The Dark Spark
It’s not benign, what makes those happy noises. Stacked high on the shelves from floor to ceiling, the glass containers shimmer with a malignant glow. The bottles are the only way that Laurel Swindle has safely found to contain the small bitey bits of darkness that live on after she flays her heart bare at her computer each day.
What she does for therapeutic purposes is difficult; when she bleeds as she does, the scars open as though they are fresh, every single time. This room, however, as much as she fears it, is home. It is a pulsating closeness, snug as a hug, and it wraps her in its embrace much as a lover would wrap the object of its desire in its arms. But when Laurel opens the door to her own private sanctuary, she realizes that something is wrong, and wishes that she didn’t have to step over the threshold and into the dark, cavernous shadows.
The monsters that live there have broken free of their cages and Laurel finds her life on the cusp of the abyss. Taking a deep breath and uttering a small prayer, she steps into their world, with the small silver bullet that she keeps on a chain around her neck firmly between her teeth as she steps through the door and out of her mind.