Monday, October 16, 2017

About This Website

Enter into the frightful world of the macabre, where things are not always as they first seem. Open the gates to those obscure regions of your soul where fear and hidden desires wreak havoc with the imagination. I bid you welcome to Tales of Dark Romance and Horror, the official home for the fiction of A.D. Vick. 

In the days ahead, I will, on a bi-weekly basis, be featuring an excerpt from one of my pieces of short fiction, starting with those contained in my first book, Tales of Dark Romance and Horror, continuing with the second, The Darkness Beyond the Misty Veil: More Tales of the Macabre, and beyond. Exciting times are approaching. I hope you will come back here to visit often.

I'd like to give special thanks to the following: 

To Lady-Moriendistock for allowing me to use her beautiful and most romantic photo at the top of this page. Visit her gallery here.

I offer my gratitude to Miramariann and Morten Marius Hansen for gracing the cover of my book with their wonderfully romantic photo. You can check out Mira's many fabulous photographs by visiting her Facebook page

A special round of thanks goes to Marina Bocharova for the wonderful artwork she produced to accompany some of my literary offerings. Her website can be found by following this link.

My gratitude also goes to Jeff Blevens for allowing me to use his magnificent photo to grace the cover of The Darkness Beyond the Misty Veil: More Tales of the Macabre.

Last but certainly not least, I would like to offer words of appreciation to the Insomniac, who not only offered me sound advice on various technological problems I encountered, but especially for helping to make things fit here. Follow this link to The Insomniac's Attic,
    
Come back soon for a visit. I'm sure you'll have a horror-able time!  




October Creepy Samples Offering: The Legend of Mercy Brown

We've reached the middle of October and that means that it's time once again for another Creepy Sample's Offering. 

Since it is so close to Halloween, and to celebrate the grand event, I'd like to do something different this time around. So, instead of offering a short-story segment from one of my books, I'd like to link to a tale that appeared on my blog, The Gothic Embrace, several years back. It's called "The Legend of Mercy Brown: A True Vampire Story." Mercy Brown is considered by many to be one of America's best known vampires. 

Just follow the link below to read the strange, tragic, but true tale of this late nineteenth century phenomenon. 

The Legend of Mercy Brown: A True Vampire Story

Sunday, October 1, 2017

Creepy Samples Offering: The Caretaker

 October has arrived, and with it a growing anticipation that speaks of Halloween drawing near. With the special night only 30 days away, and its spirit growing in intensity with each passing day, what better Creepy Samples Offering could I feature at this time than a ghost story involving a cemetery caretaker who happens upon an old, previously undiscovered grave in the nearby woods?

This week's offering is taken from my book entitled "The Darkness Beyond the Misty Veil: More Tales of the Macabre." The name of the story, perhaps not surprisingly, is "The Caretaker:"

The caretaker examined every bit of ground in the vicinity. As the minutes passed, the brightness of the rising moon increased, illuminating the terrain well enough that Elena's grave marker, although small, should easily have been seen. Yet, his search remained fruitless, and his frustration grew. Damn it! I know I'm in the right place. Why can't I find it?

The discomfited man, having covered the entire area to no avail, paused momentarily. As he gazed toward the forest beyond his field of operation, he couldn't help noticing how uncannily foreign the surrounding landscape had become. The trees now seemed larger, older than before; their thick, majestic trunks and limbs reaching toward the heavens. He was struck with a sudden realization that the cold northerly breeze, which had accompanied him into the forest, was absent. In its place was a translucent, swirling fog that seemed to emanate a dull light of its own. The moon was no longer visible. Nothing was recognizable, and he felt as though he had been snatched from the world with which he was familiar and placed into a new, unfamiliar reality; one much more eerie and portentous than his own. The sudden stillness of the place unnerved him.

Suddenly, the sound of approaching footsteps broke the silence. These were unlike the earlier disturbances. They were slower, more deliberate—human! For the moment the thick fog continued to block his vision as well as that of whoever was approaching.
The caretaker took advantage of the opportunity to take cover behind the thick trunk of a nearby tree. The sound grew louder with every step and then...

Is that a woman's voice I hear? It is indeed, and she's singing!

With that realization the object of his attention emerged into view. The lady moving in his direction seemed the most beautiful woman he had ever seen. She continued walking slowly, pensively, all the while singing words of love to a tune he'd never before heard. She sported a stylish wide-brimmed hat, which partially covered her flaming red mane--hair that cascaded well over her shoulders. Her beige dress, although voguish, reminded him of something folks would wear to civil war re-enactments. And then he noticed it—a necklace bearing what appeared to be a heart made of ruby. His mind raced as the exquisite female drew near. Pieces of the puzzle began falling into place.

My dream, she looks just like the woman I dreamed about a couple of weeks ago. And that ruby heart, could it be her prize....

“Hey lady, Lady! Hold up a minute!”

She paused and looked back disdainfully at a dirty-looking man running in her direction. Taking her eyes off him for just a moment, she tucked the ruby heart under the cover of her dress before turning around to confront him.

“Want some company?” He asked her. “After all, a pretty lady like you ought not to be walking in the woods alone; 'specially, not in the early evenin' like this.”

He stared at her with beady eyes, not removing his gaze from her. Feelings of anger and even jealousy began gripping at the caretaker as the uncouth man continued with his nauseating pursuit of the woman.

Well that about does it for this week's sample. I hope you enjoyed it. I'll be back with another Creepy Sample's Offering around the 15th. Until then, don't forget to keep it spooky! 

Artwork and photo by Marina Bocharova. You can visit her website by following this link.

Saturday, September 16, 2017

Creepy Samples Offering: The Cellar: A True Story

Here we are in the middle of September, and that can mean only one thing: It's time once again for the next Creepy Sample's Offering.

Today's offering, called "The Cellar: A True Story," is taken from my first book entitled "Tales of Dark Romance and Horror." This selection however, is a bit different from my other pieces because it is a true account of occurrences that took place in my childhood home once my father, at my urging, revealed some terrifying family secrets to me. Please keep in mind that what I relate in this story comes from a child's perspective many years ago. Yet, I still believe that the things described in this piece transpired as I relate them. You the reader, can be the judge. 

It was a dark and dreary night
Around the campfire bright
The captain said Antonio
Tell us your most fearful story
And Antonio, he began


I still remember the dreary afternoon upon which I relentlessly pressed my father to reveal the secrets—to speak to me of the unexplainable occurrences of which I had inkling. 

“If I tell you it will frighten you,” he would say.

“No! No it won’t scare me. I’m not afraid of that stuff.”
“It was a dark and dreary night…around the campfire bright…” he responded.


This process kept repeating itself; my frustration with it growing.
 

“It was a dark and dreary night…”

Why does he keep repeating that poem? I thought to myself, it doesn’t go anywhere!

“It was a dark and dreary night…around the campfire bright…”

“Why do you keep repeating that poem Dad? Can’t you just tell me?”

Then…he suddenly…RELENTED!

I listened to the stories as, one after the other, they spoke of things more horrible than I had ever imagined. Perhaps they were horrible because they were real. How could they not be? Had I not been relentless in pressing my dad to tell them? Had he not been reluctant to speak of them?

Where do I even begin to describe the horrors—the otherworldly phantoms that assaulted me from some dark and forbidden place? How do I relate the feeling one gets knowing that something kept walking up Aunt Elsie’s stairwell—that kept attempting to open her door—ALL NIGHT LONG!

Then there was the priest with a horse’s hoof instead of a foot—a priest that was standing in a closet when someone tried to open the door!

As my father continued on with his telling of these tales, I remained transfixed. I learned of the clock that no longer worked, yet chimed just at midnight one Christmas Eve.

“Someone is going to die within the next year,” it was proclaimed, and someone did. The following Christmas Eve the non functional clock, as if arising from its own death, struck twelve once again. That was when my great grandfather, who had once lived in the same cellar that I was now sitting in—that’s when he departed from this world.

Most hideous and unnerving of all however, was the alarm clock. Oh yes, the alarm clock. It wasn’t my alarm clock—the one that woke me for school most mornings. No, it was the one of which my father spoke—the one that rang without being asked to—the one that also didn’t function! I didn’t know who that hellish clock belonged to or where it was physically located, but I understood its power—ITS POWER TO TERRIFY! It haunted me in my dreams—ringing and spinning—ringing and spinning on some unknown ledge as it hurled its spine-tingling waves of terror at my very soul. Still, even that repellent clock, with all the evil it could cast, was not the worst of it.

Once I learned the secrets my world changed. My nights alone—those nights when my folks would go out-- they became fearsome things. On those nights I would hear objects moving around in the darkness of the cellar. Something would slide; there would be a crash. I intuited that the sounds came from the wooden flats, upon which mason jars filled with nails, screws and washers stood. These would slide and crash—slide and crash. Yet, whenever my father next returned to his shop NOTHING WOULD BE OUT OF PLACE—NOTHIN

Well, that about does it for this week's selection. I hope you enjoyed it, and if you'd like to learn more about this story or how to purchase my books, please feel free to visit my website, which is listed on the right, a bit closer to the top.
Until next time then, keep it spooky! 

Photo Source: Gothic Pictures Gallery
Author unknown

Sunday, September 3, 2017

September Creepy Samples Offering: Angeline for All Eternity

We now find ourselves at the beginning of September and that can mean only one thing. It's time once again for the next Creepy Samples Offering!

Today's excerpt comes from the story, "Angeline for All Eternity." We begin with a young man named Adam, sitting at the entrance of an age-old cemetery. He is waiting for nightfall and the arrival of a mysterious, alluring woman he'd met just the night before.

"I am Angeline, the Lady of Darkness," she had told him. Now, after the previous night's encounter, he was willing to follow her wherever she would take him.

"Still sitting on the stone wall, his thoughts momentarily return to the present. It is twilight now, and the crickets once again announce the commencement of their nightly mating ritual. He looks around and gazes into the deepening darkness but still sees no sign of her.

"At this point his thoughts again revert to his recent encounters with her—to the way she endearingly touches his face while gazing deeply into his eyes—to their first kiss and her
cold but intoxicating lips upon his—kissing roughly—biting…Within the course of just three nights she brought her prospective lover to a state of delirium. THEN SHE
OFFERED HIM THE PROMISE OF FOREVER!


"It was at the end of their meeting on the previous night when she spoke the words he wanted to hear: 'You want to be with me don’t you Adam? I can feel your desire—your craving for me. Well, I crave you too my love—in ways that you cannot even fathom. I want your life—your essence to become a part of me.'

"Gently stroking his hair and face she continued. 'I ask only one simple pleasure from you. I demand a ritual that I believe will be equally as pleasurable for you as for me. If you trust me enough to consent to this it will seal our bond as life partners; you will have gained my eternal love and affection. We will walk together through this world in unison and with undying devotion to one another.'

Although he would have consented to just about anything she desired at that moment Adam made a feeble attempt at cohesiveness by offering a question. '“What type of ritual
do you want me to take part in? What is it that you want?”'

'“I ask only that you allow me to drink some of your blood,”' she responded. “I won’t hurt you and I believe that you’ll find it to be a most pleasurable experience, but that is what I ask.'
She looked at him imploringly and with a hunger—no, thirst that he’d not seen in her before.


'“You’re a vampire? I heard that some people were into that, but I never thought that I would meet anyone who was.'

'“Shh, she admonished him while putting a finger gently to his lips. 'Let your thoughts dwell upon this, and if you agree, meet me at the old cemetery on the north side of town tomorrow evening. I will come to you after the darkness descends. If you want to be mine, wait for me by the entrance way, for I will certainly come to you.'

"With that she gave him one more endearing kiss, turned and slowly disappeared into the
darkness."


There you have it! I hope you enjoyed this week's entry. Until next time, keep it spooky!

Photo source: Gothic Pictures Gallery  
and Vampir-Club.de.

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Creepy Samples Offering: Jessica

It is the middle of August and that means it's time for the third in a series of Creepy Samples Offerings. This excerpt is taken from the story entitled "Jessica," which is found in my first book, "Tales of Dark Romance and Horror.

We pick up where Jasmine, after leaving her friend's collectible's shop, arrives home with a creepy doll named Jessica. As Jasmine walked along the dreary streets of Sea Haven, she'd had the distinct feeling that someone or something had followed her along the way. Now that she's at home, that feeling has not dissipated.

"Outside, the stalker stands idly by the gate. Barely noticeable to the naked eye, the being pauses – held back by fear. It is not a fear of being seen by passers-by in their swift vehicles; more likely than not, they would have to be aware of this visitor’s presence to see it – to see him! Oh no, it’s the human – the woman that lives in this house – who now has the body of his beloved in her possession; she’s the one to be concerned about.

"I know she’s aware of my presence, he thinks to himself. She walks between the realms; she has power. Still, I must go in there. I must be re-united before it’s too late. I have to be brave. I’ll wait until she sleeps – they all sleep. Then I will see my beloved.
***

"Jasmine returns to her living room, puts the soup, sandwich, and a cup of herbal tea on top of the coffee table, then moves over to the fireplace where a grate, already stacked with paper, kindling and logs, awaits the flick of her lighter. Still convinced that an unknown presence lurks nearby, she watches as the fire begins to take on a life of its own, then steps outside the front door and stands on the small deck silently – not looking for anything in particular, just feeling – sensing. For just the briefest moment she sees a dark distortion by the gate - perceives might be a better word. 

Nevertheless, even though it appears to have temporarily moved away, she is aware that it remains nearby. She’s aware that it has an intention – an intention that will somehow involve her.

"'Show yourself,' she says in a conversational tone, 'show yourself to me so that I can know what you want.'

'There is nothing else to be seen or heard except for the fog horn blowing in the distance and the waves as they continue to crash upon the nearby shore. After standing in silence for a few more moments with nothing manifesting, the intuitive woman returns to the shelter of her small but comfortable home.

"Once more inside the living room, she lights her wall candles and a stick of incense, chooses a CD to play, and then turns off the lights. “This ought to make you feel right at home Jessica,” she says quietly while casting a glance at the figurine, 'I bet you can handle this just fine; and maybe – just maybe, we’ll get to the bottom of what’s happening here.'

"As she settles onto the sofa with her snack, the sound of music fills the air. It is slow and melancholy; yet, dark and beautiful – funeral doom, encompassing the small abode in an almost otherworldly atmosphere. Within a few minutes of finishing her meal, she reclines against the back of the sofa with feet on the coffee table. The slow but hypnotic beat of the music mixing with the flickering light and fragrance of incense brings her to the brink of trance – only to the brink however, for she knows that it is necessary to stay alert – at least until she confronts that which remains nearby.

"After a moderate amount of time transpires, there is a slight movement of the door, but it is enough to garner her attention. Gazing toward the entrance way she sees a short but translucently dark figure looking back at her. Sensing the being’s caution – its fear of her, Jasmine is able to release any apprehension she may have had. Without moving, she watches as the unearthly visitor inches forward and away from the door."

Well, there you have it; the second Creepy Sample's Offering for the month of August! Stick around, because the next offering is just over two weeks away. Until then, keep it creepy!

Photo Source: Gothic Pictures Gallery.
Artist: Unknown

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Creepy Samples Offering - August 1 Edition


Once again, it's time for another Spooky Samples Offering. This time, the excerpt comes from a story entitled, "The Collective Evil," which is the second of my "Raven" series.
In this tale we once again glimpse into the Land of the Dead, where an unspeakable evil wreaks havoc with the inhabitants thereof.
Let's join a band of Fae horsemen as they plan their defenses against the evil that threatens their existence:

Somewhere out in the darkness of the night, Lord Sorin signals the other horsemen to stop, even as he attempts to quell his own mount’s nervousness; this, after hearing what appears to be an explosion - one that is quickly followed by a hideously-low growl – an almost sadistic, yet sickeningly vile sound. “What in the name of the Goddess was that?” he asks aloud – his question not aimed at anyone in particular.

One of the other riders, a woman, approaches and stops at his side. She removes the hood that has been restricting her hair, and giving her head a shake, frees her long curly locks. Her hair is so intensely red that its color can be discerned even on a night as gloomy as this. “During all of the time that I have lived in the land of Mircea, I’ve never heard a sound as horrific as that.”

“Neither have I Alexandreina. And I cannot believe that this is not some hideous manifestation that has come to us by way of the humans.”

“Perhaps, but we cannot forget that the human world likely contains as much diversity of thought and action as does our own. Earlier tonight, you spoke with the human witch that took residence here after her departure from the Earth plane. What are her plans?”

“She intends to consult with her familiar, the one named Sebastian. I must admit that he displays magnificent powers of perception. I would…”

“Then I must attempt to contact her clairvoyantly, she interrupts, “I doubt that whatever is afoot here can be defeated by bow, arrow and sword alone. I suggest that we hold up here for awhile and that you and the others allow me the solitude needed to make contact.”

“I will make it so Alexandreina.”

Their conversation concluded, she leaves his side and rides off in search for a place of solitude. As the sound of her horse’s hoofs retreats toward a nearby rock formation, something new becomes audible. It is the sound of a traumatized people –screaming – fleeing from some unspeakable horror that lurks somewhere in the darkness. 

There you have it. I hope you enjoyed this week's sample and will come back here again around August 15 for the next Spooky Samples Offering.  Until then, keep it creepy!

Saturday, July 15, 2017

Creepy Samples Offerings

Welcome to the first of many Creepy Samples Offerings. Around the first and fifteenth of each month, you will be presented with an interesting segment from each of my stories for your entertainment.

Today's presentation comes from the first tale appearing in the book entitled Tales of Dark Romance and Horror. The name of the story is Raven. Enjoy!

It was nearing sunset when I reached the cemetery. Upon entering, a crow called to me. Ah yes, the crow, I think to myself, messenger of death, and harbinger of magick. “What is it that you are trying to tell me?” I asked quietly.

Often the cawing of a crow is not directed at a human being; after all, crows have their own social systems and communicate with one another often. Still, there are other times when one must listen – respect the wisdom and await the manifestation of the crow’s message. At that moment I felt that this must be one of those times. An omen had been delivered to me. This wasn’t the first time that such a thing occurred in my life.

The crow cawed again. Looking up, I could see her sitting high in a tree branch. She was looking down at me. Realizing that my arrival home would be delayed somewhat; I sat under the old oak tree that stood next to the church. Then, I waited for something to happen.
With the setting of the sun came the twilight; which in turn, deepened as if in some mad rush to bring about total darkness. I looked toward the east and noted the rise of the waxing moon. 
Then, upon gazing back to the opposite end of the cemetery from which I sat, I saw a woman walking past the further-most grave markers – a beautiful woman! It was hard to see her well in the deepening darkness, but I could discern that she had dark hair – long flowing black hair, and I could see that she was wearing a full black dress, which perfectly accentuated the curves of her body.
How did she come in here without me seeing her? I asked myself. Did she come in through the woods instead of through one of the entrances? Why would she walk through the woods with it getting so dark?

Suddenly, she paused and looked in my direction. Her gaze was electrifying! Suddenly, I was overcome with a need to meet this woman – this woman whose face I could not see, but whose spirit and essence I felt like I had known for ages. My rational mind struggled to keep up with this sudden turn of events: Why am I so affected by simply seeing a woman in the cemetery? Besides, who is she? I’ve never seen her before, so why should I get so bent out of shape simply because she looks my way?

The answers were not forthcoming; I responded to her gaze with a simple wave – a wave that somehow did not seem to be an appropriate response to the electrifying jolt that she had just sent me. Then, turning toward the nearby woods, she continued her slow walk and then…she disappeared from my sight, just as quickly as she first appeared to me.

Above Photo: Author unknown. 
Source: Gothic Pictures Gallery

Friday, June 30, 2017

The Darkness Beyond the Misty Veil: More Tales of the Macabre

This second book by A.D. Vick continues his tradition of presenting short fiction in the Gothic and Southern Gothic styles. The pages within this publication present a compelling mix of seduction, romance, horror, and the supernatural. 

Here you will read about an old man's encounter with the Angel of Death, a mean-spirited child caught off guard by the Christmas demon, ghoulish creatures in subterranean places, seductive vampires, and ghosts whose tragic stories coincide with the lives of those living in the present. 

The Darkness Beyond the Misty Veil: More Tales of the Macabre is available in both paperback and ebook format at the Lulu Bookstore,

It is also available in both paperback and ebook format at Amazon
, Barnes & Noble, and other similar venues. 
Support independent publishing: Buy this book on Lulu.

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Tales of Dark Romance and Horror:


Tales of Dark Romance and Horror is a collection of short stories and novelettes that share very human themes; romantic love, forbidden desire, seduction, and the struggle against one's personal demons. Then again, there are demons here of a different sort as well. These inhabit realms that exist outside the human experience, beyond that which is seen by the naked eye. Indeed, they inhabit the dwelling places of the dead and manifest as alluring spirits as well as loathsome, destructive entities. There are also monsters and dark beings that walk among us in the modern world we inhabit. These are the stuff of folklore and legend. They can be darkly seductive and yet, oh so deadly. We speak here of monsters that lurk by the forest in the murkiest swamp lands, and we speak of the undead, blood-thirsty vampires that walk among us during the dark hours of the night. All this and more is contained within the fables presented on the pages of this book.

Tales of Dark Romance and Horror is available in paperback and ebook form at the Lulu bookstore.
It is also available at Amazon Dot Com where it can be found in Kindle format, Barnes & Noble,
and other similar vendors.

Just click on the banner below to obtain a copy of  my book--and thank you!



Support independent publishing: Buy this book on Lulu.