Monday, December 5, 2011


“Elly, my good woman.” Mayor Link strolled into the Bighorn Diner and took his favorite booth, along the wall where he could survey the interior and anyone else who came in. “A plate of your finest apple flapjacks and a side order of Fakin’ Bacon. And wrap me up a banana muffin to go.”

Vernon MacMahon, currently the diner’s only other patron, snorted from his table by the window. “Just can’t stay away from the bananas, can you, monkey boy?”

“Ape. It’s ‘ape boy.’ Monkeys have tails. You’re free to insult me as long as you’re accurate. And how are you this lovely morning, you old son of a bitch? Please note the accuracy.”

“Can’t complain.” Vern chewed deliberately on a mouthful of flapjacks drowning in raspberry syrup. He followed this up with a long pull from his coffee mug. “Well, I suppose I could.”

“I thought you might.”

“I couldn’t help noticing City Hall’s trying to open the game lands to outside hunters again.”

Link sipped at the coffee Elly brought him. “It would bring a lot of revenue into the Peak.”

“It would bring in a lot more humans, you mean. Outsiders sniffing around. Or maybe you want more humans here. They’re your kinfolk, after all.”

“True,” Link admitted. “We’re only separated by a couple of genes. I’ve got more in common with them than I do with any other shifter species.”

“Must be why you pal around with them so much.”

“I can’t help it if humans like me, and keep proving it at the polls.”

“Yeah, you guys are so adorable, in those little hats and dresses and diapers and all.”

“And you canines look so at home on the end of a leash.” He grinned when Vern bristled. “If you don’t like the way I’m running this town, vote me out of office. Oh wait, I forgot. Shifters don’t vote. Humans do. I knew there’s a reason I like them.”

“Shifters vote.”

“C’mon, Vern. You don’t even know your own breed. If the alpha forgets to vote, the whole pack doesn’t bother. That’s why I win all the time. Apes are just as cliquish as wolves, except they show it on election day.”

“Or maybe,” Vern suggested, “the shifters are just waiting for the right candidate. Someone who could give you a serious run for your money.”

“And who would that be? Brandon Wayne? He’s not interested. Damien Hancock? Also not interested. Shere Khan? Too scary and not interested. That leaves … well, nobody.” He noted the look in Vern’s eyes, and laughed at it. “You’ve got to be kidding. Surely you don’t think you’d have a chance.”

“Only the herbies come in here. My place gets the carnivores. They’re the real life’s blood of Talbot’s Peak, and I’ve got my paw on the pulse. Nobody likes you, Lance. You’re just the lesser of whatever evil runs against you at election time. Give ’em a choice – a real choice – and you’d be out on your poo-flinging butt.”

“I do believe that sounded like a challenge.”

“I’d say the Peak’s overdue for a change.” Vern slicked back his hair and struck a seated pose that showed off his handsome profile. “What do you think, Elly? Do I look like a mayoral candidate?”

Elly snorted from the grill. “I wouldn’t touch that with a ten-foot spatula.”

Link chuckled. “The response of a true politician. Miss Elly, maybe you ought to run.”

“No thank you. Riding herd on my kids and customers is trouble enough.”

“Looks like it’s you and me, then. Think you’re up for it, wolfie?”

“You’re on, monkey boy.”

The two males rose, met in the middle of the diner, and shook hands. “I suggest we suspend hostilities until after breakfast,” Link said. “No way I’m sullying my flapjacks with anything as vile as politics.”


They returned to their seats. Elly set a plate of apple flapjacks and veggie bacon before the Mayor. Link raised his coffee mug to Vern, and Vern returned the salute. “May the best ape win.”

“Or the best wolf.”

“There’s no such thing.”

Vern bared his teeth. “Guess we’ll find out, eh, Lance?”

Back behind the counter, Elly shook her head. Males. And they said bighorns were thick-skulled. She sighed and set about cleaning the grill.


Pat C. said...

Because we all know politics is the biggest monkey business on the planet. Brownie points to whoever figures out which long-ago TV show I'm citing this time.

Savanna Kougar said...

Pat, adore your flash!

Well, I fail at that question, although it is ringing some dim bells.

Yeah, only the humans would pay any attention to a Mayor, since packs rule the Peak. So, let the ape boy have the designated, only ceremonial position.

And, hey, if they let the hunters in that just means more fresh meat for werewolves... of course, that brings it's own set of problems... although with a little creativity that part of the forest could become real haunted, real fast... and maybe populated with nude purple fairies... make all those 'hunters' think they've gone mad... hehe...

Serena Shay said...

Aah...I'm with Savanna, it's ringing some bells for the show, but nothing concrete has floated to the top of my noodle yet! Gotta keep thinking. :)

Oh, Vern will totally win that one, especially if he gets Nick and Dante to back him!

LOL...hats and diapers! I can see ape boy playing an accordion, as well.

Pat C. said...

I can't let you gals suffer any longer. I took the Mayor's name from Lancelot Link, Secret Chimp, a kid show from the '70s.

Herman Cain's withdrawal from the presidential race got me thinking about the political structure of Talbot's Peak. They'd have to have a Mayor and a City Council, and the Mayor would have to be someone who understands humans as well as the various shifter species ... so why not a damned dirty ape? Who better to monkey around with the denizens of Talbot's Peak?

But then, wolf packs are all about politics, so Lance may have a fight on his hands after all.

Savanna Kougar said...

Oh, no wonder. I never watched that show.

Oh, I think it's perfect because Link can deal with the humans and present an appropriate appearance to the outside world. But he's too puffed up if he thinks he can sit atop the Peak, above the wolf packs. Dante would even side with his sire to stop that. Of course, Dante is fine with Link as mayor, as long as he knows and keeps his place in the real scheme of things.