A tiny piece from early on in Starship’s Mage: Episode 3, as our intrepid heroes go… shopping
“Row seventeen, level K, box nine is where we’ll find our man,” Singh told Damien, leading the way to a rickety-looking elevator. It clanked and chugged its way up seven layers of the cargo containers and disgorged them onto a catwalk that looked only slightly safer.
“Is this place safe?” Damien asked, following Singh along the catwalk and looking for the haphazard mix of pre-fabricated signs and glorified graffiti that marked the various sections of the warehousing section.
“Not a chance,” Singh said cheerfully. “That’s why we’re carrying guns.”
Something about the cheerfully deadly Sikh pilot, however, got them through the sparse crowds and darkened catwalks without incident. They reached the box they’d been told to go to, and a youth with most of his hair shaved away, leaving a row of spikes down the center of his skull, popped the door.
Two more spiked-hair youths, a man and a woman, were waiting inside with blocky but effective looking carbines.
“Leave the guns here,” the woman ordered in a hoarse voice. “Nobody sees the boss armed.
Damien followed Singh’s lead in unslinging the shoulder holster and leaving it on the table the ganger pointed at.
“This way,” she instructed hoarsely, leading the pair of officers from the Blue Jay into the next room. Waiting there, sitting cross-legged on a table surrounded by black metal cases, was the tiniest adult man that Damien had ever seen.
The wrinkles and lines on the face showed the man’s true age, as did his head, out of scale with his body. The small man wore his black hair, streaked with iron gray, shoulder length – and he levelled his gaze on Damien and Singh like a gun turret.
“Narveer,” he said flatly. “I really didn’t believe you’d have the balls to try and deal with me after the last time we met.”
“That was duty, never personal,” Singh replied calmly. “And this is business – not personal.”
Before Damien could react, the man was off the table and pointing an immense pistol directly at Singh. The gun was almost comically mis-matched to the man, but the barrel didn’t waver or tremble in the slightest.
“You’re unarmed. What’s to stop me blowing you away as a down payment for that cargo?”