Daily Flash Fiction 9/2/21 W/C 299
“Throw a cup through the wheel! Win a prize!” The barker yelled his chant all day. Day in, day out, the same invitation.
One night at the campfire, Bart complained.
“I don’t know about the rest of you carneys, but I am sick to death of this. It’s the same every day. ‘Throw a cup through the wheel. Win a prize.’ As if anyone can do this. You know how many today? Two. It’s rigged. But I have to scream that every day.”
“At least you don’t have to squeeze fat people into small seats.” Hairy Henry shook his head. “Hate that job.”
“That’s an ugly thing to say. Some of us can’t help it,” said Dimpled Dottie. “I have a glandular condition.”
Mark the Monkey jumped about, “What about me? I have to dance on the roof of a little house. Pet cruelty.” Then he chittered and chattered in the language of monkeys that no one understood.
“Never mind him. He got stiffed on a tip by a guest today.” The Marvelous Murphy threw a flame to restart the campfire, then practiced some magic tricks.
“I think we’re all just at that ‘it’s-halfway-through-the run-of-the-carnival’ blues. We’re stuck in nowhere Nebraska. Three more weeks to go. So let’s make the best of it.” Shirley smiled.
“Yeah, well, take your cotton candy stand and pound sand,” said Bart.
They argued until dawn. When Buddy of Buddy’s Carnivals arrived to open the gates, he found the site clean as a whistle. Not one ride, not one booth, not one vehicle.
“What the…” he yelled.
Meanwhile, the carnival refugees trundled down I-80 on the way to Mark the monkey’s family home at Critter Country in Wyoming where they hoped to make the best of it.