Once again it was a misty night. Cold and raining. There was a knock on the door. It was her.
"Hello, Neil. Short time no see.
"I thought you were in the Middle East!
"On my way, Neil. May I come in?
Once again I showed her into the Gerald Ford Room. I apologized for the mess. I had several of my larger collages laid out on the couch cushions.
"Oooo!" she said. "'The Last Judgment'! So you know?
"Know?" I said. "Know what?
"Don't play innocent with me, Neil," said Laura, tut-tutting me in her best schoolmarmish tone. "You know exactly why I'm going to the Middle East, don't you?
"Um," I responded, "because your husband is a supreme dipshit so you're going to try to save his ass?
She laughed. "Oh, Neil! You are such a duplicitous bastard! That Middle East Peace Conference of his is such a joke. It's just a cover. Condi's over there right now trying to distract the world from my true ambitions.
"So," I said, after a long pause. "So you ARE the Antichrist?
"Of course!" she giggled. "And now that my armies are in place I'm going over there to take charge.
"Absolutely. It's time for the world to end, don't you think, Neil?
Hmmmm. I wasn't sure. Was it truly time for the world to end? Was there no longer any possible good that could come from it? I withheld my opinion.
"So all of this has been your doing, Laura?
"Oh, for heavenssakes, Neil!" she scoffed. "You of all people! You've known it from the beginning!
"Well, let's just say I 'suspected' it. So you're gonna go over there and...what exactly?
"Well, I'm programmed to do what's expected of me, of course. Just read your John of Patmos. You must have a copy of 'Revelation' around here somewhere, don't you?
"Oh sure. Oh sure. I like to read that every night before I go to bed. But what about the 'Rapture'?
"We'll do that in a couple of weeks. We'll get the real nitwits out of here before we start the shooting.
"So...Halloween for the 'Rapture'?
She stood, walked around the Gerald Ford Room with that mistical air of hers that is so, so charming.
"Are you sure you don't want to join me, Neil? To rule the Earth?" she queried, coquettishly.
"No, no," I responded firmly. "You just do what you have to do, but don't expect the God of the Swedish Lutherans to take this lying down.
"Why not? He takes everything else lying down.
"Yeah, OK, so he likes His opium, but this time he's gonna send Jesus to smote you!
She laughed. "Jesus?!" she cried. "I can seduce him in heartbeat!
"No you can't!" I cried back. "Because he's gay!
"Jesus is gay?" She seemed genuinely dumbfounded for a moment, even though she knew that all the evidence pointed to Jesus being gay: 33, single, hung around with 12 men and a couple of faghags. But then she caught herself and laughed. "Oh, Neil! You're such a card! Well, I'd better be going. Armagaeddon waits for no man...or woman.
"Wait a minute!" I said. "Aren't you worried that I'm going to tell the whole world that you're the Antichrist?
She laughed again, that wonderful, lilting laugh. "Oh, Neil! WHO is going to believe you?
That was true.
"I mean, c'mon, Neil! First you tell people that you're the 'Chief Lobbyist for the Afghan Opium Growers Association and now you're what? A hedge fund manager? The only thing people know about you for sure is that you're a nitwit!
"Takes one to know one!
"No it doesn't, Neil. Any sane person would realize immediately that you are a nitwit.
"Yeah, well, OK. Well, best of luck then, with the End of the World and everything!" said I, merrily. And with that I showed her the door. I'd had enough of her and her ilk.
She slipped into the mist, into the shadows, into the rain.
Something bothered me, though, about her appearance. And then it hit me. It was raining hard, but there wasn't a drop of water on her. Even her hair was perfect.
Just like that werewolf from London.