New Excerpt from Strange Reflections

Hello all,

This is an excerpt from the horror novel I am currently working on titled “Strange Reflections.” This passage is from Chapter 5: The Rescue Party.

If you are interested in this story you can read the first 3 chapters here.

Special thanks to my friend and fellow author Sarah Rosmond for the new image.

Enjoy!


Excerpt from Chapter 5

There was laughter echoing down the maze of mirrors, a slow rumbling movement of a malignant will. There was no source, but it filled her, penetrated her, and she felt a compulsion to stare at the nearest mirror.

Amanda turned and gazed long at the scar that ran up her face. As she looked at her reflection, the glass turned back time. Her wounds unknit and exposed flesh opened. She reached up to touch her face and felt the shock of the same pain she had felt on the day when the explosion had rocked her convoy. She pulled her hand away and looked down in the reflection and saw that there was blood. Then, shocked at the sight she lifted her same hand to her face and saw no blood. Looking again into the mirror she saw the wound gaping, bits of skin hanging from her mangled face. Her leg in the mirror was a shattered wreck. The moment her eyes touched the reflection of her leg, she felt the pain of her wound surge and grow till she crumbled to the floor.

It was the pain that broke her gaze. Later, she would realize it was the pain that protected her, had saved her from the madness of that moment.
But Armin was still staring. He was a statue, raptured by the seduction of his reflection. His body tensed. His fingers were flexing and clenching in rhythmic movement.

Armin’s jaw worked. “No.”

Amanda said, “Armin, what do you see? What is it?”
He stared into the reflective surface; his eyes fixed his mind focused. Amanda could see sweat gathering on his forehead in the dim light.
She thought about what she had seen and wondered if Armin saw that very same thing.

“No it’s not true.” His voice was barely a mask for his rage.

“Armin?” Her voice quivered. Gooseflesh took possession of every pore of her skin.

“Armin.” She stood, moved forward and rested her hand on his shoulder.

But Armin did something he had never done before, something that Amanda had never thought him capable of. Armin, the joker, as he was always known in the squad, had never seemed to have a hateful bone in his body. Armin, the person who was the life of the party, always quick with a joke or a sarcastic reply, did not even turn his head as he raised his left arm and punched Amanda hard in the face.

The blow was so violent and so forceful that Amanda couldn’t understand how he was able to gain the leverage he needed to knock her back. She stumbled and fell, a shot of pain crawling up her leg for her ancient wound, like tiny spiders nibbling on her nerves.

“Armin? Why?”

Armin screamed. He drew his pistol and fired, his finger worked and moved and gushed out lead into glass. The sound of the air changed quality as the ringing took possession of her ears. The mirror cracked and shattered and bits of glass fell to the ground and tinkled with an almost lyrical quality despite her muted ears. Armin fired till he was empty and then threw his sidearm at what remained.

Some of the scraps hung in malformed triangles and Armin screamed again, pounding his fists on the glass to knock out every tiny piece. Blood leaked on his forearms and gathered on the tips of the triangles. Some carried the stain with them as they fell to the ground.

Even as the last pieces fell to the floor, Armin did not stop. Instead, he began his work on the next mirror, and Amanda watched as the glass cut down deep to tendon and bone, though he seemed not to notice.

She had to do something. She forced her body up, her leg crying in agony as she did. She mustered all her strength and charged him. She felt the collision in every nerve, and as they both fell to the floor, bodies mingled from the impact. He moaned like an angry beast.

Armin’s blood flowed freely, and as Amanda lay on top of him, it seeped and stained into her skin and garments.

“Armin. Stop. You have to stop.” She shook him.

His eyes were glassy, and he craned his neck to try and gaze into yet another mirror. But Amanda, realizing that it was the pain that had broken her hypnosis grabbed one of his forearms where the glass had cut deep and squeezed as hard as she could. Armin yelped and looked at her, eyes full of rage.

“Armin snap out of it. Don’t look at the mirrors.”

But his neck stretched and reached for a glimpse like an addict craving a fix.

With her free hand, she smacked his face. It was barely a slap, but it was all she could muster.

He fixed his eyes on her again, the rage focused. He reached up and grabbed her by the throat for a few moments her held tight, and she could feel the blackness swarming behind her eyes. Just before she lost consciousness something softened in his eyes. He let go.

“Amanda?” His voice was rough and muted by the ringing in her ears.

“Armin…” She coughed and sputtered but forced her words through the mucus built up by his stranglehold. “Don’t… look… at… the… mirrors.”

He nodded and stared at her for a moment. “How did you get blood all over you?”

She returned his gaze. “Armin… look at your hands…”

He did. For the rest of her days, she would never forget the look of horror and revulsion on his face.

Strange Reflections a new serial on Patreon

 

Strange Reflections Cover

I just launched a new serial story on my Patreon page.  For those of you who don’t know already, some of my stories are either exclusive to Patreon or early access for Patreon Subscribers.

My new serial, titled Strange Reflections, departs a bit from science fiction and delves into a world of horror and mystery.

A short blurb:

A reoccurring nightmare, a library full of occult books, and a strange underground passage, for Amanda it’s only the beginning.

Check out my Patreon Page where you can find this story and one other from the world of the Chronicles of the Great Migration! 

Man in the Mirror (Happy Halloween!)

Happy Halloween 2017.

I recently wrote a piece for a Halloween themed Flash Fiction Event. I thought it would be fun to record a quick video and throw it up on YouTube. But, if you just want to read, the words are also below.

 

“The Man in the Mirror”

 

Welcome back doctor, you are well I hope?
No don’t bother, I know the usual trope
Are you ready to examine me under your microscope?
I am ready to share now, I will succumb to your hopes.

Your hopes, your hopes but what of my hopes?

I take it you want me to explain my tale?
I warn you now, you will think me mad, a liar, worthy of jail
I have told a few others but to no avail
They do not believe it, thus far the truth has not prevailed

The truth, the truth, the truth will prevail

Why am I speaking in rhymes you want to know?
It simply eases my pain and lessens my woe
The loss of my wife was, you see, quite a blow
Although, you think I am guilty, that I know

The woe, the woe, you cannot possibly know.

It was early morning when I woke from my doze
The darkness still sparkled, the sun had not rose
I shifted and turned in the chair that I chose
I shut my eyes tight but they would not stay closed

Stay closed, stay closed, if only they’d stay closed

I moaned, for sleep was scarce indeed.
The first colors of the morning had begun to bleed.
I sat up in the chair and tried to proceed
But long bouts of insomnia had sapped me indeed.

Nights without end, indeed, indeed.

I rose from the chair and the world started to spin
I pawed my way to the bathroom so my day could begin
I glanced at my reflection and I did not find twin
But instead staring back was a strange man with a grin.

That grin, that grin oh the horror of that grin.

His face was like mine, but something was wrong
We stared for a while, time looped and grew long
His eyes like questions, hypnotic and strong
My terror grew deeper for a mirror is never wrong

Distorted and cracked but never wrong

How much time passed? I could not say
But I will never forget what happened that day.
For the man in the mirror, he wanted to play.
And the game that he liked? Command and obey

Obey, obey I had to obey. My gaze was fixed, I had to obey.

It was not a good game, it was cruel you see
For he was trapped in the mirror and he wanted control of me
He wanted my life, he wanted to be set free
A curse had trapped him there for all eternity

The curse, the curse he wanted to be free.

A blood sacrifice was required of course
Not a chicken, nor a goat, not even a horse
At first, I resisted, I fought with all my force
But my will was finite compared to his source

Centuries of hate were his near infinite source

He compelled me to do it, to his will I was bound
You may think me mad, that my mind is unsound
But those eyes, those greedy eyes, so wide and so round
I could not resist his will, I was bound

Bound, bound, soon we will all be bound.

He beckoned me to the kitchen, and made me grab a knife,
And then he sent me upstairs to find my sleeping wife,
I entered our room full of struggle and strife
But his desires were strong and he wanted her life

Her life, your life, bound in the blood and knife

The rest you can guess I am sure it’s quite clear
After all, I’m famous, the case of your career
Crazy as It might seem we are bound right here
Do you feel it yet doctor? That tingle? That fear

The fear, the fear are my intentions yet clear?

And now doctor, I have you, you are all mine
You lingered too long, you dallied for the last time.
I captured you with my lyrics and rhythms and rhymes
I’ve been trying to find the right vessel and now you are mine

Mine oh mine, you are all mine

You see, the sorcerer in the mirror managed to get free
But his body? Long gone and so he found a home in me
But something about me is inadequate you see
I am dying and to a new body he must flee

This body will crumble, oh doctor, it’s too late now to flee

Come closer now doctor and stare into my eyes
That’s it I beckon, I compel, I promise you no more lies
That’s right doctor, give in, resistance is unwise
Let down your barriers, let me try you on for size

Wonderful, what a fit, what an excellent prize.

Now to find the descendants of my captors and bring about their
demise.