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Episode 29: Part 2 of “Black Myrtle’s Glory


Alex had been engrossed in his work and did not

notice that someone had walked up

behind him.


It was Our Lady Person of Perpetual Anger; Pfeffer.


“Hello Alex” it said.


Alex recognized the voice and without

turning around said

“Hello Pfeffer.”


“What? No hug? No kiss?” Pfeffer asked.


“I might be confused – – – – – but not that confused”

answered Alex. After a moment of silence

he added “What can I do for you?

Sorry about my back but I have

to pay diligent attention to this

shaper or it might bite me.”


“Crap Alex” responded Pfeffer

“Machines don’t bite people;

people bite people.”


“You spend too much time in the office” said Alex.

“Machines are always biting people.

Look at all these guys

out on the floor.


None of them can hear a damn thing.

Some of them have lost fingers.

One guy has lost both hands

to the steel cut-off machine.”


“I’m not here to listen to a litany

regarding evil machines.

I’m here to tell you

that the Coquettish

Queen has eyes

for you”




“Just what I need” said Alex.

“I come to the forging works

to expand my career

and now I am

expected to

bend over

for the





“It might not be that drastic” answered Pfeffer

as she tried to downplay Alex’s concerns.

“Just play her coquettish game

and you will get promoted.”


“And how is that going to happen?” asked Alex.


“I will promote you out of the forging works

if you can keep her happy. You don’t have

to bend over like the Four of Clubs

at a croquet game. Just keep her

on the hook so that the forging

works remains productive”

said Pfeffer.


“I’ll keep it in mind” responded Alex

in a non-committal



Pfeffer said nothing as she turned and walked away.

Alex copyright