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Ruins diving. Sometimes you find old books from when times were easier. At other times the best you can dig up is a few clumps of nanowire. At still others, if you look in the right places, you find folks that make their home in the remains of pre cat civilisation, just about on every station.

That's exactly what happened today. I had just entered the burnt out shell of an apartment building. The front desk was reduced to shambles and the lower part of the stairs had collapsed.

That's when he jumped out of a nest of rags. A wild eyed savage of a man. Too bad that this particular savage was wielding a comparativly high tech shotgun pointed right at me.

He was apparently more fond of letting the guns do the talking rather than ourselves, and I didn't come unprepared. As he was pulling the hammer backward, I had already drawn a quick bead on him with my rifle. You're generally told to pull the trigger slow and aim carefully, but at such close range and such little time, that mattered less than actually getting a shot off.

I didn't end up dropping him because of that. My shot clipped his gun arm, but that was enough for him to become distracted, allowing me to dive out of the way, behind a usable piece of the front desk. While he was busy reaiming, I focussed on him once again and pulled the trigger a second time.

He was hit in the stomach. The outlaw tumbled back, a mix of confusion and pain registering on his face, but just before his grip on the shotgun failed him, he got one more shot off.

I moved, but not quickly enough. I was caught on my left shoulder. The pain was intense but manageable. I stood up, but began to hear quick footsteps and shouting echo through the abandoned streets. The guards were coming.

If I wanted anything from this trip, this guy'd have to do. I quickly ran over and rifled through his belongings. He didn't have much, a few cred chips of little worth and a still sealed food ration.

I had bearly escaped into the tilting office tower across the street before a troop of gadani security officers came within visual range. While they were busy investigating the badly injured crook in the apartment building, I made my way back to the populated parts of the station.

Within only a segment of tossing the meager ration box onto the market, it was snapped up. As usual, it neglected to tell me who the buyer was, but all the better for it, as long as the cash arrived in my account I didn't much care who bought these rations off me.