By Robert E. Howard
Listed here are Howard’s maximum horror stories, all of their unique, definitive types. a few of Howard’s best-known characters–Solomon Kane, Bran Mak Morn, and sailor Steve Costigan between them–roam the forbidding locales of the author’s fevered mind's eye, from the swamps and bayous of the Deep South to the fiend-haunted woods open air Paris to distant jungles in Africa.
The assortment comprises Howard’s masterpiece “Pigeons from Hell,” which Stephen King calls “one of the best horror tales of [the 20th] century,” a story of 2 tourists who bump into the ruins of a Southern plantation–and into the maw of its deadly mystery. In “Black Canaan” even the simplest warrior has little probability of taking down the evil voodoo guy with unholy powers–and none in any respect opposed to his wily mistress, the diabolical excessive Priestess of Damballah. In those and different lavishly illustrated classics, corresponding to the revenge nightmare “Worms of the Earth” and “The Cairn at the Headland,” Howard spins stories of unrelenting terror, the legacy of 1 of the world’s nice masters of the macabre.
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He leaned ahead, the moonlight etching his face into one of these masks of horrified listening that every people shivered and flung a hasty look over our shoulders. “Not the evening breeze this time,” he whispered. “Something makes the grasses swish-swish–as if a good, lengthy, pliant weight have been being dragged via them. Above the bungalow it swishes after which ceases–in entrance of the door; then the hinges creak–creak! The door starts to bulge inward–a small bit–then a few extra! ” The man’s fingers have been held in entrance of him, as though braced strongly opposed to anything, and his breath got here in fast gasps. “And i do know I should still lean opposed to the door and carry it close, yet i don't, i can't circulate. I stand there, like a sheep ready to be slaughtered–but the door holds! ” back that sigh expressive of pent-up feeling. He drew a shaky hand throughout his forehead. “And all evening I stand within the middle of that room, as immobile as a picture, other than to show slowly, because the swish-swish of the grass marks the fiend’s direction in regards to the condo. Ever I preserve my eyes towards that gentle, sinister sound. occasionally it ceases for an fast, or for numerous mins, after which I stand scarcely respiring, for a terrible obsession has it that the serpent has not directly made front into the bungalow, and that i begin and whirl this fashion and that, frightfully terrified of creating a noise, notwithstanding i do know now not why, yet ever with the sensation that the article is at my again. Then the sounds begin back and that i freeze immobile. “Now here's the single time that my realization, which courses my waking hours, ever in any respect pierces the veil of desires. i'm, within the dream, certainly not awake that it's a dream, yet, in a indifferent kind of manner, my different brain acknowledges convinced evidence and passes them directly to my sleeping–shall I say ‘ego’? that's to claim, my character is for an fast actually twin and separate to an volume, because the correct and left hands are separate, whereas making up components within the related entity. My dreaming brain has no attention of my better brain; in the meanwhile the opposite brain is subordinated and the unconscious brain is in complete regulate, to such an quantity that it doesn't even realize the lifestyles of the opposite. however the unsleeping brain, now slumbering, is cognizant of dim thought-waves emanating from the dream brain. i do know that i have never made this completely transparent, however the truth is still that i do know that my brain, wide awake and unconscious, is just about break. My obsession of worry, as I stand there in my dream, is that the serpent will elevate itself and peer into the window at me. and that i comprehend, in my dream, that if this happens I shall pass insane. And so shiny is the effect imparted to my awake, now napping brain that the thought-waves stir the dim seas of sleep, and in some way i will be able to suppose my sanity rocking as my sanity rocks in my dream. backward and forward it totters and sways till the movement takes on a actual element and that i in my dream am swaying back and forth. no longer constantly is the feeling an identical, yet I inform you, if that horror ever increases its bad form and leers at me, if I ever see the frightened factor in my dream, I shall develop into stark, wild insane.