- Guest Post by Paul Harry
I was booked for a book signing at a small shop called “The Bell, Book, and Candle”. It was a late signing, scheduled for a Saturday night which seemed a little unusual, but I figured it was probably a small store that catered to the evening crowd. Since I had very little planned for the week and nothing planned for this particular evening I had my agent book the signing with the hopes that I might find a young woman available who might be interested in having dinner with me afterwards. Saturday nights can get quite lonely.
Arriving at the shop around 9:00 PM I was surprised to find that the lights were all off–the place completely black. Immediately I panicked thinking that I had gotten the date wrong, so I checked my i-pad and sure enough the book signing was scheduled for this evening and I was a little early, so someone should be here. Perhaps the owner had to postpone.
I approached the shop and noticed that the windows were blacken out by a heavy dark paper with the words ‘Big Sale Tomorrow’ printed on them. It seemed odd, but not to be dissuaded I knocked on the door to see if any one was inside. I heard a voice say, “just a moment,” then a key in the door. To my surprise a beautiful woman with dark red hair greeted me. She was dressed in a black satiny outfit that rustled softly as she moved. “Hello,” she said. “Are you Mr. Harry?”
“Yes,” I replied, “but please, call me Paul.”
She smiled and opened the door wide. “I’m Anna. We’ve been expecting you.”
I nodded and followed her lead inside, watching her hips sway gently back and forth. My thoughts, shall we say, were primal. She was a beautiful woman.
“May I offer you a glass of wine?” she asked, taking me past several rows of books to the rear of the store. “We just opened a bottle of Pinot.”
“That would be great,” I answered as we entered another room where I saw for the first time a number of other guests. They were all dressed in black formal wear and standing around a white linen table with glasses of wine, cheese and crackers set atop. I immediately felt a little out of place. I coughed, slightly embarrassed. “I feel a little underdressed. This is more than I am used too,” I said.
“Oh this is nothing,” replied Anna. “We like to dress up and role play with our guest speakers. Surely you can understand. I mean being a writer of horror stories and all. We just want to get into your mind.”
I smiled awkwardly as the group of people surrounded me. They smiled blankly at me with eyes glazed and red wine staining their teeth. Some pressed near to me, their lips quivering as if expecting to nibble on my cheek. It was very eerie.
“So which of my books would you like to discuss?” I asked hurriedly.
Anna pointed to a chair, pulling it out so that I could sit. I complied and she poured me a glass of wine.
“We’d like to talk about all your books, especially the ones where you maligned the vampires.”
“Oh, Death on a Cross,” I responded.
“Yes,” the group replied in unison. There response made me uncomfortable. These people seemed a little strange perhaps to the degree of having an agenda.
Anna patted me on the arm and smiled. “Mr. Harry . . . Paul . . . we are perhaps your most devoted readers. We’ve read everything you’ve ever written.” She bent her face near to mine, the scent of her perfume intoxicating me. It was then that I felt my hands being held and handcuffs placed on my wrists. I was quickly subdued and bound to the chair in which I sat. I then watched as Anna pulled out a long, slender knife, her smile wicked, her dark eyes giving my body a lusting look as she cut the buttons off my shirt. I was ready to crap my pants.
Suddenly to my surprise I heard a voice coming from the back of the group. It was Peter, my old agent, the one I had recently dumped when signing with Harpers. He came forth smiling like the devil himself. I was stunned.
“Paul,” he said. “You cheap, rotten bastard. You remember when I said you were the best writer I had ever come across. That I’d promote you work for free–you remember?”
I nodded, my voice silent in my ear.
“Yeah, well no one works for free. And the cheap trash you’ve been pedaling well it’s not fit for toilet paper.”
Though I wanted to respond, the voice in my throat was dry and weak. I struggled to mouth something, but nothing came. Peter came close, breathing heavy and foul in my face.
“My friend Anna here has read everything you’ve written about her people,” he said.
My mind flashed–her people? I looked at her beautiful face and I could swear her canine teeth grew in length right before my eyes. I was a dead man. My tongue twisted in my mouth. I spat dryly, “No, this can’t be.”
“Oh yes,” answered Peter. “It is and it will be. Tonight on this very table these fine folk are going to eat you piece by piece, bit by bit. And then it hit me . . .
THIS WAS NOT WHAT THEY MEANT BY BOOK SIGNING HORROR STORY!
Shit, I got it all wrong! Sorry.
Buy Now @ Amazon
Genre – Sci-Fi / Historical / Contemporary
Rating – NC17 for explicit sex
Connect with Paul T Harry on Twitter