BOOK FOUR – “WITCHCRAFT”
(Friday, January 5, 2035)
Norlin returned to C-Squad at 1600 hours, tossed his overcoat on the rack, and poured himself a weak, bitter cup of dekka. Homer Sack squirmed when he passed, making guttural sounds in throat that finally caused the Corporal to scowl...
"What the keb's got into you?"
"Mandatory overtime," the Jatesist finally pouted. "Because of your incompetence, it's said, Captain wants the whole kebbin' Department assembled in the auditorium at 1800 hours. Performance art, for the media. When Triple-J held sway, the media were reined in but, since his ascension, a culture of loosening morals has led to "funny pages" and the Paul Parchette Show... worthless worms beneath their shoes, as will grow into great, poisonous phibes to constrict and strangle us. I've got preparations to make, you know..."
"Blow 'em off! What do you care... you're shootin' your keister up into space, to find union with Triple-J..."
"Some of us take this job seriously, Corpse..." Homer shook his long face, ears swaying tremulously in C-Squad dankness.
But, before Norlin could reply, there came a knock... another tour group led by Francine Morrison, though smaller... perhaps only a dozen elderly souls...
"Corporal, this is the outing from the Sunnyrest Shire..." Francine said primly, betraying at least cursory knowledge of Norlin's present infamy, "...we're showing them round the Trouble Factory and Mrs. Aintree, here, specifically mentioned you..."
"Of course," he sighed, as the com buzzed. "Who the keb is it, now, Angelynne?"
"Mrs. Batter for you..."
"Uh... put her on speaker," he directed, glaring at the tour group with naked malevolence. "You kebs want to know what really goes on down here, where the money that you pay in taxes really goes?" Francine Morrison blanched, clapping her hands over the ears of a wizened little man clasping an ancient, probably ante-k'ball, walking brace. "Listen! Hello... hello, Terushka? How are things hanging?"
"I continue to be electronically and chemically abused around the clock, Officer Norlin," scolded the ingenue. "Enemies have ensconced themselves in lozenges to all sides; they outfit the building with sophisticated electronic equipment, to use 'Shazam!' to, also, abuse the food, the utilities, and the air that I must breathe. They use a Telstar to cause bleeding down my legs from a black French Catholic Rapist, Dar*Slattery, also Caliph the Cat, his she-pal playing my murdered puppy, and she has also reported to the Geneva Convention the new electronic sore on her face. Torture unremitting! From Attorney Martin Ransome, the workmen and..."
"A lesion!" shouted out old Mrs. Aintree, "in the fabric which advanced minds perceive!"
"Is that my mother?" Troosh accused. "I am not here, Phyllis Rita deSimone Sapoi, also Ida Futorian. You photocopied my tax refund check - where is my two zekels and forty sous..."
"Isn't that Esther Ratkiller, Greta Pigbelly..." the tiny old lady shouted back, stomping her feet with such vehemence that bugs under C-Squad's crusty linoleum deserted their habitations and veritably flowed across the floor, a tide engulfing the skittering feet of Francine's elderly clientele. "Your ark afloat in a sea of fex, floating downstream towards the Big Show? I am not your animal..."
"Mrs. Judy..." Francine tried to calm her...
"I have boycotted the Academy since 2004," Terushka Batter replied, stiffly, "when the actors were killed and replaced by your duplicates..."
"Kill the speaker!" Norlin waved to Homes, losing patience with the group, with Fran, and with himself. "Look, I'm in the midst of an important investigation," he informed the widow of many names and even more histories, hearing one of her kebbin' dogs yapping in the kebbin' background. "I will get back to you, promise..."
"Kill the messenger," Miss Judy persisted, "but you never will kill the monster that lurks behind art's intention!"
Some of the Sunnyrest contingent begin to scream or moan, stomping and howling at the arthopodiac tide; an old man, waving one of those canes with an evil clown's head... quite fashionable on the Hamorite Strip, a decade ago... chimed in: "Potatoes! Potentials! Police!"
"Get these people out of here, please!" Norlin snapped. "Trooshka, I'll get back to you..."
But she'd tuned in to the old man or, perhaps, one of the other wailing, vibrating voices in the bedlam chorus that Francine's flock had devolved into. "Is that Pinkford?" she demanded to know. "You have Pinkford at the Trouble Factory, don't let him escape! As my puppy's body switched to long-dead, if not taxidermied... to ignore malignancy its engulfment of the whole..."
Quickly but discreetly, Miss Morrison began to physically shepherd her geriatric charges out the door of C-Squad; slapping elbows, pushing at pendulous, sagging buttocks, boxing ears that were young in those days when a proud King still bestrode the earth. As her confused army wandered in the corridor, Francine pulled a package wrapped in plain, brown paper from beneath her coat.
"Didn't I tell you that we were on the case?" Norlin insisted. "I promise... I'll get back to you, I foresee dramatic developments, possibly in a matter of hours..."
"The food is illegitimate, like plastic putty," Mrs. Batter continued tolling her afflictions, "my puppies are duplicated and my nails are brittle. My skin is dry..."
Pinwheels of pain exploded across the Corporal's head, like shooting stars. "Good bye, Mrs. Batter..." he said.
"Ida Futorian to you, sir," a strange, gravelly voice replied. "Until the Becoming..."
"From your father," Francine Morrison dropped the package on Norlin's desk. "Never let it be said I wouldn't do a favor for you, despite..." she let the promise, or threat, dangle before storming through C-Squad's door to round up her wintry cattle...
Norlin killed the com, but Fran was gone, and an immediate beep replied... Peg Reilly's missive, transmitted by HRI's Premium Plus TM service began scrolling across his pleader.
Dear Officer Norlin:
I am sending drafts of this com to foreign countries and the international organizations because our Courts uphold the rights of drug dealers and the dog prostitution makers... whom C-Squad needs Funereal Power over...
I have to type this fast. I have terrible time trying to figure time to do these notes. Too many people around. 7:30 PM 1/4/35 I heard paper rustling, dogs barking. I didn't open door because I can't prove anything when they go to basement with paper bags. Venus went out on a walk with Iowa and the Sweetie, who had something in her left pocket, but it was hard to say.
I saw the brother of the boy with the black dog on the stair, who had only magazine-qubes in the bag he was holding, and said: "We are going in a minute." He seems to be a nice fellow, but nice fellows get substance-impinioned too.
When I told Victor I would make a civilian arrest Hannibal took such direct aim... karate shot... I swung my cheek bone clear but was under a doctor's care for a year. Victor held Hannibal back to give me time to run and the police came saying I have a hard head, too bad. They spent 45 minutes down in Victor's apartment yelling Keb this and Keb that... haggling over money. The only thing not there is actual passage of money from Victor to Officer McCoy and they said, why McCoy only had to blow his nose and Victor was just giving him a handkerchief...
These were the same cops here on the night the Detective from Detectives' Squad stole Mrs. Hanzik's puppy out of the ambulance whom I watched from the window with my Telescope - legally glassed and purchased, licensed by HRI.
Finally it was decided for McCoy to say - Where is that child chased by dogs? This was after the conversation with Victor Iowa. Hannibal had chased David out of 1A with dogs, as David was in drug traffic and Hector did not want David in the basement, but that was just an excuse for the cop to drop back. I went to the courts of Flow and had to wait 1 hr. and a half to see the judge, to ask why I had not been allowed summons for assault of Hannibal, the assault that Victor openly paid off to McCoy on the sidewalk. I confronted Judge O'Hare with the truth; I did not tell him he was not mentally fit as a judge to try a case where police corruption makes.
They claim a right-to-eviction because of a bad check - I was going to be paid in a few days but banks in Jatesland all collaborate with the mafia. Their real intent is to skirt rent control and get me away from the Iowa drug ogre-nization.
8 PM - A Spanish guy and girl who didn't look Spanish came down, went out to a small yellow hydro on Eleventh. He looked up, otherwise I wouldn't have known he was Spanish. They do that all time - park car on side and go out to strange cars. A drawing-man from the Chinese Market leaned on a silver sports hydro, carrying a tool chest for artists, wore cap which he tipped to Mr. from-Spain. He was not there working, although, making pictures of the building for litigemitic purposes. The hydros that by-passed that red-roof dog bawdyhouse (not all) were:
9 PM - They follow a pattern. They will no doubt come out again at 12 and sneak out again around 4 AM. The marvel is how they keep this stuff up. They spend 50% of their lives hunting for coffee and satisfying their dogs.
I am paying taxes for this Court with Burlesque Scenes and now to make it worse, as of Jan. 1st I must pay two zeks and fifty sous on the Mag, two on buses, due to waste of money by the Court. If you question why I say it is a combination of burlesque and dirty politics so, answer why? I was not allowed a summons for head assault in a death attempt when, on the same day that the clerk refused, a woman got one because her neighbor cooked onion soup, or was it fish, maybe, or both; she was cooking something that caused the odor to come into her apt. and she was given a summons.
Mrs. Boyle was saying she comes in at 2 in the morning and the cops mixed it up and wrote down that I come in at 2 in the morning. It was so stupid, as if I was in show business at the time.
It is so cold, but I will try to sleep. All the ladies in the MAU department where I watch cameras on the Northeast (dull quadrant!) are on drugs and all the people on the cameras who have been in jail so many times you can see shadows of the bars against their sunburn pull fex from their noses at us, remove their clothing and display their shabby privates. Caffeine and cocaine and ice cream (sugared!) although they say they are sick with flu shots. Jatesland is Hell! The Mafia operates, I believe, with the Communist party here. Triple-J would look down over our sorry fexxers from the sun and have a vomit, I do believe. I will write again, tomorrow or tonight... on what-ever day it is that the corrupt politicians and Mafia are to be making it.
Yours in the cause of Health, Security and Property,