Friday, May 23, 2014

Day Seven-Hundred-Five: Asshat

I made my move at lunch. I knew the boy couldn't resist leaving me alone to fetch some food.

The first stirring of Fynn's stomach came with the first hot gust of wind into our hotel room this morning. My son's a growing boy, after all, and he wolfs down food like zombies wolf down brains. Libby left him with a large platter of breakfast meats and veggies before leaving to attend to some errands.

The platter did not last long. Fynn's stomach continued to rumble.

Sensing an opportunity, feeling rather squirrely at the prospect of sitting indoors all day, I searched my pockets and grabbed a few coins. "Here, son. Go buy us something to eat."

Fynn stared at the heap of coins in my palms greedily. "Really? I've... I don't think I've bought anything before."

I smiled. "Now's a good time to start. Go on, grab me a sandwich or something. I saw a nice lookin' shop down the block a ways."

Fynn peered off the balcony and down the street. "That one? The place with the dome roof?"

"That's the one."

Fynn paused. My boy is largely without guile, no surprise for a less-than-one-year-old, though he possesses the earnest beginnings of a bullshit detector. His eyebrow went up. "That's... the Dauphine is in the other direction."

"I'm not sure what you mean by that, kiddo." I rubbed my stomach. "C'mon. I'm starving. If I can't leave, you need to get us some food. Hell, if you want, you can grab something from the Dauphine."

Fynn considered that a moment, taking the coins from my hand. He inspected one. "Dad, you've gotta stay here. Okay? Mom told me to keep you in the hotel."

"And I will stay here." I feigned a sigh. "Guard's honour."

"You swear?"

I crossed my heart with two fingers.

"Well..." Fynn's eyes narrowed, and he smiled a little. "I think they sell food in the lobby. I'll go grab us something from there. Gimme a few minutes."

The lobby is connected to the front door. The front door leads to freedom. You can't get to freedom without the front door. Fynn clearly thought he had me trapped, and I'm proud of him for it. But he missed something that might have been obvious to a seasoned guard watching over a prisoner: a balcony.

Thank the gods we were only on the second floor of the hotel. And that the owner keeps sandbags out front. They cushioned the fall.

Nursing an upset stomach from landing oddly I skittered through the streets of Desert's Edge, moving from one alley to the next. It seemed as though every road and stall and building was somehow occupied by a member of the crew, and I had to remain constantly-cautious lest I get caught. The only person to actually catch me was Traveller, and, uh, he was nude and being chased by police, so... I got off scot-free on that count.

We may have to bail him out later. Maybe.

After dodging a close encounter with the lady that wears the silly animal hats I escaped Desert's Edge, heading south towards the Dauphine. We've given up on hiding our big transport, and it's been sitting outside the city for days. Surprisingly few people in Desert's Edge seem to care. We have coin; why turn us away? The Dauphine's front loading ramp was extended as I broke into a run towards the transport -

- and as I got close, a booming, disapproving voice rang out across the flat plains. "WHAT IN THE HELL! COULDN'T YOU BE PATIENT FOR THREE FUCKING DAYS?!"

"NOPE!" I cried, spotting Libby at the base of the ramp. She was stringing up a banner between two poles. "TELL ME WHAT'S GOING - "

Then I skidded to a halt. I immediately felt like an asshole.

The area in front of the Dauphine had been transformed into a picnic ground of sorts. The tables of the Neo Neo Beefiary were planted firmly into the rough grass, each surrounded by chairs festooned with decorative flags. Morris was carrying a big bucket of dripping, sizzling meat down the ramp, no doubt intending to deposit it beside a long line of vegetable platters, pasta bowls, chilled deserts, and kegs of ale. A big, tiered, red-and-blue cake dominated the tables, its rough icing surface watched over by a small, wooden figurine wearing a horned helmet.


I stumbled into the midst of the celebration-under-construction with a smile formed of awe, happiness, and utter confusion plastered across my face. Libby whacked it away with a light slap. "Ow! What the hell!"

She slapped her forehead next and shoved me down onto a chair. "You asshat! This was supposed to be a surprise! How'd you get away from Fynn?"

"He got hungry," I mumbled, peering around Libby at Morris. He shook his head, but he was smiling. "What is all this? We missed my birthday. It's in February. This is May."

Grunting, Libby sat down beside me. She punched me lightly on the arm. "You're such a douche. I know it's May. We missed it. Gotta make up for that while we still can, 'n I figured... well, considering this place is called 'Desert's-Fucking-Edge', I didn't think we'd have another chance..."

"I see." I laced my fingers together and laid my head on her shoulder. "You coulda just said you were planning something."

"I figured it was obvious, numbnuts."

"Don't you know by now that I'm kinda dense?"

"I should, I really should. Stupid bastard."

"I love you too, Libby."

The event spoiled, we gathered everyone together and had a half-formed, fully-fun party. And it was pretty great. If morale was flagging before, it's been restored now.

I'm a lucky guy.


Dragomir the Wanderer


  1. Hahaha, I'm glad they had a good Friday this time.

  2. Minor spoilz:

    The rest of the season is doom-and-gloom. I figured I owed it to the cast.

  3. I was actually surprised that zombies ate something as normal as brains here. That's not weird, is it?

    1. They also eat crumpets.

      ... brain crumpets.