I often sit here and wonder what horror is all about. Its actual meaning when referred to by the masses in their huddled conversations on a cold winter morning while out on a smoke break, or the lone, long distance delivery driver, with plenty to consume an empty mind, along a deserted and empty road.

Horror to a child attending school for the first time, could be a bully who makes their life a living hell.

As an adult there are many who live with the unfortunate circumstance of being tied to a job which is taking them down a dead-end road, where asking for a small increase in pay, or the most simplistic of things: a day off, could be seen as something terrifying, deciding instead to carry on, as asking would put their low paid job in a more fragile position. Because after all: the job may not pay a lot, but it pays all the same, (and it’s regular).

The lone driver, has horror, and let’s say, for argument’s sake, that it’s a man. He has a young family to support, and his boss has told him that if he can drive through the night and pick-up an important load, there could be a little extra on top of what he’s already getting.

The man, who thinks of his family, has been on the road since mid-afternoon, and it’s now dark. He thinks of pulling over to rest his tired eyes, but the little extra, and the ingrained image of his newborn daughter keep him on a road he doesn’t know that well.

Usually he does the day shift (but he has a terrible boss), so driving out of his normal sleeping pattern is something of a challenge.

His eyes are starting to feel heavy.

Patricia has not long ago given birth to a beautiful girl, and she couldn’t be happier. The child is a handful, but for some reason doesn’t take to her breast, making Patricia temporarily lose her normal cool and shout at the girl named after her delivery driver husband’s mother, Mary-Anne.

She shakes the child, who has now started to scream, and Patricia, having no knowledge of an alternate food, and a shyness which stops her from calling someone for help, paces the house, bouncing the wailing child, calling her husband names that (thank god) her new daughter is unable to understand. She looks to the dark outside. It’s started to rain. She hopes her husband makes his boss happy. Mary-Anne needs a new cradle.

John, (the man) and husband of a new daughter, begins to see things in front of his eyes. It has started to rain, and on top of the worsening weather, he has to stop and take a leak. His truck is fitted with a tracking device, something that John thought of as an invasion of privacy, but his boss (not too kindly) told him that he had a business to run, and liked to keep an eye on his (money on wheels). With that thought, and the fact that his boss could be sitting at home watching a flashing blip on a computer screen, John decides to piss where he’s sitting. He’ll find a way to explain it, but hopefully he won’t have to. If he can clean up baby shit, then he can sure as hell get rid of adult piss—and besides: he needs his little extra, and Mary-Anne needs a new cradle.

At about the time John starts to empty his bursting bladder, his daughter’s screaming has reached a point that would drive the most placid, insane. Patricia, before she rested her chin on the shotgun, was at odds to understand what it was that made her take her baby from the house and place her in the middle of the road. She needed some quite, and as she went back inside, shutting the door, her mind went back to one of calm. She could still see Mary Anne, moving, and most importantly she was wrapped up tight, and the rain was forgotten.

The terrible boss had been watching his screen and overwhelmed to see that his stupid employee, John was nearing home.

The boss wanted to be there, and unload while it was still dark.

He saw the house but his foot, that had a tendency to push his speed faster than it should, missed the house. Cursing, he dropped the chewed Cuban from his tobacco stained mouth. His F-250, with its custom tyres rolled over the still screaming child without a hint that anything was wrong.

The boss to his surprise, had seen something, if only for a second. It could have been someone’s pet, and that alone was a situation he didn’t want hanging over him. His delivery, which was illegal, could cause him unwanted trouble, so putting his foot back down, headed out of the area.

John tried to shake his leg as the warm piss made its way out the bottom of his jeans. It was uncomfortable, but if he was going to get paid then this is what he had to do.

Eric couldn’t wait to start school. It was something he’d been looking forward to since his parents had told him how good it was, and once settled in he wouldn’t want to leave.

They couldn’t have been more wrong. Eric hated everything about school, and to top off the fact that he had no friends, he was getting bullied by some bigger kids.

His first day had been the start of a whole list of things that were done to him every time he showed his face. They shoved his head down the toilet. Rubbed shit over his face that had been scooped on the end of a stick. Trodden on his jam sandwiches, so he went hungry. But most of all they called him gay.

He didn’t think he was any different to those around him. His voice was a little higher and he swung his body slightly when he walked, but that was how it had been for as long as he could remember.

His parents never said anything when he asked for a doll at Christmas, and he loved to dance in front of the mirror wearing his mom’s clothes.

The nasty people at school had told him that they were going to hurt his family if he didn’t kill himself. They hated gay people and even though Eric had just started his school life, and didn’t want to die, he was also scared for his parents.

That’s why he had crept out of the house, and now stood at the side of a quiet road wondering what he was going to do. It was raining and he certainly wasn’t dressed for wet weather, so before doing anything silly, he was going to go home, and tell his daddy about the nasty people.

Thinking about it now, if anyone could help him it was his daddy. For the first time in a month a smile formed on his small face, only registering long enough before a delivery truck, with what looked like, a man whose head was between his legs, ploughed into him, smashing every bone in his body, killing him instantly, along with the driver who exited the truck by its window screen slamming hard on the wet road, his last though being that he now wished he’d stopped to use a real toilet.

The following day, news reports were in a frenzy about the previous night and the tragedies that had unfolded. Those on their break spoke at length of what a horror filled world they lived in. The rain had started again, and the huddled circle was getting cold. Stubbing out their cancer sticks, and shaking heads as one, they hurried back inside before their fucking boss fired them on the spot for taking a minute too long while smoking.

Coal black eyes bore down at the gently sleeping form, as steady breathing gives slight rise to a floral pattern blanket. Long black claws sticking out of bright orange gloves contrast nicely with a mop of yellow hair. A big blue nose and black sharp teeth give meaning to the chalk white face ready and willing to destroy all that is good.

Small fluffy toys have pride of place around a room filled with affection, but the brightly colored intruder knows only pain and the joy it gives performing it. Stepping back from the bed, it watches the prone form start to whimper and let out short pleading cries. It senses the moment of waking is near and in the blink of an eye the room is as it was… for now.

Molly awoke with a start. Her body, paralyzed with fear perspires freely as scared eyes jump around a still dark room. Her breathing slowly returns to normal and with a sigh flops back down onto a damp pillow. She wonders if it’s worth waking the rest of her family but just as quickly decides against it.

Her dreams have been getting worse over the last week, but not wanting to upset anyone she’s kept them to herself.

They start out in the woods not far from the tree house she played in after school. Her friends are laughing and joking, and then everyone drops to the ground, ears and eyes pouring with blood. Out of a slight breeze that moves the trees steps the most horrific clown you can ever imagine. Teeth like razors and eyes like hell. It’s fright that usually pushes her back to the safety of her room, but this dream goes further.

The clown stands in front of her using sword like fingers to make ribbons of her exposed throat.

Evening meals were a pleasure not so long ago; Molly had enjoyed laughing along with her family about things that didn’t matter. Her waking hours are now plagued with the clawed clown, the name she has labeled it. Nowhere is sacred. Its head pops up from a full bath meant to relax and revive a glimpse in the reflection of a window, inside the refrigerator, the backseat of the car.

Her family have noticed a decline in health a doctor has been mentioned. Molly has explained time and time again about the clown and what it looks like, but apart from soothing sympathy ignorance it would seem is bliss. Her sanity has been questioned and the sharp knives that decorate the kitchen, give confidence as they hover over up-turned palms.

The leaves play an autumn tune as another breeze makes its way though clusters of green foliage.

Sally and Joan along with Molly enjoy a happy time of talking girl talk, hide and seek, ring a ring o roses. Then as if by magic, dark clouds appear blocking out their yellow friend. Smiling faces look up in concern before the bleeding starts.

Molly watches as two dear friends fall to the ground screaming in pain, blood blurs vision and blocks out sound as hands scratch at crimson faces. The breeze has now become a squall and from the trees a face appears, a face Molly knows without thought. Black eyes burn into her very being.

Rainbow colored clothes are a distraction from the teeth and claws engrained in her mind. Frozen to the spot her heart beats faster. The friends that were her best now have the hands of the clown.

Scratching fingers become weapons that reduce once pretty faces to unrecognizable lumps of gore.

These images of destruction have failed to notice the approach of the blue nosed nightmare. The dream has moved on from previous nights, everything seeming real, and Molly is scared.

Beyond the tree line more faces appear, where before there was only one. A brightness lost in the darkening day. The rainbow is a thing of beauty, but not in the form of the monsters that wear its colors.

Open mouths descending into horrific blackness are all that is in focus, and laughter long misplaced. It seems as if they are having fun. Her friends have stopped moving; the others drift in to view the scene. They crowd around and approve of the carnage. Looking up now in unison, it is her eyes they seek.

They smile and laugh then start the short walk to where she is still a prisoner by the big one. She pinches her arm in an effort to take her home. It doesn’t work. Where are they from? Is it only her that has all the attention?

The one with the blue nose looks down at her laughing, not ashamed to show the vile rotting mouth that spills out a fetid smell making her recoil, it says that all of her questions will be answered, and not to be in such a rush. The night is still young.

Then the screaming starts and everything changes.

“Mummy – ” “Help me – ” “Mummy – ” “Help me – No – Go away…” the bed sheets lift as if by invisible hands leaving a tangled mess of legs and arms.

“Mummy – ” the voice becomes desperate.

The sound of her daughter’s voice brings an end to her terror. Untangling herself she sees an eight-year-old face filled with panic and despair. Regaining a form of composure Molly jumps off the bed taking the child into a comforting embrace, repeating that it was just a bad dream. Her daughter’s soft lips brush Molly’s ear and whisper.

“Mummy, who’s that?”

“Shush now baby it’s all over.”

As the words register Molly’s face tenses with fear.

“Who princess?”

Her daughter’s voice trembles a whispered reply.

“The clown behind you with the funny hands.”

24. August 2014 · Write a comment · Categories: Horror · Tags: , ,

Evil had been waiting. People knew it was there, but refused to see it. They felt it when alone, and glimpsed it out of the corner of their eyes, but still dismissed it as something they didn’t believe.

Dogs barked, cats meowed; birds made crowing sounds high in the trees, and low on the garden fences. They saw evil moving through the streets, into the walls of houses, into the water that people drink. The sky was high with it. The ground was low with it.

Emily had seen it, and it had her daddy.

The morning had started with pancakes and syrup. With mom in bed sick, we were going shopping. Being thirteen was supposed to be fun, but not today. My older brother Toby by one year didn’t want to go, but daddy made him. Molly had no choice; she was three. The drive was nice; we sang songs and played I spy. The store played boring music, and the cart had a funny wheel. Frozen peas, bottle of milk, chips for movie night, fizzy drinks for treats.

Daddy asked where the knives were; he was swatting nothing in the air. His eyes started to bleed and made Molly cry. I pushed the funny cart into daddy and grabbed his keys. He fell trying to trip me, but I’m thirteen and can run fast. Toby was scared and for a boy I found that silly. Molly clung to my jacket, the button not working first time when I pressed to open the car. I decided to try and drive, get us away from daddy who was coming. I managed to start and speed through the lot, scaring my brother and sister, who I had forgotten to strap into their seats. I drove into a fence I didn’t see, and then a tree brought us to a stop.

The front wrapped around its tall trunk. My brother had hit the back of my seat; he lay slumped on the floor not moving. My sister, a crumpled heap beside me, between the gearshift and seat. And me, Molly, thirteen, my nose probably broken, blood running down my face from a cut to my head. And through the smashed side window daddy is coming.

His eyes are now fully red from the blood, and his face looks scary. Scarier than before because now he has the knife, and he is pointing it at me. I have to go now; he’s nearly here. Please don’t forget me, but if you do, remember this.

Remember that evil is not coming. It’s already here.

I wrote this tale while eating my lunch, another idea that popped into my head. Sometimes a story doesn’t have to be filled with heaps of red stuff…well maybe a little, and the subject is enough to make a story work. There are many who have suffered at the hands of bullies, and it’s something I do not condone.

Enjoy.

I LOVE BULLIES.

A short disturbing tale by horror author, D.K. Ryan 

Bullies come in all shapes and sizes. Big ones small ones, there are no surprises. I loved those words; they came (I think from some forgotten rhyme) and suited my mood when thinking of the nastiness inside individuals picking on the weak. I can’t remember if it was a defence mechanism I used to numb the pain—to stop the hurt inflicted by the bullies—it could have been a special tune hummed by the bullies themselves as they handed out their daily misery.

Anyway, the meaning and origin are irrelevant; honestly! How can several words take away what the bullies gave?

The day I decided to love the bullies was a blur. They all seemed to blend as one, forming a contemporary canvas of pastels and gloom.

After the hospital and many chalky pills I looked in the mirror that hung on the back of my bedroom door, turning my head from side to side examining the clean break at the bridge of my nose wondering if it would remain crooked, and my eyes would be any other color than the current increasing purple.

It started the very next day. I had to let them know how much I loved their belief—a twisted religion held together by its own blend of internal fear.

My acceptance came in the form of a weak looking being; one who had, over time probably suffered the same as I, though until this point, had managed to hide himself from the vultures that circled near the gates and locker lined corridors.

I can’t remember his name. I should do, because he was the first of many in my quest to love the bullies and have their love returned.

I could say that my attention toward him was infrequent and had no real impact on his life other than the times I knew the bullies were watching, but I’d be telling an untruth.

It was only when his regular absence became a talking point that the principal held a meeting, informing the school of his death by train, that made me realize I’d maybe gone too far

What must have been going through his mind as he stood on that secluded track, is something he took under those 90 mile per hour wheels, and something that has plagued my dreams.

Did he wish me harm? Was I the cause of his life that held such promise, ending alone and scared? I’d have to say yes—I can never be sure, but having such attention placed upon him for my own personal selfish needs, would have been a factor and weight on his young frame.

One thing the nameless death did do, was make the bullies love me. They were experts, and unknown to me had been watching from every corner of their ever seeing far seeing eye.

They welcomed me and tried, in a jovial manner to say they had been grooming me for this day.

The torture and abuse given was a way to separate the weak and find the strong—a way to carry on the institutional tradition once they’d moved on.

How silly they were.

I’m older now, and love the bullies even more. I thank them every day for my flourishing career, one that has made me a very wealthy man.

I own a secluded country house where I hold special, invite-only weekends. A place where the bullies crowd my specially made underground chamber.

They hang around waiting for the fun to begin, moaning with impatience.

Moaning from the hooks they hang from, like packed meat in a freezer, through their soft flesh between the shoulder and collarbone—a marrionette with a broken string.

The bullied get an afternoon for free. To see if they enjoy the experience, and more than anything—as a memory to the boy whose life I helped take.

The choice to pay is optional, but most are more than willing to part with their small allowance for the look they get when a helpless bully meets the continuous end of a cattle prod or clawed hammer.

So if you’re reading this and see yourself as a nasty piece of work—a bully who likes to pray on the vulnerable—remember this: I’m watching you, and one day you may wake up in a place you find less than comfortable.

Because as I’ve already said… I love bullies.

Now! I thought it was about time I started talking about one of the characters who has had an impact on my life. When I say impact, I don’t mean, the direction my life has taken or the things I’ve done, just that to be introduced to such a figure, was another reason I came to love the genre which is horror, and if a certain information site can be believed, the term is ‘splatterpunk’ Daniel Edward Flowers Bunkowksi (Chaingang) Is a name that evokes fear through anyone who hears it; and to meet the thing which is this human monster, or monstrous human, would surely have them counting down the moments to the end of their life. This five hundred pound, deformity, has a mind like no other; he is someone who as a child, had to contend with some of the most brutal of punishment – where cruelty was a daily part of life, and ultimately what turned him into the killer he became. He has a relentless mind, and if you are unfortunate enough to have upset him, then… good night. It may be easier to kill yourself, because he is relentless in his search, and the fact, you’ll never hear, or see him coming, really does add an element of terror, which he so dearly holds over those who have done him wrong. His extensive mind is an encyclopaedia of knowledge, attributed to the eating of pages from any book which he deems of interest, that could in the future be of help in performing some despicable act. My words can never fully detail the monster, and for those who wish to familiarise themselves with his exploits should read SLOB, by the great Rex Miller, the man responsible for creating such an abundance of character. But you knew that already…right?

The king slouched low in his overly large throne, a gift from his predecessor, looking bored at fingernails long overdue for special attention.

For the last three hours, he’d been sitting while his man-servant counted the measly takings from the peasants that snaked all the way back, out of his room. He sometimes regretted not having a person whom he could trust to oversee such tasks, but the way he saw it, that was how he’d stayed ruler for so long.

Another hour passed and after ordering several executions, extreme torture and vile disfigurement, some of which he would perform himself, he cleared the room, stretching, thinking a stroll around his kingdom would lift his spirits. After checking with his guards that all was clear, he ordered four to surround him as he breathed in the air.

The first thing he noticed was black smoke and burning buildings far in the distance. The dragons, no doubt, thought the king. His walk coincided with his queen returning from a trip to her sister also surrounded  by more guards.

She was riding in her very own metallic beast, a gift from a grovelling rival before his eyes were removed. The king after kissing his queen and promising to be in shortly took one more look around, making a note to visit further afield the following day.

His goblet of wine that accompanied him on his short trips had emptied itself far too quickly, telling the king he needed more. Not far from the entrance to his castle his mobile rang, an employee wanting a private word.

The king finished his call after a ten minute conversation, pleased that his shipment of semi-automatics had arrived, the serial numbers filed to extinction. And that another five million had been deposited into an account that would never be found.

The king smiled, his goblet now full shouted for all to hear. ‘God bless America.’

The dark was something that had always scared Seth. As far back as he could remember, the sun going down made goose bumps start to form along his skinny arms. Color dropped from his face, and his voice started to stutter making him the one that got picked on at school, because he was the only child who wanted to stay after class, for the fear going home brought him. But the thing was, all kids at some time in their lives were scared of the dark. But Seth was scared because of the dark man.

The dark man had long claws and twisted hands, and he had a crooked grin that didn’t look as if he was grinning at all. The dark man never came while he was awake. Seth had tried one night to stay up, straining to keep his eyes open before dropping off, only to wake and have the dark man leaning over his bed making that gargling noise with his throat, but as soon as Seth started to shout, the room went back to quiet.

Some nights the dark man never came at all, (or so it seemed) but once the morning came Seth knew by the smell of his room his visitor had come a visiting.

The dark man was the one that had taken his mother.

One night he remembered waking to noise coming from his mom’s room. His dad was long gone, after the harvester he was working on started by itself cutting him to ribbons in its sharp front blades, but he doubted another man in the house could have done anything to stop what happened. Seth made the short dash to her room throwing open the door, seeing the dark man’s shadow fall down the wall to where his mother lay screaming, trying to fend off something only he could see.

Years passed, but the dark man kept on coming, invading his sleep, troubling his days. It was only when Carol came along that things had started to calm down. They were married, and before long their daughter Mary was born bringing happiness for the first time in Seth’s life.

Outwardly, Mary was a happy child, her playfulness and cheeky games brought smiles to all those around her.

But it was the dark moons sitting underneath her eyes that hid her night-time terrors. She was visited not long after leaving the womb, watching swinging toys from her hospital crib, mixed with the dark man’s shadows. He had learnt from the past that a screaming child was no fun; a child that couldn’t call for help was much, much better.

And as Seth watched his daughter draw brightly coloured pictures in her book on the living room floor, he was glad of the deal he made all those years before with the dark man.

One, which had given him seven peaceful hours of sleep… Every single night.

For the next few days I’m going to be posting a free short story for your enjoyment. I found them in the depths of an old computer. The first which you’re about to read was prompted by Shark Week.

Slightly late, but I hope you enjoy it anyway.

Fun In The Sun

Phillipa knew they were out there, but whatever her friends said or however much they goaded her, she wasn’t going in. Most went to the beach for relaxation and a chance to unwind after the working week; Phillipa went for the chance to overcome her fear of sharks. Everyone from the lifesavers to the people who made up statistics said she had more chance of being hit by a bus than attacked by a shark, which was ironic because not long after her fourteenth birthday, she was in-fact hit by one.

She and her friends had been there all day, laughing and joking while she was the designated watcher of the valuables people usually shoved in shoes or wrapped in towels. The sun had nearly gone and after saying bye to her friends, stating she had decided to stay for a while, she sat on an almost deserted beach, watching a man in the distance throw a ball to his dog.

The air and slight breeze, along with the sinking sun gave Phillipa a sense of peace, and before she knew it, her eyes had closed, taking her into a nightmare from which she wouldn’t wake. In her dream, she imagined a man walking from the dunes, almost human but with the look of a shark; his sleek body shone as did his sharp razor teeth. He came at her from behind, gently tapping her burnt shoulder; startling her slightly asking if she wanted to swim.

Phillipa told the shark-man, whom she noticed walked on two legs, with a dorsal fin that looked like a knife sticking on a smooth back and a tail that almost dragged in the sand, that she was afraid of the water, and would it be ok if they sat for a while. The shark-man said, in a hypnotic voice that the water would cool her down, and for the first time that day Phillipa did indeed feel hot, thinking that a short swim would be the most wonderful thing.

She was lead, with slight resistance at first, into a cold lapping ocean that made itself at home around her thin ankles, and as she moved out further from the safety of the beach, she felt at ease, and welcomed the buoyancy of the water. The shark-man was there to brush off any uncertainty that lingered, and before long they were both enjoying the floating sensations provided by their soothing playground. Phillipa not noticing the sky that was now dark.

Upon opening her eyes, it took a moment to realize she was in the water. Panic and the distant near invisible beach caught her unaware, and she sank under the still smooth waves, choking on the water that halted her scream.

Her mind did cartwheels as she tried to find a rhythm with her arms, trying in what seemed like vain to reach the safety of the shore. Then the voice of her dream came up from the deep asking if all was well. Phillipa saw the shark-man for all that he now was. A face full of teeth and a glint in his eye that told her things were not going to get better. As she floated he told her of men who wrote statistics and how sometimes they got it wrong, before circling the frightened girl telling her that he would see her soon. And if she thought that she could, then please feel free and swim for the beach. Then disappeared below leaving Phillipa all alone…she hoped.

I’ve been doing a lot of reading lately, and one story in particular has left me slightly annoyed. I don’t think it was an intentional annoyance by the author, but unless I can find how this story ends, I think that madness is going to own me. The story in question is, Anything can be dangerous by the author, Matt Hults. After having had this story for a while I thought it only fair I give it a go. I’m not going to give too much away, but the general gist is about plastic bags, and how they start to quite simply, take over the community at large, and who knows? Possibly the world. Anyway, from the first line I was hooked and transfixed, both with the writing style of Matt Hults, and his obvious talent for keeping the reader entertained. I was like a werewolf in front of its caught prey, my drooling mouth wanting more from this transfixing tale. And then it happened: the story finished, leaving questions unanswered and the heart of my prey still beating. Now unless I’m the stupidest horror lover, and a continuation awaits my buzzing eyes, leading me through the next phase of my wide-eyed tale, Matt Hults has left one, very hungry wolf. See you soon.

Dead As Hell
DVD Infatuation
Horror Movie Podcast
Land of the Creeps
Scared You
Beyond The Gore
Chainsaw Sally Show
Camp Gore
Thy Demons Be Scribblin
True Angel of Grue
A Scribe From Beneath
Crash Palace Production
Black Flag TV
Bleeding Films
Ginger Nuts of Horror
SG Lee Horror
Promote Horror
Horror News Network
One Buck Horror
Jeremy C. Shipp
Armand Rosamilia
The Blood Factory
Latashia Figueroa

More to come…