When night falls, darkness cloaks the land. It is a time of shadows and those creatures who move in shadow. What truly happens in the hours we spend sleeping blissfully unaware in our beds? Only the moon knows. And the Brothers of the Moon.
This collection contains thirteen tales of horror and fantasy, of passion and lust, from the realm of darkness. A demon on the beach demonstrates a degree of trickery that reinforces our fear. Spectres from beyond the grave return to help, console, and once again enjoy carnal pleasures long since left behind. The lonely Nullabor Plain plays host to extraterrestrial visitors. Ancient vampires bestow the Moonkiss on a troubled young man. Beings who have no name move unseen throughout the world, altering our lives in small but important ways. And all the while there is the call of the flesh -- the unceasing passion for closeness and gratification that binds human to supernatural.
Join the Brothers of the Moon. Let them lead you to places you can only imagine. Let them caress you. Let them kiss you. If you dare.
EXCERPT FROM "M"
“But master, what is this strange parchment? Its texture is not as rough as paper and it’s not brittle like ancient papyrus.”
Ambrose placed a hand on Aroth’s broad shoulders.
“It is human leather, my boy. It was old before I was born, and now I am passing it on to you as my master passed it to me.”
“But when I bleed on him, won’t that stain him?” asked Aroth, who wasn’t certain he wanted to be responsible for such an artefact.
Ambrose shuffled across the floor to the fire where his favourite chair stood.
“The blood is absorbed. He needs it to bring him back. Blood is the only thing that won’t stain him. I trust you, Aroth.”
Ambrose backed himself up to the chair and then slowly, painfully slowly, sat himself down with a sigh of great effort.
“Now leave me alone to rest. Take your gift to your room and keep it safe.”
Aroth rolled the parchment back up as carefully as if it had been made of butterfly wings. He pushed it gently back into the satin pouch and placed it into the black box. He looked across at Ambrose, who was already making the quiet noises he made when he was dozing.
“Night,” Aroth whispered before stealing off to the small annex where his bed was.
With the curtain pulled across and the box safely on his bedside table, Aroth removed his robe and settled onto the mattress. For a while, he lay naked on his simple bed watching the flickering candlelight dance across the walls of his tiny room. He often did this while he waited for sleep to come, and when he could feel that it was on its way, he would roll over onto his side and bring an arm up under his head to rest on. Tonight as he rolled over, his eyes fell upon the box and, suddenly, the wispy tendrils of approaching sleep were swept away.
He reached over and removed the satin pouch from inside the box. With his heart thumping and his blood full of adrenalin, he slipped the parchment from the pouch and unrolled it. Taking the candle, he held it carefully over the drawing to more closely inspect its detail. It was exquisite. The lines showed each and every muscle, even the veins on the penis, which hung down over a pair of large balls. The man’s eyes stared off into the distance and there was a slight smile on his face, as though he were thinking sinful thoughts. Aroth could even make out the toenails on the man’s toes.
So focused on the drawing was Aroth that he didn’t notice the slight tilt of the candlestick. In fact, he only saw the small drop of hot candle wax as it left the candlestick and fell toward the drawing. He jerked back, spilling hot wax on his hand, but the damage had been done.
A small spot of wax had landed on the man’s abdomen.
Aroth could hardly breathe. His heart was pounding so hard, that it threatened to break free of the ligaments that held it in place. He hadn’t had the drawing an hour and already he had damaged it. How could he tell Ambrose?
Not knowing what else to do, he blew on the wax to cool it, and when he was sure it had set, he manipulated the parchment so the small wax disc lifted off, leaving only a small shadow of a stain on the drawing. With a little amount of luck, Ambrose would never notice.
Aroth sat back on his bed and breathed a mighty sigh of relief. Yet now that the problem had been taken care of, his mind began to wander. Blood. Blood would bring the mysterious man drawn on human skin to life, and if it was blood M wanted, then it was blood Aroth would give him.
Taking the small knife he kept on his belt, he pricked his finger and squeezed it until a tiny bead of dark crimson blood appeared. With a bit more pressure, the bead rolled off the wound and dragged a red ribbon down the length of his digit. However, before it reached the bottom of his finger, he pointed it squarely at the drawing and let the blood drip freely onto M’s naked body.
At first, nothing happened. But as more and more blood landed, splashing onto the parchment, it seemed to swell. He kept his finger poised over the drawing until the whole parchment began to quiver. Such was the amount of movement that the whole thing fell off the night table and onto the cold stone floor, where it continued to increase in size until, finally, it transformed into a fully grown man.
Aroth watched with curious fascination as the man blinked his eyes and looked around him. When he saw Aroth, he smiled.
“Hello,” he said. His voice was deep and had a rich timbre.