Archives: hauntings

More Free Fiction for Halloween

It’s the 31st of October and I still haven’t picked out my costume. From the array of cosplay/Ren Faire odds and ends in the back of my closet, I’ll have to decide what to go with based on the weather. If it dips below freezing, I’ll probably choose the Victorian frock coat in which to hand out candy rather than the ball gown or diaphanous nightie (candlestick and running shoes optional).

In the following story, let’s assume the characters are somewhere October 31st-November 1st remains well above freezing.

“I see.” He raised his hands—each caught in a loop of shadow-soft cord, tied in turn to Lucas’s right wrist. He smirked. “Bound?

“I can keep you as long as we’re joined like this. Or until sunrise, whichever comes first.”

“Binding Him Between”

Lucas hadn’t been to the cemetery since the funeral. He hadn’t seen the point. If anything, it’d only make Colin seem even more impossibly distant. But he remembered, he knew exactly where to go. Through the dark, he found his way to the line of glossy granite stones and shorter grass between the oaks.

With each step, his hold tightened on the rope in his pocket—it felt more like ribbon, or vapor, or the finest silk scarf, so barely tangible that it might be crushed to nothingness in his fingers or slip free and vanish into the night. Insubstantial as the barrier between lives was supposed to be at this hour, at this time of the year.

When a witch accosts you on the street, says to your face exactly what you most want, and presses a gift on you… Lucas was desperate enough to try anything.

He crouched at Colin’s headstone and lit the candle from his other pocket. Hoping the surrounding markers and trees blocked the flame, he repeated what the self-proclaimed warlock had told him. It sounded like dog Latin to Lucas, but there was some comfort in words so devoid of meaning—free of the pressure to make sense. Things had stopped making sense at the doors of the emergency room eight months ago.

The shadows cast by the candle stirred over the ground. Stirred, like liquid. Lucas stumbled back as the brown grass disappeared under mist, and the mist rocked with waves like the surface of a silver lake. He took a deep breath. The directions on this point had been very simple, very clear. He pulled the cord out of his pocket, knotted one end around his right wrist, and reached into the grave.

It didn’t feel like anything at first.

He cried out when another hand found his.

But he didn’t hesitate, plunging his other hand into the mist. His fingers closed around those holding his, traced down them to find the wrist. Unable to see beyond the silver ground, he tied two more knots by touch, then tightened his grip and pulled.

Colin stepped out with the same lanky, unusual grace he’d always had. That was all Lucas saw before throwing his arms around him, pulled tight in return by two bound hands grasping his sweater. He hid his face against Colin’s neck, scratched by his suit collar. He smelled like…nothing, really, a pure absence of scent, but underneath that a glimmer of warmth that Lucas knew was Colin, again, at last, and he opened his mouth as if he could swallow it. That made Colin chuckle.

Lucas stepped back. Unable to help himself, he reached up and brushed back an untamed lock of hair that Colin had rarely let him correct in life. Now he allowed it. Colin’s forehead was unlined, from pain or confusion or anything else. Despite the warm candlelight, the illumination that touched his body glowed silver. Maybe that was why he looked…different. Yet if anything, better. Not healthier, but more visibly himself. Free of some veil Lucas had never noticed until it was stripped off.

Colin glanced around them, and a corner of his mouth pulled in an achingly familiar way. “Not the most romantic place for a reunion.”

“I know.” Lucas joined in his laughter, almost giddy. “But the, um…the magic is bound to your physical…remains.”

“I see.” He raised his hands—each caught in a loop of shadow-soft cord, tied in turn to Lucas’s right wrist. He smirked. “Bound?

“I can keep you as long as we’re joined like this. Or until sunrise, whichever comes first.”

“Well…” He stepped closer. “I think we can make the best of it.”

He kissed Lucas’s smile away. That warmth in his scent infused the taste of him too, and the smooth pressure of his lips and slickness of his tongue seemed to melt through Lucas.

Because he couldn’t help himself, in between their kisses, Lucas asked, “How has it been?”

“Missing you is the worst part.” Colin nipped his jaw lightly, in his old playful way. He didn’t ask how it had been for Lucas, for which he was grateful. That was over now, at least for one night.

He unbuttoned Colin’s suit and ironed blue shirt—blocking out the day he had taken both from their shared closet to hand to Colin’s sister—then pulled the cloth down his shoulders and as much of his arms as their bonds allowed. Colin returned the favor of undressing him, tugging up the hem of his thin sweater. Thank God it wasn’t a cold autumn. Even if it had been, the warmth now beating off Colin seemed to reach through his fingers into every inch of Lucas’s flesh.

“Wait.” Lucas pushed him prone on the ground, taking advantage of his untied left hand to explore his lover. Touching all of him, whole, alive. Or if not exactly that, still present. In some thrilling way, more present than he had ever been before.

Colin caught Lucas’s face between his hands and pulled him up for another kiss. Lucas parted his lips for him, sipping at his tongue even as he groped between them to undo Colin’s fly. Colin kicked off his shoes, and after Lucas pulled back to strip off his own jeans, he felt his lover’s silk-stockinged soles run along his calves. Just as they’d used to do on lazy evenings in bed.

He pulled down trousers, briefs, and pressed his face to Colin’s navel, nuzzling, nipping at the skin above his hips. He licked his way down until bittersweet-musky hair met his tongue, and then he found Colin’s cock, and he savored it the way he always did.

Oh.” There was a new surprise in Colin’s voice, mixed with the old appreciation. As if it felt different now. His fingers curled in Lucas’s hair, not pulling but tangling.

Lucas was never able to take him all the way in, even now when he felt so hungry for him, but he’d always thought Colin was just the right length. His left hand stroked the rest of the shaft that he couldn’t reach, in between slipping lower to hold his balls. The warmth and a salty taste, like sweat or precome but airier, filled his mouth, the undeniable presence filling all of him.

With a gentle twist in his hair, Colin drew his mouth away and guided him higher along his body.

“Yes,” Lucas said, straddling him. “I want you everywhere.”

He had to get up on his knees so that Colin’s bound hands could reach between his legs, and then he was parting for his fingers, sinking onto them, shivering and gasping.

Colin met his eyes, and his brows lifted. He added a third finger, coiling deep with a practiced gesture made easier by Lucas’s arousal—and earlier preparation.

“I got ready for you…before coming here…” He bent his head, breaking the connection of their gazes, not embarrassed but nearly overwhelmed between Colin’s expression and the sensation uncoiling inside of him. “I…really fucking hoped this would work.”

They both laughed—not for long. Lucas was breathless as he fell across his lover, hips hiked to let his hand keep working. Colin was…beyond that, it seemed, into a new level of awe and ecstasy and focus. The beckoning of his fingers against Lucas’s prostate made him cry out, then bite into the suit fabric bunched at Colin’s shoulder to keep from shouting.

“Come on,” he nearly whimpered. “I’m ready for you. I’m so ready.”

Colin took his fingers away, and Lucas reached down to guide him in.

They’d always used condoms before, but it didn’t seem to matter now. Colin’s cock, still slick from Lucas’s mouth and pulsing with silver warmth, joined their bodies with a smooth stroke. Lucas twisted his hips, finding a rhythm that he matched.

Eyes hot, tasting salt, Lucas sat up, taking him deeper. He shoved Colin’s bound hands over his head and began to ride him. Colin groaned approvingly, but he’d never been one to submit with complete passivity; he drove several thrusts home as Lucas stroked himself with his free hand. He was already close. Yet the unbelievably of the situation kept him from giving himself over to it, as if that would be taking it for granted. He remained conscious of every centimeter Colin moved inside him, every brush of his knuckles over his own cock. He didn’t let this blur together, adding up into the suffusion of orgasm. He didn’t let himself forget Colin.

Not that he could. Not that he really ever had.

Too soon, but after an eternity, he came with a fall of pearlescent drops across both their stomachs.

He released Colin’s hands, and they gripped his thigh, nails digging sweetly into the flesh. At other times they might have held his waist, his ass, adding leverage to pump him up and down. Now any touch was enough. Lucas lowered his head and they kissed as Colin finished inside him with slower, deep-rocking strokes.

“Stay in me,” Lucas murmured.

Colin’s voice caressed his ear. “Do you remember the night I stayed inside you until I was hard again?”

Lucas grinned.

Colin’s responses weren’t much faster than they had been in life, but effortless and sure. As they night passed, they encountered the inevitable faltering or uncertainties, but nothing a word or gesture couldn’t clarify. Except, of course, the biggest confusion, the dizziness of the miracle of being together at all. Unable to explain—Lucas didn’t waste words talking about the warlock or why he’d believed him—they only made the most of it. At one point Colin switched, something he rarely did but showed no hesitation about now, and spread his legs for Lucas, who’d probably be sore in the morning but didn’t care, couldn’t care; he would have endured real pain to have this night again.

And then the night was over.

As dawn made the horizon a bruised apricot, Colin began to undo the knots in the cord. “We shouldn’t remain joined much longer. When I return, I want to go alone.”

He looked at Lucas deliberately. After a moment, Lucas nodded. He did have things to live for. Sometimes they were easy to forget. But Colin had always been good at reminding him.

Then Colin whispered, “Same time next year?”

Lucas didn’t have a word stronger than “Yes,” so that was what he said. When the sun rose, its light was no more dazzling than the silvery brightness of Colin’s smile when he did.

The mist slipped between them but could not eclipse it.

Lucas headed home with the rope and candle in his pocket, alone, eyes steady on the path before him.

~end

If you’re looking for more erotic ghost stories, “Bodies of Ghosts” is still free at all major ebook retailers, and it’s included in the new Haunted anthology from Mofo Pubs. Happy Halloween!

 

Haunted is now out!

Haunted, Mofo Pubs’ latest volume of literary erotica, is out today–just in time for Halloween! Treat yourself to the eerie, sexy, chilling and thrilling:

 

A young man feels a peculiar hunger to be loved, one he can’t survive without sating in a series of vivid homoerotic dreams that blur the boundaries of fantasy and fact, desire and love. 

A hesitant dominant struggling with a recent breakup and the loss of her grandmother, finds a mysterious man in her living room with her grandmother’s rosary and an appetite for submission.

Years after a summer romance with a young male model, a woman finds herself driven to search through online porn for photos and videos that might feature him.

A man is tormented by the erotic demands of his soulmate—with whom he shares an intimacy so deep they can literally hear one another’s thoughts. 

A British soldier is haunted by memories of his lost lover and comrade in arms. 

A grieving woman moves into a basement apartment, which she discovers already has a resident.

 

 

Last week I wrote about music for making love to ghosts, and if that’s your thing, good news: Mofo editor Parker Marlo has put together her own playlist for this anthology.  Check it out on Spotify.

 

Read Bodies of Ghosts free:

Mofo Website

Amazon

iBooks

Kobo

Nook

 

Get all the stories in Haunted:

Mofo Website

Amazon

iBooks

Kobo

 

Music for making love to ghosts

A Walt Whitman poem says, “And to die is different from what any one supposed, and luckier.”

I’ve always misheard that as “To die is luckier than any of us know, and stranger.

Because how could it not be?

I don’t pretend to have any insight into what an actual afterlife might be like, but when I’m writing ghosts, I try to keep its potential strangeness in mind. Not in a bad way, necessarily; it could be a lucky and fortunate strangeness. But I’m pretty sure sex with ghosts would be something very different from sex with human beings. A matter of odd geometries and invisible contours, the texture and taste of a non-biological intimacy. It would have to be at least a little scary, and probably wistful too.

A song that perfectly captures this mixture of whimsy and weirdness–incidentally, the perfect soundtrack to Bodies of Ghosts, even though it wasn’t released until after I had completed and submitted the story to Mofo–is Seeming’s “Phantom Limb”:

 

Incidentally, Seeming also has a song called “Stranger” that makes the process of becoming different sound pretty lucky (though it’s much more about life than death). And at times weirdly, wonderfully erotic.

And if you’re looking for inspiration for Mofo’s current call, Apocalypse (how would you fuck if the world was ending?), you might want to check out “Goodnight London.”

 

Read Bodies of Ghosts free:

Mofo Website

Amazon

iBooks

Kobo

Nook

 

Get Haunted:

Mofo Website

Amazon

iBooks

Kobo

 

Weekend Reads

Lots of exciting things happening this past week. To summarize: 

Getting ItSinCyr’s Publishing’s feminist femdom anthology, is on sale for just 99 cents until Monday, October 9.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My Goodreads Giveaway of The Complete Lady Crayl also ends and randomly selects a winner on Monday, October 9.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And “The Bodies of Ghosts” is FREE on all major ebook platforms. No deadline on this one, but if you like it, check out the anthology it’s a part of, Mofo Publishing’s Haunted, which is up for preorder before its October 26 release date.

Read Bodies of Ghosts free:

Mofo Website

Amazon

iBooks

Kobo

Nook

 

 

 

 

 

Lastly, sci fi erotica fans: Circlet Press’s crowdfunding campaign has reached the goal for their 25th Anniversary “Best Erotic SciFi” Anthology, but they’re still funding for stretch goals including their 2018 slate of books. You can check out their forthcoming titles, and prizes including everything from ebooks, book bags, story critique, and book dedications, at Kickstarter.

Haunted: Free Fiction

Mofo Publishing’s fourth anthology is Haunted—a literary erotica anthology exploring the erotic charge of that which is persistently there. Tales of ghosts, memory, obsession.

A young man feels a peculiar hunger to be loved, one he can’t survive without sating in a series of vivid homoerotic dreams that blur the boundaries of fantasy and fact, desire and love.

A hesitant dominant struggling with a recent breakup and the loss of her grandmother, finds a mysterious man in her living room with her grandmother’s rosary and an appetite for submission.

Years after a summer romance with a young male model, a woman finds herself driven to search through online porn for photos and videos that might feature him.

A man is tormented by the erotic demands of his soulmate—with whom he shares an intimacy so deep they can literally hear one another’s thoughts.

A British soldier is haunted by memories of his lost lover and comrade in arms.

A grieving woman moves into a basement apartment, which she discovers already has a resident.

That last story is mine–and it’s available to read free, right now, as a MoFo erotic short.

Read Bodies of Ghosts free:

Mofo Website

Amazon

iBooks

Kobo

Nook

Become Haunted:

Mofo Website

Amazon

iBooks

Kobo

Nook

New Release: “My Body is a Haunted House” in MoFo Pub’s HOTEL

Click “Continue Reading” for an excerpt from the opening scene of “My Body is a Haunted House”

The stories in this anthology explore what happens in those most impersonal of private spaces—hotels.

Hotel. The very word conjures a sense of transience. Hotel takes you into a world without permanence. Between these pages, lovers meet and lovers part. Elegant, sensual prose takes you from grand ballrooms with lavish appointments to shabby heaps where you pay by the hour.

Sneak a titillating glimpse behind closed doors, where whatever can happen just might.

Transience, transgression, and transformation seem to be the order of the day–or night–in this anthology. My story, “My Body is a Haunted House,” links two women together at an occasion of transformation: their (ex-)husband’s funeral.

Continue reading

Embodied Hauntings–“The Bitterness of Flesh”

Continuing on my themes from the last week’s posts–hauntings, and also recent releases that didn’t get proper blog posts because my website was down at the time they came out.

“Would you like to see Cleo?”

This time the blush flamed to the surface of her skin, and the chill dove deeper, towards her heart. “I… Can I?”

Robert Fitzwilliam held out his hand. “There’s a statue of her down the hall.”

A statue. Of course. Had she been expecting a ghost? She pressed her palm to his again, felt long fingers close around it, followed the draw of his arm. The thick carpet drank in their footsteps.

“The Bitterness of Flesh” came out in Ever Dream of Mean anthology from Fantasia Divinity Magazine. It was inspired by two things: the Year’s Best Food Writing anthologies from Holly Hughes, and Daphne du Maurier’s Rebecca. Of course, I was reading those at the same time, which is one of the best ways to cross wires for creative sparks.

Plot-wise, the story is not about a chef: I’m more interested in eating scrumptious delicacies than preparing them, so the Food Writing inspired me to notice and incorporate sensual details–and also an heirloom apple orchard. Honestly, I’m surprised there isn’t more writing out there combining culinary and erotic appetites, although Gael Green’s Insatiable and Ashley Warlick’s The Arrangement are both on my bookshelves (I hadn’t realized M.F.K. Fisher had a love triangle under her belt along with all those European meals!).

The core of the story is about a second wife, and also, of course, about the first one. I adore Gothic novels, but the atmosphere of “Bitterness” is a little lighter than most Gothics–more bittersweet than venomous. Its partial inspiration, Rebecca, is a book about jealousy and fear, love and obsession. And when the heroine gets that obsessed with Rebecca (aided not least by the tour Mrs. Danvers gives of the shrine made from Rebecca’s bedroom), it becomes almost–with more or less “almost” about it–sexual.

Continue reading

Best Women’s Erotica of the Year Author Interviews

I just realized how much I have to catch up on, posting-wise, from those long and dreary months I spent without a website. And there’s a whole sob story about what else was going on that getting the new website up wasn’t a priority for me, but who needs to hear that? Sob stories aren’t that sexy.

Well, they can be.

You're trembling, and aside from those delicious, involuntary shudders, you don't move. from T.C. Mill,

Eroticism and grief, loss, and tragedy are kind of a thing for me. Hauntings–supernatural or psychological–appear again and again. I’m struck by the kind of intimacy you can or can’t have with the past, what forever eludes your touch. There’s also the intensity, the whole-body experience of each emotion, idea, and sensation. It’s why Shakespeare’s tragedies are so beautiful. It’s also why grieving people may suddenly find themselves powerful. The grief story that resonates most strongly with me is: “I just went and stood there, sort of trying out my anger against theirs, I guess. And mine won.”

Or as the narrator of “Phone Call, 3 a.m.” puts it:

Grief and fear are rare aphrodisiacs. Deep mourning isn’t, and depression certainly isn’t. Anxiety makes you clammy and numb inside or makes you let loose recklessly. In my experience merely anxious sex has always felt somehow cheap. But grief unlocks something. Maybe it strikes so deep that it gives us permission to feel. It excuses us. Or makes us so desperate that we’ll have anything in place of the loss.

Anyway, what I was getting to when I started this post is that I forgot to share here when my author interview went up on Best Women’s Erotica of the Year’s Tumblr page. On the other hand, waiting until now to post about it means I can share the complete set of author interviews from all 21 contributors; you’ll find them under the tag for Best Women’s Erotica of the Year, Volume 2. They’re all fascinating, and I think you’ll love the chance to hear about the inspirations for these stories, read each author’s favorite lines, and find out what’s coming next!

If you’re interested in being part of the series yourself, the call for Volume 4 is up, seeking themes of “outsiders and risk.”