And now, for the snippet:
Fortunately for all of us, a family of travelers passed by in the other direction, dressed in far nicer clothes than my dingy leather jacket and pants. The crowd of salesmen rushed off to separate them from what little money they had left. I took the freedom to accelerate my pace and escape their barrage.
More shopkeepers hounded me from their stores, but didn’t want to leave their merchandise unattended, leaving me able to pass by quickly without risk. I heard loud coughs and turned my head toward a young mother and three small children, all huddled in a pile against the store’s fabric wall. Their faces were tight, leathery skin pulled against the bones. Their eyes were empty as all four clutched at each other in between coughing fits. A small can rested in front of the mother, a few gold-rimmed credits inside reflecting in the sun. I almost thought about tossing one or two more in, but feared another mob of salesmen would congregate if I started flashing money around.
Besides, I was here on a job.
Note that the bolding above was just so I complied with this week's "cue word" (a new feature of the SFFS snippets?). While you're waiting for next week's snippet, be sure to go check out the rest of the Science Fiction Fantasy Saturday snippets and don't forget to buy some books. You'll be glad you did.