Stuff Nightmares Are Made of


Norah gasped and sat up! The pack of wild dogs stopped chasing her. She was safe in her own bed. It had all been a bad dream, but it was over. Lacie lay on the chaise under the window fast asleep.
Thank god! That was some nightmare.
The digital clock on the bedside table said 7:15. Time to get up and make some coffee.
I love Sundays.
She swung her legs off the bed and headed for the bathroom.
“Come on Lacie, rise and shine, time for breakfast.”
Lacie didn’t move.
Norah put some toothpaste on the Sonicare and walked over to her sleeping dog as she brushed her teeth.
“Come on lazy bones.”
Lacie felt cold and stiff. Something was wrong. Her dog stood up slowly, clumsily, as though drugged, she looked at Norah, a thread of blood and saliva dribbled from the corner of her mouth as she tried to growl.
Dropping her toothbrush Norah stared at her dog, then turned and ran.
“John, come quickly, there’s something wrong. I think Lacie’s sick, she may have rabies. JOHN!”
Her husband sat on the sofa with his back to her. He was wearing headphones and watching soccer on the television. He did that sometimes on a Sunday morning, so as not to disturb her, the European games were early. She ran in front of the television to get his attention. Then she froze.
Oh dear lord help me. Am I still having a nightmare. Wake up, please let me wake up.
Her husband stood up and smiled at her. It was a one-sided smile. The left side of his faces was missing. She saw movement over his shoulder. Janine, the teenager from next door limped clumsily out of the kitchen. She was naked from the waist up, her skin was torn and decaying. The once beautiful young girl looked at Norah and licked her lips. Then she hissed and stumbled towards her, arms outstretched. Norah willed herself to wake up, but this wasn’t a nightmare. She took a step backwards, but there was nowhere to go, she backed into the television. John took a step towards her. Norah turned to run, but pain pierced her ankle. Lacie sunk her teeth into Norah’s foot and pulled a chunk of flesh away. The noise was sickening.
Make the most of it Lacie, it’s the last breakfast you get from me!
Norah was thankful when her brain fogged into darkness. She’d had enough!

I hope you enjoy my short horror stories. Sometimes I have to empty my brain before I go back to my real writing. “Ghosts on the Sand” is a compilation of short stories, and I will be releasing it later this year. There are no zombies or vampires in this book, but it is a collection of chilling tales that I think you’ll enjoy. Watch out for it on Amazon. 


Dead Eyes Open

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When Norah opened her eyes there was no sign of her precious pup. She tried to call her name, but her mouth wouldn’t work. She pushed herself into a sitting position and immediately felt nauseous.
Lacie? Where are you?
Blue light still spilled through a gap in the curtains from her house, but other than that, she was surrounded by darkness. Thankfully the oppressive sickening buzz had disappeared. Norah lay still on the cold wet grass, praying her nausea would subside. Her head spun as though she were on a fairground ride.
What was that?
A nebulous light flitted just within her range of vision. She turned her head slightly to follow it and immediately threw up again.
I have to beat this, I just have to.
Above her the curtains opened. Her husband held their lifeless dog in his arms. He Chewed hungrily on its ear, blood dribbling down his chin. He looked down in the grass and saw Nora lying there, easy prey. Food to feed his hunger.

Norah looked up to the sky. The light had steadied now, hovering above her.
What the hell is that?
The dizziness eased and she stood up, unsteady on her feet, but she managed to remain upright.
“Lacie, Lacie, come on girl, where are you?”
With her back to the house, she looked into the darkness.
Why is it so dark? Where did you go Lacie, you could barely walk, where did you go?
She turned around and looked towards the house again. John stood in the window. He smiled and waved at her. Lacie was in his arms.
How did she get in the house? Has this all been a dream?
Norah hurried to the front door, which opened as she approached. John opened both arms to greet her, dropping the lifeless bundle of fur to the ground as he did so. Lacie bounced down the porch steps, blood dripping from her head where her ear should have been. Norah stopped in her tracks.
What the hell!
“John what’s wrong with you? Lacie!”
The furry lifeless bundle rested on the bottom step, eyes wide open. Norah picked her up. Sobbing she hugged her.
What happened to you Lacie. Was it a coyote? A rabid dog?
Norah looked up at her husband, hoping for answers. His lips were smeared with blood. He picked a dog hair from between his front teeth and lurched towards her.

TV Zombie


Norah whispered softly to her pup as she carried her home.
“Please don’t die on me. You’re my baby, you got me through college, and law school. I need you.”
Lacie’s breathing was shallow, she no longer whimpered, and her little body was limp.
“Almost home baby, almost safe.”
Why aren’t the lights on along the driveway?
She thought of calling John again, but changed her mind. As she stepped onto the asphalt driveway, the lights came back on, dimly at first, slowly growing brighter.
Must have been a power cut.
Then lights became abnormally bright and one by one, as she passed them, the bulbs exploded. Holding Lacie close, she continued slowly towards the house.
Somethings wrong here, very wrong.
A strange blue light spilled from the open drapes in the living room window. She left the path and walked across the lawn to see what it was. Peering into her own house she saw the silhouette of her husband John. He was standing in front of the television, staring at a screen that showed nothing but blue static. Norah watched him for thirty seconds or more. He began to speak, but not in his normal voice. The words were monotone and in a language she’d never heard.
What the hell is going on here?
Her husband turned around and walked towards the window. Nora held
her breath.
Don’t let him see me!
Why was she suddenly afraid of her husband? His face was blank, expressionless.
Did he see me?
He closed the drapes, shutting her out. The static grew louder, it surrounded her. Norah became dizzy, she wanted to throw up.
I have to get Lacie to the vet.
A loud pulsing buzz erupted from Norah’s hom. It made the air feel heavy and oppresive.
Lacie whimpered weakly, spurring Norah to take action, but two steps were all she managed before her legs gave way. Norah’s brain switched off moments before her body made contact with the soft wet grass.

Happy New Year


The party was in full swing and the bar was in front of her. Live music, dancing and chatter made the atmosphere intoxicating. She was pretty sure she’d be able to find a replacement for James. Monica didn’t see who took her coat, she barely felt it slide from her shoulders. Her eyes were fixed on the handsome young man with a cocktail shaker in his hand. He poured something orange and fruity into a champagne glass.
“Happy New Year,” he said as slid the champagne glass across the bar, “I made this for you.”
“Thank you, what is it?”
“Taste it, maybe I’ll name it after you if you like it.”
Monica found a stool and sat down, looking at her reflection in the mirror behind the bar as she did so. She adjusted her dress to show even more of her expensive cleavage.
“How do you like the cocktail. I can make you another if you like it.”
Monica took a sip. “Mmm, its heavenly.”
It really was, she’d never tasted anything like it before. It popped and fizzed in her mouth, a little like champagne, but better. She emptied the glass in no time.
The creator of the drink leaned towards her, so close she could feel his breath face.
“Whats your name sweet lady?”
“It’s Monica,” she whispered, “I’d love another drink.”
She watched him make the cocktail, his eyes were fixed on her the whole time, she liked the way he looked at her. He was handsome, somehow exotic. Oh I’m so glad I found this place, she thought. He slid the second drink across the counter, his fingers brushing the silk of her dress just below her nipples, as he released his grip on the glass. She shuddered with pleasure.
“Who’s party is this?” she asked.
“It’s mine.” he answered as he sat on the bar stool next to her. He saw the surprise on her face.
“What, did you thing I was the cocktail waiter?”
Monica took a sip of her drink, she was already feeling tipsy. The night had turned around, it was going to be the best New Years Eve ever.
“Lets dance.”
Monica emptied her glass, almost spilling it down her front when his hand rested on her knee and moved up her leg a little. Her whole body tingled with excitement. He slid off his chair. Monica looked for his reflection in the mirror, wanting to drink in his handsome face and body without being too obvious. That’s funny, he has no reflection, I must be really drunk. She felt his breath on her ear.
“Come, lets dance.”
He led her to the dance floor, his arm around her bare shoulders. The band played a slow song. He pulled her close.
“Whats your name?” Monica whispered, her voice husky with passion.
Troy was built like a god. Their eyes met and she felt him look into her soul.
Can this be really happening? He’s gorgeous, and obviously rich if this is his party. I wonder if he’s married. Who cares anyway, I’m going to . make him mine. I can tell he likes me.
He pulled her closer, she could feel every move he made. Troy kissed her, the tip of his tongue finding its way into her mouth, she melted into his arms, moaning with pleasure. The music stopped, but they continued to dance. Slowly, barely moving! Troy looked into her eyes.
“I want you.” he said.
“Is there somewhere we can go?” she groaned.
“No, I’m going to take you here, right now.”
She felt his tongue in her ear, then he kissed her lips. He pushed her back and kissed her perfect breasts, his lips resting on her nipples. Her eyes were closed, ecstatic she gave himself to her.
“Don’t stop, please don’t stop,” she muttered.
His hand pressed on the small of her back, pushing her closer. He was kissing her neck, he moved her hair, so he could see her prefect white skin and the vein that throbbed beneath it. He was hungry.
“Oh, yes, I’m yours, don’t stop.”
He sunk his teeth deep until he found warm liquid. She didn’t struggle, just collapsed into his arms. He carried Monica to a huge oak table, still feasting on her blood.
A small group of hungry vampires surrounded him, his inner circle. Troy looked up, blood dripping from his chin.
“Come join me, there’ plenty to go around.”

The Engineer

Two young women drinking tea --- Image by © SuperStock/Corbis

The Engineer lived just outside a small village in Lombardy, Northern Italy. He’d lived there all of his life. In fact, he’d lived there as long as anyone could remember. He never seemed to age.

“Dye’s his hair of course” my mum said.

“But he hasn’t aged, Phoebe, no wrinkles, no liver spots. He still looks the same as he did when I was a little girl”

Mum and Betsy sipped their tea silently. I was only seven and didn’t know the Engineer very well. He scared me a little bit. He was very nice enough, gave me sweets sometimes, but his eyes were dark and cold. His jet black hair and mustache showed no signs of grey. I guessed his height to be a little under six feet because he was a little shorter than my brother, and my brother was six foot two. Words weren’t his thing and he used them as little as possible. A tight smile was his only humorous expression, but the smile didn’t touch his eyes.

“Has he ever been married?” Betsy asked mum.

“Not that I know of, I think he dated once, for a year or so, but the she disappeared. Never saw her again.”

“Maybe its a good thing, not sure he’s make a good dad if kids came along. I wonder if he wears make-up. His eyebrows are perfect.”

“Could be gay! That would explain the marriage thing!”

A loud rapping on the door startled us all.

“Its him!” Mum said.

“Don’t be silly Phoebe. Why would he be knocking at your front door?”

“My boiler is playing up. Sometimes we have no hot water.”

“Did you call him” Betsy asked.

“No! I never call him, he just seems to know when something needs fixing.”

Mum’s voice was quiet, she sounded scared. Her hand shook slightly as she put her tea-cup down. “Betsy, come to the door with me.”

I watched as they opened the door. The engineer stood on the step, a tight-lipped smile on his face. He wore jeans, perfectly pressed with a crease down the front and a blue denim shirt. His fashionable shoes were highly polished. A draft blew in from behind him, or perhaps it came from him. I shivered.

“Good Morning Ladies, Phoebe I understand you have a faulty boiler.”

Evil Shadows!


When Sam opened his eyes again it was dark and quiet. He tried to move, but he was fastened tightly to whatever he lay on. His body ached from lack of movement. His eyes became accustomed to the dark and he could make out shadows around him, but nothing moved. A huge black caldron sat on the dying embers of the fire. He dreaded to think what might be inside it. Then he felt silly, witches didn’t really exist, this must be a bad dream. He remembered looking for Dirk in the woods, he remembered the cottage, he remembered…

His arms were numb from being tied so tightly so he wriggled his fingers to make sure they were still there.

He was cold, so very cold.

Sadie, I think I’ll be with you soon. Don’t know where I am, but I’m in trouble and I’m not sure I can escape.

Something stirred in the far side of the cabin. Sam strained his eyes to get a better look.

“Who’s there?” He asked. No reply! Dawn approached and a slice of light found its way through the dark drapes that hung across the window. A man sat in a chair, A man with a misshapen head. Sam watched in horror as sky brightened.

“Dirk, is that you.” The head moved slightly. Sam closed his eyes.

This can’t be happening, This is a nightmare. WAKE UP!

He opened his eyes again.

Oh dear sweet Jesus!

A face with flaming red demented eyes hovered over him,  staring hungrily down. A face he recognized!

“Good Morning Sammie, I’m glad you’re awake. I have a surprise for you.”

“Sadie? What have they done to you?”

The face cracked into a grotesque grin as it bore down on him.

Halloween Treat!

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The nostalgic aromas were intense, his nostrils devoured them.
“I miss you Sadie, I miss you so much.”
Sammie come closer and keep me warm, I’m waiting for you.
He took another step and his knees buckled beneath him. He sunk to the ground. He was aware of hands grabbing onto him, finding a place to grip him and lift him and carry him.
Sam opened his eyes. His vision was blurry. He tried to speak, but couldn’t.
The aroma wasn’t wood smoke anymore, it was rancid, sickening. His eyelids were heavy.

Childish giggling roused him from unnatural slumber. Still unable to move anything but his eyeballs he looked around.
I’m inside the cottage, the old hag has me in her cottage.
As though reading his mind a dark figure appeared, her face was hidden in the shadows, but he could see her body, it was young and shapely.
Is this who Dirk saw in the woods? Is this the old hag playing tricks? She has us drugged.
“Yes you’re in my home, you should be thankful I have you. You fell to the ground out there. I brought you in. Saved you from the forest. I’m insulted that you call me names. Do I look like an old hag?”
I’d be safer in the forest!
“Really? It depends what you call safe?”
Sam’s eyelids were still heavy.
“Come children, give our guest some soup, he’s weak.”
The pattering of tiny feet, the scraping of a chair. The shapely figure disappeared and a deformed face bent over him. A face that looked like it had been patched together roughly from spare human parts. The ears didn’t match, the eyes were odd. If Sam could move, he’d have screamed and run. A grotesque smile twisted the drooling mouth above him. A hand that looked more like a claw held a spoon of steaming liquid. From the shadows at the far end of the cabin a voice commanded him to eat. As the steaming liquid trickled down his throat whispers invaded his ears. They floated around him, above him, beside him. The filled the dark, thick atmosphere of the cabin.

Drink your soup, let it warm your insides,
We need to fatten you up,
We’re cold and hungry we need to eat,
Any you are our special Halloween Treat!

The patchwork face above him licked its lips and drooled a little more, then grinned, revealing two rows of  razor sharp teeth.

Shadows on the wall


Sam teased Dirk, but he didn’t seem to mind. He was distracted, excited and even a little giddy. Sam enjoyed seeing his old friend look so happy, but he was afraid it would end badly. The old witch had obviously drugged him and made him believe things. Could she really still be alive?

Sam sat alone in front of the fire in his little two up two down home. The home he’d lived in for fifty years. He’d bought it just after he and Sadie were married, raised the twins there. He didn’t want to be young again, not without his wife, life was lonely without her. Cancer had taken her ten years ago and now the only thing that kept him going was her memory. His heart ached when he thought about her, he was ready to leave this world and join her on the other side. Maybe then they’d both be young again and live in eternal bliss.

Sam, Sammie, wake up

“What? Who said that?”

Sam shivered, the fire had died and was nothing but glowing embers. It was dark. He was disoriented, sure he’d heard his wife’s voice, she was the only person who ever called him Sammie.

“You’ve had too much to drink old man.” he said to himself as he climbed the stairs to his bedroom, “and that old fool filled your head with witchcraft.”

He got into bed and pulled the blankets tightly around him, he was cold, deathly cold. Shadows danced on the wall. Shadows that looked like long bony fingers. Fingers that wanted to reach out and probe him, delve into his parchment thin skin.

Take a life, give a life! 

“What, who said that?”

Sammie, Sammie…

Sam closed his eyes and thought of Sadie, he missed her.

Death Memory

522891-murder”Why does it feel warm?”

She undid the popper that kept the camera case closed. The clicking had stopped, but camera vibrated. It was processing something. Barbara shuddered.

“I don’t like the way it feels, it feels warm alive.”

“Here, give it to me,” Lucy said, “this whole thing might be some sort of joke, lets see what on its memory.”

Barbara looked around uncomfortably; they were surrounded by darkness and silence. It wasn’t a good place to be at night. Lucy gasped.

“Oh sweet Jesus. Oh dear God.”

“What is it?”

Lucy turned stood next to her friend and showed her the secrets captured in the camera’s memory. Barbara turned around and hung on to the branch of a tree while she threw up.