In the Wax Works after the last tourists trickle out, the Bowies shake out their arms and legs, and roll their necks loose. Restless and rowdy, they elbow each other and start playing ‘show and tell.’
“I’m the one who took everyone and their granny into space.”
“I married a supermodel.”
“Well I did a shit ton of coke with Iggy Pop.”
“I recorded an album with Nile Rodgers.”
“And I’m a bloody goblin.”
“But I’m the one who snogged Mick Jagger!”
“Shhh gentlemen,” says the Thin White Duke, finger to his lips, “our lovely curator, Sadie, has just made her entrance on approach to the exit.”
They all turn to look at me and I’m greeted with ten cocked toothy grins.
“I know! What about a little game of truth or dare, Sadie can join us,” Ziggy rubs his palms and long pale fingers together.
“Not tonight fellas –” I start.
“Yeah, smashing.” Let’s Dance Bowie gathers the rest into a huddle.
They whisper and turn back towards me, Berlin Bowie clearing his throat:
“We’d like to know which one of us you’d snog.”
I blanch with ten sets of eyes on me. “Eh… my fiancé…”
“Stupid question really,” says the Goblin King (even his sneer is sexy), “of course it’s me.”
“In that frilly shirt?”
“Oh shut up, you were literally a clown.”
“Wait. Hold it. What if Sadie were to give all of us a little good night kiss?” Ziggy plumped his lips.
The Bowies gaze round at each other and shrug in unison.
“But if Sadie locks lips with Goblin King, he’ll turn into a frog, won’t he?” Aladdin Sane says, making the others split themselves, in danger of teetering off their dais.
Goblin King’s mouth sits on a slant of disdain: “You know where I’d dump you all if I could?”
“The Bog of Eternal Stench,” the nine other Bowies chorus at him and laugh so hard they clutch their bellies.
Just as I think I can slip away, Lady Morris, our benefactor, breezes past me.
“Sadie, dear, would you ever get a karaoke machine or something to entertain these ruffians of yours. Oh, and by the way, don’t even think of ordering that set of Madonnas you were googling.”
Bayveen O’Connell lives in Dublin and is inspired by art, myth, history and Gothic notions. Her writing has appeared/ is forthcoming in Bending Genres, Janus Literary, The Forge Lit, Splonk, The 2020 National Flash Fiction Day Anthology, From Whispers to Roars, The Cabinet of Heed, Ellipsis Zine, and others. In 2019, one of her pieces was nominated for Best Microfiction.