Run #7 - Nicked* Time
* - "nick" is British slang for "to steal"
Real world: This run occurred during Session #8, 29SEP2002.
The runners for this session were Fifi (Reema), Kozmo (Corey),
and Titus (Ryan).
Run: 5 karma.
Bonus opportunities: +1 if war story.
23OCT2063: Sasha unleashes a flurry of profanities in Russian
as the leg of the couch comes crashing down on his foot.
He manages to steady himself on the narrow stairwell and
brace the couch against his hip, preventing it from sliding
down the stairs and over him. He yells out in Russian, "Uncle,
please be careful!"
"Sorry Sasha, I lost my grip. Are you ok?" Anton
"Dah...dah, its ok." Sasha's voice calms.
The two men resume moving the couch up the stairs and into
the small apartment above the old electronics store. The
two men push the couch through the doorway to the living
room and set it down against the far wall. Once situated
the two men fall back onto the couch and slump down into
the cushions. Having spent the whole day hauling furniture
up into the apartment they are too exhausted to move. In
retrospect saving the sleeper sofa for the end was a bad
idea. The smell of a hot stew wafts out from the kitchen.
The two men hear the soft singing of Raisa, Sasha's mother.
"Momma, you need help in there?" Sasha yells
"No my 'baby bear' I'm ok. You and Anton relax, you've
done enough today. Remember after dinner we go to see Ivan."
Raisa immediately returns to her cooking as she sings an
old Russian folk song. The two men doze off for what seems
like hours, but awake to the sweet smell of one of Raisa's
hot stews being served. She calls them into the kitchen
where they all sit around the small kitchen table. Anton
and Sasha eat voraciously while Raisa dotes on them throughout
the meal. At the end the two men help clear the dishes quickly.
Its about 6 p.m. and they only have a little time to go
to the hospital and see Ivan.
The family arrives at the hospital around 6:45 p.m. and
make their way through the warren of hallways to Ivan's
room. Sasha is impressed, La Familia has come through and
made sure Ivan was upgraded to a personal room, the large
no-necked man sitting outside the room notices the family.
He nods politely as Raisa and Anton walk into the room.
He holds up Sasha with a motion of his hand. "Hey kid, I
heard about da' drek chou went thru, me and da' boys want
chou ta know we got Ivan covered while he's here. You just
take care a business which your family." The man puts his
hand on Sasha's shoulder and extends his other hand. Sasha
shakes the man's hand and gives him an acknowledging look.
He enters the hospital room to hear his mother laughing
and sees his brother with pudding dripping down his chin
and a big smile on his face.
"Ahhh, Sasha. You are just at the right time to help with
rescue efforts. Momma has just crashed a plane full of pudding
on my big mush." Ivan says while softly laughing, still
too weak to create his normally bellowing laugh. Ivan manages
to muster the strength to be jovial, enough to put his worrying
mother at ease. Sasha gets a big smile on his face.
"Too bad Momma threw away you're old baby bib, the one
with the duckies on it." Sasha ribs his brother about his
famous duckie bib.
"Hey, none of that, those tough duckies." Ivan retorts.
The family spends about 45 minutes helping Ivan eat. Though
his condition has improved and the doctors consider him
stable, he hasn't quite regained full motion and the prospect
of months of rehab still loomed ahead. After the orderly
came to clean up his tray Ivan begins to tire.
"Oh my sweet boy, should we go, you look tired."
"You might as well, the drugs they give me knock me out
soon enough." replies Ivan. The family begins to say its
goodbyes and plans on seeing Ivan again, but earlier tommorrow.
As Sasha, Anton, and Raisa file out of the room, Ivan calls
Sasha back in.
"Hey you big mudack, how are things going at home?" Ivan
says very concerned in a soft voice.
"Ohh, don't worry about it. Its tough, but I got it covered.
Totti, he did good by me. He gave us the shop and the apartment
back outright. I still got some cred, so I was able to get
them some new furniture. A lot of it is second hand, but
its in good condition. It'll be a while before Anton get's
the shop back up, but I think Totti is going to give him
a loan. A real loan, in exchange for an interest in the
shop. Anton seems ok, he's never been one to look too carefully
at stuff that came in the pawn shop anyway. Anyway, I think
we'll be ok. I'm living at home till I can get my own place
again. You just worry about getting better, ok." Sasha begins
to turn and walk out.
"My brother, always the responsible one. Take care of Momma."
Ivan says in a groggy voice, the drugs already beginning
to kick in.
Sasha begins to head out the door, "Hey Carlo, you need
anything? Maybe I can get you a coffee from downstairs?"
"No thanks, take it easy ya' mook." Carlo grumbles
in a scratchy voice.
13JUL2063: Its late, 2:30 a.m., Kozmo logs into the matrix
through the new computer his uncle purchased with the money
he received from Totti to help rebuild his electronics shop.
The two men had been working all day getting the shop ready.
Most of the equipment had arrived for the repair shop and
the pawn shop was easy enough to get back up. Though it
had been three years the men were noticing old clientele
showing up again. There was also a steady stream of mob
customers who were now being sent here. Sasha couldn't tell
how Anton was taking the mob connection. It was harmless
enough on the surface, just another mob-connected business
where money would be laundered.
Kozmo cruises through the matrix trying to reorient himself.
Sites had changed, thankfully not too many data formats,
lots of information to absorb. Its particularly hard to
find the conspiracy theory sites he often frequented. The
matrix-masters of those sites being paranoid enough that
the locations changed weekly and only those 'in-the-know'
were able to track the new location down. Having just experienced
some seriously messed up drek, Kozmo was looking to do a
core dump of the information he had in his head. He knew
the best place was on one of these sites.
After about an hour searching around Kozmo comes across
a familiar site. After some innocuous security questions
he makes it in to the site's chat group. There is the usual
chatter about the corps and the government, but the subject
clearly on everyone's mind is the drek that went down at
Seattle West hospital.
Kozmo loses himself in the matrix, checking out different
theories on what 'really' happened at Seattle West. The
popular theory is that it was some sort of Renraku experiment
gone wrong. Kozmo's favorite theory is the trial run for
a new Azatlan super weapon. This was just an advance attack,
soon they'd have a version powerful enough to engulf the
city. After some time Kozmo comes across a familiar face
arguing over the merits of the Renraku theory with some
unknown matrix denizen. Kozmo interrupts the in-depth discussion,
"Hey Digit, what sort of drek you feeding this chummer?"
Startled Digit replies, "You pinko-bastard! I don't even
believe it! Where the frag you been omae. I thought you'd
been geeked on some job you were doing."
"Almost omae. It wasn't a job, just another day in the
life." Kozmo replies cooly, "The drek I seen is so fragged
up...can we go somewhere to talk?"
"You bet, let's get out of here." with that the two men
head off into the matrix.
"So I heard you talking 'bout Seattle West?"
"Don't even tell me you got a line on what happened there."
Digit says increduously.
"Yeah, I got a line on what happened there. I was there.
Its hard to believe, but I was there." Kozmo says.
"Well let me have it omae." says Digit.
"It started out as a normal day. I was meeting a couple
of my crew at a safehouse we got. I had rigged up some security
for the place and wanted to show them. Well, the place was
out in the Redmond Barrens and I don't think I emphasized
how tough the area was. Titus and Fifi came out alone. I
thought they'd be ok, but they got jumped on the way there.
I don't know what happened, but they got roughed up pretty
bad. When they finally showed up to the safehouse they looked
like hell. We stayed there at the safehouse for a while,
when it got late I realized I needed to call Crazy Ivan
about our plans that night. Turns out he got jumped by some
guys and was in pretty bad condition...at Seattle West Hospital.
Titus and Fifi are in bad enough shape that taking them
to the hospital is a pretty good idea."
"What about the other two? You know the tribal and the
merc?" inquires Digit.
"Well turns out both of them are at Seattle West too, turns
out Boomer was backing Arrow up on a hunt and the two took
a beating as well. When the three of us get to the hospital
Titus and Fifi check in and I head up to see Crazy Ivan.
The whole family is there. Momma is balling her eyes out,
Anton is pacing around. Some of Ivan's boys are there. It
looks pretty bad, he's seriously messed up and dependent
on the ICU equipment to keep him alive. At some point during
the night my family and I head down to get something from
the cafeteria, that's when all the crazy drek started to
happen. All of a sudden there are bodies coming in like
a flood. Looks like there was a gang war or something, there
are just tons of critically hurt people coming in. Not too
long after there's this crazy light show that lifts up all
the bodies and starts running up the walls in the ER. It
seems to be originating in the ER, but reaching out to the
whole hospital. Next thing that happens is the lights go
out in the building. Actually, everything not on its own
power supply goes dead. I need to take care of my family
so I make sure my flashlight works and give it to my uncle
to watch my mother while I head up to ICU to check on Ivan.
My thermo vision is working pretty well. Not to mention
the strange energy surging around is eminating as a low
light off the walls. I get up to ICU and find Ivan ok. The
life support equipment have their own battery packs so it
looked like he'd be stable." says Kozmo.
"Whoa, what about your crew?" asks Digit.
"Well, while I was checking on Ivan, Fifi and Titus manage
to connect up and find their way to the ICU to get me. Fifi
is freaked out a bit. Titus seemed real uneasy, like something
was going on that I couldn't see. I think from the very
beginning he knew it was some sort of bad mojo. Titus and
I were content to sit things out in the ICU while the rest
of the hospital was in a panic mode. Fifi was determined
to investigate the whole thing. I told them what I saw in
the ER, so she heads down there. She wasn't gone too long,
but when she came back her hand was burned and she said
the ER was blocked off by some energy barrier. She was able
to push through inanimate objects, but she burned her hand
when she touched it. Anyway, we sit tight for a few hours
and finally I just got a little uneasy bout sittin around
all that time. So between the three of us, I decide to head
back downstairs and see if I can't get to my gear." says
"Your gear? What the frag for? Who was shooting at you?"
Digit says almost mockingly.
"It's just a runner thing. I would have felt more comfortable
with the stuff. Anyway, I start to head down to the security
station by the ER and I can't even get down a flight of
stairs. There's a strange energy barrier coming very slowly
up the stair well. I head back to ICU and according to Fifi
its the same thing she saw. Well, we decide this can't be
good. Titus is pretty sure its some funky-bad mojo. So we
decide to head up to the roof to maybe try and get out and
see what's going on." Kozmo says before he's interrupted
again by Digit.
"What did you see out the windows? Couldn't you just bust
out?" asks Digit.
"I wish, there's a strange glow at the windows. I think
there was an energy barrier engulfing the whole hospital.
So we head up to the roof. I jimmy the door and as I'm throwing
it open my arm meets an energy barrier and I get fried pretty
bad. I'm talking chicken fried Kozmo. At this point we're
all freaked out. We're pretty sure that with the other barrier
coming up and this barrier holding us in that its just a
matter of time before we all die. At this point I'm looking
for the mojo slingers to start comin up with ideas, cause
I don't know drek about what this could be. Titus finally
latches on to one idea. Turns out there's this magic metal
to help save these guys when they're banged up. I guess
the hospital has a bunch scattered around. Well, Titus thought
that if we collected it all and he slung some of his mojo,
then we'd be able to pass through the barrier and find what's
causing this." says Kozmo.
"Lucky them, they've got someone who specializes in 'collecting'
stuff." Digit chuckles.
"Yeah, I guess. The plan actually works. I manage to collect
up enough of this stuff, 'ora-calcium' is what I think they
called it. Titus does his thing and with some help from
Fifi and I and he makes a sort of portal through the energy
barrier. Well we don't got much stuff and we have to jump
through pretty quickly. Unfortunately, Fifi isn't the most
graceful ork and takes a little too long to get through.
This doesn't leave Titus much time and he gets zapped by
the barrier as it starts to close. We're all busted up a
bit now, but we manage to get down to the ER area and get
our gear from the checkpoint. The eerie thing is that no
one is around...I mean no one. There's also these lightning
bolts shootin all over the place. They hit us with quite
the sting too. I mean we kept getting fried by these things.
Fifi especially, I thought she might go berserk after a
while. Something about her magic, she goes nut-so sometimes
when she gets banged up. We start making our way to the
ER, but its tough with all the energy bolts zipping around.
We finally get there and its the fraggin craziest thing
I've every seen. Some mojo wierdo is floating in mid-air
with a big staff above his head. His eyes are freaky blank
and all these energy bolts are streaking into him like he's
collecting them. I pull out my piece and try to shoot him,
but the bullet doesn't make it more than a few inches away
from me before it just drops to the floor. Luckily Fifi
has got this fraggin huge sword and I manage to pick up
a stun baton from the security station. We trying to figure
out what to do and Fifi just goes crazy and charges down
after this guy. I don't really know what to do, but I follow
her. As we're running down we get zapped a bunch of times
with energy bolts and we're almost done for when we finally
reach this guy. Fifi is able to knock the staff out of his
hand as I try to hit him with the stun baton. As soon as
that staff is out of his hands he drops and all the energy
bolts go away. After all the freaky stuff subsides Fifi
notices that there's people outside watching us, it looks
like a HazMat team or something, almost like out of a sci-fi
flick. I tie up the guy and the next thing we know Lonestar
is busting in." Kozmo says.
"Whoa, you didn't geek the Lonestar guys did you. Knowing
how you feel about them I could see how you'd react if you
knew they were involved." Digit says.
"I didn't have much of a choice, I didn't know if my gun
would work or not, anyway they easily had the drop on us.
I played it cool, and safe, and just layed down for them.
I wish Fifi had been a little more chill about the situation.
She got knocked around a bit trying to explain to them what
was going on. So that leads me to where we are today...we
came out of that hospital and it had been three years. I
don't know what the frag happened, but that drek just took
three years off my life. Something tells me Titus knows
something about this, or at least has connections to the
scientists that were there. Turns out he knew a guy on the
scene with the response team, that's how we got outta there
without too much drek from Lonestar." Kozmo says.
"What about your family omae? Did they make it? What about
the rest of your crew?" Digits asks.
"Yeah, they all got out. Luckily we were able to stop it
before it got too much higher up in the hospital. I did
come close to losing them all at once. Its hard rebuilding
my life after three years and taking care of my uncle and
mother, but I think it might be even harder if I didn't
have to take care of them." Kozmo says.
"I can't even imagine chummer. Its good to see you alive
though." Digit says, "If you need any help, let me know
and I'll do whatever I can."
"Thanks omae, its good to have friends. I think I'll be
ok though. Things worked out in the end, but that's a story
for another time." Kozmo says, his tone changing from exhausted
to almost whimsical, "I'm going to log off now. Its late
and I've got a lot of work ahead of me tommorrow."
"Take it easy omae." Digit replies.
With that Kozmo logs off the computer and turns out the
lights in the shop. Its about 4:00 a.m., in a couple hours
he's got to be up with his uncle. He trudges up the narrow
stairwell to the apartment above the shop where the family
lives and quietly enters. Making his way to the sleeper
sofa he removes his shoes, but can't muster the energy to
take off any of his work clothes. He flops into the lumpy
mattress and falls immediately into a deep sleep.
|14JUL2063: Sasha checks his watch as he waits in line at
the security checkpoint of the hospital. Things haven't calmed
down yet since the hospital was magically attacked and over
three floors of people killed in some wierd ritual. This is
evident by the 45 minute wait to get through security. Sasha
looks around furtively keeping a close eye on the mojo-slingers
that he can pick out, he's a little more concerned with them
now. He passes through security with little problem, as he
passes through the MAD system Sasha is greeted by an older
guard who recognizes him, "What's the word young fella?"
the man asks.
"Hey Sammy, things are good. How are you doing?"
"Can't complain, going up to Indian country to do
some fishing when I get outta here." the guard smiles
wide and makes a motion with his arm as if casting a fly-rod.
"Good luck, its the perfect time of year to be outdoors."
"Yeah, I had time saved up and after all the to-do
I figured I should use it up. Weren't doin' me no good just
sittin' there." the old man chuckles, "How's your
"Gettin' better everyday. Thanks for asking."
Sasha says as he reaches to pick up his personal items from
the security guard. "You take it easy now." Sasha
smoothly pockets his cellphone, wallet and the small bag
he brought and walks toward the elevator bank. The elevator
ride is quick and Sasha arrives at his brother's floor in
seconds. He snakes his way through the ward to the private
room his brother is in. He nods to the man sitting outside
the door to his brother's room, "Hey chummer, if you
want you can take a break while I'm here." Sasha says.
"You sure?" The burly man replies.
"Yeah, go grab a bite or some coffee." Sasha
"Thanks, I'll just run down to the cafeteria and back."
the man says.
Sasha enters the room to see his brother surfing the trid
monitor with the remote. He seems anxious. "What's
up bro?" Sasha says in a light, happy tone.
"Ah! Sasha, tell me you bring something to kill boringness."
Ivan sounds pleading. He also notices the bag Sasha is carrying
with him. Sasha moves to Ivan's bedside and dumps the contents
of the bag onto his lap. A few adult magazines, a treasure
trove of super-size chocolate bars, and Ivan's cellphone
"Aha Sasha! I count on you everytime! You never let
Ivan down!" Ivan exclaims. His demeanor picking up
already. "You talk with nurse, no?" he asks.
"No, not yet. Why? Is there something wrong?"
"No, no, just opposite. They say I am good to start
rehab! So this next week I will be sent to different hospital
where I do exercise to get better." Ivan says. His
strength is much better and he has returned to his normal
loud and boisterous level.
"That's great bro. Momma will be very happy."
"Sasha, how are things at home. You never tell me
if things work out or not. What happened?" Ivan asks.
"Well, you've heard about everything that went on
here at the hospital, but I guess it really started when
you got jumped." Sasha says.
"I knew trouble coming that day," Ivan says,
"things very tense at boss' place."
"Well, turns out your buddy Igor got it in his head
he was going to knock off Totti and his crew and just slip
in with his own crew. Like the family would ever allow that.
I don't even know what that fraggin' piece of drek was thinking."
Sasha says, "Anyway, he had you jumped to get you out
of the way. I think when all the drek went down here at
the hospital he thought he had it made. You were out of
the way and he made his move to get your position. Well,
he had a couple years to work his way up the organization.
When I got outta' this joint, I think he saw an opportunity.
I called him trying to put my life back together and he
says he's got a job he wants done. He gives me an address
of some foreigners he says he doesn't want to deal with,
but they got work to be done." Sasha sits down on the
chair next to Ivan's bed and leans forward putting his elbows
on his knees, "I get my crew together, well really
the ones who can walk, and we figure it's some fast cred
to get us back on our feet. Its sounds like an easy job,
they give me a briefcase and they want it switched with
another one at the monorail station. Titus and Fifi are
pretty wiz slinging the mojo, so I figure its a good job.
Public place, a simple bait-and-switch, and we're gone with
a pocket full of cred at the end." Sasha's face crinkles
up in mock pain.
"Oh brother, you know it never simple." Ivan
"I know I should've known better. We checked out the
location at the downtown station and we figured we had a
plan to cover a switch on the platform or the train. Well,
there were some bugs we discovered later. We set up on the
day of the job and things are looking good. We don't spot
the briefcase on the platform so we get on the train and
figure we'll just make the switch and its all good. Well,
that's when I see Totti and some of his crew come down to
the platform and get on the train. I'm a little nervous
now 'cause its obvious that something is not right about
this job. I move through the train and find the briefcase
with some guy in the forward car. Well, he gives me a nod,
like he's expecting this. That's when I realize this isn't
right, but I make the switch anyway and the case I pick
up feels empty compared to the one I leave. I head back
to Titus and Fifi and they can tell I'm not ok with this.
So I decide that the best thing to do is to tell Totti and
his men what I think is going on." Sasha says.
"What was it?" Ivan asks.
"I thought, and later learned, there was a bomb in
the case that we brought onto the train meant to kill everyone
there. I head over to Totti's guys and I start tellin' what's
up. Of course those guys don't know what the hell to do
and we're pretty much trapped on the train at this point.
The guys who had the case then comes back and is pretty
confused. I think he is taken by surprise about what I'm
doing. Well, Totti's guys don't know what the frag to do
and are basically standing around useless. So I head back
to the other car and decide to try and disarm the bomb.
Its a pretty wiz job too. The guy on the train with us was
probably the builder and he did a sweet job on this thing.
Its got mercury switches and some pretty wiz wiring in it.
Well, I thought I'd be able to disarm it, but we only had
a couple minutes and I'm taking it down to the last few
seconds. Titus and Fifi are starting to get real nervous
with the situation. I told them that this was just for me
now and they should save themselves. See, they each got
some mojo that let's them fly so they were ready to jump
off the train and get to safety."
"They could fly, but what of you?" Ivan asks.
"Before I decided to tinker with the bomb, the plan
was for me to parachute off the train. It turns out we were
all in deep drek. The train has a safety net which deploys
when people try to jump or fall off and when Titus tried
to jump it snared him and trapped him with us. Well, I wasn't
able to disarm the bomb in enough time, but the guy who
made the switch with me figures out what we're doing and
comes back in enough time to disarm the bomb with a remote
he has." Sasha leans back in the chair and relaxes
a bit. "So that's how I got you all this, the private
room, the hospital care, the rehab. Totti was grateful and
like I told you, he did good by me and you. He gave us back
the shop and Momma's apartment. Not to mention he made sure
me and Fifi and Titus got the cred for the job. That's what
I used to get Momma and Anton set up in the apartment."
"Sasha, you are smart. The family likes that so of
course they take care of you." Ivan chuckles. "They
have their eye on you, be careful what you decide in the
Sasha smiles uneasily at his brother's words and then looks
at his watch. It's getting late and he decides its time
to go if he's to slip back to Tacoma before rush hour starts.
"Well, I gotta go bro. I'm helping Anton at the shop
and I gotta head back before the rush starts." Sasha
"I understand, is Momma coming later?" Ivan asks,
"Ask her to sneak in more of her cooking. I grow tired
of slop they serve here." Ivan chuckles.
Sasha smiles and heads out of the hospital room. He passes
the man at the door who glances up from his paper. Sasha
makes his way back out of the hospital. As he exits the
building he looks down at his cellphone and notices a message
from Jared. Hopefully he's got his gear ready, and maybe
a job, the cred's getting a little low.
Titus's Warstory - Homecoming
"So tell us, Dr. Dawkins, however did you get out
of that pickle," Drake intoned, thoughtfully looking
into his snifter of brandy.
The members of the Crimson Circle were gathered in the
drawing room of the Seattle Heights. They reclined in the
plush chairs, appreciating the fine vintage that the astral
link that was finally complete again. Chamber music drifted
in the background.
"Well, the basic effect was a type of energy drain,
with its center-of-effect on this artifact-the staff I mentioned
earlier," Dr. Dawkins explained, leaning forward in
his high-backed leather chair. "It's aura was unlike
any signature I've ever seen. The closest comparison would
be something like a health spell, but it was different.
It seemed to absorb energy and create a positive feedback
loop back into the effect of the spell."
"Yes, but please do start from the beginning,"
implored the lovely Silver, as she turned the white noise
generator higher to insure their privacy. "The wards
are all in place and my watcher will make sure we remain
"Well, I was going to the hospital after a particularly
dangerous shadowrun. Drake and his staff took excellent
care of me, for which I am grateful," Dr. Dawkins said,
raising his glass to Dr. Farnswell. "Cheers,"
Drake replied, receiving the small toast.
"My colleagues were there as well and one of them
had a family member there who had been injured. I had just
reunited with Fifi, the shaman, when the lights went out
and the building was enveloped in this effect. I tried to
analyze the astral signature, but the energies flowing through
astral space were truly mind-boggling. That great of an
effect would normally have to be the work of a very large
ritual circle, supported with many foci, but it seemed to
be originating from that single fellow in the emergency
"My team and I sprang into action, analyzing the situation
and forming a solution. The field was growing at a predictable
rate, but we were on the outside of it-and it had the particularly
brutish effect of absorbing the energy out of every living
thing it touched, resulting in a form of disintegration.
So I devised a plan to produce a ring of shielding that
would open a hole in this magic field long enough for us
to cross into the inside of its effect. Having had some
small medical experience in graduate school, I had my colleagues
gather the magical trauma kits for the small amounts of
orichalcum contained therein. We created an orichalcum-lined
doorway and arranged it to be flush with the event horizon
of the effect. When the effect intersected with our shielding,
it created an opening that we quickly jumped through. Wanting
to observe the effects of our little experiment, I went
last and caught a bit of the collapsing field on my leg
as it overloaded our shielding, so I fear I wasn't of much
physical use after that."
"Well, there's no need for your physicality when you
have that Boomer fellow around, now is there?" chuckled
Jonah and everyone paused for a humorous moment.
"Unfortunately, Boomer and Arrow were separated from
us and we had no easy way of finding them. Through the field,
we headed for the security checkpoint where our equipment
was stashed and recovered our weapons. Suitably equipped
we headed into the emergency room where we saw this man
floating in mid air, holding a staff overhead, shooting
energy bolts off in all directions, oblivious to the world.
We tried to shoot him, but the bullets fell to the ground
as soon as they left the barrel, having been absorbed of
all their kinetic energy. It's really curious that the effect
was able to drain the energy from the bullets and yet we
were able to still function. My leg injured, I stayed and
tried to provide some observation and spell defense while
Fifi and Kozmo charged the man with the staff. After heroically
shrugging off several bolts of energy, they reached the
man and knocked the staff from his hand, abruptly ending
the effect and knocking the man to the ground. The world
suddenly shifted back to reality and I saw the field crew
from MIT&T just outside the doors to outside the hospital.
Some uniformed thugs from Lone Star came in and flaunted
their ignorance of the situation while I got a good assensing
of the staff's astral signature. When I tried to touch it,
it drained me of some energy, so I left it there."
"When we emerged, time had passed far more quickly
outside than inside this curious field. I'll be curious
to see the reports coming from the study of the effect.
I've sent my notes to Dr. Greenwood, my adviser from MIT&T,
so hopefully he'll be able to contribute to our understanding
of those events."
"Well, Dr. Dawkins, it's very good to have you back
with us," Drake said standing up and raising his glass.
The others followed in a toast. "Frankly, the rest
of us just don't have stories quite as exciting as the ones
you live through."
Mack absently wiped a perfectly clean section of the bar
for the fourth or fifth time as he stared into space, deliberating.
Then, with sudden resolve, he grabbed a bottle of the bar's
best whiskey - the real stuff - and poured a nice amount
into a glass. After glancing surreptitiously down the bar
to make sure she wasn't looking, he quickly ran his fingers
through his hair to give it that mussed look the gals seemed
to like and straightened his vest.
With all the smoothness he could muster, Mack sauntered
down to the end of the bar where the object of his attention
sat on her usual stool. His approach broke through her reverie,
and she looked up as he set the glass down.
"Hey, omae, I didn't order this," she said with
a slight smile, which he took as a good sign, smiles being
rare enough from this one.
"Null sheen, chummer - it's on the house."
She looked at him suspiciously and didn't reach for the
glass. Hmm... that wasn't quite the reaction he'd hoped
for. Trying to seem casual, he leaned one elbow on the bar,
nudged the glass closer to her, and said, "So, I was
if you're not doing anything tomorrow night
His wonderings were interrupted by the beep of her comm.
"Sorry," she said, shrugging, and popped the detachable
earpiece in her ear. "Yeah?"
Mack cursed under his breath and moved a short distance
away, but not so far that he couldn't overhear her side
of the conversation.
"Heya Silver, how's life?" Mack sure hoped Silver
was a girl. He couldn't hear the voice on the other end.
She continued, "Not too bad - keeping out of trouble."
She laughed after that.
"Sure - what d'ya need?" Sounding businesslike
you know where those live, right? And that
they're toxic as hell?" As she looked down for a moment,
a small braid of dark hair fell to hang in front of her
"No, I'm not saying I won't do it - you know me, I
like a challenge. I'm just saying we'll need some backup.
I know a guy who might be up for it. Let me talk to him
and I'll call you back." She unwound her long legs
from the rungs of the stool, and stood up.
"Sure thing. Talk to you soon." She removed the
earpiece and, with a short wave in Mack's general direction
headed out into the street.
The glass of whiskey sat on the bar, untouched. "Ah,
hell" Mack grumbled.
Arrow sighed and stretched, wincing at the pain that shot
through her right leg. She shook her head, still groggy
from the medication, and looked around. She hated hospitals.
They stank of blood, sweat, and disinfectant. The IV in
her arm made her feel like a bear with it's paw in a trap.
Arrow never minded sitting perfectly still for hours waiting
for her prey to come along, but she couldn't stand any kind
of forced immobility. She couldn't wait to get out of there.
If only Silver hadn't been too tapped out to heal her!
Ah well, she should be happy they'd all made it out of there
alive. At least the shaman had taken them to a decent hospital.
She'd been very apologetic, since it was her idea that got
them in to this mess to begin with.
With that thought, Arrow looked around for her other companion
in the escapade. The curtain beside her was open slightly,
and through it she could see a familiar-looking horn sticking
out of a mat of greasy hair. Yep, that was him. He was snoring
softly. Funny, she hadn't realized trolls could do anything
At least Arrow had the bed by the window, though she couldn't
see much more than gray sky partially obscured by a darker
gray building and the occasional grayish bird swooping by.
Lovely day! she thought morosely.
Arrow's wrist comm, sitting on the table by the bed, beeped
an incoming call. Thrilled to have a distraction, she reached
over and turned it on, mumbling a greeting. The tiny screen
resolved to show a young woman with very white hair. The
miniature Silver beamed, "Arrow - I'm so glad to see
that you're all right!"
Arrow shrugged, "Yeah, I guess. As all right as I
can be stuck in here. Do you know when they're gonna let
us out of here? I don't think I can handle this place for
I need to explain, and I'm not sure where to..." She
was cut off by the beeping of another call.
Seeing who it was, Arrow held up her hand. "Hold on
a sec, will ya?" She switched channels.
"Rachel!" Amanda's face lit up the screen. "I
can't believe it! I'm so glad you're ok. We missed you so
much!" She was distracted by something offscreen, then
turned back. "Wait, Rook wants to talk."
Before Arrow could say anything, the girl's image was replaced
by that of her brother, who didn't seem to know what to
say now that it was his turn. "Um
hey Rae, how
ya doing?" Arrow noted vaguely that the boy looked
different, somehow. Come to think of it, so had Amanda,
but she couldn't say why.
"I'm ok, I guess," she said, as a strange sort
of tightness began forming in her stomach. "Um
is something going on? I'm sorry if you guys
were worried, but I just saw you two days ago."
Rook looked uncomfortable. "Um
we're coming down there to see you. Just hang on. We'll
talk to you soon." He ended the call, and his face
was replaced by Silver's. She looked impatient.
"Hey, what's going on?" Arrow demanded, frustrated.
Silver sighed. "Look, it's too hard to explain over
the phone. I'm on my way there now. I'll see you soon."
The call ended, and the woman's image was replaced by the
date and time flashing on the screen.
It was several seconds before Arrow noticed the date.
It was several more seconds before she convinced herself
that she hadn't misread it.
She closed her eyes, confused.
After a moment, Arrow sat up as well as she could, ignoring
the ache in her leg, and pulled the curtain by her bed open.
"Boomer!" she whispered loudly. When he didn't
respond, she balled up a tissue from the box by the bed
and threw it at him. "Boomer!"
The big troll snorted and scratched his forehead where
the paper had landed. After a few seconds, he turned in
her direction, eyes bleary.
"What?" he demanded, blinking. "Get bored
and decide to throw things at the biggest target around?"
"Something like that," Arrow didn't smile. "I
was just wondering... what date does your comm say it is?"
He reached for it and took some time staring at the readout.
"Must be fried," he grunted. "Says here
it's October of 2062. Stupid cheap piece of drek."
Arrow sighed and laid back on her pillows. "Um
You know, that's the date mine says too."
Boomer stared at her, then shrugged. "Must be some
kinda bug in the system. Getting the date all confused like
"Yeah," Arrow replied. "Must be something
She looked out the window as the sun broke through some
clouds on the horizon. It sure seemed to be setting early
for the beginning of July.
Arrow sighed as she pushed open the door to Mack's Hole
and looked around. At least here was a place that hadn't
changed in the months she'd missed. Hell, as far as she
could remember it hadn't changed in the 8 years she'd been
drinking there. There were only a few patrons in the bar
at this early afternoon hour, but it was as dim and smoky
Even Mack looked just the same. The tall, broad-shouldered
human was leaning halfway across the bar, deep in conversation
with some orc she didn't know. When he saw the door open,
he gave the orc a friendly slap on the shoulder and turned
to greet the newest arrival.
Arrow smiled as Mack did a visible double take. Recovering
himself, he grinned broadly. "Hey! Arrow! You're back!"
"Hey chummer," She headed for her usual spot
at the far end of the bar as Mack reached for a bottle and
poured a drink.
He sat the glass in front of her. "A welcome-back
drink - on the house. So, where ya been, gal? I was starting
to think you got geeked or somethin."
"Thanks, Mack. Damn, that's good stuff. Nah, I didn't
get geeked. I just went hunting."
"Hunting?" he frowned, "For over a year?
That musta been some hunting trip."
She sighed. "Nah, the hunting only took a day. Nearly
got ourselves killed, but we made it back to town in one
piece. It was in the hospital afterwards that things got
"Hospital?" Mack looked confused, then realization
dawned. "No! Don't tell me you were in THAT hospital?
The one that's been on the news, with the quarantine and
all?" When she nodded, looking disgusted, he continued,
"So, what was going on in there?"
"Hell if I know," she said. "Some kind of
crazy mojo. As far as I was concerned, I went to sleep in
July of '61 and when I woke up 15 months had passed, but
it sure didn't seem like anything to me. Truly fragged up
situation." She shook her head. "It's been about
two weeks now, and I'm starting to get settled in again.
Lucky for me a friend knew what was going on and took care
of my stuff. But, of course, I wasn't around to pay rent
or anything so I had to get a new apartment and move all
my drek back into it."
"Huh. After a story like that, I think you need another
one of these," Mack said, refilling her glass.
"Thanks," she smiled slightly. "Hey, you
got customers waiting," she gestured up the bar to
where two young women were just sitting down.
"Oh, yeah, better get back to work. Well, it's good
to have you back." He headed off. Arrow sighed, thinking
that it didn't feel like she'd been gone very long, but
it was still good to be back.
- 1400 Titus and Fifi head over to safehouse in Barrens. They
get out at Touristville and decide to walk. They get jumped
by gangers and almost killed.
- 1500 Team heads to Seattle West Hospital. Kozmo's brother
is also there after being jumped. Arrow and Boomer (players
not here) are also there after a hunt went bad.
- 1600 One of Titus's magical group (Crimson Circle) members,
a Doctor, stops by to check in on Titus.
- 2000 - commotion and casualties.