via eZine Guidelines
Great story from Lee A.Forman for Pen of the Damned.
Beneath the stars I entered the forest, machete unsheathed. The idea of a gun rejected early in my search. It wasn’t personal enough. I wanted to sever its ability to escape and run my hand over its face—it had no eyes; I wanted to make sure it could see me. I needed it to know it was me who consigned it to death.
I pondered the irony of where the hunt would end. Years I searched to unmask the hidden wretch, my obsession. In that time I encountered many a sinful beast, but none so horrible as the eyeless thing that took my wife. Meryl’s expression held elegance even in shock, as its shiny, coal-dark arm wrapped around her throat and took her forever.
I sought out urban legends, overheard rumors in bar conversations, asked questions no sane person would dare. But none of the things I hunted turned out…
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Holes by Paul F. Lenzi
“Grief” by Vrindavan Das
in places where
laughter and life
blood and bone
abandoned to deep
of fierce absence
we miss them
the dead and the gone
the echoes that loved us
washed out images slip
from the eyes of the mind
fade from pages of
sadness resigned with
of loss in a rich blend
of memories forming
a tincture of grief
an emotional balm
made to infill the holes
left in souls that might
incomplete and alone
A little scary Halloween story by Nina D’Arcangela for Pen of the Damned.
Muttering to himself as he always does, ole Gus shuffled to the basement door, pulled it open, and carefully descended the barely lit stairs. Once in the subterranean cavern – as he liked to imagine it – he began searching the dusty shelves for boxes marked ‘Halloween’ in Ester’s neat, tidy handwriting. God rest her soul. Given what a pain in the ass his wife had been in life, he’d never thought he would miss her nagging so much now that she was gone. Oh well, done is done, can’t dwell on the past. That’s the way he’d always lived his life, no reason to go changing now. If he could just get the damned Priest from their church to stop coming by, he could finally catch up on his shows. That old coot would do just about anything to get a little extra change on the Sunday…
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Maxwell’s Cellar by Andrew Forman.
“Brett, wake up.”
His voice echoed, came to my ears from great distance.
“Wake up, you worthless slag.”
Cracks of light burned my eyes. Slowly they grew until I saw the familiar boots of Sam Brooks. Those stupid fucking skull buckles… Peculiar how my first thought lent itself to something so unimportant.
He grabbed my collar and pulled me from the floor. “Come on, you shit, we’re going to see the boss.”
My attempts at a response led to no success. Throat dry, lips cracked, desperate for water—I couldn’t even croak. Not that I knew what the fuck I would say. I had no idea where I was and little memory of how I got there. Something about a bar and a yellow neon light; I’m pretty sure it was shaped in the name of some cheap beer.
Sam dragged me down the hall, jeans riding along the splintered…
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