Excerpt from newest short story called Cold Dark:

Uncle Jack hovered over me. I could smell him he was so close. Road grime, old cigarettes, coffee, and stale sweat. I didn’t like it.

His knees popped as he knelt to my level. “You keep an eye on your old man. You understand?”


“There’s something wrong with him.” He swiveled his head, staring past me to the house, as if my father might suddenly reappear.

“Where’s your mum?” he asked. He reached out, brushed something off my shoulder. Why’d he keep touching me?

“She’s dead.”

He was chewing on the side of his cheek. “A boy needs his mum.”

“My dad does all right.”

“I’m going to tell you a secret. Can you keep a secret?”

“Can I tell Sam?”

“No. This is for you alone.”


He leaned forward and I thought he was going to try to kiss me. I tried to back pedal but his hands were on my shoulders. I could taste his breath and I didn’t like it. “Your dad is going to try to do you wrong.” He must’ve seen the slight shake of my head.

“He’s going to kill you, boy. Now you understand?”