This week’s #writephoto prompt took me in a somewhat bizarre direction. I blame the weather…
Arturo Despot shuffled his feet nervously. He’d been sure he’d come up with a nailed on certainty, but pleasing Artemis Poltroon was not easy. Not easy at all.
‘What is that, Despot?’ The tyrannical Chief Executive squinted at the sky.
‘A cloud, sir.’ Better to stick to the basics until it was clear which way the wind was blowing, Arturo thought. The temptation to cower, however was almost overwhelming.
‘A cloud? Just a cloud?’
‘A feather cloud, sir. Very a la mode.’
The sigh caused a small localised depression to form over Arturo’s head, releasing an unpleasantly sticky drizzle to coat his hair. The supremely horrible one continued, ‘And why did you think a feather cloud would be appropriate?’
Arturo blinked. ‘The commission brief, sir.’
Arturo experienced a momentary failure of his sphincter muscles as the low pressure eased unexpectedly and hinged backwards in order to stop an embarrassing evacuation to add to his already considerable misery. When he eventually righted himself Poltroon stared with a quizzical expression. ‘Yoga this early, Despot?’
‘No sir, I…’
‘You were about to explain how you concluded a feather cloud, a rainbow-branded feather cloud was the obvious outcome of this commission.’
Arturo lost the power of speech. In the silence Poltroon wrapped an arm around his subordinate’s shoulders. ‘We make weather to order, yes?’
Arturo managed a nod.
‘And the commission brief spoke about providing a suitable climatic backdrop that would showcase the pride our clients have in their electoral success, yes?’
The fast shrinking cloud engineer swallowed as he managed a squeaky acknowledgement of that truth.
Poltroon squinted at the sky. ‘So, let me guess. You saw the reference to pride and thought rainbow? Feathers?’
Another slightly more confident nod.
‘And the fact that the client has emphasised its recent rebranding as a more mainstream inclusive political force?’
Arturo straightened his shoulders. This was a test; the chief was just having a laugh, testing his ability to defend his creations. ‘It’s all about embracing diversity, about…’
‘They’re fascists, Despot. They don’t want colour. The only time they’d take the knee is if someone shot out one patella. They’re about as diverse as a cheese toastie. Now get a ladder, paint your cloud the blackest black you can source and pray.’
‘Indeed, use whatever method you have of appealing to a higher power. Just hope the stars don’t come out and twinkle. If your bloody cloud acts like a disco ball at their conference, it might be the last ball you ever see. Now hurry.’