I am Elis Argall, recently moved to America from Wales. I used to be in a gang over there, and they knew that I needed to get out of that place. So they helped me. They got me a plane ticket to some fuckin city in America where I could start over. Maybe now I can have a normal life. Get a job, a family, get higher education. Maybe.
As I walked through the streets, looking for stores that were hiring, I bumped into someone who had obviously seen me. And I know that cause I saw her eyes glaring at me from the reflection in a store window. Most people would have moved their arses out of the way but nope. She walked right fuckin into me.
I stumbled a little, and glared at the woman. I wiped my mouth as I looked at her, grimacing from the trickle of blood on my hand. She intentionally hit me in the fucking face when she walked into me. She was about my height, a little taller, though that might have been the heels. Obviously she was a dragon, and her attire reflected that. I thought it was a little odd, but it still looked intimidating. I wasn’t going to let her scare me though.
“Oi! What the fucks wrong with you? Get your arse out my way.”
“I don’t need to do shit.”
Then her fist flew towards my face, I was ready for it, but I wasn’t ready for how swift she moved. Her gauntlet scraped my cheek as I dodged. She sent a flurry of blows, and I tried to block them all, but I soon learned that was a bad idea. My arms had scrapes on them now because of those damn gauntlets. After that first bit I started to really get into the fight, though I very quickly learned that I was outclassed, and she was playing cat and mouse with me.
After I figured that out, I figured that my best offense was to go unpredictable. So I just tackled her. She wasn’t expecting it, but she adapted quickly. We both fell to the ground but she twisted as we fell so I took the brunt of the fall. All the air left my lungs and I painfully tried to sit up, even though she was on me, but she took the advantage. All I saw was her fucking gauntleted fist then darkness.
A week later and I was a barista at a coffee shop. Surprisingly, getting a job was very easy, even though my face was fucked up. No one ever asked about it, though I did get a lot of odd looks. I wouldn’t say odd like what the hell happened to him, it was odd because people looked at me like they knew something. Whatever.
I was working just a regular day, when suddenly there was a big commotion in the line. Everyone jumped out of the way, and this guy strolled in like he owned the place. I gotta admit, he had a beautiful face, even with the scars, and maybe a little because of the scars. He seemed to be a sort of snake, dog, mix. I didn’t ever pay attention in school though so fuck if I knew any breeds. I ignored that he just jumped my line.
“Good morning. What would you like to have today?”
“Do you have a cell?”
He seemed pretty irritated about something, so I decided to have a little fun with the guy. Even though half the people in the shop looked like they just pissed themselves.
“Well I mean.. I’m not really supposed to have a full on chat with people while I’m working. If you would like to order something though…” I added a small smile for effect. Why not, right?
He hissed, and his tongue flicked out at me. “Fine. Get me a sssmall hot chocolate.”
I grinned and rang up his order. “That will be $4.07 please! And no, I don’t own a phone.”
He hissed again and rolled his eyes at me. I was beginning to guess the tongue thing was a sign of irritation, as well as the rolling of the ‘s’.
“Well then where do you sstay?”
“Oh, I’m sorry, but we have to go on our first date before I can bring you home.” When I said that, I noticed a cat grimacing from behind him. “Also could you please step aside so I could ring up other customers?”
He made a face, but he stepped over, and I rang up someone while talking to him. “Alright then you Brit. Can you at least tell me when you get out of work.”
I corrected him, I was Welsh not British. Even though the Queen was my Queen, there was still a difference.
“What fucking ever. What time do you get off work?”
I told him, because I could tell he was getting right minged off about me. Then his hot chocolate was done and as he started to walk out I said, “Aw, I don’t even get your name?”
People were giving me panicked looks while he turned around and walked back to the counter. He leaned over the counter and grabbed my shirt. All I could think of in that moment was that his breath smelled like chocolate. Which was weird cause he hadn’t had any of the hot chocolate he just got. Not like I was looking or anything. Anyways, he whispered to me “Erin, and don’t you tell anyone, either. I’ll be back.” Then he left. The rest of the line seemed to scared too have small talk with me after that.
Just as I was cleaning up to leave Erin walked in again. He told me to hurry up, and then went back outside. I was very curious to find out what was going on, plus maybe I could get lucky and have a nice shag with the guy.
Finally I finish up and clock out, and walk outside. He immediately steps beside me and leads me down the road. We talked for a little bit about the town, I was full of questions, and snarky comments to go with them. Finally I asked him, “So, if no one knows that your name is Erin, what do people call you?”
He contemplates it for a few moments. “Firstly, there are a few people who know my name. Secondly, people just know of me. I guess when people talk about me they call me ‘Mailau’s snake’.”
I went along with it. Though, I had no idea who Mailau was. I then asked him where he was taking me, and he replied with Mailau. Since it seemed like this was a very important person, I decided to leave it a surprise. Also I didn’t want to show just how ignorant I really was about this place.
“So, why does Mailau want to see me, of all people?”
Erin shrugged and made an odd face. “She says you showed promise when fighting her. Even though I thought it just looked like you got your ass handed to you. Plus I guess she likes to see people who don’t back down.”
That explained it. Mailau was the dragon I fought on my first day in America. By now I was very suspicious of who they really were. It all made sense, really. It wasn’t like I was opposed to joining a gang. It’s just, I was in America now, where guns were legal. That was something entirely out of my league.
We turned into the yard of this beautiful big ranch style house. It was two stories and had a couple of lovely cars parked in front of it. It seemed very nice, and I wondered if this was their base of operations, or if they were just rich enough to have bloody amazing safe houses.
I stepped in the house and it seemed as nice inside as it did from outside. Though the furniture looked more worn in than fancy, as his first guess would have been. It seemed more like, a house, than anything. Anyways, Erin led him through the foyer and living room to the kitchen area. And there she was, making some sort of iced drink. She didn’t have the wing shoulder cape thing on, but other than that she still looked the same.
She glanced at us as we entered, but nothing else. Erin took a seat at one of the stools next to the island. I decided to sit next to him cause I might as well make myself comfortable, right.
Mailau glanced at me as she got some cups. “Want tea?” What the bloody hell is she on about. I knew she was talking about the weird liquid in the large container with all the ice in it, but I just saw her pouring powder in it. That was definitely not tea. Instead of voicing my opinion on her so called ‘tea’, I just shook my head. She then poured two glasses and gave one to Erin. I tried not to make a disgusted face and he sipped on it. It didn’t even smell like tea. It was just this watery lemon smell. Bleh.
Then Mailau was staring at me. She was leaned against the counter and sipping her concoction, just looking at me. I raised an eyebrow. She smirked and glanced at Erin. He rolled his eyes and looked away. I was really confused as to what was going on. I decided to fucking step up and start the conversation.
“So, what do you want.”
Then she smiled. It wasn’t a mean smile, it was a genuine smile, all sharp teeth and tiny little eye crinkles. “I think you would be a good fit for my operations around this place.”
I raised my eyebrows at that. “Oh, so this is how it’s going. How do you know I give a toss about your ‘operations’ anyways?” Out of the corner of my eye I saw Erin give me a look, but I wasn’t taking my eyes off of her. She was definitely the most dangerous one in the room, and I had the habit of waking the dragon, so to speak.
Her head did this small tilt thing, and for some reason I noticed how smoothly her hair swayed to the movement. “Why did you pick a fight with me then, if you supposedly aren't interested.”
I could feel my scruff bristle at that. “I did not! You ran into me, and then you threw the first punch.”
Then Erin threw in his opinion. “From my point of view, even if you didn’t see her you still started the fight verbally.”
Mailau nodded then said, “And I know you saw me, too. You weren’t taken completely by surprise when I walked into you. Which is another thing I noticed about you. You were aware of your surroundings the entire time, even when we were fighting.”
I crossed my arms, impressed she noticed. “Ok fine whatever. But what do you want with me? I’m not, and I never have been, the best fighter. Even though I usually start all the fights. So what are you going to do with me? Am I to be your lapdog?”
She shrugged. “Whatever it takes. But no, we’re going to take you out on a test run and go from there. Hows that sound?”
And that, was that.