The Wife of the Silversmith

Juan almost dozed off several times. It was easy to do with his eyes closed on that soft warm night in Valladolid and he struggled to keep his senses. Each time he caught himself drifting away, a cold shock would bring him back. The pin he pricked against his leathery thumb helped him too. It took three hours before he was satisfied that his household was finally asleep.

Just before 2 a.m., Juan slid off his feathered bed and crept into the hallway where he silently dressed. From there, it was out the rear door of Number 13 Calle de Platerias and through the garden to a shadowy path that ran inconspicuously several blocks before entering upon the plazuela of Saint Michael. He remained hidden behind a statue for a few moments, making sure there was no one about to see him sneaking around at such an hour. Satisfied that he was alone, he then ran the short distance in the open to the covered porch at the one-time residence of Doña Leonor de Vivero.

After three soft knocks, a slide opened. Juan placed his lips to the wicket and whispered. “Cazalla.” A bolt turned and the door opened just wide enough to allow Juan entrance. The bolt sounded again behind him.

But Juan wasn’t as quiet as he thought when he whispered the password. From below the railing, concealed behind a broad-leafed bush, the wife of the silversmith heard it very clearly.

She waited a moment before gathering up the courage to find out where her oddly-behaving husband was running off to in the middle of the night.

On May 21, 1599, 200,000 people gathered in the Plaza Mayor to witness Juan Garcia and fourteen other Lutheran conspirators burn. After a long lull, the Inquisition began again in earnest.


David Marciniak said...

If I may characterize the blogosphere as a feast for the mind, these compositions of yours are like prosciutto-wrapped scallops in a rich mango barbecue sauce. I could stand at the table all day, brother...

cyurkanin said...

lol trying to wrap my mind around that combo, thanks man.