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“O Cap’n, My Cap’n”
2008, for International Talk Like a Pirate Day
Rating: PG for some brief profanity
Summary: Just a bit o’ pirate fluff, so buckle yer swashes and smartly there, me braw lads and lassies!
Warnings: None, unless pirates be offendin’ ye.
Disclaimer: The A-Team has never belonged to me and never will. Pity. But I enjoy writing about them anyway. Yo-ho-ho and enjoy!
“So where is this friend of yours?”
“Nobody spends that long in the john.” Sabine sipped at the last of her Zinfandel. “What, did he drink a keg before coming here?”
Okay, why did I agree to set Murdock up with this Mediterranean goddess, instead of asking her out myself? And why did her friend Teresa have to be a no-show?
“If he’s not back in ten, I’m gone. I swear.” She snapped one manicured thumb and forefinger together for more wine.
That could have been it. Demanding, impatient, a Jersey vernacular…and a body that could melt Velveeta…
Another sigh. “So, Sabine, tell me more about Thomas, Ivanovich and Salvatore,” prompted Face. Oh, yeah, she’s a lawyer. That was the clincher.
“Damn it, where’s that waiter? I thought you said this was one of the best places in Newport.” Sabine jiggled her almost-empty wine glass. Then, “What was that, again?”
“Your law firm. Must be fascinating work, with all the high-profile cases…”
“A-list divorce cases, Temp. Gotta have a shark’s instinct and a gator’s skin to win ‘em. I made partner in ’82, youngest one ever.”
I see we’re batting oh-for-four. But, those eyes…
“What’s this guy H.M. do again?” she snapped.
“Oh. Well. He’s a pilot, remember?”
She took one last sip. “Commercial? Those guys are hot.”
Face groaned inwardly. “Not exactly.”
“Oh, not commercial? So he’s one of those weird charter guys. Probably runs drugs down to Baja every other Friday.” Her nails drummed on the table.
At least she got one part right. He quickly changed the subject. “Sabine, did anyone ever tell you how lovely your hair looks in this light?”
She snorted. “There is no light. It’s dark out.” A glance at the Cartier on her wrist. “I hate to be kept waiting like this.”
So do I, Murdock…what on earth are you doing?
Face picked up the menu. “Maybe some shrimp cocktail while we wait?” he suggested, resisting the urge to put his hand on hers.
“I hate shrimp. Makes me puff up like a balloon,” she said indignantly. “They got any calamari?”
“Tempura, with marinara on the side.”
“No can do. I only like it sautéed in olive oil.”
A waiter finally arrived and poured a fresh glass of Zinfandel, ignoring Sabine’s glare. “Not a wine enthusiast, Temp?”
He grinned. “I’m driving. You know, the Vette outside?”
“A Vette? You gotta be kidding.” For a moment, she seemed interested. “You have any idea what the accident rates are on those?” she finished.
Only a lawyer…
“I’ll order, Sabine. Okay? How about some spring rolls?”
“How about I split, unless your pal decides to show up like a man?” Her green eyes flashed with anger.
Face stalled. “He’s a little shy. He’s, uh, probably just out getting some fresh air. I’ll go grab him and then you two can talk about prolonged custody battles over some grilled mahi-mahi and candlelight?”
She pointed at the Cartier. “Five minutes.”
Outside Le Perle Grise, Face found only a deepening twilight and a few couples chatting while waiting for tables. No Murdock.
Sabine’s gonna have my head on a platter. If she’s still there when I get back…
“A pretty young damsel I chanced for to meet…” A song carried on the sea breeze, and he knew that voice. Face followed it to the end of the dock, where several six-figure yachts were moored. Two figures stood at the end, their tall reflections cast upon the water.
“An’ what scabby landlubber might it be what intrudes upon a private parlay ‘tween two braw cap’ns?”
“Murdock.” Face held his rapidly rising temper in check. “You think you could come inside? Now? You know, for the date that I so graciously set up on your behalf?”
The other man turned. Face felt his breath hiss out. The Ralph Lauren suit Murdock wore had been artfully ripped and torn with what could only have been pinking shears, and his feet were bare. No Gucci loafers in sight. His eggplant silk tie was knotted around his forehead, and he wore a scowl to rival one of B.A.’s best.
“If she be a goodly wench, she’d best tae be meetin’ the cap’n on his own terms,” he said.
Only then did Face notice that in addition to Murdock’s horribly altered clothes, he stood with his arm around a six-foot, wax version of Long John Silver that might have been liberated from one of the many bayside restaurants, or maybe Disneyland.
“Have you been drinking, Murdock? And where did you get that?” Face’s voice rose to an incredulous pitch, and he pointed accusingly.
There was a twinkle in the one eye Murdock hadn’t covered with a patch. “’Twere an ill day indeed when a poor pirate be separated from his rum.” He gestured to his companion. “Cap’n Leadbelly here be a bonnie bucko indeed, though in sooth he’s not much fer’ the flappin’ o’ the jaws.”
If ever there were a time I wanted to drink…and to think he just ruined a six-hundred dollar suit I paid for…
“Okay, okay. I’ve just got one question.”
“Ye may address the Cap’n, lad.”
“Why the hell are you acting like a pirate?!”
Murdock cocked his head. “’Twas by yer own tongue ye swore it unto me.”
“Ye did attest that a fine scabbard to me cutlass ‘twere to be found in a salty wench, Sabine, who ‘tis said is fond o’ pirates, O One Who Is Facial.”
“Not pirates! Pilots!” A few of the waiting couples had turned around in curiousity. “Pilots! You know?” Face imitated the sound of an airplane.
“Methinks yon scallywag be a bit addled in the pate,” Murdock said, leaning in closer to “Cap’n Leadbelly,” who continued to smile and stare wordlessly.
He’s hopeless. “Oh, c’mon, Cap’n. If she’s still in there, twenty to one says she’ll think you’re a real card. Oh, and, uh, why don’t you let your pal hang out and enjoy the view?” I will not let any woman as beautiful as Sabine see me with a wax dummy.
“Arr, Cap’n Leadbelly, he be in a right foul temper. Ye’d best tae hold yer grog at this very spot…”
“Come on, Murdock!”
Just as I thought.
The table with the lovely view of the bay was empty, with only a half-empty glass of Zinfandel and a candle starting to burn low. Face stopped the young waiter who’d poured the wine.
“’Scuse me. You, uh, wouldn’t happen to have seen the lady who was at that table, would you?” he asked.
“Oh, no, monsieur, she left in rather a hurry.” The waiter looked like a dog waiting to be kicked.
“Did she say anything?”
“Nothing I can repeat in polite company, monsieur.” He started to back away towards the kitchen. “She said you’d be taking care of the check.”
Face plopped down in the empty chair. He could still detect a trace of Sabine’s Chanel No. 5.
Ah, well, there’s other fish in the sea. Or other white whales…
Murdock took the chair opposite. His uncovered eye was filled with mischief. “What say ye we splice the mainbrace and drink tae the boundin’ main, and sailin’ under the Jolly Roger, and plenty o’ booty?”
“Aye, matey. Booty.”
“Well, seeing as I won’t be getting much of that anytime soon…”
Murdock motioned over another server, a girl with black hair and a vacant expression. “Avast, lassie. Ye’d be best tae be spiritin’ handsomely a plate o’ vittles and two pints wi’ Godspeed, savvy?”
She blinked her huge eyes. “Um, would you care to try the house salad too?”
Face sighed again, the Vette, Sabine Salvatore and her Venusian looks, a ruined designer suit, and pretty much all else forgotten for the moment. “Just bring us a couple of stiff drinks, all right?”
“All right.” She bustled away, and was back a moment later with two glasses filled with rum.
“Yer a fine sea pup, me lass.” Murdock winked and raised his glass. “Howe’er did she know just the thing tae warm this blaggard’s heart? Tae booty, and tae the best mate ‘cross the seven seas an old salt could wish fer.” He downed the glass in a single gulp and grinned.
“Yeah, I’ll drink to that.”
And maybe Teresa will want to walk my plank, if ever I get to meet her.
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