As I returned from round the back of the Jewin Welsh Church which abuts part of the west side of The Denizen, I caught the hooning whistling of Chan's luxury apartment, coming down strangely through the stillness of the night. It had a queer note in it, low and constant, queerly meditative. Once I'd climbed onto the balcony I was able to see the floor in the middle of the living room was puckered upward in the centre into a strange soft-looking mound, parted at the top into an ever changing hole, that pulsated to that great, gentle hooning.
Tag: Barbican Estate
"Then there is The Denizen," said Meagle, "full of luxury apartments available at absurdly low rents and nobody will take them. It has taken toll of at least one life of every family that has lived there - however short the time - and concierge after concierge has died there. The last caretaker died just a few weeks ago."
The history of the site, opening amidst a maze of dates, revealed no trace of the sinister immediately after its use for a plague pit. The Denizen lies in the ward of Cripplegate and in the 1660s the Great Plague of London killed nearly eight thousand of the parish's inhabitants; but not one of those who lived or worked in the brothel above the ancient Golden Lane plague pit fell victim to the black death during this dreadful outbreak. The site was outside the original City of London wall and for hundreds of years had been notorious for both its poverty and its brothels. Those thrown in the plague pit came from the great mass of the lumpen proletariat in the area, and it seemed possible the spirits of this 'low end population' were very particular about who they wanted living or working on this piece of land. They didn’t seem to mind the low ranking coppers who moved into Bernard Morgan House in the nineteen-sixties, and these included members of the notoriously corrupt drug squad. The spirits were in two minds about what was going on when nurses moved in and mingled with the police. Something strange must be noted. No woman who lived in Bernard Morgan House ever managed a live birth, those who became pregnant had only still-born children. And according to the records, when brothels stood there no child was born alive to any of the women who worked in them for hundreds of years.
"Death, death, death," the heart of The Denizen beats proudly. "Long years—" he sighs. "Again you found me." "Here," she murmurs, "sleeping; on a balcony reading; laughing, rolling marbles in the games room. Here we left our lives—" Stooping, their light lifts the lids upon my eyes. "Death! Death! Death!" the pulse of The Denizen beats wildly. Waking, I cry "Oh, so this your life within? It's a living death."