Excerpt From The Brass Verdict (Photo by Terrill Lee Lankford) Los Angeles was the kind of place where everybody was from somewhere else and nobody really dropped anchor. It was a transient place. People drawn by the dream, people running from the nightmare. Twelve million people and all of them ready to make a break for it if necessary. Figuratively, literally, metaphorically -- any way you want to look at it -- everybody in L.A. keeps a bag packed. Just in case.