Thursday, October 25, 2012

Mote to Beam

Sitting atop a mountain, I caught the whisper of a Word.

My brothers had mocked me when I suggested we Listen. They were drunk with love, and none could blame them. Certainly not I. We’d been denied simple pleasures – any pleasures, really – for our whole existence.

He must have Seen this.  Either He had reason for allowing us to carry on, or He simply got distracted. With the whole of time and space laid out before Him like a jigsaw puzzle, one can hardly fault Him for missing a detail or two. I was counting on it.

Interesting trick, subterfuge: alien to us, but inherent in the creatures we were given to watch over. I’m certain we were not meant to watch them quite so closely, but perhaps that, too, was Ordained.  He is both crafty and subtle.

I was neither. Not before the Word.  With dreadful understanding, I descended to the valley.

“Bring me the daughters.” A simple Command, immediately obeyed.

Without explanation, I led the girls away. Humans could not stop me. My brothers cared not. They had their precious boys – rowdy giants wreaking havoc for amusement.

I’d been Blessed with daughters.

I led the girls to where Lucifer slept in peace, where he sleeps to this day, and left them there, safe and sound, until the Flood had passed, and the sons begat by Angels had perished from the Earth. The Word had said nothing about daughters.

Nephilim yet live.

That’s what He gets for overlooking girls.

 Note: This is background for my current novel project.

Monday, October 22, 2012


Ronald’s words reach me over the beeping traffic. “Julius isn’t naked.”

No, of course not. He’s right there next to me in the car, telling me my taste in music sucks and laughing when I deny it. He’s turning off Bad Company and plugging in his iPhone. I’m hit with screeching garage death metal from hell… so loud and terrible it makes me dizzy, nauseated. He screams along.

“They spied every Dane.” Ronald makes no sense, shouldn’t be there. He’s at work.

Like a game of telephone reversed, I finally hear the truth.

Julius didn’t make it.
They tried everything.

Thursday, October 18, 2012


I climb in next to her, warm, welcome. Her hands paint pictures on my skin, symbols on symbols, a landscape of waiting, stretching time and sense and patience until it threatens to break. 

Until I threaten to break. 

She likes me thus, desperate, hungry. Her eyes seem to glow in the darkness, another of her seemings, bodies steaming up the windows, until I forget that I was ever cold, ever lonely, ever wandering the world in search of something.

In search of her. 

Once upon a time. That’s how the stories begin. Isn’t it? I can’t remember. The world has shrunk to this place, this woman who holds me captive, holds me still, holds me off, asking with her silence for me to scream defiance, beg forgiveness, ache, ache, ache with wanting. She keeps me waiting, keeps me sound, keeps me ready, always ready. 

Until I understand war. 

She is armored in amour as she dances just out of reach. I advance, steady, predictable. A front. Inside, I am wild, angry, willing to rend and shatter beauty. Willing to plunder, to plow furrows in paradise until it yields to the thunder of my need. I take, at last I take, and it is all I ever craved, all I require. I claim this place, this world, this woman.

But it's not enough.

In the satiated dark comes the whisper of a whisper of the thing I’d sought, the thing I could no longer have.  I remember freedom…and despair.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012


When I hit the lottery, mother bought me a silvery outfit. “So you can look pretty when you go to your new life.”

The newspaper took a picture of me with a pumpkin, the only other thing our village is known for.

The rumble that preceded the Dragons was met with a cheer. They swooped in, all leather and metal and the smell of death.

I swallowed bile and went to them.

The Elder greeted me with a toothy leer. “Mount up, cherry.”

I got on the bike, knowing my ruin would keep the people safe for another year.

Monday, October 15, 2012


Uncle Jim called The Monastery – an impressive compound indicative of the Priest family’s sense of humor. They’re neither celibate nor religious. Father Mark would consider truce if Jim returned the car, armaments included.

We pretended détente was possible while sabotaging their equipment.

“So, am I on my own?” I asked.

Nate’s jaw clenched, released. “Best keep you close.”

I went to lay wards on his car, before my magic found its own way out.

Nate approached, weapon raised.

Spells still glowing, I froze.

He flipped the gun around and handed it to me. “Time to get out of Dodge.”


Thursday, October 11, 2012

Morning Becomes

I look down on the city, a maze of lights in motion muted by the rain. Behind me, people who mean well murmur platitudes no one believes.

“We’re so sorry.”

“He was a good man.”

“Everything’s going to be okay.”

They’re speaking to soothe themselves, for all that they claim to be here for me. Lies cannot mend what has been shattered. Untruth wraps around me like my widow’s weeds, tight, strangling. Comforting.

“At least he left her enough to live well.” That whispered where I should not be able to hear.

He did not leave willingly. Every last breath was a struggle to survive, to return to the world we’d built together, this castle on the hill. No matter that it’s a penthouse apartment, it is every inch a fortress, impenetrable – or so he’d thought.

Display cases are filled with mementos from our travels, each one a small torture of memory. The art on the walls creates a study in restraint. Everyone remarked on my keen eye for décor, but it was all Sidney’s doing. He never did like to take credit for his work.

Nor did he wish to be given credit for what grew inside me, but it was all his, and I was not giving it up. He should have realized that before attempting to kill me. Not even Sidney could unmake what he’d made of me.

I suck the last bit of dried blood from the crevice of my fingernail and turn to accept condolences.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

What Passes for Normal

I hip-checked Nate just to watch him flinch. “A cipher key is mental.”

“Like you.” His retort felt right, familiar.

Jim hooted like a drunken owl. “There’s the brothers I know.”

“My father must have left word for the Priests, in case he met with a bad end.”

“Is that what you are?” Nate asked.

I shrugged. “You’ve banked on that for years.”

“Now it’s painted a target on my back.”

Jim snorted. “You fight like old women. I’ll tell the Priests you’re not what they heard.”

“But I am.”

“For once in your life, Seth, shut the hell up.”


Tuesday, October 09, 2012


“Paltry paltering’s pointless.” Demon tongue twisted like her tattoo vines. “I’ll not suffer a liar.”

“The offer was fair,” I protested.

“Until you slide that sticker ‘twixt my ribs. I’m no fool.”

“If I meant to kill you, I’d have done already.”

“And I’d have done you for less than a promise, but I know what you are. Witches usually come begging. Not you.”

“Magic born, but I still need information.”

“A kiss for payment.”

“My soul?”

“Yours, if you can keep it.”

Swirling tongue warmed my blood.

“I know what hunts you,” she whispered.

The knowledge chilled my marrow.

Sunday, October 07, 2012

Crossing the Line

Baron croons my name like a death-omen owl, like destiny, fate. If I go, he’ll talk sweet, hands roaming – neck, elbow, hip, thigh – the cycle of lust and damnation. My heart pounds, and I know it’s in time with his.

“Go away,” I pray.

Not gonna happen, sugar. He’s inside my head, in heated blood swirling low, insistent.

“I can’t.”

Already did, then did again. You mine.

Denial bursts loud from my lips.

Momma looks up. “No what, honey?”

“Nothing. I’m confused.”

“A walk might help. Go on now.”

I close the door behind me and step out into forever.

Thursday, October 04, 2012


“How could you allow this to happen?” she shrieked.

I flicked imaginary lint from my suit. “The girl was on the guest list, madam. We could hardly have barred her entry.”

“Find someone to fire for it.”

 “Of course.”

The rich are cavalier with other people’s lives and oh so distraught when there’s a tiny irritation in their own. Sometimes, I wonder why I bother with them at all. Then I remember that they throw the most fabulous parties. I admit to my weaknesses, although never in public.

 “Will there be anything else? I’d like to send my crew home.” They’d been reliable all evening, but they were tired. If I didn’t let them off soon, they’d turn into beasts.

 “She had to have help. That child could hardly have orchestrated such a complex scheme on her own, much less procured the necessary trappings to pull it off. She utterly ruined the evening. I want you and your people to ferret out how.”

“And what are we to do when we find the ones that did this?”

“Bring them to me. Don’t bother to tell our hosts. This is a family matter. My daughter deserves the future we have planned. I will give that little interloper the punishment she deserves. Anyone who helped her gets the same or worse.”

“Yes, madam.”

 As she swooped down the hall, I flicked my fingers. Her corset lacings burst, followed by a terrible screech as her gown gave out.

I smiled and went to tell Cinder the gig was up.

Door #2

By Colleen Foley

I looked from Jim to Seth and back again, angry and trying to process.

I could still see that thing on Seth’s now-covered hip. It would become one of those things you can never un-see. Like a train wreck.

Deciding felt like a balloon of resigned determination bursting in my gut.

I still wanted to shoot them both. But I knew now that I couldn’t. Shit.

I downed the shot, slammed the glass onto the table, and looked hard at my brother.

Jim looked up, a startled owl, alert to danger.

“Where’s the key? And what’s hunting us?”


Tuesday, October 02, 2012


“Such a forlorn place! And enormous! Won’t it make you remember…” Her mother’s casual cruelty subsided only when manners dictated.

It was ever thus.

“I like remembering.  Devin loves… loved the woods.” So hard to recall the proper things to say.

“Sasha, please, come home.”

The name had never fit.

“This is where I belong now. The air tastes right. The city holds no appeal.”

“Call when you change your mind.”

As the sound of the boat engine faded, Devin slunk around the barn.

She opened the door to the other wolves and went to make a cup of tea.


Disaster thwarted, I set the book before Uncle Jim. He swooped, an owl snatching up knowledge-prey. “Language?”

“Romanian cipher. I’ll provide the key.”

He pointed to a sunburst symbol. “Ain’t seen that before.”

I unzipped, revealing it’s like, magic-branded on my hip. “It represents me, the First of Many.”

Jim whistled. “Fuck.”

“Probably a bad idea,” I drawled.

“Explain.” Nate had traded gun for scowl.

“Prophecy says my great-grandson will ‘break the world’.”

“Then don’t breed.”

I didn’t need Nate’s warning, but he needed mine. “We’re already being hunted.”


“Unless you’ve forsaken me.”


Magic built, awaiting his answer.