A Winter’s Night

Pen of the Damned

I whispered, “When the winter snow falls, hide your eyes. When the winter wind blows, stay by the fire.”
The beginning of an ancient warding, one I prayed still held power, but in my heart I knew there would be no stopping her. I knew the moment I heard her roar tremble the trees, the wild winds bellow my name. I ran, chased by the frenzy of her storm.
I sealed my fate that moonlit evening in the forest.
There would be no escape, however long I might pray. I was hers. Even now I could hear her voice shrieking through the frigid squall howling around my hunting lodge.

I am the Bride of Winter. I am the Reaper of Night.
I stand on the edge of insanity, of cruelty, outside the deceptive warmth of the fire.
And I see you, Nikolai. You cannot hide.

I shouted in defiance, “I…

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The Feast

Pen of the Damned

There would be bodies. Her mother had already warned her about the smell, about the morbid pull of curiosity. You’ll want to look, she had said. But don’t. You’ll only spoil your appetite.

In her unease, Isa had no appetite left to spoil. She paddled through the darkness, having only old habits to guide her. There was nothing to see but blackness, nothing to hear but the whispering waters against her paddle. She tried to remember her mother’s words, the pieces of advice scattered like bread crumbs to lead her home.

They want you to believe you don’t belong here. They think your humanity will make you weak, but you can prove them wrong. You will show them you belong.

Belong. It was a strange word—one that never seemed to fit. Did she ever truly belong here among the shapeshifters and specters? Here where the river was dark with spirits…

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Signal to Noise

Pen of the Damned

He regained consciousness in the hospital corridor, finding himself standing in the middle of a stream of people flickering past without pause. He was dimly aware he couldn’t be seen. The world he had emerged into was grey, faded and separated from the world he had just left. It was also silent. He reached out to touch a nearby nurse, but his hand, insubstantial, entered her arm and passed through without making contact.

As soon as the time of death was recorded most of the staff cleared the emergency room, moving onto the next crisis. She stood over his shell, stunned, ignoring the nurses who fussed around him, tidying up the detritus of the failed attempt to save him. She thought back to the accident; they had been walking across the road, moving from pub to pub, then boom, the taxi had hit him. The next few minutes were a…

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OPEN Call for SUBMISSIONS: The Sirens Call – Summer 2021 – issue 54 | #Horror #DarkFiction #eZine #OpenCall #Reprints #fiction #stories #flash #poetry @Sirens_Call

The Sirens Call eZine is open for submissions!

The Sirens Song

Promo_Cover_for_Ezine

Summer 2021

For the fifty-fourth issue of The Sirens Call, we’ll be accepting short stories, flash fiction, micro-fiction, drabbles, and poetry that fit within the horror/dark fiction genre. We welcome reprints as long as you hold the copyright to the piece.

Your piece can be scary, sullen, emotive, freaky, elegant, bizarre, have a dark satirical edge to it, or be flat out terrifying!

The basic rules:

  • Write the piece well.
  • It must be primarily horror/dark fiction oriented
  • No pieces containing coronavirus/covid-19 references will be accepted.
  • Don’t break our set-in-stone taboos – NO pedophilia, NO bestiality, and NO descriptive rape scenarios.

Beyond that, be creative, be morbid, be vicious, be clever; show us what you’ve got, and if it fits our criteria, we’ll offer it up to our readership of 35,000 readers!


REPRINTS ARE WELCOME!

Submission Deadline: May 1, 2021

Circulation:Approximately 35,000

Short story word count: 1,000 – 2,500…

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OPEN Call for SUBMISSIONS: The Sirens Call – Spring 2021 – issue 53 | #Horror #DarkFiction #eZine #OpenCall #Reprints #fiction #stories #flash #poetry @Sirens_Call

The Sirens Call eZine is now open for submissions!

The Sirens Song

Promo_Cover_for_Ezine

Spring 2021

Welcome to a whole new year, folks, one that will hopefully prove better than the last!

For the fifty-third issue of The Sirens Call, we’ll be accepting short stories, flash fiction, micro-fiction, drabbles, and poetry that fit within the horror/dark fiction genre. We welcome reprints as long as you hold the copyright to the piece.

Your piece can be scary, sullen, emotive, freaky, elegant, bizarre, have a dark satirical edge to it, or be flat out terrifying!

The basic rules:

  • Write the piece well.
  • It must be primarily horror/dark fiction oriented
  • No pieces containing coronavirus/covid-19 or political references will be accepted.
  • Don’t break our set-in-stone taboos – NO pedophilia, NO bestiality, and NO descriptive rape scenarios.

Beyond that, be creative, be morbid, be vicious, be clever; show us what you’ve got, and if it fits our criteria, we’ll offer it up to our readership of 35,000 readers!

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Sowing the Seeds

Pen of the Damned

Andy looked at the bowl of cereal that sat in front of him.

“What’s this?” He complained.

“Muesli.” His wife replied. “You know what the doctor said. Now, when I get back from my sister’s I want you to have finished the whole box. There’s enough there for the week.”

She placed a kiss on his forehead before heading to the front door; a wheeled case in tow.

He reluctantly spooned the ‘chicken feed’ into his mouth. It had the consistency of cardboard and didn’t taste any better.

Within an hour he winced in pain. Strange sounds were emanating from his stomach.

He decided to retire to bed, hoping a lie down might make him feel better. He took a bottle of water with him; he was so parched.

Lying in bed, he attempted to reach for the bottle; that incredible thirst was driving him insane.

To his utter dismay…

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RELEASE: The Sirens Call eZine Winter 2020 Edition – Issue 52 | FREE Online #Horror and #DarkFic #eZine #magazine @Sirens_Call

Issue 52 of The Sires Call eZine is out!

The Sirens Song

Sirens Call Publications is pleased to announce
the release of the Winter 2020 edition of

The Sirens Call

The 52nd issue of The Sirens Call eZine comes in at 200 pages on the nose and features 130 pieces of horror and dark fiction. Our Featured Artist, Allison Smith, offers 10 images along with an essay on being a Horror Artist; our Spotlight Poet, Marge Simon, offers us her take on poetic prose and a peek into her collaborative book, ‘War: Dark Poems‘, that she co-authored with Alessandro Manzetti; and our Spotlight Author, Lydia Prime, discusses how small things can become great endeavors with time and patience. She also offers us three excerpts from her short story collection, Itty Bitty Horror Bites.

Come grab a copy! No sign-up required, no tricks when you get there, just a free eZine packed full of incredibly talented writers and artists!

Click…

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Damned Words 45

Pen of the Damned

DW_45

Drops
Nina D’Arcangela

With each tear that fell from her cheek, another drop of laudanum fell from the pipette. Chewing her lower lip, she wondered if the choice she’d made was a just one. Closing her eyes, she drew forth a fond memory of her once vital son laughing as he played – a sound she’s not heard in some time. Her knees buckled as her resolve strengthened. A few more drops and his pain would be ended. Climbing the stairs, the glass of apple juice trembling in her hand, she choked back her own wailof agony.


Elixer
RJ Meldrum

The last tank was empty. The desalination plants were redundant, there was no seawater left. The humidity collectors had been scrapped, the air was too dry. It was over.

The vial was found in a storage room in an abandoned hospital. Five milliliters of distilled water. It wasn’t enough to…

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Savior

Savior by Mark Steinwachs. This week’s horror fiction from Pen of the Damned!

Pen of the Damned

I sip the mint flavored mocha that Maryanne set down in front of me moments ago. As always, the drink was exquisite. She has been a part of this earth almost as long as myself, and I’ve only been outlived by the man sitting next to me. No matter what certain books say, I was number two around these parts.

Drizzle patters the window in front of us, typical for a Portland morning. Relatively few people are out on Saturday compared to the bustle of a weekday. None of that matters in here though, most people walk by without giving a second glance, just another tiny, local coffee shop.

“It’s coming,” I say. “Each day I feel subtle ripples rooting deeper amongst them.”

            The man next to me looks exhausted. His eyes sink in slightly to his gaunt-skinned face. Even his close cropped white hair and beard seem ragged.

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RELEASE: The Sirens Call eZine Halloween 2020 Edition – Issue 51 | FREE Online #Horror & #DarkFic #eZine #magazine @Sirens_Call

Issue 51 of The Sirens Call eZine is out!

The Sirens Song

Sirens Call Publications is pleased to announce
the release of the Halloween 2020 edition of

The Sirens Call

The 51th issue of The Sirens Call eZine comes in at a massive 246 pages and features 176 pieces of horror and dark fiction. Our Featured Photographer, Pieter, offers 13 images along with an essay of his love of UrbEx photography; and our Spotlight author, Lee Andrew Forman, serves up his take on The Allure of the Haunted, along with an excerpt from his book, The Bury Box.

Come grab a copy for free! No sign-up required, no tricks when you get there, just a free eZine featuring the works of incredibly talented writers and artists!

Click on the cover for your #FREE download!

2020_October_ezine_cover

Visit the web site to check out the other free issues of The Sirens Call!
www.sirenscallpub.com

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