Oh No, Not Again
GBE 2 Week #86
“No! No! No! Oh no, not again. I am NOT going to drink that nasty brown liquid you call ‘Mother’s Milk’! The last time I did that, I woke up mid-air after you people had launched me from a catapult. I don’t care that I landed in the middle of the landing pad. I don’t care that I walked away with only a sprained wrist. I don’t care…you are NOT going to pull any sort of stunt, on me, like that ever again!” Giorgio spun on his heels and stormed out of the pub.
“Midgets….they are so temperamental.”
“No sense of humor in that one.”
“He doesn’t like to be called a midget. He rather you call him one of the little people.”
“When I hear little people, I automatically think of Leprechauns! If he dressed better, maybe people WOULD think he was a Leprechaun.”
“I think those cranky Leprechauns wouldn't even take him. He’s no sense of humor!”
“You can be sure, when His Lordship gets back, he is gonna get an earful from that one!”
The cacophony at the Suit of Arms became as deafening as a congress of crows; much pounding of mugs on the table tops, raucous laughter, and the scraping of chair legs across the floor. The patrons of The Suit, as it was known locally, began another plot of adventure at the expense of another unwitting neighbor.
The indignant but unharmed young man kicked at a napping cat as he stormed down the street. As cats are, it was gone long before the swinging foot neared its resting place causing further frustration.
Throwing himself onto the ground, the smallish young man began to pick at the weeds growing alongside of him. He was close enough to the road way to see His Lordship’s caravan returning from their outing. The young man’s face lit up. He just knew his pride would be avenged. He knew those oafish clods from the tavern would get a real tongue lashing from Gerome. They would never have dared pull a stunt like that with Gerome around. He began to climb to his knees, astounded he fell back down and sidled behind the tree. Unwilling to be seen but wanting to witness all he could. A woman tethered and drug behind as though she were an animal or slave. Where is Gerome, he would explain what was happening.
Gerome had opted to walk himself back to the village. Wanting to tell Lord Alfred, but knowing that timing is everything, he opted to keep the Nymph’s presence a secret. Unfettered with servants and footmen and military personnel he was certain he would be as invisible as he normally was upon arriving back home. Also walking alone, rather than riding with the caravan, would give him time to come up with a story about the Nymph. How was a crippled hunchback going to explain the arrival of such a beautiful woman?
Cook would see to it that his belongings arrived in his quarters, safely. He had every confidence that all would be set in order when he arrived. The hustle and bustle of the villagers gawking at the procession as Lord Alfred reentered with his entourage. The dust would be settled and he, Gerome, could simply walk in unnoticed accompanied by the Nymph.
Aquina had donned the clothing of a young man, but those eyes told the real story. She could hide her hair, she could attempt a swagger, but those eyes gave the ruse away. She had apparently gotten used to walking. Gerome completely understood her difficulty with walking. His pace was slowly paced and careful enough to allow Aquina time to adjust. Living in the waters, Aquina had developed the ability to walk in short spurts, not for the long trek it would take to get back to the village. When Aquina had first emulated his club footed scrabble, Gerome was at first horrified. Snorting in laughter, he corrected her walking pattern.
Gerome’s ears picked up the raised voices while he and Aquina were still within the forested portion of the trail. A break in the overhead growth allowed the clamor into the woods. The roar of voices drowned out the cawing of the raven sentries. This was not the quiet homecoming Gerome had hoped for. “Damn this club foot. Just once I wish to stride upright into town, not scrabble like some hermit crab!”