Banquet of Souls, 8th Course, “The Crumbs of My Soul”


What follows is an excerpt from the eighth story from my new anthology, Banquet of Souls.


The Crumbs of My Soul


You need to understand that she stole chunks of me. Bit by bit, visit by visit. And now here she was again, in my room. She was on me. Riding me. Grinding hard. Groaning with pleasure until I surrendered. Then she left.

As she always did.

She first came to me about six months ago. She moved into the apartment across the hall. I was getting home from my job at the store, and saw her door was open. Boxes, both open and closed, strewn about the room, each written with marker with the appropriate room destination. I could see a blonde woman was in the kitchen, putting dishes into the cupboard. Her back was to me.

As she reached up with a stack of plates, I could see her long, lanky form, her midriff bared as the pastel green tee-shirt rode up. I decided to not say anything. I found my keys and busied myself with unlocking my door.

The jangling of metal must have alerted her. As I pushed the key into the lock I heard her voice.

“You must be my neighbor!”

I turned. There she was, her slim form poured into tight jeans. She wiped her dusty hands on her thighs and held out an open hand. I took it, shook it. Her grip was tight and strong.

“Hi. I’m glad that Mr. Foster finally found someone to rent to.”

“I’m Ava.”

“Mark. Bennington.” I said.

“Mr. Foster is such an old sweetheart, isn’t he?” Her smile sparkled.

I nodded. “Yeah, well, welcome to the building,” I said, attempting to retreat into my apartment.

“Mark,” she interrupted. “Could I get you to do something for me? The movers really weren’t very particular where they put my sofa and chair. Could you find a moment to help me move them?”

“Uh, sure.”

The apartment was bright from the lack of curtains on the windows. The place had the bittersweet smell of disinfectant and fresh paint. She led me to the upholstered chair.

“This should go over there, next to the lamp.”

I grabbed one arm, she grabbed the other, and we lifted. I walked backwards, taking care to not trip over any boxes or debris. We set it down, then she shunted it into position in the corner. The sofa wasn’t as heavy as it looked, and before long we had it placed flat against the wall.

“There! Thanks.”

“No problem.”

“Interest you in a beer or a glass of wine?”

“No thank you. I don’t drink.”

“Water? Soda?”

“No thank you, I’m fine.”

“Lived here long?”

“About three years.”

“What do you do?”

“Oh, I’m an assistant manager down at Frankie’s Discount.”

“You must work a lot.”


She sat on the couch and made a motion for me to sit. I felt a little weird, but acquiesced.

“I just started working at the Chesbrough bank.”


“Yeah. I’m a loan consultant.”


“I don’t know anyone in the area. I suppose I’ll make new friends, but right now…” she trailed off.

“Well, I’ve got to be going,” I said, standing.

“You don’t have to leave.” She still sat, looking up at me with her face level with my belt buckle. A small smile touched the corners of her mouth.

I felt an unaccustomed wave of lust wash through me. I instantly wanted her. I had never had been with anyone before.

“I-I should leave.”

“Please stay.”

“Uh, I…”

That’s when she touched me.


12 courses of fear and horror! Banquet of Souls is available now at Amazon Books

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