When you watch a ventriloquist do you ever wonder which one's the dummy?
By Stephen A Abell – Tuesday 12th January 2021.
Number of Words: 1373
“Gottle o’ gear. Gottle o’ gear.” The man holding the dummy looked uncomfortable on the narrow stage.
“Oh, for fucks sake, get off the fuckin’ stage you fuckin’ idiot.” The heckler, sitting to the right, shouted.
“Why don’t you shut up?” The woman sitting at the adjacent table rebuked the ventriloquist's tormentor. “It’s open mike night. The guy’s got five minutes. Go for a drag if you don’t like ‘im.”
“Yeah, fuck-wit,” the voice was deep and ominous, “sod off outside and go pull on a pinner.” Silence fell in the intimate room, and all eyes shifted back to the stage.
“Fuck, yeah!” The heckler laughed.
“I fucking love stoners.” The wooden puppet continued, “They’re so wasted, the idiots will laugh at almost anything. Check this out. The dummy with his hand up my arse forgot to introduce me. The name is Johnny Woodencock.”
The heckler was guffawing heavily, and a few other patrons joined in with the laughter. “Woodencock, I fuckin’ love it.”
“Well, you do look like a man who loves cock, wooden or otherwise.”
The put-down drew an “Ooh!” from the crowd as the stoner spluttered, “Fuck you, man.”
“See, what did I say?” The crowd were getting into it and the laughter was growing. “Hey, Just because I have a blokes arm stuffed up my arse all day doesn’t mean I’m a homo. So all you Rainbow Wavers can stop sending me your dick picks. I ain’t interested.
“Truth be told, I’m a trans lesbian so if there are any lesbo’s out there who want to share a piccy or two, feel free to forward them to me.
“Hey, I gotta get my splinters off one way or another. Don’t fuckin judge me.”
“Hey little dude,” the heckler spluttered through his laughter, “you’re more fucked up than I am.”
“You think so?” The man bobbed his head vigorously. “Yet, you’re the doped up arsehole talking to a fucking puppet.” The crowd whooped their delight.
The man stood up and staggered over to the stage. Wavering on his feet, he leaned in toward the ventriloquist, “Are you trying to make me look like a fuckin’ idiot?”
“Now, why would I do that,” the dummy continued. Every eye moved from the man sat on the stool to the carved effigy on his lap. Even the stoner’s attention reverted to the wooden man. “You’re doing such a great job of that yourself.”
“Hey, why you pickin’ on me?”
“You started it, shithead, I thought it was open season on morons… and there you were, sitting right in front of me. Talk about an easy target.”
A bloke standing at the bar spoke to the friend standing by his side, “About time fuckers like them got schooled.”
“Damn right.” Declared a woman sitting at a table in the centre of the comedy club.
The audience was getting enraged, and Woodencock cherished it.
“Shut the fuck up,” the stoner ranted as he stomped back to his seat, “you lousy fuckers are no better than me.” He picked up the remains of his pint and guzzled it in one. “Come on then, let me ‘ave it. Rip me some more. Get your cheap laughs at my expense.”
“There once was a stoner who walked into a comedy club,
He picked on the ventriloquist and caused such a hubbub,
But the thing he didn’t realise,
Though it was right before his eyes,
Was that Woodencock was no dummy but Beelzebub.
With wit and words, he cut the druggie down to size,
The audience applauded and laughed at the chastise,
But little did they know,
This was more than a show,
It was a mere diversion to allow the daemons to arise.”
“What the fuck?” The man at the bar interposed over the silence which had descended. “That wasn’t even funny.”
“Hey, Dick,” the stoner cried gleefully, “looks like you’re losing your audience.”
“Yes, the peasants do indeed appear to be revolting… very revolting indeed.”
“Hah, the little prick had a fuckin’ cheap shot at me, now ‘e’s callin’ you guys revoltin’. Are you gonna take that shit from a dummy?”
“His time’s up anyway. So he can fuck off and never come back.” This came from the women who had chided the druggie at the start
of the routine.
“Very well,” Woodencock conceded, “But before I go, I have a question for all of you.” He paused until silence pervaded. “Think about this. Who do you believe the dummy is?”
There was a multitude of hushed and bemused whispers fluttering through the room between the gathered patrons and friends.
As always it was the stoner who spoke up, “We’re the fuckin’ dummies for taking this bullshit. Now, do as the lady said an’ Fuck Off!”
Woodencock stood up on the ventriloquist's lap. The ventriloquist elevated his idle hand and Woodencock reached up, seized the wrist, and hoisted himself free from the man’s arm. “Now, that is better. God my sphincter is wrecked. One of these days I’ll have a prolapse. At least then I’ll be able to do porno.” He joked as he jumped to the floor. No sooner had his feet left the knees of the ventriloquist then the man slumped and slid onto the ground, like a rag doll.
“Huh,” the stoner stammered, “what the fuck? How?”
“Chill man, it’s just a fuckin’ drug-induced illusion… just like that daemon on your back.”
Slowly, the heckler twisted his head to the side Woodencock was pointing. Tendrils of whispery smoke stroked his shoulder. While he watched in amazement, they began taking a more rigid form. Nails. They were lengthy and lethal. They were not nails. They were talons. For a delusion, this was the most realistic he had experienced; he could feel the claws sharp sting through his hoodie. His gaze continued to shift back, over his shoulder. These wisps of smoke were transforming into something more bestial. The head of the delusion was a cross between an Eagle and a Doberman Pincer. It had a cuttingly cruel beak, and inside that beak was the most fearsome set of teeth he had ever witnessed. Saliva dripped from them and hung in hideous webs. The creature's eyes were the worst though. They were dead, soulless, but moreover, they were starved.
Woodencock was strolling nonchalantly around the chaos in the comedy club, “Please let me introduce you to your daemons.” His arms swept an all-encompassing arc in the air. “These are my brethren. My brothers and sisters. Above all, however, they are your children. You birthed us from your anger, your fears, your prejudices. You fed us with your constant hate, loathing, bigotry, and misconceptions.
“That prick on stage hated everything. He detested his shyness but hid away from the world. His anxiety grew and he began hating everyone different to himself. He cut himself and blamed his parents, his family, the Pakistanis next door, the black family across the road. To him, they were to blame for the state of the world and by that logic, for his downfalls. It took a lot to get him here tonight for this gathering. I’ve possessed this fucking dummy long enough.”
Woodencock exploded into a million shards as smokey wings flapped into the air. “There comes a time when every new hatchling must leave the nest. So thank you for the delicious feasts you have provided us. But your usefulness has come to an end. Don’t fret, though, you can still sustain us for a little while longer.
The club erupted with screams, and the sounds of crunching bones, and the wet ripping of flesh, and slurp of viscous body fluids, and horrid sloppy mastication as the daemons gorged themselves.
Once the banquet was over Woodencock the daemon stood tall and recited, “O pater inferi portas iam pascua plena exoptatissimo nobis aperta est.” (Oh father of hell, now our feeding is complete open up the gates and welcome us home)
Center stage a blue-white light shimmered. As they watched, the light expanded.
“Come, brothers and sisters, the father is welcoming us home. Let’s leave this depressing world and its people for paradise and pleasure.” On substantial wings, the daemons took flight and soared through the open portal.