The original copy of this short story runs 6 pages long. Obviously, I cannot put the entire story on the internet as it demands a little more time and concentration. Here is an excerpt:

"The smell of blistered flesh devoured the room and served a piercing palate on Alexandra Bates' tongue. Crystal fluid, so clear and sleepy, escaped from sores that covered the Orderly's filthy body lying dead on the floor. Beneath him Alexandra moved her fragile body and tried to push the heavy disgusting man from within her. She was unaware of how thin her body was until that moment, she could see the soft lump of his penis pressing her abdomen from inside. His body smelt of earth and fire, both pleasing and harmful. Alexandra removed the dead man, pushing him to one side and removing his vile flesh from her sore wet patch. The defence of Alexandra's flesh had absorbed itself into the Orderly within seconds, every feature of his pleasure was etched onto his face by venom that had surrendered no mercy in its rage. The blackened carcass of her invader lay crackling and fused with the black and white tiles of the floor; his body and clothes melted together by some diseased adhesive. The remains of a blackened slug dropped from between her legs as Alex stood and leaned against the cool wall.

"The sound of trickling water, like an orchestra playing an ancient and voiceless hymn washed through Alex. She pulled her stained, iron-oxide dress down from her thin waist and loathed its transparent wire Batiste clawing at her skin. Alex stepped over the black fragments, moved over to the unhinged sink in the corner and twisted the loosening tap. The bathroom was swamped in flickering industrial light, displaced tiles rotted in dark puddles on the floor and a concrete emptiness deafened the electric silence. Penetrating damp had begun cracking the paint away in dark patches from the corners of the room. Alex pressed her wet hands to her face and washed away the taste and smell of the Orderly. She scraped and clawed at her face, pressing harder and deeper with her nails; a tear escaped from her soft cerulean eyes, mingled with the unclean tap water and was lost in a whirlpool. The taste of neglected breath and cigarettes lingered on Alex's tongue; the smell of after-shave tinged with a faint perfume of ammonia poisoned her lungs..."

If you would like a complete copy of this story along with the rest of the zine, please visit the submissions page for more details on ordering a copy of Neuralgia.


vol.1 no.3 Fall 1999

Lovely Ugly Brutal World
New regular column by AR
Neuralgia Survey

Entombed--Alix Caldwell
Heartland Film Noir Classic Starring Peter Lorre --Fetters
Retinal Fetish--AR
Salvador Dalai Lama--David Goth
Transfuse Me--Tom Hamilton

Prose/Short Stories:
Cradle--David Canada
An Episode--A.M. Olsson


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