-- as imagined by John Shirley...

My darling winky dinky pretty puss-puss, how this new job weighs on me, everyone is "oh we have to be so secret", even more than when I was a General, what are they worrying about? Is it that damn new particle beam destruction device we're putting in orbit to take out Tehran? I mean christ who's ever going to imagine THAT?! BTW did I leave  my laptop in your bathroom?

...Oh My darling sweet bumps lovey-popo, can't wait to meet you in the penthouse suite at the Watergate Hotel again, we'll do it standing up against that big window the way you like, no one will be able to see who it is, unless of course they have  long range spyscopes but, ha ha, who would bother to use those on ME?! Hey did I leave a briefcase full of plans to kill President Assad in that cab where we were, you know, going at it?

...My sweet little heart of my heart, love of Mr Yoo Hoo, we might have to be more discreet after this, as it appears we've been a little too openly naughty. Apparently this "spymaster" stuff actually requires mastering spying which has something to do with keeping secrets and it seems that the whole "sex in public" thing we've been trying out, groucho noses or not, is in danger of letting the soft pink kitty cat, if you know who I mean, out of the bag. I'm starting to notice people with cameras and press badges following me. As a General I would just have them sent to, you know, special detention, and "interrogated". For some stupid reason I don't have permission to do that here in Langley. You'd think the CIA director could interrogate whoever they wanted but believe it or not some of them are interrogating me. "Why were you having sex under the table with that woman with the Groucho nose and mustache in that restaurant across from the United Nations building?" Of course I thought quickly and said, "Atten-hut! About face!" They were so confused I was able to slip away. But gad, these people have no respect for rank.

...My Lily of the labia, I must ask you, did you, actually, put my email mentioning the new particle beam weapon up on facebook with a "OMG can you believe my boyfriend is working on this?! It's so awesome" comment? That might have been indiscreet, I've heard that a lot of people really do look at this social media business. And please, that diplomatic pouch with the secret photos of the prime minister of England having his way with that Russian girl you introduced him to....? I shouldn't have shown that stuff to you. And left it there. You really have to get it back from that friend of yours, what was his name, Chin Wagg, the fellow from  Beijing? You shouldn't have gotten stoned with him and looked through it, I'm sure it was very funny but...he did apparently take it while you were out and that was very not-procedure. Yes I know you will say, "Oh Mr Big Yoo Hoo you shouldn't have left it in the back of the limo..." And please stop telling your friends I provide the limo with CIA funds that's actually not protocol my little winky dinky.

...Listen, I don't see why I should quadruple your mistress money before you'll give me back the briefcase, the diplomatic pouch and the laptop, my "darling".... I could, believe it or not, actually get in trouble...they take all this stuff very seriously!!!... I don't want to have to throw someone I love in the brig... if I had a brig...Oh God I need another drink...


John Shirley is the author of numerous novels, story collections, screenplays (“THE CROW”), teleplays and articles. A futurologist and social critic, John was a featured speaker at TED-x in Brussels in 2011. His novels include Everything is Broken, The A SONG CALLED YOUTH cyberpunk trilogy (omnibus released in 2012), Bleak History, Demons, City Come A-Walkin’ and The Other End. His short story collection Black Butterflies won the Bram Stoker Award, and was chosen by Publisher’s Weekly as one of the best books of the year. His new story collection is In Extremis: The Most Extreme Short Stories of John Shirley. His stories have been included in three Year’s Best anthologies. He is also a songwriter (eg, for Blue Oyster Cult), and a singer. Black October records will soon be releasing a compilation of selected songs, BROKEN MIRROR GLASS: Recordings by John Shirley, 1978-2011. The authorized website is at john-shirley.com