Tiny Troubles

Tiny Troubles

Postby Suede » Tue Sep 03, 2013 11:19 am

It was going to be one of those days, I could tell. I didn't make the effort to show up at the constabulary these days. I never had to begin with, but now I really didn't. It was more effort, lots of effort to get nowhere. I'd seen what that sort of effort could get you. A sun-up to sundown job, little pay, and a whole lot of hurt.

I'd had enough hurt in my days. So one morning I'd just stopped calling myself Corporal Seasons and went back to something simpler. There were still people in this Amasynian asshole that could use some help. The sort they couldn't expect to get from those swain, or the people working for them.

I didn't want to help them, either, but they'd always seemed to find me. This time was no different. I had been minding my own on a stack of wood outside the tanner's, trying to convince some stray dog that I was worth getting to know. She wasn't biting, though. It was another bitch that did.

When she walked into my view I knew she was trouble, the leggy sort of trouble that wore her clothes to make sure you knew it. It was obvious she was a Teahouse girl with those smokey eyes that tried to look innocent, and those cherry lips that smiled at you as if she knew you'd do whatever she wanted.

Boy did I want to at the promises her hips kept making.

I mostly kept my eyes down, hoping she'd go right by me, but Lady Luck wasn't having it. A pair of silk slippers and more frills than I thought was decent appeared in front of me. I had to say something. I tossed aside the last of my breakfast, into the alley after that stray and glanced up at her.

"You're blocking my view." She didn't seem pleased at the bland tone, or the blander expression, and she shifted her weight to show me just a little more ankle. I wasn't taking the bait.

When her lips parted I already knew the sort of voice she'd have, that smooth sort that wrapped around your mind like a snake. Oh, this dame wouldn't be good for me.

"I heard you do work sometimes, the kind other folks tend to avoid."

Well, someone had been talking. I didn't like anyone knowing what my free time entailed, or how I made a living. I'd have to find the squealer later. "I need to pay the rent, just like anyone else." Say little, keep them talking instead.

"I need you to find someone, I'm willing to pay." And she was dangling a pouch that jingled in just the right way before my eyes. Damn.

"I'm not a dog, or a lawman. You should try up the street. Find someone more your sort." I shifted my feet and made to stand, but her hand was on my shoulder and holding me down. I gave her a look and glanced that way.

"It's a friend, she hasn't been around lately."
Her face had changed, not longer playing her game of temptation, she seemed worried. I didn't buy it. Maybe it was true, but if she was that worried she could have had a lot more folks than just me doing her dirty work for her. I'd been about to tell her as much, but she kept talking. "She's still young, and her brother never liked her much. He got angry when I asked about her, too... I need to know she's okay... please?"

Ah hell, she used that word, and I'm a bit of a sucker. I let out a sigh of resignation and took the pouch from her hand while I pushed her arm off my shoulder so I could stand. Now that I could look down on her I realized just how far... down, I could see. I looked away before my face turned red, down the still quiet street. "Where'd you see her last?"

"Outside of town, near the Rememdium. Than--" I didn't let her finish. I didn't want her thanks, I didn't want to get involved with her anymore than I had to. Just offering to check things out, and that's all I'd agree to right now, was enough to get me in trouble if this turned out as bad as I worried it might. I grabbed my coat up from where I left it and started down the street, leaving the girl behind. That other damn stray was following me, though.
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Re: Tiny Troubles

Postby Suede » Fri Sep 06, 2013 9:43 am

They say that a guy who wants to look tough should be smoking something. Pipe, cigar, a rolled bit of tobacco. But I didn't smoke, so it really just made me look like an asshole. So I chewed straw, so I didn't open my big mouth when I should be listening. It was easy to find some to shove in your mouth, and people thought you were a no brain farmer for it. I couldn't argue with the statements about my intelligence considering where I was, but it was useful to let people think I just plowed a field.

I'd gone over to the Rememdium after stopping to make most of the pouch disappear. The doctor hadn't been particularly forthcoming, rambling on about patient privacy and how he'd tell me nothing. Dumb ass told me that at least one of the folk I was looking for had been around just by refusing to say anything. I spent some time after letting him chase me off just walking the grounds. Didn't find a damn thing. Didn't really surprise me. I was just killing time anyways.

Some of the volunteers eventually stepped out for lunch and I fell into step with a pair of dressed for a field tent more than a local clinic. They weren't too keep on my being around at first until I turned on the charm. Then they had -really- not wanted me around, so they answered the questions I had quick as they could. It turned out my client's friend had been to the Rememdium, and so had her brother.

They were as stiff as the doctor when I asked why, but I knew now at least that the brother had been sick. That created a few motives for him, if the blonde's theories had any weight to them. No one really saw where they went back in town, or even if they did. But they'd seen the pair stop at the Broken Dagger more than once.

I stopped in the path and gave them a half-hearted wave with my best grin. They weren't swooned, maybe the suspiciously violent holes in my coke set them off. It couldn't have been my pretty face. As I walked back towards the Dagger I resisted the urge to shudder. The place was a cesspool of psychotics at the best of times. Now it was regularly riddled with frills one day, and signs about how demonic the frills were the next.

I'd rather have gone to the Tickled Pig and risked getting something tickled. Luckily no one would know who I was, so I sucked up my trepidation and went up the stairs to the door.
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Re: Tiny Troubles

Postby Suede » Tue Sep 10, 2013 3:00 pm

The Dagger was about as useful a place to find information as I expected. If you avoided the more unusual regulars, and the barmaids dressed like the belonged over at the tea house, the rest of the dregs could help. They were my focus for the night while dancing around actually paying for anything more than a few drinks to make friends. Most of the folks here didn't know me, or at least know me well enough for it to matter.

I wasted the rest of my day and half my night splashing one cheap beer or another onto a tabletop before I left feeling confident. Confident that my missing girl and her brother had been about at least a few times. Apparently the girl was the sort you remembered, and her brother was ugly like a horse hit with a battle axe. No one knew where they had gone, only that they'd been in just a few days prior.

The only other useful tidbit besides them being around was that he worked out as a trapper for a merchant in town that ought to be able to tell if he'd been to work. Without that, one of the drunker patrons had claimed they'd gone frolicking off into the forest while talking about why he appreciated incest.

The sauce would do that to you, dumb bastard. I didn't need perverted fantasies. I stomped my way down the street back towards town, feeling like I was going nowhere fast on my way to the merchants when I realized an obvious fact. I'd been in such a rush to start poking around I'd never even bothered to just see if anyone was home.

Fat chance, considering, but there might at least be a better clue than the nothing in my pocket. As I hit the outskirts of town I realized I had a tail again. It was that stray from earlier having caught up to me. It probably hoped I had more food, but it was out of luck. Maybe I would stop on my way to the merchants to grab something to throw back at it, but that would encourage it more.

I turned a sharp corner, skirting around one of the farmer's markets quiet this time of night and slogged deeper into town. Maybe I should wait until the morning to make my visits, get myself some sleep.

... Nah.
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