Closed The Debt Collector

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A lawless town of anarchists, built on the ruins of an ancient mining city. [Lore]

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The Debt Collector

Postby Shakune on June 2nd, 2015, 2:54 pm

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10th Summer, 515AV


The store was empty.

It was in moments such as this one that Shakune finally allowed herself to exhale. Her left hand reached up to her right arm, forefinger and thumb squeezing her own copper flesh tightly.

A pinch.

Yet the dream did not shatter apart, the shop and Shakune remained perfectly stationary and perfectly intact. It was real, all real.

A slow smile crept across the courier's lips. She'd done it. She had finally, officially, opened her own store. No Questions Couriers finally existed in the form a slightly rundown, but still intact, shop. The floor was bare, revealing the original and crooked floorboards. One wall was painted a gaudy yellow - the others were plain and creamy, peeling at the corners and flaking in patches. The ceiling was comparatively undamaged, though there was a stain of questionable origin hanging right above the doorway. Havzi refused to stand directly underneath the red patch for any length of time, claiming that she'd seen gloopy drops of whatever the stain was made of drip down and splatter on the wooden floor beneath. It at least explained the patchy discolouring of the wooden slacks.

In truth, the store was tired and had clearly not been cared for by whoever had last occupied the space. When she'd planned running her own business, Shakune had imagined a luxurious storefront, with carpet and comfortable chairs, fancy candleholders. The reality was a stark contrast. And yet despite its bare walls and creaking floorboards, Shakune adored it. The business was hers - from floor to ceiling, from wall to wall. All of it was hers.

She stole a glance to the padlocked chest to her right. It was in there that Shakune stored the packages and letters she'd received throughout the workday, to be delivered over the next few days. Currently, three letters and five parcels resided within the chest, all safely locked away. The courier wore the small key to the padlock on a piece of sting around her neck. She'd never been one for jewellery before, but this was one particularly accessory she simply couldn't leave home without.

Her black eyes returned to the door opposite. She willed someone to walk through it, but it was the end of the day, now. The fishermen had long sold their stock and the market outside was beginning to close and be packed away. The last few merchants hollering out their wares did so in strained, tired voices.

Accepting defeat, Shakune turned to her final task of the day: sifting through the small amount of paperwork that invariably collected on the desk of a business owner.

Business owner, ha! She grinned again, wriggling in her seat like an excited child before picking up numerous sheets of parchments and organising them into separate piles.
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Last edited by Shakune on June 2nd, 2015, 8:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Shakune
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The Debt Collector

Postby Shaun Blackwood on June 2nd, 2015, 6:06 pm

The skin snapped with such ease under so little force, revealing flesh so tender and sweet in was a crime not to pry it from the core as a river flowed from the wound, dripping down and saturating the dry ground beneath it.

"That'll cost ya a silver."
A simple raise of the hand was the response as Shaun continued his assault on the succulent apple,
"Boy, I've been around far longer than you. There ain't enough ink on that brand to warrant free food."
Shaun's face curled with irritation, his pride wounded from disrespect as he turned to face the gruff merchant. A hand instinctively reached to a familiar hilt as they stared off, it wasn't the battle of two great goliaths but they remained unflinching for a time nonetheless before Shaun finally surrendered. "Fine, take ya silver" He spat as he chucked the dirty sliver to the ground, letting him scrounge for it like the rest of the downtrodden.

He ignored the muttered curse as he walked away, followed in heel but a lad just old enough to grow some fluff on his top lip and swing a hatchet that certainly wasn't a warrior's weapon but a labourers. "We've got our orders boy, let's get too 'em" He barked as the boy followed without question, he was paid a fraction of Shaun's wage yet a needed it far more. Shaun did love expendable muscle.

The order came from someone far beyond Shaun's reach; the name was more of a whisper as the order traveled down the vine from officer to officer as each felt the job was beneath them and finally fell into the lap of a random grunt. It was an opportunity though, one he would seize at to any exent.

"Sorry mate, we're closed for tonight" He said with all the warmth that accompanied a shady shakedown as the old man went from annoyed to worried as he saw the weaponry and scuttled off with far more speed than one would expect. "Stay out here, make sure no-one else sniffs around for business" He ordered before stepping into the establishment.

"Y'alright love? Hope ya still open" He said, warmly enough as he eyed his surroundings. One bloody ceiling, a splintered floor and flaking walls - What a shithole. "Heard ya you were a couriers, don't think I've seen one of these in a long time round these parts, you must've have scraped a lot of coin together to afford this place" He said, rather aimlessly as his fingertips ran softly across the wall as he peeled at the flaking paint.

"Thing is, I got a mate in hot water and I need her to get the message before it's too late. Problem is, my old man never taught me to write, y'know how it is growin' up here and all right? And this place is no questions correct? So I was hopin' that you maybe write it down then I'll give you a name and fee so you can do your job and we're happy. What did ya say your name was again?" He said as he stared into the soulless black eyes with a smile that had all the warmth of starving viper.
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The Debt Collector

Postby Shakune on June 2nd, 2015, 8:14 pm

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The papers wrinkled noisily as the courier sorted through them. Her black eyes scanned down each page, briefly reading the details each letter or message entailed. Some were letters of congratulations: Well done for finally followin' through with it, kid! Others were, for lack of a better phrase, junk mail: Visit Vinny's for the crunchiest carrots in 'Berth! and Bessa LeBain: The girl with no limits and no gag reflex, only at the Scarlet Sanctum!. Having no real interest in prostitutes or vegetables, Shakune discarded these advertisements before moving onto another pile of documents.

Her brows creased minutely as she studied one parchment in particular. It documented as her loan from Goldfinger: the total amount, as well as the instalments she had paid so far. The latter of which came to a total of... nought. No Questions Couriers had only been open for ten days, there was surely no way the loan shark would expect her to have made a payment by now.

The creak of floorboards snapped Shakune's attention to her left. Out of the dank shadows of her store, Axel slinked to her side. With a sigh, he rested his black head on his mistress' lap as Shakune continued to work. She made a note of her profits made over the past ten days, which amounted to a somewhat impressive figure -- in her eyes, at least. With a final nod, she cemented her plans to make the first payment instalment to Goldfinger in the next three days.

"That should keep the short-arse quiet, for the time being." She murmured to Axel, who agreed with a flop of his tail.

Woman and dog were alerted by the opening and closing of the door. A man, bald as a baby save for a thick, dark beard stood before them inspecting the shop front. Immediately Shakune's black eyes hardened into marbles as she inspected her visitor. He looked like any other bloke who prowled the streets of Sunberth: rough, gristly, clothes flecked with dirt or blood -- or both. With a quirk of an eyebrow, Shakune came to the conclusion that he was older than she, and this assumption was followed by the question: married, single, or gay?

Older, rough-looking men were her type, after all.

"I'm still open, yes." She replied, pushing her final pile of notes to the side and standing up from her seat. From the smirk that played on her lips, it wasn't entirely clear whether Shakune spoke her courier service or something else she might offer. Axel padded to the other side of the desk, sniffing mildly at the man's legs before slinking back to the far corner of the room, melting into the shadows yet again. Clearly the dog saw no immediate threat to his mistress' wellbeing. "That's fine. I can write your letter for you." It was an unexpected service Shakune hadn't planned to provide for her clients. She'd been naive in thinking that the Sunberth populace could read and write. "Oh, and m'name's Shakune. Yours?"

After shifting more papers about and preparing a greasy-looking quill, Shakune nodded to the male for him to begin dictating his letter.
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The Debt Collector

Postby Shaun Blackwood on June 3rd, 2015, 4:18 pm

Dogs, not even good for eating. Closest thing most people would even get to a steak in this city though. He kept a watchful eye on the little mutt, the last thing he needed was some little rodent trying to take a bit from his shins though he wouldn't hesitate to make the bugger a cripple if it put the message across.

"My name's not important pet"
He said with a small smirk as he took a moment to consider the what he was about to say next, just like any man might before writing a letter that could dictate the length of woman's life. "Okay, so hmm... I really want to nail the tone just right if ya know what I mean. So, here goes."

"Dear Shakune, you're a filthy non-human in a city that is fed up with outsiders comin' in and bleedin' them dry like a fuckin' pig prime for the slaughter." He drew his blade, the steel scraping across leather with a noise so sweet it sounded like soft, sensual music to Shaun's ears "On top of that, you didn't even earn the money that put the roof over your head. Money was taken and how do you repay that debt, not a single Miza in sight and workin' for people who would see this city of free people collared and leashed till everyone's a fuckin' slave." He tossed his sword from one hand to another as he raised his free hand to scratch his rough beard as he revealed hi s brand with all the subtlety of a firework show.

"But you can make things right, you need to pay up one hundred Mizas which'll be one of many, many payments to come because you owe someone both money and respect which have been found lackin'" He stepped forward, raising the tip of his fine blade to ever close to that soft skin that no doubt would reveal flesh so tender it would be a crime not to pry it from its core and hooked that piece of string and hoisted it up. Now Shaun truly smiled, his eyes wrinkled with all the warmth of a camp fire before adding "And you need to hand over that key I bet you always keep hidden between those tits of yours or leg are gonna start bein' broken, probably that mutt you love so much."

"From a true friend. Add a little kiss at the end would ya?"
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The Debt Collector

Postby Shakune on June 3rd, 2015, 7:53 pm

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It took exactly one tick for Shakune to realise the true meaning behind this male's visit.

It took significantly longer for the courier to decide how to proceed. Her immediate reaction was one of fear: her heart leapt to her throat, her breathing quickened and her jaw tightened.

But then a strange numbness overtook her body. She'd heard this all before: the fact she was a non-human, how the Sunberth populace disliked outsiders, how she was a nuisance that bled the city dry like an alcoholic who's drunk all the ale in a tavern. It bored her as much as it insulted her. Sure, Shakune had thought she'd left this all behind - she was a business owner, after all. She provided a service to the city that would otherwise not exist. Her clients didn't seem to mind that she was half-Chaktawe, at least.

His act was all bravado, she hoped. He was some hired grunt - employed by Goldfinger for his braun and distinct lack of a brain. The courier managed to confirm this conclusion when the male finished his speech. She briefly eyed the sword that passed between his two hands, considering how efficiently it might slice open her throat. As if it were telepathic, the blade rose up and hooked under the rope at the courier's neck. She instinctively raised herself on her tiptoes, backed away so the key rested safely between her breasts yet again. She gulped loudly.

Somewhere in the growing shadows of the shop, Axel lurked silently. His red eyes did not leave the bearded man.

Shakune exhaled, black eyes watching the male carefully. How she wanted to spit at him, to drive the sword into his testicles and leave him yowling like a little boy. The thought gave her a sick pleasure, and she subsequently smirked.

No- she would not go down that route. No doubt this male was far more talented with a weapon than she, and such an act would only result in her own death -- ideally something she'd like to avoid. So instead, Shakune thought. She considered all she knew about Goldfinger. He was a smart man, but ruthless. The key word here being: smart. He knew where money was made, and where it wasn’t. More importantly, he knew that dead people made less income than the living. Six-hundred odd mizas was too much too gamble away on the blade of some numbskull merc. He'd also tested Shakune before giving her the loan, pushing the courier to the limits of her psyche and mental state. She'd only just survived, but the experience had left her hardened and ballsy.

"See, that don't make sense." Was her eventual, brazen reply. She lent forward on her desk, quill cast aside and now leaking thick ink all over the blank piece of paper underneath it. She frowned, pouted her lips in mock thought. "Two things don't, actually. I'm a courier, see. I reckon my payment rate to your boss will dramatically drop if I don't have legs to run on. Or packages to deliver, for that matter."

She indicated to the chest standing to her right. " I'll pay Goldfinger his one hundred mizas. But I'm only paying it to Goldfinger. Not you. For all I know, you might use half of it to pay for some little boy to bend over and shut his eyes." Her eyebrows quirked minutely as she slid a copy of the contract across her desk for the bearded male to see -- even if he couldn't read it. With a finger, she indicated to the seventh line on the document. "See here? It says 'the payee will make payments directly to he who granted the loan'. Now--" She returned her attention back to the male. "Unless you've grown a few inches and lost your hair in less than a season, I doubt your Goldfinger." She straightened herself up, folded her arms, jaw locked tight. "So. You paid for bein' an escort, or is that a little below your services?"
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Shakune
I drive a hard bargain.
 
Posts: 352
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Joined roleplay: August 21st, 2014, 10:43 am
Race: Human, Mixed
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