New Rules New Game

1) Exercise your Killer Instinct by submitting your VERY BEST

poem or story to

no bio needed, you retain the copyright.

2) Be Creative.

You will be judged by ME, then by your fellow killers.

3) If you're Good, you will make THE HIT LIST.

If you're not, don't expect any Remorse.

Good Luck.

Jul 29, 2012

The Edge of The Road

by Kevin Michaels

On a two lane county road near Williamsport, the skies that had been dark and threatening for hours finally erupted in a violent explosion of lightning and thunder cracks. The road turned slick, the wind kicked up unexpectedly, and it was nearly impossible to see anything through the rain. Even harder handling the power of the big block Chevy Bel Air. It was the kind of car that wasn’t so easy to drive, but Archer was starting to feel comfortable behind the wheel. By the time he got back to New Jersey he would know everything about that car.

He kept his eyes on the road while he fiddled with the radio. In between bursts of static, Eddie Cochran sang about “the summertime blues” while the wipers slapped the rain off the windshield.

Archer liked that steady, rhythmic beat – the sound helped drown out the noise in his head.

He thought again about the nice young couple he met at the rest stop near the Pennsylvania State line. They were from some small town in Western Kentucky, Illinois, or Ohio – just another name and a dot on the map to him. No idea where it was or how far they had to travel until their paths crossed, and it wasn’t like he could ask them about it now. Archer couldn’t remember exactly what they told him – he hadn’t paid that much attention to what they had to say. Just enough to keep the conversation going and pass the time.

For a little while.

You need a distraction, he thought. Something that breaks the monotony of the road.

Doug had been the quiet one. Right from the start he hadn’t said much and barely made a sound the whole time. But Kate was another story – she kept going on and on long after Archer had lost interest in either one of them. She just wouldn’t shut up. Her voice had a way of crawling under your skin and getting inside your head, and it was miles before the sound finally faded from memory.

The storm showed no sign of letting up and the drive became difficult. Archer finally pulled into a small bar tucked beneath a highway overpass to shake off the rain and kill some time.

There were only a handful of people inside – locals leaning into the bar, working shots and beers, while others huddled around a pool table playing eight ball. Nobody paid attention to him as he slid onto a bar stool and ordered a Jack Daniels. The bartender – somebody called him Sean – slid the glass across the mahogany and walked to the end of the bar without a word. Elvis blasted from a corner jukebox while the redhead at the bar dipped a shoulder and swayed to the song. Something about the way she ran a finger slowly along the rim of her glass before carefully bringing it to her lips and sucking away the salt held Archer’s attention. Quietly sipping his whiskey, he chanced a smile when she glanced his way, but she simply flipped the hair off her face and turned away from his stare.

She downed what was left of her drink and gathered her things, smiling to the bartender and the people around her. By the time she started saying her good-byes, Archer had already pictured the feel of his hands against her skin, the smell of her breath on his face, and the way her voice would sound when he held her close.

He tossed a twenty on the bar, slipped his fingers around the switchblade in his coat pocket, and headed outside to wait. Maybe this one wouldn’t scream so loud when he carved her up, he thought. Not like that couple from the Midwest. Killing them had been hard, especially since he had never done two at the same time. Once he gutted Doug it took forever to muffle Kate’s screams while he ripped the blade across her throat again and again.

Even longer for the light to go out of her eyes.

The two of them were still under a blood-soaked blanket in the back of the car, but Archer figured the Chevy’s trunk would be big enough to hold another body when he got done with the redhead.

At least until he got back to New Jersey.


  1. Kate here. Don't care how heavy that blanket is baby -- light ain't ever goin' outta this chick's eyes.

    You write one helluva mean tune though, Killer Kevin. My fellow even said "Why is he so VISCIOUS?" when I read it out loud. Thing is - I only read it out loud because of the three glasses of white wine after the billiards win in Boyleston, MA -- fortunately far enough away from Rte 80 on that wicked Pennsylvaania trail.

    Way to go pal, way to go.

    ~ Absolutely*Kate

  2. Nice work, Kevin - that one packs a chill and a half. Great stuff!

  3. This one has it's own sound track. All through the story of Archer and his, um, collection, I could hear Morrison singin' "Killer on the road. His mind is squirming like a toad." Kept me reading close all the way. Neat one, Kevin. Economical and pure. Cool.

  4. Thanks all - AJ, you're absolutely right. Forget the 50's feel and the Eddie Cochran and Elvis beat, for big chunks of this story I was channeling Jim Morrison.......

  5. Really like that, Kevin. One of your best I have read. Very well written, and the last sentence is great.

  6. Kevin wields the pen and exchanges ink for blood in this one! Always an excellent writer who's a joy to read.

  7. Oh yes, I love the Morrison reference; I read it back with that in mind and it worked even better than the first read through - and I thought it was brilliant before. Chilling.

  8. Brilliant writing. Edgy and taut, and a great twist (of the knife) at the end.

    Robert Keys

  9. Man oh man....just discovered this and it cut me to the core. A really excellent story.