The Wonderful Wizard of Reno...Part 9

It has to End, Right??


The Late Arriving Reader notices that the Lobby is empty. A small table hosts a single light and a small sign which reads...

“Please click HERE if you are joining the tale now...this will put you at the beginning of the Story...”

I Hope you Enjoy.


Source
The Shrek Smoothie...
The Shrek Smoothie...
Source
Tibetan legal Document of the 5th Dalai Lama
Tibetan legal Document of the 5th Dalai Lama | Source
A Shoe Fetish...
A Shoe Fetish... | Source

Another Random Midget Phrase...

The proprietress of the Barbergirl28 P90X Gym of Pain follows the progress of the group as they enter her establishment. Kelly, Alastar, Nemanja, Creative Voice, Toto, and Applejacks take in the clean ambiance of the place.

Exercise machines line the walls while treadmills and stationary bicycles occupy the center of the large room. Healthy and buff looking people are doing healthy, buff-inspiring, stuff.

Stacy, the proprietress, is dressed in a rocking exercise outfit that only serves to accent her musculature and shapely physique. She’s wearing Nikes and nibbling on chocolate covered peanut butter balls while drinking a Shrek Smoothie...

Kelly spots her and walks over determinedly. The guys follow...

“Where are my Ruby Slippers?” Kelly demands.

Stacy coolly appraises the group before stating, “I’m not telling.”

“YOU HAVE THEM??” Call out a surprised Nemanja, Alastar, and Cowardly Lion. Their surprise is only exceeded by how silly each of them looks holding twelve-pounds of pastrami apiece.

Toto notices the chocolate covered peanut butter balls and feels queasy. He sees the Shrek Smoothie which doesn’t help and then he gets a whiff of the fatty-type meat and vomits in Stacy’s trash can.

Applejacks is in a dither...

“Not that you will ever find them to prove it.” Stacy says before hesitating and asking, “Are you boys going to a pastrami party or something?”

Alastar answers confidently, “Oh no...We only have twelve-pounds each so, you know, we won’t look like tourists.”

“Yeeeeah...your secret is safe with me...” Stacy trails off as Kelly threatens to tear the place apart looking for the Ruby slippers.

Nemanja adds to the discussion, “Let’s give her on a lie-detector test!”

“What for?” Inquires Alastar. “She’s already admitted to taking the slippers.”

Kelly informs, “Lie-detector tests can be beaten.”

Right, right, right.” Nemanja remembers as he makes a note...

“They should hot-oil wrestle for it!” Cowardly Lion posits eagerly as he grips his pastrami. All the guys tend to think this is a pretty good idea as they each grip their pastrami tighter...

Kelly and Stacy silence them with a bracing set of glares.

Kelly puts forth her legal case...

“Thomas and Betty, (The Smoking-Hot Good Witch of his Imagination), gave me complete wardrobe rights for Dorothy for the duration of this story.”

Kelly presents the legally binding document which was notarized by Betty and dated (Part 2) of this story. “These rights include my Ruby Slippers!!” (Which legally speaking...they did).

Non-pulsed, Stacy examines the legally binding document with scorn before reporting a brutal reality...

“I don’t care. I have a shoe fetish that needs to be fed.”

Far off in the distance...the Munchkins let loose with a ragged cheer...

“Yaay...”

It was true...as those who know Stacy...know...the girl likes her foot leather. Strappy affairs, pumps, a stiletto would never be turned away, it didn’t matter...what mattered was the shoe. Stacy has a shoe problem which apparently extends to bejeweled footwear as well...

In an interesting plot development...Kelly did know this.

Turns out they have been friends for years. They work together, at the award-winning website, www.Hubpages.com, where they are, both, very talented freelance writers...

A familiar voice comes from behind. It sounds like a violation of smarminess. It’s Scarecrow...


Source
Stacy...AKA...Barbergirl28...
Stacy...AKA...Barbergirl28...
Source
A corn Maze...or would it be...a maize maze...?
A corn Maze...or would it be...a maize maze...? | Source
Hmmm...Copper Wire...
Hmmm...Copper Wire... | Source
Just a Garden Gnome...nothing to See here...
Just a Garden Gnome...nothing to See here... | Source

“We Never Talk Anymore.” Complains the Dwarf...

“Sweet. You should naked hot-oil wrestle for the shoes! That’d be fucking hot!”

He was having a good night. Upon hitting town he had “found” two car batteries which had translated into a hefty sack of methamphetamines. That sack was still a quarter full.

Later, (the reader will remember), he struck a deal with anti-Tea Party Hobbit...and convicted felon...Bilbo Baggins. Baggins had sent him on a mission to find the ruby slippers after arming him with a pack of cigarettes and ten dollars.

When last seen, he was in the company of Pistol and Mary on the way to the nickel machines to parlay, that ten-spot, into the forty-seven dollars currently in his pocket.

“Awww! Why’d ya have to go and make it sound dirty!?” Complains Cowardly Lion.

Scarecrow was on one...

His pupils refused to dilate. Any light rays that might have happened to enter his jacked-up retinas were quickly absorbed, as if, into a black hole. His lower jaw was working faster than a Cuisinart...set for soup...

The relentless pressure of this movement shatters a molar. The remnants of that dental disaster glide down his throat, lubricated by the drools of lust, from the prospect of the impending “rub-down” between Kelly and Stacy...

“Who the fuck is that?” Stacy queries disgustedly.

An equally disgusted Kelly replies, “That’s Scarecrow. He’s a tweaker. If he gets grabby...set him on fire.”

“Oh. I will.” Stacy promises before looking around and asking. “Where’s Tin man?”

“He’s with Thomas. They’re trying to figure out how to end this story.”

Far off in the distance...the Munchkins let loose with a ragged cheer...

“Yaay...”

“Oh yeah?” Stacy asks doubtfully. “How’s that going?”

The group collectively grumbles before Alastar admits. “We’re hopeful he’ll come up with something soon...we all got shit to do.”

“I should think...” Stacy trails off as a general discussion ensues regarding the unlikelihood of the author’s ability to ever complete a Haiku...

“Seventeen syllables? No. No. He writes long.” Nemanja immediately goes on record with his expert opinion and the others quickly agree. It’s a short conversation.

Not surprisingly, considering the financial rewards at stake, Scarecrow remains focused...

“Well, if the pretty ladies aren’t going to get naked and roll around in warm oil...we’d better start searching this place.”

Crudely stated, but accurately put, as regards plot progression.

Now that it was game time, Kelly was at a loss. She had never actually torn a place apart looking for Ruby Slippers and wasn’t quite sure where to begin. Additionally, as Stacy’s a good friend, she didn’t wish to trash her business.

Burdened, as they were, with thirty-six pounds of pastrami between them; Nemanja, Alastar, and Cowardly Lion were also slow off the mark.

Not so...Scarecrow...

Like every tweaker...Scarecrow exhibits the innate ability to accomplish the ‘come-up’.

Whether it’s a “found” car battery, a spool of copper wire, free electricity, or the ability to find a lost shard of meth in the shag carpet of a cheap motel room; tweakers have a six-sense that allows them to shamble through their tattered lives without missing any possible opportunity that enables them to continue their worthless existence for another 24-hours...

After making a cursory pass through the gym, Scarecrow notices the, one item, which appeared out of place in the establishment and unerringly heads right to it. The Garden Gnome sits on a pedestal in the corner of the room.

Stacy tenses as he reaches for the garishly painted, ceramic, garden guardian. When he turns the statue over to reveal an emptied and hollowed out center...Stacy goes positively ape shit...

“WHERE ARE MY SLIPPERS??” She screams out in surprise, anger, and anguish.

Kelly points to her legal paperwork before stating, “Actually, they’re MY slippers.”

“Thomas must have moved them,” Posits Nemanja. “Being the author, he’s would be the only one in a position to take them from the gnome statue.”

“To what purpose?” This from Alastar.

Cowardly Lion attempts to put the best possible face on this progress, “Plot development?”

Everybody chuckles at this, quaintly optimistic, notion before seriously discussing their options...

The resultant conversation was shrouded in confusion, mistrust, and the overwhelming smell of pastrami. It was generally agreed that they needed to locate the author if any resolution was to be hoped for.


Putin's Plan for me...
Putin's Plan for me...
Betty...
Betty...
Real life Roommate and Fellow Hubber...jhamann...
Real life Roommate and Fellow Hubber...jhamann...
Four...
Four...
Musical??
Musical?? | Source
Four...
Four...
Faye...
Faye...

This Irks His Companion, “I Just Made a Random Midget Phrase Up Top There...”

The execution team was in place. From three points of the compass, their triangulated fire would guarantee a successful kill.

The two Norwegian speaking Russians, Leonid and Boris, formed the base of the triangulated fire while Vladimir Putin was poised on the pointy end of the triangle and going for the head shot. They were awaiting Fork’s signal...

I was unaware that death was stalking me like one of those commercials that always began, “If you were born between 1923 and 1943, you are eligible...” before offering an incredible insurance deal or something.

Each subsequent year would see that bracket moving closer to encompass my particular demographic group until eventually...I WAS born between 1943 and 1963.

Of course...I wasn’t thinking these thoughts...I was thinking of Betty’s shapely form as I followed her across the casino floor.

Her long-sleeve, form-fitting white shirt, black mini-skirt, ‘classic’ knee-high argyle socks, and sensible black shoes were like a sexy Etch-a-Sketch knob drawing me along...

It was due to this preoccupation that I was surprised when I looked up to see (real-life) Reno roommates, Jamie and Erika, and (real-life) Reno friends, Faye and Amy Golden, playing a line of slot machines. Betty and I stop to chat...

“What are you guys doing here?” We both ask taken aback. Hugs and greetings are exchanged as Jamie fills us in. In addition to being my real-life roommate...Jamie is also Hubsville poet, jhamann.

Jamie is chagrined as he admits. “I lost control of two of my characters.”

I understood. I have had, on more than one occasion, a character slap me about as I attempt to produce prose.

“Which characters?” I ask.

“Pistol and Mary.” Jamie confirms.

“The junkies?” I chide before advising. “That’s why you don’t put junkies in stories. They are loose cannons. I’ve got a tweaker running around in this story that I ain’t seen in three parts.”

Betty corrects, “Closer to four.”

“Four parts.” I agreed since it further supported my case...

Erika looks bored. As the wife of one Hubpages addict and the roommate of another...she was sick of hearing about Hubpages. Also, she was behind on her homework and annoyed that I had, once again, hijacked her into a story.

She was giving me the silent treatment which was not typical of her...she generally speaks her mind. I take advantage of the mood because I need a break in writing dialog...

Real-life friend Amy Golden gets my attention before asking, “Yo. Have you mentioned that I am the one who gave you the idea for this story? The Wizard of Oz set in Reno?”

Erika and I have been friends for, neigh on a decade, and she is well aware of my aversion to musicals and, as such, it occurs to her to ask...

“You do realize that The Wonderful Wizard of Oz is a musical, right?” Erika asks the question slowly...I think...to make sure that I understood the words...

“Not on my watch it isn’t.” I declare before considering how to best answer Amy Golden’s question of attributes.

The nature of her question suggested that she had not read the story. Otherwise, she would have clearly known that I hadn’t given her credit. This insight allows me some latitude. I lie.

“Well, yeah. Right in the beginning...like in the middle of the ending part of the second section...or something.”

Betty corrects, “Closer to four.”

“Part Four.” I agreed since it further obscures my case...

Amy Golden seems mollified until she thinks to ask, “What about the midgets? Does everybody know that it’s all about the midgets?”

Betty and I exchanged a knowing glance before I assure Amy Golden, “Oh no worries...you can’t swing a used condom over your head without hitting a midget in this story.”

“And it had to be phrased like that?” Betty asks drily.

“Yes.” I reply, equally dry.

Real-life friend Faye stands up and comes over to me. The last I had seen of Faye (in a literary sense) was at the conclusion of my six-part series entitled, The Writer’s Hero Journey (Featuring Faye).

I will admit...I’d taken considerable literary license with that one and I had yet to receive any type of feedback from Faye.

Faye is a taciturn girl. Mid-20s, great feet, very pretty, confident, incredible long-dark red wavy curly hair, and with outspoken opinions when she is ready to speak but, unlike Erika, generally keeps her own council.

“I read your story about me.” Faye says before slapping me hard across the face, “I liked it.”

“I liked that slap.” I quickly reciprocated the praise. Faye sits back down and, with an enigmatic smile, continues gambling...

I was rubbing my cheek when Fork gives the signal to fire to the three Russian marksmen...


Intrepid Hubsville Investigative Reporter...Arlene V. Poma...
Intrepid Hubsville Investigative Reporter...Arlene V. Poma...
Arlene's Favorite...
Arlene's Favorite... | Source
Arlene on Vacation...
Arlene on Vacation... | Source

“I Wouldn’t Mind Some Bacon.” The Dwarf States Determinedly...

Leonid was sweating. He was used to colder climes and the setting of this story was pegged squarely at seventy-eight degrees. The lack of humidity was certainly nice but he still has sweat streaming down his forehead which causes his failure to see Fork’s signal to fire at the American journalist.

He brings the handkerchief away from his sopping brow to find Hubpages investigative journalist, Arlene V. Poma, standing in front of him with a challenge.

Arlene had followed along at a leisurely pace from the bus station before checking into her room, unpacking, and heading to the casino floor...

“Hey asshole.” Arlene opens the dialog. “Are you into selling dumb-ass mail-order brides to even dumber assed mail-order grooms? If so...I want to interview you for my story.”

Arlene’s information was solid. Leonid and his brother, Boris, were involved in the Ukraine—Lithuanian—Norwegian mail-order bride industry. They also specialized in the smuggled sushi trade and the assassination of the occasional journalist.

Leonid has no idea what Arlene is talking about; however, because she is not speaking Norwegian. He does, however, notice the Fig Newton cookies in her hand (Arlene’s favorite) and reaches for them to help stabilize his low blood sugar...

Upon noticing this advancement, Arlene punches Leonid in the face and drops him to the ground, thus, eliminating one of the three fields of fire.

“Get your own Fig Newtons, asshole.” Arlene concludes the interview.

Recognizing that her story was going nowhere with the unconscious Leonid at her feet, Arlene decides to retool her mail-order bride story to focus on Asian, rather than Eastern-European, mail-order brides.

In the meantime...she decides to go up to Lake Tahoe and write a feature story about The Legend of Captain Dick “Them’s my Toes” Barter.


Boris Scopes Betty Out...
Boris Scopes Betty Out...
A Drive By...
A Drive By... | Source
Pistol and Mary...
Pistol and Mary...

“People should Deliver Bacon in Boxes.” Agrees the Midget...

Boris was sweating. He was used to colder climes and the setting of this story was pegged squarely at seventy-eight degrees. The lack of humidity was certainly nice but he still has sweat streaming down his forehead which causes his failure to see Fork’s signal to fire at the American journalist

Not that it would have mattered. Boris’ scope was not trained on the journalist but, rather, just to the right of him...on Betty. Boris had never seen such a beautiful creature and that’s why he’s sweating. He was also fogging up the scope with his hot panting breath...

Pistol and Mary come shambling along behind him, as happenstance would have it, in hopes of finding a miracle in the form of a twenty bag of heroin.

Their lack of money and the fact that they already owed their dealer, Jimmy Brown, for the last sack, is what would have qualified, any successful procurement, as divine intervention...

As events would have it...they were destined to find religion this evening...

Suddenly...from around the corner...by the bathrooms...a black sedan races towards Pistol and Mary across the casino floor. Tourists scatter in their wake as, indeed, they should.

This is not typical behavior in a Reno casino...well...Except during the annual Street Vibrations celebrations but those are usually Hells Angels on motorcycles...

The passenger window of the sedan rolls down as a gunman emerges and yells...

“Yer payments late to Jimmy Brown,

you fuckin worked out junkies,

put you in your place in the ground,

cure your disease, you flunkies.”

With that, he lets loose with a barrage of gunfire that rips through the two hapless junkies as they drop into a crimson stain upon the casino carpet. The carpet is so gaudy, the blood blends right in...

In that...Jimmy Brown’s henchman screamed this in English and, not Norwegian, Boris had no clue what was going on.

The sounds of squealing tires and gunfire, however, sound much the same in Norway as they do in America...and this gets his attention.

As he turns away from the fogged beauty...that is Betty...two wayward 9 mm rounds fly past the crumpled forms of Pistol and Mary and explode deep within Boris’ skull, killing him instantly and, thus, eliminating another of the three fields of fire...

The car roars off into the night. Another triple homicide is logged into the books at Reno Police Headquarters and quickly stamped, “unsolved”...


Todd Palin...Greedy Bastard...
Todd Palin...Greedy Bastard... | Source
Maury Povich...
Maury Povich... | Source
Responsibility...
Responsibility... | Source
Putin fleeing the Country...
Putin fleeing the Country...

“Like a Pizza Box?” The Dwarf Presses...

Vladimir Putin was sweating. He was used to colder climes and the setting of this story was pegged squarely at seventy-eight degrees. The lack of humidity was certainly nice but he still has sweat streaming down his forehead which causes his failure to see Fork’s signal to fire at the American journalist.

Not that it would have mattered. Putin had just received paperwork from Todd Palin’s lawyer advising him of a paternity suit. That’s why he’s sweating. He was as disorientated as the application of democracy in the Duma.

His overriding consideration was to flee the country in advance of the scheduled paternity test on the Maury Povich show’s, “Who’s the Daddy?” segment.

Todd Palin had booked the show, in the hopes of capitalizing on his family’s freakish lifestyle, as a way of forestalling having to get an actual job. This decision was made following Sarah Palin being crushed to death by a flying house earlier in this story...

Putin briefly considers killing Maury Povich but, he only kills journalists, and Maury Povich’s career had long since disqualified him from that title...

Even worse, to Putin’s way of thinking, that crazy bitch, Bristol Palin, wants to defect with him to the “New face of Russia” when he leaves the country.

As recent news from his homeland suggested that he would be successful, in his bid to recapture the Russian Presidency, he hardly needed to have her crazy, fertile-ass, running around and cramping his style. He was mentally making plans to beat-feet out of there...

Da. Da.” Putin mutters to himself as he contemplates his exit route through Mexico and Cuba before taking a non-stop flight from Havana to Moscow. He’s lost in thought...

The newest addition to the Bristol Palin, winged-illegitimate, offspring clan is still confused. Da-da? She approaches Putin...chirping quietly...quivering slightly...”Da-da...Da-da...”

When she unexpectedly grabs hold of Vladimir’s leg, she scares the crap out of him. He instinctually points the rifle down and fires into the creature causing feathers and parts of his knee-cap to explode in a shroud of pink mist, thus, eliminating the final threat to our intrepid journalist from triangulated rifle fire...

Far off in the distance...the Munchkins let loose with an impressive moan...

“Boooo...”

Upon hearing the Munchkin’s disappointment and not seeing the target's head explode like an overripe watermelon on a hot day...Fork knew things were fucked up.

“What the fuck?” Fork grumbles as he heads back to Sharron Angle’s campaign headquarters...


France??
France??
Pastrami...
Pastrami...
Civil War Stuff...
Civil War Stuff... | Source
Prudence...
Prudence... | Source

“I Would Call it a Bacon Box.” Announces the Midget Proudly...

“What the hell was that?” Stacy asks, following the brief clatter of gunfire.

Kelly...who has spent an impressive amount of time stalking the mean streets of St. Louis reports, “The first batch came from a 9 mm. That last shot sounded like it came from a sniper rifle...mmm...maybe Eastern European...?”

Cowardly Lion was about to suggest that it was probably Hells Angels, on motorcycles, before realizing that is was too soon for the annual Street Vibrations celebrations...

Alastar, who is mightily impressed by Kelly’s abilities at acoustic ballistics, begins massaging his pastrami. His palm-sweat begins the marinating process...

Nemanja chuckles at the thought of ‘palm-sweat marinated pastrami’ before announcing, “Thomas is a fucking freak.”

“Right?” Everyone agrees as, that dead-horse, endures another whipping...

(At the mention of “palm-sweat marinated pastrami,” the author...makes a mental post-it-note...to include Sharron Angle back into the tale...)

“There was an adage in the Civil War,” Notes, Civil War expert, Alastar, “that if you’re lost on a battlefield...your best course of action is to march towards the sounds of gunfire.”

“That’s a horrible idea!!” Cry out Cowardly Lion and Scarecrow in unison.

Cowardly or not...Cowardly Lion knew that the best course of action was to flee, in the opposite direction, while screaming for someone else to call 9-1-1, so as, not to get involved...

Conversely, Scarecrow understood that the relationship between fired gun shots and the arrival of police officers, frequently led to the detention and questioning of idle tweakers who are simply minding their own business. Best to keep a wide berth in these matters...

Nemanja considers the number of characters who have randomly met their deaths within the pages of Thomas’ stories. Quite a few, actually. Most of them random...several...simply gratuitously...

“Perhaps, prudence would be the better...?”

“OH! You know Prudence?” Scarecrow interrupts him. “She’s a freak, huh? Wanna go see her now? I got her number. The scabs have cleared up and she has replaced her upper plate...you know...if you like upper-teeth action. I don’t know you man so...”

It’s now Nemanja’s turn to interrupt...

“Yes. Walking towards the sounds of flying bullets sounds good. We should do that now.” He finishes this statement as he begins edging away from Scarecrow and hastily motioning for the others to begin walking...

Disappointed...Scarecrow and Cowardly Lion follow. In a sudden mental flash, Applejacks, gets an image that demands her attention and she immediately flies off towards the service entrance of the hotel...


A Midge...
A Midge...
Pepper...
Pepper... | Source

“Call it What you Want...It will Still be A Pizza Box filled With Bacon.” The Dwarf Mutters...

The iceberg glides to a stop outside the Silver Legacy. The fact that the Truckee River goes nowhere near the casino remains uncommented upon as the berg is tied to the pylons of the pier. Uncle Arthur, Jane Goodall, Willow, and Pepper quickly disembark before stopping to get their bearings.

When last seen, the quartet was being snuck up on by Gorillas under the control of Scientologists. The group was nearly caught unawares, before a cracking branch gave away the Gorillas’ position.

Uncle Arthur immediately cast a spell which transformed the simian assault members, into the largest native species of Antarctica, the half-inch long wingless midge. Willow was impressed.

Ironic, really. I mean, monkeys are pretty high up on the evolutionary food chain anyways. And these guys could talk and ride horses and shit. And now they were just half-inch long wingless midge(s) that promptly burrowed themselves into the iceberg. It’s just ironic is all...

“The entrance is right around the corner.” Pepper advises.

“Aren’t you coming with us? Asks, a surprised, Jane.

Pepper looks disappointed before admitting, “I can’t. I was blackballed from this casino for fishing.”

The practice of ‘fishing’ involves walking through casinos and ‘fishing’ out any spare change that may have been left behind in slot machine trays. It’s the casino’s contention that any money left behind by distracted players is the casinos to keep.

Farewells are awkward as it is difficult to hug a tumble weed with an eight-foot-circumference. Several cuts are sustained. Well wishes are shouted back and forth after a strong southerly wind sends Pepper bouncing towards Carson City...pink bustier flashing brightly...

“That was weird.” Says Willow.

“Pfft.” Uncle Arthur makes a spitting sound. “You need to get out more if you think THAT’S weird. Especially if you want to be MY apprentice.”

“I can be your apprentice??” Willow is almost too choked up to formulate the question...

“We need to beat feet.” Announces Jane as she heads towards the entrance to the casino.

“We’ll see.” Arthur concedes before following Jane. Willow trounces after him, happily.

They are met inside by Applejacks who quickly fills them in on the going-ons inside the casino. Immediate plans to “march towards the sounds of gunfire” are forestalled by the further information that a meeting was being held up in the penthouse. It is decided that the group would head directly there...


No...I mean Seriously...France??
No...I mean Seriously...France??
Pastrami...
Pastrami... | Source
Elevator to Heaven?
Elevator to Heaven? | Source

“Fuck Off.” Says the Midget who Heard the Muttering...

Following the brief clatter of gunfire, Faye looks up from the slot-machine and asks, “What the hell was that?”

Erika was about to suggest that it was probably Hells Angels, on motorcycles, before realizing that is was too soon for the annual Street Vibrations celebrations...

Jamie and I knew the import of those shouted words that were cut short by the hail of gunfire. Pistol and Mary were dead. Jamie blanches at the recognition before stumbling over and violently vomiting in a trash can.

“Why do you have my husband violently vomiting in a trash can?” Erika asks.

I consult my notes before replying...

“Um...this is an interactive story and characters can request stuff? Anyways...Jamie asked that (should he be included in the story) that I depict him throwing-up publicly in a trash can.”

She looks doubtful until I show her my notes.

“I would have thought the vomit would have been alcohol related.” Erika states idly after seeing the irrefutable proof.

“I like to mix shit up.” I admit.

“I’d better take him to Urgent Care.” Erika sighs before they leave...

Faye and Amy Golden seem perfectly content gambling so Betty and I bid adieu before making our way to the elevators.

In route, we run into Tin man, who had been singing a soulful rendition of Otis Redding’s,Sitting on the Dock of the Bay, before being interrupted by the sounds of gunfire. He’s carrying twenty-six pounds of pastrami.

“What’s with you guys and the pastrami?” Betty asks puzzled.

I let her in on the secret, “I’m not sure...but if we end up needing it...it’s probably best to have it.”

“I would be afraid to even start arguing that point.” Betty states wisely while hitting the up button to the elevator.

“Where are we going?” From Tin man as he shifts his meaty burden to the other arm.

Betty ruins my fantasies of a “Nooner,” in one of the bedrooms upstairs, when she says, “There is a meeting upstairs that you guys need to attend.”

“Aww...a meeting? I mean...is that what the kids are calling it now...?” I scramble to maintain the viability of my fantasy...

“If by ‘kids’ you mean ‘you’ ...yeah...probably.” Betty says as we pile into the elevator and she hits the button for the penthouse. The elevator ascends. When we get to the door, Betty walks right in, and we follow. Disappointingly, in terms of the “traditional” usage...there is a meeting going on...


Important Meeting...
Important Meeting... | Source
Thesis Statement...
Thesis Statement... | Source
Topic Sentences...
Topic Sentences... | Source
YOU??
YOU?? | Source

The Dwarf Sneezes...

The room was crowded. At the center of the action, however, is my old friend and writing aid...Thesis Statement. As is his way...Thesis Statement was dressed formally. Tuxedo, Kenneth Coles, cumber bun, cuff links, and bowler hat. He’s on the phone but waves us inward after noticing us...

I look about. In addition to Thesis Statement and his three assistants, (Topic Sentences A, B, and C), there are a few surprises in the room.

For those readers having difficulty visualizing what a Topic Sentence would look like...they look exactly like the Oompa Loompas from Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory. Obviously.

In addition to Thesis Statement and his staff, also present are: Elephant, Uncle Arthur, Jane Goodall, Willow, Applejacks, Sponge, and L. Frank Baum. Betty, Tin man, and I mingle and catch up while Thesis Statement finishes his call.

Applejacks informs me that she has flashed our location to Toto. He and the rest of the group were headed towards the penthouse suite for the long awaited reunion...

“I WANT THE LOCATION OF THAT HEADQUARTERS!!” Roars Thesis Statement before slamming down the phone. He was in a mood...

“Really?” He asks me disgustedly after noting the word count of this story...25,000 words. “Did you plan on calling me in at all on this one? 25,000 words? Seriously?”

Thesis Statement was fashionably late...even for one of my stories. It was a battle I had fought with my favorite English professor, Barbara Morrison, many times.

My preference is to add Thesis towards the end of the tale rather than the traditional ‘beginning’ of the story.

It allows for flexibility and lets me mold Thesis around the story...as opposed to the other way around. Needless to say...English professors prefer the ‘other’ ‘other’ way around and they really hate the type of sentences I just typed.

Still...this story was out of control and I welcomed his input.

“I feel bad about that Thesis Statement.” I admit sincerely. “We just need to move past that and give this story some structure.” I finish...nodding happily.

Thesis is always very clear in his intentions. “Structure? I will shove structure up your fucking ass...”

His tirade is interrupted by the flushing of the toilet...

“Who’s in the bathroom?” Queries Tin man.

Topic Sentence B provides the answer, “That’s the Wonderful Wizard of Reno.”

“THE...Wizard of Reno?” I exclaim confused...

The bathroom door opens and out walks the Wizard of Reno. I couldn’t have been more disappointed...

“You...?” I say...sounding very disappointed.

(End Part 9)

(Part 1)(Part 2)(Part 3)(Part 4)(Part 5)(Part 6)(Part 7)(Part 8)(Part 10)

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Comments 20 comments

FloraBreenRobison profile image

FloraBreenRobison 4 years ago

Hey. I haven't read seven or eight yet -don't ask why, just totally behind in everything - and thought that part 8 would be the last and a new storyline would start. Otherwise I aaahhhh......drat it anyway. Bad Flora!


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

hi Flora!

No worries my friend! I am so far behind on absolutely every aspect of my life (don't ask) and I completely understand!

As it happens...there is this one...and then there will be a part 10 and that should finish this bad boy off. Thank god.

Thanks for stopping by!

Thomas


barbergirl28 profile image

barbergirl28 4 years ago from Hemet, Ca

OMG.... this is just too funny. I mean... ruby red shoes are now missing... or maybe I just confused everybody and placed the blame on you. BTW - I visited Dorthy's House in Kansas... It was on the Yellow Brick Road... go figure. I tried to post it on Facebook but my lack of reception made it not happen. But hey... if you want the pictures let me know and I will post them.

Love the story... this is so much fun... and now I am curious. Who the hell....


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Stacy...

Don't try and blame me for moving them...I believe you may have moved them in an OCD cleaning incident and just don't remember!

I saw the various posting of your trip and most certainly want to see pictures!

I'm glad you like the read..It took for days to finally get you into the story and I welcome you mightily. As always...when a new person enters a story, I say, "Don't sue."

Thanks,

Thomas


jhamann profile image

jhamann 4 years ago from Reno NV

What a grand reconnect of all that is "The Wonderful Wizard of Reno!" Wait...oh shit...where is a trash can...BBBAAARRRFFF...sorry that had nothing to do with your fantastic storytelling abilities. jamie


RealHousewife profile image

RealHousewife 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO

Thomas - you are kicking my ass! Man - or dog - or cow - whatever - you just make me LMAO!

You totally win the contest of "most likely to make me speak out loud and laugh while reading" I catch myself talking to you as if you can hear me through the computer - did you??

Ty - TY - TY - you take the cake and you set all the hubbers in hilarious positions...very clever! You are good with slippers:-) LOL


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Jamie...

(Laughing) ...so how was the urgent care visit? This one was all about trying to reconnect everything and everyone...I wasn't sure that I managed it so thanks for the confirmation!

Thomas

PS...uh...need to wipe away that...yeah...there you go...


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Kelly (aka Dorthy)...

This has been a crazy long journey my friend and I thank you from the bottom of my heart for your continued support and sense of humor!

I DID hear you through the computer!! Of course...I thought they were the normal voices I hear...but when no one mentioned robbing a bank...I assumed it was a new voice...

Let's do this shit...

Thomas


Arlene V. Poma 4 years ago

Ah, Reno Man. I caught this last night while suffering from insomnia and dissolved into fits of laughter. I didn't have my beloved Fig Newtons, so I stole the Butterscotch Cups from hubby's lunch. Again, thank you for including me in your masterpiece. Always looking forward to your most entertaining articles because you never miss!


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Arlene!

Thank YOU for rounding out my cast of crazy characters and helping to take Leonid out of the "Kill ThoughtSandwiches" equation!

I thank you for sticking this one out and as to, "never miss"...? Oh yes...I miss...please reread Part 8 should you doubt...lol.

Thomas

PS...I actually wondered if you would have fig newtons on hand when I placed that picture. Alas...that's what hubby's lunch is for...stealing the butterscotch pudding when there are no fig newtons.


Alastar Packer profile image

Alastar Packer 4 years ago from North Carolina

That's right Kelly! Lie-detectors can be beaten by squeezing the sphincter muscle, Alastar forgot about that. Uh-um Uh-um those Munchkins know a good thing when they see it. I'm glad Stacy, Jamie, Erika, Arlene and friends joined us Wizard of Reno adventurers, takes the heat off some. You know I'm a shy homeboy at heart Wizard. Man you are a funny funny clever rancounter and just kept hittin home run after home run here! Gotta admit forgetting what that word rancounter meant until recently when James Watkins re-enlightened. But enough of my patter; number nine spectacular Thomas. Took a few days cause I wanted to take my time, lay back and enjoy the Oz ride. And bro you sure delivered!


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Alastar...

Ahh my friend...there should be no heat on anyone other that evil bitch from hell...Sharron Angle. That said...yeah we added a shitload of some folks for this section making for a busy part 9!

I must admit to still forgetting what the term rancounter means and will need to look it up upon hitting "post comment" button. I am glad you have mentioned James...I have heard nothing but awesome stuff about him and have been meaning to add him to the reading list!

I'm surely glad that you enjoyed #9 my friend...I'm thinking one more part and we should all be able to get back to our busy lives!

I'm certainly glad you were able to take this journey with me good sir.

Thomas


Alastar Packer profile image

Alastar Packer 4 years ago from North Carolina

James is one of if not the best non-fic writer on the site. He's a follow that pays high dividends. Thomas, The Wizard of Reno series has been a 21st century Wizard of Oz extraordinaire. You should be very proud of yourself, you deserve to. Hope plenty of readers discovers it on the HP and eslewhere as time goes on. They'll be glad they did if in possession of an open mind and the ability for hearty laughter. Thanks a hundred times for the character inclusion and links. Can hardly wait to finally see who the Wizard is in part ten. Very well done my friend, and what atreat it's gonna be to see what you come up next, whither singles or another series.


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Alastar...

You are more than welcome a hundred times and thank you a thousand times for having that open mind you spoke about above!

I will start to dive into Jame's material and thanks for the heads-up.

Thomas

PS...I'm thinking some singles will be forthcoming for awhile.


nemanjaboskov profile image

nemanjaboskov 4 years ago from Serbia

Finally... This was great fun, Thomas, and I must say that this is my favorite part up to now... You are a freak, my friend, and we are all enjoying your freakishness very much.

I am seriously thinking about printing and framing the following paragraph:

"Alastar, who is mightily impressed by Kelly’s abilities at acoustic ballistics, begins massaging his pastrami. His palm-sweat begins the marinating process..."

I couldn't believe my eyes when I saw this, and I will probably keep laughing at it for years to come... "My" response to this has also made a lot of sense, and you guessed exactly what I was thinking while reading the paragraph - it was magnificent!

Also, I had no idea who the Wizard might be until this part, but I think I know now - we'll have to wait and see if I'm right :)

Thank you very much, Thomas, for this amazing ride. You have really proven to be well-worth following, reading, and respecting! Can't wait to see what happens in the final part.


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Nemanja...

I wish to thank you my friend for your continued journey with me down the Yellow Brick Road!

I have to admit that I am surprised at how big this story got...far past my initial expectations of two or three parts.

I have also enjoyed every moment of writing it and I'm glad you have enjoyed the reading!

lol...Alastar and his pastrami...lol...

I appreciate your discretion in matters of Wizard identification, good sir. I should think that if any one would have solid ideas on the subject...it would be you!

I can say that the Wizard is indeed a character from an earlier story in my repertoire...I hope that will help hold you until I finish writing this bad boy!

Writers write for the readers because it's the readers that give the writing meaning. You are the finest example of this fact as I can think of my friend.

Take Care,

Thomas


nemanjaboskov profile image

nemanjaboskov 4 years ago from Serbia

Well, I just wanna say that so far my hunch in regard to the Wizard is still viable... I have loved a lot of characters from your previous stories, but I have a feeling that only one of them would be perfect for the role of the Wizard, and this is one of my favorite characters, BTW - we shall see how it plays out :)


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Nemanja...

And now I am curiously wondering if we have the same character. Perhaps this is the first time in literary (hahaha...I called this stuff 'literary'), history where the author is as interested in the outcome as the reader. I shall write faster so we can compare notes!

Thomas


phdast7 profile image

phdast7 4 years ago from Atlanta, Georgia

Thomas - It just gets better and better. :)

Lots of things I loved, the three-man firing squad (and how you eliminated them), the discussion of the multi-national mail-order bride business, Palin and Putin, the phrase - "like a sexy Etch-a-Sketch knob" (not sure why I like that phrase so much, but I do), I loved Thesis Statement and Topic Sentence B (my, how I hated the English template for essays - we don't follow that crap in history)....I am clearly the queen (or princess or duchess) of parenthetical statements.

But....wait for it...my favorite sentence was after the question about the Tin Man... "He's with Thomas. They're trying to figure out how to end this story." I cannot explain why,but I started laughing hysterically, the choking, can't catch your breath kind of laughter.

Can't wait for 10! :)

Theresa


ThoughtSandwiches profile image

ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada Author

Theresa,

Just between you and me...the getting away from the three assassins was the whole reason for Part 8...I needed more time to figure out how to get out of it with my pretty little head intact.

I actually remember giggling about that line when I wrote it. Mostly that was because it was true. Internal CD player and I were in the wilderness for days trying to end this lone...lol. Also, once I wrote 'sexy etch-a-sketch' I was immediately enamored of it although I can't really say why.

Thank you my friend for taking the time to read these as it is greatly appreciated along with your very nice words!

Thomas

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