Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Blunt Weapons

Summer, 1032
Iridia

Jack had finally managed to consume enough honeyed wine to dull the sounds of the lower-class brothel, and numb the heaviness in his chest. He sat at the bar with a careless grip on his mug, slumped over and staring at the grimy wood floors below.

He had yet to speak with his wife, despite learning that Betha’s condition had worsened to the point that no physician would see her, and her comfort now rested solely on the generosity of a local herbalist. The stale air was thick with the scent of vomit and mead, and the only sounds were the quiet, rhythmic grunting of those humping upstairs.
The man who sat beside him appeared to be nodding to himself, and Jack raised a callous brow over at the dark haired stranger. Through blurred eyes, Jack noted the harsh scar across the other’s man’s face.
“Ow,” he said aloud. “That’s a big scratch.”

The man continued nodding and smirked a little, suddenly Jack realised that he had been speaking aloud the whole time, sharing his rotten thoughts with the stranger.
“Almost lost my eye,” the stranger said with a wink.

Jack nodded with an open mouth, admiring the facial deformity. The man looked to be a decade or so older than him, with grey hairs sprouting around his chin. He had dark hair and pale skin, a common combination in Iridia. Jack didn’t need to ask the man what he did for a living; he knew what a slaver looked like. Jack’s father had been a slaver too. He had despised his father, mostly for his fondness for beating him with blunt weapons, but also for the seemingly heartless way he went about his job. 
He couldn’t help himself, Jack leaned toward the man “Don’t you get tired of treating people like they’re worth no more than they can lift?” He hissed, purposely trying to start the man. “Doesn’t it make you sick inside?”

The man seemed calm, and coolly looked over at him. “Why are you here? Why aren’t you with your dying wife, or your little daughter?”
“Don’t!” Jack spat, anger catching in him like a fire. “Don’t even mention her,” he waved his hand through the air. “I got her away from here; she’s safe with the high borns in Marlowe.” Jack looked at the man and squinted, his thoughts fading from memory. “How,” he whispered to the stranger. “How am I going to tell her I let her mother die?”
“Did you let her die?” The man got up to leave, but held Jack’s gaze for a second longer than necessary. “Or did she let herself die?”

Jack nodded, barely noticing as the man disappeared. He took a swig from his mug, and planted a firm hand on the bar. Glancing around, he couldn’t see anyone to pour him another drink, and growled at the lack of service. Leaving his empty mug, he swayed to his feet and stumbled across the room. Finally, he spotted someone familiar. A whore, a woman he’d watched his father bring home multiple times, a woman with a lovely singing voice. And unlike his father, Jack now had the coin to make her sing.

3 comments:

  1. Short-ish one, but hey at least I got it posted.

    Been busy trying to organise my trip overseas, got my passport just trying to get the money asap. It's been hard as work shut down for a week and now it's gone quiet. We'll see what happens, I've got about half of what I need. I'm SLOWLY working on another story, by the name of Lyle, might not come together for ages, might do it bit by bit. ANYWAY. I think I'm getting sick of night shift, I'm stressed out and losing hair again. Good news is I paid my course off, though I'm way behind on it.... Hope everything is good!!!

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  2. Enjoy your trip! And looking forward to the new story whenever it's ready.

    Hmm. I think Jack owes the mother of his child whatever deathbed comfort he can give her, even if it's not much. Unless, of course, she doesn't want him around.

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  3. So, I know I've been absent for quite some time (thank you by the way for mentioning my blog in The Liebster Award post and I'm also very sorry for not uploading my blog with it), but I still don't understand why Jack took his daughter to be raised by a more honorable family but left his wife to perish in such misery (I admit I may have forgotten a couple of things about his story, because it's been such a long time since I've read a few chapters).
    I'm still curious what will happen next to Jack and his family, especially now that his wife's death is so close.
    Great chapter! ^^ I love your writing style.

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