By Edward Lee

“The 3 tales during this chapbook are between my favorites of my stuff,” Lee says. The tales are the intellectualized b-movie-like “The Seeker” and the Lieberesque “The Goddess of the hot darkish Age,” plus the powerful existential porn piece, “Sex, fact, & fact” aka “Pay Me.” The latter hasn't ever been reprinted, and used to be initially accredited within the early ‘80s through HUSTLER journal, even to the purpose that Lee’s manuscript used to be copy-edited and despatched to the typesetter. “Jut my luck,” Lee recollects. “Right sooner than they have been going to pay me anything like 800 bucks,” the fiction editor left the corporate and the tale was once rejected via his successor, stated HUSTLER used to be no position for philosophical fiction. It’s the one time I’m ever gotten a manuscript again with copy-edit marks.”

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Urban police officers cruised via, eyeing him, squab faces darkish in the back of tinted glass. “Frog, Ice, Cokesmoke? ” a hand-pocketed black guy requested him. via a newspaper stand, the place headlines blared guy units spouse & young ones ON fireplace, a raddled prostitute twitched, scratching at needlemarks within her thigh. within the mouth of a brick, urine-soaked alley, a girl in rags vomited up blood as rats the scale of small pups boldly approached the emesis, to consume. Smith hated the solar. It appeared vivid with existence, which made him consider even older, extra depleted. the place am I going? The query didn’t suggest now, this present day, this minute. the place am I going eternally? he puzzled. the place have I been? The footsteps padded in the back of him; that they had for weeks. Smith had lengthy on the grounds that stopped in retrospect. It gave the impression of anyone strolling barefoot — a girl, he surmised, a powerful, attractive lady. He additionally detected the stunning odor — body spray, and a few type of inexplicable warmth at his groin and his middle. every time he grew to become, although, on the sound and the plush body spray, not anything was once there. only a shadow occasionally, only a fleck, just like the mica within the cement. maybe it was once a ghost, no matter what ghosts have been. Ghost, or simply hallucination. His actual physique felt like vermiculated meat. Too many synthetic sweeteners, cigarettes, alcohol, saturated fat. A physique may perhaps simply take loads vandalism. yet Smith didn’t care. Why should still he, now? Or ever, for that topic? or even ghosts have been actual. actual residuum, he speculated. Interplanar leakage. used to be there relatively a netherworld, like an fearful tongue licking throughout pressed lips, determined for access? He’d learn someplace that horror left a stain, a laceration by which the tenants of the void may ooze into the area. but when this have been real, mankind might definitely be smothered by means of such ooze. So what was once this “ghost? ” A spirit? An angel? was once the ghost genuine? occasionally he may well truly see it, through the presage: the longing body spray odor, the heat. in general in simple terms at evening. after all, he proposal. evening. Dr. Greene had informed him to count on as a lot. yet ghosts? “Be ready for a few contraindications from the chemotherapy,” got here the phrases like a clipped dissertation. “Olfactory and aural hallucinosis. Exodikinesis, excessive scotopic particles, synaptic maladaption and toxicity intolerance. It’s general. ” common, Smith mirrored. Dying’s basic too. 3 remedies left him racked for hours, dry heaving bile. His hair had fallen out. “To hell with this,” he’d advised Greene, at the fourth stopover at. “Let me die. ” melanoma appeared a suitable means for a author to die. It appeared approximately allegorical. The festering underneath the striking veneer of human flesh. No, the ghost wasn’t an aspect influence. It needs to be actual. He suggestion he may perhaps see it, the shadow in the shadow, peering again. A shadow in wish of flesh. used to be it Smith’s flesh it sought after? Why may still it wish me? My flesh’s loss of life. i'm basically a jogging corpse. He may perhaps odor the fragrance, even over the city’s mephitis of carbon-monoxide, stale sweat, and rubbish. “You scent beautiful,” he whispered. “Whoever you're.

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