Categories
2009 horror Poem Poetry

Dream a Little Scream of Me | A Poem

Dream a little dream of me

When you sleep

I will creep

On your fears and superstitions

While you pray

I will play

I’m the lurker in your closet

Boogeyman

Yes I can

Make you fear what lay in shadows

Scaredy cat

Insomniac

I’m the ghoul beneath your bed

I breed fright

When there’s no light

Fill you up with dread and doubt

Am I a lie

You decide

I’m the monster in your nightmares

Sending thrills

That give you chills

Just dream a big ol’ scream for me

Then face the fears

That you hold dear


Written: December 15, 2009. My first and preferred title was “Dream of Me, Scream for Me”. This poem originally featured in Dreams and Screams, a print anthology published by Liquid Imagination Magazine in August 2010.

Copyright © 2010-2016 by Brandon L. Rucker. All Rights Reserved.

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Categories
1997 Excerpt horror Supernatural

On Shadowy Ground | An Excerpt

{ 456-word excerpt }

Earlier I had thought it was something scurrying around in the foliage like a raccoon or some nocturnal rodent.  But this time it sounded like something bigger.  The movements were quite sluggish for a small animal.

I snapped my head around, surveying the scene, but in the gloom of night everything was gray and black, covered in shadows.  Naturally my display of alarm had alerted Jess.

“Quinn!  What’s wrong?”

“Shhh! Be quite,” I whispered.  “Did you hear that noise?”

“What noise?” she whispered back, thankfully.

I listened intently.

Nothing.

Then it came again but this time it was in the trees, up above.  And close by.

That, did you hear that?”

Jess wasn’t alarmed.  “Yeah, but it’s probably just some dumb animal.  No biggie, baby.”   I think her hormones were clouding her judgment.  She pulled me in close to her again and started That-Thing-She-Does to my neck.

I wondered if I was delusional.  However, the more Jess did her Thing, the more I just wanted her—spooks or no spooks.  After a while (preliminaries and all) we made the kind of wild passionate love normal teenagers in love did.  To my surprise and utter relief, I didn’t hear the suspicious noises during our tryst, although, that could’ve been because all I could hear was Jess’ ecstasy.

Later, after we got off the ground and straightened out our clothes, I decided we should call it an evening and head home.  But, as we made our way through the woods, something jumped out at us!

I couldn’t see it at first but I knew it was there.  Jess shrieked and immediately froze up.  Apparently she saw our visitor but I could not until . . . the shadow!  No, maybe it wasn’t a shadow.  Something pitch black stood directly in front of us, practically camouflaged by the cloak of night.  It was like a three-dimensional shadow, featureless and totally opaque.

It voiced an eerie squall like that of a tortured bird, and its breath stank and smelled literally of sewage or rotting garbage.

I would have screamed just like Jess, but the sudden icy grip of the shadow’s hand around my neck prevented that.

I struggled to get the damn thing to release its hold on me.  I wanted to tell Jess to run like hell.

{ end of excerpt }


Written in 1997. The full version of this story was previously featured in Thriller! A Young Adult Anthology, a print anthology published in October 2010 by Static Movement, edited by Chris Bartholomew. This excerpt exists here for sampling only – any other unauthorized use or dissemination is strictly prohibited.

This edition is copyright © 2016 by Brandon L. Rucker. All Rights Reserved.

Shadows image is copyright © 2016 it’s Respective Owner. All Rights Reserved.

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Categories
2010 Bizarro Flash horror

The Underneath | A Bizarro Flash of Horror

{ 691 words }

Ramsey noticed the mole on his left arm while in the shower earlier that morning, but his mind didn’t quite register what it was through the morning maze of his 6 A.M. mind.  At the time the previous night’s dreams lingered tenuously in his consciousness like intangible, fragmented ghosts.

Now, while he sat at his small gray cubicle ready to assume the role of corporate worker ant, he eye-balled the thing.  He observed that it was dark tan in color, round in shape and entirely . . . new.  The mole had not been there last month, nor a week ago, and most certainly not just yesterday.

Yet there it sat on the inner side of his forearm halfway between his wrist and elbow.

Ramsey looked around the office bullpen to see if anyone was paying him any attention.  Lunch hour had arrived so the office became relatively spare of people, save for the other loners who ate at their desks like he did.  He put his chicken salad sandwich down and surveyed the mole again.

Then he picked at it.  Strangely, there was no feeling.  Perhaps a bit of pressure, but no pain.

Two hours or so later while on his last break of the day, he picked at it again in the elevator.  That delivered a pleasant feeling, so he gently picked at it again.  This time it tickled and smiled.

Later, during his drive home from work the mole started to itch.  Ramsey looked away from the road to scratch at it.  He noticed that it seemed to have gotten bigger since the last time he glanced at it.

That’s peculiar.

He was anxious to get a better look at the thing.

Once home, he heard a voice.  An internal voice . . . in his head.

Look at it, the voice said.  He did.  What he found surprised him.  The round mole, which was once small and tan, and later only slightly bigger, had now grown to the size of a nickel and had darkened to a rich brown color on his pale skin.  It also appeared to be raised; no longer as flat as it was previously.  He fingered it in disbelief.  It began to itch again.  Gone was that tickling sensation from earlier.

He scratched at it and grimaced from the resulting pain.

The voice in his head told him that the truth was underneath and that he had to see it.

From his bathroom Ramsey gathered cotton swabs, tweezers and antiseptic.  Before he could even apply the tweezers to it, the mole—or whatever the hell it was—began throbbing.  It surged with an intense pain that brought him to his knees.

He clawed at the thing with desperation to get it to stop hurting, but that only made it more excruciating and the pain bowled him over onto the hardwood floor.  He must have gotten through the damn thing because his crimson blood began a steady trickle.

Look!  Look underneath!  The truth awaits you!!!

Afraid to look, yet Ramsey allowed his curiosity of what lay beneath his skin get the better of him.  He pulled back the blood-red and blackening surface of the blemish, which was now the diameter of an old fifty-cent piece.

Once he peeled the mole-skin back he saw an eyeball staring back at him.  He shuddered at this revelation, shook his arm as if to dislodge it.  Yet still it sat nestled there inside his arm.  The whites of the eye were bloodshot, and the iris was icy-blue with a tiny black pupil.  However, it didn’t stay that way.  In an instant the eye transformed: the white was now black, the blue now red, and the pupil became a pointy reptilian or cat-like slit.

In another instant the pupil dilated and inside the pupil was the image of Ramsey naked and chained in an X formation against a fiery backdrop.  By that point the searing pain had given way to numbness.

Ramsey became convinced that if he was not already in Hell, or hadn’t gone completely insane, he was fast on his way.


Written in 2010. A slightly different version of this story was previously featured in Like Frozen Statues of Flesh, a print anthology published in July 2011 by Static Movement, edited by Joe Jablonski. This re-published edition exists for electronic access and online archiving, and is intended for reading and reviewing purposes only — any other unauthorized use or dissemination is strictly prohibited.

This edition is copyright © 2016 by Brandon L. Rucker. All Rights Reserved.

Cover designed by Brandon L. Rucker and copyright © 2014. All Rights Reserved.

brandonrucker.com | RuckerWrites | @RuckerWrites

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Categories
1995 Excerpt horror

Pieces of Candice | An Excerpt

{ 772-word excerpt }

Back at my place you should have seen the poor gal.  She was sopping wet with the sky’s tears and her own.  Candice had come out of her state of shock by the time we had reached my cabin.  I suppose that Franklin’s passing had finally dawned on her.  She had to be quite distraught for the multitude of resident house flies and other flighty, six-legged critters to go largely unnoticed.

“It’s my fault he died!  It was my shift to drive when the car must have lost contact with the road.”  She tried to control her sobbing but to no avail.  “We crashed into the trees.  I’m so stupid, it should have been me.  It’s not fair!”

However, I could not seem to make logic of her rationale on the subject.  But no one has ever accused me of having a reservoir of sympathy, either.  Actually, I thought her to be foolish and babbling.  Yet being the gracious and very anxious host that I was, I was determined to comfort her and provide her with whatsoever she required.  For example, if she needed a back rub to unwind herself, I would have given her the best rubdown she had ever known.  However, if she needed me to put her out of her misery, I had the perfect cocktail to do so.  Who could blame me for my magnanimousness, eh?  It was not often in my forty years of existence that I was needed.

I prepared some hot tea with my special blend of ingredients to warm her and put an end to her chills.  She sat upon my love seat with her arms folded and her legs drawn up close to her body.  I handed her the drinking mug and sat in the reclining chair that flanked the love seat.

“Thank you, Mister. . . ?” She paused, not knowing how to address me.

“Oh, how rude of me not to offer you my name.  I apologize.  Please, call me Jules.”

“Hmm . . . Jules,” she mused, “not very common.”

“Is that meant to be a compliment?”  I said, glaring at her. “I most certainly hope so.”  She did not flinch at my stern voice.  Candice seemed to be quite relaxed now, which meant my special blend was working its magic—its affects were instantaneous.

Oh, how I reveled at the prospects of what I could do with her.  Her beauty did not affect me in the sexual sense; I was far beyond sexual gratification at that stage of my life.  Odd, yes, but when you’ve lived alone as long as I have you either got over such things, or you’re doomed to be ruled by them without resistance.

No.  My attraction to her was in an artistic, aesthetic sense.  Corruption, pure and simple.  Perverting her beauty so that it matched my own hideousness was going to be most invigorating!

Noticing the odd odor that permeated the place, she said, “What’s that smell?”

I said, “Rancid meat. I’m afraid I got a raw deal at the butcher in town the other day.”  I chuckled.  “Be wary of the manager’s special.”  I didn’t have the heart to inform her it was the smell of old death.

“So, um, do you live alone out here, Jules?” she asked.  To a more attractive man you would call it flirting.  She took another sip of the magical earl grey.

“Surely you don’t picture me with a woman in my life, do you, Candice?  Take a closer look at me.  Really, what woman would share her life with me, hmm?”

While Candice pondered on the question, she gazed intently into her drinking mug, apparently wondering what else was in it besides the tea.

“To be honest with you, dear Candice, I do not live alone in the spiritual sense.  If you follow.”

Now wary yet slightly disoriented, she dropped the mug onto the wooden floor, spilling the remaining contents.  She started to rise from her seat.  “I-I-better be going now . . .”

“Where are you going, darling?  You can’t leave just yet.  You haven’t met my roommates.”

Candice tried to run, but to her detriment she fell to her hands and knees, and then collapsed onto the floor, her face kissing the wood.

“Candice, my darling?  Are you all right?”  I stood above her figure, watching her squirm and writhe in her pathetic plight to escape me.  She was like a helpless insect missing a wing and two legs, waiting to be squashed out of its misery.

“W-w-what-d-d-did you—?” She struggled to speak before falling unconscious.

My exotic potion had worked its magic.  She was going to be staying with us after all.

* * *

{ End Excerpt }


Taken from a story written in 1995, inspired by the works of horror legends Edgar Allan Poe and Ramsey Campbell. The full story was previously featured in Madness of the Mind, a print anthology published in August 2010 by Static Movement, edited by Chris Bartholomew. This sample is for electronic access and online archiving, and is intended for reading and reviewing purposes only — any other unauthorized use or dissemination is strictly prohibited.

This edition is copyright © 2016 by Brandon L. Rucker. All Rights Reserved.

Cover designed by Brandon L. Rucker and copyright © 2011. All Rights Reserved.

brandonrucker.com | RuckerWrites | @RuckerWrites

Amazon | Smashwords