Pecklow

I looked down at the town below us. The wind atop the hill was bitter, numbing my face and hands and freezing the rest of my body down to the bone. Pecklow was an old mining town founded upon a series of hills which jutted out of the tumultuous rivers below; a mountainous island upon which only the hardiest weeds grew. The name of the town had originally meant Low Peak, but had become bastardised and corrupted over time. The bridge joining Pecklow to the mainland was an old industrial revolution era bridge of riveted iron, which once had a train track running across it from the days when Pecklow was mined for its rich coal reserves beneath the earth. Continue reading

The Corpse Candle

The flame dances in the wind, like a liquid wisp, suspended in blue over the ground, swaying vertiginously, back and forth, beckoning me to follow it. I paw at the window lightly, convinced now that the flame is real, and not some off-shot reflection on the pane.

The light casts meandering shadows among the grass of the garden. Without scorching the blades, the flame hovers in a circular motion, as if it has a will of its own. Stopping in place, doubling in size, then shrinking once more, and shooting off up to the top of the garden and dissipating into the blackness of the night. Continue reading

Perfume the air


Florigera rosis halo

“I perfume the air with my blossoms.”

The smell of citrus on the breeze was the only thing I liked about Attard Psychiatric Hospital. In the summer, the redolence of the flower gardens swept like a river through the cracks in the old Victorian building, flooding the yard with the bittersweet smell of lemon, and the rich flora from the gardens of San Anton Palace. Continue reading

The Big Boots – Part 3

Read “X Faction Soldiers”

Read “The Big Boots – Part 2”

I pull up to Aaron’s house and find him waiting on the lawn. His tie is loose and his wrinkled shirt has been hastily tucked into his trousers. I open the door and he clumsily lumbers himself into the passenger’s seat. Continue reading

The Big Boots – Part 2

Read “X Faction Soldiers”

Read “The Big Boots – Part 1”

“There is only one truth, and that truth is beauty. There are no ethics within nature, only pragmatism -that which functions to best serve the collective- everything, man or beast, is given an equal chance, but nature itself provides a strainer. That which is without function falls through the strainer, and loses the evolutionary arms race.”

The doctor’s eyes lit up as he read aloud the pages of his diary. The sedate body on the table looked dead already. The life had faded from his face, leaving in its wake dark sunken eyes, sallow cheeks, and a set of pale, cracked lips.
Continue reading

The Big Boots – Part 1

(This is the next chapter in the “X Faction Soldiers” series)

I remember the night I left the nursing home. From my seat on the porch I looked out across the garden; there was a lunar eclipse that night, so I’d timed my break to coincide with the cosmic event. The grass on the lawn was in dire need of mowing; the saplings that had been planted a few years ago had become withered and skeletal. We’d had a gardener at one point, but budget cuts left him redundant, and the edges of the garden had become somewhat wild looking. The trees surrounding the garden had grown out significantly. The branches reaching out through the wire of the fences they disguised; twisting and warping the wires as if they were trying to escape the confines of the garden. At one point, the garden boasted an eclectic mixture of beautiful flowers; scattered clusters of Anemone, which blossomed in scarlet, crimson, and white; complimented by blue Harebells and purple Columbines. In the spring, the Common Rue would bloom with light blue leaves, and Nasturtium grew around the edges of the garden near the trees. The central feature, a large green Willow tree cast its branches wide, hanging down like a protective shroud. Continue reading