- Violence - Canon-Level
- Slice of Life
He isn’t the first half scared kid to enter her bar.
He squares his shoulders and walks with the slightest hitch on the right side. Cracked ribs and desperately trying to look like he can still hold his own in a fight. His eyes sweeping the room assessing for threats.
The hunters glance at him and go back to their business. Cocky teenagers die fast on the road, too convinced they are immortal to take the proper precautions and too angry to care. No one expects to see this kid again. The monsters don’t care how tough he thinks he is or how righteously angry. They’ll gut and eat him just the same.
Ellen wipes out a shot glass and pours the kid a shot of cheap whiskey. If nothing else it should take some of the sting out of those ribs. He slides a five out of his pocket and across the bar before downing the shot. Up close she can see bruises on his neck and jaw. There are lumps under his long sleeved shirt that are most likely bandages. Each of his knuckles are scabbed over. From the coloring of the bruises, she’d guess he got his ass kicked well and good about 3 days ago.
His shoulders slump slightly and Ellen can see the pain and exhaustion weighing down on him. There’s a slight tremor in his left hand as he returns the shot glass to the bar. God, he’s nineteen if he’s a day and already his eyes are flat and hard like a dog expecting to fight for every scrap. These are the same eyes she sees every day in the hunters that pass through. The eyes of men and women who understand death on a visceral and personal level.
Yet, there is something about the tilt of his chin and the arrogant twist of his lips that makes his youth obvious. He may fight like a man, but he’s also still a kid in way over his head trying to pretend he’s fine. She pours another shot and offers the kind of gruff indifference that won’t send the kid running.
“There are some rooms round back and a shower if you need it. Twenty dollars a night, solid core door with a couple strong locks and about 10 minutes of hot water if no one beats you to it.”
The kid looks at her, straight and unflinching. Assessing her angles and trying to figure out if she’s running some sort of game on him. She lets him look.
Finally he nods. “Thanks.” He slides a twenty across the bar and downs the second shot.
She pulls a key off the peg board under the bar next to the sawed-off and hands it over. “If you need anything just ask for Ellen. One of the sad bastards will know where to find me.”
“Eliot. And if anyone comes asking for me, shoot them.” he says as takes the key from her hand.
She just nods and pours him another shot.