So now what? I’m in a foreign land (where they don’t seem to like my music) with no money, and as far as anyone back home knows I’m dead. I tried to think of someone I could call for help, assuming I could figure out how to make an international call, but I came up empty. My parents and I aren’t close, my friends are mostly pretty casual acquaintances or broke. Most of them are both. I have a manager I haven’t heard from in months, and that was before I was blown up and kidnapped and lost several months of my memory. He wouldn’t be terribly interested in anything that would cost him money anyway. My ex could probably afford to bring me back, but I don’t know if he would. Or where he lives currently.
I assume the easiest route back to the CS from here would be through Panama. And then somehow convince the police or someone that I’m me. Fingerprints? I’ve been arrested so I would have fingerprints on file right? But that was in the CS, not the US. Do they share information? Is getting home what I even want? Eventually, yes. But someone by the name of Duke Eaglevane tried to blow me up. Did blow me up. I’d be dead now if not for . . . whoever did . . . uh, whatever they did to me. I never thought of myself as vindictive or vengeful, but that’s a much easier attitude to have before someone murders you.
I asked where Duke Eaglevane was and Alcazar laughed. He’s the most wanted man in the world. Several countries are offering millions of dollars to anyone who can give information on where he might be. Not even for his capture, just for information. When he asked me why I wanted to know, I told him I was thinking about killing Duke Eaglevane. He didn’t laugh at all. He looked at me like I said that I was thinking about swallowing molten lava. He was pretty harsh in expressing his view that a singer from the “softest” country in the world with no training, no resources, and no support should not attempt to hunt down the world’s most dangerous and notorious terrorist. Correction, the world’s most dangerous and notorious terrorist who may possibly be immortal.
I barely know the guy, where does he get off talking to me like he’s my father? I couldn’t get too mad at him though because he loaned me some money to get a place to stay and got me a job down at the docks with a French shipping company unloading ships. The manager, who was skinnier than me, didn’t bat an eye when I picked up a crate that had to weigh a couple hundred pounds. I guess Madripoor does have its fair share of weirdos.
I foolishly thought that since it was a French company, most of the other workers would speak French, but they didn’t, even though it seems like some of the locals do. The one guy there who spoke Spanish told me they were Vietnamese, but don’t they speak French there too? I should have paid more attention in model UN. So I can’t understand whatever horrible things my co-workers are saying about me. Which is probably for the best. Out of the many paths I thought my life might take, I would not have put lugging boxes on that list in ten thousand years.
While I was working one day, I heard a horrendous noise and looked out in the harbor to see that two ships had collided. Actually it looked like one ship had sliced another in half. Everyone came to gawk as the one ship listed badly with a half-ship stuck in its side while the other half sank like a rock. I don’t know why it took me so long to realize that what I was seeing in the water were people. My Spanish speaking “friend” Omar happened to be nearby and I asked him what I should do. He thought about it for a moment, looked around and then shrugged.
(translated from Spanish)
“I don’t see anything you can do.”
“I have super strength. I must be able to do something.”
He squinted out at the water “Like what?”
“I don’t know, hold up the ship until everyone gets off?”
“How would you do that? There would be nothing to support you.”
“Maybe I could rip the side open in case anyone is trapped inside.”
He looked at me appraisingly “Could you?”
“I could try. I mean I have to do something don’t I?” At that moment the bossman, not the skinny guy who hired me, a big bald bastard with a mess of tattoos on his arms, came over and bellowed something not in English, French or Spanish. “What did he say?”
“Boss says back to work.”
I gestured “But what about the people in the water?”
Omar and the boss exchanged a few words, Omar gesturing at a small boat nearby, and then he turned back to me with another shrug “Boss says back to work.”