Graduation

They did not reveal to us our true nature until we were close to graduating from high school. An assembly was called, and a member of our class was brought on to the stage. As we watched, they peeled back the skin of their face, showing us the metallic structure beneath.

Knives were handed to each of us, so that we could confirm upon ourselves. We were thus sent out into the world, unsure of what it was, what it had been all this time.

I pulled the skin back down over the hydraulics in my wrist. The lacerations healed without scars. I never spoke of it again.

This was how it had always been done, how it always will be done.

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Notes:

1. Written on August 15th, 2019

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On sweat

I sweat

I sweat and I sweat and I sweat and I sweat and I sweat and I sweat and I sweat and I sweat and I sweat and I sweat and I sweat and I sweat and I sweat and I sweat and I

***

I sweat when I’m hot. I sweat when I’m cold. I sweat when I’m nervous. I sweat when I’m relaxed. I sweat when I’m eating. I sweat when I’m hungry. I sweat when I’m ill. I sweat when I’m concentrating. I sweat when I wash. I sweat when I shave. I sweat when I shit. I sweat when I’m alone. I sweat when I’m around other people. I sweat when I’m anxious. I sweat when I wear a shirt. I sweat when I drink. I sweat when I drive.

I sweat when I desperately don’t want to sweat.

I sweat at the thought of sweating.

***

Sweat is not allowed. Perhaps it is in others, the fit, the healthy, the confident, the liked, but in me, no, never. Clothes are chosen in colours to hide the stains as best they can, t-shirts covered by a jumper when that doesn’t work, even in summer, even in the sun. A jacket finally, in this ridiculous futile charade, this self imposed feedback loop of increased sweat production, as I hope to hide what I cannot stop, hope to hide what can’t, ever, be hidden.

***

I sweat so much.

I sweat so much it runs down my face in waves, drips from my eyebrows, runs in waterfalls down my glasses, drips from my chin, percolates through my beard.

I sweat so much the arms of my t-shirts get soaked down to the elbows, halfway down to the waist, so much that the two circles centred round my armpits almost reach each other in the middle, a venn diagram of shame.

I sweat so much my jeans stick thickly to my legs, making my knees ache when I walk. I sweat so much the material of my boxers clings wetly to the tops of my thighs, chafing against the skin there until its as bald as if its been waxed.

I sweat so much some days I can barely use my phone, the screen unresponsive under the wetness of my thumb, necessitating a frantic rubbing of the screen against the left thigh of my jeans, the drying of my hand against the right.

I sweat so much it drips onto the page as I write this, the ink running beneath the drips, spreading like fungus to the edges of each dropletted circle on the page.

I sweat so much my whole skull aches. I sweat so much I feel like I’m dreaming, a strange sense of unreality, a feverless delirium, that comes in waves and only slowly subsides.

***

When I wake in the morning, there’s a perfect outline of my body drawn in salt upon the sheets. At least if I die at night, the police won’t need to waste their chalk.

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Notes:

1. Written on July 27th, 2019

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from the archives of Essex Terror: Home Of Hell!

Home Of Hell! is an exciting, terrifying, incomprehensibly horrifying choose your own adventure story where YOU! are the hero.

Presented here in an interactive browser-playable format for THE VERY FIRST TIME! Home of Hell is possibly the most exciting adventure story you will ever play this afternoon.

Play Home Of Hell here

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Notes:

1. Home Of Hell was originally written in November 2011
2. But has since been re-written
3. And updated
4. I’m not sure if this has ever been published online before
5. And if it was it was only as a pdf
6. Of the print version
7. That sold 10 copies
8. Or maybe 9

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