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Fragments of Fear 4: Mr. Smiley: Fragments of Fear, #4

Fragments of Fear 4: Mr. Smiley: Fragments of Fear, #4

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Fragments of Fear 4: Mr. Smiley: Fragments of Fear, #4

80 pages
40 minutes
Jan 15, 2020


Welcome, I'm your host, Mr. Smiley. Step right in to my bed and breakfast. My specials today include a delectable collection of stories cooked up in my very own kitchen. I hope you enjoy them and tell your friends to come visit. I've always got room. 

To tantalize you, here's a small sampling of the menu.

A serial killer with a taste for vengeance.

A mummy with an eye for the unexpected.

Santa the terrorist. 

All that and much more await you when you visit. Stop by anytime. We're dying to see you. 

Jan 15, 2020

About the author

Michael Kelso self-published his first short horror story seven years ago. Since then he has gone on to self-publish many more, won 2 horror writing contests, and publish his debut Crime fiction novel.  He conitnues to work on his next novel, a YA sports novel, along with sequels to his first crime novel.  Michael lives with his wife and children in Pennsylvania. Author interview: https://www.qwertythoughts.com/authors-lobby/interviews/michael-kelso/5d2c15e11a1ffb34782c440f Review of One on One: https://forums.onlinebookclub.org/viewtopic.php?f=22&t=102148&fbclid=IwAR3f66nynkRjlEECORSPN-S83Ph4pCxxgHmn_9J-WDo5TPGeHc6ILx5wsHg

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Fragments of Fear 4 - Michael Kelso

These stories are original works of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents either are the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, events, or locations is entirely coincidental.

This story contains violence, sexual situations, and adult language. It is not recommended for those under the age of eighteen.

PLEASE VISIT MY AUTHOR website for more of my works, a look at my blog, and more news of upcoming events.


Chapter 1


‘MR. SMILEY'S BED AND Breakfast.’ is what the sign said. Right beside it was a skull and crossbones painted to look like a smiley face.

I would’ve passed right by but my belly protested. I pulled in, got out of the car and looked the place over. The broken shutters and general run-down look of the building were straight out of an old horror flick. I turned to leave when the door opened with a loud creak.

Really? Where’s the black cat?

Just then something zipped past me.

My GPS told me there were no other restaurants within ninety miles, so I stepped inside. It wasn't as bad as the outside. It seemed quite comfortable. The sign in the hallway said ‘Please seat yourself’, but the ‘s’ in seat was about to fall off. I chose a table in the corner where I could overlook the room. A rather pointless gesture since there was no one here. I picked up a menu and looked at the sparse offerings.

Breakfast: House special and a story.

Lunch: House special and a story.

Supper: Catch of the day and a story.

The front door slammed shut and an old man hobbled in.

Good afternoon, young sir, he said, making his way to my table. Other than the hunch on his back he was rather unremarkable in appearance, with two exceptions. He had a broad smile that at first seemed very friendly, but upon closer inspection I realized was an illusion. It looked like a botched facial surgery had forever robbed him of the ability to frown. It gave him a twisted look.

The second thing was his eyes. One of them looked fine, brown and normal. The other was palest blue, nearly white, and the eyeball protruded out from its socket. I felt as though he could see right into my mind. It was so unsettling that only then did I understand why Poe’s protagonist did the deed in ‘The Tell-Tale Heart’.

What can I get for you today? he said.

Looking at what passed for a menu, I said, I think I’ll have Lunch.

Excellent choice, he said, hobbling off.

He returned with a glass that was bubbling and smoking.

Are you serious? I asked.

Give it a try.

Maybe later, I said, pushing the glass as far away from me as possible.

Now it’s time for the story, he said, settling into a seat across from me. It's about a couple who fell in love, and got married, then fell out of love and into hate.

LORD I WAS BORN A RAMBLIN' man, try in' to make a living' and doing the best that I can... Frank Turner crooned at the top of his lungs driving down the highway in a 1967 Chevrolet Impala. The baby blue paint shined in the sunlight and the 327 V-8 engine purred under the hood. The car was deceptive. It had long ago registered its one-thousandth mile on the odometer, but you wouldn't know it by looking at it. The driver was deceptive in the same way. You wouldn't be able to guess his age by looking at him. Many people had asked Frank his secret to staying young. He would answer the same way each time. Eat healthy, exercise, and keep my temper in check.

Frank was friendly wherever he went, but never made friends. He was like a barber in every small town. People would tell him things without even knowing why.

In case you haven't guessed yet, Frank was a traveling salesman. He made a decent living, enough to support him and his wife. And what did he sell? Cutlery. Just about the finest kitchen knives, you could buy.

The broad smile faded from his face as he spied the sign, ‘Larsan 8 miles.’

"Back to the

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