Merc Rule 42c

Written by J. D. Wiley --- Art by J. D. Wiley

Merc Rule 42c: There are mercs, there are politicians, and there are them who wear ponchos.

Mercs can be an untrustworthy sort. They’re lazy. They lie, cheat, and steal. Hell, they’ll even con you out of hard-earned coin. But mercs don’t pretend to be the saviors of mankind. No, a merc performs more or less as advertised. That’s why even the dirtiest of mercs don’t hold a candle to a politician.

Those bastards are the scum of the earth. They’ve got their grubby fingers in all the same folks’ pockets as mercs. But they do it under the guise of being a shining light. A helping hand in the community. They flash that devil’s grin in your face, all the while, they’re exploiting every crippled, starving soul within reach. Making life harder on the working man. Which includes us mercs.

You can imagine we don’t take kindly to that. Don’t misunderstand, we don’t hate ‘em. We realize that the role of corrupt mastermind is a vital part of the criminal underworld—without which, half of us would be unemployed. They’re a necessary evil, make no mistake. Just don’t ask us to trust ‘em.

But as much as politicians are some greasy, conniving, lowdown, bald-faced-lying swindlers of humanity… even they can’t compare to the snakes running around in ponchos. They might as well be wearing signs saying, “I read all the rules, and as long as everyone else follows ‘em, there won’t be any trouble.”

Case in point, enter a pair of local, but well-known, politicians by the names of Longhorn and Bixby. They control the bullets, and by extension, the heart of criminal enterprise. Which makes ’em crookeder than a barrel of fishhooks. But when those two gangsters want some dirty work done—bloody work that no other merc will touch—they hire Kurgen Black.

Allow me to elaborate.

Need a church burned down? Hire Kurgen Black. Got some orphans to interrogate? Call Kurgen Black. Gotta put ten mercs in mud coffins to save on having to pay ‘em after a job? Kurgen Black.

He’s an evil son of a bitch with a heart as black as the dried blood under his nails. Get the picture?

The reason men in ponchos exist is because there are things that even politicians won’t do.

Coyote Joe, Memoirs of a Merc

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