The minister’s wig

“The minister here wears a wig the colour of thunderstorms, as dark as his eyes, as bright as his smile.”

We have a new flash fiction piece published today in the October 16 issue of Ink in Thirds.

Take a look and download it here for free.

Thanks for reading.

 

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The old maid and other stories

The Old Maid and Other Stories.

Three weird tales by Rufus Woodward available to read now at AmazonSmashwords, ibooksor Barnes and Noble

Three short stories of ghosts and witches, of sibling rivalry and desperate longings, of the weight of time passing and the strange unsettling things that lurk on cliff tops and in sand dunes.

The Old Maid

“I was trying to help you,” she says.  “You really shouldn’t talk to me like that.”

“Fine by me,” snaps Charlotte.  “Whatever makes you think I want to talk to you at all?”

 

Cold companion

He gets up and goes through to the other room and finds her there, curled up, head to the wall with tears running down her face.  Somewhere in the darkness the sound of low sobbing is coming back at her.  He puts his arms around her and holds her tightly.

“I couldn’t stay away,” she whispers between tears.  “I knew it was here and I couldn’t stay away.”

 

Ghost story (not scary)

“Then something happens and it’s not funny anymore.  It all comes so quickly that we don’t even have time to leave.  When he’s gone we stand there for the longest time, listening to her cry, curled up in a heap on the floor by the bed. Then we shuffle away, neither of us saying anything or knowing what to do with ourselves.”

 

‘The old maid and other stories’ is one of four chapbook volumes published by the Olgada Press.

To read all four for free, please visit us at AmazonSmashwords, ibooksor Barnes and Noble

The Shorecliff Horror and Other Stories

shorecliff

The Shorecliff Horror and Other Stories.

Three new weird tales by Rufus Woodward available now to read for free at Smashwords, iBooks, or Barnes and Noble.

Three tales of loneliness and lost love, of impossible people and the weird creatures that live in forgotten places.

The Shorecliff Horror

I first moved into Shorecliff House on a bright, warm morning in early April. When I moved out again in the November of that same year, there were clouds gathering on the horizon and an icy wind threatening to rise from the North. In between those two days, I emerged from one nightmare only to fall right into another one.

The Impossible City

As it reaches out to pull him closer, Solomon recoils away a spark of dread flying through him. He feels a smile spread across the creature, a sickening, gleeful grin of delight that fades back into the darkness as it drifts slowly away.

“Not now,” he hears a low voice whisper, “but soon. Soon.”

Philippe and the Silver Flute

Somewhere in his mind, wearied though it was by his long trek, a voice called to him. A gentle voice, small but persistent, that called repeatedly, telling him to give up his journey now, to turn around and return home. Philippe listened to the voice, sitting on that rock for a long time while a light rain began to fall and the dark shape of the castle hovered black and insistent ahead of him. He listened to the voice until its words died away and he was left alone once more on the silent moor. Then he packed his bag together again and continued his journey.

The Shorecliff Horror and Other Stories’ is one of four chapbooks published by the Olgada Press.

Now available to read for free at Smashwords, iBooks, or Barnes and Noble.

A Report on a Haunting and Other Stories

haunting

A Report on a Haunting and Other Stories.

Three weird tales by Rufus Woodward available now to read for free.

Three claustrophobic tales of anxiety and dread, of hidden thoughts and buried memories, and of all the monstrous things that lurk inside.

A report on a haunting at number 11 Erskine Street, Aberdeen

There are few bloodthirsty visions here, no messages from the dead, few heart-stopping terrors. In fact, and I want to be as truthful about this as I can, let me say at the outset that whatever ghosts or spirits appeared on the night I am about to describe to you, I myself did not see any of them.

That may disappoint you. It certainly disappointed me.  But if disappointment were all this story had to offer, it would make for a rather dull end to this evening. No. There is a little more to it than that. I may not have seen the ghost that appeared that night, but plenty of other people did. And here is the rub – when they saw it, the face they were staring at was mine.

Missing pages

He took a book from his briefcase and pushed it across the table towards me. “I want you to have this,” he said. “I can’t have it in the house anymore. I should probably burn it or shred it, but I suspect that might only go to make things worse. I’ve thought this through and the only way is to get it out of the house, to get it somewhere I can’t see it. Will you do that for me? Will you keep it safe for me? I don’t know for how long. Who knows, I may never want it back again. But it’s important to me that I know where it is, that I can have it back again if I need to.”

The crescent-shaped scar

“Why aren’t you dead yet?”

Sometimes they have notes, sometimes they don’t. I’ve had more than my share of bricks thrown through this window over the years and I’ve seen all possible variations on the theme. This one was a note carrier. “Why aren’t you dead yet?” in red marker pen written on lined note paper.

A Report on a Haunting and Other Stories’ is one of four chapbook volumes published by the Olgada Press.

To read all four for free, please visit us at AmazonSmashwords, ibooksor Barnes and Noble.

 

A Crescent-shaped Scar

There is a quality, I have always felt, about the red colour of blood that makes it almost entirely unlike any substance I can think of. Even in small quantities – a tiny drop, a small smear – it is obvious and unmistakeable. It stands out from whichever surrounding it is found in, sharp and vicious. Something in that colour contains a depth of reality that is shocking and uncomfortable to look at. In truth, the amount of liquid that poured out of me that day was probably not all that great in itself, it was after all only a small cut.  And yet, smeared loosely, oily and slick around my hands and my clothes it seemed like a shocking amount to my eyes, achieving a surreal, dreamlike effect which was only heightened by my shortness of breath and the racing of my heart.

I have never, you might have guessed by now, much liked the sight of blood, least of all my own. As a boy I avoided butchers’ shops, I ran screaming at the slightest scrape of my knee or nick of a finger. Even now I shave with an electric razor, I have a distrust of blades that verges on mania.

(This is a short extract taken from a longer story.  To read the full version for free, please visit us here.  Thanks for reading.)

haunting

‘The Shorecliff Horror’ is Chapbook number three of four volumes forthcoming from the Olgada Press during 2015.

Available to read for free now.

Missing Pages

“I don’t remember when I bought it,” he began. “You know what I’m like. I pick these things up all over the place. I couldn’t tell you precisely where or when I found half of them. Sometimes they can lie in a pile for years before I get around to actually reading them, so that in itself is not unusual.

Neither is it entirely unusual that, since reading it, I haven’t been able to find any other copies available for sale among any of the dealers I know of. A lot of these books are old and fragile. They were always ephemeral. They weren’t made to last and there may never have been all that many sold in the first place, so it’s not surprising that having found one copy it’s hard to locate another one.

These things are not so unusual in themselves and I want to be clear about that from the start. There have been plenty of strange things happen to me in the past few days, so it’s important not to dwell on matters which may be far simpler to explain. And yet, at the same time, it is true to say that this book which has troubled me so much is one which I do not recall ever seeing until five days ago and for which I cannot find another copy anywhere in the world.

(This is a short extract taken from a longer story.  To read the full version for free, please visit us here.  Thanks for reading.)

haunting

‘A Report on a Haunting and other stories’ is Chapbook number four of four volumes published by the Olgada Press during 2015.

Available to read for free now.