"I wager that I could lay you out," McKinley said, soaking his beard and the bar top with another mouthful of ale.
"You couldn't lay out a corpse, even with the help of your rum-ruined uncles," Birschon countered.
McKinley's eyes opened wide and bobbed in the ocean of ale swimming behind them. His beard quivered, shaking flecks of frothy ale from it like a dog that had escaped from its bath. Hands clenched around his mug of courage, McKinley stood and pressed his stomach against Birschon's elbow as Birschon kept his gaze lowered into his ale.
"You're a newcomer to this town, so I'll let you retract that remark. Lowell, remember what happened at the last country fair?"
"They were picking Hunter's teeth out of the grass for weeks!" shouted one of the men who were eager for a fight to break the monotony of the evening.
"Hunter hated limes and a stiff breeze would've finished what scurvy started," Birschon said. "Sit down, friend, you'll not get anywhere with me."
A rumble began in McKinley's stomach, jiggling it against Birschon's arm, and the rumble traveled upwards like a volcano until a tremendous belch knocked Birschon's hat to the ground.
"My mam made that for me before I left home, and I'd expect you to treat it with respect," Birschon said as he bent down to pick it up.
"I'll fetch another for you when I see her," McKinley said with a grin.
"I'm afraid it's a one-way trip to where she is now," Birschon said, putting his hat on his head and carrying the stool that he'd been sitting on with him as he rose. He smashed McKinley beneath the chin with the edge of the seat and McKinley flew through the air and into the crowd. A brawl began.
Above the din rose a high-pitched scream, unusual for the boisterous grunts typical of the bar. The tempest slowed to a few gentle zephyrs as Birschon dove between the men towards the source of the exclamation. There, on the ground, was someone's head and their headless corpse, still swinging. The eyes on the head blinked, noticed what had happened, and then the body collapsed.
"A spy from the necromancers!" Birschon said, "I'd heard there was one in town. They always send the fresh corpses. There's no better way to find 'em then to get 'em in a brawl, they always lose their heads!"
The Moral: up to ninety percent of tavern patrons are lousy stereotypes of tavern patrons