For now, at least. I fear the rewrite. At any rate, "Torquing Vacuum" came in at 5,800 words in first draft.
A bit of wip:
Well away from the locks-and-docks sector, he finally let go of Austen. Kid would be bruised for sure. "Alright then," Spanich said. "You're on your own."
"Wh-what?" Austen seemed dazed.
"Snap out of it, kid. You're free." Spanich swatted him on the ass. "Now time to scoot."
"But I don't know where to go."
"Sure you do. You been living on Estacada Orbital for months." Platinum-coated genetics or not, the kid had survived on his own. Hustling wasn't the worst way to get by.