“The City”

Ulysses dies at dawn. At least, that’s the word on the street among those as saw what went down at Calypso’s.

Now listen up, we’ve got a labyrinthine twisted task of a tale to tell and if you don’t keep up, you might get lost.

First, to understand how this all goes down you’ve got to know a little about the planet we’re talking of. See, on this planet there was a city, grim old city, the sort of place the rain beats down like coffin nails and the air wafts with the cigarette stench of betrayal. My kind of town. Now this city, grim old city, starts to grow. And when it meets other towns, other cities it absorbs them, takes them into itself, until soon enough there’s no land left. So the city grows into the sea, and when there’s no sea left it grows upwards into the sky, and when there’s no sky left the city burrows inwards, into the bowels of the planet. Until soon enough, there is nothing but the city. So generations live and generations die in the warrens and the tunnels and even the lower levels of the surface, never to see the sun.

And it’s in one of the deepest, most secret of these tunnels that we meet our hero. Goes by the name of Ulysses. Currently beaten, bloody, battered, unbowed. Spits out a mouthful of teeth and disdain and looks up to see four of the meanest bastards of the meanest streets of the meanest parts of the city. All immaculately turned out in pinstripes. We’ll call them the Suits.

You might ask how we ended up here. I know Ulysses is. Well, it started in a bar, as it usually does. In Calypso’s – a run down old gin joint, pays its money to Dionysus – our hero slumped over a bottle of whiskey, trying to drown enough sorrows to choke a horse. And one horse in particular.