Chuck Wendig’s challenge this week is to make an alcoholic drink (imagined or not) and write a story relating to it. I brought back Soul Merchants, cause they’re fun.
“I like being in Woellian body. You guys know how to make a cocktail.” I fluttered with strands of white hair I’d streaked black. The deep blue skin I wasn’t quite used to, but I’d only been in this body a week.
The Woellian bartender skin was a pale blue with multi colored swirls painted on his skin with only narrow strips, bright red over his body, and blocking the important bits. He frowned, those snowy white brows like two beautiful clouds in the sky. “You are a Woellian.”
“Try again, sweet cheeks.” I sipped drink, it was acidic, fruity, and kicked me in the teeth.
His eyes glanced downward. An infinity symbol made out of hourglasses rested between my breasts. “Soul Merchant.” He bared back his lips around his predatory sharp teeth with a hiss. “Your kind isn’t allowed in here.”
“Oh come on now. I’m not a regular Soul Merchant. You should know that. I’m what your people call an eiaa of my kind. Your leaders have given me special privileges.” The drink smelled good. Ripe, lush, like you could bite into and juice would run down your chin.
“I’ll confirm that myself.” He stepped away to near the bouncer. In all my many lives, I never got along with bouncers. Wild drunken women never seemed to appeal to them.
With a twist of my hip I swiveled on the bar stool. The decorating here was odd. Well, odd for anybody but a Woellian. The ceiling was a splattered with every color imaginable, then overlaid with sparkling net of diamonds. The walls were ever changing light patterns of red, blue, yellow. And, the floor was painted black to look as it was the middle of a fireworks display. They had weird taste.
The music at least whispered deep in my soul. Rhythmic, dark, and fast paced, it made me want to give into my emotions and dance.
“You are cleared to be here.” A rumbling little growl from behind me, the bartender didn’t like me. Unfair, really, I’m so likable.
“What’s in this?” I asked as I turned back around to face him.
“Jul berry, three smashed, bactium tincture, and heart of leora flower.” He recited those pretty gray eyes hostile.
I wish I hadn’t asked. Ignorance is bliss, as I well knew. “Not all Soul Merchants are bad. We are like genies. We grant people wishes, you know.” I gave him my best pretty girl smile.
His eyes flattened as they flared red for a second. Oh, man hunting red was coming out. I must have pissed him off. “You give people what they want, if you deem it in your own interest. And, they pay you in something that they don’t understand.”
“How’d you figure? You know your own worth don’t you.” I took another drink.
“Nothing would know the value of a soul as much as Soul Merchant. “ He shook his head. “Therefore, you offer the deal with false pretenses. You could say anything you wanted. I would have no frame of reference for the deal. Nor anyone to counter the deal.”
I chewed on my lip in thought. Right now, I could go for a smoke. However, Woellian lungs did not handle any kind of inhaled substance well. Maybe, that’s why they enjoyed their liquor so much. “True, but I’m not like the rest. Can’t you tell? Don’t I seem sweet, and fun? The rest of them are so stuffy and by the rules.”
“I can see the age in your eyes. You might act young, but you are not.” His lip curled. “You are pretending to be what you are not.”
A laugh burst out before I could censor it. “I’m not trying to act young, I am only enjoying life. I love drinking, partying, dancing, getting into trouble. The rest of them, they hate all the stimulation, the lack of power over the physical. Not me. The first time I was in a body I got into a fist fight. It was amazing. The feel of flesh against flesh, the burst of pain, it was life. Soul Merchants we kind of exist, that’s about it.”
The bartender mixed up another drink. This one was vibrant blue with speckles of yellow inside. He handed it off a female Woellian with red dyed hair, and crimson tattoos all over her skin. I can say all over, because she was only wearing thin gauze over herself.
“What’s this called anyway?” I tapped out a beat on the polished metal counter.
“Bah Ra,” He didn’t even look up from making the drink.
“Of the fruit, nice.” I finished it off. My stomach roiled at the pickling. All good, I enjoyed the feeling.
“You’re Wol is excellent.” He took the glass away. “You want another?”
“Oh yeah, hit me. And, of course my Wol is perfect. I’m a Woellian.”
He pulled up a shaker pouring three different liquors at once. Then, he spun it on his hand. With a flourish, he took off the top and poured it into another glass. “You aren’t a Woellian, you are a Soul Merchant.”
“No, darling dear, I’m both. That’s the thing. I can hear your leaders whisper in my ears. They want me to conform. I never will, but the whispers will stick around until I die.” I licked the outside of the glass. I let the fresh, berry smell to tickle my brain.
“Why are you here? Is to share your strangeness?”
“No way. I’m here to get drunk.”