It is hard to believe I have an assigned job. It feels strange, as if I have been placed here by accident. I try to complete my assignments as detailed. If I do the assignments long enough, I will be able to reclaim my strength and purpose, giving rise to the phoenix of he within thee.

One would expect a doer of good, a justice righter, to be proud and strong at all times. This is a fair expectation, but one cannot do goodness upon the greater whole when one is not whole themselves. To care for the citizenry, I must be made whole again...I must make myself whole again.

“Is this your coffee sitting in the corner?” the brusk voice of a firm and youthful woman asked.

“Yes,” I answered, avoiding eye contact with her as I have avoided it with customers — it is too intimate when you have been a ghost for so long.

“Soy and stevia? You aren’t going to energize your man juices with that routine.”

“Huh?” was the response designed not to offend.

“Not sure those are the things that get a man’s testosterone pumping,” she answered, exclamating with a wink.

Those were her words, but when looking at her round, full, youthful face, it was clear she was saying I had a shot. Clearly, she was letting me know that if I were to man up with a bit of milk and honey, I could enjoy all of the sweetness she has to offer. Clearly. Milk? Honey? No problemo.

It must be cruel, anyhow, the way the extract milk from an innocent soybean.

She winked again.

I’m back! I’m back in the game.

Too intense. I step up to the espresso machine and make the order on the pending cup.

I might be alive again...someday...maybe...sweetness...sticky.

I can be in the game. All I need is the sweet stickiness brought by milk and honey.