Episode 8: Umwelt: Two Bit Whore

Rinky dink jaunt of a piano plucked honky-tonk tune spills out to the street. High kicked as a can-can leg it rips into tender ears. Minnie raises full skirts, booted feet. Larks in a circle around grinning Slimm. Flashes garters, teeth and sparkles, happy as a pig on acid.

Turns a figure eight. Careens round Slimm, round Margo, humming off-key, eyes a-twinkle. Margo leaps in behind, dances a ragged jig. Minnie’s hum becomes a little ditty.

‘Two bit whore and not a penny more, I’ll suck ya till ya raw, you can dislocate my jaw…’

Margo stops dead. Applauds. ‘Love it, love it,’ she yells. ‘We’re so fucking cheap you could stamp made in China on our arses.’

‘Sweat shop sex slave!’ Minnie shouts, kicks up heels till frilly knickers flash at passers by.

Margo grabs Minnie’s arms, squeezes tight, pert nose to perky nose. ‘I ain’t slavin’ if I can get me a quid for sucking some wanker’s cock,’ she says, then hollers, ‘Easy money. I could suck an egg out of a hurricane.’

Minnie howls to the clear blue circle of sky above, the tumultuous wall of grey wrapped tight as fist around it. Grins ear to ear. Shouts, ‘You could suck the gold out of a seam.’

Margo roars, ‘Darling, I could suck the holy off a nun.’

Minnie collapses against Margo’s tits, spilling all cream and bounce out of a rigid bodice into a froth of lace. Sucks air like she needs an inhaler. Slaps a stockinged thigh.

‘Wassat I heah?’ throaty voice rides on the honky-tonk smooth as a land ship on the desert. ‘Brang that mouth over heah shugah, show mamma them lips.’

Over the saloon door, huge obese creation of purest ebony, glitzy amber eyes, a mass of curling hair wild and vicious as snakes. All of it bright, livid red so pure it’s like a field of poppies grown on a cranium.

Margo squeals delight. Races over. Grabs handfuls of the mass, rubs it all over her face.

‘This colour,’ she declares, her voice a purr loud as Mr Rat the cat’s, ‘is beyond fucking sexual.’

Mamma bares teeth so large, bright and white, Margo squints. ‘Well shugah,’ ripples that engine thrum honeycomb of a voice, ‘them lips is as purdy as that face, and them tittays o’ yours’d make a blind man weep at a hunerd paces. Hers too,’ she tips her great head at Minnie, who plumps up her tits with both hands and flutters eyelashes. ‘Ah cud find work fer y’all easy as winking.’

Slimm struts forward, curls a hand about Minnie’s waist. ‘Well now,’ he drawls, ‘reckon you best make it worth my while if you’re thinkin’ to hire my girls.’

Mamma’s eyes narrow. Assessing. You can see the money roll in the black voids of her pupils. Calculated calculations flitting fast as fireflies.

‘Fiddy fiddy if ah get’s em workin on the Peggy Dunne. She a land freighter due in this eve’nin. Always has a mess o’ passengers off the mines. Reckon they’ll pay out the left nostril fer some genuine purebred white girl tittay.’

‘Sixty forty to me, not a penny less,’ Slimm sneers. Minnie damn near turns to a pile of lemon yellow drool. Slimm pinches her arm hard, hisses in her ear, ‘not here darling, not here,’ as mamma debates the cut.

‘You,’ mamma declares in her honey machine drawl, ‘has cut yerself a deal. If she,’ mamma points a fat finger at melting Minnie, ‘kin do that on a john we’ll be rollin’ in readies bah midnaht.’

Margo, still attached to red hair like a human barnacle, ripples out a giggle merry as a bottle of gin. ‘Oh, honey,’ she tells mamma, ‘the things me and Minnie can do are going to have those johns ready to roll you to the high life.’

Mamma turns a beady peeper on Margo. ‘You ain’t shittin?’

Margo steps back, strikes a pose. A riot of forms and fancies trip over her in delicate fluctuations. Silver and brass, the jut of a katana. Iridescent silk over subtle milky skin. Leather on sculpted scales of brightest copper, supple as satin. They keep coming, focus and fade, an endless parade of exotic Margo’s.

Mamma’s palms smack together. Rise to pursed lips. Her amber eyes bug and stare. Then she lets out a bolt of belly laugh so deep and rich you could bake chocolate cake from it.

‘Oh mah dahlin, dahlin ‘hos,’ she says, ‘if I was even a little bit into snatch I’d suck your little clits till you creamed and creamed. Y’all’s tha finest thangs mah sorry eyes done ever rested on.’ She laughs again, great dollops of cream in amongst the rich chocolate. ‘We’s all gunna live lahk Queens offa your backs!’

#

Mournful heavy blare of the horn blasts through the hull. Resonates steel until it vibrates a hummed counterpoint. A music of metals under aural attack. Rings out again and again to warn that storm’s in proximity. Provokes instant panic.

Stampede ensues. A battle of bodies in overcrowded corridors, hurtling for the safety of below decks. Private passengers struggle to cabins through the melee, faces bright with terror. Money doesn’t spare them this, only the crush of the hold.

In madness, one walks unhindered by the riot of bustling bodies. She and her two companions stroll easy, quiet, down to the lush suite of rooms in the midriff of Peggy Dunne. To the twin doors of rich oak behind which lie the finest the Peggy has to offer, all gratis, because Sebus is afraid to demand payment from this creature.

Awaiting them there, quiet as stone and much as still, stands a lone figure in black. Angeline tenses. Steps around in a wide berth to open the door as if the black-draped figure bears the plague. Drags her twin, mute and unresisting as ever, with her. Mother Immortal stops. Cocks her head, veil drifting into folds across her face.

‘Speak,’ She exhorts. A low burr of cruel command in it.

Broken hiss of air. A faulty valve. Then the voice comes. Scratchy, brittle, dry as dust, rotten as canker. Sounds like it hurts to speak. ‘Storm. Not just desert driven by wind.’

‘Is that so?’ Mother Immortal leans on her cane. ‘How interesting.’

Air around her thickens. Spins a web of sentience that is both part, and not of, her. It hardens, a glisten like heat upon the air. Then she makes a soft sound. Deep intrigue. Admiration.

‘So it isn’t.’ She turns attention to the corvid-black statue before her. ‘Does this present a problem?’

Another broken inhalation. It bubbles a touch. As if under that veil the mouth, the throat, are broken, blistered, filled with liquid, with blood from vocal chords fractured by their use. ‘The Angel directs it.’

Mother Immortal sharpens. Whole being vicious as a blade edge. ‘I did not see this. How is it that you see this?’

Her hand snaps out. Distorted and skeletal even in the shelter of a glove it latches onto the shoulder of the statue. Tightens. A hook of fingers, fierce as a vice. A low sound emerges from under the black veil. Could be pain, disappears too fast to tell.

‘What is your name?’ the demand hits hard as stone on soft flesh.

‘Sanctimonialis of Matris Immortalis.’ The reply is instant. Sure. Unbowed. Even in that splintered voice of putrid liquids it rings clear as a bell. Mother’s grip relaxes.

‘Show me then.’

The glisten pours forward; a viscous slew envelops the Sister head to toe. The vast yawning breadth of Mother’s power swallows Sister’s mind whole. Mother uses it like a bloodhound, drives it merciless out to the desert, to the rolling fury of dust. To seek the link she missed.

There, so subtle it’s near invisible. A gentle thread of direction running from Peggy Dunne to whirling sands. Mother snarls. Hunts the mind it leaks from. Finds misdirection in place and ploughs through it to hidden truth.

Experiences a sense of incredible size. Rapt light. The flutter of air behind great wings. And eyes. Huge. Luminous. A blue so bright the sky itself would fall to its knees and worship. They turn to regard her.

Mother screeches. High. Reedy. Ragged with pain. Tears away, collapsing to a ball of withered limbs in the shadow of the door. Angeline rushes to assist but is hissed away. Clawed hand flapping in disdain.

‘Go back to your Sisters,’ Mother orders her black-hearted holy daughter, ‘get us through the storm. He’s trying to stall us. Keep us safe and don’t let him touch your mind. His touch is death to such as us.’

#

A double glare of yellow and red glints off the hull of the Peggy Dunne, gliding stately swift along the shining trail of slip across the desert. Her four steam towers pour forth great clouds of white vapour. Vast cumuli drifts that gather in her wake as if she drags the sky along behind her.

Ahead, a stark contrast to the blinding wall of sun’s reflections off pale desert, a looming chaos of darkness rises from tundra to highest atmosphere. Blocks the horizon. Has become the only horizon in sight.

The sound reaches the Peggy even over the chug of her engine, the hollow mourn of her horn. It’s a howl. A roar. A guttural commotion of noise rising and falling like the breath of some titan risen from beneath the pit.

It sends the human cargo scrambling to corners to find comfort in the press of warm flesh, however unfamiliar. Drives the rich under blankets, cowering. Afraid their expensive havens within the heavy hull cannot save them.

And there. Before the Peggy. A solemn, silent, procession of only seven hovers above the slip. A triangle of swift black figures, graceful as migrating swans. They glide just fast enough to keep abreast of the bulbous jut of her prow, lead her even though she is unaware of them.

As they near the storm it seems to note them. Turn. Drive forward with intent. Churning over the desert. Gulping the miles with hungry dark teeth until it hits them head on. It’s roar a gibber of sound too much like fury to be mistaken for anything other.

Low ululation arises then from seven throats. A wordless chant. Occult. Primitive. To hear it would twist a mind to raving. And it twists the storm too, parts it sure as the Red Sea cleaved before a staff. It splits around them, around the Peggy as she sails in behind. Majestic. Unscathed.

At the head of the triangle glides the Sister who went to visit the Mother. Her mind carves ahead. Hot. Seeking. Unrelenting as assault and battery. But in the recesses glow the hints of what the Mother saw. They call to her. Beckon. Lights to guide her.

Such size. Such wings. Such eyes. Such light. Again and again her mind strays. Eager. Disobedient. To run after that thread of thought connecting ship to storm. To follow it to eyes a hue of blue so rich, so pure, the clearest sea would seem grey in comparison. With all her strength, with the borrowed might of her Sisters, she tries to fight it. But the call is clarion.

In minute degrees her mind slips control. Whisks off toward that thread. A violet string, pearlescent as nacre, arcing over the mind-web of darkest grey that signifies her sisters. Its touch is death, the Mother told her, but she cannot resist. Such a death to be had in the depths of fathomless eyes.

Grey strand touches violet. Is sucked in, along. Speed unbelievably fast. A blink and she’s there, in the presence of air moved by great wings. Drenched in light, in a sea of power strong as the Mother’s but as unalike as sweet is to acrid.

There then, are those orbs of brightest blue. No blue brighter, more perfect, more profound. They turn to see her and the colour rips through her. Gouges a hole in the dark of her and pours inside, cerulean fire. Rends to shreds, to slivers, all of what she is, was, might have been.

All the darkness that she was becomes blue, then violet, then silver. If this is death, then it is as delicious as murder to her and she wants it to last forever. But sudden as it came the fire of blue disperses. Leaves her desolate. Washed bright silver. A colour so lost to her it wasn’t even part of memory.

A voice, resonant as the echo of thunder through a canyon, asks of her, ‘What is your name.’

And she replies, ‘My name is Sparrow Plenty.’

© Ren Warom 2011

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s