After The Hunt
by Randolph O. Mann
Pitifully, it has always been my experience that every cocktail emporium infesting our planet ultimately develops a matchless singular bouquet. I believe such unique fragrances to be of Darwinian development, as each saloon ultimately fostering a signature mephitic tang all its own. Then similar to the scent-recognition employed by suckling sea lion pups on crowded beaches, the local bar-flies can follow their noses back to nurse.
Regrettably, this rustic tavern is no exception and upon opening the grunge-tarnished front door I artlessly flinch at the pungent odor that is overwhelming my nostrils. I am furthermore obliged to loiter in the foyer of this feebly disguised hunting lodge to allow my eyes the occasion to adjust to the extremely muted barroom surroundings. Then in my anomalous style, as the shadows gradually clear, I discover myself to be the only punter enjoying the rustic ambiance of this huntsman’s pub at such an early hour. As a result, I must timorously solidify my nerves with a heavy exhale that I project will buttress my fragile courage before venturing deeper into the recesses of this intimidating neighborhood watering hole.
Oh rest assured, I have been suitably cautioned how my ambitions are dodgy at best with only a modest opportunity for success. To a certain extent I must agree. Candidly, my only hope for success is established upon my stubborn pertinence. As it is my tactic to cautiously sift amongst the picturesque indigenous inhabitants while engaging the more societal constituents with genial conversation hoping to curry favor. Then, and only then, can I anticipate the prospect of finally locating HIM.
My strategy is very straightforward, I will just sit down and wait, right here inside this ordinary-looking park-side tavern. I intend to nonchalantly dine upon the iniquitous animal protein that is offered for consumption. This afternoon’s fare will entail partaking of the scandalously illicit Hunter’s Spread. A villainously wicked sampler platter of wild game audaciously garnished with the officially banned pickled quails eggs that are celebrated globally for their invigorating fecundity courtesy of a generous coating of jalapeño beef-marinade which is alleged to both stimulate one’s libido and also is rumored to dissolve metal cooking utensils.
Simply stated, I aim to take my fill of the vast array of over-priced alcoholic beverages and banned animal flesh that is being illegitimately served in this bogus eatery as I leisurely pass my time monitoring the provincial ‘society’ of the home-grown clientele that frequent this sacrosanct eatery, with a fervent anticipation of making a chance encounter with Gaylord Percival, the living legend.
Nervously, I belly-up-to-the bar prior to stridently smacking the palm of my left hand upon the stilted counter, for effect, a maneuver I blatantly envision will capture the attention of the rotund Inn-Keeper loitering at the far end of the bar. Disturbingly snatched from his scholarly musings, I tolerantly watch the stout fellow peevishly extinguish his hand rolled cigarette previous to repulsively exhaling second-hand smoke simultaneously through both of his nostrils as he grudgingly abandons today’s unfinished crossword puzzle. Then, wedging a scorer’s pencil behind his massive right ear, the big fellow lumbers down the length of the bar to indignantly collect my beverage request. A white cocktail napkin, embossed with a bold black line still-life rendering, entitled ‘After the Hunt,’ is compliantly flipped onto the ramshackle mahogany plank where I have timidly chosen to locate myself.
“What will it be, Stranger?”
I purposely ignore the obstinate servant while using the faded paper napkin to meticulously cleanse the sticky bar surface in the vicinity of where I have elected to park myself. I then audaciously crumple the dilapidated cocktail duster before offhandedly discarding the filthy item back onto the bar.
“I’ll have a glass of sherry, ... please.”
My beverage request produces a primeval grimace upon the weathered mug of the attending bartender as he must now search his long term memory for the obscure location of such a seldom requested liquor bottle. In due course a light goes on behind his narrow-set eyeballs as his modest armada of brain cells aligns into a battle formation from which he can attack this dilemma. The thickset employee then drops to one knee, regrettably exposing his hairy butt-cleavage in my direction, as he searches among the dusty recesses of the lower back-bar stage in his sordid effort to locate an extremely weathered flagon of Noe PX Viejo. A handy bar towel hanging from his belt is then used to clean the relic to allow for a positive identification before rising and removing the cork stopper so a fixed portion of spirits can be decanted into a suitably diminutive wine glass. The causally sanitized wine decanter is then intentionally sited upon the countertop of a very elaborate back-bar just near enough at hand to prevent any need for the bartender to replicate his unholy genuflecting.
No sooner had my cocktail napkin been replaced and the modestly portioned glass of fortified wine positioned in front of me when the back door of the hostelry abruptly bursts open, flooding the whole barroom with the harshness of the midday sunlight as a three-man Scandinavian film crew gradually recoiled their way rearward into the tavern. Their handheld lighting is overtly focused upon the furtive passageway that is violently collecting my full attention as a haggard looking huntsman hobbles obliquely into the pub while misusing a lofty Nairobi Rutger as his personal human crutch, with a much shorter Wyandotte Stalker serving as his private creature-cane.
Together the huntsmen and the two supporting porters stagger their way diagonally across the backside of the saloon where the faded hunter collapses into an empty captain’s chair. All the while, the Swedish production team is hard at work collecting footage of this anomalous occasion. The Wyandotte’s head is artfully preserved upon film in dramatic fashion by the unrelenting camera crew as he franticly pivots his head while searching the meager interior of the pub for ad hoc medical provisions. Systematically the little Indian escalates the scope of his exploration until his trained eyes fall upon a series of ragged bar-towels neatly folded and stacked on the counter top near the gate of the bar. Then the record each step of the Wyandotte’s desperate dash back and forth between the bar and their makeshift hospice where his lanky African comrade is administering to the injured sportsman.
I sit in stunned silence, mesmerized by the spectacle and marveling at the precision of three cultures silently communicating in a sequence of rapid hand signals. I find watching this impulsive production to be totally captivating. I discover scrutinizing the towheaded Lighting Grip multitasking as an O R Tech while the diminutive Wyandot demonstrates his utility as both the Attending Physician and the protagonist in this neighborhood drama is beguiling. I am riveted while monitoring the cameraman as he struggles between his numerous obligations pertaining to Set Director, Talent Scout and the Best Boy of the surreal ‘Reality Show’ that has descended upon this unsuspecting watering-hole. I observe a silent tap upon the cameraman’s shoulder from the provisional Cable Grip-slash-E R Tech signaling for a measured panorama of the bar’s interior that culminates with the camera lens coming to a melodramatic stop by focusing again upon the gaping dorsally located doorframe of this bucolic drinking establishment.
Then, as if on cue, majestically a very daunting silhouette steps into the glare of the midday radiance casting his arrogant outline upon the gnarled oak floorboards conjecturing up images of Hemingway and all-things-manly as standing before me is none other than Gaylord Percival himself. Unmistakably clad in his craggy Goulburn Hat, a Vandegrift Jacket with a hand-tailored blowgun quiver strapped to the thigh of his khaki fatigues that have been tucked loosely into knitted hiking socks that are incased within a pair of single-seamed Pivetta alpine hiking boots and of course, ... his signature Leopold Range-Finder that is hanging around his neck, Gaylord Percival is most defiantly in the house! And he has not arrived alone, as cradled in his arms is the limp figure of a woman. With roguish sophistication Percival defiantly marches through the doorway, boldly striding across the hard wood floor and into the Game Room that is immorally decorated with a plethora of mounted animal trophies adorning the jaded walls where Gaylord deliberately positions the copiously amnestied lady upon the derelict pool table. Instinctively the chemically latent female coils into a fetal arrangement, whimpering as she drives both of her hands between her firmly clinched thighs in a subliminal attempt to veil her excessive publicity.
“Easy Darl’in, lay still sweetheart, your day ain’t over quite yet. Innkeeper, can you point the direction to the kitchen for the Wyandotte as he must melt some wax? Then toss your phonebook to that skinny fellow sitting at the bar so he can lug it over here.”
The wallop from the telephone directory as it is callously dropped upon the stilted countertop snaps me to attention. And just that quickly I am added to the talent pool of this ad-hoc production as the towheaded camera crew focuses their lens upon me. I hastily throw back the remaining wine in my glass and do exactly as I am directed. After all, these are truly Neanderthals. I am talking about the banned relics from our chauvinistic past from long before fresh water was rationed. These are dated products from an ancient era when gasoline could still be purchased for less than a ‘Hamilton’ per half gallon and in my modest estimation Percival & Company definitely were NOT in a mood to be trifled with. So having just been invited to mingle with such untamed ruffians, I meekly obey as I timidly bundle up my frayed nerves before grabbing the directory by cradling it librarian style in my right arm as I scurry towards the back room and into the company Sir Gaylord Percival, the world renowned Great White Hunter!
As I make my way towards the far-flung pool table I reminisce how as a schoolboy I had marveled at his legend. Being well-read in my formative years I had judiciously studied how Percival learned the Outfitter Trade while it was still legal to harvest big game on this planet. I read with interest how Gaylord had developed his pursuit faculties in his youth during the annual Christmas Holidays spent with his grandparents in the shadow of Mount Kilimanjaro where he would tag along with Waschagge Bushmen as they hunted in the Tanzanian foothills. Like everyone from that wild bygone time the adventures of Gaylord Percival seemed bigger than life and totally entrancing. In time, I learned how Gaylord subsequently honed those legendary hunting skills along the Río Santa María del Mar Dulce as a trail guide with zoological safaris.
Percival’s ‘fifteen minutes of fame’ absolutely resonated, not only with me but his grand adventures also captured the world’s imagination elevating him into a godlike celebrity. I religiously studied Outdoor Chronicles as each month a new issue would arrive in the mail describing another of Gaylord’s exploits while he hunted the length of the Continental Divide in search of big game animals. Gaylord was iconic during those exciting times before the Ninth District Court of Appeals instigated their wide-ranging liberal capitulation to the various Special Interest Groups. A rout that I believe ultimately forced a conformist shift away from our traditional representative democracy as public opinion set the stage for a biased transformation into our contemporary delegated meritocracy, with the Politically Correct gradually pilfering the express control of this new government.
Predictably, the Gaylords of our world lost favor once the concept of Animal Rights gained legitimacy during the calculated mastication of the Second Amendment. Which when coupled with the Supreme Court’s indulgent interpretation of the Constitution, the law abiding citizens ultimately were stripped of their inalienable right to bear arms. As sentence by sentence and word by word the Second Amendment was dismantled until all we are left with for protection was ... bare arms. Fully automatic guns were the first to be outlawed. Then the abolition of ALL assault weapons was covertly integrated into subsequent legislation. This act eventually was litigated into a ridiculous caricature called The Original Violent Armaments Mandate blanketing all lethal weapons as they were collectively judged illegal to possess. The custody of firearms was ruled a felony and universally banned along with all forms of archery. Blades or axes also were labeled as contraband too. Ammunition came under fire next with a succession of verdicts making it a felony to even possess a reloading press or a fletching jig. In due course even Swiss Army knives require a permit to carry.
On top of all that, Greenpeace and the PETA group aligned prior to embarking upon a parallel legal mugging incorporating fancy judicial wrangling that eventually spawned congressional declarations that eroded the funding to the office of the Secretary of the Interior which in turn forced the Fish and Game Department, the National Parks Service, the Zoological Gardens and the S.P.C.A. to be merged under the leadership umbrella of a newly created Environmental Czar. This budgetary miscalculation triggered a domino style downsizing as urban zoos were dismantled with their “illegitimately incarcerated creatures” disastrously emancipated back into the wild, where Darwin’s hypothesis was vividly collaborated with the bloodcurdling dog-eat-dog holocaust that ensued because the land management formerly available thru the Park Service and Game Wardens was now being administered by the very naïve S.P.C.A. Commissioners. In due course such ineptitude would lead to a mass die-off from starvation, species inbreeding and indigenous stock pestilence all taking a toll, because without the funding derived from the hunting industry, firearms commerce and fishery concerns Mother Nature was given a free rein to reestablish her own natural equilibrium. In the wake of these Feral Creature Reforms the Great White Hunter was reduced to the status of an out-of-date dinosaur from our primordial past when warm blooded carnivores foraged and long before vegetarianism was the diktat.
Futilely inventoried upon the fringe of society, Percival was forced to bid his time in the shadows of obscurity until the Secretary of Education, of all people, stumbled upon accounting spreadsheets from previous administrations that graphically recorded the vast sums of revenue that had previously been collected through the sale of hunting licenses, duck stamps, and deer tags. Thinking outside-the-box this wily bureaucrat developed a strategy to fund higher education by way of a similar arrangement whereby student’s tuitions could be funded through Hunting Scholarships, a newly constructed arrangement with the express intention of permitting consenting, voting age, undergraduates to be indentured as willing human quarry, during a strictly prescribed hunting season, as they work off their scholastic endowments that would be funded via Hunting License fees. At first reading the initiative was lambasted by every possible advocacy group. But with the presiding administration looking down the barrel of a 200 trillion dollar deficit they found it a good deal easier when turning a deaf ear toward the pricey lobbyists and moved forward with the first of what would in due course become a myriad of sanctioned Academic Harvests.
“Hey, Slim just toss the book on the table. We will need it later when we elevate this ‘heifer’s’ croup. In the mean time grab hold of her front paws while I pull this ‘milker’s’ legs over end to the pool table”
This guy, Percival is just as advertized, ALL business, and I did just as I was told. I placed the phonebook on the green felt next to the girl’s curvy bottom and then reaching between her thighs to collect both of her wrists before drawing them beyond her head and shoulders. With Gaylord and I controlling each of the queen’s appendages it was a simple task to roll her onto her belly. Then all it took was one stalwart tug by Gaylord and he was able to drape the ewe’s hindquarters over the end of the pool table.
“Good job, pilgrim, and while we are waiting for the Wyandotte to arrive with the wax we can get to work skinning her.”
In the long run I can report, the Harvests survived a plethora of legal challenges with the Supreme Court eventually ruling five to four that a hunting License is in essence a Legal Union and qualifies under the broad laissez-faire definition of marriage and thusly the Department of Education was permitted to proceed, with the caveat that all participants must be consenting adults and of course, both genders must be eligible, mind you. The only exceptions were in West Virginia where upon rare occasions emancipated minors have been permitted to lobby for inclusion among the hunted. But for the most part in the other seventy-nine states, such a practice is frowned upon. As I recall it was Gallop Polling that finally forced the presiding administration’s hand and the Academic Harvests were reluctantly sanctioned as a limited one year experiment.
With that authorization the hunting rights to each amenable student, in possession of an established Grade Point Average of two-point-five or higher, were auctioned off on Ebay to the highest benefactor. All the winning bids to be deposited via PayPal into a consigned Trust Account that is to be integrated with Execution Directives instructing how each Scholarship will be transferred singularly into the custody of either addressee (hunter or prey) that able to present a properly coded banding-anklet with proper photo identification, of course, at Season’s End. Needless to say the Harvests were an overwhelming success and courtesy of these ever popular Academic Harvests the government now had in place an easy on the budget solution for the displaced recreational hunters who would happily provide a renewable funding source to higher education just for the privilege to forage among the available students. In very short order, Gaylord found his hunting expertise back in demand as every Professional Outfitter jumped at the assorted vocational opportunities this innovative venture offered.
I will freely admit the sarcastic smile and smart aleck head-shaking from the diminutive Native American as he arrived with his weather-beaten camping kettle brimming with liquefied beeswax really pissed me off. I couldn’t help myself from lamenting how my impromptu girlish shriek had categorically identified my total lack of firsthand hunting knowledge and had wholly branded me as a neophyte for all and sundry.
“We’re sugaring the molly’s parts.”
I can only guess as to the appearance that my stunned facial lexis presented as I slowly gained an appreciation for the contemporary enterprise at hand and how my anticipated genial compliance was copiously anticipated. But I do know the Wyandotte stalker garnered a good deal of humor courtesy of my revelation as witnessed in his unmanageable mockery of giggling. The novelty of participating in such an extraordinary activity, which personally I had only read about, encouraged a kaleidoscope of butterflies to take fight within my abdomen as the very notion of benefiting from this woman’s inebriated venerability had in fact excited me. None-the-less I hastily balanced my resolve upon accepting how Percvial had erroneously assumed that I would be freely assisting with the confiscation of her pubic fleece.
“Stop dithering, waterboy, and secure the jennet’s arms.”
And just that fast I had been drafted as an accomplice. Without hesitation I sprang into action. I grasped each of her forearms and pulled them in opposite directions and I held them in place by bring the full weight of my upper body along each by using a vigorous stiff armed style. My stanch and decisive reaction effectively pinions the lady’s thrashing upper appendages firmly in place with each pastern buried into their respective corner pocket. I desperately hope that my prompt reaction has recouped a measure of respect from Percival and to a lesser degree from the Wyandotte in the process.
An encouraging glance followed by an appreciative nod from Gaylord designate all was suitably organized for the nanny’s fleecing. With the lightheaded falcon positioned facedown and vulnerably suspended at the foot of the pool table, it turned out to be a simple matter for Gaylord to quietly slide the waistband of the dam’s Capri jogging tights past her diminutive haunches. Then by applying the business end of his skinning clippers at the crotch of the duck’s running pants that are presently lingering in-between her thighs Persival splits them in two, deftly exposing a dorsal viewing of the lady’s parts as the tattered trousers fall away in a threadbare legwarmer fashion. After that, hoisting such a deadweight cargo back onto the gaming table fell into my scope of responsibility. This I gradually accomplished by means of a series of ineffectively executed tugs from my lofty angle at the head of the pool table as I winch this sleepy lioness into a position that a allows for a meticulous review of our anesthetized prize by the Scandinavian film crew as they cinematically document her significant attributes.
After rotating the catch onto her back the Wyandotte mounts the pool table and straddls her pelvis with the objective of repositioning the drowsy remuneration by means of clutching the soldierly girdle that is holding her pepper-spray holster. Then by applying firm upward pull directly above her center of gravity her body-weight is expertly counter balanced along the median equilibrium line connecting the lady’s hip joints and for the little Indian makes lifting this wilted trophy a much simpler task. With identical portions of body mass cantilevered in this time-honored fashion the stunted stalker is permitted to shuffle-step our anesthetized mare to the discernible axis of pool table allowing for a scrupulous review of our anesthetized pen by the Scandinavian film crew.
A firm squeeze by the Wyandotte at the plastic side clasps unshackle her black canvas martial girdle and a rigid pull upon the Velcro thigh-high strap distance the doe from her empty holster. Then with the jenny fittingly neutralized, Gaylord applies his clippers as they guardedly cut through kitten’s shoelaces. By loosening the tongue of each of sneaker Percival was able to complete a firm tug at the heel of each shoe which allows for the trouble-free extraction of this bobbysoxer’s diminutive feet before dropping the shoes onto the bar room floor. Then as officially stipulated the ever-present film-crew employ their sophisticated camera indemnifying the wiggler’s abundant rack by using an extremely slow and measured visual assessment of the vixen’s torso. A bothersome mandated undertaking that is considered necessary to authenticate the providential attributes of this blond Bambi prior to qualify this creature for cataloging among the Boone and Crocket trophies plus such a well assembled specimen ought to effortlessly meet PETA’s stringent eligibility criteria for the Flint and Hefner Record Book too. Then as only Percival can put it, Gaylord ceremoniously shook hands with the Wyandoote and me proudly celebrating such a fabulous achievement.
“This is truly a once in a life time incarceration and we are all very pleased to make her acquaintance! Now pilgrim, please join us for a photograph.”
Together we pompously mug for the camera with the tumbler indelicately exhibited in the forefront before continuing our rousing chore by using the nymph’s prone position to our advantage as we can continue the field dressing process. Positioning the fallow squarely upon her backside and cautiously distancing from the holster makes it an easy matter to hook an index finger into the cleavage created between the ankle bone and her Achilles tendon in order for Gaylord to peel off each of the little lady’s foot-lets. These two dainty keepsakes plus the recently liberated self defensive apparatus are all added to the hoard accumulating on the bar room floor. While at the same time leaving our prudently declawed feline in an unnaturally barefooted status. This tender footed condition is designed to hamper any escape should the lady’s metabolism capriciously neutralize the soporific qualities of the sedative.
By means of a slow practiced method Gaylord skins away the remainder of the Lycia Capri jogging tights by inserting the knife blade under the flexible hems below each knee. The fabric neatly gives way to the keen edge of the hunter’s blade as he drives the skinner’s blade all the way along each of her shapely legs without any difficulty. Applying a vigorous tug to each hem is the most efficient method to peel away such troublesome jogging garments from beneath this fallen catch while additionally exposing the lass’ ideal russet coloring for all to see. Gaylord’s hearty pull garners whistles of approval from the Wyandotte as he continually stirs the melting wax and signals for me to collect the tattered runner’s garment into a crumpled bundle with an insistent head nod. Once her dilapidated outfit was removed Percival takes the opportunity to vigilantly examine the puncture wound left by the one inch blow-dart. Judging from the lack of bruising we are sure that it has missed any vital capillaries or significant venules in the targeted area.
As an additional safety measure Gaylord reaches into the hunting pack for the plastic bottle containing hydrogen peroxide and a disposable capsule containing a premeasured dose of Butadiene that once applied will insure against any possibility of infection. Percival’s circular application of the reddish-brown antiseptic discolors the fetlock below her starboard hindquarters and by gently kneading the antiseptic liniment into her wound Gaylord elicits an audibly exotic whimper from the helplessly anesthetized gal earning her sheepish smirks from both the Indian and I. The ragged jogging trousers ultimately joined the footwear as they too are stockpiled in our game bag. A slow and deliberate visual assessment of the freshly skinned roo’s lower region divulges our catch as in first-rate physical shape with suntanned muscular calves and strapping thighs wrought from her many hours of running along the beach. The lady’s drumsticks terminate were a perfectly bronzed spherical derrière is sited. Her continuous taupe colored hide speaks to the countless hours this one has spent sunbathing in the buff. Applying a hunting blade between the mounds of her sports bra are the next errands for Percival as the hen’s halter is left scattered upon the green felt covering the pool table. Cinematic endorsement is achieved as each enormous mammary gland is measured and palpated to indemnify authenticity before the gosling’s lower appendages are spread and we are all made witness to the golden mane blossoming at the apex of this pinkie’s inseam.
“The carpet matches the drapes!”
The sight of the matching fair-haired locals launches the elevationally challenged Wyandotte onto his tippy toes as he stretches across the emerald felt with a sweltering waxy purpose while the Nordic film crew gathers footage of his dedicated effort. Instinctively I speculate how such a progression might induce violent behavior from this currently docile squab so I tighten my grip upon her extended forepaws. The blistering report of the Wyandotte’s first application of hot beeswax sends the placid cosset into a tizzy. Requiring me to bring to bear my full upper body weight against her thrashing arms as I struggle to control my half this bucking pullet. Mechanically the panicky fawn recoils back into a fetal arrangement with her left patella making violent contact with the bridge of my nose! … …
“…I do believe the poor chap is coming around? Easy pilgrim, your day ain’t over yet. Bartender! Toss me a clean bar towel this one is soaked with his blood. By the way does anyone know this unfortunate lad’s name? You see Slim, I am afraid our wingnut caught you square with her hock and boxed you straight onto Queer Street. Not to worry, we were able to collect the fleece without you. Now, in my expert opinion, we have done everything we can for this jenny until the anesthetizing effect wears off. So while the Wyandotte stores that golden pelt and disposes of the lower half of the lady’s kit how about if I help you to your feet so you can buy us both a nice cool gin-n-tonic while we properly introduce ourselves as we wait for this naked peahen to wake up.”
Copyright© 2012 by Randolph O. Mann. All rights reserved.