Every year, I post a story for Halloween - a tradition that's important enough to me that I stole a few minutes away from my dear friends' wedding reception to post this one!

Many thanks to the fabulous Ms Mana for eleventh-hour assistance with this - all remaining flaws are entirely down to me, especially as I changed things since she last saw it.

Everything changes
by Alex Draven


11pm finds me stepping off a train. I haven't been back in London for years and the area around King's Cross has changed almost beyond recognition.

You've still got the station, of course - stations are always good for an emotional smorgasbord, although personally, I tend to use airports these days. But the streets around the station? These days there are students and clubbers and cocktail bars mixed in with the porn shops and all these neon-plastic chain places; the teenagers that crowd them are junk food for us, just like the burgers are for them, all those candy-bright hyper-real emotions.

Used to be that dealers and hookers, and the dealers and hookers' clients, were the most regular items on the menu outside the station proper. That's why I moved on in the end. All that thin desperation and hopelessness sits sour in the stomach, and I never did have Z's taste for shame.

Read more... )

If you're interested in previous years' stories, here's the list:

Dream Come True (2004)
Thirteen Kisses (2005)
All Souls (2006)
Favour (2007) (for sale)
Soar and Raining Cats (2007)
Tradition (2008)

(plus, there are the two zombie stories. They are seasonally appropriate, but they do come with a 'you click on the link, you take responsibility for your own sanity' warning - the titles are terrifyingly accurate on these two - Zombie Incest Wrongness and the infamous necrophiliac plushy gangbang story)

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