Oppe Hele Natten : Chapter 10
As I make my way to where I'll be staying for the night, I can't help but notice a bunch of shiny lights in the distance, accompanied by a lot of noise and crowds cheering, which brings a huge sense of curiosity. Could there be others like me in Rough City nearby? I rush over to see what all the commotion is about.
As I approach, to my surprise, there is no crowds or gatherings. The shiny lights are made out of paint cans, and there's just one inhabitant street performer drumming on a bucket.
"You're pretty good, " I shout over the beating drums, noticing they are intently focused on the beat.
"Oh hi!" They look up, a bit startled. "I'm Rusty Braemore, and you are?"
"Hello. Um, they call me Ø. I thought there was a crowd..."
Rusty interrupts,"you mean this?" pointing to a beat up music playing device, as I look in wonder. "What brings you to Rough City?"
Before I can respond, Braemore interrupts,"Here try this...It's a new recipe I'm working on." They hand me a ruby red dark sour, super thirst quenching.
"This is delicious," I mention. "What happened to your leg?"
Rusty spits some of their beer out,"Hah! You mean this old thing?" Rusty grabs their wooden crutch and sits up. "It's no biggie. Minor fall is all. Hasn't stopped me from playing though so that's good!" Rusty smiles, their long dark hair glistening in the light.
"Well, I must be on my way," I yawn a bit tired.
"No way no how!" Rusty moves over. "It's not often I meet someone like you in Rough City."
Rusty convinces me to walk over to an underground cellar, where we end up at a large wooden door. I notice the sign above the door reads Mariusgenser, which makes me wonder if there's any influence from back home.
The door opens, and oddly no one is there to greet us.
The space is something I'd never laid my eyes on. Lots of inhabitants are sitting at the wooden tables and bar stools overlooking the stage full of musicians and dancers performing in a very vibrant setting full of sweater pattern tiled walls, draconia plants, and bright colored walls.
After some thrilling performances, and a few cocktails, Rusty and I are stuffing our faces with delicious fish cakes, hot honey sprouts, and a fish stew that has me longing for the sea again.
Noticing my dozing off, Rusty admits it's time to go. They drink one more Tequila soda and we stumble out onto the quiet dark streets.
Miraculously, Rusty leads me to my sleeping quarters, and bids me farewell.
"Until next time Ø!" They trot off.
As I lay there, barely crawling into the bed, my head spinning, I wish Bowski was there to witness the nights debauchery, and doze off to sleep.