So you can read my books

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

I DIED A MAN_Platform Builder's 1st Challenge


Rachel wants us to create a 200 word flash fiction starting with "shadows crept across the wall" and ending with "everything faded." I edited a segment from my NEW ORLEANS ARABESQUE {a WIP.} :

Shadows crept across the wall. Three Spirit Night. Cosmic conjunctions aligning.

Outside, this house on Dauphine Street offered no clue to the carnage that took place within more than a century ago.

Time was unraveling. The Nameless One who had breached the Cosmic barrier, killing the Turk called the Sultan was now entering the present.

Screams of dismembered harem girls. The trilling of the Nameless One. The Sultan racing past me out the back door, running into the gardens -- where the police would find him buried in a grave dug with his own hands.

The house was a nightmare. Body parts were strewn along the staircase. The wood floors were slick with blood.

There. Right in front of me, layered in wet orange scales. An obscenity of flesh and tentacle. I would stop this abomination from preying on the innocents outside.

Perseus. Gilgamesh. Beowulf. Simple men who fought monsters. But I was a monster.

Tentacles slashed. Hungry teeth gnashed me. I laughed. I tore off my right glove, grasping a tentacle. The Nameless One screamed. I kept on laughing though it smashed me into oak walls.

It groaned, dropping me. I smiled. I had died a man.

Everything faded.
The murders of the Sultan and his entire household occurred in 1834 along with the fire which consumed the mansion of New Orleans' Jill the Ripper, Delphine LaLaurie. For more of the Sultan's murder mystery :



  1. Very vivid. Were you there when it happened?

  2. Was this from the book or a new creation for the campaign?

  3. Richard :
    The narration is by my hero, Samuel McCord. I'm glad my prose was vivid enough to lend a sense of me having witnessed it. Brrr. Unlike Lovecraft, I have no desire to see a Nameless One up close.

    Alex :
    It is a very abridged version of an episode of my WIP, NEW ORLEANS ARABESQUE. Thanks for visiting, Roland

  4. Dude! You never cease to amaze me with your prose. Nice one! :)

  5. Ooh great job! I love it! I always love your flash fiction :)

    I'm entry #19

  6. That was awesome. Even more so for the basis in history. Thanks for linking the article.

  7. Vivid and totally chilling entry Roland. Made my skin crawl. Nice touch adding the article link, will have to look this up now.

  8. Completely creepy and chilling in a very good way. Great voice!

  9. Thanks, Amber Cities :
    The word restriction really muted this excerpt. Yours was lovely, Roland

  10. Wow, Roland, that was intense. Good job. And thanks so much for visiting my blog. Have a great week.

  11. Duuuuude... Definitely on the freaky side. You're great--I can tell you're a great world builder. The whole orange tentacle thing grossed me out! Lol... Nice work ;)

  12. "Three Spirit Night." I loved it Roland. Your prose is always so evocative and puts me right there.

  13. Very gory. Well done! I'm #111 at the end:)

  14. Wow! That was very vivid and graphic, I really enjoyed it!

  15. Nice blog! I'm in your group for Rachael's 4th campaign. Glad to meet you! ~Theresa Sneed author of No Angel and forthcoming From Heaven to Earth

  16. That was fantastic. So creepy. Along with Philadelphia, New Orleans is SO HAUNTED.

  17. Joylene :
    Your post was really engaging and absorbing today. Thanks for the nice words.

    Morgan :
    A sickly orange it was,too, lass. (In my best Monty Python Scottish accent! LOL.) I'm glad you enjoyed it.

    Lady Gwen :
    Thank you so much for liking my post so. My 4th Victor Standish novel is entitled, THREE SPIRIT KNIGHT. Look at me! I'm only 73% finished with his 3rd adventure!

    Lori Ann :
    I'll visit your entry should this tour of duty at the blood center ever end! :-)

    Komal :
    I'm you enjoyed my muted little trip into the horror of haunted New Orleans.

    Theresa :
    Good to meet you. Don't be a stranger!

    Wendy :
    So good to see you here again. I didn't bug you with emails, for I wanted you to feel unpressured to heal at your rate. Always in your corner, Roland

    Jay :
    You should read UNDER A VOODOO MOON where haunted New Orleans comes to life at midnight for the street kid, Victor Standish, and his ghoul friend, Alice! So you live in Philadelphia? The shadowlands are feisty up there I hear! :-)

  18. Well done for pushing the boundaries! I'm totally liking this one!

  19. I want to say poor dude, but he seemed pretty happy. =) Great job!

  20. Thanks, Charmaine :
    Head for the stars is my motto. I am glad you enjoyed my entry, Roland

    K :
    I feel we have to be vivid to stick in the mind of any agent or editor who is reading our material. Hey, blog browsers are out there! LOL.

    E. :
    To man haunted by the fear he is a monster, to die like a man is a strange comfort. Alas, the Angel of Death refuses to take him. Now, that's cursed!

  21. Nice job! I like this. I never heard of Jill the Ripper... female I assume. Female serial killers intrigue me for some reason. Savannah, Georgia is another creepy city with lots of gruesome stories.

  22. Wow, Roland, what an interesting mystery! I'd love to read more about this man that called himself a Sultan!

  23. Humpty Dumpty :
    Thank you so much for liking my turns of phrases! :-)

    Alexia :
    Her name was Delphine LaLaurie, who, with her physician husband, conducted gruesome experiments,tortures, vivisections, and other terrible acts on their bound slaves. The two appear in the Victor Standish historical fantasy, UNDER A VOODOO MOON. Once in the beginning and for a longer time in the last chapters.

    Deniz :
    He was indeed a mysterious, cruel figure. He appears in NEW ORLEANS ARABESQUE (not yet published) and in the Victor Standish historical fantasy, THE RIVAL (due out this spring or summer.)

  24. Hey there! You've been shortlisted for the the finalists in the 4th campaign's first challenge. This is stage 2. Winner's will be announced in stage 4.

  25. Congrats Roland!That was creepy!