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MSNPC Fingus Lakar - Quite A Commotion


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((Dark Sky Inn - Harbor District - Jupe - Demes II))

 
The sun hadn't yet risen over the frigid waters of Jupe Harbor, when Fingus Lakar hauled his first heavy wooden keg of Dornak's Select ale up the basement stairs.  Grunting a little as he made his way up and over the top step, he navigated the darkened alehouse with a practiced precision paid for in bruised shins and painful stubbed toes. Arriving at the crude barrel stand behind the bar, he hefted the keg onto the counter and leaned against it for just a moment.
 
He let out a small sigh before righting himself and grabbing the tap from the countertop and the heavy wooden mallet that lived on a hook under the bar. Again, muscle memory had the keg tapped and ready to pour in no more than 3 heavy thumps of the mallet. Fingus wiped his forehead and set about stoking the large fireplace and lighting the various mismatched lanterns throughout the modest but cozy pub. His chores complete, he unlocked the front door and flipped the ornate wooden sign that had been carved by his grandfather, or possibly his great grandfather to read "open" where it hung just outside the entrance.
 
He was on his way back to his station behind the bar when he caught sight of his reflection in one of the thick-paned windows. Frowning at what he saw, he sucked in his stomach a little and tried to stand up a little straighter. Fingus was strong; carrying kegs up from the basement and hauling them in from the supply wagon would do that. But like the long line of Lakar men before him, his love for food had given him a shape that was reminiscent of those very large ale barrels, possibly a little more round even. As the sun began to cast its weak light over the green waters, he watched the comings and goings of the sailors and merchants through the windows and, as usual, began to daydream a little.
 
He was 4 cycles old now, the age when most men left their family homes to build their own lives, but here he was anchored to the family business, living under his father's roof. His boyhood friend Tynan had just joined up with a caravan headed to Lakonna by way of the icy plains of the Western Frontier and was set to leave in 1 or 2 suns, depending on the weather. Fingus had listened jealously as Tynan had told him all about the adventure and opportunity ahead of him, though he was fairly certain that he was just repeating the dubious promises the caravan recruiter had told him. Still, he imagined the intrigue of life with a caravan or one of the ships bobbing in the harbor and sighed once again. His father Fargas would never allow it. No, the elder Lakar could imagine no higher honor than to be the 5th or 6th generation (there was some debate over this) of Lakar men to run the Dark Sky Inn and would entertain none of Fingus' far-fetched dreams of adventure. He scowled at the memory as he wiped the bar top to a well-oiled shine and tossed the rag over his left shoulder. No, it seemed his lot in life was to man this bar until he was as ancient as Ole-man Yeru, whom he was fairly certain had been a patron of the Dark Sky Inn since it had first opened. Had the Eternal Ember really stoked the spark of his life only to hear the tales of danger, adventure and glory from the sailors and travelers that passed through his pub, but never to have any of his own?
 
Right on time, the front door opened, casting a sweeping ray of light across the room that moved in time with the ringing bell that was affixed to the door. As Ole-Man Yeru limped up to the bar with his cane, Fingus poured a mug of ale and set it on the bar in front of his usual spot. He liked the grumpy old codger, though he knew that he was probably one of the few who did. 
 
Lakar: Good morn to you, Ole-man Yeru. ::He let a smile show on his round face.:: Just the Ale today or should I get the kitchen started on some grain drippings or nice warm meat phlart?
 
As the frail, wiry old fellow climbed onto the stool at a pace that made the growth of the great glaciers in the north seem fast, he replied.
 
Yeru: Just the Ale. ::He grumbled.:: Ember's seen fit not to grace my nets with any fish to sell, so I'm a little short of coin, to the now.
 
Fingus knit his brow as he eyed the thin old-timer and risked a glance towards the back office where his father was probably going over the inventory. The kitchen wouldn't miss one meat phlart, would they?
 
Lakar: Just the ale and a complimentary meat phlart for being our first customer of the day, then.
 
The old man eyed him suspiciously, no doubt wondering what the catch was. The older generations were always weird about charity, but ultimately, he nodded and set a coin for the ale on the bartop.
 
Yeru: You've surely squeezed enough coin out of me over the years to make up for it.
 
That was about as close to gratitude as Fingus would ever hear from the elderly fisherman. He hadn't even slipped an insult in there anywhere. He was about to walk over to the kitchen that was shared by the Inn proper and the pub, when he heard a loud commotion outside. There was a loud cracking of timber followed by a crash and a chorus of shouts and cries. Without really thinking about it, Fingus moved towards the door and stepped outside to see what was going on. 
 
Immediately, he could see that one of the old wooden cranes had gone over and dropped one of those oddly large crates that he'd been seeing coming off of some of the ships lately. Some unfortunate deck hands had been caught beneath the crate and a couple of strangers were doing what they could to try and shift it off of them. Fingus felt his legs carry him over to the scene at a jog, distantly aware that he was leaving the pub unattended, but he'd deal with his father's wrath later. If he could help, he should. 
 
Niac:  Grab something we can use as a lever, whatever is in here weighs a ton!

Etan:  Response

He snatched a thick iron dock pole from it's hook on the railing and joined the strangers. They certainly weren't sailors, as their outfits were in the style of the rural villages, but they were unusually clean for rural types.
 
Lakar: Make way!  ::He pushed through a few unhelpful onlookers and called out to the strangers.:: Push it hard, to the now and I'll try and jam this 'neath it.
 
Niac/Etan: Response
 
After a few strong heaves, they managed to rock the heavy crate just slightly and Fingus wedged the thick pole under the crate. The screams and groans of the pinned grew with every movement. His years of hauling kegs finally paid off and he drove the pole deep under the crate and levered it up just enough to take most of the weight off the trapped dock workers.
 
Lakar: ::Straining:: Get them clear!
 
Niac/Etan: Response
 
The strangers pulled the unlucky fellows to safety and Fingus dropped the dock pole with a heavy clang and a crunch as some of the timber cladding of the crate cracked and fell away. He stood still for a moment, his panting breaths showing in the cold air as he tried to recover from the sudden excitement. The Loadmeister showed up just then and began seeing to his people as Fingus approached the two strangers.
 
Lakar:::Still panting a little:: Thanks be to you, strangers. ::He smiled.:: It is a rare thing for bystanders to involve themselves in matters such as these.
 
And it was true. It wasn't that the Jupians were cold or uncaring people, but there was a sense of pride in taking care of oneself that made offers to help a potentially offensive proposition. Though Fingus doubted the ailing workers would complain about the help in this instance.
 
Niac/Etan: Response
 
Smiling warmly in the biting chill, he extended his index and middle fingers and placed them between his eyes in the typical Jupian greeting gesture.
 
Lakar: I am Fingus, Fingus Lakar. ::He pointed back to the Inn he was currently absent from.:: I work the bar at the Dark Sky Inn.
 
Niac/Etan: Response
 
Nodding as they spoke, he couldn't help but smile a little. All the excitement of the morning; rescuing people, meeting strangers. These were the things Fingus longed for, not pouring an old man's daily dose of ale.
 
Lokar: Once you've finished your business, please drop by the Dark Sky. ::He leaned in a little.:: I think you've both earned yourself a mug of our finest ale. 
 
That they only had one kind of Ale, wasn't important.
 
Niac/Etan: Response
 
TAG/TBC
 
Fingus Lokar
Publican
The Dark Sky Inn
 
As Simmed By:
 
LtJG Talos Dakora
Intelligence Officer
USS Excalibur-A
O238811CD0
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