Doghouse Blues

Baby, Let's Play House (23rd January 2181)

23rd January 2181

The villa was comfortable, and the basement bunkroom at least provided free accomodation. The ground floor of the villa contained several larger bedrooms and rooms, while the basement also featured a games room (with full size shuggy table) and mini cinema. There was also a small annexe, which was used as seperate accomodation for the four remaining security guards.

Besides Scotty there was Brother Martin, Mike and Mindy-the film crew, and, of course, Elvis. His face looked kind of familiar, and Anwyn checked on what passed for the local internet.

It transpired that Elvis Presley had been a big music entertainer in the 20th Century-he died in the 1980’s. However, The Church of the Living Elvis were listed as a successor Cult to The Church of Elvis the King and the Second Sway (another wacko cult she assumed). The second coming of Elvis was officially deemed to have occurred on January 8th 2085, and during his Reign the King, amongst other pronouncements indicated that he would never again leave his Faithful. The Church was re-organised as The Church of the Living Elvis in 2114, and since that time there had always been a Living Elvis. The current Elvis had apparently reigned since 2165. It was speculated that The Living Elvis might be a surgically altered impersonator, or more esoterically a clone, or even a clone with memory transfer of one or all of the original Elvis’s. The Church were not saying, and the speculation helped to maintain interest in The Living Elvis. The Church had also aquired rights to most of the original Elvis’s material, and was clearly a viable money-making concern. Not short of a few credits then.

Elvis appeared to be in his early thirties, and was a peculiar mix of the spoiled and the humble.Strangely polite, even to Strontium Dogs, his flunkies nevertheless ran off to fetch him a burger (putting on ordinary cloths as a disguise, Anwyn noticed) at a moment’s notice. Brother’s Scotty and Martin seemed to work hard to keep him happy. Clearly however, Elvis was getting very bored with his villa confinement, and Anwyn has already overheard more than one raised altercation between the Brothers and Elvis.

After the last one Elvis had stormed out, looked at Anwyn and beckoned her downstairs into the basement. She helped him open a side panel and lay out what were apparently a number of dojo mats. Elvis went into a side room and got changed into a martial arts gi, indicating to Anwyn that there was gear in another room into which she could change. She had shrugged- a workout would relieve the boredom after all.

Being a Strontium Dog, Anwyn was no stranger to hand to hand combat. She was also tall for a female, and pretty strong. “Probably best not to head butt him with my horns” she thought. A surprise was in store for her however.

After some initial pad work and warming up they moved onto sparring, and, somewhat unexpectedly, Elvis whupped her ass. In the ten or so bouts they had, she won only perhaps a third of them. Clearly the man was not quite all he appeared to be.

“Where’s you learn all those fancy moves Elvis?” asked Anwyn. Her own style was basically some military nastiness she had learned from the mutant army, mixed in with whatever she had discovered would actually work.

“Bin’ doin it a long time Darlin’” said Elvis, “Never quite given up on it. Keeps me sane sometimes.”

After a night and a long day of this the Agents were also getting restless. Yobo’s bounty was waiting, and their bank balances were yawning hungrily.

“Look Scotty” said Clarissa eventually, “These Webbs might take a long time to come, or they might never come at all. And this place is pretty vulnerable: snipers on any of a dozen surrounding outcrops could pot down into the villa, never mind an assault. And we need to get on.”

“’At’s roight” said ’Enery, “If them mercs. ’as decent weapons from distance a few RAM grenades and an SAW would pretty much take out this villa from elevation, and pretty much everyone in it. A sniper would do the rest. No need for close stuff.”

“So it’s actually dangerous here Man?”interjected Elvis, “All the more reason I should come with you then.”

WHAAT?!” exclaimed Scotty, “You’ve got to be joking Elvis.”

“No joke man. These guys have their own business, and like they said, this ain’t a good place to protect me. I could take the Chuck Wagon and go with them. Be on the move too-harder to find.”

The ‘Chuck Wagon’ it transpired, was a tour Mo Home, complete with mini music and vid editing suite. It had served as a mobile home for the small tour company on a dozen worlds, though it was currently in storage in a lockup, waiting their exit form the planet. After some discussion the group agreed that this made some sort of plan. ’Enery put it quite succinctly.

“Arfter all,” he said, “What could be more sensible than us driving round the desert in a tour bus, hunting dangerous cannibal bandits with Elvis Presley and a film crew in tow?”

Brother Scotty insisted that he too needed to accompany Elvis. Brother Martin and the four security guards would remain at the villa and maintain the pretense of occupation. The following day they would prep. the Chuck Wagon and give it a less conspicuous re-spray, and the following day the group would set off on, as Anwyn put it, Elvis’s Hound Dog Tour.



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