Jonathan replied.

  “On the balcony. When the lightning struck, I saw a woman there. Very formal, eighteen hundred’s dress.”

  Jonathan looked over at Jose and chuckled. “You have done well, my friend. Very well indeed.”

###

  Jose and Evelyn followed Jonathan up a cobblestone walkway, leading to a massive porch. In front of them, there were a series of stone steps leading to the entrance doors of the house. They were impressive oak doors, at least ten feet high, with a stone arch at the top.

  “Welcome to Trudeau Mansion,” Jonathan said.

The door opened with a groan as lightning flashed again, illuminating the foyer inside the house.

  “God is restless tonight,” Jose said.

  A large room stretched out before them with ceilings vaulting to oak beams, also in an arch design. The place looked like a large cathedral. There were paintings on the ceiling of angels and demons in battle. Innocent humans were in between them, wearing hoods over their heads; their bodies naked. A herd of pigs were on the opposite side of the ceiling with a painting of Christ, directing the cloaked people toward them. On the other side of the room was a large throne; ornate and beautiful with jewels on the outer edge and red cushions in the seat and back.

  “Interesting décor. What’s with the throne?” Evelyn said.

  “Oh yeah. It was said, the Madame would sit there and watch the people engage in the orgies. Afterward she would pick the one she wanted. She had sex with them, slaughtered the poor asshole, and offered them as a sacrificial lamb. Pretty crazy shit.”

  Evelyn grinned at Jonathan. She looked away and shuddered.

  “What’s wrong?”

  “I’m not sure. I’m getting weird vibes about this place. I mean, it’s haunted, I assume, so I would think the spirits within are trying to talk to me. Their usually curious of my presence, but it’s different this time, almost like they want me to leave.”

  “Some pretty nasty atrocities were committed here, so it wouldn’t surprise me if you had misgivings.”

  “It’s not like that. I feel like someone is trying to talk to me.”

  “The work of the Devil. He roams the Earth like a lion, waiting to devour the innocent soul,” Jose said.

  “You may be right. There is something evil here. Maybe some of the good spirits are trying to warn me?” Evelyn said.

   Jonathan considered her and gave her a skeptical look, thinking: with a body like hers, I’m sure the ghosts here are more than turned on.

  They continued down a hallway until they came to a room off the main corridor. There were three men and two women behind tables with equipment set up around them. Three of them had cameras of varying size. The other two had laptop computers set up on tables.

  “This is my crew. Ruby, Beth, Jimmy, Seth, and Will. They make the magic happen around here.”

  “I’m not sure if we need any more magic in this house. We seem to have all bases covered,” Jose said.

  “If we are to get some scientific proof, these are the people who will help. We have a table set up with candles.”

   “A séance? I’m intrigued. I thought you didn’t know I was coming?” Evelyn said, smiling at Jonathan.

   “Well, let’s say I expected a medium, but not one as lovely as you.”

  Evelyn continued to smile, clearly pleased by the compliment.

  “Now if you are all ready, let’s get started. Evelyn? Can you do the honors?”

  “Sure.”

   Jonathan escorted them to the table. They all sat down and held hands. Evelyn began to meditate. She flipped her head back and her raven black hair fell onto her shoulders and across her cleavage and Jonathan was instantly aroused.

  “Those from another past. Can you show us your presence?” Evelyn said.

   The candles went out, as the room was plunged into darkness. A low hum permeated the air and an energy rippled from all around. Lightning flashed through the windows and thunder crashed with a loud boom.

  “Where are you? Can you hear us?” Jonathan said.

  The noise from the hum got louder. A candle lit from the middle of the table shining on Evelyn’s face. The noise was coming from her.

  “What do you want? Why do you bother me?” Evelyn said in a low gravelly voice.

   Jonathan and Jose looked at each other, and then back at her. Their eyes widened.

  “Why do you haunt this house?” Jonathan said.

  “I do not haunt, only control the entities who live here.” Evelyn’s eyes rolled back.

  “And who are they?”

  “You fool, you do not know what you deal with! I am the taker of souls, the one who answers to the Dark Lord!” her head snapped to the side in a disjointed fashion. Her shirt ripped open, the buttons flying off. A lacy bra was the only thing holding her breasts in place. Her hair levitated out and suspended in air, as if caught in a high wind.

  “What are you?” Jose said.

  “I am the leader of the swine, the pigs who worshipped me!” she said.

  Jose and Jonathan looked at each other in puzzlement.

  “What do you mean?”

  Evelyn looked straight at him with her mouth open wide and her eyes white. “I am the harbinger of pain, my pleasure to bring it and yours to receive!”

  The ceiling began to crawl, as faces started to appear. Hundreds of souls, reaching and pawing, seemingly held back by an invisible force. Evelyn’s bra popped open and her breasts fell out in front of Jonathan and Jose. Blood poured from the ceiling and down her chest. Jonathan started to squirm, as his pants became tighter. To his surprise, he was more turned on by the blood than the exposure of her breasts. Although they were supple, and he longed to touch them.

  “Come to me, my lover,” Evelyn said with a deep voice, looking at Jonathan. He started for her, as he was unable to resist. Jose jumped between them and shouted,

  “I cast you out in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit!”

  Evelyn shrieked and fell back into her seat. Lightning flashed from outside, as the air rippled with energy. The seats and the table shook violently, then all stopped, and the room went dark, except for the glow of the cameras. Evelyn looked down at her chest and grabbed her shirt, pulling it together.

    “Where did all this blood come from and why was my shirt open?” she said, looking toward Jonathan and Jose. But before they could answer, she saw a woman sitting beside Jonathan. She was covered in shadow. The woman’s head turned toward her. Then the light from the candle lit by itself. He noticed Evelyn looking beside him at the empty chair.

   “Evelyn? What do you see?”

   “I…I’m not sure,” she said.

    The woman’s face was hovering over the candle. She looked as though she were melting, her skin sloughed off, revealing striations of black, necrotic muscle on her cheeks. Her teeth were black and eyes glassy. Evelyn was frozen, as the creature came closer to her face. A long black tongue shot out of the hag’s mouth and licked Evelyn on the face.

   “This vessel will do,” the lady said. Evelyn screamed, grabbing for her face. The candle went out, plunging the room back into darkness. The chair beside Jonathan fell back on the floor with a smack and he jumped to his feet.

  “Evelyn? What’s happening?” Jonathan said.

  “Aagh!” Seth called out from the other side of the room. He was clutching the headphones over his ears. The laptops and cameras flashed on and the screens began to fluctuate. A steady stream of static came across the view screen and one of the cameras popped and sizzled, as smoke trailed out the top. Beth and Will were grabbing for fire extinguishers. Jimmy was scrambling, trying to save as much equipment as possible. A loud hum resonated from the electronic equipment.

  “Shut everything down!” Ruby cried out.

  Another quick burst of lightning filled the room, as all went silent. Seth flipped the switch and the overhead lights came on.

  “What happened?” Jose said.

  “I don’t know, but I’m hoping we got it on camera,” Jonathan said.

  “I have a feeling your ghosts are demons.”

  “Right now, I don’t know what to think! Let’s check out the tape and see.”

  Evelyn hadn’t got up yet, she was clearly woozy, rubbing her temples. Jose brought her a blanket and covered her with it. She nodded to him in appreciation.

  “How are you doing Evelyn?”

  “Better, Jonathan. But I’m not sure what happened.”

  “Something must have invaded your body,” he said, as he helped Evelyn to her feet. “Roll the footage team. I want to see what we caught.”

  Ruby opened her laptop with one hand and waved the electrical-smelling smoke from the air around her head with the other. The other computers were ruined, but hers was still operable. She rewound the recording to where the séance started. Jonathan could see himself, Jose, and Evelyn. They all looked normal, except for Evelyn. She had small orbs of light over her head, hanging in the air like fireflies, only in a tight cluster. The orbs had tendrils dangling from them in a spiral pattern that encircled her. A naked woman materialized and walked over to Evelyn. She caressed Evelyn’s hair and pulled her shirt open and a moment later opened her bra. The woman spit blood from her mouth and onto Evelyn’s chest. She caressed Evelyn’s naked bosom, licking the skin up to her neck. Other people surrounded the table and started dancing. They all had cloaks covering their heads, but no clothing on their bodies. They all ran behind Jonathan and started pushing him toward Evelyn. Jonathan stepped back and put his arms up in a victory wave.

  “Do you know what this means? We have actual proof of a paranormal encounter!”

  “Easy for you to say. I feel like I’m the star of a low-grade porno movie,” Evelyn said indignantly. Jonathan looked at her blushing. He wanted to ask if she enjoyed it as much as he did, but thought better of it.

  “Jonathan, wait. There’s more,” Ruby said.

  The digital recording continued, as they watched. The people surrounding the table began to turn to pigs and ran into the wall, disappearing. After this, the recording went to static.

  “What happened? Why did it go blank? I didn’t see the faces in the ceiling! Where did the pigs go?!” Jonathan cried.

  “I’m not sure. Everything looks fine, maybe the camera in the hall caught something. I’ll take the crew and check it out. Come on, guys,” Ruby said. They left the room for the hall leading to the entrance door. Jonathan turned to Jose and Evelyn.

  “While their checking for problems, let’s discuss what happened, especially you Evelyn. I want to know what you felt. Those things were all around you, did you know they were there?”

  Evelyn considered him and looked to the ceiling. The paint rippled like a wave of water.

  “Did you see it?” she said.

  “See what?” Jose said.

  “The ceiling is moving. There is something behind it.”

  “I don’t see anything,” Jonathan said.

  Suddenly, there was a scream from the hallway.

  “Jose? Who the Hell was that?”

  “It sounded like Ruby.”

  They ran to the door. Jonathan was two steps ahead of him, as Ruby came running up. She was covered in blood and crying.

  “What’s wrong? Where is the rest of the crew?”

  “They…they, didn’t make it,” she said.

  “What do you mean? Where are they?”

  Ruby was crying so hard she couldn’t make a coherent sentence. The lights began to flicker and went out, plunging the hall into darkness. Lightning flashed, lighting up the hallway and the room ahead.

  “Jose, Evelyn? Where’s Evelyn?” Jonathan said

  “I’m not sure, she was behind me,” Jose said.

  “Take Ruby back to the séance room, I’m going ahead to see what’s going on.”

  “No…no, don’t go in there,” Ruby said.

  “It’s okay, I’ll only be a second,” Jonathan reassured her.

  Jonathan rushed to the end of the hall and into the main room. The lights were out, so he flipped the switch, nothing happened. Lightning illuminated the room and he shuddered from the ensuing thunder rumble. He saw a red hue coming from behind the murals on the ceiling. Did he see the demons moving? He did. They ripped the flesh from the humans they were holding, blood dripped from the inflicted wounds. Jonathan noticed the pigs were missing from the mural and the angels were huddled in a corner. They turned their heads to look away. He couldn’t believe what he was seeing. Worse yet, he didn’t know if there was a camera on this.

  Then blood began to fall around him, pouring from every corner of the room; in his hair, on his face. He felt his dinner in his throat, as he wiped it away.

  “Where is my crew? Guys you should be recording this!” Frustrated, he stepped into the large room. He pulled up hard with his foot, making a popping sound, like a suction cup releasing. There was something thick and sticky on the floor. The next step caused him to trip over something. What he saw made him wretch. It was the camera crew; their bodies were laid out on the floor; arms outstretched, and feet pinned together spread out in a circular pattern like spokes on a wheel. They were disemboweled with entrails hanging out in all directions. Body parts were strewn out everywhere, some human, but others were…pigs? Jonathan jumped back landing on a pigs head.

  The swine parts were in a random pattern around the bodies of the camera crew. He remembered what he saw in the mural earlier. The bodies being cast into the pigs by Christ.

  Blood soaked the floor and every other area of the room. Jonathan peddled backward, trying to get to his feet. He rolled over onto his hands and knees and slipped into the blood and muck, face first. He choked as the blood was now in his mouth. He started spitting and heaving. A wave of nausea overtook him, and he lost the contents of his stomach.

  Jonathan managed to get a hand on the wall and steady himself. With weak legs, he rose and stumbled along the hallway.

  “Jose? Jose, where are you? Ruby?” he said.

  Lightning illuminated the room up ahead, casting a shadow on the wall for a moment. It looked like Evelyn’s outline, but something else was there too. The thunder rocked the house along with Jonathan’s resolve. He fell against the wall; his body shook with fear. He wasn’t sure how much longer he could stand.

  “Jose, Ruby, Evelyn? What the Hell is happening? Would somebody please answer!?” he begged.

  “I’ll answer if you want to listen,” Evelyn said.

  Jonathan turned his head and rested it against the wall. He was afraid to move any further.

  “Jonathan, I’m waiting, come join me,” Evelyn said.

  He found the strength to lumber forward, his legs, gelatinous, not wanting to cooperate. Grabbing the door facing to steady himself, he walked into the room. A flash of lightning lit up the horrifying scene. Jose and Ruby were pinned to the wall, arms wide apart and feet nailed together, crucified to some makeshift cross. Evelyn stood below them. She was naked and covered in blood. A pig’s head adorned the top of her head. It was attached to a cloak that flowed over her shoulders.

  “There you are. I’ve been waiting. Lay down on the table.”

  He did as she said, he felt as though he had no power to resist. She undressed him, massaging his penis until it was erect. She straddled him and took him inside her. Evelyn put her hands on Jonathan’s chest. She worked up and down, grinding her pelvis into his middle in a rhythmic motion, moaning in a low drone. Her cadence intensified, and Jonathan groaned with pleasure.     Evelyn reached down beside her, producing a large knife. She raised her arms and brought the knife down into Jonathan’s chest.

   The blood erupted from him, as Jonathan, trembling, released his seed into her. She plunged the knife into his chest again and again until his sternum collapsed. She cried out in pleasure as she came.

   Evelyn got down from the table and drug Jonathan’s body to the hallway and down to the main room. Then she gathered the other bodies, bringing them to the same place. She raised her hands into the air and a blue fire came from the floor, swirling about the bodies. A demon gathered them, laughing as he did so. They all rose to the ceiling and disappeared.

   Evelyn walked across the room and sat in the throne. With the knife still in her hands, she slit both of her wrists. Blood flowed from the self-inflicted wounds, as she began to drift off to sleep. She looked around the room and to the ceiling. She saw Jonathan, Jose, and the rest of the film crew; cloaks around their heads. She smiled. The Madame was pleased.


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[TMG3] No Longer Human – Arya Ashok Dixit

No Longer Human

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The alarm clock was set. The clothes were packed. The note was written. Everything was ready as planned. I had managed to scrape together as much money as I could. It was only a matter of time before I put my plan to action. I decided to get a few hours of shut-eye before that.

A sharp sound pierced my ears with the intensity of a train whistle.

The alarm rang and I woke up with a start. “It’s time” I said to myself aloud. Saying it aloud made it seem real and the seriousness of it all hit me. No, I can’t hesitate now. It’s too late to change plans. With my mind set, I picked up my duffel bag and the letter.

I looked at the letter for a minute. It had been so hard to write. So painful. My eyes swelled with tears. No! Stop! Don’t open the dam again. Your feelings will flood your mind and it will drown you. I closed my eyes and shut the dam- although it was harder now that the time to leave was already here. I ran to my window- staying longer only made the pain worse. I jumped out of the window like I had done countless times before, but I knew this time I wasn’t coming back. Maybe I will someday, but that day was a long, long way off.

I plugged my ears with my earphones. The loud music pounding through them cut me off from the horrendous reality. I was in a different world – a better world- a world where things like money, debt and violence had no place. There was only bliss. Bliss and happiness. Bliss, happiness and best of all- freedom and no misery.

I arrived at the bus stop and sat on the empty bench. I glanced down at my watch. The bus would be here in about fifteen minutes. I waited, staring at nothing, when suddenly I heard footsteps. More accurately, feet dragged along the coarse ground. Who would be wandering about this late at night? I wondered. A huge muscle-bound man passed by me, drunk. Very, very drunk. Absolutely hammered. It was a miracle he was even standing on two feet. He was reeking of alcohol,  a stench so raw and concentrated that I gagged despite the distance between us. But that was not all- I recognised the man. The man whose face I could never forget in a million years. The face of the man who harassed, beat up and finally murdered my father over a petty debt right before my eyes.

My body trembled with hate- so much hate. Hate so primitive and uncontrollable that even before I knew what I was doing, I had whipped out my pocketknife and I was running, running towards him, charging at him with ever ounce of hatred I could muster. He turned his head groggily but even before he could comprehend what was happening, I drove my knife into him. I pulled it out and stabbed him again and again and again . Blood gushed out from the multiple holes I had punctured. His chest had stopped moving a long time ago, his eyes stared blankly at nothing but I didn’t stop. I couldn’t stop. My face was smeared with blood mixing in with the salty tears, my hands dripped with the thick red liquid, trembling even as I held the knife and drove it into him one last time. I collapsed next to him on the ground in exhaustion- exhaustion from all the crying or from the stabbing I couldn’t tell. I closed my eyes and my father’s face appeared before me.

I heard the bus rolling to a halt in front of the bus stop. I stood up, as though in a trance. I looked down at my hands. They were still shivering and still red. A deep, dark red which almost looked black. I was still in shock as I walked out of town. I walked, and walked for how long I do not know. I found a stream where I managed to wash my face and hands. I sat back down.
The realisation hit me hard. I had murdered a human being. No, I had murdered a murderer. He was no human being. And now, I realised, I am not one either.


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[TMG2] Secret – Victor Flavin

Secret

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I remember when I was younger. There I was, standing there, when what I wanted to do was forbidden. Forbidden by who? I didn’t know because no one had ever given me an instruction on this in my entire life. Somehow though, I knew that I shouldn’t.

I’d wrestled with this knowledge many times and I was familiar with the same crazy eight of dilemma, desire versus disappointment, self-actualisation against self-destruction. What should I do? What must I do? And more importantly what happens next.

I’d made it this far; clearing my schedule and taking the bus to this anonymous part of the city.  I didn’t believe that anyone followed me; I had made certain by making arbitrary turns and reversals of direction. Each time scanning to see if I recognised any face or if I could catch an observer in the act.

Eloise is my half-sister, but everyone thought she was my cousin. She was my mission, on this cold winters day. Our Mum and Dad had moved in with each other, me and my parent travelling the four miles from Curraheen, on towards the village and all that excitement. I got my own room in a massive house; it had a fantastically huge garden and a colour telly. What more could I want? I was 13 years old and living like a king. That’s when it struck, this ailment, Eloise.

I know she’s my half-sister, and at sixteen years old, she was quite sophisticated and mature. When I met her I saw that she was exactly what I had been missing all my life, and I hadn’t known it until we moved at the end of last summer.

Mum said “David, this is Eloise” just like that.

When I saw her for the first time I was dizzy and I’m sure my face reddened, it was fantastic, there was definitely music playing. I don’t think I said anything because Eloise smiled and hugged me and said “Oh, Hi David, we’re going to have so much fun!”

We were very close and in those first months as our parents explored their new marriage we spent a lot of time together: although that vision of heaven I had when we first met, that adrenaline rush of Nirvana was never quite equalled.

For comparison, I also glimpsed the depths of hell. One weekend when she went to a party with a boy from St Joseph’s and Dad said it was OK.

He even drove them about and picked her up afterwards. I didn’t eat all day, frantic with worry and sick with jealousy. Little wonder I didn’t speak when she came home, all buzzed with excitement from her date, I didn’t talk and was very possibly even rude to her.

This was why I was here, I would buy her a Valentine’s card and make plain my position on the matter. Everyone would realise how this was fated. Even if at first they were shocked, they would come round and be like ‘Oh well, that’s alright. David and Eloise will be great together.’

So, there I was outside Eason’s on O’Connell Street in Limerick, ready to buy my card. Walking into the shop I was filled with a sense of trepidation, it didn’t make me afraid exactly, it just filled me. Yes, I was anxious, nervous. There would be no going back. Clearly, I was taking monumental action in deciding that I would buy this valentines card. A greater action would be sending it to the object of my wishes, my love, my wonder, my heart, my soul. I asked the girl behind the counter where the Valentines section was and she just rolled her eyes, chewing gum and pointed behind me. Turning, I realised the world was filled with love, roses were rife, violets were too, there were millions of cards for you and for you. That was the problem.

Not one single card captured my feelings for Eloise.

There wasn’t a poem, a haiku, a picture or even a balloon that did justice to my eternal love.

I said as much to the guy that was filling shelves with overpriced, and to my eye, substandard teddy bears. It was important, to explain to him that the poetry was lacking.

“You could make a living doing that kind of thing.” He said.

His words reverberated in my head, I had never thought about what my love really meant until then.

This was a cathartic moment for me.

All of a sudden, it was not loves labour lost, I had another purpose. I would get my feelings out into the world. I would shout from the rooftops my brilliant, bright, all-consuming love for this other, this beacon of perfection.

It could be anonymous. None would understand and fewer still would approve, but at least the outpouring of sentiment my heart had made would not clog up my mind and senses; not to mention my geography homework book.  Also, on the plus side I imagined that I would get paid a lot of money for this life as a writer. It was certainly going to pay for me to move to another country. I would opt for somewhere a little more avant-garde than Ireland, The Netherlands perhaps, they would be more liberal about my relationship with Eloise as they celebrated the brilliance of the prose that I put forth. She and I would be able to live happily ever after.

I left the card shop and travelled home, determined. The next months were a whirl of duty and dreaming. School, homework, jobs around the house, trying to spend time with her before scurrying to my room to pen my literary love. I amassed quite a library of scribbles despite the fact that I discarded twice or even three times as much as I saved. I wasn’t writing all the time but I credit that activity with rescuing me from the worst excesses of the hormonal teenage male. Let’s just say I was a busy boy and leave it at that.

They were all the same I decided. Women that is, I had spent the earlier months honing my exposition of unrequited love, countless hours, writing and rewriting. Coded references to ‘E’ as I couldn’t risk a discovery of my secret. Although now I reflect on the prolific use of rhyming couplets and the word, ‘please’ appearing so often before or after my capital ‘E’, may have been a clue to an interested detective.

School that year had been full of talk about getting ready for next year. We would be heads down for Junior Cert exams. That made it hard to think things through and when all the girls in class started talking, I found myself fully distracted.

 Anyway, I digress, Eloise had been, quite literally, a bitch. She began shouting at me all the time and it didn’t make sense to me. She walked into my room one day and I wasn’t writing , as I’ve said , I was busy doing what boys do. I scrambled frantically for my self-respect. She saw what I was doing and I swear she smiled, she seemed to be thinking and she didn’t leave at once. Instead she kept looking at me until I hid my face, I just know she saw my geography book open on the desk. Eventually she left, saying it was a pity I was a boy and not a man.

After that she was always telling me to go away and demanding that the keyhole in the bathroom and bedroom doors be covered, for NO REASON, I heard Mum and Dad talking and Dad asking if Mum if she wanted him to have a word with me and Mum saying ‘No, I’m sure he’d die of embarrassment.’ It wasn’t entirely clear whether they thought that I was up to no good or not. It’s ridiculous being accused when no-ones actually seen you doing anything. I can remember feeling that I would be glad when she had done her Leaving Cert exams because the stress was clearly turning her paranoid.

On another day the whole family journeyed to Dublin to look at Trinity College because she would be going there in September, I was hollowed out inside and quite sick. She was kind to me that day and sweet as she ruffled my head, saying that I needed a break from her.

In July, our holidays were spent in Donegal and a rented house and the whole time Eloise didn’t ask me to do anything with her, instead she stayed in reading and wouldn’t even go on car trips when Mum & Dad asked. One day we strolled to the beach, and she insisted on sitting on the towel all day her face obscured by a big hat, sunglasses and a book. I still loved her and later, at the coffee shop on the coast road, I made a special effort and bought her a favourite treat which she didn’t bother to taste. It was a lemon sherbet ice cream that melted all over the counter.

Eloise left for University and life kept moving on and even I could feel the feel the intensity waning. She was at home at holidays and such but also often out and socialising with others. I followed Eloise to university but my college was in England and I remember one night being drunk and stoned and I told my story to two guys that shared the flat with me. They laughed and talked about me being on my knees to Eloise. I felt Damned by their careless mirth.

My parents’ marriage split when I was nineteen and away from home and after that Eloise and I never really saw much of each other, we send cards and make occasional calls and promises to visit with no intentions of doing so. We both have our own families and responsibilities that keep us busy. I heard that her diagnosis is now terminal and I cry about that and feel strongly that I love her. It’s still confusing to me whether it is a sibling love or unrequited first love. I cannot discuss it, I can’t face the possibility that my feeling is governed by base and illicit urges. To visit her now would be impossible, I couldn’t bear to look into her eyes and risk knowing the truth that she sees.

I don’t think about it, I have my life now.  Two people can keep a secret when one of them is dead. When Eloise leaves this time, my secret will be safe.

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[TMG2]Roanoke – Lisa Dabrowski

 

Roanoke

Like the story? Give some change to the author!

$1.00

The rugged cold terrain of Serbia held little comfort for Josif . He sewn together hides of animals to make a covering to try to keep the brutal winds from slicing him in two.  A roaring fire , and a pot with a fresh rabbit and a few root vegetables were stewing away as he sat there gazing up at the bright blue moon. Josif stirred his pot, his stomach growling, it had been days since his last meal. Food was scarce in the winter, and he was looking forward to his feast tonight.

Looking up from his stew, his ears picked up a crunching in the snow. A slight noise moving closer to him.  The noise grew louder, and stronger. WOLVES! A pack of wolves were now charging at him. In a matter of minutes his pot flew up in the air and was ravaged by the wolves.  They tore through his thick parka as if it were a baby’s blanket, shredding his skin, and leaving him to bleed out in the cold.

Josif lay there, drifting in and out of consciousness. During this time he had a vague recollection of a Hairy Behemoth carrying him to a cave.  He stayed there and slept for what seemed an eternity before waking up to a raven haired woman, wiping his forehead. Her eyes looked familiar to him, as if had met her in a dream.

“Rest,  you are safe here, “ she said in a loving voice before leaving him to join the others.

Josif drifted in and out of surreal dreams , he could not tell if they were really happening or just vivid dreams.  Looking down at his feet, only to find paws with claws that were covered with blood, Surveying his surroundings there were more like him, appearing to be beasts of the night with blood soaked teeth fresh from the kill. The body lay slain , shredded in a heap neath a tree.

He startled himself awake with a guttural Howl. The others looked at him and smiled.

“Yes, Brother, you are one of us now,” an older one said to him.

Josif didn’t know what to think. He felt a rush of adrenalin soaring through his veins, yet he was mortified at the thought he had done this to another human being. The taste of warm blood still fresh in his mouth only made him crave more. He was disgusted with himself.

The raven haired girl went over to Josif to calm him. “ Gather yourself. My name is Alana , and I am part of this Clan that works and hunts together for survival. I was the one who drew first blood from you, and could not stand to leave you there in the ice. A curse has been put upon our clan by a Gypsy Witch. When the Moon is full we turn  into beasts, half wolf, half man. The werewolf you have heard talk about. Our hunger is greatest during the Full Moon, though I will admit there are times when we do hunt for survival. We are gathering supplies to go to Romania to meet with Count Vladmir, who has also fallen victim to this curse. We have been turned into Creatures of the night. Hiding in plain sight, hoping to escape whatever trap the Gypsy Witch has dreamed up for us. Perhaps Count Vlad will have some advice for us. Regardless  it has become to dangerous for us to stay here. The townspeople hunt us on a daily basis , and our food supply grows short”

There were eight of them in their clan, They knew they had been turned into a mere pack of wolves, but as long as they kept their humanity they were going to refer to themselves as a Clan. They had sparse belongings to pack up for the journey. A lean-to made of animal hides, and a sack with a few cooking utensils and a couple of canteens . They were a rag tag bunch, but they clung together, for dear life.

Stash the leader warned them of the Gypsy Witch, and how she liked to make camp near the river. They decided to go west towards Romania, cutting through the forest. Their time would be cut in half, and their would be less chance of  coming across the witch. Josif could feel the blood begin to boil within his veins. The Moon was reaching her cycle. Alana and Stash watched him carefully, knowing that he had no control over his impulses yet.

“Look! It is Count Vladmir’s Castle!” Stash exclaimed pointing off in the distance, and not a moment too soon he thought to himself.

Trekking up the mountain to The Count’s Castle they could smell the distinctive stench of fresh kill. The closer they got to his castle the stronger the smell became. There were heads impaled om stakes in the front courtyard of the palace. {erhaps this was Count Vladmir’s idea of a Grotesque Garden. In any even it made them a bit nervous to come calling upon him for a favour.

Stash put his knuckles up to the door to knock, when the doors flew open. They were greeted by a pale man in his early thirties, with long flowing wavy chestnut hair. His eyes a mesmerizing hazel. “Come in dear Children of the night. I understand we share a common enemy. We have much to discuss, “ The Count said while motioning them in.

“The one they call the Queen of The Gypsies is in fact a Witch.  She placed a curse pon me after I rebuked the affections of her daughter.  This was once a Grande Kingdom. Great dignitaries came to visit from all of Eastern and Western  Countries. I had a loyal army, my people loved me, and the land was rich with crops. More important than anything else, I had a Queen who worshipped and adored me, and I her. The Curse of this Gypsy Witch has taken it all away from me!  I suspect she is also the one that has made you crave the flesh and blood just as I do.” The Count finished.

“She is the one. My father caught the Gypsy Witch’s Husband robbing our coin box from the sales of bread for the day. A fight ensued and my Mother was knocked to the ground where her head lay split wide open from a rock. Blind with anger after seeing my Mother’s life drain out of her, My Father choked the very life out of the Gypsy Witch’s Husband. It was then that she put the curse upon my family, “Stash replied.

“The heads on those stakes out front are of my soldiers who turned against me when the village came to burn me out. I unfortunately had to Impale most of the Villagers before they retreated. Word spread through the countryside like wildfire once my Beloved Wife had died , and I renounced God.  Something came over me in that moment, I now know it was the curse, and the I lunged for the throat of The Gypsy Witch’s Daughter who was laughing hysterically at my beautiful wife laying in a pool of blood, impaled from a cross that hung on the ceiling. I devoured the girl, ripping into her neck,  swallowing every last bit of blood I could drain from her. I was insatiable. Seems like a lifetime ago., “Count Vlad continued, “ You have come a long way, and I am sure you are famished. Tonight the moon will be full and waxing. I understand that you need to feed as well. I have no shortage of fresh meat. I have prisoners in the dungeon for your nourishment.”

True to his word Vlad took them down to his dungeon, where the prisoners were kept. Shackled to the wall were plump men, and gaunt men, at least a dozen or so. Enough for a feast. The wails and moans of others kept in cells down the dark corridor could also be heard. They were indeed famished. The sun began to set, and their beins began to crawl . The Moon in all her glory was rising in the dark sky. Their skin began to itch as the hair sprouted up their flesh. Bones could be heard cracking during the metamorphosis  from man to beast, Jaws extended, teeth like that of a wolf. Claws as sharp as razors. Let the Feast begin!

It was a feeding frenzy, prisoners being ripped down off the wall, shredded into bits, and consumed. Flesh devoured, Blood spraying about the dungeon creating a ghastly mess. They ate until they could not eat anymore, Bits of tattered flesh left clinging to bones scattered along the dungeon floor, The licked the blood up hungrily. They were insatiable.

Josif and Alana awoke naked in one another’s arms the next morning. Looking about, realizing what they had done, they held each other and made in love in a puddle of blood.  The moans and wails of the caged prisoners could be heard, in their shame they found solace within each other.

Count Vladmir provided them a warm bath and a fresh suit of clothing to wear after his man servant helped them clean away the debris from the night before.  Stash instructed hs clan to clean up after themselves so as not to leave a trail.

Johan , the man servant escorted them to dining hall of Count Vladmir. They were to discuss strategies over coffee.

“It is becoming too dangerous for our kind in this land, “ the Count began, “ I have arrange for Johan to travel by rail with me to France. I know the King there and he will aid me.  Count Dabrouski will also be leaving Black Square and acting as my mediator should the occasion arise. Count Dabrouski has once again found himself in a state of , shall we disfavour with his countrymen in Poland and needs to leave for awhile. He is also one of us. Immortal, drifting through the centuries. I feel it would be in your best interest if you  accompany me on my journey, and try to assemble a fresh start.”

Stash pondered the thought for a moment. The Count was right. They lived their lives in constant fear of getting caught, being hunted down like wild, soulless animals.  A change of scenery would do them some good.

Johan and Count Dabrouski  took turns caring for the Clan and Vladmir during the three week train ride. The Conductor and the Engineer had been handsomely rewarded to hear or see nothing during this trip. Two vagrants that had the misfortune of stowing away in a box car became dinner for both the  Count Vlad and The Clan when the Moon cycled full again, their carcasses, or should I say what was left of them being thrown from the train.

In France Count Dabouski made contact with  King Charles who promptly made living arrangements for Count Dabrouski in Paris.  Johan was to sttle everyone into the guest quarters in the rear of the Manor where they would live largely unassumed for the most part.  

Count Dabrouski was considered a dignitary from a foreign land, and thus was expected to hold formal gatherings and parties.  Occasionally special staff would be hired to help with these affairs. The Count being a wise and generous man, would allow the wait staff to consume a bit of brandy or wine, perhaps a bit that had been spiked with a sedative. Johan would then put them in the vegetable cellar until all of the guests had left and then he and Count Dabrouski would carry the bodies out to the Guest Quarters, where the Clan would eagerly be awaiting their feast.

Count Vladmir enjoyed strolling the streets of Paris , seducing young women, draining them in alleys, before going back to the Manor. Paris was lovely and so were the ladies. He was shocked that his libido had returned to him during this time. This move was just what he needed, yet he seemed to be craving more and more blood and lust, and could not separate one from the other.

Ladies were being urged not to walk the avenues and streets alone at night because there was a maniac on the loose attacking them for their virtue and then draining the blood from their bodies in a ghastly fashion. Word of this spread to Count Dabrouski, and he knew at once who was responsible for this recent string of murders. Count Vladmir could ruin it for not only himself, but The Clan and of course Count Dabrouski did not want to be involved in this scandal. He was in enough trouble back east right now. He must come up with a plan to send them somewhere else.

Count Dabrouski arranged for a cargo vessel to take Count Vladmir and The Clan to England, given enough gold, a Captain will do anything. Johan accompanied them, Count Vladmir was placed in a sealed coffin, and it was explained that he was being taken home to England to be buried.  The Clan were his servants that were going to work for his Nephew Johan.

Once in England  Count Vladmir and  Stash decided that they would part ways.  The Clan had a problems of their own. The sun was setting fast, and the Moon was to be full that night. They too felt that all too familiar craving coming upon them.  Trying to hide in the shipyards, their transformation began. The hair sprouting, breaking through with a painful itch. Bones disjointing, The jaws extending and their teeth pushing through like razors. All reasoning seemed to be gone, the need for flesh and blood was all consuming. Drunken sailors happened by. They were shredded to bits, razor sharp claws digging into the flesh, then chewing it off in a feeding frenzy as f they would never eat again. Blood spraying, growling, the clan fighting over every last drop.

They awoke in the morning in the hull of a ship. Obviously they had crawled in there to keep warm. Looking around, they found trunks, and put on dresses and suits. They could feel and hear the sound of the ocean.  Josif had once been a sailor. He could tell when they went top side by the direction of the wind and current that they were heading west. West? He needed to talk to someone to find out what kind of mess they had gotten themselves into.  

Dressed in the frocks and Sailor’s Uniforms the clan blended in with the others aboard the ship, By estimation nearly one hundred or so souls were on the vessel. They all seemed to be filled with anticipation of reaching this New Land across the ocean. They spoke of building a colony , a new civilization for the Motherland and claiming it for England.

The Clan had their usual problem, the moon was due to cycle. There was no escaping their curse.  Stash decided to see if he could negotiate a deal with the Captain, who had become fond of one of the females in their group, a red head  named Aileen. In exchange for Aileen, some of the passengers would be offered up to The Clan. The Captain and a few others would be given the opportunity to join The Clan as well. Their problem was solved and before they reached the coast of the New Land The Clan had grown from  eight members to twenty.

They were weary from travel but knew they must set up housing for the women. Josif learned that Alana was with child. Stash was overwhelmed with joy. They had lived for nearly a century now, and he believed that they had been cursed with sterility as well. He was going to be a Grandfather.

The celebration was short lived when a group pf indigenous peoples sprung forth on them screaming “WENDIGO! WENDIGO!” They were carrying sharp blades and throwing rocks, Clacking bones together and carrying torches. The Moon rose in the clear blue sky.  A few that were Native to the land chose to fight The Clan, all the while screaming “WENDINGO!” There was blood and flesh flying across the campfire , the stench billowing high in the clouds. Other Natives chose to run.

The next morning they began the clean up process, and finished building their homes. Alana was swollen with child and ready to give birth any day.They needed a name for their Colony, and Alana’s baby.  They chose Roanoke, and it became known as Roanke’s Colony.

The Clan survived off the Natives for many years until England decided to send another Boat over. They decided it was time to trek further east to see what the land held for them. They ended up settling in Bayou Country.  Josif and Alana were very comfortable raising their cub alongside the French. Roanoke would have the chance to grow up a refined lady.

The Captain and Aileen went their separate , always close to The Clan, just raising a Family while he and Josif ran a Shipping Company off the Gulf Coast with cash flow from their old frien Count Dabrousky who had given Stash a generous sum of mpney for keeping his immortality a secret.

Josif and Alana raised Roanoke in a fine Manor home safely tucked away in the bayous, and of course Grandpa Stash was there too. Roanoke went on for centuries without developing the curse of the Bloodlust. Her parents were relieved to say the very least.

Roanoke had a gift for writing. She could take words and spin them into gold. Her parents encouraged her creativity as most parents do, forgetting their lineage, and what could potentially occur should someone research her past.

Roanoke Dane wrote three Best Sellers write out of the gate. People loved her work and couldn’t get enough of it. They clamored for more. Reporters were calling her night and day trying to get an interview. She wanted to do an interview, although her parents strictly forbid it.  She felt trapped. She was over five hundred years old and her parents still treated her like a child. This was it, she called up the reporter in town from California and told him to come by alone that evening and he could get an exclusive interview, but only if he came alone.

Roanoke’s parents were going out with The Clan that night, so she knew that she would be home alone. She was nervous when she heard th knock on the door, then she opened it and there stood a short balding man with a notepad and a tape recorder. Not what she was expecting at all.  She invited him in.

She poured them a cup of coffee, and shook his hand before sitting on the setee in the parlour.

He sat down next to her and turned on his tape recorder.

“Miss Dane,  name is Alex and it is a pleasure to meet you. I am going to ask you a few questions that your fans are dying to get the answers to. Is that alright with you?” he asked.

“Well of course. That’s why we are here, and you may call me Roanoke.”she answered.

“Your name Roanoke, that is a very unusual name. Like the Lost Colony of Roanoke, “ He started.

“I never really thought about it. It’s just my name, “she shifted uncomfortably.

“ Your stories seem so vivid. It’s as if you have actually lived them or have known the characters in your book, “  He again pushed.

“I know them from my dreams, “she answered quickly.

“I have looked everywhere for your birth certificate and came up empty handed. How do you explain this?” He asked with a sneer on his face.

Something came over her. She felt her veins crawl, Hairs were sprouting, itching everywhere. Her body began to crackle as the bones morphed, Sje looked out the window at the full moon before her jaw line extended revealing her razor sharp teeth.

Alex tried to run, but she was fast,  lunging at his jugular, draining his life force. She began to shred the meat from his bones, savoring every bit of flesh. Ravenus, she left nothing but bones and hair.

When she came to the next morning, she played Alex’s tape back, and looked at his heap of bones and answered “That’s how I explain it, Motherfucker!”

 

 

 

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Bitches – Trev Hill

 

 

Trev Hill

Can’t a writer get paid? Give Trev Hill some beer money!

$1.00

Miss Jowens was cross. She had had enough of these young girls and their unladylike language and behaviour. Mind you, she shouldn’t have been surprised. Even at the interview she had been shocked by the way Miss Hayes the headmistress had talked about them. Oh yes, she plainly remembered, Miss Hayes had perused her CV and references with a favourable eye before asking if she, Miss Jowens, would require a residential position.

“Well, I am quite prepared to consider it, Headmistress, but I have found a small cottage on the edge of the moor which would be quite suitable for my needs. Unless the position specifically requires me to live upon the premises, I think I should prefer to live off-site”. Miss Jowens replied.

The Headmistress smiled and nodded,

“Not at all, Miss Jowens. I completely understand. In fact, I think it would be an excellent idea for your first few terms, at least until you feel you have settled in. Many teachers find the girls to be quite exhausting in the evenings and tend to leave abruptly. You cannot imagine, Miss Jowens, what little bitches these girls can be.”

Miss Jowens had been shocked that a headmistress would use such terminology for her charges but she had forgiven the lapse of decorum and accepted what seemed to be a rather splendid job.

The school was situated on a moor in the south of England. The young ladies, although she now gave pause as to whether some deserved the title, seemed good students and extremely energetic (although they could be sloth in the morning). The regular teaching staff seemed friendly and very professional, the pay was good and the hours amenable. A few hours literature classes a day and a little history, then a bracing cycle trip home for an evening by the fire. Very agreeable, or so she had thought.

Her initial reception had been the usual mixture of caution, fascination and a few little challenges, the usual things like feet on the desk, saucy attitudes and uniform infractions; nothing she didn’t expect or couldn’t handle. What had slowly begun to grate on her nerves was one particular class which contained a particular clique of upper form girls, the leader of which, a young madam by the name of Danni Murphy, seemed to have a penchant for high skirts, tousled hair in the morning and the mouth of a street urchin, not that any of the others members of the gang were far behind.

One of the earliest conflicts had come about Miss Murphy’s use of language. With the clanging of the lunchtime bell, Murphy had an annoying habit of jumping up and shouting, “Feeding time, bitches!” to a whoop of delight from her cronies. As the group had headed for the door, Miss Jowens had ordered the girl to remain behind and sternly lectured her about such behavior and language in her, Miss Jowens’s, presence. Amidst the usual teenage eye-rolling and eye-avoiding pouts, Murphy had mumbled something about it being a name she and her “homies” used amongst themselves and no insult was meant by it. Ever after, the impudent young madam had paused before uttering the offensive phrase in time to say something like, “Meal time… ladies!” in her sing-song voice.

Over the next few weeks, it became apparent that there was some tension between Miss Jowens and that particular class of girls. Even some of her colleagues had approached her in the staffroom or taken her aside and advised her, in hushed tones, to watch her step. It seemed that even the staff referred to the clique as “The Bitches”. Miss Jowens, although a little perturbed at the nickname, assured her colleagues and herself that her professionalism would rise above it all.

Time however, took its toll. And Miss Jowen’s nerves were becoming seriously frayed at the behavior and attitude of these stroppy young besoms. This morning had been a near breaking straw when she had come in to teach an early history class about Templar monuments (which had received whistles of derision) only to find the infuriating Murphy sitting on the desk with her skirt pulled high, revealing a scratch across her thigh to her friends.

“I assume, Dannielle, that there is some explanation for such bawdy behavior?” Miss Jowens had demanded. The girl stood, letting her skirt fall back to its full length.

“Yes, Miss. I was showing the girls some scratches I got during a cross-country run last evening when I tried to put my leg over a fence.” She smirked. Miss Jowens ignored it.

“Yes, well thank you, Dannielle, but a history class is not the place for such things…”

“No Miss, sorry Miss, I don’t suppose you’re into getting your leg over things,” came the taunting reply, followed by another comment from a girl behind,

“That would be ancient history!” This remark brought giggles from the class and the declaration of a one hour detention for the entire group that evening. The sentence brought moans and protests,

“But Miss, we’ve got cross-country tonight!”

“Then you’ll miss it, won’t you?” Miss Jowens declared triumphantly. A class of sullen heads bent over the text books and several pairs of angry eyes glared under their fringes at the teacher.

The detention classroom was ready and the girls filtered in slowly and sullenly. There were several books of short stories placed at the desks, Miss Jowens having just finished a literature class on early 20thc supernatural fiction. Danni Murphy slouched in and picked up one of the volumes with a whoop.

“It’s M.R. James time, Bitches!” and the rest of the class cheered. This was the final straw. In a voice of sheer fury, Miss Jowens ordered them to leave the books and to take their places. How dare they disgrace the work of the master with such behavior. They were not fit to read such fine works. And Dannielle Murphy was ordered to the front of the class. She stood, defiant.

“Make me!” she taunted. Miss Jowens fixed her with a glare,

“When I whistle, you’ll come to me my girl!” she replied in a hard voice. The girl moved slowly to the front of the class to stand before the enraged teacher. “Good, now face the class”. With a heavenward  eye-roll, she turned slowly only to receive two lightning hard whacks across the back of her thighs with a pointer. She yelped and jumped around to face Miss Jowens with a savage stare.

“Don’t worry, Miss Murphy, those two won’t go down in the pointer’s diary… but if you’d like some more… otherwise, sit down while you can!”

Seemingly defeated, the sulking girl limped towards a desk. The class was silent, in a state of shock. There was only a mild response when it was announced that Miss Murphy’s behavior had earned them an extra hour of detention. One or two girls pointed out they would miss their evening meal but otherwise the rebellion seemed to have lost heart. Miss Jowens wrote up the detention assignment and sat back, satisfied.

The double detention had meant that the sun was setting as Miss Jowens began her usual cycle ride down the unlit moor road. She wasn’t worried as she had a good light and the weather was mild. It was a straight road and there was no chance of getting lost. But it did occur to her that this was the first time she had crossed this area at night.

Around ten minutes into her ride, she thought she heard the sound of running. Looking around, she saw nothing, although it was so dark that she couldn’t have seen if anything was there. Still she heard a drumming sound like the pounding of feet. Perhaps there were sheep of moor ponies attracted to her light, she thought. However, despite such attempts at comforting herself, she pedaled faster. The road snaked into a broad bend just before the stream bridge and she seemed to hear the running veer off to one side. She sighed in relief but continued to increase her pace as she approached the little flat bridge.

The hard, heavy bulk crashed out of the dark and sent Miss Jowens flying from her trusty bicycle, into the stream which gurgled under the bridge. Struggling to stand, she turned towards the bridge to find a large black canine confronting her with red eyes and a slavering snarl.

Miss Jowens had heard local legends of black dogs but had dismissed them. Legendary or not, however, there could be no mistaking the size and ferocity of the beast before her. She attempted to scramble up the stream bank only to find her way barred by another canine, this time with a lighter coat. Looking over to her right, a third creature was likewise barring her escape whilst baring its fangs.

Miss Jowens choked a scream for help and began to run, stumbling along the length of the stream, often falling and rising, drenched to continue her fruitless attempt to escape. The two lighter beasts ran alongside the stream and then, suddenly, with a great snarling and splashing, she heard the black one charging up the waterway behind her.

Slipping and stumbling, the terrified teacher clawed her way up the shallow bank and began to run across the moor. The thundering of the canine pads came hard and fast as the black dog jumped at her back, bringing her face down into the mud and peat. The other two hounds grabbed her arms in their jaws and dragged her fast and roughly across the sharp, abrasive surface of the moor. Through the pain and the banging of her head the bloodied woman became aware of several other dogs running alongside, barking joyously. The blessed darkness of unconsciousness spared her more.

“Did you enjoy the cross country run?”

The familiar voice crept into her ear, pulling her from the sweet darkness. Her eyes flickered open and through the blurred vision Miss Jowens began to make out a new face, canine, with burning eyes and an almost impertinent grin to its fanged mouth. Miss Jowens shivered as the face came nearer, licking her across the face and thrusting its nose into hers. She shuddered, waiting for the snap of jaws. The animal seemed to snort in amusement and turned its back on the terrified woman.

As her eyesight adjusted, Miss Jowens became aware that this dog, seemingly the leader of the pack which surrounded her had a two toned coat; the upper part around the body being dark but the hind legs being pale, almost white but with two fierce red lines across the back of them. The snarling face turned to gaze at her.

“Kneel, Jowens” came a voice, a singsong, almost human voice. The teacher choked back a cry and stared, quivering as the beast turned to face her. Raising herself onto her knees, Miss Jowens sobbed a final word…

“Dannielle?” she croaked.

The upper lip curled and the eyes rolled upwards before honing in on Miss Jowens’ widening pupils. The other dogs whined excitedly as the cry came,

“FEEDING TIME, BITCHES!”

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The Meat Grinder

MeatGrinderText

Deadmans Tome The Meat Grinder

Attention writers, are you confident in your writing ability? Do you feel that your ability to tell a story is on point? Well, then put it to the test! Send in your stories and let it be at the mercy of the readers. Some will shower with praise, some will tear it down with ridicule, and some might just be kind enough to give you a dollar.

How does this work? Easy, send in story to jessecdedman@gmail.com and it will be placed on the site and given a week to earn feedback in the form of views, likes, and comments. Stories that fail to please to interest the readers, whether the feedback is positive or negative, will be removed from the site. Reader interest would be determined based on whether a story is viewed, liked, or commented on with in first 72 hours it is placed on the site. Stories that receive consecutive negative comments, three comments in a row, will be removed from the site in shame. Authors are free to remove their stories at any time, and they may do so depending on the sort of feedback received. However, the story stays on the Deadman’s Tome site and has the most points calculated based on views, likes, and comments within 30 days it is place on the site will earn $50 via PayPal. The authors will compete against each other, share their stories, promote it any way they can, and might even sabotage others.

How it works? Stories in The Meat Grinder stories will post in batches on Monday and those stories will compete. The story that survives to the following Saturday and has the most points will win money. Each view is worth 1 point, each like is worth 2 points, and each comment is worth 3 points.

Authors can also earn money in the form of donations. Every story in The Meat Grinder will have the option for donations. Authors will receive 60% of the donations. 40% will go to Deadman’s Tome in hopes to increase the Monthly payout.

Submit your work into the meat grinder and see if it doesn’t turn into pulverized crap.

The Meat Grinder is open to short stories, flash fiction, and poems, of the dark fiction and creepy variety.

Send stories to jessecdedman@gmail.com with meat grinder in subject.

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Interview with Norbert Gora

Norbert Gora is talented poet and writer that demonstrated that you can polish a turd! Don’t believe me? Check out his poem The Vast Sea of Shit in Deadman’s Tome Shit Fest. The poem provides layers upon layers of social commentary from a cynical perspective. As with all of the stories in the Shit Fest, The Vast Sea of Shit blends disgust and horror with an element of humor.

Mr. Deadman: Let’s start with why Shit Fest?

Norbert Gora: It’s because my interest in bizarro and extreme horror fiction. This kind of literature pushes the edge, but in my poem I tried to draw the attention of readers to another type of shit – contemporary media and idiotic behavior of people.

Mr. Deadman: You have a point about bizarro and extreme horror, nothing quite pushes the limits in terms of graphic content. However, what do you say to those that dismiss that graphic content as a gimmick?

Norbert Gora: As a gimmick? I’ve never heard of such readers. I’d rather expect people who dismiss these subgenres because of bestiality, stupidity and manifestation of the total fall of literature. What could I tell them? Your choice, but you won’t stop the development of this literature. The 21st century is the apogee of cruelty and idiocy.

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Mr. Deadman: Some dismiss the extreme content as unnecessary, but I agree that there are times when the graphic imagery is needed to tell a story. Take your poem, for example, a quick glimpse into the cruelty of humanity. I think the poem wouldn’t be as effective if it were “tame”.

Tell me, what was the inspiration, the motivation, for your poem?
Norbert Gora: I wrote this poem more than a year ago for a special call for submissions. It was supposed to be an anthology of the heaviest stuff between horror and bizarro. The editor inspired us with a short note: “Make your work disgust my life”. I have been improving it for so long that the deadline has finally passed. In fact, the motivation to writing this poem was very weird. I was very helpless then and I had to “restart” myself somehow. A poem about the shit was an ideal reboot.
Mr. Deadman: Wow, I didn’t expect a submission call for shit to be so… therapeutic? The poem reflects a brutal reality, but tell me about its depth? Was this based on a real event? Personal experience?
Norbert Gora: It based more on the observation of modern civilization, influenced by media. What do we have on TV, whether American or Polish? Is this something meaningful or just a total crap? Comedies in which the characters alternately shit and have sex, programs in which people admire a guy devouring two kilograms of beef on time. It looks like society is some kind of a huge loo, hah! That’s why I wrote this poem – to describe the darker part of humanity.

Mr. Deadman: Well, the poem certainly reflects the darker side of humanity. This line comes to mind. It grabbed my attention and worked well to frame the rest.

oh God, tell me why did you do it
clogged toilet with a monstrous poop
Not to get religious on you, and you’re free to go as deep as you feel comfortable with, but do you think God clogged the toilet that is humanity with a monstrous poop?
Norbert Gora: The hardest question, hah!
Well, according to religious teachings, God created us. He is also our “guardian”. After difficult, stressful experiences, most of us ask “God, why did you do that?”.
In this line, God nothing to do with it. I just wonder why He had to show me this toilet(knowing that He is our “guardian”). There are two answers:
1. If the toilet is a symbol of the world and God created us, we – as a humanity – poop on it. We don’t really care about the world.
2. It’s also a surreal, dingy allusion to people, which is connected with the first answer. We act like a sloven. In many cases, life comes down to consumption and excretion. This toilet is the final stage of “life”.
Mr. Deadman: Oh, that phrase is used a lot: God, why did you do that? I like your answers because I can see one would gravitate towards them. It’s true that as a species we are not afraid to exploit others and the environment for money and power. It’s also true that consumption and excretion is a fact of life. I can’t think of a single organism that doesn’t consume and excrete. While every organism follows this pattern, humans do it on a much larger scale. We may sound like a couple of hippies right now, but it’s true. People equals shit.
How do you feel that many will fear going number two after reading this disgusting book?
Norbert Gora: Then I will think that this was the point that we wanted to achieve.

Mr. Deadman: Hahaha, it really is. I couldn’t use a toilet without fear that a demon would bite my ass after watching Ghoulies II, and know I want others to feel the same!

What other projects do you have lined up?
Norbert Gora: I’m the author of more than 100 poems published in numerous anthologies around the world(most of them are horror&dark anthologies).
Mr. Deadman: What do you like to do when you’re not writing?
Norbert Gora: I like… reading 😀 I assume you didn’t expect it
Mr. Deadman: How did you find Deadman’s Tome?
Norbert Gora: I found a call for submissions for Deadman’s Tome on Horror Tree. Then I looked at your website. It was very interesting, so I decided to send my submission.
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Murder Suicides

Murders, suicides, and brutal savagery claims more lives than you may think. With over hundreds of thousands of lives claimed every year, its an indisputable fact that it’s not uncommon for heated arguments to lead to heated death. While this is not just an American thing, it’s a very real horror, a very real reality that permeates American society.

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While most fiction create fictitious worlds to distract from the brutal reality, Real American Horror dares to do the opposite. Deadman’s Tome Real American Horror dares to explore the dark underbelly of American lives. Every story is based on real life events, based on truths that are much more horrific than anything you could make up. Crib-side murder suicides, Zika viruses, torture, abduction, and meth addicts. This grim anthology paints a very bleak, but very important image.