• Vol. 07
  • Chapter 03


The corridors of the hospital are like a friggin maze, she thinks to herself as her bare feet pad along the homogeneous floors, careless of any infection which might have spilled and been inefficiently cleaned. She ignored the smear at the bottom of one wall, just below the sterile soap dispenser.

The nightgown she wears with such disdain is merely camouflage to serve with blending in while she seeks her client. She snorts at the political correctness of the term.

“Prey,” she vocalises in a hiss. “Goddamn PREY!”

A passing nurse stops in passing and makes to address her. She hasn’t time and flicks her will in his direction. He stares through her – blinks, squints at her position … but – unable to focus on her – shakes his head and carries on down the corridor muttering about sleep loss and double shifts. Despite appearances when she doesn’t take such extreme action to avoid notice, she is not a dour teenager in a light nightdress and luxurious loose hair – she’s an immortal bailiff of sorts, repossessing souls on a freelance basis.

Hell used to have the monopoly, but the economy being what it is on earth, the representation of the afterlife changed to allow humans to relate. Hence the p.c. shit and the move towards clandestine collections as opposed to the tattery cloak of darkness … and the shrieking she so enjoyed.

So, this was the source of her irritation and bubbling rebellion – lack of job-satisfaction … and of course the bloody labyrinthine design of the hospital.

Finally, she finds the ICU. She tries a smile with the charge nurse, querying after her client.

“Oh, Charlie’s recovering nicely. He was moved to the open ward not a half-hour ago.”



The banshee scowls, plucks a calming reefer out of nowhere and sticks it in her mouth.

“Have you a light?”

“Oh no – you can’t even smoke on hospital grounds, dear. Health and Safety!”

The cigarette droops a little as the creature considers returning with a replacement soul … but her current employer frowns on that sort of thing.

The scowl deepens to a glare.