FLASH FICTION *The Things We Do For Love*

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The Things We Do For Love
R.A Goli

He smells a bit funny tonight.
Sniff.
It doesn’t really matter as he is already taking off his torn t-shirt. Watching him undress makes me feel tingly between my legs. I move forward to help him unzip his jeans. He rips my t-shirt off in a desperate act of passion and it makes me moan in anticipation. He starts to kiss my neck and slips a hand up my skirt. He nibbles at my skin gently, licking and tasting, then he bites. Hard. I can feel my flesh tear and my own blood spill across my neck and shoulder. The pain is intense and I let out a warbled cry, my hands grasping his hair to pull him back. Tears prick my eyes and my breath quickens, but I resist the urge to move away from him. I love him. This is the only way we can be together.

I’m just glad that he doesn’t want to eat my brains.

He pushes me back onto the bed and then scrambles on top of me. I slide my hands up his chest, the skin mottled gray but mostly unblemished, and I look into his cloudy eyes, as he chews and swallows a piece of me. I wonder where he will bite next, how much I will have to endure before I can be with him. Be like him.

The door bursts open and a shotgun blast rings through the small room. I scream, as his head breaks apart and I am splattered in the gore and fragments of my beloved’s skull. I sit up, wiping the blood from my eyes, my face stinging from the shards of bone splintering my skin. I look down; he is still. Most of his skull is gone, his face torn away, leaving him unrecognizable. But, he smells so good. I pick up a limp arm and begin gnawing at his flesh.

I tear a piece off with my teeth and let it roll over my tongue before I begin to chew. It tastes better than the most succulent steak I have ever eaten, his blood sweeter than any red wine jus. I hear the click of the shotgun barrel as it’s reloaded and I look up, but my vision is blurry, everything has a yellow tinge. I put a hand to my chest and realize that my heart has stopped.

The man says, “I’m sorry pumpkin,” but it comes out in heavy sobs.

That’s when my slowing brain puts the pieces together and I realize who it is.

“Daddy, no,” I say as he raises the shotgun, aiming at my head. I put my hand up as though it can stop a bullet. I see it splatter in a thousand crimson pieces, in slow motion. And then everything is black.

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My Father’s Buick

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My Father’s Buick

by David Gilman-Frederick

            Cyrus could scarcely believe his ears.

“You can’t seriously be saying,” he raised both eyebrows, “that you don’t make any decisions at all? That the Lord Jesus Christ does all your thinking for you? I mean, he chooses your outfits in the morning; they, like, magically appear, all laid out on your bed? Do you do your homework, Jeremy – or does your Heavenly Father? What kind of grades do you get?” he laughed without amusement, a friend without an r. “I mean, God what, God brushes your teeth for you . . . .”  He mimed this and then laughed again.

Sitting opposite him on the stoop, Jeremy slumped forward, pale and shivering. His skin was a sallow, hypothermic blue, despite the warmth of the early May evening. He focused on a spot on the step between his generic tennis shoes. He didn’t answer, just trembled and tilted his head in a gesture somewhere between a nod and a shake. Continue reading

Cover Reveal for ‘One Night in Salem’

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Autumn 2017, explore Halloween Night in Salem through a collection of short stories spanning four-hundred years. PRE-ORDER HERE.

One Night in Salem - High Resolution

From the cursed settlers to the Great Salem Fire of 1914, from the whispers of war in 1812 to the story of a bullet hole in an alley on Gedney Street. Bear witness to things both lost and forgotten in the passing of decades and remember tales of a city long gone, for Salem is different on every other day of the year. One night remains a celebration of the darkness wrapped up in the arms of specters still haunting the place in which they lived and died. Travel through time, glimpsing the Witch City on the most important night of the year, October 31st.

OFFICIAL RELEASE DATE TBA, EXPECTED LATE SEPTEMBER, 2017. Pre-order now to ensure your copy and a special pre-order bonus, TBA.

Featuring stories by:

Erin Crocker, Kathleen Halecki, Linette Kasper, Elizabeth Sweetman, Nancy Brewka-Clark, Jim Towns, E. D. Margay, L. W. Bellin, Jonathan Nichols, Jeremy Megargee, Samantha Lucero, Heddy Johannesen, Daniel LeFever, R. C. Mulhare, Steve Zisson, Chad McClendon, Kevin Lewis, Patrick Cooper, Charles Reis, Benjamin N. Thomas, Few More TBA

*Flash Fiction* The Stranger in Your Bed

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The Stranger in Your Bed

By Laura Beasley

Her answers didn’t add up.

She told him the wooden cage was for a large bird she’d caught. But only small and medium-sized birds lived in the woods. She let him chop up the cage to burn in the fireplace.

She let him scrape the candy off the outside of the cottage. It had been a failed decorating project she’d seen on Pinterest. Women do crazy things.

They met on a dating website. He liked her long, grey hair and flowing black dresses. She was interested in marriage and liked children. She owned her cottage in the middle of the woods.

Their relationship was clicking and he planned to pop the question. He was ready to bring his grandson to visit on weekends.

Everything changed one day. He was fixing dinner in her kitchen while she painted her nails blood-red. He needed more EVOO for the salad dressing. He found the pouch of bones in the pantry. They were children’s finger bones.

He never married her. He kept his grandson safe.

He called the cold case district attorney. The DA had been searching for the killer of a missing child. A little boy had been lost in the woods for more than a decade.

Hansel’s parents would find peace at last.

 

The Only One in the Room

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The Only One in the Room

By Nick Manzolillo

The bodies sway gently in the breeze, with one hanging from every other lamppost along the Main Street.  Robert wonders how they all got up there, he doesn’t see any ladders.  He takes one final pull from his cigarette and then tosses it against the asphalt. There’s a brilliant flash of sparks before the stub’s sole ember is left struggling to remain alive before it eventually suffocates.  Other corpses rock to and fro from the tree branches, but they are shrouded in the late evening darkness.  Go figure, the next bus isn’t coming ‘til the morning, but this was always meant to be the boring part of the trip. Continue reading

Theater Three

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Theater Three

By Ellie Brown

When I was in my early twenties, I worked at a small movie theater that showed only independent, cult, and foreign films. The theater was built in the early 1940’s and was decorated in the style of the era with heavy red velvet curtains, stained glass light fixtures, and dark wood. My co-workers were mostly college students at nearby Wayne State University or were enjoying their post-graduation “lost years”, like me. We slacked off, smoked pot in the basement and on the roof, picked the films for the summer midnight movie series, came up with cast lists for who would play each of us in a movie about our theater, and generally had the run of the place. Despite the minimum wage pay, tacky uniforms, and the misanthropy that comes with working with the public, it remains my favorite job. Except for this one thing… Continue reading

Drops

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Drops

By Lee Blevins

The first drop fell during a Buster Keaton comedy at the arthouse theater in the city nearest their town. Bertrand felt the cool plop of a single drop of liquid upon the edge of his hairline. He raised his hand and brushed the water off and chalked it up to leakage or spittle or maybe premeditated hooligansim and continued watching the film.

The second drop fell during fourth period the following day. Bertrand had placed a slide upside down a projector. One of the less anarchic students then pointed out the error. Bertrand was turning the slide around when the second drop fell onto the transparent sheet. The fluid ate through the word Indochina. Continue reading