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The Collector
Elf
rix_scaedu
I wrote this to meepalicious's prompt "You'll measure my footsteps while I blow through this town."


I stopped being a ‘good’ girl a long time ago, when I realised that I wasn’t getting any credit for it. Not that I smoke or otherwise damage my health, heaven knows that being able to run is a useful trait in my line of work, but ‘good’ girls don’t do what I do for a living. Guns, violence and leather protective gear are my stock in trade as a ‘collection agent.’ I’ll admit I’ve gone to some trouble to make sure my parents think I work in a call centre, ringing people up about overdue bills. As if.

Most of my work is in the city because that’s where the majority of my targets are. When I have to travel for work I try to line up a few jobs in the same place; I believe it saves time in the long run. So I rock up to a town, it could be your town, on a Friday evening in my air-conditioned van and I go to work. Given what I collect, the relevant authorities will have received an email notification that I was coming, sent five minutes after their office closed for the weekend. If your relevant authorities have offices that are open 24/7 then I probably don’t need to come to your town.

I generally park the van in a light industrial area, near the panel beaters and the trade hardware stores, not near the factories with multiple shifts. There are fewer people around to get curious about the van that way. Then I go scope out the sort of bars my targets tend to frequent – I’m sure it’s a punishment for my sins that I never get assigned the targets who like to hang out in hatted restaurants. If things go well, I can usually romance the first target in any given bar all the way to the van and even into its back. If there’s more than one in the same bar, well, my reputation is dirt in a lot of places and for a lot of things.

On a good run, the wanted fish in the pond just drop out of sight, all across town, as I reel them in.

The standard issue restraints, shackles and padding in the back of the van usually come as a big surprise, no matter how I got them there. The reading of their warrant and their rights is usually a bigger shock – you’d think they believe lopping the police budget meant no policing, not doing it smarter with less. That’s usually where the violence comes in. I’m good at responding to violence.

Really, yes, I am the bang you get for your paid-tax buck.


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