Excerpt from “It Really IS Rocket Science: Surfing With the Alien” (volume 2 of the series). The band is on a country fair tour in Southern and Eastern Oregon. Tsika and Glycerin, both having been raised in foreign boarding school, are totally unfamiliar with the concept of a country fair. Some editing to minimize spoilage.
The county fair wasn’t the largest Blar or Kpau had ever seen but it was a decent example. The band was able to drive the van right up behind the stage next to the other acts, using the vehicle itself as their lock box and dressing room. They had a few hours to kill before setting up, so Kpau was leading Tsika and Glycerin into their first country fair experience. Blar faded back and just watched the trio for amusement.
Kpau gave them the full tour, as if she had been raised at that particular country fair. Blar took photos of Glycerin and Tsika cooing over piglets and lambs, eating cotton candy , crunching up a snack called elephant ears, and making nauseated faces at deep fried butter on a stick. They declined the butter. No one in the band was glammed up or tricked out, so only Glycerin caught the occasional group staring at her ragged eccentric hairstyle. The fringe of radioactive purple on the edges she had added before they left Portland was an added eye lure. Mostly the eyes were from men dropping their jaws at three very differently beautiful women. At least that was Blar’s belief.
Tsika and Blar were sampling jam at a vendor stand when Glycerin’s voice caught Blar’s ear. She was across the path at another stand looking at custom knives. Blar turned to see that two young men had approached her.
“Ah said, it ain’t like you’re ugly but what in the hell happened to your hair? Weed-eater get it?”
Glycerin stared silently for a few seconds at the man insulting her.
“I cut it … m-myself … with scissors.”
“Are you crazy?”
Now their expressions weren’t looking too friendly. Blar touched Tsika, motioning to her they should be ready in case Glycerin needed them.
Glycerin stared silently at the second man who had called her crazy for a few seconds, then spoke.
“Yes … completely mad … m-m-mad as a bloody bag of angry ferrets. I’m really g-good with scissors! We loves to cut! Here! Let m-me show you.”
Glycerin slipped her hand into her purse. The young men took off like gazelles. She blinked, then looked around, insecure and seeking her friends. Blar waved. Glycerin quickly moved to put herself next to Blar and took Tsika’s hand.
“Did … did I d-do good?”
“You did wonderfully! That was freaking hilarious!”
“I … I am crazy, you kn-know. Medically.”
Blar put his arm around Glycerin’s shoulders, pulled her close and kissed her forehead. “Yet we love you anyway.”
“It was Snake’s idea. She thought th-they were rude.”
Blar realized the momentary silences of the confrontation were when Snake and Glycerin were conferring. He chuckled and wondered if the men had seen her eye pupils doing those odd contractions. It would certainly have added to their consternation.
Blar got a tap on his shoulder and turned. Two security personnel stood behind him. Blar computed silently that they were extra-duty county deputies. Real law enforcement, not just costume wannabees.
“Hi, we got a report of this young lady … threatening someone?”
They had the expressions of people just realizing their time was being wasted as they looked at the trembling doe-eyed beauty.
Blar rolled his eyes. “Young jackasses. They harassed and insulted her. She put on a show of being a little crazy so they’d leave her alone. I was across over here and she was alone over there. You can ask the knife vendor.”
Glycerin clutched Blar fearfully, giving off the appearance of a frightened little deer. Tsika’s expression, on the other hand, was turning venomous.
“Is that what happened, little lady?” The officer was gently smiling. Blar’s paranoia settled.
Glycerin blushed. “That is sweet to call-call me little, constable. They w-weren’t being terribly mean but they were rude and frightened me a trifle. I w-w-was taught that acting a wee bit daft sometimes put off bad men.”
Blar kept a straight face as the officers drowned in Glycerin’s “love me protect me” magic.
“Good lord, where’s this little filly from with that delicious voice? I want to hand her my wallet, car keys, and my gun for no discernible reason.”
Kpau had walked up beside the other officer. She burst into laughter. “You were right, Bubba Blar!”
Tsika’s expression seesawed between confusion and angry righteousness. “Blar! This one requires subtitles if demonic explosion of incomprehensible accents continues!”
The other officer looked at Kpau and Tsika. “Shee– , er, and now we’re surrounded by lovely little … wait. I got it! You all are the city band performing tonight, aren’t ya? I’m doing security tonight and you all fit the descriptions they gave me.”
Blar nodded. “Yes, sir. That would be us. These two have never seen a country fair before. Tsika hails from Russia and Glycerin here is a British citizen. Kpau and I are from Texas and Alabama, respectively. The young women are excited at the thought of seeing a real American country fair and the hospitality of real Americans.”
“I get it. I get it. You don’t have to ladle it on. Okay, here’s my cell number. If anyone bothers you again, give me a ring. I am going to go have a word with those two nimrods about bothering strangers. You all dressing up for the show?”
Kpau winked at the man. She already had her hand lightly touching the officer’s elbow as she stood quite close to him. Full power breathy come-hither voice. Blar struggled to stay serious. “Always! We always dress up – it’s part of the show!”
The officer smirked. “Well, I’d like to get a picture with you before the show. My daughter’s in the audience. She’s been going on about you all for a couple of weeks and it might make dad less square for a few minutes.”
A few pleasantries later, the officers shook hands with everyone and went on with their patrol. Blar scratched his head. “Well, that went strangely well. My history with the law is mostly of being handed a hard time for just existing.”
“No offense to Aina, Buddy Bo Blar, but you didn’t have enough boobage back then. Aina with her one pair versus our six pack! This time you’re fully loaded!”
Glycerin pressed her face into Blar’s shoulder, giggling hysterically at Kpau’s naughty remarks. Tsika rolled her eyes, her expression communicating her opinion of Kpau’s view of the world.
“Besides, Papa Bear, if his daughter is a fan ya think he’d want to be the one to have given us a hard time? Okay, who wants to see moo cows up close?”
Glycerin raised her hand and quietly hopped on her toes as she waved.