Justin Grimbol


Bella came into my office. I was working on a poem.

The poem was about butts.

I wanted to write a whole book about butts. Called it FRANKENBOOTY.

“What the fuck is that?” Bella asked.

“It’s FRANKENBOOTY. It’s going to be the next great American novel. Or poem. Or whatever.”

“No I mean that pile of trash in the corner.”

I looked over. An impressive pile of old photos, DVD cases, shitty books and other junk.

“Are you building a nest?” she asked.

“No way. Just a pile. You know how I like piles.”

“You sure do.”

“I was thinking about putting a blanket over it.”

“That’s not a bad idea.”

“You don’t want me to clean it?”

“I mean, I do. I do want you to clean it. But that’s a really intense pile. I wouldn’t even know where to begin.”

She was wearing fuzzy red sweat pants she got from my stepmom. They were baggy and cozy looking.

I grabbed her pants and pulled her close. I smelled her crotch.

She laughed and told me to stop.

“I can’t help it. I have a libido. It fills me with passion.”

“Oh baby,” she said.

And she started trying to get it on by kissing my neck and grabbing my dick.

“Stop,” I said. “I can’t do that right now. I gotta write.”


She looked at my computer screen. Microsoft Word had been minimized. YouTube was up. There was a video of a lady with a big booty twerking.

“This is you writing?”

“Sometimes when I write I watch YouTube. It gives me inspiration. You know that.”


She walked off to the living room.

And I continued writing. But I didn’t write about butts anymore. I started working on a list that I was planning on sending to Cracked.


I could only think of a few Transformers. There was Arcee. The pink lady from the movie. She was hot. Great legs.

Then there was that chick from the GoBots but she kinda seemed like a tranny. I thought trannies were sexy. But did I really want to open up about that in an article about female transformers?

I was online researching female Transformers when Bella came in again.

She looked at the screen and saw a picture of a Transformer.

“You have to be kidding me,” she said.

I shut my laptop.

“It’s not what you think,” I said.

“This is fucked,” she said.

She stormed off.

I chased after her.

She liked that.

Soon we were playing tag.

I caught her at one point and then I pulled her pants down and smelled her butt.

Then I dragged her off to the bedroom.

We started having sex.

“Have you noticed our sex has gotten a lot more cuddly?” I asked.

She nodded.

Then she kissed me.

Then I kissed her back.

Frank Greasestain

Just Me and My Micropenis

“You know, before I get started with girls, I ask them, ‘you like it with skin on or skin off?’”

Roy started cracking up at his own joke; dude could barely breathe. Meanwhile, I just sat there in utter incomprehension.

He noticed the blank look on my face and asked, “What, you don’t get it?”

“No, I get it,” I said with no confidence in my voice whatsoever.

“You don’t get it! It’s because I’m an anteater, haha!”

“Ohhhhh,” I said, doing my best to fake ‘getting it.’

“I’m not circumcised.”

“Oh!” I said, finally actually getting it.

My eyes fell swiftly to the floor. I couldn’t even tell if I was circumcised or uncircumcised… I was born with a micropenis.

Doctors usually give parents the option of keeping a perpetually virginal boy or constructing a fake vagina.

Men usually don’t care about the size of vaginas. They’re just happy to be invited in. You can’t even get your foot in the door with a micropenis.

My parents were fundamentalists and of course it was God’s will for me to have nothing but a slightly oversized clit hanging (Ha! If only it were big enough to hang!) above my normal-sized nutsack.

I was made from mud. It was meant to be. Goddamn you, God.

Whenever I get embarrassed, like I was discussing Roy’s sexual exploits, my penis shrinks even further up into my body. Sometimes I worry it’ll never come back out again. This was one of those times. I had a slight panic attack in my mind but no one could ever tell. My palms were sweating.

“You alright, Mike?”

“Yeah, yeah. I’m fine.”

Fine? I couldn’t even masturbate.

“You’re not fine, bro. What’s wrong?”

For some stupid reason, I felt like telling the truth.

“I’ve never had sex. I’ve never even masturbated.”

“What?? You gay, dude?”

“No, I just physically can’t. Never mind. It’s not a big deal…”

It truly was no big deal. Language has a way of hanging us.

“What, Mike, you got a little Vienna Sausage or something? So long as it can crack the curtains, it can jump through the window if you know what I mean!”

He slapped me on the back, seeking my approval of his joke. A Vienna Sausage would be great, but I could hardly claim a Little Smokey.

I’d neglected to mention we were at McDonald’s. After we’d finished our large Cokes, we both had to piss, so we went to the bathroom together.

I’ll bet you can guess where this is going.

I can’t piss directly next to anyone when there are no dividers between the urinals. I’m always worried they’re sizing me up in comparison to theirs. It really, really bothers me.

But there we were. Some fat ass was in the only stall. If I didn’t piss, it’d raise suspicion, and so I took the only free urinal next to Roy. Figuring I could fake it if nothing else, I unzipped and pinched my ‘Johnson’ (what’s diminutive for Johnson?) out of my drawers.

But before I could squeeze anything out, I heard the loud, heavy stream pounding down on Roy’s urinal cake. Now I knew I definitely wouldn’t piss.

“Ain’t you gonna piss, man?” Roy asked, turning to look right at me.

“Not when you’re staring at me,” I said.

“What, you got a shy bladder?”

I ignored the question.

“Holy shit, man! You call THAT a penis?”

At Roy’s urging, my already tiny penis tried to escape back into my body once again, making my present pissing situation all the more impossible. I quickly zipped up with no fear of getting caught and stormed out of the bathroom.

Ditching Roy at McDonald’s (because fuck him), I drove to a nearby park, sitting on a bench by myself. There were some high school kids making out as they strolled past, backpacks slung across their fronts to hide their boners. A trick I knew of but never had to use myself.

It was then that Roy texted me, suggesting that I tie a string around my dick and weigh it down with something.

“It’s sure to stretch,” he wrote, trying (and failing) to be helpful. “I read it on the internet!”

He obviously had no idea how hard it was to tie a knot around a micropenis. Almost impossible. I’ve tried. I’d even thought about cutting off the blood supply with a string like some people do with warts and skin tags, just letting my pathetic little excuse for a dick shrivel up and die.

I had no hope. It was useless.

When I got home, my mom was cooking breakfast for dinner. I loved having breakfast for dinner.

“We’re making bacon!” she said, smiling as I entered the door.

“Fuck you!” I yelled at her and stomped off to my room.

“This is my house! Don’t you dare speak to me like that!”

“You ruined my life!”

“I gave you life!”

“Thanks a lot!”

I slammed the door behind me and lay down on my bed, staring at the ceiling until I fell asleep.

I dreamed I was walking down a long hall with brown carpeting, white walls, and kitsch paintings of flowers placed at regular intervals. The hall only got longer as I kept walking. My tiny little penis began to elongate like one of Stretch Armstrong’s limbs, stretching out like a wad of taffy behind me. I could feel bugs crawling all over it, lint and dust clinging to it as it began to drag along the floor. I kept thinking rats were going to attack it next. It was terrifying.

I woke up grabbing for the cursed appendage (if you could call it that) between my legs. Sure enough, it was still there.

Meanwhile, the smell of delicious bacon had begun to waft through the air in my room. I got up, went downstairs, and made my way to the kitchen.

“Sorry, mom,” I said, grabbing for some bacon. She never made sausage. Or hot dogs. All things considered, she was a considerate woman.

“It’s okay.”

“Why couldn’t you guys just agree to give me a pussy? I would have never known the damn difference.”

“You’re just as God made you.”

“Yeah, miserable…”

John D. Robinson

The Delivery

Malcolm Sedgwick was a thirty-eight-year-old, beastly, obese married man of four young children with a mortgage and a strong commitment to his spiritual faith. He was a very well-respected and leading figure in the local church community; any spare time, Malcolm would use to organize fundraising events and social gatherings to help spread the good word.

Malcolm worked as a courier for a small but busy inner city delivery service, ‘Speed Guaranteed.’ He rode a Honda CB125 and his hulking mass dwarfed the small machine and the other couriers would laugh as he left the depot with the bike coughing and sputtering beneath his weight. Malcolm had been employed at the company for five years; most of his fellow employees were younger and he felt them coarse and unread and he mostly kept just himself to himself. He was loyal and punctual.

As usual Malcolm was the first to arrive at the depot at 08:15. He parked the Honda and strode slowly into the office to be given his first delivery of the day.

Manager Bob Stone had the day’s deliveries sorted for each courier. He smiled and greeted Malcolm, who stood before him with tiny beads of sweat gathering upon his forehead.

“I’ll give you an hour to deliver this and get back here,” said Bob. Malcolm took the small package and nodded his head and made his way back outside.

As he placed the package into the top-box he noted the name and address, a local adult sex shop. He stared hard at the package like it was a bomb about to explode. He couldn’t help but ponder what might be in the package and he began to feel uncomfortable and unclean as he tried to shut those thoughts from out of his mind.

Malcolm made good time. He pulled over and killed the engine. For a few moments he sat feeling anxious and confused, his mind still racing with images of what the package possibly held, torn between light and darkness.

He climbed off the bike, took the package out of the top box and walked across the road to some public toilets. He locked himself in one of the cubicles and with shaking damp hands he opened up the package.

His fingers were trembling as he looked down at the photographs and he felt disgusted and aroused simultaneously. He began loudly cursing the photographs; “YOU FILTHY WHORES! GOD DAMN YOU! YOU HORNY SINFUL BITCHES! OH FUCK! OH FUCK!”

He unbuckled and whipped out his throbbing member; feelings and sensations that had laid dormant for years were unleashed and were now screaming through his body and mind and he was powerless against it.


With an overwhelming urge he began masturbating and very quickly climaxed over the photographs. He sat panting and puffing and then in a sudden rage of self loathing and guilt, he ripped up the sticky photographs and threw them onto the floor and began screaming loudly and pleading for forgiveness.


“Hey, keep the noise down in there!” said the attendant, knocking hard on the cubicle door.

“Okay, okay…” said Malcolm, still catching his breath. He gathered up the torn pieces of paper and thrust them back into their packaging. Panic and guilt and shame swirled within. He had no package to deliver. Of course he couldn’t tell the truth. He would lose his job. He’d lose everything; job, wife and children and house, everything.

He would not be able to live with such shame and embarrassment.

If a courier somehow loses a package he is fired, there is no argument. However, the one exception was if the courier was robbed.

Malcolm made his way out of the public toilets and began walking with no thought of a destination. His hearted pounded like heavy shell fire and perspiration rolled from his forehead as his mind raced in every direction. He felt helpless. He needed to think of something.

Wandering the narrow back-streets, he rounded a corner and literally crashed into a gang of youths.

“WHAT THE FUCK YOU DOING FATSO!” one of the young men screamed in panicked face.

Malcolm had begun to apologise when he felt a fist smash into the side of his face, and his legs were kicked from under him. He had let go of the package and one of the youths snatched it up and opened it and dumped its contents onto the pavement.

“Look at this shit!”

Malcolm curled into a ball to protect himself from the volley of kicks that came without mercy.

Several hours later, he awoke in the hospital having sustained numerous injuries. He saw his wife and children standing beside the bed and beyond them in the corridor waited two police officers.

He lied to his wife and children and he lied to the police officers. He related how he had been forced by a gang of young men into some alleyway, somewhere he didn’t know, and how they had attacked him, robbing him and destroying his delivery before beating him unconscious.

The story was featured in their local newspaper. He received dozens of well-wishing cards; particularly from the church community, from family and friends and from his employers and from total strangers. Each card that arrived was a reminding stab of guilt and shame.

Every day he lives this lie and everyday he lives with guilt and cannot find it within himself to forgive himself. He thinks of this often, of what he did, and he feels ashamed and empty of goodness and no longer feels worthy into looking into the eyes of those who love and trust him most.

And every time he thinks of those photographs, the primal urges surge, and he mutters a prayer to heaven.

David P. Bates

Household Things

I pulled the entertainment stand away from the dumpster less than 10 minutes after the guy who was moving out had left it there, dragging it clear across the parking lot to my own apartment.

I went upstairs, found the screwdriver, came back down and unscrewed the shit that held the top and bottom parts together. After that, I was able to haul them both upstairs, reattach them, and set up the flatscreen before my wife got home from work.

“Happy Valentine’s Day, baby,” I said as she walked through the door.

Breezing past with hardly a word, she tossed her box of wine in the freezer, kicked off her shoes, and headed straight for the bedroom.

I just shrugged and turned on the TV, finally at eye-level on the new stand. Until today it had sat upon the floor. But we had a low couch, so it didn’t really matter.

I watched an episode of Breaking Bad, I watched an episode of Rescue Me. I leaned back and scratched my balls a bit, vegging out to the max.

Every ten minutes or so, my wife went into the kitchen, twisted a full glass of wine, and went back into the bedroom. Every ten minutes or so, plus or minus a minute or two between her own trips to the kitchen, I’d grab another beer from out the fridge.

You can ask me how many beers–I won’t be able to say for sure–but at one point I could’ve sworn the entertainment stand moved, its silver plastic legs seeming to shudder a bit. I’d barely had a chance to rub my bleary eyes before I noticed that they had taken on more of a shiny, blackish sheen, looking something like a beetle’s carapace

When its legs began to lengthen, staggering beneath the weight of the TV as it rose up higher still, it was all I could do to sit there slack-jawed with a beer in my hand.

It was sweet Angelina Jolie who appeared first, luscious lips projecting from the flatscreen on its spindly, insectoid legs. She smiled mischievously before coming in for a kiss, but then abruptly backed away.

The wife was pulling another glass of wine from the freezer.

Next it was barefooted Kaylee, promising to fix the engine with pubic hair and “something” in Cantonese; then Willow so close she was breathing witch dust in my face.

The entertainment stand crept closer and closer to the couch each time, but whenever my wife returned for another glass of wine, it returned to its place against the wall. Every time she left, a new face appeared onscreen.

Now it’s Kirsten Dunst, prepubescent, trying to straddle me on the couch, saying no no no I’m actually older than you are. Then it’s baby Drew Barrymore, from E.T., saying no no no we’re the same age now.

Meanwhile, I had begun to panic, calling “Baby, come here!” towards the kitchen.

She came out to find the TV exactly where it belonged, looking at me like I was retarded.

“What?” she asked, annoyed. “Get your own damn beer…”

It is now 4am. I’m allowed to enter the kitchen, but if I try to escape down the hall, the TV is there on its stand, blocking my way.

“Baby, please help!” I cry out to my wife.

“Sleep on the damn couch, you fucking drunk!”

Meanwhile, the stand’s legs have begun to morph into long, waspy stingers as Scarlett Johansson closes in on me.

C.M. Crockford

I Saw This Horrible Evil Entity and Now I’m Pretty Much Done

I suppose you’re wondering why I’m here. Well to make a long story short, I…witnessed a massive, ancient cosmic creature emerge from the sea and I’m pretty much done. Donezo. I mean with life: like physically, mentally emotionally, I am out. Once you’ve seen an ancient monolith emerge from the depths you can forgot posting pictures of your dinner on Instagram or hanging with old frat buddies, am I right?

And I had a life too! Like, interests and shit – foosball night at Ruby’s was the best! At least until understanding my hollow, miniscule place in the universe made me completely lose any interest. I cannot emphasize enough how much seeing a tentacled beast deity emit a blaring roar then slink back into dark waters changes you, for better or worse.

…It’s all worse. I cannot make that more clear.

After all, at the time, I was an explorer, swashbuckling my way through intrepid lands, searching for the unknown…fine, I was a tourist, but I madethe effort to learn bits of Peruvian and whatever the other language was. Of course I’ve stopped caring about other cultures, or really about anything an hour after the great malevolent god emerged from its slumber. Eh, maybe half an hour after. “Time is a flat octagon” or whatever that Texas guy said in that show. I saw like one episode but I hated the Yellow Queen bullshit.

So, in hindsight, yeah, I probably shouldn’t have wandered onto that mysterious beach late at night, but shit man, it looked really cool! Even with the cloaked priests chanting some weird Arabic language and those dark clouds overhead. How was I to know they’d all kill themselves and awaken a huge octopus?! Just my luck. I even got locked up for gibbering about “the slumbering darkness below” or whatever I was saying. I blacked out eventually.

So as you can see from our surroundings I’ve been technicallydeemed insane by the state. You say “insane”, I say “prophet of the coming doom” – you say “Tomato”, I say “Tomata”. I guess I can’t complain though, especially being that I’ll be a tortured, helpless plaything for the Old Ones any day now, so the sanitarium really isn’t bad. Que sera sera. Plus the food here is pretty good, especially the pudding. Did you try the pudding? Excellent distraction from the oblivion that awaits.

Anyway it was great talking to you and thanks for the visit. Hope your story goes well. I’m going to go patiently wait for the inevitable alien hellscape in my room, get some more pudding beforehand. Have a good one! Hope the many tentacled Gods kill you first instead of enslave you!


Michael Marrotti

Casual Sex At Narcotics Anonymous

My only friend Tony has turned his back on me for some slut in Dormont named Trish. You know the world’s spinning out of control when someone as hideous as Tony has found a girl to fuck him. She’s cute too. Unbelievable. And here I am jerking off to free online porn instead of making an effort to cum the good old-fashioned way. I’m not a bad-looking guy; there’s a slut out there waiting for me to slip it in. I just gotta finish these pizza rolls, grab some drugs and find her. If not I’m doomed to a solitary existence. It’s time to get rid of this hand lotion and get on out there.

I’m all dressed up on this Thursday night, now all I gotta do is snort these drugs. I’m running on empty over here, down to my last two pills. This is no good. If I don’t score some more shit soon I’ll be the manifestation of a good thing gone bad. Anyways I crush my last two pills on the dresser, grab my favorite straw and embrace the light. It’s instant gratification to the point that I run to the bathroom for my first narcotic shit of the day. My systems are flushed and my hands are sanitized. Let the scratching begin.

I love this feeling. Drugs make me enthusiastic about living. I could literally sit here by myself, watching Lifetime movies like a little bitch and be completely content. That’s not gonna get me laid, though. This is no time for complacency, so I’m out the door.

I have this ingenious plan. It entails going directly to the Narcotics Anonymous meeting up the street from my apartment to handle both my needs. All I gotta do is a little play acting. After all, I’m a fan of drugs, they purify my life. The only drugs worth doing are the ones that give, and these tiny little pills I blow up my nose have made me a better person. I’m the me I always wanted to be. And the females at these support groups are always so vulnerable. They sit there and obsess over numbers. Well congratulations, bitch. I’m the thirteenth step going directly into your vagina.

As I walk through the doors of the Methodist church it becomes abundantly clear that Christianity is a religion of decadence. This place of worship and recovery is crawling with scumbags from all walks of life. Reformation in the making, if they can just resist the pleasures of chemically induced bliss.

It smells like relapse and burnt coffee. I take a cookie and have a seat next to a recovering addict. She looks like something straight out of a Nazi propaganda poster. Minus the track marks.

I’m one bite into this stale-ass cookie by the time she turns her troubled little head into my direction.

“Hi, I’m Gina,” she said. “My asshole boyfriend usually comes to these things with me, but today he decided to go get a bundle of dope and shoot up some shit instead. That bastard! He doesn’t care about my recovery. All he cares about is getting high. We’re through. I can’t take it anymore. It’s all about his needs, his wants, his spoon. That stupid fucking spoon! How about this shit; he still has the original spoon he used to shoot up with for the first time. Unbelievable, right? He says it’s his good-luck spoon, that’s why he’s never overdosed, or at least that’s what he claims. Anyways, fuck him! It’s over…”

Wow. That was intense. These people are brutally honest. I like it. This is way better than a sitcom. This woman may be strung out, crazy and/or depressed, but she has one hell of a sexy figure. Entering her love tunnel would be a pleasure. My pleasure.

I look into her pretty blue eyes and say, “He sounds like a real asshole. What’s a sexy woman like yourself doing wasting time with someone like that? Take a look around, honey. We all know you could do better.”

“Oh, that’s sweet. You’re one of those nice guys, I can see it from here. A woman deserves a nice guy after years of dealing with selfish assholes. What’s your name?”

I tell her my name’s Mario as I consider how tight her pussy might be. I’m dubious of this, but the woman does have a smoking hot bod, plus she’s blonde. Those aren’t easy to come by in Pittsburgh.

I’ll just have to wrap it up, that’s all. I know it sucks, but it’s better than jerking off again or contracting hepatitis.

But before I can seal the deal, I’m rudely interrupted by the ex-junkie speaker standing up there at front.

“Hi, I’m Mark and I’m an addict. It’s been several months of a living hell, but I feel as though the worst is behind me. The reoccurring dreams of pin pricks and prostitution are a thing of the past. Have faith in God, people. With the almighty Lord anything is possible. If there’s hope for me, you better believe there’s hope for you. As I look into the crowd I see a new face. Let’s all give him a warm welcome as he tells us about his struggle.”

For the love of God, I wasn’t expecting this! This junkie fuck just put me on the stand, man. I don’t wanna face all these scumbags, I just wanna get high and find me some pussy to fuck.

Maybe this wasn’t the most thought-out idea after all…

“Go ahead, Mario,” says Gina. “We’re all waiting for you.”

I reluctantly go up front for all the bloodshot eyes to see. I’m so fucking nervous that I’m walking funny.

Man, fuck! If they catch onto my act I’m doomed. I might even catch an ass beating by the bottom barrel of society.

Fucking losers. What’s so hard about using in moderation?

“Hi, I’m Mario and I’m an addict. I’ve been a slave to narcotics for five years too many. I’d work sixty hours a week to support my habit. Things were fine until I couldn’t score. I brutally beat my boss one day after I showed up dopesick with a bad attitude. He questioned my appearance and work ethic; I questioned the integrity of his chin. That cocksucker collapsed after just two punches. Next thing I know I’m without a job and my freedom. Praise sweet baby Jesus! Grant me the strength to make it through!”

All the stupid fuckers began to clap their shaky hands. Be careful, you brittle bastards. I wouldn’t want you to break any bones over it. A couple even said amen.

They all fell for it, and now Gina is giving me the eye. Everything is going according to plan.

“Mario, that was great. It’s so nice to hear different stories. After a few years here, it all becomes monotonous. It’s one of the reasons why I started looking for new places on my body to shoot up on. We all need a little change now and then, you know?”

I ask Gina how much longer the meeting is as I second guess the conquest of this vagina that’s likely been around the block one too many times for my liking. Junkies aren’t the most virtuous people in Pittsburgh, after all.

I’m willing to bet Gina slept around A LOT to feed her addiction. Is that too far-fetched to believe?

She tells me no more than an hour. In the meantime, I come close to shattering my teeth on this Goddamn rock of a cookie. Maybe I should go get a styrofoam cup of cheap-ass coffee to go with it as well. That would kill a few minutes.

Meanwhile, addicts keep getting up to explain their deplorable stories for an audience that just can’t get enough. These people are delusional. They put all their faith in God when they never even personally met the woman. What do atheists do? Just believe in themselves like rational people and kick the monkey off their back. That’s what they do.

I look around and notice a clique mentality here. It’s starting to feel like high school all over again. This is doing nothing more than making me wanna use a little extra next time around. These ex-junkies are pretentious, too. It’s all about them. I guess the problems of the outside world don’t matter when you’re trying to stay clean.

Maybe they all took a page out of my father’s shallow book: “Just worry about yourself, son.” Words of wisdom by my narcissistic father. If we all followed his callous example, the world would go back into the dark ages. He wouldn’t care though, unless it affected him personally. What a fucking dick…

Finally, this boring spectacle has reached its climax.

The serenity prayer is the biggest crock of shit I’ve ever heard in my life. I’m awarded a one day sober coin for my efforts, along with a bunch of superficial support from people I’ve never met.

Thanks, but no thanks.

I want Gina as my sponsor. This feels awkward and peculiar. That’s ok, though. It’s just for today. One day at a time. What more can I ask for? How about some clean pussy and primo drugs, bitch?

“Gina, let’s go get some coffee or something. I’m buying.”

“Okay,” she agrees with a smile.

We’re walking out through the doors of deception when she pulls out her phone and says, “Oh my fucking God! I just got a text… Lemmy has passed on to the afterlife!”

“What the fuck? That’s terrible! I was supposed to see them this summer at the PE Pavilion! Lemmy doesn’t know how to die…”

I give her a big warm hug for comfort. Lemmy was the man, but I don’t want him spoiling the mood.

“I’m so fucking depressed now. First my asshole ex-boyfriend, and now the demise of Motörhead…I can’t take any more. Today’s a fine day to relapse…”

“I completely agree, honey. Let’s go score some shit.”

“No need; I’ve got a Suboxone in my car. I’ve been saving it for a rainy day.”

Rain magically begins to fall from the gray, depressing skies of Pittsburgh as we make a run for her old, beat-up Toyota Camry in the parking lot. Whatever pessimism was left inside me has now completely depleted. This plan so far is perfect!

Gina cuts the Suboxone strip into four pieces and hands one to me. I never took this shit before, so I ask her what to do with it. She tells me to put it under my tongue, but warns me of the awful fruity taste that lingers afterwards before lunging at me and jamming her tongue down my throat.

We make out for a minute; she’s a good kisser. I manage to slip my hands up under her tank top and cop a good feel during this transition. Wow. These are some firm titties. I can’t help but feel the death of Lemmy has helped me in my conquest. I know in a way it’s kinda fucked up, but I’m sure Lemmy wouldn’t mind. The man was all about pussy.

Now we’re driving to the store for some beer, listening to Motörhead’s Iron Fist album, my personal favorite. The album itself is perfect. Not a single throwaway track on it, plus it’s the last album with Fast Eddie on guitar. It was all downhill for the band after this one. Gina happens to agree with my every word. She has good taste in drugs and music. I’m feeling the effects of this Suboxone already. I haven’t been this fucked since yesterday. Those fools at the NA meeting are missing out, big time. Just for today, huh? Yeah, there’s always tomorrow.

By the time I run into the store for a cheap six pack, I’m beyond fucked up. I must look like a real piece of shit in here, rubbing my face and scratching all over. I quickly make my purchase, running back to her car with lightning speed. I’m eager to smell her vagina. Nothing’s more exciting than fresh snatch.

Back at my place, Gina has me straddled with her tongue down my throat once again. I manage to get her shirt and bra off, sucking those perky tits. I can already feel the pre-cum seeping out my cock, just one step away from discovering the color of her pubic hair.

That’s when she jumps off of me and says, “I’m sorry, Mario. It’s too soon; I just can’t do this…”

I gaze up at her say, “Honey, please don’t do this to me. It’s not right. You’ve got me all worked up over here.”

She says, “I’m sorry, I just can’t,” as she takes another swig of beer. “It’s nothing personal, so please don’t take it the wrong way.”

“Fuck this. If I were a stamp bag, I’d be in you already. Where’s your imagination? Pretend I’m a fucking bundle of dope, damn it!”

“Mario, you’re becoming hostile. I don’t like it!”

I take a big swig of beer, hold it in my mouth, and spit it right into her pretty little face. It goes everywhere; into her eyes, into her mouth, and even up her nose. She’s a walking disaster at this point, and frankly I’ve got some cleaning up to do. But first things first; time to rid myself of this garbage.

“You son of a bitch!” she screams, staggering backwards as she wipes her face with her hands.

Who’s being hostile now, bitch?

“Get out you junkie whore! Get the fuck out! My modest cock is too good for anyways!”

“No! We need to talk about this!”

Jesus Christ. I thought a mouthful of beer in the face would be all the initiative anyone could possibly need to walk out that door. Fuck, I guess not… Maybe my contemptuous feelings aren’t getting through to her.

So I go for round two; another mouthful of beer in her face. She’s screaming at me again, only this time she’s walking out the door as intended. Her hair is soaked and her makeup is running all over the place. I never did get to tap that ass, but now that ass is a thing of the past. God grant me the strength to carry on. This is bullshit.

“Good riddance, you fucking heroin addict! Shoot up or shut up, bitch! God’s an asshole and so are you!”

The door to my apartment slams shut, along with this chapter of my disappointing existence. Well fuck my life. I’m back to square one again, and my ugly friend Tony is knee-deep in primo pussy. I tell ya, I’ve got all the luck in the world when it comes to drugs, but little to none when it comes to women.

Maybe I’m just not ugly enough. That’s what I’ve noticed about dating in Pittsburgh. It’s always some hot-ass bitch walking around with some goofy-looking dude. These cunts are shallow in the opposite aspect. Fuck it. At least I’m stoned and alone.

I’ll relax as I scratch in peace. Maybe I’ll finish this Hemingway novel.

Tyler Gates

Love At First Sight

This is it, what all those songs and movies are always talking about. There is no doubt in your collapsing heart, this is love at first sight.

Your eyes run the length of her body, savoring her from head to toe, and as they do you gently run your fingers through her thick, red hair.

Focusing on her eyes, you begin to drift away as you stare longingly into them. They flow into yours and back into themselves for what feels like the most agonizing eternity. You could dedicate your entire existence to simply gazing through them and still not experience a fraction of the beauty they struggle to contain.

Her skin is white and almost seems to glow beneath the bright halogen light. Your roaming fingers stop at every mole, scar, and freckle along the way, mesmerized by the lifetime’s worth of stories you know they each could tell.

As she lies perfectly still, you can’t help but be drowned by the oceans she contains. What a suffocating torrent she is.

Love has always been foreign to you, something heard and read about but never truly understood. Now though, you simply can’t imagine life after her mountains have crushed your pitiful soul to pieces. Here and now, she is yours. The hair on the back of your neck stands up as you gently write:


upon her belly with your latex-gloved finger.

Just then, a nurse enters the room, interrupting you both to ask:

“Doctor, is the body prepped for autopsy yet?”

“Just give me a few more minutes, please.”

David Hughes

Killing Ground

Debbie ran screaming, fearful for her life—she’d never felt such terror in all her thirty-eight years—as a balaclava-wearing, chainsaw-wielding madman chased her through the woods.

“Help! Help!”

Her breath came in ragged rips as tears cut dirty mascara tracks down her cheeks; her face and neck fully flushed. The rest of her body was ice-cold thanks to the flimsy, see-through baby doll dress she wore, which barely covered her bald pussy and ample backside. The fabric pricked at her stiff nipples, sending a tremor through her clit.

Never had she felt so alive as she did right now. Yes, she was terrified out of her mind, but exhilarated at the same time.

It’s only a game, remember? Boy, was Patrick right about this.

At the thought of her husband’s name, Debbie glanced back at the towering, shadowy figure lumbering after her through the October mist. An owl hooted from somewhere up above, and the full moon—high in the sky, its beams cutting through the naked, gnarled tree branches—drenched the leaf-scattered forest in a ghostly hue.

“Going to get you, whore!”

Debbie trembled at the thought of being captured by this maniac. Determined not to break character, she could only scream to cover her excitement.

Her dress snagged on some brush as she tore through it, the roaring of his chainsaw driving her on.

She’d watched him remove its steel teeth, before her head start, but this did little to calm her hammering heart. She’d still be at his mercy if he caught her.


Two nights prior, on October 29, Patrick had proposed they come to their remote cabin to try and rekindle their marriage “before it’s too late.” As far as Debbie was concerned, it had been dead in the water for quite some time already – their sex life was non-existent. Not that it had ever been earth-shattering anyway.

“There’s something I need to tell you,” he said, stoking the fire, “that I think will help us get back on track. I’ve never been honest with you, or myself.”

“If you’ve cheated or whatever, I don’t think it matters – I’m not in love with you anymore, Patrick.”

“Please, just listen to me. I know I’ve never been attentive to your needs…”

Well, I’ve come this far, she thought. Might as well listen to what he has to say.

“I could never tell you about my own desires, what drives me, because I thought it would scare you off. But now, I’ve got nothing to lose. Are you willing to give me one last shot?”

“I don’t know, Patrick…”

It was then that he pulled the pink baby doll dress from behind his back.

“I want to play a game.”

Like a good opening sentence to a story, his pitch drew her in. She felt an involuntary twinge between her legs, blushing as he produced a balaclava.

“Will you be my victim this Halloween? My scream queen, running half-naked through the woods?”

“A chase?” she gasped, freaked out and turned on at the same time.

For the past several Halloweens, Patrick had brought her here, and not once had he ever been this naughty. Such filth and perversion! It was a side to him she hadn’t even known existed.

She loved it and he could tell.

“Wait, there’s something else…”


He revved his chainsaw as he drew near, thrusting it at Debbie like a macabre hard-on.

“Please. Don’t hurt me, Mr. Killer,” she pouted, lifting the hem of her dress, “I’ll do anything…”

Debbie was impressed by how hammy her acting was – like something straight out of an eighties B-movie.

“Wanna fuck me..? I could suck your cock…”

She fluttered her eyelashes, sliding a hand between her legs as she thought about gagging on his fat prick.

From a tree to her right, which was marked with a red X, Debbie knew they had reached the ‘Killing Ground’, which was where Patrick wanted it to take place.

Debbie back away slowly, his saw chugging idly between them. Oil and diesel hung heavy in the air, turning her on even further.

“I think it’s time you found out just how kinky I am, Patrick.”

She spoke loud enough to be heard over the approaching chainsaw, its proximity sending tremors through her body.

Suddenly she staggered, erupting in spontaneous orgasm as she turned to run away.

It was then that, like a good ‘Final Girl’, she tripped over and played at trying to get up.

“Oh, no!” she squealed, leaves and twigs entangled in her hair as she crawled and squirmed about. Her tits popped loose and she rolled onto her back, writing in the underbrush. Feeling the thorns against her skin, each scratch and cut pushed her closer to another climax.

“Please… No!”

The roaring chainsaw now inches from her face, she feared he actually might kill her. But no sooner did the fear pass through her, he dropped the saw on the ground beside him.

It was then that he produced a large kitchen knife from behind his back.

Dropping to his knees before her, he made short work of what remained of her ragged dress, exposing her body completely. She gasped as the cool night air danced across her nipples—hardening them further still—and she climaxed again before he could even get his cock out.

Ugh!” she cried as he forced his girth into her, fearing she wouldn’t be able to take him all the way in.

Holding the knife against her throat, he used his free hand to grope her jiggling tits, grunting like an animal as he relentlessly pounded her pussy.

“Don’t… Stop…”

A small rivulet of blood had by now begun to trickle from where the blade grazed her neck.

Yesss!” she screamed between gritted teeth as yet another orgasm enveloped her. She ground her hips against him and wailed like never before.

Suddenly he pulled back, the knife still glinting in his hand. She shuddered as the cool metal slid across her breast, menacing her nipple with its edge. He resumed slamming into her just as forcefully as before.

Her hands balled into fists, tearing at the grass beneath her as she came yet again. Juices gushed forth and she was spent, certain she couldn’t take any more.

It was then that he leaned forward, whispering in her ear, “Shall we try for another?”

His breath smelled of mint.

Debbie dug her fingernails into his back, feeling his solid muscles as he pumped away, coming soon after. She felt his spunk explode inside of her, massive dick throbbing as he collapsed with a grunt.

Over her attacker’s shoulder, she watched as Patrick rose from of the bushes, camera in hand.

Happy Halloween, Patrick, my love

Stephen McQuiggan

Am I Clean?

Hackett hated shaving because it took so long. He had so many areas of his face to avoid, too many accident blackspots to manoeuvre around, and all the while the distracting pounding of his Aunt on the bathroom door, accusing him of masturbating. Her constant harangues made his nerves quiver and his hand shake until blood seeped through the foam like raspberry ripple atop an ice cream cone. As if there was anything in the house to masturbate to; even his imagination was filled with limp terrors.

After he finished his face Hackett shaved his head, then his chest, his arms and legs. The whole process seemed to take forever, and all the while Aunt Marie crowing, ‘Are you tugging at yourself in there, boy? You’ll turn yourself inside out, you little fool!’ Then he stepped out, just a towel wrapped around his mottled body, covered in bleeding little nicks but, thankfully, no hairs.

Aunt Marie rubbed her hands all over his smooth torso. ‘You’ve removed your Devil fur,’ she clucked.

‘Just for you,’ he smiled, kissing her, running his long lumpy tongue over her dentures. He plucked himself from her panting grasp and locked himself in his bedroom. He needed solitude to begin the long process of getting dressed.

He stood in front of the full length mirror on the back of the door and (Are you fiddling with yourself again?) took a can of spray paint (Are you shaking your demon wand?), humming to himself as he applied the first layer to drown out his Aunt’s querulous voice. He sprayed his legs red and his torso green and his arms yellow. He avoided his genitalia and his buttocks; on his face he daubed a white foundation he had pilfered from Auntie’s dressing table.

He waited an age until he was dry (You’re awfully quiet in there, have you gone blind?), breathing in the harsh chemical hit of the paint in the small airless room; feeling high, feeling mighty. When he was sure he was no longer dripping he opened his wardrobe and perused his night-time collection. He sighed; it was impossible to decide – he would have to do Eenie Meenie or flip a coin.

He settled on a waistcoat made from baby bones, that was left to him by his Father, and a necklace of eyeballs; still fresh, if a little crusty. He put on a skirt of tempered female flesh, enjoying how the stiff folds flapped when he moved and how the hairs prickled his shorn skin. Hackett admired himself for a time, pulling faces in the mirror. He knew something was missing – he took a scalp from the drawer, licked the blood from it, and hung it from his skirt: Perfect. He growled menacingly at his reflection then went back out to confront his Aunt who was sitting on a boulder in the dark hallway.

‘Well,’ he said, trying to hide the nerves in his voice, ‘am I pure? Am I clean?’

‘You’re one of the filthiest, evil looking things I ever did see,’ she said. ‘Why, the stench of you alone is enough to curdle my gut. You’d give Old Nick himself the jaundice.’ Aunt Marie’s brow knitted as if she were in pain, then her ratty little face broke into a vicious grin. ‘Come here, you monstrous big bastard, and give your old Auntie a hug!’

Hackett spun her in his arms, so happy he could howl, but careful not to crush his eyeball necklace; it took a lot of work to harvest them, and his large clumsy fingers struggled to string them.

‘Are you going out now?’ his Aunt asked when he set her down, ‘it’s just about sunset.’

‘Yes,’ breathed Hackett, unhappy how his voice had risen to a harmless timbre in his excitement.

‘Well, don’t forget your boots.’

Hackett sighed; he loved his boots, all human skin and studded with teeth. ‘They don’t fit me anymore,’ he said, pointing down at his toenails which had grown so long they curled like a Genie’s slippers.

Aunt Marie tutted. ‘You really are disgusting,’ she said, kissing him long and slow. ‘Now go out and kill something, make an old woman proud!’

Hackett made his way up the dusty tunnels, leaping the corpses of the mangy dogs that had sustained them these last few lean months, his Aunt’s voice at his back. ‘Give them hell, you filthy Swine!’ He laughed to himself – Swine – it was the greatest insult she had in her limited arsenal, and although it sounded childish to his ears he knew she meant it from the dregs of her rotten soul.

When he emerged from the cave and into the damp bracken the sun was just setting, casting red jailhouse bars across the fields below. Hackett shivered, though the night was mild; down in the meadow he could see the old donkey grazing by the riverbank. How he hated that donkey, hated it because he feared it – the stoic old donkey had eyes that seemed able to burrow down and rummage through his darkest secrets.

He didn’t want his secrets to be exposed. He would be ruined. Auntie would turn him out of the lair if she found out he…No, he must remain calm; he was a disgusting creature, a foul shade, everyone said so. He would march past that donkey and tear it limb from limb if it so much as looked at him out of the corner of its flyblown eye. Still, for all his sudden bravado, Hackett wished there was an alternate route that wouldn’t cross its sardonic path.

By the time he got to the forest several of the toenails he had been cultivating had broken off like the brittle twigs that littered his path. Hackett barely noticed. He beat his chest and, now that he was safely past its probing analysis, roared at the donkey as he plunged into the trees, moving toward the shimmering lights of the village that sparkled between the trunks. Somewhere a wolf howled and sharpened the sickle moon until it sliced at his eyes. Hackett moaned, fighting back the urge to return to the cave; the thought of his Aunt’s disapproval drove him on.

He stopped as the darkling woods thinned out, sprawling on his belly on the crest of a bank that overlooked the park. There were swing sets down there, a climbing frame, a roundabout and, best of all, a slide. Sometimes, in the chill early hours when he was supposed to be hunting, Hackett would take turns on all of them, giggling to himself all the while.

Part of him hoped that no-one would turn up tonight and he could have a go on the slide, but he knew that was unlikely – it was a Friday night and that meant the bigger kids would show up, drinking wine and sniffing glue and groping each other undercover of darkness. He hoped there wouldn’t be too many of them, that was why he had arrived early. They tended to drift into the park in small clusters and Hackett was confident he could pick one of them off if their numbers were small.

And if they didn’t stand too near to the duck pond. Hackett was scared of the ducks – vicious, feathery little bastards, with their black knowing eyes.

He kept his head low, his breathing shallow, listening for a sound that did not belong here. Soon he heard it – laughter, a snatch of song – and his heart pressed up closer to his ribs; the sound of young flesh, and girl flesh at that. Hackett sank back down into a thicket, sucking on an eyeball from his necklace as he waited for the voices to come a little closer.

There were two of them, all shiny hair and short skirts and earrings that looked like screaming fish mouths. They were smoking cigarettes in an ostentatious manner as they walked, as if by blowing toxins out of their puckered little mouths they might somehow transcend the emptiness of their bleak lives.

Hackett grinned, the eyeball plopping out of his drooling mouth and slapping wetly against his chest. He was confident he could handle two little girls; Auntie would eat well tonight, she would be so proud of him to boot! Maybe she would even compare him to his Father. The thought made him tingle below.

He had to move quickly before the others arrived. He knew only too well that a couple of little girls, like flies around dung, soon attracted a gang of little boys; little boys with liquor and itchy groins – a combination that often caused little boys to act like heroes.

Hackett waited until the girls wiggled their way over to the bench by the slide. He had already picked out the plumpest one to target, the one who would be slowest and provide the biggest meal (the other girl was only good for soup), before he made his move. Their chatter soon ceased, their faces lit by the sterile glow of their phones, as they texted away oblivious of the world around them; lost in a nether world of self love and boundless vanity.

Hackett rose slowly before launching himself down the bank with a bowel loosening roar, charging toward the young girls with his huge arms outspread, his waistcoat of bones clacking, his eyeball necklace swinging maniacally, his hairless flesh gleaming in a multitude of gaudy colours. He bared his pointed teeth, the drool dripping from them like silver rain.

The girls looked up from their phones, frozen for an instant by the sight before them, their mouths open to unleash screams that would rouse the whole village; but what emerged instead from their pouty little mouths stopped Hackett in his tracks and sent him scurrying back into the trees: Laughter.

Cold, heartless, mocking laughter.

‘What the fuck are you like!’ one shouted after him, giggling fit to burst. ‘Pervert!’ yelled the other, her voice full of joyful malice as her phone flashed like lightning to document his retreat; ‘Freak! Paedo! Weirdo!’ The insults stabbed home hard, every one, until Hackett found himself mercifully out of earshot.

He collapsed in a sobbing heap at the far edge of the woods, crying so hard the foundation ran from his cheeks. Lurching back to his feet he skirted the fields warily; the old donkey would be waiting for him, mocking his failure with its inscrutable black eyes. Oh, how he would love to tear that foul beast apart, beat it to death with its own hooves – but even the thought of approaching the foul thing terrified him.

Trailing a moan of despair, Hackett sprinted back to the caves, discarding his waistcoat, his necklace, his pathetic baubles of borrowed horror on his way. He lay naked in the tunnels amongst the half chewed corpses of the village strays, weeping until his lungs hitched painfully and his heart was spiked by sorrow’s stabbing blade.

Auntie Marie came to him then, smoothing his matted hair down with a hoary old claw, whispering soothing obscenities in his ear. ‘What did they do on you, my darling boy?’

‘Oh, Auntie!’ he wailed, ‘they…they laughed at me!’

‘Jaded little fools,’ she tutted, licking away his tears, fondling him down below, ‘What do they know of real monsters nowadays.’

Hackett sat up, wiping the bone dust from his chest. ‘But,’ he began, unable to finish the terrible thought that now consumed him.

‘But what, child?’ cooed Auntie Marie, picking the burrs from his ears and chewing them slowly.

‘But what if I’m…clean?’ Hackett blurted out, ‘What if that’s why they laugh at me, why they aren’t afraid? What if I’m clean, what if deep down I’m pure?’

Hackett began to shake uncontrollably until Auntie gripped his shoulders, digging her cancerous black nails into his flesh. ‘Listen to me, whelp,’ she hissed, her breath a carrion nightmare. ‘You are one of the most disgusting, ugliest, worthless creatures to ever have been spawned from a rotten womb. You take after your Father, an Ogre amongst Ogres – why, the Devil himself would gag looking at you.’

She hugged him tightly and Hackett melted in her embrace, hiding his wet eyes on the bristly patch at the base of her throat. How he loved his Aunt. He loved her so much it shamed him, for he believed that love was where his purity stemmed from. Maybe if he were to kill her then –

No, the thought repulsed him beyond measure. He hugged her ever tighter, counting her ribs with the tip of his long black tongue; better by far to be clean and scorned than to be truly wicked and alone.

Mick Alberts


Focus your audio. Unhook your ears, Clyde. Stand by while I pad your skull. I dont know how much of this is for real—I only heard it secondhand myself. But the fella who told it to me was creeped out—that much is for sure. I was late to the picture, and its a good thing I was cause nobody who was there was ever seen again—christmas cancelled—except for Socrates, and like I said, he got all buggy from it. Fuse blown, permanent.

I was heading out to the Flats. We used to play out there, break out like the measles. It was a good place cause it was all lunar and crazy and you could get away from the cubes. Salt Lake was squaresville. Strictly Podunk. But the Flats was berries.

So, like I was saying, I’m on the way out there on my scoot, amped up on airplane glue in the early brights, figuring the scene would still be going. I see something out on that salty psychocolor horizon, a fire ant on a cocaina sand dune, way out there on the salt checkerboard, squares as far as you could see, and that one spider out there, like, crawling.

I motor down there, a bit twitchy, wondering whats up. As I get closer I can see its one of us. You can tell from a distance. Dark clothes, and that freaky aura. Turns out its Socrates. Normally his claws are pretty sharp, but I scoot up and hes all wigged out. Out there in the salt among the glass puddles, biscuit snatchers clutching at his kneecaps, and some kind of yellowy goop on his sleeves and his shirt and his shoes and the backs of his hands. He gets spouty, in snatches, all out of order, but this is the sense I make out of it, some of it his words, some of it mine. Hope you got a lot of room in your ears.

It started out a dig same as anything else, out there on bennies and glue, bongos and bonfires, maryjane. Bikes and hotrods chrome and candy-apple-everything, resting out there on the salt cubes.

Willard read one of his poems. Yeah, I wasnt there to hear it, but, Ive heard Will often enough and hes all

Cat with a spider for a heart

The man in a wheelchair of hypodermic needles

Spider spins a web in the frame of an hourglass

So there they are, all sitting around their fires and getting sweaty and slimy and smelly in their sleeping bags, rods and cones and mushrooms, or listening to Willard with his beat kings jive and the racket coming from sax and bongos and axe. Swapping yarns and manifestoes and smoke and body fluids. Cosmic goo. Firelight fireflies trailing up into the night.

Then someone sees these orange lights in the sky. Casual like, like whats that? Moving snarly orange against the purple night. Like, cool, pretty. What is that? Three lines squiggle and spark forward and backward. Mostly forward, closer. Some kind of crazy sputnik up there. And then they arent lines but dots. And then they aren’t dots, but these glowing spheres. Then they’re not glowing, but chrome, chromium, as the sun starts to eyeball that gang of gawking beats from the horizon.

Like it’s xmas, three silver spheres hanging in the sky. Ezekiel’s chariot. The comrades are starting to freak maybe a little. And one of the things lowers itself down, quiet like, real slow. So now there’s this big globe sitting on the salt like a chromium planet, not a dent on it, just a dark line down the middle, a groove. This thing is a slinky piece of homework. Sharp enough to shave. Nobody moves for a second, except maybe to stand up, step back a step, shuffle, eyeball each other, smoking ciggies. They tilt their heads. Is the thing, making a noise? Like, a whirring horror-flick sinewave. An inside out clanging. Bounce bounce bounce bounce clunk.

And then…something blasts out the top of it. Orange lightning. Blurts up all squiggly, jaggles around in the air for a while, wiggles out in different directions, a hypnogogic jellyfish, just spurting around, all sloppy. Then it sort of settles down. It has something in mind. It starts to, like, sniff around, first seven-eight tentacles, then more like just one, curly-queuing and doubling back. It sniffs at the crowded beats, who are now really getting freaked, but too freaked to make for it. This sparkly meat hook right in their faces, checking out one comrade and then another. After a few tics it gets bored with the humanoids and turns mostly to the hot rods and bikes arrayed all helter skelter on the salt, chrome green and exhaust pipes and spokes. It checks em out real close, then it stops to focus on one—Ben’s flatblack t-bucket. It looks at it like it got a bad smell. Then it, like, stomps it, squashing it a little and sending small parts tinkling off in willy nilly directions. Ben, he like, gasps. Then the x-ray sort of sparks and buzzes all up and down, from tip to where its extending out of the silver xmas ball. It inserts, what, a hypo needle maybe, into the t-bucket, and Ben’s Ford turns blue orange, then sort of melts and explodes itself inside out.

The buzzing white-orange tentacle thing starts to get pissy then, moving to another hot rod and another, then to a bike, blasting them and turning them fiery blue and orange and white and exploding them all over the salt, melting them, insiding them out. This goes on for a while, some of the beatnoids now turning tail and running. Sparky noises and explosions and parts flying and bouncing and metal sizzling and leaking, until it looks like there are no hot rods left. The squiggly raygun thing checks out all it did, like, pleased, swelling up like a poisoned pooch. But then one tentacle seems to catch a whiff that some of the comrades are escaping, running for all theyre worth—which aint much—as far and as fast as they can get from the glowing squid and all its nasty higgledly piggedly explosions.

The thing stretches out an orange tendon, elongatory, thinning, toward Joan, whos huffing and puffing and swinging her arms, tight black pants and fuzz black sweater, glancing back all freaky from time to time. So this orange sputtery buzz chases her down, not going much faster than she is, and she lets rip a scream and starts pulling with all shes got. In the end the thing sort of hauls back and pokes at her like a needle, and that’s all for her. Scratched from the big race. Turned her inside out, was what Socrates said—sputtered something about scattered little slimy bits.

Then the thing moves on—to Newman, and Jukie, and then Phillipa, and all the other beats who are in a state of mind what which they can run. Stops everyone in their skinny tracks. Socrates had a hard time talking about it, eyes shiny. Wasn’t pretty.

Then, dig the chromey globe thing. This platform slides out, slow like, even though there’s no crease for it to slide out from. Parallel with the ground, mostly. And now theres this opening. It’s hard to get a sense of scale—the sphere is big.

Something—a bunch of somethings—start to squiggle down the ramp, like rats from a ship. The comrades are glazzing, getting spoogy now. Whatever these things are, they reach the end of the ramp—which isn’t really a ramp cause it doesn’t touch the ground—and walk right off it to plop on the salt. The beats back away in little half steps. One of the things patters up close to Socrates. It’s a blob of eyeball spheres—twelve, thirteen—with multi-colored irises, and lotsa rubbery grey tentacles curling out.

As all this is going on they hear a motor turn. So, there’s a hot rod that wasn’t exploded, and Milt is in there, trying to get it started. He’s got it going, he’s jockeying forward and back among the busted up parts and melted chassis. But it’s like the fiery tentacle thing hears it too, and it aint pleased. Not to trip you out too heavy with details, but, in sum, the thing fries Milt up together with his wheels, melting metal and burning old Milt and mangling the whole mess together.

Meanwhile the little squirrelly eyeball things are running around, getting closer to the bugged out beats. Scared like. The beats try to get skinny, peer around themselves.

Then Krebs, he pulls out a pistol. He’s a nickel rat, a two-bit porch climber, so nobody’s surprised he’s got a piece. Thing about Krebs is—a little aside—I’ve never seen him blink. Like, blink his eyes. You gotta blink right? Moisten your glazzies? But this cat, I never seen him blink.

So anyhow, Krebs starts taking potshots at the globey thing. The bullets just bounce off, ricocheting siren song silver streaks across the cubist flats. I’d like to say they don’t leave a dent on that chromium globule, but the truth of it is is—they do. Tiny dents on its shiny white surface.

And the little eyeball rodents, now they’re ganging up on people, attacking. Thing is though, these things aint that tough. People squash them under foot, under fist. Krebs shoots at them. They never seem to die, but they do lose the ability to ambulate, so they just wiggle around plastered in place by that yellowy goo. But Jeannie, she’s in shock. She aint fighting back like the other dopeniks, and a handful of these eyebally creepy crawly octopi got her by the scruff, by the collar, by the sleeve, by the hair, and they’re dragging her back toward that silver ball, toward the ramp what’s sticking out of it.

But there’s a hitch because the ramp—not really a ramp, per se—doesn’t touch the ground, so the eyeball buggers can’t drag her up it. The spaceship, cause that’s what it is, I guess, lurches up into the air and then down, crashing in the salt, gonging out hollow, making halfassed bonking attempts to get the ramp and the ground lined up right. Once it veers way diagonally left-right and Bug Phillips gets crushed under the thing. Ripe for the lilies. Socrates got choked up over that. Bug was a good guy, straight from the fridge.

Finally they—whoever’s driving—get the ramp lined up, but the opening the eyeball conglomerations came out of isnt big enough for humanoids, so the eyeball things try to drag them through, screaming, like big beatnik pegs through a small hole. And all the while, thither and hither, theres this battle going on between the eyeball rats and the beats. The eyeballs, crushed all over the place, writhing around, tentacly, seem to be losing, slated for crashville.

Then—tune me in—the second sphere makes an appearance. It descends from that dark and scary sky and cronks and bonks and settles on the salt. First it sits there. Then there’s that noise again, a sideways busted sax. It’s accompanied this time by a hole opening up, aligned trippy with the ground, tilted away from the staring, fighting, screaming beats. A big hole this time, like you could walk through standing up, and then some.

This part here—just telling you—this is where it starts to get freaky. Up jumps the devil, and something starts to like, excrete from the big hole. Transparent blue and tobacco jello, and there’s this…stuff in there. Don’t know what. It glip glops out, spreading and burping and plopping, shiny and droopy, swum through with prehistoric dragonfly nymphs, with cubist spiders, with cephalopod hearts and transparent steel bones, something out of some paisley cave.

It oozes and spurts out of that hole, toward the tripped out dopeniks, who are like, now what. It’s strictly horrorshow, surgical waste galumphing out and spreading, but—here’s the thing—it aint fast. The beats can outrun it, and so they peel off in all directions. The blob, it spurts toward them, but it’s like frustrated, too slow. The quarry’s getting away. But what happens then is, it starts to grow legs. Big angular thorny centipede legs, germinating and worming out, wriggling, anatomically configurating. So now it can drag itself along, spurt and puddle forward, sections of it almost running, dragging the rest behind, still drooling out and stretching.

The thing aint efficient, but it’s picked up some speed, and the beats, glancing back, huff and puff as best they can. It’s catching up. It slips and slithers right up to Gina, slowest of the bunch, and sorta plops onto her back and pulls her—screaming and wriggling arms and underpinnings—off her feet. She’s stuck there, like a fly on paper.

The thing creeps and crawls toward Mayfield, grabs him too, and Velvet, and Oscar, and one beat and another. The blob’s barely faster than the screaming comrades, and the whole proceeding takes a while, but eventually it’s accumulated all of them, except for Socrates, who somehow outruns it.

The thing stops short, backs up a bit, glares at Socrates—and Socrates glares back, just out of reach. The blob sort of shrugs almost, then rolls and plops and drags itself back to the ship. It sucks itself back in through that aperture, like backwards toothpaste—together with the shrieking, squirming beats.

The hole closes up behind them, and everything’s all quietlike for a bit, Socrates the only one left to see it. Then there’s a noise. An upside down creak, a screechy compressed explosion, and one of the globes, the one from where the eyeball spiders came, shoots back up into space. Split. No-tomorrow style.

Then the other globe starts making noise. A slithery crank, an ugly backfire, and then it takes off too. The silver ball gets smaller, passes that third chromey sphere, the one what never came down, then it’s an orange dot, then an orange line, and then it’s gone, with the blob. With all the beats. With the whole cookie factory.

Socrates stares up at the third sphere, which hangs there, maybe staring down at him. Wound up like an eight-day clock. The way he tells it, Socrates starts to howl at it: Take me. This place is cubesville.

And sitting here on the salt, covered in that yellow goop, after bumping his gums, telling me the whole story in chunks and ugly disjointed pustules, he starts screaming about it again, right here in front of me. Take me. This place is cubesville. Take me. Over and over. This place is cubesville.