Thursday, September 20, 2007

292. The omniscient narrator

Scarecrow snapped his scrawny fingers. A split second later, a loud buzzer sounded, triggering two things: first, each of the four bound men on stage moved almost mechanically to their knees. It was clear that this was something they had been trained to do--they did it not quite willingly, but fully aware that disobedience would bring harsh punishment.

As the captives sank to the floor, four uniformed members of the militia marched out onto the stage and took positions directly in front of them. The hooded heroes' faces were at crotch level and they waited silently as the Honest Men slowly unbuttoned their breeches, sliding them toward the floor while leaving their duty belts in place.

"As you can plainly see," Crane intoned, "not all of the hoods allow for oral contact. That is no matter. These four understand now that they must serve their superiors in a number of ways. Sometimes that involves their mouths. Sometimes it does not. For the purposes of today's demonstration, their heads will do just fine."

The Honest Men wore black leather jockstraps emblazened with the initials "HM." At Crane's cue, they pressed the pouches into the hooded faces of their captives. In a choreography of humiliation, they rubbed them up and down, side to side, as the heroes kneeled passively and accepted their fate.