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Lisa's Revenge-Fiction by Janet Hatwell
Her Passion-Fiction by Kenneth James Crist
Threes-Fiction by Cindy Rosmus
Ruby in the Red Hoodie-Fiction by Ryan Priest
No-Fiction by Bruce Costello
Fat Trucker, Hot Wife-Fiction by Matthew Copes
Between the Sheets-Fiction by K. Marvin Bruce
Hearts in Retrograde-Fiction by Hillary Lyon
From a Buick-Kind-of-Place-Fiction by Darrell Petska
The Map-Fiction by Jan Christensen
Old Mules-Fiction by Mickey J. Corrigan
The Right Tool for the Job-Fiction by Roy Dorman
The War Against Stuff-Fiction by Fred Andersen
The Handyman-Fiction by Bobby Mathews
Till Death Do Us Part-Fiction by Justin Swartz
Deadville-Fiction by Gary Clifton
Huggermugger-Flash Fiction by Gay Degani
Mortuary-Flash Fiction by Doug Hawley
Inside Room 107-Flash Fiction by Dustin Walker
Gatophobia-Flash Fiction by M. A. De Neve
Daybreak Over I-15-Poem by C. W. Blackwell
Confetti and Juicy Fruit Gum-Poem by Kenneth James Crist
Night in Cumming's Cove-Poem by Michael Keshigian
Scar-Poem by Otto Burnwell
Graveyard Love-Poem by John Grey
Plan but No Really Plan-Poem by Joe Balaz
Audible Sigh-Poem by John Tustin
Erica-Poem by John Tustin
Heartbreaker-Poem by Meg Baird
La Guitare-Poem by Meg Baird
Parking Garage-Poem by Joel Matulich
Vintage Trade Paperback-Poem by Joel Matulich
Perpetual Motion-Poem by Stephen J. Golds
The Best Ones Are the Crazy Ones-Poem by Stephen J. Golds
Black Widow-Poem by Luis Cuauhtemoc Berriozabal
Out of My Skin-Poem by Luis Cuauhtemoc Berriozabal
The Terrible Shadows-Poem by Luis Cuauhtemoc Berriozabal
Lucky Number Seven-Poem by Bradford Middleton
The Old Routine of Dreaming and Blasting-Poem by Bradford Middleton
F**K It, Let's Listen to the Ramones-Poem by Bradford Middleton
Our Open Window-Poem by Ayaz Daryl Nielsen
Wandering Woman-Poem by Ayaz Daryl Nielsen
Winter's Twilight Sky-Poem by Ayaz Daryl Nielsen
You, I, Together-Poem by Ayaz Daryl Nielsen
Each Day-Poem by Judith Partin-Nielsen
Ghost Dance-Poem by Judith Partin-Nielsen
He Paid For-Poem by Judith Partin-Nielsen
Winter Woman-Poem by Judith Partin-Nielsen
Cartoons by Cartwright
Hail, Tiger!
Angel of Manslaughter
Strange Gardens
Gutter Balls
Calpurnia's Window
No Place Like Home
Dark Tales from Gent's Pens

Art by Hillary Lyon 2021

Inside Room 107


by Dustin Walker

Her voice trickled out of Room 107. Soft and pleading, but still loud enough to catch Johnny's attention on his way to the motel ice machine.

“No, sweetie. Please, don’t.”

Then a slap. A muffled cry. And what sounded like a mallet hitting a piece of raw steak.

Johnny knew that sound. He’d heard it every day as a kid while hiding in the pantry, listening as his dad beat on his mom. He imagined the woman on the other side of the door, huddled on the dirty carpet as some biker or gangbanger stood over her with a clenched fist. Her face swollen. Lips bleeding.

Johnny’s hands curled into tight balls. He glanced around. His Camaro and a jacked-up Silverado were the only vehicles in the parking lot. A pair of streetlights threw dirty tungsten on everything, but it was still pretty dark. And there wasn’t anyone in sight.

He pressed his ear against the door and listened.

Whispering. Harsh, pointed. The way you’d hiss I warned you or I fucking told you at someone. Johnny recognized that sound from his childhood, too.

Another slap. Another muted cry.

He grit his teeth and adjusted the giant skull ring on his index finger. He raised his hand to knock on the door just as the woman screamed, “Please, no!”

The door flew open. Johnny jumped back. A rail-thin girl stumbled out of the room, tripped and fell on the concrete. She wore blue jeans and a black crop top. Mascara ran down her face like inky tears.

She looked up at him but didn’t say a word. Didn’t ask for help. Johnny’s mom had never asked, either.



He stayed to the side of the door, just out of sight. Fists raised, ready to fuck up the bastard who would walk out of that room. Ready to unleash the pent-up fury from a childhood hell full of beatings and days spent in hiding.

Johnny bounced from foot to foot and wrung out his massive hands. Cracked his neck.

But he couldn’t wait. Fuck the sneak attack.

He lunged through the doorway, his skull-clad fist drawn back, ready to throw the hardest right cross of his life.

The room was empty.

Johnny dropped his hands to his side and wondered if the guy had slipped into the bathroom.

Light footsteps from behind. Johnny spun around.

The woman stood in the doorway with her arms folded across her chest and her face scrunched up like a crumpled roadmap.

“The fuck you want?” she said. Her voice thicker and stronger than before. “Sticking your goddamn nose where it doesn't belong, looks like.”

She walked up to Johnny and got right in his face. Her eyes had a hardness to them. And a distant, empty gleam.

“I heard you cry out . . . I wanted to help.” Johnny turned toward the bathroom for a second, worried the guy might jump him from behind. He turned back to the woman, just as she stuck a butterfly knife into his gut.

“Who’s the big tough man, now?” She smiled before pulling the blade out of Johnny’s abdomen. He slumped against the wood-paneled wall and clutched at his wound. Heart racing. Cold sweat streaming down his face. 

The woman wiped the knife on his jean jacket and slipped it back into her pocket. She put her hand on the doorknob and looked back at Johnny. “Everyone’s a fucking hero these days.”

Johnny’s legs gave out and he collapsed onto the carpet, hand still pressed against his spurting gut.

She turned off the light and closed the door, leaving him in darkness.

“Get in the truck, bitch.” Her voice carried into the room.

Then a slap. A muffled cry.

Johnny slipped into unconsciousness.




Dustin Walker is a former newspaper reporter who specialized in writing feature stories about addiction, homelessness, and other social issues. He now uses those experiences as inspiration for his fiction. His work has appeared in places like Dark Moon Digest and SilverBlade Magazine.

Hillary Lyon is an illustrator for horror/sci-fi and pulp fiction websites and magazines. She is also founder and senior editor for the independent poetry publisher, Subsynchronous Press. An SFPA Rhysling Award nominated poet, her poems have appeared in journals such as Eternal Haunted Summer, Jellyfish Whispers, Scfifaikuest, Illya’s Honey, and Red River Review, as well as numerous anthologies. Her short stories have appeared recently in Night to Dawn, Yellow Mama, Black Petals, Sirens Call, and Tales from the Moonlit Path, among others, as well as in numerous horror anthologies such as Night in New Orleans: Bizarre Beats from the Big EasyThuggish Itch: Viva Las Vegas, and White Noise & Ouija Boards. She appeared, briefly, as the uncredited "all-American Mom with baby" in Purple Cactus Media’s 2007 Arizona indie-film, "Vote for Zombie." Having lived in France, Brazil, Canada, and several states in the US, she now resides in southern Arizona.  https://hillarylyon.wordpress.com/                                    

In Association with Black Petals & Fossil Publications 2021