Then she shrugged and smiled. ‘So Santa Carolita's nigh his a big night for me, seeing how closely we are watched all the rest of the year. '
I said, I'm confused again. Are you saying that things are puritanical here - except this one night? '
‘I'm not sure I know what you mean by "puritanical", Maureen. And I have trouble staying with your "Man from Mars" pose - if it is a pose -‘
‘It's not a pose! Dagmar, I truly am lost. I'm not on my own planet; I don't know anything at all about this place. '
‘Ali right, I'll throw in with you, I said I would. But it is hard to keep it in mind. Okay, the way things work here - Three hundred and sixty-four days of the year - sixty-five on leap years - everything is either required or forbidden. The Golden Rule, the Supreme Bishop calls it - God's Plan. But on Carolita's feast day, from sundown to sunrise, anything goes. Carolita is the patron saint of street singers, whores, gypsies, vagabonds, actors, of all whom must live outside the city walls. So on her day - Boss! You're not going outdoors in that outfit! '
‘And why not? '
Dagmar made retching noises; I turned to see what the fuss was about. The doctor had gone to shower, had returned still stripped down and sporting the most amazing phallus I have ever seen. It was standing straight up, rising out of a wide, dense briar patch of dark brown curls. It thrust up at least twelve inches from that curly base. Just back of the mitre it was as thick as my wrist. It curved back slightly toward his hairy belly.
It ‘breathed' when he did, bowing an inch at each breath. I looked at it in horrified fascination the way a bird looks at a snake, and felt my nipples grow crisp. Take it away! Get a stick and kill it!
‘Boss, take that silly toy right back to Sears Roebuck and demand your money back! http://www.dvdbuycheap.ru Or I'll, I'll - I'll flush it down the pot, that's what I'll do! '
‘You do and you'll pay the plumber's bill. Look, Dagmar, I'm ing to wear it home and I want you to snap a pic of Zenobia's face when she sees it. Then I'll take it off. .. unless Zenobia decides she wants me to wear it to the Mayor's orgy. Now get into your costume; we still have to pick up Daffy and his assistant. His goose, although he claims otherwise. Move. Shake your tail, frail. '
‘Pee on you, Boss. '
‘Has the sun gone down so soon? Maureen, if I understood you earlier, you have not eaten today. Come have dinner with us and we can discuss what to do with you later; my wife is the best cook in town. Right, Dagmar? '
‘Correct, Boss. That makes twice this week you've been right. '
‘When was the other time? Did you find something for Cinderella to wear? '
‘It's a problem, Boss. Ali I have here are jumpsuit uniforms, cut for me. On Maureen they would fit too soon in one direction, too late in the other. ' (She meant that I'm shaped like a pear while she is shaped more like a celery. )
Dr Ridpath looked at me, then at her, decided that Dagmar was right. ‘Maureen, we'll see what my wife has that you can wear. It won't matter between here and there; you'll be in a robocab. Pixel! Dinner time, boy! '
‘Now? Wow! '
So we had dinner at the home of the Ridpaths. Zenobia Ridpath is indeed a good cook. Pixel and I appreciated her, and she appreciated Pixel and was warmly hospitable to me. Zenobia is a dignified matron, beautiful, about forty-five, with premature white hair tinted with a blue rinse. Her face did not change when she saw the mechanical monstrosity her husband was sporting.
He said, ‘What do you think this is, Zen? '
She answered, ‘Oh, at last! You promised it to me as a wedding present all these many years ago! Well, better late than never - I think. ' She stooped and looked at it. ‘Why does it have "Made in Japan" printed on it? ' She straightened up and smiled at us. ‘Hello, Dagmar, good to see you. Happy festival! '
‘Bumper crops! '
‘Big babies! Mrs Johnson, it was sweet of you to come. May I call you Maureen? And may I offer you some crab legs? Flown in from Japan, like my husband's new peepee.
And what would yon like to drink? ' A polite little machine rolled up with crab legs and other tasty titbits, and took my drink order - Cuba Libre but omit the rum.
Mrs Ridpath congratulated Dagmar on her costume: a black, sheer body-stocking covering even her head - but missing wherever presence of garment would get in the way at a saturnalia: cutaway crotch, breasts bare, mouth bare. The result was glaringly obscene.
Zenobia's costume was provocative but pretty - a blue fog that matched her eyes and did not hide much. Daffy Weisskopf climbed right up her front, making jungle noises. She just smiled at him. ‘Have something to eat first, Doctor. And save some of your strength for after midnight. '
I think Dr Eric's suspicions about Dr Daffy's assistant, Freddie, were justified; he did not smell right to me and I apparently did not smell right to him - and I was beginning to be whiff, as I was starting to get into a party mood. As I had requested, that Cuba Libre had no rum in it, but I had half of it inside me before I realised that it was loaded with vodka - one hundred proof, I feel certain. Vodka is tricky; it has no odour and no taste. .. and now I lay me down to sleep -
I think some of those appetisers had aphrodisiacs concealed in them. .. and Maureen does not need aphrodisiacs. Has never needed them.
There were three sorts of wine at dinner and endless toasts that rapidly progressed from suggestive to outrageous. The little robot that waited on my sector of the table kept the wine glasses filled but was not programmed to understand ‘water' - and Mama Maureen got potted.