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Latest Stories

June 19, 2024
Flash Fiction Nelly Shulman

Welcome, Comrade

“What exactly is the purpose of your visit to Petrograd, Mr. Connor?” The English of my interrogator was impeccable, and I immediately noticed the familiar inflections but decided to keep my mouth shut. Even if he also attended Eton, he was not likely to set…
June 19, 2024
Fantasy Stories Paweł Markiewicz

The Birdies Part V

Alpbach. July 2, 2014 Wednesday. Late afternoon Late in the afternoon, the friends left the dog at home and went to the central part of thevillage. The road there ran down the valley, among meadows. Time after time they passed lonelyhouses and farmsteads…
June 19, 2024
Crime Stories Robb White

Hog Trough Harry

Harold Markham told his cronies at his club that having a certificate from an online college was better than a Stanford business degree. “It’s like having a rocket strapped to my ass,” he claimed, laughing. “People keep promoting me. They think I’m poor but…
June 19, 2024
General Stories Jaimee Alonso-Lundheim

Ghost Light

Stories take shape in the shadows. They start as ideas, tiny seeds in the depths of human minds, quietly being written while life happens. Most of these stories mature with time, a string of moments repeated and passed on like a child’s game of telephone,…
June 16, 2024
Flash Fiction Benoit

Boat People

She suddenly stood and began yelling. Hysteria or planned distraction, was it? His eyes fixed on the folds in her tunic, where a bomb might be. Intelligence had warned to expect terrorists amongst the boat people. Peace sister he said in Arabic. James had…
June 16, 2024
Romance Stories Jim Harrington

Greetings From Spain

Hola de Madrid mi amiga Carla. Is that right? It's been a while since we sat next to each other in Spanish class. Can you believe we'll celebrate our twenty-fifth high school reunion next year at this time? Charlie and I spent our first day at the Parque del…
June 16, 2024
Horror Stories Marvel Chukwudi Pephel

Maria Vamos, Beverly's Vampite At Law

The pungent stench of formaldehyde permeates the air as I enter the candlelit basement. Shadows dance on the stone walls, cast by the flickering flames that provide the only light in this windowless chamber. Yusuf Furthermore sits hunched over a wooden table,…
June 16, 2024
Flash Fiction Chris Elliott

Shucking with Chuckie

Shucking with Chuckie sucked. First, he was left-handed. If you were to his left, he’d elbow your shucking hand. If you were to his right, he’d reach where you were already grabbing a scallop. And, he worked too hard. Everybody worked hard on the Granny…
June 16, 2024
General Stories Michael Barlett

To Have Or Have Not

‘His tears fell on the sidewalk as he stumbled in the street a dozen people stopped to stare but no one stopped to speak. For his castle was a hallway, and the bottle was his friend…’ Gordon Lightfoot CHAPTER ONE The cold wind blew through the canyons of the…
May 21, 2024
Mystery Stories Marvel Chukwudi Pephel

Plant Dreaming Of Sheep

Before I begin, let me set things straight. I'm the chord of delight in a vocal. My name is Lucy. I remember I was dead conflicted. I found myself screaming in a hotel room. What happened to Jon Watts in Nelson was my fault. My vision of life had changed,…
May 21, 2024
Fantasy Stories Paweł Markiewicz

The Birdies Part IV

Vienna. July 1, 2014 Tuesday. Afternoon At 3 p.m. the party ended. Mary quickly left the university building. The woman boarded a tram heading towards the Margareten district. The weather outside was truly summary. The July sun was shining. There wasn't a…
May 21, 2024
Flash Fiction Andre Gouyneau

The Cat's Pajamas

I like Kelvin, my master. He’s cool. I used to be a black and white kitten, but bit by bit my fur became multicoloured and my mind went a bit nuts. I’d consumed more of Kelvin’s leftovers that he’d dropped on the floor than organic cat biscuits. This diet…

Mr. Joshi was on his way back home from the cinema. It was 10 P.M. and the evening show had finished just an hour earlier.

He was in a happy mood. The movie had been interesting—he liked the part where the hero fought and defeated all the villains single-handedly despite his background in journalism. Like most Nepali movies it had a happy ending and the hero not only managed to get the girl but also was able to convince the girl's parents to let him marry her. The audience had cheered and whistled and applauded when the couple finally kissed and then the movie ended.

He used to go to the cinema alone. He could not remember the last time he took Mrs. Joshi to to the cinema or anywhere else. Inside their house, they had their own private little lives and each respected the other's privacy. Mrs. Joshi had been a widow before he married her. He had decided to stay unmarried until he finally yielded to his family's wishes and decided to marry at the age of thirty eight. There was a narrow path that branched out from the main road that led to his house. On either side of the path there were vegetable patches—cabbages, little radishes and turnips. It was difficult to navigate the path at night.  His pocket torchlight lit the way, projecting a consistent beam of light.

As he approached his two-storied house he heard the sound of leaves rustling in the direction of his guava trees. As he pointed his torch in that direction he saw a silhouette of a man standing just below the trees. Except it wasn’t a man.

It had the body of a man—in a black suit. His humanlike qualities ended just as the neck began. It was a headless body.

Mr. Joshi let out a scream. He dropped his torch and fell back. The torch fell on the ground and flickered for a second but continued illuminating the grass. Mrs. Joshi must have not heard his scream; she would have come outside the verandah if she had heard him screaming in front of the house like a lunatic.

He picked himself up and stumbled towards the door. He banged the door with his fists. As he banged the door incessantly, he could see the body at the same place where he had first seen it. It was standing awkwardly—as if it was hung by the neck with a rope. Then it gave a lifeless twitch.

Finally, he heard footsteps from inside and the door opened and he burst inside. He bumped into his wife and nearly fell on the floor.

"What are you d—" she began.

"Out!" He said. He could not speak. "Outside!" he cried as he pointed to the door. It was all he could say.

She went outside. "There is nothing out here." she called back.

"A m- man" he stuttered "A man with no body!"  He wanted to say "a man with no head." He was breathing like of a drowning man.

Mrs. Joshi closed the door and looked at him with a perplexed expression.

"Just sit there on the sofa. What you need is a warm cup of tea." she said as she started walking towards the kitchen.

"Wait!" he said still shaking violently and struggling to from coherent sentences. "I'll come with you" he blurted out.

She gave him a smile and went to the kitchen and he straggled behind her.

He let out a bloodcurdling scream as he saw the body— sitting on the dining table—black suited and headless. It got up.

Horrified, he turned towards his wife to grab her and get out of the house. Instead, he saw a knife in her hand and a wicked smile on her face…

And then the lights went out.

 

The End

Author Bio: I am a law student from Kathmandu, Nepal. When not pouring over legal theories, statutes and case laws I try to write short stories. My hobbies include cooking and staring at the green wall of my room for hours thinking about story ideas.

 

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