Another Warren Ellis
short story, even more disturbing than the last:
ELLIE; Hello. You're through to the Helping Hotline. My name's Ellie, what's yours?
ELLIE; There seems to be some noise on your end of the line. What's your name again?
VOICE ON PHONE; Doesn't matter.
ELLIE; Everyone matters. Tell me your name. Let's talk a little bit.
VOICE ON PHONE; You changed your tune.
ELLIE; Excuse me?
VOICE ON PHONE; The line's been busy for two hours.
ELLIE; Well, sometimes a lot of people need time to talk.
VOICE ON PHONE; You were having phone sex.
ELLIE; I'm sorry?
VOICE ON PHONE; You were having phone sex while working on a suicide hotline.
ELLIE; Is this a joke?
VOICE ON PHONE; Wasn't to me. I needed help. I was going to kill myself if I didn't get these thoughts out of my head, and I just needed someone to talk to.
ELLIE; Well, we're talking now, aren't we?
VOICE ON PHONE; I committed suicide a hour ago, bitchface.
ELLIE; ...this is a joke, right? It's one of you guys...
VOICE ON PHONE; I threw a grenade in the toilet and then put my head down it. It's probably on the news by now.
ELLIE; This is a really sick joke.
VOICE ON PHONE; All because you were on the line having amputee-fetish phone sex.
ELLIE; Who is this?
VOICE ON PHONE; "Are you fingering your stump now, Gerald? Imagine me touching it, wearing the peach-colored rubber dishwashing gloves soaked in detergent..."
ELLIE; Oh my God.
VOICE ON PHONE; How many people do you think killed themselves tonight because you were having fun, Ellie?
VOICE ON PHONE; I'm sorry for the noise in the background, by the way. I can't turn it down. Too many people here.
ELLIE; Where are you?
VOICE ON PHONE; Let me give you a clue. Your father would like to say hello.
ELLIE; My father...
VOICE ON PHONE; Your father, yes. Your dead father.
VOICE ON PHONE; Your father the killer.
VOICE ON PHONE; He'd like to say hello.
VOICE ON PHONE; Hello, Ellie. It's Big Daddy. Anything you have to say for yourself?
ELLIE; I hate you, Daddy.
ELLIE; I hate you because all the girls you kept under the floorboards always had prettier dresses than I did. You bought them perfume, but you never bought me anything.
VOICE ON PHONE; Ellie? I had to spray them with something, they were stinking the place up...
ELLIE; I don't care. You always had excuses. "I couldn't afford a birthday present for you, I had to buy the hydrochloric acid." "Your mother never understood me and that's why I became a necrophile." "I can't take you to the party because I have to go trolling for college girls in pink sweaters tonight." Always another fucking excuse, Daddy.
VOICE ON PHONE; ...I'm sorry. I'll make it up to you, sweetheart.
ELLIE; How? You're dead. Never call me again, especially not at work.
VOICE ON PHONE; I'm sorry. I won't, I promise. Can I send you a present on your birthday?
ELLIE; That'd be a fucking first. Get off the line.
VOICE ON PHONE; Okay. I love you.
ELLIE; Don't. Just don't, okay? I'm hanging up now.
VOICE ON PHONE; Please --
ELLIE; I'm hanging up.
VOICE ON PHONE; CLICK
ELLIE; You're through to the Helping Hotline. I'm Ellie. What's your name?
ELLIE; Yes, I'm still wearing the anti-bacterial suit, and it's got the algae from your infections smeared all over it, you naughty boy...
(c) Warren Ellis 2003