Nightmares 7: Elektra Descending

She walked in a pool of light.

It tracked her perfectly, the endless battle between light and shade waged over her form – waxing and waning lakes of cream flowed across fields of blue velvet as her muscles bulged and smoothed away. She walked with the power and finesses of a Kung Fu extra on rice paper, with the patience of a Highgate angel. Every nerve ending in my skin applauded electrically, currents of heat and pain washed over my back, shorting across the sweat that formed like dew. An impossible breeze cooled me to the core, but I was already frozen.

Once in a lifetime
Once over there
She stood in doorways
She stood on the edge
Her point of view was fever
On a thread of light
My point of view was shaken
She took my mind

I had just stepped out the back door of the joint into the alley – cool, dark and only slightly less full of boxes, bins, cans and abandoned Skodas than Janet Street-Porter’s mouth was full of teeth. There are still a few pubs in London that haven’t been turned into groovy wine bars, mock Edwardian railway stations or yuppie clone-zones, and this wasn’t one of them. Though there had to be a seriously pressing reason why I was here, it’s importance was rapidly diminishing in the face of two dangerously strange facts. I was watching the personification of Lust in a dress walk past, and the world was starting to career about like a turbocharged rollercoaster on the way to the Chemists.

Jeez, that last Bushmills tasted like a hippopotamus’s underarm deodorant. I watched a guy in a trenchcoat sway alarmingly, teetering on the brink of gravity’s domain, tracing a Mandelbrot with his arms. I don’t know what he was on, but I’d have some of that and so would my parrot. Call me Finn. Mickey Finn.

The parrot on my shoulder guffawed like a Victorian clown marionette, scratchy and repetitive, mocking me through a Doctor Who sound effects echo. The angel seemed sublimely oblivious to the sudden plasticity in the local space-time continuum. My mother wouldn’t like what I was thinking, but I figured there wasn’t a lot of point doing something if your mother did like it. I tried to call after her, but my
words came out in Helvetica Medium and kept swimming around like sperm and arranging themselves into potential candidates for the names of new Balkan states. After a while they got bored with that and tried for the Guinness Book of Records for the longest palindrome ever, making “a man, a plan, a canal – Panama” seem like a four year old’s first attempt to spell “video”. As the words stretched out of sight they began to curl, form strings of DNA helix and promptly mutated into a hippopotamus with a clothes peg on its nose. And a large drinks bill.

Break open my body
Hold my mind in your hands
Drag me down in deep waters
Down in fields of flowers
For there’s no sanity
To stand me on my feet
My point of view exploded
She fucked my mind

She led me with a smile and a wiggle like a seahorse on a fishtank, and I waded after her robes which were white enough to make Persil’s ad-men break down and weep. The door parted round her and left me wondering why my wallet contained so much that was either invalid, expired or both, and why my Visa card took its abuse so personally that it tried to bite me when I offered it up to the door lock.

The interior resembled a fifties Batman set rather better than I would have liked – all primary colours, four pane windows and giant telephones. An urban playground full of exciting niches for bad guys to leap out of holding Hollywood prop six shooters with eleven chambers. The man in my boots appeared to be trying to moonwalk while holding his breath for the benfit of a large but invisible audience who thought this was the warm-up before the appearance of some smutty northern comedian.

Abruptly, I had got my boots back again, and a man who was as familiar as Hell was arguing with the angel with the volume turned real low. She drew an exquisitely carved knife from the warmth of her thigh and slit his throat, the smile never leaving her lips.

The lights winked out. The knife in my hand was warm and slippery. Somewhere in the dark a man drowned noisily in his own blood.

Please don’t disturb me
Just wrap me in clean white sheets
I’ve seen her cool white skin
I’ve seen her hands
While mine like desires
Untouched, betray me
With cruelty and love
She left my mind