Troughman: The Musical - Part One
ADULT: Barry Lowe kicks off the first in a five-part serialized erotic short story.
PART ONE: AUDITIONS
Jack Staal waited patiently as the once well-known actor, who had jumped from a top-rated TV soap for a career in Hollywood movies but who discovered to his chagrin his fan base was now in the toilet, thumbed through the script. As director of the forthcoming small-budget musical for the Taylor Square Musical Society (motto: ‘We put the glitter in the gay’), Jack had seen his fair share of divas that day and he already knew he had another on his hands in the form of Storm Lambert. He wasn’t just washed up, he’d been dried and put away in the cupboard and forgotten. He had all the appeal of an old suit that had been neglected in the wardrobe and needed a good dry cleaning. Drugs and booze will do that to you.
In an effort to hurry things along, Jack called out from his seat in the centre of the theatre.
“Which part do you think most suits your talents, Mr. Lambert?”
Storm sniffed as if it were obvious. “Why, the lead, of course.”
“Naturally,” Jack replied without even the hint of sarcasm to which he could have easily resorted. Besides, he already had someone penciled in for that role.
Storm cleared his throat, standing awkwardly on stage. “Um, I was told you were doing Singin’ the Rain. This seems to be a very different sort of…um…wet.”
Jack gritted his teeth. “Who told you we were doing that?”
“Um…Will, the artistic director.”
Treacherous backstabbing bastard,Jack thought. He’ll do anything to thwart this production.
Jack took a deep breath. “No, we received an Arts Council grant to do a play about an iconic historical gay figure.”
“And this Troughman guy fits the bill?”
Jack had already had this conversation so many times he didn’t feel any need to justify himself, so he merely said with as much finality to his tone as he could muster,
“I think so.”
“Ah…there won’t be any…um…real urine involved, will there?”
It was time to put this wanker out of his misery. “Mr. Lambert, I pride myself on the stark realism of my productions. You may not have noticed that Act One ends with an underwater ballet so, yes, there will be buckets and buckets of piss.”
Before Jack had even finished his sentence, Storm Lambert had turned a duck shit green, held his hand to his mouth as he dry retched, and ran off the stage. The company was due to start rehearsals in a few days and Jack had still to cast a few major roles including the second lead, the Piss Angel who acted as narrator, but he’d run up against a wall of preposterous demands from actors who were afraid to put a toe in more adventurous theatrical waters. Lambert had been the last for the day, so he stood up, rubbed the bridge of his nose and turned to walk up the aisle to the back of the theatre. A voice stopped him in his tracks.
“Mr. Staal. I hope I’m not too late. I’m here for the audition.”
Jack didn’t need to turn around to know it was Jason Stitch speaking from the stage. Jason had broken his heart. What broke his heart more than anything now was that Jason was perfect for the Angel. Jack would offer the role to him and his heart would be trampled once more. Jason had been the love of his life. Still was.
Throughout the month of September, Barry Lowe presents a five-part erotic short story. Next week: ‘Part Two: Intervention’.