‘Trembling With Fear’ Is Horror Tree’s weekly inclusion of shorts and drabbles submitted for your entertainment by our readers! As long as the submissions are coming in, we’ll be posting every Sunday for your enjoyment.
Fun fact: This is week includes our first accepted poetry! These will fall in line with Drabble in how they’re accepted.
Two requests this week if you have a chance:
For the writers: We’re always suffering a severe shortage of drabble and could use more!
For the readers: Would you be interested in Trembling With Fear to become its own website down the line? Still a Sunday post on Horror Tree but having its ongoing content with a focus on readers? (More shorts published online, author interviews, etc.) Please let us know via Twitter, Facebook, our contact page, or in the comments below! Thanks!
By: Rachel Wesley
I wake with a start, lightning flashing through my otherwise dark bedroom; thunder rumbling across the sky. That familiar tingle bounces around my stomach, the one that people get when they know they are being watched.
I lay there, pretending to still be asleep while I slowly inch my hand under my pillow for the waiting 9mm. Knowing the monster that stalks me causes a tinge of guilt for what I am planning. There is no other choice; it has to be done.
I can feel the thing staring into my back, waiting for me to make a move. My fingers close around the cold metal and I instinctively click off the safety. A horrendous roar bursts into the night, like nothing describable. My heart pounds in my ears, drowning out all other sounds, except that roar. It goes on and on.
I dash out of bed, making a run for the door. Too late, I hear the glass of my sliding patio door, connecting my bedroom to the outside, shatter. I made my move too late. I turn, expecting to get off at least one shot, but I’m shocked to see the monster is already on me.
A massive, clawed hand wraps around my throat and lifts me off the ground in one quick movement. Why had I waited? I should have taken a shot while it was still outside. I try to scream as my gun, my only hope, falls from my hand, but nothing comes out. The giant creature pulls me up above his face and for the first time since he stalked me, I see the full horror of him.
At least 8ft tall, with warped, gnarly, antlers rubbing against my 10ft ceiling, the boney creature has a strength his size betrays. A foul odor rises from every part of his leather-like skin. Small uneven patches of fur burst out in areas at random.
He slams me hard against the door, enough to knock the air out of me. The creature slides me up higher. Fear and confusion warp my thoughts. I meant to make it through this; it had been the plan. I meticulously worked on this plan; perfected it.
Nothing had been enough.
Finally, the beast looks me in the eye. It was the first time I have seen my husband Ben since he was killed 2 weeks ago. His eyes plead for forgiveness, but still, his gaunt stomach rumbles tremendously. He sends me flying into the adjacent wall and is on me in a second. As the crunching begins, words fill my mind: “Forgive me.”
Rachel Wesley is an American author who writes in the horror, thriller, and fantasy genres. She has a particular interest in old school horror with a new school twist. She loves obscure legends and wishes to bring more of them to light. Some of her work has been featured on Reddit and read by various YouTubers. She ghostwrites articles for business sites and individuals and submits expert advice on miscellaneous topics. Rachel is a homeschool parent and has written two books and numerous articles on the subject.
The Hag of the Mists
by Frank Coffman
A mist was rising o’er the lonely lea
As he approached a crossroads in the dark.
There, suddenly, an old hag, haggard, stark,
Was there before him standing silently.
Her cloak was green and hooded and half hid
Her face. But for some reason rising fear
Grew great within him as she drew full near.
Then she put back her hood and—God forbid!
Her hair was not just fiery gold, but flame!—
Real flames swirled like long locks around that head
Above that hideous face and glowing eyes!
Then she keened out—most shrill—a well-known name.
And he knew then that his true love was dead.
The banshee never errs and never lies.
Frank Coffman is Professor of English, journalism, and creative writing at Rock Valley College in Rockford, Illinois. A published poet, author, and researcher, his emphasis of late in literary criticism has been on the poetry of Robert E. Howard [edited Robert E. Howard: Selected Poems]. His weird/supernatural poetry has appeared in Spectral Realms, Skelos, and other journals. He is the founder of the Facebook site: Weird Poets Society. He has a keen interest in all of the genres of popular imaginative literature.
By: Emma Taylor
Bound bodies were everywhere, unconscious or even alive, only God could have known. The rope tore at my wrists. The knot at my feet was looser.
The grind of a garage door opening shattered the silence. An enormous shadowy figure emerged, moving as if he just woke up from a year long nap. His massive teeth ripped into the first victim’s stomach. Blood and intestines dripped from his scratchy beard as he moved from one body to the next. My stomach tensed.
I must have whimpered. He turned in my direction and caught my eye. Smiling, he moved toward me.
Emma Taylor lives in rural Missouri with her dogs, Roscoe and Bowie. She loves reading and writing (especially horror and suspense stories). She has been writing since she was 6 years old.
The Survivor’s Musuem
By: Andrea Allison
“Ladies and Gentlemen, my name is Devon. I’ll be your guide for this evening. Welcome to The Survivor’s Museum. Every person in our exhibits are the lone survivor of a serial killer. Learn the history of their tormentors as well as what they did right that granted them their life.
We arranged each display to honor a killer’s specific tastes and it’s interactive to make your experience more enjoyable. This is a one time private showing. Under no circumstances are you to touch the exhibits. You paid a lot of money for this tour. We don’t want any…..complications.
Andrea Allison currently resides in a small uneventful town located in Oklahoma. She is an author who enjoys writing horror of all varieties. Having discovered her love for all things spooky courtesy of the Fear Street series, she has found minimum writing success and massive amounts of kind rejections.
- Taking Submissions: Corporate Cthulhu - March 28, 2017
- Taking Submissions: This Twisted Earth (vols. 2 & 3) - March 27, 2017
- Trembling With Fear 03/26/2017 - March 26, 2017
- Ongoing Submissions: Shoreline of Infinity - March 24, 2017
- Taking Submissions: Southern Fried Autopsies - March 23, 2017
- Taking Submissions: Untitled Rice Paper Press Horror Anthology - March 22, 2017
- Taking Submissions: Heroic Fantasy Quarterly - March 21, 2017
- Ongoing Submissions: The Forge - March 21, 2017
- Ongoing Submissions: Conduit - March 20, 2017
- Taking Submissions: The Edge: Infinite Darkness - March 20, 2017