"Charles, have you been drinking again?" the elephant asked.
My eyelids fluttered as I tried to focus on the shapee before me. After a moment I said, "Oh, Maggie. Well, I may have a had, um, a few blinks but that doesn't mean I've been drinking."
"Blinks? You're drunk!" she said with a laugh.
"I'll have you know it takes more than . . a few little drinks . . to get me drunk."
"Well there is an empty bottle of cognac on your desk. That would be enough to get you drunk."
"If I were drunk, my dear, could I do this?"
"That certainly is an impressive skill my love, but there is a very serious crisis that has to be addressed."
"Oh there's always some crisis. Crisis is the routine. Why do you think I drink?"
Maggie just rolled her eyes. "I just have two words for you. Dark Phoenix."
That certainly got my attention. The surge of adreline helped to clear my head. "What's happened?"
"Oh, so now you care? Well I'll tell you, Jean as been taken over by the Dark Phoenix again and she has gone on a rampage."
"I've been seeing the signs but I just chose to ignore them. Blast! Where has she gone?"
"Yes. They are a powerful alien religious order that maintains peace in a far away galaxy."
"Far away? Well that's relief. She can't really hurt us then."
"Charles! We can't let Jean destroy people, even if they are aliens. Gaia has followed her through a wormhole. We have to do something!"
I let a long sigh. "I know. I was just kidding." After a moment's thought, I snapped my fingers. "I think I know just who to call for help. The Starjammers."