Chapter One: The Beginning (or, Why you shouldn't choose a wife based purely on her looks.)
Harry looked at the snake. The snake looked at Harry. Harry's eyes widened as the snake sprouted legs and began to break-dance. His jaw dropped as a stream of confetti fell from the ceiling and the room was plunged into multi-coloured strobe lighting. In front of him, the snake was shaking its slimy booty, desperate to draw attention to itself. Harry rubbed his eyes. Something wasn't right. He looked at the snake, who was now squirming around on the floor making a fool of itself. He looked at the floodlights: they seemed normal enough. Oh. The confetti? Harry had seen enough confetti in his time - having worked in a confetti manufacturing plant for seven years - to know when confetti wasn't right. He caught one of the fluttering pieces in his hand and examined it.
"Ah," he said, as the confetti turned into a small snake and began to nibble on his thumb. "This isn't confetti after all." He dropped the snake and watched it slide away like a piece of walking liquorice.
Suddenly he heard a voice from somewhere in the room. "Harry. Harry," the voice said. It was feminine, and, to Harry, familiar. Then he twigged. It was a dream. A ridiculous dream. Suddenly it all made sense, and this came as a relief to Harry, whose heart had almost failed when he realised the gross injustice that was being committed in the confetti area. Satisfied that no codes of confetti conduct were being broken, he allowed himself to slip back into consciousness.
"Snakes indeed," he murmured to himself as he opened his eyes to find his wife, Heidi, standing in front of him wearing a red baseball cap. Her long, blonde hair flowed from beneath it like matchsticks and, for a second, he could have sworn that one of the strands was wriggling as thought it were a yellow snake.
She looked concerned. "Bad dream, honey?"
He sighed. "Not so much bad as... well, weird. You see, there were these--" He stopped and looked out the window. "Er, am I on a plane?"
She smiled. "Yes, dear."
Harry looked confused and had a fleeting and somewhat hopeful notion that he was still in the land of nod. "How did that happen?"
"Oh, well," Heidi began to explain. "You know how I've always wanted to go to California, and how you hate it?"
Harry frowned. "Yes..."
"Well, I won tickets in a contest, so I ground up some sleeping pills in your drink, stole your dad's wheelchair, and told the airport you were a heavy sleeper." She said all this very quickly, as though cramming it into one sentence made it less of a peculiar and, some would argue, violating thing to do. "So, what was your dream about?"
Harry ignored her question. "And the cat?"
"Don't worry about her, she's in the cargo area with all the other cats."
Harry jumped up. "She's on the plane? There are CATS? On the PLANE?"
Heidi's composure faltered for a moment. "Sit down, you're making a scene."
"But, the cats? And, and the plane? An- and the togetherness?"
"It's fine. They have precautions. Look, do you want me to get you another drink?"
"Yes, plea-- no, actually, I'll get it myself."
"Suit yourself," Heidi said with a huff, and slipped back into the seat next to her husband.