“When have I ever turned into a frog?” I asked incredulously.

“It was all in that short story of yours, dear. What was is called again?” She snapped her long nailed fingers at me as if that would make the traumatised hamster speed up.

“What the cat dragged in,” she said with a pleased smile on her round face. “It’s in that short story collection you published on Smashwords. Turned, Touselled, Tested, Tourniquet…what was it again?”

“Twisted,” I answered wondering whose brain really needed slapping and frying.

“That’s it!  My memory is flawless, you know.”

I didn’t bother arguing.

“Isn’t this bikini the most adorable thing you have ever seen?” she asked as she waltzed past me jiggling everywhere. It was hard to concentrate when all her body parts were moving indiscriminately from one another.

“I look positively skinny in it,” said my darling Muse who has never been skinny except in one of those weird mirrors at the fun fair.

“It’s one size fits all and was discounted. You really should buy yourself one, dear it does wonders for the old self esteem and at the discounted price you would be able to afford it. You haven’t sold any copies of that Tourniquet book, have you?”

She knew I hadn’t, but rubbing my nose in it was one of the things she did extremely well. She had gotten the title wrong again, on purpose. She lived in my head damn it, she knew everything I did. Then it dawned on me that she probably pushed the hamster off the wheel in the first place. No wonder the hamster looked miffed. He only ever fell off when one of my more far -fetched stories sent him into paroxysms of laughter. She wanted to pop out and show me the bikini which I could only catch glimpses of. Half of the little material there was had gotten stuck in the rolls and valleys of her flesh.

She turned around and I experienced the full horror of it. It was a g-string bikini, though the string had disappeared into parts unknown which have never been boldly explored by man. To make matters worse the whole thing was a hideous metallic orange. I wouldn’t be caught dead in it!

I imagined my dead self lying at the front of the church in an ornate coffin. People would be dabbing at their eyes with Egyptian cotton handkerchiefs. Purcell’s funeral march would be playing sombrely in the background. At a signal from the universe or a moment of insanity the pastor would flick a switch. Disco lights and the booming bass of Queen’s Bohemian Rhapsody would fill the eaves, sending doves fluttering into the sky and pacemakers stuttering. Open would pop the coffin lid and I would be wearing the metallic, orange monstrosity and a feathered headdress.



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