Lilly looks over the fine print of her coupon as she approaches Big Daddy Browder’s Gas & Guns. “We value our customers. Five credits off your next [KNIFE] purchase. Offer expires in one week. We also honor coupons from Dominion Vespene.” She walks in through the glass doors, taller than the height lines marked on either side of them. “Hey,” she calls to the attendant, “I’m looking for a knife. What do you guys have? I have a coupon.”
“Uh, we’ve got all your basic knives,” the clerk says, pointing to the rack by the checkout aisle. He notices Lilly is wearing one of those. “A repeat customer. Nice! We have fancier stuff, too.” He takes her over to a display case where there is a glistening knife with a 240-credit price tag.
It is nice looking, but that is expensive. “I don’t have that much,” Lilly tells him. “I just need a good knife.”
He returns to the front of the store with her, where there is a knife vending machine. Everything in it is twenty-five credits, but there are a variety of styles. Lilly looks over her choices, trying to decide what Imogen would like. All she really knows about her teammate is that she is from some foreign place called Umoja, she seems to like vespene, and she talks funny. Umoja is pretty high-tech, so Imogen might like a shiny knife, but then Lilly decides, Let’s toughen her up, homing in on a sportsman-style knife with a serrated tip. She puts the coupon and some credits into the machine and pulls the knife out of the delivery slot. The clerk signs her up for a loyalty card and punches it once for the new knife, but he refuses to punch it a second time for the knife she bought a week ago. Lilly decides that is fair and heads out.
She returns to the apartment to find Imogen staring pensively at their TV. “Here,” Lilly says, handing her the knife as soon as she walks into the living room.
Imogen takes it, a little surprised. “What’s this for?” she asks, wondering why Lilly is just giving her a gift. Their earlier conversation has slipped her mind completely following her talk with Egon and subsequent stroll.
“Well, you can stab with it. You can cut with it. You’ve got this serrated part…” Lilly spends a while describing all the uses of a knife, jumping back and forth between mundane uses in the kitchen and ways to kill people. Finally, she concludes, “And this edge, you can use that to gut fish, or zerg, whichever.”
As Lilly rambles on, Imogen’s eyes grow wider and wider in surprise, not just at the level of instruction provided, but also at the enthusiasm and engagement Lilly is showing. This is the longest, most detailed thing the former soldier has ever told her. “All right… I guess I’m prepared now, I am.”
“Goodnight,” Lilly says abruptly and heads into her room, leaving Imogen looking after her, baffled.