A darkened alley off Hollywood Boulevard…
Morty coaxed Celine into the alley – her stumps bothered her from all the hill climbing. Three dumpsters lined the walls in a horseshoe shape. Horns blasted from impatient drivers along with the usual overhead helicopters spotlighting partying night clubbers that could be heard milling out of doorways - or arguing to get past a doorman.
“Hey – I’m 21! You can’t keep me out! I’m 31! Don’t you know who I am?”
“Really – tough guy with back-up. Three bats behind me says you let us in!”
“My boyfriend won the Hawaiian American Idol?! You don’t recognize him? Like Five-OOO!”
Morty and Celine leaned against a wall and listened to the night sounds of their world and Celine began to cry. “What’s wrong – sweetheart?” She swiped her tears wearily – “I’m just tired. I want to go home and in our own bed.” The dwarf consoled her and promised they would make it home safely and turned her towards him with an enormous smile -“Let’s hide behind a dumpster.” She giggled as Morty lead the way – when….
Peter and Babes showed up. OH yes they did! He hollered to Jared while jumping up and down excitedly kissing Babes - “Heyo! Over here!” Celine turned as Morty slid under her dress from behind her to hide. Only a glimmer of light illuminated the alley. She looked at Peter with a plea in her voice – “Why are you doing this? You’re just a boy with a rubber doll for a girlfriend. We didn’t do anything to you – please go.”
Peter let Babes whisper in his ear. “My girl says that was a mean thing to say.” Celine apologized and begged – “Please don’t call Jared here.” “He just wants to talk to the midget. YOLO!” Peter explained. “YOLO?” she asked. “Jared says it’s you only live once for stupid people.” Celine replied – “You’re not stupid – you’re just lost and…” Babes squeaked as Peter held her. “Your girlfriend looks cold. Maybe you should cover her up better?” Celine suggested. Peter gazed at his inflatable girl and laughed – “No goose bumps.”
“Well – he’s not here.” She took a step forward in the darkened alleyway. Peter kept yelling as she and Morty inched forward slowly. Peter - “Don’t come any closer – you’re scaring my girl.” Closer they came - “You really should go home to your parents and get off the streets.” Celine continued as Peter screeched louder for Jared – his nerves were rattled. Morty leapt out from between Celine’s fake legs and punctured Babes with a small pocketknife. A loud whoosh could be heard.
Peter started crying while trying blow Babes back up. It happened so quickly he never saw Morty coming. This was the second time Babes was attacked in her entire lifetime with her boyfriend. Ever since he got her newly from the box – Peter had taken excellent care of her. Josh bolted over with his camera and started filming – but Morty was already back under Celine’s dress.
“Turn that camera off.” Celine hissed as Peter cried out to Josh for help. His camera fell to his hip with the strap holding it. “Dylan… I mean Peter – we’ll fix her – I still have a patch leftover from earlier when she got popped at Dodger Stadium.” He smiled dreamily as he thought of his interaction with Spielberg. Only two weeks in town and he was set to be a filmmaker to be reckoned with. Yessirree – in his mind he was!
Celine and Morty watched the two as they slowly made their exit onto the sidewalk. The emergency patch was working as Peter blew his girlfriend back up and Josh glanced at Celine when…
Jared skidded to a stop. “My – My – what have we got here? A damsel in distress or a midget hiding - under her dress?” Morty tapped out code on her crutch leg hidden beneath her petticoat – to hold strong.
Peter stood up and informed – “She popped Babes.”
Celine in her British accent – “I did not – you bumped your doll against my leg and punctured her and if you come any closer I’ll knock a hole in you -little boy.” She emphasized as she made loud whooshing sounds with outstretched hands flying in birdie motions. Peter and Babes were at his hero’s side as Josh shot some footage.
Jared’s lips twisted into a curl – thumb towards himself – “Really? What are you going to do to this big boy? Last time I saw you and that little dummy – I thought we had a thing goin’ on between us – but NO! You had to destroy my meeting and it’s a top secret happening that you were not supposed to crash or even remotely know about… do you know how long it took me to get these people to come out? DO YOU!”
Celine cringed. “Well – a really – really long time – okay? Like trying to resurrect Ziggy Stardust and the Ants of Venus!”
The Asian King twin sisters - sashayed by – “That’s Spiders from Mars – dollman! Get your info straight.” They chuckled as a limo pulled up – curbside. “Missed the party and the ambulance – what a scene. Who knows maybe one day even you will be invited to the party.”
The sisters knew how to piss Jared off. “Excuse me - you two phony heiresses without a motel – Hugh E. Nesser is a good man – he just had a little too much to drink. I seriously doubt you were on the REAL guest list. Hookers for Jesus are from the Valley – and we all know – Hollywood doesn’t DO the valley well.”
The sisters giggled and one put her head out of the window as they drove away with their clients – “Dollman? You’ve always been a lollipop without a stick. Leave the poor homeless lady alone – you don’t have a chance even with a cripple like her.”
Jared raised his middle finger – and unbeknownst to him – Celine was raising hers for that remark - “P*ss off you clueless pellets with no trigger!” He inhaled – then twisted back to Celine who was now further down the sidewalk. A loud whistle made her stop as he slipped in-step beside her -
“Do you have any idea how sick these people with puppets are? Or how their little minds are so fragile that one FALSE move like what you and the little guy did can set them back for life?!! You don’t come in and destroy a private meeting that was top secret!”
Celine was getting frightened – “We didn’t mean any harm and are really sorry to have offended you. It was lots of fun to watch – you’ve done a really good job!”
“It takes a lot of imagination and compassion to rid these people of their puppet addiction and persistence as a leader to educate and inform them of how dangerous their habit is. Everyone has a little quirk of their own design. What’s yours?”
Celine looked at him confused and scared as Morty tapped on her leg to get moving – so she began to walk.
Jared followed – “Come on – you can tell me pretty lady and you will tell me where your partner is. What’s your albatross that hangs around that pretty neck of yours?”
“I got this at a thrift shop – thanks so much for liking my necklaces.” She tried to deflect.
“You know I’m talking about something more personal than that but if you insist on ignoring me and playing stupid. God – I hate when people do that! I mean you truly have no idea who you’re dealing with – I am the rocket man – you and me… now…” - Jared shook his head to clear it - “Where is he? Someone has to pay and I nominate the angry little guy!”
Jared was in Celine’s face and could smell her unique scent – instant wood - “Hmm… not bad for a woman with no legs…” His hand slid down her waist as he pulled her slightly towards him. “A bit too much on the make-up but it’s Hollywood – at least your chest isn’t a floater.” Celine was terrified as his hand slid down her right stump onto her crutch leg Jared yelped – Morty had poked him from beneath her dress. “Ouch! Your leg turns me on – let’s try the smoother side.” As his hand descended and he started to grope her – Morty grabbed his hand and bit down as hard as he could. Jared screamed – “What the hell??!!” Josh kept shooting and Peter and Babes looked on.
As Jared’s hand was released he pulled his cupped fingers to his face. “What bit me?!” His eyes widened in enraged realization that the dwarf had been there all along when… Morty came tumbling out and grabbed his bag of marbles hitting Jared from all sides. Jared fell to the sidewalk holding his head with his hand tucked under his other arm. “I’m going to KILL you – you f**king midget!” Celine took off as Morty turned to the boys taking aim. “Leave or you end up like him.” They ran. To Jared – “You leave me and my girl alone – loser!” Morty made faces at him and helped Celine away.
Jared grabbed his long-haired wig and howled to the night skies – “I want an apologeeeeee!!!!!!”
Later in Shorty & Morty’s hillside shack…
Unable to sleep – Morty – the 4’6” dwarf punched his pillow hard. “That guy – that white coat doctor whatever he was – doesn’t know why or how you lost your legs! He wanted to hurt you and I stopped him!” Celine bolted upright. “Hey… hey… it’s alright luv… it’s okay.” “I made your legs so you could see the world through the eyes you were born to see them with!” Morty grimaced painfully – “We’re the same size but I wanted you to be lifted up, see?” Morty needed to know he made a difference to her. “I know that. Don’t be angry it was just a dream.” Celine’s voice soothed him as he rolled onto his side and listened to the chopper fly away.
He knew Celine had special gifts. Some said insight – others intuitive and then there were those who said just plain crazy – but Morty knew his girl was special. Coming from an orphanage and being a repeat returnee taught him a lot about people and he didn’t trust much – if at all– in goodwill towards any man – woman or child. Not for lack of trying. He was always the fastest and smartest kid but when Morty quit growing - it seemed the hearts around him did too.
He became the unlovable one – the oddity – yet proportional in size – it wasn’t his fault he didn’t grow. Morty understood Celine’s pain and her not wanting to face it. He also agonized over whether she were strong enough to deal with what really happened to her legs – should it be uncovered. Thoughts she had said swept through his mind. Did she get run over by a tractor? Was she savagely tortured as a child –hung up to dry and her legs fell off from an electric saw or died from lack of circulation? Had she had a disease and they were amputated or was she simply born that way? Underneath all of her bravado – the 4’6” man felt only he knew the truly soft side of her and he would die protecting it at all costs.
Morty looked over to Celine and her eyes were closed. This day and night were unlike any other they had encountered since coming from the ports to Krazytown.
He wasn’t sure but he could swear her eyelashes glitter glowed in the dark like tiny dancing spirits in celebration.
To be continued… Yesirree!!!
Last week’s episode:
23. Stuck In Krazytown – Shorty & Morty’s Homeless Hollywood Hood:
22. Hollywood Messes – Shorty & Morty’s Hollywood Homeless Hood:
21. Kharma ‘n Nesser – Shorty & Morty’s Homeless Hollywood Hood: http://tinyurl.com/krb4nya
20. For The Love Of It – Shorty & Morty’s Homeless Hollywood Hood:
19. Morty Wakes Up – Shorty & Morty’s Homeless Hollywood: http://tinyurl.com/obe6evs
18. Nesser Joins The Club - Shorty & Morty’s Homeless Hollywood Hood: http://tinyurl.com/b2kb7ue
Short Stories/Interviews Continued:
17. A Very Private Club - Shorty & Morty’s Homeless Hollywood Hood: http://tinyurl.com/msd2zuf
16. A Fool’s Culture – Shorty & Morty’s Homeless Hollywood Hood: http://tinyurl.com/cnqbr2a
13. Cultures Clash - Shorty & Morty's Hollywood Homeless Hood: http://tinyurl.com/d6f8tuz
10. Spielberg Visits Shorty & Morty’s Hollywood Homeless Hood: http://tinyurl.com/cp4ovmh
9. Shorty & Morty – Residents of Hollywood’s Homeless Hood: http://tinyurl.com/b7bxpop
6. Josh Jalil & Peter: The Camera Guy – Shorty & Morty’s Homeless Shooter: http://tinyurl.com/cght25m
5. Jared: Everybody’s Got A Bully – Even Hollywood’s Homeless: http://tinyurl.com/d4xrpnb
4. Steven Huber: Composer Steven Huber Creates A Theme Song for Shorty & Morty: http://tinyurl.com/chhqvez
3. Razor: Countin’ On The Homeless Cenus – Hollywood @ Steak with Shorty & Morty: http://tinyurl.com/cyjnvxh
2. Peter: Running Young ‘n Homeless in Hollywood – Shorty & Morty: http://tinyurl.com/bq6hj7h
1. Zippy & Kate: Two Left Feed in the ER with Shorty & Morty: http://tinyurl.com/d5x7e5r
Official Web Site: www.shortyandmorty.com
Dylan Bocanegra's art site: www.dtbsketchbook.blogspot.com
LIKE Shorty & Morty on FB: http://tinyurl.com/bw6v68p
Art Inspired by E.M. Fredric's Shorty & Morty: http://tinyurl.com/cd8p4wh
Shorty & Morty Theme Song by Steve Huber: http://tinyurl.com/cpnzsrz