Night Terrors Vol. 1: Short Horror Stories Anthology
Night Terrors Vol. 1: Short Horror Stories Anthology
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🗣 Narrated by Johnny Raven and Stephanie Shade
Terror stalks the night…
An old woman’s obsession with youth leads her to purchase a cursed appliance from a sinister antique shop. A new homeowner discovers her property comes with a deadly addition. And dark forces stalk a troop of innocent boy scouts when they spend the night on a haunted aircraft carrier…
Scare Street delves into the darkness to bring you a new collection of spine-tingling terror. This diabolical tome is bursting with thirteen sinister stories of supernatural horror, featuring ghastly ghosts, cold-blooded killers, and fiendish visions torn from your worst fears.
Just be careful you don’t lose track of time as you meander through this shadowy landscape of dreams and nightmares. Because once the sun sets, something waits for you in the darkness of night.
And if it finds you, you may never see daylight again…
This bone-chilling supernatural collection contains:
1. Cool Air by Peter Cronsberry
2. The Presentation by Tarphy W. Horn
3. The Homeowner's Guide to Sanity by K. M. McKenzie
4. Retrospective: Florne's Ghost by Emil Pellim
5. 7734 by Ryan Benson
6. Aisle 3 by Rosie O'Carroll
7. Pumpkin Patch by C. B. Channell
8. The Third Father by A. M. Todd
9. Troop 94’s Last Scouting Trip by Karl Melton
10. Play It, Win It, Kill It by J. M. White
11. Satan's Town by Bob Johnston
12. Everything as It Was by Warren Benedetto
13. Summer Camp by Ron Ripley
7 hours and 29 minutes
By Peter Cronsberry
Evelyn Holmes worked the crevice in her forehead the way a kid picked away at a scab. This wrinkle was so deep, a mother spider could have laid eggs in it. Or so she thought.
“I may be seventy-five, but I’m not going to look seventy-five,” she rasped out at her reflection in her bathroom’s medicine-cabinet mirror.
With gnarled fingers, she gripped the basin as tight as her late husband, George, gripped the steering wheel before he crashed their car and killed himself. Heart attack. Dead before his car hit the bridge abutment. Those business trips all over the country she thought he was on? Casino slot machines had never lost their appetites.
The downtown life and that three-thousand-square-foot condo in swish Lincoln Park was in Evelyn’s rearview mirror. She’s been a midtown gal for a few years, now. She’d shared a second-floor rental apartment with a mouse that played hide-and-seek, where paint had curled in hard-to-reach places, where the mechanical groans of her fridge signaled it had reached its best-before date, and where central air had been nothing but a pipedream—cruel punishment on a July day, where a breeze felt like a blast from a hairdryer.
She held dear her photos, memories, the illusions of yesteryear’s marriage, and some newly-made friends who knew more about the treasures found in thrift stores than the contents that once filled her Gucci handbag. Strange as it seemed, she accepted her circumstances, part of which would change when she heard the eventual snap of the mousetrap.
Evelyn was always a people person. Her bird’s-eye view of the street directly below was home to a dry-cleaner’s, a fabric shop, and a health food store that cozied up to a gym where she admired the svelte and the chiseled as they came and went through its front entrance.
Her pension check covered the rent. There was enough money to put food on her table, buy the yarn for her knitting and the crossword-puzzle books she hoped would keep her mind sharp.
But way back when she turned fifty, thoughts of trying to keep Death’s bony hand off her shoulder always filled her head. Now, when she went to the druggist’s for her prescription, she bought what her budget allowed in the way of lotions, potions, ointments, and herbal remedies as she tried to keep her appearance. Too bad that gravity and the calendar had other plans.
To Evelyn, getting old had as much appeal as curdled milk. And as George’s car barreled at a hundred clicks toward that bridge with one hand clutching his chest, she had her hand on the telephone to call Dr. Wilcox, who she’d heard seemed to work miracles with injections, but indecision stopped her dead in her own tracks, so to speak. She also believed in luck, and if there was a pocket in any of her garments, a penny was surely tucked inside. Why, there wasn’t a table, nightstand, bookstand, or countertop in her apartment that wasn’t topped with an acorn or dice or even a wee figurine of an elephant she’d saved from a box of Red Rose tea. All were feel-good objects that helped her cope in the down-market life that defined her days on this rock.
So, there she was, dressed in a white, floral sundress, big sunglasses that shielded her baby blues and her pumps that cushioned her tender tootsies as she strolled along a sidewalk of an old part of downtown where dollar stores, burger joints, and supposed antique stores studded the streetscape.
She called it luck that she happened upon one of those supposed antique stores. She sidestepped a fallen bird’s nest and cast her eyes up above a mud-colored wooden door and read the paint-chipped wooden sign: Uncle Odds Emporium of Curios and Antiques. Then she looked at the front window of the place, and when she saw a mannequin of a faceless magician, a mottled, slab tombstone, and even a model crypt with a pair of hands that grabbed on to barred doors—from the inside—she knew she had found something special. Intrigue grabbed her by the throat, and she pushed against the door that screamed against warped wooden floorboards.
Once inside, she was greeted with a scratchy-sounding, “hullo” from the back of the place. She walked over to the front of a broken-tiled aisle and discovered what was behind the disembodied voice.
He was an old man dressed in a rumpled white shirt and appeared as if he was being swallowed up in the seat of a black leather chair’s cracked and bleeding white foam rubber. And as this genial gent pushed himself up and though hunched, he shuffled his way up the aisle with his arms bent at forty-five-degree angles at his sides that gave him the look of a sheriff in search of his gun. He had black, button eyes, a mouthful of stained and broken teeth, and a shock of thick white hair that stood on end and made him look like he’d peered into the bowels of Hell. Squatted atop piles of dusty tomes were statues of a Minotaur, serpents and beasts with long, yellowed teeth. These creatures seemed to guard not only the passageway but their caretaker as well.
When he moved past her, he stood beside a Victorian fireplace dusted with black soot and busts of King, Lovecraft, Grant, and Cushing that sat sentinel on its mantel. She stole one more glance back at his perch and noticed that beside an old gilt-colored cash register stood a bookcase that was fashioned out of a lidless, upright coffin. “You’ve got a bird’s nest down on the sidewalk in front of your store,” she said with a dose of sympathy. “Bad luck, you know.”
“For me, or for the bird?” he said with a wry smile. Evelyn blushed.
“Yes, I know,” he started, as he wiped his beak on a hankie with dime-size tombstones printed on it. “I was just about to go out and sweep it up. It got knocked down last night from that little tremor the city had. ’Bout two in the morning it was. You feel it?” Then he shoved the hankie into his crypt-grey khakis.
“Well, a storm woke me up. I just thought it was one of those foundation-shaking rumbles of thunder. I’m in an apartment building. No damage, though. The news this morning said that there were lots of cracked windows and a few house alarms that went off.”
“This town is never quiet,” he said, almost as if he knew more than she did.
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