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The sentence is: After hours don't raise too much suspicion.

If it helps to understand the sentence in any ways, here is the context: The sentence is from an onscreen notification of a game called "Sleeping Dogs". During a specific mission, you drive a woman around, do some stuff and one of them is sneaking in a temple and disguise as a monk to steal flowers for her wedding. This is the screenshot of the scene with the sentence.

I know what "after hours" means (the time after working hours, likely after 5PM), but putting it into this sentence, it doesn't make much sense.

I have a few guesses of the sentence's meaning:

  • The game gives you a hint that "It is after hours right now, so it will not raise too much suspicion".

  • The game warns you that "It is now after hours, so you'd better not raise too much suspicion".

So, what is the meaning of the sentence? Is it a badly worded one?

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Based on how it's written alone and that screenshot, because I haven't played the game, I'd take it to mean:

  • Don't raise too much suspicion after hours.

The phrase "after hours" is an adverbial modifier that can appear pretty much anywhere in the sentence. When adverbial modifiers appear in advance of the subject-verb to introduce the sentence, we generally separate them from the rest of the sentence with a comma, for example:

  • After hours, I think we should have a party.

Your sentence, though, is in the imperative mood, or command form. When we give commands, the subject is "you" and we leave it out. Because of that, because the subject isn't there, people often don't put a comma afterward an introductory adverbial modifier.

Anyway, that's why I think that it is written like that. It's not ungrammatical if what it means is: "Don't raise too much suspicion after hours."

| improve this answer | |
  • Thank you for your answer. You really got what I was wondering about why they didn't put any punctuation there! :) – MattCat15 Jul 2 '18 at 9:26

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