Perspective (East to South)
Jack and Bendy emerge from the drift into
South Park South Pole.
“Hellooo! Anybody home? Oh there’s Polly over there beside the cottage, Bendy,” says Jack, pointing in the appropriate direction.
“You mean Prissy?”
“Oh, right. Prissy Pollypants, correct.”
“Don’t say it backwards again, jeez. She’s very fussy about her name.”
“I know. I remember.” Jack calls Prissy’s name directly from below but she still doesn’t answer. The mergirl’s attention is fixed by something on the side of the house. Jack and Bendy walk up and stare with her. It’s Bart again, with a number of fish balloons attached to his skateboard now.
Prissy shakes her head as if just awakening from a dream. “What? Oh it’s you Jack. Hello! And hi, Bendy. It’s been a while.”
“Yeah, since the whale and squid thing.” He thinks back again to that awful day and shakes his own head. The whole moon must have been there to witness the event. “You are looking good today,” he says, studying her now. “Very good.” Too good, Bendy thinks further. What just happened to him?
“Thank you.” Prissy’s cheeks blush slightly as she returns her stare to the chimney. “He just wafted in. After the light in the sky. I couldn’t stop staring at him jiggling back and forth on that skateboard. I guess I fell into a trance.”
“That’s okay, Prissy,” Jack reassures her. “You’re okay now. We’re here with you. But where is Lily? Out on another grave finding expedition perhaps?”
Prissy glances away from the house to the west. “No she made herself small and is walking the labyrinth. She’s up to 3 times a day. I guess that’s a good thing. But one might call her…,” and here, Prissy cupped her hand to her mouth and reduced her voice to a loud whisper: “… obsessed.” Then she leaned away and then back, repeating the hand to mouth motion: “… possessed,” she says this time to Jack and Bendy. Then she repeats it once more and follows with: “… demons. The dead, you know.”
“Well, that’s a long standing project, Prissy. We all have obsessions. Me and my sky mapping, Bendy and his constant thoughts of food…”
“I never!” Bendy defended himself, truly embarrassed.
“Ah, simmer down, Bendy,” Jack said, peering over at Prissy who was hiding a giggle. “I was just joking. And then, for example, Bart with his skateboarding. But I’ve not a clue how he got from East Pole to South Pole so quickly. We were just there, Prissy, you understand. *Just* there. Came through the drift of course.”
“Yes. Of course.” Prissy looks down and shuffles her fins. “But I am being such a rude host. Why don’t you come into the cottage and we’ll have some juice.”
“Juice?” the shocked Jack and Bendy say in unison.
“Yes, from the lemons on our lemon tree. Freshly picked this morning. It’s right around the corner. There.” She pointed to it.
Bendy felt like rushing over and kissing Prissy full on the lips. Food on the moon! His dream had come true.
Soon all were gathered in the cottage sipping on delicious ice cold lemonade. By this time in the evening, the group had broken into two pairs, Prissy and Bendy to the left, and Lily and Jack on the right. Bendy’s head was afire with passionate thoughts. He spoke to Prissy about now staying on the moon.
“What’s the use in going back?” he asked the mergirl. “I have everything I need here. Good friends like you and Jack and Lily. Good food and drink. And — wait for it — good food and drink! Ha ha ha.”
Prissy chuckled with Bendy. She thought him a very funny person. But what does our future hold? she wondered again. “A mergirl and a robot,” she said aloud. “What strange bedfellows,” and then instantly began to blush. “I mean, not bedfellows,” she furthered, attempting to cover her tracks.
“It’s okay, doll. I think we’d be just fine the sack he he.” He nudged her knowingly and she giggled like a school girl. “Ooo you’re such a tease,” she exclaimed amidst the laughter.
Meanwhile Lily and Jack were talking more earnestly about the appearance of the lemon tree.
“You say you can’t remember the tree being there until you came back from the labyrinth, Lily. But then where *did* it come from?”
“It must have something to do with Bart,” she said in her husky female voice, perhaps an octave higher in register than Jack’s. “Are you sure you won’t have any more lemonade sweety?”
“Nah, I’m fine. Should we even be *drinking* this stuff since we don’t know where it came from? Could be poison for all we know.”
Lily shakes her horned head. “My honed intuition tells me that isn’t so. It’s lemonade plain and simple. From a perfectly ordinary lemon tree — except it totally shouldn’t be here.”
“Totally,” agreed Jack. He looked over at the flirting Prissy and Bendy. “So… do you think they’ll make it together.”
“Who, Prissy and Bendy?” Lily asked innocently, glancing over her shoulder at the still giggling couple. “They’re simply made for each other. Can’t you tell?” She wanted to add, “Just like you and me,” but held her tongue.
“We get along so well with them around. Why can’t it be that way all the time?” Jack looked at Lily with sadness in his eyes.
“You’re head is too much in the sky, in the stars, Jack,” Lily replied, looking into her glass of lemonade. “You can’t feel the ground beneath you until you start navigating the moon, prompted by your good friend over there. And you can’t wait to be alone again so you can climb up on that roof and study the hole you can’t see from your pole.” She wanted to add more, but stopped again. If they had been alone, this would most likely have been a gateway into an argument, following the familiar path of Lily claiming Jack only came here for that hole and not herself. She takes another drink of lemonade and tries to hide the tears forming in her eyes.
“Now now, you know that’s not true.” But it was true he couldn’t commit to Lily and say the feelings he felt for her. He *did* love her. By the way she acted all the time, he figured she must love him too. They were destined to get together in all likelihood. But how? He had his pole. She had her pole on the opposite side of the moon. They were both settled in, she in her cottage and he in his work shed.
Jack wondered again if it would be possible to haul that shed to a different side of the moon through the drift, perhaps *through* a different side to a different pole altogether, if you catch my drift. It would take a whole posse of people. But everyone loved Lily and Jack. It wouldn’t be difficult at all to mustard up a team of willing volunteers for an, albeit, most likely impossible task.
Jack then said something to Lily that had been on his mind for a spell (if you get my meaning again). “What happens if we flip the poles?”
Just at that moment, there came a gentle tapping from the direction of the only window in the cottage. All looked around, and Lily clapped her hands in excitement. “Peter’s here,” she spoke just above a whisper.
Peter stood in the front of the window with everyone gathered around now. Bendy was still confused about the explanation Lily was providing. “So Soso is good.”
“Soso is *grrr-reat*!” exclaimed Lily, imitating their mutual friend Tony Tiger. All chuckle except Peter, who winced. “Oh, sorry Peter. His ears are still new. Well, *everything* is new.”
“So,” he replied in a squeak. “So so. So.”
“Aww, he’s so *cute*.” Lily gently pinches him on his still forming cheek. “He’s the first Peter to truly be resurrected because he’s the best. And Peter Gabriel embodies Soso to perfection with the unnamed albums, all leading up to “So.” And *so* I think that’s who’s trying to form before us: Peter Gabriel.” She shrugs her shoulders quickly. “It’s just *so* exciting!”
“Ahem, you need to stop with the “so”s,” Jack requested, but with a laugh.
“So so,” repeated Peter. “So so so so.”
Prissy was nervously scratching her fins. “”But why is he a merboy?” she asked. “Like I’m a mergirl?”
“Because he is your brother, Prissy,” Lily explained. “You are only a bit older than he. How old are you now?”
“13,” came the answer. “13 weeks,” she elaborated.
“13 weeks and 2 and a 1/2 days, yes. You were born at noon. Peter here has just manifested at midnight. You are the day and night twins.” Lily then turns to Bendy. “How old are you Bendy?”
“I’m going to go with 13 as well because I don’t really the heck know.”
“Oh, that’s not true Bendy,” Jack spoke. “You know I completed you on the same day as the whale and squid fiasco. That’s why you’re so *bent* up inside; that awful thing was one of the first things you saw with your shiny new metallic beamers. And Bendy became your name because everyone knew you would become truly warped after that. And *so* it came to be… sorry Lily.”
“So so,” Peter gurgles. “So… *lo*.”
Lily claps again. Peter winces again. “Oh, so sorry Peter once more. But you’ve said your first variant word. Solo!” She tried not to be so loud this time but she felt like shouting it from the rooftop. Peter Gabriel!
Pope Gabriel Solo (Peter)
“Solsbury Hill” is a song by English musician Peter Gabriel about a spiritual experience atop Solsbury Hill in Somerset, England. Gabriel wrote the song after his departure from the progressive rock band Genesis, of which he had been the lead singer since its inception. The song was his debut single. The single was a Top 20 hit in the UK and reached #68 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in 1977. The song has often been used in film trailers for romantic comedies.
Gabriel has said of the song’s meaning, “It’s about being prepared to lose what you have for what you might get… It’s about letting go.” Former bandmate Tony Banks acknowledges that the song reflects Gabriel’s decision to break ties with Genesis, but it can be also applied in a broader sense.
“I think I’ve decided is my favorite spot on the South Pole, Lily. In the middle of your labyrinth.”
“Yes, it was designed as a man trap.” She smiles at him. “We’ve got to have you running it inside and out at least 3 times a day to get you back in shape. I can turn you small beforehand to quadruple the effect.” She shook her head. “You live such a sedentary life, Jack.”
“Yeah, I know. I’ll get back into fighting form, I promise. If we could just solve the problem of merger.”
“Well, as I’ve told you, I can’t double the moon through a magic spell to combine the two poles. You can forget about it.”
Jack hadn’t quite given up the fight. “I’ve showed you the plans. The topography of the North Pole and South Pole fit into each other in unexpected, beneficial ways. Your cottage would slot into my Big Crevice. My shed on one side and Molly’s Cardinal Tree on the other side.”
“It would be too risky,” Lily says firmly, trying to end it. “Our moon friends might be thrown off into space. It could mess up all the side gravities.”
“I just thought a powerful enough spell could protect us.”
“No,” Lily says flatly. “The ancient physics of our moon should not be monkeyed around with. Spells should work side by side with natural laws, not attempt to override or replace them. You listen to me. That’s *that*.”
“And then the other plan: we can’t drag my shed up here through East Pole.”
“I really don’t have room for it even if we could mustard up enough manpower, which I don’t think is possible. So: no. No go.”
“Ketchup,” he cussed. He had given up again. “So there really is only one way out.”
“Yes,” Lily agrees. She stands up and walks over to the edge of the labyrinth, carefully peering down at the grave on West Pole. Jack joins her.
“He has both our genes in him this time. He’s programmed differently from Prissy, a slight but important upgrade. And he’s triggered Project Pope in Bendy. Those two should be fine together, now. This should work. We’ll just have to see what happens.”
“The moon is a square that needs rounding, true,” says Jack, looking into her eyes. He loves her so much, he realizes. She is the center now, not the hole in the sky. But he *can* finish his task since he’ll be living here if all goes as scheduled. The sky will be whole and without hole, and the completed sphere can manifest on earth in theory, according to Lily. As above so below. It’s all up to Peter.