"Jackson Blue had a brilliant mind, he might have been a genius, but he was cowardly and blustery to the core. If he could have put it in a jar, Jackson would have sold his soul for tonight's dinner or, even better, for fifteen minutes with a whore.
"If there is a God he was drinking or mad the night he put Jackson together. Scrawny, lying, and afraid of his own footsteps, Jackson was one of the many friends who would never abandon me--he had nowhere else to go.
"The same God who made Jackson Blue took a crocodile to make the man I was facing. He was every bit as tall as me, over six foot in cotton socks, and bumpy. He had rough skin that shifted hue now and then over his corded bare chest. His muscles weren't big but his shoulders dropped in a boxer's stance and the damage that time had done to his face hadn't wiped the bitter dare from his lips."
--Black Betty by Walter Mosely