You see, Love is simple. It is only ever complicated if and when we make a choice to make it such. Philosophers for thousands of years have attempted to make Love complicated, and they've done a tremendous job of this in many ways. They have spoken of 4 Loves, and sometimes even more. It's only natural, of course, to believe that we Love different people, places, and things in different ways. But that is the way of the world..not the way of MY world. Not my perfect world, anyway...which truly exists in a secret and sacred place deep inside my heart. In my perfect world, you see, all existence came about by way of Love, and remains unto eternity by way of Love. One does not Love more or less...one simply Loves or does not. That I love my children takes absolutely nothing away from my Love for myself, for my neighbor, for my higher powers, for humanity, nature, or even nachos and beer. In fact, I can Love them all simultaneously without causing pain or harm to any of them...so long as my focus remains upon the all-powerful Love itself. If I have brought about pain or harm to any of them, then at some point I have made a choice to live outside of Love itself, and will undoubtedly pay the price for straying.
And then there is this thing mankind created which is called Loyalty. Loyalty is lovely as a concept, but in all honesty, I am no fan of it. Loyalty is anything but simple, and has caused me more troubles than anything else in this existence that I can think of. You see, where Love is unifying by nature, Loyalty is naturally divisive. It is, in effect, an ultimatum. Unlike Love, in my opinion, there are countless different forms of Loyalty: Loyalty to one's self, to one's higher powers, to one's friends and family, to one's employer, religion, philosophy, science, sports team, nation, race, city, culture, organization of any myriad kind, music, literature, cuisine, finances, and so on and so on. There is even this particularly strange idea of Loyalty to Loyalty itself.
Now, life goes along just fine for most of us until different Loyalties collide--which they often do, unfortunately. If I've explained this well enough, dear reader, your mind is now bursting with several examples as to how this happens in so many different ways nearly every single day of our lives. So often we find ourselves in the sticky position of choosing one Loyalty over another Loyalty, and I believe this is where most of our troubles begin. We attempt to "weigh" the Loyalties, and use this measurement to make our decisions that affect the lives of literally everyone and everything in all the universes. In mundane, trivial situations this is no big deal [for example, being a Chicago Cubs fan, I despise the St. Louis Cardinals...but sometimes I have to hope the Cardinals win if it will help my Cubs make it into the playoffs. I am temporarily betraying Loyalty to myself and my team in this case, because I have decided that my Loyalty to my team making the playoffs is more important in the long run.] But, unfortunately, many of the Loyalty collisions we experience in this life are far more serious, with far more serious ramifications. I hope dear reader, that I've made this clear, because it's time we finally return to the story. Though I've been long-winded again (I excel at this!), you will shortly see why such an introduction was needed.
If, by chance, you have not read Part I of this chapter, I highly recommend you do so now, otherwise you are certain to be thoroughly confused. Here is a direct link to it, in case you might enjoy indulging further:
*It will open in a new window, if you click on it.
What I had hoped would be a soliloquy had already turned into a "dueliloquy" when Moonshine Superman bolted out from inside the stall of the Sacred Pub restroom and shattered my solace. And, of course, all hopes of keeping it limited to a semi-peaceful "dueliloquy" were dashed when Rhianka the bartender fairy met us in the hallway of the Sacred Pub, attempting an escape plan. And so this is how the unintended and undesired "trililoquy" mostly went about:
Rhianka: Oh, hi boys! You must be Mr. Kev. Olga has told me so many things about you--most of it
really nice. It's nice to meet you. I'm Rhi--
Me: Rhianka! Olga has told me ONLY nice things about you. And yes, I'm Mr.--I mean, just...call me Kev. Very nice to meet you!
[Then I extended my index finger, which is a customary greeting between humanoid and fairy, and Rhianka game me a lovely finger hug]
Rhianka: And if I'm not mistaken, this jingly fellow with you is the gentleman that was booted from
the Sacred Pub a few moon-greetings ago for lighting off fireworks inside the pub. But it
seems you're leading him in the wrong direction...the door is well behind you.
Wayward Son: Well, I am an Otterman, yes, but not the Otterman you are thinking of, Rhianka. At
least not anymore.
Me: What he means to say, I think, fabulous Rhianka, is that he has turned over a new leaf.
He is a super hero now...Moonshine Superman. See, he doesn't even have his
backpack with him!
Wayward Son: Oh, you're right! I left it in the bathroom stall! Thank you for reminding me of that, Kev!
I'll be needing that later for sure--but not for here, of course.
[Then Moonshine Superman removed himself from my gentle grip of his shoulders, and turned as if to return to the restroom. Rhianka's pleasant smile turned instantly into a lovely scowl, and I spun the super hero back around (less gently than before) and held him firmly in front of me]
Rhianka: Well in any case, he can't be in here, Mr.--I mean, Kev--and I'm about inclined to stop believing that you have any intention of turning him into Olga...if you get my drift. I will
not betray my loyalty to her. She is like a mother to me, you know.
Me: No, of course I would never ask you to betray your loyalty to her. Nor would I wish to
betray my loyalty to Olga, or the loyalty she has always so kindly shown ME.
Wayward Son: But what about loyalty to ME, Kev? I thought we were friends.
Rhianka: And you, Mr. Moonshine Superman, did Kev bring you into the Sacred Pub with him?
Wayward Son: No, I came in through the ventilation shaft on the roof, as any good super hero
Rhianka: And so it seems to me you have already betrayed your loyalty to your friend Kev,
since you have now involved him in your betrayal of Olga, and the rules of the
entire Sacred Pub, and all its patrons. You wish that your friend would be booted
from the Sacred Pub along with you? That would be loyalty to you?!
[I found it impossible not to smile as I listened on to Rhianka's lecture, though I was glad that Moonshine Superman was facing the other way and could not see it. What a lovely bartender fairy Rhianka is! No wonder Olga had hired her. I'm not sure if it was Rhianka's perfect mannerisms, or the anxiety of the situation itself, but I had nearly forgotten my crush on the other lovely bartender fairy, Shelellabee. Yes, even in the midst of difficult situations, my mind tends to wander into unintended places.]
Wayward Son: Well, no. Of course not. I would never want Kev to get booted from the Sacred Pub.
But he's done nothing wrong. Olga's not going to boot him.
Rhianka: You don't know that, Mr. Moonshine Superman! Harboring--or "un-harboring" as the case may be--a fugitive inside the Sacred Pub is a very serious offense. Very likely to get Kev
Me: You are so kind, wise, and understanding, fabulous Rhianka. Can I just add that I really
do consider Moonshine Superman to be my friend? Even if he's not loyal to me?
Rhianka: Of course, Kev. That's very kind and honorable of you. You know, we have a saying in
our beloved Lustra, land of the fairies: "The greatest Loyalty of all is Loyalty to the
Truth itself." If you get my drift? So, Mr. Moonshine Superman, what say you? And, fabulous
Kev, you are now my friend, too. I'm glad we met.
[A tear or two streamed down Moonshine Superman's cheek, and he turned and hugged me. And I hugged him. And we told each other that we loved one another. It was a beautiful beautiful moment indeed.]
Moonshine Superman: Come on Kev, let's go turn me in, my friend. And thank you, lovely Rhianka for
being so kind and helpful to both of us. For what it's worth, I will always think
of you as a friend too, though I'll likely never see you again. You are wise and
precious in so many ways, Rhianka. I'm glad we met.
[Then fabulous Rhianka smiled warmly, approached Moonshine Superman, and gave him a tight finger hug. Then she looked up and pointed behind us, as our "trililoquy" suddenly became the most beautiful beautiful "quadriloquy" there perhaps ever was.]
Olga: Consider yourselves turned in, you troublesome boys...and stop looking at my Rhianka
all sweet like that! She's MY Rhianka, and you know the rules. Mr. Kev, are you willing to
vouch that your friend is, in fact, Moonshine Superman the super hero, and NOT Dwight
Otterman, the Wayward Son?
Me: If you will allow me to just perform the swiftest of ceremonies, dear Olga, then I will
gladly vouch for him as such. Graciously, and with honor. For he is my friend.
Olga: Don't be getting all weird and wordy about it, Mr. Kev...just get on with it!
[I nodded solemnly, and the Wayward Son knelt down in front of me for the last and only time. I reached down and lifted up his chin, so that we could look into each other's eyes. The entire Sacred Pub fell silent.]
Me: As the son of the Creator, Founder, and true Sustenance of our beloved Xanadu Forest, and
with all authority that goes with it, I hereby dub thee Sir Moonshine Superman, super hero,
and protector of our blessed lands. Heretofore shall you never again be known by any other
Olga: And heretofore does that blasted backpack stay behind the bar with ME...any and ALL times
Mr. Moonshine Superman is inside my Sacred Pub. No exceptions! Ever! And on this
momentous--or whatever fancy word occasion Mr. Kev and his strange ilk would call it--I'd like
to introduce everyone in the bar to a new strong drink we're going to be serving, called
"Midnight Shimmer.' It's a strong one. You've been warned. Kev, and Mr. Moonshine
Superman: I believe you've got a bell to ring! Lets get those acorns rolling, you trouble-
With that, the entire contents of Olga's Sacred Pub shouted with thunderous joy, and many fists rose triumphantly into the air. And the happily happy mob rumbled its way toward the bar proper in search of Midnight Shimmer. And did they ever find it indeed! And the new jukebox did finally play on...and on, for what felt beautifully as though it could be a blissful eternity. There were more hugs and finger hugs and silly dances than I could have ever imagined in a single moon-greeting. In a word, it felt like Love. Just pure, beautiful, sweet Love. Through and trough, within and without us all.
When all was done and said, fabulous Olga found a quiet moment, so that I could thank her again for the kindness she has always shown me, and I was able to assure her I would never take it for granted. I couldn't promise her that I would never make trouble, of course, since Kev's like me excel at causing mischief--though it is always unintended. She finger hugged me, and even gave me a sweet fairy kiss upon my cheek. Then she reminded me once more to stop looking at her fairies like that, and we shared a toast--just Olga and I. And Midnight Shimmer, of course.
Life is so beautiful beautiful!
You know I love all of you, dear fabulouses, and am so grateful to have you along for this crazy journey we call life...
But tonight, a very special I love you to all the new and kind friends that have welcomed me into my now real life Sacred Pub. Many of you will find places in future chapters, my heart knows this.
And to my knew brother, Dwight. I won't forget.
I love you.