He felt old and tired.  That was all he knew about himself.  He rose from his bed and washed his face while he waited for his mind to focus.  There was a gentle shifting of the floor beneath him.  “Am I on a ship?” the...

When I first started sleepwalking, my wife mostly found it funny.  She stays up much later than I do in the evenings.  Apparently, I’ve started finding my way to her home office just down the hall from our bedroom.  If I can even remember these...

My cousin AJ told me this story in 2006.  He was twenty-seven years old and would soon be on his deathbed.  AJ claims that he got sick because of what happened to him back in 1998.  He was nineteen then.  Now that he’s gone, I...

My mother and I used to live together in a large house on the crest of a hill.  We had a sitting room that overlooked the churchyard cemetery a short way down the road.  I rarely went into that room as a child because that’s...

We trekked out into the middle of this desert to find solitude.  To “achieve greater introspective insight than we could have ever achieved in the real world,” as Jeff put it, was our goal.  When there is no wind and no sound besides your own...

The lavish banquet that had been so expertly laid out on the long, elegant refractory table before me could only be described as perfect. Truly, utterly, perfect. It was the most sublimely archetypical Thanksgiving Dinner that I could imagine. The table was draped in a...

The painted gray metal door leading from the reception area to the mechanics’ bays banged open. “Hey … we got a hot one!” “Yeah?” Nigel asked. Larry nodded and winked, “Oh, yeah!” Nigel smiled. “Do we have some time?” “All day, Nige. Guy’s wife came in, rushing him around, nagging him...

Maggie pulled her Honda Civic to the curb and cut the engine. It was her second stop of the morning, garage sale number two.  And, boy, is it a big one! she thought.  People were clustered alongside the road, ambling eagerly toward the lawn further down...

Growing up, my wife Rhea's best friend in life was her brother Evan. Even with the age and gender difference, they were kindred spirits. Out of millions of genetic possibilities, somehow, they were born with the same mental framework. He taught her how to ride...

Chapter 1: Man’s Best Friend The sound of Duane’s Dodge diesel pounded a steady thump with a deep cadence as it idled up the dirt drive to the barn. The sun was setting but it still hung just above the ridge that rose above their farmhouse....

Chapter 1 If you want to know just how unimportant you are, get a job at the biggest company you can. The bigger the outfit, the smaller the cog you’ll be in that cascading clockwork that makes the thing move. You’d be more significant as the sole...

Chapter 1: The Beginning Loretta could see two versions of the mockingbird in the tree outside her window. One with ugly gray and black feathers, the other with beautiful aqua feathers. The aqua bird was so much more pleasing to Loretta’s sight. The black and gray...

They were gone.  The call left me stunned, sick to my stomach.  How did people go missing in today’s world?  How did two perfectly capable adults vanish off the face of the earth in a place where everyone knew everything about the folks who lived...

“The first reported incident was an alleged homicide in which a man killed five people in the master bedroom, dissected them in a meticulous fashion and vanished with the lungs, vocal chords, and epiglottis of all five of the five victims.  The killer, a man...

“I don’t know, man, the cabin is really far out there and you’d be alone until Sunday.” “Alright, If it’ll help you get over this thing with Sam you can stay at the cabin for the weekend.  Just, you know, you remember what it’s like.  Things...

Chapter 1: Blake and Dani’s Dark Tourism Welcome to Helltown, Ohio. The dripping letters and numbers appeared to have been spray-painted over the original town’s name and stats. Population: 3,000,000+ Elevation: -6666. A nice place to visit. A better place to live. I laughed out loud at...

Chapter 1 She sat in the window seat of the Allegiant direct flight from Springfield, Missouri to Tampa, Florida. Cruising at 42,000 feet above the earth, Elsie was dressed to kill, wearing a crimson red halter top and black yoga shorts so tight they appeared to...

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