Posts Tagged ‘Ghost’

PseudoPod 541: Tessa Told Me

Show Notes

“I always like to say that there’s nothing more terrifying than the human heart.”


Tessa Told Me

by Rob Kotecki


Julie only half listened to Mr. Garland as he ran through the emergency numbers on the fridge, distracted by why Liam hadn’t texted her back. It had been forty-five minutes. They’d agreed to break up when she moved, but spent more time talking now than they ever did living ten minutes away from each other.

“I mean it,” Mr. Garland said, bringing her back to her babysitting gig. “Don’t forget to have fun… just wait until Noah goes to bed,” and he pinched his fingers and brought them to his lips.

As if. She had no idea where to buy yet. The stay at home Dads were always the worst, as they were either OCD about their kid’s every move, or desperate to prove they stayed home because they were so chill. Really.

“If all goes well, I’ll be home around one. If it goes great, I won’t be home at all.” Julie mustered a smile that fell just shy of condescending. He seemed to want something from her. “Don’t worry. Noah and I are going to be fine.”

That did the trick, and he grabbed his guitar case. He was off to play in some sad cover band at the sports bar that seemed like an off-brand TGI Friday’s from the outside. But as soon as he left, there was nothing to distract her from checking her phone and refusing to send a second text, until Liam responded to her last one.

Noah was lost in some stupid video game that seemed set in World War II. He was cute now, even a little shy, but she saw the inner frat boy Noah would grow up to be. She tried to do her calculus, but her attention never drifted far from her phone. Fine. “Busy?” she texted Liam, feeling so cavalier about it right until it was sent, at which point she realized how sad and desperate she was.

She decided to shut her phone off before she did even more damage to her self-respect and offered to play with the kid. Noah wagged his head.

“Tessa says no.”

“Who’s Tessa?”

“She’s nice. She likes you, but she thinks you should go home.”

“Well, too bad for Tessa.” But he merely shrugged and went back to the game.

“She says too bad for you.”

Imaginary friend. Fine. At least the kid’s quiet. (Continue Reading…)

PseudoPod 528: Unsent Letter From An Unnamed Student

Show Notes

Pseudopod wants to direct your attention to a project by one of our Authors, Greg Stolze. This is a good time to go back and relisten to episode 317, Enzymes.

YOU is a novel, set in the universe of the democratic horror game Unknown Armies, which pits readers against a book that hates them while situating them in the person of a middle-aged businessman named Leo Evans.

Leo is divorced, a fan of racquet sports, and a cultist of the Necessary Servant—a quasi-religion he freely admits seems silly, except for the way it grants him extra senses and paranormal abilities. The chief cultist, however, is his ex-wife, and the two of them clash over a key question of what it means to truly “serve” with integrity.

In the process of hashing all this out, Leo must survive a couple attempts on his life, come to grips with an enchantment that makes him hate the person he previously loved most, and deal with lingering issues between himself and his son.

This novel is Kickstarting in February, check the trailer at www.gregstolze.com/you


Unsent Letter from an Unnamed Student

by Aaron Fox-Lerner


The first time you killed me was the scariest. Those large hands, holding me down until I breathed water and then nothing at all. Those hands that had previously stroked me and caressed me and ranged all over my body now shoving my head under the light ice on the pond, steadying me as my thrashing grew gradually more feeble.

A test of trust, you said, joking but not. To break the tension after our argument. I lay my head right by the water, and I even let you push it down, betrayed by the jocular smile on your face. It went on so long and became so hard to breathe and the water was so cold, but it wasn’t until I started to struggle and you refused to let me go that I realized I never should have trusted you at all, that was the test that I’d failed. That realization was the scariest part.

And after the enveloping terror and darkness, I came to in my bed early in the morning. Nothing wet, nothing cold, my roommate still asleep across the room. I thought it was a dream, a dream so powerful I had believed it to be real. I stayed that way, stalking disoriented through the school corridors until I came into your class at 10:30 and saw your face, looking as if you were the one who had been in the cold pond rather than me. (Continue Reading…)

PseudoPod 514: The Show


by Priya Sharma

Originally published in BOX OF DELIGHTS, you can read “The Show” online at NIGHTMARE MAGAZINE.

PRIYA SHARMA’s fiction has appeared in Interzone, Black Static, Albedo One and on Tor.com. She’s been anthologized in several of Ellen Datlow’s Best Horror of the Year series, Paula Guran’s Year’s Best Dark Fantasy & Horror series, Jonathan Strahan’s The Best Science Fiction & Fantasy 2014, Steve Haynes’ Best British Fantasy 2014 and Johnny Main’s Best British Horror 2015. She’s also been on previous Locus’ Recommended Reading Lists (2010, 2012, 2013 & 2015). She is a Shirley Jackson Award Nominee and British Fantasy Award nominee for her story “Fabulous Beasts”, which appeared on Tor.com in 2015. Find her online at Priya Sharma Fiction.

This story was also reprinted this month as part of Nightmare’s special issue People of Colo(u)r DESTROY Horror! Read along with the story over at their site. Listen to two more stories from this issue over on the Nightmare podcast feed, and add it to your podcatcher while you’re at it!

Your narrator – Andrea Richardson – came through at the last minute for us! Check her out at Andrea Richardson!


Pseudopod has launched our TEN YEAR Kickstarter! CHECK IT OUT!

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The CAST OF WONDERS Flash Fiction Contest info can be accessed at the link.


Info on Anders Manga’s album (they do our theme music!) can be found here.


The camera crew struggled with the twisting, narrow stairs. Their kit was portable, Steadicams being all the rage. They were lucky that the nature of their work did not require more light. Shadows added atmosphere. Dark corners added depth. It was cold down in the cellar. It turned their breath to mist, which gathered in the stark white pools shed by the bare bulbs overhead.
Martha smiled. It was sublime. Television gold.

PseudoPod 394: Summer Girls

Show Notes

Kameron Hurley can be contacted at the following link: Kameron Hurley.

Matt Wallace’s Slingers can be found here!


Summer Girls

by Caspian Gray


Something brushed his leg. For a moment he felt the sensation of fingers closing on his ankle. Dan started, then floundered away, panicked as a little kid at the first touch of seaweed. He composed himself in case Kayla was watching, but she was treading water further out, eyes on the horizon. Dan swam out to her, accidentally swallowing a mouthful of salt water, then splashed water on her back to get her attention. Kayla turned, pulling long strands of hair out of her eyes.

_The dead girl_, Dan signed. This was one of their home-signs, a single gesture not rendered in his bastardized ASL.

Kayla cocked her head. _Too early_, she signed. _The dead girl won’t be here ’til August._

_She touched me_, Dan signed. _She touched me._

Kayla swam closer to him. They treaded water, looking out over the dark waves for her bobbing corpse. There was no sign of her.

_Let’s swim back._