This week’s prompt for #writephoto is
‘Mr Crabbe?’ The stressed looking intern scanned the waiting room but the only faces looking back at him were blank, bored or borderline psychotic.
A thin beaky faced man with the sort of pout that made cat’s anuses look inviting snarked, ‘That’s the part, moron. We’re all crabs here.’
The intern made a mental note to find out who Beaky Arse Face was and lose his application. ‘Is anyone called Crabbe?’
A flapping caught his attention. He moved to one side. Another skinny candidate wearing a sort of seaweed ensemble stood by a goldfish bowl. He looked apologetic and not a little confused.
‘Are you Mr Crabbe?’
The man shook his head vigorously. Instead he pointed at the glass bowl. ‘I… that is… maybe… in there?’
The intern looked from his clipboard to the man to the bowl. The seaweed wafted as the man picked up the bowl and handed it to the intern. Only at that point did he look inside the bowl. A crab – a real claws-attached sideways scuttling crustacean – eyed him in what might have been a suspicious manner if only the intern could discern any sort of expression.
The voice, when it came was rather like a ventriloquist gargling. ‘Just Crab will do, sonny. Shall we do this?’
‘Are you here…?
‘For the audition? No, I’m on a tour of waiting rooms. Cours I bloody am.’
Donald Perfectpants liked everything just so. That’s why auditions were such a trial. There were so many uncontrollable. Take the last prospective crab. He could barely stand upright let alone move sideways. And his singing voice. He’d heard waste disposals with a better octave range.
Colin Something-Soft backed into the studio, carrying what appeared to be a bowl. While gifts were, of course gratifying the rules were clear. Leave them in reception.
‘Colin, dahling I’m sure we’ve been through the pressie-etiquette. Before you…’
Colin however didn’t stop his approach, heaving the glass bowl onto the desk with a grunt and slopping a smidgen of rather disgusting slime onto the shiny surface. ‘Mr Crabbe. Or just Crab.’
Donald’s confusion wasn’t helped by the angry, almost actionable expression Colin gave him.
‘Sorry, sweetism? Who’s this Crabbe or Crab?’
They both looked into the bowl. The crab looked back, its claws crossed in what would have been an attitude of boredom, verging on annoyance if that wasn’t to anthropomorphise the creature. ‘You Perfectpants?’
If Donald was surprised to be spoken to by what sounded like a flooded speak your weight machine, he had years of dealing with swooning starlettes and flouncing hunks not to be able to rise above such unjustified self confidence. ‘And you are?’
‘Your saviour matey-boy.’
‘And how does one come to that conclusion?’
‘Hey, you, spindle shins. Pop me on the mat, will you?’
There was a short silence before Donald leant towards Colin. ‘He means you.’
Colin, who’d apparently begun to set leapt into action. In moments Crab was standing on the mat in front of Donald.
‘Okay, I know you’re busy so the short version. Word reached our shores you are casting for a live action Little Mermaid. You’ll need a Sebastián.’ Crab held open his claws, clacking them as he did so. ‘Tada! Me.’
Donald and Colin exchanged looks.
Crab let his claws fall to his side. ‘Have you something against crustaceans?’
‘No, not at all. It’s just…’
‘I can dance.’ Crab did a passable cha cha cha albeit only sideways. ‘And sing.’ To Donald and Colin’s surprise Crab essayed a decent baritone, albeit a little gurgly.
Donald held up a hand. ‘You seem to have every talent…’
Crab folded his claws. ‘I think everyone can hear the but…’
‘You’re a bit small.’
‘Small? You know what, Donnie? I’m crab sized. I fit the criteria by being a sodding crab. You got some giant squid to play Ursula? Is that it?’
Donald was about to speak when Colin tugged his elbow. ‘You could make this work. Why not cast Pete Dinklage as Neptune and work back from there? You’d be a hero.’
‘Maybe.’ He turned to Crab. ‘You’re hired. We’ll need to make a few small changes…’
‘Nothing much. Bit of makeup and maybe ditch the shell and… whoa! Those claws will have to go to.. Crab… Now Crab Let’s talk about this…’