Broken lives and shattered dreams.

Two horror short stories: one occult thriller novella. (45, 250 words)

Sleet Dreams
Maggie can just about survive the winter when it turns the city into a trap of ice and snow. She can juggle her pension, scrimp and scrape, make every penny stretch. Every winter she swears she’ll make it to the south next year. South to where winters are gentle and snow never touches the land, to where the wind will never bite into her bones. This winter all Maggie is dreaming of is a warm coat and a better pair of boots. Maggie finds a fur coat one day, a fine fur coat that keeps her warm, keeps out the winter. But dreams are sometimes nightmares and not all wishes should come true. (11,600 words)
Alma Mater
Alma is a perfect mother. She knows how to raise a child. Her daughter Catherine will be perfect in every way. Alma will make sure of it. No clingy brat ruling the house with her cries and tricks. No fuss, bother or disturbance. No demands from a greedy baby or sulks from a temper driven toddler. Order and routine from day one will ensure that as Catherine grows, hair will always be neat and homework will always be done. Catherine will know how to behave and what to do and what to say and she will be thin, beautiful, gifted and obedient, and any mother would be proud to have such a daughter. That things may not go to plan never occurs to Alma. Just as it never occurs to her that sometimes you can do a job too well. (6,850 words)
The Fool
When the body of a young man is found on the altar of the Mother of All Sorrows Church in Peckham, London, the Catholic Church does everything it can to help Scotland Yard in the investigation. It sends an independent investigator from the Office of the Congregation of the Arcane to assist. Maryam Michael isn’t happy, however, with it being London and she’s unhappy that the parish priest she’s supposed to be helping is fast becoming the main suspect. The Vatican is not going to be happy with what was hidden under the body: and neither is the local Mosque. Maryam only has a couple of days to solve the riddle of why this young man died on the altar, and if the supernatural is involved. Can she solve the murder fast enough to prevent Father Wyn Jones being charged? Is it straightforward gang violence, or are there occult forces attacking the Church? (26,800 words)
The Fool is the first story in the Maryam Michael Mysteries series and the second chapter, The Magician, will be out next year.