Posted in Adult Fiction, Adult Paranormal, Horror, Mature Fiction, Mature Themes, New, New Release, Paranormal, Paranormal Horror, Short Story

A Brush With Death

Title: A Brush with Death
Author: N.J. Ember
Genre: Adult Paranormal/horror
Cover Designer: Najla Qamber Designs
Publisher: Fire Lotus Books
Publication Date: July 31st, 2018
Blurb:
A darkened road.  A truck-stop diner.  A chance meeting.
All Marisol Pedilla wanted was to make the drive to her aunt’s house without incident. Instead, she meets a woman named Sasha. Together, they encounter more misfortune than Marisol has ever experienced.
Danger and deception seem to be all too common in Sasha’s world, and it’s a world Marisol wants no part of. But fate has other plans. The secrets Sasha’s keeping from her could change Marisol’s life forever.
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N.J. Ember is a paranormal fiction author who loves to write stories about survival and triumph over adversity. Whether her characters are dealing with the paranormal or everyday life, she seeks to show that strength is not always about being superhuman or invulnerable. She enjoys anything with mystery, suspense and horror, so when she’s not writing you can find her watching shows like Orphan Black, Penny Dreadful and Sherlock. She currently lives in Michigan with her grandpa and a forever growing collection of books and Funko Pop! figures.
Author Links:
 
Chapter 1
I’d never been more thankful to be wearing jeans as I crawled around on the checkered floor of a truck-stop diner. It had to be here somewhere. “Mierda,” I cursed loudly as I smacked my head against the underside of the table. I climbed back into the booth, and the dark green vinyl squeaked in protest, sticking to the back of my legs. My stomach dropped as I dumped my purse out onto the table for a third time and rifled through the contents. I sighed. Yup, it was official. My wallet was missing, and I was screwed.
A waitress hurried towards me. She looked tired; dark shadows nestled under her eyes, and her mouth was turned down in a thin-lipped frown. “Have you decided yet, Honey?”
I looked up, panic fluttering hard in my stomach. The sizzle of food hitting the flat top caught my attention, its aroma flooding the tiny diner. Bacon. Possibly hash browns. My stomach growled, but spare change would only get me so far. “Uh, just coffee for now. Thanks.” I smiled politely then haphazardly shoved things back into my purse.
My hands felt grimy, and I grimaced. I threw my purse over my shoulder and pushed past incoming people towards the bathroom. I washed my hands twice. I didn’t know how it happened or where I could have lost it, but I knew what my mom was going to say when I called her. “I told you you were too young to drive to your aunt’s alone. I knew your brother should have gone with you.”
It didn’t matter that I was twenty-three. In her eyes, I wasn’t ready for so much responsibility, even though I’d been her shadow, her second in command for as long as I could remember. I knew I could handle this. While I’d never driven so far across the country before, I had the GPS on my phone and a printout of the directions in case that failed. What I didn’t factor in was bad luck, or maybe it was just my own stupidity.
Once I was sitting back in the booth, I rested my head on my arms. Exhaustion was tugging at my eyelids, making me sluggish, like I was dragging my body through water. I sat up, pushing my jet-black curls behind my ears. The lecture was coming no matter how long I put it off. I plucked my cell phone from my purse, but the screen stayed blank. I pushed the power button. Ugh, no charge. I picked up a menu instead, to avoid looking awkward, and glanced out the window.
The interior of the diner was tinged red from the glow of the neon sign hanging in it, providing some extra security against the inky darkness. It was already past midnight, and even once my phone was charged, it would still be too late to call.
I skimmed over the menu, not really taking it in. My stomach growled again, and I startled as I felt myself falling forward. I was hungry and tired, with no money and a lot of miles left to go. I wasn’t sure how, but there had to be some way I could manage to get to my aunt’s without my mom having to rescue me.
“You mind if I sit with you?”
I jumped again. I’d been so lost in my thoughts that I didn’t notice the woman come up to me. Her skin was a deep golden brown that reminded me of tiger’s-eye stones. Her voice was soft, but there was a hint of underlying smokiness. Tall, with a slender, athletic build, she looked imposing in a leather jacket and high-heeled boots. She had a long, angular face with full lips and high cheekbones, and her onyx hair billowed outward in an afro. I looked around. The diner was crowded but not completely full, and I failed to find a reason why a total stranger would try and sit with me.
She seemed to read my thoughts. “Hey, it’s cool. I thought it’d be nice to have some company, but I understand.”
She turned to go, and I felt a pang of remorse at my hesitation. I reached out and grabbed her wrist. “Wait!”
She turned back, and my heart flip-flopped. I ignored it. My fingers brushed against hers as I let go. “Sure, you can sit here.”
Her eyes widened, and the ghost of a smile showed on her face. It only lasted for a second, but the warmth of it seemed to make her brown eyes lighter. She slid into the seat opposite me. “Thanks. I’m Sasha.”
“Marisol.”
“So what brings you out this way, Marisol?”
Before I could answer, the waitress returned. “Would you like to order?”
Sasha glanced at me. “You haven’t ordered yet?”
I shook my head. “Just coffee.”
Sasha didn’t even bother looking at her menu. “I’ll have the western omelette, extra cheese, and she’ll have the pancakes with bacon.”
My face burned with embarrassment. “You don’t have to do that.”
“It’s the least I can do. Besides, you were staring at the picture so hard when I walked up; I thought you were going to burn a hole through the menu.”
My embarrassment deepened, and I looked away, desperately trying to think of anything else to talk about. “Do you come here often?” I mentally kicked myself. “I mean, I only ask because you seemed pretty sure of what you wanted.”
“No, not that often. I’ve passed through here a couple times though.”
I looked back to find her watching me, and I quickly dropped my eyes to the tabletop and fidgeted with the edge of the menu. “So, you do a lot of traveling?”
“You could say that, yeah.”
“For work?”
“Most of the time.”
“What kind of work do you do?”
This time it was Sasha’s turn to be interrupted. The waitress set two mugs in front of us and filled them. I moved my menu out of the way as she slid a steaming plate of pancakes in front of me. My mouth watered. “The rest of your order will be out in just a minute, hun,” she said to Sasha as she handed her a stack of buttered toast.
I grabbed three packets of sugar, ripped them open and dumped them into my coffee, along with two creams. I stirred, watching the color of it lighten to something more acceptable. Sasha’s gravelly laugh made me look up.
“You want any coffee with that?” I noticed she had left her own cup alone.
I smiled at her. “Not if I can help it.”
She shook her head as I drizzled syrup onto my pancakes and dipped a piece of crispy bacon in it. “So you never answered; what do you do for work?”
Sasha’s face fell, and I instantly regretted asking. The waitress brought her omelette. I waited as she cut into it. “This and that. Nothing worth talking about.”
I nodded. Conversation stopped for a few minutes as we ate. The neon sign flickered, and Sasha tensed. She stared out the window. I did the same, but beyond the procession of cars and trucks, I couldn’t see a thing. “What is it?”
“Nothing.”
But it didn’t seem like nothing. I watched as she shifted and reached for something I couldn’t see. The sleeve of her leather jacket lifted up, revealing a tattoo: a long-stemmed rose intertwined with a scythe.
“That’s beautiful.” I moved my plate out of the way so I could lean forward. “Would it be okay if I took a closer look?”
Sasha pulled her sleeve up some more and stretched her arm out towards me. I traced the lines with my eyes. “Why a scythe?”
“It’s a reminder.”
I looked up. Sasha’s gaze connected with mine, and my stomach lurched. I was scared to breathe. Scared to blink. Then she turned away, looking out the window again, and disappointment sank like a stone in my stomach.
“Marisol,” Sasha said sharply. “Get down!”
Hands grabbed my legs. I fell backwards, and my butt hit the floor. The window next to us exploded in a shower of jagged glass as the diner was plunged into darkness.
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Posted in Adult Fiction, Horror, New Release, Zombies

MAZ – Military Against Zombies

MILITARY AGAINST ZOMBIES

by Alathia Paris Morgan

 

Genre: Horror – Zombies

MAZ2.jpg

Brad Jackson is overseas, serving his country, when the zombie sickness hits. The National Guard had been overrun, and the sick are turning into zombies faster than bullets can stop them. Ordered to evacuate to Nashville with his unit, he’s only a few hours away from Jackson Mountain, where his wife, Emma, was supposed to go if all hell broke loose. Now, his only motivation is to complete the mission and make it home, but the zombies seem to have other plans for Company D.

Meanwhile, the sickness has spread to the countryside, and former marine, Linc Harris, is torn between the two women he has sworn to protect–his girlfriend, Jessica, and his mother, Mavis. Jessica appears to be safe on the farm, but his mother is trapped in town. A bully is determined to stamp out the zombie sickness by killing all those who are sick. Can Linc save his mother and the town from from the sick before they turn, or a bully kills them?

A few of the troops were starting to cough the closer we got to the States. This always happened when we made the change of atmosphere from east to west.

But the closer we got toward home, the sicker sounding those coughs became. The medics had taken all those that were showing signs of illness and moved them to the back of the plane. Our leaders hung blankets, hoping to avoid the spread of germs in the contained area.

With only about thirty minutes of flying over the water left, a growling sound started coming from the back of the plane.

Screams and grunts erupted from behind the curtain as a blood-covered hand gripped the blanket, pulling it down.

“Buckle in, we’re going to open the cargo door! I repeat, strap yourselves in…” The voice trailed off as everyone tried to grab their guns and strap in at the same time.

A blast of air was sucked out of the plane as the pilot tried to prepare everyone for the difference in air pressure.

I watched in horror as bodies flew out of the cargo door with blood dripping from their teeth. I felt bad for the ones who hadn’t been as sick but were being sucked out of the tail of the plane as well.

When the cargo door closed, I gulped in the fresh air, only to hear more gasping sounds coming from the back of the plane.

Evidently, those who hadn’t been as sick were strapped into their seats and had become the infected dead, but they couldn’t do more than bite the person next to them.

My platoon officer yanked off his restraints, gun in hand, and ran to the back of the plane. Rapid shots followed and all the growling sounds were silenced.

Everyone on the plane watched as he walked around, checking each person and making sure those who were infected were dead.

While hard to watch, I knew it was the right thing to do even though I wasn’t sure if I could have done it myself.

The pilot spoke again. “Due to the growing problem, everyone will have to be inspected before they can leave the area and find a place to shower, eat, and rest up before orders are handed down.”

I groaned on the inside but knew that after what had occurred on the plane, extra precautions were needed.

With the way that things were going, they weren’t going to let us go home to our families. This virus, or one of those things were going to take us out one by one.

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Emma Jackson is an army wife and new mom with all the uncertainties that come with it… until that fear is pushed in a different direction. Instead of worrying about diapers and feeding schedules, her only objective is to keep her child alive after being chased by a man who looks entirely too dead.

Trish Walsh thought her day was bad when she had to drag all four of her children on an errand, but she rethinks the meaning after what she can only hope was someone dressed up like a zombie beats on her car door. Yet, the bloody mess left behind is anything but reassuring.

Cooper Walsh’s job is top secret. When criminals break in to steal his company’s secrets, he overhears the conspiracy devised to create chaos as a cover-up. Knowing he must do everything in his power to right the wrong, he sets out on a mission.

Surviving long enough to reunite with their families is all that matters. That… and stopping the zombie apocalypse before it destroys them.

1502b-authorinfo

Alathia is known to those around her for having an a long time love affair/obsession with Dr. Pepper, she has asked to be buried with a can so that it never runs out in the after life. Always bossy, she uses her mothering instincts to help others and share awareness of abuse in child and domestic situations.

A B.S. in History and English gave wings to her vivid imagination in book form. A supportive and loving husband has given her the chance to make her dreams a reality. Their three daughters and three dogs keep her busy while writing is a great way for her to wind down and destress.

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Posted in Adult Fiction, Horror, Medical Horror, Medical Thriller, On Sale, Thriller

On Sale – Heads Will Roll

HEADS WILL ROLL

A Medical Thriller

by Joanie Chevalier

 

Publication Date: May 21, 2017

Genre: Medical Thriller/Horror

What if, in the near future, we could choose the body we wanted? We could visit a store front, much like a neighborhood mom-and-pop shop, and we’d see all the available bodies lined up in a glass-enclosed case. We’d be able to choose the body we wanted, purchase it, have an operation, and wham bam! wake up with our new body.

Dr. Farkis begins his head transplant operations in secret in Oakland, California and Tokyo, Japan. When news filters out about his revolutionary surgery, individuals from all walks of life come forward, desperate for a new body and an improved life that only Dr. Farkis can offer. We meet: Barry, so frantic for a new body, he stalks the doctor and bargains with a menacing ultimatum; Aiko, father of 19-year-old Kaneko, who demands that she undergo the operation to become more attractive to snag a husband; and finally, Baby, who finds out the hard way that demanding a new body may end up being fatal.

Choosing the perfect physique from a smorgasbord of available bodies may seem like a dream . . . until it becomes a nightmare.

“I’m saying that you can’t leave.” Farkis shrugged nonchalant. “Not now that you’ve heard about our little operation here. You see, once you have the surgery, we erase your memory of the pre-consultation. Instead, you’ll think you were on a fat farm for six weeks.” The doctor looked proud. He leaned in towards them. “That was my idea, by the way. The fake memory,” he whispered. “Clever, eh?”

“Of course,” he added, “you can leave after you recover from the operation, since you won’t remember anything. And if you see anyone with a faint scar around their neck in the future, because this is sure to catch on, you know, you’ll be conditioned to ignore it.”

Denny stopped pacing. “Is this a joke?” His eyes looked wild, like a caged animal’s.

“If it’s a joke, it’s not funny,” Baby added. Her voice trembled and she hiccupped.

“Oh, believe me. It’s not a joke.”

Farkis stood up from the desk and walked over to the wall adjacent the door. He pressed a fist-sized red button. The wall behind the chalkboard slid open. A cold blast of air swept into the room as if a freezer door had been left open.

“Follow me,” the doctor commanded. “I’ll show you the available bodies. You can choose the one you like.” He grinned, directing his comment to Baby.

“Well, as long as I don’t have any long-lasting scars…” Baby commented in a soft, distant voice.

The crazy doctor then turned to Denny. “Of course, I’ll need a $1.2 million deposit from you, dear Mr. Denny. Don’t worry,” he added when he noticed Denny’s face became flushed with astonishment. “Baby’s already given me a few of your account details…”

Before Denny could protest and insist that the doctor show them out ASAP, they’d stepped inside the cold room. That’s when he saw frozen, naked bodies stacked up on a Ferris wheel-like contraption. Denny promptly fainted.

Baby stepped over him and followed the doctor. She couldn’t wait to pick out her new body.

One Day Only – March 7

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Joanie Chevalier works full-time in beautiful San Francisco as a legal assistant. She also freelances as a content editor for indie authors. She loves camping in her teardrop trailer and she thinks her two Chihuahuas are adorable.

Her writing is a blend of everything she likes to read: Suspense, horror, crime, psychological, non-fiction, and a good short story. She’s had several of her shorts in anthologies and she’s always on the lookout for more ideas.

Posted in Adult Fiction, Horror, Medical Horror, Medical Thriller, On Sale, Thriller

Free – Heads Will Roll

HEADS WILL ROLL

A Medical Thriller

by Joanie Chevalier

 

Publication Date: May 21, 2017

Genre: Medical Thriller/Horror

What if, in the near future, we could choose the body we wanted? We could visit a store front, much like a neighborhood mom-and-pop shop, and we’d see all the available bodies lined up in a glass-enclosed case. We’d be able to choose the body we wanted, purchase it, have an operation, and wham bam! wake up with our new body.

Dr. Farkis begins his head transplant operations in secret in Oakland, California and Tokyo, Japan. When news filters out about his revolutionary surgery, individuals from all walks of life come forward, desperate for a new body and an improved life that only Dr. Farkis can offer. We meet: Barry, so frantic for a new body, he stalks the doctor and bargains with a menacing ultimatum; Aiko, father of 19-year-old Kaneko, who demands that she undergo the operation to become more attractive to snag a husband; and finally, Baby, who finds out the hard way that demanding a new body may end up being fatal.

Choosing the perfect physique from a smorgasbord of available bodies may seem like a dream . . . until it becomes a nightmare.

“I’m saying that you can’t leave.” Farkis shrugged nonchalant. “Not now that you’ve heard about our little operation here. You see, once you have the surgery, we erase your memory of the pre-consultation. Instead, you’ll think you were on a fat farm for six weeks.” The doctor looked proud. He leaned in towards them. “That was my idea, by the way. The fake memory,” he whispered. “Clever, eh?”

“Of course,” he added, “you can leave after you recover from the operation, since you won’t remember anything. And if you see anyone with a faint scar around their neck in the future, because this is sure to catch on, you know, you’ll be conditioned to ignore it.”

Denny stopped pacing. “Is this a joke?” His eyes looked wild, like a caged animal’s.

“If it’s a joke, it’s not funny,” Baby added. Her voice trembled and she hiccupped.

“Oh, believe me. It’s not a joke.”

Farkis stood up from the desk and walked over to the wall adjacent the door. He pressed a fist-sized red button. The wall behind the chalkboard slid open. A cold blast of air swept into the room as if a freezer door had been left open.

“Follow me,” the doctor commanded. “I’ll show you the available bodies. You can choose the one you like.” He grinned, directing his comment to Baby.

“Well, as long as I don’t have any long-lasting scars…” Baby commented in a soft, distant voice.

The crazy doctor then turned to Denny. “Of course, I’ll need a $1.2 million deposit from you, dear Mr. Denny. Don’t worry,” he added when he noticed Denny’s face became flushed with astonishment. “Baby’s already given me a few of your account details…”

Before Denny could protest and insist that the doctor show them out ASAP, they’d stepped inside the cold room. That’s when he saw frozen, naked bodies stacked up on a Ferris wheel-like contraption. Denny promptly fainted.

Baby stepped over him and followed the doctor. She couldn’t wait to pick out her new body.

March 4, 5, & 6

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Joanie Chevalier works full-time in beautiful San Francisco as a legal assistant. She also freelances as a content editor for indie authors. She loves camping in her teardrop trailer and she thinks her two Chihuahuas are adorable.

Her writing is a blend of everything she likes to read: Suspense, horror, crime, psychological, non-fiction, and a good short story. She’s had several of her shorts in anthologies and she’s always on the lookout for more ideas.

Posted in Adult Paranormal, Horror, Promo Blitz, Supernatural, Supernatural Horror

Fractured

FRACTURED

3 Disturbing Tales

by Michele E. Gwynn

Genre: Supernatural Horror

From Amazon Bestselling Author Michele E. Gwynn (Once Upon a Midnight, Oct, 2016 Amazon US; The Winter Wishes Collection, March 2017 Amazon UK) comes a collection of 3 disturbing tales that walks the line between this world and the next.

A Slow Awakening

Premiering in this set, A Slow Awakening is a nightmare happening in real time. Frances Baker is an old woman living alone. Afraid of the dark and of storms she must brave both one dreary, frightful night. Waiting for it all to pass, she awakens to a situation far more terrifying. Unable to move or even speak, she is trapped inside her own body with no way to call for help. As the storm rages on, the demons from her past prey upon the vulnerable woman, dragging her down into a memory buried deep, one best left forgotten. Throughout the night, her life passes before her mind’s eye, taunting her and daring Frances to face up to her own mistakes all the while praying for morning to come, and for help to arrive.

Cavanaugh Road

Previously published in Guardian of Dreams from Paper Gold Publishing. “A life for a life. Someone must pay the toll.”

On a stormy afternoon in 1951, tragedy strikes ending the dreams of a teenage girl along a lonely stretch of country road in Fort Smith, Arkansas. With the truth hidden, twenty years later, another life meets its fate on Cavanaugh Road. Jake Williams has little time left to enjoy his freedom. The threat of the draft looms as his eighteenth birthday passes. With his older brother and his best friend already deployed to Vietnam, each day is a gift. He has his job at the diner and his brand new, used Javelin. The only thing missing is a girlfriend. One night, Jake spies a pretty blonde outside of the diner, but before he can reach her side, she disappears without a trace. Intrigued, he decides to find out who the new girl is, but fate steps in, delivering devastating news to his family, and issuing a summons he can’t ignore. Despairing and desperate, he takes off down Cavanaugh Road where a near-death car wreck changes his life. It’s there, injured and shaken, that Jake comes face to face with his destiny. The beautiful girl, the one who has captured his heart, is suddenly there to save him. She promises to take him home. But things are not what they seem, and long-held secrets begin to unravel right under Jake’s nose, within his own family. As his days grow shorter, the mystery deepens, and the answers lie around the bend, in an old family plot, on Cavanaugh Road.

Split

Previously published as a standalone.

A car accident left Jennifer Jones alive, but killed her parents. Survivor’s guilt and grief strangles her soul while the continued abuse from her fiancé, Aaron, breaks her spirit. Without warning, she snaps. Free from the moorings that bind her to the rational world, Jennifer finds that stepping across the line, and committing cold-blooded murder means she no longer needs to follow anyone’s rules but her own – but has she gone too far? Now that she’s tasted the heady power of controlling her own destiny, she can’t stop!

Down the rabbit hole she goes into a realm of psychotic darkness so deep, she may never find her way out again! As her world begins to spin out of control, she’s haunted by her misdeeds, and pushed further over the edge. The struggle to hold it together is tearing her apart, and if she can’t find her way back from the dark abyss, Jennifer will split from reality for good!

Excerpt from the premiering story A Slow Awakening

Trapped, Unable to move, and all Alone…

All was quiet. The rain had ceased to fall. The winds died down. The only sound she could detect was the windup clock on the bedside table. She turned to look at the time. Nothing happened.

Again, she tried to turn her head. Her mind said turn, but her neck refused to obey. Something was wrong. Something was terribly wrong.

Afraid, Frances tried sitting up. The view remained the same. Just the ceiling. She stilled, assessing her whole body.

Wiggle your toes! she told herself. Nothing moved. There was no pain, no…nothing. She felt nothing, physically, at least. Inside, she was panicking.

She concentrated, focusing on moving any part of her body. Fingers, knees, shoulders. There was no response. Not even a twitch. She screamed, but no sound came forth. Her mouth did not open.

Dear God, I’ve had a stroke! What will I do? What can I do?

Panic took over, and fear engulfed her. She was paralyzed, with no way to call for help.

She tried to determine the exact time. It had been around 10:00 when she’d fallen asleep. Unsure how long she’d slept, she figured it couldn’t have been more than three or four hours, so it might be around one or two in the morning. Jack was supposed to come around to fix her leaking bathroom sink, sometime in the mid-morning hours. He had a key so she wasn’t worried he’d leave if she couldn’t get up to answer. It was good to know help would eventually arrive, but in the meantime, she was stuck in her bed, unable to rise if needed, to go to the bathroom, to shout for help.

She wanted to cry, but her body betrayed her yet again, refusing to shed a single tear. There was nothing for it except to wait, and see if perhaps her motor skills would return, even if just a little bit. It was the only hope she had besides being found by her son-in-law seven to eight hours from now. She let her mind drift.

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Michele E. Gwynn is a Bestselling Multigenre Author of Crime/Detective books, Sci-Fi/Horror books, and Paranormal/Supernatural romance books in San Antonio. She previously wrote for newspapers, magazines, and online websites. As a journalist, she’s covered news and events, and conducted countless celebrity interviews.

She has 3 series currently with several stand-alones, and more books coming!

She resides in the small town of Schertz, Texas on the northeast side of San Antonio with her four felines who so graciously allow her to reside in their home.

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Posted in Adult Fiction, Horror, Psychological Horror, Thriller

Back 2 School – Horror/Thriller

REJOICE! The children are back in school.

For those who live to read…here are some awesome books provided by the incredible authors who wrote them. All in celebration of the new school year.

While a few of these books might be oldies, but goodies…others could be new and fresh off the presses.

Relax and find your new favorite author.

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HORROR/THRILLER

Horror is a genre of fiction whose purpose is to create feelings of fear, dread, repulsion, and terror in the audience—in other words, it develops an atmosphere of horror.

Please enjoy these books that focus on horror and all the sub-genres. The list is available in alphabetically order by title.

Don’t forget to enter the Rafflecopter for a chance to win an Amazon Giftcard.

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Beyond Psycho by Kate O’Reilly

Psychological horror

A STOCKHOLM SYNDROME contemporary story.

Behind the restroom building, the man lies in wait, ready for any opportunity. A car pulls in and rolls to a stop. Before the driver can open his door, the kids bound out and hurtle around the corner, straight into his arms. The girl is first, though she is younger. Her brother stops dead when he sees the gun.

It’s years since Beth has been abducted. Her current reality is the only one she knows. And then the man offers her freedom.

Not suitable for young readers or those unused to psychological horror. Contains gory, gruesome horror and violence.

Dream Noir and Other Tales by Sean Gallatin

Crime stories

WARNING! For those over eighteen. Three twisted tales revolving around the dark underbelly of Alaska. A view the tourists never see. What can induce a person to kill? And there may not be many roads in Alaska, but what is there can make for a wild ride.

Horns of the Devil by Marc Rainer

Crime Drama/Murder Mystery/Thriller

The beheaded body of an ambassador’s son is dumped on the curb in front of his father’s embassy just blocks from the White House. Federal prosecutor Jeff Trask and an FBI task force are called upon to solve the murder. Their search for the killers leads to the MS-13, a hyper-violent gang from El Salvador, but Trask and his team soon learn that someone else is also tracking their suspects, and with deadly efficiency. When Trask himself becomes a target, he realizes that he is caught in a cross-fire between two of the most ruthless organizations in the western hemisphere.

Hush Little Baby by Sean Kerr

Horror

Never take your life for granted or something may just take your life.

Sian and Andy have good lives, loyal friends, a beautiful home, and a loving family. To everyone else they are the perfect couple, the doting husband, and the successful wife. But every family has secrets and Sian and Andy are about to realise that nothing stays hidden forever. Some secrets are just dying to get out.

At what point does a career become more important than your life, than the one you love, than your own sanity? Sian is about to find out because she keeps seeing things, dark monstrous shapes that hide in her bed, that lurk in every corner and no-one will believe her. Even her own mother thinks that she has lost her mind. To make matters worse, Andy thinks that her hallucinations are caused by guilt, a guilt that is slowly devouring their perfect relationship.

After a blazing row, Sian is left alone in a house that feels hostile, dangerous and as darkness falls, Sian must face her guilt in the form of a horror more profound and more terrifying than her worse nightmares.


Slots by R.E. Hargrave

Horror

You know the saying, ‘What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas’… well, that’s not always true. Three travelers find themselves running to Sin City in an attempt to right a wrong, only to have it backfire—in a big way. Rated NC-17 for extremely graphic scenes. Please heed warning inside.

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Posted in Ghost, Horror, Paranormal Elements

Vein River

VEIN RIVER

by Kellie Honaker

Genre: Horror

The locals of Vein River fear the covered bridge and avoid it at night at all costs. They say she hangs in the darkness, her long silk nightgown drifting in the breeze. She swings from a noose, her toes rat-tat-tatting across the hood should someone drive beneath her.

As legend goes, if you receive her withering kiss, you either die, get sick, or go stark raving mad. Your only chance of pardon is to kiss her dangling feet and beg for mercy.

The fate of the town rests on the shoulders of Annie Forrester, a sixteen year old girl with psychic powers.

Only Annie will have the strength to enter the bridge and face the evil head on.

Ed Meeker became a missing person that wasn’t actually missed. Local cops poked around and asked questions, but didn’t delve too deeply, in my opinion. He didn’t stay missing for long though, he washed up after three days. Some poor kid with a fishing pole caught what he thought was a hell of a catch. What he really caught was a few therapy sessions. Corpses are ugly, traumatizing things, especially those who died from supernatural causes.

I eat most of my meals at the Floured Fork because it’s too hard to cook for one. It’s depressing to cook for one, not that I was ever a pro at it to begin with. I’ve sat in this corner booth so much that the cushion remembers the curve of my rump. It’s my favorite corner at the far end of the restaurant, far from the bathrooms and the entrance. It shares a wall with the kitchen, and I like the heat that passes through the swinging doors each time a waitress makes an exit. You can hear the sizzle of the grill, the clash of pans, and the occasional swear word from the dishwasher. People avoid this booth for these very reasons, but I find the racket comforting.

Gretchen has scarcely refilled my coffee cup when a shadow passes over me.

“Mind if I sit?”

I look up to find Detective Robbins. I’ve known him since he was knee-high to a grasshopper. Always was a good boy. He grew up in the house beside of mine, until he turned sixteen. His mother was a pretty thing; good natured, hard worker. A single mom that worked two jobs. She did a phenomenal job on her own, but when the lawnmower needed fixing, or the roof leaked, I made sure to help her out. I don’t mind helping those that help themselves. I even taught Robbins how to throw a curve ball on evenings when she couldn’t get him off the school bus. I don’t know if he ever regarded me as the father he never had, but I surely know how fond I was of him.

“Sure, have a seat,” I say.

He slides across from me and waves to Gretchen. She brings him a coffee.

“How are you doing, Charles?” he asks.

“Just fine, how are you and the missus?”

“Quite well.”

He stares at me, tracing the rim of his coffee cup with his thumb.

I look him in the eye. “Something on your mind, son?”

“What do you think of them finding Ed Meeker?”

I shrug and take a sip of my coffee.

“You should have seen the body, Charles. It was horribly wrinkled.”

He waits for me to make eye contact before he continues.

“He was wrinkled just like you. The wrinkles were so identical, that I’d swear the two of you were twins. It’s true that bodies and water don’t mesh well, that’s a fact. But what I really expected to find was a bloated body, not a body that looked like it’d been shriveled in the sun. Three days in the water, Charles, and he was like a stick of jerky. How does that happen? It was a hideous sight, Charles, he looked like he died while he was screaming. There’s no way there’ll be an open casket. That’s why it’s odd, Charles, that’s why when we arrived, there was a ten-year-old boy vomiting on the edge of the river bank. A normal body wouldn’t have rattled him so. I think you know what happened to him, Charles, or at least you have a theory. You haunt that bridge just as much as the ghost you claim swings from the rafters.”

Robbins leans away from me as Gretchen tops him off. She’s on auto-pilot. She wouldn’t pay attention to a customer’s conversation even if we were planning an assassination. She makes off for the far end of the room with a plate of eggs. He leans back in closer to me.

“You were the last person to talk to him, your home phone called his, we have a record of that.”

“I had car trouble, he helped me out and I went on my way. I didn’t see anything.”

He nods his head as if he already knew.

“I think you did see something, Charles,” he whispers. “but I know that whatever it is you’ve got in that head won’t fly on a legal document. So, I’m not going to ask you what you saw.”

I want to smirk and glare at the same time, but I keep my poker face.

“Now, I’ve never seen this so called ghost that you’ve been morbidly obsessed with for the whole of my existence. I don’t believe in it, either. I’m a man of facts. I don’t solve cases with mumbo-jumbo. I think you know exactly what happened. I think you lured him to the bridge in the hopes that your pet ghost would scare him to death. I’m not sure what you did, but I know you did it. I can’t say that I blame you. There’s a long line of people that would have loved to kill him. Do you know what the coroner said he died from? Old age. Forty-five years old and died of old age. What do you think of that, Charles? Now that doesn’t look good on paper either. So I’m going to tell you what I’m going to do. I’m going to pull some strings, have it written up as a heart attack. Everybody knows that Ed was a dick. He kept me busy with all the riffraff. Quite frankly, I’m glad he’s gone, but I’ll never tell anyone but you. My report will list it as a suicide. His dirty deeds finally caught up with him, so he jumped. Maybe once he hit the water, he changed his mind and tried to swim to shore. He was a smoker and a drinker, and ate his fair share of Big Macs, so his heart gave out. That’s what happened, right, Charles?”

“You’re the detective.”

“You’re right,” he says sliding from the booth and slapping a five on the table. “You’re exactly right.”

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Kellie is the author of Grandfather Hollow and The Web Weaver, two short story collections available through Amazon. When she isn’t rescuing animals or fueling her book addiction, she’s busy mastering the art of becoming a hermit and a writer. Kellie incorporates her pets into her stories at every opportunity. In fact, her author picture features Salem, the kitten who makes his debut in Vein River. Even though the fictional Salem is robust and into mischief; the real Salem is blind. It doesn’t slow him down though. He still manages to climb his cat tree and catch the wayward fly. Once his bug-catching duties are over, he lounges around with a French Bulldog named Dumplin’.