Hampington Upon Wicke is a town in which everyone bleeds profusely from the knees. The cobbled streets have a lacerating bite that turns even the most hardened kneeler’s kneecaps into a pair of scabby, weeping wounds. In the middle of the town is a lake, bordered by an almost impregnable circle of benches, each dedicated to deceased former residents. “To Edith, Who Kneeled Well. INGNODWETRUST,” says one. “To Tony, Who Needed No Knee Pads for his First Communion,” says another.
On a fine day, you can wander into the central square of the town, vaulting the ever accumulating rows of ergonomic, wooden memorials, and glimpse a rare site in the lake’s shimmering waters. Beneath the surface is a bizarre hellish nether world made up of whips, chains, and iron grips. Most disconcertingly, apart from the aforementioned instruments of pleasure/pain, the two worlds seem almost alike. Yet, in this world, the benches are not comfortable, they are deadly sharp. As a consequence, inhabitants of Hampington Below Wicke bleed profusely from their rear ends. Instead of kneeling forlornly at the lake’s edge, knees streaming iron-red goo into the clear water, the “People Bellow The Wicke” stand tall, staring up, yet never floating to the top.