CHRISTMAS NIGHT WITH SATAN

by John Fox, Jr. from Christmas Eve On Lonesome And Other Stories, 1911. No night was this in Hades with solemn-eyed Dante. SayIt No night was this in Hades with solemn-eyed Dante, for Satan was only a woolly little black dog, and surely no dog was ever more absurdly misnamed. When Uncle Carey first heard that name, he asked gravely: "Why, Dinnie, where in h----," Uncle Carey gulped slightly, "did you get him?" And Dinnie laughed merrily, for she saw the fun of the question, and shook her black curls. "He didn't come f'um that place." Distinctly Satan had not come from that place. On the Continue reading

SHADOWS OF THE DEAD

by Louis Becke. It is bad to speak of the ghosts of the dead when their shadows may be near.. "It is bad to speak of the ghosts of the dead when their shadows may be near," said Tulpé, the professed Christian, but pure, unsophisticated heathen at heart; "no one but a fool--or a careless white man such as thee, Tenisoni--would do that."   Denison laughed, but Kusis, the stalwart husband of black-browed Tulpé, looked at him with grave reproval, and said in English, as he struck his paddle into the water--   "Tulpé speak true, Mr. Denison. Continue reading

THE SCREAMING SKULL

by F. Marion Crawford. from Wandering Ghosts, 1911. A ghostly visage haunts the residents of Bettiscombe Manor.   I have often heard it scream. No, I am not nervous, I am not imaginative, and I never believed in ghosts, unless that thing is one. Whatever it is, it hates me almost as much as it hated Luke Pratt, and it screams at me.   If I were you, I would never tell ugly stories about ingenious ways of killing people, for you never can tell but that some one at the table may be tired of his or her nearest and dearest. I have always blamed myself for Mrs. Pratt's death, Continue reading

THE RED-HEADED LEAGUE

by Arthur Conan Doyle. Originally Published in The Strand Magazine, August 1891. Holmes investigates the strange case of a man whose qualifications for the job of copying encyclopedia entries was his red hair! I had called upon my friend, Mr. Sherlock Holmes, one day in the autumn of last year and found him in deep conversation with a very stout, florid-faced, elderly gentleman with fiery red hair. With an apology for my intrusion, I was about to withdraw when Holmes pulled me abruptly into the room and closed the door behind me. “You could not possibly have come at a better time, my Continue reading

WITHOUT YOU

by Del James. from The Language Of Fear, January 1, 1995. Darkness awaits in the cold November rain. Although he wanted to share the dance, Mayne could not bring himself to interrupt such beauty. Her well-toned body swayed childlike, peacefully, slowly moving to the rhythm. Her innocence was enchanting, her beauty breathtaking. Mayne knew shed be angry at him for sneaking about, watching without letting her know, but the teenage voyeur inside his adult body encouraged him and didnt care about the consequences. Besides, this was for his eyes only. Her eyes sparkled, reminding him of the ocean, Continue reading

THE GHOST WALKER

by Edgar Wallace. Originally Published in The Grand Magazine August, 1927. No matter where he goes, Don Murdock finds it impossible to escape the ghosts of the past! Don Murdock came to the territories with three guns and a breaking heart. At least he had tried to keep the rifts wedged open and still preserved the similitude of hopeless grief and .unconquerable despair. It had been easy enough that night when the New York skyline was falling astern and he had looked over the side of the Berengaria and had seen, almost on the verge of tears, the pilot's hazardous climb to the waiting boat. Continue reading

ROSE ORCHID

by Rex Stout. from All-Story Weekly, March 28, 1914. Lieutenant-Commander Reed gets more than he bargained for when he makes port in the south Atlantic! Accepting as postulates the assertions that human beings are pegs, and that Lieutenant-Commander Brinsley Reed, U. S. N. was a human being, it follows with certainty that he was beautifully fitted for his particular hole. He was third in his class out of Annapolis. By the time he attained his two full stripes he had successfully dominated three junior messes and been the subject of unusual commendation in two wardrooms; and before he had Continue reading

A CASE OF IDENTITY

by Arthur Conan Doyle. Originally Published in The Strand Magazine September 1891. Holmes is hired to investigate the mysterious disappearance of a quiet Londoner! “My dear fellow,” said Sherlock Holmes as we sat on either side of the fire in his lodgings at Baker Street, “life is infinitely stranger than anything which the mind of man could invent. We would not dare to conceive the things which are really mere commonplaces of existence. If we could fly out of that window hand in hand, hover over this great city, gently remove the roofs, and peep in at the queer things which Continue reading