Another mysterious horror story has resurfaced in my memory, this time from the realm of science fiction. It was a short story by a male author. For a while, I thought Isaac Asimov might have been responsible, but since reading him as an adult, the tone of this particular story doesn’t seem quite consistent with the rest of his work.
The setting was a spaceship where a female crew member died (possibly after killing herself) and was ejected into space. The spaceship then went through some sort of warp and emerged greatly diminished in size, so that the woman’s now enormous corpse was floating around outside it. This idea is full of a vivid horror that has stuck with me over the years. There was an especially grotesque image of colossal blackened lips visible through a porthole. Later on, the spaceship underwent an even more drastic transformation in size, this time becoming massive enough to wipe out hundreds of planets as it moved through space. I think the crew were gradually driven mad by the knowledge that they’d destroyed countless worlds, and lives.
As part of the ‘research’ I did for this post, I very quickly scanned the internet for information on whether bodies decompose in space. It appears they don’t (well, not externally, at least)!