Richard Laymon: Flesh

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Richard Laymon Flesh
  • Название:
    Flesh
  • Автор:
  • Издательство:
    Leisure Books
  • Жанр:
    Ужасы и Мистика / на английском языке
  • Год:
    2009
  • Город:
    New York
  • Язык:
    Английский
  • ISBN:
    978-1-4285-0729-6
  • Рейтинг книги:
    5 / 5
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Flesh: краткое содержание, описание и аннотация

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No one in town has ever seen anything like it: a slimy, mobile tube of glistening yellow flesh with dull, staring eyes and an obscene, probing mouth. But the real horror is not what it looks like, or what it does when it invades your fleshbut what it makes you do to others. FLESH introduces a whole crowd of characters beginning with Eddie who is cruising back roads in his van for his next victim. Eddie ends up a bit crispy, but what happens after that is absolutely fascinating. Seems that dear Eddie was not acting alone; he was the host for something that compels humans to turn cannibal. The whole novel follows the leap of this “something” from person to person, hideous murders, creepy abandoned buildings with danger at every corner and one cop’s relentless pursuit of the weird killer.

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Flesh — читать онлайн бесплатно полную книгу (весь текст) целиком

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Richard Laymon

FLESH

This book is dedicated to Dean and Gerda Koontz,

Who consistently top The Laymon Times

“Best-People List.”

A Loving Husband

Up the stairs three at a time, snapping open the holster and drawing his .38, still at full speed when his shoulder hit the door.

Wood splintered and burst and the door flew open.

Nobody.

He ran for the bat-wing doors.

He dove through the doors, tumbled into the kitchen, came up in a squat and took aim.

He didn’t fire.

He didn’t know what he was seeing.

The woman in the red shorts was sprawled on the floor, faceup. Faceup? She didn’t have a face. A chin maybe.

Ron was hunched over her, his face to her belly.

No one else in the kitchen.

The cellar door stood open.

“Ron? Ron, which way did he go?”

Ron lifted his head. A bleeding patch of his wife’s flesh came with it, clamped in his teeth, stretching and tearing off. He sat up straight. He stared back at Jake. His eyes were calm. He calmly chewed. Then he reached back for the shotgun.

CHAPTER ONE

Eddie, in his van, had the road to himself.

Except for the bicycle.

When he first saw the bike from the crest of the hill, it was below him and far ahead. At such a distance, he couldn’t tell much about the rider.

He knew it wasn’t a kid.

The bike was one of those high, streamlined jobs, not like you see kids pedaling around on. And the rider looked big enough to fit the bike.

Could be a teenager, Eddie thought.

Could be a gal.

Squinting, he leaned toward the windshield. The bottom of the steering wheel sank into his belly, filling the crease between his rolls of fat.

Could be a gal, he thought.

With the back of his hand, Eddie wiped his mouth.

He was halfway down the hill by now, picking up speed and closing the gap between his van and the bike.

The rider’s brown hair was somewhat long. That didn’t prove much. A lot of men wore their hair that long and longer.

But you don’t see a lot of guys in red shorts.

Eddie sped closer.

Close enough to see how the rider’s hips flared out from a small waist.

A gal, all right.

On both sides of the road were fields with trees here and there. No buildings. No people. The road ahead to where it curved and vanished was deserted. Eddie checked his side mirrors. Behind him, the road was clear.

“Her it is,” he said.

He pressed the gas pedal to the floor.

Though the rider didn’t look back, she must have heard the rising engine sound. Her bike moved to the right, gliding away from the middle of the lane and taking up a new position a yard from the road’s edge.

Eddie bore down on her.

She was hunched over her handlebars. She kept pedaling.

Her T-shirt was so tight that Eddie could see the bumps of her spine. Bare skin showed between the bottom of her shirt and the elastic band of her shorts.

Her left arm swung out. She waved Eddie by.

At the last instant, she looked back. Eddie was near enough to see that her eyes were blue.

She was very pretty.

He turned his van toward her.

I like the pretty ones.

Her front wheel jerked right.

Pretty and young and tender.

He waited for her to meet the windshield.

But she was being hurled the wrong way—forward and to the right. She was no longer on the bike. She was above it, legs kicking overhead, as Eddie’s van smashed through it.

No problem, Eddie thought.

She won’t go far.

I’ll get her. Oh, yes.

His right-side tires bounced over the gravel shoulder of the road and he was about to steer back onto the pavement when he came upon a bridge.

He hadn’t even noticed it before.

He glimpsed the sign as he sped past it.

Weber Creek.

Not much of a creek.

Not much of a bridge—but it had a concrete guard wall four feet high.

CHAPTER TWO

“Are you all right?”

“Do I look all right?”

She was sitting on the ground with her back to the road, her head turned to look up at him. Above her right eyebrow, the skin was scraped off to her hairline. The raw place was striped with beaded threads of blood. It was dirty, and a few bits of straw-colored weeds clung to the stickiness.

Jake sat down beside her on the edge of the ditch.

Both her knees and the front of her right thigh were in the same condition as her forehead. Her right arm hung between her legs, knuckles against the ground. She held the arm with her other hand while it shook. She didn’t appear to be trying to hold it still. The other hand seemed meant to soothe it the way someone might lay a hand on an injured pet.

“Do you think it’s broken?” Jake asked.

“I wouldn’t know.”

Jake took out a notepad. “Could I have your name?”

“Jamerson,” she said. The corner of her mouth twitched.

Jake wrote. “And your first name?”

“Celia.”

“Thanks.”

She turned her head to look at him again. “Shouldn’t you be doing something about that?” Her eyes shifted toward the blazing van fifty or sixty feet to her left.

“The fire truck’s on the way. My partner’s keeping an eye on things.”

“What about the…driver?”

“We can’t do much for him.”

“Is he dead?”

A shish kebab, Chuck had remarked when he saw the driver’s remains hanging out the windshield.

“Yes,” Jake said.

“He tried to hit me. I mean it. He had the whole road to himself. I’m over by the shoulder and I signal him to go around, and I look back and he’s actually swerving right at me. He’s grinning and he swerves right at me. Must’ve been going sixty.” Her face had a puzzled expression as if she were listening to a bizarre joke and waiting for Jake to feed her the punch line. “That guy meant to kill me,” she said. “He creamed my bike.”

She nodded toward it. The bike with its twisted wheels lay in the weeds on the far side of the ditch.

“What happened, I turned quick to get out of his way and it flipped on me. Just before he hit it, I guess. The van never touched me. Next thing I knew, I was landing in the ditch and there was this crash. Bastard. That’s what he gets, going around trying to…what’d I ever do to him?”

“Did you know him?” Jake asked.

“I’ve heard of these guys, they’ll run down dogs just for laughs. Hey, maybe he thought I was a dog.” She tried to laugh and came out with a harsh sobbing noise.

“Had you ever seen the man before?”

“No.”

“Did you do anything that might’ve angered him?”

“Sure, I flipped him the bird. What is this? Is it suddenly my fault?”

Did you flip him off?”

“No, damn it. I didn’t even see him till he was about a foot off my tail.”

“As far as you’re concerned, then, his action was totally unprovoked?”

“That’s right.”

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