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Wednesday, November 30, 2011

From "Ghosts of the Asylum" by Ty Johnston

“Where is this nephew of yours?”

A shadow fell across his table as Kerjim looked up from his dinner into a set of dark eyes surrounded by stringy gray hairs atop a mammoth head the size of a melon. The Docks Guild chief lifted a red napkin with frayed ends, the best the Stone Pony had to offer, dabbed at the corners of his mouth, then slid away his nearly finished bowl of pigeon stew. “He is no longer any family of mine,” he said as he lifted a wooden cup of ale and sipped from it.

The big woman huffed and those present in the tavern’s main room went quiet. All conversation stopped, as did any slurping of drinks or scraping of plates. All eyes were on the monstrosity that was Mama Kaf as she leaned forward, towering over the seated Pursian.

Where is he?” she asked.

Kerjim set down his drink and looked up at her. “I have no idea. Perhaps he is upstairs in his room packing to leave town. That would be the smartest thing he has done of late.”

The big woman tromped off to one side, heading toward the stairs.