"Mysterium" - BaronFig.com
"Pecan Pie on Doomsday" - HelloHorror.com
"The Letters" - a short story about a man's dive into his grandfather's secret life. Published in Plumbago Issue #3.
"The Slaughterhouse" - a flash piece featured in Plumbago Issue #1 (reprinted below):
“There it is,” said Danny pointing at the tall brick building. “I dare you.”
The Redfield Slaughterhouse. It wasn’t a clever name or anything. They killed chickens and pigs for local restaurants, back when we had ‘em. Daddy used to say when the brickyard closed down and everyone lost their jobs, “It all went to shit.”
Danny dared me to go up there every afternoon on our walk home. He punched me in the arm when he saw I wasn’t listening.
“Asshole,” I said.
He hit me again in the same spot. His bony knuckles left a welt on my arm that pulsed like another heart.
“Come with me,” I said. “Or are you too chickenshit?”
We stared up at the only two windows left. “S” and “L” had been written in blue paint, though the S was missing a corner, a dirty glass cracker with a bite taken out.
I wasn’t sure if I’d gotten tired of Danny always asking me, or because the June sun had boiled up too much courage in my belly, but I marched toward the building. Danny ran after me.
We crept along the side, kicking vines from our sneakers that inched up the wall like cracks in a windshield. The paint on the metal door had chipped and rust bled through from underneath.
“You sure, man?” he said.
We touched the door—cold, even in June—and pushed. It groaned along with us and came to a stop. I pulled a flashlight from my backpack and lit the dusty floor like the bottom of the ocean.
“You know this place closed down because the owner was murdered, right?” he whispered. “And before him, it was run by the mob. Ten gangsters got shot up, like in old movies.”
People always died in Danny’s stories.
We inched past empty rooms. One had a chewed up mattress in the corner. The homeless must’ve given up and found places where people had change to spare. A rat scurried over Danny’s foot. He cursed and grabbed my backpack. I laughed and he punched me again.
We pushed through a set of double doors on hinges that announced our entrance. I pulled my t-shirt up over my nose and choked on the metallic stench of urine and blood. Hooks stained with rust and black hung from cobwebbed chains. Ribs and pieces of skull crunched under our feet. Metal clanked from below. A pop and a hiss, like my presence had awakened something dormant.
“Shit!” Danny screamed and disappeared into the fog of darkness we’d just come from.
My light found a set of stairs and I climbed, far from the pipes and the bloody ornaments dangling above forgotten bones. The waning sun cast a yellow net through the wall of broken windows. I looked down and called out to a panting Danny. A cool wind touched my neck before flying away. Danny waved, then pulled his hand down like he’d touched something hot. His face sunk. Danny bolted. We didn’t talk much after that.
"New York at Dawn" - The Coil
"Legend in the Wings" - Medium (an essay about my grandfather originally printed in The Loop Magazine)