Moonlight – An Absence

Drabble: Horror

Something wakes me.  A sudden absence jerks me awake, and I open my eyes to find the room pitch-black.  I know the night is cloudless – I checked the weather report before bed.  I know the moon isn’t new – it shone full the night before.

I get up and go to the window.  The landscape is black, with no hint of the moonlight.  I step out onto the balcony, looking up.  There hangs the moon, round and silver but radiating nothing.  It’s holding in its light, not even softening the sky.

What will happen when the sun comes up?

The Fallowing – The Fourth, Part VII

Claire talking here.

Novel: Occult Adventure

“I saw him in the light of the children’s lamp and I screamed, and I didn’t know yet why Uncle Taylor didn’t come.  I knew later it was because that man didn’t want him to come, didn’t even let him hear me scream.  But I screamed and ran in, thinking only of the children.  He turned, still on the bed, ruffling Mary’s hair, and he put a finger to his lips and shushed me.  And somehow that stopped me and calmed me all at the same time.

“And he said ‘Don’t wake the children.’

“That chilled me down to my bones, because I knew that’s what he was here about.  But I couldn’t speak, couldn’t grab them and run like I had meant to do when I first saw him sitting on Mary’s bed.

“He looked down at her again, brushing a strand of hair from her forehead, and his profile in the light of the lamp was so perfectly beautiful, but wrong somehow.  Something in the set of his brows or lips.

“’They don’t have long,’ he said.

Continue reading “The Fallowing – The Fourth, Part VII”

I’ve Been Seeing You

Drabble: Horror

I know we haven’t spoken in a while but I have something to tell you.  I’ve been seeing you.  Just walking around, not noticing me, just walking and staring.  Mostly late at night or in the early morning hours when it’s dark – so dark it was hard to tell at first that it was really you.  But during the day too, in the shadow cast by a passing cloud.

I don’t know what’s going on.  These things… they can’t possibly be ghosts.  I mean, here I am talking to you on the phone, and you’re clearly alive.  Right?

…Right?

The Fallowing – The Fourth, Part VI

I don’t think I actually put in an explanation of Atsel’s watch.  I was going to, but forgot.  I’ll fix it in post.

Novel: Occult Adventure

Claire was pretty shocked to see us again so soon.  On her front porch I held Sam’s wet clothes and coat in a store bag.  Sam wore new clothes someone had bought from a Berber’s down the street from the bridge with some silver from Sam’s bag, which I noted on opening was still quite adequate even after buying me that watch.

“Sam fell in the river,” I said.  “Don’t ask.  We were wondering if your uncle could take another look at him.”

Sam had his arms folded, both from cold and from pouting.  He hadn’t wanted to go back to the doctor, citing reasons such as he can make the hotel room safe and the children will be put in danger and Atsel will just trail us back and forth across town.

But I insisted on account of, you know, hypothermia after excessive blood loss.

Continue reading “The Fallowing – The Fourth, Part VI”

The Fallowing – The Fourth, Part V

Novel: Occult Adventure

They didn’t want to let Sam go that day, but we insisted.  We didn’t want to involve them, especially once I told Sam there were children in the house.  I had a thermos on me which Claire filled with sweetened coffee, and she waved to us from the doorway with a silly grin on her face as if she knew something we didn’t.  The doctor just frowned at us and mumbled that Sam needed rest.

The sun was fading as we walked towards the river, heading south on Michigan Avenue towards our hotel, a bit cowed knowing that we were likely being watched.  We were silent for a long time as we passed shops and restaurants and bars with music blaring and bands playing.  By the time we hit the river the sky was dark.  I looked up at it, at its zenith where the stars would have been winking on right about now.  Thinking about stars again.

“Faye,” Sam said sternly as he caught my arm.

I brought my head down from the sky and saw I had nearly run into a streetlight.

Continue reading “The Fallowing – The Fourth, Part V”

I Dreamt of You

Drabble: Horror

I dreamt of you, sinking into the darkness.  A final kick, a final twitch of the muscles.  A final breath racked free from your throat as it went limp, as your lips began to freeze in perfect parting, turning pale and icing over.  Your eyes shining blue in the black, shock-still in their white frames.  Your body turning around, around, pirouettes lowering you into the steady abyss.

I wake to the phone clanging like a scream.  I still see you, burned into my mind, as I answer.  They tell me you drowned – an accident.  But I knew that already.

The Fallowing – Supplemental

I’m hard at work editing and revising the first chapter of Fallowing, back when Faye was chasing the wolf-monster-type-thing.  So here’s a little extra I’m adding in.

Novel: Occult Adventure

Several people from the bar offered me a place to settle down for what remained of the night, but Ben insisted the most.  His place was part of an apartment complex, as crumbled as the bar but warm in its collective housing, full of families and heating elements.  With a candle before us he led me up the stairway and to a darkened set of rooms where his parents and grandfather and sisters slept, aunts and uncles and cousins of Carrie.  Even though the furnace was turned down for the night, it was still a marked change from sleeping outside in a tent.

Ben stole into the hallway and pulled blankets from the closet.  He silently handed them over to me, and they sat thick and heavy in my arms.  A sister was already sprawled on the couch, and Ben woke her and grumbled at her to go into the bedroom.  But she drunkenly waved him away and rolled over.

Continue reading “The Fallowing – Supplemental”

The Fallowing – The Fourth, Part IV

Novel: Occult Adventure

Sam woke with a start, bathed in sweat.  He had been tossing fitfully in his sleep, and even as he woke he threw his arms in the air and his eyes flew open wide.

I put a hand on his shoulder and he jerked at the touch before grimacing.  His hands went to the bandages layered across his chest.  He tried to sit up and I stopped him, so he rolled onto his side, facing me, though I tried to stop that too.  He grimaced again as he got himself settled.

“Am I okay?” he asked me.

“You lost a lot of blood but you’ll be fine.  So long as you quit moving around.”

“I remember a car came along.”

“Claire came along, and she went out in the street and stopped a car.”  I remembered how Sam had looked, staring at his blood-stained hands, not pain on his face but fear.  He had looked at me and there was so much terror in his eyes my throat closed and I couldn’t breathe.  His hands were shaking so hard I thought he might be going into shock.

Continue reading “The Fallowing – The Fourth, Part IV”

The Fallowing – The Fourth, Part III

Short snippet for right now because I want to post something but don’t want to proofread much because I just edited a whole bunch of chapter one.

Novel: Occult Adventure

Sam had told me what Atsel looked like.  Long brown hair, he had said.  Golden eyes.  And that I would know him when I saw him.

In that instantaneous moment when I brought my gun around, I took in the man who had appeared behind me, and I knew what Sam meant.  This guy was goddamned gorgeous.  The expression on his face was calm, serene.  Angelic.  It hit me like a ton of bricks.

But my muscles were already primed to shoot the gun.  And they did, twice.

Continue reading “The Fallowing – The Fourth, Part III”

The Fallowing – The Fourth, Part II

Novel: Occult Adventure

“Do you have a watch?” Sam asked.

I glared at him.  We were outside the hotel.  We had stepped outside the doors and stopped, not altogether sure of where to go to from there.

“You gave my watch to Gehazi,” I told him.

“Oh yeah.”  He was looking up at the tops of the buildings, at the sky that was pretty clear as far as the sky goes.  I took that as a good sign.

“We’ll have to use the backup.”  He pulled a watch from his pocket.

“You’ve had a watch this whole time and you gave mine away?” I nearly shouted at him.

“Well we needed one in reserve,” he said, almost apologetically.  “And I know this one works.  I wasn’t sure how good yours was.  We need a working one.”

“Mine worked perfectly.”

Continue reading “The Fallowing – The Fourth, Part II”