All Stories, Science Fiction

Home Again by Keith LaFountaine

1.

Alarms blare. It is the end. David knows it as much as he knows anything else. Below, glorious golden clouds meld in a blue atmosphere. So much like Earth. But his family won’t see the light of this star system for twelve years. They will grow old and die, and if he ever makes it back all that will be waiting is a grave. Assuming, of course, there is a planet to return to, and a way home.

The ship falls, and David with it. McLonsky’s blood bubbles and flutters around the cockpit in globules that have minds of their own.

This is it. The end. David closes his eyes, and he waits for his Maker’s embrace.

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All Stories, Fantasy

Shut Your Hellhole by Gabriel Munro

The Thing at the Border:

But erecting a building on consecrated ground presents its own challenges. Wailing banshee? Use stone-wool insulation for soundproofing. Vengeful demonic presence? Mix a dash of salt into the foundation concrete. Ghosts? Use the phrase “historic charm” in the branding. Carlos is ready for anything.

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All Stories, Horror

Civil Servants by Ben Fitton

We slosh through these places, Jorvy and I, with beeping equipment we don’t understand and in suits that keep us alive. Our breathing is laboured. Boluses build at the base of our throats, resting like half-swallowed pills. The gin they give us, which tastes like it had to cross a dozen illicit borders to get here, dissolves them.

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All Stories, Fantasy

The Disciples of Baphomet by Kevin P Keating

I have yet to meet my new housekeeper. She comes highly recommended from, well, shall we say an intimate acquaintance of mine. The agency is headquartered in an anonymous building along the industrial riverfront where, if the amateur historians are to be trusted, a loose affiliation of second-rate magicians used to gather during the Depression to practice their dark arts. Like those illusionists, my housekeeper finishes her duties and vanishes with remarkable punctuality moments before I arrive home from my office at the graphic design firm.

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All Stories, Fantasy, Horror

Bosco by Hugh Cron

Everyone has played watching games. I’d taken it a step further. I played dead games. I visited cemeteries and I gave five of the dead my thoughts on their life.

I don’t know when my game changed. I wasn’t making up the stories anymore. I’m not exactly sure when the visions changed from imagination.

…They had no input from me.

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All Stories, Horror, Short Fiction

The Eleventh Step by Hugh Cron

I hate that eleventh step. It’s the darkest one. It always has been. I remember noticing it when I was around twelve years old but I couldn’t say anything, not to my parents.

I blamed them. I thought when they died it would leave me alone. It didn’t.

I’ve suffered that step for forty years now. But I don’t think I’ll need to for much longer.

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All Stories, Crime/Mystery/Thriller, Horror, Short Fiction

Speak No Evil by Hugh Cron – Warning – Adult Content

I was somewhere I had no business being, doing something that I shouldn’t, when I felt a hand on my shoulder.

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All Stories, Fantasy

Red by Angela Panayotopulos

They say the wolf ate the magician.

They find the man lying on the stone floor, chunks of his flesh unfurled around him like oversized rose petals, torn apart by thorny fangs. Broken bottles litter the shelves of his home, caught in liquid pools of strange colors that hiss and spread like angry tears. Tattered black books pattern the floor, spines up and pages squashed, sprawled open like dead crows.

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