This is an extract from chapter eight of my novel "Everything Must Go" (working title).
We ran around the streets of Los Angeles, from thrift store to bath house, looking for clues. We had our names tattooed on the inside of our wrists so that when we held hands our names made out.
Candy Bar and I thought things over, what would two single girls do, alone in the world without any savings? Candy Bar suggested we go into policing or politics, but I have always been averse to concealed cash transactions, I have always wanted to live exposed with the wind blowing right through me and the sun bleaching my bones. Living in spite of myself, and spitting in anyone’s face if they even dare to doubt my absolute right to brilliance, to sparkle and reflect and dazzle and keep myself clean of all the scum that coats everybody else in this bog of a world. Candy Bar understood, her eyes misted somewhat, but she was butch enough to hold it together and she said that she would go out into the world and make money for us.
Candy Bar used to work in a department store, before the effects of late nuclear fall out forced everyone out of the cities and all the merchandise there became totally worthless.
At her counter Candy Bar would select colours and crèmes for her extravagant clientele and slap their faces with it. She’d take the lonely spinsters, and the doddering Mothers of preeminent Nazis, and the mousy secretaries and make a whore of them all, with just a few flicks of her palate. She drew on grotesque cavernous, carnivorous mouths that dripped hot, wet blood like a cunt shedding itself, like an abortion, like a botched hysterectomy. Mouths that no man would ever approach with an erection, mouths that would devour with nothing but hunger. Candy Bar drew on eyes, huge omnipotent eyes in green, the eyes of a monster that hung out in dungeons, waiting. Candy Bar gave them cheeks like welts from chemical burns, so their jawbones had the appearance of breaking the skin, so these women’s skulls appeared to tear through their own flesh and eat their own faces.
With a final flourish, Candy Bar would spritz her client in a mist of some mysterious, potent pheromone that only attracted cobras and hyenas, and sigh with joy. Stunned, as a person on the receiving end of a sharp blow to the front of the skull often is, these women would inevitably shriek in utter, utter horror and then buy everything. And Candy Bar would wrap it all meticulously and tot up her commission as she did, and as an extra something, would sprinkle crushed glass into each vial of the cosmetics. Often Candy Bar would hear cars break and passersby scream and the occasional gun shot, as her clients left the department store, and she felt proud, and she would daydream of those bloody faces, those disengaged eyeballs, those lacerated cheeks in front of mirrored dressing tables all over Chicago, all thanks to her.
Of course now all of the department stores were abandoned, only the lowest of the low, nuns and priests and missionaries lived there now. Taking shelter from the hollow sky and the relentless assaults on street walkers from long range home made missiles launched out of sentry towers and designed to keep spirituality where it belongs, in the supermarket.
Department stores where now ghettoes for the holy, inside stood great big gleaming altars made from endless shirt boxes stood end on end and decorated with an eternity of cut glass perfume bottles. Crying out to a God who had forgotten them, or who never knew them, His servants called for deliverance for or acceptance into the next life, the afterlife, life after death, instead of this death in life of abandonment.
The Church had officially denounced all practitioners of the faith as heretics, after undoing the existence of every saint whoever preached peace, justice or consideration to either man or beast. They excommunicated Christ for being a faggot, Mary for being a whore, and Joseph for being a paedophile and a rapist, then systematically euthanized every Bishop who voted not merge with Hinduism to reduce overheads (as it turned out the rights to Lord Shiva where already owned by Disney, the Church’s rival theme park, so the deal went to shit).
The Catholic Church now existed solely to promote its line of watches produced under license wherever they could be manufactured for free. They all bore the face of Pope Alexander VIth who was now commonly regarded as the only person fit for the position as head of the Church, being that he was undoubtedly one of the most debased serial killers of all time.
Attempts to bring His Holiness back from the dead at first looked good, it was thought he could be revived as part cyborg at least, if nothing more suitable could be arranged. However, those of us who remembered the Pope’s first 14th century rampage, were quite adamant that this did not happen, and we plotted against him. For the second time, Alexander was sent back into the ground, when somebody switched his carburettor for the cooling element from a fridge freezer and he blew up at his coronation.
His face on a sports watch was a fitting tribute thought the Cardinals, shortly before they were knifed in the stomach, as they signed over the Church to the exclusive control of IBM. They would never have been in this situation, they sobbed amongst each other as they sold off the Vatican for enormous personal profits (shortly before they were castrated and garrotted) had they retained the support of the magical beasts and beings on whom the power of the Church had always rested. The Cardinal from Antigua sobbed, “If only we still had the transsexuals on our side.” Then somebody from IBM ripped his guts out with the claw of a hammer.