He turns away from her on the bed while she is talking, much to her relief. She’s tired of looking at the thing. He claims their sex is hot, hot, hot, but to her it’s always lukewarm! And he’s not tea so no reheating; one and done. “Santa,” she calls back toward him.
“Satan, please,” he requests, his voice booming even when projecting the wrong way. “Santa’s a last name.”
“Oh, right.” April Mae knew full well what his name was. He had to use the most obvious anagram possible. Might as well stick 2 horns on his head and prod expectant children with a forked candy cane or something. “He knows about you,” she then offers.
“I’m *not* the maker.”
“He knows that too.”
“I am Satan!” His tone was more defiant that ever.
“You are the Red Devil, true,” she agreed. Where did all the legends get that hot fire and brimstone stuff? she wonders again. Falsities!
“Be a dear and bring me the book, April Mae. The one where I’m a star — I need it to get to sleep.”
Well, she certainly wants him to get to sleep. So she can sneak out again. Tommy Pajamy over in cabin B might be willing later tonight. She’s been prepping him for weeks, bending too far over while shoveling the sidewalks, climbing too high with her dress on a ladder to prune the snow laden trees. She knows he watches. She has eyes in the back of her head.
She retrieves the book from the shelf and then hands it to Satan Santa, not looking down. It’s a 1989 mystery novel involving a cooperative venture between the US (US) and USSR (THEM) that gets screwed up because a woman’s death is broadcast on the net. Then it turns up on a VHS tape that lands in the wrong hands. The woman is named Kat. Eartha Kit Kat Moon. And I believe she’s Chinese. Or Japanese. And she may not be a woman either.
(to be continued?)
“Does my hair look all right this morning, Herbert?”
“It looks fine, April Mae.”
“Hmph.” She takes a noisy slurp of her tea, then winces. “Next time, dear, set the microwave on about *60 seconds* for the pot, not 40. Lukewarm tea is the worst!” Another slurp, another wince. “Oh dear.” She scoots the twice drunk cup toward Herbert. He knows what has to be done.
“Tastes all right to me,” he shot back, irritated the she *always* knows, within a few seconds, exactly how long he’s heated any item of food or drink up. Next time he’ll try to get away with 45, but he knows he there’s no way he can pull it off. He’s always testing his limits around wife April Mae. And failing.
After putting all the tea back in the pot and reheating the thing, he returns to the table. His mouth might scald a bit but he’s use to it. Better living with that than the alternative. She tests again.
(SLURP) “Yes, much better, Herbert. Thank you. Now… tell me about that dream you had last night. The one where (SLURP) you met a maker.”
Grandpa (Herbert) Gold was introduced to the ringleader but didn’t know quite what to make of it (!).
“Other Other?” he ventured.
There was some kind of acknowledgement from the contraption, so Herbert went further.
“What is Cat pole star?”
There was a mysterious exchange. Then Herbert asked, “Do you know who I am?”
The avatar who seems to be Other Other didn’t know who I was.
More exchanges. He (or she) indicated that he (she) wanted to improve the sim by depicting reality more accurately.
I went for broke and gave him/her the link to my Sunklands site. Herbert Gold looked over while chatting, and couldn’t help but think he’s staring into the face of God.
There was a couple of exchanges about the 100 story building. I enthusiastically commended him/her on the project. He/she expressed hope that a planned, second 100 story building would be as successful.
I was translating both Japanese and Chinese at once. The contraption pulsed behind me but not in a menacing way. Herbert Gold’s head bounced with its.
Although wishing further contact, I had to excuse myself by saying my translator was out of date. Will we meet again? Could be.