We’re back with a brand-new episode of our queer, Philly-based switchblade-and-sorcery web novel, The Dread Eclipse, with new updates published weekly on Thursdays! Enjoy the preview below, along with a link to the full episode and free downloadable EPUB and PDF of all episodes to date. ✨
“Long Night Moon”
story by Mabel Harper & Emrys Webb
written by Emrys Webb
Caren stood watching Ash walk away, thinking how almost-cartoonishly tiny he looked. Took a drag, went into a coughing fit, rubbed at her chest.
Checked the time on her phone.
A little after eleven. Nowhere near her own grown-up bedtime.
She opened up her texts—froze for one beat at the sight of Sylvan’s thread right below Ash’s, with that last message: New place!! and the ex-girlfriend’s address, before deleting it, along with Sylvan’s entry in her contacts.
She took a moment to replace the name Daddy’s Boy with Ash in her address book, then hopped over to her favorites and selected Peri.
Caren stared at the blank text field to Peri for several seconds, thumbs hovering over the keyboard, then backed out to her main address book and jumped to F.
dtf? she fired off to Ellis, then shoved her phone back in her pocket and took another deep, lung-scorching drag.
Caren wandered up Richmond Street to the nearest non-sports bar, ordered another Maker’s Mark (double), demolished it. Put “Idiot” by Wavves on the jukebox, sat headbanging and drumming on the bar top. Waved her empty rocks glass at the bartender for a refill.
Ellis’s reply came:
Damn gurl you thirsty as hell this weekend. I already got company tonite but hmu literally any other time 👅💦
Caren unleashed a string of the foulest epithets in her vocabulary, returned to the F section of her contacts, hit send on indecent proposals to a couple more prospects.
Paused to stare briefly at Luke’s text feed, at those two blunt gray check marks.
Did some hasty swiping on Tinder before again stuffing her phone in her pocket and going to town on both her whisky and the bar-top-cum-percussion-instrument.
An old white dude in a blazer with a tumbler one-quarter-full of Scotch pulled a stool up next to her. Looked her over slowly head to toe, licked his lips, flashed a mouthful of veneers.
One knock-down-drag-out bar brawl later (and a couple of trophy veneers in her pocket), Caren found herself stumbling her way down the street toward where she was seventy-two-percent sure she remembered parking Porkchop, turning her now-empty cigarette box upside down and checking her phone for the millionth time.
No responses from her old hookups so far. Even Tinder was coming up dry.
It was going on two a.m. now. All the bars would be closing soon.
But there had to be something fucking else she could do besides just…go home.