The both turned to watch the water tumble down towards Dearghglin. It was gone twenty years since the dam broke and the village’s landscape changed forever, never mind the lives touched by the tragedy.
“Do you mind if I smoke,” Emmanuel reached into his pocket and took out a long slender cigar.”
“Work away. Tell me, Uncle Bartholomew?”
“He went in the night Mamie. May God rest his soul.”
Mamie turned back to the river, she had known for ten years this time would come but what could she say?
“Um, Emmanuel would you come to the city with me tomorrow?”
“Is it back?”
“It is and I must go to a solicitor.”
“Is this it, Mamie?”
“Yes, but, look, oh never mind, we’ll talk tomorrow, here at ten o’clock?”
“Okay Mamie,” he turned and walked away, whilst she had an eye on him and an eye on the river.
They managed to drive the sixty miles to the city without speaking. It wasn’t deliberate on Mamie’s part, she tried to speak but couldn’t; a frog in her throat stopped her each time.
“Have we time for a bacon buttie and a cup of tea?”
“The appointment is quarter past eleven, I think we had better go straight there.”
“We have an appointment with Mr. Jervis,” Mamie spoke to the dour receptionist.
Mamie blushed as she said, “all of them, I hope.”
“Oh Mamie McCarthy, take a seat,” the receptionist was smiling now.
Emmanuel was bursting to ask, he knew this was more than being a witness for poor Mamie’s will and testament. Was it possible?
The night the dam broke, the twins had being playing football in the field next to the river. Geordie, Mamie’s intended, had seen them swallowed up and he dived in to save them. They were not seen again.
Ten years ago Mamie had been in the city, she was browsing in one of big stores when she saw a man pushing his hands through his hair just like Geordie had. She was transfixed by the movement and in seconds, as the man turned towards her, she dropped to her knees, faint or sick or both. She wasn’t sure.
She followed him to the door of Jervis, Jervis & Jervis, solicitors. She watched the door all day and at half past five, the three Jervis men came out, but they weren’t, it was Geordie and the Cronin twins. She learned that the twins had been saved by her fiancé but had begged not to go home. Uncle Bartholomew was inappropriate and had threatened to slit Emmanuel’s throat if they told. They swore Mamie to secrecy.
George Jervis opened the office door. “Mamie?”
“Geordie, it’s okay, Bart is dead. I only have a few more weeks. I have to…”
Emmanuel rushed past her, “Boys!”
Much, much later as the story was told and retold. Mamie and Geordie sat apart. “Mamie I am sorry.”
“Hush, you did well. I had a good life. It’s my time.”
Kyle G. Reynolds
Go ahead, have a sip. The most famous frog in the world has a sore throat does he? A nice cup of hot tea with honey and lemon should make it all better, right? You won’t be thinking that in a couple of hours when you’re hunched over the toilet praying that it will just stop. There’s only one way this will end, though. When I say it does, and I don’t see that happening any time soon.
Night is coming. I know how you hate the thought of the sun falling below the horizon, and what that means. Your friends will all be at home enjoying the peaceful dreams that come with a clear conscience and a commitment to zany adventures. You, however, will be holed up in your ultra-luxury pad with the lights on. The night will be filled with the sound of your enemies circling you and waiting for the just the right moment. It’s odd, isn’t it, how they followed you to the big city? Or how you can never quite manage to catch a glimpse of the predators that lurk just beyond the reach of your brightest lamps? I bet you wish they would just be done with it and make their move, just like you did.
Morning will offer no relief, though. I have a feeling that Pigathius is going to discover a photo of you thoroughly enjoying a crispy, salty, and oh so satisfying slice of bacon heaven. Photoshop can really do wonders in the right pulvilli. The upward curl at the edges of your mouth and the glazed look in your eyes will leave little doubt for her as to what kind of beast she has taken up with. She will see you the way that I see you. The way that everyone will see you…eventually. The papers and other media will spend countless hours speculating about the sudden split. I hope that you’re ready to feel the searing eye of the spotlight as it worms its way through all of the secrets that you thought were laid to rest. Secrets, though, have a way of lurching back to life at the most inopportune moments and pulling you back under with them.
Have you forgotten the time that you hit Elmo in the face with that football just so he wouldn’t show up and steal your thunder at Rockefeller Center? You told everybody who would listen that it was an accident, but we both know better. Or how about the “accident” with Fozzie’s bubble gum cigars? They really should put the fact that they are made in a factory which also processes peanuts on the label. Or, how about Orville? He was something really special, but the world never got to find out. He would put on those little aviator goggles and magic would happen. The sweet sound of his ultra soprano voice was a bright light in an otherwise dreary, featureless world. I wonder where the sweet, naive fly that was supposed to be making his big debut went? You and I both know it wasn’t stage fright. So drink up, frog.
Nighttime is approaching.
Shaken But Not Stirred
Kermit lifted the crystal tea-cup half way and paused. “Of course, Dr. N, there is a reason you’ve gone to all the trouble of luring me here.”
“You are surprisingly astute, for a frog, Kermit.”
Kermit brought the cup up to his “lips” and inhaled the moist steam.
The Dr. continued, “Of course you know that with Miss Piggy out of the way …”
Kermit interrupted, “Miss Piggy? What have you done to Miss Piggy?”
The Dr, broke a subtle grin, nearly imperceptible, and took a long casual drag on his cigar.
“Have I touched a nerve?”
Bringing the cup for a sip, Kermit paused just in time to avoid burning his lips with the scalding brew. “Didn’t you know? The pig and I broke up some time ago.”
The Dr. shifted in his chair, and flicked the ash off his cigar. Pressing a button on his console, his demeanor waxed congenial. “I’m sorry to hear that, Kermit, You had such a long intimate history together. I am surprised, but then these things happen.”
A waiter brought out a snack tray and set it down on the coffee table between the two.
“Please forgive my manners, Kermit, you must be a little … peckish.”
Kermit eyed the tray. Laid in neat rows of crispy hot ribbons, brown strips of fried bacon wafted their exquisite scent to Kermit’s olfactory receptors.
Dr. N grinned as he took a strip of bacon and crunched it loudly. “My dream is to rule the next TV season with my own puppet show.”
Kermit’s hackles bristled beneath the collar of his tuxedo, “Puppets!?” He smirked. Mere puppets wouldn’t stand a chance against the time tested antics of the original Henson Muppets. But, of course, without the love/hate relationship between him and Miss Piggy there could be some dissension among the fans.
Kermit’s eyes dropped to the bacon strips before him and inspected them suspiciously.
Lowering his tea-cup, Kermit took hold of the tea-bag string and dipped the bag up and down a few times before suddenly giving the string a quick twirl, sending the bag flying straight into the Dr’s eye.
Dr. N screamed as the scalding hot tea-bag stuck to his eye socket. Jumping to his feet, he waved his arms frantically as he lost his balance and fell backwards directly into the huge fish tank just behind him. Before he could surface the was beset by piranhas and devoured instantly.
Jumping up, Kermit smashed the lock on the trunk next to the table, and Miss Piggy popped up, “Kermie! I knew you would rescue me. How did you know I was still alive?”
Kermit straightened his lapels and replied, “I realized the bacon was too lean. If it had been from you, there would have been considerably more …” Then he suddenly paused.
Miss Piggy exploded, “What? FAT?”
Then she grabbed Kermit and with a loud, “HI-YAH” drop-kicked him out the window like a football.
Regaining her composure, she tossed her hair.
Dani J Caile
Fozzie bundled through the door, ready to greet his old friend Kermit. Their last movie had been a blast and they hadn’t met since then. Maybe Kermit had some good news about the next. Scanning the large, luxurious penthouse, he spotted the green guy on the white leather sofa.
“Kermit!” The frog turned his head towards Fozzie. “Hey, Kermit! It’s so good to see you! What have you been up to, buddy?” There was a smouldering cigar resting in an ashtray on the solid walnut wood coffee table in front of Kermit’s crossed legs. A cup of tea next to the ashtray completed the inventory of objects Fozzie saw in the whole room. It looked like Kermit had turned into a minimalist. And the frog looked so relaxed, stretching his long, green arms across the top of the sofa. Fozzie took another look at the cigar. Surely the little guy didn’t smoke now?
“Hello, Fozzie. Please, take a seat.”
With a wide, open, happy smile, one of his trademarks, Fozzie sat down in a matching white armchair opposite.
“Wha… wow! Hey, this is so comfortable! I can’t believe it, Kermit! Wow!” He jumped up and down on the chair.
“Yes, Fozzie, they are comfortable. They should be for the price.”
Fozzie noticed Kermit eyeing him sternly so he stopped with the jumping. He shifted around.
“So, Kermit, what, erm, why, erm…?”
“I want to talk to you about something,” said Kermit, picking up the cigar and taking a puff. He exhaled the smoke towards Fozzie, who fanned it away.
“Really? I… I didn’t know you smoked, Kermit?”
“There comes a time for change.”
Fozzie sat there with Kermit’s eyes locked on his. Something was… different about his little green friend. He noticed there was a waft of freshly fried bacon in the air.
“Mmm, that breakfast?”
The frog nodded and a thought popped into Fozzie’s head.
“Where’s Miss Piggy, Kermit?”
Kermit’s staring went on a little longer until he broke it off and sipped his Lipton tea. Another puff of smoke filled the space between them before Kermit spoke again.
“She… has been attended to, as has Gonzo.” Kermit waved his hand over to the corner where a life-size model of Gonzo dressed in the Arizona State Sun Devils’ uniform posed precariously, holding a football.
“That’s so cool, Kermit, so lifelike!” enthused Fozzie. Kermit’s eyes were now slits, cutting into his soul.
“I had him stuffed.”
“What?” he asked, huddling behind his furry paws.
“I’m moving on, Fozzie, and I don’t need any… slackers,” he said.
Fozzie started to sweat, nervously pulling his bow away from his neck.
“I’m afraid I will need to have you ‘whacked’, Fozzie.”
He froze. Fozzie had to think quickly.
“Whacka whacka whacka!” he shouted.
Kermit looked confused.
“Don’t you mean ‘Wocka wocka wocka‘, Fozzie?”
“Artistic license.” Fozzie sprang from his armchair to the front door, only to be greeted by a wall of yellow feathers.