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No one saw us as we crossed the street. The green iron gate of the house opposite was tall with a bronze lock and bolt but it wasnt heavy and opened without a sound. The lights in the first floor windows were off; it was night-time. I cupped my hands so my brother could use them as steps to reach the balcony.
As I opened the basement-level door, I thought I could smell birds. Hello, Im here for a two oclock interview, I said to the overweight woman seated under a sign that read Print Services Reception. Without looking up, she nodded and lifted the receiver. I watched her mouth the words. Your two oclock is here. Her lipstick had come off in places.
Little Sister brushed the teapot with her fingertips. It had been a mistake to brew the leaves early. Fatherwhich was what they all called her husbanddidnt believe in reheating so the entire preparation would have to be discarded if the physician didnt arrive within the next five to ten minutes. She adjusted the sandwiches on the tray. Chicken, cucumber, liver.
The following scene transpired in a brilliantly lit salon draped entirely in red. Rodolphe, dressed in a long dressing gown of black velvet, which further augmented his paleness, was seated before a large table covered with a rug.
In Ivry, at 2:00 p.m., Épaulard took possession of the green Jaguar and the paperwork. The machine dated from 1954. Its suspension was a horror, and acid escaping from successive batteries had made holes in the partition between the engine bay and the interior of the car.
T. Motley is the author of The Road to Golgonooza, a fake jam comic.
Tom Motley is a cartoonist, illustrator, and educator. His publications include Tragic Strip (a monthly strip in the Brooklyn Rail), The Golden Ass, The One Marvelous Thing, and contributions to the indie anthology Cartozia Tales. He teaches cartooning at the School of Visual Arts and illustration at Pratt.
Kimberly King Parsonss first book, Black Light, is aptly titled. Each story reflects light out of darkness. Equally, these stories find rot and provocative weirdness in the well-lit subdivisions of Texan Americamiddle-class parents stand at one or two removes from reality; hotels become heavens to the down-at-heel; children bully and are bullied and proceed by means of fictions.