Tis the season…what better time to get lost in A World of Gothic?
A group of authors from countries all over the world were drawn together by our love of the classic gothic mysteries by authors such as Daphne du Maurier, Victoria Holt and Phyllis A. Whitney.
While the stories are stand-alone, they each share a recurring thread of a Spinel stone, which can play a small or large part in the plot. We have stories set in Scotland, Greece, Oklahoma, Florida, France, Ireland, and more.
Haunting at Spook Light Inn by Alicia Dean
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A writer travels to a remove bed and breakfast to debunk the superstition of an eerie spook light. But when she encounters a ghost, she has to re-evaluate her beliefs. Now someone…or something…wants to harm her. Is it a long-dead spirit, or a living, breathing human being?
A glimpse through the trees made me halt. A man. I moved closer and recognized Declan, although his back was to me. Three headstones were spaced four feet apart. Declan stood in front of a white marble teardrop-shaped stone with roses carved into the side that looked newer than the others.
His sister’s grave?
He wore a charcoal gray wool trench coat with the collar pulled up around his neck. His breath came out like wisps of smoke in the cold air. Snow dampened his dark blonde hair, making it look almost black. He was unaware of my presence. His focus was on the grave.
Sympathy pierced my heart, and I blinked back tears. He looked so forlorn, so alone. I had to tighten my hands into fists inside my coat pockets to keep from reaching out to him. My efforts wouldn’t be welcome.
After several moments of silence, I began to wonder if I’d really heard his voice. Although I’d had to take the path to get here, a small grouping of trees were all that separated this area from the carriage house, so it was possible. But had he been speaking to his sister? He didn’t seem the type of man to give in to sentiments such as talking to a dead loved one.
I no sooner had the thought than he spoke again. “I’m sorry, Eleanor. I wish we’d gotten along better, but I did love you. I never wanted this to happen. I only wanted to protect you.”
Feeling like a spy and not wanting to continue intruding on his privacy, I stepped back. My foot landed on an icy tree branch lying on the ground, and the sound exploded like a firecracker in the still afternoon.
Declan whirled to look at me.
My heart leapt to my throat.
His expression tightened in anger. “Ms. Burditt? What in God’s name are you doing out here?”
“I—I was just…taking a walk.” I cast a guilty glance over my shoulder, then looked back at him.
He peered in the direction from which I’d come. “You were at the carriage house?” The words were barked like an accusation.
“Y-yes. I just…” I took a deep breath, suddenly feeling the cold even though the wind was still calm. “I just came upon it. I didn’t go in. The doors were locked.” I realized my error as soon as I said the words. Too late to take them back.
“You tried to get in?” He stalked over until he stood directly in front of me, looming like a dark angry cloud. “The carriage house is off limits. Stay away from it, do you understand me?”
I swallowed. “I wasn’t going to hurt anything, I was just curio—”
“I said stay away.” His voice was deadly, his eyes molten steel. “Do I make myself clear?”
For one brief moment, the fury in his eyes made me think he might be capable of murder after all. Namely, mine. I couldn’t speak, so I only nodded. He held my gaze for a few more gut wrenching moments, then stormed away.
Check out all the stories here…
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