Jack,

In the dorm rooms of Gray House, Ian lays on his bed.

Nik,

Nothing is right. You are going to say I’m superstitious for it again but it’s all wrong because I keep forgetting to pay the light charges. On the days when I have to spend half the morning calling in to the electric people to get the lights back on, I always fight with Pete and if I fight with Pete I never remember to call them back and when the power’s not back on by nightfall, I get into a fight with Deb. She’s working too late anyhow, she should be in bed by then. Do you recall the last time we came in after midnight and just before I was almost struck by that car? I know you believe in the superstitions since I see you cross yourself at cemeteries though you never tell me such things. You’re waiting, I think. You don’t trust me. Well I’m going to make you trust me. Wait and see.

I

Nik,

The trains coming in from Cheshire were damaged by the meteors. It’s planned to happen again in November and I want you to come with me to see them. I am sorry for calling so late but I knew you would be awake. I don’t remember having told you before about the night I was locked in the schoolhouse. I was running away from home and stole jellies my mother made. I brought a sack and broke into the school. The lock jammed on me. I was terrified.Are you laughing? Then, I wasn’t found till morning when the maintenance team came. I’d hid all night under the watering I don’t know what you’d call them. I’m sorry I fell asleep while you were still on the phone. I can’t stand it here. I want the heavens to rain with fiery cannons down at me. I want to be bashed into something new. I know you will understand.

I

Nik,

I rented out Steph’s cellar, but you’ve got to let me clean it before we can use it. These are the bending bottle days but I don’t drink any longer. I swallowed the shards of God’s considerable debris. The two of us. If we will go to hell for this raconteuring, the restless apathets will have stopped listening, I know. I was wanting to ask if you remember how it was the trains vibrated everything on the iron-walled side of the isle of dogs?

We drove the captain’s plagues and rafted the sickest
to the banks, where the holier man waits to give his life for the cure
But the leeches starved and the barred doors told weak prayers
The words they threw at you, the words, you knew them too

I

Nik,

I must go and get shoe polish and ribbons.

I

Nik,

I wrote you a song. I’m outraged by your parent’s reaction to finding us out last Sunday. I'll take up your auto charges now, don't worry yourself. There were no directions out of the fire plains. Our marching never moved us anyway but through misheard orders and the embers. Do you remember? It didn't stop us any. Very glad now that I had the intuition to get a telephone connected in your flat. Now just please answer when I give you a call.

I

Nik,

The vast constituency has come to the North corner of the city. I offered to pay for him room and board, but he says where he stays doesn’t cost him. I don’t remember when last I could say for certain he slept. He sit behind sunglasses that seem to darken the long I look at them. He says the airports he’s seeking to build have been approved. It’ll make transport easy, God leave the trains for greater disasters.

Woke up sick again, urine oaking my shirt all the way to my chin this time. I know it’s crass to say but the smell is beginning to make me miss you. Please don’t repeat that. I love you, nikka. I want to be with you now but the train is late as always. These transgression will keep me late, the train arriving or no.

I

Nik,

Je veux me tuer. Vous êtes parti depuis trois jours dans les montagnes avec votre famille. J'ai menti lorsque j'ai dit que j'allais bien. Je ne veux rien d'autre que toi. J'ai eu plusieurs saisies et je ne peux pas dormir parce que quand je fais, j'ai de terribles cauchemars d'araignées sur les voies ferrées. Ils crient de l'aide, mais je ne peux pas les aider.

J'ai promis de lire les versets bibliques que vous m'avez donnés, mais j'ai également compris cela. J'aurais aimé savoir que vous pensiez à vous raser la tête. Je l'aurais fait avant de partir pour la nature sauvage. Je désire désespérément que j'ai eu quelques-unes de tes cheveux ici avec moi dans le noir. C'est plus sombre que jamais. Je me sens tellement idiot de ne pas demander le numéro de téléphone de l'auberge que vous allez rester. J'ai eu le courage de tout cela avant de décider de me marier Deb et maintenant je ne le fais pas. Ce qui m'importe est de changer très rapidement maintenant que je ne pense pas pouvoir continuer. N'ayez pas peur pour moi. Je vais lire vos versets à nouveau et comprendre pourquoi vous avez dit qu'il s'agissait d'une carte hors de ce lieu. I love you, Nikka. Do you love me? Please give us a call and say you do.

I

Nik,

When I'd run away from home the second the time after the time I had told you of, I brought a bomb with me. It was a pipe bomb made by my mate older than me which I stole. The medicines would do nothing to destroy my cock considérant the strength of the blast put into it. I am dreaming of exploding a train station bathroom. It'd give us time enough that I could make love to you. I've come to the library to check a book on it. That's where I'm writing this letter.

I tried to make a large payment for your auto charge but I was rebuffed when I told them I was not your family. I'm sending Steph there to try again and he will tell them he is your brother. Thank you for ringing me, I would never have known my vouchers weren't accepted.

I

Nik,

The dead are talking to me again. The tracks were built of their bones and they don’t find it pleasing to be run over by a

I had another seizure and another vision too with it. Deb’s dreams are telling her what I knew all along. She and I are the same this way, tho she won’t tell anyone about her own seizures. She dreamed the bullets of agamemnon were put on the tracks. There were prefabricated homes there, all along the lanes. In November the world is going to end. I know I’ll find myself lost if I’m separated from you. I’ve decided to divorce Deb if she won’t come with us. She remembers more than she can admit, but it changes nothing.

I

Nik,

The pills are a consolation to the noises that have been dusted over. I can't hear down up here the way I did down there. The people cross over the Moore, recognizing their last moments how I never will. I want to stop it but I know there are no right answers, only wrong tunnels corroded with lies.

The way through is happening to me/The way through is happening to you/The way this was always wrong/I'm not going away from you

I've been writing you another song. It has an elephant in it like I promised last time. Do you have enough food? Come around for me and I'll take you to the shops.

I

Nik,

You vibrate my body with the sound you make having an orgasm. It's the same sound of the trains coming to a halt in the station. I've reconciled with Steph now won't you let me go on over to your flat? I miss you. I know that I made an arse of myself, but he's forgiven me and so now should you? Will you? I thought to package my sperm in an envelope for you but that was prior to the brawl and had sense bopped into me. I love you.

I

All of these are sealed into thin envelopes through which Ian's slipshod rapid print can be seen plainly, on his unlined journal paper.  He slips them under my door, the envelopes, sealed and blank but for a warning scrawled along the seal: DO NOT REPLY.

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