Florentino with Artemio Fiazza

Artemio Fiazza, the Literary Lion

He was born to be a literary genius. Even when his house burnt down and his property was destroyed, he was still a literary genius. He was such a literary genius that even as a kid he stole books from other people and was scolded and paddled for reciting romantic poetry to a nun who taught his lessons. Anyways, he was always a literary genius… [src]

Believe it or not, Artemio was once considered among the greats of literary-philosophical genius.

After his house was burnt down, he leaned on the bottle and nothing else. Eileen is the only one who worries about him, but Artemio angrily brushes off such care and demands more to drink. [src]

Streets of Velia

One day, Florentino is out for a stroll by Velia when he saw an old man getting drunk at the side of the road… in broad daylight… with carriages going through the busy streets.

Who’s that guy? Florentino thought. I’ve never seen him before.

Florentino approaches the old man.

“Hello there, pardon me but I think you’re getting too drunk too early… Have you considered-“

“Go away… Ooop…” the Old Man said while swaying side by side towards the middle of the road.

“Woah there!” Florentino moves the old man to the safe side of the road.

“That was… that was close… I need to have another drink.”

“No… you don’t… Have you ate breakfast anyway?”

“Nope!” the Old Man said proudly. “I’m gonna booze before breakfast. I’m gonna live like today is my last!”

The Old Man then proceeds on drinking the alcohol from the bottle he is holding.

This poor old man… Florentino thought.

“*Hic* Urgh… My. My drink’s gone…” the old man said as he looks at the empty bottle, “I was just about to feel better… Huh? Hey… What’re ya lookin’ at?”

“You know what? How about I get you something to eat?”

“Why, are ya goin’ to get me some drink?” the Old Man is now lively.

“No, I’m going to get you-“

“That’d be a relief! Go to Islin at the inn. Tell her I’ll pay next time!”

“I’m not going to get you another drink… oh, nevermind,” Florentino starts walking to the inn. “I’m going to get you something to eat!”

Lunar Halo Inn

Florentino Ibarra and David Finto in a Discussion

Inside Lunar Halo Inn, there are a bunch of adventurers that hail from different places, from Calpheon to Valencia.

The inn is lively as ever, a bard playing his lute and sings along the tune, the other patrons singing and dancing, and some adventurers plotting their next adventure.

Florentino went straight to the counter where David Finto is currently cooking.

“David Finto, my friend!” Florentino exclaimed as he leans over the counter. “How are you?”

“What do you want, Florentino?” David Finto said as he chops a large portion of meat. “Can’t you see I’m busy?”

“Well, regardless. You, my friend, owe me some silvers for that shipment of the highest quality ingredients that are to be delivered in a short amount of time.”

“Oh… right…” David Finto suddenly stops chopping meat, “I still don’t have the silver to pay you for-“

“That’s the thing, my friend. You owe me a few silvers for the service I’ve rendered.”

People in the inn are now looking at them.

“Look… I don’t want any trouble, I-“

“My friend, there’s another way for you to pay me.”

“I’m listening…” David Finto leans forward. “What do you have in mind?”

“You’ll cook me breakfast, fit for a king.”

“Are you serious right now?”

“Yes…”

“Alright…?” David Finto shrugs. “If that’s what you want that will pay my debt…”

“And I’ll not be eating here, I’ll take it with me.”

“Um… okay…?” David Finto then brought out more ingredients from the shelves. “I’ll call for you when your order’s done…”

“Thank you, my friend,” Florentino then walks towards the bench and sits down.

Regarding Artemio Fiazza

Florentino Ibarra and Islin Bartali in a Discussion

A few moments later, Islin Bartali entered the inn and saw Florentino.

“Madam Bartali!” Florentino said as he approached Islin Bartali then bowed, this caught Islin Bartali by surprise, “I’m honored to see you.”

I’m honored to see you, Florentino. To what do I owe the honor of having you here at my inn?”

“Oh, nothing of much importance, madam, I just have a few businesses to attend to with David Finto.”

“Regarding what?” Islin Bartali then skims through the notes she has with her, “I’m pretty sure if it’s business with David Finto, then I have records of it here.”

“I assure you, madam, it’s for a good cause… and to finally pay for his debt with me from our previous dealings.”

“He has a debt to pay!?” Islin Bartali went through the notes again, this time to read every detail. “I’m sorry, but I don’t recall that we have dealings with you.”

“Pardon me, madam,” Florentino said sincerely, “It’s a private dealing with David Finto to get a good supply of shipment with the highest quality ingredients… he didn’t want to let you down.”

“Why am I not informed of this?”

“It was on short notice, madam.”

“Alright, what does David Finto have to do to pay his debt?”

“A simple task,” Florentino smiled, “To cook me breakfast fit for a king.”

“Just that…? Just to cook you breakfast fit for a king?”

“Oh, but it’s not for me. It’s for the old man outside, who’s drunk in the middle of the day that hasn’t eaten breakfast yet. He said ‘I’m gonna booze before breakfast.'”

A Revelation

“Drunken old man?” Islin Bartali said, “You mean Artemio Fiazza? Why is someone like you fetching stuff for that drunkard?”

“Artemio Fiazza!?” Florentino exclaimed, “That drunken old man is the Artemio Fiazza, one of the greats of literary-philosophical genius?”

“Yes…”

“I’m sorry for my outburst, madam, but how did he turn to such a state?”

“Well… after his house was burnt down, he leaned on the bottle and nothing else…”

“What caused the fire?”

“I don’t know exactly, but for him to have all he has own to burn to ash… I understand his pitiful situation, but it doesn’t justify his habit, right?”

“Agree…”

A few moments later, David Finto called Florentino regarding his order, as a result, his debt is now paid.

The Drunk Literary Genius

Florentino Ibarra and Artemio Fiazza

Florentino left Lunar Halo Inn and went straight to Artemio Fiazza, now laying on the ground.

“Sir Fiazza…” Florentino said calmly, “I’m back and with food…”

Artemio’s asleep, Florentino tries to wake him up.

A moment later, Artemio got up while shouting at Florentino.

“What in hell are you doing!? Can’t you see I’m sleeping here!?”

“I’m sorry, but I brought you food, how about you eat first, you haven’t eaten breakfast yet, right?”

“Oh, you’re the one from earlier! So… did you brought me something to drink…?”

“No… but I got you-“

“You’re useless! I gave you a simple task!”

“You know,” Florentino said as he gave the food to Artemio, “You could just work for… never mind… here…”

“What about my drink?”

Florentino sighs and thinks for a moment then looks around.

“Fine… here…” Florentino then took out a metal hip flask from his leather belt bag and gave it to Artemio. “Please, lay off the alcohol in the future.”

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