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Thursday, January 9, 2020

Excerpt: Christmas Lites IX - Charity horror anthology for the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence

by Amy Huntley, JG Faherty, Tricia Kristufek, KC Grifant, Brian Matthews, JA Clement, A.F. Stewart, Angela Yuriko Smith, Sean Patrick Little, Sally Clement
December 15, 2019
370 pages
Thirty-six stories to give you your holiday fix. Thirty-six times to get a Christmas chill or a warm, fuzzy feeling. This group of authors have come together for the 9th year in a row to help support the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence. In the coldest of times, the warmth of the heart can bring hope to many who are in need this time of year. Read shorts from your favorite authors and discover new to love. Spread some holiday cheer this season! 

Excerpt from “By Midnight” 
by Pamela K. Kinney, horror story included in Christmas Lites IX anthology. 

As she peeked in the fridge, she heard a sound. Closing the door, she listened and heard it again. It sounded like someone speaking. She couldn't catch the words, but it came from the back of the house. Jenny walked out of the kitchen and stared down the shadow-dark hallway. A chill skittered up her spine. The only people in the house were her and her guests, who acted like they hadn't heard anything.

The jabbering grew a little louder. It appeared to be coming from her mother's bedroom.

She jumped when something touched her shoulder. Her pounding heart slowed when she realized it was Spider. His bottle hanging limp from the fingers of his other hand, the boy's brow knitted together.

“What’s going on?” He peered down the hall. “I thought we were supposed to be the only people here tonight. Your mother’s working, right?”

Jenny rubbed her arms with her hands, as she felt cold. “She is. We are.”

“Hey, what’s going on? Sneaking off to do some neckin’?” Lisa and Debbie, plus their guys, joined them.

Spider pointed with the neck of his now-empty bottle down the hallway. “No. Doesn’t it sound to you guys like people are talking back there?”

Debbie bit her lip. “Really?” She turned to Jenny. “Thought you said your mom was at work.”

Jenny spat out. “She is. We’re supposed to be the only ones in the house tonight.”

Debbie giggled. “Cool. Maybe it’s ghosts.”

Lisa snorted. “There are no such things as ghosts, dummy. It’s just Jenny playing a trick on us.” She merged with the darkness as she walked down the hallway. “I’ll prove it. Hey, John, coming?”

John asked, “You sure you want me to? I mean, I doubt there’s anything back there.” He gave Spider a nasty glance. “Spider watches too many horror flicks if you ask me.” But when Lisa called to him, he hustled to join her.

Our mission is to lead, mobilize and raise our voices to support efforts that demand a change of conditions that lead to domestic violence such as patriarchy, privilege, racism, sexism, and classism. We are dedicated to supporting survivors and holding offenders accountable and supporting advocates.

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