Tarmac turns to dirt, and the van bounces across uneven ground, causing my pen to roll off the passenger seat and the hanging cross to swing violently from side to side. There he is, walking straight towards me, about a hundred yards head, swaying his...

I should have taken more notice of the graffiti when I arrived at the Highbrooks. But the sad fact is that the strange scribblings on the complex were the least of my worries here. Traveling alone is never something I would recommend when you are in an...

Gabriel Larson walked up to Colby Pittman on the playground at recess and kicked him square in the nuts.  The heavyset, bug-eyed redhead crumpled to the ground.  Then Gabriel kicked him in the stomach with the force of a raging bull.  Nobody stopped him.  Everyone...

First, Grant Bateman found out that he had lost his job.  He showed up to work and was told to clear out his desk. When he got home, he found his wife in a flurry of activity that looked a lot like packing her things.  She...

If anyone ever asked me to name the best three people I know, Russell Allison would be the first name out of my mouth.  We’ve been friends since high school, and in the twenty years since, I’ve never had any reason to doubt his honesty,...

When I was thirteen, I abandoned my best friend. It wasn’t intentional, not really.  I’d been the one that had been sure of what we had to do—telling our parents, convincing them to tell the police, and promising Virginia what no matter what, when it came...

He makes the walk from living room to bedroom as if approaching the scene of an accident, as loath to see what waits in the bed as he’d be to discover a mangled body in a smoking vehicle.  The bulges in the sheets are abstract...

When I drive, pell-mell, to the hospital for the birth of our first child, I never expect we’ll be leaving without the baby.  I certainly never anticipate making the trip home with a doll buckled into the infant carrier, all glass eyes and vinyl limbs. ...

A layperson might have found it off-putting, but to Dr. Ian Wessner, the sound was comforting, nostalgic.  It was like something from a Star Wars movie; a combination of R2-D2 passing on some critical message and the Millennium Falcon readying for takeoff.  Even a regenerative...

Fact: according to the Insurance Information Institute, there is a one in one hundred and sixteen chance that you, taking your car out for a drive, will crash into a deer.  Those odds increase drastically during the fall and winter months, during the white-tailed deer’s...

It was August in Alabama, half past noon, and suffocatingly hot. It was beautiful outside, with pines lining the road and the smell of their sap in the air. But nature couldn’t mask the stark scenes of small-town decay. Alms Hill was barely big enough to...

I’ve had an effect on people ever since I was a child. I can’t explain it and it’s driven me to the brink of insanity. I never asked or prayed for it. In fact, I don’t even know if I believe in God. But the...

I went camping a few weeks ago. I wanted to be alone after my recent break-up and thought some quiet time with nature would help clear my head. I picked a mountain at random in New Hampshire. I’m not going to tell you which one....

Do you know what a mentalist is, by any chance? By definition, it’s someone with amazing observational skills who uses them to figure things out about people. Kind of like reading their mind. It doesn’t sound too interesting to watch, but you’d be surprised! My Dad...

Paul nearly jumped out of his skin when he realized that his little sister was standing right next to him. He was focused like a laser, writing the next horror short that the Dark Shadows Rising podcast was demanding. The closer the deadline loomed, the...

“Look, Daddy! An airplane!” my son Sedrek pointed up at the sky at the brilliant metallic dot cutting a white line across the clear blue sky. This was something of a family tradition. When I saw airplanes as a little boy, I had to point them...

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