Sven Goes to War. Part 5. Come on Stanley.
Arriving seven days after all the other boys due to helping his da out with the welding on the fleet of Evans’ Sausage and Pie vans, why do they bring them all flippin’ in at the same time?, stepping into the dorm room Stanley had found Sven on his knees, the other boys around him in a circle, jeering, while Sven was forced to lick some disgusting paste [it was Spam] off Bert’s naked chest.
“It’s a doggie doggie world,” Stanley had said, reading out the tattoo on Bert the Boxer from Boosbeck’s chest as he grabbed him around the neck, launched him through the open window and down, via a pitch roof, look at him roll, ka-dunk, ka-dunk, ka-dunk, onto the parade ground below.
Landing on his arse.
Lying there stunned.
“And when you get back up here,” Stanley bellowed at him through the window, “you can apologise to the wee man, and I mean properly apologise, and if you ever so much as even look at him wrong again I’ll fucking kill you, so I will.”
Stanley’s father had a run-down workshop on the edge of town that dealt with All you’re Welding Needs and his mother was a dinner lady at Saltburn-by-the-Sea’s Ecclesiastical Lower School but she spent six months of each year in the Lunatic Asylum Up On The Hill with the Devout Nuns because of her Nerves which drove Stanley’s dadBloody Barmy.
“But she’s alright, me mam,” said Stanley. “She’s always there for me swimming.”
Stanley was a prodigious swimmer and when he was older he dreamt of diving for pearls in the Gulf of Mannar, being World Champion Free Diver five years in a row, and of appearing in The Guinness Book of World Records for recording the Fastest Unaided Swim between Saltburn-by-the-Sea and Stavanger which is in Norway and probably bloody icy flippin’ cold being so far North and me balls’ll probably retract up to me nose during the swim so one sneeze and they’ll come flying out me nostrils which is not a good look for a World flippin’ Record Holder, but before all that when he was 16 later this year he was going to join the army because my dad has already signed me up, because there ain’t many jobs about here and it’s better to have a profession behind you but what kind of profession I’ll have in the army I don’t know because the likes of me and you Sven are the ones who are flippin’ cannon fodder.
Stanley always wore a blue cable knit jumper, had shoulders wider than a pit pony’s thighs and, although he was only 15 and ¾, had to shave twice a day although he didn’t shave because [and here he tugs comically with both hands at full chin fluff on square adult-looking chin] with a beard like this he could get served pints of ale at The Jolly Fisherman and admittance to Johnny’s Peep Show where you could see real titties and ass through a Wipe-down-Perspex-Viewing-GlassTM.
But Stanley’s biggest secret, and don’t tell anyone although I know you won’t because me and you Sven, we’re completely different but two of a kind, was that when he was twelve years old he had welded his toes together with one of his father’s blow torches.
I was thinking webbed feet like a duck or a grey goose or a swan would help me swim better and the blow torch flippin’ bloody hurt, being hot like, and me da went bat-shit fuckin’ crazy, hit the moon and back, you know? but it did the trick, because look at these pair of bananas.
Then Stanley kicked off his shoes.
Then he peeled of his socks.
Where other boys might have toes on each foot Stanley had a red ridged flipper.
“I was thinking of calling myself Stanley the Shark,” Stanley said. “But it sounds kind ‘o’ naff and why big yourself up to knock yourself down?”
After Stanley had shared with him the secret of his feet Sven came to the conclusion that he should finally make a Momentous Decision,
not taken lightly, get down on knees and pray, although don’t believe in God.
Will that make prayer less / more effective?
1.God, being bountiful, will think, Let us make this prayer come true so I will have +1 follower for my ever decreasing flock. Not that this decreasing is perpetual. Throw in flood. Throw in global pandemic. Etc. Etc. People will turn to God (Me!) in hour of need. And here is God (Me!) being bountiful. Etc. Etc.
2.God being unbountiful (and merciless!) will think, What have ever done [for me] in past 15 years? Been to Harvest Festival? No. Sang hymn in eternal praise and glory? No. Cried nightly tears for my endless bounty and passion? No. So why do I care for +1 follower? I am God. +1 follower is nothing to me. Get all of Saltburn-by-the-Sea on side, for example, and build, for example, shiny new church, with stained glass window, and font in style of eternity pool etc etc and then come back to me and God (Me!) will reconsider.
3.God does not exist and while I (Sven) am on knees praying, eyes closed, lips moving, Oh all powerful God, all knowing and all bountiful etc etc, I approached from behind by Bert the Boxer from Boosbeck and, taking opportunity of [my] vulnerable state, will whip down pants and shove ‘man’s head roughly size of golf ball, man has shocked expression on face, fixed to back of man’s head is plug, plug goes up butt, fixing in place, so looks like man trying to escape from butt,’ up my ass and then pull it out and make me suck on the shitty end. Thanks God. For making me suck on shitty end. Which why don’t believe in you. Quo vadis…
But then he had thought of Stanley, and his handsome kind face, and discounting God, who was, after all, an unknown variable, he had taken his Momentous Decision, blind, and that night while the other boys were engaging in some rough physical games under close supervision Sven had taken Stanley into the Broom Closet, turned out the light and, standing on an upturned disinfectant bucket, whispered the words he had only ever said to himself before into Stanley’s left ear.
“I dress up in my dead sister’s clothes.”
Then he looked down at his hands, kneaded his fingers together, felt a tightening in his butthole.
In for a penny, in for a pounding.
“But it’s not because they’re my sister’s clothes. It’s because they’re girls’ clothes. I don’t know why. I just prefer them. I feel safe.”
Then Sven closed his eyes, prayed for real this time,
and for someone to understand
“You like to dress up in women’s clothes,” said Stanley, flicking on the light, grabbing Sven by the shoulders, pulling him in for a hug, “that’s fine by me. Why should anyone give a flippin’ flip about that sort of thing when there’s so much other bad shit flying about? Stick with me and you’ll be alright.
I promise you.
Now let’s go and get some grub.
Then, me and you,
we can take on the world.”
Image from Pixabay - https://pixabay.com/photos/man-athlete-sixpack-fitness-931724/