Thursday, November 12, 2009

Art - Mod

So, it's been a crazy week. I worked eleven hours on Sunday, and thirteen hours on Monday. Putting the total at around fifty five plus hours. Ugh. I'm also starting to work on a project for Perfect 10, so not much happened in the way of personal art.

That being said, I'll post something I had been working on previously that's not finished yet. I like where I was going with this, and will have to return to it later.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Art - Happy Halloween

Okay, so I've been gone for a while. I'm a bit lame, I admit, but I'm going to make an effort at updating more often. You know, more often then once a year. So here's my new piece of art, Pumpkin Fairy...

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Art- Portrait Photoshop

So, I got a new Wacom tablet for my birthday. This thing is great! I finished my first fully digital piece of art today. This is a portrait of Sara done from a phot taken a few years ago (we no longer have a fully functional digital camera, so it was the most recent photo. I updated the hair, and added color to it to make it look like she wants to make it if she gets the right job.

In writing related news I got my copies of crossed genres. It's so cool to see my story in print. Once again, it can be read online or ordered at

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Writing- Story is live

"The Last Collector" is now live at Crossed Genres magazine. You can read it for free at their website,..

Here, >

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Life- nothing exciting

Sorry about the lack of update. Things are kind of in flux. I started a new job. Things are... weird. Don't know what else to say right now. Hopefully things will get better soon.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Life - Update

So I sent off all of the contracts and what-nots to the editor of Crossed Genres yesterday. It felt pretty good to be at the post office with something like that. I had to resist the urge to blabber on at the post person about what it was.

On another note, my writing has come easier since receiving my acceptance letter. I think I was beginning to doubt myself a bit. I know that's pretty stupid. Most authors have at least a hundred rejections on hand before they get there first acceptance, but I don't think it was so much about the rejections, you know?

I think I was suffering from a bit of what always sabotages me. I think I was just afraid of finding out. Getting the acceptance letter was more freeing then anything else. It was like, okay, that parts over. Now I can just go back to writing without the expectations. Of course I want to be published again, but now that it's happened once I know I'm doing something right.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Life- I got published!

So, I received my first acceptance letter today. My story, "The Last Collector", will appear in the July 2009 issue of Crossed Genres magazine.

I'm pretty excited, though I've calmed down quite a bit since I received the letter. I had been keeping up with the editors blog, and it sounded like he had already been in contact with all of the authors, or at least the ones who had never been published before. I convinced myself that I was just waiting for my rejection to come.

So, about 7:30 today I flipped over to my e-mail to find a response from the editor. I opened it thinking it would be my rejection.

My first thought?

"This is really long... It's like, a whole page."

Then I started reading, and thought,

"I don't get it. It sounds like they really liked my story....."

Then I got to the part where they said they would be putting it in the July issue... It took me a full five ten seconds to realize I was reading an acceptance letter. I guess they hadn't even realized I had never been published before, which is really cool.

I then proceeded to call my parents, and Sara's mom. One or both of them may still not know I will soon be a published author though. I was pretty incoherent. Funny huh? First thing that happens when someone says, "hey, you're pretty good at slinging those words together.", is that you forget how to make words function in any meaningful fashion.

So here is an excerpt from my acceptance letter. I have removed most of the publication hoo-haw for the sake of brevity.


This is Bart Leib, co-editor of Crossed Genres magazine. Kay Holt (my co-editor) and I both greatly enjoyed your submission "The Last Collector". It's an potently somber story, and the revelation of the forgotten Dystopian disaster at the end was very effective. Your main character was very "human", so the discovery that he HAD been human was completely convincing. We also liked your art submission "Clockwork Man At the Beach" very much, and feel it complements the story well.

We’d like to include both "The Last Collector" and "Clockwork Man At the Beach" in Issue #8 of our magazine, which will be released online, in print (Print-On-Demand), and in various electronic formats (PDF, Kindle) on July 1. As specified on the website, we offer a flat $10 token payment as compensation (times 2 - $10 for the story and $10 for the art). We'll also send you a copy of the .pdf and/or .prc editions at no charge. You can also purchase up to 2 copies of the magazine in print for 25% off: if you’d like to do so let us know and we’ll make arrangements once the issue has been released.

I've attached 3 documents to this email. The first is the License Agreement for the story, and the second is the License Agreement for the artwork. Please read them over carefully (they're the same except for the name of what's being licensed), and if you have any questions or concerns please let me know.

So that's it. That's how it begins I guess. I can't tell you how lucky I feel to have only had to suffer five rejections to get to my first acceptance. I would not be here now if not for Sara. I owe her a lot for making my work better then it had any right to be at this early stage.


Friday, June 5, 2009

Art- Burblebee Bush

So, I was just on a design website called concept, pretty cool place. Lots of interesting art and a great forum. I found it while trying to find some dynamic pose reference for my art, which I feel is getting kind of stale when I try and move from anything cartoony. Well, they had an add for the brand new version of a product I have wanted for so long. I figured I would check it out....

It's freaking amazing. Not having a Wacom limits me on the computer, because no matter how much practice I put in a mouse will never feel as natural to me as a pen. I've tried the demo of Corel Paint a few times, and it never comes out looking like a real painting. I figured I would click the buy link to see whether it's something I could ask my parents for on my birthday.... Errr.. Damnity damn damn. Not even close. They are having a hard time with the economy too, so this thing is right out. I guess another time, when I get back on my feet. =(

So anyways, I think I'll post another funny creature today. His name is Burblebee Bush.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Okay, so this is freaking amazing. I am totally imagining interactive books with this technology. Could you imagine being able to just pop in on your favorite characters?

Monday, June 1, 2009

Art- NarBeaver

Okay, so I figured I would add a new creature today. This is the NarBeaver.

On the writing front, I received a rejection for my story "Death in a Stairwell" Which you can read on this blog. I got some helpful comments though, so that's good. I am also waiting for a response from Crossed Genre's on a story I have yet to post anywhere. I'll let you know as soon as I do.

On a personal front, today I had the most terrifying job interview ever. I was grilled by a panel of people I have dubbed, the nice guy, the mean bastard, and the quite one. It was for a position as a 9-11 operator.
Part of the process is to take a lie detector test, so they asked the preliminary questions for that. Great way to start off an interview huh?

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Art- Bunnerocerous

So, today I'm going to post the first of a series of monsters / creatures. This one's Bunnerocerous. I think the name speaks for itself.

I really enjoyed making these guys. I think they're a lot of fun.

I hope to one day figure out what I can do with them.

Until then I think I might put them on some fun / Quirky products in my store.

Art - The Asylum

So I promised new art....

But it's not quite finished yet, so I am going to post something a bit older for those who may not have seen it.

I've been a bit scattered lately. Working on too many things at once I guess. Also I am becoming increasingly bored from lack of gainful employment. You would thing an extended vacation would be barrels of fun, filled with all kinds of happy go lucky tingly feelings. You would most certainly be wrong though. It was a nice break at first, but now it's kind of a creativity sap. It would be better if I could start making some steady money through artistic ventures so that i could get out and do things on a regular basis.

Anyways, there it is, a long overdue update.

Tune in later for a tale of two underwears; or, How my dog became a thief.

P.S. A print of this should be available at my shop (which you can find at the bottom of the page) soon. Hopefully.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Quick update

Sorry about the brief hiatus. I should have some new art up soon.

So, I will leave you with these thoughts of the day.

Coach is a douche.

I would pee on myself for a million dollars.... True story.

My geeks are gone for the season... This makes me sad.

Those who sacrifice their children's goals for their own should not win a reality T.V. show.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Writing (H/F)- Death in a Stairwell

Okay, so last Friday I posted my first story here. I figure I'll keep on track with a story roughly every week until I run behind. This one is relatively short, but I personally like it. I have had a tough time deciding where to send it, as I don't know how to classify it.

Anyways, here it goes.

Death in a Stairwell
By: Jeromy K. Smith
You have to understand that my only driving desire that day was for a good burger. One of those needs that comes on so suddenly you find yourself half out the door before you even know what it is you're doing. I was headed to Daddio's, the local dive bar. It's crowded, the beer is watered down, but they serve the best double with cheese in the area. It almost seems like the whole thing was planned. Destiny, you know? I was nearly there, just bopping along to the techno beat of the city, car horns, construction, all that. I could even smell the place, that grease smell that permeates the air around any decent burger joint. Not like those fast food places, where you can't smell anything but exhaust and french fries even though the slack jawed teenager has the drive up window open wide. So, I'm picking up my pace when I realize I left my wallet back at home. That kind of thing happens when you get hit with one of those urges.

So I head back. I cut through the alley at twentieth and Regal because it will get me there faster. I normally avoid going that way. You can always hear the sound of couples in the apartments fighting. The kind of fight that's just a phone call away from an appearance on Cops. On top of that, is the off chance of regurgitory assault from one of the bums that have taken up residence back there. It's an unpleasant experience. Nearly halfway down the alley I noticed a shoe lying in a pool of something I hope was water. Normally I wouldn't have thought anything of it, you know? There's always plenty of discarded junk laying around in places like that. There was something about the lone shoe that made me think I should pay attention to it though. It was one of those slip on business type shoes, a Penny Loafer. It was staring at me, like it wanted me to know it was there. I walked over to check it out. That's when I noticed the stairwell, about five steps leading down to a landing and a sturdy door. It was pretty dark down there, but in the gloom I could make out a heap. At first I thought it might have been a trash bag, but then I noticed that the trash bag had a leg, the leg had a foot, and the foot had a shoe. It was a Penny Loafer.

All thought of getting a burger slipped away at that point. Before I could think about how bad an idea it might be I was kneeling beside the body. I realized pretty quickly that I was looking at a body by the twist of the guy's neck. He looked like he might be trying to check out his own ass. His eyes were like a couple of marbles gone misty with age. I'm not sure how long I sat there looking at it. Long enough to notice the shards of light bulb scattered across the ground, and the way his arms were spread out in front of him, as if he were a criminal who had been told to assume the position. I guess I should have called 9-1-1 straight away. Not that they could have done anything for him, but they could have called someone to inform them of his passing. By the look of his suit he would have someone in his life who would be interested in his unfortunate condition. Instead I just sat there.

I guess you might think I'm a morbid guy, but I was a bit fascinated by it. I may have been deep in contemplation over the nature of mortality, or I may have been wondering whether I could still get a burger after I answered all the questions that were bound to come out of this, when the body let out a guttural belch. Up until that day I had never known a dead body could do something like that, so I guess no one could blame me for screaming. I was still screaming when I noticed the lump that started in his throat and worked it's way up towards his gaping mouth so I just kept on with it.

I remember the scraping sound when the thing crawled out of his mouth. Its head came first, black like a rotted piece of fruit. Its eyes were so human that looking into them dried my mouth and stopped me screaming. There were four of those eyes. They turned in their sockets before finally falling on me. The rest of it emerged from between his lips with a pop. It was covered in a glistening carapace. I think that's what made the scratching noise, the shell rubbing against the dead mans teeth. It looked at me for quite some time, trying to decide whether I had actually seen it. I think it finally decided I had, because it spoke to me. I'm sure you're wondering what it said. Well I'll relay the conversation to you. It looked at me with those green eyes and it said...

"Oh dear."

"Oh my god! You talk!??" I said.

"Yes I talk, and I'm also supposed to be invisible." It shook itself then. I think it may have been expressing its frustration, but I could only focus on the viscous ropes of body gunk that flew from its flanks. "Since you can quite obviously see me, I guess I am not."

"What.. what are you?"

It considered me for a long moment before answering.

"I guess it won't hurt any to answer, now that you have seen me. What's your name?"

"Jim. My name’s Jim." I answered.

"Well Jim, I guess the best name for me, the one you would understand, is Death."

The creature said it just like that. In a way that made sure I understood that it was death with a capital D. Not just death, but the Death. Even now I have a hard time reconciling this beetle of a creature with the man in the long black cloak and skull face.

"You're Death? Like, you travel all over the world taking souls, like a nasty Santa?"

"No. Not like that really." Death let out a great sigh that whistled across his perfect line of black chicklet teeth. "I am his death."


"Yes. This is Tom, who has a rather large amount of money stashed away behind this door. He acquired said money in a somewhat uncouth manner, so he hid it in the basement of his rental property. Like many men who suffer from insatiable greed, he became paranoid about the status of his money....."

Now, I will stop here to tell you that I wish I had followed my first impulse at that moment. If I had I would probably be in Mexico right now. In mexico, and rich. Instead I listened to a deeper impulse. I had to know more about this little creature that claimed to hold the keys to the After, with a capital A.

".... That's what brought poor Tom down here, where he fell down these stairs to his death. Of course I knew this long ago. You see when Tom was born I came into being with him. I have spent the last thirty two years awaiting this very moment. Every human has a Death that lives with them."

"I don't believe you. You're just a mutant talking cockroach is all. Or I'm having a hallucination brought on by a lack of some nourishment that my body needs. That's what brought me out for a hamburger."

"You need proof? Well think back Jim. Think back and remember a time when you were doing something foolish. Something dangerous. Do you remember the awful twisting feeling in your gut, Jim?"

"No. You're lying! That's just adrenaline."

I'm not sure if I believed what I was saying at that point. Regardless of whether I believed it then, the next moment would prove me wrong. Death reared up, it's spindly legs clicking together as they writhed in the air. Its mouth opened up and I could see something deep in it's throat. Something awful. My stomach, or something else entirely, squirmed in my midsection like a child that wishes to be put down. A moment later Death returned to his placid state. He stared at me while I fought to control my runaway heart.

"That was your Death, Jim. We get nervous when our human is threatened."

"But you said you know how we will die." I thought I had him there.

"Quite true. We know how you should die, but there are others out there. Others that wish to take our purpose from us."

I could hear the sirens approaching in the distance. Somewhere closer a dog was whining in response to the sound. I knew someone must have called the police when they heard me scream. I should have run for home. Let them discover the body for themselves, but I had to know.

"What comes next?"

"You will find out soon enough, Jim. I believe your Death is waiting for all of that stuff in your arteries to do its work. Now, I must go."

"Wait!" I cried, but Death had gone.

"You believe me right?" I ask the nurse.

"Of course, Jim. Now it's time for your medication. Open wide."

I can feel that thing in my stomach turn in response to the erratic thrum of my heart. Down the hall someone is screaming. I wish someone would give him his medication.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Art- Mouse habitat 1.0 finished

So this is it, all finished.

Hope everyone likes it.

Sketch-Mouse Habitat 1.0

Okay, second sketch here. It's called Mouse Habitat 1.0. It's pretty rough because I intend to paint it, so I wanted to keep the line work light.

Hope you enjoy, hopefully the painting will be up soon.

Let me know what you think, and as always help an unemployed slob make some money by clicking the adds if you are so inclined.

Sketch- Space Mouse

So, as well as stories I have stated that I will be posting art here. This would be the first of those posts.

I will be labeling my posts from this point on to make them easier to find in the archive. The labels shall be as follows,

* Sketch
* Art - for finished work
* Writing (H=Horror F= Fantasy SF= Equals sci fi)
* Personal

This comical little guy is named Space Mouse. I doodled him some time last week while surfing the web.

Space mouse traveled to the moon in an effort to find a vast fortune of cheese. Needless to say he was disappointed by the marked absence of cheese on the moons surface. Since that day he has traveled the universe in search of the most fantastic cheeses known to man or alien.


Sunday, April 26, 2009

Great News!

I got my first rejection letter, which is now nailed proudly to my wall next to my computer. I know what you're thinking,

Jeromy, that sounds like terrible news!,

But you're wrong. First, rejections are part of the biz. To be rejected is sublime. It means I'm moving forward. I've been rejected, and despite being a tiny bit disappointed, as would be expected, I find that I am still here, and still confident that my time will come. Second, they actually commented on my rejection (which I hear only happens when they see promise). They ended the e-mail by asking to see more in the future.

So here I sit, after spending two hours finding another magazine to submit the piece to, feeling pretty good.

So, come join me on the rejection bandwagon, we'll have a cigarette, a few Irish car bombs, and rehash some old disappointments.


Friday, April 24, 2009

The Service

Story number one. Feel free to let me know how much you hate it.

P.S. If you like my stuff do me a solid and click on the adds to make me some cash moneys. You don't have to buy anything, just click em.

The service is exactly as he imagined it would be. For some reason this strikes Tom as an odd thing, like when you walk into a picture show half way through and you get this idea you've seen it before. You watch the actors recite their lines and you feel like you could play along. That's how it feels, listening to the minister finish up his rambling ode to life. He hasn't been to a funeral in fifty eight years. Sitting there makes him feel like he is still that eight year old boy. The preacher is different, as are the guests. It had been his mother in the coffin that day. Despite all of that, it is exactly the same. Different actors, same plot. Of course he knows plenty of people who passed away since that awful day. When the funerals came he just didn't go.

The minister's voice runs over the sniffs and wheezes of the assembly like a river passing over the time worn bed of a river. To Tom, the words take on a droning quality. They meld into an amalgam of sound that no longer holds any meaning for him. Instead it is like the sound of the white noise machine Alice bought him when he was having his sleeping troubles. It is oddly comforting and disturbing all at ounce. It is the buzzing of a hive of bees, the warbling of a flock of pigeons. The room is filled with the intoxicating perfume of a hundred different kinds of flowers. They watch the mourners from their vases and pots, monolithic one eyed creatures bearing witness to an ancient ritual. Everyone brought their own bouquet and placed them wherever there was room, as if the mad kaleidoscope of vibrant color would somehow lessen the atmosphere of death. Underneath the choking tendrils of pollen is the stale smell of the church. From behind him comes the sound of someone breathing heavily through their mouth in an effort not to sob. It joins the warbling sound of the minister's voice and becomes a warm summer breeze. Off to his left Mable Werts blows her nose twice into her handkerchief in a startling imitation of the sorrowful call of a goose.

His mind takes off like an old plane that has taken to doing its own thing. He is now standing in a park he had forgotten a long time ago. The tall grass around the feeding pond bows at his feet under a lazy winding breeze that carries the scent of water fowl. Underneath this earthy aroma, like the subtle remnant of a long gone passenger, is the smell of baking bread from the local market. Two geese skim the surface of the water, lacy white trails curling from the tips of their webbed feet. The sobbing sound of seagull cries fill the air. The edges of the world blur like an oil painting when you stand too close. It is like being an actor on a stage set in his mind. Chill fall air caresses his skin, leaving tingling goose bumps with its soft touch, and making him feel alive. He is in his thirties, still a young man on his way to the top of the world. This is long before his accident.

He walks around the edge of the pond, listening to the sound of laughing children as they enjoy the last months before winter rears its bitter head. They run across the other side of the lake, a bright red Kite carving a wild path through the sky behind them. These sights and sounds are no more then a backdrop. The real show is his own, and it is focused on one thing. Her hair flicks and waves in the gentle teasing wind, the strands like fingers calling him. It's so violently red that it almost seems to be trying to put the turning leaves to shame. This is the sort of woman that is beyond a man like him. The delicate lace of gold jewelry around her slender throat and the immaculate condition of her flowered dress tell him she's from money. However, today is his. He removes his hat and twists it in his hands for a moment. The boys down at the docks would recognize this as a sign of his nerves, but when he speaks his voice is steady.

"Excuse me lass, can you spare a moment?" He asks.

"For you? My father would say no."

Her smile is warm enough to take some of the chill out of the air.

"And what would you say?"

"I would say my father's a bore." She answers.

Tom comes to with a start, realizing as the blood rushes to his cheeks that the minister has ended his sermon and old Mable is staring him down. He can feel the wetness on his face and knows that he's been crying like an old fool. He wonders absently how long people have been shuffling by, giving him their regards. Mable is roughly the size of a small barn, and due to this fact Tom can't tell how many guests may be standing behind her. He tries to remember what it was she said, while simultaneously doing his best to ignore the vast shifting plane of fabric covering her midsection. It is like trying not to be pulled into a black hole. No answer comes to him so he improvises in the best manner he can.

"Thanks" He says.

Not the right answer, that much is clear as her eyes slide into narrow slits, but it does the job. Mable thunders by with no more then a sniff.

Todd makes his best effort to humor the rest of the guests as they pass by, one by one. He endures the I'm-sorry-for-your-lossses and the she-was-a-good-womans with what he imagines is grace. He has always thought of it as a stupid ritual. Probably makes them feel good, but it leaves him feeling no better. If anything it puts him in a piss poor mood. Finally the procession ends with his son.

"You ready dad?" He asks, halfway making to grab the handle on his wheelchair without waiting for an answer. The boy looks sharp in his crisp three piece suit. He always has, even as a ten year old boy.

"Can I have a moment with your mother, Bobby?" He hates the way his voice sounds, like listening to a dying car sputter.

"It's Bob, dad. Just Bob."

He hates that too. He hadn't named him just Bob.

"May I?"

Bobby looks back over his shoulder and then to the double doors leading outside before letting out a long sigh.

"Yeah I guess. Don't be long, they're going to be coming along for her anytime."

"I won't get in no one's way."

He doesn't say anything more as Bobby strides out. Tom watches his back, feeling the old familiar wrench in his neck. He turns slowly back towards the long silver casket. It's an offensive thing, all shining lines and hard angles. It makes him think of a bullet waiting to go off and take his wife with it. He pumps his arms, ignoring the pain that shoots through his fingers. By the time he is within a foot of the open lid his breath is coming in ragged gasps. A single strand of white hair dangles in his face and tickles his craggy nose. One more push and he will be able to see inside.

"I'm over here, Tom."

The sound of his wife's voice, so close and so life like, nearly gives him a heart attack. Tom sits for a long moment clutching his chest and waiting for the spastic thudding to stop. Knives stab into the back of his eyes as the blood rushes into his head at an unnatural pace. When his motor settles back into its normal rhythm, he spins the chair towards the sound of Alice's voice.

"Alice?" He asks.

"Yes darling, who did you expect? The Michelin man?"

"But you're... You're.."



He feels foolish. Looking at her standing next to the bar she had insisted on having, he feels as if he has lost his mind. The bar had been for him of course, none of her fuddy duddy friends would partake.

"I am dear."

Tom is now entirely sure that he has lost his mind. He has finally crossed over that bridge and into the land of senility beyond. Soon he will be riding his old John Deer through town and trying to mow the parking lot at the local Seven Eleven. Staring at his wife now he wonders wether that might not be such a bad thing. Her red hair has faded away to a snow white over the long years. Her eyes are marked with deep crows feet. There is something odd about the tilt of her nose as well. He tries to remember exactly when she may have broken it and cames up blank. That isn't much of a surprise, so many things happen nowadays that travel right through his mind. She is still beautiful though. His heart wells up in a way he had started to believe it is no longer capable of doing.

"I know this is rough, dear. Here, why don't you have a drink?" She tips some of the contents of one of the various bottles into a shot glass and holds it out to him. The amber liquid sloshes inside like a molten gemstone. Tom can feel the saliva filling his mouth and swallows reflexively.

"I don't drink no more Alice." He answers, not able to shake the feeling that this is some kind of test.

"Well this is a special occasion." She places the glass in his outstretched hand. He hadn't even realized he had reached for it. "It was a beautiful service, wasn't it?"
"I guess, you know I hate these things."

"I'm glad you came, I almost thought you might not."

"For you, I did."

He upends the shot glass, unable to ignore it any longer. The whiskey feels like wildfire as it tears down his throat and into his stomach. Tom resists the urge to push the glass back out towards Alice for a refill, but only just barely.

"So why.. I mean how..." He says, not quite able to put his thoughts into a coherent string.

"How am I here?" She asks. Her smile makes him feel more at ease, "I don't know. As for why, I guess I just wasn't finished. You know me, always forgetting that one last thing."

"Like our trip to Ireland. Boy, we almost missed that plane because you couldn't remember whether we locked the door." He says with a chuckle.

Tom sits looking into the shot glass clutched in his cracked hands. He twists it back and forth, watching the tiny golden bead of whiskey roll across the bottom.

"Sometimes I'm as surprised by what you remember as what you forget, Tom."

"What I forget seems to be more and more every day," He frowns. The simple gesture sends a shock of deep chasms spreading across his features, "They say it's early onset. I never told you."

"I knew, Tom, you never were very good at hiding things from me."

Alice takes the shot glass from his hands. The chill in that touch makes him shiver without even realizing it. Tom watches the gentle sway of her buttocks as she walks back to the bar to refill it. The minister was upset by her request for the open bar. He finally allowed it because everyone agreed not to use it. She returns the newly loaded glass to him. The warmth spreads through him again. He feels a little dirty drinking with Alice watching him, like he has been caught in the mens room with a skin mag.

"Why are you letting me drink, Alice?"

"So you'll remember, Tom. I would feel awful guilty if you didn't remember."


"The bad times. I need you to remember the bad times."

"What do you mean, Alice?"

"I need you to remember this, Tom."

She leans in very close and he realizes he can't feel her breath on his skin. Goose bumps push their way through his leathery skin. As Tom watches she begins to change. The eyes come first. The lids begin to swell shut around her pupils. A garden of blue, purple, and red flowers bloom under the translucent surface of her skin, leaving behind grotesque blotches. Her lip swells like an over ripe piece of fruit until finally it splits. A single thread of bright blood runs down to her chin. The blood collects in a pregnant bead until it falls, landing with a plink in the empty chamber of his shot glass. Her nose twists to one side and finally lets out a loud crack like a distant gunshot. Fresh gouts of blood pour from the shattered nose.

Tom whimpers helplessly as he watches his wife turn into a horror before his eyes. She looks like a prize fighter that has gone ten rounds with a pit bull.

'What.. What is this, Alice? What is happening to you?"

"Remember." Her voice sounds as if it has traveled from the bottom of a wet swamp to reach him. The gurgling of a gas bubble striving to reach the surface.

And he remembers. He had done this to her. It's the reason he promised to stop drinking. It had gotten worse at first. His nerves had been like a down power line. He remembers the last time he beat her. That was when he broke her nose. It had also been when he had fallen down the stairs. If it hadn't been for his fall he may have killed her that day. It got better once he was confined to the wheelchair. Why had she stayed with him?

"I remember. God, I remember."
"And are you sorry, Tom? Are you sorry for the prison you kept me in all those years?"

"Yes." The word sounds weak, even to his own ears.

"Then you'll make it up to me won't you Tom? You love me enough to make it up to me don't you?"

"Yes, I do."

She leans in closer, her split lip nearly touching his. There is a sucking sensation, as if someone is taking a vacuum cleaner to his insides. Hot tears once again sting his cheeks as he stares into Alice's icy blue eyes. Those eyes are glossy and doll like now. Tom realizes suddenly that he is looking down at her in the coffin. He is hunched over it's side, using his arms to propel himself forward. To anyone checking in on him it would appear that he is praying. His vision begins to fade. First darkening at the edges like an old photograph and then edging in.

And then the world goes dark.

He stares into that tenebrous darkness for what feels like an eternity. The intoxicated feeling still hangs onto his mind like a snail clinging to the side of a fish tank. Tom is beginning to wonder whether he has died when he senses a pressure in the darkness. Light returns slowly as his eyes are peeled open. A familiar hand retreats from his vision leaving behind a clear view of the church ceiling.

And then a face enters his vision. It slides into sight like the moon rising over the horizon. The blur of features comes into sudden sharp focus, making Tom want to scream. It is his own face.

"Goodbye, darling." His face says. The voice that comes out of those cracked old lips sounds harsh and ancient, like dust from a tomb.

"Mr. Hamton, we need to move her now."

His face turns away.

"Okay. Be gentle."

Tom watches as the coffin lid swings closed. He screams in silence as darkness falls over him once again.

Welcome to the Black Spot..

Welcome to The Black Spot. I will be posting my rants, ravings, opinions, and most importantly my short stories and art. Well, lets be honest here, I'm hoping that's why you're here.

That's why you're here right??

Hopefully you will find some joy in following my doings, and quiet frankly, my un-doings.