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Welcome to the official blog of horror, thriller and suspense author Todd Russell. He's written under various pen names including the name of this website, taken from AOL in the mid 1990s where he posted numerous twist ending short stories, six of which can be found in the horror short story collection Mental Shrillness. For Halloween 2011, he shared 13+ new stories in a collection called . His debut novel is now available in paperback and eBook.
|Excerpt of "Pains in the Glass" from Mental Shrillness
Date Published: 2011-07-10 14:45:56
Summary: Read an excerpt of the short story "Pains in the Glass" from the collection of twist ending horror stories in Mental Shrillness.
Pains in the Glass (excerpt)
by Todd Russell
Excerpt from the book Mental Shrillness available in paperback or ebook
Wanda removed the tiny shard of glass poking from her hand after hanging up the phone.
Her mother had called and said her father had been sleeping around for years. She'd lamented to Wanda for almost two hours, apparently knowing about the indiscretions for over twenty years but finally accepting the inevitable end. Wanda kept telling herself how relieved she was that Tim loved her so much and would never hurt her that way.
"See you in a week, babe," Tim said, melding his mouth with hers, tongues wriggling for position. "What's up with the hand? Ouch."
"Don't know. Just there all of a sudden. Must have picked it up from the counter." She washed her hand under cool water and bandaged the tiny slit. She helped Tim take his things to the door. Working as a computer salesman, he was always entertaining and on the road, his territory was the Northwest. Tim was worried she'd be bored while he was gone. She told him that her best friend, Beth, would keep her company.
The next day at 8 AM, the phone woke Wanda with a start.
"Is Tim there?" a soft female voice asked.
"Jerianne from Phoenix. Tim said he was coming by." A stab of pain racked Wanda's right hand. She looked down and saw two longer pieces of glass and dark red oozing from her hand. She winced, hanging the phone up. She went to the bathroom and used more cool water and Band-Aids. Was Jerianne a client? Wanda figured that must be it. Why didn't she ask Jerianne?
More shards of glass showed up throughout the day. From her back she removed an inch long section. She almost called Dr. Sears, but hung up the phone, not wanting to sound crazy.
But as she stared at the phone, she felt hot beads roll down her neck. She went to the mirror and saw a long slice of glass protruding from her neck. She tried to remove it with tweezers, but it opened her flesh further and more blood rained.
The phone rang again. She answered it and it was "Polly" from Billings, Montana. Wanda found out that "Polly" was no client and then felt more twinges of pain. She went to the mirror and in horror saw blood dripping down her face. She grabbed for the phone and started to dial.
"Good afternoon, Dr. Sears office?"
She opened her mouth and nothing would come out. Turning to the mirror she saw the longest piece of glass penetrated where her voice box would have been. Trembling, she dropped the phone and went to the door. She put her hand on the knob and stopped at the doorbell's clanging.
Peeking through the eyehole, she saw Beth outside. She started to open the door and then froze.
"Wanda, I need to talk to you," Beth said, her voice muffled. "I know you probably don't want to talk to me. Tim told me this morning that..."
Blood coursed down Wanda's thighs, back, stomach, breasts, neck. Little and big pieces of glass poking everywhere. She turned the knob and pulled it inward. HELP ME, she thought.
"... he and I are finished. I'm so sorry I did this to you--" Beth stopped and stared at the shambling, dripping horror. She backpedaled, screaming out of the walkway...
Enjoy the excerpt? You can finish reading this story and more short horror fiction by Todd Russell in Mental Shrillness a collection of six twist ending horror short stories. Available in paperback or ebook in various e-formats. Todd Russell's debut psychological thriller/horror Fresh Flesh will be published later in 2011.
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WIP (Works In Progress)
Novella #1 (1st draft)
NOVEL: Pain Plane (final)
NOVEL: Fresh Fetus (1st draft)