It’s time to tell the story of the Ant and the Elephant, both chics. CUE MUSIC
“First off, the elephant is a Trojan Horse, pardon the mixed metaphor of sorts.”
“Pardoned,” she said, because she had that power. She was queen over her own little land which wasn’t little atall to her. Like Rose Wells before her. Or after her. We continue…
“We know that because of the triangle that can be opened with stuff put inside. Like a *bomb*.”
Attagirl gasps, throwing her hands cartoonishly to her mouth. Because she was. Would her subjects do such a dastardly deed? And why in Dennis of all places? Or a TV shooting screen in Dennis?
He stared at red, the cover closed for now, the puzzle incomplete, the TV shooting screen: disabled. But luckily we can view remotely.
Grasshopper is dead.
Her bugs are responsible.
The proof is in the pudding… and the sandwiches, and the cake, and the sausages.
He kept looking toward the window beside the door at me instead of the action in the ring. In the ring.
“New around here?” asked Lichen Roosevelt, tending bar in this here town until her big break as a singer comes, national anthems being her specialty.
Axis-Windmill kind of looks toward her, kind of doesn’t. “We’ve met many times before, Marilyn,” he deadpans.
Marilyn? she thinks. Hadn’t heard *that* name in a long time. “Well… can’t recall. Many, huh?” She keeps wiping the wine glass in her hand, although it’s perfectly transparent now. She looks through it at him, watching his distorted steely eyes move here and there, sometimes toward the door, sometimes at her, sometimes in-between. But not at the action. Another lift, another slam to the canvas for Joey. Poor Joey Avatar. Looks like a rain of pain coming tonight. How did *she* get into this mess?
“That’s right,” he finally answered Lichen. He walks toward the door. He opens the door, telling me to come in and join him. He indicates the tables to his right. We sit down, no words between us. We watch Lichen tend bar. The action in the ring (in the ring) wraps up. Victor Eugenia O’Neill moves toward the bar, decided what kind of drink to order for Joey to make up for breaking a couple of her nails tonight. Usually: so gentle, so careful. Must have been the full moon, she reckons. Grasshopper should do it, extra mint.
I was always the smartest girl in school. I was always first to raise my hand to answer questions from the teacher. But my *brother*… we didn’t know until much later his special special talent. He *couldn’t* be edited. Let me state that again: He *couldn’t*… be *edited*. No wonder he got frustrated by his 2 dimensional family, including me (me!). He was 3d all along, working on a higher plane that us. A *channeled* plane, true, but still: highly psychic, more than the rest of us. I had to step out of myself and turn into Jennifer Lane to understand better. Before, I was Jenny Lane, a kid at Forest Hill School for psychic children. Jacob I. was there a bit later — he went over to Hillside on the other
hill side of town for his elementary years. Now I was grown up; all weedy. But I didn’t smoke pot to get high. Grown up — but I felt my apples were too small. I wanted to exchange them with another’s. Harrison Ford Jett seemed a perfect (imaginary) candidate. I was always a Star Wars fan growing up, not even learning about Star Trek until the 11th grade, almost done in school. My classmates called me Spock but I thought that was because of my glasses, before I got my (umbrella) contact lenses and could read with my eyes. The library remained a far away and fuzzy edifice after that, shrouded in distance producing mists by then. I proceeded forward with my new life with Tommy beyond academia. Family became priority.
A child is born, a child is given. Julius, although I wanted a Julia. Sex happens. Then the second: a mini-me of sorts. I projected into her. When I got my new eyes (in effect) I realized we were the same deep down, where it counts (166). We made a pact: she *became* me and I became her. Then we hid this fact to others in a carefully placed box. Where was this box? (Borneo) We had both forgotten where we hid it. (Borneo) And the umbrella design has a story of its own as well.
Oh dear, that will be the neighbors, the Wells. Rosie or Rose, my sister from another mother, as we say, then Indian — love of my life until I met Tommy over at a tailgate party. Tommy Tailgate he was after that. I became pregnant that night.
turning into Jennifer Lane
It’s time to bring a new character into the picture: Jennifer Lane, twin cousin to our Shelley Lane, right down to the all seeing umbrella eyes. She remembers the bombing, the underground, the… flight.
“Another one, sweetie?” Lichen Roosevelt asked from behind the counter, presently cleaning a glass, perhaps the one she would pour a new drink in for Jenny.
Grasshopper? she thought. No: too obvious.
“Just another stack of potatoes.”
Kick-ass Boos said to sit at the table with the Bigfoot book, so here he is. He picks up another book laying nearby by John Shaw Billings, which he quickly gathers from his reading was a librarian for New York city in the US of A, Earth.
Kick-ass Bogota, Boos’ brother, strolls into the bar. His brother said he’d “mark him” to make sure Axis-Windmill knew who it was.
Yup. That’s him!
“Grasshopper please, Bertha. Extra mint.”
“Coming right up, Ted.”
“I recall now. I am your hairy… neighbor. To the North. Remember? Like Canada. Some called us friends. Like me. Remember? Not Arthur but me. We were sent here (to Mythos) together.”
I recalled. There was lots of pain in his direction, more than mine. The US of our A had it easier. A single child (functionally). A loving *father*. “You didn’t know,” he wanted to say to me now. “You were involved… in your own world.” I couldn’t argue. At least he didn’t declare war on me, like Cofmo. Ants, mechanical ants. My grasshoppers never had a chance. June bugs bombed but all were underground.
I know why my artist friend from Our Second Lyfe was named that. For this.