Thursday, April 4, 2013

Thirty-Two--Travels with Trebek

After the massacre at the Sisters of the Silent Hug, Alex Trebek had fled in the school bus with Pluto, Far Flung, Inkblot, and Creeper--four doofuses that he only knew by code name.  At the on-ramp to I-80 West, Trebek told Creeper to pull over.  When he did, Trebek stepped off the bus, a vehicle which he figured--correctly--was headed for immediate capture.  Unfortunately, Far Flung, an acne-scarred moon-faced waddler, had stepped off the bus with him.  Hearing sirens in the distance, they rushed down the embankment and up the other side, until they found themselves in a Walmart parking lot.

"Can you jump start a car?" Trebek asked.  Far Flung nodded.  "Well then, do it."

Within 60 seconds, Trebek's last sidekick had found a Camry, opened the door, and started it up.  Leaving the car, he waddled over to the bush where Trebek was waiting, at which point the host of Jeopardy! used a silenced pistol to pump two slugs into Far Flung's heart.

Master planner! thought Trebek.

He drove down I-80 85 miles till he hit Sacramento, where he pulled into a gas station.  Stepping into the Exxon, the man behind the counter managed to say, "Hey, aren't you--?" before Trebek shot him in the neck.  He substituted the dead cashier's blue pickup truck for the Camry and headed south on I-5.  Cop cars passed twice, coming from the other direction, sirens flashing.

After midnight, he pulled into a small motel across the street from an abandoned gas station and rang the bell.  A gray-haired woman answered the manager's door in a green robe.

"Any rooms open?" Trebek asked.

"Hell, they're all open," she answered, and Trebek put two bullets into her, grabbed a key, and slept in Room 101.

In the morning, he saw two people he guessed to be the janitor and the dead woman's replacement.  He shot them both in the parking lot, drank a couple of coffees, and headed off down I-5 in the woman's yellow Subaru hatchback.

Driving carefully at 65 miles per hour in the slow lane, he saw a car pulled over on the side of the road and a man waving his arms.  He rolled down his window and shot him as he drove past.

Naked freckled boy scout, Quincy had said at the child prodigy edition that never aired.

And what had Trebek said?  Had he sensed a trick?  Yes, he had.  The boy was trying to explain Jeopardy! to Trebek.  He was trying to teach Trebek the rules!  Hell, Trebek knew that contestants were given the answer and had to supply the question.  But what had he said?


To which the boy had replied with a smirk: "Who is handcuffed to Trebek's bed?"

Then the audience had gasped and started giggling.  All of those taunting faces.

At that point, Trebek knew he had to kill the boy.

But no, not in front of a studio audience.  Later.  When the boy was least suspecting a terror attack.

Trebek winced.  So okay, he got the wrong address and ended up blasting a house full of nuns.  His mistake.  No excuses.  Not exactly the sign of a master planner.  But now he would be in control.  He would manage his impulses.  He would be at the height of his powers.

He pulled into a 76 station, filled up with gas, shot the cashier and two truckers, grabbed a couple of hot dogs and a Coke, and hit the road.

He would not make any more mistakes.  No more random shows of violence.  Control.

The road to Las Vegas was a long one.  At a gas station, where he shot the cashier, two mechanics, and a school bus full of teenaged girls, he entered the bathroom with a razor, scissors, and a makeup kit looking like this:

and came out of the bathroom looking like this:

but when he ordered a baked potato and chili at the first Wendy's he saw down the road, everyone said, "Tom Selleck!" so he tossed a grenade into the kitchen area and shot the senior citizens eating their doublestacks on the patio, then hurried into the bathroom and came out looking like this:

and zoomed off down the road on a stolen motorcycle.

He spent three months living in a foreclosed, abandoned house in North Las Vegas.  It had no electricity, and he made sure not to leave a candle burning during the evenings.  Cold water ran in the faucets, but Trebek didn't need hot water.  Cold water kept him sharp.  No one ever stopped by.

He knew the boy--knew that eventually he would be pulled to Vegas.

During the World Series of Poker, Trebek had begun to feel his hope slipping away.  No sign of the kid anywhere.  Sure, he knew, the kid was underage, but his private investigators had given him so much information!

They said, The kid's playing in disguise!  The kid's winning millions!  Nobody can stop the kid!

Well, he, Alex Trebek, would stop the kid.  With a bullet in the forehead.  And then he would go down in a hail of bullets, a hero of the people.

The first few events had given him no hint, no clue whatsoever.  But then he had noticed that late at night, a movie was filming.

Starring Natalia Pertman.

Hot teenage Russian chick, Trebek thought.  Yes.  He sat at video poker ten nights straight and lost three thousand dollars.  All the while, he watched.

And then it happened.  He saw him.  No costume.  Just a shithead kid with his shithead friend.  Trebek saw Quincy give Pertman a brick of cash, saw the shithead run off to the elevator, saw a blush creeping onto Pertman's face.

She likes him? he wondered, aghast.  Then he smiled, understanding that this could work in his favor.

A waitress appeared at his side.  "Would you like a drink?" she asked, interrupting his thoughts.  He reached for his pistol, then remembered that he had to play it cool, real cool.

Just say what a normal person would say, he advised himself.

"I'll have an Aqua Velva," he said.

"Ooookay.  Is the bartender gonna know how to make that?"

"One ounce vodka, one ounce gin, one ounce blue curacao," he instructed.  "Mix together and serve with a little umbrella."

"What color umbrella?" she asked, laughing, and it took every ounce of his self-control not to strangle her against a slot machine covered with mermaids.


  1. Naked freckled boy scout, Quincy had said...To which the boy had replied with a smirk: "Who is handcuffed to Trebek's bed?"

    LOL, I'd forgotten that one.

  2. I like how every time Alex T goes to the bathroom he comes out with more facial hair.
    I would love that super power

  3. ... takes an ominous turn. What I don't understand is that you're in the middle of the desert in the Middle East - far away from Truckee, CA or LV NV... how do you remember a 76 station or a Wendy's doublestack? Those are details I simply don't recall on an everyday basis and I live in the US!

    Also, where do you get the details from about Aqua Velva or an "acne-scarred moon-faced waddler"? Do these ideas just come to you? I am definitely unimaginative, I guess.

  4. It's easy to remember a Wendy's doublestack when you haven't had one in 3 years and you are craving it.

    The Aqua Velva is from a movie called "Zodiac," directed by David Fincher. Once I saw a character order one, I wanted to fit the same drink in a story of my own.

    Don't know where I got "acne-scarred moon-faced waddler." I just pictured a guy who looked like a toady, and that's what he looked like. Took a while to find that phrase to describe him, though.