00250702

We began again the next day…

“It’s Plan 2, Stumpy,” spoke Man About Time within Moe’s Bar over at NWES City. He’s decided to leave this footprint in the town; keep paying rent on it. “Black Ice is kaput.”

“Yeah, I know,” replies Stumpy the formerly headless bartender, hired only after he promised to get one. “We’ll have to think of ‘what ifs’ on that one.”

“What if…” MAT starts, “… I was recognized for being a world renowned artist.”

“What if…” Stumpy chips in, getting into the game himself, “… I remained headless and could still balance red wine and blue pot correctly.”

“What if…” MAT’s turn again. “All of this is a dream.”

“What if… I were actually dead instead of alive.”

“What if… Charlene were actually my girl instead of Jeffrey Phillips’.” MAT pauses here; Stumpy takes a good gander at him. “Because, you know, he’s dead and all.”

“Maybe *we’re* dead,” Stumpy doubles down. Were they still playing the game? “Do you, er, fancy her, Man About Time? You can tell me. I’m your no. 1 bartender after all. Remember, you hired me after I promised to get a head.”

“Ahead in life, yes. Which the job would give you. So: case closed; loop completed. You are here. You have a head.”

“Back to Charlene…”

—–

He sits for a while on the subway before he remembers it was never finished. He’ll have to walk. Another “what if,” then. What if… the subway system of town was finished and residents could more easily move from one sim to another. But to Black Ice and continue his pitches which are All Pitch. Maybe he should buy Barry DeBoy’s red baseball cap. Put it on backwards so he can tell the two apart. “I’m here,” he imagines saying to forward cap wearing Barry across from him on the train. “And you’re there.” But he was facing (transposed) the other way and couldn’t even see him. Reminds me of a certain Tiger we’ve viewed recently. Barry, I mean, MAT sits alone again. Then gets up. Because of the whole nonfunctioning part of the subway. He’ll have to walk to Black Ice. Surely he remembers how to walk — yes, one foot then another then another. Feets get moving!

(to be continued)

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