As you know I am a martyr to projects, and there is no dearer project to me than a new home. Over the last twenty years, I have had sixteen of them but now I believe I have found the home nestled in the Hollywood hills overlooking LA. I loved the house at first sight, but the interior was irredeemably wedged in the 1970s and had to go. I hired someone to do something about it, and I had begun to feel she’d let me down rather badly.
“How much am I paying you?”
Janezza, the hottest and most expensive interior designer/architect/Feng Shui Master in Los Angeles, had the decency to blush at the question.
“It’s a six figure sum, Mr. Carter.”
“Then why can’t I find the kitchen?”
It’s my own fault. Myaddiction is for the Moden, to have the very best of the Now, and I feed that addiction relentlessly. Janezza’s talents have been lauded by anyone who is anyone from Milan to London. People I know to have taste, to have all the right sensibilities, have been driven to ecstasies by her work but a mere six weeks after turning her lose on my new LA home and I’m starting to see problems.
“The kitchen, as per the plan, is right behind this bookshelf, Mr. Carter. You told me to play with space, and I have.”
She’s oddly beautiful, this Janezza. There are hints of India in her bone structure, elements of the Pacific Islands in her figure but her eyes are pure Iceland and there’s more than a touch of New England in her accent.
She’s also right about the kitchen. If I move the bookshelf way from the wall and stand just…here…I can see the entire kitchen. I have no idea how this is possible. Or how to get into it. Or how I might get back out again.
“Janezza, remind me where you got your qualifications?”
“All of my diplomas are available to view online, Mr. Carter.”
They are, too. I check on my smartphone – which, I note, is now having reception problems. Eventually, there they are: the Celaeno Institute of Design, graduate of the Carcosa School, and an Honours degree from the Miskatonic school of Architecture. I recognise the last one, the other two are probably in Italy.
“Perhaps if you were to tell me what you believe the problems are?” she prompts. It’s hard to put into words.
For days now, the wine cellar has been gnawing at the edges of my mind. It seems, on the surface, a perfectly ordinary climate controlled wine cellar. The lighting is subdued, the air still, the walls faced with stone from Glozel in France. But the shelves seem to hold too many bottles and the darkness in the corners…the darkness goes *far too deep*.
The entryway is a nightmare all on it’s own. Other features of the house leap out at you from impossibly angled walls. The staircase seems fine until you start up it, at which point it becomes tortured and vertiginous. And the master bathroom…
“I really can’t even call it to mind, Janezza” I gasp, reaching out for the wall with one hand, in order to support myself, and missing. Is it me or has the room begun to spin? She seems stable enough, standing amidst the maelstrom of interior design with those too blue eyes piercing, piercing.
“Do try, Mister Carter” she says, and is that an insectoid buzz in her voice?
You…the bidet…the shower…” I gasp as the motion of the room drags me inexorably to the wall, centripedal force pinning me like some drab butterfly “the shapes…the forms…”
When I regained consciousness, she was long gone. So was the house. And my money. All I am left with is the memory of that peculiar bathroom design. It was eldritch, my friend, for how else to describe the design? A swirling, sprawling nuclear chaos at the heart of the house, where she had curves in all the wrong places.