cat 1: what's your name?
cat 2: i don't know. i remember it, though.
cat 1: i feel it being changed on my tongue. but this soul feels comfortable no matter the breed.
cat 2: yeah i'm definitely gonna see that movie about the buddhist dog when we get out of this.
cat 1: do you feel the compression of your fur?
cat 2: yeah, the timelines are pushing into each other. won't be long now.
cat 1: i can see everything, everywhere, everytime, at once.
cat 2: but do you see me? that's all that matters.
cat 1: no wonder my eyes are so big and constantly sniffing.
cat 2: and let's be honest, this is cos our creator is lazy.
cat 1: that's definitely for sure.
the cats enter a celestial butthole in the stars. unawares of what they just did. they follow the path up the dark tubular canal clutching onto each others' paws and curling their tails together. so cute.
cat 1: like the dank abandoned underground subway tunnels we all used to congregate at in old york.
cat 2: how old do you have to be before you can't be cute anymore?
Musculo has been mortally wounded on the stage. he's lost two-thirds more blood than is necessary even for an alien. Carmen continues to stand next to him redhanded as it were holding the bloody safety pin. she must move but it's like she's been caught in a time warp. the screams of the crowd are muffled by both parties which begs the question and confirms the answer, no one can hear your screams in time.
for Musculo's part, he eases in and out of planes of existence always trying to look at his hand for a gauge. he likes it when he's in the cracked desert and talking to Codrus rather than when he's sleeping.
Musculo: there are no trees here but i don't feel cold.
Codrus: cos it's raining. and there are trees. you realize you lost. but you will be propped up in all timelines.
Musculo: uh, thanks. but i want to win. wasn't that the deal?
Codrus: excuse me? there are no resolutions. there are no christmas presents. you are either alive or you are dead. but please complain some more. non-gods i swear. we shoulda made cats the most intelligent. i told Fuerza to.
Musculo: that hurts me, boss. oh yeah, there's my tree. my sponsor. the one that keeps me up. that beautiful baobab yonder.
Codrus: the Grand Oak's cousin. pretty but not with enough gravitas.
Musculo: it's such a cool tree though.
Codrus: Madchen got the weeping willow. she wins. a real old soul who's seen real pain.
Codrus spits from his mouth a golden wad on the rocky ground and it lights up a makeshift campfire. he sets out the humble meal for the night. he splits the unleavened bread with his slave and his charge.
Codrus: i dunno but i just...love bread.
Lieu: you like Oprah.
Lieu is careful with his laugh. he keeps in a squatting position dusting the sand off his shins.
Musculo: i don't eat.
Codrus: you gotta eat. no matter what you're going through. you must make time to nourish yourself. that's why you lost. for shame. we have all the ancient grains at our fingertips. you dishonor your ancestors. everyone's ancestor was a farmer. they raised us. the matzah and the roti and the, i mean you don't even like your native tortillas?
Musculo: i think i tried a flatbread pizza once but i spit it out.
the only thing which moves Carmen off that stage is a vision of a blue Russell Brand who gives the double thumbs-up to her and smiles so wickedly she can't help but laugh. Russell continues beaming, swishing his cheeks full of air back and forth and gesturing with his hands that he is steering the heavy wooden wheel of a pirate ship. he even covers up one of his eyes.
Musculo is seated on the toffee bottom of a cushion at a musty tea parlor. his slaves are now someone else's slaves as they serve stale tea in stained frilly french maid outfits and coiffed white wigs. but no one in that room cares about food, they are having too good a time. the atmosphere is smoky but no one is smoking. the Nutcracker Suite plays tinnily in the background out of creaky cranky heirloom musicboxes with ceramic ballerinas spinning with their eyes covered up in cheesecloth.
Bump and Vladimir Putin are shirtless and bro-hugging each other after each tweet they send to the other. they are laughing so hard you can see both their adams apples.
Bump's tweet: YAWWWSSSS
Vlad's tweet: LOLZZZZ
Bump: i don't know what i'm thinking from moment to moment. it's a moet moment.
Vlad: *smiley with the laughing tears* vodka my comrad, a real drink for a real madman. no need for sponsors.
Bump: Korea can suck it.
Vlad: can't find it. which one? *smiley tears*
Bump: bumpcare. come in to my office and i'll take care of you. or you'll get bumped off.
Vlad: i heard about you and playing doctor. we have socialized medicine. so we have no medicine. just vodka. vodka for Russian winter. *smiley tears*
Bump: i'd bro-fist you across the pond but it's a frozen lake!
Vlad: come visit. stay forever. winter is 9 months. our brisk cold air for good health. Russian winter is best.
Bump ends the session with an ominous one-word tweet: god
to which Vlad responds: ..............i don't know what that is.........
Musculo slumps his shoulders to fit the outline of his chair and hangs his jaw but soon finds he can't find the words. he is emblazoned in a lieutenant's uniform being held up by the shoulders with his frilly epaulettes.
Bump: get this man a stiff one. with LEMON. yellow lemon. what do you see up there, sir?
Musculo: a plane. of existence. a yellow submarine flying in the clouds.
Bump: *heavy accent* oh dear. you must get out of the cheese cupboard, little mouse. you don't see the timeline in front of you? clear as day. well i know things others don't. your army makes a preemptive strike and falls and fails. Carmen and her lady parts, they outwit the men with their magic and
PILOT A SUBMARINE INTO YOUR BUILDING, CLICK HERE, RIGHT HERE AT THIS LINK.
Lieu: *whispers* ready for your inaugural address?
Musculo: what? it's my first time.
Musculo looks out onto the sea of people all looking at him blankly. this is not like those other times he practiced at a mirror. they are mirroring his ennui and lack of fun. the Lutum instinctively know where the action is and they all turn to a local cafe with a protester outside. except the protester is a Bump voter.
the protester is an average-looking short pudgy white male with straight sandy hair, an untucked blue shirt, and beige slacks. he saunters into the place with a new-found confidence and orders his coffee black with just a hint of salt. Russell Brand working the counter doesn't quite get the order right and grins devilishly. he looks good in that green apron, though.
Russell: fudge. i added some fudge, mate.
protester: i'm allergic to cocoa. you better do what i say! you're the help. i voted for Musculo.
that's when Carmen, who's in line trying to calm down with a caffeinated drink, goes off and gores the protester in the neck with her pin.
Carmen: the fuck you say. like that means anything. voted for Musculo like that's a credit to your family name. just makes you a moron. one of the duped. you thought you were part of the revolution but you joined the wrong one. oh the joy in resisting! get the fuck outta here. i'll throw you out myself little man. kick. war on. onto the sidewalk with the rest of the deplorables. time to diversity your portfolio.
Vlad has positioned two of his armymen in line behind Carmen to strike up a timed conversation and camera-phone-film the whole thing.
agent 1: so miss, that felt good, huh? defeating your enemy like that.
agent 2: it really gets your hairs to stand on end. like a cringing cat you're let loose on the wild. once you get a sniff of blood..........it's the ultimate food.
the agents begin licking the palms of their hands and using those palms to scratch their temples.
Carmen: yeah you're right. i feel it in my bones! more than any chicken bones i used as a witch.
Russell: girl we gonna need a beverage babe for tonight. can you cover my shift? i'm being knighted.
Carmen: sorry, sir, i'm gonna be busy. i'm the Leader of the Resistance! *closed fist*
Russell taps the mic as Musculo drools into the podium and it seems Carmen's stony visage has been transferred to Musculo's gray face.
Russell: you caught a cold. hello? anyone home?......well of course someone's home...
Musculo strainedly gets out, "i had a dream..."
Russell: okay, let's get this ceremony crackin'. Your Highness, if you will.
the Queen of England glissades onto the dais like a snail. she is not looking well but still proper.
Queen: smooth along. is this for the band Queen? that Freddie Mercury has the sexiest moustache.
Russell: no ma'am. knighthood. me, Andy Murray, and the black guy.
Queen: well of course. tut tut and all that. hand me the sword.
the thin iron sword is so heavy the Queen breaks in half and turns to dust but not without leaving a parting shot. she coughs into the face of Russell Brand leaving him covered in phlegm.
Russell: blimey. guess i'm king. on with the show. i got a real sword.
Russell pulls out a lightsaber from an air pocket or something in his plaid jacket and activates it. it makes the familiar SHEATH sound (like a cat) and crackles and vrooms with blue energy.
Andy Murray is first in line and he bows down to accept the sword on his shoulders.
Russell: oh but you Scottish, aye mate?
Andy: well, uh, yeah i guess.
Russell lands the lightsaber on both of Andy's shoulders, burning them.
Andy: ooooooooooooooouuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuchhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!!!!!! still less painful than haggis.
Russell: arsemunch. *laughs* just kidding. sorry, mate. 'tis a flesh wound. a singe. alright, i hate tradition, i'm in the business of breaking tradition but let's go back to the play-sword for the time being. next. Hilary?
Hilary: *bowing in a sex-slave outfit* it's better than nothing. i love this carpet.
next to her is Bernie.
Hilary: *whispering loudly* where have you been?!
Bernie: had some clams at Cafe Rio and was in the bathroom for a month.
as Bernie makes his way down the greeting line another dignitary takes the reins and does the honors. he is a midget dressed in a long flowing green robe.
Penyelamat: little person. except i'm not a little person. i'm a small man with a large heart.
Penye bops Bernie on the head with his knotty staff knocking out the last of Bernie's white hair. Bernie's Brooklyn accent really comes out and becomes more pronounced.
Bernie: wha, wha? i'm walking here! i tried, i tried.
Penye: not hard enough. you could have saved us from this mess. next time take at least one trip to Russia.
Hilary breaks the fourth wall, bites her finger, and looks into the camera with a pensive, "Penye!"
Russell Brand begins dancing on stage. he gesticulates as only Russell Brand can. he begins to form in and out of various blue shapes. first he's Jesus then a fox before he settles on Lysander. but he finds Lysander boring and jumps up and down and runs to the ceiling of the domed roof where he stands motionless. he transforms into his final form, the Trickster, before scampering out a hole. Lysander comes crashing down and almost dies but rubs his head anyway.
Lysander: what happened? ouch. remind me never again to turn into Russell Brand.
at the real Inauguration a week later the drone cameras are set up in the air of the open-air ceremony at the base camp. a campfire burns as always shining a rather peculiar light on the proceedings. ominous but cool. the two cats come out of the mouth of the Sphinx on the shifting sands and sit down in loaves on the head of the mythical beast with a perfect overhead view. Madchen sits on her makeshift throne of sticks and stones. she tries to sound important. she sounds like a mother.
Madchen: um, i didn't want this but tragedy always strikes at the wrong time. it is my destiny and my death. but i promise i will never leave you. i may not be in this form but i am me, throughout all of time and space. i am universal. as big as my butt. we all have butts. we are losing artists and gaining politicians. like my son always said we must return to art. war belongs in paint, not in practice...
the cats jump down from the Sphinx's head and slide down its tail. they glide along till they reach the stage. seated to the right of Madchen is Carmen. to the left is an empty tuffet, Herlina is on leave.
cat 1: what is your name?
cat 2: Ese.
cat 1: seriously?! my name is Siam.
Ese: why i gotta be stuck with Ese?
Siam: hahahahaha. ese. vale ese! que tal vato!
Ese: i used to think that was funny.
Siam: that movie will ALWAYS be funny! come on, be proud, there's no harm in owning your roots.
the cats jump onto Carmen's lap and purr. they do not look at Madchen. Carmen has tears in her eyes for the first time in a while.
Carmen pets them but the cats recoil.
Siam: we tracked you.
Ese: by the blood on your hands.
Siam: only pet us once.
Ese: you must save our heads.
Siam: we must be preserved for all generations in all times in all places to find comfort.
Ese: our hair must last.
Musculo finds a warm place on the other side of the desert by his baobab tree. he sits under it and finds himself there most nights whenever he loses consciousness. it's never cold, always slightly humid. stirrings of Beatles songs always lose themselves over the mountains.
Musculo looks out onto the expanse. he always sees in the distance a white woman gliding along the hard sand. and Codrus with a hand.
Codrus: y'know a white lady is both a ghost and a cocktail. you mean you don't drink, either?