As was his custom, Gotcha appeared on the street immediately in front of the Peace Tower rigt at the stroke of midnight.

The fact that he completely ignored his old friend and partner in grime, the King of Horror, despite the fact that King was clad head to toe in pink, and greeted Kitty instead, made it immediately clear to the girl that he was already under her spell.

“Hello Kitty! It’s wunderbar to finally meet you!”

The fact that he used a German word to greet her was not overlooked by Miss Kaboodle.

As soon as Gotcha spoke, Kitty was hit with her eerie vision once again. This time she shut it down before she could hear Lady Justice screaming in terror. Skipping the obligatory pleasantries, she asked, “Are you a lawyer?”

The smile came off Gotcha’s face. He didn’t much care for the contempt that the word lawyer was swimming in when it came out of her mouth, but was well aware of the fact that most people are contemptuous of lawyers, so he didn’t get his back up.

“Non-practicing,” he said, defensively. “Why do you ask?”

Kitty ignored his question, and asked another, “What are you practicing?” Then she partially answered her own question, before he could, “Sorry, I forgot, you’re an international dealer of shade. That’s funny! Shady dealer!”

Heartened that Kitty seemed to have a quick change of her about him, Gotcha said, “I’m glad it amuses you.”

“What amuses me even more is the fact that you are also an international dealer of Chinese bunk Viagra.”

Gotcha turned at Pinky, with more than a hint of surprise, and a suggestion of disdain. Pinky shrugged his shoulders and said, “Oh, whatever. Get over it. You are, and if we are going to work together, she has a rigt to know. Besides, it’s mostly harmless, and she is, obviously, amused by it.”

Before Gotcha could retort Pinky, Kitty laughed, “I am amused by it. I think it’s hilarious… but I’m not quite sure why”

Noting the subtle expression of relief on Gotcha’s mug, Kitty added, “I saw a Viagra ad, on TV, a couple years ago. It was, without a doubt, the greatest ad I have ever seen.”

“Which one?” Gotcha wanted to know.

“I don’t even remember the ad itself,” Kitty admitted, but the kicker will always ring in my head: ‘”Seek immediate medical help for an erection lasting more than four hours!’” The girl burst into laughter. The old guys laughed, too, but not nearly as vigorously.

“Whoever came up with that beauty better have made a million bucks for it,” Kitty laughed. “Four hours! Ever softwood lumberjack in the forest must have been falling all over themselves to buy, online, of course, after seeing that ad. And there you are, selling them Chinese bunk that won’t give ‘em wood for four minutes!”

“And laughing all the way to the bank,” Gotcha confessed. “I really should have found out who write that one, and sent him a cheque, because my sites did get considerable spikes while that campaign was running.”

“You must have pissed off a lot of softwood lumberjack wives who had great expectations,” Kitty laughed.

“I was ready for their lawsuits,” Gotcha laughed back.

“I bet you were, counselor,” Kitty replied. “So, why do you do it?”

“Shits and giggles,” I guess.

Kitty suspected there was more to it than shits and giggles. More to it than shits and giggles and money, even. But she knew she wouldn’t get it out of him in a first encounter, even if he knew, himself. “Why Wuhan?”

Gotcha gave her a straight up answer, “The lab that makes them there gives me the best price. Pretty simple. Their packaging is identical to the real thing. They are never out of stock. Thoroughly professional.”

Kitty nodded, then floored the international dealer of shade, “What do you know about the Wuhan virology lab being evacuated today?”

Gotcha froze. WTF is she talking about, he thought to himself. “What are you talking about?”

“You heard what I said,” she said. Then she said, “That’s impossible. If that lab had been evacuated, I would know about it.”

What?” Gotcha asked, visibly confused.

“That, word for word, is exactly what you were about to tell me,” Kitty answered. She was rigt,. He didn’t have to admit it. “And now I’m gonna say, Wanna bet? And you’re gonna say, How much? And I’m gonna say, A million bucks. And you’re gonna say, Do you have a million bucks to lose? And Pinky here is gonna say, She does. Don’t do it. She got that million bucks by beating me in a bet a couple days ago.”

Gotcha said, “That’s impossible. If that lab had been evacuated, I would know about it.”

Kitty said, “Wanna bet?”

Gotcha said, “How much?”

Kitty said, “A million bucks.”

Gotcha said, “Do you have a million bucks to lose.”

And Pinky said, “She does. Don’t do it. She got that million bucks by beating me in a bet a couple days ago.”




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