[Howdy folks! We are on day three of the ALLEN TOMBES give-away, and I’m throwing a bonus chapter out there for all the kids at home to enjoy! (Mostly, because I forgot how short Chapter 3 is!) So what this means for you people is that you’ll get not just 4 free chapters of the novella to chew on, you’ll end up getting the first 7—absolutely FREE! After that, if you want to read the next 30 chapters and see who lives and who gets MURDERED (lots of blood!) you’ll need to become a Primitive Patron by visiting our Patreon page and signing up for a buck! That ain’t much, especially when you consider all the FANCY THINGS you’ll be helping to support, like paying our yearly WordPress bill and helping make books and t-shirts and art prints, etc. So read on! Enjoy those wacky ALLEN TOMBES hijinks below! Then, when you’re ready to read the rest of the story, head over to the Patreon page and throw a dollar our way! You’ll be glad you did! —RFY]
ALLEN TOMBES – FIRE FROM WATER (Chapter 3)
Rose wasn’t home yet when Allen got there, and his Mom said that his Dad’s law firm had an important meeting with some huge company that evening, so it was just the two of them for dinner. Allen thought about showing his new necklace to his Mom, he’d tucked it into his shirt before coming inside so he could spring it on Rose, but he was afraid his Mom would think it was too gruesome and not let him keep it. She’d become much more sensitive to the horrific since Chris disappeared. She didn’t even like Allen to read horror stories, although she’d never, technically, said he couldn’t read them, but to be safe, he usually kept his hobbies to himself.
After dinner, Allen helped with the dishes, talked with his Mom for a bit about not-much, then told her he was going upstairs to “do some homework.” Hours later, just as he was finishing a comic adaptation of Lovecraft’s “Pickman’s Model,” Allen heard the front door open then close. He wasn’t sure if it was Rose or his Dad coming home, and frankly he was too tired to bother going downstairs to find out. It was already after midnight, so he decided to try to get some sleep. He turned his bedside radio on just loud enough to pick out the words of the songs playing, a bedtime ritual he’d developed to help keep himself from listening for more whispering and hissing in the middle of the night, and then he fairly quickly drifted off to sleep.
He wasn’t sure how long he’d been out when he woke, feeling incredibly cold—and heavy. He heard a rushing wind, and although it was late November, he noticed that his bedroom window was slowly opening—by itself.
ALLEN TOMBES – FIRE FROM WATER (Chapter 4)
The room was very dark, but a reddish glow was beginning to spread up the wall and toward the ceiling above his bed. He sat up and as he did, the shadows in the room shifted. His chest was very warm, and he realized that both the heat and the red light were coming from the charm around his neck. Frightened, he grabbed the leather string and started to pull.
“Don’t take it off,” a low, gruff voice said from the shadows next to the open window.
Allen felt himself go electric, his fingers and hands suddenly frozen. He knew that voice, although he hadn’t heard it for five years.
“Chris?” Allen said with a swallow.
“Shhhhh… They’re coming. Keep still and leave the amulet on. It’ll help shield you from their spells. I won’t let them get close enough to use their claws,” the voice said.
Allen couldn’t breathe. The charm burned his chest, but the voice! It was Chris, here, in his bedroom!
Allen noticed something at the window, like black ink moving through water. A shadowy arm swam through the air, wrapped around the windowsill, then a shoulder followed, and then teeth and eyes flowed into the room. It moved like smoke, a living shadow that maybe had once been a human, but had forgotten how flesh and blood was supposed to act. It swirled and sloshed through the window and into his room.
A small, blue glow appeared in the corner where Chris’s voice had come from. Silently, the glow grew longer, then blurred and slashed through the shadowy mass that had made it through the window and was now creeping towards Allen. He heard a squeal, then hissing like a punctured car tire. Teeth and claws, the only parts of the shadow that appeared to be solid, slid down the smoky body to the floor. The shadow mass dissipated quickly, and after a moment of confusion, Allen realized that his brother had destroyed whatever the thing was. Allen heard wild hissing and squealing from outside, and the figure that Allen was sure was his brother moved to the window and jumped.
“Chris!” Allen yelled. He sat for a few seconds on his bed, staring at the open window, then he heard more hissing and choked shrieks from outside.
The heat from the charm on his chest began to subside. Allen slowly got to his feet. The teeth and claws on the floor were smoking, melting into the carpet, leaving a greasy stain like dripped candle wax. Allen stepped around the remains and slid carefully up to the window, peaking out with one eye. Little wisps of smoke floated up from several spots in the lawn, but he couldn’t see any more shadow creatures—or Chris.
[Holy smokes! Did you see THAT coming? It’s starting to go down! Don’t forget to check back tomorrow for the final FREE installments of ALLEN TOMBES – FIRE FROM WATER! If you’re liking the tale, the entire novella, all 37 chapters, will ONLY be available through the Primitive Patreon page for a measly $1.00 contribution! Until tomorrow! Keep those windows locked tight! —RFY]
—Richard F. Yates
(Commander in Cheap of The Primitive Entertainment Workshop)