209 - Barhalla


 “Your brew is fit for the gods!" shouts the obnoxious patron seated across the bar from you. As he has done three times before, he throws the glass that once held his beer onto the floor, sending clear shards sliding across the concrete base of the bar and adding to the growing pile of broken glass next to his stool. “Barkeep,” he shouts at you, “another!”

It is two o’ clock in the afternoon, and the man doing the worst Thor impression you’ve seen to date (and you’ve seen at least one other) is your only customer. This unfortunate reality gave him a pass the first three times he smashed a glass you’d later have to sweep up; if it will lend him a fourth, it will not be because of your decision.

With the blank and even stare of a man who has lost all hope, you turn your gaze across the room, coming to rest on your boss. He sits in silence in the center of a corner booth near the entrance to the bar. You needn’t attract his attention – his eyes have been locked in your direction since your customer shattered the pint glass.

Your expression does not change. You make no movement or gesture, nor do you speak to your boss. Nonetheless, he takes your meaning. Wearing a nervous half-smile, he holds his hands up in a shrug of surrender then shakes his head.

God damn it, you think at him as hard as you can.

“By the fangs of Fenrir, whom must I slaughter to have my thirst quenched here?” shouts your customer.

You snap your attention back to him and retrieve a fresh, cool pint glass from the fridge, fill it from the tap and place it in front of him.

“As if carried by the Valkyrie!” he says gleefully, wasting no more time before sucking the beer into his gullet. Much to your chagrin, he does not choke.