the master was on the fifth floor. i was on the third floor. i heard him walking above me on the fourth floor.
there was a phone and an intercom on every floor. the second floor had two thousand rooms.
the master’s thin assistant bob was a marathon runner. he had his desk on the fourth floor. he went up and down the fourth and second floors, seldom did he go to the fifth floor where the master worked slept thought about what he thought about, his thoughts were a mystery to us.
the assistants on the second floor answered to the thin assistant bob.
i thought bob was too thin and speculative. i worried about his
mental health. i didn’t agree with his ambition. he had thin wrists like i had.
i blocked his way on the stairs between the second and third floors. he had debunked my thoughts about a philosophy book i had read.
bob escaped to the stairwell on the third floor of the second building that was connected to a third building that was a printing press and a halfway house for rapists and arsonists. nanny 4, a former addict and arsonist when she had been an anarchist and had sympathized for the earth and the animals that dwell on it, was a counselor at the halfway house. bob went to her when he was overwhelmed with the master’s indifference. bob had had a crush on nanny 5 who had been nanny 4’s lover and had died from a brain tumor. bob had a future that he wanted the master to help him with. when the master summoned him on the intercom nanny 4 would answer it and say that he was with her and he would ask her to tell him to call him which he never did because he was with nanny 4 who was as, if not more, powerful than the master because she knew his achilles heel.
the master never called for the assistants himself. they were errant and hungry. the master worried that nanny 4 would send the rapists and the arsonists to his building and floor. they had to be contained. they weren’t ready to be released into society, at least not all of them at once. the master had enough money to give to nanny 1 – 20 to sustain the half way house. i had been at the half way house and the printing press for ten years before nanny 8 and 9 thought i was ready to work on the third floor for the master and bob and his assistants. i had set fire to a doctor’s office that had been pushing opiates and had gotten addicted to them. the doc and his staff had been incommoded, it had taken a year for the doc to have a new office.
i didn’t know what i was supposed to do for the master. the third floor had a yard in it. there was a room that may have been a class room. it had a black board and a projector and an asian white woman with black hair who had been a public school teacher. she said that she wanted more than one pupil in her classroom. i said that i didn’t know anything about that. i said that i didn’t know anything and that i didn’t know how to do anything. i said that i liked to babble but that i didn’t like to masturbate with another person in the room. she said that the master would be coming down to have his lunch. he had boiled eggs cold cuts salmon mustard coffee tea mozzarella bread sticks pie sirloin capers apple.
everyone wanted something more from the master than he had to give. when they felt too frustrated and angry and guilty they went to the halfway house and the printing press to print thin books that were read by the rapists.