3LBE #5
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The Roof of God

by Jai Clare

 

The frightened sun shines on our wrecked van and glints hesitantly on the other vehicle coming closer, pushing slowly forward as if afraid, into our hidden road. I step back into the bramble bushes making sure Ralph doesn’t see me as he passes with a new stranger. A woman.

They head up to the house but I don’t follow immediately. It’s my practice in the late afternoons to walk back to where the van broke down to look at its exposed burnt shell. No one has bothered it since we abandoned it. No authority has been near it to remove its dangerous shape from the edge of the road, proving finally that no one really ever comes near here. We are far from pilgrims’ routes and normal highways, in a section of land forgotten and bypassed by the rest of the world. Dull red rust has gnawed away at the van’s vibrant green paint and the glimpses of tiny green patches make me want to cry.

It’s impossible to leave, even if I wanted to. I sit and watch the van for a few minutes, as long as I can spare to be away from the house. But I am drawn time and time again to the wreck. It’s almost as if it’s something more than it is: a sea-wreck revealed by the tide, a ship on the way to explore new continents, going down with all hands lost, full of lost treasure and floating corpses.

It is a symbol of what should have been.

It was our first adventure together and the map was our guide, our Bible: showing us all the wide spaces still left on the planet we had hoped to discover. We had hoped to wind away over continents, to drive carefree through dense Teutonic forests, and slowly splutter up mountains, praying the van wouldn’t break down, and then we hoped to descend onto heated plains, and white crystal beaches, where we'd race naked through gem-like waters. Matt even wanted to cross deserts on camels, while I told him that was perhaps too ambitious. Just go where our fancies take us, without ever planning anything, least of all coming back to this damp country house with its people huddled in the middle like they were afraid of wetting their feet and get blasted by cold sea air.

It didn’t happen. On the motorway the van spluttered and complained. We pulled off into a service road/shoulder running parallel with the motorway and came to an enormous stop.

The van doesn’t have a roof. The fire surged forward from the engine at the back, bursting upwards so suddenly that I screamed and clutched Matt’s hands nearly breaking skin. The fire digested the van in a matter of minutes. We just stood on the side of the road in disbelief. Everything was gone. I grabbed my camera, which has since been sold. That’s all I had left. My address book, my money, clothes, passes, water canister. All gone. Matt had even less.

It serves us right for trying too hard to be different.

• • •

From the outside the house looks like a dump. All the windows are blocked up. Tepid light comes in through forced holes and cracks and through the skylights. Billy thinks no one will see us from the air.

In the main room a conversation between the new woman, Billy and Ralph is in progress. They are the only noise in the quiet house, and as I walk quietly through they ignore me. Matt will be upstairs with Pynchon, a rather quiet girl from the New City who’s been here a few months and doesn’t look like leaving. He thinks I don’t know. He thinks that I haven’t seen him furtively push her into rooms when he thought my back was turned. I know what he does with her but as long as he comes back to my room at night I don’t really care. I am lily-clean, at least physically. I admire from afar and dream at night when I'm finally alone. But I think it is Matt who really keeps us here. He tries to blame me, my infatuation with Ralph, but the two years we’ve been here have finally shown me how pointless it is to dream about Ralph. Maybe at first, but no longer.

“I had to move her.” As Ralph talks, Billy turns away. Rarely have I seen Billy angry. Usually he laughs. He has a sardonic turn of phrase, which at first caught me out, but now I laugh with him. To the more sensitive ones he is sweetness and light and so charming, peering at you from under his permanent sun-tinted spectacles, giving him the appearance of a wise owl or the nerdiest eggheads at school. He never sleeps with anyone, or least I’ve never known him to. Perhaps he has no sexuality, even though his first sight of me was my bare legs locked around Matt’s hips, my ankles locked against his little bare rump. We were having life-confirming sex soon after entering the jumble of buildings when Billy found us, but that never stopped Matt. He continued fucking me, heaving and groaning and pretending a man wasn’t standing laughing in the doorway. A man in a yellow sarong with a cropped haircut and rough blonde beard.

Billy now kicks the chair over and it rolls towards the door. “I'm not sure you know what you’re doing, Rafie. This girl has really got you.” Ralph says nothing.

Billy’s always here. Whereas Ralph is out most of the time, and I miss him. But there’s usually other people here. At first they confused me and I was silent. I go quiet when I feel threatened. With Matt I shout and scream and our sex is boisterous. That’s why I was going away with him. Partly. Ralph is thoughtful and I find that threatening, but very seductive. It’s as if I have to make him noisy, turn him into something that he’s not. Billy never fought in the war, but Ralph did. Matt finds that admirable. He really looks up to Ralph while Billy he finds risible and despicable. I can’t imagine Ralph as a soldier; he seems so quiet now, so incapable of brutality. He is the man who fixed things here, always trying to get as many people as possible involved the place’s upkeep. We have our tasks and Billy is to be left alone to get on with his obsession: his wall of stories. So many words, so many tales of fighting, struggles to survive. So many names: a Marcus, Simone with the crimson feather boa, Talis Halnaker, Lady Heaven, a Mr. Toye and his famous dogs, Simon Mountain, Nadia, the gods Aidan and Orrin. Everyone striving in the face of brutality. In the war, nukes were never used — scared I guess of the true apocalypse — so it was a war of combat and tactics and attrition. Like the ones before.

I can’t imagine brutality. I am spoiled; a spoiled rich girl. Matt has kept me away from everything unpleasant. It is good to be so protected, like under the roof of god.

Most people love Billy. He collects people to him — like Fagin — to hear their stories, to add them to his enormous wall. And sends Ralph out to look for more, hitting the cities at dusk to hang around bars, listening to people talking, to their ideas and their fears. Then he talks to them, tells them of a place he knows.

All come willingly, finding their own way here, as if this place advertises invisibly. That’s how we came here — without knowing where here was. Some people come for a few days, kip in the living room or in one of the outhouses, and then are gone again. Others come for the summer and return to the city, come the winter. Only a few are permanent members.

Sometimes, when it gets rough, we still say we will get out of here. Hit those empty spaces.

• • •

“She’s not like the others.” Ralph is still talking. “This one’s like no other at all.”

“She’s dangerous. We don’t need someone like that here.”

Ralph normally treats Billy as some kind of big brother and usually he’s so sensitive with him, protecting him from anything bad he’s found out, like he fears him wilting under the occasional rare hot sun, or beneath the more frequent torrential downpours.

At that moment the other door opens and a woman walks in. A bit older than me, long dark hair, tied back against her shoulders, and weather-worn, crumpled clothes, ripped in places. Attractive rather than beautiful; face like a storybook. “This evening; I’ll be gone this evening.”

I follow Billy upstairs and into his room, into the sea of voices from his machine. I never have understood his fascination with those voices and those words. He says he just loves collecting stories. Not all of them he copies on to brick, striking into clay. The wall of stories, he says will stretch all through the house, preserving the words and lives from the elements and human nature. “The Epic of Gilgamesh survived in stone form for thousands of years. Musa, if the words could have been recorded on disc or tape do you think they would have lasted?”

“What’s goin' on?” I ask Billy.

“The girl has to leave. Ralph doesn’t agree.” Billy is relaxing in his huge armchair while the words fill the room . He looks mesmerized. The voices change; now a girl’s voice, talking about her parents, how she left them when the war was moved up north away from the fighting that was getting closer to us. I hadn’t really been around much at that point. Billy has never asked to hear my story. He listens to the voices of strangers — but not me. And certainly not Matt. I used to ache to hear Ralph’s story.

“Why can’t she? We’ve had worse.” I continued.

“Not this worse.”

“Why? Who is she?”

“Not sure I should say.”

“Secrets, Billy. I didn’t know we had those sort of secrets.”

“There’s always secrets.”

“But you ask us so many questions before you let anyone stay. I remember you asking if we were running from something.”

“Runaways bring trouble hot behind them. People who come here do so naturally, not because they are forced. It’s the way I want it.”

“You ask about war records…”

“To those old enough!” He touches my face. “You were never old enough for war.”

All evening I expect Gissy to leave, but she doesn't. Instead she’s huddled in Billy’s room. Doing what, I have no idea. I sit on the best seat in the best room — the room with a great open fire and old sofa in a picture window. It must also have been the farmer’s best room as it’s the one safest from the weather. Ralph is in the garden, toiling, as the light begins to fade, over soggy potatoes, trying to make fertile what is constantly mud. Sometimes it rains so hard that all the soil — by now watery mud — slides down the bank, taking with it any crops Ralph has managed to sow, towards the racing vehicles. he’s not a natural farmer.

Matt comes in, dripping wet, standing the middle of the hallway shouting, “Musa! Musa!” And such a smile he’s wearing. The smile of a mad man, or a dream-winner.

“What’s up?” I ask, rising from my chair, reaching to his arm to feel the wetness. Such rain we’ve seen. The predictions of a New Flood seem so possible, especially here — we are so low-lying in the centre.

He grabs me, dragging me into the hall. “Musa, we’re saved. Everything’s going to be okay.”

I laugh and ask what on earth is he talking about. Billy and Gissy come down from upstairs. he’s very gracious to her now and I don’t think I like it. I preferred when he didn’t like her. Such a face she wears, like a satisfied cat. Matt shakes me.

“We can get out of here at last.” I shake my head. He must have been drinking. As he bends forward, I smell his breath: the normal unwashed aroma. “I’ve stolen a van.” He looks round to Billy. “A van — one of them old camper vans. Not as good as what we had, but it’ll do. It will certainly do.”

Sometimes I look at Matt and wonder what a simpleton I got involved with. He thinks we can leave, that I want to leave. I look at Billy and I know I still want Ralph, still want him to pay me some attention. He knows I exist and yet I may as well be mist, or a child that he puts up with clinging to his trousers pleading to play football. “What for?” By now Billy is nearly upon us. I'm sure he can hear. As he has marvellous hearing. His eyes are good, though tiny. Not that you see his eyes much, hidden as they are behind constant dark glasses. We can’t call them sunglasses anymore. I remember once thinking how good it would be to wear sunglasses under a hot mammoth sun, a sun whose light dominated the sky.

“Matt-boy, what you say?” Matt’s lost now. I stand back against the wall and watch Billy extract the information he requires. he’s good at that. And she’s watching too, from the bottom step. He pushes Matt against the wall. “A van?”

Matt nods.

“Purchased? Paid readies for it?”

“Stole it. Well, it was sort of sitting there in this carpark… and I just went to look and it was unlocked…”

He lets go of Matt and walks away. I know better. I’ve seen him do this sort of thing before with Ralph. Billy may look like a softie in his yellow sarong full of holes, but really he can be vicious, like a German Shepherd.

Now he turns and I stop myself from calling out. He grabs Matt’s hair. I always liked his scraggy black hair and hate seeing it pulled like this. I guess this means I still like him. It’s easy to doubt yourself here.

Billy says quietly to Matt, pulling him beneath him, “In broad daylight. Someone must’ve seen you…”

“No one — ”

“We aren’t invisible.” He lets go of him then and pushes him slightly away as if a foul dishcloth. “The van will be reported and then someone will come looking. Find us here.”

“Not necessarily.” He looks at me now. Though I tried to go against what he'd said, I knew the wisdom of it. It wasn’t often that Billy could be faulted. He had spent the whole time here. After all, he was the one who found this place hidden in its hollow, almost unseen from the road below and the old road running by it. Then he planted trees, encouraged growth to completely shade the place, and finally behind this growth erected a fence — made to look old and neglected. We were a little haven, and being by the highway no one bothered us. The rest of civilization just went on without us.

Billy walks away now. “If you bring anyone here, I’ll kill you. You know that?”

Matt looks scared. I can tell by the way he moves away, shuffles a little and pulls up the waistband on his floppy jeans, and laughs, uneasily, not really sure Billy is kidding.

Billy smiles showing all his teeth. “It’s been tried before. Get rid of it.” And leaves. Gissy is still standing, watching us, as Matt disappears out the front door. I hear the van chugging into life. I love that sound. To me it’s the sound of freedom. I guess it means the same to Matt.

“Sounds to me as if Matt wants to leave. Will you go with him?”

“Vocal all of a sudden, aren’t you? And nosy? Answer some questions of mine.” She shrugs, smiles, which makes her look so much younger. As she moves down a step, closer to me. I smell lightless, musty rooms, and stale perspiration on her clothes. “I don’t agree with secrets. Matt never hid the van…” I wish he had though, I wish he'd whispered his words to me during the night, and dragged me with freedom words towards the waiting van, sitting like a white horse outside. Oh, I'd love him then!

“Ask me your questions.”

“What questions?” Ralph comes forward, under the shaft of light shooting into the house through yet another hole. No wonder we freeze to death here, permanently wrapped in blankets, standing like roasting burgers in front of the fire.

“She doesn’t like secrets! Should I tell her?”

Ralph shrugs his shoulders but gives me a reassuring pat, like one would a small dog. I knock him away. I suppose I should be grateful for any attention, grateful that he even noticed me, that I am worthy of his attention. Then I want to take hold of his hand, the one that touched me. I want to drag it to me, make him touch me again — but better, like a woman and not a creature. But he’s gone. And the moment — whatever it was, whatever it meant — has gone too. Gissy is talking.

“I'm not for men just doing whatever they want, and whenever they want.” She pauses. “Just so everyone knows the dangers of having me around…” She pauses again. “I'm in hiding. I killed Nadia, my best friend, sometimes ago… Oh, yes and my boss Miller!” She’s quiet now. But while I am shocked by what she says, I still look for a regretful expression. Her face barely changes. In fact I sense an element of pride in her statement, as if she’s glad her boss, and maybe even her best friend, are dead.

“Someone’s looking for me. For punishment. For retribution. Everywhere they flush me out. I'm like the blighted mole. Nadia, poor Nadia.”

“We had a Nadia here once.”

She looks up.

“Did we? I don’t remember.”

Gissy waits for more. Then — “A common name,” she says, turning away and into the front, as if looking for Matt and his stupid van. Do I really want to leave? I hadn’t realized till Billy attacked Matt that, yes, I would like to see new views. But Billy will never let us leave. We are his children, his helpers. He would never let us leave, and yet, I believe his threat. He would kill Matt if he brought the wrong people here. Oh, I am worried now and no longer care about Gissy’s faraway crimes. “I think… Ralph, you were in the city at the time, a while ago, last year… there was a small woman here, thin, her arms withered away, anorexic. I remember she was such a handful, shooting up when Billy wasn’t looking. Billy hated her; she was far too bossy for him. I think Billy recorded her.”

“How else did she look?”

I'm looking outside, listening for the sound of a diesel engine, for a glimpse of paint colour through the trees. “I'm not sure… I really…”

“Was she old?”

“Not really. Well, no more than Ralph!”

Ralph walks up to Gissy. “No chance?”

“Of course not! Miller… Miller died. I know he died. On the radio, remember? When you drove me west. We heard it, together: 'Famous breakthrough scientist in sudden death mystery.' I have it engraved in my memory. Then they played that awful recording of him, the interview after he revealed he'd discovered the gene for ageing.”

“Musa’s description sounds a lot like the girl I saw when I met you in the city. How are you so sure?”

“Impossible that she survived,” says Gissy, “Impossible.”

I left them talking like this for the sound of a horn blasted through the quiet air. Matt, sitting in the van neither barely in the farm nor out of it, but hiding beneath the trees that surround the entrance. “Get in! I'm not going back in there. You’re coming with me before…”

“Matt, I want to come. I do, but — ”

“I had wondered if you could bear to tear yourself away.”

“But, not yet. Not yet, really. Just a bit longer.”

“I'm not going back in there! Billy’s a lunatic. Did you see the way he looked at me? Okay, it was a dumb move getting this. But for us, it was the best thing we could have done since our old one blew up.”

“Wait for me. Move the van in the trees. Billy never goes outside and Ralph, well, Ralph won’t say anything.”

“Why do want to stay so much? Ralph still won’t look at you twice, especially not now that other’s around. You got no chance.”

I turned around, looked towards the house before walking away without answering his question. I know it’s useless but I want Ralph to come with us, just to stay close to him, even if he treats me like an errant pet. I’ve watched Matt staring at the hurtling traffic down below, never imagining he was dreaming so hard, so real. And with such desperation.

Billy’s up in his room, listening to people talk about their lives, telling family stories, boyfriend stories, girl troubles, how they came by scars and broken bones, what they did in the war, what they did before the war, before life changed so drastically. He listens to these stories, takes out the main points and then creates clay tablets and painfully scratches out the words from the stories. And yet he cannot talk to me or Matt properly. Oh, sometimes he sits in the best room and talks about people he has met. He was never in the war. A pacifist. Billy with Ralph helped pacifists hide. They still do it now, though they pretend I don’t know.

I find the Gissy woman deep in Billy’s chair. This is unusual enough. Billy’s chair is like his private property. Not even the house dog dares to sit there, and he sits everywhere, filling my bed with his hairs and bad breath, and vile digestion. She’s holding a clay tablet. Making them is laborious work. Once in a fit of generosity, Billy asked me if I wanted to learn how to do it, but I can’t see the point in such rigmarole. If I wanted to write words I'd use an electronic box, not clay. Maybe that’s a good idea; maybe I should listen to the stories and write them. Maybe I haven’t got the energy to do even that. But my story, perhaps yes I should record my story. Billy has never expressed any interest in hearing me.

A familiar voice fills the room: plaintive, slightly abrasive; a voice to scrub out pans, full of grit and malice. I dislike this voice. Nadia took to Matt and finding him not to her taste left him gobsmacked. Carrion-eater she was: a crow come to carry away whatever of value you have left. But here her voice is again and I hear her mention Gissy. Gissy herself looks up at that point with eyes full of tears.

“I don’t know whether I'm crying because it lets me off the hook or because I'm glad she’s alive. I only have to bear the guilt of one person now.” She shakes her head. “I can’t believe she’s really alive. Did she look normal?” Nadia’s voice continues. I hear now everything that Gissy did, killing her boss Miller with his own gene experiment and trying to kill Nadia too. But Nadia laughs. That voice that seems to run along the ground, catching dirt between its teeth, says, “I don’t really blame her for trying. I was a handful at that point. I kinda asked for it, really. She got me first, before I got her.”

Gissy stands up, blocking out the hint of light coming through the frame in the wall. “I got to find her. Any ideas where she went?”

“New City.”

The New City was once a town on the edge of the marshes, a wet town surrounded by three rivers, which formed a moat as the rivers spread over time. An island. During the war, as the waters rose, and no one could cross. Without money for bridge building, the sea came into the rivers, turning the marsh into an open estuary. The town survived as a raised bit of land. Maybe they wouldn’t have done it if it hadn’t been war time, but they decided to float it. And the city now, with its casinos and nightlife and drug culture, as the only newcomers were fugitives, or those trying to escape the war, floats along the coast, and you have to reach it by ferry. It’s legit now, with a Major and everything. Sometimes people say, what would they do without it? It takes everyone the rest of the country no longer wants. I’ve never been. It wasn’t on our original map. Once I wanted open skies and twisty hill roads, not bars and junk palaces.

“How can I get to it?”

“Get to where?” Ralph is standing in the doorway. I don’t know how long he’s been there.

Gissy looks him straight in the eye. “I'm going to find Nadia.”

I am once again redundant. I spoke and Ralph listened but now no more. His gaze is well above my head.

“You leaving then?” I move over to the side of the door, crossing with Ralph who moves into the room. And I watch. I'm good at watching.

“Have to. I may have mended my fences with Billy a bit by doing some fancy footwork.”

“By spinning a few tales, highly dubious tales, I bet.”

“But,” she smiles, taking hold of his hand, “But, it doesn’t alter the fact that my presence is putting this place at risk.” He turns away, taking away his hand from hers. “I still have to leave. It was nice while it lasted, being near you for the first time in years.”

“You never said.” Gissy folds her arms and smiles wryly, as if to say she’s no time for this sort of scene. I like her as a person now, she seems less aloof. Knowing about her and Ralph upsets me and I leave and go down stairs into the back room.

• • •

“Billy, can I use your voice machine?”

This time Billy merely nods his head and says. “You know how to work it?” He doesn’t even raise his face from the clay he’s baking in the kiln. By now the wall of words has really grown. Even more names, deeds are written across what was once a ravaged space. Impressive. Billy looks worn out. Rings around his eyes, the rims red. For once he’s not wearing his shades.

“You been doin' this for ages. Have you slept?”

“You wanted it fixed, didn’t you? You wanted your comforts.”

The wall is enormous. The words stretch from one side to the other. There’s just one gap, in the middle and I look at what he’s working on now. Gissy’s words emerge from the kiln. The killing of Miller will be the centre, along with the supposed death of Nadia, her escape west with Ralph, and the years of hiding. Next to it is Nadia’s own story. Nadia’s words are sardonic and bitter. Reading it, you know she hates the world, and still hates Gissy — even while admiring her for what she did.

“Go on then, get lost. Go play. I'm busy.”

Ralph is standing in the hall, as if waiting for me. “he’s not well. He should rest. he’s wearing himself out.”

“That’s up to him.” I say, heading for upstairs, for once not paying Ralph any attention. All I'm thinking about is the voice machine, is my story, my words, making myself heard for once. Then I’ll leave. This is what I’ve been waiting for; this is why I can’t leave yet. Unfinished business… and it is no longer my infatuation with Ralph. Leave him, leave him be. Matt, though less charismatic will be the better bet. If I pay him more attention maybe he will shine like the odd clear sky. One day.

“You don’t really know about him, Musa, you don’t really know what he could do.”

“To whom?”

“Himself. Why do you think he found this place, locked himself away, messes about with other people’s stories, collects waifs and strays, like you, to his side?”

“I wouldn’t know. No one’s thought me fit to tell.”

“His mother was experimented on before the war. But in the years they knew it would be coming, when they were trying out so many gene modifications. It was just an experiment to make people withstand the cold. They neglected to check for pregnancy.”

“Billy’s a freak?”

He laughs. “Not in that sense. It didn’t change him intrinsically, but physically but he’s always been weak and mentally was never average, never the norm, you know? Intelligent, yes. Neurotic, yes. His whole life has been a series of breakdowns brought on by overwork, trying to do too much. For years, he was head of the anti-war organization, after the originals, Aidan and Orrin, died or left, till it became impossible to work democratically and so we took to the underground where the strain on him was too hard. He retired, if you will, to here. If he pushes himself now with this clay bricks thing, well then, it…”

“But what am I supposed to do? I don’t see how I could help.”

He comes closer to me. My view is over his head; he is looking up at me. “Assist him, slow him down, do some of the work. I’ve tried to drag him away, but I’ve got to take Gissy somewhere. And I don’t know if I’ll be coming back.”

“Not coming back?!”

“New people should be coming in soon. I might go.”

“How can you say you’re worried about him if you’re planning to leave, and you want me to look after him for you? Am I your conscience?!” I walk away, muttering, ”

No way.” He notices me when he needs something. He expects me to sacrifice myself for him. No way.

He shouts up the stairs, “It would please me if you would do this, Musa! I need to be with Gissy.” I stop at the top landing and stare down at him. I wish I had something heavy to throw down on him, something fat and deadening to fall on his mousy hair, darker now than it used to be. Squash that button nose, wipe the smile from his lips.

In Billy’s room I settle in his chair by the small window, click on the voice machine and begin.

“My name is Musa. We had dreams, Matt and I. We were heading over borders and continents, crossing rubicons… but we arrived here. And stayed. I don’t think people here have treated me well, not even Matt. People here have been worse than I ever met. I don’t understand why they disregard me. I perhaps I shouldn’t let them.

“We are finally leaving. I can see Matt through the trees, smoking and looking up at house. We could have stayed here and made a success. People come here; the world comes here. And yet they remain untouched, it seems, by the words and people they collect. As it gets dark I do feel regret that it has taken me this long to realize we have been wasting our time here. And I am strangely empowered by this knowledge. We were young, only 18 on arrival, and full of such dreams. My family are workers…”

It’s dark now as I leave quietly, looking behind briefly for one last glimpse of Ralph, but he is nowhere to be seen. I tread softly in the undergrowth, kicking leaves. There’s no moon and no wind. It is so quiet. I run through the trees to the van and hear another noise. I stop. An animal?

A figure comes to me and for a second I ache for it to be Ralph come to stop me but that’s so stupid. It’s Gissy. “Take me with you.”

“What about Ralph?” She looks back to the house but no candlelight shows.

“he’s looked after me for five years now. I think he deserves a break.”

“That’s not how he sees it.”

“Even gods have to lose sometime.”

Matt starts the van, smiling so much. “The New City,” I say, before he can ask. Gissy laughs and settles in the back. Soon we are on the roadway beneath the house. I strain my neck to stare at it so forlorn and forgotten on the promontory. I wave it goodbye and look straight ahead. The road is packed. We are adding to the car noise. Billy will be trying to sleep.

 

 

Jai Clare lives in wet but beautiful Cornwall, in the south-west of England and writes an ezine review column for Zene magazine and has been published in a number of small magazines, including Roadworks, Odyssey, Staple, and forthcoming in June’s edition of Voyage magazine. In Australian Redsine, and Winedark Sea. On the net in webzine Deeply Shallow. She is completing her third novel while sending out the second. (We don’t talk about the first!).


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ISSUE #5

April 2000

FICTION

ART