The following if a an extract from one of short stories featuring in my new book of short stories called ‘Tales of Salvation and Damnation’ which will be published in Jun 14.
I write dark adult fantasy and by adult I don’t mean lots of sex (though there is that in the books), I mean I write for the thirty plus market. Or as one person said –‘You write fairy stories for grown ups’ and I have yet to find a better description 🙂
The story ‘Love’ looks at all the different types of Love and what people will sacrifice just to be loved. After all not all Love is pure and kind
Anyway, I hope you enjoy the extract, and please me know your honest thoughts.
“I used to think love was a wonderful thing – delicate, beautiful, special. I was naive.” Joanna laughed lightly as she turned her head to look at the handsome man lying next to her on the bed. “I was a young girl, yet to be blinded by life’s harsh light.”
Joanna placed one hand behind her head as she licked her lips. “I even loved my husband, at the beginning. He was nothing of special note, to be honest, but he was mine and I loved him.” Joanna turned her head back to the ceiling. “I was a fool.”
Absentmindedly rubbing her chin with her free hand, Joanna continued, “I wanted two children – a boy and a girl.” She smiled. “He would have grown up strong and been a heartbreaker. She would have been loving, kind, and gentle.” Joanna’s voice changed, becoming monotone. “But that was not to be. That foolish idiotic husband of mine made sure of that.”
Silence reigned as Joanna stared at the ceiling, her eyes boring into the wood.
Then she spoke. “I was so excited. I was pregnant, eagerly awaiting my husband’s return. When he did return, it was with five other men. Apparently, he had lost a bet with them and I was the prize. I tried to resist. I begged my husband to help. I told them I was pregnant. They just laughed and said if I wasn’t, I would be soon. They said I was to be a good wife and pay my husband’s debts.
“I won’t tell you about the pain, anguish, and humiliation I went through at the hands of those men – as a man, you would not understand; however, it was nothing compared to the pain I felt when I miscarried and lost my precious child.”
Silence once again ruled the room.
“That night, I discovered a new type of love in those men’s eyes – lust. It is what men call their version of love. It is hard, fast, and brutal. It does not care, nurture, or support. Lust is a hard love.
“After that night, I continued to be a good wife. I looked after the family home and looked after my husband. It took him years before he could look me in the eye again. We made love, of course.” Joanna gave a hard dry laugh. “He would try and engage me, but I would just lie there, waiting for him to finish grunting and thrusting. He soon gave up and stopped bothering me. You could say, that was when the love died.”
Joanna turned to look at her lover, smiled sadly, and turned back to the ceiling. “At first, nothing filled the empty void within me. Then love’s dark twin slowly filled me – hate: pure, clean, and wonderful hate.” Joanna laughed. “Wonderful, wonderful hate. Hate is but love in another form. It fills you; it consumes you. You can think of nothing but the person you hate. The intensity is frightening, and it can hurt so wonderfully.
“There I go again, using that word – wonderful; however, I can’t help it. So, I hated my weak and pathetic husband with all my heart and I was the perfect obedient wife. We lived that way for years, slowly destroying each other.
“Then war swept the land and our Queen demanded men to fight in this war, and my cowardly husband fled to join the army. However, the war was closer to hand than we thought and, as our brave lads marched to war to the sound of the drum, the living dead attacked them.
“My husband survived the initial attack and fled back to our village of Oakton. He hid away in our house as the Restless Dead ripped open our neighbours, literally. It was then I got the idea, such a wonderful idea.” Joanna licked her lips. “I went into the kitchen and got the sharpest knife I could find, and, as we crept from the house in an attempt to escape into the forest, I waited until we were halfway across the open ground before I stabbed him in the back.
“Then, as he turned around in total shock, I plunged the knife into his belly and gutted him like a fish. He screamed as his insides poured out. He screamed like I screamed when I was raped. He screamed like I screamed when I lost our child. Oh, I made sure that the bastard screamed.”
Sitting upright and swinging her legs off the bed, Joanna made her way towards her clothes, which littered the floor. “The living dead started to make their way towards us, but I did not care. I just hoped that they would inflict more pain on him before he died. I did not care about myself; I was unimportant. It was then my Knight-in-shining-armour arrived, or should I say – my Devil-in-black saved me. He strode through the moaning horde and swept me up in his arms, carried me to my bedrom, and killed me.”
Joanna slipped on both her stockings. She continued, as she lifted her dress over her head, “He was the hordes’ leader and a vampyre, and, for some unknown reason, he decided to turn me into the living dead – a vampire, a Moon Stalker – just like him.”
Flattening her dress down, Joanna looked at the young man lying naked and very dead on the bloodstained bed, with two holes in his neck where she had sucked the sweet, lifeblood from his body. “But, unlike him, I will not give you everlasting life, my love.” Moving to his side, Joanna punched her clawed hand down into the man’s chest and ripped out his heart. Holding it to her eye line, she squeezed the cooling lump of meat between her strong fingers before flicking what was left of it onto the floor.
Picking up an edge from the sheet that lay on the bed, Joanna cleaned her hands daintily before sitting down and pulling on her boots. “I didn’t love you that much.” Stepping over the young man’s destroyed heart, Joanna left the room and made her way out into the darkness of the early morning.
Continued in Tales of Damnation and Salvation
No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in retrieval systems, or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise without the prior permission of the author.
This is a work of fiction. All characters and events portrayed in this book are fictional, and any resemblance to real people or incidents is purely coincidental.