A Twisted Tale by Steve Sibra
I awaken and I sleep and I do not know the difference between the two. In one realm my wife and children have been brutalized and left to die; they have been sewn up, stitched into leather tubes while still alive. I hear the screams. But do I hear them in reality, or in a dream? I pray it is the dream. But I cannot tell.
The rhythm of Amber’s screaming lulls me into sleep. Or am I already there? I dream that I have gone to the kitchen for some applesauce, only to find that a naughty puppy has eaten all of it. Or is this real, and the other a dream? Continue reading
A Twisted Tale by Sarah Beaudette
3,462 people responded to Mitchell’s tweet, all of them asking where to send their donations. Mitchell thanked each person from the bottom of his heart and gave the address of his brother’s cold storage unit in upstate New York.
One month later Mitchell was shivering in a maze of frosty boxes stacked to the ceiling. He picked his way through the crates, boxes, and air mailers of every size and color to the west end of the unit, toward his work table and some precious few feet of floor space. He’d only had a few thousand followers. He’d only been asking for donated materials for his newest sculpture, but something about his tweet struck a nerve with the masses and inspired them to come to his aid. Standing at the work table with apron donned and crowbar in hand, Mitchell knew he was about to become a conduit for a sea change in postmodern art. Continue reading
A Terrible Tale by Tom J Perrin
A photograph that one takes of oneself, typically taken with a smartphone or webcam, and shared via Social Media
The familiar click of the camera’s shutter annoyed everyone at the table, but Chelsea didn’t care as she pouted furiously at her phone, annoyed at the standard of the selfie she’d just taken. Arching her arm above her and smiling, she experimented with various props before taking the shot. She took another shot, posing quizzically while pretending to take a bite out of her sandwich. It’d do. She set about immediately sharing the picture around her various social media accounts, clicking away rapidly, oblivious to the fact that her social circle were actually gathered around her. Continue reading
A Horrible Tale by Daniel Lind.
You are thirteen summers old with a skip in the step. With no customers inside, I sneak out from my corner shop to catch a glimpse of you walking home from school. Youthful pearly grey eyes sparkle in the afternoon sun.
Your magical smile conjure a tingling in my bones. Continue reading
A Sick Tale by John Rickett
Duct tape. Check.
Old VHS camcorder. Check.
Four rolls of sheet plastic. Check.
Revolver—I pop open the cylinder and count six rounds.
This is exactly what it looks like.
But it feels like someone poured powdered cement down my throat, and it’s solidified in my guts. Like someone’s rubbed my cock raw with sandpaper. Like a bowling pin lodged in my ass, sideways. Continue reading
A Twisted Tale by Alex Maher
Big John Miller loved Sundays.
That was when young John Miller Junior would come over and hang out in the shed with Ol’ Grandad. Margaret, his wife of fifty-three years, and Phillipa, his daughter, would be inside getting Sunday dinner ready. They would be chopping and preparing vegetables and cakes for dessert. They would be talking about whatever girls talked about when they chopped and prepared, and he would get to hang out with John Junior for the day.
His thoughts turned to Margaret’s sweet lemon meringue pie. The lemon so tart it would turn your belly button inside out and the meringue so sweet you’d think it was a Disney movie. His mouth watered and his tummy let out an involuntary rumble, much to Junior’s amusement Continue reading
A Twisted Tale by J Saler Drees
When Makar was a baby in a Russian orphanage rats chewed on his face, leaving him for the rest of his life with a crumpled ear, missing nostril and disfigured lips. Growing up, his face gained him more pity rather than love, until he finally found Griselda. Griselda who now wants him to spend the night again. They rest in her bed after having sex, his arms wrapped about her pillowy body, squeezing her soft flesh tight.
Usually he’d say yes, of course he would, but tonight is different. Tonight is the night of no moon. And he can’t stay or she’ll find out he turns into a rat. And if she finds out he’s a rat she’ll no longer want to be with him. And worse, he thinks she’s the one he wants to marry, the one he can see spending the rest of his life with. He’s thirty, has a steady job as an accountant, and ready for commitment. Except, how can he ever tell her that on the night of no moon, every month he turns into a rat from sun down till sun up? To tell her is a risk he’s not willing to take. Continue reading
A Dark Tale by John Bryant
The waiter nodded toward a solitary, unremarkable man—dark glasses, grey hair cropped close—seated at a table near the farthest edge of the patio. “That is Senor de Ortiz,” he said to the Condesa. “He is unorthodox and…selective about whom he assists.” Remembering himself, the waiter added, “Your ladyship will be eminently acceptable, I’m sure.”
The Condesa handed the waiter a coin without further acknowledgment, and crossed the patio to the seated figure. Although she sought to be discreet, her aristocratic bearing announced her arrival.
Senor de Ortiz held an unfiltered cigarette between stained fingers, his head tilted toward the distant sound of a flute. Continue reading
A Horrific Story by P.C. Newland
In my mind’s eye I’m smoking a cigarette. I’m sitting on a porch swing in rural Georgia, or someplace like it, where sun-ripe peaches sit in rosy rows on whitewashed railings. A place with sugary sweet tea, so much ice clinking in the glass it sounds like church bells. A place that smells like jasmine. Somewhere I can sit and watch kids play on a hand-me-down swingset or grab jacks off the cracked sidewalk; where the hot, damp air melts any impression of thought or wish or regret and all you do is just exist.
Somewhere not at all like this. Continue reading
A Poem by Gary Beck
I kissed the rosey cheek of death
before he could prevent me.
He glared at my impertinence.
No sentimental outbursts please.
I do my job without display,
in sleepless hours night and day. Continue reading