Fiction: Devil’s Road by Cody Roggio

 

Cody Roggio

 

The haunted road on the border of Pennsylvania and Delaware is called Devil’s Road, located somewhat near the Brandywine River Museum. The numerous ways that it is haunted are impressive: people say the trees grow away from the road because even they, with their ever-falling leaves and daunting height, are scared. There’s a black house with windows boarded up where “witches” used to perform their sacrifices. There’s also a tree with a hole at the bottom where — legend has it — a dead baby is buried. This is called the Dead Baby Tree, which I always thought was clever. The KKK also used to apparently hold meetings off this road, adding a plausible realistic and emotional haunting to the list as well.

If you travel down the road at night you will get chased in your car either by a red truck or a black SUV. The first time we went it was the red truck and we were terrified; half because oh wow the rumors are true and half because we were actually in a high-speed car chase. The red truck turned out to be local teens just trying to keep the legend alive. The black SUVs are security; apparently people live on the road and are tired of kids walking around on their property trying to scare themselves.

Another way it could be haunted is that we used to go there all the time because haunted roads were right up our alley. We turned up scary music on your car stereo and crept down the street. We parked halfway down, and under the cloak of darkness we made love multiple times. The trees grew away from the spot we made love. The ghost of the dead baby had no idea what was happening. The witches were chill about it; we probably helped them seal a magic spell.

Sometimes I think about the seven known gates of hell and I wish I could kiss you at every one of them.

I kept trying to remind you of the time I invited you to prom as my date and my friends and I rigged the prom queen votes to make you win, but when you stood on stage we dumped gallons and gallons of pig’s blood on you. You were adamant about telling me this never happened but I have vivid memories of you standing there / covered in blood / fists clenched and shaking / that look in your eyes — and then you using telekinesis to violently murder our entire graduating class and finally myself. Regardless of whether you remember that or not I just wanted to say I’m sorry.

 

 

Cody Roggio lives outside of Philly and has been published in Philosophical Idiot, Witchcraft Mag, and more. He runs Secret Lovers Small Press which can be found at www.scrtlvrs.com. He’s working on an experimental harsh noise project and a novel, so hit him up if you can either scream or edit well.

instagram: @somethrills

facebook: Cody Roggio

 

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