|The Story||The Authors|
Monty (who did not at all like being misnamed and confused with another
character who is supposed to be fighting the Bagel Gnomes in a whole different
story (which I might add is being run by people without passwords, which is OK
but should not be confused with a story run by people with passwords) and also
did not like being the subject of the longest thing in brackets he had ever
seen outside of a political speech) and Barbara were enjoying their scorpion
bowl when the dead dog flew in.
Barbara. She screamed much louder then she had screamed at Monty's Darth Vader
suit. Then she fainted.
All this sent Monty into a fit of speculation. He seemed to remember a dream he had had after falling asleep last Beer Hour. A terrible dream. A nightmare. Actually, it had started out as a good dream. Barbara had completely changed. She had become a love woman. Like he was a love man. He remembered that, in his dream, he had thought it would be the best evening of their lives. Then the pain had begun. Horrible pain. And Barbara had been standing over it, controlling his agony, standing over him, laughing, as he had watched himself being cut to peices, and screaming, and then, mercifully, he had woken up.
Monty shook his head. You're going crazy, man, he told himself. All this thinking about a silly dream when you have the best woman in the world you have to take care of, and this ghost flying around the room.
But somehow he had this feeling it had not been a dream.
Unlike now,where he finds himself dressed as Lord Vader in a Tiki lounge with
his boss, the uptight recovering addict, lounging and talking small talk which
looks to be leading to pillowtalk when an apparently dead dog, which said Boss
had run down earlier in the evening, comes flying into the bar yipping and
dripping blood and bits of mail. Monty took another long drag on the Scorpion
bowl through the ridiculously long straw and watched the animated corpse of
Muffy pull the toupee off of an elderly gentleman and shake it like a rag,
All in all, the strangest aspect of it was how little anyone seemed to care. Albeit city life in general tends to numb one's sense of outrage and innure you many things that might alarm you in other circumstances. Thus things like rats as big as Sunday hams, the family of four living in the dumpster behind your apartment ala Oscar the Grouch, the quiet guy down the hall with the closet full of human heads, and new special at the Korean restaraunt down the block that coincides with a rash of cat-nappings in your neighborhood become just another part of the backdrop of your life. An amusing anecdote to drop into the casual banter in the break room at work.
So the band played on. (A marimba laden version of "Over The Rainbow" with exotic birdcalls thrown in for atmosphere) Drinks were poured and consumed over idle chatter. Heavy Pu-Pu Platters of Satay and fried shrimp came to and fro from the kitchen and no one gave a second look as a short middle aged woman squeezed into a too tight oriental style gown (presumably the Hostess of the esablishment) ran after the flying dog trying to shoo it out the door by waving a red cloth napkin at it.
Stunned by the specter of a thing not heard of or mentioned since the
very-different-from-now circumstances of her upbringing, Pata, the Tiki
Lounge's manager, reverted to the Maori of her girlhood. "Kuri!" she shouted.
"Kuri maniheko! [filthy dog!] Tupapaku maiheko e kuri paruparu! [Filthy corpse
of a filthier dog!] Whanatu! Rewera e kuri! Whanatu! [Go away! Demon dog!
Begone!] Whanatu!" |
Hearing these words spoken in the precise, thin-lipped diction passed on down to Pata by the sorceror [ruanuku] grandfather who had raised her, the dead dog cocked its head grotesquely on its broken neck and emitted a low questioning whine which soon, unanswered, rose to a full-fledged growl. Moving slowly towards Pata, who kept backing up unthinkingly until she felt her back pressed against the cool glass of the great salt-water tank where the restaurant's lobsters were kept.