Monday, November 20, 2017
The Last Evil, by David Vardeman
Hooboy. What to say about this week's entry? It reminded me of Shirley Jackson, John Collier, maybe some shadowy corners of Flannery O'Connor and even James Thurber. In other words, we are in the strange part of town.
Our protagonist is Mrs. Box, who believes that suffering is good for the soul. Hence she wears flannel lined with canvas, because parochial school taught her "the value of chafing."
She also believed in doing "a lot of good in the world. But there was another tinier but just as important point, and that was to get the leap on people. In her own life she felt a lack of people leaping out at her. In the past forty days and forty nights, not one soul, nothing, had given her a good jolt. Mr. Box certainly had not."
Which is why she keeps a live tarantula in her purse, which she pulls out to shock people. As a good deed. Or does she do that?
One thing she does do is meet a man on a train who has something in his briefcase even more frightening than a live tarantula. Or does he?
Enough. Read the thing and find out. It's worth the trip.