A Foul Day!

In honor of it being Thanksgiving this Thursday, here is a reboot of A Foul Day! I hope you enjoy!

***

It moved! I swear on my mother’s grave I saw it move! Glancing up, I scan the faces surrounding the table trying to determine if anyone else saw the jerking motion. No one seems to have noticed; they’re all laughing and drinking, chattering away happily while waiting to be fed.

I blink a few times to clear my eyes. I’ve been working too hard lately, putting in too many hours, that’s all. I raise the carving knife and fork once more, preparing to plunge them into the bird trussed before me. It fucking moves again! This time with an accompanying slopping sound. A bead of sweat breaks out on my upper lip; my wife is staring at me hesitantly. With both hands now resting on either side of the beast, I take a few slow, deep breaths to calm my overwrought nerves. A slight nudge comes from my right. It’s my wife, a strained smile on her face; she nods toward the foul creature. I nod back.

Bringing the arm with the fork up, I dab at the dew above my lip and make an off-hand comment about it being roasting in here. Everyone laughs. A small shake of my head, I exhale and raise the knife once again to begin slicing the meat. As the gleaming instruments near the platter, I hear a voice in my head. ‘Go on ya piss-ant piece of shit – cut me open. Show everyone what a big man you are and gut me. Gut me like you gutted your wife when the doctor told her there was no physical reason you couldn’t get it up. Ya don’t have the balls to stick it to her, and you don’t have the balls to stick it to me either!

What the fuck? My knees nearly buckle and my wife reaches out to steady me. I jerk my arm away. The room grows quiet, the tension nearly palpable. I toss out another remark meant as a joke; the responding chortle is terse, fraught with unease. My wife is no longer smiling; she looks worried. I try to reassure her with a smile of my own, but a bare shake of her head lets me know she’s not buying it. ‘Ya know, she doesn’t have any faith in you anymore, right? She was expecting to marry a man, and look what she got – you! She knows about Terry, too.’ I almost utter a response but choke on my own spittle instead. ‘Yeah, that’s right. She knows you’re sticking it to that bitch from work. She knows you been doin’ it for the past month when all you’re bringin’ home is that limp fish in your pants, she just doesn’t wanna ruin this family get-together-thing. Your ass is outta here as soon as they’re gone, buddy!

Sure that I’m pale as a ghost, I lean on the table for support once more. My head hanging, limbs trembling; the nervous tick of the fork tapping against a glass the only sound in the nearly silent room. My wife reaches over again and lays a hand on my forearm. I lash out to shove her away, forgetting that I’m holding the carving knife. We stare at one another in shock for a heartbeat before her body crashes forward into the china, her throat sliced ever so neatly from side to side. As the crimson of her blood mixes with the pumpkin colored hue of her favorite tablecloth, a slight gurgling is all that resounds. I look on in horrified disbelief, then one of the children lets out an ear-piercing screech. The demon starts again, ‘Ha! Look what you…

I begin stabbing it with the fork, maniacally ripping it to bits while screaming incoherently. Everyone in the room is staring at me like I’ve gone insane. I try to explain about the turkey… about not realizing I was still holding the knife… about the pressure I’ve been under… but there isn’t a sympathetic eye to be found. ‘You know what you have to do, don’t ya? If you don’t, they’ll lock you up in the loony bin again.’ An icy cold sheet of acceptance washes over me as I move to the doorway, blocking my teenage brother-in-law from escaping.

I was really hoping this family would be different, not like the last…

~ Nina D’Arcangela

© Copyright Nina D’Arcangela. All Rights Reserved.
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Waves by Nina D’Arcangela @Sotet_Angyal #pained #horror #prose

Trapped within this bubble, I feel nothing of the arid landscape that surrounds me. I sit in subjugation, offered scraps to feed upon; amuse-bouche for the soul, or so I imagine. Apportioned morsels to sustain me, but never more than your callous ego will allow. Yes, I have licked the plate and the tang has seared my tongue, left a residue of shame that will forever taint my palate. I once soared with as much grace and majesty as the prey that circles overhead – a dangerous companion to adopt, folly perhaps, as I know what it awaits.

Freedom, such a simple thing, stolen from me by destiny’s choice; a truth mourned beyond measure. I was vibrant once, as vibrant as the now desiccated tree before me. I see its brittle limbs, its exposed bones; the crack that foretells of the next fractured moment. I live that moment with every breath, forever caught just before the fall, perpetually suspended in a state of flux. With bowed back, I am forced to genuflect, to stare into a shallow pool that lacks reflection; a me without identity, stripped of all dignity. With broken wings, I stagnate in this cage never to glide on lighter waves of air again.

© Copyright Nina D’Arcangela. All Rights Reserved.

Pup by Nina D’Arcangela @Sotet_Angyal #horror #fiction

Pup

I scrambled through the woods at break-neck speed. I had no idea which direction I ran, I only knew I had to escape the beast that attacked me. A clearing in the trees ahead revealed the flicker of a fire’s glow. As I stumbled into the mudded tract, I realized I’d come upon a gypsy encampment. Two men immediately rose in defense, but a hunched old woman shushed them away. She guided me to a rough-hewn bench. I sat in the brisk night air, chest heaving, lungs still gasping for breath as the crone examined my scratched torso, the gouges left upon my arm by the beast’s maw.

Heavy drapes at the rear of a nearby caravan parted. Concealed behind a voile sheath loomed a tourmaline eyed creature of exquisite beauty. She held my gaze for but a moment before her eyes crept down toward my bare chest and further still to the ruined forearm. The old gypsy woman tending my torn flesh immediately bowed her head and began to back away.

As the black veil unfurled, I saw the illusion for what it was; the alluring countenance of the creature’s face belied the grotesque malformation of its body. A withered arm snaked its way forward, grasping the rail along the stairs in its elongated hand. The exposed flesh covering it resembled nothing more than flaking mica. The body that followed was near indescribable. Multiple legs, in varying size and stage of abortion, dangled beneath the tattered rag it wore around its distorted midsection. One hip jutted upward and away from its body while its engorged abdomen bucked in sway with something yet unseen. I tried to avert my eyes, to look away from this aberration, but fear and revulsion would not allow it.

Moving in awkward jerks, it approached. Terror demanded I flee, but a wave of authority emanating from those rapturous eyes locked me in place. It lowered itself to the muddy earth at my feet. Its stare burned through me as it brought its mouth to my savaged arm. Crimson lips whispered an incantation that danced with the feather-light touch of its breath over my aching skin. It then clutched my arm in its claw-like grip, threw back its head and began to screech a banshee’s wail.

As its legs tore open, a gush of fluid sluiced from between them. The screech morphed to a guttural moan as something passed from its body and darted into the woods. The echoes of torment silenced; the only sounds left were labored breathing and what scurried in the dark underbrush.

The creature before me spasmed, struggled to right itself, to regain its knees in the slick afterbirth. Composed once more, it stared at me with fierce brutality. Once again, it grasped my wounded arm in its roughened talon and spoke a single command as it seared its mark into my flesh. I saw depths of rage, hate, regret, pain and sorrow in its release as the eyes dimmed and the body fell backward to lie unmoving.

The old gypsy woman approached. She looked upon the corpse from the caravan, the wound and brand on my arm. Compassion and terror colored her countenance as she dipped her fingers into the mingle of blood and amniotic fluid. While making a sign of sanctity to ward herself from evil, she spoke these words.

“The pup is born, the mantle passed. Protect it, and you may yet find your own salvation.”

~ Nina D’Arcangela


© Copyright Nina D’Arcangela


Chewing by Nina D’Arcangela @WiHMonth @Sotet_Angyal #WiHM8

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Chewing

Ripping, rending, tearing at me, everyfuckingnight!

Why does it always have to be this way? This thing over and over again? It wasn’t supposed to be like this, not for me. I was always a good girl; I excelled at everything! What did I do to deserve this? Why did he choose me?

I swear to God there is no reason it should have been me! Not that I wish it on some other girl, I mean, I’m not like that – that’s not right, right?

Do you have to chew so fucking loud?

Isn’t it enough that he took what he did? Isn’t it enough that I have to live it every fucking night when he comes home? Do I really have to hear it again and again? I swear I’ll puke if he starts slurping! Who’m I kidding, does he ever not slurp? He always fucking slurps; he rips, he tears, he chews, he slurps! I mean seriously, fuck me!

I just wanted to see the kittens, that’s all. I wanted to see their cute little faces all snuggled up and hear them making tiny little mewling sounds. That’s what he said… how was I supposed to know he was a complete douche bag? Jay said he was cool, we’d hung with him a few times – I mean, sure, we all knew he was lying about his age, but he was so fucking hot and didn’t mind picking up beer for us. Maybe I flirted a little… Why didn’t I just stay outside and fucking wait for Jay like he told me to?

Maybe no one will ever know; maybe no one will ever find out; maybe no one will ever smell it… Oh God, why me? I’m not the one this was supposed to happen to! I’m not, goddamn it! Fuck him, fuck his apartment, fuck his blonde hair and fuck his blue eyes! I knew better, I know I did. I just didn’t think it would happen to me…

Ugh, chew with your mouth closed PLEASE!

How did I let this happen? I was just hanging out on the porch waiting for Jay when jerk-off drove up and asked if I wanted to see his kittens. Of course I wanted to see his kittens, what girl wouldn’t want to see his fucking kittens? It was kinda weird the way he asked me to come around the back to go upstairs, but we’d hung out at his place before… it seemed cool.

Ah, crap, he’s friggin’ slurping again… dude, really?

Like I said, I’d been to his place before, Jay wasn’t gonna be back for at least another half hour, so why not go see the kittens, right?

So I walk around to the back and go upstairs with him ‘cause he doesn’t want to bother coming around front to let me in – yeah, I’m a friggin idiot, I know, you really don’t have to say it. We get up to his apartment and he’s holding a bag of groceries and asks me…

Come On… more chewing? Doesn’t this guy ever get sick of it?

I say sure when he asks me to hold his sack (yeah, he’s real fucking funny, this one) as he opens the door to let me step in. Okay kiddies, time to pay attention because this is where the ride gets interesting.

The door closing behind me takes place in a sane and still perfect world; but as the sound of the deadbolt being thrown begins to echo softly through the darkened living room; time begins to ebb away from me in a way I’ve never experienced before. It slows down; not the slowness of an extended moment when a bottle crashes to the tile floor, but the acute awareness of an animal that instinctively senses a predator nearby; heart racing, hearing razor sharp, eyes dilating to fix on the impending threat.

As the deadbolt is thrown, I begin to turn wondering why lock the door? In the span of a heartbeat that last 7, 8, maybe 9 seconds in my distorted time frame; he locks, I turn; he smiles, I drop …the bag hits the floor. Before the scream can escape my lips, he reaches out and yanks me back into a vise-like grip. This is wrong; every fiber of my being is screaming it, my brain is trying to process it, my body is in shock – utterly immobile. What’s happening? Oh God, I know what’s happening…

That’s when I hear the crack.

It’s odd really, in movies or on TV, when you see someone get their neck broken, there’s always a sigh followed by a pregnant pause, then the body falls to the floor and… cut! That’s a wrap folks; thank you very much – the Craft food cart is set up in the lot! Well, it doesn’t go down that way for me.

In a single fluid motion he snaps my neck to the side and begins dragging my body through the double doors into his bedroom. I’m not supposed to be able to feel anything at this point, right? Then again, this wasn’t supposed to happen to me, remember?

Every one of my senses is in overdrive. I feel the fibers of the carpet scrape my bare legs; I feel the overly indulgent sheets that this low-life piece of shit sleeps on hit the side of my face as I’m tossed on the bed; I feel his disgusting fetid breath on my neck tainting my skin with its rotting odor. I’m pulsing with terror as he rips my sundress off with one swift yank from behind. I’m desperate to protect myself; desperate to get away; desperate to strike back – but I can’t, my limbs won’t move! My quivering flesh responds only to his septic touch. The pain is excruciating; my broken and abused body lies there waiting for the release that only death will bring it.

…I must have passed out…

Ripping – rending – tearing – slurping; what the fuck is that noise? I can hear the sheets on the bed as they wrinkle beneath me, I can smell how green the pistachio paint is on the walls, I can taste the blood of the small man nailed to the cross that hangs above his dresser, I can even count the change laying on the bedside table; but I can’t feel a fucking thing – and have no clue what that noise is! Then he grants me a view by shifting so I can see him in the mirror, and what I see is him carving slices of meat off my now paralytic back while he chews them in ecstasy. Sticky red blood mixed with fatty globules slide over his chin and down his grotesquely malformed chest – he’s eating me! First he used my body like I was an extra in a grindhouse flick, now he’s fucking eating me?

Oh God… Am I awake again?

Why am I still here? Why must I lay on this bed day after day, waiting for it to end? Why didn’t I just die like I should have?

Dude, really? Do you have to fucking slurp when you eat me?

~ Nina D’Arcangela

(psst! This one was a twofer if you read carefully…)
© Copyright Nina D’Arcangela

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Stop by my other blogs for more Women in Horror Month content!
Spreading the Writer’s Word – A new Horror Flash-Fiction from a different female author daily in February!
The Road to Nowhere – Horror movie picks by The Damned staring strong leading ladies daily all month long.

And don’t forget to visit the Women in Horror Month official web site
for more great 
WiHM8 events and posts!

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Hunting Prey by Nina D’Arcangela @WiHMonth @Sotet_Angyal #WiHM8

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Hunting Prey

Beautiful creature of destruction; you are the embodiment of majesty and grandeur darting through the air; humming past in the blink of an eye, stunning your prey into a shock of paralytic fear; engaged always in aerial combat with the currents that fight your forward progress; rising, dropping, jerking, zipping.

Always seeking…

What is it you seek on those elegant gossamer wings? Perhaps the next meal that awaits you… What else would a voracious thing such as yourself desire? You, with your crushing mandibles and gnashing teeth, so willing to consume all that cross your path and thereafter, your gullet. A beast of miniscule proportion whose lust to sate itself knows no bounds – respects no boundaries.

The patter of rain does not deter you from the hunt – your need for nourishment is all consuming; it’s all your disjointed body knows. The repeated pumping of your clasping organ seeking purchase as it curves downward to secure a hold in this new and foreign terrain. Your legs spread so delicately, laid wide ever so gently, in this most opportunistic of places. Large bead like eyes of gleaming blackness adapted for spotting the smallest of morsels passing by whilst you suckle on nature’s other offerings.

You have at last found a worthy feeding ground amongst the thin grasses of this murky bank. This piece of drift offers a perch from which you may indulge your glutinous greed. You seek a place to hide, a place of recess from which you may ambush unsuspecting prey.

Cloaked by stealth and the hush of your own inner stillness, you await what tasty treat flicks past seeking a safety all its own whilst knowing not that you are now the monstrous dark occupant which all others must fear in this previously safe harbor.

~ Nina D’Arcangela


© Copyright Nina D’Arcangela

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Stop by my other blogs for more Women in Horror Month content!
Spreading the Writer’s Word – A new Horror Flash-Fiction from a different female author daily in February!
The Road to Nowhere – Horror movie picks by The Damned staring strong leading ladies daily all month long.

And don’t forget to visit the Women in Horror Month official web site
for more great 
WiHM8 events and posts!

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My Watcher by Nina D’Arcangela @WiHMonth @Sotet_Angyal #WiHM8

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My Watcher

My watcher gazes upon me, great despair and longing seeping through her gently fluttering lashes. She lives a life of torment, a life filled with a depth of pain and depravity that rivals my own. Closer she wishes to draw, trying – always trying, but the measure of her success is a cruel and harsh one that denies, not grants, the wants of those like us. Unable to do more, she watches.

She watches as I sink ever further into the squalor that is my self-imposed exile, my place of preciously preserved pains, the darkest recesses of my mind where even I cannot find respite from my own deranged ramblings. Gasping for a breath that will never come, hope a thing lost to a moment that can never be regained, I will forever dwell in this chasm of nowhere. Capable of infusing life into me once more, yet unable to wade such a distance, she must simply watch as I succumb.

She watches as I prance about in this tattered garb, seeming to most a thing so giddy; a toy bright and shiny – all the while, inside… nothing but a fool. She sees my cracks, my flaws, all that makes me unworthy. She is witness to the tarnish that dulls my plating, the rust that flakes my surface, the debris that hinders my step. She gropes at the pile of destroyed dreams, hoping in vain to free me; the more she digs, the deeper the rubble becomes. She must watch as I succumb to what others have done, and what has become of me.

She watches as I shatter into innumerable shards, only to suffer my tears as I collect each delicate fragment to me; insistent upon rebuilding my ruined castle once more. Tears of acid crawl down my cheeks, the madness that accompanies them the crumbling of the world – my world – should they ever truly be unleashed. A steady stream of tangible harm inflicted by so many, each droplet a testament to the life I bear. Her desperate plea for me to hush heard only as an echo in my ear. Her arm stretched towards me, wanting so much to offer reprieve, is hindered by obstacles both beloved and unfair. She must watch as I succumb to what others have undone within me.

She watches as I flay open my own flesh for allowing moments of weakness, glimpses of joy, lies of happiness that happen in an instant, gone all too quickly. Brief encounters, an hour, perhaps two. Touching, loving, seeing, hearing; feeling – breathing; for the first time in so long, breathing. A small step that leads to a brighter existence, a false step placed upon undulating ground. A promise of the sweetest forever, but no promise ever made, a faith always held – a mourning that shall never end, my forever, my reality.  This she must watch as I succumb not to what others have undone, but what I have done to destroy me.

Would I give so much more for even a lie of something less, if that lie was not this? With all the wasted remains of me, I would…  But my watcher stands as guard. She will not allow one to crumble, for the other would fall, no longer even the loathsome wreckage that now exists. Scalding tears pour in a cascade of deafening silence from her eyes. She must always watch me from behind a glass wall that cannot be allowed to shatter for all that would be lost.

A pile of forever swept to the side so that the tendrils of this now never break for what should have been.

~ Nina D’Arcangela


© Copyright Nina D’Arcangela

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Stop by my other blogs for more Women in Horror Month content!
Spreading the Writer’s Word – A new Horror Flash-Fiction from a different female author daily in February!
The Road to Nowhere – Horror movie picks by The Damned staring strong leading ladies daily all month long.

And don’t forget to visit the Women in Horror Month official web site
for more great 
WiHM8 events and posts!

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Primal Urge by Nina D’Arcangela @WiHMonth @Sotet_Angyal #WiHM8

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Primal Urge

Tearing free of the straps binding it to the table, it slams its muscular body against the one-way mirror and snarls, “What have you done to me?” Its hideously deformed jaw and engorged tongue make the words nearly indecipherable. Saliva drips down the glass, its claws scratch angrily at the slick surface; the creature fights in vain to smash its way through three feet of impenetrable barrier.

From the other side of the glass, the doctor stands dead still, staring at the monstrosity thrashing against the window mere feet away. After an elongated pause, he orders, “Open Room Two.”

Without hesitation, the operator taps his keyboard to execute the command.

As the door slides smoothly upwards into the wall, the staff can see a young woman crouching in the corner shielding two small children. Filth and vomit stain her T-shirt and jeans; their terror is palpable.

The monstrosity slowly swivels its head toward the open doorway leaving clumps of gelatinous flesh sticking to the glass; lips peel from its gums, a chunk of cheek clings to the surface, one eyelid ripped cleanly from its face. Sniffing the air, it abandons its attack on the window and drops to all fours, senses focusing on the three new beings invading its territory. After judging them no threat, it rises slowly to its full grotesque height.

“Excellent instinctual response. Specimen eighty-seven has locked onto the victims without provocation,” the doctor recites into the digital recorder he is holding. Folding his arms across his chest, he waits with the others in the control room – they watch silently.

The young woman clutches the children as she tries to push further back into the wall. Shaking uncontrollably, she can do nothing but shield the children’s eyes and wait.

The creature strides menacingly toward them. One clawed talon on the doorway, it ducks beneath the slight overhang that forms the box known as Room Two.

“Switch to video feed.”  Monitors in the control room light up and display varying angles from within the multiple chambers.

Pausing just inside the doorway, it sniffs again, fuller, stronger this time. Its vicious watery gaze assesses the three huddled forms before it. A slight distraction – pounding on the wall to the right. The young woman glances; the goliath never wavers in its stare. The pounding is frantic; another woman’s voice howling in desperation from what must be a room next door. ‘God, is there another of these things?’ The thought flicks through the young woman’s mind.

Encouraged by her fear, it moves forward quickly, plucking a screeching child from her grasp. The woman in the other room seems to go mad;  scratching, shrieking, thrashing beyond the wall.

Dangling the boy before it, the thing draws a long breath from the child’s mouth. It smells the boy’s blood, his vomit; it tastes his fear. With one hand still holding the head, the other clawed fist shreds the boy’s body from its neck.

Snorting at the young woman clutching the girl, the monstrosity dangles the boy’s head above its mouth and releases it.  Still looking her in the eye, it pops the child’s head like a melon with its clenching maw. It chews; it swallows.

Lowering its own head in challenge, it flicks out a claw and rips the young woman’s T-shirt, sniffing at the putrescence staining it. Frozen in shock and fear, she does nothing. It grins. Reaching down slowly, almost gently, it lifts the remaining child from her numb limbs. The little girl struggles and begs; she tries to grab onto her would-be protector. The young woman can do nothing. She watches as it sinks its teeth into the squirming child’s midsection, splattering offal across the entire chamber, covering her in the little girl’s drippings. Chewing with slow delight, it continues to stare directly at the young woman cowering against the wall. It smells her rank terror; it sees her eyes dim as her mind slips to a distant place. It watches as her body goes limp then spasms.

All the while, the wailing from the room next door grows more incessant; more frantic.

Awareness dawning, it seems to recognize, to reason; not simply act on impulse. It likes this feeling. Malformed knees bent backwards, it leans down and flicks the young woman’s head to the side.

It has a thought: useless.

It has a feeling: mild agitation.

It hears a sound.

Turning its head, it recognizes the scent that accompanies the untamed agony coming from the other room. Smiling, it abandons the mass of jittering flesh on the floor, and draws a gore smeared talon across the wall. The sound calms for a moment… only a moment… before the maniacal pounding and ear-splitting shrieks begin again.

It leaves Room Two, returns to the table in the center of the main chamber and stares with smug satisfaction at the one-way mirror. It believes it has won.

“Seal the chamber. Gas it.” The doctor orders. He then speaks into his digital recorder.

“Eighty-seven has shown marked improvement with cognitive awareness, careless brutality, and its ability to identify its own DNA. But it still does not choose to kill the stranger. Is it showing a degree of compassion?” He clicks off the recorder, tapping it against his chin while glancing up at the monitor displaying the view of Room One.

Flicking the recorder on once more, he continues, “The reason for the test subject’s failure is still unknown. She should have been able to breach containment by now, her agitation and adrenal response is clearly heightened when her offspring are in mortal danger. End session eighty-seven.”

Rubbing his exhausted eyes, the doctor turns to the others in the control room. “Let’s clean this up, and get her sedated as quickly as possible. She’s already gestating two new fetuses from number eighty-eight. We don’t want to endanger them anymore than we have to.”

~ Nina D’Arcangela

© Copyright Nina D’Arcangela

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Stop by my other blogs for more Women in Horror Month content!
Spreading the Writer’s Word – A new Horror Flash-Fiction from a different female author daily in February!
The Road to Nowhere – Horror movie picks by The Damned staring strong leading ladies daily all month long.

And don’t forget to visit the Women in Horror Month official web site
for more great 
WiHM8 events and posts!

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