Eightyeight

“Maybe we should both be time traveling Blue Feather Douglas in this saga.”

“Past, present, future,” Tracy Austin agrees, wondering if she should have her baby before or after the production.

—–

The poor, pitiful sob, she thinks while staring back across the circle.

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Blue Feather

He looked down on me, always smiling, always laughing.

The Man About Town Time.

—–

I must get home…

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ruff

“And the little house beyond?”

“Phillips.”

—–

The horse leads, the horse tells.

Doors opening.

A man, a woman (sort of). A shallow grave.

So close.

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Papa

“His name was Boaz and he was a noble deer and he didn’t deserve to get shot and die.” Your Mama’s tone displayed anger and bitterness. As usual.

Channeling, thought Raggy. Always forget she can do that. He glanced over at the other deer head mounted on the far side of the fireplace. “How about the white one?”

YM closed her eyes, getting in contact with the Great Beyond again. “Viola. Boaz’s mate. Played him like a violin. Or viola I suppose, hee. But they were together at the end. That’s how they ended up here… together. Two stone with one bird.” She snorted and stared over. “Weren’t faster than a speeding bullet, you see.”

“I see,” Raggy followed quickly, trying to steer the conversation away from something that would agitate her further. “When’s the 1st gig?” he then decided to say.

“You know when it is, Raggy. You’re just trying to switch subjects.”

“Yeah,” he admitted. “Tomorrow. At 3. You ready?”

Another snort, combined with a bitter chuckle. “Of course I’m ready. Are *you* ready?”

“I’m not in this one. They don’t need a jester to warm you up here.”

“Jeston the Jester,” she recited. “Remind me how that works again?”

He sits up, looks out the smoky windows at the waterfall in morning light. “Dawn’s breaking,” he said distantly with neutral, cracking voice (as usual). “You better get some sleep. Big day tomorrow.”

“Phillips coming, I know.”

Phillips coming! thought Raggy, off the hook at last.

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sink sank sunk

“We’re here.”

“Super.”

Your Mama then turned toward Raggy. “Got any more of those ham sandwiches around? I’m ravished.”

“Careful with those. You know what…”

“I know, I know. That’s why I’m *here*.”

—–

“I wonder what’s this way?” she voiced defiantly.

“Care-ful.”

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granted 05

“Vein and Artery Boy is a pet nickname. His real name is…”

“Wait,” implored Allen Y. to speaking Rock. “Lemme guess: Hitchcock.”

Rock Ramby and “Vein and Artery Boy” share a sly smile.

“No?” Allen Y. kept pushing. “Am I wrong?”

—–

“Did I ever tell you how Rock got his name?” VA Boy boomed a little later on. The Hitchcock appellation hadn’t been resolved.

“No. Not in the 15 minutes we’ve ever been talking to each other.”

“You haven’t been here before?” VA Boy looked over at Rock with this, who just shook his head back. “This isn’t… *Hitchcock*?”

—–

“*Anyway*, back to the dog.”

“Oooh. *This* story.” Rock settled back in his seat and crossed his hands behind his head. He seemed to be preparing himself for a long one; VA Boy was about as chatty as Rock, and almost as conceited, it appeared. But — strangely to Allen Y. — they *complemented* each other, as if Allen Y. understood now how each formed the way they did. In some couples it is done by balancing weaknesses with strengths. In this case, it was *accenting* those. They’d been so boastful to each other down through the years now, apparently, that it had become a kind of refined game or ritual. And now, Allen Y. sensed, they were stuck in these patterns, unable to really converse successfully to anyone else. It was an odd realization. But — he understood — there was a deeper mystery to it still which everything pivoted around. Hitchcock. A *game*, yes. He would soon learn the surface name for that game. And it wasn’t Hitchcock.

—–

Exactly where Santa Sven disappeared as a point in the sky, another came. Was this Hitchcock? We’ll see!

END OF “COLLAGESITY 2019 EARLY”!

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granted 04

Rock Ramby sure knows about trees and plants, thought Allen Y., listening in for the second hour now as the muscular dude babbled on. “The redwoods are a hybrid clone,” he was currently saying. “I got dwarves as well. I created all and everything on this sim,” he reinforced again. “Horses too.”

“Tricksy?” Allen ventured while scratching his chin, testing the water.

“That a horse name?” he came back. “Doesn’t sound like one.”

“Yeah, that’s the one I mentioned meeting on the way over here. All the way back at the first of our, er, conversation.” A long, long way back, he thought to himself. And he hasn’t mentioned this mysterious Hitchcock in a long time either.

“Mirabel,” corrected Rock. “A transer, yeah. Tricksy could have been it.”

“That’s what she said,” Allen held firm. Blasted know-it-all. In truth, Allen Y. had become weary of the chatter about 20 minutes in. He’d heard enough blowhards back on his home planet of Elven.

Just then, what appeared to be jingle bells sounded outside the cabin, breaking the banter. “Cool,” Rock Ramby then beamed. “Sven’s back. Runs a packing industry over in Meat City Misty Mountain, you know. Let’s take a look.” Rock springs up from the chair on his powerful legs and moves toward the front door. He draws his knife just in case. Less spry Allen Y. stands and follows; peers through the opening behind him.

“More veins and arteries for your boy, Rock,” called Sven merrily, landing just behind the circular train track. He threw a bowed package in his direction, which Rock deftly caught, knife still in hand. “Schweet,” he yelped. “Thanks Santa!”

“Sven, please. Merry, um, Something!” he shouted as his jingling reindeer lifted him and his heavily packed sleigh back into the sky. “Merry Something to All!”

Shuffling behind Allen Y. as he watched the sleigh recede. He turned. “I heard my name,” issued a Zeus-like voice.

Where the hell have *you* been hiding,” the yellow alien thought.

(to be continued)

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