The small human shoes meant so much to me. Almost as much as my metal horse. They are nice, backing the black spots, black straps by human creatures. I put on my feet, they give me warmth, my feet tingle by their pressure. Dancing parodies, roaming the streets, ready to dance for someone walking by, to surprise them, make them remark at my agility to make them sing. I do it. I really do.

 

        It's not hard. I am. Peruvian castles -- that is where I live. Sheets of armor hang on the walls and shine when sunlight comes in through the courtyards. Backstreams ventilate the light. And protect the armor from bad rays that could damage my things. I won't allow anything to damage my things. Secret traps keep the mice out. I look for those traps and sometimes find one with a vermin already dead on it. In the pantry usually. I pretend it is me, just to try and figure out how it must have felt. Sometimes its head gets caught, other times, its foot. I won't unhook him to save the trap for another time. Pink little eyes.

 

        The mouse traps in my Peruvian castle sometimes catches faces. A man was found dangling from one. I think he was probably there to rob and kill me, so it was OK. The only problem was that I found it startling.

 

        One time, the mouseface was found hanging by his foot, wearing a green leotard and a red over shirt. He looked like a Robin Hood.

 

        Spoon sugar wouldn't have like it if I told her about that robin. She follows a guid and the guide says that's bad I get mad at Spoon sugar. I am eternally ungrateful. Spoon sugar walks her cat every day with a careful eye (she does everything with a careful eye), when she gets it home she probably has it take a nap. Salad days.

 

        I would eternally deny my day with animals, in grim accordance to that guide. Animal instincts repeating over and over that we are all creatures, similar in spirit, though different in bodies. A lack time of it. Spending pride to buy experience. A laid animal; a dog, eager. That just wouldn't fit. Laminated pursuers intent on having consultation movements don't

RIVER BED   97

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