The feeling that I should be taking notes had been following me around the Victoria Apollo Theatre for the past forty minutes, and with good reason.

For those last forty minutes, the head of set design, Dexter, had been showing me around the theatre on a guided tour of the whole area. This eccentric man had shown me where the toilets, dressing rooms, special effects command room, the ticket booths, and the ‘secret’ shortcuts through the theatre were. I really wanted to draw out a three-dimensional map of it all, it was that complex. Every turn we made and each room we visited only left me more confused still. I’d be asking where different rooms were for weeks.

“Of course, you’ll be spending most of your time offstage, caring for props and maybe working with some of our more advanced workers in the special effects department,” Dexter told me, making exaggerative hand movements as he spoke, spinning his wrists and splaying his fingers. “How long will you be staying with us for, exactly?”

“Er,” I said dumbly. Truth be told, how long I stayed here depended on a number of things, most importantly being if I got the Elphaba role or not. If I got the role, then I’d have no spare time if I continued to help backstage, hence why I was an ‘extra’ backstage. “That’s not something which has been discussed yet.”

Dexter held the door open for me as we made our way to the upper balcony of the audience, so that I could have a different perspective of the stage. He looked back over his shoulder at me and smiled as he spoke. “You auditioned earlier, right?” I nodded. “We’ll discuss it after the results of that, but for the time being, shall we say a month?” I grinned at him thankfully as we walking into the audience.

The whole room was lit by lights which were pressed to the ceiling like preserved flowers, emitting an odd light across the scene before me, which truly took my breath away.

The stage was beautiful, be it very incomplete and sparsely decorated. The few coils and pistons on of the stage were dark and gloomy from here, but Dexter informed me that they’d be lit with a pale blue hue and candle-esque bulbs during performances. The staggered seating made me feel high up and mightily powerful compared to the ant-people who were remaking the set to Tony’s specifications (which weren’t too different to the old set, just a little more elaborate and, well, new). The stage itself looked like it was shrouded in magic from here, as if mythical creatures could easily crawl from the vast cavern like spaces that had been left in the staging from its manufacture.

It all lit up a sense of excitement inside me. I wanted nothing more than to act out my favourite scenes from this musical on that very stage, the audience booming with cheers and applause as I bowed with my fellow cast members. I wanted to be swept up by the stage and the surreal qualities I could clearly feel from it.

Dexter let me absorb the scene, before he led me back out the door and through the maze of corridors to the stage, where he left me to help a wild haired woman called Max with the electronics of the stage, like the little candle lights and the general safety and security of the stage. Somehow, Max trusted me to climb up step ladders and the curved staircase to the left of the stage to reach these things, despite my protests. Max was a good natured person, and only laughed off my words, which did make me warm to her slightly.

Max even asked me to build a replica of one of the plate sized wheels that decorated the stage after I’d shown a vague capability for changing light bulbs without shattering any of the dead ones. And that’s why I was then sat at the lip of the stage with my boot encased feet swinging over the edge as if I were perched overlooking a vast canyon rather than the meter drop. I felt microscopic here, as if anyone here could drop something on me because they simply couldn’t see me. I’d end up with glittery blue paint tigering my hair or being electrocuted by a short-circuiting fuse before I knew it.

Procrastinators on Stage (Chris Kendall/crabstickz fanfic) *unedited*Read this story for FREE!