Chapter 10, "Happiness is a Cold Tentacle"
Sadly, Lou had not bothered making dinner because he was too busy not learning how to play the banjo. I fell asleep consumed with an all consuming desire to consume things, also known as "hunger".
When I awoke the next morning, it was obnoxiously weather-y outside. I got dressed in clothes that covered my body and also looked nice if you were the type of person that liked clothes, and I wandered into the living room to find Lou with his banjo and a parrot with a kazoo.
"Oy, was haben sie banjo, sweet girl!" He asked with concern.
"What is that parrot doing here, Lou?" I concernedly asked.
"Parrot, my poodle dumpling?"
I pointed at the offending bird.
"Oh, you mean Larry! Er ist mein gute bandmate."
"He's in the band, lassie-poo!"
A parrot in a band. I mentally thought to wish them good luck, but I forgot because I thought of my own problems which were more important than anything else.
"Well, I'm going to school!" I said out loud, but Lou did not respond because he and Larry were stringing together a cacophony of horribleness.
When I got to school, everyone with a nametag and even some people without them came up to me. "Frig!" they said using speech, and also simultaneously, it was really weird; "We heard you were alone with Xlormp!"
I didn't know how to respond, mostly because the whole thing was pretty creepy and I also hated them all, so I didn't much feel like talking to them. What I felt like doing was griping about how much I didn't fit in, even though everyone wanted to be my friend, but it looked like this huge crowd of nosy jerkfaces wasn't going to let me.
Suddenly, I felt something on the back of my neck. It was cold, slimy, and blissfully familiar.
"Xlormp!" I spasmed, turning gently to look into his face.
Xlormp held up a flipper and two tentacles. "Listen, everyone," he pronounced carefully, with mighty inflection. "Frig and I are in love now, and that means that she will only do things I say she can do, and that includes not answering your questions. Instead, she is going to polish my spaceship and then I will walk her to her classes."
Steve swaggered up to Xlormp, indignation written all over his face in permanent marker. "Excuse me, Xlormp, but I'm afraid that's my job," he said.
"Ha, ha, again I say ha!" Xlormp chuckled, winking stupefyingly at me. He then narrowed his eyes (all of them) and vaporized Steve with his laser vision.
Everyone gasped. Simultaneously.
I gazed at Xlormp lovingly. "Now, Xlormpykins, was that really necessary?"
"Hush, woman, and get to scrubbing!" He shouted alertly, and handed me a washrag.
My heart was more than happy to do as he asked. I swayed on my tiptoes as I stretched up to kiss his green, reptilian cheek. With a curt nod, Xlormp dismissed the school to go partake of their classes, and me to make shiny the Xlormp-mobile.
The cleaning process took the entire first half of the day, which meant I missed all of my classes until lunch time. But Xlormp said that was okay, sometimes there were more important things than going to class.
It's a good thing I finished in time for lunch, because I hadn't eaten anything in almost twenty-four hours.
"How does it look, my most precious one?" I asked hopefully, anxiously seeking my alien's approval.
"It looks much like it did before! Good work, my little slave!"
"I mean...um...love of my life, my dearest one!"
My heart melted for the gazillionth time at his kind, loving words. If only I had six hearts, so that I could easily replace mine whenever Xlormp befuddled me like this.
Every eye in the lunchroom was on us when we walked in. Except for one, and that was Coach Carver who had a wooden eye. That one was not on us because it couldn't actually see.
I walked through the lunch line, sad that they were not serving quesadillas today, in fact, they were serving pizza. Again. Did these people know how to concoct any food other than pizza?
The pizza angered me, which made me feel a little better since Xlormp was making me feel so happy.
"I'll take the usual order of llama intestines, Rose," Xlormp casually articulated. "You know, for my special medical diet."
Rose the lunch lady nodded, and handed Xlormp a bucket.
"Care to eat with me, my precious jewel?" he asked me, because I was his precious jewel.
"Of course!" I shouted, perhaps a smidge too quickly?
We sat at a table. It had chairs. There were four of them. We sat in two of them, and they held our weight up so that we were not on the floor, but rather at an appropriate level to eat food from the table.
"So," Xlormp said, lifting a flipper-full of llama intestines and cramming it into an opening on the side of his stomach, "How has your day been?"
I would have answered, but I was too fascinated by his eating techniques. I could not tear my eyes away, even though it was disgusting and gross. My mind was running away with itself, imagining a myriad of things one could do with a stomach opening, if one were so inclined.
"Frig," Xlormp said sternly, poking my arm. "I asked you a question and I demand you answer it right away."
"Oh," I sputtered. "Yes. My day has been completely blissful, at least the part where I've been with you."
Xlormp nodded and smiled happily and with joy. "That is the correct answer," he said, and he tossed me a cookie he'd produced from somewhere in his slime folds. I caught it with my mandibles and chewed cautiously.
"So, Xlormp," I began, at the beginning of a sentence, "Now that we are deeply in love, can I ask you a question?"
"You may ask me any questions you like, except for the specifics of my world domination plan."
It seemed a reasonable request.
"I was just wondering, if you have a whole family of space aliens on another planet, why were you adopted by the Winstons?"
Xlormp nodded. "Ah, I see you are good at thinking of logical things."
I blushed at the polite compliment.
"Well, Frig, the answer is very simple. The Winstons are feeble-minded humans, whose brains are easily controlled so that I may live a normal life and blend in among your people."
"Until now," I whispered sweetly.
Xlormp flicked some llama guts at me. "It is my turn to ask a question of you."
My pulse quickened, which was weird because I was doing no aerobic activity. "Yes?"
"You aren't going with anyone to the shindig this weekend, are you?"
Again with the pulse quickening. I hoped my ribs could be reinforced with titanium later, because I didn't know how much longer they could hold up to the beating my heart was giving every time I was around Xlormp.
"No, I'm not going with anyone," I all but chortled.
Was he going to ask me to the shindig? Was Xlormp, this creature of utter green perfection and bliss going to take me, a mere earthling, to the school dance?
"I was wondering..." he asked, leaning closer to me with his body, "...if maybe..." I could feel his breath on my face now, it smelled funny, kind of like a mix of cake and battery acid, and it made me slightly nauseated (with love) "...you would like to come with me to an undisclosed location and perform some tasks for me?"
There was something about the way he said "tasks" that made me want to throw his cold body onto the lunch table and smear his llama intestines all over him in a seductive fashion.
But I didn't. Instead, I said, "Even more than I want to continue breathing air," and I meant it, too.
Xlormp muttered something I couldn't really hear, but it sounded sort of like, "That could be arranged." I giggled and gazed at him, happier than I'd ever been in an entire life of hating everything. We were going on a date!
Catch up with the chapters you may have missed somehow!