All posts by David Kummer

I live in a small, river-town on the Ohio River in southern Indiana. Along with taking care of younger siblings (I have eight total), I make time for writing in between school and sports. I've been writing since I was young, with As Trees Turned Away being my first published work and She being my first published novel. Along with writing, I am an avid reader and watcher of all things horror, and enjoy writing reviews on them for others who might want to know my opinion on them. When I'm not writing, I enjoy talking with my hilarious friends and amazing girlfriend, spending time with my loving family, watching movies, and working out to burn all of the calories I get from binge-eating Hawaiian Rolls. Those things are just irresistible, am I right? I'd rather get paid those for royalties than money. Slogan: Turn the page. Trace the plot. Tempt the panic.

Summer Announcements

A few announcements to run by here. Summer’s about halfway over, I guess you could say, and already Cold, Gray Eyes released on June 1. I have one more release, one major book announcement, and of course some fun giveaways popping up here and there 😉

First of all, Cruel, Gray Eyes comes out on July 1 and is available for pre-order if you go click on the book title. If you haven’t done that, I highly recommend pre-ordering because it gets you the book instantly when it’s published, you won’t forget about it, and it lets me know how much interest there is.

Secondly, I’ve decided that I’ll be releasing both Mr. Telo books (the Eyes ones) as well as a third one, all bundled together in one paperback format. When is this gonna happen? Not for a while, sadly, but keep that in mind for all of you non-Kindle readers.**

Number after two, I’m gonna have tons more giveaways, most of them in July! I’ve compiled a short list of the giveaways below (three of them) which you can copy, screenshot, or add to your calendar so you don’t forget. (These will also be on Facebook later).

As Trees Turned Away (Discounted)— June 25-28

Cold Gray Eyes (Free)— July 1

She: A Horror Novel (Free)— July 8

Lastly, I hope to have a new book trailer made by a good friend of mine who puts together absolutely amazing work. The book: She Watches. The trailer date: sometime in August. The excitement level: very high.

So that’s all! Stay tuned, ladies and gentlemen and kangaroos, because I have tons more stuff coming down the pipe, and a very game-changing prospect that I’ve been thinking on for a while. More on that in coming weeks 😉 Stay goofy

<><><><>

** If you want to know how to read Kindle books without using a Kindle, check out this helpful article I wrote.

How To Read Kindle Books On Computer

Are you one of those people who doesn’t use Kindles, Kindle apps, or anything Amazon? But you still want to read that cool new book that’s only on Kindle? Don’t worry! My article will save you

Check it out and see HOW TO READ KINDLE BOOKS ON COMPUTER.**

I find myself running into this problem more and more, so without further ado, here is how to do the tricky things I have described above in the most confusing wording possibly known to mankind. (See? I’m fun!)

Click on the blue links to go to the download site. If there isn’t a link, I couldn’t find one. You’ll understand when you get there.

Notes About Kindle

  1. YOU’LL NEED AN AMAZON ACCOUNT FOR THESE. I’m sure you already have one if you have a computer, though. If you don’t, you’re very very special and I praise you.
  2. Unless otherwise noted, all of these apps and sites link together all your devices. So if you read to page 3 on one device, you can pick up on page 3 with the other. It’s simple, but very helpful.
  3. Unless otherwise stated (different word hehe), all of these things (?) allow you to buy/share/read/rate your books. Obviously, you can read on all of them. I mean come on. That’s what it’s for. That, and making money. What?
  4. I will make sure to put if any of these aren’t free. I think they’re all free, but the books you have to buy won’t be. There are some free books on Amazon, believe it or not.
  5. Oh yeah. When I say Amazon and Kindle, these are mostly interchangeable. Amazon is the website, Kindle is the reading device, but they’re basically the same because you can access them from each other. It’s like a big spider web with lots of dead insects in it.

FOR MICROSOFT COMPUTERS

First option is Kindle for PC. This is the main one you want. It gives you all the benefits of a Kindle, such as highlighting, notes, sharing, buying, and obviously reading. It makes all of this available on your computer, so it’s basically an app for your computer. There’s color, different brightness settings, etc. etc. It’s a Kindle on your computer. For the full details, go click that bright blue link (should be blue anyways).

The second option is directly on your browser. Kindle Cloud Reader. Basically, you’re reading the books on your computer, without an app or anything. Think of it as a Kindle Blog. There’s a SUPER HELPFUL ARTICLE HERE that explains tips and stuff so much better than I ever could, so open up those two links and get reading brother/sister/aunt.

The Kindle App may be in your app store. I don’t even know. I have a feeling it is, though, so check.

FOR MAC COMPUTERS or CHROME COMPUTERS

Seven words: App store. Both Macbook and Chromebook users will find the Kindle App directly in their app store. This is the easiest way to read them on your computer, because to be honest there’s only two ways. One– the app. Two– the browser. And the app is a much nicer choice, trust me. Find it by going to your app store, typing in Kindle App, and start your reading.

The second option is directly on your browser. Kindle Cloud Reader. Basically, you’re reading the books on your computer, without an app or anything. Think of it as a Kindle Blog. There’s a SUPER HELPFUL ARTICLE HERE that explains tips and stuff so much better than I ever could, so open up those two links and get reading brother/sister/aunt.

FOR PHONES/TABLETS

I think every phone or tablet type has an Kindle App in the app store, to be honest, so that’s your best bet. And it’s completely free. So go to your app store, get your books, and start reading.

If you insist on not doing apps and want to read directly on your web browser, the second option is directly on your browser. Kindle Cloud Reader. Basically, you’re reading the books on your computer, without an app or anything. Think of it as a Kindle Blog. There’s a SUPER HELPFUL ARTICLE HERE that explains tips and stuff so much better than I ever could, so open up those two links and get reading brother/sister/aunt.

BASICALLY

You have two options.

  1. Read it on an app from your app store (or Kindle for PC if you’re on a Microsoft thing, which may also have a Kindle App in its store)
  2. Read it on your web browser, via Kindle Cloud Reader

 

**There’s really no way to print off e-books, without emailing the author and asking for a copy that you can print off. My email is davidkummer7@gmail.com and I’m totally willing to do that for ya.

New Release! Cold, Gray Eyes

Buy Here

This is the first installment of the Mr. Telo series. The second comes out July 1. Pick up a copy now to read!

<>><><>>>>><<><<<><>><><(*&*&(_*(&()

“I would never kill a good person, but there are no good people. That’s an easy rule to live by.”

There is a campground deep in the forest that everybody raves about. The owner is a down-on-his-luck 40-something man, with a good heart and a good camp set up. Sure, there have been accidents in the past, but who’s to judge?

One family shows up to his site, ready for their vacation, and learns that things aren’t quite so cheery at this camp. There is a darkness that doesn’t stay in the forest. There is something behind Mr. Telo’s smile. And most of all, there are secrets hidden in the past; well-hidden.

Everybody gives in eventually. The darkness will always get you, one way or another, one day or another. Let it overwhelm you. Let the evil grow. Come to the camp with the secrets.

“Nobody can resist the cold, gray eyes.”

Castle de la Phantom: Part 4

4

Lili stumbled along the castle halls, breathing heavily and trying to find her way through the dim light. The walls all around her were cold and unfriendly, as she tried her best to find a place to hide. That strange man, standing at the back of the crowd, had told her to run, and given her a key to a room. Now it was her job to find the keyhole.

She tried every door she passed, twisting the knobs to see if they were locked. Some of them were not, and so she peered inside. The ones that were locked, she tried to fit the key into, but with no avail. It had been nearly an hour, and still there was no sign of hope.

Inside the countless rooms were all sorts of terrible things. In some of them, she found bodies, alive and dead. They were writhing on the floor, covered in darkness and ashes. Some rooms held chambers full of torture devices, unspeakable acts still echoing like ghosts around the room. But nobody screamed, not a single person that was alive. They had been taught to fear the open door.

At long last, Lili managed to turn the key. She opened the doorway to find a cramped and dusty study. There was a desk set up, along with a small case of books. On the desk were papers. Darting inside, she shut the door behind her.

She picked up one book from the shelf and glanced at the others. There were titles such as The Right Rituals and What Powers Are Beneath and Of Many Tortures.

On the papers were random symbols, drawn in all sorts of disfigured ways. Some of them looked like bodies, turned in impossible formations, while others seemed to be gibberish. On another sheet were names of people, over fifty on the first page. There were dozens of pages under that, and all of them had X’s over the words. At the top of every page was written: Slaves- Who Still Lives.

The door opened behind her, and she whipped around to see the man from the crowd. He strode in, wearing his mask and long cape, circling her like a lion about to kill its prey.

“Have you come to kill me yourself?” she asked defiantly. “I’ve had enough of people like you for one day.”

“Hold your tongue,” he snapped. “I saved your life, and I’m about to do it again. There are a thousand angry men coming towards us as we speak, their mouths dripping with blood and skin under their nails. They will kill you, and they will kill me.”

She crossed her arms. “Then let them. It’s better to die than to be with that horrid man who owns this fortress.”

“I own this fortress,” the Phantom said, stepping towards her. “You all are my servants, but you’ve forgotten how afraid you should be.” He raised a hand, and she took a step backwards, fear flashing for an instant.

“I have obeyed you,” she said.

There was silence, as his head cocked to the side. His hand slowly lowered. “Yes, you have. For that, you will be rewarded.”

Stepping around her, the Phantom used his elbow, breaking through the wooden wall. He ripped away pieces of it, until they could see clearly outside, where the snow was falling swiftly and now piled up on the ground.

“If you go out, you will find there are two stories below us. Hop down onto those roofs, and then to the ground. You may break your leg, but you’ll manage. The snow will soften the blow if you fall right.”

He stepped out of the way and motioned towards the exit. Lili took a step, but then turned to face him.

“I don’t want to leave you,” she said. “You saved me.”

“I have lived in these castle walls for years on end,” the Phantom growled. “Terrible things I have heard, and worse things have I seen. There is a darkness here that cannot continue. Take yourself out of this place, and you will be pure. You will be saved. Stay here, and you will burn with the rich.”

Fire peeked its head through the wooden door and started spreading quickly. Outside, they heard the chanting of a crowd, and the stomping on their boots on the ground. It shook the entire castle, the thousand-strong march to defeat the Phantom at last.

“Leave,” he commanded Lili. “Leave me now.”

She stood in front of him, rooted to the spot, staring into his eyes. “Take off your mask.”

He bowed his head and held her hand gently, raising it to his face. “Take it off yourself. You already know what is beneath.”

She peeled away the fabric, exposing a face that was burnt and deformed, with cruel lines etched across it. There were scars and skin stained from blood, ever running and ever flowing.

“My skin was made a parchment for the Count’s pleasures. I was the one who dared to defy him. The others slaves would not. It was so many years ago, when his father was still alive, that the Count took up the cruelest of hobbies. We suffered greatly, but you suffered even more because of it.”

“I thought they’d killed you,” she said, hugging his neck. “I thought you were dead.”

“Lili.” He raised her head and stared into her eyes. “Go quickly before they find you here.”

She backed away from him, holding the mask in her hands. The Phantom unsheathed his sword and handed it to her. With one last, filling glance, she turned away and exited the window.

“Put the mask on, Lili,” he said as her feet left the room. “It will help you.”

She turned around, wearing the Phantom’s mask. “Yes, father.”

The marching grew closer, as the Phantom turned back to face the flames. There was a fire engulfing the room, drawing near to his body as the papers and the books went up in smoke. A brief light, as it consumed the room, and his entire world was a shining ball of light.

The crowds continued marching, continued chanting, as they burned alive. The Count was leading the way, his limbs enveloped by flames as he marched until the skin was detached from his bones, thrown down as ashes on the ground. The rest of the men and women fell to their knees before the almighty flame, as their gold and their silver and their jewels and their beautiful decorations melted in front of them. The end had come for the rich and their riches.

With one last scream, the Phantom threw up his arms and embraced the old friend of fury. A heat so overwhelming took him to his knees. The fire would rage until every sliver of wood had perished.

The Phantom crashed, burned, and died with his castle.

Madison Library Event: RECAP

As promised, here are the videos/pictures from my library event last night. Take a lookie! The samples I’m reading are mostly ones you’ve heard before, and sadly we didn’t get the Q and A sequence on camera. If you any questions or thoughts, let me know in the comments. Thanks to my dad for recording, and to everybody in my family and some from the community for showing up.

https://goo.gl/photos/pxSGUfJz58KaHCm48

About 20 people showed up in total, and we had a great time over an hour and a half. In fall of this year, I’ll be having another event there to celebrate the launch of She 2. Looking forward to it because this event was such a good one!

I’ll have some books for sale next time 😉

Castle de la Phantom: Part 3

3

“Get out of my way,” the Count growled as he entered the main room. People didn’t take notice of him at first, but then he shouted and they quickly moved aside.

“What is it, sir?” the Mayor asked nervously. “Has something happened?”

“Where is the spiked club?” the Count demanded. “I need it.”

One of the guests brought it over, handing it gently to the Count and trying to smile. He stuttered out some word, and then backed away as fast as his legs could manage.

The Count held the club in his two hands and slowly approached the Slave, who was on the ground whimpering. What used to be a body was now a tangled, mangled, mutilated pile of flesh. It was black and blue all over, his eyes streaming tears and his throat red and swollen from screaming.

“You’re going to wish you’d never come to my party.” Holding the club, the Count grinned wickedly, feeling his heart like ice. With every beat, his hatred of Lili grew, his hatred of everybody.

“I have a family!” the man begged. “My… my wife will be wondering where I am. I was just coming to see… if I could get in. I just want food! I’m starving!”

“You won’t have to worry about that much longer. Soon, you won’t feel anything at all.” The Count raised up the spikes and swung them down, digging into the man’s back.

“Sir!” one of the guests raced up. “You have to pay for your swings!”

The Count spun around and pushed the club up to the man’s throat. “I don’t know how many it’ll take. I’ll pay when I’m done.”

The Slave whimpered on the ground. “Please, limit yourself to 10 swings. I can’t stand any more than that.”

Whipping around to face him, the Count thought for a second. “Yes, I think 10 will do. I think in 10 swings you’ll be dead at my feet.”

He brought the club up above his head and smashed it down onto the man’s shoulder. It crushed, and he was flattened on the ground. With the third and fourth strike, he flattened the man’s knees. Once, twice more and he was laying on the ground, begging for mercy, his head still attached to a thrashing body.

“You’re going to feel every single spike, and then it’ll be over.”

Another swing, and another flattening blow. The Count put a foot down and kicked the figure over, so that his ripped back was pressed against the floor and his torso was exposed.

The eighth swing ripped across his chest. The ninth cut into his abdomen. With one last heave, he planted the club in the man’s face, where he lay writhing until the rest of the blood seeped out.

All around, the guests were staring in awe. There was blood sprayed across everyone near the center of the room, and the floor was slick with it. There was a sense of terrible depravity, such darkness resonating from the Count. Everybody knew what they just witnessed was wrong, was a terrible act.

Laughter broke out in one person, and then two. One minute later, a thousand men and women were heartily laughing, clapping the Count on the shoulders. “Bring out more slaves!” they cried. “Let us kill the rest of them!”

Silence, followed by the booming voice of the Count.

“Take up your clubs, take up your swords, take up any weapons you can find. We no longer need to kill the slaves. We no longer want the weak ones. We want the strong ones. We want Lili.”

“Who is Lili?” the Mayor asked, standing a few feet away.

“She is a villager who has snuck into our midst and stolen our food. She is worse than these slaves, because she is a woman, and she had the audacity to come here and take what belongs to us. She had made fools of us, and for this she will die!”

“Wait!” There was a familiar voice yelling from the door to the right side hallway.

“Who is that?” the Count yelled.

A guest peered down the empty corridor. “It’s your brother, the ugly pig!”

There was laughter, and the Deformed entered the room, pushing his way through the crowd. A knife stuck from his chest, and blood coated his whole appearance. He desperately lunged from the Count, trying to stand upright but falling to the ground on his knees.

“What do you want?” spat the Count.

“He lies!” the Deformed called. “Lili is not thief and she is not making fools. He is thief, he is the bad one!”

The Count stared down at his brother, grinning. “The poor man’s lost his mind,” he announced to those around him. “This can be your practice for Lili the thief. This man is a monster, and demons live inside his face. Cast them out!” He handed the spiked club to the Mayor and called to everybody, “Kill him!”

The rabble of men jumped onto the Deformed and starting tearing away at his body. They used the clubs, as well as their teeth and fingernails to rip him apart piece by piece. Before five minutes were up, the man lay as if parchment sliced by a knife.

“What is the meaning of this?” an even louder voice echoed from the ceiling. It traveled around the whole room, reaching every man’s ears and stabbing every man’s heart. “Why has there been blood shed in my castle?”

They all turned with a gasp to face the balcony, overlooking them all. The women, who were affected just as deeply by the voice, stood in awe, covering their mouths. Stories were told about the man, stories that nobody had ever thought to be true. There were tapestries falling from the balcony, and the Phantom looked down on them and spat.

“Who are you?” the Count mocked. “You’re an old man who lives in the attic! You’re a phantom with no form! As if you could stop a group of a thousand, armed with clubs and with hate.”

The Phantom began to walk down the long, spiraling stairs, making his way towards the crowd. He wore a mask of deep black, covering half of his face, with a long cape flowing out behind. His sword was on his hip, and his clothes rustled as he descended.

“You do not respect me as you should,” he said deeply. “There was once a time when people understood. The ladies should have eyes for only me. The men should cower in fear of only me. The children should run to only me. But you have turned my town and my castle into a place of disgusting deeds and of terrible evils.” His face surveyed the expanse of the room. “You have lost track of what was right. And now you will all pay for it.”

“When we find the girl, Lili, you will both die,” the Count said, forcing his way through the crowd. He and the Phantom were standing only inches apart, at the bottom of the staircase.

“The girl ran out of this room half an hour ago, when I told her to. She has listened to me, and so she will live.” The Phantom turned his back on the Count and began up the steps again. “You have not, and so you will not.”

With a growl, the Count unsheathed his sword and brought it around, aiming for the neck. The Phantom twirled about, blocking the metal. He kicked the swordsman out of his way, leapt up in the air from the steps, and grabbed hold of the tapestries billowing from the balcony. He swung across, over top of the crowd, and landed at the entrance to the hallway, which he sprinted down.

“You will regret the day you did what was wrong in my eyes!” he shouted.

Fire flared up around him, where it had been building in the hallways, unseen to the eyes of everybody in the main hall. Now it spread quickly over the castle, devouring floorboards and walls until it felt like an oven all around them.

“Follow him!” shouted the Count, leading a mad charge towards the interior of the castle.

New Book for Pre-Order

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B071NQ34W1

Cold, Gray Eyes: A Psychological Thriller is now available for pre-order on Amazon.com. This thrilling novella is the first in a series of three that all feature the dreaded Mr. Telo, a mysterious camp owner who lives deep in the woods, among the cabins he owns.

Read on for the official description.

“I would never kill a good person, but there are no good people. That’s an easy rule to live by.”

There is a campground deep in the forest that everybody raves about. The owner is a down-on-his-luck 40-something man, with a good heart and a good camp set up. Sure, there have been accidents in the past, but who’s to judge?

One family shows up to his site, ready for their vacation, and learns that things aren’t quite so cheery at this camp. There is a darkness that doesn’t stay in the forest. There is something behind Mr. Telo’s smile. And most of all, there are secrets hidden in the past; well-hidden.

Everybody gives in eventually. The darkness will always get you, one way or another, one day or another. Let it overwhelm you. Let the evil grow. Come to the camp with the secrets.

“Nobody can resist the cold, gray eyes.”

Castle de la Phantom Part 2

2

“How nice to see you!” the Count exclaimed, rushing over. He embraced the figure in a hug, which was not returned.

“I… I’m sorry I’m late,” said the nervous voice of a young woman. She threw back her hood, revealing flowing, brown hair and a face that was drawn taut over her bones.

“It’s no worry.” The Count ushered her in and quickly closed the doors behind her. “There’s plenty of time left for you to enjoy yourself. Where would you like to go, Lili?”

He turned his attention back to the girl, but her eyes were transfixed on the group of people surrounding the main area on the floor. She stepped closely, driven by curiosity, but the Count snatched her hand and drew her back.

“Let me show you around,” he said with a wide smile. “There’s so much to see. We might as well get out of his old room.”

At that moment, the Deformed lumbered over, stepping close to his brother so that his lips were against his head. He whispered something quietly in the Count’s ear, as both their faces turned grave.

“I’m afraid I have some business to attend to,” the Count said darkly to Lili. “Stay here with my brother, and he’ll show you around the main room.”

The Deformed nodded to her. Even with his hunched back, he stood nearly seven feet tall and three times stronger than herself. Lili cowered behind the coat, too large for her and too thin.

“You won’t need yer jacket, misses,” he whispered. “The peoples here isn’t the kind to wear much clothes.”

“I’ll keep my jacket on for now,” she said firmly. “Is there any food here? I’m famished.”

The Deformed nodded, and started to barrel his way through the crowds, with Lili following close behind. It was a short walk to the banquet, which was down the right hallway. Against a side wall, the table sat brimming with plates of food and countless goblets.

“This is wonderful.” Lili stopped and took in the sights, her eyes wide and mouth watering. “How… where did all this food come from?”

“A nice gather,” he shrugged. “Eat as much as you please.”

Behind the table was a glass window, reaching from the floor to the room. Outside, there was a dark backdrop as snow began to fall. Lili sighed and gathered a plate, filling it with meat.

“You eat not much?” the Deformed asked, standing over her shoulder and breathing in her ear.

“Um, not since yesterday.” She stepped away. “Can you… go do something else? I’d like to eat alone.”

“Master has said to stay and guide, he nodded vigorously. “This my job, this I do.”

Taking her plate of food, she sat down on the floor beside the window, watching the snow fall quickly outside. Without much thought for appearance, she began to stuff the chicken into her mouth, ignoring the disgusted glance from the Deformed.

He sat down across from her, with two cups in his hand. One, he gently pushed over to her. She thanked him through a full mouth, and turned her attention back to outside. Lili could feel his eyes on her, but not in a lustful way. It was curiosity that drove his actions.

“I has not seen a beautiful girl with poor clothes,” he commented. “Most beautiful girls is rich and wears the fancy of clothes. Why you not?”

Lili put her plate down and pressed a hand on the window, which was ice cold to the touch. It was a familiar feeling.

“Why you are poor?” the Deformed repeated.

“Most of us are poor,” she stated blandly. “My family was better off than most, but my dad got arrested and killed. Since then, we haven’t been so good. We’re poor, but we’re not any poorer than anybody else.”

“If you is poor in the town below, where do all the rich peoples come from?” he asked. “We have many hundreds of them tonight.”

“They come from far away, I’m sure. Around here, only the Count and the Mayor have money. The rest of us are…”

“Cold?”

She smiled feebly. “Yes.”

“You are nice,” the Deformed said meekly. “Even more nice than beautiful. You are many nice and many beautiful.”

“Thank you,” she said, shivering.

“Here.” He took off his outer cloak and handed it to her. “Wear this.”

She shook her head. “I’m okay.”

“I understand why you wear jacket.” He nodded, and handed her the cup he had been drinking from. “Here is this. You can drink rest. I take your plate to wash.”

The Deformed left, carrying her plate and empty cup to the kitchen down the hall. Lili sat by the window, watching the hills outside. Below those hills, somewhere, was her town.

When the Deformed reached the kitchen, he walked inside to find the Count holding a whip, and one of the servants on the ground cut up and bleeding profusely. The young boy was barely holding to life, crawling his way towards the corner of the room.

“What is it, stupid?” The Count turned towards him, breathing heavily. “Are those the lady’s plate and cup?”

The Deformed nodded, placing them on the counter. “I has talked.”

“With her?” The Count nodded, thinking. “Maybe this will be good for us. For my plan.”

“What are you plan? What are you plan with the girl?” The Deformed took a step towards him, growling.

The Count smacked his whip against his brother’s face. It ripped across, tearing three strips of his skin. He fell to his knees, whimpering.

“Not so strong now, you ugly giant.” The Count puffed out his chest and put on a jacket to cover his blood-stained shirt. “I will propose to the girl, and she will accept my hand. Soon enough, we will have a permanent guest at this castle.”

“You loves her?”

Chuckling, the Count stepped over his brother, stepping on the giant’s head briefly. “Love does not matter. She will be the prize on my arm, and when I gain control over the surrounding cities she will lose her purpose to me. And die. Of some unknown sickness, in the most dramatic way possible.”

Leaving the kitchen behind, he walked down the hallway, strutting like an ostrich. Lili turned her attention as she heard his shoes clopping down the hallway. She opened her mouth to say something, but before she could the Count was down on one knee with a beautiful ring in his hand.

“It’s been nigh on three months since I laid eyes on you, but I know for sure that you are the one I love, and I want you to spend all those cold nights here. In my castle. In my bed.” He grinned, pushing out the ring a little farther towards her. “Let us bless the world with our beautiful children, and make the world shine with our beauties put together.”

Lili shook her head, pressing back against the window. “I… I can’t…”

“Just say yes, dear. Just say yes.” He stood to his feet and pressed in on her.

Lili grabbed a plate of food from the table and threw it at him. The pudding flew all over his clothes, and the plate shattered at his feet. The Count stood there, shaking from head to toe, as his eyes turned from lust to hate.

“I’m sorry,” she whimpered, before sprinting away from him towards the main hall.

The Count stomped his way to the kitchen, where he found his brother standing. The Deformed shook his head as he saw the mess all over his master’s clothes.

“I told you,” he said.

The Count grabbed a knife from the drawer and stepped up to his brother, who shrunk back against the counter.

“You turned her against me,” the Count growled. “You made her hate me!”

“You are to be hated,” the Deformed snapped. “You are scum of earth.”

The Count roared with anger and plunged his knife into the heart of his brother. The Deformed writhed in front of him, but fell to the ground. Turning away, the Count headed back to the hallway, but felt his anger was not quenched. There had to be blood spilled. There were more bodies than needed to fall.

He walked up the empty hallway, towards the crowded front room where the Slave was being beaten.

New Book Announcement: Cold, Gray Eyes

 

ANNOUNCING!
Coming in June 2017, the first scary novella out of three. Each one will be around 13,000 words, and will be released in June, July, and August.

Not to give too much away, but this centers around a campsite, the not-so-normal Mr. Telo that owns it, and a growing tension with the strange man who lives among the empty cabins. One family moves in, and they begin to discover that this nice, gentle campsite isn’t quite what they were told.

It’ll be 99 cents, as will all three novellas. June, July, and August; they’re coming.

I’m super excited! I hope you are too 😉 They’ll be frightening.

Castle de la Phantom

Part 1

“What a splendid party,” the Mayor remarked, as he stepped into the massive castle. There were crowds all around him, heading in the same direction, but nobody answered. It was not a time to talk, but a time to be amazed.

The night was darker than most, as the sun set behind the towers of the castle. There were hundreds of people inside the gigantic, wooden fortress, which belonged to the Count, a well-to-do but snobbish young man who inherited the setting from his father. It was a family heirloom, but a somber one.

When the sun was sunken low, the heavy wooden doors were closed. There was a great thud, but nobody inside realized or cared. The party was in its throes of wonder, with bright chandeliers hanging from the ceiling and warm lamps along all of the wooden walls.

Each guest wore a mask over his or her face, splendidly decorated and full of vibrant colors. The richer folks had come in their nicest and most eye-catching clothes, but none of their outfits were quite as elaborate as the Count himself, robed in varying shades of red and a long, dramatic cape.

His brother, the Deformed, wore a dark blue color, nearly black. The mask on his face covered every inch except for his hair, so that nobody in the masquerade could tell just how ugly his features were.

Awkwardly, he followed the Count, speaking in a quiet voice and trying not to make a scene. On his single foray to the dance floor, he found that his feet kept tangling up. After falling once, he slunked to the corner and sat there, with the middle-class men smoking their pipes.

“This is quite a spectacle.” The Mayor stepped up and shook hands firmly with the Count. “How on earth did you get the funds for all of this? The lights, the music… It’s quite overwhelming.”

The Count smiled in a secretive manner. “There are some things you should not know, dear friend. Remember your place in the village below, and let me remain in my high castle.”

The Mayor bowed and stepped away, going towards the center of the room where everybody was gathered on the dance floor. The Count watched him go, letting his eyes trail across the room and all of his guests.

He growled, noticing one face in particular had not yet arrived. Regardless, it was time to start the festivities. If ever she showed up, then his attention would shift, but for now it was the guests who demanded entertainment.

Walking up a long, spiraling staircase, the Count reached the balcony which overlooked the main hall. There were two doors on either side below him, which led into the rest of the castle. Up until that point, everybody had been crammed into the large room, with closed doors on every side.

“My good friends!” he bellowed, the deep voice echoing about the room.

Everybody turned to face him, high up above them. The Count grinned, holding out his arms in dramatic fashion.

“My good friends! It seems all of you have made it to my party tonight, and in very good fashion I might add. We have the entirety of the village here, except for those poor peasants who only can dream at the wonders in this castle.”

There was laughter from below, and he went on. “Well, maybe that’s not so true. There are a handful of those poor people who have made their way up to my castle, and tried to sneak in. What are they, really, but our slaves? And so, as our slaves, they will give us the entertainment for our night. Please step aside from the center of the room, and let my guards bring in something for your pleasure.”

He clapped his hands twice, and the throngs of people crowded themselves against the wall, itching with anticipation. Some of them were shaking, but not with fear. They were excited for the pleasure.

Three guards walked in from the two doors below, carrying a man. He was covered in dirt and in sores, wincing as they took each step. Taking him to the center of the floor, they dropped him down and put chains around his neck, wrists, and ankles. With long spikes, they hammered these chains into the floor, until he was stuck in the center of the room.

Everybody held their breaths. The Count watched their reactions, humming to himself.

A fourth guard carried out two large clubs. A fifth one -who was a boy barely of age for manhood- came after him with another club, only this one had sharp, 2-inch-long spikes all around the head of it.

“I certainly hope you brought your money,” the Count roared with laughter. “Pay 10 coins, and you get 3 swings with the brute clubs. Pay 30 coins, and you get 5 swings with the spike club.”

“But what if we kill him?” one man yelled from the silent, anxious crowd.

“Don’t worry, good friend.” The Count drummed his fingers on the balcony railing. “We have quite a few more of them in the pantry.”

The guards exited the room, lumbering through the same doors which they had come. Only now, the large wooden barriers did not shut after them.

“You will have noticed, surely, that the two hallways below me are now open,” the Count exclaimed, jabbering with excitement. “Feel free to explore my castle all you want. But beware. There are some things you might not want to find! And now, my friends, be off with you. Either to the Slave or to the castle. You have all night!”

They all sprung away from the wall, half of them heading farther into the castle and half towards the Slave. Soon enough, the air was full with his cries of pain, barely audible over the live music from the main stage. Even the band members would take turns going down and spending some money on the clubs.

For the next twenty minutes, the Count strolled around the main hall, inspecting all of the happenings. There were people crowded around the Slave, as a few of them took turns beating. The spike club lay against the wall, unused for now.

There was a grating noise as the large, wooden doors slowly opened inwards. The Count immediately turned, his interest peaked. A figure stepped inside, cautiously, wearing a tattered, black coat and a plain, brown mask.