“Ones & Zeroes” Excerpt

Here’s a brief snippet from one of the stories featured in Ones & Zeroes,
“The Mouse & the Dragon”

The knight charged forth, shield up and spear ready. His armor glistened despite the dreary overcast sky like a chrome beacon amidst his hellish surroundings. The horse’s neigh was loud and triumphant as the clopping of its hooves echoed on the scorched cobblestone. The knight’s banner, an orange lion against a black background, billowed in the wind.

He would’ve been a majestic sight to behold had Hildy not seen it already or known what was coming. Continue reading

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“Ones & Zeroes: A Short Story Collection” Now Available

A collection of my short stories is now up for sale on Amazon

kindle coverLook behind the curtain for 14 tales of horror, action, humor, and fantasy…

A babysitter contends with not just an intruder lurking outside, but her own mind…A drug addict saves the world from an alien invasion…In a sleepy town, an abandoned sewage treatment plant houses a sinister force…Man and insect clash in the middle of the night…Mercenaries collide during the sacrifice of a princess…A damsel in distress tries to escape her own story…

Vampires, dragons, zombies, giant spiders and more can be found in this collection of stories from author M. Walsh.

Only $0.99 on Kindle

also available in paperback

“Collision”

This is another of my early works about a pile-up of protagonists with varying goals.
It’s a fantasy story—featuring an Elf, no less—and in a lot of ways was a precursor to Graylands. So readers should recognize certain characters and concepts that wound up getting used and incorporated in my books.


Donovan Moore was a man with an intangible quality about him. He was tall and thin, with shining white hair—but not elderly. There was great strength in his lanky frame and fearful power behind his eyes. As High Cleric of the Disciples of Moros, he was rarely seen in person—often delegating orders to subordinates or lower Clerics—but when he made his presence known, he had a talent for shrinking the will of even the strongest of those around him.

He sat in his lavish armchair, staring at the dagger in his hand, with a content and sly smirk on his narrow face. The handle of the dagger was pure silver, crafted into the shape of a horned serpent. The blade was dull gray, but pulsed with a faint red glow—enchanted for a divine purpose. As Moore listened to the crashing waves outside the tower window, he felt a surge of anticipation flow through his blood.

It wouldn’t be long now.

“Cleric Moore,” said one of his followers, entering the chamber. “The Great Tail is visible and will be before the moon shortly.”

“And the Princess?”

“Still unconscious.”

“Wake her and get her ready,” he said, putting on his ceremonial garb. “Tell the guards to remain on high alert.”

The subordinate bowed and left as Moore walked to the window, closing his gold and maroon robes. The last trace of sun disappeared over the horizon, and high above, a fat, yellow moon shined like a glowing eye. In the distance, the comet known as the Great Tail approached—soon to pass the moon, an event that only occurred every thousand years.

Looking at the comet, he gripped the dagger tight. When the Great Tail eclipsed the moon, its blade would pierce Princess Anna’s heart, and with the sacrifice of royal blood, Moros, the Final Dragon, would rise again and cleanse the world in his mighty fire. And from the ashes, the Disciples—led by High Cleric Moore of course—would build a new, perfect society.

With a satisfied smile, he set to make the final preparations. The presence of the Great Tail lit the night to a deep, red hue like early evening and made the ocean like blood. Despite the violent waves, there was an expectant hush like before a great storm.

Taking one last look at the approaching comet, Moore deemed it a fitting atmosphere to herald the coming of a god. Continue reading

“Intervention”

Here we have a tale of an individual offering an unorthodox justification for his vices.
I can see this story not being for everyone, given its abrasive protagonist and his (or her..?) cavalier attitude toward addiction, but I hope it isn’t taken that seriously.


Okay, right off the bat: NO, I don’t have a problem.

Yes, maybe I drink a little more than the average bear. But am I not entitled? Life’s a bitch, and sometimes I need to unwind. Besides, I know when to stop. I know my tolerance level. When I was still working, I never let it affect me. Sure, I might have snuck a beer or swig of something harder here and there, but despite what my jackass supervisor said, it never affected my work.

Working at a movie theater wasn’t exactly brain surgery.

And yes, I’ll admit I do partake in drugs sometimes. But I am not an addict. I can say no or stop anytime I want. I don’t because I have it under control. And again, I never let it interfere with my job. I wasn’t stupid enough to try sneaking blasts of coke while I was working—my boss was making up stories and exaggerating. He never liked me and was always looking for an excuse to lay me off.

What? Well, yeah, I’ve been doing coke a little more than usual, but I’m not working right now. Excuse me for indulging. I told you: it’s not an addiction. The reason I do it as often as I do—which really isn’t that often—is because I know I can stop anytime. If I thought I couldn’t control it, I would stop.

What’s so hard to understand about that?

Okay, here we go—I knew this was coming.

Yes, I was drunk and on drugs that night. And yes, I had a little something to do with the fire. But it is not what you think. I was not trying to get back at them for firing me. I’m not stupid—you really think if I wanted revenge on the theater, I would do something as crazy as burning down the place?

Of course not! Believe it or not—unlike some people maybe—I am remarkably lucid when I’m fucked up. Do you have any idea how many times I’ve driven coked out of my mind and gotten home without a scratch on the car? How is that a problem?!

No one’s bothered to ask me my side of the story. I’ll be happy to tell you why I had to start that fire. In fact, you people should be thanking me. Yeah! You should be on your knees thanking me—not just for torching the movie theater—but for even being able to handle my narcotics the way I do.

Why? Because if I couldn’t handle myself, this whole town … screw that, maybe even the whole planet would’ve been doomed! Don’t look at me like I’m crazy. If it wasn’t for me, and the fact I was tripping balls on coke, every one of you would’ve been replaced by aliens.

Yeah, I said it. Continue reading

“Look the Other Way”

This received an Honorable Mention in Allegory e-zine (vol. 24/51)
It’s more of a straight horror story about a young couple driving through the country who happen upon something not quite human.


Rain pounded the front windshield like they were driving through a carwash. The wipers darted back and forth with their constant rhythmic hum, but did little to aid the view. It was just good fortune the road was empty—almost nothing could be seen ahead, even with the headlights at their brightest. An oncoming car would likely create blinding white glare.

Laurie Brooks had been staring out the passenger window, seeing little more than the rain slide down and across the glass at an angle. Near the ground, water sprayed outward as though they were on a speeding boat. Beyond was near total darkness. She was able to make out some open fields of wheat or weeds, but as far as she could see, they might as well have been driving through a tunnel.

She looked at her husband, Tom, and noted his normally boyish, carefree face set with stern concentration. He looked stiff and uncomfortable, like someone watching a movie and anticipating a loud jump-scare. She’d seen that look when he was studying for law school. She sympathized, but also found his seriousness endearing at the same time.

“I say if the next town doesn’t have a motel,” she said, “we just pull over and sleep in the car.” Continue reading

“The New Babysitter”

This is one of my first short stories, and I think the first work I ever tried to get published. I’ve never been really sure what genre it should fall under—a sort of horror-comedy-thriller, I guess. Can’t say if it holds up, but it has a special place for me.
It’s a twist on the old babysitter story where said babysitter gets harassed on the phone by a creepy guy lurking outside.


I know I have problems.

My parents knew—I knew—we were taking a risk letting me babysit the McAllister kids. But in my defense, honestly, what are the odds? I certainly didn’t go in that night thinking things would escalate the way they did. I didn’t want anyone to die … Continue reading