The Martyrdom of Sally Jenkins
Sally clasped the rosary to her breast and stared hard into the distance summoning every last vestige of belief she could muster. The hot, bright light blazed through the stained glass and across her pale cheek and she felt the beads of sweat begin to gather on her upper lip.
Suffering, she thought. Yes, I can suffer.
Cramp began in the back of her knees as she stood stock still, staring, embracing the discomfort, picturing those great martyrs who had suffered before her: Joan of Arc, Saint Catherine of the wheel, and all those others who had endured agonising death rather than deny their true calling.
Sally pictured how she must look to the onlookers, the gawpers, as she waited, sweating.
She was brave, stoical. She pressed her face into an expression of infinite patience and piety. Perhaps this really could be a fresh start for her. She had never really considered religion before, but she was doing so well at this endurance stuff that maybe it was worth a go after all.
The taste of last night was sticky behind her teeth, the evening returned in flashes; first the tall elegant glasses of mimosa in the apartment, then bright flashing lights, high heels, a chalky white pill in a filthy bathroom and, finally, a greasy samosa from chippy lane on the way home, then nothing. Nothing until she had been hauled out of her bed and dragged to stand here, a spectacle before these leering sinners.
Well, Sally could show them. All that was behind her now, she was born again. She felt the light of salvation burning inside her; the hangover was nothing more than a crown of thorns to garland her pain. No more mimosas, no more dodgy drugs in dirty club toilets. No more horrible Indian food before bed. No, Sally Jenkins was a pale, young vestal virgin. She would dedicate her life to helping the poor and needy, she would be remembered for her generosity and, of course, her innocence…
“Ok everyone, that’s Erotic Dawn take six, from the top, people. And...action,” boomed a voice from the crowd.
And Sally turned letting the sheet drop from her chest, exposing her bare breasts to the camera, the rosary clutched theatrically between them. The sweetness and purity that had brushed her face slipped into a wicked and mischievous grin as Danny the Dong approached her, weapon in hand.
“Good sir knight - you would not despoil a Sister of our Lord here in a house of God, would you?” cried Sally, opening her knees and looking very much like a rampant despoiling would do her the world of good.
Well, she thought, as Danny yanked off her habit and slid between her knees with a meaty grin, this was certainly no place for an innocent waif. That would have to go. She cast off her martyrdom and tried on ‘opportunistic seductress’ instead. Far more suitable.
And perhaps there’d be time for a small mimosa before the all-you-can-eat Indian buffet for the cast and crew that evening?