All the Little Vampires

by Gregory L. Norris

 

While the family slept, all the little vampires fed.

The laptop, whose battery no longer held its charge, sipped wall current. No less greedy were the phones and tablets plugged into sockets and quietly slurping. The microwave and stove tolled the hours in digital numbers, as did cable boxes. Modems and routers hummed, their readouts showing they, too, were feasting well, as spelled out by blue or green diodes glowing in their dark corners. Flat-screen TVs were off in every room, though not really, according to their little tell-tales, red like blood.

And then the electricity bill arrived—the horror!

 

Gregory L. Norris

Gregory L. Norris is a full-time professional writer, with work in national magazines, fiction anthologies, novels, the occasional TV episode, and, so far, one produced feature film. He has just returned from one of the best writing symposiums in history and got a request for my epic SF novel GRAVE SPACE from an agent and the top SF editor at Tor Books, both of whom loved what he’s done.

Follow his literary adventures at www.gregorylnorris.blogspot.com.

Crystal L. Kirkham

Crystal L. Kirkham is a multi-genre speculative fiction author and podcaster. She has published several full-length novels and has been a part of multiple best-selling anthologies.

Joel R. Hunt

Joel is a writer, proofreader, ex-teacher and part-time human from the UK. He is constantly planning stories, novels and screenplays, a very small number of which actually get written. His genres of choice are horror and sci-fi, although the odd bit of sentiment does manage to sneak in between the freakishness and disturbing twists.

Terry Miller

Terry Miller is an author and 2017 Rhysling Award-nominated poet residing in Portsmouth, OH, USA.

G. Allen Wilbanks

G. Allen Wilbanks is a retired police officer living in Northern California. For twenty-five years he wrote collision and crime reports during the day to pay the bills, and he wrote short fiction during his off-time to stay sane. He recently retired from real life to devote his full attention to fantasy.

Brian Koukol

Brian Koukol, raised in the suburbs of Los Angeles, now makes his home among the salt breezes and open spaces of California’s Central Coast.

Umair Mirxa

Umair Mirxa lives and writes in Karachi, Pakistan. His first published story, ‘Awareness’, appeared on Spillwords Press. ‘Anonymous’ in Zombie Pirate Publishing’s anthology, ‘Flash Fiction Addiction’, is his first story in print.

Alice Lam

I have loved writing for as long as I can remember.

My story ‘Lilies’ was published in Atlantis Short Story Contest’s anthology in October 2018. Without giving a spoiler, ‘Lilies’ is about a young woman who is drawn to perform dark acts in order to assimilate and avenge the loss of a dysfunctional relationship.

Aiki Flinthart

Aiki Flinthart has 11 published speculative fiction novels, including the popular YA series, 80AD, the urban fantasy Shadows trilogy, and the science-fantasy trilogy The Kalima Chronicles.

Rags and Bones

by Carys Crossen

 

The villagers decided she was a witch. They exiled her to the desert, to die of heat exhaustion or go mad of thirst.

She did neither.

She made a scarecrow, constructed it out of rags and bone. She placed it near a trading route, and waited.

In verdant lands, a scarecrow repels. In this desolation, it did the opposite. Birds, travellers, stray children flocked to it, for water, for succour, for company.

She feasted like a queen on the flesh of lost things. Blood could quench any thirst. Their bones and clothes she hoarded.

Soon, another scarecrow joined the first.

 

Carys Crossen

Carys Crossen has been writing stories since she was nine years old but only recently discovered drabbles. Her fiction has been published by Mother’s Milk Books, Dear Damsels, Three Drops Press, Blink Ink, Paragraph Planet, The First Line journal and others. She lives in Manchester UK with her husband.

You can keep up to date with Carys on Twitter @academicwannabe