Songs of Bliss
quickly afterwards. Inject into muscle and it takes longer but the effect is probably the
Helen shivers and the doctor takes her hand in his and squeezes it gently. "Yes, you
see, they?ll be very nervous, jumpy, making mistakes. We?ll get out, take our chance, and, I
think, because of that lovely yellow stuff over there, they won?t have told anyone where
they are going, so we?ll be free for a few hours, maybe a day or two. Jock?s car will be
clean for a while, so we should have enough time to get away. The basics are simple. If we
don't do this, then we?ll be joining the bodies in the pit."
"The question, Helen, is this. Will you come with me? Will you, if I ask you, help
me kill them?"
This is it, this is the point of no return. She thinks of films full of grim heroines, in
particular Ripley and the alien mother, sees herself as the little girl screaming in the lift.
Life on the street. Decisions. Self-preservation. It should be a simple answer. Choose life.
She imagines the tip of the needle breaking skin, sliding into muscle, the bulge where the
liquid pools as she presses on the plunger, and the spasms, a face, a ric tus grin. She can feel
a tear on her cheek as she starts to nod slowly. She whispers her answer softly. The words,
spoken too loudly, would change their fate.
The doctor shifts, crooking one leg up onto the table so that he can face her. He
leans forward and takes both of her hands in his.
"Look at me."
She stays stock still for a moment.
"Look at me, Helen."
She moves slowly towards him until her eyes lock onto his. His face is long and
thin, his hair receding and lank, unlike anyone that she has ever been close to before, but
his eyes pierce her. He looks so intense and there is something in his eyes, something in the
soothing way that his voice modulates, that draws her in.
"Good girl. You?re my good girl."
He cups her chin with his left hand and draws her face to his. She closes her eyes as
he bends his head forward and kisses her on the lips. Their smells mingle and he tastes the
salt water on her cheek.
"In my own way, you know, I love you…" he says, and he too sheds a tear.
Music From Beyond the Moon
Alex Berisa is cruising, kerb crawling in the sodium glow of evening as the
provincial streets wind down towards late night walks, the pad of paws and the rustle of
plastic bags. Pubs hang on the cusp of closure, barren underneath their illuminated signs,