Having spent the past week suffering through tonsillitis and strep throat, I find my world focused on such mundane things as swallowing, how to avoid it, and the constant quest to find sustenance that won’t make me cry when I consume it. It has not been fun.
I don’t mean to whine, although I am. It’s just that when you write a weekly blog, you must write it rain or shine, illness or health. But that doesn’t mean I’m not more preoccupied with throat pain than I would be on a normal week.
Ironically, the searing pain in my throat reminded me of one of Kristine Kathryn Rusch’s mystery short stories called “Flitting Away.” It’s a haunting story that I have an even better appreciation for now. If you read it, you’ll understand why.
Here’s the synopsis:
When a vicious attacker leaves Nicole Walker for dead, she fights against the odds to survive. And to succeed, she must remember—the attack, the attacker, even her own desire to live. Her mind wants to flit away and escape the horrors of the attack. Flitting away means death. But remembering might mean an even worse fate.
Originally written for a tribute volume to Edgar Allen Poe, this horrifying and moving story takes inspiration from Poe’s lesser-known story, “The Mystery of Marie Roget.”
SF Site said of this story: “…a horrifying story of violence on a woman whose life is ruined forever by a rejected suitor. The echo of similar, true stories happening in real life makes the piece even more frightening.” And Bibliophile Stalker calls it “a personal and disarming piece.”
I highly recommend you read it, but I must warn you: It’s not for the faint of heart. However, if you have the courage to delve into the depths of horror humans can inflict on one another, this story will change your perspective forever.
Allyson Longueira is publisher of WMG Publishing. She is an award-winning writer, editor and designer.