“Using the tip from Sally, we followed the car all the way to the entrance of the park but could go no further. *Fifes* Grove Park, like in Barney Fife.”
“Like in Barney *Rubles*,” emphasized Man About Time, fascinated with the new information. He hardly ever emphasized anything in his speech, so mild manner and calm and cool and collected he is. But this seemed different. They had found a way… inside.”
“I thought you might want to know, being second in command of this here chilly town in the mountains.”
“So beige,” said MAT almost religiously. But he understood. “In case something happens to me,” is the unspoken sentiment.
They were all dead now, these “monsters”. All except herself. She stared at the empty space that should have held her own picture, thinking back to the time they first discovered her superpower. She was called the ugly duckling, the unpretty one who instead seemed to be cut from the cloth of the ordinaries all around them, the mundane, the *muggles* to borrow a phrase from another supernatural mythology. Must have been blinded Uncle Sam on a town bender, they figured. But as they aged, she didn’t. They then traced the genes back to Great Great Great Aunt Selma on the father’s side, who was from a long line of immortals. Then they traced the whereabouts of Selma herself, living under a new guise in Cheeseburger, Wisconsin down near the city dump or city hall take your pick. “Of course she has powers,” Selma replied in a middle-aged voice about Sally’s seeming normalcy, at least judged by the outer world that we, us non-monsters, live in. “Why would she be staying with you otherwise, humm? Uncle Sam has nothing to do with this; she’s actually the oldest of all of us.” She addressed each of her visitors individually: “Great great grandson, great great great niece and nephew(-in-law), great great great *great* grandson. Meet your ancestor with a family name so long that it would take the rest of the day to pronounce. I’d suggest you just keep calling her Sally, then, but respect the hell out of her from now on and look to her for sage advice instead of just ridiculing her looks.”
Even Selma is dead now, since the great majority of so called immortals are actually quite mortal and only live to be a couple of hundred years old at the most. Sally is a little different, since both her mother and father were pure bred. But one day, still a long way down the road, it will catch up with her.
She had to say goodbye to each one, watching them fall like dominoes in time’s passage.
Jeffrie’s note came under the door. Without opening it, Sally remembers how she was slipped under the door, as it were, of her own great x 2,375 niece and nephew(-in-law)’s gothic Mockingbird Lane abode by parents long in hiding themselves. Marge and General Johnston I think they’re calling each other these days. She’ll have to look them up sometime. “Uncle Sam’s kid, yeah,” she presented herself at the threshold, luggage just behind. Stooping down in the present, she picked up the note and read.
Spying from a safe distance, he watched her enter the library on the southern edge of Collagesity and the Fordham sim as a whole. She stayed until about 1/2 past 6, and then exited with no books checked out as far as he could tell. Tim Bean had retired from the library in ’72, about 2 years ago minus a year or three. Right now it was auto-service in there until they could get a new person. She had her pick of the books, then, but she seemed not to want any. Then he remembered *he* had the monster book, found in The Abyss temple atop unique, unicorn-like Fissure Mountain over on the old continent of Sansara. Maybe she came out with nothing because *that’s* the book she was looking for — interesting.
He could slip a note under her door at the Kidd Tower where she was staying, directly beneath the apartment of Man About Time, a kind of vice chancellor to the city and a right hand man to himself as head honcho. He’d made his peace about the resurrection through the marriage to Wendy over in the Urqhart sim or thereabouts. Man About Time would still have to bid his time to become the ruler of this here fair burg.
“Meet me at Perch (restaurant) at half past 7 in the evening after today’s tomorrow,” he decided to word it, with just the right amount of detail, he felt.
In the meantime, he was due to meet with Man About Time anyway concerning the town budget wars so he slipped in a couple of questions about the new gal. Sally was her name, MAT said. Sally Nugent. He gathered she came from a family of monsters, because the pictures he helped tote upstairs for her all had people with green or bloodless white skin, with fangs in their mouths or bolts in their necks.