33. Shoot Me Up Already

Soundtrack: Download, “Separate” Inglorion is standing in the anteroom just outside the throne room. Cabinet officials linger here and there, chatting in twos and threes, because the poor acoustics allow them to speak in relative privacy. Clytemnestra is trying to guide Philomela out of the throne room, past members of the Xyrec delegation, who are […]

25. Persephone Eats Six Seeds

He’s gone when her water breaks. The pain yanks her into the open, impales her in her body and the cell around her. She’s bound, as always. The force is terrible — a series of rhythmic blows from the inside that warp her frame. It grips her by the nape, shakes her over and over, […]

24. You’re Just a Little Thing

He enters carrying a tray with a branch of lit candles and a jar of the viscous, violet-scented liquid. He’s quiet, but there’s a sense of barely restrained excitement about him. He feeds her quickly, and leaves her arms and neck strapped to the cot, the feeding tube taped in place. He watches her for […]

23. You’ve Been Forgotten

“I’ve wanted so much to get to know you,” says Tereus. “To share a meal, or the occasional smoke, or a drink. We both hold commands, after all. We’re powerful among our people. I’ve wondered if you felt doubt and regret about what happened — the troops you lost.”  They’re sitting side-by-side on her little […]

20. Blood for Blood

Another episode of Man Raised by Spiders, the coming-of-age story of Valentine Shelawn. Once he lights the candle, Valentine says aloud, “Fuck it.” Before he can lose his nerve, he scrawls a note to Aramil: Cousin, I need your help tonight with an urgent matter. Please come as soon as you receive this. —Xάρων He […]

19. Flashing Eyes

Another episode of Man Raised by Spiders, the coming-of-age story of Valentine Shelawn. Ariadne is buried immediately, due to the fear of poison. At first, Valentine can’t grasp that she’s dead. Long before he asked her to be his wife, she was his inner audience, the kind, sympathetic listener we all long to have. At […]