mark ryan

Horror comes in many forms. It can creep at the door, surprise us in a truth or dwell within our very bones. To escape and flee is a natural instinct. But what if the horror never disappears?

 

Dislocated is a collection of 28 short stories which cover the need to escape, and the horror of remaining. Tales such as ‘Folkroot’, where something dark is lurking in the hotel pond. Or ‘Nemesis’, which takes us to another world where still a darkness dwells.
 

This collection shows you the road to freedom, but warns you with a cold hand, that you may not travel alone.

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extract - 'rain'

Tears from god. He always thought of that in the heavy downpours. The type where you can feel the stinging weight of the raindrops on your body, the cold water pelting your face. His mother used to call it that: heavenly tears. What was god crying about all the time?

He’d set off into the night just as the first drops had begun to fall. He’d smelt the rain coming, rushing to put on his boots and set out into the village to catch it. He’d grabbed his jacket but didn’t bother with an umbrella. He wanted to feel the water tonight. He wanted to feel something.
 

The sun had set hours ago and the hazy glow of the streetlights above him blossomed down the road he was taking. Each a branch up out of the dead black road beneath his feet, offering beautiful orbs of light to the angels above him; and who were threatening to leave. He saw how the sheets of the rain splintered across the face of the lights, little streaks through the glow like tiny missiles before disappearing into the void of the nothing.
 

That nothing welcomed him tonight as he walked. It spoke to him of a new solitude which he was happy to lay his bones within. The night and the rain were pure and wild, base elements that ravaged the world. He’d stepped into them before, drowning once and becoming lost in the darkened forest of his mind.

Tonight, he just needed to walk. To smell the fresh air and feel the waters smother his face. The coldness came with the rain tonight also and he watched his breath escape out into the air like his soul leaking away. He licked his lips, tasting the rainwater; feeling the flecks of the divine in those tears shed from above.
 

The village began to open up into fields at this end, sweeping pastures plunging down the valley where the water would rush and flow like a tide on land, going out in a grassy sea. He heard nothing but the falling rain, but he watched as lonely cars moved slowly off in the distance. Little specs of light, haunting eyes that hovered across the fields where the main road was. What lives did those little tin cars carry? What stories and sadness did the souls within survive? Somewhere tonight he thought, one of those cars will fall victim to strong salty tears. Skidding and colliding somewhere and snuffing out the contents within. Plunging an unfolding tragedy into the lives of those who knew, loved and would now miss those dying embers. Collecting rainwater in the crumpled remains of the squashed tin can.

His mind had become saddened as late. His body had struggled to move in the mornings when the alarm would ring in a new day like a gospel chorus. His own muscles and bones a defying demon to the angelic blessing of the new dawn. He would lurk in the shadows of life; disconnect from the buzzing beast of the people he knew.

He only stepped out when it rained.

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© 2020 by Mark Ryan-Havoc & Consequence