So in our introduction, we learned how Captain Beautiful had brought Chester LeCrow back to life and had asked the lovely corvid to be his forever companion, guide, and spotter of all things that sparkle. And that is where we left off. It must be remembered that Chester returned to life not realizing he had died, and quite confused about what had happened--and especially that he could actually understand the words of this strange man.
Instinctively, somehow, Chester was compelled to respond, "Of course. I would be honored." And he fluffed his feathers and hopped up onto Captain Beautiful's shoulder. Captain Beautiful smiled and tapped Chester's beak affectionately.
"It's late, my new friend," Captain Beautiful said, "we should get some rest." Then he reached in the pocket of his rabbit fur coat and pulled out a key with a large tag on it. Chester liked the shine of the key tag and expressed as much. "Yes," Captain Beautiful replied, it is rather nice, isn't it? I have a room here in The Moore, room 301."
"The one next to the fire escape," added Chester.
"Yes, that's the one," the Captain confirmed. They entered the lobby, and Captain Beautiful waved his hand at the night clerk."Evening, Bobby."
"Hey there!" the clerk exclaimed. "I see you've made a friend, Cappy. You're not going to let him wander the halls, I hope?"
Captain Beautiful chuckled oh so charismatically, "Wouldn't think of it Bobby...just heading to the room. That was one hell of a Martini your lady served me!"
Bobby grinned. "Nothing but the best round here, Cappy! Goodnight."
"Nitey nite, Bobby. Stay fabulous baby," Captain Beautiful sang as he rounded the corner and met the stairs.
Then Chester interjected, "There's an elevator right there, you know."
"Yes, I know, my new friend, but I always take the stairs...don't care much for automated things."
Chester LeCrow continued, "Something just hit me..."
"Oh yeah, what's that?" asked Captain Beautiful, as he stumbled slowly up the stairs.
"It just occurred to me, we're talking to each other--"
"Yes?" Captain Beautiful tilted his head to face Chester.
"Well, I don't believe I've ever spoken with a human voice before...or understood one for that matter. And furthermore, I'm somehow aware that you're a man, and I'm a bird--a corvid to be specific. And I somehow knew that room 301 is next to the fire escape--and what a room IS! I feel like I'm missing something here. What's going on?"
Captain Beautiful smiled so lovingly, "So many questions for such a small being, my new friend...but you're right--there are many things to explain. Thankfully we have all of eternity to sort them out. I'll tell you lots more when we get to the room."
Chester continued, "I also know there are cockroaches in this hotel for some reason."
"Yes," Captain Beautiful answered, "There was one in my room this morning--a very friendly fellow--Henry I think he said his name was. Oh he was a fat one! But very nice. He said his wife and children were down on the second floor somewhere. According to his story, he told his family he was away gathering some of this, that, or the other...but in reality he just needed a break from them. Fancy, that, huh? A cockroach needing a break from cockroaches?!" Captain Beautiful chuckled again, and tapped upon Chester's beak playfully.
"So you talk to cockroaches, too?" asked Chester with furrowed brow.
"Yes, of course," Captain Beautiful beamed, "I communicate with ALL living organisms. Yes, in case you're wondering, that includes vegetation."
"I was actually going to ask that," Chester replied.
"I know," winked Captain Beautiful.
Chester felt no closer to understanding what was happening to him. "So does that mean that I can also talk to--"
"Ah, here we are, my new friend," Captain Beautiful interrupted, and inserted the key into the lock. "Room 301. My home sweet home away from home" he sang.
Chester fluffed his feathers and flitted on over to the bed. "Not bad. I don't see your cockroach friend. He must have gone back home."
"Yes, most likely" quipped Captain Beautiful as he shook off his rabbit fur coat and tossed it on the chair. "I would think cockroach wives could be particularly naggy when their husbands have been gone too long." He then hopped onto the bed and patted his hand, gesturing toward Chester, "Come here, my friend, time to seal our bond."
Chester waddled over. "Some sort of ritual where we cut ourselves and mix our blood or something like that?"
"You'll see," Captain Beautiful halfway sang, and he rummaged through a backpack that was propped against the bed. He pulled out a bottle of glittery purple nail polish, and shook it vigorously.
"Ooh, shiny!" Chester exclaimed. "And yet, it's warm..it has a richness about it. Very nice."
Captain Beautiful smiled and winked at the corvid. "Give me your talon." Chester offered his little crow foot up without hesitation, and Captain Beautiful began to paint his talons...and then the talons on his other foot. Chester got fidgety, but did his best to stay still. When his last talon was painted, he began to hobble away. "No, not yet, my friend," Captain Beautiful advised..."two coats--always two coats. Plus a clear top coat. It's the proper way, you know. And I will tell you a bit more about myself as I finish making you fabulous."
"Oh good," Chester said, "You have no idea how many questions I have running through my little mind right now--actually you probably DO, knowing you!" and the corvid cackled softly.
Captain Beautiful continued, "Indeed I do, my friend. For starters, I'm not from around here..."
Chester interrupted, "Well I had gathered that much!"
"Let me finish, my anxious friend," Captain Beautiful sighed. "I am from a place very far from this planet...a place called Hadesia."
"Another planet from outer space?" Chester crowed.
Captain Beautiful tapped the nail polish brush to Chester's beak and grinned, "Sort of. Now if you'll let me finish..."
"Yes, of course, Cappy. Sorry." Chester resettled himself as the clear coat was being applied.
Captain Beautiful blew on Chester's little talons and continued, "Hadesia is a place...it is a planet, a region, a night club, and also a place outside of time and space. In a word, Hadesia is the place of reincarnation--it's where beings go to be reincarnated. You see, when you fell off that roof and died, I--"
Chester jerked his head back and tapped his foot down upon the bed. "Wait...so I died?!!"
"Yes," Captain Beautiful sighed, "You had died from the fall."
"And you brought me back to life?" Chester asked impatiently.
"Not really, no. I reincarnated you," explained Captain Beautiful.
"But I was a crow before, and I am still a crow," Chester exclaimed.
"Yes, my friend, but not the SAME crow," Captain Beautiful went on. "You are Chester LeCrow now. Before your fall, your name was Cedric. You came from the cemetery up on Capitol Hill, where your family still resides. You will have no memory of this, of course, because of the reincarnation process. The spirit of Hadesia flows through you now--you will find you have many abilities that ordinary crows do not...and your mind is connected directly to the Hadesian data banks, giving you access to all the knowledge Hadesia has to offer. In a word, you are now a Hadesian...my fabulous Hadesian brother, in fact!" Captain Beautiful examined Chester's talons to be sure the nail polish had set most perfectly. And it had.
Chester sighed deeply, "It's beautiful...but sad. My family will miss me. And though I can't remember them, I miss them too."
Captain Beautiful stroked the soft short feather's upon Chester's head and spoke softly, "I understand. I feel what you feel, my new brother. Try not to think too much--you've had a long day. We will go visit your family tomorrow, and you will see that everything will be so much better than fine. No more questions tonight...let's get some rest. Your talons look fabulous, by the way! I knew that was the perfect color for you."
Captain Beautiful then stood up and turned down the bed and fell in. Chester lie down next to him and nuzzled. As the light was clicked off, Chester asked, "Can I ask just one more question tonight...only that I might sleep more soundly?"
"Yes, of course," remarked Captain Beautiful so gently.
"So the nail polish you painted my talons with...that is some magical thing from Hadesia--a mysterious ritual that seals our bond?"
Captain Beautiful laughed quietly, but fully from his belly, "No, my silly Hadesian brother...I picked it up at Walgreen's the other day because I liked the color. The clear coat is what seals it." He then patted Chester lovingly on the head and said, "Goodnight, my friend. Sweet Hadesian dreams befall you."
Chester nuzzled closer and sighed, "Goodnight Cappy." And the two Hadesian brothers slept most fabulously the whole night through.