The Caitiff – Paragraph Extract #13

Only four days to go now, until The Caitiff comes out on Amazon! There’s still a generously-proportioned part of me (I believe he prefers to be called curvacious) that can’t believe I won’t have it to work on anymore; to fiddle around with sentences and molest paragraphs as I wait for something to happen.

‘Do you like living in the city?’ He asked me severely, his eyes glazing over as he looked out the window. I thought about the question for a while, staring at the ceiling.

‘As much as I liked living at home, I think,’ I replied, after a moment, ‘for the same reasons that a rat might, anyway. Life is here, even the half-life modernity inspires in us. For all that I pity the students and hold the disciples in contempt,’ Eli threw me a strange look then, one which pretended not to know of whom I spoke but he certainly must have done, ‘they are a better alternative than the dull-eyed failed revolutionaries of my home town, each one with a beer-inflated stomach and romanticised opinions of smoke-stacked factories; better than the sluttish women with their breasts spilling from imitation dresses and their heavy hand-bags stuffed with bottles of vodka as they sneak into nightclubs and order Cokes; better than the children who squeal to each other over social media and pretend that their lives are hard. Manchester is the heart of a world I despise, but where I come from just isn’t the heart of anything except, maybe, decay. One day, I shall take you there and you can see the empty galleries beside the rain-sodden market; the marbled area where the latest group of Alternatives gather, each year thinking that they are special, that, somehow, their problems are worse than everyone else’s; the great Face, which squats outside my favourite pub, its judging eyes of stainless steel witnessing an endless nothing. I will show you the green outside the church, with shit-stained benches and groups of pre-pubescent brain-washed morons sitting on the grass drinking weak cider and proclaiming how very drunk they are. It is impossible to hate those people; it is impossible to admire them; it is barely possible to think of them as people at all.’

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