Stop, watch.

By: Rip

Some people have a knack for finding strange things. Strange things always seem to find Zane Legends.

Sometimes, though, Zane wished he was one of the former. What he wouldn't give to be the sort of person who had the knack for finding strange things, instead of the other way around. Especially if he could have the knack for finding strange knick-knacks, which is what he really needed right now. Well, strange knick-knacks and maybe a quick snack.



And stop he did, rather abruptly. The word wasn't heard so much as seen and felt, as if the universe had caught wind of his train of thought and convalesced before him to just put an immediate end to all that right there. Zane yelped and reeled back, rubbing his forehead where he'd struck the sign, briefly worrying about how much more his scar would stand out with a giant bruise around it.

His concern for his appearance evaporated in favour of concern for his life in general, however, when he noticed why the sign had actually impeded his progress.

"Oh kna...ehr, sausages!" He yelped, leaping away from the treacherously steep staircase before him. When his back struck something, and that something reacted by wrapping its arms around him, he just went right ahead and yelped again because it was just one of those sorts of days.

The 'something' with the arms steadied him and spun him around, realised it might have done that in the wrong order, and steadied him again.

"" Zane babbled, having given up pretty quickly on that whole yelping thing in favour of maybe gibbering a bit instead. The Something turned out to be a person, of sorts. In fact, it was a clockwork person, which really wasn't that unusual around these parts. This one was less brushed steel and elegant interconnecting gears, though, and more the unfortunate aftermath of an intimate encounter between a grandfather clock and a wood chipper. The clockwork person stepped away, and gave him a moment to regain his composure.

"Aheh. Uh...sorry, about that. I wasn't really watching where I was going."

The clockwork person just stood there, second hand ticking away patiently. Something about it compelled Zane to explain himself.

"Which is funny, because I'm actually looking for something, so you'd think I'd be looking where I'm walking, right? Hahah. Uhh, even...funnier is that I'm looking for um..."

Zane started to sweat a bit under the unflinching regard of the clockwork person. The minute hand moved slightly, in what he couldn't help but feel was a condescending way.

"Here, I'll just show you." He reached into his pocket and produced, to his mild embarrassment...a pocketwatch. The clockwork person whirred loudly, causing Zane to start and fumble the watch.

"NOO!" He yelled as the watch clattered to the ground and started rolling towards the staircase. The clockwork person pushed him aside and in two quick strides outpaced the watch, snatching it up in a fluid movement that didn't quite fit its driftwood-and-scrapmetal appearance.

Zane heaved a sigh of relief. He was used to crazy days, but this was really getting to be a bit much. The clockwork person regarded his watch for a moment, then reached up and fiddled with something on the back of its, for lack of a better term, neck. There was a metallic twang, some squeaking, and a concerning crunch. Zane stepped forward, about to say something, but the clockwork person had apparently finished whatever it was doing and offered the watch back.

Zane took it, and looked down at the golden disc in his hands. It was now adorned with the very thing he had gone out in search for: A new chain, to replace the previous one that had broken. He tugged at it experimentally. It was very strong, and very fine indeed. So fine it surely would have cost a fortune had he acquired it from a store.

Zane looked up to see the clockwork person disappear around the corner.

"Hey, wait! Wait!!" He yelled, running after it. It didn't seem to hear him, though, and by the time he made it back out to the street the clockwork person was nowhere to be seen.

Genre: Adventure
Setting: In a dark alley
Character: Deaf person