The whale pod of water tankers flowed past Sophie as she sheltered in the verge of the hard shoulder. A piece of plastic from the ditch propped beside her kept away the worst buffeting of the wind. Vast wheels of the trucks hit the road...

It’s nearly Hanukkah again, the Jewish winter holiday also called the Festival of Lights. To most people, that refers to the oil that miraculously lasted much longer than it should have, keeping the eternal flame burning until more oil could be made. For me, though,...

The evening would arrive before long, but Marian wanted a bit more time outside.  She hoped to study the birds that still hopped and pecked at the dusty grounds around Ernstmoor Estate.  Sometimes, they would turn their heads, directing one of their black and focused...

Donald opened the front door, looking for who rang. There was no one on the porch of the big house or the walkway below. He looked around, eyes scanning the street, but he saw no one. Maybe some teenagers were playing their pranks, but Christmas...

Kerry had his hands in his pockets as he traversed the trail, walking quickly but still unable to escape his own mind. It was freezing, and he wasn’t at all dressed for it outside of his boots, but the air wasn’t any colder than he...

Tucker yawned, but he finished it with a smile. He had waited a long time for this day. It was his first Christmas with his new wife and stepdaughter, Tiffany. She hadn’t been hateful up to this point, but she hadn’t connected with him either....

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...

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...

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...

“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...

I know he is there—the man who lives in the forest.  I am yet to see him directly, but I feel his presence nonetheless.  He flows as a shifting shadow between the boughs and branches of the trees — a dancer in the darkness unheard...

The Crocodile House stands alone in the scrubland; old, abandoned and overgrown.  And I use the term ‘stands’ in the loosest possible sense.  It must have been a grand place, once, but the building is now a dilapidated wreck. The council put some fences up around...

When there was a chill in the air and there were more jack-o-lanterns than plain pumpkins on every doorstep, I got called out to investigate a fresh crime scene. Somebody thought that it would be real cute to firebomb a Catholic church. Now this wasn’t one...

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