Joe's jaw almost fell to the ground. How...? Ken doesn't have any family! What's going on!?! Galactor…?
The woman -no, girl- was watching him levelly, seeming to know that trying to scram again was (currently) futile.
What's with this guy? she thought. He chases me through some of the worst obstacles in town to get his wallet back -how DID he keep up with me, anyway- but instead of hauling me to the cops when he gets me, he stands there in some kind of shock. Unobtrusively, she looked closer at him. I don't believe it; he's not even breathing hard!
Joe moved; grabbing the collar of her black leather jacket, he hauled her to her feet and slammed her into a wall. "Who. Are. You."
She glared. "Black Ivory." He doesn’t ‘feel’ dangerous, but why take chances?
"That's not a name."
Joe slapped her across the face. "Listen good, kid. I've got an adopted brother who I thought was the last one of his family. But here you show up, wearing an almost exact copy of his face! Now WHO ARE YOU!"
Her eyes widened. "You're lying." But…I can ‘tell’…he’s not…
"No." Joe reached into his wallet and pulled out a picture. It was of him and Ken and had been taken over six years ago, shortly after he won a very difficult cross-country race in Australia. He showed it to her.
"My name's Joe Asakura. Who ARE you and where do you live?"
"Emiko. The streets are my home. Why do you think I was picking pockets?"
Joe glared. "Where are your parents?"
Her eyes narrowed. "My mother was a 'call girl'.” Shoving it in his face, “In case you don't know, that's a high-class prostitute." She grinned evilly at the shock on his face. "She died when I was ten. And my father could have been any of several ‘partners’." Emiko smirked. "I hated her. I won't use her name."
Joe shook his head. D^@>. What has this kid been through? “How old are you now?"
"Sixteen. I ran away six years ago, after I recognized the 'dad' in the foster home to be one of her 'frequent customers'." Her face hardened. "Why am I telling you all this, anyway?" Why do I feel like I can trust him…Like Trev…She blocked that thought.
It was Joe's turn to smirk. "I guess you just decided to trust me as family." The glare that Emiko gave him proved once again that 'if looks could kill' is a figurative phrase. "Do you want to meet him?" The Condor could see the war going on behind Emiko's eyes. C’me on kid. For your own good, as well as Ken’s.
She looked away from him, around at their surroundings. "This...could well be the key...to a new life…a safe life…"
"You also may be able to save Ken's life."
"What do you mean...Ken's the guy in the picture? Save his life?"
"Come on. I'll explain as we go."