Tuesday, 22 September 2009

The Perfect Crime.

Mrs Bell was the last long-term resident in the Windermere Hotel, Surbiton. She had a small room, well away from the sales reps, filled with dust, lily of the valley talc and Readers Digest. She received no mail, talked to nobody, wore small black hats, tired cardigans and had continuous trouble with her spectacles. Her sole pleasure seemed to be tormenting whoever was waiting on her at dinner. She always sat at the same corner table, eyeing even the cruet with suspicion.

David, on his gap year, had drawn the short straw and Mrs Bell’s table. He brought her the day’s hors d’oeuvre.

“What’s this?” She poked at it with umbrage.

“Egg mayonnaise,” explained David.

“I don’t want this muck on it.” She poked at it again.

Under her baleful stare, David returned reluctantly to the kitchen where the chef, a malevolent chain-smoking Scottish dwarf, snarled and bustled.

“Mrs Bell doesn’t want the mayonnaise, chef,” he croaked.

MacLeish stared at him like a cobra with heartburn and then seized the plate. He pushed aside Fidel at the cleaning station and, clamping a nicotined hand over the contents, thrust Mrs Bell’s egg mayonnaise under the soapy hot tap, sluicing the dish back to three dark lettuce leaves and a severely hardboiled egg. He flattened out the lettuce, now steaming faintly and smelling of lye, and crushed the egg halves into their centre. Then he handed the plate back. “Give the old bitch that fucker,” he ordered.

Caught between a rock and a hard place, David sleepwalked his way back to Mrs Bell’s table, and placed the dish in front of her. She inspected it closely, sniffed at in, and prodded it with her fork.

“That’s much better,” she snapped.

David floated back to the kitchen; he was now a made man.

Tuesday, 15 September 2009

Love is a many splendoured thing 4

Brooke received a singing telegram on St.Valentine’s Day. A circus clown; red nose, huge shoes, whirling bow tie and voluminous trousers, arrived at her open-plan office, and positioned himself in front of her desk. While Brooke, red-faced and mortified tried, to ignore him, he threw out his arms and announced a song of Andrew’s composing. This detailed, at full volume, endearing characteristics like her snoring, her predilection for junk food and her comprehensive shaving habits. It then moved on to a sentimental pronouncement of forgiveness and a resounding if fatuous declaration of undying love, “I love you lots and lots and lots/ My sweetest, darling farty-bots.”

On this, the clown produced a klaxon which he honked suggestively, before planting a wet kiss on Brooke’s crimson cheek, with a final cry of “Happy Valentines, you hairy old slapper!!”

He then strode away, his shoes slapping on the parquet flooring, his job well done.

Most of Brooke’s colleagues had frozen in a rictus of embarrassment, but her closest friends fed upon the spectacle greedily. Brooke refused to run, tear-sodden, to the ladies washroom. Instead she speed-dialled Andrew and told him he had a very small penis and bad breath, and that her Yoga coach, Darryl, was an infinitely better screw. Plus her brothers were now looking for him, to break both his legs. She rang off, to spontaneous if sporadic applause, and attempted to get on with her morning.
Ben from IT, who had worshipped her from afar, tried to restrain his elation. Aware that the odour powering out from his trainers might betray his joy, he slipped into the men’s washroom to commune his silent triumph to the roller towel. The coast was clear. Brooke was there for the taking. He wondered what doggerel he could inflict on her from Darryl.

Monday, 7 September 2009

Love is a many splendoured thing 3

Brenda had never considered cosmetic surgery; she was quite happy with the body God had given her. God clearly had a penchant for short redheads with moon faces, small breasts and chunky thighs. Everyone else would just have to make do.

Until she met Eamonn. They both hated the same things and enjoyed long walks in the country in proper boots. Eamonn bought her a new rucksack to carry their waterproofs and so she knew it was the real thing. But then something hinted to her that Eamonn might not share God’s taste in women. He kept looking at Britney Spears videos, singing her songs, mooning over her pictures in magazines.

There was nothing for it, she concluded, she would have to despoil God’s creation and become a big breasted blonde with cow eyes. She didn’t tell Eamonn about his lovely surprise; she told him she’d be away for a few days with her job.

When Eamonn next went round to Brenda’s flat, he was confronted with an angry blonde with black eyes, a weasel’s nose and aggressively large breasts. She daren’t move her mouth and her breasts felt like someone had taken a wrench to them. How the hell could he put her through all this?

Chastened by her transformation and her quiet fury, Eamonn suggested a weekend on Dartmoor, their old favoured hiking country. She sulked all the way down the motorway, and overnight at the hostel. Her breasts chafed under the rucksack straps. She could hardly breathe through her tiny new nostrils. She couldn’t even snort with impatience at him.

Next morning, she stormed across the moors in silence. Eamonn put a spurt on, striding ahead until his muscles screamed. Perhaps he could lose her by the Tor. After that it would be up to helicopter rescue.