Inside a private gambling room, a woman asks the waiter if Rick will have a drink with them. They're told that Rick never drinks with customers.
We finally meet Rick. Good-lookin' guy. He seems to be playing chess with himself. That's a good way to always win.
There's some commotion as a German tries to bully his way into the gambling room, but Rick won't let him in. So it seems Rick doesn't love Nazis. Which means we love Rick.
After Rick arrives back at his table, a gentleman named Ugarte pulls up a chair across from him and attempts to engage him in conversation. Rick humors him, but not without some of his signature snarkiness.
Ugarte reveals that he's in the business of helping refugees, for a price. He also mentions he's on his way out of Casablanca himself, and hands Rick an envelope containing letters of transit for safekeeping. Seemingly, the only guy he trusts with them is a man who can barely stand him. Tough town.
Rick, more than a tad suspicious, reminds Ugarte that those German couriers were killed and robbed of some letters of transit. Then he tells him he's "a little more impressed" with him.
Seems killing Nazis is what it takes to get on this guy's good side (we don't blame him).