Like a kid with a new toy, Kitty was thoroughly amused with her newly discovered power, and she couldn’t stop playing with it. She was the only pedestrian on Ottawa’s locked down streets, so she had to test her powers on drivers.

When she saw two cops in a patrol car coming her way and pointing at her, she turned the traffic light that was twenty yards ahead of them red. She laughed, and pointed at the cops, and flashed them her titties. The cops grinned. The driver looked around quickly. Seeing no one else on the road, he honked the horn excitedly. But before they could either run the red, or get out of their car, she paralyzed them, squealing with delight when they froze.

She scurried up to the car and opened the passenger side door. She pulled both their dicks out. She got them hard. She wrapped their hands around the other’s dick. She sprayed them with perfume. She closed the door. She disappeared around the corner of a building. She released them from their paralysis. She watched. She laughed her ass off. She wondered if they would file an incident report, and laughed some more.

Kitty turned the traffic light to green, and watched as the cops speed away down the street.

Wondering if she could freeze their car, without freezing them, she concentrated on the task. And the car came to a dead stop. She toyed with the idea of restarting the car, then freezing the cops as they drove away, but decided against it, opting to merely restart the car, and be rid of them. There would be time to experiment later.

As Kitty strolled past Parliament Hill, she froze the clock on the Peace Tower. Curious to see if anyone would be able to undo what she had done, she left the clock frozen, and continued on, into the Chateau Laurier.

When she got to the lobby, she froze the desk clerk and the concierge. She released them when she got to the elevator doors. Looking up at the floor indicator, she made one go up, and the other come down. She stopped them on several different floors, then stopped them both between floors, before releasing them both back to whatever machine was charged with giving them orders.

As she rode the lift to her floor, she wondered what and who else she could paralyze with her mind. Could she stop a tank? If she could stop one tank, how about a hundred of them? How about a tiger? How long could she leave them frozen without any effort? How many things could she paralyze at the same time? Could she take it a step further, and command machines and creatures to do whatever she wanted, whenever she wanted? If so, what couldn’t she do? Who could stop her? Who would dare oppose her?

Ah, but there would be opposition, and she knew it. Could she stop a bullet, aimed at her head, in mid air?

Could she make plants grow? Could she defy Galileo and make the sun revolve around the Earth? If so, she would surely be named Pope, if she so desired, and as such she could dissolve the Catholic Church.

Then the epiphany hit her, ‘Holy shit! Am I becoming a God?’

‘Easy, Kitty,’ she told herself. ‘Let’s not get too far ahead of this game. Calm your imagination, and see what happens. If VoV really was responsible for this mutation, logically, VoV could reverse it, too. Wait. Does it have something to do with the phone call from Daisy, out there, all alone, ten thousand light years from home? What the fuck is going on?’’

As she passed Pinky’s open door, she peeked in. He was sitting at a desk, laptop open, open beer next to him. “Hello, Pinky!” she exclaimed.

Turning to see the girl, Pinky matched her enthusiasm, “Hello, Kitty Kaboodle! Come, talk to me.”

Kitty deposited her sweet little ass in a large chair. “Beautiful day,” Pinky said.

“You don’t know!” Kitty laughed.

“What, exactly, does that mean?”

“Oh, nothing, really. But it is splendid outside.”

“Yeah,” Pinky agreed. “Let’s hope it stays that way.” Kitty wondered if she could control the weather. Noticing that she was lost in thought, Pinky asked, “What? What is it?”

“Nothing. What are you doing?”

“Mostly, I have been wondering how the fuck you managed to reach inside Gotcha’s mind, last night.”

“I’ve been wondering that, too. I have no idea. But I can’t do it to you, or any of the hotel staff. Obviously, there is something different about your friend… whom we should be meeting, downstairs, in ten minutes.”

“I’m gonna take a pass on that,” Pinky said, reaching for his beer.

“Day drunk?”

“The eternal curse of the writer. As Saint Dorothy of Parker so perfectly put it, ‘I’m not a writer with a drinking problem; I’m a drinker with a writing problem.’”

“You’re writing?”

“Kinda. I haven’t, for a while, and whenever that happens, I hear Kafka laughing, ‘A writer who is not writing is a monster courting madness.’”

Great line!”

“He had a few of those!” Pinky laughed. “I’m figuring. Pre-writing. Wondering and wandering. Letting my imagination wander, and it’s been doing that, furiously, since we got back last night. If I were to join the two of you for lunch, I would not be able to concentrate on the conversation, and would just interrupt and interfere with whatever flow the two of you get going. Besides, I’ve heard most of his noise before, and have no need to hear it again.”

“Does drinking inspire wordcraft?” Kitty asked.

“Sometimes,” Pinky answered. “I got this out about ten minutes ago: His shadow taller than his soul, he plunged into the eternal void of misanthropic darkness. A stream of pulse-quickening, licorice-flavoured snake venom rocketed out of his reptilian adrenal gland, and electrified the fifth chamber of his beastly black heart. With the confidence of Hitler, he shrieked, ‘Cry havoc and let slip the dogs of war!’”

“That’s great! The eternal void of misanthropic darkness, licorice-flavoured snake venom, beastly black heart, the confidence of Hitler. Very tasty. Sandwiched between slices of Zeppelin and Shakespeare, it’s nom-nom-nom, gimme more, more, I want more.”

“Tell em about it. So do I. But there’s nothing. Some days the words just roar and roll outta my head. Other days it’s a battle akin to wresting the whip from the iron grip of the Marques de Sade’s clenched fist. Today is one of the latter; it took me ten hours to extract that from the festering mess of looming dementia between my ears.

“So, I’m just letting my mind race around the universe, hoping I can at least snatch and salvage some sentences savage once in a while. If I tried to actually write, today, it would be gibberish. Fat fingers full of beer blabbeling bullshit. Today, my good friends, here,” he said, opening the fridge and pulling out a fresh beer, are on a seek and destroy mission.”

“Appetite for self destruction?”

Thinking for a bit, Pinky said, “See? I worded that wrong. I am not out to destroy myself. I am out to save myself.”

“By getting loaded?”

“Correct. You see, my dear, my brain is constantly clocking at around warp three. When it gets up to warp seven, eight, nine, like rigt now, the fucking thing just won’t stop. The only way to derail this runaway train – and it must be derailed, because it’s headed for a dynamite factory – is to throw the glug-glug switch, and get blotto for a few hours. Sink into retardation, like the majority of the human race, for a while, and thus avoid a super nova of the gray matter.”

“Fascinating,” said Kitty, wondering if that was why the Gods drink, and if she would find out for herself. “Okay Pinky, you carry on. I have just enough time for a quick shower, before round two with the international dealer of shade. Should I check in on you, when we’re done?”

“No,” was the answer. “Things can get ugly, or at least messy, when I get this kind of drink on.”

“All the more reason to check in on you,” Kitty said.

“Don’t worry, kid, I know what I’m doing. You go have fun. I’ll check in with you, when I am no longer the blotto beer beast of Boston.”




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