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Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/view_item/item_id/1991275-Assisted-Audition
Rated: 13+ · Short Story · Adult · #1991275
An aspiring circus clown enlists the help of a clumsy passerby and a well-meaning friend
George was casually strolling down a street on a lazy Saturday afternoon when he heard what could only described as a high-pitched squeak coming from the backyard of the house he was walking by. Startled, George stopped walking and waited to see if there was any more noises to be heard. Concentrating as he was on the various sounds coming from the backyard (he thought he could faintly hear a conversation, too quiet to make out any specifics), he failed to notice the momentarily blocked out sun, or the flipping pastry that was obscuring it. He certainly noticed when aforementioned pastry landed with a resounding *thwack* straight on top of his head.

'Hmm,' He thought, running a a finger through the cream that was slowly seeping onto his forehead, bringing it in close for an inspection, '...the birds sure are getting big this year!'

His attention was again shifted as a bubbly, colorful young woman suddenly burst around from the side of the house. Her outfit clashed violently! She was wearing a pair of bright pink tights and a deep-purple wavy blouse, separated by a white tutu. Even brighter still was her face! She was fully covered in white makeup, with thinly arched black eyebrows. Her mouth had red paint extending slightly beyond her lips giving her a perpetual smile, and a bright, rosy blush applied generously to her cheekbones. Her look was topped off with the very tip of her nose painted red and a her hair pulled into a sideways ponytail. "Oh....! I'm so sorry! My friend got a little carried away, and..." she giggled, apologetic but still amused by his misfortune, "Come around back, we have towels and a hose."

She extends a white-gloved hand and introduces herself, "I'm Trixi! My friend and I were just practicing a part of this skit that I wrote, looks like you got caught in the crossfire!" She exclaims, continuing to giggle at the state of George's head. "Believe it or not, this is the first direct hit after half an hours worth of attempts!"

When the pair rounded the corner, George was greeted by the sight of foamy chaos. Big blobs of foamy cream were generously dabbled throughout the yard in a mostly random fashion. The chaos seemed to be centered around a couple of camcorders set up near the side of the house. They were clearly positioned to capture an action sequence from a different angles. Along the wall is a thick layer of cream, clear evidence of repeated pelting of pies. Next to the scene was a stack a heavy-duty paper plates and a large bin half filled with a thick, foamy mixture. Grumbling away next to it was Trixi's assumed partner in crime, who was slapping generous helpings of cream onto plates, splattering her outfit with tiny flecks of cream in the process. She was dressed in a similar manner to Trixi, only having her colors reversed. Her makeup wasn't quite as thick, either: she only had a splash of white over her eyes and around an exaggerated red-painted smile. Her red nose was wider than Trixi's, and her cheeks were adorned with several small black freckles painted just under eyes. Her hair had been brushed upwards and gelled in all sorts of crazy directions, giving her a look like she was perpetually walking into the wind. Other than those few differences, they looked practically the same, like a pair of clown twins!

"Pixi!!" Trixi called out cheerfully, getting her attention, "Look where that one landed!"

"Stop calling me that! My name is Penny and you know it!..." she starts, but is stricken into an embarrassed silence when she sees the creamy state of George. Traces of a deep crimson blush can be seen around the un-madeup portions of her face as she rushes over to apologize. "Omigosh, I'm so sorry mister! I have no idea how I threw one that far!"

"Well, my eyes were closed, so we're going to have to check the video," responds Trixi, who tosses a towel to George as she marches over to a laptop. The other two watch from over her shoulder as she tracks the video feed back a few minutes to examine the scene.

On the screen, Trixi is standing with her back to the wall with a big goofy grin on her face, leaning forward with her hands on her hips. She'd apparently just said a key phrase to cue Penny to throw the pie at her carefully presented face. Unfortunately, it seems like Penny was a terrible thrower, as evidenced by their overly creamy surroundings. After having tried and failed a number of times previously, she attempted a new way of throwing the creamy projectile -- like an olympic discus! Penny groaned at her poor attempt, and Trixi stopped the video, overcome with laughter.

"Wait, wait, if you think her throwing is bad, check out her catching!" Trixi exclaims in between fits of laughter. She rewinds the tape to several points where their positions are reversed. Trixi seemed to be an excellent thrower, all of her pies coming straight towards the reluctant looking Penny, who would squeak and dive, duck and dip out of the way at the last second each time. "See! What a total wuss," she chuckled, and gestured at the creamy surrondings, "... and what a mess! We can't seem to get this right! This sucks, I really wanted to include a good, old fashioned pie gag in my application to Circus Circus!"

"Oh, I had heard that the old clown that worked there for years is retiring, were you hoping to replace him?" George asked

"Uh huh," Trixi nodded excitedly, "I've been perfecting all my clowny skills, I already have several minutes showing off my juggling, balancing act and pratfalling. Ever since I was a little girl, I've always dreamed of being a clown in the circus! This pie gag is the cherry on top of my audition!"

"Well, I'm sorry I make such a lousy clown. When you asked me for help with your video audition, I thought you wanted me to hold the camera or something. I'm not cut out for this kind of silliness!" pouted Penny, whose showing skin was still practically the same hue as her nose from her earlier embarrassingly bad clowning attempts.

"I've got the rest of the afternoon free, maybe I could help you two with this scene," offered George.

"Of course, an extra clown, that's what this scene needs! If you gave 'Pixi' a little bump from behind just before I throw... she won't be able to dodge!" says Trixi, delighted for further help. "Perfect!"

"I figured that I'd be throwing the pie... I'm not even dressed like a... oh..." George started, before looking down at his clothing. He had to admit that he was dressed a little bit silly, with his baggy, patched brown pants and his green-checkered loose shirt. In his defense, it was laundry day!

As George was evaluating the clownishness of his clothing, Trixi was busy rummaging around in her bag of clown supplies. "Hmmm... just need to add a bit of flair to you... aha!" she yelled, yanking out a rainbow afro wig, an over-sized bowtie and a bulbous red nose. "These should do!" She slapped the garments onto George, who didn't look quite as well put together as the other two, but still managed to look quite ridiculous. Trixi arranged her fellow clowns into their positions: 'Pixi' in the front awaiting the oncoming dessert, and 'George' just behind, having snuck up behind her to give her a little bump.

"Wait, why does he get to be just 'George' when I have to be 'Pixi'?"

"Becauuuuuuuse billing two clowns with ridiculous names makes the third 'normal' name look even sillier!" admonishes Trixi as she skips to her position, brandishing her newly acquired pie. She continues with a giggle, "Don't worry, you'll come across as silly enough, I promise!"

Penny was truly a good friend, and so she only sighed slightly when 'Trixi' gave her the prompt for her line. Forcing herself to sound more enthusiastic than she felt, she extended her hand and belted out, "Give me that pie!' Right on cue, 'George' stepped into a push to the back of 'Pixi'. Unfortunately, mostly for George, he also stepped on Penny's dangling shoelace, which caused her to only make it one step forward before she was rapidly redirected toward the ground. The unexpectedness of the trip took her by complete surprise, and she landed flat on her face with a dull *thud*. 'At least the grass is soft,' thought Penny, who then heard a the followup *splat* of Trixi's pie. George, being a good deal taller than Penny, took the pastry right in the middle of his chest. It had exploded spectacularly, covering his entire torso up to his chin in cream.

'Ooh, that was great! If only I had aimed a little higher...' thought Trixi, forming a new plan on the fly. "Clumsy, George, veeeeeeeeeeeery clumsy!"

"Sorry," winced George, who was futilely wiping the pie off his shirt. He honestly didn't mean it!

"One more time! Places, people!!"

Penny once again nervously yelled out her loaded line, followed by George giving her a slightly more careful push, but he turned out to by unlucky once again. Penny's footing was covered in a slippery pile of excess cream from the previous pie, which caused her legs to shoot out from under her. She yelped as she suddenly fell ass-over-teakettle straight towards the pool of cream beneath her. With an undignified *squish*, her backside planted firmly into the mess.

George faired no better, as Trixi had assumed there would be another mishap from the uncoordinated duo and launched her pie slightly higher than last time. It soared right into George's face with a noisy *splat*! He was completely creamed, the only recognizable feature was the bump outwards in the mess caused by his overly large clown nose.

Trixi walked over to her splattered helpers, clutching her sides from laughter. "You two are naturals! Are you sure you've never studied clowning before?"

George, having realized that he'd been had, stormed over to the bin of pie cream and quickly assembled another pie. He may not have studied clowning before, but he was a pretty decent pitcher! Trixi blew a raspberry at him while she carefully repositioned herself. He pulled back his dripping, sloppy creation and threw a hard throw straight at Trixi's smiling face, who elegantly leaned to the side to dodge.

Meanwhile, behind Trixi, Penny had just gathered herself up and was busy wiping the cream off her bum, totally oblivious to clowny mayhem happening to the side of her. That only lasted a moment, as the previously hurled pie crashed into the side of her head in a brilliant explosion of cream. She stopped rigidly in her attempts to clean herself and slowly turned to face her attacker. "You...!" she spluttered, pointing an accusing figure at George. He gulped, and took off running with Penny in hot persuit.

Trixi continued to giggle to herself as she pranced her way over to the bucket of foam. Carefully observing the pattern of the two fools running about the yard, she deposited the bucket in a particular spot with a *thunk*, a little splurge of cream shooting out the top of it from the force. Giddily, she scooped up a heaping mound of cream onto another pie plate, and whistled to get George's attention as she let her pie fly.

George, concentrating on evading Penny's vengeful grasp and not at all noticing his collision course, narrowly ducked his creamy fate. The pie continued onwards and exploded with a puff of cream in Penny's face, who was blown off her feet from the unexpected assault. George laughed at her from over his shoulder, greatly amused by the huge mass of cream that envoloped her face. The only part of her face that was clear of cream was her mouth, which had fallen open into a shocked 'O'. Her stunned state made for not only a great comedic effect, but also a brilliant distraction, as George was too busy laughing at her misfortune to notice Trixi having repositioned herself in front of the bucket filled with pie froth, her foot extended in a conspicuous manner. George continued forward and tripped right over the clowns' leg, flipping him straight into the rest of the foam. Cream burst out in all directions as George's feet dangled in the air.

With her two fools thoroughly delt with, Trixi made a turn towards the camera, gave it a wink and theatrical bow and went to turn off the cameras. 'I'm a shoe-in after that performance,' she thought. She hosed off her compadres, profously thanked them for their help and sent them on their way. George had no hard feelings about the affair; he was always getting himself into sticky situations, at least this one helped a nice young lady! Penny was a bit more begrudging, but ultimately was happy that she could help her friend. Besides, it wasn't that bad. She was initially embarrassed, but had started to warm up to the sounds of her friends' laughter.

*********

A couple of weeks later, George was stepping into a coffee shop to meet his two new(ish) friends. Tara (Trixi, when she was out of character!) had told him that she had great news! He spied them at the end of the shop, and slid up next to them. Tara was practically bouncing in her seat from excitement, whereas Penny had a grim, ashen look to her.

"Guess who's the newest clown act over at Circus Circus!" She cried as George sat down, unable to contain herself.

"Congratualtions! It really is perfect for you"

Her grin widened, "Us! It's perfect for us!"

She slid a letter forward, and George read, 'Trixi, Pixi, and George, thank you so much for your application! Your chemistry really blew the competition out of the water! We'd love to hire you straight away. We hope that you have many similarly hilarious skits as the one you showed at the end of your demo reel. Regards, Ringmaster Lynn'

"Wait, why do they want us all together? I thought that was your application!"

Tara shrugged apologetically and slid her phone across the table to George. "I might have been a little creative with the editing of the footage..." The ensuing footage was of the various silly scenes at his and Penny's expense spliced together, rewound and extra-hammed up for comedic effect. She even put their chase scene to Benny Hill's Yakety Sax! "I hope you're not too busy, they want us to do four shows a week!"

George looked back and forth between Tara and Penny, the former who was batting her long eyelashes and giving him the puppy-dog eyes, and the latter who was thoroughly embarrassed. "Oh, what the heck. It's only a bit of harmless fun! But just you wait, I'm going to get you back for those tricks you played before!" threatened George, in a good-natured fashion. He extended his hand in an act of solidarity towards the middle of the table. Tara cheered, and slapped her hand down on top of his.

Penny groaned, her head dropping into her hands. What had she gotten herself into? She had always been such a serious person, how will anyone ever take her seriously when she has 'professional clown' on her resumé? Still, it was so important to Tara, who had been such a good friend to her for so long... she tentatively put her hand on top of Tara's. "Okay, I'll try it. But if I don't like it, you're going to have to find yourself a replacement!"

"Yaaaaaay!!!" exclaimed Tara, who threw herself across the table to hug her two new coworkers. In the process, she knocked over the table and the chair that she was sitting on.

"Hey!! Watch what you're doing, you clowns!" yelled the barista, which was met with a chuckle, a giggle and a groan.

To be continued...
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Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/view_item/item_id/1991275-Assisted-Audition