8.11 – The Barracks

The Barracks was in a brand new luxury apartment complex.  There was a gate around it, and you hadta enter a code in order for it to open. Inside all the buildings looked exactly the same, and you hadta have someone like The Admiral tell you which one to go to or else you’d get lost.  Then when you got to the right building you hadta type in another code to get inside the door.  Then you hadta go to another door upstairs, and when you unlocked that you were finally allowed in The Barracks.

It was clean and organized, but there wasn’t much in it.  Aside from the basic furniture, there was just a globe and shelf with books about War. All the walls were bright white and bare, except for one that had an old fashioned sabre hanging up on it.

As soon as we got in the door The Admiral told The General we’d got in a car accident.

“No, we didn’t,” I said.

“Hahaha,” The Admiral, “it was close.”

“Some things never change, do they?” The General shook his head.

“Everything always changes,” I said.

Then a girl came into the room who looked just like La Renarde.  Everything on her was red.  Red hair, red lips, red tanktop, red skirt, red boots.

“Hahaha,” The Admiral said, “Red.”

“Oh my god!” she looked over at me.  “Hippie Dippie!  Do you remember me?”

I’d only seen her briefly a couple of times when she was just a kid.  La Renarde was older and always said they never MeToo’d about anything, and she couldn’t believe they were actually related.

“Sortuv,” I said, “I’m not Hippie Dippe tho.  I’m Jonathan or Ace or Bluebird.”

“You’re funny,” she said.  “I’m gonna call you HD for short.  Just like my favorite kind of TV!”

“No.”

But she ignored me and pointed to my chest.

“Oh my god, HD” she said. “Why are you wearing a sticker?”

“Don’t look at that,” I said and covered it up.  “Why are you here?”

“Oh my god, me and TheGeneral&TheAdmiral are are like friends now.  They come into my job at Applebee’s all the time, and they’re so much more mature than the boys at Ohio Future Adult Training School.”

Then she noticed The Stash we’d just brought in.

“Oh my god!” she said and grabbed a bottle of vodka.  “Is there any cranberry juice?”

The Admiral showed her what we just picked up on the gas station run.

“Oh my god, yes!” she said.  “Let’s get wasted.”

And then before you knew it everyone started raiding The Stash and grabbing different bottles to make their own drinks.

“Wait,” I said, “the best way to MeToo is if we all drink the same amount of the same Alcohol.”

“Don’t try to pretend like you know more about drinking than we do,” The General said.

“Hahaha,” The Admiral said, “we’re alcoholics.”

“I know what I’m talking about,” I said.  “I learned it from the great Perceptionist Reality Traveler Wolf.”

“I was born knowing Perception,” The General said.

“No, you weren’t.  It’s a Reality Traveler term, and you don’t even know what it means.”

“What I know is that there’s no way you’ll be able to drink as much as me.  I have a greater body mass and a genetically superior tolerance.”

“Only MeNotzies make drinking a competition.”

“Okay,” he shrugged, “then I’m a ‘MeNotzie.’”

There was nothing I could do to stop it from becoming Every Reality For Themselves.  Red drank the vodka and cranberry, The Admiral drank straight rum, and The General mostly only drank expensive beer from his own Stash that was already there. You couldn’t tell how much Alcohol they were drinking at once, but they were all drinking too fast.  I hadta make my own very powerful JacknDrPepper just to try and keep up.

It seemed like a good moment for The Goddess of Faith to show up, but she didn’t.  All I could do was look down at my Sticker.

“I’m The Bluebird, a MusicMan Traveler who flies to all Realities and sings to them,” I hadta say to myself.

8.8 – Applebee’s

TheGeneral&TheAdmiral wanted to meet at the bar at Applebee’s.

Applebee’s is a restaurant found in every city in America about having the most average food possible.  Often in Suburban areas they do not have real bars, and Applebee’s is the closest thing to one.

I didn’t even shower first, I just left on my Wedding Uniform cuz even tho it had a little Travel stink on it, the Professor-like tweed jacket still gave me the best chance of getting taken seriously.  When I got out to Wings I was hoping The Goddess of Faith was gonna be there waiting, but she wasn’t. I guessed it wasn’t the right key moment yet, and I hadta go to Applebee’s by myself.

TheGeneral&TheAdmiral were already there sitting at the bar.  The General was wearing a suit and tie Adult Uniform, and The Admiral was wearing some kind of workman’s jumpsuit Adult Uniform.  They looked like they’d just come from their jobs even tho it was the middle of a long holiday weekend.  The Admiral laughed as soon as he saw me.

“Hahaha,” he said, “what are you wearing, Hippie Dippie?”

I looked down.

“You mean my jacket?” I asked.

“Hahaha,” he said, “hippie jacket.”

“What are you talking about?  This jacket was very respected at the Wedding I went to yesterday.”

“Hahaha, why’s it got a sticker on it?”

I quickly covered it with my hand, so he couldn’t read it.

“Easy, Admiral,” The General said.  “Let him sit down at least before you start busting balls.”

“Thanks,” I said and took a stool next to them.

“So where are you living these days?” The General asked.

“Where-ThePlains-Meet-TheMountains,” I said.

“Hahaha,” The Admiral said.  “Never heard of it.”

“It’s many states west of here,” I said.

“So when did you fly in?” The General asked.

“I didn’t,” I said.  “I drove.”

“Hahaha,” The Admiral said, “but you don’t know how to drive.”

“I do now.”

“Hahaha, but you didn’t at as-soon-as-you-were-16 like you were supposed to.”

Then The Bartender came over and asked what I wanted.  I noticed TheGeneral&TheAdmiral were drinking beers, and even tho I didn’t like it I knew we hadta be in Common Perception, so I got one, too.

“Let’s do a toast,” I said.

“Nah,” they said. “We don’t do toasts.”

“Whatever,” I said and hadta say “GAM-BAY” quietly to myself.

ThenGeneral&TheAdmiral started catching me up on what they were doing in life.  The General worked at an office that designed rubber for weapons, and he was making a lot of money.  The Admiral worked at a factory that made rubber for weapons, and he didn’t make as much money but still a lot more than me.  Then it was time for me to tell them what I was doing in life, but I wasn’t quite sure how to do it.

“Hahaha,” The Admiral said.  “I know what Hippie Dippie’s doing.  He’s The Bluebird, a MusicMan Reality Traveler who flies to all Realities and sings to them.”

“How did you know that?” I said.

“Hahaha, why are you wearing a sticker?”

“Sounds like nonsense words,” The General said. “What does ‘Reality Traveler’ mean?”

Then I didn’t know what else to do but try to explain.

“A Reality Traveler,” I sighed,“is chosen by The Gods to Travel to as many Realities as possible and prevent War by MeTooing them.”

“Hahaha,” The Admiral said.  “Hippie Dippie did become a hippie!”

“No surprise,” The General said.

“Hahaha, The Admiral said, “peace, man.”

And then he mockingly held two fingers in the air like a Golden Age Reality Traveler.

“I’m just curious,” The General said.  “Who’s paying you for this Reality Traveling?”

“No one,” I said.  “I do it for free.”

“Then what do you do for money?”

“I deliver pizza.”

“Hahaha,” The Admiral said, “but you can’t drive!”

“I can now!”

“So a Reality Traveler is called upon by The Gods to stop War,” The General said.

“Yes,” I said.

“There are so many flaws in this, where do I begin? First, War is necessary. According to you we were supposed to just let The Axis Powers win World War II?”

“We should’ve MeToo’d them,” I said. “Focused on what we had in common.”

“What do you mean?  You think we could have stopped the War just by agreeing we both like sauerkraut or sushi?  That’s ridiculous.  We had to annihilate them or else they would’ve annihilated us.”

“But The Great MeNotzie Army wouldn’t have even formed if at the end of the First Great Reality War the winning Realities hadn’t blamed the losing Realities for totally starting the War.  They needed to say the Eleventh Hour MeToo that they were all being MeNotzies.  Instead it just made the losers feel more different and alone and afraid of all the other Realities around them.”

“Let’s say that’s true.  How are you personally going to stop War.  As we’ve easily predicted, you are not in any kind of influential position in the U.S. government.”

“War is happening all the time in little ways tho. Just Realities arguing and making fun of each other and wanting each other to change.”

“How can you possibly stop that?”

“Every Reality Traveler has a MeToo Specialty and mine is The Great List of Old Songs.”

“Hahaha,” The Admiral said, “Sunday Bloody Sunday!”

“How is a song going to help someone if they’re getting robbed or raped or murdered by some psycho?” The General said.

“Maybe if someone had MeToo’d them earlier about a song, they wouldn’t feel like doing that stuff,” I said.

“What if you can’t find a song you both MeToo?”

“There’s always gotta be at least one song.”

“I’m going to go out on a limb here and guess that the only songs you know are the ones you heard on The Radio as a kid. How could you ever MeToo an inner city black guy or a foreigner or someone much older or younger?  One day in the future only a few people will ever have even heard of your favorite songs.”

“Then maybe I’ll start my own band and always be writing new songs Realities can MeToo.”

“What about people like me and The Admiral who don’t even listen to songs?”

“Then maybe I’ll write a book about trying to MeToo about music, and readers will at least MeToo about that.”

“How will you get us to read it?  We only read books about War.”

“Fine, if all else fails, there’s always Alcohol.”

“Hahaha,” The Admiral said, “I can actually MeToo that.”

“I’d still go to War with someone I drank with,” The General said.  “They’d let their guard down, and then I’d strike.”

“Or maybe your guard would be down, and you’d be easier to MeToo,” I said.

“How about we test this out then.  We’ll get drunk together tonight, and we’ll see whether we MeToo or go to War.”

“You’re on.”

 The General was about to order another round, but I stopped him and told him about The Stash.

“There’s still enough to get half a Wedding drunk,” I said, “and the best part is it’s free.”

“On my salary I can afford to drink all night at Applebee’s,” The General said, “but I can see how a pizza delivery driver would need that kind of break.”

“Hahaha,” The Admiral said, “minimum wage.”

Then they agreed to just go back to their apartment they called The Barracks and drink The Stash there.

“Only thing is there’s no mixers,” I said.

“We don’t use mixers,” The General said.

“Hahaha,” The Admiral said, “what about Red?”

“Oh yes,” The General said, “our friend Red is supposed to hang out with us tonight, and she’ll need her cranberry juice.”

Then he started giving us orders.

“Hippie Dippie since you apparently can’t handle your alcohol straight, you drive to the nearby gas station and get your mixer plus cranberry for Red.  Admiral you go with him to make sure he doesn’t screw up.  We’ll rendezvous back at The Barracks when your mission is complete.”

“Alright,” I said.

 “Hahaha,” The Admiral said when we got in Wings. “I hope we don’t crash.”

“Dammit, I’m telling you Admiral, I can drive now!”

8.3 – After the AfterParty

When I woke up I was surrounded by Realities passed out on the floor and Perception debris of every kind.  My whole body hurt, especially my head, which was spinning around like I had The Vertigo, and every time I tried to get up I felt like throwing up.  Wolf&Lamb, however, were somehow up and smiling and full of energy.

“We’ve gotta go to The Philadelphia Suburbs (Pennsylvania) Convenience store just like old times!” Lamb said.

“Yes!” Wolf scratched his chin, “nothing like greasy food and coffee in the morning after getting Shitfaced all night.”

“Hey,” I grogged to them, “how come you’re not sick or unconscious?”

“We’ve taken a guaranteed Hangover cure,” Wolf said.  “Let me make you some.”

“Great. I’ve gotta Hit the Road to Ohio like right now so I can Travel to TheGeneral&TheAdmiral Reality tonight, but all I feel like doing is hitting Scorpion’s toilet.”

“Hold on one moment,” Wolf said.

Then he shuffled around in the kitchen for a minute. When he came over to me I thought he’d have some cool Perceptionist potion, but instead he came back with a full glass of JacknDrPepper.  Just sniffing it made me gag.

“No,” I said. “I need to get less drunk.”

“Trust me,” Wolf said.  “It’s an age old Perceptionist trick called Drink-Whatever-You-Had-TheNight-Before.”

“Isn’t there a not gross cure?” I asked.

“No,” WildFuckingTurkey grogbbled from somewhere on the floor. “He’s right.  It’s the only way.”

“It’s best to drink it in one gulp to get it over with,” Wolf said.  “GAM-BAY!”

“GAM-BAY,” I said and then I poured it all in at once.

My throat didn’t want that much of anything at once going down it, and there was a second when I thought it might all come back out. But suddenly I had the strength to hold it in, and the spinning stopped, and I was able to sit up straight.

“I think it’s working,” I said.  “Thank Gods, we’re in Wolf Reality!”

“No,” Wolf said.  “Thank Gods we’re in Bluebird Reality.  You saved me last night, and as a token of gratitude I want you to have what’s left of the Alcohol Stash.  There’s still plenty.”

“Wow, thanks,” I said. “I might not be able to MeToo tonight without it.”

Wolf&Lamb weren’t the only ones up.  So was Scorpion, and he wanted to help me get on The Road, too.  He gave me directions for a ShortCut I could take out of town and then handed me a little plastic baggy with one large black&white pill in it.

“I imagine you have many hours ahead of you on The Road,” he said.  “This should help so you don’t get too tired or crazy with boredom.”

“What is it?” I said.

“It’s an old Weight-Loss Perception banned from the market for decades due to possible undesirable side-effects.  But I’ve Adventured with it before and found it to be completely harmless.”

I looked over at Wolf.

“That’s a very rare and powerful Perception,” he said.  “I’m jealous.”

“Thanks Scorpion,” I said and put it in my pocket.

Then me and Wolf&Lamb went out to Wings with The Stash, and there was The Goddess of Faith waiting there in a jean jacket and jeans.

“My Gods!” Wolf said.  “Is that really the Angel?  Did you sacrifice and summon her just now?”

“No,” I said. “She just comes now cuz we’re in True Love.”

“Oh my Gods!” Lamb said. “She’s breathtaking.”

“Oh my Gods!” The Goddess of Faith said. “Is that really Wolf&Lamb?  I watched your whole Wedding, and it gave me The Chills, and made me want to have a Wedding, too.”

“Thanks!” they said.

The Goddess was really excited, but she was also holding her head and stomach, and you could tell she was kinda sick.  I asked her if she had a hangover.

“I don’t know,” she said.  “Every time I fly I have to come back down and throw up.”

“It’s Alright, Baby,” I said.  “Wolf’s got a Perceptionist Cure.”

“What were you drinking last night?” he asked her.

“All of them,” she said.

Then Wolf went back and grabbed a glass and made an AllofThem drink for her.  She held her nose and GAM-BAY’d it down, and soon she was back to normal.

“Thanks so much!” Faith said.  “I know we have to go now, but I wish we could just hang out as couples today.”

“It’s alright,” they said.  “Today we have to go to our Honeymoon in the far off and exciting Realities of Jamaica.”

“Yay!  I’ve been there many times giving It’s Alright, Baby songs to the MusicMan Traveler Bob Marley.  You’ll love it.”

“Wow, Bob Marley?!”

“Yes, now let me give you both a Wedding present to help you enjoy the trip.”

Then she reached out and pushed them both together and gave them a huge It’s Alright, Baby squeeze at the same time.

“Mmm,” Wolf said. “Angel Hug Perception.”

“I feel like we’re already on a tropical beach with white sand and teal water and a gentle breeze, and everything is gonna be for certain Alright,” Lamb said.

“I’m so happy for you!” The Goddess clapped.

Then it was time to go, and we finished loading up the car, and we all hugged one more time.

“Be brave, Traveler,” Wolf said, “and you clearly don’t have to remember The Gods are very on your side.”

“You, too,” I said and then me and Faith hit the Road on a beautiful Sunday morning thinking nothing bad could possibly happen…

7.5 – Scorpion’s New Hole

Since Wolf had Graduated Perceptionism School, Scorpion had gotten a job, a wife, and a New Hole in Philadelphia Suburbs (Pennsylvania).  Wolf had never been there before, but we followed Scorpion’s directions.  I imagined he lived in some kinda pile of rocks or crevice in the desert or at least an unsuspecting boot, but when we got there it was actually a neighborhood of condos.  Each one looked exactly like the one next to it, and you hadta go thru a maze of identical looking streets and parking lots and landscaping before you got to one that had Scorpion’s van out front.

“This kinda looks like an Adult neighborhood,” I said when we got out.

“Yes,” Wolf scratched his chin and then held his head, “it’s making me a little dizzy.”

Then to cheer him up I showed him The Stash in the trunk.  There were two big cardboard boxes each holding nine bottles of all the different varieties of Alcohol.  Wolf looked at it and licked his chops.

“That does look tasty,” he said.

“How could Scorpion say no to this?” I said.

“How indeed… but he can be a bit of a Perceptionist Snob.”

“Oh.”

We decided we should bring it in anyway, and we all went inside. Wolf put down his box, and Scorpion and his wife hugged Wolf&Lamb, and then gave us all a tour.

The inside of Scorpion’s Hole looked as Adult as the outside.  The living room was full of furniture like a couch and a coffee table and a television.  The kitchen had appliances like a dishwasher and a microwave.  Everywhere the walls were a sparkling bright white, and there was no clutter or Perceptionist Paraphernalia anywhere.  The only strange thing was a mysterious shiny gold wheelchair hiding in a little nook under the staircase.  Otherwise it was not much different than my parent’s Nest or Kat’s parents’ place, and I wondered how such a mythic Perceptionist could live there.

All of the younger Realities from The Wedding seemed to be there already, except for Emperor Penguin, whose band apparently hadta play a concert before coming over, and Lamb’s sisters who went to see the show.  Everyone who was there hugged and congratulated Wolf&Lamb and told them how beautiful the Wedding was and apologized for taking off in the van so quickly.  No one seemed to notice I was standing there the whole time with a big box of Alcohol in my arms, except Wolf.

“Alright,” Wolf said to everyone, “it’s time to decide on the Common Perception for the night.  My fellow Reality Traveler, Bluebird here, has secured for us quite a bit of leftover Lubricant from The Wedding.”

Then he pointed at The Stash, but no one got as excited as I thought.

Scorpion stared at it, waved his tail just a little and shook his head.

“We have to choose something that all of us can handle tho,” Wolf said.  “We can’t just try to seek The Highest Most Powerful Perception tonight.”

Scorpion said nothing.

Wolf hadta shake his head like a wet dog.

“Alright,” he said.  “What do you have in mind then?”

Scorpion stared at him for a second.  “Marijuana Perception,” he then said.

“As you know Marijuana is my Preferred Perception, but I have to acknowledge that not every Reality here feels the same way.”

Wolf looked over at me.  Scorpion looked over at me too and then turned back to Wolf.

“So?” he said.

Then Wolf tried to explain the RealityFuck at hand and how important Common Perception would be.  But Scorpion wasn’t listening.  He raised one claw and pointed it at what looked like a basement door.

“The Marijuana Perception is in my Hole,” he said

“Alright,” Wolf said.  “If that’s the only thing you’re willing to Adventure with then that will just have to be The Common Perception.  But everyone has to do it together.”

Everyone agreed, and then I hadta put The Stash down and go into the Hole.

6.17 – The Storm

The Storm came down fast and hard with lots of thunder and lightning and wind and rain and even hail, and when it hit your skin it felt like sharp little iceballs. Me and The Perceptionism Professor hadta go back to the tent so The Storm couldn’t get us anymore.  When we got back Planner Ants were everywhere like a lollipop had just fallen on The Wedding. They were scrambling to get everything out of the rain before it got wet, and at the same time Wedding guests were running for cover under the tent and clogging up the entrance.  The tent itself was getting blown hard by the wind, and its thin plastic walls looked like they could just blow away at any moment.

I’d had enough of The Wedding.  I’d gotten my New Reality MeToo and just wanted to get outta there.  I just hadta find Wolf&Lamb, say a quick goodbye, and then I could get to The Goddess of Faith so we could make a Bluebird’s Alright, Baby!!somewhere in history.

I found a gap in the crowd of Adults and managed to get inside The Tent.  I lost The Perceptionism Professor in the chaos, but I couldn’t look back.  I zeroed in on Wolf&Lamb, who were, thank Gods, sitting alone together at The Important Realities Wedding Table.  They were actually looking better than they were before, and it seemed like their pre-Vertigo state must’ve been wearing off somehow.

“Bluebird,” Wolf said.  “I know you probably want to get out of here.”

“You read my mind,” I said.

“I don’t blame you,” he said, “but The Wedding is ending soon anyway as The God of Weather is making clear.  And then comes The AfterParty.”

“What’s that?”

“It’s a party at The Best Man’s house in Philadelphia Suburbs (Pennsylvania),” Lamb said.

“There won’t be any Adults invited,” Wolf said. “Only Reality Travelers like us. We’ve been waiting for this all day.”

“Alright,” I said, “how do Iget there?”
“The Best Man hired a van to take us all there,” Lamb said.

“Since you drove here,” Wolf said, “you just need to find the van and follow it when it leaves.”

“Where’s the van now?” I asked.

“Let me show you,” Wolf said.

Suddenly The DJ turned off the music and came on the microphone.

“Attention everyone,” he said.  “The Wedding is over.  I repeat The Wedding is over.  Please say your final goodbyes to The Bride and Groom, and then leave.”

Then all the Realities looked over at us and quickly formed a mob.

“Oh Gods no,” Wolf said.

Before I could get directions to the van or say goodbye myself, I was rammed out of the way by the crowd.

All I could do was go outside in The Storm and try to find the van myself.  On the way out I ran into The PerceptionismProfessor again.

“I need your help,” he said.  “I just discovered the open bar still has a giant stash of unused Alcohol.  Those MeNotzies, as I suspected, were over-rationing, and I heard they’re just going to take it all and use it at their next wedding unless we get to it first.  That’s Wolf&Lamb’s by right, and you’re going to need it for The AfterParty.”

“You’re right,” I said. “What’s the plan?”

“Follow me.”

We headed to the open bar, and somehow in the chaos it was unmanned.  I kept a lookout, while The Perceptionist Professor went behind it and started putting all the bottles into two boxes.  I noticed The Bartender nearby getting yelled at by The Queen.

“Why haven’t you taken down your station yet?” she said.  “Can’t you see there’s a Storm outside? A Wedding’s worst enemy!  Everything must be carried into our underground Wedding tunnels at once!”

“Quick,” I told The PerceptionismProfessor, “they’re coming back!”

“Thanks,” he said.  “I got as many as I could.”

And then he handed me a big heavy box full of jumbo bottles of every variety of Alcohol Perception.

“Hey!” The Bartender saw us. “Put those down.”

I looked over at The Perceptionism Professor who had picked up his own heavy box.

“Run!” he said.

Then The Perceptionism Professor took off like a bunny darting thru the meadows, and I followed.  The Bartender ran after us, but The Perceptionism Professor was an expert at using the Realities in front of us to screen him off. When we got to the exit, it was still clogged up with guests and Planners, but The Perceptionism Professor was able to find a little hole in their legs and slideunder it, box and all, and he even managed to keep his top hat on the whole time. I tried to follow his lead, and found a little hole, and also made it thru altho I accidentally hit a few Realities’ legs with my box.

“We’ve gotta take these to the van!” I said when we got outside.

“Where is it?” The PerceptionismProfessor said.

We couldn’t see it at all, but you could hear the Bartender yelling behind us, “Help, they’re getting away!” and then we had to keep running anyway.

“Let’s just take it to my car,” I said, and we both ran toward Wings.

We looked back, and it seemed like we lost The Bartender, but there was another Ant in a raincoat who’d taken up his place and was now close behind.  She kept yelling “Hey!” at us, and she didn’t have a heavy box and was catching up fast.  I wondered what they’d try to do to take The Stash away, and I wondered what The Perceptionism Professor would do to defend it.  Just as I got to the car, a hand grabbed my shoulder.

“Get away you MeNotzie!” I said.  “Nobody likes how you planned this Wedding, and you owe us this Stash.”

“No, Bluebird, it’s me,” she said.

When I turned around, she’d taken her raincoat hood down, and I saw it was The Goddess of Faith.  She pulled out a big umbrella and held it over our heads.

“Holy shit!” The Perceptionism Professor said.  “It’s an Angel!”

“Don’t worry,” I told Faith, “he’s on our side.”

“I know,” she said.  “I’ve been watching.”

Then I introduced them to each other.

“Actually,” The Perceptionism Professor said, “I’m known to The Gods as Magic White Rabbit.”

“Nice to meet you,” she said.  “Actually I’d like to be known today as Bluebird’s Date.”

The word “Date” gave me The Chills, and we looked at each other and smiled.

“My Gods,” Magic White Rabbit shook his head, “You really truly are in True Love.”

“Shhh,” The Goddess put her finger to her mouth.

Then we looked around and cars were quickly leaving the parking lot, but we still couldn’t find the van.

“They must’ve left already,” Magic White Rabbit said.

“I guess we’ll just have to pack it up in our own cars,” I said.

“I wasn’t gonna make it to The AfterParty anyway,” he said.  “I’ve got Adventures in Perceptionism to lead at The Training School tonight.”

Then he helped put both boxes in Wings’s trunk and shook my hand.

“It’s been a pleasure,” Magic White Rabbit said.  “And I hope the best for you.”

“Alright, you, too,” I said.

“I’m parked just down there.  Mind if I borrow you and your umbrella, Bluebird’s Date?”

“Alright,” she said.

Before she went tho, she whispered in my ear.

“I have to go now, but I just had to be here for one second with you, so I could officially be your Date.”

“Thank you,” I whispered back.  “I TrueLove you.”

“Oh, Bluebird, I TrueLove you,too, my SoulMate.  And I’ll try to sneak back and see you as soon as I can.”

“I hafta kiss you now.”

“We can’t tho.  We’ll just have to say the words ‘kiss,’ and that will have to be good enough for now.”

“Alright, kiss.”

“Alright, kiss.”

And then she walked The Perceptionist Professor over to his car, and when she was done flew high into the sky and thru the stormclouds.

I got in Wings, and wondered how the hell I was going to find that AfterParty.  As we drove out of the parking lot, I looked at The Wedding and the tent was coming down and the last of The Wedding Planners were running down into their underground Wedding holes.  All the Wedding guests were gone, except for two who came running toward my car shouting. As they got closer you could see they were wearing a tuxedo and a Wedding Dress.

“Wolf&Lamb!” I said and scooped them up out of the rain.

“Bluebird!” they said. “Thank Gods you’re still here.  The AfterPary van left without us, even tho we’re the most important Realities at The Wedding.”

“How do we get there then?” I said.

“Don’t worry,” Wolf said, “I can get in touch with Scorpion and get the directions, as long as you don’t mind driving us.”

“Not at all.”

“It smells like pizza in here,” Lamb said.

“It smells like Where-ThePlains-Meet-TheMountains in here,” Wolf said.

And they both went “ahh.”