Category Archives: Quirky

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.

‘Celtic Zodiac’ #AtoZChallenge

The wolf and the swan, of these two a union made. I am the wolf, I grant no quarter; allow none between myself and mine own. You are the swan, your grace sees beyond an impertinent nature; it finds beauty where there is none to be seen. Ferocious and loyal, you find fault in my tenacity yet respect its essence. Gentle and enlightened, I find frustration in your nobility, wish to cast away this shackle and free your spirit. You long to gentle me to your passive ways; I will myself to fight all the more – not against you, but to stand guard before you. You see with clarity, with judgment, with a cool aloofness my feral devotion does not allow; not because I lack honor or dignity, but because I will not lay down the bone. My intent strong, I will not allow you to steal the meaning behind my action; your intent not to steal but to soothe, you will not be swayed by my aggression. You are my lover, passionate to a fault, yet I see no fault in you. I am fearless and brave; I will chase the ills of the world from your sight, though you would ‘oft demand I not. This hound no longer lone; this swan now free to float on waves of inspiration.

At odds this pairing, perfectly in order – the order of chaos, the perfection of discord; happiness found in restriction, a mate for the soul.

© Copyright 2014 Nina D’Arcangela. All Rights Reserved.

Welcome to my April AtoZ Blog Challenge post! I hope you enjoyed my ramble, and come back for more! Don’t forget to visit the other bloggers participating by clicking on the badge to the right, or simply using this link. :}

‘Memory’ #AtoZChallenge

Why does a building in ruin speak so directly to me? What allure does a dank, musty corridor hold that a newer structure lacks? Beyond being one who embraces her wanderlust, I’m also drawn to the decay and sense of abandonment such places effuse. What stories have they to tell, what past once thrived within the now crumbling walls? What of the soul that may still canvas the lonely walkways? How do I turn my back on the call, look away when something begs to be seen? How am I to fight the desire to lay my eyes on what has long since gone unnoticed, unwanted, unwelcome? Perhaps I’m not meant to turn and walk away. Perhaps I’m one of the few who must see, must feel, must know what such a place wishes to whisper. Am I to consider myself a chronicler of all things forgotten, one who sits in judgment of those who haven’t a care? Or am I to realize that what has been abandoned, pushed to the side, lost and discarded recognizes me as a similar breed and is reaching out so that somewhere, somehow, something will retain a memory of me?

© Copyright 2014 Nina D’Arcangela. All Rights Reserved.

Welcome to my April AtoZ Blog Challenge post! I hope you enjoyed my ramble, and come back for more! Don’t forget to visit the other bloggers participating by clicking on the badge to the right, or simply using this link. :}

‘Joke’ #AtoZChallenge

Hey :] I hope your hip is doing better, not hurting as

much as earlier. I worked until 10 tonight, grabbed

a quick bite and now I’m in bed reading. How’s your

night going? It’s the usual here – the house is dead

silent now. The doorbell was acting up earlier, so I

yelled at it to stop. It’s hasn’t chimed since. :] The

door to the green room kept shutting too, the cats

were growling at it, but they seem to have settled

down, so has the door… it always stops when the

front door –the one that doesn’t lock anymore –

when I hear it unlock, the knob turn, the door gently

shut, and the lock reengage. I know you don’t believe

me, but none of the other doors open with a skeleton

key, the sound is distinct. Anyway, the smell of smoke is

dissipating… the cigarette smoke, not the pipe tobacco.

The cherry scent is still hanging in the air, probably will

be until you get home. Sorry, I know I’m rambling, but

you know how I hate having to text you goodnight. No

blame –I know you didn’t pick the nightshift, but still…

Anyway, I guess I should say goodnight since that‘s why

I texted. Try to have a good one and I’ll see you in the

morn if I haven’t left by the time you get in. Night hun!

Love ya boo-boo-bear!! :]


Ahhh… I think you may have the wrong number…


Oh, I’m so sorry! I hope I didn’t wake you!


No, you didn’t wake me – I’m a night owl. I

know I’m not ‘boo-boo bear’,

but your message was a little odd.

Do you need help?


Help? No, well yes, but not the kind you mean anyway.

I’m so sorry to have disturbed you. I’m Trish, btw.


I’m no more disturbed now than before

your text. Get it, it’s a joke?


I got it – clever.


Is ‘boo-boo bear’ your boyfriend?


Yeah, we’ve been together for a few years now.

He works at the Budweiser plant near the airport.


Oh, so you work days, he wrks nights?

I’m Todd.


NTMY Todd. Something like that. Since we’re

talking, what are you doing up so late?



Watching a marathon on the Horror

network. They’re ramping up for the

latest FD film that’s coming out –lots

of slasher flicks on tonight.


No way! I love those movies. Which one are

you watching? No – wait, hang on… Sweet!

I love the scene where his

head gets sliced apart by the falling glass!


lol – you’re into horror/slasher flims?


Yeah, love ‘em.


So that stuff you were saying about your house,

is that some kind of joke?


Hmmm, joke? No, it really happens.

The place is haunted out the ass.




Oh, gosh – I’m sorry, are you like,

born again or something?


lmfao – no, it’s not that – swear all you

want – it’s just kinda odd to get a

wrong text at three in the morning from a girl

living in a haunted house while

you’re watching horror movies,

don’t ya think? – lots of coincidence

there. lol


Mmmm, maybe. I don’t believe

in coincidence.


Okayyyyy… What do you call it then?


If shit is meant to happen, it does. Oh damn!

The elevator scene! Yesssss!

*squeals in delight*


TFF – weirdest ‘non-coincidence’ I’ve ever

had. Your number didn’t come up

on my phone – do you live near the airport?


Nope, about an hour north.


Me too! Where abouts?


I’m in Bergen.


So am I… maybe we can catch the premier



Oh, dang! The pipe scene where it juts through his

head. Don’t you love it when they take the time

to trickle blood out the end. Sick! 



Uhm, yeah – I do. And the gore stuck to the

front of the pipe is a nice touch. lol


So true – only armatures miss that part! Great film,

I’m kinda glad I miss ‘texted’ you. ;]


Yeah, me too. You never said what town

you’re in?




Yeah, where are you mis-texting me from? lol


I’m in Emerson :]


No friggin way… me too! How f’d up is that?


I know…


Right, completely wacked!


No, I mean I know you’re in Emerson.


How do you know that? lol –

did the house tell you?


*giggling* No, silly… turn around and look out

your window.


Oh, shit! You scared the crap out of me!


Come on, open the window before I fall off the

roof… and what is this crap about you taking

another girl to the premier?



Brian… Brian! I swear, if you don’t

open this window!

Whose boo-boo-bear?


Whaaaa? I mean, WTF?

Boo-boo-bear, who is he?



OMG -YGTBFKM – you know there is no boo-boo-bear!

It was a joke! You don’t believe me? UFR!


Maybe you better call boo-boo-bear before

you fall – those tiles are slick.


I know, I climbed up! *huff* …Brian! Brian! 



Brian! Brian? Brian…


© Copyright 2014 Nina D’Arcangela. All Rights Reserved.

Welcome to my April AtoZ Blog Challenge post! I hope you enjoyed my ramble, and come back for more! Don’t forget to visit the other bloggers participating by clicking on the badge to the right, or simply using this link. :}


Slivers, that’s all I ever saw – it peered through the crack of a door that didn’t seat in its jam; between window and sash where the slightest breeze blew; below floorboards that had shrunken, leaving the barest opening. Slivers, as it watched and waited. For what, I dared not imagine in my waking hours, though I’d suspect it was for my guard to falter.

Closeting myself in a fully sealed room with no chinks each night, I allowed myself sleep when it would come. My dreams invaded by visions of that godless eye. It stared at me relentlessly, the light absorbed by its depth-less void; a lie of beauty hidden among the allure of its iridescent skin. But I knew far better than to be fooled by its camouflage. Looking into that eye, I could see what it promised – it promised pain, it promised torture, it promised an end that would not come swiftly or easily. Worse yet than the uncaring, unfeeling eye were the endless rows of teeth. They glistened, dripped with saliva. Translucent and viciously pointed; some jutted straight upward to pierce and stab, others curved backward toward its bulbous throat, insuring that once it had snagged its prey, there would be no escape. Teeth designed for ripping, tearing, rending chunks of flesh from bone to be swallowed whole. A gruesome death awaited any that it caught. I did not wish to die that way.

Perhaps worst of all were the moments sleep did not come in my tiny sanctuary. I’d crouch listening as it scratched at the walls, the floor, the ceiling above me. It knew where I hid; it was only a matter of time before it breached my woeful defenses. This we both knew, but still I longed to live just one more day…

© Copyright 2013 Nina D’Arcangela. All Rights Reserved.

I See You

Just take a deep breath
slow yourself down
just ease the fuck off
I’ve shown you your worth.

Just fill my wants
give me more
just try harder
your needs don’t matter.

Just come when I call
be grateful for my scraps
just take what I give
go away when I don’t want you.

Why can’t you understand
why don’t you try harder
why won’t you be what I need
damn it, do this my way.

Just leave me alone
learn to obey
always put me first
know that I love you.

Coffin Hop 2013 ~ Gus


Muttering to himself as he always does, ole Gus shuffled to the basement door, pulled it open, and carefully descended the barely lit stairs. Once in the subterranean cavern – as he liked to imagine it – he began searching the dusty shelves for boxes marked ‘Halloween’ in Ester’s neat, tidy handwriting. God rest her soul. Given what a pain in the ass his wife had been in life, he’d never thought he would miss her nagging so much now that she was gone. Oh well, you have to go on, can’t dwell on the past. That’s the way he’d always lived his life, no reason to go changing now. If he could just get the damned Priest from their church to stop coming by, he could finally watch his game shows in peace.  To get a little extra change on the plate each weekend, that old coot would do just about anything. Gus couldn’t see any other reason why the man would keep coming by the house to console him; always bringing casseroles, and baked this, or homemade that from strange women Gus had never even met. Yup, it had to be that Sunday Salvation Savings account he kept making deposits into. No other reason for it. She’d been dead for, Christ – what was it, six or seven weeks by now. Treating him like a lost mute-child found wandering the streets was getting to be a bit much! These people just didn’t know how to keep to themselves and stop meddling in his affairs. But at least he was eating well. Ester, God rest her soul, was a fair looking woman with many fine qualities, but cooking wasn’t one of them. Nope. She must have been looking the other way when that train went whistling by. Oh well, that book was closed, no point in flipping through the pages.

Rooting around the musty shelves in the dim light, Gus finally came across what looked like the right boxes. ‘Course, they were behind the ‘X-Mass’ boxes; now he’d have to move those first. Speaking of ‘X-Mass’, that was something he’d always wondered… Why spell it with two S’s on the end? Christmas was spelt with one S, and he couldn’t see the Arch Diocese endorsing X-Priests, like X-Men, so X-Masses had to be out of the question. Now that would be a service he wouldn’t mind paying to attend – hell, they could charge admission. Those money grubbing, wafer toting, alcohol peddling Men of the Cloth zipping around with special powers… that would be a show! What, no change for the plate? Father Laser Eye, incinerate that cheap son-of-a-bitch who came to service empty handed. Zap! Ha! Ahhh, well, it would probably be more like Father Lazy Eye with those clowns, anyway. Speaking of clowns, if he didn’t stop imagining The Flying Priest-capades in his head, he’d never get the lawn set up for tomorrow night. And Ester, God rest her soul, wouldn’t have that at her home. Nope. Better get back to gettin’ to it.

Finally, after clearing the ‘X-Mass’ boxes out of the way, and pulling down the Halloween decorations that had amassed over the years (get it, A-Massed?) – ha! He really should have been in show biz; his talents were wasted in the mill all those years… Anyway, after moving the boxes around and getting the right ones out, he’d need to get a move on it if he was finally going to get back at those little shits for the years of fucking with his Ester’s, God rest her soul, lawn.

A few hours later, he’d managed to drag all the boxes and loose pieces of seasonal ornamentation up from the basement and out onto the front porch. Looking around at the leaves cluttering the lawn, Gus figured there was no sense in raking them, they only added to the ambiance of the festival. Plus his back was way too sore for that kind of manual labor, especially considering what was still to come. Yup. Ester, God rest her soul, was going to be proud of his efforts this year; and whether she was too kind-hearted or lady-like to admit it, she’d enjoy the vengeance he had planned for those crap-faced teenagers. Ha! Well, time to break out the cob-webbing, and get the decorating over with.

Gus worked long into the night, waving to passers-by as they called out a hello, taking a break only to sit and eat the latest dish of whatever you call that stuff the Priest brought by. To any and all watching, it seemed the kindly old widower was going about making his home as inviting as he could for the pip-squeaks who would come mooching for candy tomorrow night. Sometime around 10:30 pm, he placed the final prop in its honored and very conspicuous place. It was the most realistic, most expensive severed head he and Ester, God rest her soul, had collected. It was really a bit too pricey for them, but from the moment she saw it, she simply wouldn’t leave the store without it. He’d spent the last several years sitting up awake on All Hallow’s Eve just to protect that one prop from the neighborhood vandals. They’re just kids having fun, Ester, God rest her soul, would always say. Kids, my ass, he always thought. Lighting his last cigarette before heading inside to wash up and sleep for a few hours, Gus wondered just how much fun they’d be having this year. After a few drags, he flicked the butt onto his neighbor’s lawn, picked up the prized latex head, and trudged inside to catch a little shut-eye.

At 2:00 am, his alarm clock sounded. After splashing cold water on his face and shaking off the sandman, Gus got down to the real business of this year’s decorating.  Collecting his shovel and pickaxe from the shed out back, he shambled his way around to the front lawn. He might be an old geezer, but years of working in the mill hardened him into something much different than most people thought. He was a smart man, one who knew how to foster good will and empathy, but one who also knew when it was time to use his strengths to his advantage. Making his way to the spot where the prized head would sit later that evening, he tossed down the shovel and began breaking up the dirt on his front lawn. By 4:30 am, he had a man sized vertical hole dug in just the right spot. He’d wheeled all the loose dirt – minus a few shovelfuls that he used to camouflage the 3ft by 2ft board masking the opening he’d just created – to the back and blended it into his freshly turned garden soil so it wouldn’t look suspicious.  Returning to the front once more, he gathered and scattered handfuls of leaves around to hide his handiwork.  Back inside, he made his way to the shower, cleaned himself up, then cooked a hearty breakfast of poached eggs, instant grits, bacon, maple sausage links, and six slices of toast. Just like Ester, God rest her soul, used to make… well, maybe a little better, but don’t tell her that.

Sitting out on his front porch that afternoon and evening, Gus dutifully rewarded all the little children with their hands held out begging for candy. As the night wore on, he was sure to keep an eye on that ghoulish head, and all the little bastards who had their eye on it, too. He knew that one of them would come back and make a play for it well after everyone was asleep. With all the wee ones home by 9:00 pm, it was just a matter of waiting the right amount of time. By 11:30 pm, Gus had been alone on his porch for an hour and a half without seeing another soul. He figured now was as good a time as any. Giggling to himself and saying a silent prayer that Ester, God rest her soul, was watching, he began his own Halloween fun! Tucking the latex head inside the house, he slid the board covering the hole out of the way and tossed it under the porch, hiding the evidence of his deceit among the other debris stored there. Sitting down on the lawn, Gus dangled his legs over the opening for just a moment before he shimmied his way into the ground. Having left one arm free, he scooped the loose dirt and leaves that had concealed the board onto his broad shoulders, then worked his arm into the dirt as well. Buried up to his neck, Gus stood in the tight confines of the vertical grave he’d dug earlier and waited. It didn’t take long.

Judging it to be just past 12:30 am, he heard a rustling sound, and the drunken whispers of the aforementioned idiots approaching. Holding dead still, eyes closed, he waited and listened.

“Damn man, it looks so real!”

“Of course it looks real, dick-head, that’s why its such a great grab for this year’s scavenger hunt. Plus that pain-in-the-ass isn’t sitting on the porch guarding it like he usually is.”

“Show some respect, man. The dude just lost his wife. My dad comes by here with food and shit from the church cronies like every night.”

“Yeah, I’m sure he does it out of respect. He’s just hoping the old fuck leaves his money to the parish.”

“Whatever, asshole. Just grab it so we can get the hell out of here before someone sees us.”

The sound of footsteps grew closer as the leaves crunched in his ears. Gus felt the warmth of the little bastard’s hands nearly touching him.

“You sure the coast is clear?”

“Yeah, man. Just hurry the fuck up and grab it!”

Sensing the impending hands closing around his head, Gus’s eyes shot open as quickly as his jaw. He’d taken the time to file his teeth to razor sharp points while he’d waited inside. In one fluid motion, he turned and snapped his mouth closed on the arm of the fuck-wad trying to steal his head.  His teeth sliced clean through fabric and muscles, and as soon as the kid yanked backward, his forearm detached at the elbow. They all started to scream like the little piss-ants they were. Blood was spurting everywhere, making Gus’s head really look like the prop. As the teens ran screaming for their lives, Gus spit the arm out towards the bushes. Cackling with maniacal laughter, shreds of fabric and gristle still clinging to his teeth, Gus shouted, “See Ester, God rest your soul, that’s the perfect prop to finish off our display!”

© Copyright 2013 Nina D’Arcangela. All Rights Reserved.

Coffin Hop Goodies!

How do you get them? Comment on my Coffin Hop 2013 posts on this blog – I’m posting something new each day, so keep coming back for more chances to win. When will they be announced? When the hop ends (after October 31st). What are they going to be? A surprise! I like surprises, don’t you? ;}

Don’t forget to visit my other two blogs that are participating:
Spreading the Writer’s Word
The Road to Nowhere…

and the Sirens Call Publications blog:
The Sirens Song

plus the blog for the writing group I belong to:
Pen of the Damned

and all the other amazing hoppers on the Coffin Hop list!

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