From two cells down Elena stood up and yelled. “Sit down and shut up Bristol.”
Wu cracked open one eye to watch the show. Bristol turned right around and grabbed at the bars to Elena’s cell. “We wouldn’t be stuck behind these damn bars if it weren’t for ‘im.”
“I know.” Elena yelled back “And right now I like him better than you ’cause he’s not making all this damn racket.”
“Ha! S’matta you been in ‘ere two days without Wat you already looking for another man?”
Quick as flashing steel Elena’s hand slipped through the gap and grabbed Bristol by the collar before yanking him into the bars. Bristol’s head bounced off the metal and he tripped and fell on his backside.
Elena stabbed a finger at Bristol. “You watch your mouth.”
Bristol reached a hand up to his face, when he pulled his fingers away even Wu could see blood on them. Bristol glowered at Elena, but said nothing.
In the cells on the other side, Wu could hear the drunks shuffling quietly, deliberately trying not to draw Elena or Bristol’s attention while they watched the spectacle unfold.
Then the Sheriff’s booming voice filled the quiet. “Get your clothes on kids, you’ve got company.”
Wu doubted the drunks had ever felt so much relief before. He opened his other eye.
Sheriff Rose paraded into the room with one of her constables in toe. She casually inspected the cells as she passed. When she saw Bristol sitting on the floor with blood on his face, she paused mid stride and turned to Elena. “He alright honey?”
Elena didn’t take her eyes off Bristol. “He will be if he stays quiet.”
Sheriff Rose walked over to Elena’s cell. “Honey, I wouldn’t normally tell another sister what to do, but right now it’s my job: You keep your hands to yourself. Clear?”
Elena said nothing.
Sheriff Rose went back to what she was doing. “Wu.” She called as she moved over to his cell. “You got a visitor.”
“Oh?” Wu looked up at her and raised an eyebrow.
Sheriff Rose knelt down so she could speak to Wu at eye level. “Your guest was pretty insistent and you’ll be under my supervision so I’m going to allow it.”
She stood back up again and her constable approached the cell door. “Back of the cell sir.” He said. “Face the wall and put your hands behind your head.”
Wu got up from the floor and did as he was told.
The constable cautiously entered the cell and approached Wu, who briefly considered jumping the man and attempting a daring escape but decided against it. Sheriff Rose stood a good distance from the cell door and would likely have her pistol out and ready before Wu could subdue the constable.
So Wu let the friendly policeman cable-tie his wrists together and they lead him into an interrogation room. Even if he’d been blindfolded Wu could tell what the room was for. Sound became stale as soon as Sheriff Rose closed the door behind them. Suggesting the room had been modified to produce clear audio. If that hadn’t been enough the bolted down tables and chairs in the middle of the room and the static servant droid standing to attention with a view of the entire room made it obvious.
To Wu’s surprise it was Jie waiting for him in the opposite chair. Still dressed like he’d just stepped off the streets of Tang Xing. A stylish bomber jacket lay folded on the table next to him, even though Jie was already wearing a jacket. Jie cracked a grin when he saw Wu get lead into the room.
Sheriff Rose noticed Wu’s surprise. “You were expecting someone else?”
“Yeah.” Wu said after a moment. “I thought I was going to be interrogated.”
“That’s still happening.” The Sheriff smiled. “But Jie’s been wanting to talk to you since you saved him and I’m going to be here to make sure everything remains above board.”
Curious, Wu sat down in the chair.
“Hey Wu.” Jie began, his eyes flicking towards the Sheriff and her constable only briefly. “How you holding up?”
“I’m good man.” He said. “I’m in the cell next door to the guys who took you hostage, we’ve been catching up.”
“Yeah?” Jie asked, his eyes twinkling a little. “How about that chick they had with them? The one with the blue hair. She mention me?”
Wu made a show of rolling his eyes. “Sure Cassanova, she asked for your number.”
Jie pumped his fist and whispered. “Yes.”
Wu smirked at him. “What about you? We didn’t get you in too much trouble did we?”
Jie became serious again. “Oh no no no. Everything’s fine. The only thing I feel bad about is that… well…” Jie gestured to the room around them. “This.”
Wu shrugged. “Couldn’t be avoided. I’m just glad Sifu got out okay.”
Jie looked down and nibbled at his lip. “Yeah. I guess.”
Then Jie seemed to notice the jacket on the table. “Oh, I got you this.”
Wu glanced at the Sheriff and then turned back to Jie. “You’re allowed to do that?”
Sheriff Rose came forward. “I’ve looked over it, there’s nothing in the pockets and nothing came up on the scanner so I don’t see the harm in it.”
“What about our Ranger friend?”
Sheriff Rose crossed her arms. “She’s not the boss around here and I figured you deserve a little gratitude for all the good you done.”
Jie presented the jacket to Wu with both hands, a beaming grin on his face.
Wu smirked and accepted the jacket. It was a black gore-tex street wear number with silver piping and linings. An emblem Wu didn’t recognise adorned both the heart pocket and almost the whole of the back.
Wu cast Jie a knowing look. “Who’s jacket is this?”
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