© 2010 Hank Quense
Outside the Capulet family tomb, Romeo steeled himself for the sight of a dead Juliet. The workers hadn’t sealed the tomb yet, so he and MacBath had no trouble entering the dark crypt. Dozens of dead Capulets lined the walls. Romeo wrinkled his nose at the stench of mold and decay. Juliet lay in the center on a stone catafalque wearing a white gown. Her hands were crossed on her bosom.
“There you are!” Romeo almost jumped out of his boots at the sound of Dreadmona’s booming voice. “Juliet is dead, and it’s all yer fault. “ The yuk stood in the entrance and shook her fist at him. “Come outta there.”
Dreadmona’s command puzzled Romeo. Why didn’t she come in and grab him? He looked around the tomb, hoping to spot an exit. Coffins and stone statuettes filled every nook. If the yuk came in here, he would have to elude her long enough to bash her head with a few of the statues. He looked at Dreadmona. “I’m busy. You’ll have to come in.”
“Yuks are afraid of tombs, laddie. It’s about the only thing that scares them.” MacBath looked at Dreadmona. “But, you have a big problem when you leave. That is one very angry yuk.”
“Dreadmona,” Romeo said. “I came here to bring Juliet back to life.”
“Yer a magician?”
“Not me. I hired this wizard to do it. Watch.”
Confusion and indecision painted Dreadmona’s face.
MacBath moved to the catafalque and scattered a powder on Juliet. The dwarf chanted softly then sprinkled a second powder on her.
Her hand twitched.
Seconds later, Juliet’s eyes popped open and she glared at MacBath. “Who let you in?”
Romeo moved to the edge of the catafalque. “It’s all right, darling.”
“Oh Romeo! I guess the poison didn’t work.”
“The poison worked. You died. I had this wizard reanimate you so we’ll be together again.”
“How romantic you are,” she cooed as she sat up. “Hey! Who took my toe rings?”
“Jewelette!” Dreadmona bellowed. “Ya selfish brat! Ya killed yourself widout thinkin’ about anyone else. Like me. Yer nasty brothers kicked me outta the house. Widout my back pay. ”
“Can you move?” Romeo asked. “We’ll go to your brothers and force them to give back your inheritance, because if we’re rich enough, no one will care that you’re undead.”
“And my toe rings. Can this old dwarf marry us?’
Romeo looked at MacBath. “Aye. I’m licensed for that.”
She grinned and waved a hand at MacBath. “Make it quick. We have things to do.”
“I pronounce you husband and wife.” MacBath made a mystical sign over their heads. “That’s as quick as it can be done.”
Juliet looked at the tomb entrance. “Dreadmona, I’m sorry about your troubles. I’m married now so I don’t need a chaperone, but I’ll need a maid if I’m to be respectable. The position is yours if you want it.”
“For how long? ‘Til ya throw me out like yer brothers?”
“Oh, no. For as long as you want it.”
Romeo didn’t think this was such a great idea but held his tongue.
“All right.” Dreadmona folder her arms across her chest. She had a devious smile on her face.
“Hey!” A frown flicked across Juliet’s face. “Can we still do . . . you-know-what?”
“Once we get your money, we’ll rent a room.” Romeo winked at her. He felt a
breathtaking sensation in his loins. At last! No more chastity belts. “Then, we’ll find out about . . . you-know-what.”
Juliet clapped her hands and giggled.
“Ain’t no one gonna do ya-know-what wid my mistress.” Dreadmona cackled.
Romeo stared open mouthed at Juliet.
“But . . . Dredmona, what if we want to do . . . you-know-what? Juliet gave Dreadmona a pleading look.
“Don’t care. Ain’t gonna be any ya-know-what while I’m around.”
Romeo felt an icy hand grip his guts. All his dreams and hopes were about to be crushed by Dreadmona. “You’re doing this to Juliet because you can’t get revenge on her brothers.” Romeo pointed a finger at the yuk. “Aren’t you?”
“Don’t know what yer talkin’ about” Dreadmona smiled. “And I’m gonna sleep at the foot of the bed to make sure it don’t happen.” Dreadmona folded her arms.
Juliet and Romeo stared at the troll, open-mouthed.
Dreadmona grinned at the happy couple.
MacBath snickered and shook his head.
Juliet and Romeo stared at the troll, openmouthed.
Romeo had an idea, one that would save the situation and taunt Juliet’s brothers. “Juliet, do you have any aunts or uncles or cousins?”
“No. The Capulet name is doomed to die out with my brothers.”
Romeo’s stomach clenched with anxiety; so much depended on a fickle yuk. “Dreadmona, do you want to get even with Juliet’s brothers? They’re the ones who fired you and cheated you out of your wages.”
“Yeah. Dem’s on me list of things to do. Me get even someday.”
“Well, the worse thing that can happen to them is for Juliet and I to have a child. Just imagine how mad they’ll be. Everyone in town will hear them howling.”
Dreadmona picked at a clump of hair on her arm. After a minute or so, she gave a gruesome grin. “Dat good. Me can’t wait to see dere faces. Me gotta be de one to tell ’em, all right?”
“Fine, you can tell them.” Romeo nodded his agreement. “But before we can have a baby, you’ll have to stay outside our room.”
“Uh-oh.” She made hideous faces while she struggled with the problem.
After what seemed to be an eternity to Romeo, she sighed and said. “Dis a big problem, but me think gettin’ even wid de brothers is bedda than getttin’ even wid Juliet. Me sleep inna next room.”
A wave of euphoria swept over Romeo. His child stood to inherit the emerald mine!
Juliet jumped off the catafalque and threw herself into Romeo’s arms. “My hero. I knew you were short, hairy and strong. Who knew you were also smart?”