I quoted Dostoevsky the other day, about what happens when a man is deprived of meaningful work. I wonder if he ever said anything about being deprived of leisure. I wonder because it came to me last night that I don’t really know what to do with myself when I am not working at the tavern. Aoibheann tried to give me the evening off, which begged the question, “What would I do with an evening off?”
I did not know the answer. I have only been here a short while, and have never really explored the rest of the island, so I don’t know what occupation there is for idle hands. Aoibheann asked if I was into hunting. Naturally, I first thought of the hunt, that most quintessentially British custom of the unspeakable in pursuit of the inedible, and said so. I don’t think she understood. I then told her that I had no problem with the concept of hunting for food, just that I had never tried it, having always obtained my meat from the butchers.
In lieu of anything else to do, I decided to take myself away from the tavern to try out the bath house. In truth, I wanted to get away for a bit anyway. The lady called Anna was in the tavern, bringing some baked goods for the kitchen. Aoibheann wanted to learn how to cook from Anna. I resisted the temptation to suggest that some lessons in botany might be more appropriate. Anna, however, seemed more interested in a gentleman who had come in with her. Emanuel, I think his name was. Or, as Aoibheann put it, “You’re the man with the puppy,” which comment seemed to cause him a moment of confusion for some reason. Whoever he was, Anna seemed quite enamoured of him, which, I will admit, did take a tiny chip out of my soul. I know she is not the Anna I knew, but even so, it hurt just a little. And so, despite the brief discussion that the bath house sold more than baths and massages, I took myself there.
Alas, it was not to be. The proprietor, Melinda, was there, but went running off towards the castle keep, clutching something blue and moaning about something called Nano. I guessed my venture into the baths would have to wait for another evening.
Back at the tavern, nothing much had changed, aside from the appearance of Senna, clutching a sword that was almost as long as her body. She seemed quite angry and appeared to be in pursuit of a yellow-haired, yellow-eyed gentleman with pointy ears. None of us had seen such, but I promised I would let her know if I did. The description did fit some of the fae I had known back in London, but that would probably not have been much help.
There being no further business, as they say in meeting minutes, I made my excuses and left the tavern. And so, here I sit, on the lookout over the docks, alone with my journal and the night.