Sticks and Stones

Catherine Fletcher

$ 4.99 USD

When Matt finds a homemade sculpture in a cave up a Catskills Mountain, his best friend David tells him to put it back. But Matt’s not a believer in spooky stuff like David is, and he takes the sinister statue home to Los Angeles as part of his celebration of their new venture. When Matt’s dreams are invaded by terrifying visions, it takes David to break through the darkness that is engulfing Matt — and create a brand new connection between them. But will it be too late to save Matt from being pulled beneath the surface into a nightmare?

(!) Content warning: This story contains the depiction of a panic attack.

If I get eaten by a bear, it’s your fault. You have to tell my mom,” David complains, but he’s already walking towards the rocks. Matt grins. He can always count on David to be willing to investigate a spooky cave, even if David frets the whole time about what might be inside of it.

Their friendship is mostly a series of almost psychic agreements on various subjects, but there is one thing they differ on and that’s whether there are or aren’t things that go bump in the night. David falls firmly into the former category, while Matt leans more towards the latter. He’s willing to be proven wrong, but so far there’s been nothing that’s given him the push towards a change in his beliefs, and he doubts that this cave will hold the thing that will either, no matter how trepidatiously David is approaching the entrance.

When they get close enough, Matt can see that it is indeed a cave. The entrance is almost hidden behind the rockfall and a pile of brush, but it’s tall enough that they should be able to go in.

“I’m going in.

from Sticks and Stones

Calling all spooky gays: have you ever been so hopelessly in love with your best friend that you wondered if being haunted by a freaky swamp statue would finally move things along a bit?

Of course you have. And eerie, vivid prose aside, we’re all here for Matt’s journey to emotional vulnerability via sinister cursed object he found in a cave and should obviously have never brought back to L.A. Luckily, Matt’s ‘friend’ David finds that lack of self preservation charming.

Laura Jones, queer fiction enthusiast

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