Episode 84: Tattletale by Christopher Fisher

When a father makes up a ghost story to scare his child out of the bad habit of tattling, something strange happens. How much can belief alter reality?

Afterward, Big and Rish talk about the power of belief, both positive and negative. But mostly negative. Also, Rish tells the story of his uncle’s new house . . . a house with a history. outtakes

Please keep in mind that the October Scary Story Event is in full swing your partner. It’s not too late to think about someday starting!

Special thanks to Juliet Bowler and Rich Girardi for lending their voices to today’s story.

Right click HERE to download the episode, select Save Link As, and save the file to your hard drive.


Related Links:
On The Origin Of Sounds by Christopher Fisher
The Editorial Department
Relief: A Christian Literary Expression
Juliet Bowler’s Site
Rich Girardi’s Lady Jade’s Lair
19 Nocturne Boulevard
Some sound effects were provided by freesound.org.
Music was Black Paradise by Mister M and Entropy, Part I: Allegience by Dereleech.
Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License


5 Responses to “Episode 84: Tattletale by Christopher Fisher”

  1. Loved the story, and the way the authour’s belief system provided the genesis of such a macabre concept. How utterly hopeless one would feel to have reality changing around them to match his own lies.

    But I must say that Rish’s talk of ghosts in the chatty bit got me really spooked: I mean, proper gut twisting, not wanting to look at shadows or mirrors, feeling draughts of inexplicable wind through my hair kind of spooked. Nice one. I’ll have to figure out how you did that.

    So good to hear Rish finally come out too.

  2. I think the picture is scarier than the story was…

    I liked this as a good old-fashioned spooky tale. My biggest criticism is that if it only took a few hundred kids believing fervently in something to make it true, then we’d have a lot more Pokemon around the place and all vampires would sparkle. I was glad to hear Rish pick up on the really nasty angle the protagonists actions took on; dude wasn’t terribly likable to begin with, but his sad-sack refusal to face his own monster was the real kicker. Spending the rest of his life alone with himself is probably the best punishment one can think of, except that he’ll probably have justified it all to himself in a few years and then end up writing bitter rants on the Internet about four-corner simultaneous days or something.

  3. I didn’t think the narrator was so bad. Just unlucky. I mean we’ve suspended disbelief because we’re fans of this fiction podcast. But seriously, imagine if anything like this were to actually happen in your life.

    I didn’t read this as a morality tale. Just a straight horror piece.

    The protagonist’s inablity to jump into the hole after his boys pretty much spelled his psychological doom. Strictly speaking, sure, it was ‘cowardice’; but again, if it were real life….

    When people do brave things it’s usually not because they thought deeply about it. We usually just do it. And which way the coin happens to fall in any given case could really be based on all kinds of surprising factors.

    So this dude got my pity more than anything else. I think he should have just jumped in afterwards. Into the pit of maggots and worms. (right.) But the main reason is that I expect it would be pretty impossible to live with oneself afterwards if one did anything else.

  4. Sorry, I didn’t mean the narrator I meant the protagonist. (it’s late?)

  5. I found this to be a nice scary story, especially since I, like Big, am a parent.

    On Monday I had dinner with a friend who is very open with her daughter (she’s a single parent, and the kid is 10), and she got a phone call from the school because the teacher said “marijuana kills” but the kid raised her hand and said “my mother and I looked up some pages on the internet that said it’s unhealthy because of x, y, and z, but doesn’t kill anyone”. The mom is also honest with her child about sex and how to deal with bullies.

    She gets a lot of calls from DCF (also known as CPS), needless to say, despite being a good mom who is not neglectful or abusive.

    That’s the kind of powerlessness that scares me, and that scared the narrator — along with, of course, Mr. Sipes — the fact that everyone can be against you even when you’ve only done what you thought was right.

    I did have a couple of issues with the story, though. (1) if his brother was dead, what did he do with the dog? or did he just leave it at his brother’s former house? (2) why didn’t the kids react when the MC went to Sipes’s house? or were the kids part of the MC’s shared delusion? — basically, just story threads left flapping.

    The opening music was excellently-chosen.

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