WIP Wednesday – Sketches from “The Little Death”

“I Do Not Wish to See” by Helen E. H. Madden,
Character Sketch from “The Little Death” Podcast Novel

I took a break from my other work-in-progress this past week to do some other drawings and catch up on writing. Frankly, I haven’t been able to make it to my desk that much. But I’ve been doing a lot of artwork on the iPad (did I mention how much I LOVE my iPad?). This was drawn with a new app I picked up, Sketch Club. Sketch Club is a bit different from the other programs I’ve got, missing some of the bells and whistles of Sketchbook Pro like the ability to resize a layer as you work on it, but it’s got some fantastic drawing and painting tools. I love the rough scratchy style I can get with it.

Anyway, this is a drawing of Robin Helki, the main character in “The Little Death,” the novel I’m currently podcasting at www.heatflash.libsyn.com. I’ve shared snippets of the story before. Robin is a telepath who reads psychic information by touching things. She collects evidence for the violent crimes division of a police precinct in a dystopian society, and is slowly going mad as a result of her work. You can find all the episodes of “The Little Death” on the Heat Flash Erotica Podcast. If you like the story, feel free to pass on the episodes. They run under a Creative Commons 3.0 license, so it’s free to listen and share.

WIP Wednesday – “The Little Death” podcast novel

Last week I returned to my weekly podcast, Heat Flash Erotica, after a few months off. For the last three years, I wrote and podcasted a new short story every week. It was great fun, but by the end of the third season, I was exhausted and burnt out on short stories so I took some time off to work up a new project. The result is a novel called “The Little Death,” a story about telepaths, conspiracies and murder. The main character, Agent Robin Helki, is an esper working for the Fifth Precinct police department in the city-state of New York. She’s been called in to gather psychic evidence at the scene of a violent death, but what she finds only leads to a bigger mystery.

I’m still writing the story, but at 54000 words, I thought I had enough to start podcasting an episode a week. Episode 01 of “The Little Death” went online last Friday. You can find it here, and either download it to play on your MP3 player or listen to it on your computer. Episode 02 has been recorded and will be available next Friday. Until then, here’s an excerpt from the upcoming episode.


Excerpt from “The Little Death,” episode 02 – Dr. Hurston Jones

The elevator glides to a halt. I step out into an empty corridor. Room seven is the fourth door on the left, the only door up here with a light shining out underneath the crack. I knock twice and prepare to wait. How long I’m left standing there in the corridor ought to tell me just how deep in trouble I am, so I’m surprised when the door swings open almost immediately. The man who holds it open gives me the false smile of a predator sizing up its afternoon meal.

“Agent Helki,” he says. “Please come in.”

I know this man. I follow him into the room, racking my brains to think of where I’ve seen him before. He wears a dark grey suit, dark enough to make him blend in with the shadows in the dimly lit room. He’s balding, but with his hair cropped close rather than combed over in a futile attempt to hide his gleaming scalp. A pair of oval spectacles perches on the bridge of his nose, and he would almost look bookish if it weren’t for the way he moves. Every motion is precise and graceful like a cat. Underneath the suit I get a sense of a body honed to razor’s edge. As he settles behind the massive wooden desk that dominates the room, the glow of the desk lamp catches on his spectacles. For an instant, the lenses are transformed into a pair of luminous orbs. I’m reminded of my dream in the van and I shiver.

“Have a seat,” he says mildly. He gestures to the only other chair in the room. I settle on the edge of the seat. It’s narrow and stiff-backed and saturated with the memories of its previous occupants, everyone of them as scared and uncertain as I am now. I shouldn’t be picking up on their feelings, not when I’m wrapped up in my coat and gloves, but I’m so damned raw after reading a dead woman’s final thoughts, and this chair is awash in fear. I’ll bet the man on the other side of the desk knows it too. I can tell by the way he’s smiling at me.


And that’s it for this week! The full episode will be available in MP3 format at http://www.heatflash.libsyn.com this Friday. Stop by then and give a listen.

“Let Me Sleep” free podcast story is up!

I was invited by the amazing Philippa Ballantine to participate in “Chronicles of the Order,” a podcast short story collection based on her newest novel, Geist, published by Ace. Geist is the story of a fantastic world where ghosts and spirits are very really and do serious harm, and only members of the Order stand between them and the mortal they seek to destroy.

As you can imagine, I jumped at the chance to write something for Philippa and so I put together a lovely little horror story about murder, revenge, an abusive lover, and a desperate widow. The tale, “Let Me Sleep,” is free to download here. Be sure to listen to the other episodes as well! These stories are great!

Writing Wednesday – The Gift of the Magician

In light of the upcoming holiday, I thought I’d offer up a Christmas story this week. The Gift of the Magician originally ran on the Heat Flash Erotica Podcast in December 2007. For more info on the Heat Flash Erotica Podcast, visit www.heatflash.libsyn.com. Free erotica stories in MP3 format every week, folks! Don’t say I never gave you anything 😉

The Gift Of The Magician
by Helen E. H. Madden

“Merry Christmas, lover!”

Backstage at the Mercury Theater, Trixie kissed Hocus-Pocus Henry. Her eyes shone brighter than the spangles on her threadbare costume as she handed the magician a long, flat box. Greta the Great lit a cigarette and groaned.

“You actually bought that fraud a present?”

Trixie ignored the grousing matron. “Open it!” she squealed to Henry.

“Here? Now?” Sweating, Henry peeled back the wrapping and gasped. “Is that…?”

“The Saw of Sergei the Severe!” Trixie exclaimed. “He used it to cut up Madam Splatvatsky! Do you like it?”

Still stunned, he nodded. “It’s wonderful! But how did you afford it?”

“She sold her wardrobe,” Greta answered, flicking cigarette ash in his direction. “Waste of money, if you ask me. **You’ll** never get that thing to work.”

“He will too!” Trixie snapped. “Henry’s worked real magic before!”

Greta scoffed. “So he pulled a rabbit out of his ass.”

“Can you do it?” Trixie demanded of her.

“No, but I can buy a present for my assistant.” Smoke streamed from Greta’s nostrils. “You get Trixie **anything** this year, Henry?”

“Um, it’s at home…”


As Trixie rushed to his defense, Henry vanished from the theater. Outside, he checked his pockets. He found his wand, a deck of cards, and smelly rabbit’s foot, but no money.

“Well then,” he said, gripping his wand. “I shall conjure up a present using this!” He hurried off to Prophetic Pawn.

That evening, Trixie appeared on stage in a brand-new costume. The skimpy outfit dazzled the audience as she stepped into the magician’s box.

“You can do it!” she whispered to Henry as he closed the lid.

With trembling hands, he shoved the saw through his lover, slicing her in half with the serrated edge. When he was done, he flung open the lid. Trixie waved from the box as her legs hopped out and paraded across the stage. The crowd roared with delight.

Trixie stuck out her tongue at Greta as an elated Henry carried her offstage. “Told you he could do it!” she quipped.

Greta sneered as Trixie’s capered past. “Whatever!”

Back in their dressing room, Henry set the bisected woman on the couch.

“For my next trick, I will need my lovely assistant!” He knelt at Trixie’s feet and pulled off her sequined panties. She giggled as he buried his face between her thighs, and then reached for Henry’s erect cock to work a few magic tricks of her own.

Two hours later, Greta banged on the door. “Henry! Are you two done in there? It’s closing time! Quit fucking around and put that girl back together.”

“Certainly!” he called back, a grin plastered across his sticky face. “All it takes is a wave of my wand…”

His smile faded as he patted the pockets of his tux. “My wand… my wand… oh shit.”

“What’s wrong?” Trixie asked. She struggled to pull the panties back up her legs.

“I need my wand to put you back together.”


“I, uh, pawned it to buy your costume.” Henry dropped onto the couch and hit his head against the wall. “Shit, shit, shit.”

Trixie sighed. “Oh Henry.”

The Gift of the Magician, by Helen E. H. Madden, copyright 2007.