“Laitka must be bathed every month with a sponge and warm water. Soft soap if she needs it. She gets tacky with all the fluids that dirty her, and her clothes may stick. If they stick the patterns from the fabric will write themselves on her skin. I have never let this happen. I peel everything away: the loose pyjamas and nightgown, the intimate cotton fretwork of her underwear. One must do this gently because her skin can peel away too, if the clothes have been too long unremoved.”
A short story about a man and the object of his affections. Published in Brittle Star. Read online here or subscribe here.