The Parasite Author:Ramsey Campbell The other children flee, as the door slams shut behind them. Ten year old Rose is left alone in the deserted attic room. Behind her a shape, swollen, quivering, diseased, draws near. Her skin prickles in fear as the soft thick substance penetrates her flesh. Rose is overwhelmingly, unspeakably, invaded. — Twenty years pass. Rose is now a successf... more »ul film critic, happily married to her collaborator, Bill Tierney. She has completely forgotten the worst trauma of her childhood. Only an occasional migraine headache, and an indefinable feeling of being somehow incomplete, ripple the peaceful calm of her existence.
But on a business trip to New York, Rose is assaulted by a mugger. Her subconscious is suddenly jolted into activity. The secret horror begins to unfold.
In New York, Munich, her native Liverpool, even in the open sky around a speeding jetliner, Rose gradually learns the strange, frightening exhilaration of out of body travel. She sees into the future more than once, manipulating reality and narrowly rescuing herself and Bill from certain catastrophe.
Rose welcomes her new powers with a mixture of joy and fear. Her writing takes on an added vitality; she feels herself growing more confident, even arrogant. But her marriage begins to crack under the strain as she falls prey to an unholy obsession.
Relentlessly the horrors multiply. A butcher shop disappears, the reappears before her eyes. A phantom baby wails in the fireplace. In her paranormal travels through the astral plane, she is drawn ever deeper into a gray, terrifying world, as amorphous as a nightmare, yet as real as our own. Worst of all she is pursued and tormented by grotesque, indescribable beings, some human, some demon.
Rose strives desperately to understand the source of her monstrous gifts, knowing it may already be too late. In one moment of shattering exorcism, the parasite within her breaks free, and Rose finds herself in stark confrontation with a destructive force no human should be made to face.« less