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A few hours later, Bilge gave Teodor some money, and he braved the now weakening storm to get some pizzas from a nearby pizza parlor. As Teodor walked back to the bar, he saw an older youth standing in the alley across the street. Teodor felt the hair on the back of his neck rise. There was something wrong about that young man. Teodor sniffed the air, all he could smell was snow, the faint odor of gas, and an unwashed human.
The young man pulled his coat closer to his body. Teodor studied the young man. He reminded Teodor of one of his brothers; a tall, thin youth, with a strong build. His youngest brother had the same frame, he liked to scout for the family.
Teodor turned down the alley and took the back way into the bar. The wind died down. As he turned into the alley, Teodor could not feel any wind. Teodor opened the back door. As he walked inside, he glanced down to the street. The young man walked by. Teodor ducked inside the building.
The boy on the couch hadn't moved. Amanda redressed his wounds, as Teodor entered. Trucker sat in front of the old TV. His face and hair were clean. He rocked back and forth on the floor. Gunner moved to the old armchair in the living room, and snored, still wrapped up in the blankets.
Teodor brought the pizzas over to the table. Trucker bounced up and ran to the kitchen. Bilge shook his head. “Settle down there."
Gunner opened his eyes, “Smells good,” He said.
Bilge handed out the pizza slices. Trucker took his full plate back to the living room and ate, while watching a program with puppets.
Teodor opened the last box for Amanda and him, sausage, pepperoni, hamburger, and ham pizza with no cheese. Amanda sniffed at her slice, then tore off a large chunk of it.
The boy on the couch groaned. Amanda took her slice with her as she walked over to the boy.
“How are you feeling?” she asked.
Teodor grabbed a plate and sat down at the table, next to Bilge, “So do you think-”
A plate crashed to the floor. Teodor looked up. Amanda's plate laid at her feet in four pieces. She held her hand to her side. Her shoulders rising and falling with each breath. The boy stood up, a bloodied knife in his hand.
Teodor left the table, his chair flying out behind him. Trucker had scrambled across the living room floor and pressed himself against the wall. Teodor grabbed the boy, knocking the knife out of his hand.
Amanda raised her head, her eyes were yellow. She had controlled herself and stopped the changing. She pulled her hand away from her side, the wound healed.
Teodor twisted the boy around. “What the hell?”
“Let me go!” the boy shouted. He tried kicking Teodor.
Bilge ran up to Teodor and wrapped his arms around him. “Calm down, son,” he said. “They saved your life.”
“Fuck them!” the boy shouted.
Teodor raised his hand to strike the boy. Bilge shook his head. “Alright, We will just let you go out into the street as is. It's freezing. And you probably haven't eaten anything.”
“Fuck you!” The boy struggled to get out of Bilge's hands.
Gunner walked over, standing between the boy and Trucker. “I know you,” Gunner said. “You're the one that always is the lookout for the dealers.”
“What about it?”
“How many times has the Woman chased you?”
The boy stopped struggling. The boy glanced down at Amanda, then back at Gunner. “You've seen Her?”
“She tried to kill me last night,” Gunner said.
The boy's eyes went wide, “No one survives her.”
“Well, we have two here that are living proof that you can,” Bilge said.
“I saw her a few nights ago,” the boy said.
Amanda glanced up, her eyes had changed back to their crystal blue. “Why did you stab me?”
The boy didn't answer.
“Because when you run with the River Rats,” Gunner said, “An adult over you means trouble.”
“Yeah,” the boy said.
“What's your name?” Bilge asked.
“T-Boy,” the boy said.
Teodor glanced at Amanda. How come everyone they had met lately had nicknames? Teodor thought.
“T-Boy,” Amanda said. “You had a nasty knock to the head, you should rest for awhile.”
“I have to get back.” T-Boy said, “They are gonna come looking for me.”
“Who?” Teodor asked.
“The River Rats,” Gunner said.
Bilge let T-Boy go. “Then you better leave.”
Amanda stood up, “I don't think so.”
Bilge shook his head. “Let him go, Amanda.”
T-boy picked up his knife and ran towards the door. He slammed the door behind him.
“Good riddance,” Gunner said.
“Are they really that bad?” Amanda asked.
Gunner and Bilge nodded.
“I had them trash my place just after I opened,” Bilge said. “Because I wouldn't let them drink here.”
Trucker tugged on Gunner's blanket. “Do you think they found the others?”
Gunner shrugged, “I don't know.”
Amanda turned her head to Teodor, “We should go and see.”
Teodor nodded. “Yeah.”