Friday, 19 July 2013

Brotherhood of the Blue Balls by Sam Carter

Read by Sean Hebert

It was Mick’s idea, first of all. Mick was kind of a doofus when it came to chicks, but kind of a genius when it came to everything else, and after he came up with the idea, the guys immediately knew it was a winner. It was such an incredibly simple and wonderful idea that it was actually amazing nobody had thought of it before. Apart from a few religious nuts, obviously.

You wanna know what the idea was? OK, prepare your mind to be blown – it was this: celibacy.




Warrior Princess by Michael Skansgaard

Read by Saffron Chan

There is one generalization with no exceptions, which is that all members of the Tang Dynasty court have something to lose. Even the gamblers who dropped their salaries into the keno lotteries. Even the apostate monks who misplaced their devotion to Confucius. Even the debauchees who left their reputations with the prostitutes. Even the eunuchs who forfeited their testicles at birth.

All Tangs have something to get rid of. Men have their lives and that’s why they become soldiers. Women have their virginities and that’s why we become concubines.

I was born with even more than that. As a baby, I was under the care of three nursemaids who bathed me three times daily and rinsed my hair in calamus perfume so that someday it would be fit to lie on a prince’s pillow. My cheeks were lathered with ambergris and powdered with ivory chalk from the horns of a rhinoceros. The only Tang with more to lose Emperor Xuanzong, my father, on whose beard I was once allowed to tug until I turned three years old and pulled too hard. To this day, he still wears his goatee in the same style—I know this because I peeked into his coffin and saw that while he had decomposed, his beard hadn’t.




Chastity by Richard Meredith

Performed by Alex Milner

The first time I met Chastity I was drinking a whisky-soda that was light on the whisky and heavy on the wallet, and she was hanging upside-down with her nipples a foot from my face.

This was at the Kosy Kitten in Soho, a place just expensive enough that most of the strippers could pass for 25 under blacklight and didn’t sport too many scars – Caesarean or otherwise. I suppose you could say it was love at first sight, for me at least; for her it was all in a day’s work. I doubt she saw much of my face, or made much of what she saw: not only was I wrong way round, but she was shortsighted and preferred to dance blind.

She didn’t tell me that until much later; I don’t think she ever told her manager. She’d do her makeup in the dressing room, then deliberately and carefully remove her contact lenses before striding out onto the tiny mirrored stage to wind and grind and sling her stuff around that pole.

Stamping her Perspex heels so her little buttocks shook in time with her tits, swaying and swinging to some cock-rock anthem a WWF star might use for his theme tune, shimmying and sliding, flashing her UV-white teeth and tossing her nightblack hair, she looked like the Goddess of Fucking Everything.

 


All the Way by Daniel Bird

Read by Ann-Marie Taaffe

It was the third date. The second Chardonnay. The first time Kevin knew he would get Katie between the sheets. He had guided the conversation through a series of topics with a strong connection to her flat: photos, home movies, interior design and cleanliness. He was pleased with his strategy. It was a sure thing now and he was excited. He thought that he might burst. When she left to powder her nose he quickly settled the bill without even glancing at the total. His eyes were fixed on the restaurant door.

When she returned she stroked his wrist, forcing his voice to come out like a prepubescent squeak,

“Coffee?” he asked, swallowing, “I know a place that does - ”

She held her finger to his lips.

“I have great coffee at my place.”



Our Lady of Guadeloupe by Evan Pheiffer

Read by Warner Sallman

I was never much of a romantic type. Or very good-looking, for that matter. In fact, I suppose I was probably something of bore – too concerned with Ouija boards and plate tectonics to care about girls. Just kidding – I wasn’t that smart. The only reason I made the chess team is because I caught the captain jerking off in the locker room and told him I’d squeal if he didn’t let me come to Springfield for the State Finals.

After high school I enrolled in a community college on the outskirts of town. I was madly in love with Roxanne and, despite my initial timidity, had forsaken a “career” in the army to follow her to school. (The boys in green at the outlet mall had tried to recruit me on several occasions). The important thing is that I was trying. What’s that line about blindly attempting something over and over again? The object of my heart’s desire had to be getting closer, one failure at a time.




A Good Hard Shopping by Keon Woong Lee

Read by Keon Woong Lee

Sale. Big Sale. Warehouse sale. Buy one get one free. 70 percent off. These words, printed in big, bold red, electrify the skin and send the endorphins racing. Your fingers twitch and your feet inch closer. This is the sign you’ve been waiting for. The words you’ve been wanting to read as you pass by all the other gleaming, shiny stores that strut out its wares.

You’ve strolled in there many times before. Don’t lie. You’ve watched. Sometimes from afar. Sometimes you’ve even wandered in. You’ve touched their goods. Run your hands over the material, massaging it, making sure it’s real. Genuine leather. Genuine ITALIAN leather. You’ve wanted to take it home, let the material rub against your body and let everybody know, yes, I OWN this. It’s all over me. It’s mine.