Wednesday, October 30, 2013


by Colleen Foley

Seth’s garish scream made me move faster . I was forced to sidestep a rapidly deconstructing Doberman as it slid past. It growled, whipping its head around to snap. It missed only because its lower jaw came completely unhinged and bounced down the stairs ahead of it. Seconds later I saw the copulating pair.

I knew instantly, which tableau had tweaked my brother. Definitely the dog. I decided not to give him grief later on.

The room and her dress were foxglove blue. Her favorite.

Seth was on the floor between her and the altar. And he wasn’t moving.



Bye and Bye

The discarded pieces of former humans, garishly strewn, suddenly made sense. It wasn’t random carnage, but a selection process. Seamless before me stood the reconstruction of the one I’d loved best, lost first. The tableau, a perfect Victorian room, the sort we’d visited from time to time, seeking wisdom from crones and their cronies, sparked memories forgotten.

She smiled, almost right, almost real.

I looked beyond her, to where the jar rested on a shelf. The room turned the blue of foxglove poisoning – she’d taught me that – as I lunged past the simulacrum of my mother.

I fell, heart breaking.


Tuesday, October 22, 2013

What Should Never Be

Even my messed up life hadn’t prepared me for the reanimated hound. It might be a slavering zombie, but in my head it was a dog, so I was reluctant to “kill” it.

No such reservations, the beast lunged. My shriek was unbecoming an experienced hunter. Luckily, its lack of coordination caused it to slide past me, coming apart and bumping down the stairs, howling.

I leapt over the copulating corpses and slammed my shoulder into an already splintered door.

The drab room was absolutely ordinary, save for the nearly complete gestation of a beautiful woman.

Her eyes hadn’t changed.


Thursday, October 17, 2013

Back in the Ring

by Colleen Foley

I heard Seth move up the stairs as I gripped the withered framework of a chair and hauled myself out of the muck. I sat astride it with my arms on the back, gasping for clean air. The same finger that had stroked my lips now began to snake across my boot, as if still searching for me. I flung it away with a kick and started up the stairs after my brother.

No matter what happened, I wouldn’t leave him alone. He was about to face his worst nightmares come true. I had to try to help.


The Hole is Greater than the Some of its Parts

The house shuddered, framework groaning from so much evil. I squelched through slicks of dismembered bodies, trying not to see the bits rolling beneath my boots, clawing for purchase in a vain attempt to re-form into coherence. Not even they wanted that, but they were too dispersed to know it.

Snaking past the half-torso of a party girl, I climbed the stairs. The priest wouldn’t roll in the muck with his handiwork. Neither would he keep his weakness close. I knew I’d found the right spot when the unhinging dog left his place astride two lovers, jaws opening in pieces.


The Greater Depression

The river snaked through fields roughed by rust-flecked plow, bits of harvest gone from gold to brown sticking up like bones of hope lost. The framework of a fecund time decayed, moonlight casting stripes of cold midnight through loosened boards.

Astride a dust-colored mare, broken like our lives, Maisie pressed against me for scant heat. Her long legs, uncovered save for muslin worn near-diaphanous, showed streaks of our passage through harder lands than these. Mute with hunger and loss, we headed for the shelter of the faltering barn, and prayed the things that hunted all would not be there, too.

Thursday, October 10, 2013


Majec scrubbed his hand over his scalp, missing his once-long hair. “How many are there?”

“A dozen, no more.” Wentz lit a cigarette.

“Even with a full clip, I couldn’t take out that many.”

“Since neither of us have half that, point’s moot.”

Mary Agnes pulled the pins out of her hair, long red curls tumbling down. “Unless we remove them for you.”

“Like that’s gonna happen.” Wentz blew smoke groundward.

Majec punched him on the shoulder. “What he means is that, even if trained, we couldn’t let you endanger yourselves.”

Mary Grace laughed. “You mean you won’t risk your CO’s wrath by screwing up this job.”

Majec nodded.

Mary Lucia stretched, long legs extending well beyond her black skirt. “Agnes, how many of these celebrations have you attended?”

“Four, not counting the one where we bailed at the last minute due to fire storm.”


“Six that I remember. I started young. It’s a little blurry.”

Wentz frowned, confused.

“This is my second,” whispered Mary Margaret.

Lucia stroked the girl’s hair. "Listen up, new guys. I have as many as they do combined, which means we’re at two dozen, and not once have we failed our duty.” She began stripping off her habit, revealing a slinky dress underneath. “So, kindly step aside and let us seduce these jackholes standing in our way. Then we can offer ourselves up to the new god as virgin sacrifices – again – and get back to the abbey before someone wakes up another goddamned demon.”

Down, not Out

By Colleen Foley

I fired several shots, hoping the muzzle flash would help me locate the vodun. It didn’t.

Instead, I was yanked face first to the floor amongst broken curio jars and several inches of goo. My heart was on fire. I was able to gasp in one breath. Bad idea. Slop bubbled into my mouth, and a stray finger began slowly caressing my lower lip.

I had the temerity to laugh as I watched Seth move unerringly towards our inheritance, following his own magic. He didn’t know it yet, but we were both to gain something from this.

If we survived.


Darkness, Darkness

“Oh, this a grand gift.” The voice vibrated, directionless. “My seedling come to take root, and the lost son of my worst enemy, come to inherit daddy’s punishment.”

I froze, partly because Nate started shooting.

“Tsk. Such temerity, to think you can kill the one as remade you. Should be grateful, boy. I gave you something better than your fickle heart. I could take it back.”

Nate choked, fell. The sucking sound roused me.

I gave my magic free rein, intent being all. It slithered, flowed, roared as it found the wretched curio I sought. Vial in hand, I followed.


Saturday, October 05, 2013

Crazy Train

by Colleen Foley

Nothing could have prepared me for the alabaster nightmare in that room. Every surface writhed with a coating of something viscous, translucent. And beneath, visible, blinking eyes, moving hands, the lower half of a leg. A nose and lips, perfectly formed and coated with bright pink lipstick, bubbled to the surface, gasped, and withdrew.

Then there were the jars, thousands of them. Shoved into freeform waxwork sculptures, reminiscent enough of sex and your worst dreams to make me want to scream through every pore. I grinned instead.

“Seth, they’re moving.”

“Jesus, Nate. Just find him.”

Then everything went dark.



Thursday, October 03, 2013

In Deep

My scars shone alabaster in moonlight, symbols near to glowing. Muggy night wrapped around me, mingled with the fear dripping from every pore. I could bless or curse with the best (or worst) of them, murder or save like a champ, but the thing in my pocket was so far beyond what I would do willingly it made the inside of my skin itch.

Beside me, Nate was grinning like a maniac with the knowledge that, one way or the other, his trial would soon end.

The door swung open, expectant, on a macabre waxwork.

“Seth,” Nate hissed, “they’re moving.”