One day as Collin Carlen was walking down past Cutter lane, towards the creek where he would sit in the sun and fish until the sun disappeared. He passed an old Oak tree, where he saw a rabbit creep out from the shadows. The little white animal turned and looked towards Collin. It smiled reveling bits of chewed up carrots. Then it scampered off down the street, disappearing underneath the red barn fence that separated the old Wilkins farm from the road.
Collin looked towards the direction that his furry friend ran off in. The barn was not empty as it always had been. Lines of big long trucks painted with the most wonderful scenes, had took residence inside the old deserted farmland.
They must have built a campfire because it was hard to see through all the smoke. Although it looked more like fog then smoke from an open fire. Colin heard low soft music, and he could occasionally hear the tone of men laughing, as hammers clanged and drills let off. Hammerers and saws, and soothing carnie music, low whistles and the smell of popcorn all came from within the barn.
Colin’s curiosity kicked in and he soon dropped his old bait and tackle box. As he approached the red fence the smoke seemed to roll away, and Collin was looking at the most lovely sight. A tanned woman wearing a golden crown, dressed in a tight brown body dress, decorated with a lovely brown sash was belly dancing to the enchanting music. A group of men had stood around her, admiring this beautiful sight.
Her long black hair swung over her shoulders, delicately teasing the front of her amble chest. As her hands came out in front of her, clasped together then rose up above her head, while her hips swayed wonderfully to the music.
“What are you looking at boy?”
A dark raspy voice came from behind Colin. Upon hearing this voice, Colin felt fear and stumbled forward. He grabbed unto the fence and his hands felt a strong surge of energy.
“Don’t be freighted boy, I won’t hurt you.” A rather short man spoke. He was dressed in old ratty Middle Eastern clothes. His stomach was very large and sat out a considerable distance from his belt. He wore a white turban and in the middle was a green glowing stone. He smelled of incense and whisky, oil and after-shave.
“The name is Mingo, the mad. Moreover, this is my carnival, now what are you doing here? Your not spouse to know about this, no one is.”
“I am sorry sir but I was walking towards the creek, when I noticed a rabbit. The animal ran off and I followed. He led me to this, what is this place.” Colin spoke.
“It is so beautiful.”
“This is all your fault.” The man’s dark eyes clenched shut and he reached into the inside of his robe.
Colin stepped back in fear convinced that Mingo was reaching for a gun, or perhaps a sword. Instead, the man produced a rabbit, the very same rabbit that Colin had seen.
“Bad Blackie” Mingo sad as he stroked the rabbit’s fur. Then he produced a rather strange looking carrot from beneath his turban. When Blackie saw the carrot, he immediately stood on his hind legs, pawing into the ear and shaking his head.
“Strange animal, it has a nasty habit of drawing unwanted attention. Now boy I have seen you looking and you know what you saw.”
“It’s wonderful mister, completely enchanting. May I go in and take a look around?”
Mingo smiled and dropped the white rabbit, only when it landed it had transformed into a black cat. The cat turned and meowed. Then ran off and got lost inside of the tress.
“Inside of there boy, are pleasures beyond your wildest imagination, sights, sounds and tricks of the eye. We will not be open until Friday. You can come back and see more then.”
Still in awe of the cat changing rabbit, Colin felt his curiosity grew even stronger. The music was getting louder, the scent of the popcorn stronger. He would not, no he could not take no for an answer.
Mingo had turned around and was walking back towards the trucks and the gypsy tents. Colin ran up and tapped Mingo on his shoulder.
“Oh please my good sir, let me in just for but a moment. I promise I will not get in the way.”
Mingo’s body was soft; it was as if Colin had stuck his finger into a feathered pillow.
“Go away boy, you can come when the rest of the town comes.” Mingo said as he kept walking straight, refusing to turn and face his bemused companion.
“I promise not to get in the way, I just want to see that woman, and see her close. Plus the popcorn scent is teasing my nose, can you please let me in, I promise to be on my best behavior. If you are worried about me swiping something, please know that I will not. I have not stolen anything since Taking Laura Fern’s red lipstick in the third grade. Honest mister I will not cause any trouble. You will not even know that I am there.”
“Yes I will, and so will you.” Mingo turned and faced Colin.
“You see Colin; once you enter you may never leave.” Suddenly Mingo’s eyes were bright green as green as the jewel on his turban. Colin stepped backwards in fear.
“How is it that you know my name? “ Colin asked as Mingo started to walk towards the frightened boy.
“Because I know everything Colin, I know more then you can even imagine.” From behind Mingo came an army of rabbits. They all started towards Colin, their soft wet pink noses were twitching as they approached.
“I know this town, I know you boy, and it’s all so familiar. The stench of its evilness nauseates me. The vile filth and corruption makes my stomach turn with the force of a cyclone.”
Colin watched in horror as from thin air a carousel appeared over by a group of men with painted faces. Their clown paint was smeared with oil, and drops of blood ran down there painted faces.
“You will all ride Colin; you will all go for a spin.”
The rabbits began to shriek and shake, there fur started to fall out at an alarming rate.
“I told you to leave boy, yet you refuse.”
Suddenly the rabbits started to grow in length, they were bold and the pink skin began to transform into bodies of men. The men screamed into the air during the transformation.
Mingo laughed an evil laugh as Colin turned to run. He smacked into what felt like a brick wall, and tumbled face first onto the ground. His jeans ripped right at his left knee. Blood began to ooze out of the fresh cut. He turned his head and realized that he had ran smack dab into a huge man with clown paint on his face. The rest of the men surrounded him. They all had the same paint, with the same grease and blood covering. They wore tattered clothing and golden slippers and on each, one of their foreheads was that same green jewel.
“Bring him to the Cyclone Now!” Mingo shouted. ” He has seen too much.”
The grips of the men were strong, and rough. They grabbed and clawed at Colin’s shoulder and shirt. Tearing his black Reebok shirt in to two pieces and then off his body. Exposing Colin’s frail teenage chest for the whole world to see.
“Let me go” Colin screamed but his cries of protest were ignored. He felt weightless and sedated as he was being carried up to the carousel. The claws of the men were sharp and unforgiving. They dug deep into his flesh, but Colin felt at peace. He no longer struggled. A warm energy filled his chest and made its way throughout his whole entire body. An odd sense of peace, maybe even desire began to take hold of his mind. The closer he got to the ride, the more comfterable he became. He no longer feared the men; he no longer dreaded the horses. He now felt an overpowering desire to join them. To let it all go and become one with the carnie.