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Serial Saturday: All The Queens Men, Part Seven: The Finale by Robert Gabe

  1. Serial Saturday: All The Queens Men: Part One by Robert Gabe
  2. Serial Saturday: All The Queens Men: Part Two by Robert Gabe
  3. Serial Saturday: All The Queens Men: Part Two by Robert Gabe
  4. Serial Saturday: All The Queens Men: Part Three by Robert Gabe
  5. Serial Saturday: All The Queens Men, Part Four by Robert Gabe
  6. Serial Saturday: All The Queens Men, Part Five by Robert Gabe
  7. Serial Saturday: All The Queens Men, Part Six by Robert Gabe
  8. Serial Saturday: All The Queens Men, Part Seven: The Finale by Robert Gabe

In the years that followed I became a recluse. I was now thirty-five and Tana’s parents never heard from me again, nor did law enforcement or officer Daniel. Her murder when unsolved. I spent my time working at a manufacturing plant and rented out a small high rise condo in the heart of the city. I still saw Rose Kay from time to time. She forgave me for stealing her jacket and was equally of fearful of Mr. Henrys threat in the first few months. We talked about Tana, but always wound up talking in circles.

Tana was killed because her goodness of heart could not be undone. She cared to much for the common people to live the life of Dream Rabbit. Dream Rabbits philosophy while anti-society and anti-goodwill, was unfortunately, the way of the world. Tana knew that, but she didn’t want to believe it. She wanted to believe people were capable of kindness, charity and goodwill but humans are primarily self interested organisms influenced by two things: Hunger pangs and satiating their sexual impulses. Mr. Henry knew this. Tana knew this. And now I knew this. Every human activity outside these was just a knack for killing time. Our only real function was to consume and copulate. Emotions, feelings, thoughts didn’t matter. Civilization was a farce. The general rule of life was, above all things, to enjoy oneself and to indulge in pleasure seeking as much as humanly possible while avoiding pain.  

 In the winter time I met with Rose Kay at a coffee shop in the upper part of the city. She knows I don’t go out much in fear that I might be being watched.

“So you’re gonna stay a recluse forever?” Rose Kay ask.

“No, but you have to understand why I fear them.” I say, “I really fucked up putting myself in the crosshairs like that.

“Do something for me?” she says.

“Anything”

“Come see me dance at the club.”

“Yeah, the club he manages. I don’t think so.”

“It’s been years Vincent.. Had he wanted to kill you he’d have done it by now.”

“You think so?”  

“I think you let this whole Tana Molnar thing ruin your whole life.” She bites her lip and smiles “If you continue to live like this you’ll regret it on your deathbed.”

Pause.

“I mean, I never thought of you as much of a man, but I never took you for this much of a coward…”

Silence.

“I have an idea.” I manage to say.

“What’s that?”

“I’m going to write a memoir about what happened and release it to the public. I don’t care if I’m killed. I honestly don’t.” I look out the window to the side of me watching

traffic go by. “That’s the only thing to do.”

“You know why I’m your girlfriend?” Rose smiles

“Why?” I say

“Because deep down you’re not a coward. You’re fearless.”

In due time, Dream Rabbit expanded. They now had their reach across the entire US. There was a national crisis of missing girls the same year, an epidemic of kidnappings. Young women were turning up dead left and right and the president issued a program to stagnate said crimes, but it was all useless. Dream Rabbit had become too powerful and there were too many public officials who were clients for the program to have any real stopping power. I felt useless but I continued to work on the novel.  I spent my days writing the novel from my apartment. I fasted during this time and lost weight. At night I went for long walks in the central park recounting all the details of the story, taking notes on my iphone. Was my apartment bugged? Rose called me one night and told me she thought she was being followed. Dream Rabbit had a watchful eye over every aspect of our lives down to our employment to the point where we’d notice men in suits staking out our workplace.  One night we decided to go to a Boy Harsher concert at the Electric Factory. The song “Fate” was playing. The lyrics “You’re always running. Always running away.” 

In the news, girls continued to disappear. A brothel was found abandoned and left as evidence were the remains of two college age girls clothes, all bloodied and tarnished. Law enforcement was always two steps behind. Dream Rabbit had been in the game all this time and not once had any of their operations been busted, at least to public knowledge. It got to the point where anonymous internet users began speculating on internet forums about a hidden ring. Said users were more useful than police ever were and having known about the organization, many of the posts were accurate to my experiences. One night I was sitting on my computer participating in such forums where a user made a post that stood out to me. The post reads:

My name is Isaac and tonight I’m dropping some vital breadcrumbs. There was sex shop in Philadelphia called a Sex Machines. Last Friday the Owner, Otis Blackwood, was found dead of an overdose and the place has since shut down. Rumor on the street is He was a connoisseur and distributor of snuff films and used the business as a front to launder money to some defunct corporation known as “Dream Rabbit Enterprises.” I did a little digging and found an unlisted website. Though their ‘about us’ section is vague, it claims they are a “hedonist paradise” and a membership costs five hundred thousand a year. Listed was their New York address. I went to the building only to find it completely abandoned. I got spooked when I felt I was being watched in the warehouse and got the hell out of there fast. For the past six weeks I have been receiving anonymous phone calls. Last night I heard a loud bang at my door and this morning when I went to open said door I found a decapitated kitten on the floor of it. My bank accounts are frozen and the power has been shut off in my house. I’m writing this from a library computer. Pray for me.  

This was Isaac’s final post.

I get a call in Mid-March concerning Rose. She’s been killed in a car accident. My first thought is one of profound acceptance as I never believed for one second Dream Rabbit would let her go after she killed The Siren and he waited years to carry out the hit only to toy with my emotions. It was no accident. Rose was driving along the freeway when a car came from the other lane and hit her head on. When I read the article online, I saw that the vehicle who caused the accident had no registration or inspection stickers. It was a hit and run which only confirmed my suspicions. I went to the funeral the next week and was not surprised to see that no family showed to pay their respects. Her obituary had a bitter tinge to it, like it was written by a scorned family member, perhaps her father. I lay flowers down at her gravestone to pay my respect and shed tears and when I do the wind picks up and it starts raining.     

The same week I visit my old college. My old stomping ground. I feel uneasy walking past the site of the shooting and when I did so I tread carefully almost as if the violence of it was still there, stuck in time. I pass through the music hall and go to the grand hall for the athletic department. I run into a janitor mopping the halls and he ask me if I know where I’m going.

“I used to go here.” I tell him.

“You need  a visitor’s pass..” He tells me.

“It’s okay, I’m leaving.” I say. “I just wanted to check out some of the alumni photographs.”

If you are reading this, it is the end of my story. Once I put out this memoir, a

 target will be on my back if there isn’t one already.. I’m not sure I will survive and frankly I don’t care. I’ve lived in

fear long enough. Tana wouldn’t want me to live like this, nor would Rose, the latter of which death I hold tremendous responsibility. It’s a burden I carry every day and one I will never put down.  To Tana’s  parents, I am sorry I could not bring her murderer, Jaques Mallick, to justice. I am sorry for being weak. But know your daughter was the person she projected herself to be and not the other way around. I wish to fight my own hedonistic ways and be more like the public figure Tana was.The last time I saw Tana I was standing next to her in a picture that we had taken at a college film festival. When I went through the athletic section today I notice the picture had been apart of their grand hall, dead center between the trophies they won for their basketball team’s big championship victory. Tana, Casey and I. I took the fragile photo from the case and held it dearly to me and in the reflection of the glass I saw a black van watching from outside the building and then drive off as I turned around to meet it.

 

Epeolatry Book Review: The Dark Between the Twilight by Jamal Hodge

Disclosure:

Our reviews may contain affiliate links. If you purchase something through the links in this article we may receive a small commission or referral fee. This happens without any additional cost to you.

Title: The Dark Between the Twilight
Author: Jamal Hodge
Genre: American Poetry, U.S. Horror Fiction, Dark Poetry
Publisher: Crystal Lake Publishing
Publication Date: 14th June, 2024

Synopsis: The Dark Between the Twilight is a unique collection of memoir and speculative poems that takes the reader on an unforgettable exploration of the darkest and brightest fragments of a lonely but loving heart. It is an accounting of one man’s soul through the power of the imagination. Through the redemption of his pain, Jamal Hodge invites us to turn from the shadows of the past and seek the light in our own lives.

Darkness purifies, Loneliness empties, and in the light, all are made whole again.

Proudly represented by Crystal Lake Publishing—Tales from the Darkest Depths.

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Taking Submissions: Orion’s Belt 2024 Window

Deadline: September 1st, 2024
Payment: 8 cents per word for fiction and $25 for artwork
Theme: Literary Science Fiction and Fantasy

The Basics

Stories should be submitted to [email protected]. All stories must be under 1200 words (not including the title and byline). All stories over 1200 words will sadly be rejected automatically. All stories must contain significant speculative elements. This does not mean all sci-fi stories must have lasers and rockets. It just means a non-speculative story doesn’t become speculative if you include a single line clarifying the story takes place on Mars.

When to Submit

Because of the time needed to evaluate submissions and prepare stories for publication, Orion’s Belt has a limited submission window. We apologize for the inconvenience this may cause to you. Stories submitted outside the submission window will not be deleted, but they will not be read until the submission window re-opens.

Our current submission window opened March 1st.

This submission window will be open until September 1st.

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Apex Book Company Launches New Imprint: Violet Lichen Books

Apex Book Company has some thrilling news to share with the world. They are proud to introduce Violet Lichen Books, their new imprint, which will be steered by the talented Editor-in-Chief, Marissa van Uden.

Picture this: a world where every corner hides a mystery, and each page you turn takes you deeper into the unknown. That’s the essence of Violet Lichen Books. This new imprint is dedicated to novella-length horror and dark fiction, with a special focus on genres like New Weird, Weird, folk horror, eco-horror, and eco-science fiction. If it’s strange, unsettling, and lingers in your mind long after you’ve closed the book, Violet Lichen Books is where it belongs.

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How to Take Your Love of Horror to The Next Level

How to Take Your Love of Horror to The Next Level 

By Kelly Florence and Meg Hafdahl 

As we’re celebrating the re-vamp of our podcast and YouTube show Horror Rewind, we thought we’d talk about turning horror into more than just a pastime. 

Sure, when we were reading Stephen King books and watching slasher flicks on summer breaks, we had a vague idea that a few, special people got to live and breathe horror as a career. Meg even used to pretend to be interviewed with a fake microphone in her mirror as the “next Stephen King” in grade school. 

But then that stupid thing called reality came settling in, you know, rent, gas, diapers, the popcorn and movie ticket fund. Horror was our hobby, and for you, maybe that’s all it needs to be. Meg’s husband is content painting and playing Warhammer for fun, and Kelly’s husband is an avid golfer who doesn’t have ambitions to go pro. Though, if you’re like us, and have an inkling of interest in making horror more than a pastime, let us give you a few tips from our years in the gory trenches. 

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Indie Bookshelf Releases 06/21/2024

Got a book to launch, an event to promote, a kickstarter or seeking extra work/support as a result of being hit economically by life in general?

Get in touch and we’ll promote you here. The post is prepared each Thursday for publication on Friday. Contact us via Horror Tree’s contact address or connect via Twitter or Facebook.

Click on the book covers for more information. Remember to scroll down to the bottom of the page – there’s all sorts lurking in the deep.

 

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Taking Submissions: Last Girls Club Fall Issue 2024 (Early)

Submission Window: July 1st – August 1st, 2024
Payment: Short Story-2,500 words or less. $0.01 USD per word/$25 USD max, Poems-less than 200 words $10, Flash Fiction-less than a 1,000 words $0.01 USD per word/$10 USD max
Theme: Demagogues

The Last Girls Club Magazine is a quarterly feminist horror magazine that publishes international short stories and poems from the female gaze. It is an homage to the scary comics and zines of the late 20th century.

This season’s theme is Demagogues. Demagogue is defined as a political leader who seeks support by appealing to the desires and prejudices of ordinary people rather than by using a rational argument. Some synonyms for a demagogue are fanatic, fomenter, hothead, incendiary, inciter, instigator, politician, rabble-rouser, radical, rebel, revolutionary, troublemaker. It’s an election year in the US. Things are promising to get weird and/or violent. The rest of the world looks like their having the same fight coming to their doors.

  • No more than two fiction stories per author per submission period.
  • Fiction is limited to 2,500 words or less. Authors are paid $0.015 USD per word upon acceptance ($37.50 USD max).
  • Flash fiction is limited to under 1,000 words. Authors are paid $0.015 USD per word upon acceptance ($15 USD max).
  • No more than three poems per poet.
  • Poems are limited to 200 words or less for each poem. Poets are paid $10 USD upon acceptance.
  • I prefer to use PayPal to pay authors, but will work with authors where PayPal is not available.
  • Nonfiction columns will must be pitched to editor in chief before submission. Email your idea to [email protected]

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Taking Submissions: Short Story Substack July 2024 Window (Early Listing)

Submission Window: July 1st – 31st, 2024
Payment: $100 for the chosen story + 50% of subscription revenue
Theme: Any genre, short story

Mission = Revive the art of the short story, support artists, and produce something wonderful.

Payout = Base Pay of $100 for the chosen story + 50% of subscription revenue to be sent by Paypal, Zelle, or check.

Wait, you mean if this substack gets thousands of subscribers, the winner would get thousands of dollars?

Yes! The New Yorker pays roughly $7,500 per story and I sincerely hope to go way past that.

What does the timeline look like?

Submit stories by the end of the month, winner to be announced on the 15th. There is ONE story that wins and receives the full payout.

Where do I send submissions?
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