“Mister Pontecorvo,” I greeted the old dotard as cordially as one can when wrestling a large wooden sign between a cart stacked with sofas on one side and a tram on the other.
“Ah, Maku,” that worthy greeted me not so much warmly as cautiously; one hand raised to the fading marks on his neck. The prior disaster, which had resulted in my very public embarrassment (after all, who was given assurances that all was in hand? who had to rent the hall? Make the models? Deliver the set speech? Not Mr. P., obviously), also rather degraded our relations. You would be surprised how strongly Miss Flood can kick, an athletic state that probably saved Mr. P. and my criminal record (of which, of course, I have none, in this fair city; nor indeed anywhere else; and that purchase was solely for research purposes I assure you.)
Nevertheless we two still trod most carefully around each other, even as burly carters carried their freight through the doors of the converted warehouse.
“I have your sign,” and I presented it to him, “ready to install.”
“Splendid,” remarked he as my handiwork was admired, “I’ve also installed that lantern-slide you made. Looks quite good…”
He wandered inside; I propped my sign beside the door and followed him in.
The building was still clearly honest about its warehouse heritage. The cavernous space was dominated on one side by a brace of disgustingly anachronistic bowling alleys, and on the other, the familiar scoreboard of an En Garde piste, obscured by workmen arranging pairs of sofas to enable conversation and observation of both sword- and ball-play, along with…
“Is this a Greedy Greedy table?” I eyed the octagonal piece of furniture in question rhetorically. It quite clearly was just that.
“For those who dislike fishing,” he jerked a finger at the eastern doors, which now opened onto a nice deck o’er the Vernian Deep, “Swords or skittles.” He began to look thoughtful. “I saw a game of Risk while buying that,” he added, “Steamlands edition. Awful lot o’ pieces though, might get lost…”
I gazed around the chamber. To my pleasure, it was papered in that faux-Asian red/gold pattern that, oddly, looked quite cozy in the gaslight. I could imagine the place filled with conviviality and chatter, along with the clash of steel and rattle of pins.
“You know,” I found myself saying, “this humble one reluctantly admits that this idea of yours might just work.”
[OOC: I’m still not happy with myself for the Excelsior debacle, but Babbage Blade & Bowls looks like it might work. The building has undergone significant deconstruction, due to prim pressure, and I might not get the aforementioned Risk game as the display unit I saw weighed about 74 prims. KR Engineering needs to add prim counts to its inworld vendors.
Currently the place is working, just unfinished, with two bowling lanes, En Garde, 7Seas fishing and Greedy Greedy. A proper opening is forthcoming.]
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