The Pale Chronicles Part 1

Please try not to judge me too harshly. On second thought, I don’t give a damn. I can hear it now, “Ezra, stealing is bad, you must be a bad guy.” My response to that would be, “first off call me Ez, secondly, if you have gone through what I have gone through, you would understand I have to do whatever it takes to survive.” If that means stealing a Zipper bike, oh well.

“Ez, are you sure you can do this?” said Grady,” I’m not sure if this is a good idea man.” 

Oh Grady, if only he could shut his mouth and just do what he was told. Is that too much to ask? I found Grady at the homeless village in the Lowlands where I live, when we were just children. Lets just say finding good help in the LowLands is pretty much non existent. 

“I told you Grady, my decoder is top of the line. I’m just gonna need a couple of minutes and we can get 20,000 chips, maybe even more.”

“Okay okay, but are you sure we should be messing with the Torin Tide?”

The Torin Tide is a gang here on my home planet of Torin. Grady was very correct to be worried about these guys. If we got caught by the Tide, I’m guessing we would get skinned alive, or something of that nature. I definitely did not need Grady thinking about that. Grady just needed to be my lookout. 

“Grady, my guy, trust me you got nothing to worry about. Do what I say and we will be alright. We have gone over this plan a thousand times, I’m sure this will work out bub.”

“Alright Ez, I trust you. Let’s just get this over with.”

Grady didn’t look all too convinced. To be honest, neither was I. All I knew was that I would do anything to get off this metal rock. The best way to do that was by having enough chips. Which I just spent my life savings, and then some, on my decoder. Might as well get my money’s worth, right? 

“Alright just a bit further to the joint, and then our Zipper bike should be there soon bub.”

Clang, clang, clang, oh how the sound of walking on this metal planet is becoming more and more annoying. See my home planet of Torin was originally an industrial society. Torin massed produced, well, everything you could think of. Then about eight years ago the Confederation invaded. Now we mass produce everything for them.

“Alright bub, there it is, Tito’s, the scummiest watering hole this side of the LowLands.”

Man, for not too much going on upstairs, Grady can do a whole lot of talking. Maybe it’s his way of dealing with his nerves. What can you do though? You can’t tell the guy who is putting his life on the line for you to shut his mouth. Then in the distance, I heard the slight purr of my zipper bike on its way to it’s new owner (AKA me). It didn’t take that purr long to turn into a smooth roar. This baby was fast and powerful. I was so interested in the sound of this zipper’s engine, I didn’t even realize Grady was still rambling. 

“Grady, Quiet.” I may have also put my finger up to my mouth and made a “sush” expression… I guess I may be a bit of a hypocrite. “Alright bub, it’s go time.”

As me and Grady were going the back way to the bike, I kept going over and over what to do for every kind of situation. I began to worry about if things went south. Grady wouldn’t be fast enough to get out of there in time. See Grady was a big guy. I mean, I consider myself a big guy being about six three, long blonde hair, blue eyes, and pretty well built if I do say so myself. My boy Grady on the other hand had about three to four inches on me. Also, for a homeless guy like myself, he was extremely thick in the middle if you catch my drift. Even though I brought Grady into this situation because he was expendable, did not mean I was completely heartless. I didn’t want the guy getting himself killed. My line of work would be much easier if I was completely heartless, let’s put it that way.

I put on a confident face for Grady. “Alright my friend, see you on the other side.”

“Okay Ez, let’s do this.” Grady was trying to put on a confident face. It wasn’t working out too well.

I held my position on the back end of the joint waiting for Grady’s word that the coast was clear. I gotta come clean here guys, this is the part where my adrenaline starts kicking in, and that feeling you get when you start a job like this was addicting. Something about putting your life on the line makes you feel more alive than ever. Don’t you worry though, I’m no dope junky.

“Ez, we’re clear.” It was officially go time.

I don’t think I have ever moved so fast in my life. Before I even knew it, I was at the bike ready to decode the sucker. I have been studying this style of bike, but unfortunately I have not been able to inspect such a new version of this particular bike. I just had to find the right port for my decoder. All the ones I saw were not right. Maybe by the engine? Sure enough I saw a hatch that had a tiny port symbol on it. Bad news, it had some sort of six digit lock on it. Good thing I had my swelter blade on me. Let me tell you, this was not a cheap item to come by.

“Hey Ez, how is it coming? You still alive out there?” Grady was sounding very panicky.

As I started burning through the metal lock like butter, I told Grady, ” I’m hanging in there bub, just a little longer. I’m getting to the port now… and there! Now time to decode this zip.”

I couldn’t believe how smoothly all this was going. My decoder is top of the line, but I didn’t know it was this good. It should have this baby fired up in a minute. 

Then all of a sudden, the Zip’s alarms started going off. My heart sank. I could immediately hear shouting and movement on its way to yours truly. Something told me these guys weren’t on their way to offer me a drink. Well, I definitely was not going out without a fight.

To be continued…

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