Monday, June 27, 2005


A Pirate Tale – Part 91 “An Execution of Ex-Wives”

Sao Paulo was abuzz with the news – Slappy was back in town. The Pirate Olympic Committee organizers were desperate to find him so that he could be safely sequestered away from the competitors and their judge-bribing ways. But while they had heard he was in town, none of them had actually SEEN the captain. Sure, The Festering Boil was in harbor and Sir Nigel’s appearance had caused quite a stir, but where could a fat, flatulent, profane windbag of a pirate be? It wasn’t like he could “blend into the crowd.”

At one point, one of the committee member’s assistants accosted a man they thought to be the famous pirate, but it turned out to be none other than, “Cap’n Wideload” a comical fellow who made a living appearing at children’s parties as a “family friendly” version of the real thing. A portly, likable clown of a man he was, too – but certainly no man’s (or woman’s) ideal pirate. Such was his disposition that he was in the habit of losing control of his bladder at the first show of violence. In fact, Cap’n Wideload wore a protective undergarment to parties in the all-too-likely event that a balloon might burst unexpectedly.

You might imagine, then, that he fairly dampened himself when “Blood-Eye” MacGirk “Three Fingers But Can Still Play the Fiddle Good As You Please” Hoskins grabbed him roughly as was their customary greeting and, mistaking him for Cap’n Slappy, trundled him off to a sequestered location without explanation or argument. Things might have been easily ironed out had Cap’n Wideload (whose real name was Marvin P. Snicklepoeseur) not insisted on making a brave attempt at “staying in character.” He bellowed and blustered and stomped about the dark room both in an effort to fool his captors into thinking he was a man of some importance at the same time trying to dry off his britches.

Finally, after two days, a close friend of Cap’n Slappy’s, Lord Alfred “Balls” Bullock on paying a long overdue visit to claim a long overdue repayment of a debt, recognized the flabby counterfeit and sent him packing with a savage beating due a hapless interloper. It might have gone worse for poor Cap’n Wideload had his weeping not reminded “Balls” of his own dearly departed mother’s tearful admonitions not to keep company with “ne’erdowells and blaggards!” In fact, Lord Alfred kissed the imposter gently on the cheek before sending him away with more gold coins than he had made during the previous seventeen children’s parties.

Red Rita, in the meantime, had tracked down Shifty Meg and her band of Pentari warriors. Slappy had just finished his grueling morning regimen – coffee and cakes followed by a soak in the portable “magical bubble pool,” a steam bath and full body massage delivered by three beautiful young Pentari maidens who really knew a thing or two about deep muscle relaxation. At first, Cap’n Slappy was afraid the rescue party from the Boil had reached him, but upon first seeing Rita, groaned aloud that she had made the whole scene seem “awkward.”

“Good God, woman!” Slappy declared, “I had hoped you were dead!”
“Hoped?” Rita spat back.

“Hoped?” Slappy feigned confusion, “Who said ‘Hoped?’ I said that I had ‘Heard’ you were dead – and threw a freakin’ party!”

“Still a bastard, I see, Mortimer.” Rita let the name just fall out of her evil mouth and smiled as Slappy cringed.

Shifty Meg turned to Slappy in abject surprise, “Mortimer!?! I thought your first name was Tyrone!”

“And I had always been led to believe it was ‘Dash!’” “Carnal” Carol stood before the assemblage which now had grown – in addition to Meg and her Pentari tribesmen, Rita had assembled an army of ruthless pirates just itching for a fight. At first, it was thought that Carol had come alone, but out of the brush stepped nearly one hundred well-armed Amazonian warriors – women who, like Carol herself, stood well over six feet tall and appeared to be chiseled out of dark marble.

Slappy was truly astonished. “Carol, my darling, my fifth and final wife – great love of my soul! I thought you had disappeared forever – having fallen victim to the cannibal lesbians of Sparkle Island!”

“No, Pookie,” another voice came from a separate wall of the jungle around them and Beautiful Brenda, Slappy’s fourth (or third) wife stepped into a clearing with her own army of flannel-clad ‘big beautiful women.’

Slappy winced – “I had such high hopes for the lesbian cannibals of Sparkle Island.” His voice was as close to a murmur as it ever came.

“Stop your stereotypical condescending crap, Slappy!” Brenda pontificated, “This is just one band of many representative of the population of Sparkle Island – We have plenty of HOT lesbians, not that it would do you any good, because the only way you could ever get close to them would be through your twisted imagination!” At this, Slappy closed his eyes, smiled and trans-like muttered, “Sparkle Island,” – for years, ‘Sparkle Island’ had been his ‘happy place’ and he wasn’t about to let Brenda ruin it – but she soldiered on bravely in the attempt. “This is The Bull Dyke Defense Force! They are highly skilled fighters and a match for any other army led by one of your ex-wives – I’m Sure!”

Slappy looked around in awe. There they were; Brenda, Carol, Meg and Rita – wives numbered two through five. All of them far too beautiful for a man of his looks, but still, there had been something there at some time. It was now coming back to him - Oh, yes, they all DID have one thing in common – they all had a substantial chunk of his fortune both present AND future. He wondered what a pack of ex-wives might be called. “Let’s see.” Slappy mused aloud, “It’s a gaggle of geese, a flock of seagulls and a murder of crows – Oh! I know! It must be an ‘Execution of Ex-Wives!’” Of course, the only one missing was the one who had never made herself rich on his seeming inability to use good sense when it came to beautiful women – and she was the most beautiful of them all. They were practically children when they met – when he was still in the naval academy and she was working with the children of the poor and downtrodden of Belize. Slappy began to smile whenever he thought of her. She left him a note one morning explaining that she felt compelled to build a school for wayward boys deep in the jungle away from the vice and crime of the world and back where the goodness of nature might teach them their true place in the universe.

Her leaving was the one and only time Slappy ever wept over the loss of a woman. Of course, he wept constantly over the loss of his stuff – but never over the women – there seemed to be an endless supply of them and nothing in this particular moment stood in contrast to his way of thinking.

Slappy turned three hundred and sixty degrees to take in the vast array of armed adversaries each bound to him by some degree or other through the rite of marriage. He decided it was time to speak, “You are all as lovely as I have remembered you my darlings. Such a bouquet is missing only one dainty flower …”

“Your Lily.” A clear, warm deep voice from his past turned him around again and there she was – wife number one – Lily.

“Lily!” Slappy was dumbfounded. Whatever charm he was attempting to conjure now flew up through the leaves of the trees above his head.

She was not accompanied by an army as his other ex-wives were, but rather by four handsome young men dressed impeccably in business attire. With a nod of her head, each man delivered a packet of papers to the four other ex-wives who, in turn, glanced at the contents and looked up in horror and admiration toward this woman who took her rightful place at the head of the family.

Without discussion she explained what their next move was, “Kiss him goodnight, girls. This gravy train and his largesse stops here – if you have any more financial matters of importance you may file the appropriate papers at my office during regular business hours – you’ll find the address on the cards my men have given you. Are there any questions?”

Even the birds and crickets were silent.

“Then kiss him goodnight and apologize for any inconvenience.”

One by one, each of Slappy’s ex-wives kissed him goodnight. Shifty Meg apologized for kidnapping him but Slappy had never had a more pleasant captivity and he said so.

Once they were gone, Slappy turned to Lily with open arms and moved to embrace her, but she held up her hand and fended off the hug.

“We’re four wives and a thousand strumpets past that, my Love.” Her voice was still warm, but her use of the word, ‘Love’ was more a faded expression than a term of affection.
“Then why did you come to my aid – and HOW did you come to my aid? What do you want?” Slappy had decided that he would NEVER sully the Pirate Olympiad and Women’s Beach Volleyball Games with false judgment – not under threat of death – or humiliation. What on earth would Lily want with the games anyway? He wondered to himself.

“Don’t worry.” Lily said calmly. “Have your little games and judge your little volleyball. What I want has nothing to do with any of that.”

“Then what is it you want, Lily?” Slappy’s voice was an echo of the voice he had as a younger man – when ‘Love’ was still possible and ‘Hope’ wasn’t just the name of a cape.

“That can wait.” Lily replied gently. “And when the time comes, you will hear from one of my boys.”

Slappy felt a slight sting on the back of his neck as if he had been bitten by a mosquito. He went to slap it but touched the hand holding the needle as it extracted itself from his neck. The young man’s handsome face was emotionless, but as Slappy began to fall, the young men cradled him to the ground and covered him with a blanket before they, and their mistress, slipped quietly away as Slappy drifted off to sleep.

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