Start your story with the words “Everything was ready for the ritual.”
Posted in Horror on Oct 25, 2022
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✍️ 53 stories
“Soul Reaving” by Alex Sultan
cw: mature subject matter, graphic violence Everything was ready for the ritual, and Aluin found there were more ways to enlightenment than divinity—more ways to power than training or speeches.A book in the hands of an occultist. Wrapped in chains, locked shut, hieroglyphs written down its spine. Dangerous work from unstable scholars. Practices better left unread. Aluin stood still in a cell as the occultist drew symbols on the wall, eye-stalks and claws, then lit candles.Bloodied tentacles twitched around him. Offer...
“My Hell-Plane Excursion” by Joseph Malgeri
Everything was ready for the ritual, everything, but with one exception, me! For some time now, longer than I’d care to admit, my life has been a perpetual juggling act, an endlessly balancing, teetering pendulum, swinging between life and death, regulated by an all-consuming dreadful fear of sleep. Night after night I’m either fighting to stay awake, or gorging myself with powerful sedatives, intent upon numbing myself comatose, using whatever means necessary to get me through the night. Pills usually put me either in a coma-like state t...
“Summer's End” by Jon Casper
“Everything was ready for the ritual.” The suspect, Allen Summer, closed his eyes and sighed. “Samhain….”There was a pregnant pause. Across the gray metal table, Detective Tara Donn raised an eyebrow. “And…?”A knock on the door interrupted them. Sargent Oliver poked his bald head into the room. “Donny, a word?”Tara grunted from her seat and met Oliver in the hall. “You believe this fruitcake?” she said.“Forensics called,” said Oliver. “Kelly’s fingerprints are all ove...
“In His Hands” by Michael Martin
Everything was ready for the ritual… everything except me. He would soon fix that. The sensation of his hand sliding to the base of my neck wakes me from a deep slumber. He cradles my head, his fingers wrapping around the back of my neck as he’s done many times before. A gentle squeeze later, he has me exactly where he wants me. How I’ve longed for his embrace. His hands are home, they’re safety incarnate – like reinforced walls, impenetrable. I’m where I belong. It’s time again, isn’...
“Perfectly Almond-Shaped Eyes” by Katharine Widdows
TW – animal cruelty, death.Everything was ready for the ritual. I had counted down the days, or more precisely, the nights - since I turned eleven.Looking out over Delltree town, I stood back a little from the sandstone cliff. Holding my torch in one hand, I pulled newspaper and twigs from my rucksack. I roughly fashioned the base of a small fire behind the concrete trig point, partially sheltered from the breeze. Larger sticks and bits of branch from the tree line behind completed my construction.<...
“Slumbering Horror” by Mark Shoe
Everything was ready for the Ritual of Slumber. A stone pillar sprouted from the center of a dome circle of a room. Flickering candle light hummed a warm glow of light, but warmth was scarce. On the pillar, canal grooves spiraled into a single path which fed into a black hole. Stood around this single feature were a dozen human silhouettes with silver masks and white robes. One man wearing a golden mask stepped into the ...
“Teen Creatures” by Charlie Murphy
Everything was ready for the ritual. Except for one thing."Come on, let me shave it!" Mimi begged."No!" Lori said, clutching her head."It will grow back.""No! You aren't shaving my head!""Alright, but everybody's going to think you're lame."“I don't care.”"Suit yourself." Mimi shrugged and passed the razor over her head."The only reason I'm going is that Jessica will be there.”"She will be bald.”"I don't care.”"Party pooper." Mimi stuck her tongue...
“Root and Branch” by David Brown
Everything was ready for the ritual; the five clerics of the vengeful and unforgiving Xyagii, greater god of slanderous lies, encircled an oblong, obsidian altar upon which was sprawled a naked and pregnant figure. With her back to the rigid polished stone and her wrists and ankles bound to the floor by taut and stout steel chains, the woman arched her spine in terror and dismay as the red-robed high priest in his snarling obsidian mask raised a viciously curved ceremonial dagger and chanted his perilous, guttural incantations to the deit...
“Fool Me Once...” by Howard Seeley
Everything was ready for the ritual, or so Deborah thought. As the sun rose in the east, she began to clean her room from the previous night’s escapades. I can’t believe that drunk did so much damage in such a short time. She righted an upturned table in the center of the room. I need to be more careful next time. I don’t want to be caught cheating customers while conjuring spirits. If some drunken...
“Beautiful” by JanetthePlanet 66
Everything is ready for the ritual; me, the nurse with the silver tray, and Dr. Edmund Powers. Everything is ready, but I have been waiting a full two hours to get inside the doctor’s office and get started. The nurse is bustling around, a crisp white vision of medical efficiency, carrying small metal trays, whose contents defy gravity and rattle without sound. She darts across the room and scurries into the labyrinth of unblemished walls the colour of lightly suntanned angels, and enters through a prist...
“When Love is Sin, Become the Heretic” by Vince Salamone
Everything was ready for the ritual. The incense was lit, Binding wraps anointed in the proper oils and dusted with unfirth bone-ash. She’d taken care in preparing the room, clearing it of furnishings before drawing out the containment channels with the strange metal shavings she’d taken from the Belfrost mines—what felt like a lifetime ago now, though only a few years had passed. Mounds of marrow candl...
“The Last Of Us” by Evan Jackson
Everything was ready for the ritual. Elijah had been up all morning checking and double checking the preparations they made for this night. It was just after sundown when he woke her up. " Are you sure about this?” Elijah asks his wife. " I’m sure” Miriam yawns, still waking up. She searches her husband’s face in the failing candlelight. He looks afraid even though he’s trying not to. She reac...
“Trick or Treat” by Gabi Coatsworth
Everything was ready for the ritual of Halloween. The doorbell rang at intervals, as tiny dragons, gangsters, and princesses giggled their way up the porch steps looking for candy. Inside, she and Rick had been talking, yet again, about their marriage. Twenty years moving at speed, to begin with, but now as exhausted as a patient dying of cancer. Perhaps the reason she’d brought the subject up was that...
“The Blood Moon's Other Side” by Elizabeth Fenley
“Everything is ready for the ritual.”Four Blood Demons surrounded a figure in a desolate room, abandoned by its inhabitants, left for decades to the forces of entropy, decay, and chaos.Thresh, tall, pale grey, and skeletal with six horns atop her head, another set on her shoulders, used a talon to slice the burlap sack from the person’s head.Teegen winced, biting her lips to keep herself from screaming. Her eyes adjusted to the faint light—and wished she could crawl back inside the safety of the bag.Thresh open...
“The Curse of Abbadon” by Ava Martin
“Everything is ready for the ritual, Ms. Cozbi,” Egill avoids looking Ms. Cozbi in the eye as he informs her of his success. He shivers as Ms. Cozbi pats him on the back and walks towards her cauldron. The dark enchantress hasn’t informed him of her plan, but Egill wouldn’t ask questions or he would be putting the lives of his loved ones in danger. Egill begins to back away from what Ms. Cozbi is doing. She stan...
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