The man picked himself up, and tossed aside the mangled remains of his weapon. “My name is Tobias Schiller, but to most around here I’m ‘the Kraut.'”

Vincent had never heard of anyone embracing that term with anything approaching good humor. “You don’t mind being called that?”

“What, a ‘Kraut?’ No. In fact, I’ve come to embrace it as a useful shibboleth,” Schiller said, grinning.

“A what?”

A shrug. “It means way of telling one sort of person from another. Anyone who calls me ‘the Kraut’ has exposed themselves as a little crude, a little ignorant, and certainly no friend of mine. Useful when consorting with gangsters and machine guns both, wouldn’t you agree?”

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