"Yeah, that sounds pretty nice! I'll go ahead and take that!" the griffon says. While he doesn't quite know what to expect, fruit juice is always good- so, he'll probably like it a lot!
You pluck quietly at the guitar, playing a melancholy little tune.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j7uj2QiSvuI
"Hmm?" He looks up, neglecting to put his goggles up. He shows you; it's an android eye, disturbingly realistic from the front. The back is all wiring and conduits. "Rest of the model got brought in a few days ago. I'm kind of a tinkerer, so I'm trying to get her back in working condition. Ought to fetch a good price, I reckon. Just got some crossed wires on this one."
Pushing up to the bar near you, coronet eyes the fruity drink with interest. "Ooh, so how's the taste, Pal?"
"Shucks. What got her into this beat-up of a state? One would think the regular robots and not androids would be better suited to working in conditions warranting such a degree of damage."
The drink is quite flavorful, with a strong taste of vodka and cranberries. It has a slightly sour aftertaste, but not unpleasantly so.
She frowns and looks at you for a while. "…Cremorne, isn't it? I'm not good with names, sorry. But I do remember you. Just a glass of white wine for you then?" She turns around to start serving, looking back at you for confirmation.
"I don't ask questions I don't want the answers to. I just take what I'm given. Looks like the owner did it though, and didn't want to spend money on repairs." Badger shrugs. "Shame."
"Nah just flirting, she's paying, so whatever she wants to buy me."
Copper points a thumb over to Coronet, looking to her,
"This is a test mind you, open note."
"Fair enough. Shout me if you need me." She puts down the wine bottle and goes to quickly serve another customer.
"Pretty good, actually! You should get one, too!" the griffon chirps excitedly.
"So you seem familiar with this bar. You come here often?" She sips her drink slowly.
"Sounds like a valid policy around these parts…. shame, you say? Is it one of these cases where a broken tool gets tossed away when a simple fix would've been enough to make it work again?"
Drift uses his scanning system to take a look at the android parts, trying to discern what could've caused the damage.
>Defaulting Sight Beyond Sight
"Yeah, i'll give it a try!"
Turning to the barkeep, Coronet flags her down with a wing. "Hey, can i get one'a these fruity drinks here? Looks real nice.">>702519
"Huh? whaddya mean?" She asks, waiting on her drink.
"You like it?" She smiles warmly. "Plenty more where that came from if you want another!"
"I don't visit anywhere often, this is my thiiiird time? At least twice atleast. It's a comfy bar, the Crossroads Special is a good cocktail."
She says, drumming her fingers on the table,
"Name a planet, I've probably been there. I've got a PHD in barcrawling. Partied in the slums, with flyboys, grannies, et cetera et cetera."
she waves her hands.
"I'd like to think it's my calling.">>702524
"The drink you're buying me, you're being tested on it."
She sticks out her tongue,
"There's a right and wrong answer you know!"
"Sure thing. Just a moment…" She puts together the same drink in ten seconds flat
and serves it to you.
You examine the other spare parts scattered on the bench; mostly brains, fingers and teeth. It looks to you they were battered with blunt force. Perhaps a form of domestic abuse.
Doc Badger shrugs again. "'Tween you and me, he had a bad look to him. Wouldn't surprise me if he just snapped and broke his own android one day, and decided to sell it here for drug money or something. You get all sorts passing through here."
"Anyway. That was kind of morbid. You settled on buying something or…?"
"Sure! I'll go ahead and take another one." the griffon says, setting a few bits down.>>702522>>702526
"Want something? I'd be willing to buy, if there's anything you'd want. Same to you, Copper!"
grabbing ahoof of the drink, Coronet takes the time to enjoy a sip of the alcohol, enjoying the music and company.>>702526
"Ah, so you're a white wine kinda gal, then? Or was it one'a these 'crossroads' you were after?"
She nods, cobbling together yet another Crossroads Special. It's really something else how quickly she can make them. "Enjoy!"
>>702529>You don't know her name, yet
"You will never
hear me say no to a free drink. Your choice.">>702530
"I said open note, not that the teacher'd just give you the answer."
She grins even wider.
Drift frowns a little, but tone suggests he seems grateful to have been answered nonetheless.
"I see… As for your question, yeah, this old piece actually sounds quite neat. I might consult a singer acquaintance of mine in regards to it before buying it, so you might expect me some other time."
He puts the guitar away and pulls out the pack of cheese cheetos he's acquired along the way, opens it and begins eating, shoving his hoof deeper into the bag than necessary.
"There's one problem with guitars I'm not really fond of though - he goes up to the counter and pulls out his hoof, yellow with the cheetos dust and changes his voice to somewhat accentuated - "can't really play with a yellow limb like that, you know? Dirty business, these cheetos, I tell ya. Got any place to wash one's hooves at the back?"
"Oh, so that's
how you're gonna be, eh? Fine, fine." says Coronet, taking another sip of her drink.
"Hmm.. if ya went outta your way to get t'this
bar in particular, i'd have'ta say The Crossroads was what you're after." She says after a moment of thought. "It is
the special, after all!"
"Hmm? Well, you really helped me out! I owe you one, at least!" he chirps, offering a friendly smile.
"Aww, how sweet. But becareful, I might have some very expensive tastes." She giggles and gives Poncho a wink.>>702526
"Well dang. Sounds like you're good at living things up."
He looks stony all of a sudden, taking off the goggles and looking at you with slight suspicion. He simply nods and presses a button on the counter, and the sign outside changes: 'Sorry, We're Closed'. He leads you through a door at the back of the room, leading you to a second, smaller room lit by dim red light, lending it a slightly eerie atmosphere. "So it's that sort of business is it." He folds his arms. "You came to the right place then. You looking to get in with Yellow Hand or something?"
"Order me one then, still sitting dry.">>702535
"Then order me whatever you'd like hun, booze's booze.">>702536
"Well I ain't rich or nothing, but I mean hey, just look at me now. Two people buying me drinks and I met them a few hours ago."
Poncho'll get one of what he got for Copper, and let Glitter pick out what she wants!
"Alright, alright, i'm on it.">>702537
"Hey uh, can i get another'a these Crossroads for the minotaur here." i ask, pulling out the credits for the drink. "Still owe this gal a drink for the trip."
Having reached the inner parts, Drift changes his voice to a somewhat more serious one, answering:
"Don't get me wrong. You have some good stuff on your shelves and I respect your occupation, but yes, that's how it is. Won't be my first time though. Looking to complete the formalities of a contract for them. Who knows, maybe they'll be pleased enough not to point a gun at the one working for them till they leave their place this time around…"
"Hm? Sure!" She makes another one for you and passes you it.
Accepting the drink, Coronet carefully slides the bevvy over to the minotaur.
"Alright, How's that? Think it's enough'ta tell me that name'a yours?"
He nods, scrounging through a nearby cabinet and pulling out a datapad. "Just bear with me for a second… Alright, here we go. I'll get in touch with one of the bosses and let him know you're coming." He looks up at you. "So. Who are you and what's this about? Can't just let you rock up to Yellow Hand's base uninvited, you know."
"Drinks all around!" the bartender says cheerily as she prepares your orders, carrying them all over to you at once expertly. "Enjoy!"
"Two Crossroads, I suppose I'm not complaining."
She says, holding a glass in each hand,
"By the way 'Cor, the correct answer was anything with alcohol. Only way you could've been wrong was something with no alcohol. I'm a very easy class to pass."
She drinks the first glass in one go, leaving the other for actually enjoying the flavor.
"And you sure you don't want to keep it a mystery forever? Thirsty minotaur's a good name after all."
"Yeah, but it sounds like something weird to call someone normally." the griffon remarks, with a chuckle
"I've had people call me it before!"
"Fine fine, Copper Feel. Thanks for the drink hun."
She takes a sip of her remaining Crossroad
"Well, you never know. She could be thirsty both literally and figuratively." She hides her building laughter by grinning and finishing her drink.
Drift pulls out the head outta the bag and holds it on Doc Badger's eye level, possibly a little uncomfortably close to him, but he does so anyway, if to enhance the convincing effect.
"Since you're their contact, I reckon familiar with the ones who've wronged them?"
"Eh, I'm sure nopony wants to just be know as 'miss minotaur' forever, yeah? If ya got a name, ya might as well use it, far as i figure." replies the bat, finishing off her drink shortly after.
He recoils at first in surprise and slight disgust, but then he peers more closely at the severed head, tentatively poking it out of curiosity. "No one I knew at least, but I'm guessing they did something to piss off the Hand. Doesn't really answer my question. Who was she?" He can't seem to tear his eyes away from the head, looking under at the bloody neck stump. "Huh. She's real…"
"I guess the ones at the Yellow Hand might not have wished to let anyone other than their bounty hunters know who's had the skills and audacity to actually double cross them… not that it did -her- any good in the long term. Name's Barca. If you want, take a picture of the head and send it to them. I don't mind, as long as you don't take mine, setting yet another wave of competition at me, trying to rob me of the prey. For the same reason, you understand, I'd rather not share my name just yet."
Poncho flusters a little bit, and lets out a somewhat embarrassed cough. He'll just sip from his drink.
He nods, still fascinated by the gruesome sight, pulling up the datapad and pushing a few buttons. The other side of it lights up blue for a moment. "Alright," he says, continuing to type away on it. "Take your prize here to the Carnegie District. There's a building there, the Triton Hotel. Go there, and ask to speak to Ores. They'll take care of you from there."
"So, Copper Feel, eh? Good to know."
"So, now that we're all acquainted, i've gotta know: what's next? Once this is all over we just gonna go our separate ways?"
The android hides the proof of kill once more and readies himself to leave. On the way out he turns his head back, asking:
"And how much for guitar, outta curiosity? Not saying I'll buy it, but I will consider it."
After that he heads out for said district/hotel.
As you sit in the Crossroads bar together, it starts to dawn on you that you don't really have anywhere to go from here. Although you're back in civilization, you're almost as stranded right now as you were on the tropical planet. There's sure to be someone hiring for work here on Capriast.>>702558
"Hm? That old thing?" He checks his datapad. "Eh. It's old. I'll leave it at 75, and that's a lowball."
It doesn't take you long to orient yourself and arrive at the Triton Hotel, a luxurious looking building in an upmarket part of town. The exterior is a metallic peachy sort of hue, while the same color is present in the interior, with fancy black wooden panelling and furniture littered about the lobby. Holographic screens line the walls, keeping a log of which rooms are available as well as broadcasting local news. Behind a fancy looking desk is a mare wearing a high tech transparent visor and matching glove, which she is seemingly using to sort through some files projected in a VR scenario. She is swiping her hoof to and fro as if rummaging through a cabinet. She doesn't seem to have noticed you yet.
"Well, depends on where the party is next, I suppose. Backstage tour around the galaxy would be fuckin' sick, but don't know if the 'ling's looking for roadies.">>702549
Copper says, looking over to Glitter,
"Do I need to have prior knowledge of your discography? I'm no superfan but you saw how those hyper nerds acted before. Maybe it's for the best"
"Oh, they act that way to almost any idol they really like," she replies with a slight laugh.
"Though having some risque songs to help sales can also have something to do with it. But yeah, nah, you don't need to know all my songs."