Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Diamond is Looking Rough #CoffinHop

Today's Coffin Hop post is a selection from my WIP horror novel, "PINS":
(Telemarketing is a drag and serving jobs are exhausting. Luckily, strip clubs are always looking for new blood. Eva "Birdie" Finch is fed up with the slim pickings in local employment, and PINS, a gentlemen's club/ bowling alley, seems to be the only option left. But learning how to strip for strangers isn't Birdie's only obstacle, especially when fellow dancers start turning up dead. From Jessica McHugh, the author of the steampunk adventure The Sky: The World and the psychological thriller Rabbits in the Garden, PINS is certain to titillate as much as terrify with a candid look at a dancer trying to keep her footing on a blood-drenched stage.) 

WARNING: The following is graphic, gruesome, and great. Well, graphic and gruesome, for sure. ;)

Also, anyone who leaves a COMMENT w/ an EMAIL ADDRESS will be entered into the "Danny Marble & the Application for Non-Scary Things" ebook contest!!!

       Then, the screams began again, followed by scores of frantic voices. The crowd became animated by shock and fearful curiosity and I couldn't help but join in. Even Honey had abandoned her rage to follow the masses rushing toward the shrieking dissonance. As I drew closer, hidden sounds emerged from beneath the commotion. I heard the whirring first: a grinding squeal of malfunction followed by a series of rapid thumps. The thumps acquired new qualities with my proximity. An abrupt squelch was followed by a prolonged scrape that led into frenzied crackles and clicks. It was an auditory puzzle that pulled me forward, but when I reached the front of the crowd and the pieces fell into place, I backpedaled and fell to the maple. Through the crowd's trembling legs, I saw a thousand extra crimson markers splattered across the lane, leading to blooming puddles. The pinsetter jerked up and down in repeated malfunction, slamming the pins against the pulpy remnants of a girl's face. Her blood sprayed with each blow and bits of bone and tooth tumbled across the floor like hapless dice.
"For God's sake, someone turn it off!" someone in the crowd pleaded, but once the machine was stopped and the view of the girl unobstructed by bludgeoning pins, everyone recoiled in horror.
Many fled, and I would have joined them if my legs hadn't turned to jelly, leaving me paralyzed on the floor. The damage was so much worse in an inert form. Her forehead was completely caved in with bits of gray matter seeping between the cracks of contusion. Her mouth had been stretched to an unnatural degree by the base of the pins, and any remnant teeth were reduced to shards in her flattened gums. Chunks of the girl slid down the pins and dripped back into their obliterated origins, filling the silence with nauseating plops: percussion to her body's postmortem chorus. There was no hope in identifying her by her face, but it wasn't necessary; her massive breasts might as well have been a nametag that said, "Hello. My name is Diamond."
My revulsion crept up my throat, inch by burning inch, but I was able to choke it down---until Heaven disgorged her own disgust onto Lane 5. The wafting stench of blood and vomit was too much. Still tucked between the legs of gawking customers, I had no choice but to let my stomach state it's opinion. The world got bleary and I began to wilt, but before I could collapse into the amalgamating puddles of puke, strong hands wrapped around my arms and lifted me up. My feet dragged limply across the lanes and dipped into the gutters as I was pulled away from the scene, and although he probably set me down gently, I felt like I was thrown into a chair.
"Hey, Birdie, you okay?" he asked.
I looked up woozily, expecting to see Josh's face, wanting to see Josh's face. Instead, it was James looking down at me, James still holding my arms; my arms covered in sweat and...something else. Vomit. It was vomit. It was…
I caught the sickening surge at the tip of my tongue, slapped my hand over my mouth, and ran to the bathroom. I was nearly bursting by the time I was in the stall and curled myself over the toilet. As I emptied, images filled my head and called up anything and everything my stomach had left, but the images themselves wouldn't budge. Diamond's obliterated face was the most prominent. Her sweet, milky face was nothing more than a mashed motley of bone and meat and a cavernous mouth. Then there were her breasts; those gigantic twins that led men like the Pied Piper were just heavy sacks now, hanging off her ribcage like blood-spattered globs of mucus after a violent sneeze.

(Mock cover made by Bill Coffin)

Remember to leave a COMMENT w/ an EMAIL ADDRESS to be entered into the "Danny Marble & the Application for Non-Scary Things" ebook contest!!!


  1. You had it right the first time...GREAT! I think by the end I would have upchucked to! I love this story. I'll be sharing it on twitter, google, and facebook!!

  2. Thank you so much, Heaven! I'm actually writing the last chapter of PINS now. It's been a bloody blast. ;)

  3. oh oh oh that was delightful.... Oh how I like that. This is great. I'm having a blast here.


  4. OK, you officially win all the prizes McHugh.

    I want this when it's done. I want to review it, I want to tell the world about it, I want to take it out for a date and share one milkshake with two straws...

  5. Coffin Hopper Nik Caesar

    Bowling + Horror = brilliant!