"Sheila!" I heard a raspy, pudgy sounding voice shout through the intercom on the receptionist's desk. "Send in the next client!"
The terminally bored looking girl didn't even glance up from the emery board gliding across her two inch long electric green fingernails. As the large pink bubble of her gum popped, she nodded absently towards the door.
I rolled through it and into the office of J'onn Sinew Nu, Vice-Corporate Toady of Something Or Other. His office was plastered from top to bottom with brown leather, obviously signifying a manly blend of power and taste. Back in the 70's. His eyes left the stock performance sheets he was holding and glanced at a paper on his desk.
"Ex He-Whore, right?" he said. "Have a seat my boy."
I glanced down at my wheelchair. "I'm already sitting, thank you."
Sinew Nu did a double take at the paper he read my name off of. "He-Whore, huh? How did you like that?"
"I have no idea what you're talking about," I told him.
"You handle. Your nom-de-ring. Ex He-Whore. We might have to change that. Not very family friendly."
"My name is not Ex-whatever. It's X-av-ier. Professor Xavier."
"Hmm . . a little stuffy. Kind of stuck up. How about Captain Xavier? Or Captain X? Yeah, that could be interesting."
"My name is Professor Xavier and I am not changing it. I do also hold three doctorates if you would rather use the title of doctor."
At that, for the first time Sinew Nu looked up from his papers and focused his gaze on me. He tried his best to give me a piercing gaze, his intent stare obviously meant to intimidate me. I stared back with equal force.
Slowly his eyes turned down. Then they opened widely. "You're in a wheelchair?" he practically shouted in disbelief. His tone was more accusatory than inquisitive.
"Yes," I replied coldly.
"Well that won't do at all," he said. "How are you suppose to wrestle and fight in that?"
"I don't intend to-"
"I got it!" he shouted while snapping his fingers. His face lit up with a smile. "The chair could be your gimmick. We could use it to get sympathy for you. Yeah, that's it. Maybe we could paint it red, white and blue! Hang flags off of it. Have sparklers along the back! We can call you 4th of July Man!"
"That sounds like a horrible idea."
"Look He-whore, you gotta work with me here. You're stuck in this chair and we have to-"
"Actually," I interrupted, "I don't really need the chair." I stood up to prove this.
With his jaw hanging open, Sinew Nu stared at me in disbelief. "You're fakin' being in a wheelchair? Wow. That is low. So how come? For the parking spots?"
"No, of course not," I said with offense. "I use it . . well . . because I had to use it for a long time and people just kind of expect it. I get looked at very oddly if I'm not in the chair."
Sinew Nu continued staring. It was apparent from his expression that he did not believe me. I felt compelled to continue.
"Well the truth is, I do also get some sympathy from the chair. Particularly from the ladies. It basically guarantees me at least second base on the first date."
The silence in the room persisted for a long, uncomfortable time. Finally Sinew Nu's face broke out again into a beaming smile. "I got it!" he yelped with another snap of his fingers. "We'll make you a villain! Doctor X! How do you look in black?"