MICHELE WRITES

Michele Freeman/Michele Bardsley

Black and white picture of author Michele Freeman AKA Michele Bardsley

Michele Freeman writes true crime and dark fiction.

Michele Bardsley writes humorous paranormal romance and mystery.

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author MICHELE BARDSLEY creates paranormal tales about Broken Heart, Oklahoma and writes the Violetta Graves ghost mysteries. She also writes true crime non-fiction (including The Doe Letters), NoSleep stories, and dark tales under the name MICHELE FREEMAN.

In the last four decades (give or take) Michele was a journalist (managing editor of both her high school and college newspapers), novelist (including writing books for Penguin Random and HarlequinTEEN), acquisitions editor at a small Las Vegas publication, freelance writer with work appearing in publications such as Fodor's, Writer's Digest, and Byline, senior editor at an independent electronic publisher, and freelance editor working with a number of independently published authors.

Michele crochets, obsessively watches the ID Channel, and eats chocolate as dark as her soul. She resides in Texas with her husband and their adorable fur babies.

Witness

By Michele Freeman

The first night the protesters gathered, I watched demons slip into human skins as easily as you or I would don a winter coat. I don't think they cared about the skin color or purpose or soul of the ones they choose. They simply ripped out the interiors. Sinew. Muscle. Bone. Dropped them carelessly onto sidewalks. Streets. Alleyways. Splat. Splat. Splat.

I watched them slither into the crowds, their fetid breath emitting gaseous words. Poisonous syllables falling into mouths and swallowed whole.

I saw people choking. Others lashing out. And the demons laughed and danced. I think...I think they fed on the fear. The hate. The rage. They threw bricks at cars. Smashed windows. Looted restaurants and drugstores. Then they screamed, "Burn it to the ground!" I saw them make fireballs with their hands and lob them at buildings.

I fell to my knees, cried as I watched the chaos unfold, my heart collapsing inward. I felt helpless. Weak. Defeated.

I saw people stand their ground. Hundreds. Shouting in unison. One roaring voice that muted the demons and vanquished the havoc. I realized then that evil grows easily in the souls of those who remain silent. I struggled to my feet and added my voice to the thunderous chorus. I watched the demons so hungry for tragedy shrink...getting smaller and smaller until their stolen skins fell away. Until they were nothing but wisps of sulfuric smoke dissipated by the power of our symphony.

It doesn't matter where I am.

Only what I witnessed.