HELENA : The Small Town Throwdown
Helena wishes she could smash open her world, like a ripe watermelon, or maybe a pomegranate, and watch it bleed into the rich black earth that had raised her, taking with it every rule and expectation that are making her life duller than the Danube snake, and twice as ugly.
But the provincial world is a tough nut to crack. And, just like the green husk on the freshly fallen walnuts, it leaves an indelible stain on anything it touches. Helena wishes this stain would go away, so she could finally embark on the quest for freedom, whatever that’s supposed to mean. All she knows right now is that there must be more to life than kicking up the small-town dust and getting in trouble for it.
This town is no place for a girl like Helena. She gets that, and so does Baba Lepa, the all-seeing eye with mythical origin and detached perspective on human affairs. With the Gods looking the other way, and her world about to become the wrong kind of war zone, Helena makes one last wish, then puts a match to it and watches it burn.
IGOR: Wronge Place Wrong Time
Igor throws one glance towards the sea, and her stomach lurches like a thing with wings. A distant memory slithers in across the glasslike surface of the water, a memory of the dead and the long forgotten. Igor wants to run, back to the Fortress, back to Princess, but Boss said that today was her birthday, and everyone must celebrate.
The pimps look pale and clammy, sandwiched in between a blistering sand and a blazing sun, their new linen suits patchy with sweat. The whores fan their faces like melting waxwork señoritas, their make-up running down their boobs, and their boobs running down their bellies. Igor takes off the glittery red shoes Boss had shipped in from the poshest shop on Champs-Élysées, smooths down her blue and white gingham dress, and starts singing ‘Happy Birthday’, in a terrifying voice of a mute.
Boss snaps his fingers, and the next moment everyone is singing, each in their own language; the choir of the damned. Old Nico staggers down the dune carrying a birthday cake. Boss cracks open the champagne. Everybody claps. Igor grins. Tomorrow, she will betray Boss. But today, she may as well eat the cake.