I offer the disenfranchised and the oppressed hope, dreams, and style.
I am not a super hero, I am a drag queen.
I am, however, slightly different than most drag queens for three reasons:
One: My legs are stunning.
Two: I can sing. My voice is nothing short of gorgeous. And sweetie, I don’t care how good you look in your prima donna prom dress, if you’re a drag queen and you can’t sing, then get your sorry ass off the stage for us real performers.
Three. I am a cat. An Abyssinian, but half Burmese on my mother’s side.
In short, I have gifts and I’m sure as hell not going to let them go to waste because of modern conventions. My stage name is Chi Chi Le Mew.
My real name is Wolsey.
Not that they use it. It has never occurred to my traveling companions that they can understand any language in the universe, but they’ve never tried talking to me. Which is why while the Doctor and Bernice are probably getting shot at or imprisoned somewhere, I’m out on the town. The TARDIS was kind enough to show me the cat flap that I don’t even think the Doctor knows about.
Afghanistan is where I am tonight. In my opinion, Kabul always looks better at night. It’s not particularly safe at night, but still, it looks cleaner.
The darkness hides the scars and soothes the fresh wounds. Especially tonight, as the moon has yet to peep through the slate gray sky, leaving the ground a deep, comforting blackness. Even my eyes have difficulty seeing the city before me. Electricity here is far from a constant, and the buildings and streets are only occasionally lit by the flickering of little fires and the odd pair of headlights, as the few metal beasts growl through the rubble.
Anyone with any sense stays inside. Where it feels safer.
That’s why I’m sitting here in an alley. Waiting for midnight.
I have wandered worlds for many years in the TARDIS, but I have yet to find a home. Traveling to war torn countries such as these make me feel less comfortable, less secure, but perversely, more alive. It’s one thing to read about history, it’s another to live in it. I have something to offer these people that the rest of the world has raped and left for dead.
I’m not sure why I picked this venue tonight. I never know why. I just wander around a city until I find the center and then head east. When it starts to get run down, and the citizens look glum and weary, I find a wall with good scenery and get ready to perform. But tonight is about more than just providing mere entertainment or light camp. Tonight, I’m sending a message. I even brought props.
This alley was dark and fetid, yet I knew I was not alone. Whether in New York, Reykjavik, Tokyo, if you look down an alley, the discerning eye can spy at least one pair of eyes glowing back.
Not here though. Fear has ruled this land for too many decades. That didn’t mean they weren’t out there though. I can smell them. Listening.
That’s my cue.
The broken wall is rough against my back, sharp and gritty, as I lie atop. But I am a pro, an artist. Suffering is part of the job. Timing is everything. As the full moon prepares to break through the clouds, I am ready: head back, chest pouting at the sky, legs crossed, one back paw in the air, my thin tail slinking over the edge. Dangling in a luxurious, sensual manner.
I picked my musical number carefully. Although the language of meow is a universal, crooning Cher to an alley full of the poor, the disgruntled, and the heavily armed is not always a good idea. The classics were flat out as well. This town needed culture, not jaded stereotypes. It was an angry town and I had just the wig for it. The TARDIS sound system’s got my back.
The moon emerges, it’s silver white glow revealing my sequined red dress and fabulously tall blond wig. And a martini in my left paw, with three olives.
My cherry red pumps drip with class.
I lie there for a moment, letting the alley soak in the drama.
The music starts, a light tinkling of the piano keys, filling the deserted street with a slow, echoing tempo
In a gentle, husky whisper, I launch into my performance, the movements scripted long ago:
-When the sky is dark and gray,
-And there’s no easy way home,
-I pack up my things and strut down the road,
-I ain’t gonna look back but carry my own load.
I know they can hear me, but the alley remains deserted and dusty. It doesn’t matter, I have the supporting notes of the piano to keep me company.
-They know not what I am,
-New faces that greet me are strange and confused,
-Yet they are my muse.
Swivel up, swing legs down, tilt head back.
The beat picks up.
-I’ve traveled the world,
-but never let anyone see,
-the person I am, deep inside me.
-Despite all the wonders I’ve seen,
-I never learned a thing.
-Then I pulled on my wig,
-And slipped on some pumps,
Chin up, sit proud, strike pose.
-Instantly I’m Fabulous and Wise,
-And I can be, the true bitch that I am.
The electric guitar enters and a snazzy snare drum taps in, the beat peppy. I can see the tiny heads of kittens peeking out from behind the scattered trash and litter. Children always have exceptional taste. They haven’t been told yet that it’s not good for them.
I leap off the wall and begin to strut down the alley: an exotic runway strewn with rubble, spent gun shells, and abandoned husks of wrecked cars. It is a treacherous stage, but I feel more eyes upon me, and I never let an audience down.
-You may thing me a bit odd,
-But in this bod, I know who I am,
-And I’m looking damn fine,
-Wearing these cherry red shoes of mine.
Work it girl.
My legendary pumps glitter in the moonlight. The first adult cats appear on the street, grim and scarred, are thin and mangy. Revolutionaries, thugs, warriors, cutthroats, rebels, and parents. Their countenance is fierce, but they step into the alley are uncertain and wary. They’re not prepared for the likes of me. They’re not used to confidence and class. Hesitantly, they approach. I’m ready for them.
-You don’t know who you are,
-until you’ve seen who you’ve been.
Stop, hands on hips. It’s attitude time:
-I’m all I know,
-I’m all I’ve been,
-And all I know,
-Is all I am.
The full band kicks in with a supporting chorus, six sexy chicks cooing in the background. Rock it, sisters!
-Become whom you want,
-The choice is yours,
-I’ve made mine,
-It’s time to make yours.
Raise martini glass and primp the wig.
A black and white pigeon feather boa appears around my neck as if from nowhere. I flash a bit more leg than they’re used to seeing round here. That’s not all they’re not used to seeing...
Dip... and hold.
The moonlight strikes me on time. The wig glows in the blazing yellow light, my lips pouting, and my voice exultant.
-Easy to be pushed
-Harder to fight,
-Don’t let those bastards tell you
-Who’s they think is wrong or right.
I look at the crowd of foreign, furry faces. I have them all now. They’re mine.
Time for audience participation. Let them feel the power. They all know the chorus by now.
Just to be sure, I feed them the lines before belting out the words. I’m not sure if they sing too, my voice is so loud, but I think I hear a few, tentative voices join me:
-We’re all we know,
-We’re all we’ve been,
-And all we know,
-Is all we are.
Pause and silence. This last verse is mine folks! The band plows behind me, a pumping, triumphant animal.
-I’m a fat screaming cat,
-Up on this stage,
-I’m loving the life that you’ve all prayed,
-Come rise up and claim what’s yours,
-The world is here, knockin’ on your door.
Rocking piano and chorus girls scream, jam, and mash for the final, crashing beat.
The music fades out. Leaving me in an alley surrounded by hundreds.
I stare back, defiant and alone, at the multitude of eyes that now fill the alley.
And that, sweeties, is Freedom.
Tossing my boa around my neck, martini still in hand, I sashay out of the alley, weaving between their shell-shocked looks, scattered applause, and wry smiles.
Love it, hate it, fear it.
Just use it.