//sorry for the lack of activity, i am still trying to find plot ideas for new threads
” Ah,” Leo gave a smile and clapped the other’s shoulder, ” Twenty isn’t bad at all. Yeah sure, you’re probably as old as her dad, but you know. She is an adult, and perfectly capable of making her own decisions,”
” If she decides on you,” He let the man go and made to lift his pint again, before realizing that it was empty, ” Anyway, there’s hardly an wrong in this, well, not that i can see. But, then again, i don’t see a lot of wrong in most things, like licking a lamp post in winter,” He made a face and pushed himself off the chair, his first step unsteady, ” Anyway, I… Best get going, mate. Oh,” He blinked and fished his wallet from his pocket.
” Not gonna leave you with my tab, heh, i’m so nice,” He grinned and left a few notes on the counter. The bartender eyed the money and gave him a nod, taking his glass away, ” Been good talking to you, Mormont,”
Then, the man sighed, whispering to himself. Derrek frowned, taking minute to catch and register the words, then Leo waved a hand, clicking his tongue, ” Ah, its fine. It’s the junkie look. I got it from my parents. It’s hereditary and all that,”
Jorah watched the man in silence with brand new eyes. All those questions had seemed to him at the beginning an excess of curiousity coming from the man. Now he saw he was wrong. No, he saw that he had been too distrustful towards the man. Not everyone was like Lynesse. Not everyone deserved to be treated like if they could be a criminal, like if they were willing to harm him. He had closed his heart, he had kept everything inside him for so long…He had nearly forgotten how it was to try to give people an opportunity. He had forgotten how to do that, to have a normal conversation - or mildly normal - with another person. He had forgotten that life was not as dark as he had pictured it.
He had forgotten that he still had a life to live.
“I do thank you for this all. For the drinks. For the talk” he said at the man as he paid. “I… I really needed it. I now see I did really need it” he said, smiling slightly.
He extended his hand towards the man. “It has been a pleasure” he added as he waited, with his hand extended, for Leo’s hand to meet his.
“And… if you ever need a bodyguard” he said as he put his his other hand inside his coat and handing the man a little white paper with some text written in it “… this is my card”
He smiled, ” Don’t get me wrong, most times it is frustrating yes, but i love writing. I love reading. Anything to do with words gives me life basically,” Derrek paused, wondering if the drink was making him more reckless in giving away such a truth. But it would not look out of place with Leo, so he continued, ” And if i get some money for a decent dinner and a pint or two, then great. If not then, well, there’s always tons of bins in the city to scavenge out of,”
The bartender came to pick his glass, and he gestured that he did not want another refill. Mormont then began to speak, answering his question.
That was interesting.
Leo smiled nervously, picking another chip from the basket, ” Is this like Lolita kind of girl, like is she about this tall, or is she just… twenty years younger than you or something? I mean that would make her about, well, twenty, because i’m guessing you’re in your 40s now,”
” I mean, hey, whatever man, i grew up in a fucked up neighbourhood and i have seen some really fucked up things, and to each his own, I guess. I mean, if anyone read some of my trippier books, i wouldn’t be judged completely innocent either, and yes, the last question was .. supposed to be my last, but you know, for clarity’s sake, and to make sure i don’t leave here tonight thinking that you’re some … you know,” He waved his hand, ” Well, consider this a question outside of the game, and we are now having a normal back and forth, conversation,”
Jorah stared at him as if Leo had not understood the meaning of his words, but it was obvious he had. But why to expect something else? What had he hoped for? For the man to tell him that it was uber wrong to love a woman that could nearly think about him as his father? He knew that quite well himself. The man in front of him did not will to repeat what he was sure that would have been around his own mind for long, and he much appreciated that. He did not need pitty, nor he needed someone to condemn his feelings. He just needed to get it out.
It seemed stupid from him to confess that to a complete stranger… And yet, how good it felt. Maybe it was due to the great amounts of beer he had consumed, but everything seemed easier in that moment. It had been such a cold conversation the one they had had that whole night.
“I will consider it as such” he said, nodding his head, a light smile in his lips. “She is… well. She is only twenty… and I am close to my fifties. It’s been long time since I understood something like this was impossible. Wrong. But see, I am used to feeling like this”
“I judged you badly” he added after a long pause during which he released a sigh, and his voice was nearly a whisper as if he was thinking out loud. “
Leo chuckled, ” Well she is your boss. Office romances like that never really work out- well a proverbial office… i assume you don’t really … office,” He blinked and rubbed his hand across his face, ” Crap, what time is it?” He looked up, and frowned at the clock behind the counter. it was five past three and he wondered if he had read the clock right. Has it really been that long? ” I’m gonna be so fucking late tomorrow. Bastard’s gonna kick my arse,” He mumbled to himself, downing the last of his drink.
He leaned forward over the counter, looking at Mormont as he asked his question. Books. What kind of books…” Fiction… mostly,” He started, frowning blearily at his empty glass, ” I … try not to make it sound fiction though. I wanna make it real. Make it like… it actually happened, that you’re in someone else’s head and you’re watching his or her life as they see it. You know?”
” I mean, i don’t like hyper realism, but, just realistic. I…,” He squints and forces himself to stop slouching, ” But.. really, i just write whatever i feel like writing. Sometimes, the story comes out trippy is fuck. My editor hates that, that i have no set style, or … genre. Hell, half the times i don’t even have a proper plot going when i’m banging the words out. They just come as i go along. That drives the poor man up the wall,”
” Okay… my last question yeah?” What question. He had so many. Pick one. Pick one. Would asking about who he worked for seem too intrusive?
” Right… what’s… stopping you from loving this woman of yours? I mean.. forget the fact that she’s your boss- In other words, and this is an.. extension to my question- if she wasn’t your boss-client-thing, would you love her, as you would love any other woman?”
Jorah nodded at his words with understanding. He had doubted at the very beginning of their conversation that the man was a writter, for he did not look like the kind that would sit down in front of a table and write during hours and hours, but it was clear at that point that he really was a writer. “The looks can deceive” he thought, and he was glad it had been so, but some part of him still was… uncomfortable. “Like if he is going to write a book about you Jorah, you stupid old man”
He wrinkled his nose slightly and emptied his pint. It was late indeed… but who cared. He would not be able to sleep that night, just like the others. He could not remember when had been the last time had fallen in a deep dream, one of those where not even dreams can reach you. Probably years ago…
“I guess we all are slaves of our own job…” he only said, allowing himself to give the man the smallest of the grins. He really was slightly tired if he was able to smile!
But Leo’s question made his smile quickly fade from his lips, and his gaze lowered once again to the bar. But did he really love the girl? Would he feel the same way he did if she was not his client? She was but a girl… She was still too young… And what about him? A nearly fifty-year-old man that admired her for her strength and determination…
Admired. Was it admiration or love? Did he felt about her the same way he felt about Lynesse? He closed his eyes for a moment and tried to imagine, to imagine that he could hold the young Ms. Targaryen in his arms…
“Because it is wrong to love her” he said, and his voice had lowered. “Because she is only a girl. Because I am almost an old man… Because she is a popular media face…. The reasons are many. Too many. But not even this cannot change what I see within her…”
“Fuck” he groaned after a pause.
” Ooo,” The grin reappeared on his face and he turned to Mormont again, ” You sound like you’re in love. That right there is as good as any wedding vow, i think, at least, compared to the ones i’ve seen and heard. Your employer is lucky to have you,” Loyalty. A concept that always escaped his understanding. How does one become loyal to a person, or an idea or even a material thing such as a football team? Was loyalty part of love, or the other way round? What made someone loyal? Was it that he would lay his life down for another? Sacrifice? What in the world would make a man put his own self before another?
” Fuck,” He laughed, as he watched the man’s face. The embarrassment in his avoiding eyes and when he pressed his lips together, twitching, and in his Adam’s apple, bobbing as he swallowed, ” You are in love! With your boss no less! Hah!”
” Well, congratulations, anyway. You have officially moved on with your life. The record is spinning again. To you, mate,” He lifted his glass and drank.
Protecting someone you loved, that made more sense. The things one will do for love, and for the ones they love, and he didn’t doubt for a moment that Mormont will not give his life for this someone of his, if given the chance and the choice. He knew many who have said and vowed the same thing as he, but always cower away when the time came, but for some reason, he knew from the devotion in his tone and eyes that the will do what he promised to the letter. Rare and special, indeed, but what was one man’s strength, is also his weakness, and it was still illogical for someone to allow him or herself to be that vulnerable.
The scar sent another sharp ache piercing through him and it took all Derrek had not to wince and show the pain on Leo’s face.
” Right, one more question from each of us, yeah?” He said, looking at the last gulp in his pint, ” Don’t want to stay out too late and get shit faced you know? Have to see my bloody editor and ten tomorrow,”
Was he, really? He asked himself. To Leo, it wa clear enough, but he was not sure. If he was, his shame would be great… She was only a girl and he… well. His youth days were long over. How could he expect to get from the young Ms. Targaryen more than just her kindness? And why was he even wondering about this.
He tried to push those thoughts away but he just could not. He remained there, with his head low and his eyes in the bar as if in it there were written the greatest secrets of the human soul. How had it happened, if it was so? As far as he was concerned, he just admired her. He admired her strength, the way she spoke and how she was able to say “no” when his brother terminately said “yes”. But when it had turned from admiration to adoration, that simply was a mystery to him…
In love with his client! If he had thought about this years ago, he would have laughed himself. But there was truth in the words the man had spoke: he had been a fool for not having been able to recognize how quickly he had became fond of the young Targaryen campaigner. He was glad that he had already drunk too much beer for his cheeks to became even redder, or he would have blushed like a teenager… he, who had long stopped being a young man to be… simply old enough to be that girl’s father.
No, he thought again, rubbing one of his hands across his forehead and releasing a sigh. “If I love her, I am fucked” he mumbled.
“Alright” he said, taking a deep breath before he looked back at the man, trying to look the same way he was before, serious and distant, but something had changed in him after he had spoken to him about his client…
“What kind of books do you write?”
That was it. That was his last question. It seemed stupid to him that he had not asked it before… what was he thinking about?
Leo smiled, shrugging, ” One question leads to another,” He replied simply, waving his hands, ” Conversations work like that. They grow and they branch out in so many different directions that sometimes, you forget where you started, or how a topic began- what brought it up,”
He shifted in his seat, before he could get sore and restless. The fucking scar was making things uncomfortable as it was, ” But really, i don’t have a pint with that many bodyguards. Or maybe i do, I just didn’t ask, i suppose. So, you could say that i’m interested because you’re a rare and special type of guy,” He said, lowering his voice and smirking at Mormont, before breaking into a grin and taking another gulp from his glass.
How long will this go on? Derrek wondered, feeling the drink go through him and his mind slowly blur. There were still so many questions he wanted to ask. But the creature in his head was quickly realizing that it’s restraints were loosened. He needed to stop this soon. One more question, he vowed, one more, after this one. Damn his curiosity.
” Right,” He straightened up again, ” Why do you continue to suffer through a job you don’t like? There are better jobs for you out there you know,”
A sarcastic smile appeared in the severe face of the Mormont bodyguard. A rare and special type of guy… well that was a new one. How amusing. His life was everything but special or rare. He could take a coin, throw it in the bar and find someone else in there whose life was more interesting than his. But yes, the fact that he was a bodyguard could have impressed him… it made sense. Though it was not something that people used to care about. What had been the last time someine had asked him about… anything. He could not even remember it. Only the young Ms.Targaryen had seemed to care about his past and life once. He shook his head slowly.
He closed his eyes for a moment before he even thought about what he was going to reply. “Because I have just found someone worth being protected. Someone worth giving my life for. Someone that I would gladly defend” he found himself saying. Those had been his thoughts for some time, but it had not been until then that he had voiced them, and for some reason, that made a shiver run down his spine. What a strange adoration and devotion seemed to drip from those words! Would the other man notice it as he had noticed it himself? The only thought of it made him want to take all he had said back, but he was unable to utter one single word more.
” Aye,” Leo snorted, amused, ” But what was this greatness built on? The exploitation of others- on their suffering- and pride, of becoming the largest empire and power in Europe. India, Africas, South East Asia among many. Yeah, sure it wasn’t like we killed millions of people, but we damn well oppressed a billion of ‘em, and for what? Our own selfish gain,” The pint arrived and he lifted it slightly above the counter before bringing it up to his lips, ” Cheers, mate,”
The drink was getting to him now, and he could feel the light buzz in his head, and his restraints slack and loosen. He will need to stop this soon. He didn’t want to get drunk and make a bloody mess of the man beside him that he will find difficult to clean in the morning. Also, he didn’t have time or the patience to nurse a hang over. He had work to do, and he cannot afford wasting an entire morning paralysed in bed.
” As for now, it’s not too bad,” he shrugged, setting the glass back down, ” Just smile for the cameras and ignore the fact that we actually have poor people living in the gutters, because every country has poor people, so what’s the big deal right?”
Then, he leaned against the counter and clicked his tongue, running his fingers up and down through his hair, ” Sorry, i guess i got worked up a little bit about that,” Leo mumbled.
His brows came low over his eyes. Derrek has never understood why people continued to stay in jobs that they despised or cared nothing for. He has concluded that it was because of sheer cowardice, that people were too afraid to quit their jobs and go through the uncertainty of finding another one. So they continue to suffer through the insanity of a job they never wanted, the stress and frustration. It’s no wonder why most people have Prozac in their medicine cabinets and handbags nowadays, ” Then why do you do it then, if you barely care about these people? Your own life isn’t worth a hundred of those bastards. I mean, besides the number on the paycheck and don’t give the it’s the only thing i could do excuse- Ah, fuck. Right, your question first,” Leo waved his hand, ” Hurry up then,”
He was right about that, though, Jorah had to recognize. He almost nodded his head in agreement, but instead his fingers stopped tapping the bar, in silent approval. His eyes were staring down at the half-dirty surface. His empty pint was resting next to his hand. Power and control had lead that great country to his disgrace, indeed, but also had the political inestability.
He released a sigh. It was maybe even worse than what he thought. He slowly raised the pint that had just arrived and drank from it, just like the other man had done a moment before. “Cheers” he murmured, more to himself than to the other man.
Jorah rubbed his hand across his two-day beard and closed his eyes. A little frown appeared across his forehead. He was not very sure if he was drinking too much or he was not…. Probably, he was. He never was able to know when it was time to stop when it came to drinking. This was a side effect of his long days spent in bars, only drinking without stop. Or at least, that was what he thought. He could not hide a bitter smile.
“It is okay” he said, leaving the pint again on the table.
It was strange to be asked about his job, when he never had been. Why he kept it, he asked, when he despised it? Well, it was easy to explain. He needed a job. He needed money… and there was nothing more than he could work as. In politics, no one wanted to know about his name, and neither in the other professions that he had been trained into in the university. But he was not going to reply to that now. The man was right: it was his time to ask him a question.
“Why is it that… my job can interest you?” he asked.