Find more from this author on:
About the author:
D.L. Perello lives in California and has previously been published in Ruthie’s Club. D.L. also has various genre fiction short stories appearing in several publications under another pen name.
Here is a short sample from the book:
That night, her first night, she retired to bed in one of the guest rooms—it didn’t seem right to take the master. In her loose bed gown, she reclined on the still-opulent pillows under the bed canopy and, by the side of a single candle, read a book. She couldn’t sleep being in new surroundings and was afraid, innately and frivolously, that she’d offend the owner of the house by having the temerity to sleep in one of his beds unannounced. So she turned to an edition of Plato’s The Republic to put her to sleep as a kind of ether of the mind.
After several long passages, she began to drowse but was perked up again by a strange sound. She supposed every sound in a new home would be strange, but this was louder and more persistent than a random creak. She heard a loudish clacking—she couldn’t tell the source, certainly not in her room. It clacked over and over again, like slabs of wood clapping, almost rhythmic. Just as it died down it started up again. Growing more perturbed, she got up with the lone candle to investigate.
Out in the hall she felt a vague chill as she followed the source of the sound. The clacking got louder and louder as she approached another room and saw inside some stacked furniture, a few chests, and a window at the far end. A curtain blew softly inward, and she approached it with intent and almost hostility as she closed on the source of her disturbance.
She flung the curtain aside and saw the window shutter swing in the breeze. It’s momentum carrying it faster, it clacked on the window frame and bounced back, readying its eventual return journey and rude reverberation. Katherine abruptly interrupted its dance and pulled both shutters in and latched them together. Silence returned to the house—for a moment.
She made her way out the room when another noise shook her nerve. She heard a table drag across the floor. It could’ve been the attic above, it could’ve been down the hall. She stopped and every pore on her skin tightened—every inch of her chilled. “Hello?” she stuttered lamely.
She came out into the hall, her bare steps hesitant, her candle wavering. She looked down the dark shadowy length of it not seeing any clue to the now-ceased intrusion. “Is… is anyone there?”