Tag Archives: Creative writing

Cracks and Crevasses – A short little horror story


 

cracky

 

 

Her leaving was quite sudden.  Her warmth will be missed,  but  my love that I had known for these many years  turned out to be simply a bitch.

Now I sit in this house we once shared…its a big bold hold of a house, with cracks in the walls and crevices in the floor boards that lead to the in between spaces and nowhere.

I would have fixed them all, all those broken pieces left unattended over the years, but now what’s the use.  There really is no call to repair something that only brought me to despair.

Never good enough.  “A hole in the wall, ” was my only gift to her,  she had ever said.

Now gone.

Then they began to come.

Out of all the those holes and cracks they seeped.

The Monsters liked to crawl  from where they laid hidden and nip at me when I turned away.  They are an annoyance, their pestering, their little pains. I have gotten scratched on many a occasion,  a bite mark or two when ever deep asleep or not quite quick enough on my feet at night.

I felt them grinning there in the dark.  I couldn’t  see them in the cold dead spaces of the room as they hid but I knew there was  an upturned lip or a crinkling of the eyes. I felt them there drinking me in.

I tried not to think about  them as I drove to work,  or as I sat at my desk, or went to the bathroom or ate my lunch in the  breakroom. Sometimes, I even thought one or two had hidden in the trunk of my car and came to work with me.  For I felt their presence always….

Its was oppressive.

It hadn’t  always been like this. Once I had been free. No monster nipped, scratched or bit.  For they didn’t exist in my home.  Back then, there were no shadows to hide them. No cold spaces to give them comfort.

I am not sure how they found me. For I sure as hell didn’t let them in. I never asked them to come into my home.  I hate them. All of them and they hate me.

There are so many,   skinny ones, fat ones, ugly ones,  ugly skinny ones, ugly fat ones,  foul smelly ones, red eyed, green eyed, black eyed, no-eyed even. So, so many.

I keep them back.  Even though there are many, they are not very brave, not at all. They may grin from the dark but they cower. They are afraid of me in some  small way.  I have yet to figure out why.

I know they don’t like my boot when I give one or two of them a good kick.  Oh no, they don’t like the boot, not at all. Then I grin back at them and I sense them cowering more.

They are weak little Monsters and I have my big black steel toed boots to keep them at bay. I wear them all the time even in bed. Not in the shower though. That would be silly. I lock the bathroom door tight, remove my boots in a flourish, still laced but loose, enough to slip back on in a flash.

Naked, I jump in the shower, scrub scrub scrub, then out in a moment between a heartbeat  of their indecision to possibly break down the door.  I scramble for my towel, dry off and put on my clothes for the next day, slip into my boots and crawl into bed.

They are not as clever as me. Not by far you see.

Until I wake up and find my legs secured, and tied tightly  to the bed .

Hmmm…my arms won’t move… they seem to be tied at my sides as well. I am all snug, snug, snug

They all are there, perched on my footboard.  Waiting for me to wake up this whole time. They just stare at me, colored eyes shining and no eyes and lifeless and all.

Why do they wait?

Why don’t they  rent, why don’t they tear and rip and claw?

A taloned appendage slips off my  boots and with a clunk they both hit the bedroom floor.

Then the grins began. This time I can see them.  Some toothless, or black and decayed as death,

some mouths with lolling tongues licking lips which drip, milk white saliva which issue a delicate hiss

upon my sheets.

They creep as one …like a low rolling wave they come. Up my body, over my feet, calves and knees…blood seeps, staining the white bed red.

Thighs are on fire as they continue to eat and eat…

All I can do is look on…pain, oh the overwhelming pain, drowns me as the wave of teeth and claws and malice munches me, a wide awake nightmare…of my Monsters finally taking their due.

Darkness falls complete as my eyes are plucked and eaten…how is it that I still live?

My mad mind is all that remains intact.

Until they reach my brains for their final snack.

My mind settles….then drifts…the pain is gone and  I meander in a pool of blood red mist…

Images come,  blurred and dim,  a focus , a purpose coalesces ….

A man sleeps before me angry and mean, fear filled and hopeless as I sit looking through a lit crack into his room and give him a little grin.

 

by Philip Wardlow 2015

His Silence…


I often sit and just think about what formed “ME”

What led to “ME” .  How was I formed? Why do I function the way I do?

I like trying to understand myself as I am sure most people try to. I do it also to become a better writer. I believe if I can get to the root of me then I can get to the root of that character I am trying to develop.

I am big on being “real” with my characters. So many books I have read have stilted unrealistic dialogue action, and plotting just so they can get the character to the next page.

What’s my character?

I remember my father vaguely because he died when I was barely twelve.  The one thing that sticks out in my mind about him most was his quiet silence.

I call it a quiet silence because it wasn’t a disgruntled silence or silence that had a point to it. It just was.  There was no malice behind it..though perhaps there was a little sadness  at times in it.  To me it always seemed a calm acceptance  at the way things were or had to be.

There were one occasion where I really felt this silence within  him.

I was about nine years old and my mom had thrown one of her epic “tantrums”  I call them now. Plate throwing, iron skillet flying , cussing, and flinging of insults and  telling  of all the wrong doings done to her by him, my father.  And there my father stood in silence, one hand perhaps slightly raised in defense to any imminent flying object which may come his way.  The knot rising like a mountain  already on his head of one plate that had connected with his skull.

As my mom often so did when she would get this worked up she would flee. In that fleeing, she would collect up my two brothers and I in a whirlwind and drag us  from the house, our home, to stay at a friend’s house,  or a hotel far away for a short to extended stay of days or weeks or even months at a time.

My father would sit there in his silence and just let her take us knowing she would return sooner or later, until the next time of course.

But this time had been different.

As I was being tugged out the door by my mother (because I was always the pokey one)  my father suddenly reached out and grabbed my other hand and pulled me back.

So there I was, a human piece of rope being tugged by my parents. She pulled then he would pull back….

I remember my father distinctly looking into my scared tear filled face and asking quietly if I wanted to stay with him.

I found my mouth wouldn’t work. I couldn’t talk.. I could say neither “yes”  or “no”.

My mother overheard the question and then asked me in a clipped tone if I wanted to.

For some reason I found it in me to answer her…and simply said, “Yes.”

She abruptly  released me and left with my other two brothers. Gone.

For the next days or weeks, I really don’t remember, it was just him and I at home.  We hung  out , we talked in generalities and funny things that only a nine year old boy and a grown man could talk about.

I don’t remember the conversations or any of the activities we did. I do remember being content in that short amount of space and time with him.  I  saw his contentment as well.

I remember he seemed a little less silent when we were together during that period.  And even when he was silent he seemed to carry his silence a little differently when we were together.  Lighter , is the only word I can put to it.  I had come to realize he had needed me to stay….

I was happy I had said yes…

 

Silence

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My brother – Past and Present reflections


 

 

 

Another_Screaming_Face__by_Master_Chi

My Brother ~

 

His pain grabbed at me, reaching in to hold tight to my chest as he screamed in that moment to no one and everyone in the world. His scream filled me up with an overwhelming emptiness that I could never fully know as it found a small echo within my own soul.

His inner turmoil was plain to see, manifested in the violent visceral cast to his eyes and voice that seemed to travel somewhere else in that instance of time. I realized then that I would never find a way to calm his inner demons that had taken a hard hold of him.

 

 

by Philip Wardlow 2015

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Fourth World – Chapter 1 – an Excerpt


The following piece is an excerpt from my First full length Novel – “The Fourth World”  due to  be completed this year.   It is a Dark Urban Fantasy Teen Novel.  It’s  set in modern times surrounding three teens  all of whom are strangers to each other.  They will  come together whether they want to or not to just possibly save the world and learn something about themselves and their place in the world. This is chapter has been revised a few times but I am sure it will be revised again before its all done…:)

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 The Fourth World

by PhilipWardlow

Calvin had always believed in magic. He didn’t care what anyone else thought. They could doubt all they wanted. There was a hidden world which we could not see sitting right in front of our faces, most everyone was too busy, too blind, or too stupid to see it. Calvin saw it in the trees as the distant winds kissed the leaves which flew through its branches. He spied it dancing in the fire amidst the embers at night; little tiny sprites hopping from log to log amidst the flames playing a game of tag. He smelled it in a wild rose growing in a crowded field of jostling weeds flinging its pheromones to attract the butterflies to alight upon its silken petals. He heard it in the babbling brook as the water played upon the rocks behind his home whispering to the frogs as it traveled on downriver. He felt it in the rough stone he caressed in the palm of his hand; an ancient power from ages past unearthed from the deep bowels of the earth from the crumbling’s of a mighty stone titan long dead. It was everywhere if they only choose to see. The magic spoke to him because he chose to listen and he almost understood what it is was saying…

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Chapter 1 – Reality Sets In

 

Calvin tasted the blood that trickled down to his upper lip which flowed from his nose. It had a sweet metallic taste. He liked the taste of his own blood. Calvin wasn’t a weird person don’t get him wrong, he wasn’t into to that kind of stuff.  He just liked to sometimes pretend that he was Conan the Barbarian backed up against a wall, fighting an angry horde of ghoulish creatures hell bent on gutting him like a fish, and slowly eating his entrails as he watched. With sword in hand he would hack and slash, limbs would fly. He would be scratched all to hell and bleeding from a dozen different wounds and smiling insanely because this could be his last day alive so why not go out smiling like a true warrior would upon meeting his death well met in battle. Yeah, he liked to have his mind go to places like that rather than be anywhere than where he was right now. Continue reading The Fourth World – Chapter 1 – an Excerpt

Mr. Moon – A poem


 

lonelymoon

Mr. Moon ~

 

Why oh why Mr. Moon do you walk

hands in pockets, eyes downcast,

as the stars sit in there satin blue sheet,

surrounding?

Don’t you know it’s all for you?

No eyes but yours can see

all that the sky can give.

Feel blessed in this.

Earthly trappings are not the

core of your constance.

Nor the phases you

endure in your

soul’s search

for permanence.

Even in shadow,

yet you are still whole.

Even though no others

may see.

You will always be whole.

 

by Philip Wardlow 2014

Wild Child – A poem


WildChild
By Artist Noe Two

Wild Child ~

 

Feral eyes
look back at me from the dark corner
of the room you crouch in.
Though your eyes are in shadow,
I sense the defiance in them.
You’ve been too long out in the wild
child.
Too long.
The woods may be your friend but
you need some taming girl.
Hair is unkept, fingernails split
cracked and bloodied
from all the bodies you’ve buried
each time you escape.
The pain leaks from you like a water through
a sieve.
Elusive composure, hunched and bent
reluctant words pulled in a snarl of
savage civility.
I know you, that soul that sleeps
so so deep within.
I see it fighting to overcome.
Always fighting,
beating and snapping, biting, clawing.
Painfully beautiful as you are
painfully aware of your
own vulnerability when you
allow the outside in.
Wild child you be
as your dark eyes look to
me for true
release.

 

 

by Philip Wardlow

Time Enough – A short story


Hourglass,_dying

Time Enough

By Philip Wardlow

I saw her and time stopped. Literally it stopped. Except me. I was the only thing still moving, still breathing, still conscience, still in the real now as I called it. At least I think I was anyways. That part has never been truly clear to me. Being real that is, because I felt apart, always apart, never a part of.

She was just crossing the street at 5th Avenue and Broad Street. You know the place. She was right on the corner where that wonderful bakery presided.

The smell at that corner was just heaven. Hmm…I noticed I could actually still smell the sweet aroma of cinnamon in the air even as time was stopped there on that corner. Must be the molecules suspended in the air entering my ol’factory of a nose that I had walked right into. I breathed in deeply the nostril massaging pleasant sweet smell of cinnamon again. Remember, it’s the little things. Always.

The smell made me wonder if time had stopped everywhere and not just on this street, or this city , or state, or country, or Earth, or solar system, but perhaps everywhere in the entire universe. Just for me.

Was I this special to be given this power – this gift – had it been given? But I digress. Back to the lovely smell of the bakery…no, no, no. I meant her, the women, just beginning to cross the street at 5th and Broad.

Her name was Angelica. And she was angelic, gloriously so, with long dark hair, full lips, bright green magical eyes. She walked with the grace of a ballet dancer on long legs in black high heels. And I was here to save her life.

How’s that you say?

I had just seen her end in a bloody mess with legs splayed at very acute and obtuse angles on this very street she was standing. In not more than five seconds (if time were to resume) an old grizzled taxi driver would be turning the corner down the street to end any future days she might have left. So I had taken upon myself and backed time up ten seconds because that was not about to happen on my watch. Not to such a lovely creature as her.

I have completely forgotten where my real life began relative to where other people’s lives are at, like this Angelica, as it relates to my own life.

I mean, is she older than me or I am older than her? I mean in the sense of the chronological order of events as they have unfolded thus far in this universe. You follow? Oh I’m sorry, I forgot to mention something vitally important.

You see, every time I stop time or go backwards in time and do something just a smidge different, then resume, I find things have shifted ever so slightly around me. Like a nudge or a ripple flowing out from the place of change. That ripple is a fickle thing, for you see it may get smaller and smaller until the last thing in the time line just weakens and dies out with no one the wiser but me.

But at times if the change is big enough, then a big ripple or nudge is produced.

To my dismay, that if it is truly a major nudge, a divergence happens out in time at a certain point. Meaning a new timeline occurs. A new possibility comes into being down many avenues that had never existed. Then I’m screwed. For you see I find I am unceremoniously pulled like a piece of taffy into that new existence and the other is gone forever.

To count, I have screwed myself over one-thousand three hundred fifty five times…sorry, make that one-thousand three hundred fifty six counting saving Angelica at this very moment. If I am truly being honest she is the reason for over eleven-hundred of those times. The rest happened because I was young and stupid. Now it’s just because I’m young and in love which is its own kind of stupid.

I have saved her life so many times in so many different ways it has created a major divergence each time. So I’m stuck in the new timeline with her and the rest of the universe I guess. Which is fine I like being stuck in that way. I couldn’t bear to be stuck in any time without her.

But damn it all to hell, either she’s the most un-luckiest girl in the world, or she’s just one of those people simply destined to die.

Do I believe in destiny? Fuck no.

I do believe something in the Universe is gunning for my sweet Angelica and I am going to find out who or what, even it kills me first, else my name is not –

Shift ~

The din and cacophony of the city came crashing into me like a thousand locusts knocking against my ears. I was always amazed at how quiet the world was when I forgot about it in that instance when it was stopped.

Time hates to be stopped… forward, backward, not a problem, but it’s very reluctant to stand still. Yes, it obliges me, but I can feel it fuming to start up as again as soon as I stop it. It’s a like a tea kettle on the stove coming to a slow boil. If I don’t start it up in time it always strains and strains and builds and builds and then boom. Time starting back up that way always gives me a headache. But I digress. I have something to do and I only have seven seconds do it in now.

“Excuse me Miss Ward.”  She ignored me of course like she always does in these circumstances and kept on walking to cross the street.

I then did the only thing I could think of in that moment. I pulled hard on the lapel of her rain coat and dragged her bodily back to the doorway of the bakery shop out of harm’s way.

“What the hell are you doing!?” she asked, looking at me frightfully, eyes like big green saucers, but at the same time balling up her fist ready to slug me. She was a good slugger. I think I have been hit at least a hundred or more times by her. I have gotten pretty good at avoiding her punches. Most of them anyways.

“I am attempting…” I was about to finish with “to save you”. But was interrupted by the taxi driver plowing through the intersection flinging the unluckys into the air with his one ton yellow deathmobile.

I caught a glimpse of the old man behind the wheel as he plowed through them all, slowing nary a bit. He looked right at me at me in that slice of a second. I swear he did. And he looked pissed, with his face all scrunched up like he had bitten into a lemon and I had taken his puppy away from him. Something tickled inside of me when our eyes connected. I swear I saw him mouth the words “you” before he sped on by and around the next corner leaving carnage in his wake.

Angelica collapsed in my arms after that. I pulled her into the bakery and had her lay back in one of the booths as the rest of people in the place streamed out to ogle or help with the accident.

Now was my best chance, I had to find that old man behind the wheel before time shifted and I was pulled again like taffy into the next divergence. He was part of this in some way. I could feel it. She was safe. Again. Time to go.

“You knew didn’t you?” She looked up at me as she laid there in the booth.

“Yes.” I said. I leaned in and kissed her on the forehead and she didn’t pull back from it. I turned from her to leave. Time was a wasting even for me.

“Wait. Where are you going? Who are you?”   Angelica looked to me for answers. Always she asked the same questions. Long ago I had stayed and had answered them and many others. But not anymore. Besides, she would forget me with the next shift as always. And that was too painful to bear again.

“Why your guardian angel of course.” I said, as I gave her a sly grin I knew she loved so well. I exited the bakery in a flourish and a wink as I stepped out of time.

Shift ~

The End (or to be continued)

The Well – short story Prompt


I follow a fellow writer named MC Hunton over at her blog. She recently started challenging herself and fellow followers to do a writing piece based on a certain writing prompt every Monday . I finally got off my lazy butt and did one like I promised her I would.  The writing  prompt this week was entitled  Monday Muse: Sound.  You basically have to write anything having to do with a noise or silence that won’t go away.  I believe the only rule was that you had to write for thirty minutes straight and just flow with it…..

So here it goes… the story is NOT done but I think I made  a pretty good start.  I will definitely try and finish it up soon I hope. Let me know what you think.

Well1

The Well

by Philip Wardlow

Momma would send me every morning to go fetch the water from the well that sat behind our house some fifty yards back near where the woods started. I hated that chore more than anything something awful.

I walked sleepily to the open back porch outside in my pajamas wearing just my slippers. The sun was still trying to sneak its head over the hill as the stars were still wide awake and dancing in a dark blue shy sky. This morning was especially  chilly when I grabbed the bucket at the back door. I saw every breath I took float away like I was taking a smoke like my daddy used to do.

I stood there in the doorway staring out at the backyard all the way back to where the well was. I could tell it was just waiting for me like it always does. To me it looked a like a squat little frog made of wood and brick, staring at me. Even two of the bricks which made up the wall of it were placed just so and colored just so different from all the rest, that it made ‘em look like eyes staring back at me in the dim light of the morning night. I imagined a big tongue rolling out of the hole of the well just waiting to slurp me up all green, slimy and wet.

This morning there was a fog rolling all along the ground from account of the cold. It wasn’t too thick. Pieces of it slunk around the yard moving left to right out of the corn field to cross over and go past the chicken coop on the far side and continue on like it needed some place to be. I noticed that none of the fog got too close to the well. It seemed to want to have nothing to with it as it meandered across the yard.

I shivered and wondered if I would hear it again. I  heard the sound all the time.  Dear lord, I hope I don’t hear it again, I said in a silent prayer inside my head.

“Josephine, get your butt going with that water! It ain’t gonna get itself,” I heard my momma yell at me from inside the house.

“Yes, momma.”

I mustered my courage and walked across the dark yard toward the well with the water bucket wrapped in my arms tight to my chest.

The chicken coop was quiet as I passed by, the hens and Old mister Rudy the cranky old rooster hadn’t yet caught on to the fact of that it was a new day on hand just yet. They didn’t make a peep as I walked on by ‘em to the well.

The blue pines rose up behind the well and towered above, swaying in the breeze. My own  shadow  was swallowed by theirs as I approached the well. It was always darkest in this part of the yard as the sun was still buried deep behind ‘em.

I sat the bucket on the edge of the well and secured the hook to the rope and sent it over the edge and started to slowly lower it down.

I looked out at the thick clump of dark trees behind the well. Anything could be in there. I began to imagine that something would wait for me on my walk to the house when my arms were heavy with a bucket full of water and take me from behind and drag me into the woods and my momma would never see me again. I thought a silly thought then. My teacher calling my name at roll call.

Josephine Stevens – she would call out twice to the classroom but I wouldn’t answer her. Because I just simply wouldn’t be anymore.

I found myself cranking the line to lower the bucket even faster….

Then I heard it….the noise.

….to be Continued…….:)