The Call of Chewing Gum by Russell Reed

This is the next short story in the Event Horizon 2017 collection of short stories highlighting authors who are eligible for the 2017 Campbell award for best new writer.

Published: July, 2016 in Mothership Zeta: Issue 4

Genre: fantasy

Setting: Darienburg, Connecticut, present day

Summary: We read entries into Mr. Huxley’s journal. He was in therapy, and found his therapist, Barbara, attractive. He recently moved into his great-uncle Rufus’ house after he died suddenly. In the house, he finds a strange statue. He takes the statue with him to investigate a strange light in the woods. There he discovers his therapist, taking part in a strange ritual, which his statue responds to. It’s an avatar of the Elder God, Cthugm. Barbara is thrilled because now they can take the next step in reawakening Cthugm. Mr. Huxley is thrilled because it gets him closer to Barbara.

Final thoughts: It’s amusing that we have an Elder God cult that our narrator gets sucked into because of a girl. He just wants to make Barbara like him, and if it takes joining the cult, so be it. Being told as journal entries makes it interesting as well, especially when you read the end and then go back and read the introduction to the story.

Title comes from: It’s a play on the Call of Cthulu. Plus, Uncle Rufus died of spontaneous combustion while chewing gum.

If you’re interested in purchasing the book, you can click on the cover image to follow an Amazon affiliate link to the book and thanks for supporting my blog!

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