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The Damage Done

(Milk-Blood Trilogy #3)

3.54  ·  Rating details ·  179 ratings  ·  47 reviews
THE DAMAGE DONE, along with the follow up novel, MILK-BLOOD, have been optioned for a full-length feature film
After years of suffering with mental illness, heroin has opened up the gates of heaven for Jervis Samsa. It is all that makes life bearable. But when he gets trapped in his basement without a scrap of dope to shoot, he needs to go to any lengths to get high. The re
Kindle Edition, 25 pages
Published April 24th 2014 by Wicked Run Press (first published January 1st 2014)
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Average rating 3.54  · 
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Short and gritty story about a man whose heroin addiction causes him to act on the suggestions made by the “voice” in his head. There’s some dark humor and a smidgen of gore, too.

Janie C.
Jul 09, 2015 rated it really liked it
Mark Matthews takes us on a journey into a damaged psyche, and we experience the desperation of a heroin addict's withdrawal first-hand. This reader is ready to delve deeper with Milk-Blood, a novel by the same author.
Jason Parent
Dec 26, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: horror
"No one ever says they want to be a junkie when they grow up," which is kinda sad really... Think of all the great art and music and, yes, even writing our world has been blessed with due to those magical powders that make hearts a flutter and always, always ALWAYS (and if you disagree I'll stab you) brings out the best in people.

Meh meh, drugs are bad. Blehh, I say to thee. I mean really? Who's ever actually died from using drugs? I mean if your heart explodes after taking cocaine, that's reall
Jervais Samsa is a resourceful young man. He is also a junkie and currently locked in the basement by his mother in order to force him to detox. With no fix in sight, his drug-ravaged mind turns to his father . . .
Rupert Dreyfus
May 18, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: drugs, transgressive
A review popped up and it looked interesting. I then discovered it's a short story and currently free so I downloaded it because I'm in short story mode...

It starts off a bleak junkie story but come the end I'd say it falls in to the gloomy Gothic horror genre only with the shock factor turned up to eleven. The setting was reminiscent of old horror stories only you know that it's set in the present tense (possibly a few years ago now as it references older metal bands such as Slipknot). While i
Maxine (Booklover Catlady)
Sep 23, 2014 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Horror Fans, Short Story Fans
This short story introduces us to one of the key characters in Milk Blood which I cannot recommend highly enough, a novel written by this very talented author. This short story had me fascinated (like watching a car crash) from first word to last. It can easily be read as a stand alone short story too.

The plot is brilliant and there is a lot packed in to this short tale. But it's a tale of horrifying incidents and mind blowing concepts. The dark character we meet is not the type of guy you want
Adam Light
May 25, 2014 rated it really liked it
Terrific short story that deals with addiction in a brutal and forthright manner. Jervis is locked in the basement by his mother; her intentions may be pure but she didn't bank on her son's ingenuity.
I love short stories, and Mark Matthews illustrates perfectly why I do with this one. Now I can't wait to read Milk-Blood, his upcoming novel that this story is an excerpt from, if I am not mistaken.
May 18, 2015 rated it really liked it
Recommended to Jason by: Rupert Dreyfus
Shelves: read-in-2015
This is a really good short story, one that leaves you wishing it was longer. Luckily Jervis features in a second book so I'll have to check that out next.

In the story Jervis is trapped in his basement desperate to get high, all is ok until the voices start and then the reader is desperate for Jervis to ignore them.

The start is almost poetic with Jervis explaining what is happening to his body, a clever way of setting the scene.

A great little story.
Gregor Xane
May 24, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2014
I saw where this one was going. But I don't know if I could say it was predictable, because it went where I wanted it to go and where I would have went with it.

I like stories about drug addicts and addiction. This story had a healthy amount of griminess, too, which I'm fond of.

You can grab this sucker free from Amazon, if you'd like:

Apr 25, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: horror
A visceral gut-punch of a short story that serves as a lead into Matthews' upcoming novel, Milk-Blood. And given what's on offer in these few pages, I'm so there.

4 Forced Withdrawals for The Damage Done.
May 26, 2014 rated it really liked it

“Introduction into Mark Matthews longer novel, MILK-BLOOD, this tale of addiction withdrawal was brutal! It gives history to the main character of the novel, and a glimpse at a part of his past that that is truly horrifying!”
May 03, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A short tale of heroin horror to wet the appetite for Marks’ upcoming book, Milk-Blood. Jervis is Jonesin’ bad. He finds himself, trapped in a cellar, living in the shadow of his abusive, junkie father, and needing a fix. The next high may just be a bad, bad trip…for everyone in the house, including Jervis. 4+ Stars.
May 20, 2015 rated it really liked it
Addiction. It's about the drug. But it's not. It's about people and how we interact, or don't, and unmet human needs. It's about inheriting our parents' demons. It's about so many things... The Damage Done exposes the darkness, the insanity that makes perfect sense. I look forward to reading more from this author!
"Once His Mama Locks Jervis In The Basement, All The Disturbing Fun Begins!"

For a short story, this book was good from beginning to end. I loved the way the story flowed. Just the right amount crazy and dark. I look forward to reading more from this author.
Stuart Keane
I've said it a hundred times before, in reviews, bios or interviews. The best horror comes from real life situations. Maybe you've lived through a traumatic experience, a loved one has gone through something horrible. Hell, maybe you were bullied in school and to you, it was the worst experience of your life. Everyone is different in their opinion of a horrific experience but one thing - of many - that unites us is drugs. If you've used them or not, they're bad news. Once you're on that spiral d ...more
May 09, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Damaged goods

What a dark little story THE DAMAGE DONE is! It takes the reader to the brink of hell (and maybe beyond) with Jervis Samsa, every mother's worst nightmare.

What would you do if your son lived in the basement and was addicted to heroin? Jervis had problems to begin with but they just got worse. His girlfriend isn't around, his mom has forgiven him for the last time and he's out of drugs. Hmmm...maybe dear old Dad can help.

Eerie, creepy tale of the dark side. Prequel to upcoming book M
May 20, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: horror, short-story
What a creepy story...looking forward to the book Milk Blood.
Thx to the author for giving me a chance to read the story.
11811 (Eleven)
Jul 22, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This was an excellent short read that depressed the hell out of me and I don't think I could ever read it again. Highly recommended.
Ryan Leone
May 18, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I read this story out loud to my fiancé before we went to bed. It freaked her out - that someone could write something with so much dark and nightmarish imagery. I love transgressive fiction so I really respect any writer that can bring originality to this overly imitated genre.

It was a suffocating tale that was remiscent of Hubert Selby's 'The Room'. I'm a big Selby fan and what I love about his work is that his fiction is always provacative and can invoke uncomfortable feelings. Matthews' visi
Peter Rosch
Jun 02, 2014 rated it it was amazing
The Damage Done reads like a ticking time bomb that you are enthusiastically hoping will explode. And then, it does. I've read a few of Mark's previous efforts, and though I've enjoyed them all, this prequel to Milk-Blood grabbed my full-attention and has me enthusiastically counting down the days until the full story comes hurling at us in all its terrifying glory. As always, Mark has managed to superbly weave the truth of addiction into a frightening fiction that doesn't seem that far from a p ...more
Jun 12, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This short story is kind of a prequel to the full-length novel MILK-BLOOD, but I have read it afterwards, which may even have intensified the impact it had on me. It is about one of the characters of the novel and how he came to be what he is later on. While several details where already familiar, it was fascinating to read when and how they happened in the past, increasing the expected horror.

A great addition to the novel, The Damage Done should not be missed.
Ken B
May 20, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: short-story
This is an interesting short story showing the desperation of a heroin addict and possibly either a bit of madness or evil that seeps into his veins as he attempts to slake his addiction at his most desperate moment. I guess we'll find out which in Matthews' upcoming novel.

May 03, 2014 rated it really liked it
This was a great teaser story for the upcoming MILK-BLOOD NOVEL!In a short amount of time it took to finish this story, it was an entertaining a creepy read:)
The Scary Reviews
Jun 08, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2014
A dark and twisted tale of a drug user after his next fix.
Patty Ward
Jul 07, 2016 rated it really liked it
One of a kind, enjoyed very sick.
May 21, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Matthews does a good job accomplishing several things with so few words. He definitely tells us story we've never heard—originality seems to be one of this author's strong suits—and he elicits sympathy for characters who in all ways seem entirely unlikable.
The writing is as blunt and direct as the content, and Matthews keeps the reader at an arm's length with his candid prose. We need this both to really understand his protagonist as the author seems to want us to, and to be prepared for the len
Jun 20, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2014
How could I not like a book with a title the same as a Neil Young song? This was a dark story of a heroin addict. Although it is short, we get enough background info to feel as if it were longer. The author did such a terrific job at describing things, I could just picture in my mind what the basement looked like and what went on there.

This was another great short story by the author. I look forward to reading the next book in which we learn more about Jervis. I definitely recommend The Damage D
Lisa Sandberg
Jun 26, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Read this book before I started on Milk-Blood.

The things an addict will do, my oh my. I have seen craziness like this and wondered, would he really do anything?


This was a good short story about an addict locked in his own basement by his mother and what he ultimately does because of it.

Rich D.
May 04, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Mark Matthews' prequel to Milk-Blood blends the horrors of addiction with a supernatural element to create a unique and horrifying short story. Can't wait to read what else Mark has in store for Jervis!
Jun 21, 2014 rated it really liked it
Really great short story. Very haunting. I've had family members deal with addiction, not to this extreme though. This little story packs a punch!
I just received MILK-BLOOD in the mail from the Goodread First Reads contests so I can't wait to dig into that book!
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Horror Aficionados : Short Story on Goodreads 1 18 Apr 29, 2014 01:47PM  

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Mark Matthews is a graduate of the University of Michigan and a licensed professional counselor who has worked in behavioral health for over 20 years. He is the author of On the Lips of Children, All Smoke Rises, and Milk-Blood, as well as the editor of Lullabies for Suffering and Garden of Fiends: Tales of Addiction Horror. Matthews has run 13 marathons, and has two running based books, The Jade ...more

Other books in the series

Milk-Blood Trilogy (3 books)
  • Milk-Blood
  • All Smoke Rises: Milk-Blood Redux

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