There's a wizard at the door!
“Doreen, don’t answer that, it’s someone going door to door!”
But the shouted warning from upstairs came too late. Doreen had already unlocked and opened the front door.
“Good evening madame. Are you the proprietor? I should point out straight away I’m not here to sell you anything tangible, merely to annoy you and take up a lot of your time.”
Doreen found herself staring at a man of average height dressed in baggy trousers tucked into wellington boots wearing a fluorescent sleeveless vest, sporting a goatee beard and a felt conical shaped hat which flopped over to one side at the top. A laminated card dangling on a piece of red twine around his neck proclaimed ‘Wearer’s official status guaranteed’. Doreen thought his appearance all rather mystical but said nothing.
“My name is Wizard Prang and I’m here tonight to ask for a sizeable donation in exchange for a twelve per cent stake in my company, ‘Wizards-R-us’. May I thank you for your forbearance and for inviting me into your home tonight.”
And before Doreen could protest to say she hadn’t invited him in he had pushed his way past and into the living room plonking himself down into an armchair by the fireplace. Rubbing his hands in the warm glow of the fire he muttered to no one in particular, “A fresh bucket of coal and a mug of hot chocolate wouldn’t go amiss. Ah bliss.”
“What did they want this time?”shouted down her husband Roger from upstairs. “Hope you gave them short shrift and sent them packing.”
“Roger! I think you had better come down. We have a wizard in the front room.”
“Bloody hell, Doreen. What did you invite him in for? You know its Tuesday and my night for going out.”
“He just came in, Roger. Says he wants to offer us a share in ‘Wizards-R-us’ ”
“Well I’ve got one leg stuck in a trouser. Just put the kettle on and offer him a cup of tea and a piece of cake. It’s not every day you get a Wizard popping in and we don’t want him waving his wand around. I’ll be down in a sec.”
“So Mr Prang, how long have you been a wizard and what is it you wizard exactly?”
“Oh please Roger, call me Denton. By the way, Doreen, that’s an awfully nice looking brocade lampshade in the corner. Exquisite macramé work and fringed with drop down tassels. Do you mind if I try it on?”
“Tea, Denton, and would you care for a square of Battenburg cake.”
The wizard did indeed and much to Roger’s consternation took two slices, eating only the pink squares and removing the marzipan from the yellow ones.
“Simply delicious, thank you. Now without further ado I suppose I had better persuade you to invest in my company and relieve you of your money. You won’t be disappointed.”
Roger and Doreen listened intently as Wizard Prang embarked on his spiel setting out his strategies aspirations for ‘Wizards-R-us’. He concluded with a little demonstration and with a flourish produced several betting slips from an inside pocket which he promptly turned into a bundle of Monopoly money and a card stating ‘Old Kent Road’.
“Hey presto. Are there any questions?”
There certainly were. And Roger was keen to drill down to the underlying hardcore financials. Doreen on the other hand was sceptical and rather bemused by the whole pitch.
She coughed politely. “Wizard Prang, I’m afraid I am going to have say a firm ‘no’ to your shenanigans. Now unless you have anything else in your repertoire to persuade me otherwise this wicked witch of the west is going to trip the light fantastic down a certain yellow brick road. Goodnight!”
And with that Doreen promptly disappeared.
Image Credit » Photographs Copyright 2015 by Antony J Waller