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three things that never happened to Mildmay Foxe

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As anyone with half a brain will tell you, it's never done nobody any good to treat with no hocus.

As anyone who's ever been down on their luck will tell you, though, sometimes, you take what you can get, and so when Felix fucking Harrowgate said that he wanted to pay me a whole lot of money to kill someone, I figured that what I could get was maybe not dead - which, in my book, was a sight, completely guaranteed dead.

'course, that was before he actually told me the target.



I never did understand the kind of fucked up you had to be to get off on hurting someone else - and I definitely never understood how anyone could get off on being hurt, but I guess that as long as you put the two together, that was as least fucked up as you could get. Like, one kind of fucked up maybe sort of evened out the other.

So when Keeper had me make this little run to one of the more expensive places she did business with, I didn't feel no need to stick around any longer than I had to. I'd delivered what I'd come to deliver; they would see to it that payment would arrive promptly and completely, and that was that.

Or so I thought, right up until the moment I damn near broke my neck falling over this guy who was lying on the floor like he was sleeping with his eyes open: looking at his face, you could tell someone was home, but also that they would never see no call to pay no attention to anything you might do or say to them.

It was creepy, but worse than that, it was just plain wrong.

His own choice, though, or so I reckoned, and even if it wasn't, that sure was no problem of mine, except for the part where I couldn't seem to get him out of my mind, after, as if he'd cast some sort of spell on me and now I had to either come and save him (from himself more than anyone else, probably) or have him in my head for the rest of my life.



"They've agreed to teach me," said Felix, and I made sure to put a big smile on my face to congratulate him, never showing no hint of what I was really thinking, which was a whole lot less happy and a whole lot more pissed.

I mean, it was grand some posh hocus had agreed to take on Felix as a student and all - that was one mouth less I had to worry about feeding, but from the way they'd all looked at me when we'd come in for the testing and the questions and all that stuff, I knew exactly how they felt about people like him and me.

Only, with Felix going and hanging around them all the time, I figured that either he was going to be completely miserable, or one day when I'd come by to visit, I'd find him looking down at me just like the rest of them had, and neither prospect exactly filled me with joy.

Still, for his sake, I kind of hoped it'd be the second.