Edgar Allan Poe and Abe Lincoln in the Afterlife Ponder Sex Toys and Suicide

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The ghost of Abe Lincoln and the ghost of Edgar Allan Poe have been mates. They have been considered, at first, as an odd couple. You’d see them passing by the arbor of the kingdom of the useless to walk alongside the river, which was extensive and peaceable. Everyone knew ghost Lincoln as Abe and nothing extra, and ghost Poe as EAP.

Abe was tall and lean, and walked with a hitch, which allowed EAP, who was brief and bowlegged, to maintain good tempo. They have been drawn to one another as a result of they each had their deaths—or, in the language of this place, their First Deaths (FD)—earlier than their time.

“Say, EAP,” Abe puzzled aloud someday, as took their common constitutional. “When was your FD once more?”

“At forty, you rotter. Before what ought to have been the midpoint of my life. Didn’t get to be no fucking hero. No huge superhero like Abe. A couple of extra years, a bit extra time, hell, possibly an excellent publicist, and I wouldn’t have needed to rely on the complete posthumous glory factor. Because the factor that sucks about that…”

Abe would chuckle and make a motion to pat his good friend on the again, his ghost hand passing by the complete of EAP’s ghost chest. But it was the thought that counted. Also, sensible ghosts like these tended to favor up-to-date vernacular from again in the land of the dwelling. Keeps one younger.

“Quite, fairly,” Abe would comment. “Let us communicate, then, of the works you deliberate to write down. Had your time not been so cruelly curtailed.”

EAP loved this to some extent. It was his favourite method to discuss himself. To get into the issues he didn’t do, that he may need finished. That he informed himself he’d do, again earlier than his First Death, however which he saved pushing aside. Often he had been very down and may do little else however put issues off.

“Okay, proper. So, you recognize ‘Cask of Amontillado’?”

“I do know it with pleasure.”

“So what I used to be going to do, after the alcoholic juggler man is sealed up in the wall, nicely, I used to be going to kick issues up a notch. Like, it’s unhealthy for him and scary that he’s going to die in there, however he’s drunk, there isn’t a lot air, he goes quick. Could have been manner worse. So I used to be going to have this monster that was already inside, this huge half rat, half man factor, and he was everlasting, and may give everlasting life to somebody he may torment. The thought being that he’d give everlasting life to the drunk who had been sealed up in there by his enemy. And then it’d be the two of them in that horrible, rank house, no room to maneuver, sealed up perpetually, collectively, this dude and the rat monster.”


“Thank you.”

“You may experiment with that. When you write. When subsequent you write.”

Abe was referring to what occurs after you die if you happen to write nicely, as EAP may, and consider in what you’ve written. You put your ghostly hand to your ghostly parchment, and no matter you set down got here to go as nicely, if you happen to really believed in its completeness. You may write it, or somebody, proper into your life. Your death-life.

“I don’t know,” EAP cautioned, although he was not often the cautious kind. “I don’t know if that’s one thing it’d be smart to mess around with. I’ve already been taking part in round with some leisure pursuits. They are protecting me fairly busy.”

“Are they assuaging any of your sorrows?”

Abe and EAP have been additionally mates, it needs to be famous, on the foundation of their respective depressions.

“Slightly. They’re a bit titillating.”

“Tell me extra,” Abe requested, being a little bit of a voyeur.

“Soon. When subsequent we stroll. For we have now come to the closing embankment already. We appear to be strolling quicker as of late, Abe.”

“That we’re, EAP. A fist bump for you”—and their fists went by one another—“and we will go to quickly.”

EAP was lacking for what got here to be, kind of, three days, although time was troublesome to measure. When he subsequent joined his good friend, exterior the arbor, he was haggard. Heavy shadows of smoke lay beneath his eyes. They walked largely in silence, and at the final embankment, EAP, in some desperation, invited Abe again to his residence.

‘I like to Netflix and chill.’ Do you know the way many fucking idiots say that?

“For I dare not say what I’ve skilled the place it could be overheard,” he declared. EAP was fairly in style together with his fellow ghosts, and when a bunch of them heard one thing significantly grotesque or ribald emanate from his lips, chants of “EAP EAP EAP!” would go up and down the vapory streets. He wasn’t in the temper right this moment.

Once that they had settled in at what the locals referred to as chez EAP, the harried ghost started his story.

“So, I’m again on the courting web site, and I’m so fucking depressed at this level, and so sexy, frankly, that I’m nearly finished in search of something actual. Of substance. You meet one fool after one other, and if you happen to can deal with all of the ridiculous textual content communicate, you continue to must deal with individuals who know nothing about something and discuss in the identical six clichés. ‘I can keep in or I can exit.’ Wow. Massive fucking accomplishment. ‘I like to Netflix and chill.’ Do you know the way many fucking idiots say that?”


“Yes, a fucking lot. So what’s there for me? Learned, articulate, passionate, and craving—”


“Hmmm. Yes, nicely, unusual issues I suppose, and additionally unusual. At this level. So I simply say shit like, ‘Oh, you appear so fascinating, and you’re a bit submissive,’ which normally will get them to additional praise themselves, and then go into how submissive they’re, or need to be. Pretty fail-proof. What are you doing?”

“Making notes.”

“Don’t write down this subsequent half.”


“So I’m speaking to this one ghost girl. Smoking.”


“I believed you’d like that. And she needs to movie herself for me, exhibiting me how she will get off. I’d been jerking myself for nearly three days at that time, making an attempt to stave off the disappointment—”

“You will need to have coated the place.”

“No. No launch. I wished to sit up for one thing. It might be very arduous to have one thing to sit up for. Anyway, she says her fantasy is to have this daughter and Daddy factor occurring. And I used to be an excellent author, may I give her some concepts, and then she’d use them and movie herself. I gave her the concepts, and she went with it.

“Let me inform you, it was so incorrect and scorching. She’s there working herself, index finger on her ghost clit, however by no means actually on it, extra like she’s itching one thing tremendous quick. But she’s saying issues like, ‘I do know you and Mommy aren’t getting alongside very nicely recently, Daddy. When I put my head up exterior your door at night time, I by no means hear these sounds I like to listen to once I pay attention and contact myself in the hallway. I need to make you’re feeling good if Mommy received’t. Is that incorrect? Can I offer you this video as a check to see if you happen to’d like me this fashion? We don’t have to inform anybody if you happen to come into my room at night time. In a manner, I’ve been in your penis earlier than—”

“Fucking hell.”

“I do know, proper? ‘And being on it and having it in me does appear form of proper.’ And so forth. This was so scorching that I busted out the EAPer.”


“I did. Truly.”

EAP had written a narrative a couple of man obsessive about masturbation whose downside manifests itself in the type of a three-foot member—referred to as the EAPer, in the story of the identical identify—that emanates from his individual and in the end kills him. Thus was the EAPer made actual, and EAP would typically affix it to himself for max pleasure, when he was at his most depressed and it took that a lot for him to really feel something, which, in that context, wasn’t that pleasurable in spite of everything.

“Can I borrow it once more?” Abe requested.

“Sure. Next time you could have your truck, we’ll load it in the again.”

“But why not say this on the streets? You’d get many EAP-tastic chants over this one.”

“True. But it’s due to what occurred after. After the conclusion of my edge-fest, which left me suicidal—irony—I made a decision to write down. And I wrote a narrative in which there was a girl this foul, but in addition sensible, and sort, and humorous, and secure. It’s robust to get all of that in one individual. And as a result of I wrote it, and I believed in her totally, she got here out into the world. But I additionally didn’t write sufficient. So there have been different issues, too. Which I hadn’t counted on. And I used to be already fighting the reminiscences.”

That was virtually at all times an issue with these writing efforts. What one created sprang into being and was precise, however together with that got here the whole lot from earlier than that individual had been written. Prior reminiscences, joys, hurts, hopes, goals, dashed goals.

“Where is she?” Abe requested. “Is she right here now? Can I’ve a go?”

He was making an attempt to be humorous and inject some lightness into the state of affairs, however his joke missed the mark. He put his ghost hand by EAP’s ghost knee.

“No, she’s not. She was all of these issues, however, after all, there was the downside of what she had informed me way back, which I now knew, that she would depart sooner or later, in all probability with no warning, as a result of as I’m unhappy, she was sadder nonetheless, and whereas there’s a lot I can face, if I drink sufficient, there’s much less she may face. I didn’t actually know how you can finish the story, so I picked it up later, and I hung myself from a bridge. So that’s on my to-do record now.”

So nice was his personal disappointment that the thought of transferring his vaporous lips on the topic had him considering the subsequent leap riverward.

“Well, that’s straightforward sufficient. We can get that out of the manner no downside.”

EAP and Abe went right down to the river once more. Atop the bridge, a smoke-vine was handed over EAP’s head. He saluted Abe and jumped towards the water. The smoke wouldn’t maintain, and thus he didn’t jerk again up and begin to bounce, as with an ordinary gibbeting.

He stood up, and shrugged his shoulders.

“Well, that didn’t work.”

Abe had some expertise in these issues, having efficiently hanged himself from the bridge many instances, one thing he’d by no means shared even with EAP, so nice was his personal disappointment that the thought of transferring his vaporous lips on the topic had him considering the subsequent leap riverward.

Abe had a can of vapor. When you sprayed vapor with vapor, the new vapor made the first vapor arduous, strong, unbreakable. Some spray was utilized to the mist-vine round EAP’s neck, a salute was made, EAP jumped, and this time he died once more. It was agonizing, however solely in a bodily manner, which was, he thought, as his neck snapped, extra preferable than different methods.

A couple of days later, Abe got here by EAP’s place to return the EAPer.

“Hey, Abe.”

“What’s up, EAP?”

“You all EAPed out?”

“You may say that. Doing all proper since the newest dying?”

“Guess so.”

“How many is that now?”

“Don’t know. Everything blends.”

“Too a lot rain exterior to stroll, in all probability. We may strive our arms at writing a narrative collectively till it clears. Didn’t you want to add onto ‘The Raven’ and have a component two, the place Satan emerges from hell to protest the copyright over the poem, saying that he wrote it himself one night in his Fiery Kingdom? That could possibly be good.”

“I don’t know if we need to deliver one other satan into issues.”

“True, my good friend. We may simply sit and work the EAPer. It’s out in the truck.”

“I actually ought to clear it.”

“Well, let’s take it to the automotive wash. You we will seize a chunk after. You up for a chunk?”

“Yeah, I may eat.”

“Okay. Cool.”

Excerpted from Colin Fleming’s eighth ebook and sixth quantity of fiction, If You [ ]: Fabula, Fantasy, F**kery, Hope, printed by Dzanc, all rights reserved.

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