He emerged from the 1898 room, unable to speak.
Tessa (Brown) was waiting for him.
“Where shall we split to now?”
Through the years population dwindled in the rural community of Pansy. In 1995 the remaining members of the Pansy Baptist Church voted to disband. The church building was donated to the Mt. Zion Baptist Church, an African American congregation in Floydada. The building was moved 32 miles by 140 volunteers from Crosbyton, Pansy, Floydada, and Wiley.
Whatever remains of disbanded Collagesity is more perfectly integrating into NWES City, fully a city now and dealing with its true identity. Sunklands Institute represents the latest move. SI remains private, but I plan to put some public buildings around it.
So many mysteries yet to be solved.
Before she left the double peaked mountain, she said goodbye to next door neighbor Oranges, who you may remember as Appleyon from our last photo-novel. He’s switched sides: he lives on the east part of the west side of the double peaked mountains. There’s significance there. Apples and Oranges in one basket.
“I — have… nowhere to go!” she cries between sobs, hoping for the obvious. She knew Oranges had fancied her for the longest time. She’s playing her final card.
Oranges looks on, slightly sympathetic but mostly amused. He offers her a drink from his demonic vending machine blocking the nice view down the mountaintop. “Jedi tea?” he says over. “It might help to cheer you up, Pumpkin.” It was an old game they played with these names, always (an) orange (object) for the green one and green for the orange one. “Okay, Lemmie.” She couldn’t help herself and changed a sob to a giggle in the moment. But he had no intention of letting her stay. Or did he? It was a Somerset dilemma. Another one.
Apples’ plan hatched next door was working perfectly. Or was it? He stares at the teapot hoping for an answer that never came.
Maybe he should ask the apple tree suddenly appearing outside instead.
Now who will play the part of Moe, h(u)mm? ponders private dick Biff Carter, still redding that read book, ahem, *reading* that *red* book. *The* red book. Maybe a dame, he thinks. How about that new gal with the dangerous curves, aheh. Uhum. Danger… that reminded him of something. Something dead. He sniffs the air. Oh… something *new* again. Dead cat soap — just in at the local Hurdy Gurdy. He can’t stop washing with it. Wash your hands wash your hands wash your hands…
He heads downstairs toward the sink with the stinking, gritty, extra strength soap for the 15th time today.
“Scrub a dub dub (whistle), scrub a dub dub (more whistling).” The phone rings upstairs. He patiently counts to twenty using Mississippi’s as the rings mount to 7. He rushes back while drying his hands and putting on his bullet proof work gloves before eight. *Riiiiin-*
“Pizza?? No thanks, ahem. I’ve already ate.”
He set the reciever back down in the antique carriage. Took him a while to figure it out. Wrong number, he ruminated. Or was it exactly the *right* number, ohho?
He consults the magic eight ball at the other end of the bar for the next move. “Uh huh. Dead and Danger *are* the same thing.” He knew that something with the word dog in its name was coming up. Stand back!
He’d run into Philip Strevor on the mean streets of Heartsdale, who told SEAN “Green” Penn to meet him here to receive more information about the Missouri “Most Foul” Murder Mystery he and Blue were now trying to solve together. “Hello there!” SEAN observed on the motel lobby’s window shortly after teleporting to the location. Optimistic!
SEAN sensed a trap, especially since Philip Strevor was nowhere to be found. Too late. The rats were upon him like tiny hounds of hell. Yeo the cat looked on at the carnage unbemused, seeing it all before.
“Whoooaa Nelly!!” *MUNCH*
*Down* goes SEAN. Only one original color left now. Blue was warned not to bring her into the story but — here goes anyway.
“Green is dead now, Olive. Brown too. Pink as well. It’s only — you and me.”
“Perfect,” she responded, and then split herself. Split in two that is, June remaining seated and Jane standing now. But call her Phyllis. Phyllis Phox. Still married to Ben Wolf last seen somewhere in the Southeast I believe, but heading toward Southwest. We better catch up with him. Or else…
“Real real good to see you down in New Orleans, yeah. Real reet.”
“*Well*, Marty. We’re not *going* to New Orleans as it turns out. We’re avoiding that boat, that dream.”
“Real reet, yeah.” Then bass voiced Marty stops talking to actually listen to The Man.
“Marty Marty Marty,” The Man starts again. “You should have never left Legos to make the new album. You’re not *black* enough, and I know a thing about black. Why you’re — you’re about as black as White Elvis, and that’s not much.” He points to his wig, perhaps still covering the ant saliva from before.
“Listen,” responded Marty, realizing his own hair is really the only black thing about him.
“Yes, good. Arkansas we’re at and Arkansas we’ll stay. The boat and the stream remain empty, devoid of content.” The Mann then stares at the bar. “And what about this setting? So shallow. Where’s the actual bar with a bartender and all.” He takes another swallow of Jack Daniels in disgust. If only all this were a dream.
“Silly love songs.”
“Yeah. Those too.”
Exhausted, Tronesisia finally stopped playing the harp for tonight. She looked around, red eye still in place. Where was she? The afterlife?
No. Still in Danshire.
And there were other instruments left to play in the same antiquated house. She switches to keyboards and fingers something different. The red eye finally recedes.
In the next room, Herbert Gold, Furry Karl, Heidi Hunt Ives, Norris, and perhaps some others not in this particular shot fade into view to listen in on the gorgeous music, flowing like platinum prune into their ears and senses. That was actually the name of the song: “Platinum Prune.” Or “In Search of…”, with the almost priceless prune theoretically showing up at the end of the overall suite of songs, drawing them inward and onward. Much better than Steel Raisin. We begin a journey.
She paused in reading her just published novel “Olive, Green and Pink”. “Ben, dear, it’s gotten suddenly quite chilly in here. Could you put another log on the fireplace?”
“‘Bout bedtime,” he counters, faking a yawn and not sensing anything out of the ordinary himself. One thing on his mind right now.
Picking up on this, she stares over at him after he finishes, trying to decide. Book or boy?
Time to pay a visit to the town hall…
Only public bathrooms in town are on the 5th floor of a gallery, ponders Herbert Gold, hunting for art with the wife once more. Strange place.
He turns the page.
I’m going to buy one of these pieces, April Mae reinforces to herself in the other bathroom while washing her hands. I don’t know which one, but… something pretty for our guest room. The one without art.
She finishes the last fingers.
It hit her when she exited the bathroom before her husband. He soon joined her in staring.
“Look, dear,” she indicated. “It’s like the statue at the town hall. 7 Stones. And there’s a little man standing before it.”
“Sooo. Is this the one you want? This (he checks the name in the object’s description) ‘Humanvillians’?”
“I think it might be.”
“Back in an hour,” the pink Mossm relayed about the mayor while The Man About Time also stared.
“Not too bad for seconds, Hatfield, but also: not good enough. 3.3 seconds. You needed 10.”
“Eek, my spine,” he managed in-between groans.
“Next! Announce yourself first before mounting the Wild Whale.”
“Um, TV. Colored TV.”
“Do you, Mr. TV, understand the challenge facing you? The Wild Whale giveth, the Wild Whale taketh. All Hail the Wild White Whale.”
“All Hail the Wild White Whale,” everyone within earshot repeated, and even Hatfield managed a weak, out-of-breath, “All Hail… White Whale,” before his stretcher arrived.
“11.5, Colored,” proclaimed Baker Bloch. “Most excellent — 3rd best time yet. You can join the winners over in the The White Whale Lounge.”
“Thank you, sir (*eek*). Thank you (*groan*) kindly.”
“Hi Male Baker. Do you know my wings are called Dali.”
“Mount the whale, sir,” rushed Baker Bloch, knowing he already had a winning TV character and not desiring random chatter from this *inferior* product, then. “The Wild Whale giveth, the Wild Whale taketh. All Hail the Wild White Whale.”
“All Hail the Wild White Whale,” everyone within earshot repeated. It was over in 2.
Iggy later gave his broken tv head back to Grey Scale Kimball. “A lot of good it did for me,” making GSK nod in agreement.
“Let’s see how far it can roll into the sink.”