Garh turned toward her and spit.
“Damn, dude,” Jess said, shuffling back on her haunches. She lifted her hands and tucked her hip to avoid his moist projectile. “What was that?”
Ducking his head was a feat in their confined space, but he managed. “Sorry.”
“No sorry. What was that?”
“Keep your voice down.”
“Too late. Why’d you spit at me?”
“Jess, can you just—“
She shoved him and he lurched forward from squatting on his heels to his knees.
“Hey!” His voice pitched.
They both dropped their heads as the steady treading above stopped. Garh poised with his hands and knees in the vile sludge making a slow stream downhill. Jess could just see his grimacing profile, pinched and angry.
Dude was too pretty for his own good. A little piss on his pants wouldn’t hurt.
The boots above resumed their heavy pacing. Garh rose up off his knees and wiped his hands on his thighs, scowling over his shoulder, but then he started forward again. Jess braced herself against the grimy walls and followed.
“Serves you right,” she said low. “Shouldn’t spit at girls. Didn’t think a guy of your elevation would need to be told that.”
“Ah, so now you’re claiming you’re a girl?”
She was at a loss for reply. Jess was never at loss for words. She muttered, “Jackal footed monkey ass man.”
“You sure you’re a girl? Most women of any elevation wouldn’t speak like that.”
So said only everyone. If it wasn't the way she spoke, it was the way she carried herself, or the way she didn't flinch when a man raised his fist.
Garh's words hurt more than she'd ever let him know. “I should spit at you. See how you like it.”
He sighed and gestured back the way they'd come. “I wasn’t spitting at you. There was an ink stain on the wall in the shape of the Horned One. I was spitting to avoid his evil eye.”
Snorting, Jess glanced around the graffitied walls. She didn’t even want to guess what dripped down the decaying boards.
“Saw just one stain, did you?” She said to his back and heard him muffle a chuckle. "You know you just traded one evil eye for another, though, right?"
Garh snapped as straight as he could and shot an encompassing glance around them. "What?"
Jess closed one eye and scowled at him through the other. He tilted his head. She winked and pushed him again. "Move, monkey ass. I won't take offense at your words if you don't take offense at mine."