Horror & Dark Fantasy


July 2017 (Issue 58)

This month, we’re bringing you original fiction from Caspian Gray (“Promises of Spring”) and Caroline Ratajski (“And With Her Went the Spring”), along with reprints by Stephen Graham Jones (“Brushdogs”) and Cynthia Ward (“The Midwife”). In the latest installment of “The H Word,” we have Nathan Carson sharing the creepy truth about goats. Plus, we’ve got author spotlights with our authors, and a feature interview with Donnie Darko’s Richard Kelly.

In This Issue: July 2017 (Issue 58)


Editorial, July 2017

Be sure to check out the Editorial for all our news and announcements—and a run-down of this month’s great content.


Promises of Spring

It was a freezing day in January, so Cody was surprised when Tay answered the door to his apartment without a shirt. His wet hair was still slicked down from the shower. “Um, hey,” said Cody. “It’s good to see you.” “Huh,” said Tay. “Come in, I guess.” Cody expected the scar in the middle of Tay’s chest. It was raised and shining, a ragged knoll that Tay crossed his arms over as soon as he noticed Cody looking. What Cody hadn’t expected was the other one.

Author Spotlight



Junior wasn’t even forty-five minutes into the trees when his son Denny called him on the walkie, to meet back at the truck. Denny was twelve, and Junior could tell he’d got spooked again. He wasn’t going to get any less spooked if Junior called him on it, though. So, instead of staking out a north-facing meadow like he’d been intending, waiting for the sun to glint off some elk horn, Junior tracked himself back, stepping in his own boot prints when he could.


The H Word: Kiss the Goat

After the serpent, the goat is widely considered the most evil animal in mythology, literature, film, and music. From biblical verse to Baphomet, Black Phillip and beyond, the cloven-hoofed mammal has long been maligned. But the majority of these allusions are surface-level references to a beast that is broadly misunderstood. Having grown up on a farm in rural Oregon, goats have long been a part of my life, as much a part of the environment as the forested hills, dark rainclouds, mold, moss, and fungus.


And With Her Went the Spring

They searched for weeks, but never found her. It was decided without words that “weeks” was the appropriate unit of time. Some girls are “weeks” and some girls are “days.” And some girls are missing posters that get seen by too few and ignored by too many. But she had done so well. Tried so hard. She followed all the rules that girls were meant to follow. She deserved weeks.

Author Spotlight


The Midwife

Though his estate had fallen upon difficult times, my husband Geoffrey retained the midwife to nurse me through my delirium, for Marguerite Willette had knowledge of the illnesses which come upon a woman who has borne and lost a child. Marguerite little resembled the crude, dull-witted folk who lived in the town, but her humble breeding was evident in the cast of her face, which revealed her French ancestry, and in the swarthy hue of her complexion and raven darkness of her tresses.


Interview: Richard Kelly

Richard Kelly is the writer and director behind the films Donnie Darko, Southland Tales, and The Box. We’ll be speaking with him about his new 4K restoration of Donnie Darko, which hit theaters this spring.