13 Tales of Terror: In Her Eyes

In her eyes,

I see love.

I see longing and desire and passion.

We are lovers, young and eternal,

Two hearts with one beat.

In her eyes,

I see bliss.

New beginnings,

Our dreams shimmering into reality,

Souls linked by two rings.

In her eyes,

I see fear.

Gray creeps along a golden horizon.

Our youth slips away,

Lives shift in different directions.

In her eyes,

I see pain.

A storm rises in the distance.

Our love is a faded photograph,

Finding color in another’s arms.

In her eyes,

I see rage.

A broken ring, an unforgivable betrayal.

Our world has crumbled in my fingers,

Both on a road with only one end.

In her eyes,

I see death.

A knife blade flashing in the dark.

My life bleeds out one drop at a time.

As darkness approaches,

Hate is all I see

In her eyes.

A to Z Challenge: Youth




A time when

Immaturity and

Immortality collide.

We are forever young,


In our minds.

Forever untarnished by age,

And the darkness hidden

In the heart of the world.

In youth, we believe

We have found answers.

Only later do we discover

We have nothing but questions.

Youth is a time

Of innocence,

Of discovery,

Of freedom.

It is a time to be treasured

And to be enjoyed,

From moment

To moment.

Such a pity it is then

That youth

Should be so wasted

On the young.

A to Z Challenge: Winston Wilson



Winston Wilson was

A man with a winsome personality and a winning smile.

His wily charms made him irresistible

To women young and old.

He wooed wives and waifs with his wits,

A wolf in a white suit

Was Winston Wilson.

And wherever he went,

He left only weeping women behind,

Woestruck as they had been swindled

By the wicked Winston Wilson.

While walking one wintery morning

He came across a young widow,

Who would not be wooed by his whimsy,

His winsome charm,

Or his winning smile.

For the first time,

Worry creased the face

Of the wily Winston Wilson.

The widow wove for him instead

A tale that withered his heart.

She wailed in sorrow as she told him

Of the woes that she had weathered.

Winston Wilson could not stop himself

From weeping for the poor widow.

And as he wept,

He felt himself grow weary.

The woman smiled,

Teeth as white as the winter snow.

For she was a witch,

Wandering in search of a wicked soul

Whose sins she would wash away

On a wintery morning,

And whose withered soul

Would then be hers to claim.

So it was that

Winston Wilson and his wickedness

Wasted away in front of her eyes.

The witch walked away, content,

Leaving behind only a white suit

Lost against the winter snow.

From that day, amongst the women,

The wives, the waifs and the widows,

Not a whisper was heard

Of Winston Wilson

Or his wily, wicked ways.

A to Z Challenge: Time



Time heals all wounds,

Or so it is said.

But even time has not the power

To bring back the dead.

Time marches on,

Waiting for no man.

They must keep pace with it

As best they can.

Time slips away,

Like each exhaled breath.

Every second ticks closer

Toward the shadow of death.

Time cannot be conquered,

It cannot be won.

It must be spent wisely

Until our time is done.

A to Z Challenge: Raven



It was a cold December night,

When even the embers in the furnaces had turned to nothing more than ash.

I sat in my chamber,

Poring over a few volumes from my shelves,

Nodding off at my desk as the moon waxed and waned.

When all of a sudden, there was a faint tapping at my chamber door.

Then there was silence.

Perhaps I had just imagined the sound, a fabrication of my tired mind.

But there it was again. A rapping. A faint tapping against my chamber door.

What visitor would call on me at this hour?

“Come in,” I called, hesitant. Unsure of who stood on the other side.

The door opened and a shadowy figure loomed in the doorway.

Of course. Raven.

The shadowy man I had hired weeks before.

The man whom I had entrusted to help me find

My lost love, Lenore.

“Please, come in,” I implored,

Gesturing to an armchair by the fire.

But Raven paid me no heed, made no obeisance.

He entered my chamber and stood by my mantel,

Leaning against a bust of Pallas.

Some claimed he was a prophet,

Others believed him to be a thing of evil,

This stranger from the distant Plutonian Shore.

But still, though I knew him not,

I had entrusted him to help my find

My sweetest Lenore.

“It is good to see you, my friend,” I said, smiling after what felt like years.

“Have you any news of Lenore?”

My visitor was silent, breathing so softly he scarcely made a sound.

“Raven,” I said, firmly. “What news have you?”

But he would not speak. He merely stood there, blending with the shadows.

At last, when I could bear it no longer, when my patience had almost slipped away

Like the last grains of sand in an hourglass,

Raven responded.

In a voice like leaves rustling in the wind, he uttered but one single word:


I waited for him to say something further, but he was silent again.

My heart raced. What did he mean? What had happened to my sweet Lenore?

“Raven!” I beseeched him. “Keep me in darkness no longer!

Tell me what you know of Lenore!”

But Raven merely shook his ebony head and whispered,


As I puzzled over how to deal with my taciturn visitor,

He drew a small jar from the folds of his feathery coat,

And placed it on my table.

A label that was almost faded read ‘Balm of Gilead’.

I had heard of this salve, known to possess unusual properties.

On silent instruction from my nocturnal visitor,

I applied the balm to my face and

Breathed in its odd perfume.

My head felt light as the air seemed to grow denser,

And I thought I glimpsed Seraphim flitting past.

Raven loomed over me, casting his shadow across the chamber,

Until all light was extinguished.

When I opened my eyes,

I was no longer in my chamber,

But on the shore of some strange land,

Seemingly forgotten by time.

Surrounded by foliage and fog,

Yet devoid of any other soul.

“Raven,” I asked my companion, who stood ahead of me.

“What is this place?

Where have you brought me?”

He was silent once more,

Driving me to restlessness.

Then, at last, he spoke.

Saying just what I had feared.

For as we stood in that land of endless night,

At the edge of a forgotten shore,

Quoth Raven,


A to Z Challenge: Ninnyhammer



Ninnyhammer, they called him.

The boy who couldn’t do anything right.

Ninnyhammer, they said.

The boy who tripped over his own feet.

Ninnyhammer, they named him.

The boy who was born to be mocked.

Ninnyhammer, they cried.

The boy who carried the flame.

Ninnyhammer, they yelled.

The boy who started the fire.

Ninnyhammer, they screamed.

The boy who turned everything to ash.

Ninnyhammer, the silence echoed.

The boy who would never be called that again.

A to Z Challenge: Jailbird



Sing a song of freedom,

Little jailbird.

Locked away

In a cage of regret.

Unable to fly,

Wings clipped by guilt.


Sing a song of penance,

Little jailbird.

Hoping to atone

For past wrongs.

Trying to forgive yourself

When no one else will.


Sing a song of hope,

Little jailbird.

Vowing to change

The path ahead of you.

Even as your footprints remain

In the path left behind.


Sing a song of freedom,

Little jailbird.

Until the day

You break out of your cage.

Or the day

When you sing no more.

Night Sounds

In the darkness of the night,

From the deepest and densest corner of the forest,

A terrible sound arose.

An inhuman yowl that sent shivers of terror through both man and beast.

In the darkness of the night,

Among the looming and forbidding trees of the forest,

A camper had stubbed his toe.


At the dawn of September,

A promise was made

To tell a new tale every day.

When the month was done,

the pen ran dry,

but in the mind stories bubbled away.

October cast a ghastly shadow,

Demanding a score of terrifying tales

To mark All Hallows’ Eve.

So the ink flowed again

To instill fear and horror,

Working without reprieve.

Now the spirits have gone,

Having played their tricks,

And returned to their realm with treats.

It is time to sheathe

The pen for a while

And to the world of slumber retreat.

The past two months have been as exhilarating as they’ve been exhausting. So, Tales of Unusual Strangeness is going on a 10-day hiatus as of yesterday so I can refresh my writing muscles. I’ve also been missing out on stuff written by many of the amazing bloggers who I follow, as well as my followers, because I’ve been stretched thin between work and story writing! So, this will be my time to play catch-up.

Of course, I’ll also be planting seeds of ideas during this time, which should blossom into full-grown tales on my return.

20 Tales of Terror – Day 10: False Friend

While walking to my house last night,

I was greeted by a chilling sight.

There was a girl in a bloody dress,

Who smiled through the scarlet mess.

As I approached the lane’s end,

She asked me, “Will you be my friend?”

This morning I walked down the lane,

And the girl was standing there again.

“Will you be my friend?” she said.

Without a word, I turned and fled.

For if I desired to be her friend,

I wouldn’t have brought about her end.