Leviathan Smiles

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admin: A+ | 3 USERS: A
Leviathan Smiles

Langrishe is standing at the foot of Chesterton's bed, visibly pained by his friend's continued ill health. Perhaps knowing that his time is limited, Chesterton suggests that they attempt to cross the thoroughfare today so that he can see the new playhouse. Langrishe advises against it, but the old man wheezily insists. "You're the producer, Jack," he says. "You'll manage." With this, he goes into a serious hacking fit and Langrishe, after pausing to comfort him, goes quickly into the hall where he is confronted with Hearst, who is moaning in back pain. Langrishe pauses. "Forgive my presumption, sir," he says, officiously, waving his hand around his own back. "Have you lanceolate pains hereabouts?" Hearst looks slightly concerned that this colorful little man is speaking to him, but he cannot lie. "Yes," he says. "Intermittent, but sudden, sharp in the onset, occasioned by a tilt of a shoulder, a shift of weight?" Langrishe asks. Hearst is apparently not impressed with his diagnosis, and moves to unlock his door. "I may try ice-water dousing," he says, hoping to get away, but Langrishe won't have it. "Oooohhh," he groans, as if "ice water dousing" was tantamount to using leeches. "A German Doctor in Virginia City urged me to it," Hearst explains. "A vogue, if you would permit me to say, now quite exploded, even recognized as possibly harmful," Langrishe says, all dramatic. "The cold causing too rapid and painful a contraction of muscles already knotted in spasm." Hearst is intrigued by Langrishe's apparent knowledge of old-timey chiropractic medicine, especially when he says he is aware of a technique -- " taught me by a former Odabashi of the Turkish artillery, come himself to be afflicted through chronic lifting of cast-iron cannonballs" -- that can relieve his pain. Cannonballs! The big man is going for this in a big way. He asks Langrishe if he will treat him, and they decide to start later that day.

Downstairs, Langrishe tells the other members of the troupe to make arrangements for Chesterton's transport to the theater. Today's the day. "Will you help me?" the fruity Bellegard asks, and Langrishe gruffs him off with an Al-like response. "I've other fucking business," he says, and strides from the hotel.

Morgan is back at the Gem, chatting up a different whore when Johnny rolls up on him, holding a big gun. "I didn't order any shotgun," Morgan smirks, but Johnny's in no mood to joke. He is, however, in the mood to stretch the limits of the English language with this sentence: "I'm doing you the courtesy of allowing you not to think I'm as stupid as evidently you believe that girl off who you tore that piece of pussy off of is." That doesn't even make country sense, y'all. And I can translate that stuff, no problem, because I am like, trilingual in all redneck dialects. For example, when I asked my brother recently if I should move my tomato plants to a different part of the garden, he responded: "Now, Al. I don't know if you ought not do that." Which means: "I don't reckon you should." Which means: "Don't do it." But what Johnny said up there? That's some shit that even in darkest Alabama would get a laugh, because there are some extra words in there, added for toughness, that even the NASCARiest individual would throw out. "The girl's sister owed me money," Morgan tries to insist. "From the Yellow Bird in Gunnison." Johnny puffs out his chest and sets the shotgun on the bar in front of Dan. "Well, Jen claims you worked that information from her," he says. "Well, did she tell you how I did it?" Morgan snarks. "'Cause I'd sure like to remember for the next time I'm short." Again, Morg, Johnny is in no joking mood about his favorite whore. "Worked it from her at this very bar in idle chatter," Johnny says, like Perry Mason on a cross examine, "having a sister who whored at the Yellow Bird in Gunnison, and only then alleged the supposed owed eleven dollars. Morgan whistles. "How long you been wearing shoes, counselor?" he laughs. For everyone's good, Wyatt arrives, already annoyed with Morgan. "Did you fuck off the full eleven?" he asks, all pissy. Johnny, though he is shorter and weaker than every man in the room, stays strong. "She claims five dollars was owed," he says, "but my inkling is the right total is seven." Wyatt shoots a look over at Dan who is backing his man all the way. Frustrated, he counts out seven dollars, and puts it on the table. Johnny thanks him and walks back to the bar. "Where are the tools, Morgan?" Wyatt asks his dumbass brother. "That," Morgan answers jauntily, "is a story in itself." Dan watches them go as Johnny returns to Jen. He hands over the balance of the money from Morgan. "You say it weren't an ass fuck," he whispers. "I believe you." Now, only Johnny could make me kind of misty-eyed over something about ass fucking. He turns around in time to catch the shotgun tossed back to him by Dan, a clear sign of confidence.

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