It was late in the suburbs already, and the night was lit only from the sky. A lone figure, tall, somewhat haggard, and filthy, had light dared to touch his angry face, was making his way down the street, a bag upon his shoulder, his clothes threadbare and tattered, his boots stolen. The wind whipped up the odd piece of muddied newspaper, but the figure kicked it aside. He kept to the shadows, his glinting eyes darting to and fro, a knife in his pocket.
Suddenly, a fist erupted out of the darkness and struck him on the cheek, sending him staggering backwards, but not quite fallen. Again it came, and then a kick, and to the figure's complete confusion he realised he was being attacked.
At once the knife was out. There was no moon: it did not glitter maliciously in its light. The figure brought it out at once and lunged into the blackness, struggling to his feet as he did so, until a glancing blow hit him on the side of his head, and he saw white sparks against the dark.
He stabbed, heard a cry, was almost on his feet when he was finally knocked onto the cobbles. The knife went spinning across the street. The bag's contents hit his back and he grunted from the pain. Blood came out of his nostrils and rolled into his mouth.
–Give me your money,– said a voice.
The figure struggled into a more comfortable position. Against the darkness, he could see a figure. Another was a little way away, collecting his knife.
–I haven't got any.
The second figure came up to him. From his dark bulk he could see that his attacker was inspecting the knife.
–Bloody nice knife,– he said, –Look at this, homie. A bloody nice knife this one's got.–
–And he said he didn't have any money.
–That's where it all went,– said the one with the knife, and both laughed, depressed, hollow laughs.
–Give it back,– said our first protagonist, from his position on the floor. –It was my father's, damn you. And I haven't got any money.–
–What was your father's name?– asked the first attacker.
–Alexander Possehl. I am his son, Dragomir.
The two attackers looked from one to the other. Of course; they'd know Alexander Possehl. –Get up,– said the second after a while. –And don't fucking dare come round these parts again.–
–Don't worry about that.
Dragomir Possehl got up, and wiped his nose, and took back his knife. –Look at you,– he said, once he'd distanced himself from the scene of the crime. –You, with your crime and your gang warfare, and calling each other homie, and trying to steal people's money.–
–Fuck you, we ain't got much of a choice.
–I know,– said Dragomir. –I'm just saying. Yeah, you just think about who you've got to blame for doing what you do.–
And he turned and carried on up the street.