That face. How many times had Yishak run to the Jackal's shop, wineskin under his arm, to meet his father after a trip? He'd slow down once he saw the wagons. Setting his jaw, he'd take the final steps to find his father unloading the wagon. It was best to find him before he'd finished his work. Sour-faced, the man would turn to Yishak. His hands would reach for the wineskin, as if he'd needed liquid courage to greet his own son. Once the work was done, Yishak walked with his father back to the house. "Slowly," echoed his mother's command in his mind.
Yishak would ask his father about the trip. Ask if they could walk through the market. Waste time looking down alleyways for rats or scorpions. Once home, his father would grab a second wineskin. Yishak's mother would nod to him when her husband turned away. The wine would never be good enough. Dinner would never be right. The tent would be too dirty, or too hot. "You didn't open the flap when the sun went down," he would charge. He would scatter disapproval like a seed. His face always set with that downward curl.
Of course, the seed did take root. Disapproval sprouted up in his own tent. His wife, awarded him by the Justices of Sodom, disapproved of being his. She vinegared his wine and kept the tent closed up after sun down. His daughter, just touching into womanhood, disapproved his blatant touches and gropes. His son simply disapproved of a man who bore his fists against his own family.
Once the dinner was over and the third wineskin was opened, the brutality would wane. The hateful words would continue, until they slurred and finally the man would turn to his bed. He would always fall into a deep sleep, but always that downward curl of the lip. Even in sleep, even in death, he disapproved.
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