Run #2 - Wanted: Vengeance
Real world: This run started and ended in Session #4,
April 1, 2001. The runners for this mission were Ajax (Corey),
Hound (Angelo), Kuma (Lars), and Piker (Reema). Mason was busy
getting smashed with his Shakespeare-loving buddies.
Mission: Liberate Little Pusan from the clutches of the
Red Ronin gang and save whatever surviving Ring members there
- Eradication of Red Ronin - 10k each for at least half, 20k
each for all of them
- Rescue of Ring members - 5k total for each
- Killing of townspeople - penalty of 1k each per person
- 11FEB2058 (Monday) - Little Pusan attacked by gangers.
- 12FEB2058 (Tuesday early AM) - Kuma contacted to gather team
- 12FEB2058 0400-0800 various astral scouting occurs; townsperson
intercepted fleeing town, questioned and released.
- 12FEB2058 0830 - Team advances on town and takes out gang.
I2FEB2058 01:51 (T) - The nuyen is evaporating as usual but
the runs just aren't coming. The first run was a little weird,
so that's not such a bad thing. Word on the street is that Fixers
are waiting to make sure that whatever the frag was going on with
the last run (Vampires?!), the dust has settled. It's about time
to get paid and it's about time to get a run. These are the thoughts
that run through the heads of Hound, Piker, and Ajax as they sit
at Moon's drinking the night away under the sonic blanket of pulsing
dance music. Val is at home, finishing cracking the anti-theft
system on Wild Child's bike with the help of a friend.
Monday night is "dance night." It's a little distracting
at first, but after two or three drinks, it's somewhat hypnotic
and the trio talks less than normal occupied with their thoughts.
Piker contemplates a task that she struggles with. Hound wonders
about finding one of these magical groups that Ajax mentioned.
Ajax struggles to avoid telling his friends anything more than
he found a magical group. He tried not to let that much slip,
but he's got to tell someone and not a lot of people have been
under fire with him and pulled their weight. So far, they accepted
that he can't tell them anything more than that. Well, Hound accepted
it grudgingly. Piker seemed to accept it right away, but then
she's pretty easy going usually.
The trio all look up at the clock. Its LED flashes 0153.
Maybe it's time to call it a night. Piker is going to be seriously
hammered in short order and it's a weeknight after all. Then a
man steps up to the table, an Asian human that walked in a few
minutes ago and was chatting with Moon. It looks like he wants
(Primary: Lars/Kuma, Contributing: Reema/Piker, Angelo/Hound,
Kuma seems to have been the first to arrive at Moon's Shine this
warm late spring night. The other team members have learned to
appreciate the value of alcohol where Kuma is concerned. The tough
as nails samurai is a good thing to have at your side when the
bullets start flying, but not when you want to kick back and have
a few drinks. After the usual small talk and collective sigh of
decompression from having faced mortality and danger again, the
conversation turns to who among the group has taken the most bullets
in a run.
"I have you all beat, chummers," says Kuma as he leans
back, taking another swig of synthbeer. "Remember Little
Pusan? I took nine slugs in that fight, scan. Fraggin' slitch
burned a light machine gun across my stomach, bakeyaro (stupid
punk)." Kuma traces a line with two fingers across his faded
Seattle Screamers shirt.
Val pokes Kuma where the bullets hit and smirks, "Yeah,
ya fraggin slitch and you kept unstitching the damn things every
time I patched them up! Of course, maybe you're just trying to
find an excuse to keep inviting me over, huh?" She smiles,
"Ya know, there's only so much Korean food a girl can eat!
Well, you started telling the war story, so get to it, wordsmith,
let's see if you can jack the muse and chrome your prose."
Moon leans in and sets down a pitcher of beer on the team's table.
He smiles warmly, but something is lost in the attempt. His cyber
eyes, black with inward facing silver crescent moon shapes for
pupils, take some of the warmth away. He pulls up one of the Troll-sized
chairs in his metahuman friendly bar and sits down. "A war
story neh? This I gotta scan."
Kuma starts in on recounting the run. "Remember, we had
been hired by the Pusan Seoulpa Ring to rescue their ash-covered
Puyallup town from this rogue gang. A crowd of punks, but a big
enough crowd with automatic weapons can burn anyone, neh?"
"So we head down into the barrens for some recon. I didn't
know you slitches that well yet, so I was probably pushing the
cold steel look all the way. Anyways, we found an abandoned factory
a couple clicks from Little Pusan and set-up base. Turns out this
village is literally a handful of fake western buildings along
a short main street with ash and rubble on every side. Damn glad
I'm not dealing with that drek anymore. I think the first thing
we did was send in Ajax, right?" says Kuma as he leans back
and takes a couple more swigs, finishing his beer while Ajax recounts
his astral travels.
Ajax breaks in: "Whoah, the astral drek out there in Puyallup
is pretty nasty, neh? Working that job was an awakened man's nightmare.
Val can attest to the drek you've got to deal with when you try
slingin' the mojo with all that background. The fraggin' baddies
are even taken down a notch by that drek. The spirit I encountered
in the village should've torn me apart, but I managed to get away.
I won't soon forget that experience. Goes to show I still got
some learning to do when it comes to my abilities. During the
ride back though, I had time to think about it and I would've
done some things differently. I'll carry that lesson with me on
our next mission."
"Moving through that field was interesting though. When
I saw that little guy all hunkered down, I thought it'd be easy
to get his help. Lookin' back it must have been pretty funny having
this ghostly elf wiggling and shaking trying to corral that villager
towards our position."
"Yeah, you're moving this old villager through the rubble,
shaking your arms and glowing. He probably has his own sheen to
tell. But yeah, Hound and I talk to this guy and find out the
basics of the village. Problem is, gang's got it slotted to geek
the two remaining ring members this morning." Then Hound
"Yeah, and they were making a real example of them too.
The first two were swinging in some gallows when we got there.
Hanging's a bad way to go..." Hounds voice trails off and
he lets Kuma continue the story.
Kuma picks up again, "So we jack the problem and move out
for full force. I know I didn't plan on it being a cake walk,
but still the opening moves were a crash. We sneak up through
the field to the back of the gang's main building, a wild west
bar of some kind. We know the Jamaican mage, most of the gang,
and the ring members are idle there."
Hound interjects, "Not idle enough, neh? We all hoped to
catch 'em napping, but no such luck. Hell, we could have just
torched the place and picked 'em off as they ran out, but there
were clients inside worth heavy cred. But I'm getting ahead of
the story. Go on Kuma, tell it true."
Ajax holds up a hand before Kuma begins and says, "This
is where I would've done things differently...knowing what I know
now. I should've trusted my magic, more importantly I should've
trusted my totem. Its times like that, when a shaman's totem can
lead him through a difficult experience. I could've done more
recon with my magic, my totem could have helped me work through
all the background drek. We might have learned more about the
inside before going in." Ajax looks around the group, with
an apologetic look on his face.
Piker puts her hand on Ajax's shoulder and says, "Don' worry
'bout it omae, at da end it was your ass dat got fraged by da
spirit." She laughs loudly. Ajax gives a weak smile, and
the rest of the team smirks and chuckles to varying degrees.
Kuma waits for the laughter to die down before continuing. "So
we are sneaking up on the bar and I catch a villager as he he's
coming out the back. He gives us the layout and then runs. We
going stealth, right behind a gang member checking up on breakfast.
Echo down and he's out," says Kuma as he mimics a karate
strike to the side of the table. "We move on in and get some
villagers out of there. We're ready to make our move when another
fragger comes walking into the kitchen, shouting about his breakfast.
Probably should have ripped his face open with a burst and stepped
right through to lay down fire into the main room, but I still
thought we could pull off some stealth. Wrong decision. I grab
the slitch and slam him into the kitchen area. A couple smacks
from the rest of the you guys and he's gone."
Hound interjects, "Didn't take much after you hit him the
first time. And I'm still not so sure we made the wrong decision
to keep stealth. We got damned unlucky if you ask me."
Kuma continues, "I ready some grenades and we're going in.
Wrong move. I barely get the door swinging and this fragging troll
opens up with a full burst from a light machine gun. There were
probably some SMG rounds flying through there too, but nothing
says 'frag you' like a machine gun burst. I take it and some how
get back into the kitchen. Everything turns chaos."
Piker smirks and says,"I kow EXAC'LY what you mean."
Hounds adds, "See, that's what I mean. If you were on your
usual game you would have beat them all to the punch and blown
them to the roof with those grenades. The fraggin troll got off
a lucky shot, but like you say once the lead starts flyin' from
an LMG you'd best lay low. I gotta say I was damned impressed
at the time how well you handled that. Now I know you've got the
'ware to help out, but even so you took it hard and came up strong."
Kuma replies, "We pulled it through the fire, though. Piker
and I round one corner and Hound ends up rounding the other side
of the building. I think you covered the rear, right Ajax?"
grins Kuma, chiding the shaman.
Ajax perks up: "Hey, I got one comin' out the back. Didn't
beat him to the quick draw like our friend Hound. I can sling'
lead when I have to. How do you guys say it, 'Took him out, null
sheen.'" Ajax takes a big swig of his drink and nods.
Kuma picks up again, "I was having a full load dealing with
a bunch of gangers inside. Piker ended up tossing some grenades
through a window and bringing the pain to some foolish fraggers
who thought they could bring the fight to the streetfighting troll.
You had some fun on your side, right Hound? Something like three
of four dead gangers, including the leader. That's some chrome
work, omae." Kuma waves for another beer as Hound takes over
the story for a brief time.
Piker interjects, "der was one important ting you forgot
about my grenades, dey fragged da troll dat put all dem holes
in your body," she points to the area where the bullet wounds
were and continues, "den two slitches taught dey would be
safer fightin' me dan being wid my grenade, dey were wrong,"
she looks frightingly satisfied. "When dey came out, instead
o' dealin' wid one grenade, dey had to deal wid two 'grenades'
in da face." She puts both her fists up, then she points
to Hound to take it from there.
Hound kicks back in his chair and relaxes a bit as he takes over
the tale. "Well, I don't mean to brag, but that was
a good day for me. I'll admit, when I went over to the other side
of the saloon I had intended to catch the slots inside in a crossfire.
Somehow I had it in my head that there were windows back there.
Too much synthbeer and not enough sleep, I guess. Anyway, it turned
out heading that way was a good thing. I just round the corner
when I see this ganger with an assault rifle climbing the fraggin
wall, going up to snipe I guess. She never even saw me, I guess,
cause she dropped without even looking my way."
"When I get down to her position, more gangers are running
out of the smaller buildings towards the saloon. I dropped a few
as they ran up, null sheen, and that's when I hear this voice
behind me. 'You think you're hot drek, don'tcha?' it says. Well,
I turn around and what do you think I see? This crazy-ass hombre
with a big bushy beard, all decked out like he was some hot-drek
cowboy. He's got his coat pulled back on one side and his gun
holstered, like he's in some old trideo, challenging me to a gunfight.
He had balls, I gotta give him that. He likely could have just
shot me in the back, and now I bet wherever he is he regrets it,
but I figured if he was gonna give me a fightin chance the least
I could do was oblige him. He even waited for me to take off the
silencer so I could holster my Tomahawk. I think he really thought
he could take me. Hell, I wasn't even sure. That much ego, I figure
he's gotta be tough. But in then end my hand was quicker and my
aim truer, and the last thing to go through his mind was several
ounces of hot lead. And I guess that's where my story ends. I
had no idea how things were inside, but I did see Val coming in
with the van, guns blazing, so I figured there was more than enough
trouble going down with the others."
Kuma resumes the story, "I thought things were flushed,
but I guess I underestimated your 'wares," he looks approvingly
about the gathered team before finishing the story. "In the
end we cleaned up the rest of the gang and rescued the dirty village.
Both ring members and some extra gear, not a bad take. We never
faced off against the carib shaman, but he probably slipped out
when he saw his employers getting a beating. Fraggin' cowardly
two-yen merc," Kuma spits on the bar floor.
Val shrugs, "Well, we don't know what deal he worked with
the gangers. He certainly wasn't part of the gang. Maybe his job
was long over with. I'd bet solid nuyen that those ganger slitches
couldn't afford to have him do much more. I think he was just
there to throw the ring a curve ball. It wouldn't be the first
time we benefited from a runner leaving when his job was done,
neh?" She looks at Hound, Ajax, and Piker. "Besides,
maybe when he saw me tearing up main street with my LMGs, he thought
twice about jacking some pain with us. I made some of those slitches
dance a serious gig, neh?" She smiles, but it fades almost
"After seeing what they did to the villagers, I'm not gonna
shed a tear either, the fragging bags of drek. Some people get
Band-Aids, some get a bullet in the head. A lot of them slitches
died a lot cleaner and quicker than they deserved to." She
spits on the sawdust-strewn floor.
"At least I managed to patch up old Koom here; it took two
quarts of oil and a new belt, but then he was good as new."
She smirks and jabs Kuma with her elbow.
"Speaking of getting some gear, that SUV came out pretty
drek hot. I have tricked out nova hot. Of course, I got the Piker
point set up in back. My buddy thought I'd never give his van
back." She smiles at the huge woman Troll as she downs the
last of her cup of synthbeer.
Piker smiles back, " Yeh, but now I got me a Viking dat
has all da space I need."
Kuma wrap up his story, "Not bad for a first run, neh? I'm
sure I wasn't smiling after that carnage though," Kuma says
rubbing his stomach, then his upper arm, and finally his collar
bone. "I don't think anyone else has topped nine bullets,
at least not yet."
Piker speaks up, "No one got more dan nine, but you and
me both got nine each, but I beat on a vamp after gettin' shot,"
she glances at Moon and says," I couldn't done it widout
you Moon," she puts her arm around his shoulder, "We
make a good team."
"You know, as far as I'm concerned," laughs Hound,
"you two can fight it out for that title. I'm all for not
getting shot at all, thanks very much."
Ajax pats Hound on the back and says, "Those are the words
of wise man."
Moon smiles, "Yeah, and the first sign Piker's drunk is
when she puts her arm around you without the intent of doing harm,
neh?" He chuckles.
Piker pirks up,"Don' forget to tell 'bout the end of da
run." Every one looks puzzlingly at her,"You remember,
de part 'bout gettin' paid." She looks at Moon and says,"
Da two ring members we save were da heads or someting, but when
da guy dat hire us told us of da pay, he said he'd pay us 5K total
for each ring member we can save. But when we delivered da survivors,
he did't want to look bad in front of dem, so he paid us 20K each
for savin' da members! At da end, we made out wid 8K extra each."
Moon smiles, "Not bad at all. All right, I gotta get back
to work. Thanks for emptying this pitcher for me, though."
He gets back up, smiling, and heads back to the bar.
The conversation moves on to other gunfights and injuries as
the night goes on. Kuma buys a couple of rounds for the group,
the Little Pusan run just another notch on the gun barrel and
another story for Moon's Shine's Sunday nights.