This is a story of survival. The survival of three indelibly attached friends and lovers, stripped of everything except a lot of money and a tiny little house. And the memory of three others, the star crossed lovers Henry Peterson and Micha Haaretz, and the tragic heroine, Bernadette Johnson.
Elizabeth has stopped from exhaustion in the writing and a sense of futility of anything but our mutual love. Lady Chief has nothing to cling to but the healing touch of that love. So I’m taking charge of this story as I took charge of the situation, because the story has merged into the situation, the past has morphed into the present of August 2088, and the words that are left can only be a diary, always written in the present tense.
The last of the story can only be achieved if my letter to Cherry Hawkins and her round trip ticket to Portland, Oregon, capital of Pacifica, brings her here to join us on our extended vacation, in a rented beach house, on the Oregon coast, large enough hold the four of us while we visit and tie up loose ends from the past. I told her what to bring: even in Summer, the North Pacific Coast can be subject to cool foggy weather that requires sweaters and long pants. I will offer Cherry the opportunity to join us in our life. By both desire and circumstance, we four have each made unbreakable physical and psychic bonds to one another, even if some of these were made inside the now gone World’s Best Whorehouse, Elizabeth’s Secret of Massey Street in Montpellier, Matriarchal Zone.
The plane arrived this afternoon. Cherry, who already knew that her “Julie” is the former chief of GLICIS and her hidden adversary, emerged from the flight, in sweater and long pants, towering over the rest of us, and the four of us hugged each other. And before the next words can be said she replies, “The answer is yes. I know you three are all I have and your minds have already merged with mine. I know that my Julie has returned to being Julie for good and has returned to me so I may help her heal. We will be a foursome as long as the four of us are still alive, and linked in love as long as any of us are still alive. Let’s go have fun together. Over the years I haven’t had very much fun.”