You ever go to one of those Ren Faires or King Richard's Faire things? Well, I was told I was going out for a fun night with the fellas. Yeah before you say anything I was lied to AGAIN, I might add. I thought it was not going to be another night of stupid drinking, carousing, and general tomfoolery as is usually the case with WHO? You guessed it the only two idiots in the world I go out with lately. Yeah THOSE two the Irish Twins or in this case the Scottish ones, Weasil and Kincaid. I trust too much that one of these days it would not be that kind of an evening. I am the forever optimist but that is slowly wearing out it is. Oi!
As I was chilling in the backseat of the red speed bucked AKA Weasil's Mustang, clothing was thrown over the backseat at me by Kincaid. It sounded like bells, felt like velvet and silk but I couldn't see it in the dark backseat.
"What the hell is THIS?" I said holding up what looked like a burgundy and black with gold piping JERKIN!
"Jus poot it on," Kincaid threw at me.
Because I ran down me stairs and got into the vehicle without letting the two miscreants get out to come get me, I did not see the attire they were sporting. Well, this taught me never again to do something so stupid as to try to spare me family the stupid remarks the two would make if they were two feet inside me door.
"WOT BE THIS?" I held up what looked like black leggings.
"Yer pants, jus poor em' on," Kincaid sighed like I was the stupid idiot in the car.
I protested much until Kincaid told Weasil to stop the car and he hoisted a meaty green leg up on the dashboard where I could see he had on leggings. I was stunned to see so much fat encased like a sausage in green merry man tights. And I opened me gob hole and said as much. Stupid laughed and so did the other one and onward we went. I should know by now, insults do not work on them.
"Where the feck are we going?" I moaned undressing to put on the silly stuff, BECAUSE I knew if I didn't I'd be that odd and recognisable civilian I always am.
"We iz going to a new pubee," Weasil said, "it be called da Red Rat Inn, I mean da Red Dragon Inn."
"Oh for joy!" I said with acid tripping off me tongue, as I struggled into the leggings. "Oh wait a minute, just because the place is called the Red Rat was it? Or, Dragon Inn it doesn't mean you need to dress like it is someplace out of Lord of the Rings?"
Not a word, they exchanged glances and a slight nod. I leaned over the front seat and that caused Weasil to tell me it WAS dress up time, it was a club for nerds who like to pretend they are a character from Game of Thrones, or part of King Arthur's court. I sat back thinking and then I looked down.
"I am NOT wearing THIS." I held up a court jester hat with bells on the ends of each isosceles triangle. "NO!"
"Coom on Gabby yer needs ta luke da pat." Kincaid said his accent not easy to understand when your own is Irish.
"I need to look like a Pat, a Paddy do ye mean?" I said getting a wee bit of temper up. "Ye tink we Irish are all jesters doo ye?"
"No, it goos wit yer coostoom." Kincaid soothed.
Like I believed him. I knew I was right even if he pronounced part as pat. There was always an Irish joke in there somewhere and it was always on me!
"Yer both prats," I mumbled jamming the stupid looking thing on me head and feeling the right fool. but then I felt something at me feet and it had bells. I reached down and held it up to the passing street lights. There was another one of on the floor. It was a shoe, but not just any shoe, it had curled up toe with a bell attached.
"OH NO, NO, NO, NO!" I threw the jester shoe at Kincaid's head.
He picked it up where it dropped to the floor and without looking threw it back and it hit me in the nose. The bell did, so it hurt.
"Coom on noe Gabe," Kincaid moaned like I was an errant child or more the brat. "Ye got to look like ya belong or ya won't git in. 'Sides dere wuz no other coostoom."
I sighed, defeated. I slipped me big feet into the big stupid shoes and caught a glimpse of me head wearing the idiotic hat in the rear view mirror. Yeah wonderful sight. NOT. I felt the proper fool. Well, I was dressed for the part so I don't know what I expected.
I sat there in the dark backseat fuming that I was a part of the Weasil/Kincaid show, the new Three Stooges. Yup, that's what was going through me mind.
So we pulled up at this place that was a rather badly put together castle, with crumbly walls and something that was to look like an iron grate with chains holding it up from collapse. We walked through this precarious edifice over a wooden plank bridge with a large puddle underneath doubling as a river. Oh yeah. And then to a thick wooden door with big round bolts that was open emanating a red fireplace glow from inside and oh the noise. The boisterous voices, the banging of pewter cups, I knew I was in for a fine time and not a good one.
I absolutely hated that I jingled when I walked. That damn hat! The equally damn shoes! People knew I was coming and of course I was the one they looked at first. Well, of course! Weasil was dressed in chain mail and leathers with a long sword looking quite the war lord, the other one, was dressed like Robin Hood but come on! He looked to me like the Hunchback of Notre Dame.
So Weasil turns to us and tells us he's got this. Yeah okay. There was a wee woman dressed in a long green skirt that was turned up to the waist to reveal a not so white petticoat. She was dressed in a leather corset with a dirty white puffy sleeved blouse rolled up to her armpits. But the most outstanding thing about her was she had a chest like Dolly Parton only bigger! I had to wonder how she kept from tipping over. She was staring into the huge fireplace that was set with what looked like tree trunks burning merrily. It had her in a daze or it was the mead she had just put down.
In that daze she held out a hand and Weasil handed her a pouch full of gold(?) and says, "Tanks, keepie da changie." This she proceeds to stuff down her bosom. We moved on.
Seating ourselves at a long table already nearly full, we were served as a wench came by and offered us, "Red wyne fer ye gents?" She asked her infrequent teeth yellow with rot, her breath REALLY bad and travelled the whole table. Everyone made a face until she stopped smiling. A jack o'lantern had more teeth than the serving wench.
As we started to sip our 'wyne' a voice came over a loud speaker of all things and said, "Cool Duke, please visit keyword RDI to learn how to use these rooms."
Don't ask I hadn't a clue, but there was a lot of laughter as a result. I wondered if this was a dungeons and dragons dress up, but well I was too engrossed in sipping me 'wyne' to give it much thought.
It was a weird feeling came over me, and the smell of fire was very pronounced as I suddenly glanced behind me and there was the wee doorkeeper standing in that same daze just behind us, still mesmerised by the roaring and might I say HOT fire. Some guy sitting next to me turned and looked at her, and then took a pouch and handed it to her outstretched hand saying to her, "Tip money for the serving wench, see she gets it." Then he smiled brightly up at her waiting for a response.
"The fire looks so much smaller now." She mumbled.
Again clueless here but OK. And once again she stuffed the pouch down her front. It dawned on me that that's why she was so top heavy. Cor! She literally stank of fire and I realised the dirt on her petticoat and blouse was not dirt but fire ash. Gees Louise!
Some poor sod was heaving his drunken bulk up to the bar behind us and the same man that gave the doorkeeper the pouch put his leg out and down went "Rafe" with a boom. He fell heavy and the room shook with laughter. I didn't find that funny, and neither did the embarrassed Rafe. Everyone watched him as muffled chuckles broke free as he limped to the bar. Once he was there, the noise and hubbub started anew.
"What is this?" I asked Kincaid but he shook his head and went to sipping his wyne.
I happened to catch movement above me and there was this guy crossing the rafters. He jumped onto a tabletop and with broadsword in hand gave a speech in old English which I understood not a word but he got laughs all the way through.
"This is bizarre. More bizarre than usual," I whispered to the man on my left hoping he felt the same way because he wasn't laughing either.
It was then I noticed the doorkeeper was right behind him staring into the flames like she was going to lose it. Me left seat companion looked up at her and said, "Do you worship fire or something?" Me question entirely what I wanted to ask but was too timid to voice. Her eyes wandered lazily to his face and she just stared him, causing him to look away in discomfort. She was a spooky lady she was.
Meanwhile, the serving wench plunked down goblets of honey mead when we had all finished our first two goblets of wyne. The stuff splashed over the rim of the goblets and she said to each of us at the long table as she went, "There ya go!" I felt like I was in kindergarten, or worse a geriatric patient in a mental ward.
She returned herself to the bar when she was done with us but the doorkeeper still stood eerily behind me, not moving, still entranced with the fire. I turned to look at her because something about the rather crazy smile breaking over her face made the hairs on the back of me neck stand up. She was, I think, praying to the fire gods and as she prayed her eyes grew brighter and bigger. Oh this wasn't good I told meself.
Before I could say anything of alarm, Weasil got up, clinked his already empty goblet on the table and waved to the crowd.
"Wuzup everyone!" He shouted as the din receded.
Kincaid had meanwhile, reached over to pet a Russian Wolfhound that had come to sit at the end of our long board or table. Weasil found this act one of disrespect because Kincaid noticed the glare he was getting and abruptly stopped petting the animal and muttered a, "Sorry Sor, ye were a-sayin'?"
Just as he finished saying this, the door creaked open and in walked a tall man with shaved head, black arched eyebrows, wearing one gold earring, a long black leather coat with brass buttons down the front and on the cuffs, white pirate shirt and completing the look, a black baldric and sword. The doorkeeper glided over with her hand out. The man took a seat as he dug out a pouch that jingled and handed it to her. The same action of stuffing it down her bodice and she turned and glided back to stand behind me. I reckoned it was the closest to the fire she could get and that just happened to be where I was sitting.
"Hey Iggy man!" Weasil called to him. Iggy nodded in return and was served a splashing, slamming goblet of mead, which he drained in one gulp. He was an ugly man, and a dangerous looking dude which made me wonder at Weasil and Kincaid. Kincaid was nodding and smiling at Iggy as the dog nuzzled its head into his side for attention.
The doorkeeper passed a gold piece with the mark of England on it to Weasil. Weas left it in front of him on the table and shouted at Iggy, "Wots up bro?"
"Howz it goin'?" the Ig asked with a British accent ignoring the question.
Suddenly and without warning the doorkeeper passed to the other side of the table and grabbing a long iron poker started attacking the fire. As she was doing this the Ig got up and with a dexterity not often seen in a man his size cut off two coin pouches of the smaller men sitting nearby. They sat in awe of him as he took the pouches, poured them out in front of Weasil and grinned.
What was THIS about I wanted to know.
"Iggy I thought I wuz goin' nuts in here." Weasil said all smiles. "Cham-pag-ney for all!" Weasil shouted to the wench at the bar.
And champagne it was, the bubbly was uncorked at the bar and the bottles were trayed to each table by the almost toothless wench.
"Wots the occasion?" I asked Kincaid as the wench gathered up the silver and put it back into the two pouches. These she threw on one of her trays and disappeared. Kincaid shrugged and went back to the dog. That made me more nervous. Was something in store for me?
Glass after glass of the bubbly was raised and near the end of the toasts which went something like this:
"To the drink!"
"To the dog!"
"To sweat and bad breath!"
And up and down the tables it went. All stupid stuff until it got to the doorkeeper who stood looking into the fire. She took a coin from her bosom and threw it into the leaping flames and turning to us she stood, her mouth working and her brow all wrinkled in thought. She said to no one in particular, "Takes a coin to keep it goin'." She frowned and then said slowly, "I can't think of anything good to say." With that she shrugged and returned her attention to the flames.
OK THEN, moving ever onward.
Iggy said to the assembly, "I can see yer all chillin' here, specially YOU Weas." And he laughed.
"Bro iz phat to see yaz." Weasil said blushing slightly (as if that was possible).
"Iz there someone else can tend for a moment so I can join the mates?" The bartender shouted.
A few hands went up and the more than drunk among us volunteered. I could imagine one of them behind the bar covertly drinking the profits. One able bodied man did step up and the bartender took his place at the table behind us. He was immediately served by the wench who again did her slam, splash and leave technique.
About that time I heard a rather strange sound. It was the wolfhound and it was purring like a cat. I took a double take and looked around but no one seemed to think THAT was out of the ordinary.
"Iggy dis iz sum kinda roomie," Weasil said gaily. "Dey all got limp wristies."
I sat there me mouth hanging open watching how the assembly took THAT little bit of information. And I can honestly say, not well.
Meanwhile, Kincaid was smiling at the dog and it looked like the purring dog was smiling back! I looked at me glass wondering what I was really drinking.
The barkeep got himself up all burly 6 feet of him. He had his hands on his hips as he glared at the Weasil and said, "Lemme guess, you wanna spar?"
The doorkeeper on that penetrating her brain whipped around and said, "Don't tell me to calm down! Don't tell me to shut up!"
Everyone was silent, the barkeep's eyes were wide with surprise as he sank his big self back in his seat.
"Cool." Weasil whispered, dropping his hand from his sword hilt.
The doorkeeper came forward and stood just behind me AGAIN! Only she was facing the barkeep. Her look was menacing but she went no further. He, for his part looked down at the table. I'd never seen a grown man cringe like that. Just what was her deal? I wanted to ask Weasil, but he slowly sank in his seat across from me with a smug smile on his face as he too looked over at the barkeeper like what are you going to do about it mate, kind of expression.
The room was electric with tension, the fire rose and hissed, the sparks flew as a log fell. Not a sound other than the crackling logs. I was half turned toward the doorkeeper but could see Weasil out of the corner of me other eye. These two I need to keep an eye apiece on if you know what I mean. Yes, I looked strange, one eye focused in one direction the other in the opposite, and yes, I know me eyes could have permanently stayed that way and well then I'd look a lot like Marty Feldman!
The tension began to settle as conversation began in a rumble on the other side of the room and soon rolled over to our side. The barkeeper had slunked his way back behind the bar and was busy drying glasses but the doorkeeper was still zeroed in on him with her death stare.
"Who is she?" I asked Kincaid in as soft a voice as I could.
"She's da Ig's sister." Kincaid whispered not looking at me, but staring into his mead.
"His what?" I exploded and as I rose half out of me seat everyone near me tried to pull me back down, shushing me as they threw side long glances in the direction of Iggy's sister. But she had turned and was looking directly at me with a scowl on her face and I could see the barkeeper sigh relieved the focus was off him. He was pouring himself a shot as I was whipped to face the Weasil side of the room cutting off me view of him and HER. Suddenly I felt the creature's fingers digging into me shoulder and wow that hurt!
"Ye haf a problem do ye?" She hissed into me ear as me mouth wailed a low ouch and me nostrils fought the fire smell.
"Oh no, no, no, no, no," I moaned the pain quite intense as her skeleton fingers with the very long yellow nails dug in.
She threw me away from her and announced to all assembled, "Yer! None of ye are to get apples this day. Notta one of yas."
If I wasn't in so much residual pain I would have shouted, "Apples?" but I was in pain and thankfully that saved me from the probability of a second shoulder squeeze and a hissing question in me ear.
Thankfully, a door on the other side swung open and everyone cheered and rapped their tankards on the tables as two huge pigs with apples in their mouths were hauled out and set on the two bigger tables (one being me own). With a determined step the doorkeeper slid her arm between two would be diners and took the apple out of the pig's mouth and then she moved to the other table and did the same and you will never guess what she did with those apples, she slid them in her bosom! Yup two greasy hot apples right down the old dress front. I tell ya she must have skin of a lizard because she had smoke issuing from her front as she passed by to another table where she took up a pitcher of water and proceeded to pour it not only down the front of her but on the back to the head of the man sitting nearby. He instantly rose up for the ice bucket challenge he didn't know he was a part of and his table laughed as the rest of us sat there watching the doorkeeper's bosom sizzle and smoke as the water produced steam from the heat. With all that water Iggy's sister was overly top heavy and was struggling not to fall face forward.
The Ig got up with the help of the Weasil and a few others to hold her upright and escort her to the bar where she could hold herself up. I was wondering if this night could get anymore bizarre and freaky. I will say I got both miscreants to promise me as soon as we devoured the pig that we would leave and get the hell out of the castle. And we did.
I know what you're saying to your computer screen, why didn't you just leave then Gabe, do you always think of your stomach first? Well uh YEAH.
I was unnerved enough to tell the Weasil I was driving us home, but he would not let me behind the wheel of the speed bucket. So I had to endure a blow by blow of their laughter at ME for botching up the evening. If that console wasn't between them I would have reached over the front seat and bashed their heads together. I spoke not a word, but sat there with me arms folded across me chest, tsking a lot and did not realise as I walked into me own home that I was still dressed the fool. I didn't have long to remember it as me Mam was the only one up with a cuppa watching the telly on a very low volume not to wake the house. When she saw me she turned the volume up and guess what? Yeah all the sleepers in the house awoke to see yours truly in jester dress. Rubbing eyes, double takes, laughter, giggles, pointing, yeah that's what I came home too.
When I tried to explain they told me not to, it was just too priceless.
So thanks a lot Weasil and Robby for making me endure a semi-nightmare, dressed like a complete idiot in the process and then be insulted royally by me own ones. Gees.
I hope it is snowing heavily in Colorado and the two miscreants will leave here and go ski off a mountain. SIGH.
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