Wood You Be Mine? Act 3 Interlude
In a bit of a departure from what I’ve been posting, it’s time to switch gears from the Legno/Timothy story and focus on Saggezza and former flame Magdalena. How will the perpetually inebriated Saggezza react to seeing the woman that broke his heart years ago, a heart that’s never fully healed? Find out below:
Across town, Stefano Saggezza laid on floor, where he had passed out hours ago. He was awoken by a knock at the door.
With a belabored moan, he pushed himself up, wiped the drool from his bottom lip, and stumbled towards the threshold. In a swift motion, he opened the door, only to see the last person he ever expected to see.
The two shared a sad, meaningful look for a moment, and then, without a word uttered between either party, Saggezza shifted to the left to clear the entrance, and the woman slowly entered.
“Hello, Maggie,” Saggezza said.
“Hello, Stef,” she rejoined.
“You know, you’re still the only person I let call me that.”
“And what little pet name did you give for the guy you left me for?” he asked bitterly.
Looking at Saggezza cockeyed, she questioned, “You mean…God?”
“Yeah, I suppose that’s pretty short enough already,” he replied while turning towards the kitchen to rummage through his liquor cabinet.
Now more than ever, he was going to need a drink.
“Campari, Campari…he never brought back the…Legno! Legno! Where’s my Campari!”
“That’s actually what I came here to talk to you about, Stef.”
“What?” he asked, rolling his eyes. “Don’t tell me you’re here to berate me about my drinking, too.”
“No, as much of a concern it is, that’s not why I came. It’s about Legno.”
Snapping back to a sense of sobriety, Saggezza asked, “What’s wrong? How do you even remember him?”
With a sad smile, Magdalena responded, “How could I forget the child you wanted me to raise with you?”
Saggezza didn’t respond.
“He came by the church earlier; he came looking for a ‘miracle.’ He, well…he wanted to become a wooden boy.”
“That *urp* that sounds like Legno all right.” With a worried look beginning to drape over his face as the reality of something happening to Legno starting to sink in, Saggezza asked, “Is he okay?”
“I don’t know. He was with this…talking insect…”
“And I thought I was the drunk.”
“I know it sounds unbelievable, but it’s true. And listen, this overgrown bug – ‘Timothy’ Legno called him – I don’t trust him. There was a malicious air surrounding him. I really think something bad is going to happen to Legno, Stef.”
“You’re sure about this? I…” he stopped himself midsentence and and slowly turned his head to look at the ground, ashamed. “I know I haven’t been the best of fathers and was never really there for him, but if what you’re saying is true…”
“It is. They said they’re going to be at Deus Ex Collina by dusk. They were on their way there when I left. I took one of the church’s horses to get here. Take her; you might be able to beat them there. I can walk back to the church, just bring her back when you’re done.”
Picking his head up, Saggezza replied, “Thank you, Maggie, and I…you know I never stopped loving you.”
“I know, Stef, but this isn’t the time. And please tell me this lifestyle,” she then stretched out her left arm and waved towards the mess of empty bottles and trash, “isn’t because of me.”
With closed eyes and a shrug of his shoulders, he responded, “I don’t know what you want me to say, Maggie.”
“Oh, Stef. I’ll always love you, but just not like that anymore. You need to accept that it’s over and move on. Please, go to Legno. Make sure he’s safe. You still have a chance to make things right between the two of you. But all of this,” she once again waved towards the mess, “it needs to stop.”
“I know. I never wanted to live like this. Without you.”
“Stef. You pushed me away, and now you’re doing the same to him. If he feels empty inside, be there for him. Be the father he needs. Give him strength and guidance. He’s getting that from someone else now because you’re not there. And…and just go, Stef. Before it’s too late.”
Grabbing his boots, mud glued to the bottom and smelling as if something crawled in them and died, he forced them on, not wasting any time to untie and tie them. He whipped his canvas jacket on and rushed out the door. Turning towards Maggie one last time, he said, “Thank you. And I’ll make it all right. I promise.” As a single, hot tear rolled down his eye and on his cheek, he said in a low voice, “I’ll fix everything.”
Maggie walked slowly towards him and kissed the tear away.
Finally, he turned and ran out towards the horse. Planting both hands on its backside, he used all his strength to throw himself up on top of the beast. Grabbing the reigns, he whipped them forcefully, and with a loud “Hyah!” he was off.
And with a pitiful, garbled “Nyah,” he pulled over to vomit.
“Oh, Lord,” prayed a disappointed Magdalena, “please get him there before he gets arrested.”
TO BE CONCLUDED
A bit more serious, personal entry, but one that I’m personally proud of. Do you feel the same? Hopefully the lack of slapstick humor wasn’t too much of a turn off. Was the drama as effective as the comedy? I sure hope so, but let me me know what you think. The next few stories will lean towards the dramatic side, so think of this as a taste of things to come. And guess what? Next week marks the conclusion of the entire tale! I never thought I’d get to this point, and I want to thank all my friends for the support. Hit me up on Facebook or Twitter for questions and comments, and I’ll see you all in a week!