Domo Arigato...

I backed towards the door, hands held up in my best imitation of a peaceful gesture. I worked my smile hydraulics as hard as I could, hoping that my expression would calm them down. This would be a bad time to screw up.

“Look, I don’t want any trouble,” I said. “But the day I suffer a bigot is the day I get a replacement head.”

The bartender said nothing, but the power light on his taser glowed a cherry red. I heard the door whoosh open behind my back and stepped through, grateful to be in the open air, even though it was raining.

My shoulders gave a sigh as I hunched them against the weather. I’d been meaning to get waterproofed again, but it tended to react badly with alcohol in my system. I’ve got priorities.

The street was dark with grime and shadow. The black stalks of broken streetlamps lined the sidewalk, with the occasional unsmashed bulb shining down on the pavement, a beacon in the night. As I padded home, I listened to the click and whistle of my legs and wondered how the world looked to a man.

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