Ken Kaze

Awakened Investigator

A Character for Shadowrun (tm)
As you read the following page, keep in mind that I also have pages containing definitions of game terms and names of the people and places Ken Kaze knows.

Shadows are shifting
Subtlety becomes slaughter
Men die for data


Run 1 - Data Steal from DEM Robotics

Run Synopsis

Ken gets called to a meet at the Abyss to discuss shadowrunning by a mysterious, masked voice.  He goes to the meet, eager to go on his first "shadowrun".
We met at the Abyss.  It was your typical flavor of the month dance place, with dim lights and dim people undulating to pulsing, hypnotic music.  The cutest gimmick they had was wearing face gear.  The head bartender, a poster child for the word enigmatic, had a full face shield that had a digital display portraying swirling, intricate fractal images.
The party gathered at a small table in the back and introductions were made.
The team seemed pretty well rounded.  There were a couple of heavy hitters, a tech, a decker, and a medic of sorts.

Tik-Tok, a disheveled Dwarf, looked like he could take a lot of punishment and probably had.  He described himself as an ex-combat biker that was good with a bat and a shotgun.  He didn't sound real sophisticated, but he looked like someone I'd like to have between me and the bad guys.  Seems like a friendly enough guy.

Case, a stereotypical street sammy, stood with his back to the wall during the meet, scanning back and forth like some villainous bodyguard in those schlocky action trids.  It wasn't the image I was going for, but it worked for him.  He was probably wired, pumped up, or something.  He looked pretty solid and talked the talk.  With him and Tik-Tok, physical security seemed pretty solid.  He plays up the grim soldier thing a little.

Chip, who bore a close resemblance to a hopped up Chihuahua, was a tech, to include computer operations.  He had far more chip jacks than I thought was healthy, but then again, a lot of Magicians would look down their noses at my data jack so I don't have much room to talk.  He talked too fast and had this anxiety about him like he really had to go to the bathroom - always.  I was hoping he would calm down soon..

Suture, a medic type, was a pretty normal guy.  He was Awakened and could perceive Astrally.  I couldn't really mark him as useful or not, but it sure didn't hurt to have someone around that could see into the Astral plane, even if he couldn't see that I was magical.  He seems like a nice enough guy.

Disco Kid, a living anachronism, lives up to his name.  He looks far too young, even for an Elf,  to be involved in shadowrunning and his afro is far too big for this century.  He revels in his 1970's fashion and mannerisms.  It's harmless and almost amusing.  He's a Decker, so he can look as quirky as he wants, provided he does not need to infiltrate a site alongside us.  Then we might need to discuss subtlety.  If nothing else, he's friendly.

The team finally met up with a Fixer that called himself Trushang..  He explained that the mission was to steal financial files from DEM Robotics, with a secondary objective of personnel files.  The team would get 5 k¥ apiece for the primary objective, 2.5 k¥ apiece for the secondary objective, and 5 k¥ total in advance for equipment and expenses.  Security was provided by Eagle Security, a company with an "A" rating.  Ken also knew that they were somewhat weak on matrix security, but they were rumored to have drones.  A datachip with the background info was provided.  Minimum residue was preferred but not required.

The team discussed the mission in general.  Ken asked people to look into heavy weapons for dealing with drones and explosives for getting through gates or doors.

Further research showed that the area fell into the territory of the Night Hunters, a thrill gang that hated metahumans and had cybered themselves up so they could communicate in high frequency screeches and calls.  However, the target fell into an area that had little gang activity.  Police patrols were pretty regular.

Stakeouts revealed that the DEM site had:

  • no perimeter guards
  • 1 patrolling Elemental, Force 5
  • a patrolling astral Magician
  • two rotodrones (flying drones) stored on the roof (not patrolling)
  • about 1.5 dozen guards inside
Disco Kid informed us of various events at the site.  We opted to masquerade as painters from Spectrum to get in and out.  Ken did a recon of Spectrum using his Improved Invisibility.  He got a feel for their operating procedures, building layout, and an ID to copy.

Chip used the ID and 1 k¥ to have fake IDs for all of us except DK.  Case picked up some  plastique with another 1 k¥.  The remaining 3 k¥ was blown by Chip on chips for Demolitions and Heavy Weapons.  This created some friction between Chip and the others, especially Ken.

The plan was to:

  1. masquerade as painters
  2. get in
  3. separate
  4. set off a false fire alarm (the system had been in testing earlier that week)
  5. use the confusion to get onto the right floors and into the right offices
  6. get the data
  7. get out
The team took up positions outside Spectrum with Ken following someone inside under the cloak of Invisibility [an Invisibility spell].  Ken looked around, then let the team in when the painting crew was ready to leave.  They quickly took out the crew, but alerted the receptionist.  Ken followed with Tik-Tok close behind.  The receptionist grabbed a pistol and reached for an alarm button.  Ken sent a Lightning Bolt into the desk, destroying it.  She fired a blind shot and missed, then Tik-Tok stepped out and clubbed her unconscious with his bat.  Ken flanked a client that had been at the desk and knocked him out with his shock glove.  The party cleaned up and put everyone in a room.  Ken destroyed the video surveillance chips and posted a sign on the front door:
We are closed due to an electrical
fire in our reception system
We apologize for the inconvenience
Please call again."
The team suited up, headed over to DEM and got into the building and started painting the assigned conference room without incident.  Plans were hashed out and things went something like this:
I made my way to the john about ten minutes to one, with the excuse that I needed to wash a paint brush.  I stalled until Chip to showed up and then we waited for the fire alarm to sound.  DK tripped it on cue at one o'clock and we slipped out onto the stairway.  Chip and I parted ways at the sixth floor where personnel was.  He was going for the secondary data.  I continued on down to the fourth floor and snuck over to an executive office while Invisible.  With the help of a spirit, I got the door open and started the download.

The other three had been escorted down to the visitor parking area.  Chip showed up just as the guards were getting antsy.  Unfortunately, Suture wasn't as smooth a talker as he thought and he helped encourage them to search the building faster, or so I hear.  Anyway, it turns out their on site Magician was patrolling astrally and spotted me downloading files.  What are the odds?!  Of course, he alerts the guards.  Luckily for the other four, they only had to deal with six guards which were divided into three pairs and two of the pairs were separated from the team by a small crowd of employees.  Case and Tik-Tok started earning their money with Chip and Suture providing support.

Meanwhile, the Mage thought he'd come slap me around.  He manifested and ordered me to stop the download.  I tried to summon a mediocre Hearth Spirit (Force 3) but he destroyed it instantly.  I decided to pretend he wasn't there until his Water Elemental manifested.  It was a big bastard and I was gonna be in a world of drek if I didn't drop it fast.  Time seem to freeze and thanks to my smartlink, I was able to barely get a clip of EX into my Predator just in time to fire off two rounds at the beast before it hit me.  I knew my bullets were barely strong enough to affect it, so I made my shots count.  Even though my shot placement would have killed most creatures with one hit, I had only managed to badly wound it with two shots.  I stayed focus on shooting it and braced myself to be slapped silly, but luckily it was so off balance from the damage I had already done that it only smacked me lightly.  I definitely felt it, but it didn't take me out of commission.  I was able to get off a third shot and it turned to mist and vanished.  I had destroyed it.

I turned to the Mage and told him to get the hell out of there or I'd "hunt him down like the dog he was."  He was not impressed.  I needed to work on my intimidation.  The data was almost done, so I propped open the door and watched for guards, pistol at the ready.  I grabbed the wireless off the execs phone and called DK to let him now my status.  I accessed the map chip I had of the building and easily figured out where the Mage's vulnerable body would be; then I told him, "Room 115, I'm coming to wake you up."  Whether or not it phased him, he disappeared.

The data finally finished downloading and I dashed for the stairs.  I made it in and ran down to the garage.  I crept up on a trio of guards with assault rifles between me and the rest of the team, which was pinned down at the bottom of the stairs.  Out of options, I chose the hard option.  I Invisibly slipped up to the trio.  I had a paint mixing stick with me and I tossed it upstairs as I fired a silenced round into the first guards head.  The EX round created a horrible mess, but the confusion was worth it.  One of them started blindly firing upstairs, the other down.  I took out the second one and the third fled the stairwell.  I rushed down stairs with their assault rifles and let the team know I was there.  I said, "Need some guns guys?" and tossed them the rifles.

It was worse than I had thought.  We had to navigate the short hallway back to the garage and a pair of guards were keeping it covered with assault rifles, backed up by some dangerous-looking Ork.  Case and Tik-Tok fired off some rounds at them as I crawled Invisibly between the guards, flanking them.  I set down a trusty concussion grenade behind them and ducked behind a car.  It went off and they were dazed, but none of them dropped.  The sammy-like Ork spotted me through the spell, so I dropped it and let two rounds rip, turning him into blood pudding.

Almost simultaneously Case and Tik-Tok came flying out of the hallway dropping the other two guards.  We rushed to the van, except for Suture who stopped to slap a trauma patch on the big Ork guy.  He actually wanted to stop and use his magic to heal him, but we told him otherwise.  I have no idea what the man was thinking.  I did not want a lot of bodies, but the guards stepped up to lethal force long before the team did.

I fired off a Lightning Bolt at the security booth, frying their console and we headed to the gate.  Luckily, the guards were all inside looking for us and we just pressed a button and opened the gate.  We zoomed out of the garage with Suture at the wheel.  He's not half bad as a driver.  As we cleared the block, the two rotodrones popped out of the roof and zoomed down, but they stayed within the building perimeter so we did not have to deal with them.

We made it to Chip's car and abandoned the van.  Chip let his hostage guard go and I torched the van to destroy evidence.  I know the wealth of information a trained forensics team could glean from that van and I did not want to help them out.  Believe or not, Suture was crying about how upset the hostage must have been.  It made me wonder if he had chosen the right career path.  There were plenty of street clinics in need of skilled help, and they would not be picky about a person's past.  We parted ways with an agreement to meet the next night at the Abyss again the next evening.

Newspaper article

Corporate Facility Espionage Turns Bloody

(Renton, Seattle) - Corporate espionage turned to gunfire yesterday at the DEM Robotics Facility when security discovered an unauthorized attempt to gain access to the computer system. The discovery occurred during a false fire alarm, believed to have been initiated by suspects posing as a Spectrum Wheel painting crew. Magical security discovered one of the painters accessing an executive's computer while performing routine fire alarm patrols. Security was immediately notified and efforts to contain the intrusion were initiated. With their cover identity exposed, the five men incapacitated guards outside the facility and fought their way to the garage complex before escaping in the stolen Spectrum Wheel van. The assailants left four security guards dead and two in critical condition. "[The attack] Has left our company in shock.  Luckily none of our vital resources or valuable employees were injured,"  said CEO Ursla Windrow. Witnesses claim the painters consisted of four human males and a dwarven male, but authorities have yet to confirm these reports or release any additional information relating to the crime.  If you or anyone you know has information regarding this case, please call Lone Star at 1-800-NO-CRIME.

Buying a "shadow phone" (e-mail exchange)

[Saturday Evening, 08JAN2061, shortly after run completed] Ken called Miner, his Decker contact.  "Damn, Miner, your voice just gets sexier every time.  If I wasn't a scrawny little human I might put some moves on you, but I'm afraid I wouldn't last through the night if I succeeded.  Regardless, what I am calling you about is a shadow phone.  A line I can use for . . . confidential work.  One that does not point back to me."

Miner answers, "Shadow phone, huh? I've done that before, it's rather easy for someone with the hardware, tough for an average sarariman though. Remember that nothing is untraceable. It wouldn't be linked to your SIN, but a skilled decker with the hot 'ware could still backride the satellite signal coordinates and find out where the phone lies at night when you are
asleep. However, it's the best you can do without getting too fancy. The job will run you ¥1000 and I can only promise two months of service. It all depends on how well I can hide the LTG in their subdatabases from the searchbots. I'll have a general idea of how long once I get in there. Still interested?"

"Secrecy sure is expensive, but if that's what it costs then that's what I'll pay.  I could use the piece of mind.  I'll be sure not to use it for too long when I'm at home.  Do I need to buy the phone or is that folded into the 1 k?"

She replies, "Sorry Ken, I'm not a Kong-Wal Mart. You'll have to pick the phone up yourself. I'll get back to you with the details and the LTG tomorrow."

[Sunday afternoon, 09JAN2061]: "Ken, looks I was able to exploit an FCC loophole. The phone service should be good for 3 months. Here's the LTG number you'll be using," the ork says as she pushes a small scrap of paper across the bar table.

Abyss Meet (e-mail wrap up)

2300, Sunday, 09JAN2061: Ken is already sitting down at a table as the team arrives.  He is nursing a bottle of Asahi.  From the thermal signature, Case and Tik-Tok can tell that he's probably been nursing it a while, because it's room temperature, and there is no trace of condensation on the bottle.  Ken exchanges pleasantries as people arrive, but remains engrossed in accessing a portable computer.  After DK saunters in, slides into a seat, and activates his white noise generator, Ken starts, "All right.  Looks like we are one short here, but that's no surprise.  It's a new team and a new career for all of us.  It's quite possible Chip decided that the team or the biz was not his cup of tea.  I personally haven't been able to get a hold of him.  Anyway, enough about him.

"First things first.  Good job.  Things went down badly and bloodily, but we got the job down and we all got out in one piece.  I can't believe the luck of that Mage picking that particular office at that particular time, but he did and we dealt with it.  I would have preferred to not have left any guards dead, but given a choice, I'd rather be alive to regret it.

Disco Kid nods, piping in with, "You said that right. Gotta pay the piper if you're gonna be running with the rats, ya diggit."

Ken looks at Case and Tik-Tok and nods almost knowingly.  He takes a breath and glances furtively at Suture, then continues, addressing no one in particular, "I appreciate that saving their lives is a good and noble thing.  If I had my way, the drones, the guards, and all of us would use rubber bullets.  The last one conscious gets the prize and we all live to play another day.  Unfortunately, the corporations keep rejecting that proposal because frankly they could give a rat's ass about their people.  The executives are too busy worrying about their "valuable people", like themselves.  So, they throw a bunch of poor slobs at us and tell them to kill us.  Unfortunately, the slobs usually listen to them, so we have to shoot back or go down.

"It was no remarkable surprise that the guards upstairs pulled out guns when you were throwing punches.  If you had not moved quickly, you'd be dead or in jail right now.  If you are more willing to go to jail than kill the man that would put you there then you should save everyone the time and cuff yourself; because you are going to meet a lot of people in
this career that are using bigger, longer range guns than you.

"Tasers are nice, and I wish every threat we faced could be taken out by one, but that's wishful thinking, it is not gonna happen.  Hell, I don't carry concussion grenades because I want to kill everyone, but sometimes people back you in a corner and you have to choose to shoot your way out or do the dead man's dance as bullets rip you to shreds.  I'll take the
former, thanks.  In the end, I gotta know that the people in my team are willing to take out our enemies to save my ass, because we are on our own on a run."

Ken takes a dramatic pause, and Disco Kid, nodding, or perhaps just dancing to a rhythm in his head, slips in some comments, "On the streets ya got different levels of cats. You got your blood, la familia. You take a bullet for them no questions asked. You got your groove cats, the ones who help you out and you help them out. Then there's all the jive-talkin' turkeys. Way I figure it. The corps never did anything for me other than make my programs illegal and give me some hoops to jump through. You can count on me, bro," responds DK with a clenched fist to his chest.

Ken smiles slightly, and nods acknowledgment then continues, "That said, let me just say a couple of things about the run.  DK, good work.  I only wish you had more access to their systems, it could have been a very different run.  Case and Tik-Tok, solid work.  We had no communications, but you took the cue when my grenade went off and took out the guards in the garage with remarkable timing and skill.  Suture, luckily you had little opportunity to use your healing abilities on us, but don't think I didn't notice how you handled the van.  A good wheel man is always a plus.  All of you kept your cool under fire and stayed focused on executing the plan in spite of what they threw at us.  Good work all around.  The only one I have my doubts about right now is Chip.  He's as flaky as he is useful, but I feel like I haven't given him a chance yet, so I'll reserve judgment.  Now I'll shut my trap and let DK and the rest of you put in your two cents worth.

Ken finishes the warm flat residue of his beer with a grimace that all of the beer drinkers at the table can sympathize with.  He surprises the waitress by signaling for a fresh one as he sits back in his chair.

Suture immediately replies, "I agree with Ken; an excellent run.  I was highly impressed by all of you on the run.  But I wouldn't be so quick to discount the merits of our frenetic chiphead friend -- he showed his worth in the speed with which he downloaded his files, and to some extent in combat." 

Suture pauses and takes a deep breath, obviously steeling himself for what he knows is going to be a difficult argument.  "Now look, I'm not stupid, and I know those comments about non-violent tactics were directed at me.  I know where you're coming from, I've been in combat before, but I take issue with your final conclusion."

"Sure the corp. suits may not care what happens to us, or to their security guards, but the guards themselves are just doing their jobs, just like we are.  They don't deserve to be killed just for trying to feed their kids.  And if you think about it, two of the guards opted for stun batons -- a nonlethal weapon -- and they didn't start using assault rifles until after they knew we had fired bullets.

Now, I grant you there are situations in which the death of some guards are simply unavoidable.  However, I'll maintain that such situations are exceedingly rare; a taser or stun baton will knock somebody out, which suits our purposes just as much as killing them does.  I know you want to be sure that your back is covered when you run into combat, and you can count on the fact that I'll do my part to take out those threats.  Until I fail to do my job to your satisfaction, you have no cause to question my means of action.

As for the trauma patching the Ork . . . well, you may look at it as a waste, but it was my trauma patch, to do with as I please.  And it didn't take any time at all, it wasn't like it was delaying and putting us in danger.  Besides, it might just keep that company from hunting us down in retribution for killing their chief security officer."

Suture stops and looks Ken right in the eye as if daring the asian to defy him, "Can you honestly say that you would rather let a man die than save his life when all it costs you is 2 seconds and a 2000 nuyen trauma patch?"

Ken holds Suture's stare unflinchingly, his eyes and face cold and dark.  It seems he won't respond, but then he speaks smoothly and quietly, "It depends on the man and the situation.  If you want to spend a hundred thousand nuyen saving the lives of those that try to kill us you are welcome to it, as long as it does not interfere with the mission or endanger the team.  It's your money friend.  I am not saying you screwed up last time, but your conscience seems to be weighing more heavily with you than with most of us and I want to be clear that it won't slow you down.  As for a taser being 'just as effective', well that's just wishful thinking.  I do plan to expand my 'toolbox' to include more nonlethal weapons, but that will take time and money.  I am doing some research towards a spell for incapacitating people, but that could take quite a while to work out.  However, I am glad you raised the point, it would not hurt if we all had some concussion and flash grenades for future work, at a bare minimum."

Ken switches topics, "Communications gear would be nice, but I priced some and micro-transceivers with basic encryption are as expensive as our last payment.  Walkie-talkies are only about 500 nuyen cheaper, so unless someone has a source of cheaper commo gear, our options are to blow money on a less sophisticated, intermediate system or wait until we get more cred.  Considering that we may never run as a team again, the latter option seems best.  It's possible that the advance on the next run would give us the extra nuyen to buy the gear, so again, waiting on that seems good.  However, it's important that it not get forgotten, because constant communications on the last run would have made things work a lot more smoothly.

Suture follows up almost immediately, "That's the truth.  And in more ways than just during the action.  We need a way to contact members of the team when important decisions come up -- such as buying a 3000 nuyen heavy weapons chip -- so that we can avoid the . . . unpleasantness that accompanied this run."  Suture looks at Case "you gonna answer that wristphone I gave you if I call?" and at Ken "and do I need to get you one as well?"

Ken gestures to a phone saying, "I have taken care of that on my end.  I have a line that should be suitable for calls regarding this work.  I warn you that it will usually be in message/pager mode, but I will return your call in a timely fashion.  Ken glances at DK's white noise generator as if assessing it's quality, then rattles off an LTG number.  Don't give this out to anyone else without my permission.  As DK can no doubt confirm, sleazing through a phone for a location fix is not very hard for a skilled Decker.

Disco Kid's eyes light up and he interjects, "I didn't even think about the comm. I got me an encrypted ear transceiver ready to roll. Man, must have been some heavy stuff I was snorting.  Course I wouldn't have been in range anyways."

"I'm pretty sure you'd be saving more than half a K for a headset unit. I remember scoping those out to be around four thou cheaper than a microtransceiver. That depends on the range you're wanting. Heavy mojo always be cutting in on the 'stick."

Ken pauses as if changing topic,  "If anyone gets a hold of Chip, see about getting our 500 nuyen shares of the equipment money from him.  Right now, I am willing to chalk this up to him being flaky, but if he doesn't come clean with the cred, he's gonna move into the realm of people that have shafted me."  Ken doesn't bother with any threats or promises, seemingly satisfied that his sentence communicated enough of that.

Disco Kid adds some comments of his own, "The chiphead needs to mellow out a bit, but he seems enthusiastic. I get some street vibes off of him too, so he probably knows the biz at least little. Way I look at it, the retaining fee's an extra thing. We got paid the cred we were promised. I'm willing to let the retaining cred slip through the cracks if it'll give us some options and make us more prepared."

Ken continues, saying, "Speaking of getting shafted, I am coordinating with DK on cleanup for the run to make sure we don't.  I know what the authorities will be looking for, and DK has the skills to help make sure those things get misplaced or modified.

As if on cue, DK replies, "Scoped the Star site out last night. Should make the run later tonight and have some info in a day or two. My groove's feeling Travolta so that IC shouldn't be any trouble."

Ken offers friendly parting pleasantries to the individual team members, grabs up his computer as if in anticipation of more work while his new beer gets warm, and waits for everyone to leave.

Interim Character Stuff

Monday, 10JAN2061: After some casework, Ken will goes out and finds a gym; one of those gyms you see in movies all the time where you can lift weights, do martial arts, box, etc.  Here, he starts up an exercise routine, start lifting weights etc. and helps some martial arts guy workout, turning that into some basic pointers on unarmed and clubs.  Athletics will fall naturally out of this.

He will head out from the gym and stop by his favorite gun store, Tight Group, and pick up a kit for working on firearms as well as some books on the subject.  He will pursue it gradually [reflecting only 1 karma spent on it] in the evenings, not wanting to rush headlong into a field where a stupid mistake can be crippling or fatal.

He also starts putting out the word and listening for word on magical groups.  I kind of imagine that a groups pick the person moreso than the person picking the group, and that is a part of the long time required to find them.  His primary concern is having people that he can trust and/or count on, although he is uncertain if he want to deal with a full-out fraternal obligation for mutual aid no demand.  He is hoping to have more than one group to choose from.

Specifically, he is hoping to find a group that is

  • group is not part of a corporation, although corporate types in the group would be fine
  • a mixture of members w.r.t. magical traditions, races, socio-economic status
  • a mixture of backgrounds with some street types and some corporate types, as a reflection of himself
The primary goal of the kind of group he is looking for is somewhat hard to place, just getting better at magic would be a good one, but maybe a group that had a more altruistic and/or lofty goal would work as well.  Ken has not lost his altruism and fights to keep his cynicism below average, so he could be recruited to "fight the good fight".  [As a player I worry that it if Ken were in such a group, the group's mission might overwhelm the team's operations.]

Of course, keeping on top of his caseload is also a concern.  He will try to keep this contained to the morning hours of the day, 0900-1200, with some scattered hours of stakeout as needed throughout the week.  The morning hours will concern the routine work, interviews and appointments, etc.

1,000 ¥ will be forked over immediately to re-establish Low Lifestyle. I interpret this as paying off his late bills and getting back in good standing with his creditors.

Buying Medical Gear from Patches (e-mail exchange)

[Tuesday, 11JAN2061] Ken stops by Patches's clinic.

"Patches, good to see you," greets Ken.

"Ken, how is the smartlink working out?" the street doc says as he turns the handshake into a palm examination. He pokes and prods and doesn't notice Ken start talking again.

Ken clears his throat and gently pulls his hand away.

"Oh sorry, don't get a chance to install many of those. Clients are mostly college kids looking for a datajack," apologizes Patches.

"I'm interested in getting some slap patches. For personal emergency use only, of course," Ken feigns sincerity and grins.

"Sure, I can help you out. My distributors have been good, so I should have most of what you want."

Ken hands over a small piece of paper that looks amusingly like a shopping list. A couple items are crossed off, but a section has been circled with Patches' name written next to it in the margin. Patches takes the piece and walks over to his back cabinet. He punches in a code to unlock to door and begins running his finger up and down in the air, tracing the myriad of labels. He pulls out several small plastic wrapped squares and returns to the detective.

"Sorry, Ken. I guess my stock didn't hold up to your requests. All out of antidote patches. The rest I have," he holds of a stack of patches in his hand.  "Now let's see, that's going to be..." the doctor starts doing some math in his head, "Yes, that'll come to ¥880 for the tranq patches
(assumes rating 11) and another ¥250 for the stimulant patches. I have a trauma patch or two extra as well that I'd part for only ¥1800 if you are interested."

Ken smiles warmly, "Patches, you're too kind.  At the moment, my desire to be prepared for the worst will have to take a back seat to my finances.  I might have mentioned that I was investigating a BTL user in one of the larger corporations. To make a long story short, he did it, I proved it, he got fired, and he took it out on me.  So, my finances were temporarily torpedoed.  Heck, I just got the med kit out of pawn.  Luckily, my normal cases are keeping me going, but I probably won't be eating any real meat in the near future.  Could you give me a call when you have some Antidote patches?"

Ken drops a 1 k¥ credstick and another 130 ¥ in cash into Patches's free hand and takes the patches.  Ken sighs in exasperation and smiles as he pulls off his glove and proffers his hand, palm up, exposing the smart-link pad.  "OK, Patches, you haven't taken your eyes of my hand the whole time.  Feel free to take a look, run a diagnostic, or whatever you wish.  I understand what it's like to have mundane tasks that are punctuated all too briefly by real challenges.  I salute your dedication to quality work."

"I'll be sure to let you know when I get ahold of some antidote patches. This should cover any complications that arise," the doctor says referring to the extra ¥100 Ken gave him.

After running some simple diagnostics on the smartlink pad, he gives it the green light. Ken heads out with the patches making a comforting bulge in his jacket pocket.

[Friday, 14JAN2061] Phone message from Patches: "I got ahold of those antidote patches you were interested in. You were wanting some rating eight patches, right? I got a small variety, in case that wasn't what you were interested in. They're going to run ¥600 a piece for those max ratings. Less for the others. Stop by and pick them up whenever."

Ken stops by and picks up two rating 8 Antidote patches because he does not think he will able to properly judge when to use a lesser one.  He willingly pays the total 1200 ¥ for them, and strikes up a conversation about cyberware and then Patches's cyberware library, the basic topic turning to - "It must be hard to stay on the cutting edge in an ever-changing field, especially your library."  This is a simple ploy to identify what books he would like for his library.  He then spends 150 ¥ on a gift-wrapped professional medical reference (hard and soft copy) on cyberwear for Patches; he drops it off with the receptionist the next day.

The card read:

"Here's hoping you have some more interesting, cutting edge
challenges in the future,
- K"

Making New Friends (e-mail exchange)

[Wednesday 12JAN2061] Ken needed some bullets and wanted a reliable armorer for discrete work.  Luckily, his buddy Rock knows an armorer:

Rock arranges to accompany Ken to go visit Leonardo at his armorer shop.  Rock initially proposed to set up a meet, but Ken's charm easily convinced him that visiting the armorer at his shop would be the easiest on everyone. At the shop:

"Bang-Bang you in? I mean Leonardo," shouts Rock outside a grungy door down a side alley in the middle of low class Auburn. An armored camera watches the two visitors and starts to pan down either side of the alleyway.

An intercom next to the door buzzes to life, static making the words faint, "What's he doin' here, Rock?"

"Just open the door, ya gutterpunk. We got some business for you. Ken's good, you've meet him. Straight shooter. It's cold out here and I don't want to have to break *this* door down," responds Rock hinting at some earlier incident.  A buzzer sounds and some locks open.

Inside is cluttered. There's no better way to describe the seemingly complete integration of a firearms shop and a messing low lifestyle.  After Ken takes his attention away from the rigged machine gun, recessed in what used to be a coat alcove that is now pointing straight at the main door. A camera is perched above it, secured to the ceiling to watch any carnage that would unfold. A narrow short hallway with several metal cabinets and crates leads to a back living/working area. 

Leonardo is in the middle of overhauling a nasty looking shotgun, tools and metal filings are scattered across his work table. He leans back in the squeaky chair and looks at the two guests. Ken suppresses a chuckle at seeing the jeweler's magnification headset zoomed in eye staring at him, looking wide and warped. The armorer flips the visor back and gets
ready for business. Rock steps out of the way, as much as a troll of his size can, and extends his arm to Leonardo gesturing for Ken to take over.

"Leonardo. I hear on the streets that you are the many to come to for guns and gun supplies. A really up and coming presence," Ken starts, wondering if he's putting it on a little thick. The scrawny human seems pleased and starts warming up a little, so Ken continues.

"I only need some EX explosive rounds for a heavy pistol. That should be sufficient to start making my mark in the shadows. They *should* be easy to get." The detective purposefully leaves out "for some one of your connections and skill" but it is obviously implied by his tone.

The armorer takes a brief moment and answers, "You seem like a nullfrag chummer, and if Rock vouches for you I'm up for doing some biz. The explosive rounds are hard to come by. Only security guys and hit men use those kinds of rounds."

"Maybe if I provided some grease for the machines of capitalism. I hear the streets can be much more pliable if they know there's something in it for them," responds Ken.

Leonardo thinks a second gauging Ken's sincerity and cred resources before answering, "I might be able to track things down, but I'm not promising anything. It'd probably take ¥200 to start the search for the explosive rounds. I'll let Rock know when I have them. You can pick them up from him."

"It'd be a lot easier if I could just give you a call myself. Possibly more lucrative in the future as well," counters Ken.

"Not for now. Let me see how this works out and if you got more business for me, you can go through Rock," Leonardo gives Rock a call and with no complaints instantly becomes more resolved in his decision. 

"Sound good?"

Ken suppress a grin when he sees Leonardo look to Rock, realizing that his relationship with Rock will have a direct impact on the one he has with Leonardo and he plans to stay on Rock's good side.  He was finally starting to feel some comfort level about getting back on the streets.  A support network was finally starting to grow.

Ken pauses, a grim deadpan on his face, as if measuring the Armorer, "hmmm, I dunno about that."

Ken pauses then breaks into a laugh, "'I'm just messin' with ya man.  It's your shop, your  biz, and your life, you call the shots and I'll deal with it.  Only downside is poor Rock has to see even more of my face."  Ken smiles at Rock.  Ken proffers his hand to shake Leonardo's in spite of any grime that might be there. He presses just hard enough for Leonardo to feel the 200 ¥ cash he had palmed as well as his smartlink pad, hoping that maybe he'll be taken a bit more seriously because of his gear.

"Now it's time for me to settle accounts with Rock."  Ken looks to the Troll and asks, "You up for a steak Rock?"  Ken turns to Leonardo and adds, "You're welcome to come along, I'm buying, and if you knew my finances, you'd know that may be a once-in-a-lifetime offer." He smiles as he finishes.

"Nah, I got biz to take care of.  Go easy on him Rock, don't spend all of his money until I'm through with him."  Leonardo says as he smiles to Rock before turning back to his bench and immediately resuming his previous task.

[Spent 50 ¥ on dinner]

[Friday Evening, 14JAN2061] Phone message: "Looks like my little pal, Leonardo came through for you. He gave me a box of 50 EX explosive rounds for a heavy pistol for you. Says they're costin' ¥1000 for da box. Stop by anytime, I'm working the next couple of nights."

Miscellaneous Stuff

Ken tries to hook up with Mac & Nicole for lunch during the week.  He would like this to be a routine; perhaps lunch once a week, during the work week, with each.

Miner is an uncertain commodity in my mind.  I had not really imagined her being socially involved with Ken.  Which raises the question of how one increases the bond with a contact without getting personal or doing them a big favor.  I suppose that Ken will suggest in his dealings with Miner that if she needs help with something or perhaps even someone just
watching her back, then she should give him a call.  Perhaps he will become more socially interactive with her too . . .

Otherwise, the evenings will be spent dropping word with various establishments, Awakened bars, libraries, bulletin boards, bookstores, etc. regarding finding & joining a group.

I would like to describe more time spent on gunsmithing but it would be inconsistent with the karma expenditures.  So, I suppose he will simply open up the kit some weekend, learn what the various tools do, and goof around without doing any real work with it.  That's about a level 1 skill from my read.

Similarly, I would like to describe him practicing and drilling for many hours a day with unarmed & exercise, but a couple of hours a day would be more than enough to accommodate the karma expenditures.  So, I'd say generally one or two hours every week day will be burned on exercise to include unarmed combat, clubs, random sports.  I'll save his rappelling
trip for Athletics 2, if I can bear to part with the karma.

He'll probably generally spend a few hours a week at the range keeping his pistol skills sharp, as well as practicing his casting and conjuring.  His conjuring practice will mostly consist of routinely summoning (almost daily) Force 4 hearth spirits in his apartment and
having conversations with them about themselves and magic, small talk focused on magic for twenty or thirty minutes, before asking them to patrol around his apartment.  His sorcery practice will probably involve simple stuff, like fine-tuning his Levitation. Drills would probably include moving around, casting it at high and low force, and casting it multiply.

Evolution of Ken's Personal Philosophy

  • Killing: Ken was, in his mind, forced to kill two security guards on this run, doubling the number of people he had killed in his entire life in a few seconds.  A unique aspect was that he proactively killed them.  They had assault rifles and were simply a lethal threat that he had to overcome lest he be killed or jailed.  He killed them in cold blood with a personal rationale of an immediate threat to him and his team.  He was not happy about killing the guards, but it is unclear if he is feeling guilt or just worried about further complications.
  • Awakened Community: His view of camaraderie with the Awakened community in general is fading.  The actions of the Mage were a slap in the face.  He has never been at odds with another Awakened person.  His idyllic notion of some mystical sense of community among all Awakened that transcended mundanes was shattered.  In all honestly, Ken realized that now he was probably a lot more realistic in his perspective.
  • Shadowrunning: Ken likes Shadowrunning thus far.  The challenges he seeks in investigative work are found in shadowrunning, along with higher stakes and dangerous obstacles.  He likes the intensity of the experience, but appreciates the day-to-day work in between.  At this point, he imagines that continuous shadowrunning would burn him out.

Karma and Nuyen


  • Awarded 7 good karma for mission plus 1 for serious action
  • Karma Pool up to 1.8
  • Spent Karma:
    • Unarmed Combat 2 - 4 karma
    • Intimidation 1 - 1 karma
    • Pistols B/R 1 - 1 karma
    • Clubs 1 - 1 karma
    • Athletics 1 - 1 karma
  • Unspent karma: 0


  • Earned 5 k¥ for primary objective, 2.5 k¥ for secondary
  • Spent ¥
    • shadow phone   1.15 k¥
    • re-establish low lifestyle 1.0 k¥
    • medkit    0.3 k¥
    • firearms kit   0.5 k¥
    • gel rounds, 3 boxes of 50 0.45 k¥
    • EX explosive rounds box of 50 1.2 k¥  (& establishing connection)
    • Slap patches   1.13 k¥ + 1.2 k¥
    • Dinner w/ Rock 50 ¥
    • Book for Patches 150 ¥
  • Unspent 370 ¥ (wow, it goes pretty fast . . .)
  • Current ¥: 495