Suzie Tremors and the Barbarians of Speed

Chapter Three

Ken Preston

10 February 2024

An illustraation of an angry punk woman screaming into a microphone.

Is it safe here?

Am I safe?

I shouldn’t be telling you all this. But I guess I should tell someone, otherwise who’s going to know? God, it’s cold in here. Don’t you think it’s cold?

Where was I? Oh, yeah.

Ng took us to a place in Camden, a massive old house, all cracked windows, peeling paint, and a hound from Hell sitting on the front lawn. It yawned when it saw us, showing off its fangs.

Ng opened the door like he lived there. The reception hall was stuffed with clocks. Grandfather clocks, carriage clocks, clocks on the walls and on crooked shelves, crowding the mantelpiece, all sizes and shapes. Every clock told a different time to the others. I checked my watch. None of them had got the time right.

The living room was crowded with furniture and stuffed animals. Dark, like an overcast winter’s day. There was this obese man sitting cross-legged in the middle of the massive rug laid out over the scratched, warped floorboards.

He nodded at NG and gestured at Suzie to come and sit down opposite. All her usual bravado had disappeared. She sat down like a timid little child. I lifted the Leica to get a photo, recording Suzie’s life in silver nitrate like she said, but Ng placed his hand over my camera lens and shook his head.

I lowered the camera.

Put the lens cap on.

Paid attention.

I didn’t want to miss what was coming next. If I couldn’t photograph it, I had to see it.

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