Thursday, 29 December 2011

Interview with the City Treasurer (1991)

This story remained lost for more than 20 years. I discovered it at the bottom of a box in the cellar of a friend's house on Christmas Day, 2011. I do remember that shortly after completing it I showed it to a friend who judged it to be "puerile", which probably explains why I discarded it. The piece certainly is crude and clumsy but I have resurrected it for minor historical interest and because it does reflect my concerns (mainly financial) at the time it was written.

Q: Have you ever emerged from your chamber?
A: No. There is no precedent. My predecessors were content to stay down here, in the darkest depths of City Hall, and so am I. I will never meet the public face to face, or face to arse as the case may be.
Q: Have you ever answered the telephone?
A: Sometimes I like to be responsible enough to be unhelpful personally. I vomit streams of steaming excrement into the mouthpiece. There is no difference between my mouth and my anus. When I am constipated, I grow silent.
Q: Do you have a conscience?
A: I have the conscience of an aardvark, the urgency of a tree. My mentality is that of a worm or a snowflake. My one purpose in life is to PROMOTE SUFFERING. I PROMOTE SUFFERING with great efficiency.
Q: How do you choose your victims?
A: At random. It gives me particular satisfaction to destroy upstart intellectuals.
Q: How do you destroy them?
A: The ways in which SUFFERING can be PROMOTED are many and varied. I relish them all. I have made the PROMOTION OF SUFFERING into an exact science. The very synthesis of SUFFERING could be formed from my array of subtle Mindfucks. The Poll Tax Mindfuck is my personal favourite. There are many others. The Housing Benefit Mindfucks have been the downfall of many.
Q: Why do you scratch at the sores that cover your body?
A: So that the yellow pus will dribble down between my legs.
Q: What do you eat for breakfast?
A: A jar of worms. I spear them with a cocktail stick. My black tongue moves up and down. My teeth mash the slimy bodies. Worm juice splashes over my chest. Shifting my weight on the toilet that serves as my throne, I pick my nose with the cocktail stick and open my bowels with a grunt. The wealth of the city plops down into the bowl. This is the real jar of worms: the one that will never be opened.
Q: Do you ever read the letters you receive?
A: I never read Applications for Housing Benefit. When I masturbate, I use them to wipe the come off my belly.
Q: Why do a calculator and a vibrator lie next to each other on your desk?
A: With one I work out Poll Tax Rebates; with the other I fuck myself. It is not entirely clear, even to myself, which I use for what.
Q: Who is your favourite writer?
A: Kafka. I have read The Trial many times. The theme of this book is well known: a victim is punished by a system for a crime he probably did not commit. I have adopted this system that punishes crimes probably not committed and refined it. I have removed the doubt.
Q: How many assistants do you have?
A: A great many. They were once normal people. One by one I have buggered them all, with a member as pale and fat as a monstrous grub. The experience has left them mere shells. This is how I like them. I am such a misanthrope that I cannot bear the company of any rational being.
Q: How else would you describe your penis?
A: Cold.
Q: For how long do you torture victims?
A: A long time. I like to turn the screw slowly. When I break wind in the face of humanity, the smell always lingers.
Q: How would you describe that smell?
A: Like that of charred bodies. A miasma of evil that expands in choking purple clouds.
Q: Why do you have no navel?
A: Because I was not born. This is my secret. My victims know I am not a normal man but they have not yet realised I am not a man of any kind. Only an utterly alien lifeform could have such a fanatical hatred of humanity.
Q: Can you describe your present/general state of mind?
A: Completely dead/defunct.
Q: Do you ever have moments of doubt?
A: In darker moods I sometimes wonder what effect my reign is really having on the city. Reports of mass homelessness, poverty and despair reach me daily, of course, but I have only statistics. I long to see the SUFFERING for myself.
Q: What is your greatest dream?
A: One day a victim will commit suicide near City Hall and my assistants will be able to snatch the corpse. They will bear it down to my chamber where I can molest and mutilate it and practise bizarre forms or oral sex and sodomy upon it. This corpse will be proof that all my policies are working. I will not longer have any moments of doubt.


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