Story Excerpt 

short story, writing

Here’s a new snippet from The Collected. Why does it always seem like my favorite characters are the villians?

 

I take the stairs two at a time, but Dach still manages to stay ahead of me. “Dach, wait!” He doesn’t turn or waiver, just rounds the corner and barrels through the common room and down the hallway. “Wait!”
He stops in his tracks outside the body’s room. I nearly run into him at full speed. I grab his arm with both hands and pull, hard. “Don’t go in there,” I plead.
He takes a step forward, into the doorway, towing me along with him. I peek timidly over his shoulder and catch sight of the body. It sits on its bed, legs stretched out and crossed at the ankle. It almost looks… normal, with one hand propped behind its head, the other balancing a book on its stomach. Strands of its hair fall into one of its eyes and it blows at the strands in annoyance.
I realized since the body had been here, I’d never once gone near its room. That’s probably because I avoid it like the plague. The room looks plain, I’d expected a pentagram drawn in goat’s blood on the wall, or a black magic spell book strewn on the desk. For something as evil as it, the normality of the room in which it resides is more disturbing than the goat’s blood and spell book would have been.
“You.” The word leaves Dach’s mouth in a growl, full of heavy implications.
The body quirks an eyebrow over its book and I grasp Dach’s arm tighter. “Can’t you see I’m reading?”

-Collins 

status update

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So it’s been a while since we posted a status update, but we have a good reason for that. We’ve been writing up a storm.

We set a goal for ourselves to publish our first book by the end of April so we needed to get our butts in gear.

Remember that story called Unit 17 that we posted snippets of? Yeah that’s the one we’ve decided gets to go first.

The process is confusing and daunting with so many options and routes to take, but Unit 17 will most definitely be an ebook. To our lovely blog followers, you will be the first to know when it’s available. We really appreciate you all.

The whole idea of releasing this book out into the world is nauseating but what’s the point if writing if it’s never really enjoyed? Stay tuned for progress updates!

-Turner Collins 

The Paul Series pt. 2

short story, writing

Here’s what Paul sees after Jacob’s conversation with Angel…

 I missed the last quarter of the game. So that was great. My wife also burnt the meatloaf, so I spent dinner scrapping the blackest bits off and crunching on the less black bits. My son refused to talk about anything other than macro- something or rather or whatever the hell he’s learning in that fancy collage we spend twelve grand a year on.

I don’t know this Jacob kid, but I hate him. I watch him from around the corner, behind a giant shrub. He’s bugging that girl he’s sick for. They talk for a minute, and she stands inside, hidden behind the door the whole time. He’s itching to come inside, I can tell by the way he leans forward, shoulders hunching. He must say something the girl doesn’t like, because the door slams shut, leaving him frozen on the porch.

He just stands there for a good two minutes before he slowly turns and descends the steps. He stops at the sidewalk, glancing both ways, his hands balled in the pockets of his denim vest. His face is screwed into pain but shifts quickly into a smooth plain of nothingness. He starts quickly down the street, heading downtown.

Man this kid couldn’t tell rejection from an invitation to a dinner party. Either he’s stupid, or just a gluten for punishment. That girl looks way out of his league anyway, all blonde and beautiful.

I follow him discreetly for six blocks before he enters a coffee shop. Some fancy place where they serve you your drink in a ceramic mug instead of a Styrofoam cup and put root extracts from Mongolia or some shit in it.

How hard is it to sell straight black coffee?

I shake my head in disappointment and pull at the tie I’m wearing. It’s tight around my neck and choking me. My wife gave me this god-awful tie two years ago for Christmas and I have to pull it out of the closet every few months to make her happy.

The door rings a little bell when I push it open and one of the baristas smiles at me, a young girl with shiny eyes. It’s crowded in here, everywhere expresso drinking hippies with their laptops and barets sit in upholstered chairs. Jacob stands at the counter, ordering. I slip in line, three people behind him, and manage to catch the last bit of the conversation.

“I’m sorry sir, we just ran out of that brew twenty minutes ago,” the barrister says. He’s a young guy with glasses and zits who probably spends his weekends studying instead of getting laid.

Jacob’s hands curl into fits on the counter. “That’s the only brew I like. Go find some in the back and make me some.”

“Again, I’m sorry,” Glasses says. “Our shipment of that brew was delayed, so we don’t have any in store after we run out.” He laughs nervously. “Which we just did. Could I interest you in our featured brew?”

Jacob’s jaw clenches and he lashes out, knocking a container of straws off the counter. Glasses’ eyes go wide and he starts to look a little nervous. Jacob grabs his head and shakes it. Damn, that girl’s got him riled up.

“I’m sorry about that,” Jacob says, struggling to calm his tone. “Fine, I’ll just get a large of whatever that featured brew is.” He tosses a five dollar bill down on the counter. “Keep the change.”

Without another word, Glasses grabs the money and pours Jacob’s drink in record time. His hand shakes as he hands it over, liquid spilling over the edge of the mug. Jacob frowns, but takes the drink and heads over to a table in the corner.

The line disappears and I order a bagel, a whole wheat one with butter instead of cream cheese. I’m trying to lose a few pounds. “Does that guy come here often?” I ask Glasses.

He glances over to Jacob’s table for a second, his face getting a little red. “Yeah, he’s a regular.”

“Is he usually that pissy?”

Glasses hands me my bagel. “No, he’s usually pretty nice. But he does say weird stuff sometimes.”

My interest peaks. “Weird stuff? What kind of weird stuff?”

“I don’t know. He once asked me if I had a sister. My co-worker over heard him talking to himself about his ‘angel.’ Weird stuff like that.” He leans over the counter a little. “I think he’s crazy.”

“Thanks.”

With that, I take a seat at the long bar along the window. I watch Jacob out of the corner of my eye. So really all I still know about this kid is that he’s love sick and unstable. Creepy, even. But I still can’t how he could be capable of murdering anyone. I shove the bagel into my mouth, ripping it in half in one bite and chewing roughly. This is such a waste of my time. What am I supposed to tell the Chief when I get into work on Monday? He’s going to chalk up my lack of evidence to lack of conviction for this fucking job.

Jacob shifts in his chair, leaning forward so that his elbows rest on the table. He spins the half empty mug idly with his fingers, his attention on something else, or someone else. I follow his gaze to a middle-aged man across the shop. He sits alone at a table, eyeing a group of teenage girls. They laugh obnoxiously and toss their hair. Most likely going to grow up to be a bunch of little teases. They get up to leave, tossing their garbage in the trash. As soon as they leave, the man gets up, leaving his garbage behind. Jacob gets up a second later and crosses the shop quickly.

I abandon my half eaten bagel and follow after him. The man ghosts behind the girls, getting closer and closer. He’s about to clap one of the girls on the shoulder when Jacob grabs his shoulder and whispers something to him. The man turns his head, his eyes shoot open, the blood vessels in them popping out.

Then, midsentence Jacob stops speaking and turns around suddenly. The man doesn’t wait around and flees across the street. Jacob narrows his eyes at me. “Why are you following me?”

“I’m not. I’m a little turned around here and I can’t find a cab. I was gunna ask that guy if he knew where I could get one, but you scared him away.” I hook a thumb through my belt loop and try to look relaxed. I haven’t had to act undercover in years, but I think I’m pulling it off.

Jacob’s face is plain again, no trace of agitation or suspicion. His lips taught across his face into something resembling a snarl. “Cab’s that way, now piss off,” he says gesturing lamely down the street.

I watch him slide silently out of sight around the corner of the coffee shop. Rude little bastard.

I think back to the pattern of what the disappearances had in common. That guy was going after those girls obviously. Now, whether that was to ogle them, or to try and rape them is the question. If Jacob thought the latter, was he trying to exact his own kind of justice? Suddenly I’m not so sure this kid is what he seems.

-Collins

Jacob talks to his girl.

author, book, controversial, creative, death, excerpt of the day, horror story

Newest installment in the Jacob series. Enjoy.

-Turner

I decide to cut the pretense tonight. Angel is coming out with me. I need my fix and the view from her window has outlived its usefulness.
I step into the shower, washing the blood of my last victim off my body, watching it swirl down the drain. Rinsing away my sins so I can be with my angel.
After getting dressed in my typical jeans, boots and denim vest I make my way to her house on foot. It’s not far from my place. I planned this on purpose. We grew up as neighbours…it seemed only fitting to still be near her.
I get to Angel’s house after only five minutes of walking, the blinds are shut tight. Tighter than normal. Did she figure out what I had been up to? I ignore the thought and knock solidly a few times before taking a step back and shoving my hands in my pockets.
The door creaks open slowly, just a few strands of hair and a piece of her smooth cheek showing. She must realize it’s me because she opens the door wider, sticking her head out, keeping her body inside.
“Jacob…you need to leave.” She nearly whispers.
“No. Come out here.” I say, done playing games. We’ve been playing games for weeks it seems. Or maybe that’s just me.
I notice a single tear drip down her cheek. It nearly guts me. This woman is the only one who has been able to get any sort of emotional response from me. “Please, I can’t do this again.” Her voice is raspy. I want to hold her, comfort her. That isn’t me. I don’t comfort, I don’t offer support. I kill, I maim, I steal and I hack. But for her, I do all the other stuff too.
“Angel…” I say soothingly, as soothingly as someone like me can. Using her nickname I gave her as children.
Her head shakes a few times. “No. I can’t let you back into my life just to have you leave me all over again, Jacob. You know how I feel about you.”
I nod, because I do know. What she doesn’t know is that I would and have killed for her. I will always protect her. No matter what she does, or where she goes, I will always find her.
I look up into her stricken eyes, the tears pooling on the blonde lashes and give her the biggest piece of my honesty that I can. “I will never leave you again.”

The Paul Series pt. 1

writing

So if you’ve been following this blog for a while, you’d be familiar with Turner’s “Jacob” series. If you aren’t aquainted with Jacob, take a look back at his journey to understand him a little better. I created a sister series tied to Turner’s “Jacob” series, called the “Paul” series. Paul is the cop assigned to surveiling Jacob after a string of disappearances.

 

I’ve been watching this creep for hours. He’s been watching her for hours. She’s been watching television for hours.
I glance down at the file in my lap, brushing powdered sugar off the photo of the creep. Name’s Jacob something, too long to pronounce. His friend, the girl in the house, was the victim of a sexual assault a while ago. The prime suspect in that case disappeared before he could be arrested. I flip through a couple of pages to the police report. Jacob was questioned in connection to the disappearance, but nothing concrete come from it. What a waste of time.
Assigning me to this case was the chief’s idea. Something to get me away from the desk, 9-5 gig. A little surveillance on a suspected murderer was just the thing. If I had to hear one more speech about the merit of not just calling myself a cop, but truly becoming cop, I was gunna shove my box of Dunkin’ Donuts down his throat. I said yes to get him to shut up. I seriously doubt this kid could cut up a body and hide the evidence. More likely he’s going through one of those goth-depression phases. My son went through one of those when he was sixteen. After two months of crucifixes and eyeliner, he was done.
I toss Jacob’s file onto the passenger seat and leaf through the second file. It’s full of disappearances within the last few months. A Mr. Harris, along with three other guys have vanished. The one commonality between the disappearances was each guy had been convicted of sexual assault or had allegations of sexual assault. So someone seems to be targeting these guys, but no bodies have turned up as of yet. For all I know, they all skipped town and hit up a toddler’s pageant. Bunch of perverts.
Grumbling, I pull my coffee from the cup holder and swallow it back. I could be watching the game right now, drinking a nice cold brew instead of ice cold coffee. Glancing at my watch I see that it’s 11:43pm. I’ve been sitting here since 8pm.
I snatch the radio from the console and click it on. “This is officer Pemberton on the Jacob what-his-face stakeout.”
“Hey, Paul. Catch that little shit jerking off to his girl yet?”
I chuckle. Kevin gets it. Chief can shove this assignment up his ass. “If I do, you’ll be the first to know, Kev. I’m heading home now.”
“Take ‘er easy.”
“Same to you.”
I put the radio down and glance over to the creep one more time. He’s still standing in the same spot, across the street from the girl’s house, staring in her front window. He wears a black hoodie, hood pulled up over his head, and blends into the shadows just outside a nearby street lamp. My best guess is he’s some love sick guy that got rejected and just can’t let go. Murderer? No. Pathetic? Yes.
I start the car and pull the seatbelt over my stomach. The belt doesn’t go the whole way and I’ve got to yank it a few times for it to buckle completely. Without another look at the creep, I make a U-turn and head home. With luck, I’ll be able to catch the last quarter of the game.
 
 
 -Collins