Chapter 19: Modern Love

Author: Jennifer Keaton
Date: 29th September 1997

Erica stared at the monitor; she had just finished reading Chapter 10 of Australian Psycho. She had started reading it the minute she got to Rex's after meeting Trudee, several hours ago.

It was all about her . . . .In fact, it pretty much echoed the events of the past few weeks, which was disconcerting considering that it was written before these things had happened.

Except, she hadn't blown up ACP. "Where would I get a machine gun?" she thought. "Especially in the middle of an illegal firearms gun buyback scheme?"

She looked out of Rex's window at the rows of antique shops that crowded the Woollahra landscape. It might be virtually impossible to find a food store, but you could always count on finding an Art Deco fireplace.

Things were falling into place. She didn't love Patrick, but his devotion to her was something she had taken for granted.

He was like an exceptionally ugly dark brown velour couch -- it wasn't something you wanted in you life, but it sure as hell was comfortable -- in a way those design-award winning couches couldn't even dream about.

She realised now that it was all pretence. He was using her as research.

"I didn't know him", she thought as Rex's screen saver of Nicki Buckley kicked into life. She'd only seen what he wanted her to see . . . how much more was there? The drug habit obviously only scratched the surface.

She also felt violated. Most of her life was in the book, how did Patrick know all this? Erica felt slightly relieved that there was no mention of Rex -- Patrick obviously didn't know about that, not even the Nutella- incident.

Still, something just didn't make sense . . . why would he paint all those pictures if he wasn't obsessed with her?

"Because someone else painted them," she said. Flikka? Of course not. Had he wanted to get into any of those positions with her, he only had to ask.

"Mikka!" she exclaimed. So Mikka's effort to separate her and Flikka in Sweden, was not because she was protective of her brother, but because she wanted to fuck Erica in every sense of the word, including the biblical one.

Suddenly Erica felt a hand on her shoulder. She looked at the clock, it was 7:00. Rex had left for work half an hour ago.

"I want to soap you down in a spa with Norsca," whispered Mikka, "and then I want to make love to you until you scream like a moose."

"It's not that you're not a really attractive person" Erica stammered "and I'm er flattered, no really and yes, I'm even a little curious but . . . "

The phone rang, interrupting Erica's inelegant attempt to let Mikka down gently. Gratefully, she picked it up as Mikka slunk out of the room.

"Hey Poppet, it's Rex."

"I'm so glad to hear from you. Mikka just said she wanted to sleep with me!"

"Well, I don't mind as long as you let me watch," Rex said slowly.

"You are such a creep," Erica scoffed in disgust.

"Well, never mind -- get this, remember Curtis Armstrong?"

"Yeah that filthy swine double crossed me," she said of the trench coat-wearing professor.

"A report just came in that they found his body in a park off Devonshire Street in Surry Hills. He was tied naked to the jungle gym in the park, upside down. His body was covered in tiny little nicks. Apparently, someone gave him paper cuts until he eventually bled to death."

Erica recoiled. Everyone mentioned in Patrick's book was dead, except for her and . . .

"Rex, we have to get to Trudee!!!"