Phantoms 

PHANTOMS
by Charles-Marie Flor O'Squarr
adapted by Brian Stableford

cover by Phil Cohen

Henriette has to share her bed with that infamous putrescence; she feels it next to her. Sometimes she attempts a desperate movement; then the cadaver rolls off her, with the slap of a dangling arm, and, abruptly thrust away, falls to the floor.

“Phantoms” (1885) is a classic study of a haunting, in which the narrator refuses to admit that the apparitions from which he suffers can be anything but hallucinations, but then ties himself in knots trying to explain them in terms of his own psychology, which he claims unconvincingly to be free from guilt. The story is one of the most interesting and elaborate 19th century developments of the theme of an ambiguous haunting, notable for its acidic artistry.

 
Also included in this collection are several darkly ironic contes cruels, remarkable for their relentless quest for originality, often striking in the unusual twists that give an extra turn of the screw to the psychological demolition of their protagonists, and a novella, My Interment (1893), which develops one of the classic motifs of horror fiction, ostensibly in a thoroughly naturalistic fashion. 

Contents:
PHANTOMS: A CRUEL STUDY [Les Fantômes] ( 1885)
THE PRÉGAMAIN SPRING.
THE GIRL.
AMOROUS PHANTOMS. 
One Minute. 
The Clown. 
Under the Commune. 
The Role. 
The Museum of Sovereigns. 
The Baby Portrait 
Vision. 
The Tamer 
The Telephone. 
The Rock Lobster 
Betrothal 
Faded Love-Letters. 
MY INTERMENT. [Mon enterrement]  (1893)
Introduction, Afterword and Notes by Brian Stableford.