Running his fingers over the purring engine of his "baby" Max smirked his approval over his flyer. Sleek and swift and the colour of electric orange to match his signature goggles that forever hung around his porcelain neck, he almost purred the same as the machine beneath his gentle caress. The sparkplugs had been changed, the pistons, thanks to the nineteen year olds trusty wrenches, had been accelerated to work three-times faster than average and not to mention the liquid-diamond that was running through the tank bay hummed in its white-blue viscosity, giving life to the otherwise cold and silent machine. If anyone had ever told Max that his baby wasn't alive, he would have beaten them 'round the head with a very heavy piece of metal. His flyer thrummed with as much life as he did, it came alive beneath his touch and thrilled him to the point of ecstasy when he straddled the streamlined vehicle and pushed off the start line, thrusting himself into a world of nothing but speed.
A shiver that had nothing to do with the dank coldness of his garage rippled down his spine. When in the comfort of nothing but metal, he didn't care who saw his aching lust for racing. Nothing had ever brought him so close to death and bliss at the same time, and the inner daredevil would simply continue to caress his flyer as thoughts of the upcoming competition entered his mind. It was soon, only a few minutes away and he fought furiously to keep his face neutral. Emotion wouldn't help him win, determination however, would. And Max was always determined not to lose.
A few other racers passed his own current dwelling but paid him no mind. Max however, gave them his full attention.
Judging by their higher-quality gear, they were from the Middle Circle of the City. Not that useful to the young vagabond, but it was always good to pay attention to those not from the Lower Circle, such as he was. "-turns out. Who's got the best chance at winning do you think?" Max's ears strained in their direction, attempting to eavesdrop on anything important or useful so he could relay the information to his superiors if required later on. His hands busied themselves with work while he did so, the practise of working with metal most of his life ensuring he could listen and work at the same time without too much difficultly. Mostly, he was just triple-checking everything.
A scoff rose in the throat of one of the racers. "No one has a clue; you just have to look at the betting offices to know that. All I know is it's an even bet between Orange Lightning and Speed Demon." His shoulders would shrug, betraying how the man did not know either driver.
Lifting his steel-coloured irises, Max raked his gaze over the other garages, looking for this Speed Demon. He was not part of the Lower Circle's racers Max would have known if he was - so he was a potential mark and if nothing else, someone standing in his way of winning. The pirate was a sore loser and it was needless to say that someone in a higher station beating him in a race was not going to wash over well with the stubborn and headstrong male.
The conversation soon became background noise to his ears and Speed Demon was not found. No problem, he'd meet him on the track. Soon, the voiceover on the communication systems hooked up to each and every garage sparked into life. "Will all drivers please report to the stadium for today's race, will all drivers please report to the stadium for today's race." Max had to resist the urge to roll his eyes at the way everything was repeated twice. Just because they were in the Lower Circle didn't mean they were stupid. Taking a firm but loving hold on his flyer he directed the gravity-defying vehicle towards the Pits where it would lead him towards the start of the track.
Other racers were doing the same as him, but no longer did the vagabond pay them any of his attention. If he was going to win and he was then he needed to be focused on the race, not the people in it. Giving a wide berth to anyone else, he didn't want his flyer damaged by a slight knock of course; Max manoeuvred his levitating vehicle into the starting gate. The basic shape and use of the gate was taken off the old human tradition of horse-racing, something only the Inner Circle where privileged enough to experience nowadays, and thus served mostly the same purpose: to cage them like animals until set free. Max, who was often compared to a sewer rat due to the way he slunk around in the shadowed corners of the City, wasn't bothered by this at all. Background noise of the engines starting, of the crowd roaring, of the gates slamming, of the insult hurling, it all faded into nothingness as his legs slid either side of his baby, as his backside found the worn but comfortable leather of his seat, as his hands founds the steering gears and as his feet found the accelerator. No brakes with a flyer.
The vagabond smirked.
When the bell rung, exactly like wild animals, they shot forwards and Max felt pure ecstasy.