Three Body Horror novellas by three Ladies of Horror.
“The Night Belongs to Us” by Jess Landry: When Laura arrives in an unfamiliar city in search of her missing mother, Mary, the last thing she expects to find is trouble—but after countless trips to different places to bring her addict mother home, she should expect nothing less. After being attacked by a group of disfigured women, Laura discovers an unlikely saviour in Cee, a haunted woman that the residents of the city streets fear. Meeting Laura unlocks the softer side of Cee, and in Cee sparks a hope that she can escape her current arrangement—being the right-hand of a revered spectre who created a community of lost women called the Underground…a creature with the face of a woman lovingly referred to as Mother. As Laura and Cee come together to find Mary and get out of town, Mother catches wind of their plan and devises one of her own—to sway Laura in her favour. After Laura realizes that Mary is the Underground, and that Cee’s been lying to her, it doesn’t take long before the thought of becoming a resident of the Underground pulls Laura in. Can Cee save Laura before it’s too late? Or does Mother already have her claws in too deep?
“Acid Bath” by Sofia Ajram: Best friends Priya and Luca strike it lucky when they are both found eligible to be healthy human subjects in a high-paying clinical trial. It ain’t their first time at the rodeo, and sure, while this study might be more dangerous and unpredictable than those they’ve done before—the bigger they are, the better they pay, and no dish is ever seasoned without the spice of risk. While Priya aspires to make enough money in the trial to pay her way into a prestigious filmmaking program, finances mean nothing to Luca who only hopes the study can be the seed of his creative inspiration.
But as the weeks pass, bizarre side effects begin to kick in, and the two friends find themselves unable to reach the trial doctors. Worse yet, gruesome and deranged deaths are cropping up on the news featuring participants they recognize from the same trial. As rivalries and resentments bubble up, Priya and Luca must discover if there is something sinister lurking within the medication they’ve been taking that will tear their friendship apart before it all spirals out of control.
“Your Next Best American Girl” by Nadia Bulkin: All Veronica’s ever wanted is to be crowned Miss Americana. When she wakes up with three strange sores on her arm, she thinks it’s a problem for her dermatologist. But when the sores keep getting worse—deeper, bigger, all over—she realizes she’s being sabotaged. Now Veronica needs to figure out who’s responsible before she misses her shot at the crown or her body falls apart completely—whichever happens first.