Horrors – A Full Year of Horror #45

Horrors! 365 Scary Stories – A Full Year of Horror

11/11/2017 – 11/24/2017

 

The horror short-short isn’t easy to master, but more than 100 of the genre’s critically acclaimed authors & hottest up-&-comers have taken a stab at it in Horrors! 365 Scary Stories, an anthology that contains a short tale for every day of the year. Steve Rasnic Tem, Wm F. Nolan, Tom Piccirilli, Yvonne Navarro, Peter Atkins, Brian Hodge, Martin Mundt & 166 others give you short, sharp shocks.

If you missed the first post you can find it here.

Hello humans…the Furry Four-Leggeds have temporarily triumphed in the Battle of the Bed. This is why your Story Human was unavailable last week. We will let her come up from the cold wastelands of the end of the bed temporarily to let her tell her scary stories to you.

Hello! I hope you enjoyed last week’s review of Where Nightmares Come From, it was an excellent book. For you guys this means a double-post of Horrors! this week so, yay! Let’s get to the spookiness!


Teacher’s PetsHugh B. Cave

Synopsis:
After following some strange footsteps to his reclusive neighbor’s home, Joe goes to inspect. He finds his neighbor dead and evidence of evil experiments. Ever wonder what your neighbor’s doing in their garage?

Review:
Not bad but it’s told so dispassionately that it’s a little…meh. It’s hard to get excited during it.


TemperanceStephen Mark Rainey

Synopsis:
Two strangers meet in a bar. Hardly a strange occurrence. But what happens when they start to fight like cats and dogs?

Review:
I thought it was a really cute story but the narrator was a jerk, I think. Cats and dogs seem to get along just fine, judging by the amount of bed is taken up at the moment by them.


Terminal IntensityJoel S. Ross

Synopsis:
During a drug bust gone bad police officer Lucy must make a choice between following the light and staying a possible captive in her own body. Torn between the decision, Fate chooses for her. But Fate isn’t always kind.

Review:
I get where the author was going with this but I really don’t think that the ironic, karmic end was justified. It seemed they were reaching a little too hard for the twist.


That’s Mr. Wiggles!Dominick Cancilla

Synopsis:
Elvira Tugalug, known nutter and suspected witch, calls on the fire brigade to help her. Mr. Wiggles, whom she’s just conjured up that morning, has gotten itself into a tree. She does try to warn them that Mr. Wiggles might be frightened of strangers. Too bad they think she’s jut the crazy cat lady.

Review:
I really liked this one. Although I have a feeling that if you called the fire department to get a cat out of a tree in real life you’d be slapped with a hefty fine. I also wanted to know what Mr. Wiggles was, exactly.


That’s the OneC.J. Henderson

Synopsis:
The Story Police have arrived to settle a complaint. Alice refuses to drink from the ‘Drink Me” bottle and that’s not the way the story goes. Someone reading this might thnk it’s silly. But what do you do when the item in your story calls them on you?

Review:
I really loved the idea of this story. It’s ending got much darker than expected but in a good way. It is pretty interesting to think of a Story Police on hand to make sure things go exactly the way they’re told. interesting…and more than a little terrifying.


There it is Again Andrew Sands

Synopsis:
We’ve all been there: we hear a creak somewhere in the house and somebody has to go look. Erica sends her husband, armed to the teeth with a baseball bat. Erica figures it’s nothing when her husband gets back into bed with her. Or is it?

Review:
Great story!It actually gave me a scalp prickle because even though you know from the type of story that things probably aren’t going to end very well it’s still a surprise.


The Thing in the Dark Del Howison Jr.

Synopsis:
Bobby has been told over and over that the monsters he thinks are there at night are just his imagination. One night he hears his mother calling from outside. She’s locked herself out and is afraid something is out there. But it’s just his imagination, right?

Review:
A pretty good story and creepy as well but all I could think was “Pick up a freaking rock and break the damn window!”


This is a TestJohn C. Bunnell

Synopsis:
Two Greys (not Christian Greys, that would be even scarier) discuss their two specimens. Put back in their native habitat of Seattle the second subject starts to prepare to meet the first subject. But first he has some shopping to do…including a very sharp knife.

Review:
I liked the thrust of the story but it doesn’t really explain what they did with the woman or why. It says they removed inhibitors (presumably on the man) but hers seems to be more of a hypnosis thing. Perhaps to make sure she crosses his path? I’m really not sure.


Three Dark DoorsRichard Gilliam

Synopsis:
For years the man has lived prosperously and well, as have the generations before him. In his mansion, however, are three doors that are not to be opened. Two can be opened safely but the third will lead to nothing but ruin. One night a drummer passing by is enlisted for his aid. And they open the doors.

Review:
It was ok but it seemed like a lot of build-up just to get to a semi-ironic end. The doors aren’t explained, neither is the drummer disappearing or why the doors are even there.


‘Til Death Do Us PartMichael Mardis

Synopsis:
Harry’s wife is a bit on the nagging side. She complains about being cold so he brings her a sweater. As she yells at him to put it on her he considers burying her a little deeper next time.

Review:
Not too bad but it was kind of obvious where it was heading.


TimeJames Robert Smith

Synopsis:
Alan has screwed up big time. He’s screwed over his partner and Rob isn’t going to stand for it. He’s going to make Alan pay. And they’ve got nothing but time.

Review:
I can see why they would wait for the ‘surprise’ but I’d really like to have gotten a few of Billy’s emotions or thoughts. Does he want to kill Alan to save himself? Or does he not like Alan either and is happy to do it? It kind of bugs me that they don’t say.


Time CapsuleMartin Mundt

Synopsis:
While excavating the narrator finds a statue. A statue unlike any other, carved before man even existed. As he studies the statue the statue studies him. Which will be the one to walk away?

Review:
It reminded me quite a lot of the Lovecraftian dream stories. Just a fragment of alien history stumbled upon that has always been waiting.


Time FliesScott M. Brents

Synopsis:
Anna wants the clock. so badly she’s willing to almost steal it from the shop’s proprietor. As she drives off with her new acquisition she hears first one fly…then another. Six hundred and sixty six in total. All buzzing the same name. Beelzebub. Anna realizes too late that she’s made a mistake.

Review:
I really liked this story and it makes me curious about the clock and the shop’s proprietor. Is he guarding the clock or merely taking care of it?


The Tooth FairyDel Stone Jr.

Synopsis:
Jimmy tries to stay awake as long as possible. Tries to stay awake until dreamless exhaustion claims him. Because when he dreams, he dreams of The Tooth Fairy. Not the magical fairy but something gaunt and lifeless. And it’s waiting for him.

Review:
I loved this story! It had great visuals like the packaged meat slopping down onto the supermarket conveyor belt (because we’ve all experienced that leaky package and it’s gross) or the meat package full of human jawbones.


Favorite of the Week(s):
The Tooth Fairy by Del Stone Jr. is definitely on top just for the sheer, vivid imagery of it. That’s the One by C.J. Henderson had a dark and grim whimsy to it that lets you fill in the ending for yourself. There it is Again by Andrew Sands was a very creepy, if more realistic “What if?”


Join us again next week at the normal time for another round of Horrors! And, in the meantime, sweet dreams.

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