"This is a gift, it comes with a price, who is the lamb and who is the knife?"

"This is a gift, it comes with a price, who is the lamb and who is the knife?"

"This is a gift, it comes with a price, who is the lamb and who is the knife?"

“Whoo, laddie, I’ll be the lamb if you slip me your knife!” Young Madge yelled as she slipped around the courtyard to the barn. Old Madge snorted a laugh and turned back to hanging the day’s washing on the line.

Roger glared at them both, then raised his arms above his head, and intoned, "This is a gift, it comes with a price, who is the lamb and who is the knife?" His mam’s best butcher knife flashed in his hand, sharp and wicked. But his arms weren’t quite right - he adjusted them to be more menacing, less limp-scarecrow, and yelled, “THIS IS A GIFT, IT COMES WITH A PRICE, WHO IS THE LAMB AND WHO IS THE KNIFE?”

That sounded proper. The spring lamb between his legs continued chewing grass, unimpressed, but Roger flushed smugly. His voice hadn’t cracked once; had rung out quite boomingly, in fact. He lowered his hands toward the lamb’s head and gripped it by the wool, lifting its head up to expose the neck. He made the mistake of looking into its soft, dewy eye. So trusting. So sweet. It gave out a soft “baa-ah” and a piece of grass fell out of its mouth.


Roger let it go, closed his eyes, and counted to 10. He set his mouth and silently repeated his mantra: “I am the man of the house now. I am the man of the house now. I am the man of the house now.” He shoved the sleeves of his tunic back, raised his hands, and added a little more oomph this time. “DARK LORD, this is a gift, it comes with a price, who is the lamb and who is -“

The knife was suddenly whisked out of his hand; he gave a not-so-manly squeak and was jostled aside, his own mam brandishing the knife, her other hand fisted in the lamb’s wool.

“You’re no dark lord’s knife, laddie, if you can’t even get us supper,” and she yanked the lamb’s head back, severing the esophagus and blood vessels in one fast swipe. She kept her glare on him while the lamb’s blood spurted into the big kettle, its head lolling back off the spine, body limp.

“Now, take this off to the kitchen shed for Young Madge. We want some black pudding put up,” and Roger’s mam dragged the sheep over to the butcher’s block. He was ashamed, but grateful. Last butchering, he’d turned green and vomited - just a little. Butchering before that, he’d straight out fainted. It was generally held that he would be a musician someday, or perhaps an actor in one of the higher-class troupes, as there were 10 other sons on the farm, all brawny and brainless and butcherful. Alas, those 10 other sons were now gone to war for the Duke, and Roger was the man of the house now.

Roger turned back to the kettle of blood, still warm, and fought with disgust and an urge to drool at the thought of fresh lamb with mint for supper. Not as delicious as pork, but better than the pottage they’d had for the last 6 days straight.

He bent his knees and put his arms around the kettle, lifted with his back, but it didn’t budge. Young Madge came around the corner to help Old Madge finish laundry; he didn’t want them to see him strain, so instead he went to his knees, and in his best black-magician voice intoned, “Dark Lord, we sacrifice these virgins to thee, drink of their blood and rise!”

Young Madge scampered over, whisking the kettle from between his arms and propping it on her hip. She eyed him up and down.

“Laddie, you’re the only virgin here, and I don’t see you bleeding.”

This time Young Madge and Old Madge laughed together and shared a wink, while Roger looked at the ground and blushed. He may as well go pick the mint for supper.

This has been an entry for [livejournal.com profile] therealljidol. Please also see my teammates' entries at Ellison's LJ, I love Freddie's LJ, Prog Schlock's LJ, and Mika's LJ!. Together we are Team Clueless, and we appreciate your votes! Please don't forget to vote at http://therealljidol.livejournal.com/888626.html and thank you!

April 2017

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