Horror & Dark Fantasy



Aug. 2016 (Issue 47)

We have original fiction from Amanda Downum (“Fossil Heart”) and G. Neri (“The Hunt for the Leather Apron”), along with reprints by Nicholas Kaufmann (“The Rest Is Noise”) and Lara Elena Donnelly (“The Dirty American”). We also have the latest installment of our column on horror, “The H Word,” plus author spotlights with our authors, a showcase on our cover artist, and a feature interview with horror gaming creator C.A. Suleiman.

In This Issue: Aug. 2016 (Issue 47)


Editorial, August 2016

Be sure to read the Editorial for a run-down of this month’s chilling content–and to get all our exciting news and updates.


Fossil Heart

Nan Walker doesn’t mean to fall asleep. She never does. But tonight the creak of the ceiling fan lulls her. Evie curls warm against her side, one long leg thrown over hers. Nan’s eyes sag, her fingers relax, and her worn paperback slides onto the bed. Sleep strokes gentle hands across her eyes. The nightmare waits, constant, unchanging: muddy water, stale wet air. The car shudders in the torrent as the flood rushes past outside.

Author Spotlight


The Rest is Noise

When Andrew opened his eyes, he was surprised to find himself lying on the worn Oriental rug in the living room of his cramped Manhattan apartment. He tried to pick himself up off the floor, but his arms and legs barely contained the strength to move. Inside his ears, something wet and sticky sloshed. The faint smell of copper came to him. On the rug beside his hand, his smartphone was still on, still talking to him. The outgoing message of the number he’d called—had he dialed a number?—was malfunctioning, stuck in a warped, maddening loop.

Author Spotlight


The H Word: The Mountains, The City, The Void

What is horror? What is it to me? It is: I don’t know. An emptiness at the center of my being that I am desperately trying to fill. All the lost versions of myself I am, defiantly and against the order of all things, trying to bring back to life one last time. The center of a dead civilization, covered in a long-lost language that I once knew, that I once created, and can now only haphazardly decipher. All the better and worse versions of myself that I neglected and abandoned. Shells and skins.


The Hunt for the Leather Apron

On August 4th, 2014, a researcher at the British National Archives came across a sealed envelope entitled “The Leather Apron.” It had not been opened in over 125 years. The envelope contained many elements of a closed investigation into the famous Jack the Ripper case. Among the items was the written testimony of the twenty-one-year-old son of Mary Ann “Polly” Nichols, the woman considered by many to be the first official victim of Jack the Ripper.

Author Spotlight

Artist Showcase

Artist Showcase: Jana Heidersdorf

Jana Heidersdorf is an illustrator living and working in Germany. Her moody and surreal work is often inspired by nature, fairy tales and everything feral and fantastical. When she’s not drawing or crafting, you can find her dabbling in the dark arts of writing, photography and animation, or stalking the local squirrel population.


The Dirty American

In a nation founded by Puritans, you’re hard-pressed to find someone who will talk about sex or mention their unmentionables. We can’t even handle squat toilets, afraid we might see our own shit falling between our knees. Perfumes made in this country inevitably come out smelling like candy, detergent, or Barkeeper’s Friend. If you’re lucky, you’ll get musty potpourri. Sweet, clean, and one-dimensional. Americans have an awful penchant for orange blossom.

Author Spotlight


Interview: C.A. Suleiman

Readers of horror fiction are frequently unfamiliar with the world of horror role-playing games, and yet that world is consistently producing high-quality fiction and beautifully designed books. Among the most popular writers in the horror RPG field is C.A. Suleiman, who has spent nearly two decades working on such immensely successful games as Scarred Lands, Vampire: The Requiem (for which he and Ari Marmell created the acclaimed “city book” City of the Damned: New Orleans), and, most recently, Mummy: The Curse.