fiction

Glitter

Poison The last vestiges of summer, Storm and I met for brunch and then proceeded to amble about the East Village rather aimlessly. It was pleasant and rainy. Light grey, light rain. We came across a Church on 1st Avenue. “Look!” said Storm “It’s Datura,” “It’s what?” He was pointing at a cluster of white bell-shaped flowers in the Church yard “Datura. It’s a hallucinogen. Shamanic” “Really?” ...

ISHTAROTH

A friend was having his birthday dinner at a tapas bar in Soho. I arrived horrifically late— they were at the coffee and dessert stage when I came in. It was my misfortune to be seated directly opposite Paul and Natasha. I had just passed a whole row of posters of Natasha on the street. Physically, her presence was even more disturbing. Thankfully Rob and Brit came round, I hadn’t seen either ...

The Birthday Party (excerpt from Language of the Chaldeans)

It is Margaret who answers the door. Her face falls immediately, I instantly recognize the extent of the sabotage— I am no longer fat—or chubby enough to enforce the hierarchy of the skinny.... But wait! All is not lost yet—I’m sure some alternative humiliation will be dispatched toute de suite to put me in my place… “These are lovely” the birthday girl scrutinizes the roses for defect.

Language of the Chaldeans (Prologue)

The memory itself taking on the strange contours of a dream— A bright shadowy November afternoon in Columbus Circle. Heading underground for the trains, I am arrested by the impulse to call—my mother? Out with the cell phone, click on address book, scan personal directory till the heading “Mom” creeps up… press “SEND”…

The NightWatch’s Plight

The Ogboni Society was formed centuries before the European explorers came in contact with Diamankor. Speculatively the institution was established in the mid 9th century. This was the era of the Aiwughobasinins, the Mountain Lords who ruled the island at the time. The Ogboni Society emerged from a system of checks and balances to safeguard against any one ruler gaining too much power. In ...

THE MEMOREXE

“The world as we see it is passing…” Ines 12:45 p.m., Tuesday Ines sits on her desk, lavishly sexy, trying to seduce me into writing this article. There is really no point to this— I’m grateful enough to have made it past the reception at Quasar, I need the work badly. Ines and I had been classmates through college, when the real world happened, she catapulted into magazine ...

Company Girl

“It’s funny, you get to some floors and its just women—” “Only women?” “You know the kind leftover from the Eighties—” “I used to wonder what happened to all those coke-head powerbabes. Do they still wear shoulder pads?” “They wear all kinds of weird shit. The kinder gentler power suits y’know? Then on some floors, it’s all white male executives with Black female associates— they’re not ...

The Witchfield

Diary entry: June 23.  We arrived in Ekuete Djeri today. I rode alone with my mom’s driver, Rafir. Just as well, I was feeling kind of irritable. I don’t enjoy being forced to come here like this. It was an extremely exhausting three-hour ride into the hinterland. It makes you wonder how the British explorers worked up the moral audacity to travel so deep into these parts… ...

Millennia

“Sometimes the soul takes the shape of a separate entity; you recognize yourself as a reflection and thus become enlightened—” I told him I would stick to espresso.

THE WHITE ROOM (excerpt from The Sea of Lightning)

Session IV (from transcript) DR.: You’ve had this recurring dream for a couple of weeks, maybe we should talk about that today. OTTO: No — DR.: I talked to the Directrix about your requests Otto. The matter is under consideration— OTTO: Her answer of course is no. DR.: But you don’t know that for a fact— OTTO: Yes I do. Do you think my demands are unreasonable, Doctor? (silence) DR.: What ...

Otto’s Cell excerpt from ‘The Sea of Lightning’

“all pain is geological” In a future that seems very much like the present, the talents of convicted criminal masterminds are harnessed by NATO to develop new war and intelligence technologies. They are incarcerated in former monasteries where they may conduct their research in relative ease and peace. The former abbey of Vézelay is such an institution, and now with a mysterious ...

FLIGHT

In the street I feel very unsafe, frightened. Killer Angels roam the streets. With me is a small boy, I am here to protect him. He says nothing, he too is scared, and huddles against me. I mean to comfort him, but I tremble. The streets are so unsafe. I press hard at the doorbell. My keys do not seem to fit into the lock, I do not know if this is because I am nervous or because the locks have ...