Games of Aspiration

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Analogy of a Gambit Part 2

“Smart Girl!”

He repeated the compliment with a seemingly bemused look in his grey eyes!

“Check indeed lass. But will it be checkmate?

He then settled back, pouring himself more of the cognac from the decanter, took a sip and smiled, looking upon her with a rather foxlike gaze.

Was he ‘Gandalf’ now, or still ‘Picard’, she could not tell!

But she could tell that she possibly still needed 3 more moves, depending on how he played his game, before putting white’s king in checkmate. Well over the 5 moves she had been given!

The game was winnable for black, she could see that!

But what did he see?

Annoyingly, instead of moving, he placed the cigar in his mouth and calmly puffed, then continued in with his story…

“Then I met, married, a wonderfully kind and gentle Irish Lass, had a son by her, and my for a time life was never better!”

“My first wife, Amber, was like someone you see portrayed in a movie, though no writer could have captured with words the love we felt for each other.”

He pointed to the board…

“This was a wedding gift from my Father-in-law.”

Mentioning the Chess game, he looked down upon it as he continued on….

“We were blessed with 15 years together…”

“But, like in many a movie, she died giving birth to our second child, neither survived..”

“So It was just my eleven-year-old son, Christian, and myself left rambling in this big old house, chasing Amber’s memories, that like a ghost, seemed to hauntingly linger in every room!”

“For another 10 years, we remained alone here, with only our maid and butler to keep us somewhat grounded in our lives.”

“Christian had inherited my Amber’s soft looks, red hair, and dancing green eyes. But he inherited my somewhat melancholy temperament. So, we never really grew as close as some fathers are to their sons.”

“But we did take some comfort in each other’s presence, and Christian loved to play chess as much as I did!”

His eyes clouded over at that, and he grew silent. He reached in and lifted the white king, moving the piece one square over, out of check!

He then sat back and sighed, as if realizing from his mind some unsettling thought, leaving his cigar smouldering in the ashtray,

Meanwhile, his captive had already plotted her course, and as soon as his hand was off the white king, she boldly moved a black pawn from its original position, two squares towards the white queen. Goliath challenging Samson.

He smirks, wishfully it seemed, and without changing his position, he then continues his story…

“Then my son went to university, graduating with a degree and took up residence away in Cambridge.”

“We corresponded regularly, and he came to visit on weekends and we would play chess, and rekindle the memories we had of dear Amber!”

“But, like an idiot, it wasn’t enough, for me. I was lonely in the house, no longer have my son full time to act as a shield to those memories of my Amber!”

“And I took to going to my club in London, spending weekends there, playing Chess and being talked into attending plays with some of the chaps and their wives.”

“It was after a performance that I was introduced to my current wife, Gail, by one of those wives. She was an actress form the states. She charmingly seemed thrilled to meet someone with a title and acted rather shy and innocent!”

“But, then, she was an actress…after all…”

“We had what one calls a whirlwind courtship, and were married before the year was old.”

“Then she began her stealing…”

“First it was my son whose companionship she stole away, by being jealous and vindictive against him!”

“And, still in wedded bliss, I let it happen!”

“Then she invited her wretched nephew Steven from the states to come live with us.”

“Soon they fired my long-time servants, and brought in their own!”

“Nothing I could do would please her, and she was soon flirting with other men!”

“I also began to notice that more money was being spent than could be accounted for, by both her and her cheeky devil of a nephew!”

“So I took command of the accounts, from both Steven and Gail!”

“Then I realized that things were turning up missing, small, but valuable items from the house!”

“It didn’t take long after that to see that she was using the money, having steven steal the for her, to support her lovers…!”

“Then, a fortnight ago, I noticed that some of Amber’s jewellry, which I kept in my study safe for my son’s wife if her ever married, was starting to disappear!”

“Stephen had gone too bloody far!”

He slammed his fist upon the table, making the chess pieces jump.

It effectively broke the aire, and realizing she had lost all sense of time, she looked up at the clock!

It was just minutes before 3 am

She looked at the board, the chess pieces looked frozen in time…

She looked back at her captor

He finally moved….

Taking his white queen, he took blacks knight, removing the white king from the immediate threat.

He looked over at the clock…

Three am! She was out of time, out of moves!

She glared at him, defiance blazing in her hazel eyes.

He had deliberately done this, stalling as he told her his story.

She believed that in two moves she could have had Blacks king held in checkmate.

Unaffected by his captured opponent’s seething look, he calmly put his cigar back in his mouth and took a deep, thoughtful pull on it, before removing it and sent several puffing rings spinning up to the ceiling.

“Sorry lass, there was no way we were playing this game through!”

“Like in real life, no one really can predict outcomes. You may have been thinking you had me in 3 moves, whereas I saw me beating you in two more ...”

“But I have found that one can learn a lot through chess about their opponent, how they handle pressure, how they handle losing, even if it is, like tonight, an unjustified game !”

He sighed deeply, setting down his cigar, lifting his goblet, studying the amber liquid as he spoke again

“But very little in this world you and I live in, is justified! And I needed to gauge your mettle!”

He looked into her eyes, once again appearing like ‘Gandalf’

“Now lass, you have earned your freedom. If you wish, I will escort you out…But!?”

She watches his features hardened, gone was ‘Gandalf’, Back was ‘Captain Jean luc Picard’...

Her eyes lit up, the way he had said the word ’but’, she had almost felt like he was going to call her number 1! Like

‘Picard’ would say to Riker before sending him to go off and explore an unknown planet, alone!

She looked down, not wishing him to see that she had almost smirked at the thought!

He cleared his throat…

“However…”

He takes a Cogent pause

“I would like you to consider a proposal!”

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

Next Up:

Chapter 8

The queen in check

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