Touching my collar, hesitantly…


nullimmortalisOctober 18, 2021 at 2:48 pm

The Validations 
Ashley Stokes

“A repetitive click stopped. You had thought the click was the bed frame, a loose joint. Turned out to be a bird trapped…”

You will believe the reviewer. This is madness now gone unmad. Let me straighten out the encroaching madness of the psychiatrist narrator and her meeting with a female horror writer in some foreign city. Echoing one of my earlier patients with a misbegotten daughter called Ella. One of my earlier stories reviewed above about doubles doubling up, trolls, and now an ‘unstork’ that shrieks in rhythm with my breath. I am a tall seventy year old, never made headmaster, though. Or was it an anti-stork, my Alzheimer’s has become Capgras, and the narrator is a woman, in any event; I’m off to Drang Isle to find the underskein, and all manner of museum mutants. I AM THE REVIEWER, THEY WILL BELIEVE ME!

That quote at the top of this entry above is the cuckoo clicking in the previous story. And we also have the levels and landings subsumed beneath my feet as in the Eikamp. And this book’s remember-to-breathe syndrome is embodied in “Breathe, I told myself” now actually quoted from this disarmingly self-made, self-mad Stokes story. Touching my collar-bone as if ‘sun-bathing without skin’, that SCAR GAP… A changeling.

“I was exhausted. I had not seen you, no. These were illusions, anomalies. I should not validate them. I should not have validated your delusions. You do not have Alzheimer’s. I should not have treated you as if you have Alzheimer’s. You suffer from CAPGRAS Syndrome.” (my validating caps)

My previous review of this author:


My ongoing review of the latest amazing NIGHTSCRIPT: as context of above


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