Follow TV Tropes


Literature / Riesel Tales: Two Hunters

Go To

A world paved with cityscape and crime. A playground full of bounties to be collected.

Riesel Tales: Two Hunters is a series of short science fiction works by Roystonn Pruitt, with the first four stories comprising Riesel Tales: Two Hunters (Volume 1).

In the year 8202, two bounty hunters by the names of Runge Margavo and Ramy Dusotes try to make a living doing what they do best on the infamous dystopian urban planet of Riesel. Surviving on such a world is hard enough, and their clashing personalities don't make things any easier. Runge is a carefree, wisecracking thug who wants all the pleasures of the galaxy, and Ramy is a straight-minded gunslinger who just wants to earn her living with as little trouble as possible.

The series centers predominantly around alien characters, most of whom fall into the category of anthropomorphism in one way or another. Gritty and cynical cyberpunk themes abound, along with plenty of snark and a fair dose of comedy.

The second edition of Volume 1 was released on April 14, 2021, nearly eight years after the original. It corrected several lore errors and includes rewrites of a few scenes, mostly for the sake of playing into Runge and Ramy's intended personalities.

Volume 1

  • First
  • Club Gig
  • Reprisal
  • Lonely Tenant

The series contains examples of:

  • Action Girl: Ramy and Sookaiya "Soo" Venatosh. Ramy, being one half of the titular duo, has shown herself to be quite competent in combat. Sookaiya takes it a step further by being a walking tank and using a gun to match.
  • Advert-Overloaded Future: Riesel has quite a lot of annoying holographic ads floating about (even in orbit), including some that are...difficult to forget.
  • The Alcoholic: Runge, but not usually to absurd levels. Usually. He gets absolutely smashed in Club Gig, though he is described as not doing this very often.
  • Aliens Speaking English: According to supplementary material, a distant-future variant of English exists with several dialects, and there are non-Humans who speak them alongside Humans.
  • All Planets Are Earthlike: Most of the mentioned planets are actually quite unique as opposed to being Earth-like, and the supplementary material indicates that such worlds are exceptionally rare. Riesel itself is not much like Earth, with its never-ending cityscape and pale, polluted skies.
  • All There in the Manual: The wiki has a huge amount of backstory and information not mentioned in the stories.
  • An Arm and a Leg: One character gets a leg shot off in Reprisal.
  • Anti-Hero: Most of the characters, including Runge and Ramy, though more so for Runge. They're either bounty hunters, mercenaries, or someone who runs a company involving such people.
  • Arms Dealer: Sig is a pretty big dealer of weapons and mercenaries.
  • Artifact Title: The Prakuul system, within which Riesel orbits, was named such by the now-defunct Prakuul Corporation, a megacorp that once ruled Riesel as a corporatocracy.
  • Artificial Gravity: A common technology in the Riesel universe. Ships use "emulators" for the sake of internal gravity and maneuvering in space, "repellers" for the opposite effect, and a "momentum counterbalance" (or "mo-co") to prevent damage of crew and cargo due to the effects of rapid acceleration/deceleration.
  • Artificial Limbs: Both of Sookaiya's legs are robotic.
  • Asskicking Leads to Leadership: Riesel is ruled by whoever has the most firepower. In this case, the Bright Ebony Organization. The wiki has a nifty little backstory here.
  • Badass Army: The Bright Ebony Organization is implied to possess this, as well as the briefly-discussed Aaltice civilization. Sgakahav "Sig" Wilobst is technically in control of one of these, being the owner of the Wilobst Pioneers Ltd. mercenary firm.
  • Bad Boss: Mr. Fyowhe, owner of Iledd's Grocery Emporium. He works his employees hard, pays very little, and is an all-around sarcastic jerk. Good employees are typically rewarded with boxes of cereal.
  • Beast Man: Quite a lot of them on Riesel, including most of the main characters.
  • Big Beautiful Woman: Ramy is described as well-padded and muscular. Runge, being shallow, isn't very supportive of this, and he frequently complains (in his mind, with comical exaggeration) about her weight. However, he does on one occasion of absent-mindedness allow his gaze to caress her curves while she's not looking and is "taken in by her beauty" according to the narrative, though he quickly snaps himself out of it after reminding himself of who he's looking at.
  • Big Fun: Sig is a huge and boisterous individual, known for his jovial behavior and sly remarks. Sookaiya is also this to a lesser extent, with her considerable size and penchant for playfully teasing those around her.
  • Bizarre Alien Biology: A favorite of Mr. Pruitt, along with mix-and-match critters.
    • One creature shown in Club Gig is like a glassy woven vase that speaks in chime and bell noises.
    • Btabo shapeshifters can convincingly mimic other species (including their clothing) and shift their features to change direction without the need for turning.
    • Qinmoirs are eighteen-foot-tall bear/crab people who breathe air with much higher oxygen levels than standard beings can handle, and can see in standard and ultraviolet wavelengths.
    • Fruburwhas are four-armed axolotl/shark beings who can regenerate lost limbs, breathe above and below water (their gills look like feathery ears on their heads), and see only in ultraviolet wavelengths with their pearly, pupilless eyes.
    • Even the Sirukti (alien dingo) and Lonkapi (alien wolf) species have clearly non-human organs.
  • Black-and-Gray Morality: Runge and Ramy are not really "evil" per se, they're just hired guns who often do morally questionable things for money. Ramy is less so than Runge, being notably uncomfortable with assassination jobs while he enjoys them.
  • Blood Knight: Runge is more than happy to snatch up an assassination job and repaint the floor with someone's gray matter, and he's been described as someone who participates in bar fights with apparent regularity.
  • Book Ends: Club Gig begins and ends in the titular club.
  • Bounty Hunter: The basic premise of the series.
  • Brand Name Takeover: Androids are usually referred to as "Rets," short for RetiNew. This was originally the name of a special line of social androids made to accompany their owners wherever they went, but has since become a generic term for all androids.
  • Brawn Hilda: Sookaiya is big, burly, tall, and brutish, and speaks in a deep (but still feminine) voice. Runge is utterly repulsed by her, which makes her infatuation with him at the end of Reprisal all the more hilarious.
  • Burger Fool: Pizza Chairman, Burger Entropy, Cheerful Fish Thug...
  • Call-Back: The plot of Reprisal (the third story) deals largely with the consequences of what occurred in First (the first story), making it a sequel episode as well.
  • The Casanova: Runge is quite the womanizer.
  • Casual Interstellar Travel: Very common in galactic society.
  • Catchphrase: Ramy often says "Sounds good" and "Noted."
  • Celibate Antihero: Ramy actively avoids romance due to the disturbingly high number of perverts and sexual predators on Riesel (which includes her business partner Runge). Discounting her tomboyishness, she deliberately avoids wearing makeup or feminine clothes and retains a pudgy figure in order to strengthen her barrier against Riesel's shallow lechers.
  • City Planet: The titular planet Riesel, which is covered with a miles-high skyline and mountain-sized masses of detached cityscape that float within the polluted skies. While it has a population of twelve trillion, this is considered anemic by comparison to other urban worlds in the galaxy, which tend to have at least ten times as many people. The wiki indicates that ecumenopolises are rather common in the galaxy.
  • Cityworld of Adventure: Riesel is one continuous city stuffed to obesity with crime and danger.
  • Chubby Chaser: Sookaiya is very much this, though this isn't apparent until the end of Reprisal, and it's directed at... Runge. While he is by no means chubby, Sookaiya expresses her intent to change this, telling Ramy that Runge is "Gorgeous, though a bit scrawny... but I can fix that."
  • Collapsible Helmet: Ramy's helmet is not able to be put on in the conventional sense: it emits from the collar of the suit as a series of ribbons that weave around her head and solidify.
  • Common Tongue: While there is a great diversity of languages on most planets in the galaxy, some of them are used to the extent of being considered common. Anczica (Runge and Ramy's native language) is one of Riesel's common languages, and most of the main characters can speak it. However, translators are still a necessary accessory for daily activities, as made evident in Lonely Tenant.
  • Conlang: Most of the characters are described as speaking in Anczica, which is actually under development by Mr. Pruitt. You can find it here.
  • Containment Field: Commonly used to keep a ship's atmosphere within an otherwise open hangar bay, or to surround a section of a high-altitude building or aerial platform to keep an agreeable pressure and oxygen concentration.
  • Cool Gun: Sookaiya's eight-foot-long anti-everything rifle, which doubles as a BFG. It has more than enough capacity to cause people and objects to be blown across the room.
  • Cool Helmet: Ramy gets one in Reprisal with a matching set of armor. It has no obvious visor, being composed of a one-way substance that can only be seen through from the inside. It also has a music player, Internet browsing, and... silly holographic expressions that can be projected on the outer surface.
  • Cool Starship: The Salona and the Carnivorous Summer Flower, as well as the Aaltice starship mentioned in First. That last one in particular is speculated to have metamorphic properties and other features that barely exist even in the science fiction works of most species.
  • Corrupt Politician: Riesel has a long history of hosting these, and is currently being led by a mafia dictatorship.
  • Crapsack World: Riesel is rusting and falling apart, run by a powerful mafia, crawling with crime, and has air that would make Los Angeles look like an eco-paradise.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: Runge and Ramy's treatment of the mook in First. The protagonists' invasion of the Zaxadin base in Reprisal begins like this.
  • Cybernetics Eat Your Soul: Nhauh believes this and refuses to get a prosthetic replacement for her bad eye as a result.
  • Cyberpunk: The series is set over 6000 years in the future on a rusty and crime-ridden dystopia world that's covered in towering cityscape, and there's plenty of cynicism to go around.
  • Cyborg: Sookaiya, with her prosthetic legs, and Mr. Fyowhe, with his prosthetic everything (see Man in the Machine further down).
  • The Cynic: Runge and Ramy are both more or less convinced that Riesel is composed of nothing but scum, though the latter is aware that there are at least a few good people.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Many of the characters, especially Runge and Ramy toward one another. Sig does this to everyone around him, being the gadfly and all.
  • Death Glare: Ramy often does this in response to Runge's shenanigans.
  • Death World: The particular context varies from species to species, but most of the inhabited worlds in the galaxy are quite different from one another, and non-native species must take varying precautions when visiting them. From a Human standpoint, very few planets are Earth-like, at least naturally. There are plenty that were terraformed over the past 6200 years.
    • Riesel itself technically counts as one of these due to its pollution and thin air at skyline height, and especially the sunless ground level.
    • Taloluht, the homeworld of one of the bar patrons Ramy sees in Club Gig, is described as being filled with meat-thirsty predators.
    • Heverlamid, Sig's homeworld, has a much higher atmospheric oxygen content than Earth or Ahjri. Ramy began to hyperventilate when standing in Sig's office without a respirator for a few seconds.
  • Description Porn: Lots of things get salient detail, expecially Riesel and the structures upon it.
  • Distracted by the Sexy: One of Runge's trademarks, even to the point of distracting from a mission. When this happens to him just before the mission in Club Gig, Ramy gives both Runge and his target a verbal carpet-bombing.
  • Drugs Are Bad: Runge is a known drug user, though this typically earns him some unpleasant ramifications, not the least being Ramy's scorn.
  • Dystopia: There is very little room for idealism on Riesel. This is expounded in the introductory paragraphs of Club Gig.
  • Eccentric Mentor: Sig is described as having elements of this, as he uses his sharp wit to refine his employees.
  • Effortless Amazonian Lift: Owing to her stout strength, Ramy can lift the heavier Runge over her head and throw him if necessary.
  • Egopolis: Riesel's discoverer, Jayscen Riesel, had originally named the world Riesel's Refuge.
  • Elite Mooks: The protagonists encounter one of these in Reprisal.
  • Embodiment of Vice: Runge is pretty well addicted to Riesel's seedy clubs and the many services they offer, including alcohol, drugs, and prostitutes.
  • Empty Fridge, Empty Life: Nhauh's fridge and pantry reflect her wallet.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Even though Ramy is a hired gun working on a planet full of corruption, she looks down on Runge's casual approach to the sometimes-cruel jobs they're assigned, as well as his general outlook on life.
  • Everyone Is Armed: Self-defense is an unspoken requirement for living on Riesel.
  • Evil Versus Evil: On Riesel, you're well-suited to be a mafia leader, a weapons dealer, a mercenary, a total jerk, or a complete psychopath. The people who are genuinely good are usually on Riesel only due to technical malfunction, which is a major plot point in Lonely Tenant.
  • Eye Scream: Nhauh Fonbiac's left eye is non-functional, featuring a constricted and discolored pupil with a strange shimmer behind the lens.
  • Face, Nod, Action: Runge and Ramy do this at the end of Club Gig.
  • Fat and Proud: Sookaiya. She even corrects Ramy after the latter makes a low guess of her weight. Ramy is also this according to supplementary material, being confident at her relatively high weight and deliberately keeping herself that way for the sake of intimidation and physical leverage.
  • Fat and Skinny: Runge is tall and athletic, and Ramy is shorter and quite stout. In a more extreme contrast, Sookaiya is over a foot taller than Cutolla and several hundred pounds heavier.
  • Finishing Stomp: Sookaiya's way of defeating the Zaxadin guard in Reprisal.
  • Flat "What": Ramy's reaction to Cutolla asking her to "give us a little twirl" after she dons a new combat suit.
  • Flipping the Bird: Sort of. Sookaiya makes an odd, but rude, hand gesture before she destroys someone who really ticked her off.
  • Floating Continent: Riesel's affluent and overpopulated past required the construction of aerial cities the size of mountain ranges, called sky continents or skycons. They're still aloft, but badly neglected and falling apart.
  • Foreshadowing: Sookaiya's horn-stab against the guard in Reprisal is repeated when she defeats the Dijnvol mercenary.
  • Fully-Dressed Cartoon Animal: Some of the aliens, including the main characters, classify more or less as beast folk and wear full outfits appropriate for their anatomy.
  • Fun with Acronyms: Brebor is derived from Br Eb Or, which means Bright Ebony Organization.
  • Futuristic Superhighway: Rather common in Riesel's skies, but since air traffic control has been defunct for centuries, there are frequent collisions.
  • The Gadfly: Sig is this with his signature teasing, to the point where Ramy has an advisory label next to his name on her phone. He's described as the kind of guy who cannot resist the opportunity to exploit and obliterate every hint of weakness and arrogance in his subjects in order to let them know he's real business, or to groom his underlings into being sharper tools in his arsenal.
  • Gargle Blaster: In the form of a candy bar. The one Runge eats in First lives up to its name: Omnicidal Flavor Bowshock.
  • Genre Savvy: Just about everyone except the Zaxadin Cartel. The latter is regarded as a complete joke in the criminal world.
  • Global Currency: The jucal is the most common currency on Riesel and the surrounding areas, although it isn't the only currency used.
  • Goldfish Poop Gang: The incompetent Zaxadin Cartel acts as a minor obstacle at best for most people, rarely becoming credible and then losing that credibility just as quickly. The fact that they still exist is a mystery.
  • Gonk: From Runge's perspective, the massive Sookaiya counts as this.
  • Great Offscreen War: The War of Ninth Sanctuary, which Runge participated in back when he was in the military.
  • Gun Nut: Sookaiya owns quite a lot of guns and is not afraid to use them.
  • Gun Porn: This pops up here and there. Runge and Ramy's sniper rifles are given quite a bit of detail in Club Gig, and the effects of their use and those of various other weapons are also described in detail.
  • Handsome Lech: Runge.
  • Harmless Villain: Subverted by the Zaxadin Cartel, who can win through sheer numbers and upgraded their power with a huge combat robot in Reprisal.
  • Hated Homeplanet: Although not her world of birth, Ramy harbors a massive amount of disdain for Riesel and yearns for greater notoriety so she and Runge can move their bounty hunter business to more important worlds.
  • Heavy Voice: Discussed. During a phonecall, Sig claims Ramy's voice "sounds heavier," though he's just being a jerk.
  • Heh Heh, You Said "X": Ramy points out a sniper target to Runge by saying "There he is, dead ahead." Runge responds, "Heh, you said 'dead.' "
  • Hitman with a Heart: Ramy is notably uncomfortable with assassination jobs. She only does them under the reasonable assumption that the people she's killing are mafia dirtbags or other criminals. Runge has less of a moral compass, happily carrying out assassinations unless the targets are explicitly innocent.
  • Hoist Hero over Head: In an instance of Runge being a drunken loaf, Ramy lifts him over her head and tosses him into their ship.
  • Horned Humanoid: Sookaiya has horns like a steer and isn't afraid to use them.
  • Hunk: Runge likes to keep his physique up to the standards of a male model. Sookaiya even describes him as "gorgeous," and she's not even the same species.
  • Hurricane of Puns: Runge indulges in this in Club Gig, dishing out burn-themed puns for a group of thugs who were killed by the Salona's security system.
  • Hyperspace Lanes: According to the wiki, there are many crisscrossing the galaxy.
  • I Call It "Vera": Sig's mobile artillery rifle is called "Tank Scrubber."
  • Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: Sookaiya has natural bull horns and a thirst for combat. It comes to its logical conclusion.
  • Imperial Stormtrooper Marksmanship Academy: The Zaxadin Cartel's starfighter pilots. Somewhat subverted with their ground troops, who tend to be better shots.
  • Impossible Pickle Jar: One of these resides in Nhauh's fridge.
  • Industrial Ghetto: Massive swaths of Riesel's cityscape are composed of this.
  • Ineffectual Sympathetic Villain: Ted from First. He's beaten to the floor with such ridiculous ease that Runge and Ramy actually help him back up, give him some food, first aid, and life advice, then send him on his way.
  • Interspecies Friendship: Runge and Ramy are this, as are Sookaiya and Cutolla. It's quite common on a planet as diverse as Riesel.
  • Jerkass: Runge and Ramy, who dish out derisive comments to each other all the time; Sig, who has his employees pick on Ramy (albeit non-maliciously); and Mr. Fyowhe, who thrives on pissing people off.
  • Kinetic Weapons Are Just Better: Although fully-functional energy weapons exist on Riesel, the main characters are more often seen using kinetic weaponry.
  • Lad-ette: Sookaiya isn't very feminine and can be quite animated. Her method of greeting consists of forcefully dropping her hand on a person's shoulder, which gives the much smaller Ramy an unpleasant surprise. She uses an anti-tank cannon as her gun of choice and her bull-like horns as stabbing implements.
  • Lame Pun Reaction: Ramy is unamused by Runge's Hurricane of Puns in Club Gig.
  • Language Drift: 21st century English gave way to many daughter languages, which further spawned more languages, especially after Humans began traveling the stars. Supplementary material mentions Ninth Millennium English, which is actually a group of languages that are quite different from present-day English.
  • Large and in Charge: Sig is eighteen feet tall and runs a mercenary firm/weapons dealership.
  • Layered Metropolis: Riesel's long-gone glory days necessitated the creation of flying masses of more buildings, which ended up taking the appearance of mountain ranges in the sky (called "sky continents").
  • Like an Old Married Couple: Sookaiya makes this remark when hearing one of Runge and Ramy's fits of bickering.
  • Lions and Tigers and Humans... Oh, My!: The series features quite a few alien species that appear to be beast folk (canine Sirukti and Lonkapi, feline Kalasi and Aaltice, lapine Subbecjus, etc), but there are also Humans.
  • MacGuffin Escort Mission: The plot of First involves returning a stolen package to a Kalasi client.
  • The Mafia: Plenty to be found on Riesel, most notably the Bright Ebony Organization.
  • Man in the Machine: Mr. Fyowhe. He's an alien clam who travels around in an imposing mechanical suit.
  • Mile-Long Ship: These visit Riesel periodically for the sake of food shipments.
  • Mix-and-Match Critters: Sig is a cross between a generic furry mammal and a crustacean, Sookaiya is a longhorn and a collie dog, and Cutolla Ceybeck is something like a mudpuppy and a spider. Nhauh is an aardwolf and a beaver.
  • Moment Killer: Ramy has a flashback in First of an event that had happened a few years prior: Runge had caught her when she was about to fall off a ledge, which led to them locking eyes and kindling some special feelings...until Runge quickly pulled her back up so he could glance at a passing prostitute.
  • More Dakka: The Zaxadin Cartel is notorious for spamming bullets in the hopes of hitting their target.
  • Multi-Armed and Dangerous: Cutolla has four of them.
  • Multicultural Alien Planet: Explicitly stated to be true for nearly every inhabited planet in the galaxy. Aliens are described as being just as chock-full of cultural diversity (including popular culture) as Human society is.
    • Runge and Ramy have access to millions of TV channels, and they occasionally mention different types of food and restaurants.
    • The vending machine in First has all kinds of flashy and calorie-laden snacks within, and with varying biological compatibility.
    • An alien club is featured as a prominent setting in Club Gig.
  • Muscles Are Meaningful: The strongest characters have the muscles to show for it.
  • My Eyes Are Up Here: Being the lech that he is, Runge is bound to instigate this. Happens in Reprisal.
  • My Hovercraft Is Full of Eels: The translation device that Runge and Ramy use when talking to Nhauh is humorously inaccurate. Nhauh points out that it's using the wrong dialect.
  • No Guy Wants an Amazon: Runge is utterly repulsed by Sookaiya's imposing build.
  • No Hugging, No Kissing: Runge and Ramy's relationship is completely business-oriented, as is Sookaiya and Cutolla's.
  • Odd Couple: Runge and Ramy, being a case of Red Oni, Blue Oni. They haven't killed each other due to the value of their combined abilities.
  • One-Liner: Runge is prone to dishing these out.
  • One-Man Army: Sookaiya manages to blast through quite a lot of Zaxadin mooks with her anti-everything cannon.
  • Only in It for the Money: Runge and Ramy wouldn't be on Riesel otherwise, as the planet plays host to all kinds of bounty-hunting opportunities. They plan to leave the planet for greener pastures once they get popular enough to be recognized as worthy of hiring by larger entities.
  • Our Minotaurs Are Different: Binnikods are powerfully-built dog/bull aliens that largely resemble minotaurs.
  • Polluted Wasteland: As Riesel developed into an ecumenopolis over thousands of years, its population and focus moved up with the skyline, while its ground level was neglected and eventually treated as a planetwide dumping ground.
  • Planet of Hats: Played for Laughs when a literal version is mentioned in a tabloid that Ramy finds on the ground in Club Gig. Played straight in that Riesel is a crime-infested planet of cityscape and decay.
  • Platonic Life-Partners: Mentioned by Ramy in response to someone accusing her and Runge of being a couple, although she cringes when she realizes what she said.
  • Pre Ass Kicking One Liner: Quoth Sookaiya, "And my heart takes the shape of a bullet."
  • Precursors: There was a collection of ancient species called the Anterior Base who existed over 100,000 years ago. The Aaltice are one of a small handful left and still have the technology to show for it, although they're very stingy with it.
  • Professional Killer: Runge and Ramy are occasionally hired as assassins. Ramy isn't particularly fond of it, but Runge has no issue doing such things.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: Runge and Ramy, being a team of opposites who nonetheless work together for mutual betterment.
  • Scenery Gorn: The landscape is frequently described in gritty detail, especially the decaying sky continents.
  • Shapeshifting Seducer: Sa is one of these.
  • Show Within a Show: The hyper-violent and nonsensical Insanity! Arbitrary Killfest.
  • Signature Team Transport: The Salona, which is described as a small freighter built for use in dangerous regions of space.
  • Single-Biome Planet: Discussed. Sig lampshades this when Ramy jokingly asks how his homeworld feels at "this time of the year".
  • Shrinking Violet: Nhauh isn't a very outgoing or confident individual.
  • Skyscraper City: Riesel is covered with miles-high skyscrapers.
  • Slasher Smile: Sookaiya is prone to doing this occasionally.
  • Sliding Scale of Idealism Versus Cynicism: Pretty far on the cynical end. The first few paragraphs of Club Gig explain this in detail.
  • Sliding Scale of Shiny Versus Gritty: Gritty end by far.
  • Starfish Aliens: Here and there, notably the Gatheephs (sapient clams in robotic suits), Btabos (semi-humanoid shapeshifters), and Lxlikelks (glass vase creatures).note 
  • Starfish Robots: Mr. Fyowhe's robotic suit. The official Riesel Artstation account shows it here.
  • Star Scraper: The average skyscraper height on Riesel is five miles. The tallest towers stretch to nearly fifty.
  • The Stoic: Vano doesn't show much emotion at all.
  • Stout Strength: Ramy is this, being visibly buff and rotund, and has exhibited her strength by lifting Runge over her head and throwing him (albeit while he was drunk). Sookaiya is this to a greater extent, being nearly eight feet tall and hulked out with muscle and sporting a pot belly.
  • Straight Woman: Although Ramy does have her own funny moments, she still serves as the foil to Runge's comical mischief and usually attempts to see things from a more logical perspective.
  • Straight Woman And Wise Guy: Being the wise guy, Runge typically responds to Ramy's seriousness with jovial and sarcastic remarks.
  • Strange-Syntax Speaker: The Kalasi client from First speaks in a peculiar manner:
    "Yes yes yes! These are these! All in beneficial condition, as fact!"
  • Subspace Ansible: The subspace relays used for communicating instantly across immense interstellar distances.
  • Super Gullible: Ted from First. The poor guy falls for the first trick Runge throws at him.
  • Symbol Swearing: A form of it. Profanity is replaced by expletive tags rather than symbols.
  • Theme Naming: Several names in the series are lifted and modified (more or less) from towns around the world, but most often from Texas, Mr. Pruitt's homeland.
  • Tiny Guy, Huge Girl: Ramy sees Runge and Sookaiya like this in an imagine spot and is thoroughly amused.
  • Title Drop: This happens in First and Reprisal.
  • Translation Convention: All dialogue is translated into English for us Earthlings, since most of the characters speak Anczica in-character. However, non-Anczica speech usually gets <angle quotes>.
  • Ungovernable Galaxy: Shown to be quite true in the supplementary material.
  • The Unpronounceable: There are quite a few very obviously alien words, such as Laylndlabye.note  Runge even lampshades this in Lonely Tenant:
    Runge: "How the [expletive] am I supposed to pronounce THAT?"
    Ramy: "I'm not even gonna try."
  • Unusual Euphemism: Prakuul and other stars are used as a replacement for purgatory, only in a more physical sense. It's basically the same as telling someone to die in a fire.
    Ramy: "The deepest depths of the hottest blue suns are reserved for people like you."
  • Unusual User Interface: The holographic consoles of the Salona, the thought-controlled helmet interface of Ramy's elite armor, and the holographic virtual reality bubble for controlling a turret on the Carnivorous Summer Flower. Then there's the optical camo suits Runge and Ramy use in the story Club Gig that also double as hover suits, all controlled by simple movements.
  • Used Future: Very few things glitter on Riesel.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: Runge and Ramy have elements of this, though they tolerate one another mostly because their combined skills lead to greater profits. Sookaiya and Cutolla are this as well.
  • Vocal Dissonance: The Kalasi client from First has a very deep voice for someone who is around four feet tall.
  • Voluntary Shapeshifting: Sa can do this with great effect.
  • Warrior Poet: Runge's inner monologues can be rather purple, in contrast to his outer lack of refinement.
  • Weaponized Exhaust: The Salona makes this quite apparent in the first story.
  • Weird Weather: Riesel doesn't experience rain. Since the planet is covered with skyscrapers whose average height is five miles, meteorological processes are hindered.
  • Why We Can't Have Nice Things: Runge tends to treat his surroundings like a teenager's bedroom. Ramy lampshades this when she almost trips over an ale flask in their base's opulent living room:
    Ramy (thinking): "Now if only Runge would just treat it like a palace instead of a common pub."
  • With Friends Like These...: Runge and Ramy's clashing personalities can make them seem like enemies at times.
  • World of Badass: Most of the characters are rough-and-tumble people, a necessity for surviving in most areas on Riesel.
  • Wretched Hive: The entire planet of Riesel is overflowing with crime.
  • You Are Fat: Runge often refers to Ramy as this, though not usually to her face. While she is rather heavy, he exaggerates it like she's morbidly obese.
    • He does take a rather open jab at her in Club Gig.
    Ramy: "My level of bitterness would make this skycon lose altitude fast enough to break the sound barrier."
    Runge: "The fact that your weight hasn't done that already is a scientific mystery."
  • You Are Number 6: Fifteen, the Dijnvol mercenary.

Statler: I wonder why Runge is so upset about Ramy's weight.
Waldorf: It's competition!
Statler: How is it competition?
Waldorf: Runge has a fat head while Ramy has a fat everything!