Snippet from Chapter 1 Remnants Book 3

Sliding into the bar seat I kept an eye on that small gathering of Trolls by the odd shadowy guy that lurked in the middle booth at the far back of the bar.  Least I thought it was a guy anyway.  Guy never moved, never spoke to anyone that I ever seen or heard.  Seemed to always have the same drink, and I never seen him drink it, hell guy never went to the bathroom while I was witness at least.  Even more creepy is the one thing I could see of his outfit due to them reflecting the neon lights from the sign above the bar, was the crest on his gloves that was identical to the one on the handle of my desert eagle. 

     Come to think of it, this was the first time I had seen anyone really near his booth.  Usually it was just him, sitting there alone.  I wasn’t sure if he was important yet, but the fact that he had some big rather well dressed looking trolls standing nearby that didn’t seem to like that my eyes kept wandering that way meant something to me.  I had a feeling they were watching me as much as I was watching them.  However, less they planned to come this way, I was content just to let them be as much “in the dark” about my identity and my business for being there as their apparent “client” was.

     The bar tender, who had been watching me since I walked in here, loomed over me as I took my place at the bar.  I made only brief eye contact with the large balding ork man, leaning my shoulders forward both my hands and forearms coming to rest on the bar, still keeping both the entrance at those trolls in my peripheral vision.  The large ork took a glance at the entrance then toward the back/bathroom area of the bar before turning his beady-eyed gaze back to the top of my head.
“Where’s ya crew?”  He spoke with a gravely rough voice, symptom of a large protruding set of tusk that jutted up and out from his lower jaw which was extended into a very severe under bite.
“Just me tonight.”  I responded briefly, without looking up.  I then moved my one hand to reveal a small crinkled stack of faded credits.  The meager remains of what money I had.

     Flashing money was the universal sign in this line of work you were here on business and you were ready to get down to it. 
“Whatchu here fo den?  If’n chu aint witchu crew?”  He responded with the same gravely rough broken slang that had come to grow accustomed to on any work night as he collected the remnants of my last pay check and quickly placed in into his dirty apron pocket, chiming “NO SALE” on the register just to make the drawer open to appear like I actually bought something.
“A beer and maybe some information.”  I responded again, cocking my head slightly up to look at him. 
“What kinda information ya look’n fer?”  The bar tender responded, sliding me a bottle from behind the counter.

     I caught the bottle as it slid to me and took a big long swig from it, the bitter half warm liquid inside was a comfort for the story I was going to have to tell.  It had been only maybe a month since Crystal had died, but the memory was still fresh as well as the feelings of loss still lingered deep inside of me.  But if I wanted to get to the bottom of this all I was going to have to suck it up and get over my feelings.
“You were here the night me and my crew were last in here right?”  The ork responded to my question with a bored “yep, usually here all da time at night…”
“Do you remember that guy my friend Crystal was talk’n with that night?  I noticed he ain’t here, happen to know where I could find him?”

     This time, I got his full attention.  He gave a studying glance from one end of the bar to the other before leaning down closer to me.  I looked up at him, I had that dangerous look in my eyes I tend to get when I set my mind to something.
“Whatchu be want’n wit him for?  Yer crew ain’t even witchu.”  He seemed reluctant to spill the information.  Not surprising, I had maybe enough to pay for one beer and possibly a shot of some top shelf liquor in that tiny faded wad of credits I gave him.  Hardly enough to buy any information, but I was hoping once her heard my story, he’d at least be willing to point me in a direction.

     “My friend is dead because of a guy he had come with us on that run.  Whole place went up in flames and the STAR was on that place way too fast.  The whole run had bad news written all over it and it maybe my fault for agree’n to go on it wit my team but Crystal never steered us wrong b’fore.  I wanna know what the fuck happened that she ended up dead!”  The ork rubbed his rough 5’oclock shadow for a moment, considering his options in this.  I had finished my beer and was staring at him with a determined look on my face.

     He slid another beer my way, which I grabbed but did not drink from, I just continued to peer at him through steeled eyes until finally he spoke.
“You’s be ask’n me for some expensive information little elf.  But yer creds are light.  However, I knew Crystal from a few years back yas see?  So I’m gonna does you a favor in her memory.”  Things were starting to make more sense now.  I knew this place wouldn’t normally be this receptive to two elves and a human girl.  Not unless there was something more going on in the back ground.  Just some more insight into the enigma that is…was Crystaleen Blue Blade.

     “She never mentioned knowing you.  Though I did find it rather odd as to why two elves and one human girl were able to walk in here without much more than a few glares; especially when this is a bar for an all ork and troll biker gang.  However, when we saw that fat greasy human Johnson that the three of us were gett’n our jobs from, I thought maybe you were a reformed gang member.  However, I’ve seen a couple orks and trolls com’n through still flying their colors.  Some things just ain’t add’n up if ya know what I’m say’n.”  The ork leaned closer to me and almost shoved the bottle of beer into my mouth as she shushed me with a threatening glare.
“Shutchu face elf!  You try’n to gets us both shot!?“  He looked around again to make sure no one over heard me blurting out my observations.

      I took a long drink from the bottle the ork had almost shoved down my throat and decided I’d let him say his piece.  I knew I was going to need to bring him more credits for him to start talking even though I had obviously poked a tiny peep hole in his operations here.
“Look, yous see dem trolls dressed up all fancy like back dere by dat hoomun dressed in all black in da booth?”  I was well aware of which person he was talking about, but I had hoped I was dead wrong.
“You talk’n bout that creepy human dude that sits back in the middle booth; I had noticed he had some heavy look’n security with him tonight.  What about him?” 
“He’s been look’n fer sum one ta does sum work fer him past couple nights.  Tells yous what; yous come back heres wit sum credits, and we’ll talk and I’ll tell yous what I knows.”

     “Fuck my life!”  I thought to myself, looking back at this creepy looking bastard sitting there in the shadows.  “Are you sure that guy’s even alive?  I have never seen him move.  Does he ever even drink what he orders?”  I responded to the ork bar tender’s request for me to speak to the man in black.  I really didn’t want to get near that guy again.  Last time I did it left a really uncomfortable feeling in me and then my best friend and lover died.
“Oh yeah, you betchu life, he’s more than alive.  Always be order’n the top shelf stuff.  Sits there all night then leaves.  Pays cash like  yous and yer crew.  Yous talk to him, getchu self some creds, then I tells yous whatchus wants ta know.”

    Looks like I didn’t have much of a choice in the matter.  I knew I was going to need disposable income if I was going to have any hopes of getting to the bottom of all of this.  Finishing my beer I set the bottle down on the bar and rose to my feet.
“Alright man, I’ll go do this thing here, but you better be ready to answer my questions when I get done!”   It was only a few steps till I was standing before two of the biggest and most annoyed looking Trolls I’ve ever been in front of.  The two huge men leered down and me and snorted.  I was not about to be intimidated or pushed around so I just sneered back at them.  “Didn’t know Magilla Gorilla and Grape Ape had two ugly twin babies…”

     The two big troll uncross their arms and cracked their huge knuckles at me.  I could already see even in this light that they had cyber ware implants and if these guys hit me I was going to be collecting the pieces of myself from all over this bar.  However, if I showed them just how close to pissing myself scared I was of them, they’d just hit me anyway.  So I opened my coat to show off my own big guns.  “No wonder you sit here every night not gett’n much accomplished.  You actually pay these two fucking baboons for protection?  If their breath or their ugly mugs don’t scare away your potential workers their complete lack of people skills will do the rest; the hell you feed’n these things, old diapers?”

     I looked around between the two trolls to try and get a glimpse of the man sitting in the dark, again he didn’t appear to have moved.  Not even so much as a shift in body posture at my comments toward his thugs.  “Or you just feed them all your clients?”  I was about to reach for my guns as the two trolls shifted their posture suddenly when I heard a rather suave demure male voice respond to my taunting.  “And it is a wonder you lived this long Raven Destiny.”  The trolls stepped to the side, their shift in posture was them trying not to smack their heads against the small over-hang and the lighting that hung over the booth that man was sitting at.
“How the hell do you know who I am?!”  My eyes went wide, and now I knew the two us having the same crests was no damn coincidence.  This guy knew me, and I wanted to know how.

     He motioned me to sit across from in in a very gentlemanly manner.  He was obviously a business man, and he looked corporate.  All that complete with the fact this guy knew my name and had the same crest on his gloves as I had on my desert eagle made me twitchy and uneasy at best.  “I have been keeping an eye on you since you surfaced here in New Seattle two years ago.  You’re not as good at covering your tracks as you might think you are Ms. Destiny.”
“Raven.”  I responded flatly.
“I beg your pardon miss?”  The shadowy male figured inquired, hands clasped and fingered laced through one another across from me.
“My name is Raven.  Not Ms. Destiny!  I aint no damn corp worker or an exec!  Don’t give me a title cause I sure as hell don’t want one!”  I responded, staring at the figure across from me.   

     Even with my enhanced vision, I couldn’t really get a good look at his face.  He wore a fancy fedora style hat that was tipped low over his eyes and nose.  I could only see his mouth and teeth and he wore the most calming and welcoming smile on his face I had ever seen of anyone in this city.  It was even more reason for me NOT to trust him!  The rule of the shadows is, never trust a smiling Johnson, and this guy was smiling way too much for my liking.   “Bar tender says you’re looking for someone to do some work for you?”  I questioned just how valid any of this was at the moment.
“Indeed I am miss Raven, indeed I am.   But the look on your face shows me you have trust issues and questions, quite a number of them.  Like why did the lovely miss Crystaleen Blue Blade have to die on a run that you were not supposed to walk away from?”

     My eyes went wide and felt my vision tunnel in on this guy’s twisted little smile.  I felt my heart rate rise and every muscle in my body went tense I reached for my gun but the Johnson in front of me finally moved, lifting his hand up, palm facing me as he spoke suddenly.  “Oh I wouldn’t do that if I were you miss Raven.  You see, at this exact moment, I am the only one that is keeping you alive.  If you kill me, you won’t leave this place alive!”  I looked around, and realized, every ork and troll in that bar had their attention firmly fixed on me, including the mage by the bar, which suddenly gained a strong competence in magic.  “You’ve been playing a dangerous game Raven,” the gentleman lurking in the shadows before me continued, keeping his hand raised, that right now being the only thing keeping everyone from going after me.  “One which you have been an unwilling and unwitty pawn in…until now!”


~ by shad0wrav3n2014 on June 4, 2013.

One Response to “Snippet from Chapter 1 Remnants Book 3”

  1. […] Snippet from Chapter 1 Remnants Book 3. […]

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