The Hands of Time: Mummies, Eternal Life, and Being Careful What You Wish to Preserve

mummy1Mummies… ancient messengers bearing witness to the human obsession of self-preservation against the ravaging hands of time. But what if the prize of earthly immortality turns out to be a curse far crueler than death–and far, far more difficult from which to escape…

Inside every mummy is a story waiting to be told… but are you certain it’s a story you’re prepared to hear?

Read “The Hands of Time,” my journey into the unexplored dark heart of mummification and its consequences in Canopic Jars: Tales of Mummies and Mummification, a new anthology from Philip Perron,  Gregory L. Norris, and D.B. Poirier’s  Great Old Ones Publishing, available now from Amazon and other fine venues.

Excerpt from “The Hands of Time”:

“You said having something that belonged to Ray would help. Maybe this will do the trick.”

The woman who had introduced herself as Dora pulled something brown and withered from a plastic shopping bag. When she laid it on the table between them, there was no mistaking what it was: a perfectly mummified human hand.

Griff McGillis, Great Clairvoyant and Speaker for the Dead, made his living finding whatever words his clients came looking for. But now the only ones he could manage were, “That’s not… that can’t be…”

She flashed him a smile full of jagged yellow cliffs and empty pink valleys. “You’d best believe it is.”

Apparently Dora had taken his instruction to bring along one of the departed loved one’s most cherished possessions a bit too literally.

She leaned across the table and dropped her voice to a whisper as if she feared the tiny room concealed spies. “Ray never went in for that all that funeral business. Had it right in his will to be cremated A.S.A.P. Fine by me, but ending up with only a little pile of ash after almost forty years of puttin’ up with the flesh and blood man—and believe me, we’re talkin’ a lot of flesh here—well, that just didn’t seem fair to me. My cousin Ruthie heard about an undertaker over in Paradise Valley—let’s call him Joe for the sake of conversation—who’s willing to bend the rules a bit in exchange for a little extra slipped into the bill, if you know what I mean. So when I wanted something of Ray to take home with me, Joe worked out a fair price and there you go. Way it’s turned out, it’s a good thing I’m sentimental, eh?”

“Uh, good thing, indeed,” Griff said, stalling for time. He was trying to think of a way to get rid of Dora without involving the police. “And, ah, how did it end up so… well preserved? Did Joe take care of that, too?”

“Why, no, sir! I did that all by myself, thank you very much. Makin’ a mummy is easy if you know how to do it…” mummy-arm

And yet Griff McGillis couldn’t have known how horrifically uneasy the result would be.

Click here to purchase Canopic Jars: Tales of Mummies and Mummification from Amazon.com.

3D-cover-huge-207x300“From a filmmaker’s perspective, these stories are truly cinematic, with compelling plots and well-drawn characters … It’s anthologies like these that will inspire a new generation of storytellers and keep the current ones working overtime to move and entertain.” From the Foreword by Patrick Rea, director of the Lionsgate Film, Nailbiter. Their desiccated corpses creep through dusty desert crypts and cursed bogs; crowded old world bazaars and desolate no man’s lands. Most of all, they haunt the darkest of our dreams, unleash the deepest of our fears, for once they were us. Exhume terrifying secrets and unravel truths best left entombed. A horror anthology including tales from H. P. Lovecraft, T.G. Arsenault, Michael Bailey, Eric S. Brown, Judi Ann Calhoun, Tracy L. Carbone, Karen Dent, Roxanne Dent, Jonathan Dubey, Allen Dusk, Melissa M. Gates, Marianne Halbert, David Hayes, Michael Hughes, Joe Knetter, Esther S. Leiper-Estabrooks, John McIlveen, Gregory L. Norris, Philip C. Perron, Kristi Petersen Schoonover, Douglas B. Poirier, James Pratt, M.J. Preston, Kyle Rader, Suzanne Robb, Gord Rollo, Lawrence Santoro, Brett A. Savory, B.E. Scully, Henry Snider, and Erin Thorne.