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Chapter 4

     The Story The Authors

...Meanwhile, our struggling hero Monty, flanked by half a dozen of San Francisco's finest, coming within range of the Taffy Factory, all found their noses suddenly roiling fragrantly with odors of manifold taffies... Bobo Blueberry (mmmmmm) Superlicious Strawberry (yummmmmmmmmm) Bombastic Banana (ooh) Cantankerous Canteloupe (ah) Wheat-tastic Wheatgrass (fortified with 17 vitamins and minerals)... these aromas and more, a whole olfactory cornucopia of the fruitabulous and the tropicalageous, wrapped the rescue party in their sticky fingers of etheral taffessence and led them by their uncomplaining noses in a conga line up the hill towards the looming, prisonlike gates of the Taffy Factory.
Whatever it was that made Vigo and company lapse so often into sweet florid rhyme must have been hidden among the seductive odors of taffy, as well (like a sharply-endowed bee hidden within the folds of a fragrant flower) for poetry is first and foremost a viral form, straddling the organic and the memetic as it does, and in its natural state (seen all too rarely these days outside the Taffy factory) as a contagion it is almost without peer, adapting itself, it it will, to a nearly infinite variety of systemic abberations, complexities and glitches... An inherent capacity for adaption which has brought essentially every strain of it to a dead halt, time and again, with the lifespan ranging from as little as five years to, in rare cases, as many as one hundred...
Anyway, the effect of all this on matters which concern us is as follows: Monty (who hadn't said a word in hours, so belabored was he by the delusion that glum silence would afford him a stronger, more 'masculine' affect in the policemen's burly company) suddenly looked up and remarked:

"Not e'en a famed poet like C.P. Cavafy
Could write lines as sweet as the fragrance of taffy..."

The six policemen looked up as one, and in the instinctive Terrier reaction of cops the world over to the utterance of verses, their eyes went red and their jaws set into growls and they went for their billy-clubs. And then a strange thing happened...

"This prospect of taffy hark! It sweetens my pout!
My fillings are itching to be becoaxed out,"
declaimed Officer Gasparian, with a princely flourish of his stout, meaty arm;

"Its odor assails me with ticklings diverse!" countered Lieutenant O'Malley with an ingenious curtsey followed by a nimble two-step;
How artful the torture, how sweet is this curse!
To taste of such pleasures is not sup enow!
I'll bathe in it! Dress in it! Taffy! And how!
Of taffy, for myself, I'll fashion my queen!
I'll sire taffy children! In a taffy tureen!
And when I've transcended joy, sorrow, and pride,
I'll rise up to heaven to be taffyfied!

"Jesus Christ, Hinenuitepo!" Joselito admonished. "Keep it down! We're in enough trouble as it is."
"E kore toku iwi e hangu, ka whai kupu ano ratau!!!(My people will not be quiet, they will have something to say!!!)" Hinenuitepo's voice boomed and shook the rafters. Muffy paused overhead but seeing that the two women were still encased in their taffy bindings, he resumed his circling over the saltwater tanks, waiting for the lobsters to regain their strength.
"Look," said Joselito in his most soothing voice. "All I'm saying here is that we are higher powers. It's our job to help these women to help themselves." Hinenuitepo nodded agreement and without hesitation he touched Pata 'down there'. Pata's eyes flew open and she started to giggle but choked on the banana taffy gag in her mouth. She looked around and became very frightened. Joselito removed the gags from Pata and Barbara's mouths.
"Listen, you two need to get out of here before something extraordinarily bad happens." Joselito instructed.
"Well what are waiting for?" Barbara demanded. "Get us out of here."
"I can't do that." said Joselito.
"Because that would enabling you."
"What?!" cried Barbara. "Enabling us? To what? To live? Isn't that the idea?"
"No, no. You can't go through life being rescued all the time. It makes you a victim." Joselito explained.
"Hello! What would call being tied up in taffy? If this isn't being victimized, than I don't know the meaning of the word."
"Listen, we don't have time to debate this. You have to get out of here."
"We are tied up in taffy, how the hell are we supposed to escape?" Barbara was begining to regret taking Joselito on as her higher power.
"It's taffy! It's edible!" Joselito rolled his eyes.
"Your saying we should eat our way out? Are you trying to make me sick?" Barbara whined.
Hinenuitepo looked at Pata and they both shook their heads in disgust. Pata's higher power waved his great powerful hand over her and the taffy fell away and she was free.
"See! Her higher power helped her!" Barbara whined again. Joselito shot Hinenuitepo piercing glance.
"He's got a God complex!" Joselito said.
"You are seriously going to make me chew my way out of here?"
"It'll be good for you."
"You bastard!"
Hinenuitepo had had enough by now. He scooped up Pata and flew her out of the factory to the safety of her Nob Hill apartment.

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