The revelation that help was coming in the form of Captain Rum and Captain Baba had reenergize the efforts of the pub staff and loyalists. It had caused us to convene a counsel of war right in the pub’s main room. We slid two tables together and laid out some maps and then began to strategize. Everyone was there and I was happy that now everyone seemed to have at least some sort of smile. The only one’s not present were Sherry (pregnant and protected in the cellar), Vodka (with his wife) and Pina Colada (also with Sherry acting as nurse and potentially midwife).
Miss Wine had changed from her typical nudist look to her gangster vamp look from the 1920s. She was cradling a tommy gun in her right arm and on her right leg was a garter belt that also had a knife in a sheath. I was not going to ask where she got either.
Gin (revolver), Scotch (claymore), Bourbon (laser pistol), Tequila (baseball bat), Margareta (.45 1911 automatic pistol), Brandy (martial arts), Pint (teeth), Pixies (all three armed with swords), Naphtha (earth and healing magic), Campeche (fire and mental magic), Avion (alien pistol) Hilda (pitchfork) and me (BFG) were all standing around the table or seated on stools. Honestly there was a lot of dangerous people in this pub but they are the nicest people when not at war.
Naphtha the naked dryad was speaking and the men were mesmerized by her words, yeah I am sure it was her words.
“The pub heals but the vampires will strike soon. Mr. Lies will not wait to long before he begins his final assault with Rum and Baba bearing down on him. He will strike with everything he has.”
“What is that?”, the question was mine.
“The Bloodsuckers, The Seven Deadly Sins, Sister Papoofnick and perhaps her entourage of self-righteous zealots. Mr. Lies himself but he will wait to reveal himself until he feels the moment is right. I don’t know, there could be something else.”
“Pretty impressive forces there, but with Rum and Baba bearing down on his flank and rear, he knows he cannot wait long. He needs us destroyed so that attack he can defend against without having to worry about us smashing him if we were to attack him. I am certain he wants to avoid that as well. He has the upper hand in forces but not for long so he must attack soon.” Colonel Gin gave the tactical assessment.
“The question I have is can we actually attack Mr. Lies if we have the opportunity? I may only be the barkeep here but even if Rum and Baba do strike and we know about it, do we have enough force to cause an addition threat. I mean Sherry and her baby are too important to not protect, if we send out a strike force we weaken the defense around her. Is it possible that Rum and Baba could handle him alone.”
Colonel Gin responded, “I don’t think so. The problem this the Bloodsuckers and the Seven Deadly Sins will be locked in combat with Rum and Baba but that leaves Mr. Lies himself with Papoofnick. Mr. Lies undoubtedly can tip the scales very easily in that battle. It will take all of us to bring him down. The best strategy is to let Baba and Rum engage Mr. Lies forces and then for use to commando style raid into Mr. Lies camp and attack him and his direct support. It would be the only moment his support structure would be the weakest.”
“A raid huh”, I mused, “Who would we send?”
“I recommend Myself, Scotch, Miss Wine, Campeche and yourself barkeep.”
“Colonel, why those five?”
“Me for my tactical experience, Scotch because he is the most stealthy, Miss Wine because she brings some firepower and other ‘infiltration’ assets, Campeche because we will undoubtedly run into some magical problems and you because I think you are the only one who can ultimately defeat Mr. Lies. There is enough firepower left at the pub to protect Sherry if it comes to it.”
I also had a personal reason to get out of the pub and out there into the war zone.
“Now, the only problem is knowing when Rum and Baba will strike and perhaps holding off another assault by the Bloodsuckers and company.”
‘Well barkeep, I have an idea about the first. The fairies are small enough they might be able to infiltrate the waterfront and fast enough to get back in time for us to know when Rum and Baba attack. As for the second, we are as prepared as we can be against another attack.”
I nodded. The next few minutes were filled with some final detailed instructions. The fairies were sent out on their scouting mission and the rest broke up to their posts. Naphtha pulled me aside.
“Barkeep, I think I now understand the meaning of your three views of the future. Well at least two of them. The one with me crying is us being defeated. I will be the only one left. The last one with the pub being nothing more than a museum, we win but everyone dies. We defeat the enemy but at the cost of ourselves. The only way to get to the pub being alive is we must win and we must survive”
I headed to the part of the pub I normally kept myself. Tequila was there and she was lovely but I could also see she was crying. Not blubbering like a little girl, but there were tears going down her face. I sat down beside her and put my arm around her and started crying myself.
Welcome to All Things Rabyd, your friendly neighborhood ‘clothing optional’ theology pub. I, the Rabyd Theologian and your bartender, thank you for stopping by. Please drink your theology responsibly or have a designated driver to get you home. Please tip your waitress and they might give you a kiss on the cheek. Just remember life is short so enjoy it. Blessings and Cheers!