The Brightonomicon by Robert Rankin

By Robert Rankin

Were you conscious that there are, hidden within the streets of Brighton, twelve historic constellations, just like the Hangleton Hound and the Bevendean Bat? good, there are, and on each hangs a story, a story so unusual that simply The Lad Himself, that inveterate spinner of stories and talker of the toot, Hugo Rune, can unravel them. And he'd larger do it speedy, simply because if he does not clear up the dozen mysteries prior to the yr is out, that'll be the tip of the area as we all know it.

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I will hire a car for you to chauffeur. It will expedite matters regarding our travel. ’ ‘Make it a Rolls-Royce, then,’ I said, as I had indeed quite taken to the driving. ‘Flashy,’ said Mr Rune. ‘A Bentley, perhaps. I shall look into the matter. ’ ‘Lost dog,’ I said. ’ Mr Rune sought Scotch. ’ he asked. ’ ‘I have no money. ’ ‘You have yet to earn your keep. I provide you with free room and board. ’ Mr Rune tried in vain to wring Scotch from the empty bottle. ‘New management. It is the “Goth Licence” now.

The opportunity, however, did not arise and I did not have words with the Divinity. Perhaps He had business elsewhere, or perhaps, in His infinite wisdom, He had already mapped out my future and was simply sitting back upon His Throne of Glory, observing the situation. Or perhaps, just perhaps, He does not exist at all. My death occurred on Saint Valentine’s Day in the Sussex town of Brighton. Or more precisely two hundred yards off the coastline, in the chilly waters of the English Channel. I had travelled down from my native Brentford by train with my teenage sweetheart Enid Earles, hoping for a weekend of sexual adventure in a town that is noted for that sort of thing.

Which it is,’ Mr Rune agreed. ‘But when you hand your manuscript to a publishing editor, that esteemed personage will take issue with the accuracy of your revelations. They will say that such and such a person did not do such and such a thing in the nineteen sixties. ’ cried Mr Rune, and he drew himself up to his full and improbable height. ’ ‘That sign definitely does say Dogs R Us,’ I said. ‘Then you will stick to your guns, young Rizla. ’ Mr Rune plucked leaves from the hedge and let them fall to the pavement.

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