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Bar Story
4.8.2003 by Rosemary, every Tuesday.

Caution: profanity and confusion.

Last week's column was postponed because of a sudden essay attack. Here are some of the pictures I was drawing two weeks ago. I'll try and post others when I have spare moment.

Also, Snowmit and I made a website about our travelling, but unfortunately the server's having technical problems, so I'll post it next week.

The band was thrashing away as if they figured they'd be snuffed in two hours. Their songs were an unending pageant of glittering, bloated monsters; they reminded Tah of the Empire, past its prime, sliding into an elegant and sumptuous decay.

Tah sighed and attempted once more to signal the bartender. He was tucked into a smoke-hazed anonymous corner, and she walked past him many times unnoticing. He sighed again, and wondered that he preferred to stay hidden and quiet rather than try harder to get more liquor.

The women in the bar were covered in a dry layer of makeup, and they were so thin and sickly-looking, all sunken eyes and smudged uneasy smiles. It depressed him. He missed the women from his time.

The band's next song tumbled to a close like a collapsing wedding cake, and the skulking man on the stool beside him turned and made some inaudible, innocuous comment. Tah nodded courteously, hoping the skulker would be satisfied and shut the hell up. Instead he edged closer. "Nice music eh?" he whined into the buildup of the next song.

"Sure," said Tah.

"Where you from?" The man's grin was a dripping melon slice.

"Two thousand years in the past," said Tah, feeling suddenly as if he didn't give a shit.

"Really?" The stranger almost drooled.

"The women back then," said Tah. "More beautiful."

"Eh?" dripped the man.

"More," said Tah, making a curvy gesture with his hands, "beautiful."

"Ah, yes, women! Women..."

"I hate this place," said Tah. The music smashed on. Every chord fit the shape of his heart, and it was a strange pitted shape he didn't like at all. The lead vocalist jerked and moved more than his drug-eaten form should have allowed. He was sparkling clothes hanging off a coatrack of a body.

"You alone?" said the man, with a sudden harsh urgency.

"What?" said Tah.

The cold nose of a gun edged against his warm stomach.

"Gimme," breathed the skulking man. It sounded like a prayer.

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