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We Reap What We Sow (Closed)

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"Circulate this."

Her words echoed in the shadows.  Loosed to the air, they were captured and dragged back down to the pavement where they floated among the discarded dust-pipes and crushed, fly-away bits of newspaper.  It always amazed Phoebe that people continued to use paper to distribute news, but even on a continent as advanced as Lagrimosa - hell, even in New Everrun's neon hellscape, there were those who couldn't afford a device or the price of connectivity or who lived in a place where unseen hands would steal such conveniences before they made it through the night.  It was by design; unfortunately, conflict is good for business.

The man scratched a thinning beard with dirty nails and took the playing card, turning it over curiously to study the face on its front.  Instead of a simple drawing, though, thousands of dots formed a pointillist rendition of the Ten of Spades.  From each speck, a grey light shimmered upward, knotting at conjunctions and dispersing light to create depth and shadow, until the shadows and highlights blended to reveal a man's rugged portrait.  The face was undoubtedly Caden Fuller- but Phoebe didn't know Caden and neither did this Skeleton. 

Still, someone would.

Caden's face hovered for a moment like a disembodied ghostly bust, holding long enough to be seen and studied, before its light reversed and flowed back into the man's fingertips, lazily weaving its way up the line of his arms to his throat chakra, where it bounced up to his crown, then faded.

"I'll pass it around.  He looks sorta familiar, but that was a long time ago.." the man grunted and pressed his tongue to the edge of his teeth, curling his top lip as he sucked a breath in and tried to clear a piece of food lodged next to his canine.  He continued to work at it for a minute as Phoebe's projection settled and etched not only a full-color version of Caden's face but his snarl - that sneer, the way it twisted the scar on his forehead, the suffocating stench of his sweat.  It settled in his thoughts as an intruding memory; a fixed, liveable, moment in time that the Skeleton could explore.

"Somebody knows this asshole's name.." she said as she let go of the card, releasing it to the Skeleton.  Caden's portrait began to fade as her fingertips lost contact.  She watched his silhouette disintegrate, setting her jaw as her hand drifted unconsciously toward her neck.  She could still feel the bruises from his fingertips, long-healed though they were; the blinding pressure in her skull, her heart slamming against her ribs as she fought to suck air past her larynx, to inflate her lungs and breathe past the weight of him.  It was stifling- remembering made it real again, made her feel him again, and the nearness of it sank into her like rot into an abandoned carcass.  Heat rose to her cheeks, flushed up from her gut by the memory of his face; she blinked, lost in the moment before the sound of the Skeleton clearing his throat pulled her back to the present, to the alley, its cool air and her wholeness. 

She flexed her hands, made fists to fight nothing.

"Just find him," Phoebe snapped, "I'm paying six months for the right name."


OOC: FYI, @supernal

Also, this is back in time a bit - about seven to ten days after Lion's Claw.


Edited by Noko

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