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CERES A cop walks into a bar and says...

Discussion in 'Private Roleplay' started by Lukas Forgrave, Jan 30, 2018.

  1. Lukas Forgrave

    Lukas Forgrave Scourge of the Water Pipes

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    I'll take a shot. Rowm.

    One of many named bars in the Medina that was flavored to appeal to the rare belter desire to travel and see the worlds.w Or at least, experience it on the belt. Wellwalla planning, for all intents and purposes.

    Strobes hung low on the walls, painting the concrete fixtures with orange tones and a blue underlay. The medicinal and astringent tones of the air were replaced with synthesized notes, stimulating the alien notions of palm trees with light undertones of smog. Soon it would be night time and the place would shift dark, blue LED bulbs shimmering like stars across the multilevel ceiling.

    It called itself the belter version of Dubai. And from what Luka could tell, it got close. The silhouettes of skyscrapers dazzled in all their holographic brilliance in the background of the long chrome bar. Hologram fountains sent trails of light across the countertop, emulating the excess water resources in the desert city. And there was the slightest notion of a breeze, keeping the club cool and comfortable.

    The Blue Oasis. A happy place, as happy as one could hope when they weren't looking to chase a bender. But Luka had the bruised face of a man that was bubbling with anger and he was eyeing the grit and grime. Because Sunday, the day of rest, had been far from restful. And nowhere in Ceres could slip from the underbelly that adhered it to the hollowed out asteroid.

    Ah pomang, ya got the glass jaw. Caught cold, eh?” The dark-skinned bartender smiled, skinny bones ever apparent, and Luka feigned a smile while gripping the shot.

    I wish. Keep ‘em coming.” He didn't have a glass jaw and he hadn't gone out quick. Every punch and kick was cemented in his mind. And he simmered just thinking about it.

    @CFB9
     
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  2. CFB9

    CFB9 505

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    Something moves in the back of the bar. A pair of pale orbs glints in the shadows under the blinking holo of a white beach and lapping waves. Salt-scented air wafts down from the vents, as if to deepen the immersion – it’s always irritated the man, however.

    Then again, he hates everything in this bar. A cheap illusion, built to cheat the poor, depressed Belters out of their script.

    That’s his business.

    Speaking of – his business walks in through the front door, looking every bit as if someone’d dragged him under an accelerating ship. Wouldn’t be the first time a dock operator got greased to look the other way as a gang took some sorry sod for a yáterashritt.

    The man rises from his seat, slides through the lazy afternoon crowd, and folds himself onto a barstool next to the zákomang.

    His smile is easy, his eyes are cold. “Wamang mogut fo vedi-fong fo to,” he speaks, signing for a glass of owkwa.

    @Lukas Forgrave
     
    #2 CFB9, Jan 31, 2018
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2018
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  3. Lukas Forgrave

    Lukas Forgrave Scourge of the Water Pipes

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    A man sat next to Luka, speaking a full phrase of creole. His gait, height, and physiology would have been enough to indicate that he was belta. The thick accent and diction was icing on the cake.

    Looking around, Luka noted that the crowd was tall. Not an earther in sight.

    Is that so?” He stated as he looked across the bar. This wasn't the sort of place he would expected a proposition. Professional or otherwise.

    He finished the shot and tapped the glass, indicating he'd need another serving. And he ran his hand over his mouth, clear irritation obvious.

    @CFB9
     
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  4. CFB9

    CFB9 505

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    Lips stretch over cybernetics as he takes the proffered glass with a soft ‘taki’. Owkwa costs a pretty penny on Sirish – could buy yourself some fine rowm for less script. But the man doesn’t drink on the job, just as he doesn’t fuck on the job.

    Business is business.

    “Im bi,” he intones, slowly. “It is.” Pomang for the zákomang. They each bear their own accent like a neon sign. The man, for one, doesn’t care. Money is the same no matter the hand that holds it.

    “Mi pensa…” he continues at that same lazy pace, dragging his pale gaze from the drink to the cop, “mi pensa you have walowda gold in that glass jaw of yours.”

    He drawls the English over metal teeth, and it comes out sharp – gutter German’s left its bootprint all over his tongue.

    @Lukas Forgrave
     
    #4 CFB9, Jan 31, 2018
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2018
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  5. Lukas Forgrave

    Lukas Forgrave Scourge of the Water Pipes

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    He understood belta, he just didn't speak it in full. It felt like turning a dialect totally into a language and largely for the sake of sounding different. It was an odd thing for him to hear it in such thick resonance, even from a clear multi gen beltalowda.

    Luka took aadeep breath at the mention of gold. Either it was a suggestion that he knew something or it was a reference to the Bough. With the way the man was speaking, Luka assumed the latter.

    "...from a man with a jaw like that..." Face turned and he met the beltas gaze. Cerulean blue but hardly as striking as the prosthetics this stranger had. Quite a pair, to go with that jaw and teeth. He only wondered what other implants the man had.

    Luka didn't like games. And he didn't like that this man knew things. Information was power and the belta had more of it. "You looking for something here...?" He took a sip of the rum, watching as the lights dimmed and the starry night appeared above.
     
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  6. CFB9

    CFB9 505

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    A jaw like that is the first thing anyone notices about him, and the man likes it that way. It keeps their attention from other things. The focus of humans is a fleeting thing, easily distracted by pretty, shiny things.

    He blinks, two bright lights extinguished for a moment from the sky. They too are artificial, just like the stars that begin to dot the darkness above them. They whole day-night cycle of Sirish is a consolation. Not for the Beltas, but for the inya like the one banging his chest right now.

    Black teeth, black smile – the gesture is invisible in the shadows.

    “I’m looking at you, kéya?” He turns to the bartender and switches to full Lang Belta in the same breath. “Mi péye fo kopeng mi xiya, ke?”

    The barkeep shrugs. “Fosho.”

    Yen jingle on the counter next to the empty glass, and the man slides off the stool like owkwa. He says nothing more, but taps the cop’s shoulder instead. Belta signals, as common as words out here. No sound kuku.

    Kom wit mi.

    The signs work wonders in crowds full of suspect ears, and this crowd is littered with Bough lackeys. A couple of them he knows – a couple of them are greased to keep their mouth shut. But the rest are not, and he would rather keep his Yen to himself.

    And what better way for two men to talk than in the can? With those pretty eyes and sashaying hips, nobody looks at them twice.
     
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  7. Lukas Forgrave

    Lukas Forgrave Scourge of the Water Pipes

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    He knew this game well. The sort that led to a relationship. And not necessarily the kind that involved legitimate interaction. A relationship of words, initiated by the show of favor and the clink of currency.

    This was either something of value or something that would piss him off. While he preferred the latter at this stage, he appreciated the fact that he could benefit from a new friend. Cause as it stood, he was running out of them.

    Not having had quite enough to drink, he lamented the tap on the shoulder and the the fact that he might not be drinking again for a while. I’m looking at you.

    He moved through the crowd of lanky beltalowda, some bough and some loca. A good deal of blade boys, low-level grunts that either asked for the purse or cut the people who didn't toss it. No one of true true position would be found in a place like this. Weaving his way through the crowd, they entered the group urinal.

    A trough filled with sanitary gel, leading to the recyclers beneath the tiling. One man was relieving himself but once he saw the two enter, he finished up his business and left quickly.

    Taki...for the rowm.” This was how things worked.
     
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  8. CFB9

    CFB9 505

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    There’s a couple flickering strobes in the narrow toilet, and the man is glad for his cybernetics. The difference in lighting would’ve blinded human eyes – he just affords a long, unblinking gaze to the sole other guy in the room.

    A zipper goes up quick. Didn’t even shake off, if he’d seen it right, and the man always sees it right.

    “Im ta nating,” he waves it off and produces a thin roll of smokes out of an inner pocket. With a lit cigarette between his teeth, he extends the offer to the cop. “You look lik you need it, kopeng.”

    The man strolls over to a narrow shelf and leans his back against the wall. Growing up in a box makes a creature fond of closed spaces. What use has a Belta for an open sky?

    He burns in silence, enjoying the hiss and roll of smoke through his lungs. Finally – “What’d you du to piss Benton off dat bad, zákomang? Steal his girl?”
     
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  9. Lukas Forgrave

    Lukas Forgrave Scourge of the Water Pipes

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    He took the cigarette, despite not being very keen on the act - what with the rationing of air. But with the way the air smelled and tasted, maybe he prefered a bit of smoke to the astringency of modified chlorine and bleach cleaners. All part of the recycler system.

    Taking a puff, he smirked at the question. The irony of it was that it was exactly the opposite. But the take was far more long lasting than the question implied. A case of theft that could never be undone.

    He caught the flicker of the strobes above, the sound of music outside was muffled but ever present. He wondered if bathrooms in Dubai looked like this, or if they shined with chrome and fountains of water - like the bar outside.

    I stuck my nose where it didn't belong…” His tone oozed with sarcasm. When it came to criminal acts, he hated the idea of bureaucracy - both shareholder and local gang driven. Large scale crime had the decency of being organized, but it still warranted his attention. “Messing with a man's script has a way of…riling them up.It went far deeper than that.

    He paused. "What makes you so interested in my plight?" He indicated with the smoking cherry towards the damage on his face.
     
    #9 Lukas Forgrave, Jan 31, 2018
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2018
  10. CFB9

    CFB9 505

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    “Gut we to get your nose broken, kopeng,” he speaks from behind the veil of blue smoke. Pale eyes track its curling progress up towards the vent. He can distinguish every little swirl of air with painful resolution; watch the motes of air and ash dance with each other before they’re sucked in by the air recycling system.

    The man shrugs. Takes another deep drag, and puffs it out like a bull. He’d never had his nose broken, he realizes with an idle smile. Chews on that word a bit – plight.

    Takes him longer than he’d like to remember what it means. “Keradzhang?” he licks his lips, and grins. “Because I am gonya steal his girl.”

    It is not the truth. But it’s not a complete lie either, because this zákomang looks half-competent, and that sort knows how to sniff out bullshit like belówtkoyo. What’s the term the inya use? Need-to-know?

    “Mi pensa you and mi kang… wowk together.” Another inya term floats to his mind. “One hand wash the other, kéya?”
     
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  11. Lukas Forgrave

    Lukas Forgrave Scourge of the Water Pipes

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    Was his nose broken? He hadn't the chance to check it yet. That was a matter for home and all the mirrors needed to pat himself down for various wounds. Cuts, scrapes, bruises, the works. Sepsis was an easy thing to handle if he just avoided it altogether. But the belta was right, it was probably a good way to get the job done.

    That's a hornet’s nest. He's not a fan of things being taken from him, even when they aren't his.” Luka wasn't sure if this man was referring to Levi or one of the other various women that Benton assumed claim over. But Benton had always been that way, for as long as Luka had known him.

    Crossing his arms, he leaned heavily against the sterile foam basin. He very much doubted it distributed water for cleaning, not unless there was a slot for chips. Looking up towards the ceiling, he took a breath of smoke and exhaled from the corner of his mouth.

    Ceres is full of people that are willing to…go toe to toe for the proper plying. What makes you so special?” This man knew something, knew the proper timing to approach an officer just after he got laid out by a bough boy and local helix mole. And Luka wanted to know what he was capable of.
     
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  12. CFB9

    CFB9 505

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    “Kéya?”

    He quirks a curious brow, though the expression is likely lost behind another plume of smoke. It’s easier than he expected, going in. The zákomeng is already showing his cards; letting precious bits of data slip from his tongue.

    Unless there’s two of them playing this game, of course. The man tilts his head aside and ashes the cigarette.

    “Mi na pensa mi special, pomang.” He speaks the last word without the bite typical of Belters. It’s better than saying Forgrave, because then it’d be him showing his hand. He’s been sitting at this table too long to make a rookie mistake like that.

    “You na know mi. Mo important, Benton na know mi eixer.” He twirls his hand through the smoke, paints figures with the cherry tip. A true belta, speaking with his hands.

    “Im da animal, kopeng. Imim du hunt in patterns, kéya? Benton knows your patterns, and im gives you da plight.”
     
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  13. Lukas Forgrave

    Lukas Forgrave Scourge of the Water Pipes

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    Luka didn't narrow his gaze. Instead, his expression remained as emotionless as hard steel. He was irritated and frustrated and this belta was speaking in circles. Animals, patterns, none of it really mattered. Because it was more than just Benton.

    It was the Mole.

    It was the Bough.

    It was the organized criminal infrastructure that propped the man up.

    It was everything that was stacked against doing small good for the sake of saving things considered small. It was the child that was swept up into human trafficking, it was the rape rings and the way the Helix turned a blind eye, it was the way exchange of currency could buy anything. Currency, in whatever form, propped the Loca Griega and Dos Arriagas and the Golden Bough up. Made them insurmountable.

    Luka pushed away from the sink and approached the stranger. He was sure, at this point, that he knew the detectives name. But he wasn't being forthcoming with it, or with any of the information he had. Turning the cigarette over, Luka pressed the burning end against his palm and rubbed into the heated edge went out. He then moved to hand the butt to his new kopeng.

    "How would you know of Benton's knowledge towards my patterns? After all, I'm just a regular pomang."
     
    #13 Lukas Forgrave, Feb 1, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2018
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  14. CFB9

    CFB9 505

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    His laugh is the rattle of cheap air-filters in the Medina.

    “Mi na said you bi regular, kopeng.” Smoke crawls out between his teeth. “If you bi regular, milowda wouldna ando showxa, kéya?” He motions between them with his cigarette, easily staring down the tall pomang. Belta perks.

    There’s a moment of hesitation – though if real or fabricated, it’s impossible to tell – and then the man reaches up with his free hand. It’s a slow enough motion that the zákomang could easily duck out of the way if he wanted. He runs his fingers across coarse stubble, leaning in to obscure a whispering mouth behind the high collar of his coat.

    “Mi know many ting, kopeng. Lik dat xitim, you mogut fo play along wit mi, detektif.”

    In the next moment, the door to the can swings open and hits the wall with a loud bang. Two Bough gorillas stomp inside in the wake of the noise, sneering grins and beady eyes scanning the toilet.

    Looking for someone?
     
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  15. Lukas Forgrave

    Lukas Forgrave Scourge of the Water Pipes

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    Perks of his condition. Or perhaps it was stupidity. He never ducked, he never dodged. The scars across his torso, back, thighs and arms would provide proof of that. His face would provide even more. There was a rugged, if not haggard, face that played canvas for his blue eyes - but it was hard to tell with the bruise on his cheek and the nose with the questionable injury.

    Not moving as the Belta leaned in, Luka laughed at the comment. He wondered what he knew because he knew something.

    "I can't play with someone if I don't know who they are."

    The door cracked open and Luka didn't flinch, he just shifted - to block their view of the Belta that was leaning towards him. He could tell by the way the door cracked open and the way the breathers moved in, like a pack of hot and heavy blade boys. Thrilled at the idea of some action. He wasn't sure if he saw the movement through the thralls of the club but now that they were here, he had no doubt that Benton or Sikes was following him. Luka suddenly found himself nostalgic for the passing days, where the schism of the Bough kept them focused on fighting each other instead of the somewhat clean cops.

    Luka withdrew a pistol from the small of his back, kept it aimed to the floor. "Boys...tonight's a bad night for an accident." I'm fucking busy. And this bathroom is occupied.

    Star Helix had a bad reputation and Luka didn't mind playing to it when it served him. And it did. With hands held up and angry eyes, they backed out slowly and let the door swing back in. Luka took a deep breath and put his attention back to the man in front of him. "They probably didn't see your face..." He paused. "But we probably don't have long before they're back. I doubt plastic bullets and this small iron will scare them off for long."
     
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  16. CFB9

    CFB9 505

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    He knew going in it was a zákomang he was dealing with, but it’s always good to see what exactly a koyo is packing on Sirish. Some cops carry more than Helix-issued gear.

    Nastier túngeting.

    Not Forgrave, though.

    The man grins as the pair of enforcers realize they’re outgunned. His breath is warm as he draws back with a lingering chuckle. His eyes are pale. They belie the smile on his lips as he wraps them around a cigarette.

    Puffs out a breath.

    “Relax, golden jaw.” He pats his shoulder – dusts off gray concrete chips. Nice night on the docks, was it?

    “Mi knowa better pelesh. Kom.” With a wink he slithers past the broad pomang. The door swings the other way and they step into the heat of the throng again. Rowm has flown in their brief absence – the crowd is more rowdy than before. Louder, too.

    Gut.

    A lazy shrug of his shoulder shakes a short shiv into his palm, and he grips it light; grips it like he knows how to use it.

    He keeps an eye on the cameras as he leads Forgrave through the swaying Beltas. Nating so far, but the weather on Sirish changes fast. Summer storms that can leave a beratna bleeding out on the sidewalk before you can say ‘duck’.

    The man is faster. He hangs back a step, breaks the rhythm to utter a warning in that sotto voice. His mechanical tone cuts through the din of the crowd.

    Serí koyos. Wang behind, wang from kowl side."

    Soon, so will his shetéxeting.
     
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  17. Lukas Forgrave

    Lukas Forgrave Scourge of the Water Pipes

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    Everyone always assumed that Luka carried one piece of gear. That assumption was the sort that might get them killed. Beyond the standard plastic shooter that sat at the small of his back, he carried a classic pistol with metal munitions. More reliable, heavier, subject to piercing a hull, and kicked like a son of a bitch. But when ammo was low, pistol whipping was always an option.

    Luka watched as the man moved by him, referring to him and the Golden Bough again. Following him out of the bathroom, the club was dark now and filled with lively music. Portions were quarantined for dancing and portions were quarantined for drinking. And the two were now overlapping, spilling and thumping against the bar.

    Just as the belta stopped, Luka stopped in turn and slowed the pace. Listening to the metallic tone, he holsterd the pistol and took a deep breath, leaning in close with a hand against the man's back. The sort that played to the illusion of something more. “Were not fighting them in here.


    The shiv wasn't missed, flicking shimmers of light against the floor. Tugging at the belta's sweatshirt, Luka turned and made a straight shot for a door that stood next to the bar. Going through there, an alleyway would take them out to the main thoroughfare. They could catch a cart, find a better or darker part of town. He just had to get the belta through that door.
     
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  18. CFB9

    CFB9 505

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    The man likes dancing in the dark, but he is wiser than that. Now. It wasn’t always like that. The foolishness of youth marks his body as much as gang colors and tatuyingi.

    “Lead da we, beratna,” he says, just because he can. But their pace is out of place, and one of the thugs isn’t as stupid as he looks. The man watches his face darken with recognition. He tries to call his buddies over but the music is too loud, and so he dashes forward.

    Alone.

    He hasn’t yet noticed that the detective is holding onto the man. A belówtkoyo through and through, and Forgrave is the face he’s after.

    A brief shower of sparks falls somewhere in the back of the club. It falls from a place where sparks shouldn’t be falling from, but it’s already too late. The lights are out, and so is the unlikely pair – it’s the Belta’s turn to tug the pomang along.

    “Where to xitim, bosmang?” His voice promises laughter, but his smoke-filled lungs can’t make good on it. Still he chuckles, a mechanical wheeze that filters through his metal teeth. Pale finds blue.

    And they say there’s no owkwa on Mars.
     
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  19. Lukas Forgrave

    Lukas Forgrave Scourge of the Water Pipes

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    He looked over his shoulder as the lights cut out, sparks of fire and electricity arcing out before the final curtains fall. And as the door opened, he did something unusual. He welcomed the outside air, welcomed the musk of chemical and cleaners and the air of a million breathers.

    The door shut behind them and they kept their pace. He wasn't sure what the Bough was up to but chasing down a cop in a fairly vanilla club was a bold move. Even for Sikes and Benton.

    Oh, I'm sure we can find something.” The alleyway came to a tee at a main thoroughfare and the roads were busy, even for night time. Night time, an odd concept, for a place that hated other places for their dependence on the sun.


    Looking over his shoulder in response to the sound of shoes on concrete, he sighed as their tail was indeed three headed. If they take a right, they bar hop down the main lane. They take a left, and the world turns colorful and neon, just like the people that swelled the streets to max capacity.

    Luka came to a stop and thought for a moment, flashing a thoughtless smirk towards his traveling companion. Taking a left, the decision was made, as he moved to assimilate into the moving crowd.
     
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  20. CFB9

    CFB9 505

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    With a few blink commands, the man dispels the camera feed of the Blue Oasis and slides his terminal out of his other sleeve. It’s smaller than usual, and fits neatly into the nook of his palm. He doesn’t look down, though – the screen projects directly onto his eyes, which is pretty damn useful in a crowd.

    And boy, are they in a crowd.

    If the man is amused by Forgrave’s choice, he doesn’t show it. Instead his pale gaze flits between code and Beltas shouldering their way past them. His face tightens.

    “Imalowda still wit milowda,” he hisses, glued to the detective’s side. In this part of Medina, two men leaning real close-like melt right into the background. He could swear that a few bystanders even wink at them, but they’re already rushing on.

    No time to fish for imfomashun. Deya imbobo rowm,” he starts, and remembers. Curses. “There bi a bar, tu streets down. Mi got wa koyo de. And da koyo got, eh… clothes, pochuye?” It’s not quite the right word, but the man isn’t much for running and talking.

    And right now, they have to run.

    “Go, mang. Go, he says and wrenches the zákomang into a side alley. There’s Bough on their heels, and they ain’t happy.
     
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