‘Okay, ladies,’ said Pam, director of Charity Slimeathon. ‘First of all, thanks for doing this. All three of your charities will definitely appreciate it and we appreciate you taking the time. We know you’d rather be elsewhere on a Friday night so thank-you.’
Amy shifted in her seat and settled in. She’d only met Pam once so far but it was long enough to find out that she loved the sound of her own voice.
‘In case you don’t remember, a lot of this is going to be like your day-to-day work. Answer the phone, take their details, say thank-you and hang up. The only difference comes at the end when one of you gets covered in gunk. Got it?’
Amy and the other two volunteers told Pam that yes, they did indeed have it. She wasn’t too enthusiastic about the whole thing. Pam had gotten one thing right – Amy really would prefer to be somewhere else tonight – but at least she figured her odds of being the on the receiving end of a gunging were only one in three.
‘We’re on in ten minutes so be ready. There will be pizza breaks and stuff as we go. Try and have fun!’
It was all Amy could do to keep from laughing out loud as Pam left the room.
‘Looking forward to that gunk, then, Amy?’ It was Tamsin, the too-friendly-by-far team leader who broke the silence.
‘She’s got the same chances as you, hasn’t she?’ the other volunteer Jemma cut in. ‘Aren’t we all just one in three?’
Amy hardly knew Jemma at all. She was a younger blonde girl, just out of university and new to the department. She was on a different team so they had yet to really spend any time together. She seemed keen, though. Each of the three teams in the department had been ordered to send a volunteer. Amy’s team had drawn lots for theirs and she lost but Jemma had actually volunteered.
‘Well,’ said Tamsin, grinning wryly as she shifted her long black hair over her shoulder. ‘Sort of.’
‘What does that mean?’ asked Amy.
‘A little birdy told me that the one of us who gets the least donations will be gunked.’
‘We know that,’ said Jemma. ‘It’s just luck who gets the most calls.’
‘Yes and no.’
‘Come on,’ said Amy. ‘What are you playing at?’
‘Let’s just say I’ve got a trick up my sleeve.’
‘Speaking of sleeves, are you ever going to take that robe off? I know it’s nice to be treated like a celeb and everything but you’re not going to go on TV in a dressing gown, are you?’
‘Funny you should mention it,’ said Tamsin as a stagehand appeared to order them on set. She looked over her shoulder at Amy and Jemma as she walked towards the door and finally let the robe fall to the floor. Beneath it, Tamsin was dressed to kill. Where Jemma and Amy had dressed formally for a television appearance, Tamsin looked like she was on the pull in a tight black dress, push-up bra and shiny black heels. A slit up the side showed off all of her shapely leg while the cut at the front exposed more than enough cleavage. She flicked her long black hair over her shoulder as she stepped into the makeshift studio.
‘Good luck, girls,’ she smirked.
Amy had never trusted Tamsin. She was too friendly by far – a sure sign of someone being two-faced as far as Amy was concerned. It wasn’t a huge surprise to see that she had cooked up some sort of plan to avoid getting slimed but, truth be told, Amy wasn’t all that worried about getting slimed anyway. If pushed, she’d probably say she’d prefer to avoid it – especially being on television – but part of her sort of liked the idea. Besides, Tamsin had definitely narrowed the odds by dressing like that. She was bound to get more calls, regardless of what charity she’d chosen. Hell, in that dress she could probably start a charity for Bankers and still pull in plenty of donations.
It was between Amy and Jemma then, most likely. They’d both come dressed nicely but neither of them could compete with Tamsin. Not that either of them were unattractive, but Amy had watched enough Derren Brown to know that life is about how you present yourself. She looked across the stage Jemma who wore a formal-looking black dress, more modest than Tamsin’s, like something you might wear to a work Christmas party. Amy, on the other hand, wore a tight fitting, olive green Bodycon dress over a pair of her best semi-opaque tights. No cleavage on show from her but plenty of thigh, and the material of the dress clung to her curves almost like lycra. She loved the way it accentuated the best of her curvy figure and the green colour made a perfect backdrop for her dirty ginger hair.
No time for ruminating on outfit choices now, though, the lights were on and the phones were ready. On with the show.
It didn’t take long for Tamsin’s lead to become apparent. Of course she had to make everything into a competition. She’d even chosen the best charity to pull on people’s heartstrings – a home for unwanted puppies. Meanwhile Amy had made the mistake of choosing something boring and important in the shape a cancer trust. Jemma had opted to represent her local children’s hospital and had earned a little more than Amy, though nowhere near as much as the puppy hostel.
Amy found herself wondering what her friends were up to without her. They were out tonight, which, she realised, meant that nobody she knew would see her get gunged if it came to that. She had a lot of time to wonder. The lines were busy enough, but she was basically doing the same thing she’d already done for eight hours today and she was finding it increasingly difficult to stay focused. It didn’t help that the people on the other end of the phone were so boring. One had even dialled a wrong number – he’d wanted to get through to Tamsin.
Midnight arrived at long last – some four hours after they’d started – and the lines finally closed. Amy and Jemma put on their best magnanimous smiles for the announcement of the winner and, more importantly, the loser. It had been close between the runners-up but Amy was entirely unsurprised to hear that she would be the one on the receiving end of a sliming.
‘So, Amy,’ said the host of the show whose name Amy had already forgotten. ‘Can you just follow me though here and out into the lifts. How are you feeling?’
‘Oh, you know, it’s all for a good cause, I’m sure a bit of gunge never hurt anyone.’
‘Well it’s more than just a bit of gunge,’ the host laughed. An obviously fake laugh, to Amy’s ears. ‘Right, out of the lifts here and through these doors I think. You work here, is this the way out?’
‘Just down these stairs, yep.’
‘And…’ she paused as they both stepped out into a crowded square. ‘Here we are!’
Amy looked around at the crowd. It must have formed in the previous four hours because when she had arrived this evening the place had been deserted except for the usual people passing through to get somewhere else or leaning against the wall for a smoke. There were hundreds of people cheering her arrival, fenced off from a small stage on which sat a glass booth about the size of a telephone box. On top of that rested what looked like a thick plastic box, pink in colour. Ah, no, Amy realised as she was nudged forwards by the irritating show host, it wasn’t plastic at all. The way the stage lights reflected off it as she got nearer made it obvious that it was in fact gunge. A lot of gunge. A lot more than Amy had anticipated. She had been expecting to have her hair ruined and to have to wash her dress by itself but looking at what lay in front of her now she realised that she was going to be completely drenched. Her flimsy dress would offer no protection against such an onslaught.
‘Alright, Amy, if you can just step inside.’
Amy had never liked being the centre of attention but as she stepped inside the glass booth and looked out at the crowd she knew she was exactly that. Everybody was looking at her and she was about to get covered in pink slime in front of them. Even worse, she noticed with a sinking feeling that her mates were in the front row. For the first time, Amy found herself regretting the fact that the office she worked in was right in the middle of town. They must have heard about free entertainment and come to watch one of their colleagues get humiliated. She would have probably done the same in their shoes.
‘Okay, crowd. Count down from five! Five!’
Amy didn’t know what to do.
She put her arms by her side, then folded them, then rested them against the glass.
Ah, how bad could it be? It’s probably like getting very heavily rained on.
Laura and Jess look like they’re enjoying themselves a bit too much.
Too late, she realised she should have put her hands over her head.
The gunge spurted out through some mechanism in the roof of her little booth. It was thicker than she had estimated by quite a margin and it matted her hair together. As it oozed further down her body she felt it seep through the thin material of her dress in seconds. It was cool against her skin, not as sticky as she had expected, but slimier than anything she had ever felt before. She looked down and saw her dress turning darker and less opaque as the gunge soaked through the dress. She didn’t think it was possible for it to cling to her body any more than it already did but the gunge was so heavy and thing that her dress became more like a second skin. It did wonders for her breasts, she noticed, but now everybody could see her bra and thong through the damp fabric. And still the gunge kept coming.
At least she hadn’t been stupid enough to look up and get a face full but since she was soaked from head to toe in it anyway it hadn’t made much difference. Still it came. It had saturated parts of her dress entirely and she felt it pooling between her breasts – clammy and chilled. She wondered, instinctively, what it would feel like pouring directly on her face. She shrugged mentally – fuck it, why not? She closed her eyes, craned her neck upwards and turned her face to the flow. It was almost suffocating in the way it poured onto her and oozed slowly down her chin. She shook it off as if she’d been squirted with a water gun and turned her face back for more, letting it wash over her slowly and oh-so-thickly. It took her breath away and she felt her heart racing. On some base level her body was aroused, she realised. She told herself it was a natural, biological response to becoming breathless – nobody could actually be turned on by this, could they? – but she knew at least one person could and that was her.
At last the flow of gunge ceased and Amy was utterly soaked in thick pink gunge. She couldn’t tell where the slime ended and Amy began. She had become slime – a near unrecognisable mass of quivering pink gunk in the shape of a curvaceous human female. She used her hands to slick her hair back and wipe the worst of the mess from her face, trying to gather herself before that annoying TV brat came to get her out.
‘You look like you enjoyed that,’ said the brat, conspiratorially, opening the door right on cue. Did she notice? Did everyone notice Amy’s little secret? They couldn’t have, surely.
‘I didn’t expect it to be so cold,’ Amy replied, honestly.
‘Well thanks for being a good sport, go and get cleaned up.’
This being a city centre office building, there wasn’t any kind of changing room. Amy had brought a spare set of clothes just in case and left them in her desk upstairs. Her intention was – well, her intention had been to not get gunged in the first place – to go and get them and then change in the toilets, which would be empty at this time of night. Security had other ideas, though.
‘You can’t come in here like that. The cleaners finished hours ago.’
‘Come on, what am I supposed to do, strip here?’
The security staff member – was his name Jim? Amy couldn’t remember – said nothing.
‘I am not getting undressed here.’
‘Suit yourself, but I can’t let you in here like that. You’ve already made a mess in reception here. Guess who’s going to have to mop that up.’
‘I’ve got clothes upstairs. Just let me go get ‘em. I’ll be two minutes.’
‘I don’t care if you’ll go backwards in time. It’s the mess I’m worried about.’
‘Well, what do you suggest? Bearing in mind that me stripping for you is not an option.’
‘Walk home like that? Not my problem, love.’
‘Do not call me love.’
‘You’re not going past here in that state. Simple as that.’
Amy glared at him but she knew it was no good. She thought about ringing a taxi but they probably wouldn’t let her in. It was dark though. Maybe they wouldn’t notice. It was that or ring her parents and there was no way she was ringing them in this state.
‘Call me a taxi, then. My phone is upstairs.’
‘Right, fine. Wait here,’ he said firmly.
So Amy stood in the reception, dripping pink gunge in a slowly-spreading puddle, and waited for a taxi. She wrung her hair as best she could and hoped that somehow the driver wouldn’t notice what a mess she was.
Ten minutes later it arrived but her hope was soon quashed by a rather surly sounding taxi driver. Just like the security guard, he told her in no uncertain terms that getting in the back seat caked in gunge was a definite no-no.
Amy was furious now. Furious at the security guy for not letting her upstairs, furious at the taxi driver for not letting her in and furious at herself for getting into this situation.
‘Look. If I take the dress off will you take me?’
‘Yes,’ Amy cut in. ‘Will that be okay?’
She didn’t bother telling him that the gunge had already seeped into her underwear by now but he didn’t ask. So, checking to make sure nobody was looking, she opened the door and quickly peeled the dress off behind relative safety of the taxi’s door and left it where it fell. It hadn’t been that expensive and by now she was past caring anyway.
‘Now go,’ she spat.
‘You haven’t told me where to, love,’ said the driver, who didn’t seem to want to take his eyes off the rear view mirror now he had a half-naked woman in the back seat.
Finally, her ordeal was almost over. She could just about stomach the driver creeping on her if it meant she could get home without further excitement. Her relief when he pulled up outside her front door was almost palpable. Home at last and not a minute too soon.
She headed straight upstairs for a shower and then she sat on her bed with laptop in hand, drying her hair as it booted up. She had a bunch of Facebook messages waiting for her. She hadn’t touched her phone for hours so it was no surprise. She clicked on Ellie first – her closest friend from work.
LOL look at this
Amy clicked on the Youtube link Ellie had posted. It was probably some dog video or other but Amy welcomed the distraction at this point. The video loaded after a few seconds. It wasn’t a cute dog. She was famous.