“It’s to do with the way you think.  The more you think sideways – and I’ve got me revolving eyes as proof – and outside your square wired skull, the more your eyes will spread apart and move on the far side of your head.  Then only, will you begin to think differently.  Then, you’ll begin to understand and feel free because you’ll begin to think for yourself.  But first, you must let go of your wired hair.  You should shave that mop.”

Captain Traumatic draws his sword and prepares to cut the Commander’s hair.

“What do you think you’re doing?  Do you wish to kill me?  Our hair is connected to our skull by our thoughts as it helps us sense creatures and objects in space even if we can’t see them and spin them up.  We take a lot after bats.”

“I read a book that maintains that—“

“—Enough of your unconvincing babble, you’re up to your eyeballs in shit, roaming the Universe lost and unable to find a direction of your own.  Tell me Captain, what makes you think your sense of direction will open my eyes on way or another?”

“There’s only so much I can read about Spinostress and so much I can learn about her through books.  You see, I need to know what her people know and feel about her.  People with first-hand knowledge and experience with her, people like you, not books, not whispers.”

“It all began some time ago, when our hair was still soft and shiny under the five moons rays.  She looked striking then…”

To be continued…©



“Wait, be patient,” the Captain continues in a seemingly tamed manner, “please, I beg you: take me back to the Insatiable Princess, I suffer from the fear of emptiness-all-around syndrome.”

And just like that, the Commander unravels the Captain once more and they land on the ship’s deck’s.

“You see,” the Captain continues, “when Spinostress stops leading the whole lot of you through her psychotic and psychopathic manipulative ways, your lives might begin to improve, especially yours, Commander.”

“You’ve never lived with her.  How can you tell what she’s like?  We love her.  She feeds us and protects us, don’t you see?”

“Yet you’d follow me onto my ship without further ado?  Have a look into my two ugly, revolving eyes for once.  Are they that repulsive?  What do you see?  They’re most useful.  Wait, and there’s a third one, hidden behind my tough skin, here in the middle of my forehead, to help me scan and be knowledgeable.  Let me tell you: I’ve read enough about Spinostress to know that she clouds your vision and—“

“—You don’t understand.  Just tell me how to improve my vision and get rid of this heavy load of hair.  It hurts my scalp and impedes my vision.”

“It’s all to do with peripheral vision,” the Captain continues, savouring a sweet, still un-won and untold victory, one wrapped in sweet embellishments and replaced with his own version of suitable memories.

To be continued…©


“Spinostress pledged that once our mission was accomplished, we’d be free.”

“Then what?”

“We all know that freedom won’t be gained in our generation’s time.”

“You could be free tomorrow if you’d care.”

“It’s not that simple.”

“But it is.”

“You don’t understand.”

“Try me.”

“I told you to shut the fuck up!” the Commander belches out, gagging the Captain with a slab of thick slimy thread, guessing where the Captain’s face might be, spinning and travelling at high speed, back up towards Spinostress’ kingdom.  The Captain lets go of his invisibility trick and reappears, his intense and insistent stare quickly having the better of the Commander’s resolve.  They slow down and stop.  The Commander has seen such a stare once before, and this was just before he’d let go of his worst enemy, the spaghetti-man, who would have rid of the Commander’s mane in no time, as well as, possibly, his head.  Now it is imperative he knows what the Captain has to say.  Now.  As they hang in the heart of darkness, too far from the Insatiable Princess to be able to sit down and talk and with Spinostress’ kingdom still appearing as an infinitely small bug, he removes the gag from the Captain’s mouth, his eyes not quite meeting that of the Captain’s.

“Would you take me on as a crew member on your ship?” he asks.

“I feel uncomfortable hanging by a single thread in the middle of nowhere.”

“Give me a break and speak English, you slimy-small-time-slum-pirate-of-hell.”

“It’s not that simple.”


To be continued…©


“What do you take me for?” he retorts, pulling the rope towards him, sniffing the Captain’s now invisible face.  The Captain head butts him knowingly and with great accuracy, just where the ugly spinner’s forehead begins, above the edge of what should be a nose but looks more like some sort of breathing apparatus and says:

“Can’t you see where you’re going or did you do this on purpose?”

The Commander’s eyebrows, wiry, creased in the middle, form a deep frown of pain, discontent and confusion on his forehead.

“I’m good with vision,” Captain Traumatic insists, “I can help you see again.”

“I can see.”

“You need better, improved and clearer vision.”

“What do you mean?”

“You know exactly what I mean.”

“Go on, but remember: you’re no more than a damned fucking lunatic!”

“Your wired hair is getting in the way, it gives you headaches and you can no longer see where you’re headed: both, in direction and in goal.

“Shut up!”

“It’s also too thick.  You can’t see me clearly at all.  It blinds you and your leader enjoys the whole lot of you having trouble seeing.  That way, she can deceive and manipulate you.  It wasn’t always like this but as she gathered in strength and in recruits, catching many of you unaware, she ensured you couldn’t see where your next step might lead so that freedom could never be gained by any of you, ever again.”

“What do you know about freedom?”

“Like I said,” the Captain continues, “it’s to do with what one sees.”

To be continued…©


Then he sees it: one small face poking out from the edge of its bed of ropes, looking at him, staring directly into his eyes: a monkey, tiny and white.  Then, another face: two monkeys.  And as quickly as the faces appeared, they were gone.

The Captain swoops above the three bundles to reach them, but the two monkeys have vanished into the ropes’ world of wilderness; leaving a third, tiny monkey sound asleep in its bed.  Did the Syck Monkey split into three little ones or was he female he wonders?  What the hell happened?  His search for understanding and meaning is interrupted as the sound of footsteps in the cabin startles him.  Tis’ best to reappear before the Commander, he thinks, else he’ll never let my ship free again.

“Commander!” the Captain calls, “lead me back to Spinostress!”

And just like that, the Captain is spun and wrapped into thick, gelatinous threads by the angry Commander’s own amalgam of threads.

“You’ll never be able to trick me like this again, understood?” the Commander growls, his thick mane of twisted, wired hair squealing, whining and growing longer, splitting into small, spiky arrows of anger at its tips that dig into the Captain’s shoulders.  The Captain pulls his invisibility trick once more, leaving only the ropes visible.

“What’s the matter, Commander?”

The Commander’s silvery face is close to white.

To be continued…©


“Fuck!” the Commander says.  He throws and sticks one of his own ropes onto the deck and himself into the great emptiness, in search of the Captain.

Captain Traumatic swings and crosses the path of the Commander, unseen, and climbs back up onto the desk to check the state of his beloved ship.  How gorgeous she can be.  Has she ever sparkled like this before or is it my imagination he wonders?  The smell of her wood reaches his nostrils and he fills his lungs with her perfume.  I’ll never go back to Spinostress, he thinks, briefly dismissing any thought about his friends, Labaguette and the King.  Then, as he reaches his cabin, he discovers another hole just below the Syck Monkey’s statue.  Hesitantly at first, he feels the edge of that hole as it crumbles under his thick fingers, leaving a large, black gap opened.  If the Syck Monkey’s escape entails connected holes, then it is most likely that the bottom of the Insatiable Princess is damaged, the Captain concludes, stepping inside the gap.  Then he sees it: an unexpected vision of tangled, thin, silky and delicate white ropes quivering under the mild breeze, extending from one end of the hull to the other, a white veil of neatly weaved threads, spreads as far as he can see, not unlike a giant cocoon, ready to burst with life, or is it?  Could it be that the Syck Monkey lives here now?  Below the near to impenetrable mass, he spots three bundles of tighter, twisted ropes, not unlike large pea pods or hammocks.

To be continued…©


The Captain must inspect the smudge, probes the entire shell with his fingers until he finds the spot: it’s a hole. This is where the Syck Monkey must have escaped.  So he’s free again.  How did he do it?  It’s such a small orifice.  Never mind, at least there’s still hope; that Syck Monkey is one hell of a restless creature who has just proven that he can’t and won’t stay stuck in one place for too long, even if encased in stone, steel or in whatever it is that might keep him prisoner.  He is everywhere and nowhere all at once.  But for now, time is of the essence, I must be pressing on the Captain thinks as he hands more scrapped shell over to the Commander.

“That’s better,” the Commander remarks, “we must be heading back.”

“Please, I need some time to inspect my ship for damage; it’s been parked here for a long time.”

“Not necessary.”

“It would avoid us having to come back to your planet later on, the Captain attempts.”

“We shall make sure you’re gone, regardless of the state of your ship.”

“In that case, I might as well disappear and disappear now,” the Captain answers as he stands on the edge of the ship, ready to jump into the empty space.”

“What do you think you’re doing?  You know we’ll spin you back up,” the Commander reminds him.

But the Captain is quicker and more knowledgeable, more aware of his abilities than ever.  He has read the book of invisibility and, as he jumps off, disappears holding on to a rope from which he hangs underneath the Insatiable Princess.

To be continued…©