Hello, Benjamin from Brothers Campfire here!
Gather ’round and I will spin you a tale.
Dwarves in Dresses
Nothing good happens with alcohol and taverns, especially at night.
Day in and day out Lord Rutherford, son of Reginald Zapher received complaints that the Hebrides had come to town and were not leaving.
The Hebrides were a sturdy lot, a bit on the short side and said to be shirttail cousins of the O’Hagans to the north. They were decent folk, fierce and independent, but unmanageable subjects. They were drinkers, and they were brawlers.
There were three things you never joked about with a Hebride; their height, their patterned kilts, or their mothers
Well, they went ahead and did all that at the tavern.
After a hard day’s work at the docks, a few Hebrides were parched and so decided to drink a few cold ones. Well, the town bully didn’t like their looks and said, “Well looky here, dwarves in dresses.”
The patrons didn’t particularly like the bully, but laughed because it was a bit funny.
The Hebrides ignored him and ordered a pint each.
“barkeep, get them half-pints. Those mugs are a bit large for their little hands.”
A barrel-chested Hebride had had enough and his friends held him back.
“Let me fight the talker, let me fight!’
“It’s ok brother, we are here for a drink and we set sail in the morning.”
Most of the patrons were not looking to get involved and went back to whatever they were doing.
The town bully was relentless. “Hey, did you bring Snow White? I’d like to meet her. That IS your mother, right?”
The barrel-chested Hebride cursed and swore, then swore and cursed, but his friends held onto him.
An older, and more level-headed Hebride looked over at the bully.
“ I suggest you be leaving sir, you just made fun of his height, his clothing, and his mother. We cannot hold him forever.”
The patrons turned to look at the Hebrides when the elder Hebride spoke. They were so small and funny looking that the tough talk was amusing.
They let their brother go and he advanced on the bully with ferocious intent.
The bully, amused, stooped down to pat the Hebride on the Head. “you people are so cute when you are mad.”
The angry Hebride grabbed the man by the beard, pulling him to the ground. He screamed in surprise as he found himself on the floor. He tried to get up, but his friends were upon him and they beat the bully nigh yon to death with small wooden clubs they pulled from their jackets.
The Hebrides were content to leave with first sail in the morning, but the barrel-chested Hebride was labeled the instigator and arrested pending a trial.
They protested the arrest and made no end of disrupting the honorable proceedings of the town. One of them rang the church bell in the middle of the night, another was caught leering at ladies’ ankles in broad daylight, and everywhere they went, they were looking for a fight.
Lord Rutherford was at his wits end with all of the complaints, and would happily have let the barrel-chested Hebride go free, but he was dear friends with the beaten bully and could not for the sake of his pride.
He would have asked his father what to do, but he was busy with the goings-on of his elder brother, heir to the throne.
He would have asked Lady Alexandria, his mother, but she was self-absorbed at the moment.
His brother, Lord Alexander would know what to do, but they had all recently exiled him to a prairie dog-infested hundred-acre wood, affectionately known as Pooh to everyone for miles around. He would not be receptive to such conversation at the moment and may find his plight amusing.
And so, without any counsel at the moment, he consulted with the barkeep as he seethed over a sip of cider.
“Seems to me,” said the barkeep, “that Lord Alexander entrusted me with no small sum to recruit folks that may be interested in work to travel to Pooh. I know it is a fair distance, but perhaps you can save face and let the barrel-chested Hebride go by calling it a work-release program. You will possibly show strength in your resolve and exemplify good judgment.”
And so, calling a meeting in the town square, he publicly administered the judgment of hard labor upon the barrel-chested Hebride who beat the bully and had his staff inform the Hebrides of the job opportunities offered by his brother, Lord Alexander.
The Hebrides were willing to ignore the political shenanigans for the freedom of their brother and made haste to the prairie dog-infested hundred-acre wood at the base of the hills, said to be haunted by haints.
Relieved, Rutherford resumed his duties of relaxing.