Solaris VII, Federated Commonwealth
November 1, 3048
A ceiling fan spins, not quite fast enough to disturb the fine layer of dust accumulated on its blades, as dingy light spills into the empty bar from the streets. Two rows of freshly cleaned glass mugs line the countertop, and a damp, dirty rag hangs on the edge of the sink. A heavy sigh escapes the lips of the bar's proprietor, Ian Blair.
Blair grabs a lonely broom from the corner, and idly pushes it in wide arcs across the dusty hardwood floor. His salt-and-pepper hair is cropped short and neat, a contrast to the deep lines of his face, and dingy clothes and surroundings Blair inhabits. Satisfied that he's made enough of an effort to appease himself that he tried to clean the floor, he returns to the bar, thoughtlessly scratching a sudden itch dancing lightly around the back of his right hand.
The double doors of the bar suddenly swing broadly open, and a short, heavy-set cannonball of a man bounds into the room, wholly disrupting the stoic calm of the bar. Blair tries his best to supress a smile creeping into the corner of his lips.
"Blair! Ye old barfly! How does the day greet ya?" The jovial bounder looks up at Blair with sharp, gleaming green eyes; fiery, temperamental red hair falls down below his shoulders, and a wide, hearty grin fills his face.
"It greets me well, MacDunn. It greets me well." Blair absent-mindedly continues to scratch his hand, the itch not subsiding as quickly as he'd hoped. "What can I get for you?"
"A PPC, my lad! I've got a busy day, and I'll need strong fuel 'ta get the ol' fusion core runnin'!" MacDunn slammed a few C-Bills onto the counter-top, but Blair waves them away.
"First drink of the day is free, you know that."
"Ach, I should! I've only been taken advantage of that promotion for what, four years now?" A raucous laugh tramples out of MacDunn's mouth as he picked up most of the C-Bills from the counter, leaving a modest, but sincere tip on the counter for Blair.
Blair places a tall, slender glass in front of MacDunn, and pours a bright, swirling blue liquid into it. MacDunn raises the glass in a silent toast, and takes a long, hearty gulp, small trails of the liquor dripping down into a full, but well-kempt beard. With a satisfied sigh, MacDunn plops the drink back down onto the bar, a muted clink chiming through the otherwise empty room. "So, why is't ye never renamed this place? I mean, you're not Skippy. Why not call it 'Blair's'?"
Blair stops for a moment and appears to ponder, as if the idea had never actually occurred to him. He scratches his hand for a moment, mulling it over, when he suddenly feels something cold and rubbery between his fingers. He looked down to see a small piece of the rubber coating of his prosthetic right hand had been peeled off by his idle scratching.
Darn it! Blair thought. Twenty five years and it still catches me off guard.
Looking up, Blair sees that MacDunn had not ignored him during his idle musings, and was clearly still awaiting an answer. "I guess..." Blair trails off for a moment, as the thought coalesces in his mind. "I guess that somewhere, there still may be a few folks from the old days, and maybe someday they'll come back. And if they ever do, I want them to know we're still open for business."
MacDunn grins widely, clearly pleased with the answer. Swallowing the rest of his drink in one swift motion, MacDunn pulls himself up from his barstool, and makes his way back out of the bar.
As Blair watches him leave, he can't help but wonder if he might soon be seeing more memories walk through that door.
Edited by Blair, 07 November 2011 - 02:34 PM.