This tale adeptly wields a horror-tinged urban legend to show a delusional sexual predator justify her actions as she submits to her baser desires.
Teacher, Abbie LeFleur, relocates from Boston to swampy Gracetown, Florida for a life-overhaul likely spurred by her divorce of 2 years prior. She buys a remote, lake-side fixer-upper and immediately lays plans to solicit cheap labor in the form of teenaged male students. Her sizing up of the potential candidates is chilling despite Abbie’s own plausible deniability.
Interestingly, the tale includes an element of dysmorphia akin to Lovecraft’s Innsmouth lore. However, here the physical transformations work as metaphor for the horror mounting.
Appearing in Ghost Summer, this short story first appeared in The Monster’s Corner: Stories Through Inhuman Eyes edited by Christopher Golden.
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