I read a short story in the Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction in the past 8 or so years that deals with a lot of body modification. The main character had surgery at some point to add wings but they have started to rot. One of the characters we meet had a beehive living in their body as well, and at the end the person tells the main character his bees have taken a liking to her and want to nest.

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I Am Not I by G. V. Anderson, published in The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, July-August 2017. You can read the story courtesy of PodCastle: Part 1 and Part 2

A review from Goodreads details some of the plot:

Varians are evolved from human stock. It's rare but possible that a Varian could have a Sap offspring. Our protagonist is one. She was hidden until she was fifteen then had surgery to have wings and extra eyes added. It's been ten years and she needs touch up surgery, what she has is rapidly failing. She gets a job at a store that sells Sap parts as souvenirs. The business is failing, plenty of stock, but she needs to drum up sales. A lot happens at the end.

The main character, Miss Strohm-Waxxog, has wings, but they are falling apart:

My wings, stale as a new butterfly's, rustled against my clothes as I moved.


And here I was, with sore, brittle wings and a gammy eye.

The beehive character is called the honey man, and he is described as "more hive than flesh":

He was more hive than flesh. He wore a loose shirt and pressed trousers, braces slung uselessly about his hips, and every available patch of skin was riddled with deep, black holes. Holes that went nowhere at all. They obscured his face, his mouth; he had no hair, just tunnels boring into his head. As Madame ushered him through for refreshment, a bee emerged from the depths of a neck-hole and perched in the opening to watch me.

As you recall, the honey man indicates that his bees have taken a liking to Miss Strohm-Waxxog:

"And they certainly seem to like you," he said, his head tipping towards the ones on my shoulders. "Perhaps they have a mind to burrow in and make a new honey girl."

  • That's a great find! I was searching my anthologies but I see from ISFDB it's never been anthologised. Had you read the story, or was it an inspired Google? Commented Apr 28, 2022 at 7:59
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    @JohnRennie - it was a lucky Google search that led to the Goodreads review. Thankfully the reviewer reviewed each story, so the few keywords I was searching for popped up :)
    – fez
    Commented Apr 28, 2022 at 8:03
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    Thank you! This story has one of the best body horror descriptions I had read. Just couldn't find which magazine it was in.
    – Chris
    Commented Apr 28, 2022 at 14:24

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