The novel’s title and its author’s name are not there.

How should such economy ever be legitimate?

Unless to do with the shrewd cinematic and televisual strategy where they like supply an exciting trifle or ominous commotion before the opening credits?

Brenda and her two Christian amigos had not had pink gunk instead of heads in eighteen years. But the huge clots had splat in them yet, as the day would unfold.

Cambridge, England.

A sunny week near the end of Spring.

In those days, Brenda was a pretty girl . . . except for one thing, a massive wart on her mons pubis, a grape’s weight, right on the bend of the bone, an antimatter clit. It had been daubed with acidic balm, cast in liquid nitrogen and ceremoniously shattered, and teased apart with electric needles. The bloody tuft stubbornly reformed (like a depressed red rose crawling back into bud). Her parents had paid a real witch called January Juice to crochet a cantrip contra it. Nothing worked. Brenda’s wart was fungal, modular. It was a manner of zealous hive, and any surving cell could operate independently, eventually recreating the network. We have no comparable passions.

January Juice had nothing of the sort on her nose. “I had it removed,” she explained esoterically (in a diaphanous cardi).