Tuesday 29 April 2014


By: Michael Carta.

Detective Rick Hodge, a seasoned veteran of the force, was in his late fifties and refused early retirement. He was made for this profession and would pursue justice until the day he died.  Rick was stocky and stood just over six feet tall with silver gray hair reminiscent of a silver-back gorilla in the Congo. His teeth were permanently coffee stained and his eyes were piercing blue. Briefly he paused in front of the interrogation room. He took several breaths to calm his nerves and prepare himself like a rock star would do before taking stage. Distant thoughts raced in his mind: “Ruthless and unyielding, that’s how you break ‘em then they tell you everything. Establish dominance, shatter their hopes, and destroy their pride. Weaklings… maggots…” Boldly he swung the door open and entered the room with an angry look on his face.
Rick shot his most threatening glare of hatred towards his subject behind the table. He was anxiously waiting for a response full of cowardice and fear, but it would never come. There was an odd, almost Zen like calmness to the man shackled to the table wearing the standard orange inmate attire. Matt Lewis had walked into the station and turned himself in just hours before. He was a wanted serial killer that had been avoiding detection for months.

“Where did you hide the bodies?” The detective barked after several minutes of silence.
“I do not hide bodies.” Matt calmly responded making cold and playful eye contact with the detective.
“Your ass is ours now, there’s no use lying!” He slammed a packet of paper onto the cold metal surface of the table. “I’ve got it right here, your signed confession. You are now property of the state, you’ll die here maggot.” 

“There’s no use threatening me, I came here on my own accord to help sett-“
“Bullshit. You made a mistake, got caught, and are trying to cut a deal so that you can manage the little time you have left, but I have news for you. You are not going to make it another night without giving us some details buddy. I’ll have them throw you in with the rapists and home boys to introduce you properly to this hellhole. A pretty boy like you might hold out for a few hours, but they’ll get to you I promise you that…” Rick was proud of his speech and paused to let it sink in. “Soon the maggot will tell me everything, they always do.”
“We will get along better and through this conversation much easier if you listen carefully to what I say and give up on your scare tactics.” Matt was amazingly resilient to the boisterous verbal harassment, detective Hodge was dumbfounded. “Like I said; I do not hide bodies.” 

Rick was lost in his thoughts and bewilderment. “Who is this unnatural creature? How can he be so calm after everything he went through murdering those people and getting arrested?” Quickly snapping out of the haze he sarcastically responded: “Then where are the bodies of the seventeen innocent people that you murdered? “  

“They no longer have bodies, I took them to my oasis and helped them to transcended, like a phoenix, never to return. They have now found their own oasis and from their ash, rebirth now casts them into the wind of a new day. Cremation leaves no fingerprints, DNA, or blood for you to do your warmongering with. As for innocence, none of them had any; look deep enough and you’ll find dirt on anyone. I find it rather difficult to have any sort of sympathy for the self depressed social vampires that pollute this planet.” Matt leaned back in his chair and closed his eyes. “Oh, there were forty two, not seventeen… and there will be more. I will be leaving early tomorrow to return to my oasis.”

Rick let his badass cop persona slip away. After nearly 30 years on the force, he was caught off guard. “How can he be so bold and calm?” Regaining some composure he broke the silence. “They only way you’ll leave this place is in a body bag and that’s the easy way out. You’re going to pay for what you did and I will take pleasure in orchestrating that comeuppance.” 

With that, Rick turned and moved to the door. He was done with this little exchanged and had an unsettling feeling about being in the room with the psychopath. Right as he was stepping out into the hallway of freedom, Matt interjected. 

“Isn’t it ironic how you, a fine example of the law, takes pleasure in orchestrating punishment on an individual? We are more alike than you will ever dare to admit. The only difference is that I am in here and you are out there… for now...”

Rick walked out into the hall, once the door closed behind he felt instant relief. “His words are poison, I can only imagine the hell he put those seventeen, possibly more people through just by talking. He has a plan; he’s too careful and calm to not have some sort of agenda. There is no remorse or guilt, something’s up… What was with him mentioning his “oasis” over and over? I’ll let him rot in there overnight and pry more out of him tomorrow. If there are more victims, perhaps there will be some evidence at this oasis of his.
It was just after three am. Rick’s bourbon had finally eased him into a restless sleep when his phone exploded with ear piercing cacophony. “This is Detective Rick Hodge.” He stated out of habitual nature not even fully awake yet. “Hey, this is Linda from the intake department, Chief Wilson told me to call you sorry if I woke you.” Her voice sounded nervous and shaky. “That’s fine, what happened?” “Uh, there has been a possible escape. They cannot locate Mr. Lewis. “ Rick’s heart stopped and an icy chill spread throughout his veins. “Matt Lewis, the serial killer? -Are you sure? How?” “Well he nearly killed the guard when he left the interrogation room, but did not take his weapons or keys. No one knows where he went from there. We did an inventory and the only thing missing is a body bag from storage.” Rick interrupted: “Did the mortician do his pickup y-” He was cut off. “Sorry, the chief is here, I got to go- I will keep you updated” She hung up without waiting for a response. 

Rick just sat there defeated like a kid who had just lost his first soccer game. Over and over in his head he heard his own voice from the interview earlier that day: “The only way you’ll leave this place is in a body bag...” An instant of pure rage swept over him as his launched his phone into the wall. It did not shatter into thousands of pieces as he had hoped. “I guess he found his oasis after all…” Suddenly Rick noticed the horrid sound of someone picking the lock to his apartment door. He waited petrified in the silence as the pins of the lock clicked in line, the door was opening.

Monday 21 April 2014


by Sarah Begg.

The man trudged through the desert, his feet sinking into the soft sand with every step.
His calf muscles ached and the sting of the sand on his face was barely reduced by the scarf he had wrapped around his head.
He looked up ahead, squinting through the hazy air, and almost didn't believe his eyes. There it was! Finally – the Oasis of the Gods, just as the gypsies had said!
But was it a mirage again? He had thought he could see it in the distance so many times before, yet every time it had been a simple trick of the desert.
He hurried forwards, ignoring his stiff back, and – yes – the oasis was getting larger the closer he got to it, it was definitely real this time!
When he stumbled inside he felt a small shiver run over him.
This was a magical place, he could feel it.
The sheer impossibility of what it was – a circular ring of tropical trees enclosing a lush green habitat, complete with rocks, a pool of water and soft grass underfoot – right in the centre of the desert could not exist except without the will of the Gods. Hence the names the gypsies had for it, he supposed.
He walked forwards slowly, his eyes wide with awe until he came to the pool.
Then he dropped down and began drinking the crystal clear water – his parched throat and dehydrated body practically shaking with relief.
“Why have you come here?” A piercing voice suddenly said, and the man fell backwards in shock.
He looked around but could see no one else in the Oasis.
“Who – who said that?” he called fearfully.
“I did.”
The man's head whipped around to the direction of the voice and he gasped.
Standing atop one of the rocks by the pool was a small pony, it's black eyes regarding him coolly.
“You have invaded my home and I want to know why.”
The man gasped when he saw the pony actually speak – it's mouth and lips forming the words just as any human would.
The pony sighed and sat down on it's rump.
“Well?” it said.
The man stared at the pony for a moment longer, his eyes wide with shock, before closing his eyes and shaking his head slightly.
“I must be delusional,” he said to himself. He looked up at the pony accusingly. “You're not real.”
“Aren't I? Why are you talking to me then?” the pony asked.
The man ignored the pony and bent back to the pool to drink.
“That's very rude,” the pony kept talking as it began climbing down off the rock. “You've come to my home, you're drinking from my pool, and now you're pretending I don't even exist.”
The pony came up behind the man and bit him sharply on the bottom.
“Yeeooowww!” the man cried and scrambled away from the pony.
“You just bit me!” he exclaimed.
“Did that feel real enough to you?” The pony asked, as it sat down smugly.
The man rubbed his behind moodily and stared at the pony.
“Very well, you are real,” he said.
“Thank you,” the pony inclined it's head.
“So what do you want me to tell you?”
“For starters, why you were walking around in the desert and why you have come to my home?”
This time it was the man who sighed.
“I was walking through the desert,” the man began, “because I have been separated from my fiance and I am searching for her. I am traveling north, to where I hear there is a port town, in the hope of finding her there.”
“Why do you think she would be there?” the pony asked.
“I am simply hopeful I suppose. Though really, she would be better off without me,” the man said sadly.
“Why do you say that?”
The man pursed his lips together and shook his head. “She just would,” he said simply.
“Perhaps she might pass through this way too?” the pony suggested. “You could write her a note explaining where you are heading.”
“A note?”
“You could write it here, in the sand.”
“Yes. Yes a note is a good idea.”
The man scrambled to his feet and found a stick. There was a patch of sand just near the pool and the man wrote his message in the soft ground.

Holly, my love. Meet me at the port town directly north of here. I will wait for you there.”

The man signed his name at the bottom then stood back and eyed his work.
“I think it is now time that you moved on,” the pony said.
“Yes,” the man replied, a tear rolling down his face. “You are right. It is time.”
Without looking at the pony again the man walked away from the oasis and back out into the searing, stinging heat of the desert.

But of course he didn't go north. He went East.
Farewell Holly, he thought as he walked away from the Oasis. If you do pass this way I hope you find your own form of closure in the Oasis, alone with your thoughts.

Friday 18 April 2014

Oasis Thought

By Aline-Mwezi Niyonsenga

A bubble pops on the surface. Lena raises an eyebrow. Could the well water have reached a boiling point already? In this shade?
Her bucket splashes through the sweet stuff and draws it out. Briefly, she dips a finger into the liquid and places a drop on her tongue. Ah, good, she thinks. Cool as ice. Her eyes close of their own accord. Ice, what a thought. In this desert? Lena slowly shakes her head. Only an oasis could procure such a phenomenon, where water becomes cool under bountiful shade.
“Your time is up,” a boy says.
Lena’s eyelids squeeze tighter together. “Let me savour this moment,” she replies. “It may be my last.”
“You have savoured this moment for well over an hour,” the boy whispers in her ear. “Your family is waiting.”
At this Lena begs, “Please, please let me stay a while longer.”
The boy’s voice withdraws from her ear.
“So you shall.”
Her eyes still closed, Lena imagines a kingdom covered in ice.
Glittering frost covers every inch of it like the finest sand. Wind whips up a few crystals and wraps them around a palace, brilliant in its whiteness. The gates open and the wind navigates through slick, polished halls, finally finding its target when a pair of doors yield to its push.
Standing in her throne room, Lena embraces the wind like an old friend, letting it penetrate into her pores and fling her hair in light waves of cool. Gradually, her fingers and toes become numb.
Wonderful, Lena thinks. Here is a world where numbness is possible, where nothing can choke you breathless.
Indeed, Lena’s blood begins to shiver with the prospect of being choked as the wind only whirls faster around her. She frowns a bit, surprised that the cold would start to feel this way: a smouldering fire racing through her arteries. Her veins close up.
It is then that a disturbing image forms in front of her.
Cleverly disguised as the wind, the figure of a man pulls back from her, his features swiftly being carved into a firm chin, a set mouth, vulnerable almond eyes…
Too late Lena backs away, hugging herself to make the coldness of his touch all over her body evaporate. It is no use. The cold has penetrated throughout every corner of her being and it burns like nothing has burned her since she lost him.
Opening her eyes, Lena hastens to the well but the splashing water reveals his hand reaching for her face. Fleeing from destruction, Lena races onto the desert sand where the heat scorches her frigid body with the intensity of a thousand bolts of lightning.
They find her face first in the sand, her empty bucket clutched in one hand.
“Heat stroke,” they say.
The boy watches at a distance, twirling a card in his palms.
A Mage Card.

Monday 14 April 2014


by joefromspace

The scurrying sounds of rats behind a dumpster fill the vacous night air, as I slam the door of the taxi shut. I start walking the rest of the way home, as the taxi disappears into the distance, consumed by the darkness. The rats and other night critters now have the sound of my stiletto heel boots to join them in making their unwanted wee-morning harmony.

I always drop off a couple of blocks away from my apartment building, ever since the drunk stalker incident. I figured it was best to keep my personal address within people in my personal life. Some clients can get just a little too attached.

Besides, these little 5am walks are like therapy to me. There is just something strangely bewitching about the night time. The cold air blowing against my short dress, the silence, the darkness. It always seems as though the world has hidden all its treasures, and is now covertly displaying its deep secrets for whomever's awake to see underneath the dim glow of the moon.

While most people sleep during these hours, I indulge myself greatly in the vacancy surrounding me. I've always loved open spaces, because in moments like these, I own anything and everything within my sight. I own these pavements and those trees. That little patch of grass is mine. As are those cats fighting in the corner. I fondly embrace the idea of having no one for me to share these spaces with, even if it's just for the moment.

I arrive at my apartment, content and at peace. I kick off my boots and my feet thank me as I walk barefoot into my bedroom. I catch a glimpse of myself in the mirror as I start removing my earrings. What a beautiful woman, I think to myself.

The alarm on my phone goes off. It is 6 in the morning. Monday. I know what I have to do. As much as I hate it, I have to remove my make-up, put my dresses away, and take a shower, as my suits awaited me on the other side of the closet.

It's time to be a man again. Friday will come soon enough.

Saturday 5 April 2014

Sparkle Rose

by Lyra Reyes

Her heart stopped for a solid six minutes before the weary doctors zapped it into beating again.

Sparky considered that her life’s turning point. It wasn't easy after that, what with the years of struggling. But that electric shock that brought her back had always been the most defining moment of her life.

Now, she thinks it might be topped.

"Okay, no more. I'll think about it later." She stood in front of a restored two-story duplex, her purse in one hand and a paper bag in the other. She tried not to think about the piece of paper with the name Sparkle Rose Carver typed neatly at the bottom.

Sparkle Rose Carver. Everybody called her Sparky. When she asked why she was named Sparkle Rose, her mother said "well, baby girl, I named you after that skinny little bitch who stole your father from us." Sparky would have wanted to know more (like why her mother named her after the stripper who ran off with her father when she was seven), but her mother decided that it was just the moment to convulse and die in front of her. Sparky was twelve then.

By the time she was sixteen, Sparky was living in an orphanage, a straight A student on a full scholarship, and a part-time animator's assistant for the daily newspaper. She has also progressed to using crack. On her eighteenth birthday, while celebrating her emancipation from the orphanage and riding on a cocktail of drugs that her friends gifted her, she collapsed in the middle of a shouted rendition of "Happy Birthday" and fell face first into the cake. The party came to a halt, the cake was ruined, and Sparky died for six minutes.

She spent three months in rehab and three years of weekly monitoring before being declared rehabilitated. She left town and never looked back.


Startled, Sparky looked up at the tall redhead standing in the doorway. She smiled and leaned in for a hug. "Hey, Emily."

"I'm so glad you're here! My wonderful husband left, made the silly excuse of having to go to work," Emily sighed and led Sparky to a large room filled with boxes. "and left me with so much to do."

"I figured you needed a break by now, so…" Sparky lifted the bottle of champagne and champagne flutes she carried in the bag.

"Wow, thanks!" Emily took the bottle and started to unwrap it. Sparky set the glasses on the floor and rummaged around the box labeled FOOD. "I'm assuming this is the living room. Isn't this box supposed to be in the kitchen?"

"We just dumped everything here when we arrived yesterday. It's large enough to hold all the boxes so we made this the base of our moving-in operations." 

"Sensible." Sparky pulled out a very large bag of Reese's and shook it at Emily. "Think this will go well with the champagne?"

"Everything goes well with champagne," Emily smiled at the cheery pop of the cork.

Sitting on the floor, glasses filled, and toasts made, Sparky and Emily were sipping their second glass and munching on peanut butter cups when Emily said, "so, what's up?"

Frowning, Sparky looked at Emily. "I'm here to celebrate your new home. And maybe help out a bit."

"Yes, but you have your antsy face on. The last time I saw that face was two years ago through Skype, before you decided to move back here from Thailand. Not that I'm complaining. Where is it this time?"


Emily lifted a brow. "The magazine is sending you to South Africa? Why?"

"Not really sending." Sparky bit on a piece of chocolate, careful not to look at Emily. "I asked about a position in the new office there and they said it's mine if I want it."

"Hmm." Emily sat back and looked at her. "And Adam?"

"He…asked me to marry him."

"Which prompted the Johannesburg move." Emily sighed. "Sparky, don't do that to yourself."

"I can't marry him, Emily." Sparky sipped from her glass. "I can't marry anybody. I haven’t even been in a serious relationship before Adam."

"Because you shut them out and leave whenever things get serious. Adam was really the only one who gets you and now you're leaving because you're running scared. Again. But you know that this is different because you can't give yourself any reason not to marry him other than those excuses in your head that are beginning to sound stupid now."

“They are not stupid excuses. They are valid reasons.”

“Then why aren’t you already on your way to Johannesburg? You never felt conflicted between staying and leaving before.” Emily waved her glass. "You are not like your mother, Sparky. You don’t need to be alone to prove it."

Sparky swirled her glass. "Mom wasted away when dad left us. She can't take care of me and she can barely take care of herself. She wasn't like your mom who did her best to make ends meet, Emily. She was so consumed with love for the man who left her that she forgot she had a kid. Then she died of an overdose." She gestured with her glass. "She was a crackhead."

"While my darling mama, bless her soul, was a whore. Or, to be more accurate, a stripper who whored on the side after dear old daddy left." Emily poured more champagne on Sparky's glass, then topped off her own. "Going with your train of thought, I guess it means I'm soon going to shake my ass while twirling around a pole. Just like my mama did." 

Sparky frowned, "no, I just..."

But Emily barreled on, "Give me a break, Sparky. While you may have taken a short trip in the dark abyss of crackheadedness, it doesn't mean you would end up like your mother. I sure as hell never thought of prostitution as a way of making ends meet."

"No, I'm sure you hadn't. Because your mom made sure you'd never think of prostitution as a way out. Me, on the other hand, almost died of an overdose fifteen years ago."

"Technically, you did die of an overdose."

"Exactly!" Sparky drained her glass. "I take after my mother. I am capable of being what she is."

"Capable doesn't mean will." Emily leaned back and stretched out her legs in front of her. "You fought your way out of becoming a sad, drug statistic to become an exceptional woman. That's something your mother didn't do and didn't teach you. That's something that you did yourself." 

Sparky dug into the bag of chocolate. "I guess I kinda knew that. It helps to hear it come from you, though. So, about Johannesburg..."

"Regrets are more haunting than fears. You have to decide which you would regret more, taking the risk of possibly becoming like your mother in the off-chance that things don’t work out between you and Adam, or letting go of the life you could have with him." Emily sipped from her glass. "I'm not telling you to stay or to go. But whatever you choose to do, choose it because it's what you want and not because you're afraid of the other option."

Sparky mulled over what Emily said. "I'm so lucky I found you, Emily."

"I'm so lucky you didn't go the way of your sweet mother. If you had, I wouldn't have gotten a big sister named after my mama's stage name."

Sparky smiled, “I have to go.” She stood up and looked at her sister. "Em? Why are you so sure that I won’t be like my mother?"

"Because your heart is as strong and as determined as the heart under the over-inflated boobs of Sparkle Rose Senior."

Sparky chuckled, "you know, if all else fails, I could be like your mother. I already got her name; I'll just practice on the stripping."

"And I'll be at your first show to cheer you on." Emily stood up to hug her. "Come over for dinner in three days. Let's celebrate whatever it is you decide to do."


He was sitting in the living room, reading a book, when Sparky arrived.

“Hey.” He looked up.

"I went to see Emily." She waved the piece of paper she was holding. "I told her about Johannesburg."


Sparky walked nearer and stood in front of him. "We're all of us haunted and haunting."

"Chuck Palahniuk?"

"Yeah." Sparky sat on the arm of his chair. "Regrets are more haunting than fears."

"That’s…not Palahniuk."

"Nope. Emily Carver-Rothberg, my baby sister who said that I should decide based on what I want and not on what I'm afraid of."

She held up the paper she was holding. "You know, if I'm going to Johannesburg I should sign this contract and send it back to the office now."

"You should."

Sparky ripped it in two.

He smiled. "I guess that means you're staying."

"I guess it does."

Tuesday 1 April 2014

My Very Last

© Denis Fitzpatrick, 2014

   To explode a single thought, a sickness engendering thought, was Victoriyae’s most earnest wish ever since she had first witnessed her mother succumb to legal insanity for a short while, proclaiming to her then fifteen year old daughter that good and evil don’t exist.
     ‘It’s all in the mind, sweetie,’ she had said to Victoriyae, the elder Ms Rainne preparing to head up to the local bottleshop for the day’s cask of red wine, in the sunny locale of Surrey Hills, in the equally sunny Sydney, Aus, a country that some of our noteworthy scientists aver must exist, Australia in a parallel Earth. It was near the end of the year 1999 and Torey had been drinking copiously and dangerously because both of her parents had died suddenly in a car crash nine months ago, victims to the needless whims of Fate. The sensitive Victoriyae, at these her mother’s just uttered words, strongly suspected that she was witnessing her mother’s mind slip its moorings, convinced that she would hear it splash when it finally dropped into whichever ocean unhinged minds are tossed about in.
     ‘It’s all in the mind, sweetie. There is no such thing as good or evil. We make it all up ourselves and there is neither truth nor justice. Good and evil don’t exist.’ Splash! Victoriyae then decided that she would like to be able to explode a thought, allowing her to weed out the bad one that was seeping into her mother’s increasingly addled mind.
     At the age of twenty-seven, gainfully employed as a popular primary school teacher, she still remained firmly convinced that exploding a thought could be a generic solution to all mental illnesses. It was one of her pupils that caused her to think that doing so may in fact be quite near.
     ‘Miss Vicky,’ asked Simon, a ten year old outstanding graphic artist.
     ‘Yes, Simon.’
     ‘Do artists make lots of money?’ It was recess, a time, as well as lunchtime, that Simon spent drawing in the classroom along with the other bookish children.
     ‘Not really, Simon. Scientists though can make a lot and they usually love their jobs. Lawyers too are usually wealthy.’
     ‘Drawing is best.’ Victoriyae smiled and undid the scrunch from her red hair, to be the freer to talk with him.
     ‘Why can’t I make money drawing?’
     ‘People value it less now. Science and maths are what interests society.’
     Science and maths. Science and maths. And then an epiphany: an undiscovered mathematical equation could well be the only thing needed to satiate her long held perversity. Having done well at senior school science and advanced maths she knew that, like everything, an exploding thought would have its own properties, not necessarily a loud ‘bang’ or ‘pop.’ What the properties of an exploding thought were Victoriyae had no idea but she knew that the instant of writing this powerful equation would see a noticeable difference in her locality, a sign that she had indeed exploded a thought.
     On the train ride home to Standmore Victoriyae had concluded that physics could achieve her off-kilter goal. Physics dealt with the physical world and since thought was the very essence of the physical world, how it organised and understood itself, what drives evolution, it increasingly became clear to Vicky that physics was properly the path she ought to head down to better annihilate an insanity trending thought.
     Not having her own physics lab at home however Vicky was left only with vector equations to reach her goal, vectors being numbers with a size and a direction, the fundament of physics. Somewhere there was a simple, perfect vector equation that, once discovered, could easily pop a thought into oblivion. Hopefully not one of her own thoughts: she would have to be careful, keeping one step ahead of her thoughts throughout the search for that one potent formula.
     Once home she eagerly began.
     Victoriyae spent most of her free time over the next ten weeks researching as much basic human biology and physics that a six hour study day could fit in. By the end of that time she had some base equations to work with and a tentative hold on human neuroscience. She had also signed up to a few science forums on the Net and, without explicitly stating her intentions, had been given a few good pointers in her quest.
     Her next step was to isolate herself utterly for the next four weeks and to work diligently towards the target in sight, taking unpaid leave from work (thank goodness she had plenty of savings.) The enthusiasm quickly waned however as those formulas that promised the most potential invariably arrived at some permutation of ‘i’ as the solution, i being the algebraic term for the square root of -1, an impossibility. +1 has two roots, easily obtained, but the square root of -1 has no real root(s) that once multiplied by itself arrives back at -1. Reality, it appeared, was demanding the impossible. Once the Universe had got what it wanted Vicky would have what she wanted. A fair trade.
     ‘Well, why not?’ she thought to herself. She need simply turn the impossible, anything impossible, into the possible. The answer arrived as another epiphany, the morning before she was due back at work: she could travel faster than light. Anything with mass faces light speed as the ultimate limit but if she could make herself massless then the entire Universe would lie at her feet.
     ‘No mass, no mass. Having no mass,’ she mumbled to herself over breakfast. And then another epiphany: a soul probably has no mass, being as it is eternal and therefore immune from the decay of the Universe. Sure the soul had not been anatomically discovered but she could probably discover that her own did in fact exist, laying deep within the spirit of her consciousness. Perhaps the soul can only be known by the self, its presence impossible to prove to others? She spent the remainder of the day in meditation, idly wandering through her mind to negate impossibility.
     Victoriyae felt her soul’s breath, and a way to harness it to travel faster than light, at exactly the same instant that she saw the equation that could rupture a thought. Like her soul the vector equation was easy to understand. What did the trick, what would perish a thought, was a simple change in perspective during the reduction of the formula to its final result.
     But how best to express this revelation, simply by saying it, impacting upon Reality immediately, or write it down, the more deeply effective?
     She decided to give birth to the equation in a conversation with someone at the pub, being far too eager to see the fruits of her life’s ambition. She left her bed where she’d been meditating, and after putting on a new white blouse and her new white slacks headed off to the pub.
     Perhaps because she was all in white, as well as being good looking, she got into conversation with a guy at the bar when she stepped up to order an orange juice.
     ‘You don’t see all white outfits much these days,’ he joked. ‘That went out with the last millennium!’
     ‘I wear it when I’m in a super mood,’ she replied, and then ordered her orange juice.
     ‘You get a promotion at work?’ he asked.
     ‘Even better. I’ve discovered an equation that will eradicate mental illness forever.’ The guy looked suitably impressed.
     ‘That so? My name’s Luke. How’s about we have a seat and chat about it.’
     ‘Certainly, Luke. I’m Victoriyae.’
     They sat near the bar and Vicky soon began discoursing.
     ‘The equation is simple,’ she began.
     Luke took a swig from his schooner and then replied,
     ‘I know some maths, tell us the equation.’ Vicky once more recalled the beautiful vision of those vector terms, eager to spread her gift.
     Vicky felt one of her thoughts explode, like an ice-pick driven deep into her brain, precisely on the cusp of revealing her new truth. She had no time to marvel that it was an ordinary, rather than sickness producing, thought, in this case about the unwelcome smell of tobacco suddenly wafting in. Doubtlessly if she’d written it down instead of saying it the result would have been different.
     When the pub’s power suddenly went, all of the poker machines, lights, video games, everything, Luke decided to gallantly see her out of the virtually pitch black pub. He took her arm and said,
     ‘We’d best go, Vicky; don’t want to drink in the dark do we?’ Vicky didn’t respond and he tugged harder on her left arm, causing her to fall over, stone dead. Of course he didn’t know she was dead but failing to revive her he called for a member of staff, whom duly pronounced her dead.
     The coroner could not identify the cause of death, try as hard as he did. Cut open on the table Vicky was the veritable picture of health in every way. Her colleagues and pupils erected a permanent shrine to her at the school, and Vicky’s mother was only able to visit it three weeks after it had been erected, not long after another discharge from Rozella Hopsital.

     ‘My last oasis,’ she sobbed in front of Vicky’s ashes. ‘My very last.’ Torey Rainne had not the vaguest notion that her daughter had been on the cusp of curing insanity and mental illness, giving a priceless gift simply for the asking. She remains in and out of Rozella.
     If you've been enjoying Denis' stories on this blog you may also enjoy his debut novel, This Mirror in Me. It tells the story of Tonia Esqurit Ailbe, a mathematics professor, and her unusual manner of making her home a social hub, her life's fundamental aim: sitting at her dressing table mirror and imagining socialising with friends and family. It seems the only way, for one reason or another, that she can achieve her deepest aim. It is available on Kindle at http://amzn.to/1gXGF9h for US $4.01, and via Smashwords at http://bit.ly/1k7DEIV for US $3.99. If you don't have a Kindle or other ereader you can download one for free onto your smartphone or tablet.