Saturday, May 30, 2015

Devil Gems, No. 1

Here it is: The No. 1 passage from "The Devil in Snakeskins," the new sci-fi western from Beat to a Pulp Books ...

This comes from the scene where the professor confronts his mother's murderer some 30 years after the fact:

He was fine dying here, long as this motherfucker died first.

And here are all 10 passages ...

10) “I kilt another feller and threw him to the beasts. “

9) Billy went to his knees trying to scream but found this impossible without a tongue, the resulting sound like something from a nightmare.

8) For the next hour they conversed as enlightened beings in a barbaric world, the professor discussing his love for biology and psychology, in particular Pavlov and Freud, men who attempted to get at why people did what they did, while Kinsey leaned toward the classics, the fables and—winking here—those no-war scribes, that fella from Dee-troit being his all-time favorite, his characters so unvarnished it was like looking straight through to their souls.

7) She looked at him as if he had just squatted down and shit a hog-beast.

6) She was the most ancient thing he had ever seen, little more than a child-sized bag of wrinkles.

5) “Shit on my hospitality and I’ll use yer fuckin’ brainpan for a spittoon.”

4) Gray stringy hair clung to her skull like a helmet; a mass of skin tags covered her jaws and neck, a live, fluttering scarf.

3) He was a blowhard, this Shakespeare feller, yet somehow she brought his melodramatic drivel to life, reciting the lines with unbridled conviction.

2) The professor’s funk turned to familiar thoughts of vengeance, to the mechanics of killing, an almost comforting state of mind for a man whose world was defined through the sight of a pistol.

1) He was fine dying here, long as this motherfucker died first.

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