Saturday, June 16, 2012

The Galloping Ghoul of Hockomock Swamp by Eden Glenn

Well, dear friends.
Continuing with the theme of sharing how my wacky imagination works. This story came about like a flash. Rebel Ink Press put out the call for shorts for an anthology they were doing on twisted tales due to come out in time for Halloween.  I knew I wanted to participate and what's the classic halloween story if not the headless horseman?  That was the launch point. A "What if?" followed by "What If?" and another "What IF?" and there you have it.

Rebel Ink Press has been gracious enough to publish this story under it's own cover. What a Brilliant cover it is!


The Galloping Ghoul rides each full moon, exacting revenge by frightening those who tormented his past. By day, he is one of the town people, Nathaniel Hawkins, an affluent entrepreneur. He identifies with Ike Sandhill, a government surveyor, and wants to protect him from the same thugs who drove Nathaniel to revenge. Ike goes to the extreme to prove to everyone how straight laced he is. He pursues Misty VonMix with the intention of marriage. Nathaniel doesn't know how to confess his desire without driving Ike away. He comes up with a plan of seduction. Before the night is over Ike discovers things about himself he always knew, yet denied.  

Massachusetts, 1790
            Somewhere in the Bridgewater Triangle, old wives tell tales in hushed tones about strange lights in the sky and the Galloping Ghoul of Hockomock Swamp. They say the specter rides on the night of the full moon. They don’t know what drives him to haunt unsuspecting travelers. Those who’ve crossed his path flee in fear for their lives. If the victims know why he rides, they never say.
. . .
Nathaniel drew closer in the deadly race. The gap closed but not fast enough and his heart jolted when the tired animal stumbled.
“Socrates!” Ike shouted the encouragement to his floundering steed.
Nathaniel struggled to rescue Ike from himself. He didn’t have time to calculate a fancy plan. He just needed one that would work. His options were limited but inspiration with a dose of blind luck seldom failed him. He threw back the cloak of his headless ghoul disguise, surprised the costume survived the mad race. The muskmelon head he carried to aid his full moon revelry would be forfeit. “Mother luck, do not fail me now.” Nathaniel lobbed the ball shaped fruit at Ike’s ridiculous hat  to save the life of the man he’d benefactored, secretly lusted after and suspected he loved.
He watched in horror as the horse hit the mud. Simultaneously the horse stumbled into the muck and the melon impacted Ike’s head sending the man tumbling ass over ears into a thicket of bushes. Pulling on Augustus’ reins, Nathaniel jumped while his horse slid to a stop. He leaped to the ground as the wretched Socrates miraculously scrambled to safety on the opposite bank of bog.
Nathaniel collapsed to his knees by Ike, unmindful of the sharp sting of sticks slicing thru his britches. Prickly bramble bushes had cushioned the surveyor’s fall. Nathaniel’s shaky hand quested for a pulse and calmed at the pounding rhythm of life under his fingers. He untangled Ike from the vines, fighting to inflict minimal damage from the biting briers.
. . .
Augustus stood patiently while Nathaniel hoisted Ike’s lanky frame up into the saddle and mounted behind to support his unconscious burden. The flight brought them to the borders of Nathaniel’s estate.
“Time to go home, Augustus.”
Nathaniel’s pulse pounded at the proximity of Ike in the saddle, his head resting on Nathaniel’s shoulder. How badly he wanted to brush the wayward lock of golden hair back from the man’s brow. No more hiding. Before the night was over Nathaniel would be sure Ike Sandhill knew his full intentions. He couldn’t go on in this limbo half-life watching from afar. By dawn, they would both be changed men. He prayed he could convince Ike to take what he had to offer, to take a chance, to take something, anything from him.


Molly said...

One word: YUM!!! Love the excerpt and the cover!!! I'm loving this party!

Eden Glenn said...

Thanks Molly. Do you like M/M erotic romance. This one has a few laughs along the way and some juicy eroticism. LOL

Molly said...

M/M erotic romance is one of my secret weaknesses....not many know I have a weakness for m/m stories but I do. Their stories are always so smokin! :D

I definitely can't wait to read it :)