Tuesday, 15 December 2015

Christmas with Spider-Boy
Darren Worrow

Jamie and his sister stood waiting behind their bedroom doors as their father piled the boxes in the cupboard next to the bathroom door. He squeezed, and he pushed the final box in then quickly turned his back and pressed it against the door, easing it shut. Once the door was shut he dusted off his hands by clapping them together and giggled out, “I know you are behind your bedroom doors kids.”
The children revealed themselves by causally sauntering onto the upstairs landing and swung their feet back and forth, “oh Dad, can’t we just have a quick look?” Jamie cried.
“No!” stated their father in a stern voice, “they are for Christmas and no one this year is going to take a peek until Christmas morning!”
Dad never allowed them to take a sneaky peek at what toys and games they had got them for the big day and he got very angry when they found ways to find out. A few years ago they just opened the door and so last year the father added a padlock to the door to secure it. Excited Jamie could not wait to find out what delights they had in store for him and so he pinched the key to the padlock from the drawer in the kitchen that Dad named “the Man Draw.” The Man Draw was completely off limits and although Jamie was mostly, I say mostly, a good boy, curiosity would always get the better of him around Christmas time and he was willing to try anything to get to see the presents early.
“Awl Dad!” sobbed his little sister and backed off into her room to sulk with her teddies.
But Jamie was confident, he wasn’t about to let a simple thing like a padlock stand in his way. It was kind of like a game, for his father to create new methods of stopping him from gaining access to the cupboard and for him to overcome them and break an entry to it.
So the boy stood proud with his arms folded, he had a plan and it was simple. He would turn that house upside down until he found where his father had hidden the key. His father looked down at him with the very item Jamie most desired clutched tightly in his paw. “You’ll not be able to steal the key this year either,” his Dad laughed and promptly lifted his arm above his head, tilted his head up and opened his gapping cake hole.
Jamie unfolded his arms and looked in horror as his father lowered his hand to his mouth and dropped the key inside it. His father then looked at Jamie and smirked. He swallowed hard, gulped, burped, tapped his belly and giggled, “Let’s see you get that one kid!”
While his father leapt for joy all the way to the bottom of the stairs Jamie fell upon his bed, “that was a rotten trick!” he snarled but then he smiled with an equally sly grin as his father. “I don’t need that stupid key anyway, not when I am spider-boy!” he sneered with his head in his hands, kicking his feet into his mattress.
Jamie was indeed Spider-boy, not like Spiderman though, oh no. Spiderman was just a guy who was bitten by a spider and had the powers of a spider. Jamie went one better than this for he could actually transform himself into a spider, a real sized, tiny house spider and that trick would see him become small enough to sneak through the gap between the floor and the door to the cupboard. Jamie had always been able to transform into a spider for as long as he could remember, he never understood quite why but he did not care to find out for that would mean asking people, talking to his dad about it or going to see a doctor and that mean that his skill would be revealed. He did not want anyone to know about this magical power as it could get him out of all number of scrapes.
When mum would call him to do his chores she thought he was nowhere to be found when all the time he was right there, in the top corner of the room, laughing at her. When his teacher gave him a detention he would pretend that he dropped his pen, go under his desk and change into a spider. From there he would scamper off into the gaps of the old wooden slats of the floor and be gone in minutes. It was a great skill; why would he want to spoil it by telling anyone. They would make him do all kinds of tests; probably hold him captive in a science lab too.
Jamie decided to waste no more time sulking and so in the shake of a lamb’s tail he had magically transformed into a tiny money-spider, no bigger than a one pence piece. He giggled as he scrambled out of the bedroom and across the landing to the door. He snuck underneath the door with ease and was finally inside the dark cupboard. There were many boxes but Jamie could not make out what the pictures were of, they were too vast for his eyes to scan and make sense of. So Jamie run up the first box and across the big bold letters, looking at them one by one so that he could read what was inside the box. He scampered back and forth but he could not make head or tail of what the words were.
Jamie became rather flustered and frustrated; why had he forgotten how to read? He sauntered back into his bedroom and transformed back to his human self. “Why can I not read the words on the boxes?” he asked himself and then it became clear. He slapped his forehead; “Blast!” he said to himself, “because when I am a spider I am a spider and spiders cannot read!”
He repeated the process, trying this time to recall what it was that he saw in the cupboard when he returned to his bedroom and transformed back to his human self but it did not work, he was simply confused, the letters made no sense, they were just gobbledygook. The plan had backfired no matter how many times he tried it, he was too big to get into the cupboard as a boy and too stupid as a spider to understand what it was he was looking at. Jamie fell on his bed and sighed, would he never find out what presents he had before Christmas, he asked himself over and over again until suddenly, he came up with a new plan and it was faultless.
Jamie sneaked downstairs and peeked into the lounge. It was time for Dad to take his usual afternoon kip in his favourite chair and sure enough that is exactly where he was, snoozing away with his mouth wide open. “Catching flies,” his mum would call it but this time, it would not be a fly that he caught. Jamie, now in his spider body, crept up his dad’s slipper and over his trousers. It was quite a journey, but he made it to his belt. A steep climb next over the hilly landscape of his vast belly but it proved no problem for a strong spider. He grasped onto the man’s chin from his neck and sneaked past his lips, over his tongue and then spun a web that allowed him to lower his body down through his father’s windpipe.
Jamie would get inside his father’s stomach, locate the key and tug it back out through the giant’s mouth; easy. Jamie winced; dad looked stranger on the inside than he did on the outside, if that was at all possible. Also, he smelt even worse too.
Through red walled caverns and tubes the spider crept until he came to a large opening with lots of waste food and liquid floating around, “gross out!” cried Jamie and he searched for the missing key. It was not so long before he found it, stuck onto a large crumb of chocolate muffin. He pulled it out and spun a web around it so they were coupled together and he would not lose it while climbing back out. Jamie laughed; this was like taking candy from a baby he figured, “even if it is a bit stinky inside here!”
He slowly found the correct pipe that led up to his father’s mouth and made haste towards it. He got halfway through the tube when his Dad breathed out hard, he was snoring and it sounded so weird inside, like a hollow howl of wind it echoed through the tube very loudly. It made Jamie jump right out of his spider-skin and he caught the end of the key on the pulp wall of the cave. The whole place immediately rocked as it disturbed his sleeping father and he coughed and spluttered loudly, a vast amount of phlegm washed the spider further back into the cavern of his stomach again. Jamie gurgled, trying to keep his head above the sticky substance in fear of drowning in it, “Blast!”
There was a lot of rumbling, it felt like an earthquake. Movement meant that he Dad had been disturbed from his slumber and was now moving around. He must have taken in a huge gulp of air because suddenly the wind factor picked up like a tornado and Jamie was swept of his six feet and flushed through a duct lower much than the one he wanted to get back through.
Now for those good girls and boys reading or listening to this story, which, by the way, is about to get very messy and horrid, you would have probably done your biology homework or at least listened in class when the teacher explained about the digestive system and so you will be able of guess just where spider-boy is venturing off to. Jamie though still could not work it out, he never listened in class.
He looked all around him at the soft brown matter that was building up; smaller particles were joining each other to form large solid logs. Yes, his father was making his way to the bathroom and the tube that Jamie was stuck in was his large colon. Jamie was confused as to where it led and he wondered to himself, “why do they even call it the digestive system, it looks nothing like a biscuit?” Suddenly he heard his father grunt, it echoed through his body and he detected that his father had now sat down. He became suspicious and then, just as he became wedged inside the pulp matter, he finally figured it out, “oh, no,” he cried, “no way, NO!!!”
With the key still attached things started to get on the move, like an over-inflated brown subway train the matter was being forced south towards a brilliant circle of light. “This is……this is poo! My Dad’s poo too!” he whimpered in horror, but coming to terms with his predicament would not make it any easier to accept.
Jamie was well and truly stuck, squashed in between collections of this disgusting matter he closed his eyes and prayed that this was all a very bad nightmare as the train pulled out of the station and headed towards the light. The waiting seemed like an eternity but before too long the light engulfed them. The sound of his father’s grunts and groans suddenly lost its echo effect and he felt the giant poo-log freefall. Then, with a massive splash he was surrounded by ocean, a yellowy brown ocean.
Jamie tugged on his web and eventually pulled the key free. He boarded it like a boat and paddled to the porcelain bank. All the way he was coughing and spluttering, the water was fetid and disgusting and he began to feel like he was going to throw-up. In tears he crawled up the inside of the toilet bowl. He dared not look up to see a kind of heart shaped opening where his father’s bottom cheeks met the toilet seat, he knew it was disgusting but it was his only way out. At one point he thought that he must have been discovered when his Dad suddenly yelped out, “Oh my god!”
He stopped in his tracks, trying to consider another way out when he heard his father rustle his newspaper and cry out, “Tottenham lost a point against West Brom!”
That was when Jamie knew he had not been seen and made haste through the gap and onto the back of the seat. Without wasting anymore time he scurried down the toilet and to the bathroom floor. Across the round carpet he scampered and then he slid under the door, all the time checking that he was still dragging the key behind him.
Now, outside the bathroom he was right in position. The horrid affair had not been a waste of time as he transformed back to his human self and held the key up high in triumph. The cupboard door was adjacent to the bathroom one and he stood before it, key in hand. The moment had come to reap the reward for his hard and smelly work. He slid the key into the padlock and grinned; now he would find out what toys and games he had for Christmas, almost five whole sleeps before the big day. He chuckled, yes it was sick but he was glad that he did it; it was somehow worth all the fuss and smell.
With a joy in his mind and overcome with a feeling of accomplishment he slowly turned the key and snapped the padlock off. He was trembling with excitement as he placed his hand on the door handle and tugged it down. At that point in time nothing else mattered in Jamie’s mind and the rest of the world was put on hold while he pulled the handle down. It was as if time had stood still, the rest of the world was no longer significant to him, which is a shame because if he had been paying more attention he would have been able to hear his father washing his hands and making his way out of the bathroom.
Annoyed with the football result his father thrust open the door, unaware that his son stood behind it, entranced by his moment of triumph. His father could not work out what was blocking the door and so he gave it a harder shove. He slipped his lank body through the gap between the door and its frame to see his son, Jamie, unconscious on the floor holding the key to the padlock in his hands. His father momentarily wondered just how his son had achieved the amazing feat of obtaining the key. Still, his father had more pressing things to concern himself with; Tottenham could get relegated by the end of the season if they carried on like that.
He smirked at the heap on the floor, bent down and yanked the key out of Jamie’s fingers as he lay, comatose on the landing carpet. “I’ll take that thank you!” he giggled and promptly swallowed the key again.
His father walked causally into his own bedroom and making sure that no one was around to view his long term secret he changed into a large, hairy spider. “When I get smaller,” he explained to himself, “so too will the contents of my stomach and the key with be lost forever!”


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