"shortly before his troubling and inexplicable disappearance"
September 17, 2020 5:24 AM   Subscribe

Three soooooorta vampire-y short stories. Benjamin Rosenbaum's short story "The Book of Jashar" purports to be a recently unearthed text that "proved to be a transcription of Biblical Hebrew originally written as early as the First Temple Period" and concerns "Mezipatheh, who drank the blood of men". Claire Humphrey's "Who in Mortal Chains" and "Le lundi de la matraque (Nightstick Monday)" (audio) feature Augusta Susan Hillyard, who says of herself, "It’s in my nature, violence; it’s on my back closer than a shirt. It’s in my nature to hate it, also, and to turn from it, when I can."

From "Who in Mortal Chains" (content note for domestic violence in the story):
"You wouldn't tell Mylene if I . . . would you? Is there some kind of sisterhood thing? Because you know I don't mean any harm."

For a second it was all wrong in his eyes. He did mean harm. Not to me, even if he could. Not to Sharon, probably not to Mylene. But there was harm in him, meaning to happen.
As Humphrey puts it, "Gus is always willing to take up someone else’s fight, and not always able to tease out who’s right or how far to go."

Humphrey's "immortal alcoholic badass Gus Hillyard" also appears in Humphrey's 2016 book Spells of Blood and Kin (which I have not yet read).
posted by brainwane (5 comments total) 11 users marked this as a favorite
I love the homage to Philip K. Dick's The Transmigration of Timothy Archer in the setup.
posted by MythMaker at 8:40 AM on September 17, 2020 [1 favorite]

...and to The Crying of Lot 49.
posted by what does it eat, light? at 10:18 AM on September 17, 2020 [1 favorite]

Thoughts on S.L. Kermit and Josiah Carberry?
posted by brainwane at 6:41 PM on September 17, 2020

Thanks for introducing me to Claire Humphrey! I'll have to track down more of her work.
posted by magstheaxe at 9:29 AM on September 18, 2020

Josiah Carberry
S.L. Kermit from Delany's Nevèrÿon series.

I really like the Gus stories. Thanks.
posted by Zed at 5:28 PM on September 18, 2020 [1 favorite]

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