This one surprised me. The first few paragraphs left me cold, seeming to be headed to a place I don’t like in my fiction. But the moment the despicable-but-charming Robert meets Aurelia, the story had its hooks in me.
I’m not usually a fan of psychological horror, and this story bridges the gap between “dark fantasy” and “horror” quite deftly, but it’s more of an uneasy Gaiman-esque kind of thing than anything actually horrific. The disquieting story of Robert and Aurelia seems to march on despite the reader’s uneasy feelings, and it ends up exactly where it needs to.