To read an interview with Loren Molloy, please see the February 2017 issue of Uncaged Book Reviews.
Thank you to Loren Molloy for the ARC.
The Storyteller of Pain
How are you supposed to survive when you’re trapped in a lunatic asylum with 13 demons and a deadly surgeon?
Dr. Sinclair had no idea but if she didn’t do something soon, her demise would become just another tale for The Storyteller of Pain?
Lilian looked at the notepad with Delia’s case
notes from the initial meeting with the family, hoping for
some clue she missed. She could trace the issues back to the root like a necklace all tangled in a knot or one of those maze puzzles you did as a child. She could see each ending and trace its tangled path to its source. This ability of hers is why she was the youngest ever to hold such a powerful and prestigious position in the field. Only twenty-eight and she was already known to have solved severe cases of lunacy where others in the field were at a complete loss. She had even been published several times for her marvelous work in the prominent field of psychoanalysis. Lily opened Mrs. DelaCour’s case file and spread it out on the table.
Taking the last swig from her glass, Lilian looked back at the bottle of Jack Daniels with longing. ‘F*ck it,’ she thought and went back for the bottle and soda. Looking back at the table she thought, I am not sitting my ass down one more time unless I have everything I definitely need.
Hmmm… ah yes. Music! I need music to concentrate by. She went over to her radio and switched it on. Pachelbel was softly playing in the background. ‘Ahh, so much better,’ she thought as she sat down. Ok now…Lily breathed a sigh of relief and took a swig of her drink.
Looking down at Delia’s intake photo Lily said,
“Why Delia? Why? Why are you a map of scars?”
She searched for the answer long into the night to no avail. She looked at her clock, ‘Ugh 3:45 in the morning.’ She had to sleep. She had work in less than 5 hours. She put everything away. All the files went back into her bag and she went to bed.
Lilian dreamt of John Barkley. At first it was a naughty slice of deliciousness. Walking into her office taking off his sweat soaked shirt. He began slowly walking toward her. His abs were rippling with each step. Sweat was glistening on his sun kissed skin. The next moment he was tearing chunks of flesh from his body and trying to give them to her as tokens of his affection. She began to scream and back away.
With each step backwards that she took, he would take another one towards her, holding in his outstretched hand another new, glistening blood soaked chunk of his own flesh. This continued until she was backed against the wall of her office. She was still screaming as he approached her. There was nowhere to turn. She was trapped between the wall behind her back and the new monstrosity blocking her way out.
He kept ripping chunks from his body until all she could see was bits and pieces of the former man. Half of one cheek was missing. His top lip was gone showing all gum and top teeth. He kept trying to speak but what was left of his face wasn’t working right. Suddenly the bloody mass that was left was against her. There was a crater where John’s aristocratic nose should have been. His eyes were wild with lust. He leaned forward bringing that deformed, bleeding face toward her trying to pucker up for a kiss.
“NOOOOOOOOOOOOO!” She screamed and opened her eyes.
Lilian was sitting upright in her bed, sheets hopelessly tangled around her sweat soaked body. Gasping for breath and sanity, she looked around her room making sure the nightmare didn’t follow her into this world. It was just a dream. I’m ok! Lilian repeated it several times before she saw her clock. Shit! I’m late for work! She dived out of bed and got ready as fast as possible. This never happens to her. Why didn’t that damn alarm clock go off?
the hospital, sees how the case is affecting Lillian and offers his help, and finding out that he’s seen something eerily similar during his time on the force, Lillian accepts his help and together they try to get to the bottom of this patient’s problems.
Be warned, this story is violent, and the author does not hold back on the descriptions. I did guess pretty quickly in the story what was going on, but I did not guess the outcomes and the author does a nice job making me squirm a bit. Always a good thing with horror. Reviewed by Cyrene