stumpy49er's forum posts
Alright. For this contest the rules were to create an original character that was a jester. You also needed to include a jest or a prank of some form in this story.
Easy reading as there were only two writers who submitted stories this time.
Without further adieu, here are the stories:
Ye Olde Man & Scythe, Bolton 1535
The young sweaty jester looked out into the candlelit dark of lower room of the Ye Olde Man & Scythe “Anyone? Well I’ll tell you. A fly without wings is a WALK!”
A cough was heard from up the back, along with either a burp or fart from the middle but the rest of the crowd simply sat staring.
“A walk…” He gestured but they just weren’t into it. Jerome fumbled with his next bit. “What’s the deal with Newcastle?”
Will Sommers, the emcee of the night, walked out onto stage clapping to encourage the crowd to give the young jester a break.
“Let’s give a big hand to Jerome Sandfield!” He said ushering the kid towards the wings.
“Whatever,” and he nudged the boy off. “Righto plenty more acts for you tonight folks. Are you having a good time?”
Parts of the crowd muttered. Another burp fart was heard.
“Someone get that man a cork!” Will joked. “Keep that up and we’ll smell like Scotland!”
The crowd chuckled at his jest. Will paced the stage and stopped in front of a couple in the front row.
“Where you from then?”
“Oritch!” The man replied. Several cheers went up from others from the town just up the way.
“Horwich! Oritch! I asked where you’re from not what she gave you!” Will gave himself an exaggerated scratch to his groin, screwing his face up. The crowd erupted in laughter. “Easy farm boy, just jesting. What’s your name?”
“I meant hers ya lump! Anyways. Enry! Like King Henry, my boss?” Will smiled. “Well my Henry is the eight…what’s your number? Better still what’s her number?”
The crowd was again back onside. Will saw the red glass go over the candle up the back meaning it was time for the next jester.
“Righto. You ready for your next act?”
The crowd cheered enthusiastically.
“That’s better! All the way from Nottingham…Peter Hood!”
Peter slowly walked out into the middle of the stage. He was wearing a stylised jester suit; blue and pink. “You good?”
The crowd responded positively.
“I got robbed on me way here. Can you believe it? Three men, all dressed in green jumped out of the trees with swords and daggers. They were like ‘Gold or your life!’ and I stood there looking at them. Gold? Me? I’m a stand-up jester. You’d better kill me!”
The crowd guffawed. From the wings Jerome watched as Peter told a series of jokes and a tale about a man with a wooden leg named Smith. He was in awe. Then a shadow fell over him and slowly he turned to see Will Sommers looming over him.
“I’m sorry Mr Sommers sir, I was just watc…”
“Quiet!” Sommers seethed. “Audience is just there.”
Sommers looked at the lanky kid with the large forehead and protruding nose. “Jack is it?”
“Jerome sir. Jerome Stonefield.”
“You know the difference between comedy and tragedy?”
Jerome was puzzled. “No.”
“Tragedy is when I cut my finger. Comedy is when you fall into an open sewer…and die.” Will patted him on the head. “You’ll get there. Righto, show time!” Will strode out onto stage applauding Peter. Jerome stood there and watched the jester of Henry the VIII’s court delight the crowd.
At the end of the night when all the farmers, potters, guards, whores and beekeepers had gone; all that was left was the jesters. Peter raised his tankard. “How you got that job at that palace, I’ll never know! You’re not even funny! You’re fat!”
“Hey!” Will slapped his stomach. “Not compared to his majesty!”
“Cheeky!” Peter replied. “Careful he might… you know, chop your head off.”
Will spotted Jerome hiding up the back. “Jack! Come join! You got up so you get to drink.”
Jerome sheepishly joined the table. “It’s Jerome.”
“Boys, this is…Jerome! His act needs work. But after hearing this lot tonight, YOU ALL DO!”
Duncan, the lyre strumming musical jester, spat his beer out. “Jerome don’t listen to this washed up old warhorse. He’s a funny as the plague! First jest?”
“I remember my first jest,” Duncan stated. “It was a nightmare! It was in this very building before they scrapped all the cow dung out.”
“Not all of it!” Will threw a faeces encrusted shoe onto the table.
“You’re an animal Sommers!” Duncan chided. “Anyways, it was me playing a gig for two people and a cow.”
“Shouldn’t talk about Will’s mother like that,” Peter interrupted.
“See Jerome, things would go much quicker if they shut their holes!” Duncan roared in faux anger. “So, where was I?”
“Holes…” Jerome said.
Duncan clicked his fingers. “Bah lost it! You’ll be fine. That fly one is clever.”
“Really?” Jerome’s eyes lit up.
“No!” Duncan joked and the other jesters laughed.
Will Sommers slid a tankard over to Jerome. “You’ll be fine boy. You at least had the stomach to get up in front of a group of strangers and attempt one of the hardest things in the kingdom; comedy! Ask people and they’d rather kill a family member than stand up in front of people and try to make them laugh.”
“Is that why your family is all dead?” Jerome stated bluntly. The table went silent. Peter then exploded in laughter followed by Duncan followed by Will. Even Edgar the proprietor of the Ye Olde Man & Scythe chuckled. Jerome wryly smiled and sipped his ale.
“Beautiful!” Will laughed. “And yes, to answer your question! A toast to our newest jester! Hip Hip!”
Jerome was delighted. The jesters drank long and hard into the evening swapping bards, insults, jokes and tales. As the sun crept through the window many hours later, Jerome wobbled to his feet.
“You must excuse me; I have to head home.” He slurred and his eyes looked in two differing directions.
“BOO!” Peter yelled. “Stay!”
“You can go,” Will stated. “If you tell us a funny jest! Something new!”
Jerome steadied himself, stifled a yawn and rubbed his aching temples. “Alright. How do you keep a group of idiots in suspense?”
Duncan shrugged. Peter looked gormlessly to the roof as he contemplated the riddle. Will scratched his neck. Jerome smiled, turned on his heels and headed for the door.
“Jack! Bollocks, Jerome!” Will stood up. “Well, how do you?”
Jerome looked over his shoulder and winked. “I’ll tell you tomorrow.”
Tell It All- Three Tales of Tomfoolery
“Hello, one and all. It is I, your foolish narrator, Tell It All.”
A pot bellied hobo clown came tumbling on the rickety stage, which was near the old train tracks and lit by an old, rundown truck. The audience was made up of blue collar workers and homeless children drinking whiskey and looking for cheap entertainment.
Tell It All wore white base with blue makeup around his eyes and mouth, forming a frown. He wore old suspenders and a baggy, plaid, green pants and a too tight, brown blazer top.
He reached deep into his pants and pulled out an old vodka bottle, pulling off the top and drowning the contents. He let out a painful belch and the audience roared with laughter.
“I am Tell It All, the drunken clown, your fool of a narrator. I am the sultan of saggy pants, the God of got nuthin’, the Djinn of drinking gin and the King of killin’ time. I am the royalty of regrets..”
“Get on with it already, ya bozo!” yelled a burly heckler.
Tell It All stopped and looked down at the large man.
“Hrumph.. You are a big one, aren’t you?”
The heckler cracked his knuckles. “Damn straight.”
“Musta hurt yer mom, coming out.”
The heckler burst out laughing. “Yep. I killed her.”
The audience groaned.
“On with the show.”
Tell It All threw a red ball into the air, which exploded, creating a fiery, sparkling energy.
“My first tale is of a regretful clown living in the past and overwhelmed by the future.”
As he spoke the fiery energy began to form into images of a jester, sitting on a swing, his makeup white and his suit green and red.
Coulda the Clown sat on the swing in the children’s park, his head resting on his palms as he sighed, wondering his life got to this point. He reached into his pocket and pulled out an old picture of his ex wife, Woulda the Woman Clown. She wore a pink and yellow jester’s outfit and had red hair.
“Wish you were here, Woulda.” Coulda sighed.
“You still on the job, clown or are you taking a crap?” yelled a middle aged, business man.
“Back to work.” Coulda sighed to himself, then sprang up out of the swing.
“Hey kiddos, did you forget about me? I forget things too. Just like I forgot to bring my clown car. I coulda brought all my clown friends. Coulda, woulda, shoulda!”
The kids laughed as Coulda did a backflip.
A female voice shouted out.
“He didn’t forget all his clown friends.”
Coulda’s heart skipped a beat. ‘Woulda?’
A young girl with auburn hair and a white, frilly shirt and shorts, with a yellow and blue plaid vest, and yellow and red tights and a matching yellow and red crown jumped out of the bushes.
Coulda’s heart sank. This girl was not Woulda. She was about twenty years younger. He didn’t know this jester.
“Don’t you recognize me? I’m your daughter, Shoulda the She Clown.”
The audience gasped.
Coulda gulped, confused. “What?”
She did a backflip in front of the children.
“Old man Coulda over there didn’t know his ex wife Woulda, my sweet mom, ran away with me when I was born..
I coulda grown up with a father. Coulda, woulda, shoulda!”
The children laughed.
Tell It All ended the tale. “Heh, old man Coulda is in for a treat. Ain’t easy being an absent father. I’d know. I am Tell It All, the admiral of absentee parenting.”
One of the drunk, homeless children with freckles and red hair looked up at Tell It All.
“Are you my dad?”
“Back to the show!” Tell It All yelled out.
“This next tale is of a more.. political lean.”
The audience groaned.
“Now, now. Give it a shot.”
The energy ball began to form, showing a young, intelligent looking man wearing a baggy suit and very detailed red, white and blue makeup.
Linger ran towards the rally with fire in his heart and issues on his mind. He saw his best friend, Collin Collegekid waving a sign reading ‘Lynch our Over Lords’.
His girlfriend, Grass Heart, was on stage.
“President Powertrip doesn’t care about nature. He doesn’t care about the grass under our feet or the downtrodden under his trod. He cares more about oil tycoons than he does cute, little racoons. He cares more about big pharma than he does little bunnies on the farm. He cares.. He cares more about his penis than he cares about vegans. He.. um..”
“I’ll take it from here, babe.” Linger said as he jumped onstage.
“I don’t need a man to take charge.” Grass Heart yelled. “I am vegan, hear me ROAR!”
Then she streaked naked and ran off the stage, into the wild, never to be seen again.
Linger did a backflip, then grabbed the mike.
“President Powertrip. What can we say about the man?” Linger yelled, then he turned away from the audience and began re-adjusting his makeup. “Let’s let the man himself say what’s on his mind.”
Linger turned around and his makeup was detailed in a way that each line looked exactly like President Powertrip, except each flaw was more pronounced and every defining feature more exaggerated.
“I am President Pervis Powertrip.” Lingers voice changed to match the Presidents. “I am here to divide and conquer. I will spread fear among you, the people, for my own gains. Being President was always about what was in it for me. And preying on the weak is all I need to gain what I want. And what I want is more. Always more. You weak minded sheep will blame your follies on other poor people of a different color. I will tear down your rights and further increase the power of my people. And my people is ME.”
The speech continued for another hour, the longer Linger lampooned President Powertrip, the more he sounded and looked like the politician.
Then a shot rang out.
Linger the Lampooner fell from the stage.
His best friend Collin held a gun in his hand, with a stunned look on his face.
“Oops! You did such a good impression I thought you were the real thing. I should probably lay off the weed for awhile. You okay, Linger?”
Linger looked at his wound. Blood rushed from his chest.
“I’m dying. Tell Grass Heart I respected her as a person. Collin, you were a terrible friend. Everyone else. Change the world for the better. Go vegan!”
But his words did not.
The world changed that day. President Powertrip became vegan. Everyone did. The world became a happy place. Oil tycoons hugged cute, little racoons. Big pharma gave way to little farm. Grass Heart roamed the forest until she met a tall, dark and handsome tree. They had three children and lived happily ever after.
Tell It All stood up straight with his arms out wide. Proud of his story.
The audience stood quietly.
The burly heckler yelled out. “What’s a vegan?”
The red haired boy asked “How did she have kids with a tree? Is the tree my dad?”
A dark haired prostitute yelled out “That was awful! Worst story I ever hear.”
Another heckler yelled “The first one wasn’t that good either.”
The audience began to grow angry. “Your stories are terrible.”
Tell It All waved the audience down. “All right, all right. Calm yourselves. Just one more tale. I saved the best for last.”
The crowd’s murmur began to die down.
The raven haired prostitute yelled out “Better be good. Otherwise I’m telling my man, Stinky, to get our money back.”
The burly heckler, Stinky, cracked his knuckles again as he smirked at Tell It All.
“Like I said. Best for last.” Tell It All said.
The fiery ball of energy began to swirl again, this time it began forming into the faces of the people in the crowd, from Stinky to the red haired boy, to the raven haired prostitute and all the rest.
“I call this tale..”
Stinky yelled out “That’s my face. Wot’s this about?” He turned to the prostitute. “Hey Cordelia. What’s he doing?”
Cordelia gave him a mean look. “I don’t know. Just kick his ass and get our money back.”
Stinky stormed onto the stage ready to punch Tell It All in the face. The clown smiled and pulled out a flask, taking a swig and stumbling backwards.
Stinky swung and missed, falling off the stage. The crowd gasped.
Stinky tumbled and jumped up in the air with a smile and a laugh.
The audience laughed as well.
“What’s so funny?” Cordelia yelled. “Stinky, what games you playing?”
Stinky turned to her. She fell backwards. He face was covered in clown makeup.
The rest of the crowd looked at her. They all had clown makeup on. She pulled out her old, handheld mirror and saw that she too had clown makeup on.
Cordelia laughed with the rest of the crowd.
The red haired orphan boy, also wearing clown makeup, walked onstage towards Tell It All.
“Are you my daddy?”
“Yes. You are my child. You are all my children.”
The swirling ball of fiery energy grew to the size of the stage, creating a portal.
Carnival music played beyond it as the crowd could see gigantic tents and a gargantuan ferris wheel.
The crowd entered the portal and walked towards Tell It All’s Carnival of Clowns. Stinky tumbled inside, while Cordelia flipped through the air and the red haired boy floated in on a balloon.
Tell It All was the last to leave. Before he fell backwards into the disappearing portal he turned and looked out at no one in particular.
“And so I say goodbye. It is I, Tell It All, your humble narrator. The Devil of don’t tell anyone else what I told you, unless our want to join our Carnival as well.”
Alright. Voting ends in 2 weeks April 28th at 11:59 pm Pacific time zone.
One vote per voter. Since there is no voting for yourself and only two writers, me and batkevin cancel each other out, so we're relying on other readers out there.
Thank you all for taking the time to read.