The Button Bin
by Mike Allen
Willett’s thin, angular face, with the stubble-shrouded cleft in his chin, remains handsome, or would have without the fleshy puckers where his eyes once were. But it’s as if those scars can see, because he turns to you.
You’re finally here, he says. His voice sounds choked with grit.
Do you know where Denise is?
He laughs. It’s a bark tinged with hysteria. Yes. Yes. Lenahan has her. He put us both deep under but he only kept what he wanted from me. Denise, he kept all of her. He planned to all along.
Maybe, maybe — and now he’s struggling to speak, as though someone just told him an incredible joke and he’s still gasping for breath — maybe if you ask nice he’ll bring her back. He wanted me to tell you if you asked. He told me to.
Who is he?
And Willett tells you.
About the Author
Mike Allen is the editor of the anthology series Clockwork Phoenix and the digital journal Mythic Delirium. His first novel, THE BLACK FIRE CONCERTO, a post-apocalyptic tale of music, magic and flesh-eating ghouls, was published last year by Haunted Stars Press, and he’s written a sequel, THE GHOULMAKER’S ARIA. His website is Descent Into Light. His first collection of horror stories, UNSEAMING (with a gracious introduction by Laird Barron, Thomas Ligotti called it “seriously unnerving fun”) was released by Antimatter Press in 2014. (Unseaming contains all four stories that have appeared on Pseudopod – “The Button Bin,”, “The Blessed Days”, “Let There Be Darkness” & “Monster”) and also contains the 19k sequel to Button Bin, “The Quiltmaker.”