"All Aboard" by Christopher Golden
This story comes from the collection " Tell My Sorrows To The Stones" by Christopher Golden.
Of course with this being a horror anthology all the stories are going to dark. This is no exception. It's an interesting story to open the collection. The first story typically sets the mood for the book and if that's the case it will be an interesting collection of stories.
A husband, Paul, and wife, Sarah, lost their young son, Jonah, to a bacterial infection. With no one else to blame for their loss they turn on each other. They stop talking to each other, barely notice each other, and just go about their day like a zombie. The more time that passes the further apart they grow.
Sarah is so grief stricken that she suffers from insomnia. Lying awake one night she hears a distant train whistle. She doesn't remember hearing the sound before, but she was normally sleeping so it doesn't mean anything to her. The next day, after arriving late to work yet again, she starts talking with the security guard.
Since she hadn't grown up around the area she didn't know about some of the myths and legends the kids grew up learning. One of those legends was referred to as the 3:18. Asking the guard more about this legend she finds out that there is supposedly a ghost train that comes through town every night at 3:18 am that only those who have suffered loss of a dead relative could see or hear.
Although I enjoyed the story I could see where this story was heading pretty early on. There wasn't a lot of surprise in this story for me. The foreshadowing in the story definitely gave the ending away. I will say there is a slight twist at the very end of the story if you want to call it a twist. For a horror story I will call it a small twist.
Just because I could see the ending of the story doesn't mean it was a bad story though. I enjoyed the ride (pun intended). I was interested in how the author was going to arrive at the ending I was somewhat expecting. With this story whether you guess the ending or not, sit back and enjoy the story.
The writing was easy going and the style proved very easy to read.