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September 3, 2015

Behind Blue Eyes | Helen Deakin

 Behind Blue Eyes | Helen Deakin 


Do you love a book that keeps you guessing………………………………………………?
Behind Blue Eyes is an electrifying mystery/thriller with an exciting forbidden romance weaved into its intricate web of intrigue and suspense.

 Despite his troubled past, Bradley Harper had never really had anything out of the ordinary happen to him. Life seemed good. Then one day, everything changed.

 It started with a brutally mangled dead bird in his yard. Then every day, another appears in the same spot. Then there’s the strange notes, the horrific and sometimes gruesome pranks and soon, death comes for those he loves. Not even the chemistry laced relationship with the lovely Anita Greenall can stop his mind from heading down a dark and unstable path.

 But the biggest torture is the questions: who’s doing it and why him?  Soon he will find out, as he comes face to face with the monster that has been making his life hell and discovers, what really hides behind blue eyes.

 An intense, gripping debut novel that will wrap its fast-paced pages around you and won’t let go.


Behind Blue Eyes | Helen Deakin 

(Mystery/thriller novel)

Bradley awoke to the faint, high-pitched sound of wrens twittering away in the trees, torn from a dream in which he was drowning in a sea of bloody feathers.

For a moment he had forgotten where he was and wondered why the mattress beneath him felt different to that of his nice comfortable Sealy.  As he clawed his way up out of the land of sleep, he remembered that Danny had persuaded him into a weekend camping out on old Patterson’s property, where they had camped with Danny’s Uncle Matt on many occasions.

The property was located just out past Clifton and belonged to a friend of Danny’s grandparents.  He had allowed them to camp there whenever they wanted as long as that whenever they came out they would bring him a six pack of beer and a Playboy magazine. Danny and Bradley still held him to his agreement every now and then.

Danny had suggested they spend a couple days camping out under the stars and doing some fishing to give Bradley a break from the stress of running his business all by himself.  But the real escape had been from those damn dead birds and of course the letters that had started to arrive once or twice a week.  They were not threatening in any way—which was why the police would not assist him in such minor matters as dead birds and silly letters that did not directly promise him harm in any way.  They were only ever as short as a couple sentences or a paragraph at the most.  Sometimes it was as short as only one sentence but they were strange; unsettling—creepy even.


‘One, two, skip a few, 99 a hundred dead birds’


‘Mary, Mary quite contrary how does your garden grow?
With blood stained bells and rotten smells and dead things all in a row.’


‘Hush little baby don’t say a word, mammas gunna give you another dead bird.  You’re up and down and in and out, I make you pout just like a trout.  I make you cry, you fear my lie, you’ll think of me as time flies by. You scream to me in your sleep. Riddle me this, little Bo Peep.  Who the hell am I?’


But despite the letters and the birds and the bottle of red paint that had been thrown at his house—something Bradley now thought was connected to it all—the police had said that there was little they could do.  They had agreed to put a detective car nearby to keep a watch on his place for twenty-four hours only, just to see if there was any suspicious activity (and a lot of good that did considering there was still a dead bird in his yard that morning but for the first time in a different spot; up the back yard as if it had been thrown over his back fence this time) and they said they would send a patrol car past his house every now and then just to keep an eye on the place but they couldn’t offer their service any further unless he was directly threatened.  They told him to photograph every bird, retain every letter and keep a record of the dates they appeared.  So if the harassment went any further they would have the evidence there.

He crawled out of his tent and the sun hit him full on in the face. Why he had pitched his tent with the door facing east he didn’t know but regretted it now.  Danny was nowhere to be seen.  He was probably down at the creek somewhere, fishing already as he liked to get an early line in.

Bradley chucked some extra wood chips on the fire and poured some water into the camp kettle.  Enjoying the smoky smell of burnt wood, he sat back and began the wait for boiling water by hot coals, taking in his surroundings with a lighthearted euphoria.  There was nothing more beautiful and peaceful than sitting out in the scrub with nothing but the quiet rustling of trees and bird song, the bush crickets and the random crackling of the campfire—no one around to bother you; no distractions; just pure serenity. He could stay there forever, just taking it all in.

It was a shame that the beatitude of this blissful serenity had to be so rudely interrupted by the continuously reoccurring thoughts that plagued him relentlessly.

Who was behind all of these things happening to him?

Why were they doing it?

Was it just all a bunch of harmless pranks or something more sinister?

Throw into the mix the noxious worm his mother had planted in his mind the night of the party and you had one troubled young man. He still thought about that conversation now and then.  It breached itself less frequently as time went on, yet it still played on his mind when the thought did arise; when that hungry little beast of a worm decided to surface out of hunger, needing to feed on his madness.

Curiosity—or maybe more of an overbearing need to know—had got the better of him one afternoon when the power was out, after sitting for an hour alone with nothing but his thoughts and he had whipped out his mobile and called his mother.

Henry had answered the phone of course and before Bradley could get anything more out of his mouth than ‘put mum on the phone,’ his pugnacious father had bellowed in his ear, something about the nerve of him; how dare he call and hung up. Bradley had regretted his actions at once and sat there for the next hour and a half that the power was out, not only dwelling on the potent need to quell the discomfort of the stomach worm but praying that his mother hadn’t copped the wrath of the creature on his behalf.

Lost in a world of ambiguous and twisted thoughts, Bradley hadn’t even realized that the kettle was finally bubbling away. Once he saw that the water was ready, he made himself up just enough powdered milk to make his cuppa then grabbed a piece of bread, stuck it on the roasting fork and went about making some good old campfire toast. He forced his thoughts to something more pleasant and that wasn’t hard either for she was an aromatic flower he found his thoughts buzzing around rather regularly.

He hadn’t seen Anita too often since the incident with Derrick but that just made his feelings for her even stronger. He longed for contact with her and every bit of his body seemed to ache for her as if he had some kind of debilitating disease and she was the medicine that was the only cure.

Everyone has that special someone that crawls up under their skin, digs in and won’t go away and Anita had that particular effect on him. He had considered trying to find a way to wrap his tongue around the words to describe how he felt but he just didn’t have the nerve to and at the end of the day, she was an unavailable woman and he had never been the type of person to try and move in on another man’s woman (‘There’s a first time for everything,’ a little voice says) even if that man didn’t deserve her.

Take the fact that he liked her so much it hurt and that he knew she liked him back but they couldn’t take anything further than this unspoken, secret attraction they both held onto; add to the equation a cheating jerk who probably would never let her go because he knew he had all the security of a good relationship plus he could get away with getting some on the side. Mix it all together—don’t forget a little salt and pepper for flavour—and you had a recipe for more mind twisting paraphernalia to put on the pantry shelf full of metaphoric, sour tasting nutriments such as ‘Mums secret gut worm recipe’ and ‘dead bird soufflé.’

So, going against every moral fiber in him that told him admitting love to an unavailable woman was wrong, he started to mentally prepare himself for the conversation in which he would express his deepest desire to her; his deepest desire being her.

It may not be morally correct to make a move on another man’s lady but he felt he needed to delineate just how deeply he felt for her; to try to talk her into getting rid of Derrick so they could take a shot at it.  Because he was so sure they were meant to be together and he really needed something nice in his life right now and—for him—it didn’t come any nicer than Anita Greenall.



Find Helen on her website and social media..!……




You can also read another one of Helen Deakin’s spine tingling
extracts from her *cue suspenseful music.………paranormal horror novella book ‘The Clock Stuck One’ on our mag here 


August 17, 2015

FADING AWAY – Dannielle Wicks

FADING AWAY – Dannielle Wicks



By day Danielle works as an Information Technology Officer for her local council, and by night Danielle is a TV show junkie!
I am a Qualified Justice of the Peace for the state of Queensland (I honestly have no idea why I chose to do the training for that, but I’m enjoying it now).

Dannielle Wicks currently lives in the small country town of Kingaroy, in Australia with her fiancé, 3 dogs and a bird named Torak. Her first novel, FADING AWAY, was published in April of 2015. When she’s not writing or working, she competes in Speedway Sedan Racing across the state….wow this girls amazing we think….. – Ed .!


We also have an excerpt from Danielles next novel, November Sky which we’ll bring you soon!


One night. One stupid mistake. Changes everything.

SAMMY STEVENS was tragically orphaned at the age of nine and sent to live with a foster family in the town of Miakoda Falls.

She’s constantly bullied at school by the arrogant, selfish, one and only…KAI JORDAN.
Kai is your typical entitled teen who’s on the verge of attending a university and having everything he ever wanted handed to him.

But all that changes when he is involved in a car accident after a night of partying…

He’s suddenly and painfully brought into the world of the supernatural.

Kai turns to the last person he ever would’ve expected, Sammy, as he struggles with his new identity and watches the people closest to him move on. And he is forgotten.

As Kai and Sammy grow closer, Kai must figure out a way to either fight to stay human or risk being stuck forever, as a prisoner of his own body




I was only nine when they died…

I remember the colour of my mother’s hair, and her soft voice. I remember my father’s cologne and the way he used to hold my hand tightly as we walked down to the store for milk. Everything else is a blur; I don’t remember what they looked like. Their faces escape me. The memory of my parents is a fuzzy one and all of the photographs are gone now.

It was dark and hot, that much I can remember very clearly. Sweat beads off my forehead and down my neck. My room smells of wood smoke, clogging up my nose and throat, making me cough. Surely the smoke detectors would have gone off by now if we were in trouble? I clutch my pillow to my stomach and watch the flickering orange light dance under the door. A shadow and then Dad is bursting through my door, bringing a cloud full of toxic smoke with him.

“Come on Sammy,” he coaxes me towards him, throwing a fearful look over his shoulder at the wall of heat. I run to him and he scoops me up, spinning and ducking through our burning house. The bright, white hot fire is everywhere. I can feel the blazing heat on my bare skin. It burns.

An overhead beam collapses above us and my dad goes down, letting go of me as he hits the ground. I scream and crawl closer to him.

“Baby girl, you need to get out.” His words come out wheezy. I glance at the burning roof beam lying across his back. His fingers lightly touch my knee and I look back down at him. “Go get help darling, outside. Stay close to the ground. Go!” I nod quickly and weave my way to the front door as fast as I can.

As soon as I push the hot door open, someone lifts me up and sprints away from the house towards the waiting ambulance. The fireman puts me down and wipes my face clean. I cough and point back at my house. He smiles and nods before pushing me further into the ambulance and handing me off to a paramedic.

I wake up in the hospital still clutching my dirty pillow, surrounded by people, none of them my parents.

The other kids at school never see me, and when they do, they whisper. I don’t know how, but they know, and being a foster child doesn’t win you any sympathy points or special treatment. It’s more like I’ve contracted an extremely dangerous disease and if anyone was to talk to me or come into contact with me, their parents would magically die too. Kids can be brutal.

I was thirteen when I first met Kai Jordan. He was a kind, gentle person back then. He introduced himself to me with a smile, unaware of my status with the rest of our classmates. Being the new kid, he was immediately snapped up into the popular group at school. If I knew what he would be like as we grew older, I would never have smiled back at him.

I am eighteen now, living with foster parents and on the verge of graduating high school and getting into the college of my dreams…if I can get this stupid paper done. Argh. I slam my pen down on my desk in frustration. It’s due tomorrow and I haven’t strung a single sentence together. I shake my head and close my book. I’ll just have to ask for an extension from Mrs. Danby. Gathering my things, I stuff them unceremoniously into my backpack and swing it over my shoulder.

The bell hasn’t released us yet, but that doesn’t stop the chatter from the other students around the room. Ms. Kelly sits down at her desk and starts shuffling her own books into her tote bag. As soon as the bell sounds I follow everyone out of the classroom and drift down the hallways amidst the sea of pushy seniors, thinking about what I’m going to make myself for dinner.

Someone steps out in front of me and I collide head on with their shoulder. I frown up at the dark haired, brown eyed road block and adjust my glasses.

“Watch where you’re going,” Kai Jordan sneers at me as he pushes past. He wouldn’t remember who I am, even if he tripped over me, obviously. I wonder briefly what happened to the happy, friendly little boy he was when he moved here.

Shifting my backpack back onto my shoulder, I continue down the hallway, heading for the exit. People smack me with their books or bags as I push my way through. I feel as though I’m completely invisible. Sometimes I just want to scream, I’m here, just look and see me.

I’m in no hurry to get home. My foster parents gave birth to their first child this year, so I live in the flat above the garage by myself. Not much to look forward too. And no chance of a new foster family, I’m too close to graduating and leaving for college.




No matter how many friends I surround myself with, I still feel completely alone. Would anyone actually notice if I went missing? If I just faded away… If I just disappeared one day and no one ever found me?

I jump up into my truck and watch my girlfriend Ashlee, and her friends walk across the parking lot, chatting about something shallow no doubt. Would she care if I died? I push the morbid thoughts away and pull out of the parking lot, heading for home.

When I park in my driveway, I sit in my truck and stare up at the dark house. They’re not here – my parents. They’re away again. Japan? China? I don’t remember. They’re never here. I used to go with them, but not anymore. I feel like I’ve been raised by the maid, Serena.

They didn’t say goodbye before they left this time. The last conversation we had as a family before they left was a fight. Mum cornered me in the study, standing behind my Dad in his desk chair with her arms crossed.

“Your father and I need you to set a good example, everything you do reflects back on this family and our business,” she snaps, her sharp voice echoing around the room.

“I don’t want to go to Harvard Mum. I don’t want to be a doctor or a lawyer.” I sound so meek up against her harsh voice.

“You don’t have a choice in the matter.”

She holds a hand up to silence me before I can answer. I can barely contain my anger, this isn’t fair. Her voice softens slightly on the next sentence. “We just want what’s best for you Kai.”

Sure, of course they do, that’s why they’re forcing me to take up a career I don’t want. She takes a step towards me. I shake my head and slam the door on my way out.

Now the house is depressingly quiet. I don’t know what they expected.

It doesn’t matter now anyway, I’ve already been accepted by Harvard Law School. That’s it; my future has been decided for me.

The microwave beeps in front of me. I pull out the plate of chicken Serena left for me and head for the sofa. I’m not in the mood to watch sports or the news. Flicking through the channels, I stop on an old movie and settle in. This will do.

I don’t remember when, but I must have fallen asleep. I’m lying awkwardly on the sofa, my empty plate from dinner upside down on the carpet. I don’t bother picking it up. Serena will clean it in the morning.

Lifting myself from the soft cushions, I rub the palm of my hand over my eyes before switching the TV off and stumbling upstairs to my room and my bed.




Fliers everywhere; the school hallways are full of fluttering, colourful pieces of paper. I kneel down and swipe one off the ground, curious.



The bold letters are underlined and spread across the pages. A party? Maybe I’ll go just this once before we graduate. The paper is snatched out of my hand abruptly. I turn around and frown at Kai and his group of friends standing around me.

“You’re not invited.” He smirks, waving the colorful paper around in front of my face. Quick, I need an awesome comeback.

“I wasn’t going to go anyway.” I mentally slap myself. Really? That’s the best I can do? Nice Sammy.

“Whatever loser,” Jacob – one of Kai’s friends – replies nastily, and then they all turn and walk away, laughing.

As soon as they are around the corner and out of sight I run to the bathrooms and stand before a sink, wiping at my eyes. Looking up at the mirror, I squint through my foggy glasses at my reflection. Nope, nothing; I can’t see anything on my face that says, please pick on me I like it. I pull my hair-tie out and re-do my ponytail. Sometimes it’s just too hard to figure people out.

I slowly make my way to my next class, slinking in the door just as Mr. Nelson starts the lesson. I give him an apologetic look as I slide into my desk at the front of the room and pull out my textbook.

I can hear whispering behind me. Pretending to write something down on my blank page, I sneak a peek over my shoulder at the airheads at the back of the room; Ashlee, Kai, Jenny and Dylan, all whispering and giggling at each other. Kai’s dark eyes suddenly meet mine; I twist back around and focus on Mr. Nelson before he can sneer or make faces at me.

Asking for an extension shouldn’t be an issue, but with Ms. Danby, everything is an issue. She’s purposely being rude and infuriating. I do my absolute best at my studies; I mean seriously, what else have I got to do. I have no friends, so I have no distractions. She finally relents and signs my extension with a disappointed sigh.

Walking along the corridor heading for the parking lot, I keep my head down. Mostly people just ignore me, but there’s a few who jeer at me and whisper as I walk past. I smile at the whisperers and their giggling stops and turns into confused frowns. I grin to myself and walk out into the afternoon sunshine.

My old car, clunks loudly into my driveway and comes to a stuttering stop. My foster mum, Kathy is waiting for me on the back porch of their huge colonial house. Her red hair is coiled up on top of her head messily, so she must have spent the afternoon cleaning. She looks exhausted.

“Hi sweetie how was school?” she calls out as I climb out of my car and walk up the path to her.

“Hey,” I reply, giving her a hug. “It was fine. Heaps of assignments to finish though.”

“Oh well, I won’t keep you long. I have some more leftovers for you and I was wondering if you were still coming to Sunday dinner?”

“Of course I am, I wouldn’t miss it.”

She hands me an armload of frozen food containers.

“How is Connor?” Their new baby boy.

“I’m so tired,” she gushes. “He’s such a handful sometimes.”

I say goodnight and retire to my flat above the garage before she can continue. I know that sounds selfish, but ever since Connor was born, I feel like an exile.

I suck in a relieved breath as I close the door behind me. My home is simple; kitchen, bathroom, tattered sofa, old TV, over full bookcase and a bed. Everything I need. After I heat up one of Kathy’s frozen casseroles, I put on a movie and recline into the soft cushions with my food.

The party at the lake is tonight. It kind of hurts to be uninvited. I shouldn’t let what they say get to me so much. Can you imagine the looks and whispers I’d get if I actually turned up at the lake? At least I wouldn’t be invisible anymore.




As soon as I park my truck and turn off the engine, I can hear the noise of the party. People yell and laugh under the effects of the alcohol. The music and the keg have already been set up by the time I enter the clearing and walk through the volumes of dancing people.

I make my way over to Ashlee and her group standing close to the water. Putting my arm around her waist I lean in for a kiss. She giggles, sloshing her drink over the edge of her plastic cup. I lick my lips with a smile, tasting the tangy beer. She’s already drunk.

“Kai,” she pouts, pushing herself closer to my side. “Jenny is getting a limo for the prom, why do we have to take your stinky truck?” I frown down at her. She’s pulled her long blonde hair back into a braid and she’s wearing a too tight t-shirt and skirt. Sometimes I wonder why I’m with someone so shallow.

“Don’t worry babe, when she sees us pull up, she’ll shut her mouth.” I look pointedly at a drunk, swaying Jenny and give her a tight smile.

“Speaking of your truck,” Luke says, smacking me on the shoulder. “We should take it for a spin in the forest. Or are you too afraid to scratch it?” he taunts, his breath is strong with the smell of rum.

I’ve never liked Luke, I put up with him because Jacob likes him.

“Yeah,” Jacob pipes up. “Let’s take it for a drive.” I narrow my eyes on him. Unable to disappoint them and become an outcast, I agree and we walk back to the parking lot.

The thrill of speeding over a one lane dirt track through a dense thicket of trees in the dark is amazing. I’ve got to hand it to Luke, I may not like him, but this was a great idea. The drunken idiots are laughing and joking around in the back seat and over the center console. Dylan leans too far forward and I take my eyes off the road for a split second as he spills his drink all over the front seat. A split second is all it takes not to react fast enough as a deer walks out in front us.




Hushed voices coming from the backyard wake me just past midnight. The grogginess of sleep clears and I realize I’m listening to Kathy and David fighting. They always fight in the backyard so they don’t wake Connor. Its been happening a lot lately. David has never liked me; I’m just a costly nuisance, an indulgence on Kathy’s behalf. It doesn’t matter that I’ve lived with them for the past five years now.

I glance at the clock again, I really need to get to bed, and I have work in the morning. Grabbing my dirty bowl from dinner, I dump it in the sink on my way to my small bedroom.




My senses come back to me slowly. Somewhere close a horn screams. I screw up my nose at the burning plastic smell and pry my eyes open. What the hell happened? Why is the front of my truck embedded in the trunk of a tree?

Something wet dribbles down the side of my face, I swipe it away and my fingers come back dark. I can’t really see anything inside the cab.

I remember what happened in a sudden rush of images. The sticky drink sloshing over my front seat, swerving as a deer walks out in front of me, my friends. Oh god. I quickly spin in my seat to find them. Luke, Dylan and Jacob are all still there and alive. Thank god the idiots put their seatbelts on.

I turn back to my door and try kicking it open, It takes three goes before the crumpled door groans open. Jumping down on wobbly legs, I glance around. The moonlight helps light my surroundings.

A few feet away lay the gruesome remains of the deer. I turn away from it in guilt and pull my phone from my pocket to call an ambulance. Then I turn back to the wrecked truck and tug on the back door to help the others out.

Jacob and Luke shuffle out first and sit on the grass beside the dirt road, Dylan groans and collapses on the back seat. I hoist myself into the truck and lean over him.

“Dylan?” I slap him lightly on the cheek. He doesn’t respond, but I can hear his wheezy breaths. He’s still alive. Its pitch black inside the cab. I take out my phone again and slide my finger across the screen to turn the torch on.

There’s blood soaking through the shoulder of Dylan’s t-shirt, his left arm is covered in it. With a curse I rip off my hoodie and wrap it around his arm tightly before gently pulling him to the door and lifting him down.

An ambulance and a tow truck arrive a moment later and one of the paramedics takes one look at Dylan and gets to work placing him on a stretcher. They load us all into the back of the ambulance.

A nurse hands me a phone when I arrive at the hospital. “What the hell were you thinking?” My mum screeches before I even lift the phone to my ear.

I sigh. “It’s just a truck, I think you’re overreacting.” I know that’s not what she’s talking about, I just don’t care.

“Underage drinking? Do you know how bad this looks for your father and me? We trust you to be responsible while we are away and you can’t even do that. We’re getting on a plane right now.”


“No, we will talk when we get back. I’ve arranged for Serena to pick you up when you’re released.” The line beeps and goes dead. She’s hung up on me.

They release me as soon as I’ve been checked over. The nurse has already called Serena for me, but before I leave I make my way through the hospital to the ICU to check on Dylan. He hasn’t woken since the crash, but I’ve been told he’ll be okay. I pause to watch him through the glass viewing window before turning and leaving.

I reach the glass front door just as Serena arrives in our silver SUV. The drive home is quiet.

“You don’t need to stay,” I tell her when she pulls into our driveway. “I’ll be fine.” I don’t want her hovering around me all day. She frowns over at me, but agrees. I suppose she’s a little afraid of not doing what I say, I could get her fired.

I trudge up the stairs to my room and head straight for the curtains to close them before sunrise. Glancing out into the backyard, I do a double take. There, standing in the shadows of the trees behind my house. Is that a deer? By the time I reach the back door, it’s gone. I scowl into the grey early morning light and then shake my head, turning to go back inside.

It’s after lunch before I wake again. I smack my lips together, my mouth is dry. I’m hot and sweaty and my skin is itchy. Am I sick? Slowly sitting up, I inch myself out of bed and head for the shower. The spray of water hurts my skin and I start swaying, dizzy. I need fresh air. Wrapping a towel around my middle I aim for the backyard.

When my feet touch the grass, I collapse onto my hands and knees. My stomach is cramping so bad I feel like I’m going to throw up. What’s happening? A pain filled groan sputters out of my dry throat as a sharp throb flares in my head. I close my eyes tightly and press my forehead to the cool grass. My arms and legs turn tingly and achy. My skin grows goose bumps and I shiver, then unconsciousness mercifully consumes me………..


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July 23, 2015



Helen is an author who loves to enthral her readers with spine tingling, ‘what lays beneath’ suspense filled Novels. We found out that Helen has a way with words that will soon have you drawn into the plot as we wind down Novella Rd into the suspense of the unknown.

We welcome as an Author with all the potential in the world to spring forth from her prolific pen, an excerpt from Helen Deakin’s spine tingling Horror Novella. Helen is a fan of Steven King, Mathew Reilly, Brian Keene, Gillian Flynn & Veronica Roth so sit back with your coffee and begin your journey with Helen in ‘The Clock Struck One’…… Oh and Helen has a competition which you can sign up for at the end of this exciting snippet from Helen’s Novel……The journey entices…..Let’s begin……


“THE CLOCK STRUCK ONE” (Horror Novella)

“This is some sort of joke, right?”

It’s all Tamara could think to say as her Dad pulled up in the driveway out the front of their new home. The “project”. It was like something fresh out of the latest horror movie; with its lawn and garden overrun in a satanic tangle of vines, weeds and thorny bushes.


The paved path leading up to an old and unstable looking verandah was cracked and disappearing beneath a mat of grass and stinging nettles that sprouted from within the many apertures.

So this was what it had come to. Things had been rough lately but this is what they were reduced to. Upending their entire lives to move to… This?

All the windows were boarded up and Tamara would have bet her entire savings account that the majority of those windows were either cracked or completely missing behind those boards. The paint—that was once maybe an off-white and was now a murky grey colour—was peeling from the walls and had left a blanket of paint chips around the outskirts of the house. Like the old outhouse at her grandmothers house that hadn’t been painted since her mother was a child. More than a few of the roof tiles were cracked and broken or missing altogether. The house was going bald you might say.

“Is this house even safe to live in?” Tamara asked. “I mean—seriously Dad—it looks like it should have been condemned like, twenty years ago. Are you sure there isn’t meant to be some sort of barricade around the place with big signs attached that say “Warning! Do Not Enter!”

“I’m sure, honey,” her father answered. “That’s just being a tad dramatic I think. There’s nothing wrong with the place. It’s a nice house.”

“More like a nightmare house,” Tamara sulked as she got out of the car, followed by her sister.

“Oh stop your moaning,” Simone piped up rolling her big doe eyes. “Why don’t you just get your bags out of the boot and stop whining for once.”

Even though she was only just under two years older than Tamara, she always felt it her duty to open her mouth and play the role of the third parent. The eldest child of the family, Simone exuded a certain confidence about her—an authority—that was almost palpable and she used it to her advantage whenever possible.

“Whatever, Simone” Tamara said. She had more forceful and inappropriate words in mind but she decided not to harangue the golden child for she knew it wouldn’t get her too far. It never had in the past.

‘That’s enough Tamara,’ her mother would say. ‘Don’t talk to your sister that way Tamara; Simone is right Tamara; stop whining Tamara.’

So she kept her mouth shut and retrieved her bags from the boot of the car. She followed her father through the thicket of grass that was the lawn of their new home. Cobblers pegs scraped at her legs and grabbed onto her socks and joggers as they made their way to the verandah where wild choko vines had ensnared themselves up the support posts and along the railings. The air was redolent with the smell of grass and clover and mingling with it, a scent Tamara couldn’t place.

As she neared the house, she was suddenly overcome with chills that were not warranted within the warm sunlight of a day that had been unpleasantly humid.

All at once she was possessed with the strangest sensation to turn away at once and just run. Run as far away from that sinister house as possible; as far away from this town as her legs could carry her.

It wasn’t just the look of the house up close but something much more menacing and deeper. Like the latent childhood fear of pouncing shadows in the night—knowing it is nothing to be scared of but terrified none the less. Her skin began to crawl as if suddenly infested with a thousand squirming maggots, buried just beneath her skin; the hairs on her arms and the back of her neck stood at attention like tiny little soldiers, mounted on mini hills that were the goosebumps that had sprung up all over her.

A strangling knot that was simultaneously twisting in her stomach and her throat and a maddening fire that exploded within her entire body; from her toes to her chest to her head, it seemed to eat away at her very sanity. A loud ringing erupted in her ears as if it were actually a piercing scream within the walls of her mind. A scream that actually seemed to be the house itself, shrieking at her to run! Run, run, run away!

“The walls are red, the carpet is damp and the clocks are ticking backwards,”
she suddenly muttered beneath her breath, as if in a trance.

“Did you say something honey?”
Her father asked as he rattled a tarnished metal key in a lock that looked like it had been there since last century.
“Huh… No, I didn’t,” Tamara replied.

What had just happened to her? The maddening burning, the screaming, the twisting in her stomach and throat had dimmed away but that maggot infested crawl beneath her skin remained. The goosebumps remained and the feeling of being watched was setting in………


To read more of Helen Deakin’s “The Clock Struck One” follow the suspense filled links below.

Hooked! Find Helen’s book here

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Kind Regards

July 22, 2015

Bree Kate Edwards | Blogger

Bree Kate Edwards | Blogger

Yesterday we received a little surprise in our emails when we received some correspondence from a young woman whom we are sure you will fall in love with… Rant Magazine would love to welcome our new blogger Bree Kate Edwards whom we fondly refer to with her digital alias Breekatee..!

Though we have never meet in person this connection is a testimony of the possibilities that in reaching out to people on the digital airways, which is what our magazine aspires to do, join the digital gaps, and build links from physical locations, websites and social media, people who have something to contribute can be found or can find like minded people to encourage one another’s gift and talents… Who know’s Breekatee may well be our next – Ita Butrose……..Cosmopolitans first Editor

…Bree saw our Facebook ad and contacted us…!

We sent Bree on her first mission and in no time flat because Bree is a go getter type, a young woman full of expression and life, Bree had written a blog about someone else’s little colouring book of calm and we from this space we are connected.

Welcome to rant magazine Bree Kate – Breekatee

Here is a link to Bree’s blog… Portable Imagination…….. We are quite sure we will be bringing you some more of Bree’s blog to you very soon…….

Karri Shannon Photography

April 16, 2014

Hello from Rant Magazine!

Hello from Rant Magazine is a weird little side post that you may stumble upon
just because it has been here since we were first conceived.

Rant Magazine. What? and Whom is it for?

Rant Magazine is a magazine that see’s the bohemian in all of us. The little rebel that bucks the status quo & strives to carve out a little piece of bark in the tree to say, ‘we’ve been here’ and we’ve working working our butts off and ‘we’ve been doing this.’

We want to rant about your story, your skills, your passion visually narrated on the pages of a digital magazine way out there in the far reaching www land.

Now we both know that carving out a bit of wood from a stubborn ol’ tree, more often than not requires some elbow grease, your sleeves rolled up & a little; sometimes a lot of dirt on your face.

We also know that sometimes your just out there on your own, sweat on the nape of your neck, tears rolling down your cheek, noodles for dinner.

So our mag has a mantra, ‘to free the bohemian’, including ourselves and make the world a more encouraging place, to pursue harmony with nature and paint each day a new shade of ‘you can do it.’

Your rant, your story, your passion, your business, your song, your ‘I did it my way.’  with love from us…..xox