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They took the skybus to the Super-O-Store
market and asked in the novelties
department about the ad.
"A fine selection,' the robot clerk an
swered. "The very latest in microchips."
"Electric?" David inquired cautiously.
"No, solar. No more 4 a.m. feedings!
Doesn't even wake up until you hold it up
to a light for 10 pilifs."
Debbie tugged at David's arm.
"I want a live one," she said.
"What?" David said.
"What?" The robot almost dropped
the squirming child. "I'm afraid you'll
have to go down to the Pet Corner. Gate
'II, Concourse B." It put the baby back
into the case and slammed the sales win
"What?" David repeated.
"I want a live one. I can handle it. I've
seen historic doc-u-dramas on it." She
lowered her voice. "I even saw one born
"Debbie . . . maybe we ought to go on
vacation. Just the two of us."
"Stop patronizing me. I'm not crazy.
Besides you promised."
"Okay. A live one it is. But it's your
responsibility, not mine."
They rode the tram to the pet depart
ment, and finally selected a small male
"Would you like a bag?" the sales
"No, thank you, I'll take it as it is,"
Debbie said, beaming.
"Remember to read the instructions
carefully. They're fragile, you know."
"Yes, thank you!" Debbie and David
left hand in hand. They had to take a
Space Ways-U-Rent car home, as the
skybus wouldn't allow small animals on
"It is important for your child to
always be clean," Debbie read. She look
ed at Baby Spot. He came with a bottle of
Nutri-Gurgle, guaranteed to make him
healthy and happy ... if it ever got in
side. Putting it inside him seemed useless
to Debbie. Spot liked it much better when
he could smear it on his outside. He
cooed and clapped". Debbie made a men
tal note to tell David when he got home
that Spot did tricks.
She filled up the washbasin and placed
Spot in it. The water came up to his tum
my, and he occupied himself with smear
ing the water all over the counter.
"Maybe he's stuck," Debbie said
aloud. A chiming noise in the back of the
house warned her it was almost time for
her favorite 3-D TV drama.
"Be good, Spot," she said as she left
the room. The book had said it was a
useful training phrase.
With Lorna safely in the arms of Dex
ter, her rescuer, Debbie sighed. So realis
tic, she thought. Oh, I forgot Spot. He's
been cleaning long enough. I'd better
fetch him and see what to do next.
She entered the bathroom and saw
Spot was leaning forward and was very
still. Good, he's not stuck, she thought.
But I didn't know he was waterproof.
She picked him up and dried off his still
body. He must be asleep. She put him in
bed and went back to the soap opera.
David came home at 5:00, as usual.
Checking the room scan, he noticed Deb
bie standing in front of him. Tears were
running down her face, and she held Spot
out with both arms like a teddy bear that
had lost an eye.
"I think he's broken," she said.
f irfxf-, Ann
By Stewart Cray
Y got out of bed, drank a
(l few cups of Scope and made
a B-line for the driveway.
Once there, I spoke to my neighbor.
"Hi ya Pops."
."Don't call me Pops, you young ass
hole," he replied. Pops was a 73-year-old
jockey with no hair.
I wrapped my wrist in leather and
"Gonna put your hand through the
windshield again Sonny?"
"Heck no, old timer," I replied as I
thrust my fist through the driver's win
dow of my rented car. "Uncle Sam's
not getting any road taxes out of me,
"Gall darn it, don't call me that, Vic.
The name's Herman."
"Sure, Pops." I drove away chuckling
to myself. The pieces of glass rubbing
against my back pricked a sentimental
vein, and I thought, "I sure am going
to miss that old geezer when his brain is
mold and his size 9's are pushing up
I kept chuckling until I thought of
my last case, and then I started to
laugh. "They'll be playing bingo in the
Kremlin before I get bread for my
babies out of that caper," I said to
When I got to my office I called in
my secretary Veronica to take dictation.
The old girl didn't take three steps into
my office before she fell flat on her
face. "God doesn't smile on people
who don't check for low strung limbo
wires VeronicaVeronica?" but she
didn't reply. I felt bad, not only was
she knocked unconscious, but she was
also bleeding heavily on that nice rug I
bought in Jersy City.
Vic Danger is a man of action, so I
ran to the bathroom and brought back
two handfuls of wet papertowels.
"Those ought to get the stain out, if
anything does. How 'bout it Veronica?"
But Veronica still didn't answer; she
just kept lying there, growing pale.
"This is no good,' I thought to myself.
'I'm not paying anybody 5 percent of
my gross just to bleed.' So I quickly
tore off my trousers and wrapped them
around her headwound. Next I loosened
her garments as best I could with my
teeth and began massaging her torso to
get the blood that was left back to her
Just then the boss walked in.
"What the hell, Danger?"
"Take a powder Chief, I'm just try
ing to keep abreast of the situation."
"Well put those down and get your
pants on, I've got some news that's
likely to tan your gizzard."
"OK Chief, shoot. Give me the low
down. What's the bird's-eye view on
this case? Pour the beans out, one at a
time boss, who latered who? Truth be
known, I'm nervous. I've got a. bad
feeling in my plumbing, it's whiskey
I've never tasted."
"What in the name of gee-whiz are
you talking about, Vic?"
"I'm not sure. All I know is that I
keep hearing a little voice saying,
"danger Danger, danger."
Stewart Gray is a junior from Hunters-ville.
Thursday, November 10, 1983 Literary Supplement 3