Dark in the Day
Dark in the Day
Dark in the Day is an anthology of weird fiction, penned by established writers and also those new to the genre – the latter being authors who are, or were, students of Creative Writing at Staffordshire University, where editor Storm Constantine occasionally delivers guest lectures. Her co-editor, Paul Houghton, is the senior lecturer in Creative Writing at the university.
Contributors include: Storm Constantine, Rosie Garland, Tanith Lee, Nicholas Royle.
Paperback: 318 pages
Publisher: Immanion Press (9 Sept. 2016)
My new short story ‘An End to Empire’ is featured in this anthology.
Read an excerpt here:
An End to Empire
I see her on the observation deck of the Empire State Building, where she is gazing through the bronze bars bolted round the perimeter. All for our own good: to deter the climbers, the jumpers and those who might itch to lob a bomb through the four-inch gap. I sidle up and make a snappy observation about King Kong and how he couldn’t do his fateful climb these days. If she laughs, I’m in with a chance. Go where your accent is an aphrodisiac, the ad said. Two days in the Big Apple and not a sniff of interest from these hard-faced females. It’s not my style to go hungry.
She shows no sign of having heard. I try again, give her the line about being the English guy lost in the city: artistic, lonely, sensitive and searching for his Muse. She raises a hand and crooks her fingers as though cradling an invisible apple. I think she’s about to brush her knuckles against my face, but instead she cups her ear like she missed what I said and wants me to repeat it. The breeze up here is certainly stiff enough to toss the words aside. I take it as a good sign.
From this angle, all I can see is her left cheek; nose and chin sideways on. Her coat is buttoned to the throat, long sleeves covering her knuckles and the hem reaching halfway down the calf; the verging-on-the-unremarkable sort worn by women on the Upper East Side. She could stroll down Fifth Avenue and not turn a single head. A cloak of invisibility. To all but me.
I lean a little closer and she tucks a strand of hair behind her ear. Her skin is so bright it looks polished. Middling height, middling figure as far as I can tell. Maybe she is hiding voluptuous curves under the coat. It’s a navy blue that on first glance could be taken as nun-like. No; an indigo cut from the night sky.
Not just any night sky…