XXII. MARRY IN HASTE, REPENT AT LEISURE
A MATCH MADE IN A ZOO, OFF TO A WILD START
IF YOU COULD TALK TO THE ANIMALS, WOULD YOU?
The Hard Part Is Having Anything To Say After The Wedding Night
(Part Twenty-Two; Part One is HERE.)
"Hello," the lion roared again, more quietly this time.
"Ho! Dat lion is talking to me, Kris!" Holly exclaimed.
"Yeah. I know, " agreed Kris.
"Excuse me. That was rude. We haven't been properly introduced. I am Bennifer, King of Beasts."
"Oh! Hi! Ah, I am Holly, Ho of Chinatown. Hello, King! Ah, how are you today?"
"Tol'able, tol'able. Yourselves?" the roaring lion inquired of both of them, smiling generously and toothily.
"Very well, um, your majesty. OK to call you that, um, your majesty?"
"Yes, but capitalize it."
"You can hear capital letters?"
"We're not really talking. We're reading each other's minds. I can see the letters, and hear the words."
"I'm just hearing them. But it sounds like the words are in my ears."
"Yes," said the lion. That's how it works." He yawned again. "So, what brings you kids here so early?"
"We'd like to get married. But we cannot find the kahuna."
"Well, in my capacity as King of Beasts, I have the authority to marry you. It is you two, yes?"
"Yes, Your Majesty. And my name is Kris.
"Ah, that's better, Kris. It was grating on my ears the other way."
"Sorry, YOUR MAJESTY."
"No need to shout!" roared the lion. "Initial capitals only, please!"
"No problem. Now, if you'll just open my cage..."
"How? Get one big kine lock, braddah lion, King, sir."
"You don't have any keys on you? Or lock picks? Or files?"
"Uh," began Kris, thinking of the bone-saw in the trunk of his cab, and the chainsaw back in his apartment, just around the corner.
"NO! NO! NO!" shrieked the monkeys in the monkey-house behind them. "He'll eat you if you let him out!"
"Oh, pshaw," mocked the lion, "I'd never eat such two fine upstanding young kids! Especially you, little Holly. You'd hardly make a light snack." He licked his maw luxuriously.
"Oh. That's good. Uh, so, can you just marry us from in there, and not come out and eat us, anyways?"
"Well, I suppose so, if you insist."
"Ssssssss," hissed the snakes from the snake-house. "Don't do it! Marriage never worksssss out!"
"YES! YES! YES!" shrieked the monkeys, "It works out fine!"
"Who will be your witnesses?" inquired the King of Beasts.
"WE WILL," trumpeted the elephants next door. "IT'S SUCH A LOVELY DAY FOR A WEDDING," they bellowed, and began to cry.
"Ssssssso ssssssentimental! Sssssstupid!" hissed the snakes.
"OK, I guess we're all ready, then, Mr. King."
"Ready, Your Majesty."
"All right then. Beasties and gentlemen, ladies and animals, we are gathered here in the sight of the Lord of Creation to join this man, Kris, and this woman, Holly, in the bonds of Holy Matrimony," the lion intoned.
The elephants were blubbering away, the monkeys were chattering their heads off, the snakes were hissing fiercely, and the birds in the aviary had begun to sing and call. The noise was deafening.
"QUIET!!!" roared the lion, at full throat. It got quiet. "Thank you. Ahem. Now, where was I? Ah, yes, if there are no objections, in the name of the City & County Zoo of Honolulu, Hawaii, and by the powers vested in me by evolution, I now pronounce you husband and wife. You may devour, er, kiss the bride."
"Wait, don't you gotta ask us stuff, first? And what about the ring?"
"Sorry. In this ceremony, you only get one lion."
"OK, OK. Kris, I promise to be nice and good and kind and stuff, long as you treat me right. You get one ring?"
"Ah, mm, just a key ring."
"OK, for now. But I like one diamond, yeah?"
"I'll see what I can do. Here, let me take the keys off it, and put it on your finger. There. I promise to have and to hold, in sickness and in health, for richer or poorer, till death do us part, Amen. Now we kiss." And so they did.
The lion roared congratulatorily, and all the animals set up a hue and cry. The monkeys were ecstatic, and the elephants had to blow their trunks repeatedly, they were crying so much. The giraffe quite twisted her neck trying to see it all. And the birds all began to sing a beautiful wild song together. It all made Holly very happy. It was like a Disney movie, with prostitutes.
The morning sun had risen well above Diamond Head now, and the light was streaming in between the leaves of the trees all around the zoo. The zoo was open to the public now, and tourists began to stream in. Kris and Holly could no longer hear any words from the animals. They began to wonder if they hadn't imagined it all; maybe everything that had happened to them in the last twenty-four hours was all one big dream, or an hallucination.
And then the lion roared, "Congratulations!" plainly in their ears as they left the zoo. The monkeys screeched, "Best Wishes!!!" And the elephants blubbered, "Oh, it was so beautiful." But the snakes just hissed, "Sssssuckerssssss!!!"
[ PART TWENTY-THREE TOMORROW copyright 2008 Cosa Nostradamus.]
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