Jupiter: Hello there, young lady! Miss me? [smiles]
Moon: [blushes] Jove, you charmer! [picks up the phone] Sir, Jupiter's reporting back in after his retrograde. Shall I send him in? [Pause] Very well. [Hangs up] The Sun will see you now.
Jupiter: We'll talk again soon, Lady. [winks and opens the Sun's office door] Good morning, sir!
Sun: Good morning, Jupiter! Welcome back. How was the retrograde?
Jupiter: Well, what I remember of it was fantastic. What I don't remember about it was probably even better...
Sun: [holds up a hand, laughing] As long as you didn't get in any trouble that requires my intervention, I don't need or want the details. Just knowing that you and Neptune were together in New Orleans was enough to scare me a little.
Jupiter: We had a great time, but that Neptune can really hold his liquor! I was impressed.
Sun: Well I'm glad you had a good time. Are you ready to go back to work? I know we all missed you!
Jupiter: I sure am, sir. Raring to go as usual!
Sun: Awesome. Is there anything I can do to make your return smoother?
Jupiter: Very kind of you to ask, sir. There is one thing. Can I close the door?
Sun: Absolutely. [Jupiter closes door] So what's on your mind?
Jupiter: Well, I see that our intrepid blogger made another trip to Cincinnati in April.
Sun: Yes, he did. Another triumph! He specifically mentioned your positive influence on that trip; he and his wife made a vacation out of it and hit a casino on the way out there. They had a wonderful time!
Jupiter: I'm so glad. I'm still the ruler of those trips, am I not?
Sun: Well, Jupiter, that's kind of a sticky wicket. The first time you were for sure, because it was an adventure and John had never been there before. But now it's part of John's routine, so I was planning to hand over this trip to Mercury.
Jupiter: I have a fundamental philosophical disagreement with that, sir.
Sun: Color me surprised. But you know the rules: You get the long ones that are spiritual or philosophical; he gets the routine trips. I don't understand how on this one it stopped being fair somehow, since that's the way we've always done it. But I suppose if you're going to plead your case, you're the perfect planet to do it. I suppose it's unavoidable. So go ahead.
Jupiter: Sir, hear me out. The main purpose for John to go to Cincinnati is astrology college. That is considered "higher education" and is clearly in my purview. The vacation he added to it is just icing on the cake and only reinforces my influence. To give it to Mercury simply because John's done it more than once is preposterous. He's not commuting there daily or anything!
Sun: Jupiter, those trips are routine and will be occurring for the next several years as he completes his studies. I see your point, but...
Jupiter: With all due respect, sir, if you understood my point of view, we wouldn't be having this discussion at all! This is my lane in the road, and Mercury doesn't belong in it, since John got out of elementary school a while ago!
Sun: There's no need to get so riled up over this, Jupiter. Honestly. I can assign these particular trips jointly to the both of you.
Jupiter: To be blunt, sir, that's not being truly fair to me. Mercury's influence over those trips is tertiary at best. And my judgment is a lot better than Mercury's. I'm not the one who wanted to send John over mountain roads during a snowstorm based purely on GPS data and the lack of fucking tolls!
Sun: Jupiter, that's beneath you. You of all the planets should be able to make a good argument without disparaging one of your colleagues. Am I right?
Jupiter: Merc would be first to tell you that he fucked up with that one, sir. He was in retrograde and you know what happens when he's out there...
Sun: I do. I've been hearing about it for a few weeks now. John has made a believer out of a few folks because of Mercury's nonsense. But that's beside the point. I think we need to table this discussion for now.
Sun: Mercury isn't here. I want to get his input on this before I make a final decision.
Jupiter: It's your decision to make, sir. I don't agree with waiting when you have all the information you need to make it now.
Sun: Tough shit. It's my call and I'll make it when I damn well please. [smiles] Anything else I can do for you?
Jupiter: No, sir. I know the world has missed me, so I need to spread some good cheer. [gets up and opens the door] Have a lovely day, sir. [walks out and passes the Moon's desk]
Moon: He's gone, sir.
Sun: [to himself] These planets get back from retrograde and start driving me nuts, for fuck's sake! [Louder] Could you send Mercury and Jupiter an email please, Luna? I'll need a convenient time to meet with them once Mercury returns from retrograde. Don't give them a meeting agenda; I don't want Mercury to take a break from his retrograde and write me a long-ass message containing HIS reasons why it would be his purview and not Jupiter's. I'm sure it wouldn't be what he really wanted to say anyway.
Moon: Certainly. [writes down notes in Erin Condren planner] Sol?
Sun: Yes, Luna?
Moon: I've got to agree with Jupiter on this one.
Sun: I can't make a call without hearing from both of them, Luna. And I don't want to talk about this anymore today, okay?
Moon: I understand. Probably good for you to take a quick break. I restocked the refrigerator by your desk with Capri Suns in your favorite flavor: Tropical punch.
Sun: Awwww yissssss!