It's Kill Brian Keene on Your Blog Day! - F. Brett Cox
Nov. 2nd, 2009
01:40 pm - It's Kill Brian Keene on Your Blog Day!
Not Far to Go Before I Die
by F. Brett Cox
The woods were ugly, shallow, and well-lit by the full moon; nonetheless, Keene was apprehensive as he stumbled towards the wretched grove, having been warned by the Trustees that doom awaited within, a warning he blithely ignored even as he routinely ignored all advice from all organizations that falsely claimed power over him, a warning that, despite what common sense and a shrewd reading of the history of the organization told him, still gave rise to a flicker of dread, a spasm of suspicion as he entered the wood, pushing aside the deformed and hideous branches, not able to bear even the thought of the warped vegetation touching his face, gnarled like the claws of an arthritic demon, or perhaps the hands of the Chairman of the Board of Trustees, spreading incompetence across the land like a shroud—and yet, despite his best efforts, the very tip of a withered branch scratched his cheek, drawing blood that proceeded to flow as if from a much deeper wound, blood that turned black as it dripped down his face, his chin, eroding his flesh as it flowed, expelling his life force like the ancient, ash-heavy breath of a bellows from a hearth long abandoned, and as he fell to the ground, scattering the brittle leaves and sticks, he took thin comfort in knowing that, in his absence, the Trustees would lack a quorum, a final thought that brought the faintest hint of a smile to his rotting, bleeding face as he fell to the ground, dead.
[As a memorial to Mr. Keene, consider making a donation in support of the Shirley Jackson Awards.]