Goldfish on the Mountain: Chapter Four

Chapter four

He made his slow walk up the snow covered hill back towards his cabin. He hadn’t caught much; it was just a pair of baby rabbits that would soon be the main ingredient of his stew he would cook up for supper. The thoughts of his previous life were beginning to fade away as he blew one more whistle in the direction towards his companion, his trusty Border collie, Sandy.

“Come on Sandy girl; get over here right now daddy’s got some rabbit for supper.”

As the man walked to the cabin he went straight to the fridge and grabbed an ice cold beer. Normally he would sit down, talk to his goldfish and tell Goldie about his day his own supper Not today. He just wasn’t in much of a mood for anything other than drifting back down memory lane.

The man sat there sipping his beer as he reminisced his old life. Each drink of the beer served to drown out an unwanted memory. There was something else he was trying to drown out. He looked over towards the bedroom door across the kitchen. He could hear muffled moans coming from that direction.

Hang tight my dear. All will be right with the world soon enough.

From inside the room a woman lay tied to a bed. She was naked with dried, bloody scars all over her body. She sobbed as she could hear the sounds of her captor in the other room. Fear filled her heart as she dreaded his return. The woman tugged at her shackles trying to free herself before he came back. She looked back and forth around the room for anything she could use to defend herself. It was useless. She began banging her head against the headboard in desperation.

Tap. Tap. Tap.

“Knock it off in there!” the man said through the door.

He sat back down at the table to finish his beer.

“How you doing there Goldie?” he asked his tiny little pet as an evil smile creeped on his face.

He walked over to the goldfish bowl and tapped on the side.

“Today is the anniversary of the day my life ended,” he said. “Tonight it’s my turn to have some fun with that frigid bitch.”

He smiled as he watched his pet gobble up all the food swimming back and forth in his bowl.

“It must be great living such a life as yours Goldie: no worries, no responsibility, and least of all no guilt.”

The man grabbed a six pack of beers with three cans left on the plastic holder. He walked over to the couch, slumped over and waited to drift off to sleep. He kicked a stack of newspapers out of his way as he walked to the couch. He sat down and looked back towards the bedroom door.

Be patient woman, I’ll be in there to settle your mind soon enough. For now, rest up and wait for me.

The man sat there on the couch thinking of the thing he had done. He tried to tune out the sounds coming from the bedroom. Sounds that filled his heart with a mixture of guilt and regret. He knew better, he knew there was nothing but pain and misery in that bed and he knew that now was not the time to open that wound back up. He wanted to let this go. He was trying to forget what he had done. He was trying to forget the life he ruined.

Life doesn’t work that way, you don’t get a free pass you fuck someone over like that, life fucks you right back.

He looked over at the bedroom door and thought to himself.

“I’m the one that gets to do the fucking tonight,”

If you like my writing please consider helping me survive. You can support me directly by giving money to my paypal: If you prefer CashApp my handle is @Stephaniebri22. Also feel free to donate to my Patreon. I know it’s largely podcast-centric but every little bit helps. Find it by going to, Thank you.

Goldfish on the Mountain: Chapter three

Chapter three

George stood against the wall at the funeral home that sleepy afternoon. It was the day of Linda’s funeral. He wasn’t prepare for this. As he looked down the empty, silent hall towards the casket that held his sister-in-law he felt nothing. He watched as his daughter and wife made their way through the crowd, hugging the sobbing family members gathered around the deceased woman. George was never any good at funerals.

He was reminded of the first funeral he had to attend.  His best friend from grade school was killed in a freak accident at the age of twelve. The sight of that young boy dressed up in his Sunday best never to wake again stuck with George.

The room began to shrink; he stood there wondering how his own daughter was dealing with the tragedy. That moment was the first time he could remember ever having any interest in the young girls feelings. He started to contemplate his entire relationship with the poor child.

“How are you holding up sweaty?”

It was the voice of his mother. George looked up from his silent trance only to realize he hadn’t budged from the wall. All he could muster was a half shrug. He wasn’t crying that much he was sure of. He was just sort of in a daze. He stared blankly at his mother, the woman who gave him life. The same woman that dictated how his life was to play out. The same woman who arranged his own marriage had arranged the union between his brother Drake and the now dead Linda.

He couldn’t help but wonder if Drake felt the same way about Linda as George felt about his own wife. He never even considered for a single moment that this person who slept in his bed, living in his house might actually be someone worth sharing his life with. He didn’t even know how much time had passed before he realized his mom was still talking to him as somehow he continued to tune her out entirely. Finally after God knows how long, he managed to mumbled.

“I don’t know…”

It was all he could muster. He gently brushed his mother out of the way, ignoring every word she spoke. It was time to begin his slow trek down the aisle towards his now gone sister-in-law. The woman who left his beloved brother a widower.

It took something like forever to get down the aisle. There he was laying in his casket, dressed in his nicest Sunday clothes, pants perfectly pressed, hair combed back and his tiny tie folded gently down his chest. It was not fair, how could Brandon be in that box? It was just a few days ago they were running around at the park as Jennifer Hambly was chasing them around spreading her cooties.

“How you holding up kiddo?” his dad asked him, hand on his shoulder. George wasn’t sure how to respond. All he could do was place his hand on his friends casket.

Suddenly cooties didn’t seem so bad.  George would have traded all the cooties in the world if his friend would just wake up and get out of that box. It was the Fourth of July when his friend met his demise. It had been the hottest summer in decades. The grass was dry from the summer heat. Brandon had been playing near a box of fireworks that were to be used in the town display.

George’s dad had been the deputy mayor so it made sense he would befriend the son of the fire chief. Brandon should have known better and somehow he didn’t see it coming, the explosive that would have lit up the sky would be the object if his demise.

As George made his way down the aisle to say good bye to his best and only friend in this world he realized right then and there life was going to devolve into a nightmare from here on out. He learned that you can’t count on anyone, not even the son of a fire chief. He felt like all he could count on was loss.

George looked up at the final bed his sister-in-law would ever sleep in.

“It hardly seems right wouldn’t you say?” a voice said to George.

He looked over and saw one of his aunts.

“She was so young, so beautiful. What a waste, so sad,” she said.

“I hardly knew her,” George said.

“How can you say that, George, this was your sister how could you say such a thing?” the woman asked.

He shook his head.

“I don’t know. We never talked much. I guess I missed out on my chance to get to know her,” he said.

“All the more tragic if you ask me. I don’t know how your poor brother is ever going to recover. Even if he gets out of that hospital there’s little chance he’s going to put his life back together so soon. Such a tragedy,” she said.

Here he was saying goodbye to a loved one yet his mind began to wonder elsewhere. He glanced over at his own wife, why couldn’t it be you? he thought to himself. He couldn’t even remember why he hated her so, just that he did.

He knew he did not only hate his wife for not being dead, he was blaming God for being so ironic. Suddenly a smile began to appear on his face. He nearly let it get the better of him before he realized where he was.. He knelt down beside the woman in the box and said a soft prayer.

“I’ll fix this you just wait and see.”

If you like my writing please consider helping me survive. You can support me directly by giving money to my paypal: If you prefer CashApp my handle is @Stephaniebri22. Also feel free to donate to my Patreon. I know it’s largely podcast-centric but every little bit helps. Find it by going to, Thank you.

Goldfish on the Mountain: Chapter 2

Chapter two

“George would you get off that damn computer and come bed!”

It was the usual nagging of a wife tired of drifting apart from her husband. He shrugged it off as usual. He sat there playing with his computer game trying desperately to get through the dungeon he was currently entrenched within. George often sat on his computer for hours a day ignoring his family, his chores, even his pets. His entire identity was tied to that computer. It was his escape from the life his parents thrust him into against his will.

His wife, Molly was lying in bed in her pajamas knowing there was no point in sexing it up tonight.  That man of hers was only going to come to bed, turn on his desk lamp and bury his nose in another book neglecting to even notice this woman who slept in his bed next to him. Drifting apart was probably the nice way of putting it.

How had she fallen in love with a man so distant? Lying in her bed, Molly was staring up at the ceiling fan looking at the flicker of the broken light trying to remember if there ever was any romance in this relationship. She couldn’t even think back to a single moment in time when she could honestly say she did love this man.

She checked the clock. Fifteen minutes had passed since she called to her neglectful husband. This time he inserted some anger into her voice.

“George if you don’t get off that stupid machine and come to right now  you can forget about going on that retreat with your friends!”

George was accustomed to the nagging of his bitter hag of a wife. Her anger did not motivate him to do her bidding. He soaked it up. It gave him a rush of power knowing she would fall asleep bitter and angry while he’d happily drift to another word as he read a book.

This hag, this wretched woman who his parents basically set him up with and given him no say at all was the very thing that defined his discontent with his life. His parents had somehow found a way to control every aspect of his life from birth, to what school he would attend to what nasty woman he was to start a family with. He hated her with a fiery passion, and swore every day of his life he was going to do everything in his power to drive her insane.

Both his and her parents had arranged this awful union as a way to merge the families into one. They gave no consideration to the feelings or thoughts of the parties involved, as such they saw to it to make sure if the blissful marriage were to end in divorce, the parents would get everything as the benefactors of their tormented existence.

The unhappy couple had no choice but to build a life together that satisfied those parents. It resulted in them bearing a child they both had no desire to raise. George new Melody was not the daughter he intended to have. He had no love, no affection, and no desire to care for this child that was born of a wife he hated. Especially considering how much his devil daughter looked like the demon wife whom he despised with every ounce of energy. He blamed her for squashing is dreams. He blamed her for every miserable moment of his existence that wasn’t spent pursuing his own endeavors.

George and Molly would put on a show for the elders in their lives that ran the show. Once those visits ended the couple would return to ignoring the child they brought into the world.

Melody herself sat in her room listening to her parents yell back and forth. She knew neither of them loved each other, nor her. She simply got caught up in something before her time. It was not her fault, she didn’t ask to be born into this twisted family. She wanted desperately to love both of her parents yet she knew neither one of them would ever return that love. She could sense how cold they were not only to each other, but to her as well. Some days Melody would get the feeling her parents hated her not because they hated each other, but merely because she had the others blood in her veins.

George finally decided it was time to shut down the computer program he had been using and slowly began drifting towards the bathroom to brush his teeth. There he would begin the long ritual of preparing for bed. He knew his wife was angry by now so he had this routine down to a science. He would maximize his time to get the most anger he could rise in her blood.

George loved it when the women in his life were angry, it gave him joy, pleasure he could not put into words. He spent the next half an hour flossing every tooth meticulously. Then he combed his hair before moving onto shaving. First, his face, then his arm pits.  He took his sweet time getting ready for bed, even changing into his bed clothes was something he could make into an art form. He knew he would never please his retched bitch of a wife. He had given up trying after the honeymoon. His job was to get the bitch pregnant which he succeeded. From that moment on he had no further desire to interact with her outside of those outings where both their parents would be watching.

George has barely gotten into bed, reaching for his desk lamp when the phone rang  His wife shot him a glaring look that told him it would be the death of him if he made her answer that phone. He picked it up expecting it to be his mother calling to bitch him out for something his wife said, or worse, to schedule some family get together where he would have to pretend to be nice to these bitches living in his house mooching off his hard-earned money.

The voice on the phone was hysterical.

“Oh my god it’s terrible! Drake was in a car accident! You got to get down to the hospital right now! Your father’s already on his way! Hurry up! Linda was found dead on the scene! Drake is in critical condition! Hurry up and get down there to say good bye to your older brother!”

Time stopped for George. He just stood there with the phone in his hands unable to move. He as trying to process the reality he had just been thrust into. As he dropped the receiver he fell to his knees in tears. The voice of his mother could still be heard coming from the tiny speaker now lying on the floor. Molly slumped down beside her husband, placed an arm on his shoulder as she picked up the phone he had dropped.

George had expected that he was running to get his pants on as he ran down the hall to wake up his daughter to tell her the news that her aunt had been killed and her uncle was dying. He knew that by now he would be down the stairs and starting up the car where  he would be heading down the highway like a maniac racing against time hoping to reach his brother before it was too late.

It felt like an eternity before George realized none of that took place. He never moved from beside his bed. He sat in that position by his bed, his wife screaming bloody murder as she had to wake up the girl herself and drag her down the stairs. He thought he made it to the hospital and said his good-byes to his oldest brother. He was wrong, he never moved from his bedside. George wasn’t able to face life in that moment.

If you like my writing please consider helping me survive. You can support me directly by giving money to my paypal: If you prefer CashApp my handle is @Stephaniebri22. Also feel free to donate to my Patreon. I know it’s largely podcast-centric but every little bit helps. Find it by going to, Thank you.

It is time to release my first thriller novel

I can’t believe this day has arrived. Nine years of my life have been devoted to this work of fiction. Nine years I have opened up a series of Word documents pouring over every detail as I agonize trying to get this story to a satisfying conclusion. It has taken quite a toll on my psyche. Much of it was written before my egg cracked, so you can sense the despair in my inner woman’s desire to be set free.

I have worked tirelessly to get this done. It started out as a whim. Like all my projects before it this was born out of a single idea. I wanted to shoot a horror movie. I had no idea what I was doing so I set out to write a script. As I was plotting the film I wanted to make, all while watching one of my then-favorite crime dramas on TV, Bones, a new story idea began to emerge. I mixed ideas from several sources. I was largely inspired by thrillers of the early 90s, largely Silence of the Lambs, People Under the Stairs and Fargo. Each contributed something that helped this story form.

I also borrowed heavily from plotlines, settings and characters from Bones. I kept only surface level inspiration while fleshing it out in my own mind. As the story developed my level of excitement intensified with it. I had a book I knew I could finish. This was the one of all the dozens I began, walked away from never to revisit again, this was the one I knew I could complete.

Here it is, finally finished. I wrapped up the first draft in the summer of 2020. The same Pride Month I came out to the world. The same time I was beginning my own transformation into Stephanie, the woman I am today, this novel was taking on a new shape as well. The new form it was taking on was that of a completed story. A plot with twists and turns. Characters you cared about getting into precarious situations. Death all around. It’s not a horror story necessarily. I envisioned it more akin to those crime thrillers I mentioned above. Sort of a gateway to later, darker horror stories brewing inside my mind.

As life has twisted the knife it plunged into my back this year I felt the need to finish this project. I have bled over this. I have lost sleep over this. I have shunned chores, friends and responsibility over this. I have even quit more than one job to buy me extra time to work on this novel. I am thrilled beyond relief it is finally done. It is ready to be enjoyed by the rest of the world.

Inspired by a fellow trans writer I decided not to seek a book publisher at this time. I want to get this story out to the world where it belongs. I’d love to send off my manuscript to an agent, have them tell me it’s fantastic and set me up a book deal with Del Rey but that’s all not they way my life has gone. I go it alone. I do things myself. I am self publishing my baby because I do not want a single hand touching it other than that of the readers who will appreciate it for the work of art it is.

This book near perfectly captures the internal agony of a transwoman forcing herself to live life as a male in a male-centric world that treats women like lesser beings. The women in this story go through some hell. All three main female characters are each a representation of the woman he was hiding all those years.

The men are the monsters by design. It is an allegory to having to live a life that isn’t quite right. The men are each flawed. None of them are able to succeed other than inflicting harm upon the women in their lives, whether intentional or not.

I am very excited to announce not only am I self publishing this book, it’s coming TODAY, right now in fact after I finish this blog post. In mere minutes you will be able to read the book I have worked so hard on for so long. In my heart of hearts I know it’s time. This story is ready to be read by curious eyes. It will be arriving shortly in the coming days. As I post each chapter I will make final edits, finishing touches that will polish it up just in time for publication. I hope you find it as much of an experience reading it as I had writing it. This is the culmination of my entire life’s work. This is everything I have been working towards since my parents gave me an old rust typewriter when I was a mere 12 years old. Enjoy.

If you like my writing please consider helping me survive. You can support me directly by giving money to my paypal: If you prefer CashApp my handle is @Stephaniebri22. Also feel free to donate to my Patreon. I know it’s largely podcast-centric but every little bit helps. Find it by going to, Thank you.