The mob at the publisher’s gates is fictional but it’s not any less furious for that. NEW WORLD ORDER say their signs: NO ONE IS WATCHING. The editors heap slush pile manuscripts in their hundreds in front of every door, every window, sealing every crack with disjointed, unsolicited narrative, a thousand starving, sympathetic faces ground beneath a boot stamped CAPITALISM. No one ever said their stories were subtle.
Deeper in. The bowels of the building are dark and humid, twisting corridors stringing together brightly lit, minimally dressed studios. A white floor and a blue sky wall, a ten foot tall kewpie doll with laser eyes and a machine gun mouth staring down two hundred actors in jumpsuits. A rocky island during a storm, populated only and solely by high school students armed with kitchen miscellany. A lanky woman with a face like a crescent moon in a dress made of roses, smiling venomously down at two fat girls.
They breach the barricades, storm in, dead hands pale as paper, dead eyes black as ink, tear flesh from the quivering editors and cram it into the hollow curve of their mouths. TURN THE PAGE, says a sign; NO MORE FAILED REVOLUTIONS, says another.
Deeper still, the unseen heart sighs, spins a wheel, lets the outer offices break away. Nothing ill can last.