The Monster Next Door

The Block Party

Darkness Gathers Over the Meat Salad

Almost everyone on the block shows up for the big party hosted by Ralph, a blissfully-clueless Mormon with a big chin. The new face on the block is a slim, urban heart-throb calling himself Esteban Chitsume; he has been seen in the neighborhood before, but formal introductions weren’t made until the block party. He is interested in buying the vacation house #1 on the corner.

The neighbors bring out their pot luck dishes as Ralph meticulously organizes them by hot and cold foods. Lilim, a saucy and outrageously tempting goth girl, contributes a ‘meat salad’, which the winsome and intense Edgar tastes and convinces Ralph that it’s the best dish there. Esteban flirts with Lilim and gives her his business card. She pretty much shuts him down but keeps the card.

Ralph promises that whoever wins the three-legged race will be able to dig into the food first, this announcement takes place while everyone is already eating the food. Clouds darken overhead as Edgar takes that for a promise made and broken in the same breath. Under the darkening sky, Zed, wearing an open shirt that shows off his perfect abs, offers to take over the grilling so Ralph can start the party games, Zed’s seemingly-doting roommate, Kali, spends some considerable time calling attention to Zed’s attractive bare chest.

Jason, a tousled but clean-living vital young male, shows up a bit late and makes excuses for his rarely-seen significant other, Pamela, not showing up by saying the rarely-seen woman is simply not feeling well.

It was revealed in a flash back, that prior to the block party, Edgar had extracted a promise from Esteban that in exchange for saving him in cat form, Esteban would wing-man him. Mr Otis makes one of his rare appearances outdoors, accompanied by his healthcare provider, Daisy. Esteban relieves Daisy of duty, so she can participate in the block party games. Edgar is very interested in Daisy, and uses the opportunity of the three-legged race to cling to her closely and for them to fall down….repeatedly.

Meanwhile, Lilim attempts to lure Mr. Nabeshima over to her house, but her feminine wiles fall flat in the face of the man’s blind devotion to his family. In the end, she uses this very trait to secure a promise to get the unsuspecting man to visit her later, ostensibly to help kick off his eldest daughter’s new lawn-mowing business.

Jason confides in Lilim and Esteban that Jessica disturbs him and he worries about the woman’s safety. Esteban tries to approach the woman but, although she warms to him somewhat, she keeps her secrets close. Esteban keeps accidentally calling Jason “”/characters/thecaptain" class=“wiki-content-link”>Captain." Kali seems overprotective of Zed, all but chaining him to the grill. After Esteban gets distracted by something that Zed keeps noticing (Kent is dumping trash bags in Kali’s yard) Lilim hands Jason Esteban’s business card.

It is revealed that to Esteban that House #1 is known in the neighborhood as “the sex house”, as it is furnished but is vacant and Kent’s friends use the house for partying and hookups. The owner of house #1 is a deployed military man named Charlie. Near the end of the party, Charlie suddenly arrives home, causing Kent to frantically try to clean the house up. Edgar extracts a promise from Kent in exchange for distracting Charlie and stalling for time, so Kent can clean house #1 up. Edgar stalls for time, engaging Charlie in conversation and encouraging him to join in on the pot luck fest. Esteban approaches Charlie about buying his house and offers twice what the house is worth.

Things turn a bit dark when Marcus defies Lilim’s attempts to boss him around, but the watermellon seed spitting contest begins… with unfortunate results for Ralph.

Meanwhile, having seen Kent dropping full trash bags over onto the Zed’s side of the fence, Esteban leaves to speak with Kent. Esteban offers to help and asked Kent to do two things. First he asked him to get some window cleaning supplies and second he asked Kent to take care of a cat which he might start seeing around that neighborhood. Kent went off to get the cleaning supplies and was directed by Ralph to get them from Ralph’s wife Georgina. Mean while Charlie had been engaged in conversation by Jason who noticed the commotion at house #1.

Finally, Jason opens the door to house #1 and finds a cat performing a mystical Japanese illusion dance with a napkin on his head in an immaculately clean house. The cat runs out just as Charlie enters. Charlie states that he still needs to speak with Esteban about his offer on this house and Jason hands him Esteban’s card which he got from Lilim.

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