03.21.3014: Nitrim Gets Beat Up
Summary: The title says it all, but for expansion's sake: Keanen gets fed up with Nitrim, and airs long unspent grievances. Nitrim learns he's not untouchable.
Date: 10 December 2013
Related: Them Crooked Vultures
Keanen Nitrim 

The Central Arcade — The Westend, Landing
The Westend of Landing is also known as the Entertainment District. It is most active at night, where the neon lights sends the world into a kaleidoscopic glow. The Central Arcade is a wide, circular plaza with various thoroughfares spreading out like spokes on a wheel into the various regions of the district. At the center of the arcade is a round stage that nightly hosts various musical artists and groups to keep the party going even between venues. Neon piping is inlaid into the cement, creating various geometric patterns and creating pathways to various nightclubs and restaurants. AMP and Red Eye dealers covertly move through the crowds, trading doses for currency.

During the day, the Arcade is far quieter and more law-abiding, though by no means empty.

March 21, 3014

Darkness has fallen over Landing, leaving the Westend entertainment district a new contrast of seediness from its daytime counterpart. All of the work from the daytime sanitation engineers to remove the smell of beer and garbage from the streets has been ruined within an hour of the sun's setting, and the nice, clean polish of the stones that line the road has been buffeted ten times over by the press of heavy, booted, pedestrian traffic. The lamplights have been lit, and the roar of pub music, the din of dulled bass from the nightclubs, and the shrill laughing of the brothel girls has turned the street into a living, breathing thing.

Off to the side is a small pub. Meager by comparison to some of the buildings that seem to be over-ripe and spilling over with patrons. No, this pub is a small, grouchy place with old, surly clientele that drink the same piss they've been drinking since childhood. Yes. Childhood. It is the perfect place for the dark hood and seedy lean of Nitrim Khournas. Having found his place just outside of the pub, he leans with his hood over his head and a cigarette in hand, forever watching the crowds of people as they pass.

Keanen has paid a few people to help point him in the direction of the Khournis Lord. He's wearing a pair of old khaki cargo pants and a ratty looking black, wool peacoat. His long hair is pulled back in a pony tail and his hands are in the jacket's pockets. He notices Nitrim standing outside, and he pauses a moment, a little smirk appearing on his face. After watching just a minute, he walks directly over to the man. "Hey, Nitrim. Didn't expect to find you slumming it down here."

Cigarette lifting in Nitrim's pale hand, the hood of the Khournas Lord's heavy coat turns to look to Keanen. Lips only, the heavy cowl obscures the man's face as the cigarette is brought in for a drag. The end of the cigarette flares a bright orange before is is lowered, and the ashes flicked away. "You know me, Keanen, I just sort of slither everywhere from time to time." Nitrim smiles to the man, pulling his hood back to his shoulders to get a better look at the Arboren. "How the fuck've you been, Keane?"

Keanen nods, "I'm awesome, dude. As always." He laughs, "You've had better days, here, lately, it seems." He shrugs, "Sucks the way you're bein' dragged through the muck." He sniffs, and then reaches into his pocket, pulling out a hypospray used for AMP. He casually begins prepping the device. "You partying tonight?"

Nitrim's eyes lower to the hypospray, delivering the device a flat expression as his attention traces the hard edges of the device. Not being his party drug of choice, hunger fails to register as he shakes his head from side to side. "You know I'm always being followed one way or another, if not actually being followed there's always a tablet-camera somewhere." Nitrim smirks. As he waves Keanen off with his cigarette-hand, the cherry at the end of the death-stick blurs like a traffic control rod. "No thanks, but do your thing. It's been a bit shit lately, though. I take it you saw the vulture-reports?"

Keanen finishes loading the hypospray, and then reaches back into his pocket. "You're not being followed down here. No fucking candy stripe reporter's gonna brave this shit hole." He laughs, and then pulls out another item from his pocket. "My thing's no fun alone. Here," and he extends his hand to Nitrim, which is holding a small dropper of what is clearly Red Eye. "This one's on me, bro."

Red Eye, however, brings a reaction from Nitrim's face as his teeth bite down gently against each other. His eyes skirt away from the eye-dropper, and once again, he waves it off. The smile is almost an embarassed one. "No, no it's okay, really." Nitrim turns his gaze to the road, looking anywhere but Keanen. "Besides, those reporters tagged Lady Evey and I a few days ago, they're gonna tag me somewhere, anywhere, they're like termites." Nitrim frowns, flicking his cigarette into the street. "Wrong reporters walk by they'll think I'm bangin' you too, mate."

"Dude, fuck THEM." Keanen shakes his head, smiling wryly, "They ain't our bosses. They're mostly full of shit anyway." He pushes the Red Eye bottle at Nitrim, stepping closer, chuckling, "Come on, man. Don't leave me hanging like that, man." he smiles, now pressing the dropper against Nitrim's chest, "Let's fuckin' party this place up, man."

Danger. Nitrim's fingertips twitch as Keanen steps in, and the Khourni lordling looks down to the dropper in his hands. The heavy breath that passes his teeth is a sign that…danger is near. Swallowing, Nitrim brushes the back of his hand across the front of his nose and reaches into his pocket for a fresh cigarette. "Keane…fuck man, I shouldn't. Can we just hang out like we used to?" Nitrim confides in the man, pleading eyes at all. "I've got a girl I'm trying to get my old man to agree to. I'm trying to fly straight. I—" Nitrim stammers. "Let me buy you a pint. Come on."

Keanen tilts his head a bit, leaving the dropper pressed against Nitrim's chest. "You got a girl? Another one? Man," he laughs, "You cycle through betrothals faster than I cycle through chicks, dude!" He smiles, and bumps his cybernetic shoulder against Nitrim's shoulder. He flips the AMP hypospray in his hand like it was a drumstick. "I don't drink until I'm good and up," he notes. "Yeah, man. That's what I want, dude. Let's hang like we used to. Straight's easy. Fuck that. There's no fun in that." He leans closer, "Dude, just this one time. You don't do it again, it doesn't count, man." He presses the dropper a bit, "I paid for the premo shit for you, bro. Come on." He smiles, charismatically.

This is KEANEN. Nitrim's old friend. The same Keanen that was there at the meeting of Soleil, and some very good club days at Detrius. With no reason to not trust the Arboren, and the old chilled claws of addiction clawing at his brain, Nitrim growls and takes the eye-dropper from Keanen. "Fuck it…whatever." Nitrim frowns, partially disgusted with himself, but it's just a small hit. Right? Batting Keanen on the arm with a cool upward tick of his head, the Khourni turns his back to the street and cracks the dropper open. In a well-practiced motion, he tilts his head back, and the drops fall into his right eye, the dominant eye.

PAIN. The burn is immediate. It becomes painfully clear to the noble that whatever was in the dropper was not the sweet release that he was hoping for. Instead…it is rubbing alcohol.

"What the F—" Nitrim gets out, stumbling against the lightpost as he covers his eyesocket with the palm of his hand. "FUCK what the Fu-!!"

Keanen immediately steps forward and throws his entire weight behind his now balled fist. In one fast, street-smart attack, he slams his fist into Nitrim's face, as hard as he can. "Soleil was my best friend you son of a bitch!" That's the start. He punches a second time, this one with a downward sweep, perhaps hoping to drop the other young man to the ground. "And now you're courting someone else, while making MY girlfriend look bad!" He throws the AMP hypospray at the man's head, "I know you didn't do anything with Evey, but from now on, you keep a respectful distance from her so no one fucking plasters her name on the news again! You understand me!?!?! Because next time, I BREAK your weak ass!" He kicks a bit of dirt toward Nitrim, and repeats, "You understand!?!?!"

Keanen's fist is a brick, and when the brick is being driven by someone who knows how to fight, the brick hits in a soft, painful spot. A painful-sounding CRUNCH sounds where Nitrim's nose is supposed to be, pushing it semi-permanently to one side with a near-immediate gout of blood. Reeling, with one eye already blinded in pain, the other quickly fills with stinging water. Nitrim stumbles back and tries to get his arm up, but the second punch catches him square in the jaw, popping one of his molars out of his socket. In a sidewards slant, Nitrim's shoulder hits the ground.

A second later the hard-metal of the hypospray divots off of his forehead, leaving a fresh cut.

Pelted with road-grime, Nitrim gnashes his bloody teeth and shoves himself up to a blinded crouch, the world around him spinning. "You fucking coward…" Nitrim growls, like a drake, refusing to beg. "…if you think for one second you have any idea. She cut her hand for you…"

With that, Nitrim springs up, trying to wrap his arms around Keanen's hips to slam the Arboren's back against the heavily postered, brick wall of the alleyway.

"Yeah, you hit that fucking MURDERER." A gruff, male voice in the background calls, as attention in the pub starts to turn.

Keanen spits on the ground between he and Nitrim, "You took the Red Eye, and I'M the coward?" He then turns and scowls off towards where the murderer comment was yelled, "You shut the fuck, ass—" And then he's slammed into the wall with an, "oof!" by Nitrim. He coughs, bending over a bit as a little dribble of blood comes up with the hack. "…damnit…" He shoves Nitrim off him, grabbing his own side in pain. "I love her!" he shouts, "You've earned this! For everything!" He doesn't hit Nitrim again. Instead, he just shoves the man to the ground, "Try and act like a noble and keep your distance from her!" He scowls, and then turns to walk off, still holding his side.

Still wobbly from the pain in his eye and the assault to his precious brain, Nitrim stumbles back and falls onto his backside. A splash of muddy, tepid water from the gutter sloshes over his coat, mixing with the dust that peppers his face. Though Keanen tells the bystanders to shut up, a few of them clap at the display, even as the Arboren lordling storms off.

Hand lifting back to the searing pain in his eyesocket, Nitrim wheezes loudly against the flurry of places where his body has begun to hurt. He sits…he waits…and no one comes after him further. With his eye in his hand, he pushes up and haunts his way out of the alley…

…ignoring the flash photography all around him.

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