Serial and Milk: Available Darkness – Chapter 2

serial-and-milk-button-225x225(Serial and Milk: Available Darkness is a serialized horror story co-written by David Wright and Sean Platt. A new chapter appears here each Friday. If you missed part one, you can read it here.)

He raced from his soggy tomb, stumbling into the black forest as fast as his weakened legs would go. Sharp pain lacerated his sprint; branches clawed across his flesh and jagged rocks and warped roots rendered the pads of his feet into a mess of gory ribbon.

He was prey, and expected his predator any second. Perhaps a scream, or a gunshot to split the silence; anything to stop him in his tracks.

He couldn’t stop. Every step of blind terror shoved him deeper into the horrible dark. And while he ran, he considered his situation.

Who was after him? What had they done to him? And then the puzzler to top them all — who was he?

Aside from a few moments of a dream before he woke in the coffin, the man could remember nothing of his past. Not his occupation, not his location, nor even his name. He pressed against his pants pockets, searching for a wallet, perhaps some identification. There was no wallet. Instead, he found a balled up piece of paper, damp with sweat. He could see lights ahead, peeking through where the trees began to thin. He looked for a place with enough light to stop and unfold the paper. As he got closer, his eyes adjusted to the squares and rectangles making up a row of two story homes.

He paused to catch his breath and calm his heart, kicking triple time against his chest. He was standing behind one of several look-alike homes, one of the few without a privacy fence keeping the rest of the world from encroaching on suburban oasis.

He chanced upon a clothesline, dipped low with damp garments. He snagged a shirt from the line just as a series of lights flooded the windows in the back of the house.  The shirt slipped from his fingers and he scurried away, slipping in cold, wet grass as he raced off with a final fearful glance back.

Sudden agony pounded between his eyes and sent him to his knees.  He wanted to crawl to someone’s stoop, pound on their door, and plead for help, but part of him was whispering; begging him not to do the obvious.

Help can only hurt you, it said.

Someone is searching. Someone wants you dead, and until you remember who, you need to stay invisible.

His head was a thousand needles as he tried to recall a single moment prior to waking inside the coffin. He claimed nothing; not a single second from his past’s enigma.

Perhaps his memories were only clouded by the pain racking his body, he thought. If he could just find a spot to rest, maybe everything else would fall into place. Though he had just woken only moments before, he needed sleep. Now.

He spied a shed behind one of the other homes without a fence. It sat far in the back, bathed in the shadows of the treeline from which he came. He glanced up at the windows, squares of black against slate. Either nobody was home, or the occupants were sleeping — he hoped.

The neighborhood must be as nice and presumably safe as the houses suggested, as the shed was unlocked. He slid inside and though there was hardly any light, he could make out some lawn equipment, three bikes and several large plastic storage containers. Easily enough room to lie down. He grabbed a pair of hedge clippers from a rack, in case his pursuer followed him.

He was about to shut the door when he remembered the slip in his fingers.

As he unfolded the paper, he noticed his trembling hands. He tried to calm his breath with little success and moved closer to the open shed door seeking what little light he could find. The handwritten words proved easier to read than he would have thought.

312 Hanover Street

Trust Nobody. Especially the law.

None of it made any sense. The sentence which followed made even less.

Avoid the sunlight! Don’t touch anybody!

What the hell?

He sat still for a moment trying to make sense of the words when an idea occurred to him. Perhaps he could steal his reflection in one of the windows. Maybe if he saw himself, it would trigger a memory or two. His body was not as curious as his mind, though. As his eyes grew heavy, he noticed he’d left the shed door open. Too late. He collapsed and fell into the deep, dreamless sleep of the dead.

He woke with a start to the sound of a scream.

(to be continued next Friday)


Got any comments? Leave ’em below. We’d love to hear what you think. Also, please tweet this post and help spread the word about Available Darkness and nurture online fiction.

We’ll post again Saturday, with some news about our contest and also a preview of what’s coming up next week at Collective Inkwell. Thanks for reading!

15 responses to Serial and Milk: Available Darkness – Chapter 2

  1. janice

    STUNNING!!! Get the TV screenplay rights organised now! (And please, on another day, get all the gals, OK, everyone, in the comments boxes to suggest which actor you get to play him. I’m starting to visualise already…)

    janice’s last blog post..Finding Your Voice in the Silence

    • David Wright/Blogger Dad

      Janice – Thank you! Why do I get the feeling that the role is being cast as some hot young male actor. I was thinking more along the lines of Kevin King of Queens’ James. Just kidding.

  2. Trina

    “Avoid the sunlight….” what the? Glad i have other things to distract me or this would be one very loooonnng wait. Well crafted!

  3. Trina

    OK, had to take a mo’ to update some thoughts as I finally made time to read the previous post ‘The story garden’ and I am gobsmacked – to borrow a UK phrase. Why did I have to come back here and release my observation? I am simply in awe of the collaborative process that Dave and Sean have embarked on. I sincerely mean that. Up to this point I have been hearing Seans side of the process, thought Ok, cool, good on ya, but handnt taken the time to understand further. Then wham, I decided to read Daves previous offering tonight (likely more has been said, just havent been around) and I was so struck by the obvious sympatico, the respect, the joy for the collaborative process. A technicolour WOW comes to mind, but doesnt do it justice either. So, at the risk of blathering on, I would like to say that ‘we’ have people come into our lives for a variety of reasons, you two must have been meant to find each other. Looking forward to more vampyre, will share with my daughter too, as she was into vampyres long before Twilight.

    • David Wright/Blogger Dad

      Thanks, I almost didn’t post the Story Garden one. First, I’d already posted it at BloggerDad last winter. Second, I didn’t know if people want to read me droning on about my writing. But then I figured that this is a whole new audience for the post, so it was worthwhile. Second, I LOVE reading writers when they talk about the behind the scenes stuff and what inspires them.

      Thanks for your words. Yes, fate definitely seems to have come into play a bit here with Sean and I meeting. Since you probably didn’t read this before, here’s that story:

      Last summer, I was looking to start a blog. I chose the name WriterDad.com. It was available, but I didn’t buy it immediately. I was considering a few other names and trying to make up my mind. By the time I decided that WriterDad.com would be it, I went to buy it and found it had been bought – by Sean.

      I was pissed, to say the least. But then I went to his site a while later and saw that he was very talented and that the name suited him perfectly. I’d already chosen a backup name, BloggerDad.com which was probably more suited for my light take on things.

      At any rate, I emailed Sean to tell him the story of how we were connected.

      We’ve been emailing almost every day since!

  4. Randi

    It’s Friday night, or should I say Saturday morning, at 12:30 a.m. I had not read Chapter 1 yet, so went back and read The Story Garden and the first chapter.

    The prologue was eerie enough to make me ask myself if I should wait until daylight to read this story, but compelling enough to make me not want to stop. The mother in me couldn’t leave a child alone in the dark with fears, so I read on. (Not to mention that white font on black background kicks up the spook factor.)

    The thing that drew me in was the way you two captured a fear common to most people–the fear of being buried alive. We fear it, and we have to know that someone survived it, so we read on. My compliments on establishing right up front a commonality that most all readers can identify with.

    By the end of the second chapter I had the same reaction that I have every week with LOST—“What? It’s over already? They are going to leave me hanging like THAT?” So based on my LOST-meter of endings that leave me craving more, I give this story a 10.

    Excellent work, gentlemen. It’s exciting to visualize the future—this becoming a best seller—and feeling honored to be here watching while it’s unfolding.

    Randi’s last blog post..Rehema

    • David Wright/Blogger Dad

      Randi – Thank you! I appreciate the kind words. The LOST comparison is high praise, indeed! The story will have many twists and turns which I get goosebumps when I think about what is to come.

  5. Sean

    EVERYBODY: It’s official, y’all rock! This is exactly the type of feedback and individual reaction Dave and I were hoping for. We want people to be excited for the next bit of serial and milk. Thanks!

    Marc: Next week is even better!
    Janice: Too early for me, but that’s only because I know not nearly enough, but slightly more than you. : > ) We would love to do TV. Maybe someday.

    Trina: AWESOME comment. “I was so struck by the obvious sympatico, the respect, the joy for the collaborative process. A technicolour WOW comes to mind, but doesnt do it justice either.” LOVED IT.

    Randi: YES! We hooked you. TV, novelization, the big screen. Well suck the blood from one of them. : > )

    • David Wright/Blogger Dad

      Yes, this story was originally conceived as a serialized television show. I’d love to bring it to the small screen. And I think TV will be the only way (other than book) to tell this story.

  6. Paisley (Paisley Thoughts)

    Really enjoying the building suspense and desperately want to know who, what, where,how???? Liked these images (so clear):
    ‘He paused to catch his breath and calm his heart, kicking triple time against his chest.
    He chanced upon a clothesline, dipped low with damp garments.
    He glanced up at the windows, squares of black against slate.
    Perhaps he could steal his reflection in one of the windows.’

    Paisley (Paisley Thoughts)’s last blog post..Pattern Potential – It’s Everywhere

  7. Ask Blogger Dad! — Blogger Dad

    […] Inkwell published the second installment of the vampire serial Available Darkness on Friday. If you missed part one, click here to catch up. […]

  8. Do You Dave Ramsey?

    This is really good guys… I love that the episodes are pretty short and easy to digest…. I don’t know how long the story actually is… but I imagine one could be enjoy seeing this unfold for quite some time.

    Keep it up!

    Do You Dave Ramsey?’s last blog post..Bad Money Decisions

  9. Serial and Milk Available Darkness Chapter 2 Collective Inkwell | Shed Kits

    […] Serial and Milk Available Darkness Chapter 2 Collective Inkwell Posted by root 23 hours ago (http://collectiveinkwell.com) As his eyes grew heavy he noticed he 39 d left the shed door open trina awesome comment i was so struck by the obvious sympatico the respect this site is powered by wordpress and thesis and customized by collective inkwell Discuss  |  Bury |  News | serial and milk available darkness chapter 2 collective inkwell […]

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