Horla Flash Fiction (April 2021)




THE world these days is filled with scumbags, and this fact has become ever more apparent since the end of the last century, their type carried on and multiplying from the most impure bloodlines. Since other men of science refuse to admit this, never mind do anything about it, I have had to operate however I can to do my part and, if not reverse the problem, at least impede it until somebody devises a more effective solution.

Opportunities for purification can come at the most random points. Just last week I was driving along and a black SUV pulled out on my Mercedes with barely enough space for me to break in time. I honked and flashed my lights, and the driver’s response was to stop entirely and give me the middle finger from out of his window. It was then that I decided what he was, and what his fate was to be.

I drove around and parked at an angle in front of him. He was amazed as I got out of my car and with staged bravado offered him a physical fight, but he accepted. He swung his door out with wild confidence and began to walk up to me with both fists clenched. That degenerate did not expect me to pull out my Walther P38, its silencer snug on the barrel’s end, and shoot him twice in the upper chest, just to the left of the sternum. (The look on his stupid chimp face!) He fell on his back with a yelp, and when I stood over him I was sure to put a third bullet through the middle of his forehead—I had been fooled too many times before. I searched the corpse and pulled out his wallet. I noted his address from the licence, as well as a picture of his family.

A moment later a truck drove by, halted, and some moron leaned out.

I pulled out my forged badge and waved it before him.

“Police business!” I shouted. “Drive on! You’ll read all about it in the papers tomorrow!”

The moron drove on, and I dragged the body off into some bushes before parking the SUV on the side of the road. It would be a good while before either was discovered.

I drove to his neighbourhood and parked away from his too nice house. I went up to the door, and by chance his wife was in.

“Mrs Cooper?” I asked, flashing the badge again. “I’m Detective Inspector Mark Engel. Could I please come in? I’m afraid there’s been an incident.”

She led me into the living room, where I sat down on the couch and told her that her husband had been murdered just an hour earlier. The woman howled like a dog (the gormless bitch!) and I asked her when her children would be home. She said through tears that it would be another half an hour—the teenage girl collected the small boy from school. I explained that given that the case was still “hot” it would be best if she called no one else for the meantime, and just waited with me until the children arrived.

When they did I knew them immediately as soon as they came into the room: the girl was a slut who led young men on and broke their hearts. The boy was a little shit who abused his way through classrooms.

Before the mother could utter a word I blew her brains out—always kill the adult first.

I meant then to kill the older girl, but she ran and I had to take the boy down before he did the same. She locked herself in the bathroom—I shot my way in, but used up my bullets in the process, forcing me to improvise. She fought and scratched as I wrapped the shower curtain around her neck. Her skirt came above her hips and unclean thoughts entered my mind, until I slapped them away. (Temptuous cunt!) My goal was to end impure bloodlines, not extend them.

The rest was easy—there was enough lighter fluid in the kitchen to get a thorough fire going before I went out through the back.

The impure authorities still hunt for me, but I’m too skilled now. My methods are crude and irregular, yes, but what else can a man, that is, a real human, do?



As well as previously at HorlaHarris Coverley (right) has short fiction published or forthcoming in CuriositiesHypnosShotgun Honey, and Eldritch Journal. He is also a Rhysling-nominated poet and member of the Weird Poets Society, with verse most recently accepted for Star*LineSpectral RealmsOrdinary MadnessYellow Mama, and View From Atlantis, amongst others. He lives in Manchester, England.

Title photo credit – Anne Nygard via Unsplash

Horla standard disclaimer – image has no direct connection with the fiction