Waiting To Be Laid Low
In the future, I predict someone will write an excruciating tale about waiting. About a man or several waiting for another man to show his face. To enlighten their gathering. To enrich their discourse.
Perhaps to win at bloody cards.
I could scribble that tale tonight. From the pub. High-and-mighty Clive Read is here, mopping his red face with a soiled kerchief. “I swear it. When that Spanish pig gets here, I’m going to erase my losses from last week. I’ll win back my land, and then some.”
“From the prophet even unto the priest every one dealeth falsely.” The Vicar slurs scripture from the crook of his arm resting on the table.
Read’s bulbous fist rocks the table, scattering cards through the heavy air. ”Are you calling me a thief, you drunken excuse for a clergyman?”
“Be not drunk with wine……zzzzzzzzzzz.”
“All right. All right. Enough. It’s clear to me that the Spaniard is not coming……Will you STOP waving that sodding thing in my face?” I swat the black master of voodoo.
The barkeep slaps the proffered dirt into an unseen corner. ”Boy there. I forbid anymore of this witchcraft nonsense in my establishment.” He turns to me. “Where is your pirate friend?”
Read gasps. “Manuel is a swashbuckler? Of course, I always knew he enjoyed swashing the ladies buckles but……hehehehehehehe. Good fellow. I must spend more time with him.”
I swallow bile. “But, surely if Manuel is a pirate, he is at sea. Wreaking whatever havoc it is pirates……wreak.”
The barkeep shakes his head. “Everyone knows his ship. It has been docked at N Adgers Wharf all week.”
Read’s belly jiggles. “Nadgers……….you know, in the old country, nadgers were another word for……”
“Balls. Yes, I remember.” Playing cards with Read is a wallow in unimaginable filth.
“He that hath his privy member cut off shall not enter into the congregation of the Lord.”
“Thank you, Vicar. I shall keep that bit of information in mind.” I check my sugar stick and turn to the barkeep. “When was the last time anyone saw the Spaniard?”
“Why, when you won Middlesex from Read there. One week ago tonight.”
I shrug to mask the blooming tremor in my heart. “If the Spaniard is a pirate, he is willing to live and die by his code. Read, deal the cards. The game shall go on without him.”
A Charleston series. The first post in the series is here, the second post is here, the third post is here, the fourth post is here, the fifth post is here, the sixth post is here, the seventh post is here, the eighth post is here, the ninth post is here and the tenth post is here. Thank you for reading.