Viral Video in Typhon a Monster Anthology
Cinnamon laughs, tucks her long hair behind her ear with her free hand and comes around in front of me. “I just want to know your motive is all.” There’s the soft hum of her zooming in for a close-up. “Or are you just a zombie baiter?”
I look at the little red recording light, and roll my eyes. “Technically they’re not zombies, it’s not like they’re brain dead.”
Instead of school we go to the hill. Lie flat on our backs, grass tickling my neck, tickling the backs of my bare legs. Above us the un-tangible drift free, forever shifting temporal shapes. A fluffy white bunny cloud gets longer, stretches out and breaks into road kill. The imagined wisps of a cliff fall into coastal erosion against a perpetual sky.
I push my tongue hard against the back of my teeth. “Real coolness isn’t achieved by doing dumb shit stuff.” I spread my hands out wide in a ta-dah gesture. “All we’ll get from this night is the empty sham of pseudo popularity.”
Jade tucks her bunny slipper feet under herself, curls up on the armchair with cat-like distain. “You still came though.”
And yeah, whatever.
Lady Pincushion and the Circus of the Dead in Gaia: Shadow and Breath Vol 2 (August 2015)
Bear Traps in Choose Wisely: 35 Women up to no Good (March 2015)
I turn, keeping the cigarette stretched far out of the window, the ash drifting gently onto the flowers of the hanging basket below. “You know that’s not how the story of the little mermaid really goes, right? In the original the prince falls in love with some other girl. Ariel dies of a broken heart and dissolves back into sea foam.” I laugh. “How’s that for a happily ever after.”
I push the bottle away, squash my eyebrows into a frown. “The body isn’t a temple, it’s a fucking graveyard.” I swallow another mouthful. “Every choice you ever make will haunt you. Every kiss, every scar is just a dead skin memory.”
Don’t laugh, but standing guard around my bed there’s He-man and Spiderman. Batman in his black suit, Batman in his grey suit, the Joker, Darthvader and Chewbacca, plus anyone else I could find. Anyone else I could bear to sacrifice on the front line.
Lily comes to the office gushing about golden opportunities and once-in-a-life-time chances, all breathless and punctuating her sentences with oh my god I can’t believe it instead of full-stops. When the agency send a girl over it’s because they see some kind of special in her, some kind of mass marketability. These girls are never what you’d call fat but they’re not third world couture either.
And our bridge, it’s nothing like the one in the book. You’d totally bet all your shit that Christopher Robin didn’t have to watch the dog mess when he ran across to the other side. You’d bet your life there wasn’t a kaleidoscope of glass amongst the gravel, shattered and twinkling in the sun.
Our bridge, it’s not even made of wood.
This isn’t Dawson’s Creek, but tonight my childhood best friend is close enough I can see green flecks in her hazel eyes, the little raised bump above her right eyebrow from that accident with the baseball bat, and the tiny scar tissue dent where her nose ring usually sits. Her once bright pink hair is now the faded colour of cheap store bought strawberry ice cream. The kind that tastes more of strawberry milk than it does actual fruit.
In my head I’m counting.
Two hundred and one
Two hundred and two
Bliss, her fingers wrapped tightly around my ankles, her boney knees pressing down on the tops of my feet, on top of my toes, holding them still, says, “Life ain’t a bowl of peaches, so suck it up, bitch.”