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Old 08-05-2009, 10:53 PM posted to rec.gardens.edible
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Default Temple of the Atlantis Tomato pt_4

The visit to the American Consul wasn't helpful. The Consul said he had
never heard of Dr. Dow and he doubted that there was a temple to any
kind of tomato in Idontunderstan. Leaving the consulate, Captain Charlie
and Billy were followed by two men.

After renting a room for the night, and needing transportation, Charlie
and Billy rented a car, an old red convertible, to get around in
Yomamasbad . The rest of the day, in the name of investigation, they
visited one bar after another.

That evening, driving on a deserted stretch of road, just out side town,
Billy dropped his open bottle of Jameson whiskey, while standing up in
the speeding car. As he and Charlie and reached to the floor to pick it
up, gunfire broke out on both sides of the road. Looking back up, Billy
and Charlie looked around for the cause of the noise. They didn't see
the ten wounded militia, on each sides of the road, who in shooting at
them in their speeding car, had shot each other.

Charlie parked the car in front of the hotel, and they went up to their
room. A couple of guys walked over to their car and put something
underneath it, and then walked away again, into the shadows.

About an hour later, a couple of Charlie and Billy, look-a-likes walked
to the door of the hotel and were promptly shot by snipers (six of
them, each unaware of the others), and dragged away. Five more pairs of
doubles tried to reach the front door of the hotel over the next two and
a half hours.

At 3 A.M., two groups of ten men started to enter the hotel but mistook
each other for the police and started shooting. Hearing the noise, ten
more men jumped out of the bushes and leaped into Billy's and Charlie's
car, which exploded.

A steady, if sporadic, firing of guns continued until 5 A. M. when the
Army arrived and the gunmen slipped away.

The next morning, in the hotels coffee shoppe, Billy and Charlie were
nursing their flussig brot. "Was it a national holiday or something,
yesterday? And what happened to our car? I cant find it anywhere", Billy
complained to Charlie. "Don't ask me, I'm a stranger in town", Charlie

"So, if I remember correctly," Billy said hopefully," everybody seems to
know that a nasty warlord by the name of Dr. Dow is hold up in an
ancient temple that is round and red, just out side of Reallyreallybad,
about forty miles from here, up in the mountains. Is that the way you
remember it?"

Charlie put his head on the counter and said,"I want my log. I really
need my log, right now."

Billy sensed that Charlie wasn't in top form. "Tell you what", he
said,"You stay here and I'll go rent us a camel."

"Good idea", said Charlie, with his head still on the counter.

Billy, drained his second "flussig brot" and headed to the door. "I'll
be right back", he said.

Charlie, heard a sneeze, near by. Then he heard another sneeze. He
raised his head to see a well dressed lady with a cup of coffee on the
table in front of her and she was shaking. Nothing seemed to be very
wrong, so Charlie started staring at the counter. Again the lady
sneezed, and Charlie could see her tremble. Charlie watched her for
awhile then went back to his flussig brot. Again the lady sneezed and
she was trembling so hard that Charlie was afraid that she was having a

"Are you OK?", Charlie asked, stepping up to her table.

"Oh, oh yes, I'mfine", said the woman. "I just suffer from a very rare

"What's that?", Charlie asked, realizing at once that it was none of his

"It's odd but every time I sneeze, I have an orgasm", the lady replied.

Stunned, Charlie asked,"Are you taking anything for it?"

"Black pepper", she smiled. "Could you hand me the shaker on the table
behind you. This one seems to be empty."

Meanwhile, Billy had just rented a camel. Muqtada, the proprietor of
One-Way Camels, suggested that Billy have the camel topped off. "Topped
off?", said Billy. "What's that?"

"Oh, we get the camel to drink as much water as he can. That way if you
go further than you planned, or it takes longer to get to where you are
going, your camel is ready for it. It's like insurance", said Muqtada.

"Sure", Billy nodded. "Sounds like a good idea."

Following Muqtada and the camel to the water trough, Billy noticed that
the soil in the flower beds looked very rich. He took a hand full,
squeezed it, and it formed a ball. Touching the ball, it fell apart into
pieces, like rolled oats. He rubbed it between his thumb and his
forefinger and it felt like cotton. "Holy moly", thought Billy, and
filled the two pockets of his jacket with the soil.

The camel was just finishing his drink, when Muqtada came up behind him
and clapped two large stones together on the camel's testicles and the
camel inhaled deeply of the water.

"OK", you're good to go", said Muqtada.

"Kripes", said Billy in a state of shock. "Doesn't that hurt?"

"Only if you get your fingers between the rocks", said Muqtada.

Billy had trouble unlocking his knees as he left the camel lot.

Two uneventful days later, Billy and Charlie arrived at Reallyreallybad,
where they went to the city hall to get information on where to find The
Temple of the Atlantis Tomato. At the city hall, there was a long line
leading the door and a very large and muscular man standing next to the
door. When Billy and Charlie tried to go in, the large man said."Get in
line if you want to go in."

"Look", said Billy, not liking the man's tone,"all we want are
directions to . " "Get in line", the man said again, baring his teeth.
"Look you", Billy started, but the guard, for that is what he was,
said,"Ignorant foreigner, get in line or I will crush you like a dog's
turd." Billy started to reach for his roll of taped-up dimes, when
Charlie stepped up to him and said,"You have to be more diplomatic,
Billy. Come on, stand back and let me show you how it's done."

"Sir", Charlie started. The guard eye's widened, he growled, stepped
toward Charlie, and reached out for him. Charlie hit him as hard as he
could. Down, went the mountain of muscle.

Billy stepped up and looked down at the guard,
"I don't see how your diplomacy is any different from mine", Billy

Once inside the building, Charlie and Billy went to the office of
tourist information. They asked the clerk, if he knew about the Temple
of the Atlantis Tomato and he said, to try the office of antiquities. At
the office of antiquities, it was suggested that they try public
records. At the office of public records, they were sent to the
department of agriculture, who sent them to the department of imports.
Before asking, Billy grabbed the bureaucrat behind the counter by the
neck, lifted him in the air and said," Listen very carefully, I will say
it only once (a line Billy remembered form 'Allo,'Allo!). We want to go
to the Temple of the Atlantis Tomato. Do you understand?"

The man shook his head up and down. "Tell us where it is", Billy
The man pointed at his neck and opened his mouth as if to speak but
nothing came out. "Oh, yeah", said Billy, putting him back on the ground.

"The tourist office has all the information with maps and everything.
They can tell you how to get there", the man said as quickly as he
could. Charlie and Billy looked at each other.

Amid the wreckage of the department of tourist information, Billy was
sitting on the clerk while Charlie asked in his most diplomatic way,"How
do we get to the Temple of the Atlantis Tomato?"

"It's north of town, about ten miles, in a little mountain valley but
you can't get in" said the clerk in short gasps of air. "The master of
the place, Dr. Dow, has his own militia to protect him from outsiders."
The only ones to get into the temple are the new recruits.

"Recruits?", said Charlie.

"Yeah, something happened in Yomamasbad and now they are hiring lots of
new recruits".

"Hmmm", mused Charlie. "Where be this recruitment taking place?"

"I can't breath, get him off me", pleaded the clerk.

"We're almost done here", said Charlie. " Where do we go to get

"Out front", said the clerk, "out front, and get in line." Billy and
Charlie looked at each other.

After a dusty ride with a dozen other men in the back of a little truck,
Billy and Charlie arrived at the temple. They were given a place to
sleep and told that it was lunch time, and that afterwards there would
be an orientation in the exercise yard.

Setting down to a bowl of gruel, Billy took one taste and threw his
spoon down. "This is horrible", Bill complained. "This is the worst food
I've ever et."

"They say, the worse the food, the more powerful the army", observed

"They can't be this powerful", groused Billy.

After dinner, the new recruits were led out to the exercise yard. There
a suit addressed the new recruits were address by a "suit". "You men
have had the luck to be chosen to serve, what will soon be the mightiest
organization on the planet." From the suit's right, a man stepped
forward and whispered into the suit's ear, then he pointed to Charlie
and Billy.

"Uh oh", said Charlie. "Let's get out of here.", and they ran.

Behind them they could hear the suit say," A thousand dollars to whoever
kills these two for me." A cry went up, and fifty men were chasing
Charlie and Billy.

They ran into the kitchen, and found the stairs and went up. They ran
down the hall on the fifth level. They open a large pair of doors and
there was the American Consul in a slip, and straightening his silk
stockings. They stared at each other briefly, then the yell of the mob
came from down the hall, and off they raced again.

They found another stairwell going up into a tower, and with nowhere
else to run, they took it.

At the top of the stairs was an unlocked door. They went in the room and
barred the door. Looking around the room, they could see that it was a
laboratory. In the middle of the laboratory was a hydroponic tank. The
sole occupant of the tank was a tomato plant about 18 inches tall with
yellow veins and orange spots on its' stock and leaves. The tips of the
leaves were dead and dried. The entire plant looked as if it had the
wilt. If it wasn't dead, it soon would be. It was surrounded with what
looked like x-ray machines, ultraviolet lights, and propane torches.

There came a pounding on the door.

"Looks like we are about as screwed as this little tomato", said Billy.
He sniffed the tank. "Eeeew, what is in this tank?", he said. He saw
some 5 gal. jugs of D.I. water. He drained the reservoir and rinsed the
tank with a little clean water. The little plant seemed somehow better.
Then he poured in the rest of the bottle.

Charlie was looking around the lab to see what may be of use.

"Do you here something?", Billy asked Charlie. "Kinda sounds like a cat
Sniffing the air, Billy furrowed his brow and said,"And it smell like
soy sauce in here."

"Probably, just dinner cookin' ", said Charlie.

Billy went to the window. "Sonja Henie's tutu", said Billy. "Charlie,
come here quick, and look at this".

It was incomprehensible at first. From horizon to horizon were dancing
saffron robes belted about the middle with kilts, a bandolier over the
shoulder and weapons raised in the air. Closest to them was a blond boy,
playing the bagpipes.
"It's W", said Billy,"It's Bill W"

Then with a crash, the door came off its' hinges.

The suit entered. "It looks as if you won the war", he sneered, "but you
won't see the victory. Kill them", he said to his goons.

Charlie, took a corner, and Billy reached into his pocket for his roll
of dimes, only to find the dirt that he had picked up at the One-Way
Camel. He took two hands full of dirt and threw them on the tomato
plant. The goons where almost on him now, so he pick another corner and
pulled out his dimes.

There was a flash of light and a shock wave. The tomato plant was
suddenly twelve feet tall and still growing and it dark green vines were
reaching out and grabbing the goons. Billy emptied his pockets of soil
onto the roots of the tomato plants. Billy thought he heard it growl.

The roots reached out and part of the wall and ceiling fell away.
"Charlie, let's go, now," said Billy grabbing Charlie's coat, and they
ran like hell down the staircase.

Back in Reallyreallybad, sitting around a table at the bar where a
flute player and a drummer were playing, "W" and Charlie where having a
couple of pints of flussig brot. "Where's Billy?", asked W.

"Oh he's poking around the ruins of the temple to see if there is
anything worth taking home", Charlie said. "He's easily amused by

Billy walked in carrying a sack and looking pleased. "Boy, is it ever
turning green up there in that valley, and it's spreading. We got to
get you back home so you can sprout more of them maters", said Billy.

"Just as soon as I find my log,"said Charlie. "Find anything up in the

"Oh, a couple of things", said Billy. He pulled out an alarm clock with
a mouse trap on top of it. "This is to keep you from going back to sleep
in the morning after you turn off the alarm clock," he smiled. "But look
at this." Billy put his bag on the table and opened it up.
"Dangedest thing, a talking, French octopus that plays musical

"Have you heard him play?, asked Charlie.

"Well no", said Billy, kind of sheepishly.

"Excuse me", said Charlie to the drummer. "Could I borrow your drum for
a minute?"

Putting the drum down in front of the octopus, Charlie said,"Play that."

Using all eight tentacles the octopus played rhythms that they had never
heard before.

"Amazing", said Charlie. He borrowed the flute and handed it to the
octopus, who played it like Jean Pierre Rampal.

"Try this", said Bill W, putting his bagpipes on the table in front of
the octopus. The octopuses tentacles were all over the instrument but it
made no sound. "Can't you play it", said W ?

"Play it?", said the octopus. "As soon as I can get these pajamas off,
I'm going to make love to it."

- Billy
"For the first time in the history of the world, every human being
is now subjected to contact with dangerous chemicals, from the
moment of conception until death." - Rachel Carson

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