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“All right, we’re going to do another set of leg lifts. Ready? Okay! Five six seven eight! Lots of energy. Great job! Next we’re going to take your thumb and put it right against your shoulder blade. Got it? I need you to bring your chin right down to your glutes. I like to call this one the ‘unspeakable ideogram!’ Feel your calves defying the law of exclusion? Reality should be weakening near your navel. Hold it! Hooold it! The broodspawn of Ur’gthax are breaching the veil of reality! At last! Burst forth, my children, and scourge this world!

“Aaand relax.”


Heather heaves out of the thick sludge, already screaming. She’s in the dingy bathtub of a hotel they visited when she was eight, the buzz-snap of its half-functional fluorescent as terrifying as ever. She’s covered in something and she hates it. She swipes at her face but it squishes into the corners of her eyes, her ears, into her hair. She tears with filthy nails and it’s sinking into her skin. Spongy. Can’t breathe. She digs in, pulls away chunks of face like soft rubber, keeps pulling, feeling warm water well out of the holes. Off, off, she wants it off–

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