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Rear Window [14]

Hanne Berg's picture
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Herbert Bentley peered at his face in the theatrical mirror. The lightbulb festooned frame illuminated his face. He was in full slap and was just applying the bulbous red nose. To one side a crazy orange afro wig sat waiting on a mannequin head. On a hanger next to the table hung a bright yellow clown suit with red and white striped sleeves.

Herbert’s transformation into ‘Hobo McBobo’ was almost complete. Herbert had once seen a faded cardboard mannequin at the ruins of some diner or other. He was so inspired he decided there and then to become an entertainer.

Just as he reached for the wig, Herbert’s preparations were interrupted by a knock at the door. He sighed. Another booking probably. He crossed the room and answered the door to a youngish man, bald, rather dumpy, his face was pitted and resembled recently unearthed potato.

Can I help you?” Herbert tried to hide his impatience from the spud faced chap. Herbert hated being interrupted while preparing for a performance and the Spivey gig this afternoon would be rather lucrative. He needed to look his professional best.

The Spud-faced one spoke. “Are you a clone?”

Herbert sighed “No, I’m a clown.” He pointed at the clown slap on his face.

To bad”

Spudface raised the pistol to Herbert’s brow. Hobo McBobo’s ridiculous painted smile hid the paralysed shock thereunder. Spud’s gun fired.

Anneka Kjaer-Spivey sat on the kitchen table as Silja tied her shiny new red shoes. Preparations for the party were in full swing. Kirsten whirled through the house like a loose tornado.

Joe ! Will you get a move on! The catering will be there in in twenty minutes. And get a shave for goodness sake. Did you get Finny to blow the balloons?. “

Joe said yes for the ninetieth time. Silja smiled. She popped Anneka down in her full party dressed splendour in front of the hall mirror.

Dásamlegt !”

Anneka grinned back. She did look wonderful.


Hanne stood at the office window. Despite her usual cold professional stance, she realised she was chewing a nail. She forced her hand away from her mouth and spread her fingertips on the windowsill. She gazed out onto the plaza looking for anything out of the ordinary.


Spud had spent the last hour in front of the mirror trying to perfect his interpretation of clown make-up. It was not going well. He knew if he presented himself at a kids party looking like that the screams would not be of joy and he would be clowning to an empty room. He tried again.

Anson and Bartram sat in Anson’s apartment sharing a bottle of vodka. The nerves were high. Pulling off a caper against Joe Spivey was a risky enterprise. The vodka helped. They checked the guns, the masks and the overalls for the tenth time. Anson checked the time.

Let’s roll.” Anson and Bartram bumped fists and headed for the stairs.

Joe Spivey parked his Kirsten’s car at the kerbside in front of the orphanage. Silja and Kirsten got out of the other side, Joe hoisted Anneka from her child seat. He hugged her.

Ready for the party, Princess?” 

Anneka nodded enthusiastically. She was so excited. Joe carried her over to the Kirsten and Silja, who were by now waiting by the orphanage door. Inside the clamour of excited kids rose. The grubby faced lookout at the window had communicated already the arrival of the Kjaer-Spivey’s.


Joe Spivey's picture

((Wonderfull! It's all about to kick off I take it? Or maybe not... maybe... *shuts up and reaches for more popcorn*.

Stick with me kid and you'll be farting through silk.

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