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Scold The Brat [Ambrose]

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Scold The Brat [Ambrose] Empty on Fri Mar 10, 2017 11:04 am

God this place is dull. Ambrose thought as he strolled lazily along the streets of Oak Town, hands in pockets, and a supremely bored expression adorning his features; eyes skirting along the shops he passed, trying to see if any of them had potential, be it materialistic, or otherwise.

You would think a town with a known dark guild in its midst would offer a bit more excitement. But I guess you’d be wrong. This place is about as exciting as a freakin’ morgue. he thought a bit bitterly. He would have much rather been doing some quests at the moment, but due to his lack of rank in Grimoire Heart, most of the quests that offered any action or excitement had been promptly taken by other more powerful members.
How the hell was he supposed to get any stronger if he was only left with the scraps? The thought passed irritably through his mind.

But he supposed it was to be expected. He had yet to really make a name for himself, and that wouldn’t be possible until he actually had something to show his guildmates. Words were not enough for them, he had to actually show them by force. And in this kind of guild there was no such thing as sympathy. If he wanted to get stronger, to take on more powerful foes, and more difficult quests, it was up to himself to get there.

He sighed, and stopped in his tracks as that thought went through his mind. He didn’t regret his decision to find and join Grimoire Heart, it had in fact been everything he’d hoped for, and more. The mages there were powerful, unbelievably so, and intimidating. He hated admitting that, but it was true nonetheless. They would undeniably push him to reach for the epitome of his potential.
It was at that time he felt eyes on him, a tingling sensation on his neck; his eyes being drawn the shop he was standing in front of, and an old man sitting behind the small table set up. The shop wasn’t much to look at, and neither was the old man, cantankerous could easily describe this man in whole. But something about the man’s stare kept Ambrose from either ignoring him, or threatening him.

Their eyes stayed locked for another second before the man finally spoke, “You’re not from around here, are you boy?”

“Whether I am or not, I don’t really see how it’s any of your concern.” Ambrose replied, barely skipping a beat in his response time, but his words didn’t really seem to faze the old man, in fact he seemed to have piqued the man’s interest even more.

“You’re one of them mages aren’t you? I can tell. You part of a guild?”

“Whether I’m a mage or not, or part of a guild, again, I don’t really see what business it is of yours.”

“Boy, you have a sharp tongue on you.” The old man said as he chuckled, and then continued, “Well that clears one thing up for me, talk like that tells me you definitely aren’t part of a guild like Fairy Tail, or any others like it. Those mages are plenty happy to boast about their guild.”

He was beginning to feel some annoyance towards the old man, and was considering leaving; whether Fairy Tail mages boasted about their guilds or not mattered very little to Ambrose, and definitely wasn’t something the mages of Grimoire Heart practiced. For them, silence was golden when it came to their guild, and for good reason.
Apparently his irritation with the man had become visible, and he probably felt like he was about to lose Ambrose’s attention all together, because he said, “Now hold on, I just wanted to make sure I had the right kind of mage. You see, I have a problem, and a proposition.” Those words went a good way to calming Ambrose’s irritation; a single brow twitching slightly with interest.

The man had, in a roundabout way, guessed that Ambrose was a dark mage, and by his words informed him that he needed the help of such a mage, “Very well. Let’s hear this proposition. And, if after you’re done, you’ve piqued my interest enough, I’ll be happy to help.”

The old man made a sound somewhere between a scoff and a chuckle at his words. A second later he motioned with his head off to the side, “You see that brat over there?”

Ambrose cut his eyes to the side in the direction of the man’s gesture. He could see many kids whom he would consider to be brats, but one in particular stood out, “I’m assuming you’re talking about the one with the crazy brown hair, and annoyingly smug grin?”

“That’d be the one, yeah. His name’s Jerr. And he’s a little brat from hell. The kid is constantly stealing from all the shops around here. And no matter what we do, what we try, the little rat continues to evade us. What’s more, the local authorities couldn’t care less about stopping one mischief maker.”

“I’m inclined to agree with them, you might remember me saying you need to pique my interest. You’ve yet to do so.” Ambrose said, a look of boredom plainly on his face. He could tell that hit a nerve with the old man, his next words coming out much more harshly than before, “Rough the brat up. Scare the hell out of him, kick him like a dog, I don’t really care what you do, just make a point to the kid about stealing. I don’t care how you do it, just do it.”

Ambrose held his ground, eyes perfectly level with the old man’s, his hands still in his pockets. He was silently telling the man he had yet to sweeten the pot enough.

“Ugh, fine! I’ll pay you to rough the kid up. Happy?”

“Supremely.” He said with an expressionless face, eyes still on the man, “Now make it double what you were originally thinking of paying me for taking your sweet time. I’ll be back in half an hour to pick up payment.” He said, not once budging at the man’s incredulous expression, and letting his silent threat hang in the air as he turned and started for the kid.

As he approached the kid, a few different strategies came to mind how he might deal with the brat, but before he could actually decide on one, the child somehow seemed to take notice of him.

Dammit! He thought annoyingly as he began to chase the now running kid. Whatever it was, something had given away that Ambrose was heading for him, and he started sprinting off as fast as he could.

Well, from what the old man had told him, he really shouldn’t have been surprised at the speed the kid displayed, but he still was. There was no way he’d be able to catch up in a full-on pursuit like this with a kid this fast. He’d have to rely on other means to subdue the child.

From what he’d been able to discern from the few glances he’d gotten of the brat, it was clear the kid was an orphan. Which meant he likely had many hiding places all throughout the town. That meant time definitely wasn’t on his side right now, but a couple other things were. Though the kid was faster, he definitely wasn’t smarter than Ambrose, and chess was one of his favorite games.

Thankfully, Ambrose had spent the past week walking around the town, and had become very familiar with its intricate layout, and though the kid was very fast, he hadn’t quite been fast enough to completely lose Ambrose before he could get a good read on their exact location.
If he was right, and he knew he was, he could easily cut the kid off in the next few turns through a back alleyway. But it was at that point, that Ambrose realized he could do one better. He saw a ladder off to the right, and without a second thought, he jumped for it, grabbed ahold, and flew up the ladder as fast as he could, quickly pulling himself to the roof of the small building.

There he is. he thought as he soon spotted the kid darting along the alleyway below, and getting ready to make a right turn. Ambrose darted along the top of the roof, keeping the kid in sight. He could see another ladder coming up, leading back down to the alleyway. As the kid made to turn the corner, Ambrose was beginning his quick descent down the ladder, his hands and feet sliding down the rungs as he practically flew down the ladder.

The kid saw him as he descended the ladder and began trying to backpedal, but couldn’t stop himself well enough, proceeding to trip and fall. Ambrose let go of the ladder, dropping the remaining few feet to the ground. A second later, he had the kid by the front of the shirt, and pinned against the wall.

“Checkmate kid. You lose.” He said to the kid’s wide fearful face, “Word of advice kid, learn how to pick your targets, and battles better. And learn when to get the hell out.” He waited a few more seconds, silently letting the kid internally panic, wondering what Ambrose would do next. Though he wasn’t above physically roughing the kid up, he’d learned a long time ago, that mental abuse could be far more effective than physical.

“Now, you see, I’m being paid to rough you up, and scare you into leaving the old man’s shop alone. But I don’t really need to do that, do I?” He said, with a small sinister smile on his face, watching the kid’s wide eyes as he fervently shook his head, “No, please. I’m sorry.”

“It’s not me that you’ll be apologizing to kid. And trust me,” he said, letting his eyes bore into the kid, “if you were ever to wrong me, a simple apology would be far from sufficient.” The kid swallowed hard, his whole body shaking as sweat beaded up on his skin.

With that, he made his way back to the old man, brat in tow. A few minutes later, with head bowed, Jerr was profusely apologizing for causing the old man problems.

“Well, I’ll be.” The old man said with a smile and a chuckle, “I have to admit, I didn’t think you’d be able to catch the little runt so quickly. Though I think the price you demanded is still too stiff, I’d say you earned it for such a job well done.”

With that, the old man took out a small leather bag, and tossed it to Ambrose. He could feel the hefty weight of a good sum of Jewels. Pleased with his reward, Ambrose turned to leave, giving one last passing glance to the kid.

Ambrose lifted a corner of his mouth ever so slightly, That’s passion if I’ve ever seen it. That old man doesn’t have a clue what he’s in store for. A soft slight chuckle, and Ambrose was on his way, hopefully to find another job.


Word Count: 1,870/1,000

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