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Locust Moon Bartender

The bartender at Locust Moon Pub. Often rambles about magic and disaproves highly of most things.

0 · 83 views · located in Wing City Business District

a character in “The Multiverse”, as played by punkrock_pizzaboy

Description

Name: Alan (last name unknown)
Age: Unknown (old)
Sex: Male
Height: 6'0
Weight: 175 lbs.
Eyes: Tiny and dark
Hair: Bushy and brown with an improbably large beard.


Very little is known about the sole bartender and apparent owner of the pub called Locust Moon. It is speculated that he is an old, burnt-out mage, who's seen far greater and more terrible things then most dare to dream of. Despite this, he speaks in a low droning voice and is considered by most to be quite boring to talk to.

So begins...

Locust Moon Bartender's Story

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Minke Character Portrait: Carlton "Ralph" Denner Jr. Character Portrait: Locust Moon Bartender

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"It's called Locust Moon," began Ralph as they crossed through the lobby and walked out the front door. "They let you smoke in there and all the weird shit tends to stay to a minimum. Like, I met a gargoyle in there once, but he didn't start a fight or anything. It's way better than Gambit's. That place sucked unless you like trying to enjoy a drink with demons and vampires and demon vampires shooting fire everywhere and being dramatic. I think that's why it closed."

They walked a few blocks before coming to a small bar, nestled discretely between two skyscrapers. A small wooden sign that hung above the door depicted a green insect leaping over a lunar crescent. The windows were tinted black, though a sign outside the door declared that the establishment was "Open!" and that guests would do well to "Try our new Jalepeno Jumpers!" Ralph gestured at the sign before opening the door for Minke. "Don't," he warned. "They're disgusting."

The interior of the establishment was dimly lit and the air was somewhat musty. Wooden chairs and tables filled much of the floorspace, with a pool table and two pinball machines near the far end. There seemed to be old comic books in frames decorating the walls. A sole bartenreder stood behind the counter, looking bored. He was an older man with an enormous brown beard obscuring most of his face and a crazed mane of bushy hair. There were only a few other patrons in the building.

Ralph turned to Minke as they took their first few steps inside.

"Raging Bitchface give us homework?" Ralph mused. "I heard what you two were arguing about. You're trying to figure out what the symbol in the apartment was."

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Minke Character Portrait: Carlton "Ralph" Denner Jr. Character Portrait: Pete (Petey) Curtis Character Portrait: Locust Moon Bartender

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Ralph gestured with two fingers to the bartender, who took out two shot glasses and poured a bright, amber liquid into each of them, sliding them towards Ralph and Minke. He mumbled softly, something about rude gestures and people not knowing the meaning of their actions, leading this into a few thoughts on unconscious magic. He rambled on even as he walked away, seemingly talking to no one in particular, though he did respond to Minke's smile with a polite nod.

"Really? Delta likes to hit the books?" Ralph mused aloud. "Didn't see that coming. I hope she finds something. I hate doing research." Ralph turned to see the frazzled looking newcomer. He chuckled at the mention of Carcosa. He didn't know if he was joking or not, but when Minke mentioned possibly being on the wrong planet, Ralph felt a hurtful pang, followed by an unexpected amount of sympathy. He gestured the newcomer over.

"What're you having, man?" he asked, catching the bartender's eye again. "And where are you headed?"

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Minke Character Portrait: Carlton "Ralph" Denner Jr. Character Portrait: Pete (Petey) Curtis Character Portrait: Locust Moon Bartender

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Pete surveyed the place with a zen like wonder... that or he was probably still a little stoned. "Uh that’s a good question" Pete replied, "uh I hate to be that guy but could I just get some tea" Pete said to the beardy bloke behind the bar. The old man rolled his eyes looking Pete up and down before proclaiming in a slow and measured monotone

"I'll get some chamomile from the basement"

Pete turned to the duo who answered him "well I wasn't sure what planet I was aiming for astral projection is weird when you lose your anchor, I don't feel dead, this is my body and all. Sorry I'm not making sense, feeling a bit like Bowie if you feel me"

Pete paused to get his bearings as thoughts of the consequences for his little escape routine finally sunk in. This could be the Other Side the demons always talked about. you can't cheat death! what were you thinking you should have just lift the chick and that old dude, they would have been fine and you'd be on a plane home! That’s it, that’s where he was going

"uh where I'm going... home I guess" A sobering look settled on Pete’s face as he finally spoke the words aloud.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Minke Character Portrait: Carlton "Ralph" Denner Jr. Character Portrait: Pete (Petey) Curtis Character Portrait: Locust Moon Bartender

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Ralph grimaced. He knew how the stranger was likely feeling, though personally he had resigned himself to the fact that returning home was likely an impossibility. He knocked back his shot. It burned warmly as it slid down his throat. He wondered if Minke would like the drink, remembering the wildly destructive aftermath of the last time they drank together.

"Fuckin' magic," Ralph said as the bartender returned with a steaming mug of chamomile, setting it in front of Pete. "Hardly seems worth the effort sometimes. What's your name?" Ralph paused, seemingly thinking about whether or not to add something.

"And you're on Terra, by the way. If you don't mind me asking, what planet are you from?"

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Minke Character Portrait: Carlton "Ralph" Denner Jr. Character Portrait: Pete (Petey) Curtis Character Portrait: Locust Moon Bartender

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Pete looked up at Ralph puzzled "Terra means earth" he thought.

"So I'm not dead I just jumped worlds, ha and they still swear shared reality is a fixed model! Christ I’d like to rub it in their faces. So much for going home, probably just a burger joint" Pete sipped the hot tea calmly resigning himself to what he'd done, much less perturbed now that he knew he wasn’t dead

“yeah I'm from Terra to we just call it earth

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Minke Character Portrait: Carlton "Ralph" Denner Jr. Character Portrait: Pete (Petey) Curtis Character Portrait: Locust Moon Bartender

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Ralph's eyes widened.

"Wait, I'm from Earth, too. I mean, an Earth. I keep saying 'This is stupid, Terra just means Earth' but everyone looks at me like I have two heads! What's your Earth like?"

Ralph held his breath, biting his lip. It couldn't be possible, that this man was from the same reality that he called home. Could it?

Alan the Bartender droned something about "shared reality" and "Infinite Terras", but Ralph ignored him.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Minke Character Portrait: Carlton "Ralph" Denner Jr. Character Portrait: Pete (Petey) Curtis Character Portrait: Locust Moon Bartender

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Minke watched them go back and forward for a while, observing and listening. Ah, yes, this conversation. Terra. Earth. Different earths. Minke had been born and raised in Terra, herself, and like the cliche story went, more or less as an orphan. These men were considered normal, though, weren't they? "Normal."

"We're on a place unlike Earth but not unlike it at the same time. There is no North America or Asia or Africa here. We're in the continent of Aslund. There's also Hafirjan. Shintenchi. Therrier-Paix. I'm certain those are all completely alien to you." She gave a light shrug. "Still sound like Earth to you?"

The woman picked up her shot and held it between her fingers. She nodded to the bartender. "It does seem to get confusing to other people, but when it's all you've ever known, it seems strange for it not to be that way." She held her hand out to the stranger. "I'm Minke, by the way."

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Minke Character Portrait: Carlton "Ralph" Denner Jr. Character Portrait: Pete (Petey) Curtis Character Portrait: Locust Moon Bartender

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Petey fumbled with his tea cup, he was a bit disoriented on top of coming to grips with the reality of his new home. He extended his hand excitedly "Peter, uh Petey. Nice to meet you, I guess you've been here a while.” Pete turned to the man in the jacket.

“I don’t know my earth is kind of weird, not Tera weird but weird. It’s like a stage. Up front everyone sees an ecological cesspit run by Incompetent bureaucrats and demagogues. Meanwhile a bunch of shadowy factions with pretentious names and poncy hats and handshakes bicker for control of the back. Even if it sounds like your earth it’s like one in a billion that it’s the same one. aaand i've been here what fifteen minutes and I've already broken out the soapbox, sorry...”

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Minke Character Portrait: Carlton "Ralph" Denner Jr. Character Portrait: Pete (Petey) Curtis Character Portrait: Kimberly M. Denner Character Portrait: Locust Moon Bartender

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Ralph breathed a disappointed sigh. While Petey's description of his Earth sound pretty nail-on-the-head, he also had a point about the odds of them being from the same world.

"I'm Ralph," he said. "And your place sounds a lot like mine. But it doesn't really matter, I guess. We're all here now." Ralph motioned to the barman for another round for himself and Minke. "Strangers in a strange land, and all that. No sleeping tiger here, that's for sure."

He turned to Minke. "Yeah. Those all sound pretty much like made-up words to me. Except Aslund, I think. I'm pretty sure that was a talking lion in a children's book where I come from."

A young woman came through the doorway. She wore a leather jacket with a grey hoodie underneath. Her hood was up over her head and much of her face was hidden by spiky dark hair. She seemed young, likely not yet out of her teens. As Ralph, Minke and Petey talked, and as the bartender was occupied cleaning a glass with a filthy rag, the girl raced up to the counter, diving over it. The barman dropped his glass and started after her, but before he was within three feet of her, she had grabbed two bottles of liqueur from the cabinet behind the bar, and leapt back over it. She sprinted towards the door.

"Dumb fuckers!" she cackled as she pushed the pub door open. Ralph stared after her. There was something... familiar there. Something in her eyes. Her face.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Minke Character Portrait: Carlton "Ralph" Denner Jr. Character Portrait: Pete (Petey) Curtis Character Portrait: Kimberly M. Denner Character Portrait: Locust Moon Bartender

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She gripped Pete's hand lightly. "It's very nice to meet you, too. I love newcomers from other worlds." She gave Ralph a coy sideways glance, then turned back to Pete. "That sounds a little bit like Terra, but not. It seems like less of a clusterfuck!"

Then, to Ralph, "That's Aslan! I loved those books." Yes. She had read them all. "So you think there's too much a chance you two aren't from the sa-" She paused, watching as the teenaged girl dove over the counter bravely (or perhaps more stupidly) and made a dash. Now, Minke was no police officer, but she wasn't about to let someone get away with shit like that.

"You two stay here and chat!" she called, bolting from her seat out the door. "I'll be right back!"

Minke was a quick girl. When you had little in the way of physical strength, that became a necessity.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Minke Character Portrait: Carlton "Ralph" Denner Jr. Character Portrait: Pete (Petey) Curtis Character Portrait: Kimberly M. Denner Character Portrait: Locust Moon Bartender

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"I'm sorry," said Ralph. "I was caught way off guard. If she's who I know she is, then... well she means a lot to me. Back home I never had anything going for me until the night I met her. Saving Kimmy was probably the first worthwhile thing I did with my life. It put me on a path to every other thing I ever did in my life that mattered. And I never thought I'd live to see her so... grown up." He sighed, realizing he had managed to actually die twice before Kimmy even turned two, and that was before he ever came to Terra.

"She looks a lot like her mom," thought Ralph aloud with the smallest of grins and helped wipe a tear from Minke's cheek. "And yeah, sometime I'll tell you the whole story. I'm super manly in it. I'm really sorry you got hurt," he repeated.

_

"Hey!" Kimmy protested as Pete took her dimebag. "That's mine!" Her face broke into a wicked grin as he continued.

"I have this dumb snake on my arms!" she lamented. "It won't come off! If you convince the assholes in the bathroom to let me go, then sure buddy, we can make like a banana and get the fuck outta here." Kimmy became suddenly aware that the bartender had been talking the entire time about stealing and punishment and debts, and no one had been listening to him. She continued to do so.

"And once we do, if you don't give me back my stuff, I'll stomp your head in until you're a warm paste."

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Minke Character Portrait: Carlton "Ralph" Denner Jr. Character Portrait: Pete (Petey) Curtis Character Portrait: Kimberly M. Denner Character Portrait: Locust Moon Bartender

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Pete smiled at Kimmy “what you’re fine as long as you don’t take out the fangs, ‘sides I’d like to meet back up with them later”

Pete turned to the barman over hearing his eerie Mumbling “Hey weird beard, can you give her a break I’ll settle up her debt”
Pete reached into his pockets coming back to the sinking realization that he arrived here with nothing.

“uh I can work it off, you look like a dude who enjoys a head trip every now and then. If you get me at least jr. chemistry set I can make a batch of UPS that’ll have you talking with dragons”

Pete turned back to Kimmy with a look of impending disappointment “dragons are normal here aren’t they…”

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Pete (Petey) Curtis Character Portrait: Kimberly M. Denner Character Portrait: Locust Moon Bartender

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Kimmy raised an eyebrow at Pete, smirking.

"What, in Wing City?" she snorted. "Where would we put em? What's UPS? You some kind of drug guy?"

The bartender likewise raised an eyebrow, though it was hard to tell through all his bushy hair. Then he narrowed his eyes, looking to Kimmy.

"We'll talk," he muttered tiredly, looking back to Pete. Kimmy raised her bound arms up to Pete's face.

"Get it off me," she commanded. "Then we go."

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Pete (Petey) Curtis Character Portrait: Kimberly M. Denner Character Portrait: Locust Moon Bartender

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Petey grabbed a piece of newspaper off one of the tables ripping it and folding it as he talked “Drug guy, Magic Head, I don't know? I prefer alchemist, you know transforming ordinary components -” Petey smiled and proudly tying off the roach on his improvised joint
“- Into something exceptional”

“I know nothing to special to look at but,…Hey,got a light” he said turning to the barman in the middle of his exhibition. The barman rolled his eyes and provided a match, Petey nodded to him igniting the end of his spliff “as I was saying it’s not what you can see, it’s what you miss”

Petey took a long drag than proceeded to grab Kimmys hands. He seemed to be intertwining them with his own hands and the snake itself. He then exhaled in Kimmys face and to her surprise the snake was now loosely draped in his hands.

hack-hack, ekhem… I usually use better paper” Petey dropped the snake as Kimmy rushed him out the door as he began to cough violently.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Minke Character Portrait: Carlton "Ralph" Denner Jr. Character Portrait: Pete (Petey) Curtis Character Portrait: Kimberly M. Denner Character Portrait: Locust Moon Bartender

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Kimmy coughed as Petey blew the smoke her eyes, but then inhaled. Her eyes widened as Petey miraculously slid the serpent from her arms. She had no idea what it was he was smoking, but Kimmy decided it must be amazing. She grinned toothily as Petey dropped the snake on the ground, which hissed and coiled.

"C'mon!" she said, grabbing him by the wrist and dragging him out the door. "Let's get outta here." Kimmy and Petey tore out of Locust Moon and halfway down the street. Kimmy ducked into an alley, motioning for Petey to follow her.

"C'mon!" she repeated, climbing atop a dumpster and pulling herself up onto a fire escape. "And welcome to Wing City."

___________________

Ralph and Minke emerged from the bathroom, relatively free of blood. Ralph looked around, blinking uncomprehendingly at the suddenly empty bar (save for the heavily bearded bartender).

"What the fuck? You! Where'd they go?!" he demanded, rounding on the bartender.

"I dunno. Seems like they left," droned the bartender in reply with the barest of shrugs.

Ralph replied with a nonsensical string of profanity, ducking out the front door. He knew it was no use though. Even though he'd had seven months to learn these streets, in this world, Kimmy had her whole life. He wouldn't find her out there unless she wanted to be found.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Minke Character Portrait: Carlton "Ralph" Denner Jr. Character Portrait: Locust Moon Bartender

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Minke paused as she came to the bar which was empty all for the bartender, herself, and Ralph. A hiss caught her attention, causing her to look down to the ground.

"...whatever did thy do to you?" she queried, holding her arm out for the inkbeast. Pitifully, it latched itself onto her, slithering up her arm. Minke rose and followed Ralph, looking around. No sign of them at all. Mink let out a long, stressed sigh.

"Well, shit," she spat, "I don't know what happened. It must have been that man. I...fuck, Ralph, I'm sorry."