CMDR VEX: 18.11.3301 – A WAY WITH WORDS

+++BEGIN FEDERAL INTELLIGENCE REPORT – OPERATIVE: <REDACTED> – LOCATION: NEVILLE HORIZONS – KAUSHPOOS+++

As per your orders I have been trying to assimilate myself into the Kaushpoos Purple Brotherhood (KPB).  I have identified one of their principle meeting places as the Dark Nebula bar in Neville Horizons, and have been working undercover there as a middleman for the person responsible for running their operations in the station, a woman calling herself Judith Priest.  However, I regret to inform you that this operation has suffered a significant setback.

I have annotated my report with excerpts from my audio transcript implant for clarity.

The bar is quiet – five patrons, the bartender, the bouncer, and Priest sitting in the corner with her lieutenant. It is 08.45; the clientele are not usually noted for being early risers.  The door slides open and two men walk in.  

The first is tall and thin with a mess of black hair.  He is dressed in high Imperial style, a long dress coat and high boots, complete with neckerchief.

The other man is his exact opposite.  Short, neat and very well built, clearly from a high-gravity world.  Completely bald and dressed in a well-tailored but simple waistcoat and shirt, with suit pants and well-polished combat boots.

The bouncer on the door notes the short one’s sidearm.

“I’m sorry sir,” He says, laying a hand on his shoulder, “but I’ll have to ask you for your weapon.  We don’t allow our patrons to carry…”

Without even a change in expression the short one grabs the arm, spins and twists it up behind the bouncer’s back.  With a crunch the shoulder pops out of its socket and the bouncer screams, loudly.  Without pausing he grabs the man’s collar and smashes his face into the door frame. Repeatedly.

The bouncer slumps to the floor, unconscious and bleeding.

The assailant turns, pulls an antique pistol from its holster on his hip and shoots the bartender, who has been reaching for something behind the bar, through the shoulder.  He turns to face the rest of the room.

“Ladies and gentlemen, my name is Vex.  I’m looking for a man called Marcus Xavier.  Someone here knows where he is, and they will either tell me or I will kill them.”

There is silence. Then, an unidentified man sitting at one of the tables asks:  “What makes you think we know anyone by that name?”

The man calling himself ‘Vex’ looks at him, and then with the same calm expression he has been wearing since entering, shoots him in the knee.  The sitting man falls off his chair with a screech and lays on the floor, whimpering.

At this point the tall one, who has been standing against the wall with his head in his hands, watching Vex through his fingers, steps forward.

“Great. Marvelous. You have a way with people, Vex, you really have. How about we revert to the original plan of me asking questions before you shoot people?”

Vex looks at him sideways and holsters the firearm. “You’ve got three minutes,” he grunts.

The taller one turns to the now fully-attentive room.  “Hi everyone, we’re here for the pub quiz. Ha ha. No, we are in fact here for some information, in the hope that someone can help us. This tends to happen quickly and cleanly or slowly and messily, while my delightfully well-adjusted companion gifts each of you in turn with an exciting new disability.”

The bartender groans behind the bar. Vex casually walks behind the counter, kicks him in the head a couple of times, and proceeds to make himself a drink.

“It would obviously be more time-efficient for one of you to venture the information he’s after voluntarily, although he would no doubt much prefer the slow and messy method.”

Judith Priest stands up, followed by her lieutenant.

“You and your friend can go screw yourselves,” she announces to the room.  “Nobody here will tell you a bloody thing.”

Vex looks up from his cocktail and narrows his eyes briefly.  Picking up the drink, he walks back around the counter and over to her.  Up close she stands a good fifteen centimetres taller.  She and her lieutenant look down at him.

“Look. Vex, is it? I’m sure this little double act you’ve got here is really effective against some people, but I’ve had scarier pond life than you come in here trying to intimidate me.”

Across the room the tall one winces, shaking his head.

“No,” Vex replies quietly, “you really haven’t.” and smashes the head of the glass on the table.  In one quick movement he grabs the back of Priest’s head and rams the stem of the glass through her eye socket.  She crumples to the ground, dead instantly.  Her lieutenant, who had been moving to help his employer, takes a step back.

“Common mistake, that,” sighs the tall one. “Common and frequently fatal, in fact. My friend doesn’t do threats – he does surprisingly accurate forecasts. Are we sure that none of us are feeling chatty?”

Five minutes later they leave, with a comprehensive list of the possible locations of Marcus Xavier.  

Obviously this re-shuffle of the KPB’s middle management in Neville Horizons has delayed my schedule.  However, I would recommend that the man identifying as ‘Vex’ be placed under heightened surveillance when operating in Federal jurisdictions, and his companion – clearly an Imperial sypathiser – be identified.

+++END FEDERAL INTELLIGENCE REPORT – OPERATIVE: <REDACTED> – LOCATION: NEVILLE HORIZONS – KAUSHPOOS+++

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