Long Enough

He had a long dagger for a forearm.

You don’t need to reread that. I’ll repeat it so you know there was no mistake. He had a long dagger for a forearm. These were the kind of folks I was dealing with.

I couldn’t tell at first, because he wore a leather coat with long sleeves, and at the end of the dagger was a wooden hand. The hand was an okay replica. Once you got close enough to inspect it you were already it slicing range, so okay was good enough I suppose.

Granted, I’d only been tangentially acquainted with this band of thieves, having done a fair amount of pickpocketing outside a few of their gambling halls and speakeasys and brothels; places where patrons might be exiting along a zig-zaggy sort of path.

Anyway, I see him talking to this poor asshole, and I don’t know what they were talking about, but it was clearly getting heated. The asshole rolls up his sleeves like he wants to go fisticuffs, showing off a row of tally marks and skull tattoos all up and down his arm. He’s no slouch; he looked like he spent his days swinging a hammer and picking his teeth with the bones of his enemies. So he must have felt pretty confident when he threw that sucker punch.

Well, imagine then his surprise when ol’ oak hand uses his forearm to deflect the punch. Cut that asshole’s arm clean off. He let him feel that surprise for a minute, let it really sink in, before he finished him off in a permanent way. Made me wonder though, if they’d gotten the asshole to a doc in time, could he have gotten one of those dagger arms put on too?

Guess it don’t really matter, but I can’t stop thinking about it. Probably why I joined up with these guys to begin with. I’ve got to imagine staying on the right side of these sorts of folks helps you to not get killed. For awhile, anyway. Long enough to…well, for now let’s just leave it at long enough.

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