High Sierra

The day was a fading mistress, her blue dress going bleak after an outing of shine painted in sweetened lies.

It rained; it was like when the boiler blew out and the shower went cold on you. It was plenty cold, the kind cold enough to chill passions and break hearts. It was the kind of wet that could drown you before you opened the bottle or even hit the ice.
Good intentions and bad alike were damp; it made no difference.

Marlowe stood outside beneath a shop's undercover shelter, taking refuge with his only consistent fellow jammed between the corners of his lips. He tightened his overcoat, his fedora casting a shadow on his stubbled mug like a forlorn memento.
He'd rather be getting wet inside, and yet, he stood out there, compelled like a cracker assed monk.

It was a damned fine place to be; low on liquor, caseless for weeks, and older by the minute.

He considered hitting a bar, but he knew that affair would only result in him stumbling out hours later with a half a head. It wouldn't take.

"...You're hitting the net," the detective announced to Triggerman abruptly, between puffs.

"...Glad to hear it, old man. I've had enough of your rainy recollections for one day, thanks."

Staying under cover from the rain, he turned inside to approach a terminal.

Two puffs of tobacco later, and Triggerman had departed.
Siegfried pulled out his PET and looked around, trying his best to find a netbattler also in a fight somewhere of a meritable age. He walked over to a small group of kids underneath a rain tarp, seeing as how the rain had pocked up. He pulled his hood up and looked around as Gungnir called to him,

'This is really unnessacary, Sieg. I don't question your capabilities as a netbattler'

But Sieg was hellbent on proving him wrong. He shook a little as he heard him call again,

'At least go inside a building, you'll catch pneumonia.'

"Telling me I'm too young to fight, that I'm gonna catch my death, what are you, my mom?" he asked defiantly, but as he sneezed, he knew he was right. He looked around and ran inside a building, trying to catch some shelter.

Inside the building he looked around, when he saw there was a terminal, and a single man standing at it operating a PET. <Yes!> he said under his breath, walking up behind him carefully, but unable to see anything on the screen. He decides to walk over and pick up a chair, carrying it from the sitting area to the terminal and setting it up behind him silently, completely oblivious to the stares and glances he was getting from people all around him as he looked over the mans shoulder at his PET, watchign him for a few moments before shouting,

"See! This guys like twelve times my age, and he's not making that many great choices either!!!"
Marlowe became aware of a presence behind him, but he didn't have to turn to assess the personality.

The air wasn't thick enough; he knew without a glance that this character wasn't a threat, and the voice confirmed it.

"Sorry kid... not interested in buying cookies or whatever you're selling," he brushed off casually, with the kind of bemusement usually reserved for punch drunk fellows. "It's wet out. Go home, boy."

Craning his neck towards the ceiling, Marlowe offhandedly produced a smoke ring that wafted for a few moments. Half a moment later, and the detective had given himself another inhale.
"Cookies!? I don't sell cookies, but I'll give you this for free" he said, sticking out his tounge as he pulled down his eyelid. He jumped off the chair and walked around, looking up at him as he blew a smokering,

"You think you're so tough, you had that totally wrong. That was a terrible combo to use on that virus, you don't know anything about setting up attacks! I knew age didn't mean a darn thing. I mean, you're so old you're crapping dust and you still dunno the first thing about netbattling!" he said defiantly, crossing his arms and bulging his cheeks.

"Hell, I bet I could Netbattle circles around you," he added, glaring at Marlowe.
"....really now boy," Marlowe returned in a velvet voice, giving the semblance of a dark chuckle.

The detective paused his reply by removing his liquor canteen from beneath his overcoat. With haste, he performed his almost ritualistic habit. Quickly unscrewing the cap off, he indulged in a generous swallow of the vodka, almost as if oblivious to the boy's presence.

"I'll give you the benefit of the doubt kid..." he continued, helping himself to another ashen inhale of smoke. "I figure you're smart enough not to try back that claim up. Hell has plenty of room, and I don't feel like handing your navi a ticket."

"I think you're smart enough to know that..uuh...I mean..." he said, looking angrily at the ground as he kicked the floor.

'You didn't really think this through much, did you,' Gungnir said from the PET as he watched. It would have been a joke, or an insult, had he been laughing. But Sieg took it just as he had everything else so far,

"EEEEEERRRRGH! I'll show you, actions are stronger than words anyways!" he shouted, drawing the attention of the entire lobby as he whipped his PET forwards and shouted,

"Hack in, Gungnir, Transmission!" as Gungnir was jacked into the system.
"WAHAAA!!!!" Sieg shouted, jumping and pumping his fist into the air as he did, once again drawing the attention of the entire area. He placed a new chip intot he PET, downloading and imprinting the data as he stuffed it into his pocket, the chip clattering to the bottom wih the other as he turned to the older guy,

"Told YOU what for! A guys words are only as good as his actions, and that was a WHOLE lotta action there! I mean seriously, only one phase. And heck, he even drew the fire from your little guy on the last shot! You should be singing my praises!" he shouted, marching around and essentially making a scene. He pointed directly up at him and said,

"You ought not let age fool you, I'm pretty badass!" but then, he heard Gungnir cough a little and pulled his arms across his body, bulging out his cheeks and turning away as he said, rather under his breath,

"Yeah, I guess you guys did pretty good yourself...I guess, ya know, for oldies.." obviously a stranger to compliments.
"Not bad, boy," Marlowe throated. "I'm glad to see the occasional kid can hold the fort... but you've got a ways to go."

He paused habitually for another inhale of smoke, coughing it out a moment later.

"...look again kid. We have company." He nodded to his PET screen, as the presence of a third party became evident.
Gungnir safely back in his PET and Triggerman deleted, Sieg sneered at the old man for a moment before saying,

"Hey, sorry about your navi, here's my E-mail, hit me up sometime and we can finish this as it was meant. I gotta bounce though, got some other things to take care of. Good luck with the repairs old man!"

As he shouted this, he turned and ran out, heading back to the store in the rain.