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GeroJr

[Fan Fic] Life of Bribe the Watchman

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#1

Bribe stood watch. Or rather, he stood there watching. It was a lazy day in Lang. The sun crept slowly along the sky, making the streets unbearably hot. The rich left for the mountains, the poor sweated, stank and waited for the evening to come. The ghost hours of summer have come and it was a good time to earn some extra coins.

A fellow watchman passed by, followed by a huge pig of a man. Bribe felt a sudden urge to kick the bastard, but you couldn’t just go around kicking the wealthy. He wondered what urgent business made the man drag his fat ass outside in the heat. It was too early for a matter of lust, so it must have been a matter of gold.  

Another guard wandered around the corner. That's how things were in Raedland since the war. A whole lotta watchmen and a whole lotta less opportunity for crime. That's what made a bribable fellow worth a whole lotta more. You know, the law of supply and demand.

But don’t you think Bribe was one of your average corrupt guards. Oh no. He was very proud of his moral compass and only allowed thieves to steal from the filthy rich. Those bastards couldn't have earned all that money the right way anyway, so it was only fair they gave some back. Would be pretty stupid, if he didn’t get a part of it too, right?

An involuntary smile crossed his face when he thought of the fattening purse in his little hideout.

A pair of footsteps echoed in the narrow alley behind him. Finally.

»G'day Mr. Watchman. How are ya?«

»Good, good. And you? All good?« Bribe did his best to sound very official and bored. Just in case someone was listening.

»All good, all good. Thanks for keepin' an eye out and keepin’ us safe. Have a nice day!«

The deed was done and it was high time to continue his patrolling.

 

Only half an hour more and he’d be off duty. He sped towards the barracks, leaving the scorching white cobblestones of the Noble Quarter behind him. The good old Swinging Bridge grew larger with every step and soon the familiar stench of unwise petty thieves filled the heat around him. Just far enough not to bother the spoiled nostrils of the upper class, but close enough to remind anyone with shady intentions it pays to bribe a guard before they do anything stupid.

He spotted an empty can and his eyes lit up. He took two quick steps, swung his leg and sent it flying into the center lamp post. Another goal for Bribe!

You see, Bribe wasn’t just a Watchman. He was also a second year player of the Watch Guild and he found himself liking the violent game of Guild Ball more and more. Well, the game and the opportunities it brought.

Of course he had dreams of grandeur, but his… other arrangements kept interfering. He was known to make a blunder every now and then. Calculated blunders, mind you. Those blunders paid off and luckily, he was simply too good to be kicked from the team.

Raedland gave the Empire of the Free Cities more than its fair share of Guild Ball stars. There was the pretty boy, Flint, who never missed a shot. Well, almost. There was the big loud scumbag Hammer. As good as he was arrogant. There was Spigot. They said he was a genius when he could stay sober. Bribe wouldn’t know, he’s never seen him that way. There were Graves, Colossus, Theron and others. But stardom and wealth were surely not in the stars for a boy who got his name by being given away as a bribe.

Dreams were nice and all, but they didn’t pay for a bed, a meal, a woman. Fellows with big dreams also had a tendency to end up in the gutter or so it seemed. Better to stay real and think about the plan for tomorrow.

Old Graves was coming back to his homeland and he was bringing the Ratcatchers team with him. The Watch officials decided it would be fun to host an exhibition game against this sick scum of a team. In their last game, half of the opposing team started puking blood in the middle of the game. Always a crowd pleaser, puking blood, isn’t it? Bribe didn’t fancy playing against them one bit.

But he got a job to do. A big one. Won’t bring him any closer to the Big League, but it will get him a hefty bag of coins. What more can a lad ask for? Who knows, it might even change a thing or two for once. Can’t let an opportunity like that slip by.

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