“Childhood Nightmares: Under the Bed”
An anthology from Sirens Call Publications
Edited by Kate Monroe, this collection of tales of night time terrors range from the literal interpretation of who’s Under the Bed, to the sinister and complex workings of the subconscious mind on many different levels. What is in the hall; who is downstairs; am I really awake; are you my friend? All these questions and more are answered by the twisted minds of the twelve horror authors who dazzled us with their interpretations of Childhood Nightmares. Beware! You may begin to have a few of your own after reading their infectious tales…
Those whispered tales of monsters hiding under the bed, or of the demons lurking in the shadowy corner where we dare not glance for fear that seeing them will make them all too real. Oh, how the innocent landscape of a child’s imagination lends fertile soil to horrors ready to be sown on the slightest of sounds; the tales and the terror they wreak on our youthful minds never quite leaves us.
We asked the authors in this collection to reach into the forgotten recesses of their twisted minds and share with us the tales of nightmares that can only thrive in the hidden corners of a child’s imaginings; the bogeyman under the bed, the outlandishly fiendish creature lurking in the dark, the slight murmur of sound coming from the hall… did you close the door completely?
Explore the myriad terrors that only a child can twist from nothing into some ‘thing’ in the span of a single rapid breath. Do you dare delve into your own memories? Perhaps you’ll start sleeping with the lights on again…
Tell us, who is Under the Bed?
Contributing Authors: Colin F. Barnes, Nina D’Arcangela, Phil Hickes, Amber Keller,
Kim Krodel, Lisamarie Lamb, John McIlveen, Kate Monroe, Brandon Scott,
Joshua Skye, Julianne Snow, and Jack Wallen
Want a copy of ‘Childhood Nightmares: Under the Bed’ for yourself? Visit:
Smashwords.com (Kindle, Nook, Kobo, Sony, PDF)
Here is a small sampling of “Childhood Nightmares: Under the Bed”,
followed by a link to a free preview of all twelve stories.
‘Baby Teeth’ – Kim Krodel
“She adds every tooth she gets to her disgusting smile. But the screws keep growing out of her gums. She never runs out of space for more teeth.”
“Why does she want them?” Brian’s voice was small. His eyes bugged, as if the skeletons stacked in God’s closet were tumbling out at his feet.
“For biting, Dummy. She likes to eat little kids.” Cal grinned as he spoke. “If she bites you with her screws, your skin gets stuck to ’em, so she likes teeth better; so she doesn’t have to floss so much.”
“No, she doesn’t. She’s nice—she gives presents! Mom said!”
“That’s what Mom wants you to think. Otherwise you’d freak out about it.”
Brian blinked, staring and processing; weighing his brother’s words against those he had gathered from adults.
“See this?” Cal rolled up a pant leg to reveal a jagged run of lumpy, silver skin. “She bit me hard the first tooth I lost ‘cause I didn’t know what was coming. Now I’m big enough to fight her off.” Calvin posed like a weight-lifter…”
‘Shades of Red’ – Colin F. Barnes
“Two thuds come from beyond the door. Probably just his mother falling, dropping the bottle. Hollow rasps come from the corner of Mitchell’s dark bedroom: between the old, rickety wardrobe that creaks if you walk too close to it, and the dresser with the broken drawer front.
Mitchell conjures images of Scamp, their pet dog: a mongrel of various terriers and common working dogs. He pictures his little whiskery face, his excited panting. Anything to stop thinking about…the Shade. But it won’t go away. It’s stuck in his mind like a leech. Growing fat on the fear.
Is it darker in that corner than normal? Is that an outline of something…is it…moving?
Mitchell whirls away and pulls the duvet over his face. Sweat forms quickly on his forehead as he breathes hot air under the stifling cover. It’s not real, just your imagination. It’s not—
A quiet laughter. The voice muffled as if obstructed. Mitchell raises the duvet slightly. Just enough so he can peer out and check that corner again. He wishes he hadn’t. A pair of red orbs float in the gap. He screams for his mother. No answer…”
‘Show and Tell’ – Kate Monroe
“He belatedly realized that tonight, there had still been no answer, no response. He leaned over the edge of the bed and cautiously lifted the sheets.
“Are you there?”
A blast of fetid air; putrid, repellent.
Satisfied, Tommy continued.
“I wish they’d bloody die.” Awestruck by his bravery in making the grand pronouncement, he allowed himself a few moments in which to savor the forbidden words on his tongue before he spoke again. “Yeah, I do. I wish they’d both just shut up and die.”
A sigh, no stronger than the breeze outside, lifted up the bed sheets and danced around Tommy’s bare feet, curling up his toes as he pursed his thin lips.
“What do you think, then?”
Before any answer could come from under the bed, shuffling footsteps announced his great-aunt’s arrival in his room…”
Please visit Sirens Call Publications for an extended preview of Childhood Nightmares: Under the Bed available for download.