A Sneak Peek Inside Issue 7 – The Hunting Room by Kia Groomon April 22, 2012 at 8:30 pm
With Midnight Echo Issue 7 creeping up on us like your favourite serial killer, the issue’s editor, Daniel Russell, thought you all deserved a sneak peek at the taboos within, a little slice of pleasure to tide you over…. So we’ll be posting story excerpts every Sunday from now on in the lead up to the May 31st release.
Also, don’t forget our Subscription Drive, with all manner of awesome prizes to be won!
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Tammy misses her daddy, unlike her uncaring mother. He taught her how to hunt, how to load the shotgun and how to stuff the carcasses. Locked in his hunting room, surrounded by mounted kills and ammunition, Tammy’s going to show her mother…
The Hunting Room by Kia Groom
Momma was out of the house today. She was out of the house a lot since Daddy died. She’d come home smelling of sweat and cigarettes, talking about how lucky they were. How life was going to change for them.
Tammy didn’t want things to change. Things had changed enough.
The door to the hunting room swung open, giving up the scent of mothballs and dust, a perfume masking something organic and decayed.
Tammy stood in the doorway and breathed it in, slowly.
When Daddy had been alive they’d spent a lot of time in this room together. Daddy had shown her how to gut a carcass. How to flay the skin from the meat. How to preserve the parts you wanted to keep.
Those grisly treasures covered the walls. A crazy-eyed bull stared down from above the fireplace, mouth gaping, yellowed teeth exposed. From the corner, a congregation of smaller creatures (some road kill, some critters Tammy remembered having killed herself) watched her with blank, unseeing eyes. Their little bodies were erect, posed to convey a sense of interest. They seemed sympathetic, Tammy thought. They were keeping a silent vigil over Daddy’s things.
On the work bench remained a collection of tools Daddy had used. They were not cleaned or put away, just abandoned. A set of tiny scissors lay open, crusted to the split in dark brown blood. A scalpel was still imbedded in the corpse of a possum.
Tammy ran her fingers along the matted fur on the head of the creature. She had always liked animals best when they were dead; when they were still and glass-eyed – when they didn’t have to struggle any more. Sometimes the kills would thrash about if you shot them wrong. Daddy said if something was in pain you should always put it out of its misery.
Momma had never understood hunting. She’d fought with Daddy about it a lot, and fought him even more when he wanted to take Tammy with him. But Momma never won those fights. Tammy would help Daddy carry his guns, would be there to pick the still-twitching corpses from the ground. Daddy said that Momma was just jealous. Tammy liked that idea; that she and Daddy shared something that Momma would never understand.
Pre-orders for the limited edition print run are now being taken.
If you live in Australia:
AU$12.50 (includes postage)
If you live overseas:
AU$17.50 (includes postage)
If you wish to purchase more than 1 copy, please contact us at Midnight Echo and we will provide a quote for postage.
And don’t forget, Midnight Echo Issue 6, the science fiction horror special, is still available in both print and digital formats. Click here to purchase your copy now.