I’m a mongo fan of anything that goes bump in the night and Halloween is one of my favorite holidays! (Quick tangent–the best costume I’ve ever worn was last year when I went as the Headless Horseman and my baby was my Jack-O-Lantern head!) I’ve always loved the Twilight Zone Marathons and if I ever saw a ghost, I think I’d wet myself.
I grew up in California although I’ve lived abroad in the UK (England and Scotland–woo hoo, gotta love those kilts!)
I’d categorize my writing as a blend of suspense, humor, light horror, and romance with a sprinkle of fantasy to tie everything together! If you are all about fairies and witches and vampires (oh my!), you love a good alpha warlock and you like men who get a little hairy during a full moon, I got the goods.
Now for the Excerpt!
I opened my eyes and lifted my head off the desk. I’d fallen asleep—who knew for how long. I was suddenly frightened and angry with myself. I’d been incredibly lucky that the Dreamstalker hadn’t realized I was immobilized by sleep and his for the taking. Stupid, I’d been so stupid. I stood up, angst pounding through me and walked my cold cup of coffee to the sink, promptly pouring myself another. I threw my head back and emptied the lukewarm liquid into my mouth, squelching the urge to gag. I wiped my mouth with my sleeve.
The sudden compulsion to go check on Sam almost blindsided me and before I could even register what I was doing, I had my keys in my hand and I was headed down to the Wrangler which was parked just outside. I glanced up at the dark night sky and even though the thought crossed my mind that visitor’s hours were well over, my feet didn’t slow down.
Before I knew it, I’d unlocked the door and was seated behind the wheel, my hand already turning the keys in the ignition. I put the car into drive and started down the street. The streetlights reflected through my windows and I shielded my eyes against the glare. The momentary thought that I hadn’t buckled up crossed my mind but I couldn’t focus on it. I arrived at the stop sign at the end of the street and had no memory of getting there. All I knew was that the hospital was to the right but for some reason, I turned to the left.
I couldn’t even really grasp the fact that before setting foot into the car, I’d planned to visit Sam at the hospital yet now I was headed for the highway leading out of Splendor and into the BFE district of Charity which was home to a herd of cows and endless miles of lush farmland.
I attempted to turn the Wrangler around, even issued the command to my arms, but the wheel appeared to be stuck or maybe somewhere in my subconscious I really wanted to visit Charity because my body seemed to be in complete opposition to my mind. I continued along Highway Five toward mile after mile of white fences and rolling hills, farther and farther from the hospital.
The radio suddenly flickered on and my heartbeat increased tenfold as I wondered how in the hell that was even possible. There was static for a moment and I watched the screen as it rolled through FM station after FM station. Finally it settled on something that sounded like fifties music. I wanted to turn the sound down but my hands were plastered to the steering wheel so the music continued to pour out of the speakers. I could practically see Patsy Cline in her poodle skirt and saddle shoes as she wailed into the microphone, “I Go Out Walking After Midnight.”
My brain began to protest the fact that my body had a mind of its own and was now holding me hostage. I glanced out at the night sky, realizing it was getting darker, the street lights no longer lighting my way as I entered the border of Charity. Sure enough, dark outlines of cows on the hillsides pointed to the fact that I’d just arrived in no man’s land.
Lights from behind me suddenly filled the Wrangler and I depressed the accelerator, hoping the person would pass me. I didn’t even have the chance to marvel at the fact that my body had carried out my mind’s wishes because it was suddenly apparent that the person behind me wasn’t going to pass. Instead, the car pulled up right behind me, close—as in bumpers kissing close. The headlights of the car illuminated the inside of the Wrangler and made it exceedingly difficult to see the road before me. I yanked the wheel to the right, pulling over to the side of the road and hoped the person would get the clue that I didn’t appreciate being tailed.
The car veered to the left of the Wrangler and just when I thought it was going to pass, it pulled alongside me until we were neck and neck. I couldn’t help the feeling of panic wending its way up my throat until I felt like I was going to throw up again. I glanced over and could see nothing but darkness emanating from within the car. It was so dark, I couldn’t even tell if there was a person in it. I shook my head at the absurdity of that thought—of course there was someone in it—it couldn’t just drive itself.
The fifties music continued to pour out of my speakers and the melody acted like a fire burning away at my sanity. The car beside me suddenly lunged to a stop and pulled up behind me again, flooding my car with its headlights. I wanted nothing more than to stop but my body seemed to have taken on a mind of its own again and I’d pulled back into the street and pressed the accelerator down until I was going ten miles over the speed limit. The car behind me revved its engine and kept pace.
I watched as my foot pressed the accelerator harder and the speedometer began to climb from forty five to fifty five to sixty five. I passed a white sign proclaiming the speed limit to be thirty five and somewhere deep inside me concern blossomed—this was a country road, windy and dangerous for extreme speeds. I glanced back at the speed gauge and watched in horror as it hit seventy five.
The car behind me pulled alongside me again and then suddenly sped up, passing me instantly. It veered into the lane ahead of me and before I could respond, the red of its brake lights suddenly interrupted my vision. The sound of the Wrangler crashing into the car shattered my thoughts, the melody of the fifties music still in the background. I suddenly felt myself flying forward and the explosion of glass was thick in my ears as I felt my chest smash into the steering wheel. Then before I could even gasp, the Wrangler was airborne.
I glanced down at my clenched palm and realized I’d shaken a mound of fairy dust somewhere along the way. I tossed it in the air, imagining a thick, insulating bubble surrounding me. The feel of rubber was thick against my cheek as I crashed through the passenger window and felt myself smash against the pavement.
Make sure to check out HP Mallory’s other books! They are all lots of fun to read 🙂