Thursday, June 13, 2013

Day Four-Seventy-Nine: Whip it good

Evangelina's first day as co-mayor was… impressive. Freaked me out a bit, but her decision was pretty damned sound.

I've learned that Harold is only a useful legislator insofar as he's not being bullied. He has a bit of a spine, but it tends to flap and fold if somebody's yelling at him. That's probably why our would-be guards wound up with such a shitty instructor - the first guy to demand the position got it. Harold's better left dealing with more agreeable artisans, trap-makers, and nobles.

Evangelina, though. She don't take crap from nobody. That's why Harold and I agreed to give her control of the guards this morning. She'll do the best job with it.

The taskmaster Harold hired to whip the recruits into shape is a mercenary named Fledge. He's a portly, well-muscled, ill-tempered fella who spends most of his time drunk. No Captain Cedric, that's for sure, yet he's earning more gold each day than Cedric probably made in a week. He spends most of it on Bora's booze, and though I hadn't met the man before today I overheard many complaints about his behaviour.

Normally, I'd be the one to ultimately deal with him. But not anymore. I let somebody else do the work. And boy was it sweet.

As I said, Fledge spends most of his time in the Beefiary when he should be out drilling the troops. Instead he tells them to do 'laps', advice which they generally ignore in favour of mucking about the town. Some of them have taken on part-time work with the farmers, which is helpful, but most of the recruits are making a mess of Pubton. They're probably revelling in the fact that they have more free time here than they'd ever had back home.

We found Fledge at his usual seat, near the bar. He likes to ogle Bora. What a surprise.

Evangelina didn't hesitate. Leaving me at a nearby table, she strode over to Fledge and tapped his shoulder. "Excuse me."

Turning away from his drink and belching loudly, Fledge stared at her. "Howdy-do, pretty lady. C'n ol' Fledge buy ya somethin'? Got lotsa coin to spare for a shapely bod, eheh."

Wafting away the smell of his bodily expulsions, Evangelina clicked her heels together. "You are being paid by the administrative branch of Pubton to train guards and soldiers. You are currently training neither. I would like an explanation."

"And I'd like ta see what's under that full suit ye're wearin', darlin'. Must be stuffy." Fledge tottered off of his stool, standing more than a foot taller than Evangelina. "'m on my break. You got a problem, you talk t'my boss. Probably out tinkerin' with his shitty wall."

"I am your boss now." Evangelina stared up at Fledge, eyes narrowed, as he moved in uncomfortably close. "You are not here to give yourself alcohol poisoning. You are here to do a job. You have failed to deliver. I am therefore terminating your contract, effective immediately."

Fledge grinned. His yellow-and-black teeth looked ready to fall out of his head. "That so. Well, honey, I don't think I'll be acceptin' that. You set me up with a sweet 'lil deal, here, 'n seein' as how nobody in this shit town can stand up t'me… y'know, what with you not havin' guards 'n all…"

Evangelina smiled. I doubt Fledge saw it, but her right hand dipped to the bullwhip at her waist. "Guards aren't necessary to deal with scum like you."

"Ach, quite a mouth on ya. I'll teach ya how to use it proper. C'mon, Fledge'll show ya why he's not goin' anywhere." The big man's hands rose to grab Evangelina's arms -

- but Evangelina was faster. Much faster. Spinning away from Fledge, she pulled her bullwhip from her belt, cracked it once, and lashed it around Fledge's legs. Already thrown off-balance, Fledge landed on his chin, howling impotently as he struggled to remove the whip from his thighs.

Evangelina stopped him by planting her boot on the back of his head, jamming his jaw into the floorboards. I imagine there was enough pressure to put the fear of the gods into Fledge. "I am also here to request that you leave Pubton. We've had numerous complaints regarding your conduct. It is unbecoming of our civil lands."

Fledge sputtered, straining to roll his head around so he could glare at Evangelina. "F… fuck you… you… bitch… the second I get up, you're fucking… dead…"

"Maybe." Evangelina's smile grew. She pressed harder. "Or maybe I'll hand you over to the new captain of the guards. He'll deal with you. I'm frankly surprised we didn't choose him in the first place."

I grimaced as said captain stepped away from his table on the other side of the Beefiary. Normally he would've dealt with someone like Fledge earlier, but he's been busy with the fields.

"Allow me to introduce Captain Oswald." Evangelina motioned to my dad, all decked out in a guardsman's uniform, as he stepped up beside her. "He'll escort you out of Pubton."

His head now loose enough that he could see, Fledge howled with angry laughter. "He ain't got no fuckin' arms! I'll snap your goddamn puppet crap like they was twigs!"

Stooping to one knee, Oswald slid his boot against Fledge's chin. His face glowed. "Try it. Just try it."

Fledge did. I, uh… well… needless to say, we won't be seeing Fledge again.

I'd normally protest Evangelina's choice of my father for the martial commander of Pubton. He has no formal training, he's overly-fond of drink, and he doesn't know the first thing about guard duty (not that it's a difficult job to pick up). But he's tough as shit, and if he can't whip a bunch of unruly farm boys into fighting form, nobody can.

I feel sorry for those recruits. They now have their own personal Captain Cedric… only this one has fewer redeeming qualities.


Dragomir the Co-Mayor


  1. I love her father That Gangster of Love hidden in Junes hair?

    1. Maurice the Hand? Depends on whether there's more to his body or not.

    2. Well, there doesn't need to be more to that body AT PRESENT, but at one point in time, Maurice could've been whole enough to father children.

    3. I've not put much thought into the true nature of Maurice. I think I'm happier not knowing.

      Which is to say, your search probably continues. Or does it?

    4. Don't you DARE do that...I know your tricks ALL too well BIRD!!!

  2. I'm saying it's probably the Baron or possibly Lord Pagan. Since the Baron would explain the magic/disdain for the Non, but Lord Pagan would explain why they were considered nobility in Jeffrey's kingdom (also would explain why the Baron may not have immediately known that they were a threat).