I entered old Jack's bar with a certain amount of trepidation. The place was filled with a fine mist, and iridescent stains dotted the booth nearest the door, a glowing azure reminder of the blue bloody murder that had taken place there the week before. I didn't dare sit there, nor did anyone else.

The jukebox was playing a devil's food cake, and I cringed with each bleating moan coming from the speakers. Old Jack was attached to the thing, and would never give it up. ("But Sissy-boy, the stories it tells when it's sober!") Old Jack was a crazy old coot, but he knew by heart the DNA sequence of everybody in town, and that's nothing to sneeze at.

Anyway, I was there to meet Ace, the Procto-Astrologer. I thought he might have a lead on my target. Ace had become a Procto-Astrologer by eating some magic beans without washing them first, and although everybody wondered just what it meant, he wouldn't discuss it. I found him wedged into a suitcase way in the back, sipping motor oil from a can of asparagus. He didn't look good, but he looked better than I had ever seen him.

His tongue had run off to Mauna Loa with a frosted nightmare, but I was able to deduce from his crazed hand signals that he was no longer Ace, the Procto-Astrologer, but Ace, the Crypto-Procto-Astrologer. He seemed only interested in talking about himself. I lurched home, full of the juices of life and frustrated in my quest.