For those of you who are familiar with my current work in progress, you may notice a different dynamic between these two characters. That is because it is set in an earlier place along the timeline. Another book to add to the pile of unfinished garbage I suppose. Anyway, enjoy?
A scowl tainted Declan’s expression as he opened the door to his flat, the unexpected, expected intruder waiting for him inside.
“What did you get into now?” Declan griped at the armored figure sitting frozen in his chair.
“I have. Your pointy squish-squish,” Nara replied, addressing the little furry creature sitting on her.
“For the last time, that is a cat.” Declan pinched the bridge of his nose. “And I really don’t have the patience for your shit right now.”
“I don’t….understand it.” Nara ignored the doctor’s pleas, tilting her head in bemusement. “So tiny, but hunter?”
“Are you high and drunk again, or just high?” he sighed, grabbing tools from a cabinet nearby.
“High as your mum’s dick,” she chirped, causing Declan to thunk his head on the cabinet door in aggravation.
“Oh. My god.” He growled through his palm. “Humans don’t talk like that.”
“Your Ma did last night,” Nara sniggered at her inebriated wit.
“Oh my fucking god.” He grit his teeth as he crouched down at her feet. “Let me see it.”
“But, tiny hunter is here,” she whined as the fluffy ball stretched and repositioned itself.
“Fuck’s sake.” He pushed the comfy creature off of the chair. “Off with the suit.”
Nara let out a half-laugh, half-whimper as the armor slipped away from her chest, revealing flesh torn to pieces by an assortment of projectiles. Declan reacted to the seeping wounds, quickly spreading a translucent gelatinous material on top of her injuries, causing her to be more vocal with each prod.
“Jesus…” he breathed as he worked to control the damage. “Do you get paid by the bullet???”
“There’s a blade or two in there…too,” she pointed out defensively. “Variety!”
“Yes, I can see that.” He finished off sealing the material onto her skin. “And somehow, you manage to retain your ability to speak. God, you are so fucking irritating.”
Ignoring any noises of protest, he scanned her internals with his glasses, assessing the majority of the damage and cursing under his breath with each pass of his eyes. He needed this habit of hers to stop, but he knew her recklessness had no limits. She had impeccable timing, too: always choosing to drop in whenever he manages to control the chaos in the Under office, and find some shred of peace.
“Well, you fucked yourself up pretty fantastically, but you’re back seems okay,” he declared as he stood up, pointing to the medical table in the living room. “Get on.”
“Can’t,” Nara professed.
“Literally can’t or won’t?” Declan asked.
“Fuckin’ really.” He growled more profanities as he grabbed a badge off of a counter. “What did you take?”
“Some blue stuff…red. Green?” She tried to collect her decaying thought process.
Declan sighed as he activated the badge and slapped it on his neck. Wires sprouted from the adornment, wrapping around his limbs. They hardened into flat sheets of metal, notifying Declan of a successful deployment in a series of glowing lights and electronic beeps.
“Fucking wonderful.” He slipped under one of her arms and used the exoskeleton to hoist the walking tank onto his shoulders. “Who’d you piss off this time?”
“Corella?” he confirmed as he flopped her onto the table, letting a hint pettiness seep from his actions.
“Ow-ow-ow.” A pained cackle exited her lips. “Yeah, that’un.”
“Hmm, could have been worse. She can’t afford the guard she has. Or had, knowing you.” He stuck her with a syringe, extracting a sample of blood. “Why the fuck do you do to this to yourself, goddammit. Using up my time like this just for a laugh.”
“I take care of you,” she assured.
“I don’t need to be taken care of. I am the last person on this shitty rock that needs help,” he scowled as he deposited the sample into a machine. “In case you haven’t noticed, I am an Uppercity citizen, and I can afford to get whatever supplies I need. It’s assholes like you that put me at risk when you steal all the megacorps’ shit. Do you have any idea how infuriating it is to have to keep track of two separate inventory lists?”
“You should sleep more,” Nara purred.
“Well I might if you didn’t keep stealing my bed and getting blood all over it with your drunken antics,” he accused over his shoulder.
“You weren’t using it,” she pointed out.
“You’re still there when I am using it!” He slammed his mechanical fist against a panel. “You just appear! You do everything on purpose just to piss me off. And if you were less intoxicated, you’d try and feed me this horseshit of ‘cultural humor.”
“Noisy human,” the tank chastised.
“Ughhhhh.” His weary mumbles trailed off as the console scrolled information in front of his eyes. “Well I’ve figured out what you took, so at least now I can shut you up a little.”
“Heh. I’ll be in your head,” she assured.
“I am well aware of that.” He quieted the pulsing in his temples as he brought out another needle. “Now go the fuck to sleep so I can work.”