September 23, 1880


I caught them digging graves.

I’m not sure who killed the men on the ground, nor did I particularly care.

It was the living who had my attention.

They were huge men, each easily eight feet tall, and some more than the others. There was no fear in them as they gazed upon me, giant hands clenching and relaxing, smiles spreading across their faces in eager anticipation.

They didn’t know who I was, of that I’m certain.

If they had been, they might have taken me a tad more seriously.

I took off my rucksack, set in on the ground, and then the Berdan followed it. Finally, I shrugged off the overcoat I’d taken from the dead, and I let the giants see the scalps hanging from my belt. My clothes remained hard with dried blood, and the hatchet felt good in my hand.

Their eyes fixed on the scalps for a moment, and then they laughed.

I smiled, nodded, and drew one of the Colts.

The first round caught the nearest giant in the eye and blew his brains out all over the one beside him.

That ended their laughter right quick, which is what it was meant to do.

As those outside of the graves charged, I killed those scrambling out of the earth, holstered the Colt, and showed them what I learned as a boy.

Some lessons you never forget.

The giants got in the way of one another, and it cost them.

I avoided bones, focusing on joints and stomachs, necks and groins. Hands soon hung from wrists, knees collapsed, intestines tumbled out of bellies, and giants were castrated.

The survivors tried to run, and I drew my other Colt, gunning them down.

Soon, I alone stood among the fallen. The living howled at me, furious and frightened. I didn’t know what they were saying, and I didn’t care. I kicked the hat off the nearest corpse and was displeased to see he was bald.

Within a few minutes, I found they all were.

There was no hair to lift.

One of the survivors saw my displeasure and laughed despite his pain. Others joined in, and I smiled. Walking to the giant who had started the laughter, I slammed the hatchet down with enough force to shatter his hip.

As he shrieked, I broke the other side and then made my way through the wounded.

#horrorstories #fear

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Nicholas Efstathiou

Husband, father, and writer.

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