Soon after the stranger walked up, a rotund, older woman waddled over to us and announced for all to hear, “I’m prudent deficient, and my ‘significant other here is scruple impaired.” She cackled loudly, “Ain’t we a couple!”
“Yeah!” the man blurted out. “My name’s Meanrake and this here is Berthabode.”
I did not have time to react before Windoline pulled at my arm and said we must be moving on. It was then I noticed goats wandering about. Behind me I heard a string of blasphemies accompanied by a loud belch, which came in unison from Meanrake and Berthabode.
“Goats, goats and more goats, will they never cease to be? These wretched animals eat everything in sight,” Berthabode shouted to make sure I heard—Meanrake broke into cacophonous laughter.
Windoline and I moved toward another part of the huge arena, while people continued to saunter aimlessly. They babbled and rambled to themselves or to whoever would listen.
Coming up from behind, a tall, well-dressed man tapped me on the shoulder. “My name is Mr. Chew Smackum, sir. Do you know where I can find the Son of Man?”
I wondered how he managed to talk, as he was completely involved with his gum chewing. I started to ask who he meant by the Son of Man, but Windoline reminded me not to speak. Several steps ahead of us, a man wearing soiled rags ambled over to Mr. Chew Smackum, who never ceased his gum sloshing and popping─Smackum was as clearly challenged with lack of etiquette as the man in rags was hygiene deficient.
“Hey Smackum, have you found the Son of Man yet?” The ragged man sneered then spit in his hands and used them to smooth back his filthy, brown hair.
“No Dirty Bob, but I’m going to keep looking,” Smackum said, holding his nose to get past Dirty Bob’s rank odor.