Page 5 of 5





going to get a job in a market already silly with genetically-modified slave labor, you can’t compete with that. It’s just about the high tuition fees.., a burden not shared by the slaves who also receive free medical. You heard about Operation Cotton Tail run by MMI? Which also covertly funds the MSA’s dark surveillance program in conjunction with Blind Ambition Technology.”

“MMI?., Blind Ambition Technology?”

“Check this out; they developed a top-secret sauce for Papa Papa Pizza with GM jalapenos infused with nano-scopic particulate transceivers programmed to implant themselves to targeted points of the nervous system and brain stem enabling remote communications with body and mind including the newly improved and recently approved ‘kill switch’.”

“Does it matter that I have no idea what you’re talking about?”

“Well of course that’s what they’re going to say., even with the lease agreement., I mean., What?”

“Hey, let’s get some pizza. You want some pizza?”

“Shit I forgot to tell Rose not to sign up for that class. I hope she hasn’t already.”

“Well she couldn’t get off early like she wanted. Krystal Ball called in sick. You know the brunette with the bad implants. Just goes to show you; you can’t get that shit at wal-mart.”

“But you can’t get that shit at wal-mart.”

“What shit?”

“Breast implants.”

“What about breast implants?”

“About getting them at wal-mart.”

“You can get breasts at wal-mart? Man you can get anything at wal-mart.”

“No. That’s what I’m saying.”

“Just goes to show you. Anyway her place was blown up before she got there.”

“Before who., Never mind, I got to get out of here.”

So I finish my beer and race home hopefully in time to keep Rose from signing up for the ass class. On my way Sally appears to me again., 
“Write the story; you have to write the story.”

Sally bothered me like this all the way back to my place but I wasn’t listening. I’m thinking about Rose. I run the last block and am out of breath when I get to my place to find no Rose.

“Maybe she just went to the store.” I said to Sally as I frantically search for signs that she’d been there and when I try to get online to check the browser’s history; Rose never clears the browser’s history – pisses me off; I see Vexicon has cut the juice, and I’m left stranded in the dark.

“Rose has been kidnapped” Announced Sally. “There goes the ending.”

“How do you know?”

“Because Rose is gone. She was your story.”

“No, I mean how do you know Rose has been kidnapped?”

“Oh, I know. I know how these people operate. It’s called leverage.”

“But they came to my place they must have been after me. I think it’s about my outstanding balance.”

“No this isn’t about you. No, this is about Jack.”

“Why Jack, because he’s gay?”

“Gay don’t have shit to do with shit; you need to leave it alone so you can focus on what’s real. Jack was on his way to share some information with you about something he saw on your website – about some exposé you were working on. They got him outside of your place. It was an abduction gone bad.”

“But you said ‘I won’t recognize instead deny’ what does that mean?”

“Yeah if you write the story you won’t know him - not as Rose’s brother anyway.”

“Then how does he know where to find me, where I live?”

“He delivers pizza doesn’t he?”

“Jack was my pizza guy? So that’s what happened to the pizza.”

“But what it’s really about is the Adopt a Cloud Foundation.”

“The Adopt a Cloud Foundation?”

“You see They secretly own the sky,”

“The Adopt a Cloud Foundation?”

“No, They, Them - that’s what that cloud storage thing is really about, so people can’t be adopting parts of it.”

“They, Their, Them - who’s,?”

“That’s what I’m trying to tell you and that’s why Jack’s in danger and why Rose was kidnapped.”


“That info he wanted to share with you. He stumbled across some papers at the pizza place that plots the plan and implicates The Bates Foundation along with the evil billionaire Jon Santo involving Vexicon and others in a nefarious scheme, to hand the world over to their Masters in the Clouds, some neo-gnostic panel of semi-demigods with a large diet for data. They’d been commanded to dance and destroy insurgent caterpillars on far away farms in order to stimulate crow meat futures to further finance the wishes of their Masters; to build a god in their image to rule over all. You know – Pinky - take over the world.”

“O.k. how’s that going to help Jack and Rose.”

“Well you know Jack will still die.”

“Yeah but why? Why does he have to die – because he’s gay?”

“Look, Jack needs to die not because he’s gay but because that’s what his character does - always must do. If he doesn’t die he’s not needed for the story so he wouldn’t even exist and you can’t get rid of your only gay character – it would look bad and you got all those gay jokes. So.., and I can’t believe I’m saying this but.., yeah, he has to die because he’s gay.”

“What about.,?”

“It wouldn’t be so bad if he were black.”

“But he is black.”

“I meant just black.”

“What about Rose.”

“That’s up to you. But, you know, you can’t really kill Rose, the sweet-heart of the story. Writing Jalapenos and Beer will give Rose a second chance – and this story is Second Chance Rose.”

“I guess I have no choice.”

“But that’s the problem. There’s always a choice. You can selfishly cling to your petty world comforted and complacent as the victim with tattered illusions confusing damnation for salvation, hoping today’s misery leads to miraculous tomorrows. While others suffer you can keep what you see; terrified that what you see you can never keep. Or fuck the dumb shit, show some balls and make the leap across the abyss, abandon with abandon and break free.”

“You’re awfully preachy for a manifestation.”

“Well, I am a manifestation of a preacher.”

“O.K., I’m lost. I do or don’t have a choice?”

“That’s what I’m saying - that’s your choice.”

“So having a choice – is a choice?”

“It all starts with a thought.”

“A thought can change the future – can save Rose?”

“Maybe. Like I said it’s up to you. I’m not even supposed to be in this story. I’m a lie within a lie created by a liar. But I can tell you that in order to save her you will lose her. That’s what I meant when I said you wouldn’t recognize Jack as Rose’s brother because you won’t know Rose. The only way you can save her is by letting her go. Let her turn right.”

“I don’t know; this makes no sense; if I don’t know Rose why would I want to save her?”

“Why wouldn’t you? You want to save her now and that’s what matters. You do want to save her don’t you? Without her there really is no story. Do you love her?”

“She’s a great fuck.”

“That’s it?”

“No.., Of course not.., Just the first thing to come to mind.”

“But do you love her – this is supposed to be a love story.”

I was never forced to honestly answer that question before. Love - a treasured trump card too loose in the hand of lust. But do I really love her? I thought back as scenes from the past paraded through present perspective.., a mesmerizing montage.., sharing the good times; comforting through the bad.., But love?

“Yeah I guess.”

“No guessing here. Do you love her enough to let her go?”

“So I have to give up great sex with someone, I do know; in order to save somebody I don’t know?”

“If you love her you have to let her go; if you don’t love her then you should let her go. Actually, now that I think of it, if you don’t let her go you’re not worthy of her and if you do let her go you become the man she deserves but she’s already gone.., bummer.”

“No shit.”

“But in order to save Rose you have to save the story because without the story there’s no Rose and without Rose there’s no story – no love – no second chance. You did want her to quit stripping didn’t you?”

“So if and when I save Rose I won’t know her?”

“Yeah but that’s another story.”

“But she won’t know it’s me that saved her.”

“What are you hoping for; substance or celebrity?”

“I have to choose?”

Now, with the threat of certain loss, it became crystal clear. I did love Rose and was desperate to get her back – ready to climb any mountain, cross any river, cross any line - I needed Rose back. But my selfish nature, much about appearance, didn’t want to appear selfish so,

“I’ll have to let her go.”

“So this story is about love and second chance.” Sally getting all sentimental.

“In the end it’s not about assholes but heart.” I added as I stifled a tear for Rose. “But how am I going to get it published, get it out there, get it read? I don’t even have an agent.”

“Remember that lotto ticket? Scratch it.”