Friday, November 7, 2008



Part the third of the Boswell backstory--why Libby turned in Violet, and the proper response for unruly singing males.

“EEEEEeeww!! I’m not marrying HER”
“Fauuugh!! I am NOT marryin’ HIM!!”

Which was how I, and me prospective groom, greeted the concept of wedlock, one to the other.


I am not wandering off on tangent, dammit!! Ye did want to know why I was there to turn Violet in, don’t ye?

Well I’m telling ye—because I am…

for my sins…

married into the peripheral clan of the Camerons.

Aye well, it happens.

I tipped the Forces That Be about Violet to save me own neck. Well, technically our necks, but as I am married to good master William only under gravest duress and necessity I like to forget about him as often as I can.

Which hasn’t been easy of late—being in such close proximity with half the Camerons in Christendom about.

Ye see, Willie is one of Lady Cameron’s godsons, and loving, caring icon that she be, she has begun to ask embarrassing questions about Lack of Heirs, with many a pointed glare at my still flat (and going to stay so if ‘n I have anything to do with it) belly.

Pointed comments served with very noxious tea-like substances and oddly shaped,
charm-like nosegays have been appearing with regular frequency—or as regular as a bloody-minded Papist can stomach practicing such hexery.

So... I bethought me to get everyone’s eyes focused elsewhere for a change.

It worked.

But is it enough of a diversion to get me an Willie back to New-Yorke, before one or both of us is exposed? That will be the challenge.

I did mention that Willie and I are married only under necessity? Well, that and slightly false pretenses, besides. You see, it is just barely possible that he is married already and besides we’ve never consummated said marriage.

Oh not for lack of rum, wine or any other spirit and trying—but Willie, fair, green-eyed paragon that he is, possesses no soft rounded bits.

And I have none of the facial hair, and dangly bits he is seeking.

What we do have, each, is half of a key that leads to a fortune in finest Dutch gin and the wee black booke full of the names and secrets of merchants and shippers what are deeply in the debt of one Greta Van Der Kuiken , tavern-keeper of Albany.

Ye see, I were landed in New-Yorke as just one of a multiple of poor wretches needing to fill out an indenture. I didn’t, however, “take” at auction—maybe I spit a bit too much and I suppose the knee to the ballocks of the one turd what groped me, didn’t help either.

We, the other malcontents and I, were led out in a shuffling line by a soul-driver into the countryside, and it were there that I met up with my salvation, in so many ways—the formidable Mevrouw Greta Van Der Kuiken, relict of the late Jost Van Der Kuiken, taverneer of Albany.

Ah…yes…and fortunate me! Greta, were ne’er averse to a little bedwarming of slow winter’s eve and many was the night I drifted off to sleep pillowed deep in goosedown and Greta.

While she freely admitted that she had taken me on only because she were lookin for another doxy to liven up the tavern of an evening, she find out quick enough I wasn’t to most men’s taste, nor they to mine.

I do have other skills, such as reading, ciphering and an excellent eye for spotting a forgery, so she overlooked my penchant for braining a man with an alepot at 20 paces for taking liberties, and kept me at work behind the scenes.

O, I can tell at a glance—a glance! if a coin’s been washed or clipped, and can spot even the best German-printed counterfeit note before it hits the counter. I were an asset to the business, and was rewarded for such.

But so was Willie—William Ian Kilbourne, to name him rightly. He is quite the skilled card sharp, and can play well and play deep—thanks to his skill. He knows when to quit the cards and let the mark win, and always gives his cut to Greta, who kept him on to keep the nobs coming.

But pretty Willie, has a flaw, however--besides possibly being still married, since the woman in question went missing, and hasn't been seen since the last time the King's Light Infantry came through town....hmmmm.

But he is also a bad Scot for He canna hold his whiskey.

At all--it’s the matter of only a few drams and his sauve demeanor changes. ‘Miss Thing’ will go a-prancing, a veritable molly, fit to do a turn down the arcades of the Royal Exchange, and singing loudly and badly, all the while.

Twenty verses of ‘My Thing is Mine Own’ later and even Greta would take an alepot to his head.

And Willie knew it, too, so he chose to stay far away from home, where he could discretely make his fortune, or fail without creating a major scandal, and everyone made sure to keep him out of the whiskey.

That were the state of affairs.

Now, tonight, from this vantage point, watching the sparks from the cook fire pop and sail up into the darksome night, it seems so long ago and so good.

But all good things must come to an end...

submitted by
--Libby Boswell

No comments: