“What if I don’t want to be ONE WITH ALL THAT IS
and I just want to be one with the guy across the hall?”
“I met someone,” I said into the phone, as I was scooping Neptune’s Ocean onto a lovely white plate for Ethel, my huge black cat.
“OH MY GOD, TELL ME EVERYTHING,” screamed my best friend.
“He thinks he’s the son of the Devil,” I said, petting Ethel’s back.
“Okay, but is he cute?”
“I guess,” I muttered, “blue eyes, hair so black that light can’t escape, surfer’s tan, around six feet tall with really white teeth.”
“Are you going to see him again?”
“Did you hear the part about him being the son of the Devil?”
“Hey, no one is perfect.”
“Yeah, but some are less perfect than others, Lex.”
“Can he start fires just by looking at something?”
“Tell her yes, but I try not to do that unless I’m forced into it,” he snickered, as he casually leaned against the counter, his arms crossed over his chest, the faded blue of his shirt setting off the color of his eyes in a pretty spectacular way.
“I’ll call you back,” I said, hanging up.
“How did you get in here, what’s your name, why are you stalking me and lastly, will you die if I stab you through the heart a couple of times?”
“I moved my molecules from where I was to here, my name is long and in a language you couldn’t possibly understand or pronounce, I’m not stalking you and only for a few minutes but it should give you enough time to get away until I find you again.”
Ethel rubbed against his back and purred loudly.
“Traitor,” I said, glaring at her.
“Cats like me,” he said, picking her up. “She’s beautiful but she doesn’t look like an Ethel.”
“You don’t look like the son of the Devil either, so?”
“Are you going to stab me now? I know you want to.”
“I’m thinking about it.”
“I won’t fight back,” he said dropping the cat onto the counter.
“Because I’m stronger than you by a factor of a million and you’re the Flaming Sword of the City.”
I stood there for a minute or two, then pulled my biggest and sharpest knife out of the drawer next to me and laid it on the counter. “Will this do it?”
“Most assuredly,” he said, staring at the knife.
“If you don’t give me a name I’m going to call you Todd.”
“Call me Ace,” he said immediately.
“Why not? I’m good at cards.”
“Because it’s stupid and you probably cheat.”
“I’m NOT calling you Ace.”
“How about Dark Star?”
“Is that your name?”
“It’s one translation.”
“Nice, but no. It’s too long and it sounds like you took it from a Spielberg movie. Besides, your father is the Morning Star and that’s enough stars in one family.”
“So you believe I’m the Devil’s son?”
“Not even a little,” I said
“But you know my father’s name.”
“Everyone knows his name.”
“No they don’t.”
“Whatever,” I said. “Now what can I call you?”
“What do you want to call me?”
“Spawn of Satan, comes to mind,” I said merrily.
“How about Tags?”
“Like the children’s game,” he said, smiling. “I get it.”
“The children’s game is called Tag and has nothing to do with it. It’s because the tags on your shirt are peeking out from under your collar.”
“Tags it is,” he said, nodding. “What should I call you, other than Flaming Sword of the City?”
“Lily and I’m not the Flaming Sword of anything.”
“Is Lily your real name?”
“Pretty much,” I said, picking up the knife. “Now, for the last time, what do you want and what does it have to do with me?”