The story so far: Simon Mills was fired from his job in a law firm after seeing Bigfoot in the woods and went out to get proof. He meets two men in the woods as they capture a three headed dog — and the story continues:
The Zoo pt. 3:
The next day, I didn’t go to the woods. I looked at newspaper want ads for a job. It seemed like a more practical way to spend my time. Maybe it was time for a change from paralegal work – especially since I’d gotten the reputation of being a lush. I saw an ad for an assistant zookeeper and decided, what the hey, I’d give it a whirl. Who knew, I might be good at zoo keeping. I really didn’t believe I’d get the job.
That’s why it was such a shock to meet Austin and Frank at the office where I went for my interview.
“I knew it would be you,” said Austin.
“You did not,” said Frank. He looked at me. “Are you willing to relocate and never see this place again?”
“This place?” I looked around the office. It was your standard office, maybe a little bit shabby, but it was nice enough for an office.
“This town,” Frank said.
“I have no ties here,” I said. I had no ties anywhere, a sad fact but true. I pushed that depressing thought away.
“The job doesn’t pay anything,” Austin said. “You get room and board. It’s a good gig.” It didn’t pay anything and was a good gig? I was beginning to think Austin was nuts. OK, so I’m a little nuts too, but I’ve always worked for money.
“You don’t need anything else,” Frank said. Was he reading my mind? “you’ll have no use for money in Unreality.” He was reading my mind.
“Is this our new recruit?” I turned to see the speaker was a tall, statuesque woman with dark eyes and hair.
“You’d hire me sight unseen?” I said. “what about the other applicants?”
“there aren’t any.” She came further into the office. “Only the person who is chosen sees the advertisement. I was thinking that her jungle suit fit her quite well, when I realized what she’d said.
“What?” I said. “No one else saw the ad?” she smiled, showing perfect teeth.
“No one,” she said. “Just you.
She looked at Frank and Austin. “Did you explain?”
“Just about to, Ongie” Frank said. He gestured to me. “come here, he said. “Through that door is the Mythical Zoo. It is located in Unreality.”
“Unreality?” I was confused and not ashamed to admit it. OK I was a little bit ashamed.
“This,” Ongie said. She waved her hand to indicate the room and the world outside for all I know, ‘exists in the realm of reality. Everything outside this realm is Unreality.”
“It’s unreal?” I said. She smiled again, as though I had said something especially bright. I suppose I had.
“Yes,” she said. “everything outside of Reality doesn’t exist – in terms of reality. Once you leave Reality, you will cease to exist for anyone you leave behind here in Reality. You can never come back. Are you prepared to do that?”
“I guess,” I said.
“You can’t guess.” she said. “You have to be sure.” I thought about my family – all dead. There had only been me and my parents. I was completely alone.
“I’m sure,” I made a snap decision. “I’ll take the job.” Ongie opened the door to the inner office and, after following her through, I found myself in the Zoo. That’s how I came to work here at the Zoo.
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