Feb. 10th, 2013

Thirteen

Feb. 10th, 2013 11:09 am
The largest beer hall in Peram (as I’ve learned the town is called) has a sign out front that says no drink may be served before noon due to statute, but either the sign is a liar or the sun is. While heavy shutters are fixed over the windows, the door is open wide when I find the place.

It isn’t busy in the sense of a thriving establishment on a fine night, but it seems crowded for the morning, nonetheless. I settle myself into a dark corner and wordlessly accepts the clay jar of brew that was brought to me.

The amazed look on the serving boy’s face when I flip him the token I find in my pocket tells me that my pocket has done me some mischief… or maybe it’s done me a favor.

“A round for the house?” I say, waiting to see if he’ll ask for further payment.

“Yes… right away!” he says.

No one had been paying attention to me before, so it takes a few moments for my words and their meaning to filter around the room. There is a flurry of activity as they do, though, and when that settles down the atmosphere has lightened a bit.

“What do you mean by this?” the barkeep asks me when the work I created is complete. He’s not just white, but pale and sallow. Then, his tavern is like a cave and I can’t imagine his work takes him out of doors much.

“I thought there was a celebration,” I say. “Why else would a tavern be so full at this hour?”

The barkeep snorts.

“A celebration?” he says. “These men are here drinking because they have nothing else to do, and when their money runs out, neither will I.”

“No work?” I say. “A holiday, then?”

“Yeah… a permanent holiday, maybe.”

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theonecalledwander

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