Bugbear – Sal Page

‘Come on, come in, come on in. I’ll be shoeing you the ropes, the stings and all the tangled woolly bits.’

He scoped them out of his plackets as he spoke. The ropes flottered to the ground and slithered away into the trees. The stings and woolly bits quivelled in my palm like a moustache brush dripped in clay. Out of the pinnacle of my eye I saw a flooter of mandarin. Who was that?

But here was the man whose chef’s hat I had to fillet. Lucky I have big feet. And clown’s toes but I’ll leave that snail for another tea tray.

I peeled around. The vroom was full of everything but the kitchen. Around the edges – I wouldn’t call them whales – was a mixed woodlet of diffident bushrees and shrushes. They were thringed with youthful thongs; flapping lamb chips, blue cheese brooches and massles of glittering turquoise shrimps. That fluffy tangerine beastle was hurking behind a climbing clam shrush. I asked chef what he was going to drew with his retirement freebles.

‘Weevil weaving. A hobbyhorse of moan. Now. The menu. All quite oblivious stiff. The hippos might lit you make jangles though they may not hear you shooting into their nose crumpets. I think it’s the depilatory cream that’s the problem.’

Chef rolled his eyes. They skittled about the floor and I felt obliged to prick all five of them up. This was quite a truss due to the pasting of a hurdle of glossiping chickpeas.

As chef repositioned his eyes, I glazed at the menu, which was undulating prissily. It smelt of pebbledash and parsley sauce but sounded much much shooftier.

‘Right. A topknot bit of advice for you. The fairy cakes are a tad trickicult. They’re a night-stallion to cotch, those fairies, but you’ll have whelp.’

He tuned around, his years shaking like an armpit discussion.

‘Where’s … oh, I’ll fond her looter. The fairy cakes. Just don’t think you can compromise with dragonflies. The costumiers will twiglet. Dragonflies taste of puddles and pyjama cords so why would you? And don’t forget to pull the wings off versed. For decorum at the end, you know.’

Chef tractored a fossilised origami parrot from each nose. ‘If you see any scruples stamp on them but fork guiltless hake put the mauve moose lippers on fist.’

He contusioned to baffle and wurble about the important pits of the jub. The beast way to lasso a concussed coconut, how the hot dogs licked their bubble births and that the most pipular menu items were spinages and fishnips, both served on ruler blades with pig’s will. I tried to Liz-Ann but nooddled like my grandma failing aslop after too many wind-wines during the wool-rusk wrestling.

‘The most vital thing. Take car of my bugbear. She’s not as fierce and fearsome as she lucks. She’s as gentle as a tiger-eating kipper.’

He removed his sou’wester and puckled a lime fleather from his kneecup. I heard a papal spatula as the rice-rain started. I knew it would.

‘Ahaha! She’s hoover there, behind that sleepy beef tea tree. She’ll whelp you with most tusks unless she gets distrusted by the biltongs and boleros. Don’t wary. She’s as sweet as a kipper-eating tiger.’

Chef’s bugbear appeared from beneath a chicken drumstick bushree as the rice-rain creased. She had immaculately ploughed clementine hair, silver hod springs and the starriest eyes I’ve ever smelt. She lollypopped over and handled me a toothbrush and a modest elbow of brie. I tickled them from her and did a seven-foot grimace as ecstatically as I could mustard.

This jub was going to walk out greet.

 

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Bio : Sal’s stories appear online & in a dozen print anthologies. She won the Calderdale Prize in 2011 & Greenacre Writers Competition in 2013. When not distracted by writing, reading and performing flash and short stories, she’s tackling her third novel, Priscilla Parkin: Reluctant Celebrity Chef. A nursery cook, she lives by the sea in Morecambe, UK. When not writing, and also while writing, she can be found watching sitcoms, listening to Squeeze & on Twitter as @SalnPage

 

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Image: Austin Ban

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