The Jacks of All Trades
D'ya think Cards are drawn to each other? Seems like it to me. Ain't no other explanation for this story o' mine, boy. Lemme tell you 'bout a group I hear just got together, callin' theyselves the Jacks of All Trades. It all started here in this li'l town few weeks back. This very inn, boy, three of 'em came one by one. We didn't know they had cards on 'em right away, they kept it nice and discrete.
Each of 'em came in and asked for rooms, then went about their ways. The lady went to her room, one gentleman made way to the tavern an' the last went flirtin' around with the town's maidens. None so inconspicuous, but y'know, fate would have the three of 'em in the inn later, for whatever reasons that brought them. An this is where I come in, y'see, I offer to play a game of cards with the three of 'em. Couple are a little hesitant but come around, and we all sit around the table, learnin' 'bout one another. The lady's a nice gal, that Sophie. Ain't nothing strange about her, maybe a little reserved. James, the drunkard, was quite a talker, a friendly fella. The lady killer, Nathan, is quieter, but all smiles an' just as friendly. An' it turns out they're all headed the same way, coincidentally. If only I knew 'bout their irons!
Next mornin', an' I don't know how, but the James hisself into a mess with a local outlaw in the tavern. The outlaw is furious as the devil hisself, tryin' to beat up on the man. They punch each other a few times, then the outlaw's friends get involved, drawin' their irons on 'im. They shoot at 'em, but he dodges 'em just barely an' scrambles out o' the tavern an' back to the inn. Seems he forgot his own iron! An' the outlaws follow 'im inside, but lose track of 'im. So they go searchin'.
An' I can hear it from the road. They's beating down the doors, checkin' the rooms out to find James. Causes lots of alarm inside, I reckon. An' I like an idiot decide to go in after 'em, 'cause I know they gonna kill that boy. Then I got in an' saw it, the lady holdin' a gun to an outlaw's head. It's a damn big 'un too, an' it's got a J an' a Club on it. I know what it is right away an' they do too. An' I hear it goin' tick, tick, tick. The lady threatens to pull the trigger, but then one of the outlaws sneaks up behind and hits her. She drops, but the gun discharges in the man's face, an' then he don' have a head no more. An' then one of the outlaws starts to hold her down, keeping her hand from liftin' the gun by holdin' her wrist.
'Bout this time, James comes back out with his own iron, a fine revolver an' it's got a J on it too, 'cept there's a Heart instead of a Club. An' he pulls the trigger without hesitation - puts a bullet between the eyes of the man holdin' the lady down. He turns the gun on the rest of 'em and threatens to do the same to all of 'em if they don' surrender. An' the outlaws calm down, realizin' they's outgunned. And here I figger there's nothin' an old man like me can do so I just don' get in the way.
Then I notice Sophie's had her fingers on her iron all this time an' its been tickin' along. Tick, tick, tick, tick, an' when she goes to pick it up she can barely lift it. But one of them outlaws notice too, an' he reacts by kicking her hand, an' then all hell breaks loose. The gun shoots a hell of a blast that tears a line through the floor, headin' toward James. He's fast enough to avoid gettin' his foot blasted off, but falls on the floor. An' wouldn't you know it, one of those the other outlaws took the chance and put the muzzle of his iron in James' back. An' Sophie had another one on her, an' they took her gun away. Surely seemed like two of the finest gunslingers, card holders, were bested by thugs!
An' then the third card comes into play. Y'know, Nathan, the lady killer? Door to his room flies open an' he strolls out nonchalant like, wondering what the hell's goin' on. An' he just walks into a scene, with James an' Sophie at the business end of crude irons. One of 'em turns a gun on the third gun, an' the next thing I know that boy's pullin' his own out of its holster. Fast like a blur, an' no one saw till it was too late. I got one brief look at that gun too - J an' a Diamond engraved on the barrel. Then Nathan fired only one shot.
Strangest thing happened, then. You ain't gonna believe me, but no bullet came out. No, I couldn't see anythin' but I sure could feel it, an' so did everyone else there. 'Was like someone unleashed a tornado in the room an' it winded everybody, friend an' foe alike. James an' Sophie were already on the floor an' didn't get it as bad, but those outlaws standin' up, boy, they got thrown around the room along with everythin' not nailed down. After it was all over, James an' Sophie grabbed their guns again an' stood up, takin' control of the situation while Nathan holstered his weapon and watched 'em clean up the rest.
'Fore long, the sheriff came an' it was up to me to explain everythin' that happened, cause he wasn't gonna believe the outsiders or the outlaws, y'see. An' seein' that they were just defendin' theyselves, the sheriff told the three with the Jacks to leave town immediately. An' they agreed, leavin' together. Seems like they liked each other enough to keep travelin' together, 'cause not long later rumors started goin' around about the "Jacks of All Trades." Jack of Clubs, The Grandfather; Jack of Hearts, Empathy; Jack of Diamonds, Dancing Devil. 'Course, that's not all of 'em now, seein' as how rumor has it the group has doubled in numbers. Don't know where they's goin', or when they's gonna get there. But you haven't heard the last of the Jacks of All Trades, boy.
Back to Wild Cards: Stories of the World
|Spades:||2 - 3 - 4 - 5 - 6 - 7 - 8 - 9 - 10 - J - Q - K - A|
|Hearts:||2 - 3 - 4 - 5 - 6 - 7 - 8 - 9 - 10 - J - Q - K - A|
|Clubs:||2 - 3 - 4 - 5 - 6 - 7 - 8 - 9 - 10 - J - Q - K - A|
|Diamonds:||2 - 3 - 4 - 5 - 6 - 7 - 8 - 9 - 10 - J - Q - K - A|
|Jokers:||Red Joker - Black Joker|
|Introduction - The World - Gameplay - Stories of the world |
On the Attainment, Ownership and Passing of The Cards
Variant Rule: Hands