banner art above by Charles Carter

Wednesday, December 16, 2015


by Vincent Daemon

Chapter VIII

Beneath The Shadows

 The doctor’s car was warm, plush, and he had some music playing low in the background that John could have sworn was T.S.O.L.’s Beneath The Shadows album. It was soft, familiarone of John’s favorite albums, in factfar under appreciated for its timehe’d always felt. It comforted his jilted senses. Julie sat in the front passenger seat as the doctor drove, and John laid down in the back (at the doctor’s behest). Julie was enthralled with the man, asking him question after question, finding his odd life and past (or at least what he would cryptically disclose of it) almost wholly unreal. She was completely hooked into and believing every word. 

 Every word of which, in fact, was completely true. He was an intensely learned man who had seen lands another set of eyes rarely ever captured, and dealt with things called legend and mythyet were merely misunderstood aspects of naturestructured as ‘religious/cultural’ mores and normsconcepts that indeed had evolved from the lower animals themselves. He was immersed in all manner of strange dealings with the occult and cryptozoology. These were the sorts of things Dr. Chorn talked about, with a quite serious yet occasionally well-humored or flippant quip, as he was alternately just as much a skeptic as believer and seer. Julie couldn’t believe her luck at running into this individual as well as John and, well, just the whole damned weird scenario. Here she was thinking she’d be merely reporting on some silly parade and holiday history, screwed by the paper again; but this was fucking lunacy.

“John?” the doctor asked softly. “Could you sit up a moment? I’d like to know if this is around where you saw the looming shadow last night.” Darkness had already fallen, but as he sat up John could already tell. It was obvious to all in the car anyway, as there was an odd stench that started in the middle of the road (where Debra had been, most likely) and then veered off into the woods, almost like a path of unearthly stink. The still-falling snow seemed not to lay along this path from the side of the road, leaving an accidental natural pathway. It was merely wet, the snow melting as it touched the ground. 

 The doctor got out, then Julie. “C’mon John, we should get some air.” John got out of the back of the car to take in a deep breath of the crisp scent of the fresh fallen snowthat just wasn’t there. Instead, it reeked of noxious sulfur and other possibly toxic odors, burning nasal passages and throats upon taking their first few initial breaths. “Well, logic dictates follow the path,” the doctor stated as he led the way, holding his coat over his mouth and nose, suggesting John and Julie do the same. 

 The deeper into the woods they got, the more severe the scent, enough to bring tears to their eyes. They noticed other things as well, like the reek of almost frozen rotting meat, innards and bile. The trees showed signs of being torn into by something strong.  Huge gouges ripped deeply into frozen-sap maples and oaks, the gouges getting bigger the further into the woods they ventured. What they eventually stumbled onto was not anything anyone with a heart and soul would have wanted to lay eyes upon. It also became rapidly apparent that this thing had grown somewhat since its arrival.

 They had walked right into the twisted intestine-wrapped, ripped-limb remains of the deer family massacre. Everywhere there were piles of goo and gunk and shit and unrecognizable stink—the fetid leftover remains of the cosmic creature’s violent feats of careless, perhaps frightened, but definitely hyper-aggressive behavior—as the Doc had put it. Perhaps it was just in this thing’s nature to act this way, especially after considering the discovery of the ugly mess of deer remains and interstellar monster vomit strewn and spewed wildly about. Just what it was they may be dealing with, to the doctor anyhow, was not such the anomaly he initially thought, perhaps. This was something from deeper, darker, and long forgotten (i.e, buried) lore. If this was indeed that...they were near doomed. Not just the three of them, but essentially the human race, altogether. Not that Dr.  Chorn would be all that broken up, but he was nowhere near that level of nihilism.

 Amidst the wreckage of deer and forest, the Doc noticed the crackled remains of an interstellar shell, split in several pieces, and apparently popped from the inside, like some kind of over-boiled egg, which to the logical conclusion of all three, is perhaps what it actually was. But what? From where? 

 The Doc went and inspected the shell-comet remains, and with his experienced eyes noticed something odd. On the inside of one of the pieces of shell was etched strange hieroglyphs and cuneiform and what seemed like many other different forms of early “human” inscription, dating back to before even Babylonia or Sumer. There were figures and letters he couldn’t quite figure out, but he carefully picked up the stone with a hanky and placed it in his trench pocket, a sickening dread consuming his entire being before the mere sight of the small and dim reddish slab of ageless existence now tucked into his pocket. It was indeed that thing he so dreaded...a Demi-Ghoul.

 “I can’t look at it any more,” Julie strained out with a dry heave while turning away from the ghastly mess and potent stink, nowhere near as bad as it could have been due to the bitter cold. 

 John put his arm around her instinctively, not knowing what else to do to for the highly upset, shaking and nauseated girl that he had developed a bit of a crush on. Perhaps more than a bit of. They connected. The doctor was right.

 “Let’s go, quickly at that. If this thing comes back, we don’t wanna be here. Not only that, it was foolish of me to leave the Geiger counter in the car, damnit.” The Doc’s tone was deadly serious.

 “The what now where?” Julie asked in a panic. 

 “Nothing, it’s not important. We just gotta go, now—to your place of employment, John.”

 “C’mon, Doc, I’m tired, I feel strange, I’ve been up for a really long time man, it’s been a long fucking day...

 “Exactly, think about it, John...the fucking petting zoo.” Dr. Chorn turned and led the way back to his car post-haste, John following and steadfastly holding Julie’s shoulders, comforting her as much as possible.

 John did think about it. Paisley, damnit! Gotta check on Paisley and Quacks. He knew just what the Doc was thinking.  “Let’s do it.” Julie reached her right hand up to where John’s was on her shoulder and took it gently; the same comfort he gave her only moments ago, he was now feeling in return. It was something he was not used to. It surprised him a bit, and brought a slight grin that no one saw, even in the midst of this horrific scenario. Genuine affection’s a beautiful thing.

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Chapter IX

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Archive of Stories
and Authors

Sean Padlo's

Sean Padlo's

Sean Padlo's exact whereabouts
are never able to be fully
pinned down, but what we
do know about him is laced
with the echoes of legend.
He's already been known
to haunt certain areas of
the landscape, a trick said
to only be possible by being
able to manipulate it from
the future. His presence
among the rest of us here
at the freezine sends shivers
of fear deep in our solar plexus.

Konstantine Paradias & Edward

Konstantine Paradias's

Konstantine Paradias is a writer by
choice. At the moment, he's published
over 100 stories in English, Japanese,
Romanian, German, Dutch and
Portuguese and has worked in a free-
lancing capacity for videogames, screen-
plays and anthologies. People tell him
he's got a writing problem but he can,
like, quit whenever he wants, man.
His work has been nominated
for a Pushcart Prize.

Edward Morris's

Edward Morris's

Edward Morris is a 2011 nominee for
the Pushcart Prize in literature, has
also been nominated for the 2009
Rhysling Award and the 2005 British
Science Fiction Association Award.
His short stories have been published
over a hundred and twenty times in
four languages, most recently at
PerhihelionSF, the Red Penny Papers'
SUPERPOW! anthology, and The
Magazine of Bizarro Fiction. He lives
and works in Portland as a writer,
editor, spoken word MC and bouncer,
and is also a regular guest author at
the H.P. Lovecraft Film Festival.

Tim Fezz's

Tim Fezz's

Tim Fezz hails out of the shattered
streets of Philly destroying the air-
waves and people's minds in the
underground with his band OLD
FEZZIWIG. He's been known to
dip his razor quill into his own
blood and pen a twisted tale
every now and again. We are
delighted to have him onboard
the FREEZINE and we hope
you are, too.

Daniel E. Lambert's

Daniel E. Lambert teaches English
at California State University, Los
Angeles and East Los Angeles College.
He also teaches online Literature
courses for Colorado Technical
University. His writing appears
in Silver Apples, Easy Reader,
Other Worlds, Wrapped in Plastic
and The Daily Breeze. His work
also appears in the anthologies
When Words Collide, Flash It,
Daily Flash 2012, Daily Frights
2012, An Island of Egrets and
Timeless Voices. His collection
of poetry and prose, Love and
Other Diversions, is available
through Amazon. He lives in
Southern California with his
wife, poet and author Anhthao Bui.


Phoenix has enjoyed writing since he
was a little kid. He finds much import-
ance and truth in creative expression.
Phoenix has written over sixty books,
and has published everything from
novels, to poetry and philosophy.
He hopes to inspire people with his
writing and to ask difficult questions
about our world and the universe.
Phoenix lives in Salt Lake City, Utah,
where he spends much of his time
reading books on science, philosophy,
and literature. He spends a good deal
of his free time writing and working
on new books. The Freezine of Fant-
asy and Science Fiction welcomes him
and his unique, intense vision.
Discover Phoenix's books at his author
page on Amazon. Also check out his blog.

Adam Bolivar's

Adam Bolivar's

Adam Bolivar's

Adam Bolivar is an expatriate Bostonian
who has lived in New Orleans and Berkeley,
and currently resides in Portland, Oregon
with his beloved wife and fluffy gray cat
Dahlia. Adam wears round, antique glasses
and has a fondness for hats. His greatest
inspirations include H.P. Lovecraft,
Jack tales and coffee. He has been
a Romantic poet for as long as any-
one can remember, specializing in
the composition of spectral balladry,
utilizing to great effect a traditional
poetic form that taps into the haunted
undercurrents of folklore seldom found
in other forms of writing.
His poetry has appeared on the pages
of such publications as SPECTRAL
CTHULHU, and a poem of his,
"The Rime of the Eldritch Mariner,"
won the Rhysling Award for long-form
poetry. His collection of weird balladry
and Jack tales, THE LAY OF OLD HEX,
was published by Hippocampus Press in 2017.

David Agranoff's

David Agranoff's

David Agranoff is the author of the
following books: Ring of Fire (Eraserhead
Press, 2018), Flesh Trade (co-written
w/Edward Morris; published by Create-
Space, 2017), Punk Rock Ghost Story
(Deadite Press, 2016), Amazing Punk
Stories (Eraserhead Press, 2016),
Boot Boys of the Wolf Reich (Eraserhead
Press, 2014), Hunting the Moon Tribe
(Eraserhead Press, 2011), The Vegan
Revolution...with Zombies (Eraserhead
Press, 2010), and Screams from a Dying
World (Afterbirth Books, 2009).
David is a hardcore vegan and tireless
environmentalist. His contributions to
the punk horror scene and the planet in
general have already established him
as a bright new writer and activist to
watch out for. The Freezine of Fantasy
and Science Fiction welcomes him and
his defiant vision open-heartedly.

David is a busy man, usually at work
on several different novels or projects
at once. He is sure to leave his mark on
a world teetering over the edge of
ecological imbalance.

Sanford Meschkow's

Sanford Meschkow is a retired former
NYer who married a Philly suburban
Main Line girl. Sanford has been pub-
lished in a 1970s issue of AMAZING.
We welcome him here on the FREE-
ZINE of Fantasy and Science Fiction.

Brian "Flesheater" Stoneking's

Brian "Flesheater" Stoneking's

Brian "Flesheater" Stoneking currently
resides in the high desert of Phoenix,
Arizona where he enjoys campy horror
movies within the comfort of an Insane
Asylum. Search for his science fiction
stories at The Intestinal Fortitude in
the Flesheater's World section.
The Memory Sector is his first
appearance in the Freezine of
Fantasy and Science Fiction.

Owen R. Powell's

Little is known of the mysterious
Owen R. Powell (oftentimes referred
to as Orp online). That is because he
usually keeps moving. The story
Noetic Vacations marks his first
appearance in the Freezine.

Gene Stewart
(writing as Art Wester)

Gene Stewart's

Gene Stewart is a writer and artist.
He currently lives in the Midwest
American Wilderness where he is
researching tales of mystical realism,
writing ficta mystica, and exploring
the dark by casting a little light into
the shadows. Follow this link to his
website where there are many samples
of his writing and much else; come

Daniel José Older's

Daniel José Older's

Daniel José Older's spiritually driven,
urban storytelling takes root at the
crossroads of myth and history.
With sardonic, uplifting and often
hilarious prose, Older draws from
his work as an overnight 911 paramedic,
a teaching artist & an antiracist/antisexist
organizer to weave fast-moving, emotionally
engaging plots that speak whispers and
shouts about power and privilege in
modern day New York City. His work
has appeared in the Freezine of Fantasy
and Science Fiction, The ShadowCast
Audio Anthology, The Tide Pool, and
the collection Sunshine/Noir, and is
featured in Sheree Renee Thomas'
Black Pot Mojo Reading Series in Harlem.
When he's not writing, teaching or
riding around in an ambulance,
Daniel can be found performing with
his Brooklyn-based soul quartet
Ghost Star. His blog about the
ridiculous and disturbing world
of EMS can be found here.

Paul Stuart's

Paul Stuart is the author of numerous
biographical blurbs written in the third
person. His previously published fiction
appears in The Vault of Punk Horror and
His non-fiction financial pieces can be found
in a shiny, west-coast magazine that features
pictures of expensive homes, as well as images
of women in casual poses and their accessories.
Consider writing him at,
if you'd like some thing from his garage. In fall
2010, look for Grade 12 Trigonometry and
Pre-Calculus -With Zombies.

Rain Grave's

Rain Graves is an award winning
author of horror, science fiction and
poetry. She is best known for the 2002
Poetry Collection, The Gossamer Eye
(along with Mark McLaughlin and
David Niall Wilson). Her most
recent book, Barfodder: Poetry
Written in Dark Bars and Questionable
Cafes, has been hailed by Publisher's
Weekly as "Bukowski meets Lovecraft..."
in January of 2009. She lives and
writes in San Francisco, performing
spoken word at events around the
country. 877-DRK-POEM -

Icy Sedgwick's

Icy Sedgwick is part writer and part
trainee supervillain. She lives in the UK
but dreams of the Old West. Her current
works include a ghost story about a Cavalier
and a Western tale of retribution. Find her
ebooks, free weekly fiction and other
shenanigans at Icy’s Cabinet of Curiosities.

Blag Dahlia's
armed to the teeth

BLAG DAHLIA is a Rock Legend.
Singer, Songwriter, producer &
founder of the notorious DWARVES.
He has written two novels, ‘NINA’ and

G. Alden Davis's

G. Alden Davis wrote his first short story
in high school, and received a creative
writing scholarship for the effort. Soon
afterward he discovered that words were
not enough, and left for art school. He was
awarded the Emeritus Fellowship along
with his BFA from Memphis College of Art
in '94, and entered the videogame industry
as a team leader and 3D artist. He has over
25 published games to his credit. Mr. Davis
is a Burningman participant of 14 years,
and he swings a mean sword in the SCA.
He's also the best friend I ever had. He
was taken away from us last year on Jan
25 and I'll never be able to understand why.
Together we were a fantastic duo, the
legendary Grub Bros. Our secret base
exists on a cross-hatched nexus between
the Year of the Dragon and Dark City.
Somewhere along the tectonic fault
lines of our electromagnetic gathering,
shades of us peel off from the coruscating
pillars and are dropped back into the mix.
The phrase "rest in peace" just bugs me.
I'd rather think that Greg Grub's inimitable
spirit somehow continues evolving along
another manifestation of light itself, a
purple shift shall we say into another
phase of our expanding universe. I
ask myself, is it wishful thinking?
Will we really shed our human skin
like a discarded chrysalis and emerge
shimmering on another wavelength
altogether--or even manifest right
here among the rest without their
even beginning to suspect it? Well
people do believe in ghosts, but I
myself have long been suspicious
there can only be one single ghost
and that's all the stars in the universe
shrinking away into a withering heart
glittering and winking at us like
lost diamonds still echoing all their
sad and lonely songs fallen on deaf
eyes and ears blind to their colorful
emanations. My grub brother always
knew better than what the limits
of this old world taught him. We
explored past the outer peripheries
of our comfort zones to awaken
the terror in our minds and keep
us on our toes deep in the forest
in the middle of the night. The owls
led our way and the wilderness
transformed into a sanctuary.
The adventures we shared together
will always remain tattooed on
the pages of my skin. They tell a
story that we began together and
which continues being woven to
this very day. It's the same old
story about how we all were in
this together and how each and
every one of us is also going away
someday and though it will be the far-
thest we can manage to tell our own
tale we may rest assured it will be
continued like one of the old pulp
serials by all our friends which survive
us and manage to continue
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Shae Sveniker's

Shae is a poet/artist/student and former
resident of the Salt Pit, UT, currently living
in Simi Valley, CA. His short stories are on
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Nigel Strange's

Nigel Strange lives with his wife and
daughter, cats, and tiny dog-like thing
in their home in California where he
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with lucidity. PLASTIC CHILDREN
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J.R. Torina's

J.R. Torina was DJ for Sonic Slaughter-
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(an industrial-ambient music label) and
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label), and was proprietor of The Abyss
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SLC, now closed). He is the dark force
behind Scapegoat (an ambient-tribal-
noise-experimental unit). THE HOUSE
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K.B. Updike, Jr's

K.B. Updike, Jr. is a young virgin
Virginia writer. KB's life work,
published 100% for free:
(We are not certain if K.B. Updike, Jr.
has lost his Virginian virginity yet.)