Unholy Trinity: The Antics of Arnie Apples by Patrick Winters
Our church worships at the altar of the Unholy Trinity. Its gospels are delivered as a trio of dark drabbles, linked so that Three become One. All hail the power of the Three.
Patrick Winters brings us something new in the realm of the Unholy Trinity. He has written a serial comprising three Unholy Trinities of which this is the first. Come back each Friday to see where he takes us!
The Antics of Arnie Apples
William had created the Antics of Arnie Apples comic strip before the Second World War erupted, and now that he was out of the service and back home, he hoped to continue the series. To get back some sense of joy and regularity.
But things had changed. Arnie had changed.
The kindly, carefree goofball who adored apples and indulged in innocent mischief had disappeared. Now, whenever William tried to draw him, he came out disheveled, hunched, and leering.
And though his famous catchphrase remained, it read quite differently now; its glee was gone, and menace took its place:
Old Pals, New Tricks
William’s headaches were getting worse. Had been since arriving stateside. They pounded away, incessantly, like little exploding mortar shells.
He crawled back into bed and passed out. When he woke up, he was sitting at his drafting table.
A little comic strip lay before him. It was of him and Arnie Apples, saying they were hungry, but penniless. They went to a store, asking for free apples–and hiding baseball bats behind their backs. When the grocer didn’t give them any, they beat him to a bloody pulp and ran off with a great big bushel.
It made William chuckle.
The strips kept coming, enough to fill half a year’s worth of newspapers. Some were an absolute hoot. Other times, he’d weep to see what his Arnie did in them.
Awful things. Bloody things.
But in the latest ones, Arnie was getting mopey. He said he was tired of being stuck in panels on a page. His answer to his problem was to “move in” with William. So, he packed up his bags and made for William’s doorstep.
When William heard a knock on his actual door, he opened it with hesitance.
“Let’s play!” his new roommate said, stepping inside.
Patrick Winters is a graduate of Illinois College in Jacksonville, IL, where he earned a degree in English Literature and Creative Writing. His work has now been featured throughout several magazines and anthologies. A full list of his previous publications may be found at his author’s site, if you are so inclined to know: http://wintersauthor.azurewebsites.net/Publications/List
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Stephanie Ellis writes dark speculative prose and poetry and has been published in a variety of magazines and anthologies. Her longer work includes the folk horror novels, The Five Turns of the Wheel, Reborn, and The Woodcutter, and the novellas, Bottled and Paused (all via Brigids Gate Press). Her dark poetry has been published in her collections Lilith Rising (co-authored with Shane Douglas Keene), Foundlings (co-authored with Cindy O’Quinn) and Metallurgy, as well as the HWA Poetry Showcase Volumes VI, VII, VIII, and IX and Black Spot Books Under Her Skin. She can be found supporting indie authors at HorrorTree.com via the weekly Indie Bookshelf Releases. She can be found at https://stephanieellis.org and on Blue Sky as stephellis.bsky.social.