by Martin Bolton
“Hey you!” Shouted the enormous, red-faced man with the tiny moustache and the huge tie. “You there! Not you, you. Yes, you. Stop. Whatever you’re doing, stop it. Right now. Stop. Just stop. Well don’t just stand there, do something. No. Something else. Stop that. No, not that. I told you to stop. Do something else. Stop it. Hey. Hey you!”
As the enormous, red-faced man with the tiny moustache and the huge tie shouted he grew, and Mostyn shrank. The huge man grew taller and redder. His tie grew wider and and more lurid, like a paisley rapist’s grin. His moustache grew thinner and blacker and squirmed upon his curly top lip as it drew back towards his gums to show more of his yellow, spittle flecked tomb stone teeth. Somewhere in the gloom beyond, his tonsils danced a mocking, provocative jig.
A fat hairy finger extended in Mostyn’s direction. “You there! You! Yes! You!” Eventually, the enormous man towered over Mostyn like a vast, sweaty cliff, his throbbing head ascending into an asbestos sky. As Mostyn cowered, he stared up towards the cavernous mouth that bellowed down at him, raining phlegm like a black storm cloud hanging over just one boy, a fat pink tongue writhing in its midst like a morbidly obese, nicotine stained clitoris.
“Yoooouuuuuu! Boooyyyyyy! Doooo Sooomethiiinnggg! Blaaaaaaaaahhhh!”
As the enormous, red-faced man reached his peak in height and volume, and Mostyn could shrink no further lest he disappear altogether (and no such mercies were afforded him here) the world lurched and flipped vertically in a nauseating arc to the tune of one hundred and eighty degrees. Mostyn’s stomach paid a surprise visit to the back of his throat and vertigo gripped him as he stared, dizzy and petrified, down a thousand foot pin-stripe cliff and plummeted at a terrifying velocity. At the bottom waited the writhing tongue, the tomb stone teeth, the gyrating tonsils. The stinking black hole of humiliation would devour him. Again.
Mostyn’s wailing woke him up to the sound of an alarm clock and the insistent throb of an ominous boner.
* * * *
Mostyn paused on the garden path, next to the pond. He did this every day in spring. He liked to listen the frogs calling as they mindlessly humped everything in sight in a frenzied orgy of mistaken identity. One of them was trying it on with a goldfish without success. His cat, Trotsky, stared at them intently. Occasionally she brought one home and left it wriggling on the doormat, minus a leg or two. When this happened, Mostyn would take what was left of them, drop them back into the pond and watch them sink slowly into the murk. He wondered how many dismembered amphibians haunted those dark green depths. Mostyn envied their simple lives and deaths.
You there! You boy! Yes you!
Mostyn’s dog, a cannabis-eating yellow mongrel called Bimbo, had tried one once but whatever the slimy little thing had secreted, it had made her foam at the mouth for about two days.
Hey you! Don’t just stand there! Do something!
Mostyn turned and opened the back door. As usual, Tummy lay on his settee, obscuring most of it. Tummy was a hungry fellow who had established his own brand of squatters’ rights in front of Mostyn’s mum’s television. His staple diet was monster munch and Quincy ME. Tummy’s chubby, downy cheeks expanded to accommodate a grin as Mostyn walked in. The fuzz on his top lip was permanently stained orange by cheesy puffs.
You! I said do something! Not that! Don’t do that! You Twat!
“You’ve run out of biscuits,” said Tummy, his lips spraying the remnants of the last of Mostyn’s mum’s biscuits over his chest.
“You got any money?” said Mostyn.
“Your mum gave me a fiver before she went to work.” Tummy replied as he peeled himself from his groove in the couch like a latex dummy being extracted from its mould.
“Isn’t that for me?” asked Mostyn.
“I think it’s for biscuits. Where’s your dinner money?”
“Since my dad left I have dinner tickets.”
“Shit,” said Tummy, grimacing, “that’s a significant dent in our income. And now you’ve got to eat school lunches.”
Mostyn slumped in the armchair, dropping his bag next to it. Blue Peter was on.
You! Hey, you there! Stop that! Do something!
“Put the kettle on,” said Tummy, “neighbours is on in a minute.”
Just then, Mostyn’s little brother, Job, appeared at the garden gate. Job didn’t walk. He bimbled. He either bimbled in a stationary position or as a form of transport. As he bimbled he muttered to himself and occasionally conversed with Bimbo, the psychedelic canine. Job was a gangly ten year old with a giant head and obscenely thick, untameable hair. He spent all his time either bimbling, wrestling Bimbo or reading endless piles of books. Mostyn was pretty sure Job was the only ten year old in the world who had been banned from talking about the torture techniques of the Blackfoot Sioux Indians during dinner. Job could often be seen lying on the floor, covered in dog hair and grass, reading the Atlas of the Universe. A ludicrous book for a young whipper snapper.
Job stopped, as Mostyn had, and gazed at the pond. Mostyn could see the boy’s mouth working as he muttered. Trotsky continued to stare at the pond, ignoring Bimbo’s grin.