Dear and gentle readers, I offer to you a little portion of the second chapter of my next novel - this is number 6, for crying out loud. It is not a "Michael Nitrous" novel, like novels number 2,3, and 4, although some of the same characters appear, and it is set largely on the extra-planetary orb of Bezelda. Go figure.
Allow me to reconnect a few things for you before I turn this over to the omnicscient-voiced narrator. Yeah, the person who is writing this – you know how when you read something, there is often something called a “narrator” who tells the story in such a way that they seem almost god-like. They know what's going on at all times, in all places, and inside the furry little melons of all the people in any given story. It's crazy, but it sure is useful, because you don't have to worry about anything being entirely hidden – unless the narrator doesn't want you to know what's going on. Kapiche?
Well, in just a little bit I'm going to turn this whole story over to some narrator's voice, and I'm going to slide into what a friend of mine would call another aspect of reality. I won't really change, and I won't really be in a different place or time – just a different plane, as it were. You'll see. It's not all that weird, really. But in the mean time, let me reconnect a few things for you.
When you see lights in the sky, don't be so damned sure that they are normal. Don't be so damned sure that they're abnormal, either. They might be a bit of both. This applies to about 80% of the people you meet on a daily basis, as well, so take everyone with a grain of freaking salt. Especially if they're wearing roller skates.
ESPECIALLY if they're wearing roller skates.
When someone gives you something to eat that looks like eyelids and tastes like fish, be careful. You are going to find yourself visiting the commode before too long – I would almost put money on that. We don't gamble too much on Bezelda, but we do have this one game of chance called “pin-flutchey”. In pin-flutchey, several people all take two very sharp steak knives in each hand. That's four steak knives (which we call “klolbs” on Bezelda) per person. We all blindfold ourselves, and then stand in a circle. Beginning with the person who is situated to the northern-most part of the circle and continuing clockwise, each player praises the person to their left, using either standard heroic couplet poetry or Bezeldan pep-mulls. The pep-mulls are a lot more interesting.
When everyone has had the chance to speak, they each throw a certain amount of money into the circle – this amount being determined before organizing the game. After each has thrown in the money, there is a countdown from seven, everyone cries out “pin-flutchey!” throws their steak knives into the air and either runs like hell or stands as still as a statue. You have to do one or the other. If anyone is struck by a knife, he or she gets the money in the pot. If there are two people struck, they split the money, and if there are three or more, all cry out the word “plossit!” and return to the circle for another round.
You can probably figure out the great amount of skill and cunning required to play a game of chance like this. It's not a game for the faint of heart, to be sure.
How did we get on pin-flutchey? Oh yeah, I told you not to eat anything that looked like an eyelid and tasted like fish.
I've never been very good at spontaneous pep-mull creation. Not like some guys I know. You probably know pep-mulls as those Bezeldan poems that are kind of like what on earth is called a limerick, except the rhyming scheme is different. Hell, I guess it's safe to say that there is no rhyme scheme at all to a pep-mull. I think the only really similarity, when you come right down to it, is the fact that both limericks and pep-mulls each have five lines. Aside from that, the comparison kind of falls apart. Here is one of my favorite pep-mulls, written by Cran Hylen. You may have heard about him before, as he was the poet-laureate of Bezelda for some time (at least in one particular aspect of reality). Here it is:
Blank? Or not with cheese
opulent stink of ice-time
wobble crashing parties.
That last word, “stijt,” has no real translation into English, but it is a really common word in the Bezeldan day-to-day vocabulary. It means something like “wanting to go and get some toasted bread-product and prepare a sandwich of sorts as long as I have the time to do it without interrupting the rest of my regularly-scheduled daily activities.”
That actually comes up in conversation quite frequently on Bezelda, believe it or not.
Cran Hylen was an incredibly good poet. He had lost all of the hair on the top of his head, and it regrew on his left forearm. Usually he kept it fairly short and parted it with the addition of a little hair tonic. Every now and again, for a season, he would let it grow long and then push it back with the aid of a nicely-scented pomade.
You just never knew about Cran Hylen.