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Once November

Tales of Jack the Ripper (Word Horde) is available now, from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and soon from your own independent bookseller (sometimes as tricksey to catch as Jack himself!). you can also get the Saucy Jack Deluxe Pack. Who doesn’t want that? I want one of those! Scroll down for an excerpt from my story, “Once November.”

jacktheripper

Ghosts appear most often between October and February.

            Only one woman was claimed within these months, and she at the beginning of November. She never appears in November–no one can say why–nor why those who always accompany her are pulled from their own months to join her. None, in point of fact, have appeared on the days they were taken; for this I cannot blame them–would you revisit the day you were murdered?

            It is now January. It was once November.

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            Polly kisses what little remains of my mouth, her own soft and fragrant. In the right air, she still smells like her soap, like you’ve run your hand up the length of a bristling branch of rosemary and have burst enough leaves to get their oil on you. You would think she’d stink of wine or gin, but these scents are long fled. Some things vanish, some yet remain.

            Elizabeth, whose gray eyes have rested long upon me, looks away. Her mouth settles into its disfigured slant. She is upset that he loved me best, that he ruined me most, that he abandoned her mid-cut and later unleashed his anger on Catherine. Catherine whom he wrote about, Catherine whom he ate. Elizabeth is forever unfinished, nearly perfect in her coat, rose and maiden hair fern still firmly pinned. Blood yet saturates the silk handkerchief ’round her neck.

            The sliver of mirror is sharp in my hand as Polly offers it to me. It is still her prized possession; Elizabeth never wants to see it or herself within. Dark Annie was slow to come around but when she looked to see what he had made of her, she wept. I look into the mirror and cannot breathe –

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