The weather outside was cold and Mike was glad that the pub was just a few footsteps away from his new home. In fact, it was both a blessing and a practicality, since his new home didn't have a kitchen. He opened the heavy door of a house painted in soft pink color. A bit unusual color for the pub, Mike thought. But hey, as long as he can get something to eat he couldn't care less if the pub was coated in gold.
As soon as he opened the door he was washed with a smell of freshly homemade bread and meat loaf. Wooden walls covered the entire interior, a few big chandeliers were placed on the ceiling in even distance, casting a heavy, dimmed light across the room. A big fireplace leaned against the wall on the right was turned on, giving Mike pleasant chills all over his body. He needed this pleasant warmth. There were only a few people inside, sitting around the biggest round, heavy wooden table and whispering beneath their breaths. Mike looked at them and his stomach turned over. There was something so scary about them, but he couldn't decide what exactly. They looked as any other person he met on his way here. Deciding not to give it any more thought he went to the middle of the room where the waiter was cleaning big, heavy ales of beer behind the bar. Mike sat down and the waiter nodded at him.
"What can I help you with, sir?"
"Well this ale of beer seems appealing. And whatever you're cooking at the back...I'll take some of it as well."
"A man with a sense of pleasure and taste. We don't get many of them around."
"Well I'm here to stay. You'll get used to it."
The waiter nodded and went to the kitchen. Mike slightly turned his head over his shoulder just to meet with a steady gaze of a man whose eyes were shaded with his cowboy-like hat. Mike shuddered despite the pleasant heat radiating from the fireplace. The waiter came in carrying a tray of meat loaf and a double-sized ale of dark beer.
Mike waved his head in negation. This was just enough. Just as he was about to take the first bite he heard a stool behind him scratch the floor. The man who stared at him just a moment ago stood up and worked his way towards him. He was much taller than Mike, with much more muscles.
"What is your business here, stranger?"
"I keep my business to myself. I'd prefer it to remain that way."
The man growled in rage and grabbed Mike's collar, lifting him up from the stool and pressing him against the wall.
"You don't know what you're getting yourself into, here. You better watch your back everywhere you go."
Mike closed his eyes and stopped breathing because the odor coming from the man's mouth was unbearable.
"Beau, leave the man alone. He just came here to eat."
"He's moved into the old house, didn't you know that?"
"Of course I knew that! Everybody knows it for days now. But I'm telling you, let him eat his dinner in peace."
Beau reluctantly removed his hands off of his collar and went back to his buddies at the table. Mike got back on his seat and started eating his dinner.
"You'll have to forgive him, his wife passed away recently. He means no harm."
"That's not what it sounds like." Mike muttered.
"He's just barking. He won't bite. But I would like to give you a friendly advice; don't ask too many questions. They're not welcome here."
Mike looked at his plate. Suddenly the place seemed hostile. But he had his own agenda in this town and, by god, he will see it through!