A. Lee Martinez
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Meet Monster. Meet Judy. Two humans who don't like each other much, but together must fight dragons, fire-breathing felines, trolls, Inuit walrus dogs, and a crazy cat lady - for the future of the universe.
Monster runs a pest control agency. He's overworked and has domestic troubles - like having the girlfriend from hell.
Judy works the night shift at the local Food Plus Mart. Not the most glamorous life, but Judy is happy. No one bothers her and if she has to spell things out for the night-manager every now and again, so be it.
But when Judy finds a Yeti in the freezer aisle eating all the
Oh, and his girlfriend from Hell? She actually is from Hell.
asked. “Sorry. Didn’t want to make a fuss.” He checked her hand. “Doesn’t look too bad, a minor misfortune hex. Doubt it can do much except inconvenience you for a few minutes once it activates. But it might be smarter to look both ways before crossing the street in the meantime.” The door to the house opened and Monster stepped inside. Judy stared at the house while drumming her fingers on the steering wheel. “Screw this.” She got out of the car. Chester folded himself into a parrot and
all those things humans like to think of as magical but really aren’t.” Judy had gone through a phase as a teen, had had a shelf full of books about signs and planetary alignments and all that jazz. It would’ve been nice to think she could’ve been on to something. “It seems like you’ve had plenty of business lately,” said Judy. “There’s always surges. Usually two or three a year. This one’s a little earlier than predicted, but that’s not unusual.” “So what are you going to do?” she asked.
the sidewalk, she surveyed a blackened kitchen sink sitting in the grass. “What happened to my house?” she said quietly. “You must be Judy’s sister. I’m Monster, and this is Chester.” “Hi.” Chester waved. Greta said, “I came home early because I was having a really weird day. A lion destroyed my car.” She tried to remember. “I think it was a lion. And then there was some other… stuff. I don’t know. I just wanted to come home early, drink an espresso, maybe watch a movie. But now my house is
familiar voice. “Are you Monster?” He glanced up at Greta. “No, I think you’ve gotten me confused with someone else.” “Another golden man?” she asked. “There are more of us out there than most people realize.” A confused look crossed her face. The origami parrot on his shoulder should’ve been a dead giveaway, but it wasn’t hard to throw light cognizants. “I’m sorry to bother you, sir,” she said softly. “No problem. Happens all the time.” She walked away. “That’s not right,” said Chester.
time.” Monster doubled back and scooped up Chester. The paper gnome folded into a monkey and wrapped his arms around Monster’s neck. “What’s the rush?” “We have to save Judy.” “I thought you didn’t care about her.” “She’s okay, but if we don’t stop Lotus, she’ll use Judy to destroy the human race.” “Hmm,” said Chester. “That is bad. I guess.” “If she succeeds, I won’t be around anymore, and you’ll be out of a job.” Chester tucked himself into Monster’s shirt to avoid the wind shear. “Pick