Tag Archives: amazon

Happy Friday the 13th

Wow, a Friday the 13th and Halloween in the same month. Black cats beware. To celebrate, I have made these amazon kindle short stories free until Saturday the 14th.

Just Desserts is a Halloween short story about the downside of Halloween hijinks.

Playback is a suspenseful short story about a video game.

Mr. Smiley is a series of short stories about a TwlightZoneesque bed and breakfast.

Fragments of Fear: Collection contains all of my kindle short stories except for Mr. Smiley.

The Mall is a novellette about strange goings-on inside a shopping center at night.

The Trail is a suspenseful short story about a group of friends on a hike through the woods with deadly consequences.

 

Please feel free to enjoy any and all of my stories. I only ask that you consider posting a review on amazon. It doesn’t have to be long, just a few lines telling what you liked about the story. If you don’t feel comfortable posting a review, I understand and still hope that you will avail yourself of this opportunity. Have a great day.

BOO!

 

Crash

An excerpt from my book, ‘Fragments of Fear Collection’.

 

“Is anyone here a doctor?” I cried, squeezing her neck as hard as I could, as blood still squirted out from between my fingers. “Please, anybody!”

A dozen people stood around on their cell phones, casting furtive glances in my direction as she bled to death. Three minutes later, two paramedics spent one minute working on my wife before telling me the words no one wants to hear, ‘I’m sorry.’

My world faded to black. The last thing I heard was, “Time of death, ten fifty-two.”

 

10:47

“Talk to me baby,” I pleaded in desperation. “Come on, you wanted to talk so bad, now’s the time.”

She gagged, trying to say something, but it only came out as a gurgle.

“Come on, stay with me.” I tried to hold my handkerchief on the wound, but it quickly filled with blood. Her eyes met mine for the last time, then closed forever.

“No! You open those eyes!” I screamed as other people got out of their cars and rushed over to see what had happened.

 

10:44

I opened my eyes, or at least I thought they were open. Everything was so blurry. I felt in front of me.

What is that? It feels like a flattened pillow.

Then it starts to come back to me.

The airbag.

Then the other thought hits me.

Sally.

I look over and can see her outline.

“Can you find my glasses?”

She doesn’t answer.

“Sally, can you find my glasses?”

I see her moving. Suddenly my glasses are shoved onto my hand.

“You don’t have to be so rough,” I said, putting them on. “All I wanted … ”

The words died in my mouth. She was covered in blood.

“Oh my God! Can you move?”

She shook her head.

“Where’s your phone, I’ll call an ambulance.”

She pointed to her neck. The phone must’ve shattered on impact. I saw a large shard of glass sticking out of her neck. I had no idea how long I had been unconscious or how long she had been bleeding.

 

10:40

The little red sports car smashed into my front fender like he was in a demolition derby. I tried to keep control of the car, but at seventy miles an hour it just wasn’t happening.

You know how they say time slows down in an accident, well I think it sped up. The car hit me, my car skidded into the barrier, the airbags went off all within what felt like a second.

We never had a chance.

Was my final thought before my unscheduled nap.

 

10:37

“Are you even listening to me?” Sally said, as I checked my mirror.

“Yes, but this idiot in the red sports car keeps pushing me.”

“Then let him pass.”

“I’m trying, he just won’t.”

“I’m trying to tell you something important.”

“Thank God.”

“So you’re ready to listen?” Sally said.

“No, thank God this guy is passing me.”

She folded her arms across her chest.

“Why do I even bother? What’s it gonna take for you to … ”

The little red sports car’s front tire blew.

 

10:35

“That idiot’s gonna kill somebody,” I said, but she didn’t hear me.

“What?”

“I said that idiot’s gonna kill somebody.”

“What idiot?”

“The guy behind us in the little red sports car. He keeps weaving in and out of traffic.”

“And that was important enough to interrupt my phone call?” she said in a huff.

“Okay, so now, as usual, I’m the bad guy and you have to go running to your sister or your friends and be on the phone for hours complaining about me.”

“Sorry, Ceilia, there’s an annoying gnat buzzing around, making it hard for me to hear,” she said into the phone.

“You were the one who started this. You wanted to talk. So turn that damn phone off and talk.”

She did turn … her head away from me and continue her phone conversation.

“I swear, one of these days you’re going to have that thing permanently attached.”

 

10:32

“Uh-huh,” I said in my road daze.

“Are you even listening?” she asked.

“What?”

“That’s my point exactly. We’ve got all this time to talk and you clam up.”

“What do you want me to say? I’m driving.”

“That’s always your excuse. That’s been your excuse for the last twelve years. ‘I’m driving’, ‘I have to go to work’, ‘I’m tired’ there’s never any time for us to just talk.”

“I’m tired.” I grinned.

“Not funny. You know one of these days I might not be here for you to torment.”

But I was distracted and didn’t hear her.

 

End

 

 

If you liked this story, you may like one of these.

Open

Avian

Haunted

Stained

The Exam

Eyes

 

Stained

An excerpt from my book, ‘Fragments of Fear Collection’.

 

‘Sincerely, Douglas T. Forbes, Esquire.’

Edna’s wrinkled hands laid the letter on top of the envelope that had ‘Final notice’ stamped in red ink.

“I think I’ll invite Mr. Forbes over for tea.”

She phoned Mr. Forbes several times only to be told he was busy.

Finally, thirty days were up. Two large men in suits knocked on Edna’s door.

“May I help you?” Edna asked sweetly.

” We’re from the bank.”

“Oh yes, come right in.”

***

Two days later there was another knock on Edna’s door.

“May I help you?” she said sweetly.

“I’m Mr. Forbes from the bank.”

“Please come in.”

He stepped into the foyer and was mesmerized by the myriad of colored glass.

“I see you like my work.” Edna smiled.

“It’s quite lovely,” he said, “Mrs. Kelley I’m here on business. It’s about your mortgage.”

“What about it?”

“It’s past due.”

“That’s because you raised my payments last year.”

“There was a change in the law, we’re allowed to do that now.”

“So you’re here to take my house that I’ve been paying on for thirty-nine years.”

“That’s correct.”

“And how much do I need to come up with to keep my house?”

“With late fees, taxes, fees for house calls, compounded daily for twelve months, that brings it to, forty-two thousand dollars.”

“Wow. That’s a lot. But happily I came across an old box of antique coins.”

“Really?” he said.

“Follow me, I’ll show you.”

She led him down the hallway that was lined with stained glass artwork.

“Did you do all of these yourself? I’ve never seen stained glass this detailed before. How do you work with all those tiny pieces?”

“It’s a labor of … love.”

“Who are these people?”

“Oh, my ex-husband, children, neighbors, mailman…”

“You did one of your mailman?”

“Oh yes, he deserved it.”

“Deserved it?”

“I meant he earned it,” she said chuckling.

As they walked, Edna started murmuring.

“I’m sorry?”

“Oh, I was just humming.”

She opened a door at the end of the hallway.

“Here we are.”

They walked into an empty room. The only thing visible was an easel.

“I don’t understand,” he said.

“Have a look.”

On the easel sat a mirror set in a golden frame. He looked into the mirror and no reflection stared back at him.

“What is this?”

He was drawn toward it as if being pulled inside.

He started to see a faint image in the mirror. The louder Edna murmured the more he could see of himself. He looked down at his hands and they had become transparent.

The mirror cracked, sending a jolt of pain through him. It cracked again and again, each a new experience in agony.

The cracks came faster.

His scream echoed.

Her murmuring reached a fever pitch.

The cacophony reached a crescendo then ceased.

She opened her eyes and smiled at her brand new stained glass portrait.

She hung it in the hallway next to portraits of the other men in suits.

 

 

Thank you for reading. If you liked this, try some of my other short horror stories.

Open

Haunted

The Exam

Eyes

Avian

 

Review of Audible.com

For some time now I’ve seen the ads for Audible and mostly ignored them. I considered it to be a good idea and was curious how well it was executed, but that’s as far as my curiosity took me. Then I started driving truck and everything changed.

For a while I tried listening to the radio, but I can only listen to the same ads, same music recycled all day every day before I rip the radio out with my bare hands…or turn it off, whichever one works best.

Along came Audible. I saw an ad on my phone and decided to try it. I’m so glad I did.

I liked the audible interface on my phone. It was very clear and easy to use with buttons large enough to be used without mistakenly hitting the wrong one. I loved the forward or back 30 seconds buttons and used them several times. Options for narration speed, button free, save location, sleep timer, and player settings made the experience very customizable. It was simply well done. I found myself surprised when a message popped up saying that I had earned a badge. This was a stroke of brilliance for the programmers, knowing that many people really enjoy unlocking badges in any app they use.

‘Patient Zero’ by Jonathan Maberry was the first audio book that I had ever listened to on Audible. The recording itself was very well done but not flawless. There were several times when the audio would suddenly lose a decibel or two. In most cases this wouldn’t be an issue, but when I’m listening to it at full volume in a noisy truck, it made a difference. I’m not sure if that was because of the app or the recording itself.

The narrator, Ray Porter, was simply excellent. He gave each character, even the minor ones, their own distinct voice. At one point, Joe (Ledger, the main character) even goes out of his way to mention that his therapist sounded just like Raul Julia from The Addams Family. He really did too. It was uncanny how much he sounded like the former actor and it gave me a clear image every time I heard that character speak.

Again, there were a few minor flaws. The characters voices would sometimes become confused if more than two were talking and on more than one occasion certain characters lost their inflections altogether for a line or two.

This was a minor point, only worthy of a chuckle in an otherwise wonderful job of immersing the listener into the world of Joe Ledger.

The only other downside was the looks of terror the other drivers gave me when they passed my truck and saw me laughing uncontrollably or screaming, ‘Don’t just stand there, shoot him!’ On the plus side, I have yet to be pulled over for such actions either.

Based on this experience, I will definitely be using Audible for a long time to come, and I look forward to the next installment of the Joe Ledger series as well.

Mike