Loretta retraced her steps of the night. She had supped alone – after Miss Reynolds had deftly turned away dreadful Mrs. Johnson, who seemed to call not to check on Loretta’s welfare but discover if she was ready to admit her husband was dead and have her meet her youngest son, Carroll, and Loretta wouldContinue reading “In Which Mrs. Loretta McEnnis, Recently Widowed, Discovers Reality Has Folded in on Itself”
The First Party In truth, he didn’t have to do much talking. Only the barest amount of small talk, whatever would make it appropriate for a simple touch. A hand shake. A pat on the arm. Sometimes Vinnie didn’t even have to open his mouth. The ballroom was so crowded he could pass off hisContinue reading “Signal to the Noise”
He hit her again, in the face this time. She took it with a grunt, her entire body twisting in the chair under the ropes. For a brief second Garza thought she had passed out. Then she opened her eyes and spat blood at the hunter’s feet. Lester looked down at his shoes, once-white sneakers,Continue reading “Friends in High Places”
“Is that someone walking?” “Who’d be walking out here? It must be a deer.” But as their car got closer to the figure on the side of the road, it became impossible to deny that the figure was human. A woman wearing a white dress, dark hair falling down her back. “Why would someone beContinue reading “Woman in White”
This is the traditional heatherheart wake. Specifically, this is the wake for Jeremiah Jones, or JJ to his friends and family. He was forty-six years old, and had been a heatherheart for the last eighteen. He was well liked. Real good at the job, very clear-headed and rational, and in the past he had beenContinue reading “A Heatherheart Wake”
Her mother had named her Hera, so many years ago. It was a name of bravery, her mother would tell her through the mirror as she brushed out her long red hair every night. A name of beauty and elegance. Most importantly, it was a name of power. No man could ever – would everContinue reading “Hera”
Vinnie glanced at the gold and silver clock face hanging above the doors to the ballroom. It had been exactly an hour and twenty-three minutes since he had found Joey on the upper floor of that shut-down factory.
Not a one of them had survived, although the word had been Mrs. Rockby had tossed herself down the cellar stairs before the disease could get her. Whether it had been from delirium or her own demented way of cheating The Blues, well, that depended on whose mouth the word was coming from.
Sometimes jobs fall right into your god damned lap. Paulie and Tosh were sitting at a booth in Rosa’s, a twenty-four hour diner directly off the highway in a town that had grown up only to serve it. The highway, not Rosa’s. In the same large parking lot as Rosa’s there was a Trucker’s HavenContinue reading “Dinner at Rosa’s”
This was, easily, the weirdest first day on the job he’d ever had. Including the water park, and that first day had ended with three paramedics and a small fire. At least when he’d shown up the location had seen normal. Parking lot away from the customers, locker room, other college kids either eager orContinue reading “First Day on the Job”