The first time he came to a meeting, the Organized Proletariat expected him to interrupt at any moment and reveal his true agenda. They had a hard enough time with the occasional police officer attempting to infiltrate their group, the last thing they needed was some gangster alien mistaking them for some new tool they could use.
But he never did. Cans sat at the back and quietly listened. He took the stage once, only after explicitly getting permission from OP, and then he spoke for less than five minutes about his personal experience with inequality and the way infinite wealth had effected him and his people. They hadn’t known currency until they were employed and it had created strife that simply not existed before.
He really proved himself during the rally at the docks when the cops turned up with billy clubs and foul intentions, attempting to break them by beating them. Cans had surged to the front of the line, taking the blows for the weaker members and dispensing of the cops in a peaceful manner… sort of. Punching them into next week may have still be a sort of assault, but was preferable to killing them.
The first time OP really spoke to him was shortly after the rally, when he stayed around after that meeting to help OP put away the chairs. He seemed to like doing things to help others, and when they’d clearing the meeting space, OP had stopped him before he left. “We only have room in the movement for people who are sincerely committed to it. I don’t doubt your personal commitment, but I doubt you have more loyalty to a collection of strangers than you do to your boss, and he’s not one of us.”
"He isn’t, you’re right. But… he isn’t collecting wealth because he enjoys engaging in capitalism." Can struggled to explain himself and to explain his mysterious boss. OP had no time or patience for any person who benefited from the labours of others while keeping them oppressed and while thievery was more honest in its intentions, it was still stealing from the proletariat. "I promise you, I am committed."
"If you aren’t, don’t come to another meeting. We can’t get used to your presence if you won’t be here with us when they come for us with more than billyclubs." OP knew he sounded harsh, but he had to be here. The movement couldn’t afford to lean on Cans to help them if he would abandon them when the establishment saw them as a threat and decided that the best way to protect the needs of the bourgeoisie was to crush any proles who spoke too loudly.
Still, he showed up to each meeting after that and he stood there in the crowd, holding a flag and lifting each member onto his shoulders so they could speak above the din of the crowd. OP got used to balancing on the broad man’s back, raising his voice over the growing mass of unhappy faces. He got used to surging to the front side by side with Cans to keep the crowd from reacting with violence to the constant presence of the police at each rally. OP found himself talking more and more to Cans as they set up and took down chairs before and after each meeting. He was a good man and someone he found himself happy to call his equal.
Cans was there the day things changed, the day that the Licentious Shark had enough of people motivating his employees in a way he found seditious and decided to nip the problem in the bud and sent two large men to ‘process’ OP the way his workers processed meat in the Shark’s factories. By himself, he would have died and the movement would have ended in a murder the police would have been happy to leave unsolved.
But when they came in through the door, Cans took out the first one and OP took the second, using the only thing within reach to stop him in his tracks. He was a big man, but the scythe didn’t care - it cut him up just the same as a small man and once he was on his knees, OP was able to slit his throat with a single slice. By the time Cans looked back, it was over and OP was wiping blood from his face, spitting out the bit that had gotten in his mouth onto the floor.
They found the cash on the big one, along with the instructions on what to do with OP. He hadn’t signed his name but LS hadn’t needed to, not when he was writing instructions on his own stationary. The logo mocked OP and he knew that he couldn’t stand to let it mock him or any other Prole again.
"Bring the body." He told Cans. They had tried a peaceful revolution, but that was at an end. There was blood on his scythe and he knew that before the day was over, more would join it. "It’s time we paid the meat processing plant a visit, comrade."
If Cans disagreed, he said nothing and simply shouldered the body. One large offered him a hand up and OP took it, standing atop Cans’ other shoulder. His free hand held onto Cans’ head to steady himself, the other still clutching the scythe. They would free Midnight City or they would fall, but either way, they would have lived as free men dedicated to the liberation of all.