Herman Fuller Presents: The Candified Cat
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The Candified Creature









The following is a page from a publication entitled To the Circus Born: Herman Fuller's Menagerie of Freaks. The identities of neither publisher nor author have been established, and scattered pages have been found inserted into Circus-themed books in libraries across the world. The person or persons behind this dissemination are unknown.

Animal Abuse

illuminated by the light of the burning Big Top tent.

But enough about happy endings, let's talk about Spots. No one knows where Fuller drummed up Spots. One day, he traipsed back from town with a bag of cat food in one hand and a damp alley cat slung in the other, practically skipping with joy. This was in the early days of the circus, back when it was just me, Manny, a couple of Clowns, and The Twins. We don't talk about The Twins. Fuller was practically bursting with ideas about his new animal act, convinced he could get Spots to sing Vaudeville tunes by the end of the night. No such luck. In those days, I had never seen Fuller get so frustrated over such a little thing, but we would see him get like that more and more over the years.

She was a sweet old girl, that one. Back where I came from, alley cats were mean old gits that would just as likely give you a festering scratch as would let you pet 'em. But not Spots. All the Freaks loved her, even the Clowns, the inhuman bastards. The only one that didn't like her was Fuller, and the feeling was mutual. For him, getting close to her was a challenge, the hissing and scratching in the way and all.

He tried every trick in the book, from trying to make Spots juggle, do flips, walking on tightropes, all of the tricks he could think of, he tried teaching Spots. He never hit her, but the volume of his voice was enough to cow her into hiding under a carnie's cot.

One day, Fuller had it. Ticket sales were low, The Twins managed to kill another customer, and one of the Clowns got the milking sickness. He barged right into the mess tent, grabbed her from underneath the table, and marched right back to his tent. Manny tried to stop him, this being back when he had a spine, but Herman just pushed him away, shouting "You think she's sweet? I'll give you sweet!"

He didn't spend as long with Spots as he did with Maya, he was only in his tent for maybe a couple hours. While we were getting ready for bed, we heard a mighty whistle and came out to see Fuller standing in front of his tent, holding the flaps closed, with a mighty big grin on his face.

"Behold, the newest addition to our little family, THE RARE CANDIFIED CAT!" He whipped back the flaps to reveal Spots tottering out like a drunken sailor, her tongue lolling out. Only it wasn't her tongue, but a strip of taffy. And her adorable green eyes were gone, replaced by tiny chocolate balls. Her muscle and bone were replaced with Clark Bars and jawbreakers. Fuller watched our horrified looks with a satisfied smile, and I think this is when most of us became a little afraid of him.

Now being deaf, blind, and mute, Spots wasn't much for the big top, so she was stuck with me in the Den of Freaks, which was fine, we were okay with the entire arrangement. What we weren't okay with was what Fuller let the customers do to Spots.

Fuller advertised Spots as the "perfect travel meal," letting visitors have a taste of her for a penny, a bite of her for a nickel. She was popular with the kids, the little brats hanging off their parents coattails, begging for a quarter so they could nibble the poor cat's ears off. Don't worry, she wasn't slowly being nibbled away, Fuller made sure of that. She always grew it back for the next showing. I tried getting petty revenges on the kids, making sure to make my most grotesque organs visible when turning inside out. The sounds of children vomiting up Spots always made me smile a bit, satisfied with my vengeance.

One time, Fuller escorted a giant man with a barrel for a chest into the tent, I think trying to sell off Spots as a meal item. The man refused, thankfully, saying something like "my restaurant serves only the highest quality of food, I don't need my customers getting teeth pulled because of my cooking."


Animal Abuse

To the Circus Born

To the Circus Born: Herman Fuller's Menagerie of Freaks

Spots didn't stick around forever. The last time I saw her was in Chicago, around the time of the Depression. An orphanage booked thirty tickets for the kids, and when they all came toddling in, grubby dimes in hand, I knew Spots wouldn't make it through the night.

Fuller was manning the entrance, the widest grin I had ever seen on his face, counting coins as the flood of children tumbled into the tent, making a beeline for Spots. Ever since Fuller changed her, I hadn't heard a single peep out of her, but just then, I swore I heard her whine in pain, with dozens of children itching for a lick of her.

By the end of the night, there was nothing left.



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