Friday, 10 June 2011
Eighth Friday Flash: Gorilla Pequeno
(This story was inspired by the above photo. I would credit the photographer, but I was unable to find their details)
Santos was no ordinary man. He was about half the height of anyone else for one thing, and another was he wore a gorilla suit to work. He was a sideshow at a carnival. They called him Gorilla Pequeno or little gorilla. It was enough to keep him and his family fed, but little else. It was his 15th wedding anniversary tomorrow and he had nothing for his wife. All his money had gone on new tires for his truck. He knew he wife would understand, but he had to do something special for her. She worked hard looking after their daughter and washing the carnival's laundry. Most of her salary went on the boarding school they sent their daughter to. So this year a crazy plan formed in his head. The carnival was leaving first thing in the morning, which give him just enough time to do what he had to do before they left, and before anyone found out what he had done, they would be long gone. He was especially afraid of his own people finding out. If they did, he would never hear the end of it.
Someone knocked on the door. “A minute until show time.”
Santos's stomach was turning over like a washing machine. He eyed the window, maybe he should make a run for it. He thought of his wife, the present he wanted to get her and gritted his teeth, besides there was no way he could reach the window anyway.
Moments later he was on the stage. The all female audience went crazy. Santos timidly made his way to the centre and began to dance.
“Oh yeah, shake it baby!” shouted a middle aged woman shaking some one dollar bills in the air.
Santos let the music and the three shots of tequila he had before the show take control. Much to his amazement and embarrassment the crowd adored him. He never thought owning a gorilla suit could make him so much money.
Before he knew it the silver ring he spotted at the pawn shop was his and he was outside his family's trailer. It was just past midnight. He opened the door as quietly as he could, but it wasn't quiet enough. Maria, his wife, heard him. She had been watching TV and had passed out on the couch.
It took a moment for her eyes to focus. She wiped the drool from her chin. “Where have you been?”
Santos couldn't think of a better time. “I went to get this for you, babe.”
Her eyes light up. She took the ring box and opened it. “Aw, it's beautiful!”
“Read in the inscription.”
“To my darling wife. Forever and always, Santos.”
“I love it!” she placed it on her elegant long fingers. Then she started to sniff the air, and she frowned.
“What's that smell?”
Santos had a very bad sense of smell and shrugged.
“Where have you been?”
“Have you been behind my back?” She got up, and towered over him. “You're trying to cover it up by buying me this expensive gift?”
“Tell the truth.. now!” her voice was getting higher and higher pitched.
He went forward to hug her. She pushed him away. “Okay... okay.” He told her everything.
She began to laugh. A sense of relief flooded over him, but it soon turned to stunned astonishment.
“Do you expect me to believe that bullcrap!”
“It's the truth!”
“Out... get out! I don't want to see your face right now.”
“But...” Santos knew from previous experience that there was no reasoning with her.
She maneuvered him towards the door and when it was open she shoved him out. He landed on his back in the mud. “And you can give this to your whore!” she ripped off the ring and threw it at him.
His gorilla suit was full of mud, Santos hugged himself and went over and sat next to the family dog. The dog stared at him with sad eyes. Santos sniffed. “You believe me, don't you Pepe?”