Yet Once More, O Ye Laurels

We were out drinking, the three of us, because that was what you did when you didn’t have anything else to do, go to the bar and see who else is there, buy a pitcher or two, play some darts. Smoke and yell, foozeball. It was packed that night, the bar we were in, one we hadn’t been too before, a little farther afield than the normal grotty pub we usually hung around in, but Lycidas had come into a little extra spending cash (she wouldn’t give us the details, just smiled when we asked) and wanted to try something new and offered to stand us all the first two pitchers. Well, we weren’t going to turn down that offer — who knew when anything similar would come again? — so off we went, piled into poor, sweet Kaz’s car, designated driver again, and went looping around the city until we found something that looked promising or at least interesting.

Adams was the name of the place and everyone in it was ten or fifteen years younger than we were, and wild and clean in a way that ground on our nerves like it always does but we were on an adventure so we put up with it and drank the beer which was okay, no better, and after a while they didn’t seem so annoying anymore.

Toward the end of the night when settled into the rhythm of the place and I’d beaten a group of sweet-faced young men at darts and let them buy me a drink even though I didn’t really want it, and Kaz was sitting at the table, nodding at Leonidas and keeping an eye on me like he was supposed to when the fight broke out, knives and chains and everything, and poor Kaz took a bottle to the back of the head.

Things went more or less downhill from there.