Small Claims

Introducing Twitch
A small vignette of youth

Tarro didn’t know why they called him Twitch. Honestly, he was more concerned with avoiding their meaty paws and the pummelling that would follow if they caught him. He didn’t really know why they did it either. It wasn’t as vicious as the race hate they had for Grundarr the half-orc. He figured it was simply because he was smaller and big kids liked easy targets or maybe it was because the first few times they had tried it, Tarro and his brother had taught them that quick teamwork could easily overcome apparent advantages like size and strength, embarrassing them in the process… Dirk, the leader of this particular posse, reached out for him and almost caught him, but Tarro took a sudden turn and avoided his grasp. Hmm, maybe that was why they called him Twitch.

He couldn’t outrun their freakishly long legs for long. Normally, he just needed to flee until he found his brother, but today he was at home, sick, and involving their parents would just make matters worse for all involved. Tarro realized that, in his unthinking run, he had turned towards the woods on the edge of town. He spent far more time in there than most kids his age; maybe he could lose them in there. Otherwise, he had recently made a friend that lived in those woods and while Tarro hated to involve him in something that didn’t concern him, he didn’t hate as much as going home with a black eye. Now, where was that cave again?

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One good turn deserves another...

«Guess who’s back?»

Malakaï entered the White Hart Tavern and was greeted by a cheer from the patrons. Another watering hole, another home away from home.

Malakaï made his way to the counter and jumped on the high stool next to it. The bartender was already busy pouring him a drink. «I trust business has been good?»

«It has my friend, it has…» Malakaï pushed a couple of copper, slipping a lone gold coin discreetly in the pile. A little extra for the contribution to the last hunt successful conclusion.

Being an Halfling in human land was not always easy. Andorans might be more civilized than most but they are still at no risk of running out of assholes looking for easy pickings. In Alvis in particular…

The two brothers have been in more scuffle than they cared to count. They knew how to handle themselves in a brawl. But on their own, when their sibling was otherwise unavailable, they each had a different way of handling the situation.

Tarro would protect himself from such predicament by retreating to the Arthfell forest. He knew the area like the back of is hand and those foolish enough to try to pursue him there, he picked apart one by one with hit-and-run tactics.

Malakaï tried to find safety in numbers, constantly mingling, fraternizing. If you have enough friends it might dissuade would be bullies. Even when it didn’t, friends could at least warn you of danger… It’s was not easy to make friends and acquaintances when you are at the bottom of the totem pole but with a lot of persistence he managed to win some over. And then some more. And then some more. In time the bullies dwindled in number as his standing continued to improve. Some of them even became lifelong friend of his when they got to know him better.

Maintaining this network involved the constant exchange of favors. It had started as a self-serving enterprise to protect himself from harm, but some time along they way something happened; Malakaï had an epiphany. He came the realization that his social clout could be used to do good. He realized he genuinely liked helping people.

Ogden had an eye for talent. In his line of work you had to be. The wrong associates will get you on the wrong side of a blade or at the end of a rope. You need keen eyes, cool heads and steady hands on your team but you also need people to work the intelligence. After all, information is the grease that keeps the bounty hunting gears turning…

Malakaï had come knocking to his door for employment. Due to an unfortunate misunderstanding, he had ran afoul Alvis’ constable and needed a room and a board until things cooled down. Malakaï had already acted as an informant for him on a couple of occasions for matters pertaining to that town, Ogden had seen that his nephew had a way with people… But he was too young, way too young for to work in this business. Not to mention that if something happened to his grandson, his son would never forgive him.

But perhaps he could let him work as a porter and secretary… A safe and inconspicuous front to let him pry his trade…

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