Jack in the Box
There was no question of it, Mr Blenkinsop was irritated. He was still out of breath from the effort it had taken him to get to the park and in his overcoat on a warm morning too; and now disappointment had taken its toll on his usual enthusiasm in spite of the fine weather.
He’d taken a number 47 bus from the city to the small group of shops near the park entrance, intending to fortify himself with a mug of sweet tea and a raisin bun, but the Cafe had been closed for some sort of work involving cement dust and a lot of loud noise, so he’d gone next door to the only place that was open, a horrible American franchise convenience store where he’d purchased a “fruit bun” in an airtight plastic bag and a cup of scalding watery tea in a styrofoam receptacle from a machine operated by a thin-lipped, very dark Indian man who seemed to be hairy in unexpected places.
It was a comparatively short distance from the shops to the entrance of the park, but it was uphill and the sun was hot. By the time he passed the sandstone columns that marked the gate he was hot, out of breath and slimy with sweat inside his clothes. Still he almost jog-trotted along in the sun painfully aware that the afternoon was passing and that he would miss the sweet spot of “rush hour” in the park, and, of course the all-important main event. As a last gasp, the path curved and climbed up and past the Men’s toilets near the fence next to the main road. He hoped they were empty, Mr Blenkinsop tromped past the bed of flowering yellow (Tulips) without glancing at them. His eyes remained fixed on the toilet block ahead. So far it seemed deserted. This was good. Sometimes homosexual men met there and huddled conspiratorially at the urinals, darting suspicious looks at him that made him uncomfortable, worse than that sometimes one (or more) of them would have taken possession of one of the toilet cubicles in which case they would probably be producing noises too unappetising to be easily ignored. The toilets appeared to be empty, except for one young man at the urinal busily engaged in shaking off any remaining droplets of urine that might adhere his penis. Judging by the energy that appeared to be required, it seemed that the young man pissed glue.
The young man looked over his shoulder at Mr Blenkinsop, and instantly recoiled at the look that was returned to him; put his penis away, pulled the chain to flush the urinal and took care not to brush against Mr. Blenkinsop on his way out of the toilets. For his part Mr Blenkinsop recoiled slightly and pressed against the door post to allow more space for his passage. The young man padded down the sunny concrete steps and away down the bitumen path towards the thick shrubbery so popular with those of his kind.
The toilets were empty! Almost running, Blenkinsop crossed the floor and pirhouhretted into the first cubicle, easing the door shut behind him to avoid the sound of a slam that might announce his presence to representatives of oppressive authority who might be lurking outside, avidly listening at the ventilation holes in the pale brick walls. It was typical, the sequence of movements, so swiftly rehearsed in his mind as he crossed the floor, resulted in the knuckle of his left forefinger being caught sharply between the door and the jamb. He hissed in pain, rescued his finger and sucked at the injured knuckle only stopping when the pain had abated enough for him to gather his wits and reflect on the Freudian symbology of his activity. Wincing at the pain in his finger, he started adjusting his clothes. First he removed his belt allowing his loose poly cotton trousers to drop into a pool around his ankles. Then, fingers quivering, he hooked the black suspender belt around his waist, feeling a flash of self satisfaction that, despite his odd diet and lack of exercise, he still had a slim and girlish figure, unlike Kate, who had seemed to balloon in size almostby the day since their marriage. How like mother Kate was becoming! Even her voice was developing an all-too-familiar rasp; perhaps the snoring had damaged her in some way. He pushed the thought from his mind, gave his naked cock and balls an affectionate squeeze and sat on the toilet suppressing a flush of disgust at the feeling of his trench coat forming a layer between his naked arse and the toilet. Hereached down for his trousers draped them across his knees, took the dressmakers scissors that Kate would never miss because she never used them, and surprisingly swiftly cut both legs off the trousers at mid-thigh level. This action left him with a pair of frayed cuff shorts that any young freak would be happy to wear while skateboarding down the High Street, and two fabric tubes each of which had once been a trouser-leg. He pulled the right tube up his right leg and then fastened it in place with the clips of the suspender belt. It was quite easy, the fabric was quite thin and accomodating and he only had to cut one “buttonhole” with the scissors. When he had done both legs, he stood and was gratified to see that the cuffs of both “legs” draped convincingly over the tops of his beige loafers.
He was already starting to become erect in anticipation.
His original plan – the one he had lain in bed and thought up night after night as Kate practised her sleep apnoea in her sunken into a hammock bed in the next room, keeping him awake through two doors – had been that he’d stake out a spot in the “homosexual shrubbery” since it had seemed safe enough when viewed at a distance through the lens of his imagination, but now that it lay the in stark focus in front of him, definitely containing at least one amorous homosexual, the idea filled him with trepidation that seemed to be insurmountable. How like Mother Kate was becoming! Even her voice was developing the same rasp! The familiar thought made him huddle in its headlights
He looked around, ravening for another diversion before the main event. There. Ten metres from where he stood, on the edge of the grass beside the path to the side of the path, stood a group of four bright plastic litter bins prominently labelled with the kind of trash that was supposed to be deposited in them. As usual throughout the park the bins were full to overflowing despite the fact that the “bin-Chicken” birds had done their best to empty them onto the ground, eating that which appealed to them and shitting on the rest preparatory to emitting large numbers of foul smelling lice-infested, yellow-grey feathers as they flew off to repeat their activities at the next overflowing bin.
Mr Blenkinsop to scuttled to the bins at a nonchalant trot that was almost an all out sprint, feeling the silky lining of his trench coat rub on his naked loins. The sensation drove him mad with an emotion that was far beyond simple arousal. He squatted behind the bins so that they formed a wall between him and the path. The spilled rubbish stank. It seemed as if a barbecue chicken was rotting under the piles of rancid sugary drink cans, bird shit and feathers. Away to his left, in the park, he heard approaching footsteps and low voices. He rose slightly and peeked down the path through a triangular chink between a twisted can that had contained orange drink and a Pizza box. A fly politely moved to allow him to see a young mother, a bundle of joy and a little princess in a fairy dress heading along the path toward him. The princess carried a pinwheel which she swiped through the air to make the propellors twinkle. Her mother beamed maternally at her princess.
It was all Mr.Blenkinsop could do to restrain himself from springing his trap just then, but his predatory instinct restrained him -let the tension mount! To pass the fateful last seconds of this phase of his evolution, he masturbated. It was all he could do not to orgasm, to slow himself down, he thought of the gangrenous spree on his mother’s feet. Rubbing the ointment in after school hadn’t helped, the diabetes had killed her anyway.
Closer. Another fly flew into his peeking hole and busied itself with the syrupy dregs of orange drink. Its activities in the can were surprisingly loud. The sun beat down, almost hot today after three days of drizzle. In a moment of silence from the can he caught the little girls voice, ”Are you sure we’ll see them Mum?”
“I think so sweetie, they aren’t due for 30 minutes and the crowds don’t seem too thick.”
The Princess nodded, she seemed satisfied with this answer.
Wait for it, wait for it..
“*AVENGER!!” * “
Mr Blenkinsop burst from behind the bins as the little family passed, less than three metres away, his trench coat was held wide open and his turgid manhood bobbed like an arrow that had just found its mark.
The woman levitated approximately half a metre in the air and screamed. When she landed the high heel of her white sandal turned underneath her and she fell in a tangle of legs to the bitumen path. Mr Blenkinsop wallowed in his unimpeded view of the crotch of her white cotton knickers.
“What the Fucking fuck do you think you’re fucking doing you Fuckwit?” The young mother screamed at the Avenger – who was prepared to make allowances – the woman was obviously hysterical.
The tiny princess took over she had a voice like a bandsaw cutting clock springs
“Yeah! Ya fucking pervert. Fuck off or I’ll call the cops!- There’s a car just there!” She pointed up the rise to the steel bar fence that separated the park from the road.
The Avenger saw the crowds had thickened and some incurious faces were indeed turned their way In the jumble of bodies. He could make out the shape of a police motorbike, leaning against the fence. His resolve wilted. Return to Plan A. He stood up, squared his shoulders and stepped back, turned and mustering as much dignity as he could manage, walked up the path towards the Park Gate and the crowds gathered at the road. The crowds were thinner at the back and it was still early.
It was easy to sidle through the crowd until it thickened up and became more truculent about two metres from the kerb, but he managed to insert himself through the throng, suppressing shivers of disgust at bodily contact until he had completey crossed the broad nature strip and balanced on the concrete kerb between a thin woman with remarkable halitosis and dry, brittle, red hair tied back in a simple ponytail and on his left, a man in his thirties, who gave the impression of having taken the afternoon off work on the pretext of an appointment with his cardiologist and who fumbled with a large camera that seemed very new. From where he stood Mr Blenkinsop was elevated perhaps twenty centimetres higher than the crowd in front of him which completely filled the left hand of four lanes of road, up to the barriers that kept the cordoned off the lanes that the motorcade would use.
Mr Blenkinsop was infuriated. While the view he was furnished with was very fine for a normal parade participant he was anything but that, and the fact that he was functionally invisible from the front from the chest down was a problem that required immediate remediation. Time passed. To confirm this, many people in the crowd consulted their portable timepieces, of whatever type. As the magic time approached, the level of excitement increased palpably. Children cried and were duly shushed, old people complained and sheltered under souvenir copies of the newspaper. Here and there they collapsed out of the hot sun into the shade and comparative cool between the crowds legs. One older man collapsed midway between Mr Blenkinsop and the crowd barrier. The surface of heads adjusted themselves like a lake accepting the arrival of a thrown rock. After several minutes a paramedic arrived and removed the owner of a sunburnt bald head who should have worn a hat. The lake adjusted itself to this too, and by some amazing chance Mr Blenkinsop found himself pushed and swirled by the current until he stood in the very front row of the crowd only slightly flustered, waiting for nothing to stand between him and his moment of transfiguration.
Away to his right, the crowd was roaring. The volume was growing as the wave rolled down the street toward him, as fast as a horse could trot. Around him the crowd became animate, making spasmodic movements that accomplished nothing. People put bags down to rest their hands, other people picked up bags to protect the bags from the blind feet of the crows. Phones were held aloft like periscopes and then lowered and re-pocketed when it was agreed that, despite the noise, there was nothing to see yet aside from a forest of arms holding mobile phones. Mr Blenkinsop swayed slightly on his perch on the kerb, fixated on a highway patrolman who seemed to consider the niceness of the day and the festival atmosphere as some kind of personal insult, his gimlet eyes mowed down the front row of the crowd. The cold blue-grey eyes stopped. Mr Blenkinsop quailed inwardly but the Avenger stood firm.
A young child, a boy of at most four or five forced himself through the narrow space between Mr Blenkinsop’s right leg and the scrawny buck-toothed woman next to him. The child ducked under the crowd barrier and out into the parade route where he stopped in the middle of the deserted asphalt and looked up the street in the direction of the approaching parade. After a second he used the flat of his right hand to shade his eyes, a second after that his hand magically transformed itself into a telescope into which he squinted. A further second passed, he shouted “Mum! I think I can see them!” At the same moment that his mother shouted “Joshua come back here, where its safe!” A bare split second before the patrolman started walking towards little Joshua and saying, “Get back with your mother, kid, you aren’t allowed on the road.” His eyes flicked off Joshua and back onto Mr. Blenkinsop but the momentary distraction seemed to have sapped them of suspicion and rendered them bland. “Go-on kid, your mother’s waiting” his voice had become kinder, placatory, to still the tears and probable hysterics that seemed likely.
The wave of crowd-roar topped the hill to the right Mr.Blenkinsop and grew suddenly louder. In sympathy, the crowd around him grew more excited, more animated – the periscope phones and a man within metres of Blenkinsop wearing a black baseball cap embroidered with the word “Ford” told his very pale and very sunburnt wife, “ I can see them, they just topped the rise!”
She replied; ”plenty of time left then.”
Laying the workings of their relationship open to anyone who could be bothered observing.
The excitement in the crowd increased, manifesting itself in a large number of isolated movements that resulted in a general pressing forward of the herd. Mr Blenkinsop was spared most of the forward motion and managed to precariously maintain his perch on the kerb, but many didn’t, stepping down into the gutter but keeping their position there, heeding the warning shouts of the police. It was a dangerous moment. Had anyone actually fallen they would most likely have been trampled by the crush of people, a possibility everyone, especially the Police, seemed aware of.
Mr. Blenkinsop could see them now, less than fifty metres away, six huge white horses, each arrayed with a white feather plume, pulling an ornate white, four-wheel open-top carriage of pearlescent wood and gold rococo trim. The coachman in a white satin tailcoat and shining white top-hat; all elements together combining into a vision of profound opulence and unattainable fairytale splendour, and reclining inside the vision, in each other’s arms, the bride and groom. The only way that the crowd could deal with the excitement the vision caused in them was to cheer, ecstatically. The red head mother of Joshua rather lacking in inspiration shouted repeatedly “Best wishes to the bride and groom”, repeatedly and each time she did it, she threw a single white long-stemmed rose at the objects of her affection, like a dart. The man in the “Ford” cap shouted “Huzzah” repeatedly until his face was doubly red from sunburn and exertion. His wife stayed mostly silent except for a thin reedy squeal not unlike an over-filled kettle reaching the boil.
The Avenger revealed himself at the moment the carriage was parallel. His rampant power throbbed, ready to explode of its own accord. Joshua looked up then looked away. The young bride was gently kissing her new husband who, as luck would have it, was facing away from the Avenger. The bride’s bright blue right eye singled The Avenger out of the crowd, gazed like a cornered deer into his blazing eyes, and glanced down at his full glory, gave a single great guttural guffaw directly into her husband’s face; and pointed.
As long as the crowd remained ignorant of his true identity, he was safe enough.
(C) Alex Rieneck, 2019
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