Painting The Sky #writephoto

This week’s #writephoto prompt (with due thanks to M Python) is

Painting By Heavens

‘Mr Angelo?”

‘Please, call me Mike. And you are?’

‘Ann Officious-Bastard.’

‘Of course. How can I help?’ Mike looked over his shoulder at the gods, some of whom were firing balls of fire at the curtains. ‘Take five, people. I need to deal with Ann. Yes, Zeus?’

‘Can I have a discomfort break?’

‘You had one an hour ago.’

‘That was a gratuitous volcano. I’ve a tsunami building pressure in my Azores and if I don’t let it go soon….’

‘Yes, alright. Just don’t lose the toga.’

Zeus exploded up and out of the ceiling in a shower of sparks and sprinkles.

Mike turned back to Ann. ‘Gods, eh? Can’t live with them, can’t… well, anyway. What can I do you for?’

‘The Pope has taken some soundings…’

‘Oh dear. Wasn’t he well?’

‘There were some issues with the digestion of the latest papal bull.’


‘Not really. He’s had a touch of the evangelicals and developed some insights’

‘Is that a good thing?’

‘For you? No.’


‘He’s foreseen your comeuppance.’

‘Come again?’


‘And this uppance? How will it manifest itself?

A pair of slavering dogs bounded across the sky and sought to disembowel Ann. Mike swatted them away. ‘Never work with animals. Sorry, Ann there’s slobber on your disapproval.’

‘Please Mr Angelo. This is a formal visit. Call me Ms Officious-Bastard. Let’s start with the fauna, shall we?’

Mike glanced nervously over his shoulder as two small, chubby and totally naked godlings aimed spells at the other’s introspection. ‘I would advise against fawning. They’re full of themselves enough. In truth, they’re full of ambrosia and some alcoholic narcotic but all that does is inflate their egos like a three day old curry and six pints on a dicky tummy.’

‘Fauna, Mr Angelo. Viz, the animals. Have you a permit for these creatures?’

‘A permit? What’s a permit? Is like like a hermit? For pigs?’

‘It allows you to include animals in your oeuvre.’

Mike smiled knowingly. ‘There’s a joke in there somewhere.’

Ms Officious-Bastard’s expression remained cretaceous. ‘Do you have a permit?’

‘No, can’t say I do.’

‘Then the animals will have to go.’ Ms Officious-Bastard clicked her fingers and one by one the animals evaporated.

Mike watched, aghast. ‘Can we keep the geese? They appeal to my flights of fancy theme.’

‘No. They will be stored in limbo and you can claim them back if you pay a fine.’

‘I don’t think I have a fine. I’ve a dozen coarses. Can I use them?’

‘Two coarses and an essential body part will suffice.’

‘Right. So, are we done?’

‘Not yet. There were more soundings. His Wondrousness was very taken with them.’


‘Not after breakfast.’

‘Where do these soundings come from?’

‘The usual focus groups and consultation fora.’

‘Should I ask what they are?’

‘How many years do you have left?’

‘My soothsayer indicated twenty-seven.’

‘Then shall we move on. The children…’

‘They’re small gods. Godlings.’

‘Can you prove they’re not children?’

‘No. Do I need a kermit?’

‘No, you can’t just allow children to participate in an orgy.’

‘It’s not an orgy. It’s an Accretion of Deities.’

‘You still can’t have children so… so…’



‘But their buttocks are their best features.’

‘Do you know how that sounds?’

‘Is it a sounding?’

‘It’s bloody creepy. They have to go.’

‘Will they be with the animals? Another body part?’

‘I’m afraid they will be confiscated and made into novelty water features.’

‘Not more pissing fountains.’

‘Can you please not swear? I’m only doing my job.’

‘And doing your job is to reduce my models to a bunch of malodorous and recalcitrant gods, is it?’

‘About that…’

‘You’re not confiscating my gods, are you? Because good luck with that.’

A vapour trail snaked across the room and blasted a hole in the far wall.

‘Look, Ann…’


‘Yes, and don’t I know it. If I don’t get them posed and start painting this won’t be the Sistine chapel much longer. It won’t even be good for a cistern.’

‘I’m not here to stop you painting the adults.’

‘Gods, yes.’

‘And whatever the aesthetics might indicate, you can paint them in a state of undress.’

‘That’s big of you.’

‘But our soundings…’

‘Not them again…’

‘OUR soundings have pointed out the, erm, some what, erm, tactile nature of the exhibit…’

‘An orgy, yes. You said.’

‘So, you will need to have an intimacy co-ordinator on set through to make sure everyone is comfortable in their roles. For instance the older gentlemen at the back. The one with the fork.’


‘He can’t keep fondling the man with the hammer. Not unless they are both happy with the roles they are playing and you’ve ensured there is a safe space for the models to get comfortable. While the woman at the front right…’

‘Pallas Athena.’

‘Ms Athena should be consulted on whether exposing both breasts is entirely essential. To me it looks a trifle gratuitous.’

Mike put his hands on his hips and studied the tableaux. ‘So let me got this straight. I’ve lost the animals, the fat ba…’

‘I shouldn’t need to say this but you can’t call them fat. It might become triggering.’

‘…The exaggeratedly adipose infants have been confiscated, and there’s to be no tits and touching for the remainder? Is this my uppence?’

‘I think that’s probably correct..

‘If that’s all that’s left, can I ask why the Pope commissioned me in the first place?’

‘Did you say twenty-seven years left?’

‘Not enough?’

‘If I were you I just stick to painting and avoid the politics. Now, I must get on. Do you know where Mr Vinci is?’

‘What’s he done?’

‘We’ve heard he’s included some mythical creatures in his Last Supper. That, and a steel band and a multitude of Our Saviours.’

‘Good for him. He’s done the hall. Room 101.’

Ann Officious-Bastard headed for the door. Mike turned back to his models. ‘Places everyone. Let’s make this one mother of a blow out before we’re all cancelled.’

About TanGental

My name is Geoff Le Pard. Once I was a lawyer; now I am a writer. I've published several books: a four book series following Harry Spittle as he grows from hapless student to hapless partner in a London law firm; four others in different genres; a book of poetry; four anthologies of short fiction; and a memoir of my mother. I have several more in the pipeline. I have been blogging regularly since 2014, on topic as diverse as: poetry based on famous poems; memories from my life; my garden; my dog; a whole variety of short fiction; my attempts at baking and food; travel and the consequent disasters; theatre, film and book reviews; and the occasional thought piece. Mostly it is whatever takes my fancy. I avoid politics, mostly, and religion, always. I don't mean to upset anyone but if I do, well, sorry and I suggest you go elsewhere. These are my thoughts and no one else is to blame. If you want to nab anything I post, please acknowledge where it came from.
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19 Responses to Painting The Sky #writephoto

  1. Ann is inglorious – the video isn’t


  2. willowdot21 says:

    There is always one obnoxious official box ticker isn’t there! Mind you, now you’ve explained what he had to deal with!!!
    The video is just so Monty Python.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. JT Twissel says:

    Brilliant! Mike better stay clear of Florida!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Would Ann like to apply for the post of Home Secretary? She seems perfect for the job! Absolutely bloomin’ fantastic Geoff!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. V.M.Sang says:

    Another wonderful tale. And the video is hilarious. Monty Python at their best.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Jennie says:

    Brilliant, Geoff. I loved every word.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Pingback: Painting The Sky #writephoto | Dragons Rule OK. V.M.Sang (author)

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