“You said that before, Policeman.”

“Not in those words, Captain.  Oh, and it’s Colonel Rhytmic from now on.”

“Since when—“

“—Initially,” the King interrupts, “you were after Spinostress and—“

“—Not about me,” the old woman comments, “you’re wrong about the law, pal, because there’s only one rule and one law: mine.”

“Utter one more word out of your distorted and despicable mouth, and you’ll never see the light of another day,” the angry Policeman says, his face taking on a shade of grey unseen before.

The old woman sits by the Captain side as he pats the top of her head, some sparks emanating from her tentacles.

“I’m innocent.  Besides, although guilt shows in my books,” the Captain continues, “it isn’t part of my genetic make-up.”

“A fucking planet of fucking boxes!” Labaguette comments, “crikey!”

As they approach the lemony green planet, it seems the boxes flying around it in neat lines and in an orderly fashion are used by none others than a multitude of policemen, all standing on their own pedestal, bravely guiding the stands where they must be led, their batons pointing in the right direction.

“You don’t look so lonely,” the Captain says, you have twins, many twins.

“Not twins, replicas.  I’m the original version from whom all originated, replicated and multiplied.  I reproduced.  I am the Chosen One.”

“Gimme a break!” Labaguette insists, “I’ve seen chosen ones before, they all—.”

“—To reproduce,” the King remarks, “you’d have to—“

“—Each and every stand,” the Policeman answers, looking taller and his chest growing somewhat larger, the general fluorescence of his clothing reaching a blind pitch of potent brightness, “is female.”

To be continued…



“Suppose there’s no river,” the King insists, “why bring us here?”

“Now, now,” Colonel Loga utters, staring insolently into the King’s eyes, a corner of his mouth going up as if to suggest that his brief convictions constitute just that: alterable truths.

The Captain falls to his knees, his hopes shattered, the likely intolerable reality too heavy to bear.

Ignoring the fuss and pushing himself up from inside the Captain’s pocket, Labaguette, pulls hard with his beak until he falls onto the ships’ boards.

“WOW!  LOOK AT THAT, SHIT!” he states.

Startled at the parrot’s sudden and irreverent shriek, the King, the old woman and the Captain all look ahead.  There it is: tens, hundreds, thousands of tiny black boxes, circling a lemony green planet, surrounded by sometimes impenetrable layers of orange mist.

“See this?” the Policeman asks.

“What is it, Colonel?” Labaguette asks.

“This is where I come from.”

“And where is this?”

“This is where I belong.”

“Gimme a name, sacrebleu Colonel Rhythmic!” Labaguette commands.

“You have entered the hexa-octagonal galaxy of Beetlestingjesus and this is my planet: ‘RythmaRymosthesis’.”

“It’s complicated.”

“It’s simple, it’s logic.”

“What do you want from us?” the King asks.

“You’re guilty as charged.”

“Guilty?” the Captain says, coming to his senses.

“You’re under arrest.”

“But,—“ Labaguette continues.

“—I’m a universal Policeman, also known as Colonel Loga Rhytmic, a true blue, man-made and gadget constructed Policeman.  I fold and unfold, I click and unclick and I move as moves do.  I am Master and Servant all contained and constrained within one body and one soul.  None shall come against me without trespassing being trespassed, ruling being ruled or ruled out and suffering being suffered.  I am the rule, the order and the lawful scribble.  I am the law.”

To be continued…


The Monkeys extend their tails and wrap themselves around a mast, clinging tightly to it; the King and the old woman are covered within that embrace, as secure as they could be under the circumstances.

We’re dead again, Labaguette thinks, cosy and warm, if not safe, inside the Captain’s pocket.

With the tornadoes and their silver mist approaching fast, the Captain yells defiantly:


When the ship hits the storm, the Captain gasps for air after swallowing the first storm particles that cross his path and he is forced to hold his mouth shut.

The tough winds pick up in speed but, as the tornadoes are about to rip the Insatiable Princess to pieces, they pass by the sides of the ship, as if avoiding it, with flying particles surrounding them disintegrating branches, trees and all that had grown out of proportion and made the ship an island of some sort.

Soon, the tornadoes are behind them and the tormenting winds evaporate almost as quickly as they’d come.  The Policeman unfolds and reappears, beaming on his podium.

“Let me out!” a small voice screams from inside the Captain’s pocket.

“What now?” the Captain asks, pulling Labaguette up, “would you like to test your flying abilities?”

“Temptation,” Labaguette mutters, “what was that all about?”

“Shut up!”

“THE MIST!” Labaguette insists, “IT’S HERE!”

“Shut up!” the Policeman says, “I know where we are.  Prepare to turn.  Prepare for landing.”

“But,” Labaguette carries on, “the River, the River, you—“

“—Shut up!” the Policeman reiterates.


“—But, but, but… yeah right,” the Captain says, shoving the bird back where he belongs, staring ahead, observing the orange mist on the horizon.


It could be the tempting, elusive and flickering light leading to the hidden abyss, the Captain imagines, who is the Colonel?  He sure looks like judgement day may be around the corner the King believes, all this just for rum.  Typical, Labaguette muses, so much pride for having accomplished a day of duty with a rum injection as a reward, stupid law enforcers.

“Captain,” the King mutters, “have you ever tried to—“

“—Isn’t it obvious?” the Captain retorts, “the Colonel has no tastebuds, it’s—

“—WIND!” the Policeman commands, “PICK UP!”

“It’s all about quick fixes for him, he—“

“—you reckon his ruling is too narrow, thwarted and biased?”

“It’s about being human.”

“He’s a Policeman, he looks—“

“—not from my planet he isn’t.”


“CAPTAIN!” the Policeman yells, “GET BACK TO YOUR POST!”

“See what I mean?”

“Well then, do as you’re accustomed to and rebel.”

“Now isn’t the right time, take Labaguette and the Monkeys and tie yourselves anywhere safe that fits.”

“Inside should be safe.”

“Remain on the bridge.”


“This isn’t going to be a smooth trip.”

As the Captain says ‘smooth’, the winds pick up and they run to brace themselves.  He secures himself and commands the Insatiable Princess to take the right direction and point to the right angle, without a second thought.

Ahead of them, giant tornadoes of white, silvery particles appear, threatening to engulf them.  The Policeman’s stand opens up.  His body flattens and neatly folds up inside it.


“—we must follow that path and turn left just as soon as the giant lemon’s orange spray circling it is seen.”

“That lemon, bird, is a green planet surrounded by orange mist and it is home.  We shall stop by it, leave the old woman there and when we come back from the River, she shall be free to go as she chooses, if she does.”

The Policeman, opens the cage under his podium.  The old woman, bearing the seal of what she endured earlier, with half her face and body divided into two beings: harmless granny and fearsome monster, steps out and boards the Insatiable Princess once more.

“With us, you shall recover,” the King promises her.

“Why,” Labaguette retorts, “if she—“

“—First things first, I need a dose” the Policeman interrupts, pulling out a syringe from his pocket, injecting it into the side of one of the barrels trailing behind him, drawing some rum and injecting it straight into his thumb.

“Surely,…” Captain Traumatic says, his eyes as round as cups, “surely…”

“This isn’t the time and place to wonder and ponder about this, Captain,” the Policeman insists, “We have much to accomplish.  Turn your ship slightly to the right and—“

“—onto a 45 upward slant,” Labaguette repeats.

Then, the Policeman knocks his baton against the edge of the ship as it transmutes into a solid hook binding podium and ship as if the two had been built together and were inseparable.  The Policeman stands proudly towards his target, his glistening uniform having gained in fluorescence and his eyes reflecting a light inside them never seen before, certainly not by this crew.

To be continued…


“I’ve given up my last three barrels to you,” the Captain adds, “why the interest in a river made of rum?  You’re a ruler of some kind, a decision maker and a decisive individual.  Surely, bringing the old woman to her prosecutors is the way forward, is it not?”

“Above all, I’m a policeman,” Colonel Rhytmic continues, “I stop all who interfere with the good order of these heavens.  I act in prevention as well as after the fact.  Why, Captain, finding the source of trouble around here doesn’t stop at contraband, counterfeiting and rum trafficking, which would be limited and limiting.  I look for real trouble, I stop it in its track and peace will be had by any means.  Your parrot is too weak to dare indulging in a single lie and if he did, I would destroy him faster than it took me to unclip the guards’ cages to oblivion.  Now, get your bird to lead us to the River, Captain.”

“Labaguette?”  The Captain inquires.

“Oui, mon Capitaine, most certainly.”  The parrot closes his eyes, grimaces somewhat and gathers concentration.


“Gimme some time, will you?”

“Colonel, while Labaguette concentrates, do let the old woman join us on the ship for the trip.”

“When Labaguette spits it out, Captain.”

The Captains smiles, at last, he thinks, a victory.

“It’s over there,” Labaguette says, all wondering where that ‘there’ may be until the bird points his beak slightly to the right and to a 45 degree  upward slant.

“You’re adamant?”

“Aye Capitaine, it’s this way.”

“Can’t be” the Policeman retorts.

“Sure is.”

“We’d be travelling to—.”

To be continued…


“My Captain has led the Insatiable Princess where it is now.  He keeps us alive and safe.  He knows where we must go and how to get there.”

“Can’t find your way home though, can you?”

“If rum was involved, we’d have found our way home way back then.  We wouldn’t even have left had our planet not been so short of supplies.”

“Is that so?” the Colonel asks.

“You’ve heard it from Labaguette’s mouth, his very own candid words” the Captain answers, “how could the truth be any different?”

The King whispers in the Captain’s ear:

“Thought he was gifted with a powerful sense of smell?”

“I’ve seen it before,” the Captain replies, “probably has to do with Labaguette’s belief that his words are true in his own mind as he speaks them.”

“The very purpose of our voyage is you, Colonel Loga,” Labaguette continues, “you’re the source of all riches and the key to the kingdom of endless happiness as well as that of law, order and all things square, and through you, we shall find the River.”

“Oh but you see, Labaguette, although I know the River exists, it is not known where its source is nor where it flows.  There must be a dam, a lake, an ocean it pours into.”

“Why can’t your superior sense of smell detect it?”

“The smell of a lie is surrounding the bottom truth of its very existence.  The River is a treasure for all to want and keep and for that reason it is kept secret.  Someone or something is hiding it from plain view.”

To be continued…