Brides of Darkness: Tales of Opulent Darkness
Cover by Davi Panzera
I am very excited to bring out my first collection of short stories. I have wanted to have a book like this since I was teenager. You don’t just get one story, but several. What a deal!
These six stories all involve characters who find themselves in horrific situations they cannot escape. They are, in that sense, wed to darkness either by intention, or fatal flaw.
Three of these stories were published elsewhere, one on Kindle and Smashwords where it has sold well, and one is exclusive to this collection. It should be available by the end of Summer, 2013.
The Vampire’s Mirror — Exclusive to Brides of Darkness
Cast out by her wealthy employer for stealing, Giselle wanders into a ruined castle. There she finds a mirror and a comb that once belonged to the wife of a Count from the House of Dracul. One hundred years later, young Stefan finds the comb and mirror in the ruins and takes them as gift for the woman he loves, the beautiful Lady Analise, who has never had a mirror. When Analise sees herself in the mirror, the Count sees her as well. Can Stefan save Analise from the Vampire’s attentions before her life is drained away? Or will his attempt be thwarted by a terrible twist of fate?
The House Witch — 2011, Variations on a Theme
Andre Fournier deserts Napoleon’s army in the depth of a Russian winter. On the brink of starvation, he meets a child who directs him to a ruined palace with a ghostly gambling casino. The tables are presided over by a beautiful lady who reminds Andre of a girl he left behind. What does she want with Andre? Surely not just a card game!
The Red Masque — 2011, Danse Macabre Magazine
A hedonistic Marquise despairs when he sees a guillotine being erected below his palace windows. He flees with his family and friends to his country estate where they continue their debauched soirees. Alisdaire and Odile, local witches, have other plans for him. Can he really escape his fate?
This story, inspired by E.A. Poe’s Mask of the Red Death, is meant to be part of a longer work involving generations of an aristocratic family and their macabre relationship with the spirits of the land.
Portrait of a Vampire — 2011, Oberon’s Law
When Goth girl, Gina, meets the gorgeous, aristocratic Laurence, (whom she affectionately calls Lorenzo), in a Seattle nightclub, he sweeps her off her feet. She knows it’s love, but he will not see her outside the club, will not take their relationship where she, and her friends, Amylie and Jen, long for it to go. When Lorenzo suddenly dies, Gina becomes obsessed with painting his portrait. Obsession turns to possession when he returns from the grave to model for her.
Priestess — 2012, Amazon Kindle and Smashwords
5.0 out of 5 stars
Look closely at the death mask of Hiero-Dia! March 28, 2012
The Priestess’s Tale is fantastic. Great details, and an phantasmal mix of Roman and Gothic elements that requires close attention be paid at every turn. There are a succession of character transformations that are important to keep track of–Portia and her daughter at the beginning, and then Sylvana’s introduction to the rites, including a great scene in which the author draws on elements from the story of Actaeon, familiar to readers of Ovid’s Metamorphoses. The story takes a deeply mysterious turn towards the end; without giving too much away, a play of mirrors in the context of an ancient mystery religion disolves time, love and death in a way that both unified a number of strands in the story and caught me by surprise. This is a great work for readers with imaginative intelligence, if not a familiarity with ancient mystery religions, and younger readers will enjoy de Winter’s creation of moods and an atmosphere in a world that is both mysterious and exquisitely described.
The Strange Marriage of Lady Crawford — 2011, Lissette’s Tales of the Imagination
Coming out of mourning, Lady Mary Crawford holds a masquerade party to reunite with her friends. The only requirement is that the guests dress as animals, the most convincing costume to win a secret prize.
The line between human and animal, and good and evil, are blurred in this Gothic story inspired by a photograph of a ruined house in Scotland and the story of a beautiful, wealthy recluse who loved animals more than people.