Orlando Bloom was late and Peter Jackson was not happy. Of course, it was Monday and didn’t Monday mornings always start badly? That was Viggo’s opinion, anyway and he was sticking to it.
Viggo was curious, though, if not a little perturbed. He, Beanie, John and Ian had been prepared to hold their weekly poker game the previous night and Orlando, being Orlando, had convinced them to let him be the fourth player. It didn’t matter that he had not the faintest idea how to play poker; no, that wasn’t an obstacle to the spirited young man. Games could be learned, couldn’t they? Everyone had to start somewhere, didn’t they? That was Orli's motto and no one could convince him otherwise. So, schedules had been rearranged, they’d asked John if he’d mind Orlando taking his place that week, and snacks had been bought. Well, they always bought snacks, but Viggo put more thought into it this week because Orlando was going to be there. He figured the young man would want more than the peanuts favored by the geriatric set. For some unidentifiable reason, he wanted the young man to feel comfortable and enjoy himself so, not knowing exactly what he’d like to eat, the older man had grabbed nearly one of everything off the shelf at the local grocery. Which explained why his kitchen table was piled with bags and cans of junk food when the others arrived.
Nodding his head towards the teetering stack of fat and calories, Sean Bean merely arched his eyebrows and waited for an answer. Viggo shrugged and shook his head. It was Ian, in his forthright manner, who got an answer out of him.
“What in mercy’s name is all this? Were they sold out of peanuts?”
And then, after exiling John from the game and spending a year’s beer money on snack food, the kid hadn’t come. He hadn’t even called to tell them he wasn’t coming; he just never showed. Not a word. Not a call. Nothing.
“Just like the younger generation. They don’t give a thought to anyone but themselves. No manners.” This was Ian.
“Maybe he got a better offer.” Sean’s two-cents.
“Let’s play.” That was Viggo’s response. “Let’s play the game.” And so they did. He didn’t understand it, but for some strange reason he was actually hurt that the younger man hadn’t even bothered himself to give him a call, letting him know he wouldn’t be there. Though he wouldn’t admit it, even to himself, he was hurt by the boy’s actions. He didn’t know why and didn’t fully comprehend it, but there it was. His feelings were hurt. As he joined the others at the table and began dealing the cards, Viggo hardened himself to the feelings warring inside and decided that the next time Orlando Bloom asked to join him in anything, he could just keep asking.