The X-Couple: Vea Evitus

Walter Skinner's idyllic weekend at his apartment takes a turn for the bizarre when his landlord arrives with a stack of eviction notices. Apparently, strange happenings like blinding lights, helicopter landings, and small grey creatures roaming the halls have become a regular occurrence, courtesy of Skinner's mysterious roommate, Cancer Man.

Things escalate further when a mysterious new piece of furniture appears and levitates Skinner against his will. It seems Cancer Man might be more involved in the apartment's odd events than he lets on, and finding a decent lawyer might be the least of their problems.

Will Skinner escape eviction and the clutches of his otherworldly roommate? Will Cancer Man ever learn to use a coaster?

Crystal City, Virginia
Walter Skinner's Apartment
1:28 p.m.

"Warnings?" Walter Skinner repeated the most striking word in his landlord's last sentence. "What warning?"

As the stocky landlord began unfolding the paper in his hand Cancer Man appeared in the hall, turning the corner with a rumpled paper sack cradled in his arms and an unlit cigarette in his lips.

"Trouble, Wally?" he asked, looking smug lighting his cigarette.

"Do you know anything about some warnings?" Skinner directed the question at him pointedly, causing a flicker of minute surprise to cross the man's sober expression.

"I wouldn't know what you're talking about," he replied before pushing past Skinner into the apartment, glancing at the landlord as he went.

"I find that hard to believe," the landlord responded as he reviewed the document in his hands, "to date there have been five warnings served due to numerous complaints, not including the one today from Mrs. Mullholland up on twenty-three."

"What are you talking about?" Skinner was perplexed.

The landlord handed over the document.

The ex-assistant director of the FBI read silently for a moment before the landlord began to recite it, "strange blinding lights in the middle of the night waking people. The building violently shaking people awake in the middle of the night. Black helicopters landing on the roof... waking people in the middle of the night..."

"Small humanoid creatures running in the halls and playing in the stair wells," Skinner read aloud now, Cancer Man straining infinitesimally to see over his shoulder.

"Fist fighting in the stairwells," the landlord took over, "bodies flying off balcony, people handcuffed to the balcony, and... bees."

"Bees?" Skinner looked up at the man.

"Bees," he affirmed.

Skinner shot a glare at Cancer Man, catching sight of something out of the corner of his eye. Something was moving toward them in the hall. He looked once, then twice, cringing at the sight of a gray scampering toward them down the hall on a big wheel. He turned his eyes up to the ceiling. Why? He thought.

"And then," the landlord breathed, "Mrs. Mullholland, that poor woman, she has enough to be concerned with without her granddaughter being abducted and cloned."

"Cloned?" Skinner exclaimed.

Cancer Man coughed.

"Yes," the landlord said and as if sensing something behind him turned- a fraction of a second too late to catch sight of the alien powered big wheel shooting vertically up the hall wall. "Damn kids..." he mumbled to himself. Skinner flinched.

"Where was I?"

"Cloning." Cancer Man helped.

Skinner gave him a warning glare that drove him back into the apartment.

"Well, that's aside from the point right now," the landlord said glancing up- too late to see the big wheeling gray cruise by overhead on the ceiling.

Skinner cleared his throat drawing the landlord's attention back down. "Do we have any recourse here; I mean can we make some type of amends?" he asked.

The man shook his head. "I'm afraid not, the tenant’s association has already voted, and the decision is a thirty day vacate order," he handed Skinner another piece of paper.

Skinner looked at the eviction notice and grimaced.

"I'll be contacting my attorney about this," he informed the landlord.

"Yes, our attorney!" Cancer Man parroted from inside the apartment.

The landlord nodded. "I understand, that's your right. In any case, you are served."

As the landlord turned to go Skinner went back inside the apartment, slamming the door behind him. "Our attorney?" he questioned Cancer Man.

"We're both involved in this," he replied sitting his beer down on the coffee table to light another cigarette. "I assumed we would use the same attorney."

"Will you use a coaster for God's sake?" Skinner declared heading to the coffee table to slip a cork coaster under the beer can. "We don't need any more unclassifiable furniture repairs around here."

"I wouldn't know what you're talking about."

"Of course you wouldn't," Skinner shot back, palms planted firmly on hips.

"Just like you don't know anything about the warnings-" he broke off suddenly looking at a large armoire in the corner of the room. At least it looked like an armoire but hadn't been there earlier. "Where did this come from?" he asked, heading to inspect it more closely.

"I wouldn't go near that if I were you..." Cancer Man warned too late.

"Wha-wha-whoo," Skinner stammered as his feet lifted off the floor and he began to levitate.

"Hmm," Cancer Man said to himself scrutinizing the situation as he drew on his cigarette. "In essence, this could be a humorous development."

Arms flailing uselessly in the air, Skinner screamed, "don't tell me you don't have any knowledge of this!"

"Well, now that you mention it, I do... Now, where is that remote...?"

Cancer Man began to shift magazines and empty Chinese food cartons, ashes from his cigarette drifting down into the clutter.

"Is there a problem here?!" Skinner shouted, a solitary vein in his temple beginning to pulsate.

Cancer Man pulled a mysterious black device from under the clutter and looked at it thoughtfully. "Now, which button is- oh, yes," he said pressing a lavender button on the control pad of the device.

A humiliating thud sounded across the room.

Cancer Man looked up seeing Skinner getting to his feet, glowering.

Putting out his cigarette, he told Skinner, “You’ll have to remind me to get a clapper for that."


Next: "The Politics of Dating"


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