TITLE: Air Pirates
GENRE: YA Steampunk
"You've been here every day for a week, boy," the shopkeep said.
"Good stew." Sam tugged his hood, keeping his smirk carefully shadowed. He had thought he could say it with a straight face.
"I ain't seen you in town before. You waiting for someone?"
Sam just slurped his pepper stew. Though if there was pepper in it, Sam hadn't found it. Probably the spice had boiled off long ago--Sam suspected his stew had come from the same pot all week.
The shopkeep eyed him warily. "You ain't a knocker are you?"
"Wouldn't be a smart question if I were, aye?" Sam glared like a hungry wolf. He was only eighteen, but he could make an imposing figure when it suited. The sword at his hip didn't hurt either. Sometimes it was best to let folks think you were dangerous, as showing them only caused trouble.
Other times--and the way the man fidgeted with his greasy apron told Sam this was one of those times--it was best to play it friendly. Sam smiled. "I'm just drumming you, baron. I ain't gonna kill anyone."
"Course." The shopkeep laughed nervously. "But you are waiting?"
Sam slurped again. The silence stretched to discomfort, and the shopkeep soon found he had other customers to tend to.