Friday, May 29, 2009

the thirteenth letter, part 2

for previous episode, click here

to begin at the beginning click here

"how much disrespect can we take? how long are we going to wait here?" mike mean watched jeanne d'arc's back as she exited tania's cubicle, leaving him, along with pete street, mac the mailman, and the archangel gabriel to look out the window or watch doctors and wives with sally.
pete chose to look out the window. "we won't wait too long. there's another case i want to ask these people about, that we might have crossed paths on."
mike shrugged and went to stand at the window himself. some small vehicles, most of them certainly police, flashed through the night sky over the dim city lights.
"so what's this other case?"
"the laura poll case."
mike nodded. "you are still working on that?" he laughed. " how is that a suspicious development - after all this time?'"
pete looked over his shoulder at mac the mailman and sally. mac was standing a yard behind sally watching doctors and wives over her shoulder. mike got the message - they were non-police.
pete took a pad out of his shirt pocket and began writing on it.

laura poll was a young woman who had disappeared under suspicious circumstances some years ago. she had been the talk of the town and the belle of the ball. tall and blonde, she had won the miss galaxy contest (two years before tania kelly was fourth runner-up) and had been third runner-up in the miss multi-universe contest the next year. while preparing for the miss mega-universe contest the next year, she had plunged wholeheartedly into training for her chosen branch of police work - paracrime, and starred on intergalactic football and lacrosse teams. although she seemed to have a full plate with her careers as an athlete, a beauty, a crimefighter and a debutante, she had also become involved in politics, in the last hectic years of politics in the universe, and joined the blue party of fidel castro as a volunteer.
at blue party headquarters she met the dashing young comte de gobineau-richelieu. they fell in love and her troubles began.

pete paused in his recitation. mike raised an eyebrow but refrained from comment.
pete continued.

laura and the comte applied for a marriage permit. because of their wide and varied combined interests (the comte was a renowned numerologist and astrologer, a multi-level fencing champion, an expert on poisons in his capacity as a lieutenant in the developing crimes unit, and an actor in popular shows {including the role of the vampire on doctors and wives} as well as having risen to third position in the blue party below fidel and che guevara), the permit had to pass through an ever expanding circle of bureaus and departments, including the most important and prestigious police departments.
the permit proceeded slowly, sometimes seeming to disappear. in addition, laura's meteoric rise had caused malicious tongues to come out of the woodwork.

"get on with it." said mike out loud.

on the last night of her confirmed existence , laura had made a leaping catch for a touchdown in the left corner of the end zone with 2 seconds left to give the notre-dame de paris reds a victory over the mexico city blues in the third round of the super bowl eliminations. the game had been played in the colosseum. although the comte de gobineau-richelieu professed to despise american style football, he had been in attendance to see his beloved perform. but he had a report due to his chief in developing crimes, as well as one to che guevara regarding suspected infiltration of the blue party, so he had gone outside to work on them. when cheering within the ancient edifice signalled the thrilling end of the game, and news of laura's heroics spread like wildfire among the throngs waiting in the surrounding streets and alleys, he put his notepad away and looked around.
ten feet away, a ragamuffin selling flowers from a basket was staring at him.
"fresh cut flowers, sir, good for any happy occasion."
the comte approached the young man and took out his identification. he smiled. "do you have a number and name?"
"77H-rt569-h56d42-9574ff28, sir. people call me little jojo."
"these flowers wouldn't contain poison , would they?"
"no poison here, sir. these are the flowers of love. cut by the god of love himself."
the comte showed little jojo his badge and smiled again. "be careful, i happen to have some knowledge of the subject."
"of course. i recognized you right away, monsieur le comte. i never miss an episode of doctors and wives. the vampire is my favorite character."
"all you street urchins say that." the comte took some lilies out of jojo's basket. "cut by the god of love himself, eh? and who might that be?"
"the god of love keeps close counsel, sir."
"all right, i will take these lilies. what do i owe you?"
"whatever you will. it is my pleasure to serve the deservedly renowned count and the heavenly miss laura."
"take this, then." the comte took a coin out of his pocket. one side of the coin depicted the last roman emperor, augustulus, playing a game of badminton with attila the hun, while st helena, the empress theodosia, and a male and female lion watched. the other side showed pascal, william wilberforce and robespierre being thrown into the fiery furnace by the empress maria theresa as johann sebastian bach played the harpsichord and blind tom played the piano behind her.
"thank you." jojo tapped his forehead with the coin and disappeared.

only later did the comte wonder how jojo, a citizen with no apparent police credentials, had known of his connection with laura, which was, or should have been, confidential knowledge pending the issuing of the marriage permit. in the months of investigations which followed, the comte, in spite of or as some thought because of, his positions and connections, was repeatedly - some would say insultingly - led back to this point as he was interrogated and reinterrogated by the
departments assigned to the disappearance. in vain did the comte point out that he had never had the opportunity to give laura the flowers. this point was contemptuously brushed aside by both the scientific and magical departments - and, in their last years of existence, the political and religious departments as well.

although the comte had taken his number, little jojo was never found. this added to the burden of suspicion, and the comte's career with the police was destroyed, although he continued to enjoy renown in the fields of astrology, numerology and alchemy (a new interest) and as an actor, where his portrayal of the vampire on doctors and wives remained a favorite with the public.

the thirteenth letter, part 3


human being said...

i'm so excited about the way the different sub-plots are beginning to merge into each other... jojo appears in the comte's account...
the comte plays as the vampire in the show sally likes...

intricacy... intricacy... how are you doing this, dear spider?

this time i wait patiently for the rest... i know the job is getting more and more difficult in each new letter...

your digital artworks are so cute... glad i can see most of them...

my favorite is the one sally is looking through the window (12th letter part 2)

be well and thriving...

rhoda said...

an unknown novelist named rhoda
scribbled in her silent pagoda
she found a fan
in - where else? - iran
and treated herself to a soda

human being said...

this is very beautiful... made me smile..... a mile!

i feel welcomed in this silent pagoda... though i crow a lot!

thanks a lot dear friend...

i really enjoy my visits here...

i love the way modern technology makes this possible for the writers and readers to communicate even during the process of creation... and without the intervention of 'critics'!