Darkness Blooms

Mary, Mary, quite contrary
How does your garden grow?
In bile and blood, fire and flood,
And darkness blooms below.

Explore the ways darkness—fascism, war, societal collapse—can seep into our lives insidiously, silently stretching its tendrils like creeping vines, or erupt with the sudden violence of a bursting seedpod.

We are thrilled to finally present this unforgettable collection featuring 17 original stories.

Mixtape: 1986

Do you remember a time before the Internet? Before cellphones and security cameras? Do you remember how it felt to step into the neon-lit arcade on a Friday night, pockets heavy with quarters?

Our inaugural collection, Mixtape: 1986, features sixteen original stories about latchkey kids, monsters, housewives, gamers, murderers, truckers, spies, and more. The collection explores themes of estrangement and loneliness, fear and acceptance, love and forgiveness, family and friendship, self-discovery and sacrifice.


Monthly Memberships

The Dread Machine is run by passionate volunteers and funded by donations. We don’t have sponsors, and we don’t sell ads. Our community makes our work here possible. If you enjoy our stories, please consider joining us on Ko-fi (preferred) or Patreon. Tiers and content are identical on both, but we prefer Ko-fi for its wealth of cool features and lower cost.

Every penny we receive pays a writer and expands our library of content.

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