“Huh?” I looked up at her then followed her gaze to the outdoor stage up ahead, surrounded by rows upon rows of backless benches in a seating area. “Um...maybe….what kind of show is it?” I asked doubtfully as she walked over anyway.
“Probably something with animals. It doesn’t really matter. You need to sit down before you fall down, Gavi-kins.” Skye blithely led me to the nearest bench and smoothly slid into her seat. She held my hand, guiding me and wrapping an arm around me as I sat down with a loud crinkle and squish of my wet diaper.
“Skye. I’m not tired.” I protested. She kept her arm around my waist; she just pulled me closer to her, snug up against her side.
“Sure.” She agreed easily. “But I’m comfortable, and now I’d like to see the show. Aren’t you curious?”
I stared ahead at the faded, weathered wood, looking for any signs or clues about what the show was. The curtains were tattered and filthy even from a distance. The zoo really needed to upgrade.
“I guess.” I mumbled. Her body was warm and soft; I laid my head on her shoulder and relaxed against her. She kissed the top of my head. From this angle I got a good view of her breasts. They really did look bigger than I remembered. Maybe she was wearing a push up bra? But there was an aching fullness to them that no bra or boob tape could recreate. I bit my lower lip as the strange urge to suck washed over me. Skye’s hand rested on my padded hip; she absently ran her fingers over one of the diaper tapes then started patting the front of my diaper. The wet, swollen interior squished over my privates pleasantly and I sighed, smiling happily.
Just then the speaker crackled, full of static and feedback. It died once, then started up again, much more clear.
“DEAR PATRONS,” the speakers mounted on rickety looking stage blared. “THE CREEPY CRITTERS SHOW IS ABOUT TO BEGIN. PLEASE DO NOT TOUCH THE ANIMALS UNLESS INSTRUCTED TO BY THEIR HANDLERS OR MAKE ANY SUDDEN MOVEMENTS THAT MIGHT FRIGHTEN THEM. THEY WILL BE MORE AFRAID OF YOU THAN YOU ARE OF THEM. PLEASE BE WARNED THAT THE FIRST FIFTY ROWS ARE THE SPLASH ZONE.”
A lot of the adults chuckled at that. Skye and I were in the very back, and I glanced at our row. “Row 49” it read. Ah, that’s the joke.
“FINALLY,” the pre-recorded message ran, “PLEASE DO NOT TOUCH CREEPY THE CLOWN. YOU HAVE NO IDEA WHERE HE’S BEEN. NOW...HEEEEEEEEERE’S CREEPY!” A clown in a lab coat and a stark white mad scientist wig entered the stage from behind the withered looking curtain, to a smattering of applause, and pre-recorded organ music and lightning.
His stark black and white makeup made him look more mime-ish than clown. His lab coat, which had probably been white at some point, was spray painted in streaks of red, blue, and neon green. Honestly, he looked more like a member of the Insane Clown Posse than anything you’d remotely consider funny. It wasn’t even close to Halloween. Why would they even have this attraction year round?
Like every other male employee working there today, his lab coat was wide open to reveal a safari print diaper with smiling cartoon animals on it.
“Ladies and gentleboys!” his pack-a-day croon send shudders down my spine. “Welcome to the Creepy the Clown’s Creepy Critter Cavalcade!” Applause echoed through the amphitheatre, bouncing off the rickety looking stage. “I of course, am the aforementioned Creepy the Clown, and I have the best job of any clown in the whole park! I get to scare little kids!” He looked down at a poor kid in the front row and began growling and barking. The little boy was unimpressed, and sat there with his arms crossing his chest.
“Okaaaaay…” the clown in the lab coat paused, “We’ll work on that.” The sound of him clearing his phlegmy throat echoed from his headset and through the speakers. “But,” the clown went on, “it’s not just about scaring the pants off of people. It’s also about educating them. Many of our creepy little friends that you will be seeing today are simply...let’s say misunderstood, and it is my sincerest hope that by the end of this show, you’ll find some of these animals a lot less scary.”
“Well,” he seemed to consider for a moment, “maybe not a lot less scary; but a tiny bit less so. But I can’t do this alone. I am simply your charmingly creepy MC this afternoon. The real hard work is going to be done by my lovely assistant. If you took the tram ride this morning, you know her, you love her; if you didn’t you’re about to; ladies and gentleboys, please allow me to introduce the woman on this show that actually knows what she’s doing: RAAAAAAANGER RHONDA!”
The tour guide from earlier that day her, mousey brown hair in a bun sans pith helmet, jogged out onto the stage carrying a light blue, thin cardboard box. It looked like something you might deliver doughnuts in.
“Well, Rhonda,” Creepy the Clown addressed her, “what do you have in there?”
“Well, that’s a secret right now,” Rhonda replied in obviously scripted dialogue.
“Is it a...creepy critter?” the Clown asked, sounding genuinely excited. Clearly he was the better actor in this bit.
“Nope,” Rhonda smiled, shaking her head.
“Well what’s in it?!” Creepy asked, seeming more agitated and anxious with each passing second.
“You’ll never know,” Rhonda puffed her chest out. “This is a clown-proof box.”
“A clown-proof...a clown...a clown-proof box?!” Creepy half-shrieked. “That’s no fair, Rhonda! No fair at all!” Rhonda just shrugged. The clown turned around in a huff, every move, every facial expression exaggerated so that the people hiding in the back rows could tell what he was doing.
The clown marched to the pre-schooler in the front row, the one who had had his arms up in the front row. He grabbed the child roughly by the wrist and whirled him around onto the stage.
“You!” he pointed to the kid once he stopped spinning. “You’re not a clown! You open the box!” The boy looked back to his mother, who waved him on, and then approached Rhonda. Rhonda bent over so the kid could reach the box.
Just as the kid was bending over, the edge of his diaper peeking up over his shorts, the lid popped open.
“EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!” the kid shrieked jumping back on his heels. The little boy lost balance and fell to his butt. Bawling and wailing, he stared down at his crotch. “NOOOOOO!” he began pawing impotently at the front of his pants, pressing down on his privates and curling into the fetal position.
His mother came onto stage and scooped him up, now with fresh tears and likely a not so fresh diaper.
Rhonda opened the lid more so we could all see what the tot had. “I said that there wasn’t a creepy creature; and there isn’t. There are many.” Even from the top row, I could see the black, squirming mass of disgusting insects crawling over each other in the boxes.
“Madagascar hissing cockroaches everyone!” The diapered clown announced. “Why don’t you tell us a little bit about these buggers, Rhonda?”
Rhonda happily complied. She reached into the box and held up one of the roaches. It was huge, about the size of her thumb, with a brown butt and long, wiggling antennas. Its butt wriggled as it let out an agitated hissing noise. “These moody little buggers are one of the largest cockroach species. They’re from Madagascar and they love to nest in rotting logs. There’s three types of hisses. The first one is what this little cutie is doing. The disturbance hiss, which basically translates to “hey buddy, back off”. Next up is the mating hiss, when the males try to flirt with the females. Then the fighting hiss. Two guys fighting over one lucky lady. Now, Mommy Roach carries her babies around in a sack until they hatch. Unlike some bugs, Mommy and Baby Roach often remain in close physical contact for long periods of time.”
“Skye, what kind of show is this?” I whispered over the speech Rhonda was giving. “That was a mean trick to play on a little boy.”
“Oh lighten up, Gavi-poo,” Skye whispered back. “It was all in good fun. Besides, he’s in good hands, now.” Over in the side of the stage, the little boy was being cradled by his mother, sucking his thumb as she gently rocked him; smiling warmly. She patted the front of his crotch and whispered something to him before she gave him a light kiss on the forehead. “All’s well that ends well.”
“Now for this next creepy critter,” the clown rasped into his headset, “we have a perfect photo opportunity for a lucky boy or girl in the audience. Who wants to come on down?”
Mothers grabbed their children’s hands and raised them up into the air, waving them around, volunteering their pride and joys as the next victim for this macabre sideshow. I felt Skye’s slender fingers grip my wrist.
“OVER HERE!” She called, waving my hand frantically into the air. “OVER HERE! PICK HIM! PICK HIM!”
“Skye?!” I hissed, “What are you doing?”
“Gettin’ you up on stage, big boy,” she grinned. “Come on, don’t you wanna show me how brave you are?”
“Oh come on!” I whined, “this is a baby show! No way I’m going up there.”
“Does that mean you’re scared?” her grin took on a more sinister glint.
“Yes! You there! In the back!” The clown called out. “Come on dooooowwn!” I was a deer in the headlights.
“Go on, Gavi-poo.” Skye encouraged me while scooting me off of my spot on the bench. “Go get ‘em, big boy.” My stomach lurched and began to gurgle as I stood up and descended the steps towards Creepy the Clown. I was out in the open, yet trapped at the same time.
“Hurry up, hurry up. Don’t be shy!” he called out. “While we’re all young….” he stopped and looked around. “Poor choice of words.”
My diaper swung and swayed slightly with each step down to the stage, the front weighted ever-so-slightly because of my pee-pee in it. I waddled like a cowboy until I was standing, front and center, face to face with the diapered clown. I’d been trying to avoid his kind all day, but Skye had taken that choice away from me.
“Nice duds, dude,” the clown gestured to my diaper. “Looks like you’re really getting into the spirit of things today.” There was some laughter from the audience. I grinned nervously and beared it.
“Name’s Creepy the Clown,” he extended to shake my hand. I eyed the buzzer in his hand and declined to shake his hand. “Smart man,” he showed the buzzer to the crowd and more appreciative laughter rang out. “That normally gets ‘em. You must be one of the smart ones. What’s your name, little buddy?”
I opened my mouth to talk, but Skye shouted out before me, “His name’s Gavin!”
“Gavin?!” exclaimed the idiot with the grease paint. “I just met somebody with that name...right here! Small world isn’t it, Gavin?” I just smirked and rolled my eyes.
“Though seriously, Gavin,” the clown joked, “I’m kind of embarrassed. If I had known we’d be wearing the same thing,” again he pointed back and forth to our diapers, “I would have worn something else. This is why we should coordinate more. Didn’t you see my status update on instagram?” More laughing filled my ears.
“But to be fair, Gavin, I’m pretty sure I was wearing mine first, so maybe you should do the honorable thing and go and get changed.” I heard Skye’s giggling waft down from the top row in the stands. I took that as my cue and started to walk off stage.
“Noooooot so fast, little buddy,” the clown’s fat meaty hand came down on my shoulder. “You’re not getting off with just a few yucks and a joke. No one gets off that easy, on my show. Good try though. Ranger Rhonda, what do we have for Gavin?”
“We have our very own Biiiiig Bertha!” Rhonda cheered carrying a large burlap sack over her shoulder. I had the creeping notion that there was something besides potatoes in that sack. She opened the sack and then reached in and pulled out a long...scaly...vomit green with rotted log spots...thick as my thigh,snake.
“Bertha is a nearly fully grown burmese python!” The stage shuddered with each step Rhonda took toward me. I wanted to run. I wanted to hide. I wanted to grab a fire axe and decapitate the legless monster that was even now being bought up to me.
“Burmese pythons are among the top five biggest snakes in the world,” Rhonda spoke into her headset, her voice echoing through the ampitheatre. “Now, like all constrictors, burmese pythons are nonvenomous. Instead they kill their prey by wrapping around it and squeezing the life out of it ” That’s when I felt the rough, scaly skin of the apex predator brush against the back of my neck.
I was only vaguely aware of the tour guide and the clown to either side of me. They were wrapping this monster around me, setting me up to be it’s next meal. I broke out into a cold sweat as its head swiveled around in the air, a vicious forked tongue probing for its next meal.
“But don’t worry, Gavin,” Rhonda assured me, “Burmese pythons rarely attack humans, though some can get big enough to actually eat alligators.” My mouth was dry. This thing could eat a friggin’ alligator and I wasn’t supposed to worry?
“A common misconception about reptiles is their predatory nature,” Rhonda lectured, oblivious to my terror, as the skin crawling monster slithered around on my shoulders, only barely being supported by the two professionals. My own frail, almost rabbit-like frame bore most of the weight. Didn’t snakes eat rabbits? “Most burmese pythons only need to eat once every month or so, and the bigger they get, the less often they need to eat.”
“Hey Rhonda,” Creepy the clown asked, “how long has it been since we fed Big Bertha, anyways?”
“Well, you were supposed to feed her last month,” Rhonda answered.
“No I wasn’t,” Creepy replied with mock incredulity, “It was your turn.”
“I thought it was…” Rhonda sounded worried.
“Gavin...buddy,” I heard Creepy stage whisper. “Don’t move. And if you feel Bertha hugging you...don’t scream...you’re gonna need alllll your air.” The snake writhed around and made eye contact with me, it’s soulless killer eyes locking with mine.
“Watch this, folks, we actually taught Big Bertha a little trick.” Creepy took a wand and waved it over Bertha’s head, her tongue dancing in the air barely inches from my nose. The wand struck Bertha’s snout and the snake opened it’s mouth with an audible hissssssss.
I stared into the pink, ribbed abyss as the leviathan opened its maw right at me. Too many living things had gone down into that living squirming, pulsating cave and never come back.
My jaw felt like it unhinged itself, mimicking the apex predator lying on my shoulders and staring directly at me, it’s pink mouth spread open to consume me. I tried to scream in abject terror, but nothing came out. Then something did. It just didn’t come out of my mouth.
Mushy, sticky, disgusting poop rushed out of me, hitting the seat of my diaper and spread out instantly. The constant crinkling that had become so much white noise to me that morning and afternoon was drowned out by a thick, sickening, squelching sound, as not quite solid stool collided with the soft cotton lining meant to hold and absorb my pee-pee accidents.
Uproarious laughter at my shocked expression gave way to pitiful silence as wet farts erupted from my backside in the intervening seconds. I was pooping my pants, except I wasn’t even wearing pants, and I had a live audience of mothers and their toddlers all watching in shocked silence.
I willed myself to stop, to scream to cover the noise, to run, to walk, to fall down; anything really. But my body continued to betray me. All I was allowed to do was bend my knees, mutely grunt to myself, and stare off into the middle distance, as I pushed out more and more of my own bodily waste into my seat.
The weight of the mess practically jerked the back half of my diaper downwards as it sagged with the weight I was putting into it. I was only, vaguely aware of the snake handler taking “Big Bertha” off of my shoulders as my mess spread first up my crack and ass, and then as gravity took over, down into my taint, and coating my balls with smelly mud-like scat.
It now felt less like I was wearing plastic backed underwear, and more like a grocery bag full of shit strapped to my hips. I was dirty. I was vile. I wasn’t even human anymore. I was unclean. And there was an entire audience of people watching me quietly debase myself.
In the front row I saw mothers hide their tittering behind their hands, and even toddlers blushed on my behalf. Further back, I was keenly aware of manicured fingers pointing at me and slender hands suddenly remembering to check their own babies for accidents in need of changing. Some of the kids even turned around to look at their parents, clear sounds of objections from their lips and looks of indignation on their faces.
As if they were as bad as the big person shitting himself in public! How insulting! How ridiculous. They were all younger than me, but bigger than me where it counted.
Up in the back rows, I spotted the little black baby and his mother from the pony ride. He was giving me the thumbs up with one hand, his other hand jammed back into his mouth, a thin line of drool visible from even where I was standing. Way to go, he seemed to congratulate me. Way to go. I had just gone alright.
An unfamiliar hand, patted my backside, gingerly squeezing the mess I had deposited. “Uh, I think this guy needs a little help over here.” The clown called out awkwardly from behind me. “Ma’am, could you come get him?”
I needed help. I needed out of this place. I needed to go home and cry and forget all about this wretched day. But most of all, I needed a new diaper. And for any and all of that, I needed Skye.