The suffering of strangers, the agony of friends. There is a secret song at the center of the world, and its sound is like razors through flesh.
Hand Off by S. Siporin
This is a Pseudopod Original. “We all have parts of ourselves we are unhappy with; the trick is to accept them as part of who you are”
S. Siporin lives and writes in NYC where strange encounters are commonplace. Other genres include science fiction and romance.
Your narrator – Louise Ratcliffe is a scientist, artist and stay-home Mum. She lives in New Zealand having moved there from England 12 years ago when her Maori husband brought her home. They have 3 children, 3 cats, 9 chickens, 8 ducks and a goat called Steve. She spends her time creating Art Yarn, and knitting body parts and blankets. Her work can be seen on Facebook at her Top o’ the Meadow fibre art page, or you can find her on Ravelry as Giggigoofer.
She was wealthy; you could tell by the thick brown fur of her coat, by the elaborate, streaked hair that made her look ten years younger than she really was. Three slender fingers on her left hand gleamed smooth and ivory; they were heavy with silver and gold rings, mementoes of failed marriages. Her right hand was bare of decoration; it hung flaccid by her side, brushing against the soft fur like a sallow slab of flesh. She tried to hide it under her coat. It was defective, shriveled, half paralyzed.
Without warning, it twitched, the fingers diddling as if playing an invisible piano, as if restless, discontent. The line between her eyes deepened, darkened as if someone had drawn on her face with magic marker. Not again, she thought. Not here. Her left hand pressed its palm flat against her forehead; she felt the ache of an incipient migraine.
Hide by Annie Neugebauer
“Hide” was first published in Black Static Issue 43 by TTA Press in November 2014.
Annie Neugebauer is a returning visitor to Pseudopod Towers. She last visited with “Jack and the Bad Man” for Halloween 2014. Annie Neugebauer is a novelist, short story author, and award-winning poet. She has work appearing in over fifty venues, including Fireside, Buzzy Mag, and DarkFuse. She’s an active member of the Horror Writers Association, the webmaster for the Poetry Society of Texas, and a columnist for Writer Unboxed. She lives in Texas with her sweet husband and two diabolical cats.
Your narrators – Marc Bailey and Heather Welliver have been a part of the podcasting community since 2006 as voice actors and narrators. They are in the process of rebooting their podcast Grailwolf’s Geek Life with a new name, focused on positive reviews of all things geeky along with thoughtful essays on the continuing The Geek Renaissance.
When I met Cecilia I’d only been dead for twenty years and she’d only been alive for about as many. She was all golden-brown skin and mahogany eyes and legs that stretched longer than the last week of summer, and I was cold – so cold.
I stood several yards away in the shade watching her with her friends. We were at an outdoor concert where a local band did a shitty job of playing good songs. Cecilia sat on the grass with those legs sprawled easily in front of her, catching the sun, leaned back and propped on her elbows. She wore a big white floppy hat that should have seemed silly and out of place but instead looked perfect.
Think of the Bones by Gary Emmette Chandler
This is a PseudoPod Original. It is about struggling with body image, and whether the story’s resolution is comforting or unsettling is up to the listener. Recommended additional reading is “The Skeleton” by Ray Bradbury, which is included in the October Country collection.
Your Author – Gary Emmette Chandler works from his apartment in Portland as a copywriter and web developer, mostly in pajamas, with a cat nibbling at his leg. His fiction has appeared in Daily Science Fiction, Pantheon, and Fantasy Scroll, among others. You can follow his hungover ramblings on Twitter @TheWearyLuddite. He has a recent publication in Theian Journal #1 from Stupefying Stories.
Your Reader – Kris Straub is a cartoonist and creator of the gag-a-day Chainsawsuit, the sci-fi comic Starslip, and the 1930s horror adventure Broodhollow. He’s also producing a series of short horror on YouTube called Local 58. His work can be found at studios.chainsawsuit.com. The television adaptation of his creepypasta story Candle Cove begins airing in September on the SyFy network under the name CHANNEL ZERO.
When the bones first began to grow, David had watched them with something like lust. Each night, in his small apartment, he would sit at the edge of his bed and watch the bones shift, gradually taking form. It started with the feet: that multitude of delicate, tiny bones, slowly knitting themselves together.
It was a secret he kept for himself — a routine that kept the days in motion, swinging about in silence, with hope.
I’m here to turn up the volume. To press the stinking face of humanity into the dark blood of its own secret heart.