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Hidden 2 yrs ago 2 yrs ago Post by The Harbinger of Ferocity
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The Harbinger of Ferocity Aspect of the Ferine

Member Seen 3 hrs ago

Smoke, not the pleasant kind either, but the kind that had that off metallic tang to it, that kind which was an amalgam of metal and something else burnt, singed right out of it and thrown up into the air. It was copper, iron really, because it was blood tainted. That was the taste, the smell, the feel of it. It was a sickly cloud of the stuff in yet another alleyway that could use more lighting to avoid this and by lighting, the man's racing thoughts did not mean more neon. The zone was choked with the stuff, just like the damn corridor was with the nasty smoke.

Metal plates slapped all over the body did a lot to stop bullets, as did plaststeel or even good old kevlar, but there was still meat under there and the dead boosters down the trench knew it now. Would have at least, assuming there was any part of them still functional in there. They got tore up, chromejobs or not, because armor-penetrators were the real equalizers on the street and someone was blowing through them. That was why he hugged the wall after sprinting through cover, oversized handcannon leveled vertically, finger off the trigger. Sure it wouldn't fire if the safeties weren't both depressed at the same time, trigger and tang, but he wasn't taking chances. Accidental discharge? Get a hail of actually aimed bullets back, or so went the worse case scenario, then end up like baldy was, now face down in some putrid, now bloody water, having an electrical spasm. So instead of joining them on the street in a similar pose, the man peaked around the corner, barrel leading.

The optic did more than amplify the darkness for someone like him who could already see in the shadowy underbelly, lack of sun or not, making the place feel like daylight as long as he kept both eyes forward, paying mind to the dot and sure as hell, one needed that advantage here. Anyone blasting off that kind of ammunition wildly, the stuff that tears up metal and concrete, was probably better equipped and prepared than a hunter. But Theron had no choice but to step over yet another body in pursuit of the source, given it being the first real lead and all he had. Guns like that, here on this side? Only one man had them for a minute and those things vanished in days, if not hours. Now all the weapons were gone and so was the dealer. Said dealer being the person Theron needed, alive if possible, and if that meant dropping a few less than lethal holes into some other solo, primarily his pricey tech, to get him to spill his guts on anything he knew so be it. That was just how the street was, especially when the Combat Zone just leaked into anything else like this.

Reaching another corner, glancing down to see some junkie with too many pointed bits stuck to his exterior, it was clear he was getting closer. The blood and its scent was getting stronger, something your average nobody wouldn't have noticed, let alone the typical hunter, but Theron lived the title inadvertently. All of him at something just around six foot was a street predator, the type of ambusher who just blindsided you, took the goods and left. Usually alive, but sometimes things got hairy, like now. So he waited and listened for a moment and heard an all too distinctive battery of bullets open up. The firefight was still alive and it sounded like he was closing in on it; whoever this ronin, samurai, corporate thug was, these gangers wanted him dead. Dead enough to send a team of like ten guys after his ass. Unfortunately it seemed they had sent too few good guys because they were getting flatlined by just too many bullets and being too hyped up for their own good; half of the ones Theron had seen died just running after the gunfight.

Sweeping the corner with pistol readied, clearing concrete corners and corridors of old, decrepit building foundations, he kept on it. Pausing only at the opening between a courtyard on over to what was an overpass, maybe a few decades ago at least. The squatter city propped up under it was dead empty, no surprise, and the chatter of way too small of guns retorted back to a much larger one. It seemed like it never ended up to now - does the damn thing never reload? That question was answered when Theron looked around. Drums, big box drums, ones that would have been full of caseless rounds, hundreds of them packed neatly inside. Crouching down, picking one up while keeping the handcannon leveled generally toward the threat, he glanced over it. Not that he disbelieved it or any bunk as that, but looking for just what was being shot, aside from the obvious holes all over the place.

Harden tungsten penetrators, the sort of stuff that even frames couldn't tank for long if they got showered with it. The hunder did not even have to wonder why these guys got carved apart by a few bursts. Tossing the plastic bin aside, the thing making a distinctive "tonk" and skid before it stopped, Theron shook his head. He peeked once, then twice across the street and bolted diagonally in dead sprint, not directly to the area where the shooting was taking place under the old roadway or by all the scrap city, but rather another alleyway. He was going to flank and rely on a small building's worth of decaying brick, steel, and concrete to soak for him, assuming any bad news came his way. Hopefully that was not even the case and as he peered around the edge once, he saw the mark. Some typical psycho, hulked up on who knows what, with some silvery veins, all too much metal for legs, and some much too expensive specs'. Leveling the barrel down at him, boot toeing the wall and forearm bracing on it, the ambusher cross-cut his target, putting the dot over the man some thirty meters away who kept his firing of that oversized machinegun in one direction.

The synthetic frame snapped back and the first shot went off, one armor-defeating round firing in retaliation to all the craziness going on in slum city. Whatever it hit on the geeked out gunner made him flinch and stop, his entire body contorting, but the attacker did not stop there; a few more shots snapped back the slide, venting the gas operated weapon and loading yet another round in. The problem with all this?

Lieutenant Davison's "friend" only got more angry.
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Hidden 2 yrs ago 2 yrs ago Post by SleepingSilence
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SleepingSilence OC, Plz No Stealz.

Member Seen 9 hrs ago


The radiant glow of her gaze peering from the opened apartment window; a passionate spark that would someday set this world ablaze. Looking out at the landscape dense with skyscrapers, all clamoring for its denizens’ attention. Buildings adorned with a chromatic spectrum of lights from abundant advertisement billboards, surrounding the cavalcades parading through the grungy streets still dampened from yesterday's storm. A mirror universe showing a collage of reflections below people's feet splashing in the puddles. It was easy to get caught up in the beautiful lies and let your mind wander...

These people weren't mere strangers to her. They were blobs of gray mortality, solely concerned for their own well-being. Clustered until their individual presence bleeds into obscurity becoming only noise pollution. How else does one stomach the grotesque daily displays of debauchery? Layers of sin smothered the masses like a thick blanket of darkness that strangled acts of generosity with a vice-like grip. Those who dare preach for compassion would choke from the fragrance of their vomit before any Samaritan could practice it. Night City Downtown Sector A2; otherwise known as The Northside District. A bloodthirsty creature created from their own volition, designed to enrapture its victims while swallowing them whole...

A zephyr blew into the room, leaving a faint chill that sent a shiver down her spine. The dropping temperature being nature's forewarning forecast of rain. Her internal scattered thoughts abruptly halted by words drenched in playful sarcasm.

"You're really sexy when you're philosophizing..."

Turning to address her bare-chested boyfriend sprawled across the bed. His scrawny frame made him look like a skeleton suited in flesh. His bottom-half covered in a pristine white comforter. She sauntered up to the queen-sized mattress, pulling her red shirt off and tossing it beside the overly neat pile of men clothes on the floor. Pressing her right palm against the soft foam, bending over and caressing the left side of his face. Exchanging smiles that pierced their hearts, giving each other looks of unbridled affection.

"And you're obnoxious when you're patronizing me," Madeleine responded pointing at his blackened right eye. "That smart mouth of yours is what gave you that shiner-" her teasing trying to stifle her quivering voice, "...those guys could have killed you."

"Madeleine…" His tone changed to become serious and reassuring. Motioning with his fingers to grab his hands since both were restrained to the bedposts. Resting their palms together, he gently squeezed and held her hand.

"I already told you that I have someone handling it. You'll never see those braying jackasses again. I promise you." She laid down and curled up close, leaning her forehead on his upper-chest feeling his pounding heart. Her arms wrapped around him, listening silently. "My buddy will have everything settled by midnight tomorrow…"

"Why couldn't it be tonight?" She interrupted with a murmur.

"Good things come to those who wait," He replied with a chuckle, "We'll pack up our stuff and finally escape this wretched place. It'll be the new life-with child that you-we always wanted."

The warmth of the bed, his body and candor were equally comforting to her. She smiled looking up at him, but his eyes seemed more distressed from what was behind her. She recalled leaving the window open-did they return to finish the job?! She sprang up from the bed, but noticed nothing. Letting out a quick breath, her focus shifted toward the nightstand and realized a can of Smash was foaming over and leaking out. Taking every ounce of self-restraint not to moan aloud, she stood up and picked up the can, turning around with a sultry smile.

"Thirsty? Open wide." Her demand was met with a grin as he opened his mouth, she started pouring the yellow foamy beverage in his gullet. Drinking the liquid as he closed his eyes, as it splashed on his lips. Stopping once his body shivered from her pouring some onto his chest. She laughed. He merely looked disappointed.

"Aw, don't waste that-it was the last can." He quasi-complained, too aroused to actually care.

"There, you smell like gasoline now." She quipped while heading toward the window, promptly shutting and locking it, as cars screeched past. "I'm going to go wash my hair, I'll be back." She said heading into the adjacent wet room.

"What-seriously? Take these off me then…" Attempting to sit up against the headboard, but failing to budge.

"Good things come to those who wait." She teased, not in his view as the rest of her clothes were thrown off. He groaned in response and muttered under his breath as the shower turned on.

"I think you enjoy dominating, a little too much..." He cracked a smile in thought, "Never thought I'd love someone so complicated."

Mere minutes passed as multiple convertibles parked in the streets, with several men getting out of their cars. Meanwhile; neither were the wiser as she couldn't stop herself from giggling, hearing her boyfriend's purposefully bad singing. Crash! A sound of shattered glass and her boyfriend shouting at her, seeing a molotov cocktail landing beside his bed.

"Madeline!" A sudden eruption of intense flames, the entire bed was burning up in a matter of seconds, as black smoke filled the place. Sounds of screaming in his futile struggle, pulling on the straps, feeling the fire searing his skin. She rushed out of the shower, immediately coughing profusely at the fumes, hands covering her mouth and nose. The fire alarm began wailing into her eardrums.

"Ethan!" She screamed in horror, stepping forth as the second projectile was hurled into the window. Viewing a fiery explosion bursting outside, her following scream was deafening and his fell silent. A harrowing thought that her degenerate lifestyle, contrasted with her youth spent at church finally bound their souls to Hell. But she’d soon learn it was naive to believe her suffering had ended, for true torment is eternal. Madeline lost consciousness before the demons broke through the front door, following orders from the devil that had other plans. The perpetrators fled the area long before the sirens could be heard blaring from a distance. By the time it was extinguished, their apartment had been reduced to ashes...

Years later...

A lycanthrope stalked their target in silence. Her reddish fur lit by the sunlight peeking from windows. The helmet she wore, recorded the graffiti plastered all around, serving a bleak reminder that this decrepit building once served a purpose. She crept through the abandoned warehouse, dodging any needles or sharp objects littering the floor that could be walked on with her bare paws. Entering a stretch of hallway with nothing but towering pillars connected to the ceiling. She didn’t need heightened senses to catch a strong whiff of trash getting closer, turning the corner to see a dead-end with a large pile of garbage that smelled like urine. She observed the faint smoldering of a stray cigarette that had recently been smoked among the assortment. Holding her breath and digging her claws through the bags, finding something else too new and wholly out of place; a cybernetic disk drive. Taking the piece of evidence whilst pulling out one of her M970 Beretta’s from the holster strapped to her hip, hearing sounds of someone approaching from behind. Swiftly facing the assailant positioned fifteen feet from her, both aiming their firearms at each other. A baseball cap poorly masking his identity. His face looked young, with patchy stubble growing underneath his chin. Seeing the artificial glow of his eyes, as the dark shades slid to the edge of his long nose.

“Drop it. I’m not looking to shed blood today. Especially, not from some amateur thug foolhardy enough to aim their gun at a beast with the safety on.” Keeping a steady posture, with her index-finger still hovering over the trigger, watching as the man visibly trembled, dropping the gun and raising his hands above his head. She motioned with her firearm for him to turn.

“Please-I have family…” He pleaded complying to her command. She lunged forward, gripping his shoulder tightly and sticking the Beretta in his back.

“Another drawback of cheap labor, and accepting under-the-table work.” She thought before speaking in a cold tone. “Keep quiet and move, and you’ll live.” An extra annoyance distracting her from finishing the job. She guided him outside into an fenced off alleyway, with only one way out. She shoved him away, causing him to stumble forth and freeze. She sighed and lowered her gun, shoving it into her holster. She peered up at the building across the street, waving her left hand up in a deliberate manner.

“T-thank you…” He uttered, his voice cracking.

“Just get out of here-” Cutting her annoyed reply short, alerted as the sound a shot rang out followed by the man suddenly collapsing to the ground. She rushed forward and flipped him over, fingers putting pressure on the copious amount of blood gushing from his neck. She saw the life had already faded from his eyes. Standing up with bloodstained hands, leaving behind a hollow husk, resembling the emptiness she’d feel completing another assignment…

It was hard to admire the scenery with her eyes closed the whole ride home. Forgoing a seatbelt and laying on her side, taking up the entire back-seat, with her muzzle facing the leather, inadvertently inhaling the new car smell. Tuning out the roar of the afternoon, the same honking horns and yelling crowds as everyday. Most importantly, managing to drown out the drivers fast talk blathering. Pet dogs couldn’t drive; one of many established rules that were strictly followed, with certain punishment for those that break them. Basically forcing her into having a partner with every Reaper job, usually someone as slick a paralyzed goat covered in mud, and half as intelligent and attractive. He ordered her to use a bottle of water and a rag to scrub her hands clean and promptly discard them, unless she preferred walking.

The driver stopped at the last red light before reaching their destination, fidgeting with the radio dial, turning it to a weather report. He looked at her in the rear-view mirror and smirked, showing his taxicab yellow teeth. His inflection sounded like he was gargling salt water.

“You know for a freak. Your ass is still fine-” Feeling a swift heavy kick behind his chair in response, body jolting forward. In a moment of thought, she declined to verbalize her disgust, believing judgement was only a block away. He scoffed but kept his mouth shut, gripping the wheel tightly, driving across busy intersection the instant it turned green, barely dodging a collision with a truck slamming their breaks, coming from the passenger's side. Arriving at ‘The Fortress’ upon the agreed time, both knowing their boss would be anxiously waiting for them.

The Fortress; an accurate representation of the proverb of a house that never felt like home. No matter how many times she went through the entrance tunnel that was just narrow enough to give the claustrophobic a panic attack, everything seemed fabricated, a dream-like world that she couldn’t escape from. Personally speaking, it didn’t help that it always too warm for someone covered in fur.

Both walking inside the predominately white room, with various white objects and furnishings, the boss sitting in the middle of the sofa, accented with light blue pillows, the section of wall behind him shelved a large collection of books. He shifted to the right, facing a fake miniature tree, to unleash clouds of cigar smoke from his mouth. She slowly approached the pudgy man, kneeling beside the couch, as her partner set down a suitcase containing the retrieved disk and a sniper rifle and lightly tapped his foot. The boss gave her a pleasant smile, taking her helmet off with his hands and setting it in on the table, gently stroking the wolf head beneath. His affectionate gaze painted a picture of far more innocent soul. She’d compare the atmosphere in his presence closely related to the cigar’s he frequently smoked; toxic, destructive and malignant.

“Scarlett, my beautiful. Did you locate the archives?”

She purposely paused, withholding that answer until her partner interrupted.

“We got it boss. It’s in my case.” He responded, opening the suitcase with an audible click. She merely waited for a perfect moment, watching the boss cross his arms and lean back, his thick eyebrows twitching.

“I asked my pet-” The boss half-chuckled shooting a cold glare matching the tone of his final words, “Not you.” Inhaling and exhaling another cloud of smoke into the air. She nodded her head, responding to his glance at her then stood up and took the drive from the case, sitting on the sofa next to him. Now was the time to reveal the news...

“Master, he killed an unarmed man. A non-threat to our assignment, and he also left the body there.” She said.

“He was armed-” He argued.

“Master, I have the whole thing recorded.” She snapped back, the man looked surprised at the revelation.

“Sir, I didn’t think it would be smart to leave any witness.”

The boss raised his hand ceasing the argument into an awkward silence, he emptied his cigar in an ashtray and tossed a matchbook from his pants pocket onto the table.

“Would you mind re-lighting my cigar?” The boss said holding it out. The man quickly stepped forward, and picked up the match box and lit a match. The men bent over to hold the match up the cigar. The boss slammed the cigar butt straight into the man’s eye, followed by scream of agony as the man clutched his face, casually putting the cigar between in his lips, smoke pouring from his nostrils like a dragon. “You’ve already been paid generously. Get out of my sight.” He spoke dismissively, without a hint of emotion in his voice. The man fled fast as his legs could carry him, leaving the two alone. Was she sick to have enjoyed the entertainment?

“Scarlett, I had another important assignment come in. Everything I’ve prepared you for is required for this retrieval process.” He said getting back into business, pulling out a folder in-between the cushions and pulling out a black dog collar and leash behind the pillows.

“What am I retrieving?” Scarlett asked, looking at the opened folder dropped on the table with papers spreading out. Quickly noticing these weren’t pictures of weapons or technology, her drumbeat heart pounding unconsciously. Hearing her rapid pulse produce a melody in her ears. Ba bump. Ba bump. Ba bump.

“Capture this man, Lieutenant Davison and bring him to us.” He said with a smile, leaning to whisper into her ear and snapping the collar around her neck, “Your reward will be getting the vengeance you so desperately seek.”

“What?! He found them!?” Her eyes widened, mouth slightly agape rendered speechless.

"That's exactly what I meant." He clarified like an omniscient being that could read her mind, simultaneously attaching the leash and caressing her back with his fingertips. "Every last one of them will be brought to my pet on a silver platter, for you to play with as long as your heart desires-"

She gulped and clenched her hands, hastily replying cutting his sentence off. “Where do I start?”

He chuckled and stood up, playfully yanking the leash. “I like it when my pet is eager to please her master,” He teased, “let’s go to my bedroom. I’ll get you caught up on all the details…”

Her previous happy life had been stolen and enveloped in darkness. Her degrading situation left her stranded without options, becoming a specter of her former self performing horrendously boring tasks she had a knack for. Awake an endless succession of nights, only grasping for the spider’s-thin thread keeping her sanity from breaking. Getting revenge was the defining reason for her existence. This is where everything truly started for Madeline, now called Scarlett. Completing what she would see as her final assignment; finding Police Lieutenant Davison and exchanging him for her achieving her purpose. But having no idea just how difficult it would be to claw up the colossal wall standing in front of her, nor how many others with shared goals would wrench her back down into the abyss...
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Hidden 2 yrs ago Post by LeeRoy
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LeeRoy LeeRoy Brightmane

Member Seen 15 days ago

In The Wastelands

Out in the badlands life is tough. The only job out there in the wild is to survive, so scavenging is a lucrative business prospect if you know what you're doing. Old tech, salvage, ammunition and weapons are easy enough to come by if you've got the knowledge and know-how. A few shotgun shells here, a bit of duct tape left on an old roll here. Its surprising how useful something so small can be, but in a pinch it could save your skin.

Yancy was resourceful beyond simply the wasteland, he was a man who chose the life here. The Mega City was beyond his tastes, the wasteland was more his style. No laws, no lawmen. Though he hated it, he stuck close to the walls of the city. Proximity had a few advantages. Safety from Cyberpsychos and Ferals was a big part, the patrols usually kept them from entering the city and were almost always there when they were kicked out. The smugglers, however, were the big advantage that Yancy was looking for.

See, Yancy's an addict. Stuck on the juice that lets him keep up. Tech and mods weren't his style, unclean and unreliable. Most importantly, against his religious inclination. His addiction to dorphs wasn't the only reason he stuck close to the walls, though. He had a man inside, a smuggler connected to some dirty cop or something. This guy gathered old fashioned ammunition and pawned it off to wastelanders in exchange for usable materials that could be junked for some quick cash.

In the wastes, any gun is a good gun. Ol' Reliable was a particularly good gun. She was the first tool that ever saved Yancy's life, and he'd grown attached to the old girl. She had to be loaded with old fashioned cased rounds, something a bit hard to come by. His connection to the city was the only thing keeping him on the bleeding edge of his 'righteous mission.' So doped up that he can't feel pain and loaded with so much ammunition that even the most advanced armors inevitably fail, he became a force to be reckoned with.

One particular run for materials was lengthier than he'd hoped. His supply of ammunition and dorphs was running thin, though his haul was incredibly valuable. Old solid state computers with valuable rare earth materials, a stockpile of them had been stored in a warehouse somewhere north of Dallas Texas. Totally abandoned, nobody else had the tools to unlock it after all these years. In a makeshift car he'd managed to make it just a few dozen miles away from the protection afforded by the Megacity's walls.

A pair of vehicles that had been customized to blend in with the broken down buildings on the side roads emerged and blocked his path off entirely. Trapping him between two massive vehicles that seemed to have once been buses, and the worn out concrete of some busted up business sector. They crashed into the opposing walls and toppled them, dropping rubble on top of their front ends and sealing off any small gap that he could have potentially escaped through.

He whipped the rifle off his back and ducked behind the haul of computers, a rain of bullets and makeshift spears riddled his goods. It didn't bother him, they weren't being repurposed. A round from what appeared to be a high caliber rifle blasted clean through his vehicle and clipped at his armor. Tearing a strip of cloth clean from his shoulder and baring the studded leather belts that he'd wrapped around heavily wadded cloth. After a few more moments and a couple dozen more volleys, it quieted down and dust began to settle.

A deep, inhuman voice came from the ugly vocal chords of some Feral bastard, evidently their leader. "Come out, Scav!" Yancy couldn't see him through the dust, but he could just hear the spit flying from his distorted face.

"Wez wantz that loot of yerz!" Still out of a direct line of sight, Yancy pulled the visor up on his helmet to listen closely to the sounds of his approaching footsteps. They were heavy, incredibly so. Even heavier than he'd hoped, sounded like he was armored up and huge to boot. Probably spent all of his money becoming a feral and dipped into the wastes to become some defacto warlord. His ears picked up something else, another sound immediately following him. He'd assumed he wouldn't come alone, but whatever was behind him was incredibly good at keeping its steps hidden. It was only a quiet grinding, probably sliding their feet across the ground.

Yancy jumped when the car was upended by a hulking behemoth more muscle than man, wrapped in makeshift armor. The sound he had heard behind him wasn't another person, it was a club.

It was a club that he was dragging behind him, and soon Yancy's face would be acquainted with it. With the car still flying out of the way and the computers crashing and breaking on the old concrete, the club swung through the air and smashed into the helmet of the junkie. Concrete and barbed wire jutted through the gap of his helmet, left there by his unwise decision of lifting his visor. Lacerations cut across his eyebrows and bridge of his nose, spraying blood out as he was launched bodily away and into the underside of his own vehicle.

His neck cracked and he left a dent in the oil pan, his head smashed into the frame and he felt the beginnings of a concussion as his vision blurred. The visor on his helmet fell down and he reached blindly for his rifle, it had fallen next to him when he landed. Blood began to obscure his vision further, leaving him almost entirely blind on his left hand side.

His whole body was numb from the shock and he could barely lift his gun. He didn't need to lift it much, though. Ol' Reliable was a modified rifle, she had some accessories that would only serve Yancy any good. For instance, he always kept a dose of his drug in a slot in the stock.

In what looked like a frantic attempt to grab at his gun and failure to do so, Yancy pulled the dose out and folded his hand on it. Pushing the needle into his wrist, doing so in such a way as to conceal the whole thing from sight. 'Get him talking. Stall.' "Sho, Feral. What modsh y'runnin' wiff?" His words were slurring, he was pretty badly knocked.

The breath ran hot in his throat as he gulped air, hoping the big dope would actually talk.

"You know, I know you're just stalling. But since youz can't do nuffin' to me." He lowered his guard, good. Yancy scooted up so his back was completely straight against the bottom of the car, his elbow pulled back as he nudged against it. Attempting to find the secret latch, he'd got a surprise in there if he could only open it up. "I've got a Steroidal and Hormonal implant. Overclock't, makezit work ovahtime, I've also got a sculpt job. Makes me look green. I gotz a soft spot for Orkz, and relatez to'im." He pointed his finger to his head. "I've also got a big boost to my reaction time. Sped up ten times that of what you've got, Scav."

The latch clicked and a small round object hit the ground behind his back, Yancy timed a faked collapse with the drop so the noise was missed. "Any last wordz, Scav? For realz, itz nuffin' personal. Youz just gotz what I wantz." He reached down and grabbed the club with his other hand, taking a few marching steps towards Yancy.

His vision began to focus on a single point, the man walking towards him. The pain completely numbed and he could feel his strength returning to his limbs. "Yeah. I got a few." His hand slipped behind his back as he pretended to fall over completely, and his hand gripped tightly to a small object that fit in the palm of his hand. A button press was all it took to arm it.

"Spit it out. Youz got three seconds." He spat, this time Yancy saw what he'd imagined. Spittle flew from the bloated, muscular lips of the giant bastard. It dripped to the dirty road and stained it a dark black on contact before drying out.

'Only need one.' He pushed the ground with his left arm as his right arm negotiated itself into position. His body raised and his flung the small device at the ground between the giant's feet. "Hand Grenade." His eyes watched the surprise on the giant's face melt away the smug sense of superiority, even as he tried to leap away the bomb caught him and blew his legs sky high. The giant was flipped through the air like a ragdoll and Yancy watched the whole bloody mess as he heaped to the ground in a gasping pile.

Yancy stood up and plucked a few pieces of shrapnel out of his chest plate, dropping them to the ground as he steadied himself. The sound of the explosion settled and the sound of vehicles revving up an feet kicking up dirt spelled out the honor among thieves. "Your men left you." His voice was saturated in luscious condescension, the drug running hot in his veins now. Though one eye was drowned in blood and he couldn't wipe it, the other was tunneled in on the lump that had once been towering over him.

He reached down and grabbed him by the muscle tissue of his neck, digging his fingers in as deep as his drugged strength could muster. "You wanna know a secret?" He leaned in so close as to press his helmet against his forehead. "You never stood a chance." As the giant turned his eyes towards Yancy, he opened his mouth to speak.

"J- just stop! Please!" A stutter had emerged in his voice, he was nervous and afraid. Terrified and it showed, even on his grossly mutated face. "Just l-l-let me g-go!" He started to scream as the pain registered in his brain, the loss of his legs had stunned him but now he was completely aware of the pain.

"Oh but you'd never survive." Yancy dropped him and went back over to his car, putting both hands up on the side that was pointing towards the sky. He dropped his weight hard and flipped it back to its proper position, then reached inside the cabin and grabbed a pair of pliers. "I mean look at your decision making, laddie. You picked a fight with the worst person in the wasteland."

The giant had begun to crawl away, having unstrapped the armor from his head and arms in order to lose some weight. A frantic attempt to get away while he still could. It seemed that despite his increased reaction time, he hadn't gotten improved movement speed in any way. "Leave me alone!" He screamed, tears and drool pouring down his face, mingling with the dirt that had accompanied his unwashed years.
The junkie smiled behind his helmet and walked up to the crawling feral, grabbing him from behind. Wrapping his hands around the man's face and sticking his fingers in his mouth. "Didn't you listen!? Your decision making is deadly, dope! You couldn't survive another day out there, this is a mercy, Devil!" He stuffed a small piece of shrapnel in his mouth with his fingers, using it to lever the man's mouth open. "You picked a fight with the Toothpuller, Devil! You clearly don't have your wits about you!"

A small pair of pliers was stuck in the man's mouth and the sound of screams and loud crunching noises filled the air for a long time. The giant fainted after the tenth tooth was ripped from his mouth, and Yancy put a few rounds in the back of his head. "I've spared you some years in Hell, Devil. Each tooth I pull is another year off your sentence, as far as I see."

He went back to his car and began to reload the computers into the back, grabbing as many of the broken pieces as possible.

Though it was material salvage, he'd hoped to at least keep them in decent condition. Damaged and broken always reduces the payment, disrepair was bad for business. Made the sorting harder. Yancy sighed and worked till the sun set, then set off in the morning.

At the City's Edge

Yancy, with his haul, made it back to the Megacity unmolested after another two days. It only took so long because he had to refuel along the way, a difficult task when fuel is a commodity. At the city's edge he snuck his way into the Combat Zone nearest the city's edge, where he knew a guy. This guy was his go-between for drugs, ammunition and basically anything hard to get your hands on out in the wastes. He'd been reliable, his source was some higher up fella. Never went into too much detail, Yancy never asked.

As long as the salvage was good, the exchange went through without a hitch. But this time would be different.

On entering the slum, Yancy's vehicle pulled into a small alley and parked by a garage door. A few seconds passed, he gave a thumbs up to the window on his left. A signal. The door began to open and he drove in, his vehicle barely made it in before the door sealed behind him. Intense darkness was the only thing in the room aside from the sound of footsteps. Yancy knew the procedure, he had thermal vision on and was checking the entire perimeter of the vehicle for stowaways. Couldn't let people know he was dirty, gotta keep it on the down low if you want to keep in business.

After a minute and a half, the lights came on and blinded Yancy. Another intentional action, just in case the person inside was an impostor. He took his helmet off and showed his raggedy face, now with new scars from his encounter with the giant. Only now, as he exposed his face, did he realize that he hadn't gotten the name of the big fellow. "It's me, Yancy Koenig. The Toothpuller." He'd always made sure to clarify his secret identity to his fixer. Honesty was the best policy, of course.

He heard a sigh as his vision began to return, the man sounded displeased. "What's wrong, mister?" Never given a name by this guy as well, he never shared his identity with customers. "Did you get the stuff?" Yancy's skin began to tense up, concern filling him. His addiction panged as the thought of going without a dose began to creep into his mind.

The man rubbed the back of his head, clearly nervous. "Yeah. I got it, but Yancy you uh." There was a very long, awkward silence. "You'll have to find another fix." The sentence came out all as one word, he was almost yelling when he said it.

Yancy's stomach dropped. It wasn't the first source he'd lost, but this source was reliable and he was running low on ammo and doses. With only a handful of magazines filled and only a few dozen doses left. By the time he got his hands on another connection, Yancy would likely be going through the stages of withdrawl. Panic set in and Yancy shot up, darting across the room and seizing him by his collar. "Come on, Man! What happened?! Why can't you hook me up anymore!?" Whatever the man had in ammo and doses wasn't enough to satisfy him.

He shoved Yancy off and popped his collar back into place. "Police Lieutenant Davis." The name didn't ring a bell, the confusion on Yancy's face was obvious enough that he continued. "He didn't bust me, he was my source's source. I've got enough to last you, what, a month? How quickly do you burn this stuff?" He cleared his throat. "Davis vanished. Not a damn soul knows where he is, and not a damn soul can find him." Reaching into his pocket, he pulled out a picture of him. Throwing it on the ground in front of Yancy, who picked it up slowly. "I'm sorry, believe me."

Yancy was stunned.

Silence filled the room.

The man began to talk. "I-"

But was quickly interrupted. "Who was your go-between with this guy?"

Yancy was going to find out what happened, no matter whose toes he had to step on.
Hidden 2 yrs ago 2 yrs ago Post by Terminal
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Terminal Rancorous Narrative Proxy

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It was extremely similar to the real thing. Maybe it was the real thing, considering. On particularly overcast nights like this one, trying to pick it out was all but impossible.

Tracy Guiomar bitterly peered up into the nighttime gloom in the distant sky, grimacing as he adjusted his hand to shield his eyes from a the glaring neon flare of a rotating billboard hovering just overhead. It was an advertisement for sneakers. The overblown celebrity-endorsed kind that obsessive hobbyists and entrepreneurs would buy and sell at private fairs for a king's ransom. Admittedly, If Tracy had a shipping address he might have considered getting a pair. Or any pair of sneakers really; the one thing he had noticed since coming here was that nothing let you run your ass off quite like a new pair a sneakers, the poor man's lifehack equivalent to getting wired. Fortunately he was spared the possibility of yielding to any sort of vain temptation, the only sneakers he could afford were the kind he could lift off of the cooling bodies of posers. His current pair were not to his liking, they were mismatched on account of a puncture hole in the left one's toeguard that he was pretty sure had been made with a knife.

And no set of air-lifters or Hermes would have let him jump high enough to get where he really wanted to be right this second. He had no idea if the Phantasmagoria was even around, truth be told. Every examination he stopped to risk was little more than nervous vigilance on his part; if it had actually been there he would know by now if only due to being reduced to a steaming pile of flash-vaporized slop on the ground. But he could not really help it, the overcast sky just made him nervous, as though there were an actual blade of Damocles poised over his head. If only the sky were clear, then he might be able to focus...

...Fooling absolutely nobody as he visibly winced at the sound of nearby gunfire, reflexively shying away from the edge of the street overlook. His breath caught in his throat, and he had to catch himself mentally with the usual reminder. He had exactly forty-seven reasons why it was not a good idea to get cold feet when facing down imminent death. The solo he was anxiously tip-toeing after - who went by the name Golemeth - had been leaving a trail of emptied 31 caliber hardened tungsten penetration rounds in their wake. Along with poser bodies. The first body he had found had practically been cut in half, with chunky viscera sprayed across the street and tiny splinters of bone dotting the brick-and-mortar wall that had been behind them. After taking a minute to dry-heave and gag wretchedly into a dumpster filled with corroded silicon-boards (he had not had anything solid to eat in days), Tracy had nervously eyed the body up-and-down while chewing on his thumb, thinking.

It spoke volumes that despite still being so readily unnerved at the sight of corpses, he was more worried about trying to deal with their friends than the psychotic, lumbering giant that had bodied them so thoroughly. Golemeth Tracy could deal with. He was one guy, wired and chipped to the high heavens and probably high and drunk and burnt from maladaptive chipset sweets, but still just one guy, and Tracy was good at dancing around baggage these days. But all these poser corpses would have whatever gang had sent them howling for blood, moreso than usual, and it was always hard to gauge when every poser nearby was coffin stuffing. There was always the risk there would be some extra-nervous guy with a poly cowering in a port-a-potty waiting to spring out and geek you with the surprise shot to the back of the head, only with posers you multiplied that guy times ten, and then times a hundred in the combat zone. He could talk Golemeth down. He would be a bit more hard pressed trying that shit out while his newfound friends kept popping up like whack-a-moles. He really needed Golemeth somewhere safe and isolated.

That was when Tracy's gaze had been drawn to the poser's knockoff, replica micro-uzi. Even he could tell it was cheap and pitiful, but it was a step up from a poly at least in that it was loud, distracting, and had burst fire. Until it fell apart at the seams anyway, but that was just as well considering Tracy had no intention of getting too attached to the weapon. Gingerly, at first he had tried to prise the weapon from the poser's grasp. Then, wretching as he did so, he pulled back the poser's clawed fingers, frozen in rigor-mortis one by one in order to wrench the weapon free. He almost had a moment where he felt a momentary pang of victory as he was readily able to slide a magazine of bullets out of the poser's off-brand darker-than-black khaki pockets, but was brought back to reality when he realized he had no idea how to eject the weapon's current magazine. His examination had then been cut short by the continued sound of heavy-weapons fire, and panicking internally at the thought of the murderous rage-machine dying, Tracy had raced off through the snaking alleyways towards the confrontation. The streets were thankfully deserted, only idiots like him were out right now while the firefight with the apartment-shredding psychoguns was still raging. For once he did not have to worry about being just the right shade of ragged and destitute to avoid being held up for money or getting used as a punching bag.

Which had led him to the street overpass five minutes later, overlooking the lower street where Golemeth had just finished firing off a burst through the boarded-up window of a condemned store, a settling mist of crimson settling down in the dark recesses of the building as the last sputter of bullets finally hit a structurally important column and caused the second floor to collapse in on whoever might still have been alive in there. Golemeth's weapon of choice was longer than the hulking man was tall - both the him and his weapon were cast in stark detail by the brilliant blazing neon light of a floating billboard advertising sneakers on an overcast, cloudy night in the perpetually dim and stygian Night City. Tracy, who had thought the giant man had finally finished with his rampage only to become spooked by the fresh set of gunshots as he shied away from the edge overlooking the lower street and the buildings below took a moment to realize: Those gunshots had not been from Golemeth. Those had come from the alleyway between two of the smaller condemned brick buildings just below the overlook. Tracy went through a brief paroxysm of mixed frantic hysteria and ecstatic relief as Golemeth took most of the shots on the chin - both literally and figuratively from the looks of it - and looked to have only gotten angrier, hefting the barrel of his oversized weapons towards the mouth of the alley the shots had come from.

Doing some quick mental acrobatics as he raced along the side of short concrete and chain-link siderail for the overpass in order to get a good look inside the alley. There he saw...

...Some random poser. He certainly looked the part anyway, wearing combat boots and trousers with a leather coat. Tracy felt a surge of relief; with his luck he had been halfway convinced the gunman in the alley would have been some biotech super-cyber-soldier freak with psychic powers, but it was just some unmodded virgin-fleshed thug with nary a chip or wire to him, at least as far as Tracy could make out in the gloom. That simplified things immensely.

This was probably the best chance he was going to get, in fact. Posed as he was in the overpass, Tracy had instant-cover on demand whenever he felt like going prone beneath the concrete barrier. If Golemeth looked up at all, he would see Tracy in the distance. If Tracy shot at the poser in the alley, maybe throw a little dramatic wave Golemeth's way after the fact, maybe he could then improvise a meet-up and try to get the hulking brute somewhere safe.

But the only way that was going to happen was if the poser in the alley got geeked. Tracy chewed on his lip as he awkwardly raised his stolen replica weapon. He was not a killer. He had never killed anyone before. Even knowing that this poser was probably a miserable piece of shit who actually had killed people in cold blood before did not make it even slightly easier to contemplate aiming the gun at him. But.


Tracy's hand only trembled slightly as he squinted through the penumbra where the dark of night met the Neon glare of Night city and pointed the uzi at the alley.

He had forty-seven people counting on him. Forty-seven decent, innocent people. If the choice came down to them or one poser gunned down in the street...

Not that he planned on shooting the poser, of course. He was not going to let such a pitiful moral dilemma make a killer out of him. He would just pepper the side of the building with a small burst, get both of their attentions - and hopefully make a good impression with Golemeth in the process. And if the distraction just so happened to startle the poser long enough for their midsection to get sawed in half by machinegun fire, that was not Tracy's fault...

Unfortunately for Tracy, for once he had not been quite paranoid enough. Even the fact that the weapon's recoil caught him offguard due to his poor stance and grip, sending the bullets unintentionally directly at Theron rather than at the alley-wall, was not going to get him anything. Even before the first bullet had crossed half the distance between the overpass and the alleyway, the Intelllitron Hunter's Graff-Stein and Re-Human-enhanced vestibular tracking response had alerted the outwardly-human mercenary to the incoming hail of bullets from behind him and the hostile up in the street overpass.
Hidden 2 yrs ago 2 yrs ago Post by The Harbinger of Ferocity
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The recoil of the heavy pistol pushed back and again into the palm until the weapon racked dry with a distinctive snap. The venting gas from the chamber filling a bit of the immediate view, the hunter knew that retaliation was on the way. Granted not all of his shots had surely hit and even those that did were likely to do little but slow the mark down, now was not the time to assess just how effective the firing had been. A step back into cover again between the crusted bricks and more than ample graffiti, thumb depressing the magazine release and sending yet another piece of scrap plastic to the ground, a strange, momentary impulse called out to the back of mind that something was off. The noise, the stimulus of it, was behind the jacketed hunter, and before his hand could even slip for another magazine, the storm of falling projectiles clattered against his partial cover.

Showered with more than a sprinkling of brick dust and pulverized mortar, the man fell to a knee and laid against the wall, shaking himself off. Oversized handgun still resting vertically in palm, its shiny obsidian exterior powdered now with grey, the man peered around the corner. Not towards the gunfight, but the other gunfight. The new one that had just spontaneously made itself. In all honesty, that was expected. Some poor scrub defending their home against what was clearly another gang problem in the heart of a Combat Zone. Granted seeing anything would have been just about impossible regularly between the haze, the dust, the ambient glow, but some eyes were just inherently better than others, especially when it came to picking out shapes that didn't belong.

Pulling back in between the walls, having seen enough to know someone was there, holding something - something gun shaped, maybe not, close enough - in their direction, the answer was straightforward; shoot back. First things first came as the new magazine was slammed into place with enough force the slide snapped forward on its own. The second came with looking himself over, to note there were no added holes of course, but plenty of cosmetic damage that would be a real pain in the ass to get out thanks to the dust. So it came down now to whoever it was getting their rebuttal, deserved or not. And naturally so, the contracted recovery agent steadied his pulse again, moved finger to trigger, stood and depressed it back as many times as he could in the span of maybe a second.

Now, the shooting was assisted by the user and sight alike - the target crystal clear - but the rapid fire wasn't meant to do more than put their head down and if lucky, punch through the concrete near them and perhaps into them, but that was a gamble. After all, recoil still existed and without chromed up arms and a fancy retool of the entire nervous system, the shots were going to go where the barrel went, which was a rough approximation of aim. Even if it all missed maybe the retaliating armor penetrating rounds punching chip sized holes through walls around them would tell them to back off. Maybe it wouldn't, who cared. The psycho rolling with a machine gun and tweaked up on some new drugs was the real focus; after all, the guy was pelted by a few shots and had the goons from some gang not been rolling on him too, the hunter would have been outgunned and now outnumbered. So the only option now post shooting was to move and move he did.

The dash was maybe five feet across, to another alleyway, but it felt like an eternity of crossing open space. Perhaps it was just being on and in the moment, being ambushed tended to do that, but once he cleared into the cover there was a long breath. Then a lot more yelling down the alley, not him of course. Instead the gunfire dipped and the sounds of a few people moving, sprinting and splashing through the seedy, trashy corridors was making bad things worse. The positive was, to the keen ears that clearly it was multiple people, not just one running anywhere near him... the downside being that now more potential enemies were here; it wasn't like the boosters cared for the help. So that sent the man packing, wiping his brow with the cuff of his jacket, and now moving closer toward the other shooter from above.

For now he'd let the crazies slug it out and deal with whoever was trying to pick them off from behind. After all, being shot in the back tended to slow down the acquisition of payment, and having less enemies was better than more.

Hidden 2 yrs ago Post by SleepingSilence
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SleepingSilence OC, Plz No Stealz.

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Scarlett’s preceding hours at The Fortress required a steel wire brush to scrub the disgust from deep within her bones; preferably, starting with the ones in her mouth. Hadn’t she learned opening up like curtains from a window, only left her exposed and prone to being caught in the moment? Desperate eyes locked upon the master’s baiting pitch, she was practically running outside for the reward of retrieval. The velocity of the motorcycle matched her speeding train of thought, still restrained from separating herself from the tracks laid before her.

On the busy nighttime streets, forced to ride pillion with - how’d they describe themselves again? ‘A gentleman of diminutive stature’, which during the trip, the lone thing more staggering than knowledge that the individual behind the pedal wasn’t blind and utterly soused, was the bike itself. Why was she getting escorted by such a crappy motorist? Needing to unconsciously clutch their shoulders several times to keep herself from rocketing off into oncoming traffic. Her fingers felt greasy gripping the unwashed biker jacket. Receiving an unexpected deviation from the familiarity; like finding a needle while combing inside a haystack, you’re met with an unpleasant prick in your hands. At least they were wearing their helmets...she almost felt obliged to drop to her hands and knees to kiss the concrete after being dropped off.

The loud buzz prompted her to step through the entrance, immediately feeling an unnerving sense of nostalgia, even if it was partially aided by the lingering cigar smell on her fur. She slowly ascended the old apartments’ staircase, the single distinctive sound was coming from the creaking of the many wooden steps. She passively glanced at the cracked mirror hanging up on the wall between the second and third set of stairs. Stopping to touch her neck, realizing in haste she’d kept the collar on. Not wishing to dwell on how accustomed she’d gotten to it, Scarlett hurried up to the requested room number. Not making her search any easier when they weren’t in discernible numerical order, finally arriving at door 15. It suddenly swung wide open, causing a split-second reaction to whip out the Beretta from its holster, aimed squarely at his pointed goat beard connected to a toothy grin. He leaned forward, giving her full view of his pentagram tattoo, using the muzzle as a headrest.

“Please - feel free. Would make my day much less stressful.” He taunted with a glazed stare. Her fingers seemed frozen and physically incapable of pulling the trigger. One of her implanted chips was overpowering her will, must have been another subordinate working with her boss.

“Should be upside down if you wanted to be subtle about it.” Her counter remained in the mind, eyes rolling underneath her headgear as she walked in. The man quietly shut the door, quieting the broken chain lock rattling in its sway. The place appeared remodeled, albeit poorly and it was hardly furnished and packed with stacks of large cardboard boxes, but that was nothing bizarre for fresh tenants. Spotting an opened nylon carry bag with an entire cyberware arm and a white plastic mask, lying in the middle of the carpeted floor. But recognizing two problems moments after looking around, they’re suppose to be here.

“Father’s in the closet, daughter’s in the bathroom.” He explained dismissively approaching behind her, sounding annoyed that he needed to reveal that information. She went over and peered in the empty closet, seeing the father rope-tied to a chair with a sack covering his head and without a right arm. Turning to the unfamiliar colleague zipping up the bag and carrying it under his arm, seemingly flexing his defined muscles at her. His back leaning against the wall beside the bathroom door, straight across from her.

“There’s enough space to fit them both in here. Why did you separate them?” She asked. He snorted and itched his nostrils.

“If one of them broke their restraints, I didn’t need them freeing each other.” He answered in a callous tone, quickly averting his attention. Soon as he stated his reasoning, they heard the churning pipes with the shower turning on. She charged into the bathroom, permitting him little time to move aside. The bathroom was a mess; sink was full of water mixed with red and the floor was slippery, in the tub was a blindfolded pre-adolescent girl sitting upright with arms tied behind her back and below a barely flowing shower-head. Though her top half was already drenched, shaking and breathing heavily, her cheeks flushed and blood dribbling from her nose.

Scarlett turned the water off and drained the sink, treating it like a formality. Dashing out of the bathroom upon hearing the rattling chain, as she caught the man halfway out of the apartment with his hand clenching the handle, the other still holding the bag. He seemed to sense the glare she was shooting him, just standing there with a sneering face.

"The bitch wouldn't stop screaming at me and I was getting sick of it. Just look out that window and wait for the signal, and be prepared to use those guns for something beside intimidation." He lazily pointed to the window, as she muttered something inaudibly through a slight growl. He chuckled and closed the door.

She merely waited by the window and waited for the vague notion of signal to happen, occasionally peeping through the blinders, only seeing the neon lights, the overpass and the unsuspecting crowd striding by…

There it was - sounds of firefight and the commotion from unfolding chaos. Checking for visual confirmation, recognizing the shoot-out was nearby. Her orders were established, simply get as much footage of the ensuing event as possible, her questions garnered her the explanation that if anyone else is looking for our target, they’d be present. She only needed to kill whoever she deemed a threat. This was a mission to obtain information and identities that could hint to potential leads. Before leaving the safety of the building and going into dangerous alley, a moment of hesitation came from the whimpering cries coming from the girl. She rushed for the door, but nearly swiveled around 180 degrees and gritted her teeth. Picking up the girl who had somehow loosened her blindfold, giving Scarlett a grief-stricken stare as she carried the pre-teen off in her arms toward the closet. Noticing her face briefly having a wave of relief seeing her father’s writhing body. Raising the rope restraints up to her jaw, she began chewing, grinding and pulling on them with her sharp fangs until they were loose enough to pull apart in due time, then gently setting her down near her father.

“Don’t go outside.” Scarlett warned, fleeing from the building’s entrance and running even closer to the sounds the gunfire with both of her guns drawn, scanning her surroundings like a hawk and using as much cover as the terrain provided. She didn’t anticipate to drop any bodies tonight, but she was equipped for worse situations, should they arise...
Hidden 2 yrs ago Post by Terminal
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Terminal Rancorous Narrative Proxy

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Tracy shrieked as the uzi's burst recoil caught him offguard and all-but flung the gun into the air to harshly clatter against the concrete floor of the overpass. Hastily bending over to pick the shoddy replica up, Tracy miraculously evaded Theron's return fire - although, as perhaps the Hunter had intended, the armor-penetrating rounds sending chips and small chunks of concrete and rebar flying through the air and causing Tracy to go prone on the ground, dropping the gun a second time as he clutched at his own head in a panicked, reflexive attempt to shield it from harm.

He lay there on the ground for several moments, his body trembling and shuddering as though an arctic gale had come and sucked the breath and warmth from him. He drew in several deep, tearful and panicked breaths as he slowly levered himself back up to a sitting position against the edge of the overpass with his left forearm. He heard additional gunshots in the distance and flinched, but immediately realized they were not directed at him or from the poser in the alleyway below. The retaliatory rattle of Golemeth's return fire from his oversized machinegun could only mean that more gangers had arrived on-scene, which meant Tracy's window of opportunity had just been flushed down the drain along with his tenuous nerves. The entire situation was awful - if the poser below alerted the new arrivals to the shooter in the overpass, Tracy would suddenly actually be dealing with the same problem as Golemth, but with approximately eight-hundred pounds less in the way of cybernetic augmentation and materiel hardware. Tracy turned and risked a peep over the ledge of the overpass to see what the poser was up to - and saw him darting back behind the rears of the street's buildings and alleys, and from his own looks both above to where Tracy was seated and to the other end of the street, was making a clear break for the stairs up to the opposite end of the overpass.

Tracy grimaced and awkwardly shifted his weight to get up onto his feet in a crouched position without getting up and exposing himself, picking up the replica once more and crab-walking back towards the upper street level he had gotten onto the overpass from, which was when things got even worse. A small group of gangers rushed down one of the upper streets, yelling amongst themselves before splitting up in small groups or individually, doubtlessly to get various vantage points where they could shoot at Golemeth at. One of them - a grotesque fellow with tribal tattoos over his face along with what looked like bio-grafted spines running across the backs of his arms - was heading right for the overpass ramp, hefting some kind of rifle Tracy did not recognize in both arms. The following mental calculation was not complicated. Even if Tracy made himself scarce, once this thug and the poser below met each other on the Overpass, one or the other would doubtlessly get back to the main posse and alert them all that there was another side present, which would make any possibility of linking up with Golemeth even more impossible and potentially fatal than that cheery prospect had been to begin with.


Tracy steeled himself, sucked in a deep breath, and drew on his training. The key to convincing anybody of anything was to harness whatever common ground you had. Right now, apart from his duffel-bag, Tracy was dressed in ratty clothes and carrying a knock-off replica uzi. He looked like shit, was probably pale and shaken as hell, and all of that could be turned to his favor as long as this random brute was not wirelessly hooked into the net - which was a fairly safe gamble seeing as his head did not have any obvious signs of datajacks or biomonitor ports.

So tracy deliberately peered a little too incautiously around the edge of the overpass ramp, locked eyes with the ganger, and feigned a look of relief. "Hey you, get over here quick," He made a hasty beckoning gesture. The thug's eyes narrowed - he was suspicious. He did not recognize Tracy, and the man with the duffel-bag did not have any of the obvious gang-marks on him - but his weapon was the sort of thing the others might use, and from the way he was shaken up he must have been part of the firefight with the titan down below and must have recognized him from his own gang-marks - right?

"That chromed-up shithead below, he's got some asshole friend who has been taking potshots at us from the cover of the alleys." Tracy gestured uselessly towards the edge of the overpass dramatically as he treated the ganger to his very best practiced scowl. "Guy in a leather jacket, no ink or mods, he's coming right up the other end of the overpass now. I'm low on ammo, I'm going to go meet up with the others and come back with some of them so we can get a line going up here on the overpass - I need you to just hold this asshole off until we get back. Think you can manage that?"

The ganger snorted as he hefted his rifle - which Tracy vaguely recognized as some kind of semiautomatic. "Down this lane with no cover? He'll be dead by the time you all get back, little guy."

"Then once he's dead, start layin' it on the freak downstairs. Slammit man." Tracy growled in a low falsetto as he got back up, descended the overpass ramp onto the high-street, and started booking it down the road in the direction the other gangers had gone. He was totally confident that even if this thug got rid of the poser, the chances of him being able of so much as scratching Golemeth was near to zero. One catastrophic turn of events averted.

...Leaving Tracy to deal with the present zero-sum game that was making contact with Golemeth without getting cut in half by machinegun fire. But one problem at a time. Banking a hard right and ducking into one of the high-street's brick-and-mortar-and-asphalt back-alleys, Tracy took a deep breath and then collapsed on the ground, hyperventilating and trembling from head to foot as he sank up against the nearest wall as he tried to settle his nerves from the stunt he had just pulled. He just was not made for this kind of stuff...

Meanwhile, back at the overpass, as Theron broke over the crest of the last steps of the stairwell up to the overpass, a trio of shots whizzed through the air around him, one of the shots causing a loud metallic twang as it hit the chain-link barrier immediately behind him. There was a shooter at the opposite end of the overpass, huddled just beneath the floor, probably lying prone on the connecting ramp from the high-street - and he was using some kind of burst-fire semiautomatic rifle. Not the most ideal of situations...

@The Harbinger of Ferocity
Hidden 2 yrs ago 2 yrs ago Post by The Harbinger of Ferocity
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The Harbinger of Ferocity Aspect of the Ferine

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The muzzle flash was what caught his attention, then the distinct snap of bullets as they cracked by through the air and their impacts against the environment. This was the stimulus for action people were regularly not capable of, at least not modded or tooled out somehow, and the deceptiveness of a hunter not appearing outwardly machined-up had some perks. Theron broke into a dead sprint, boots pounding the concrete and easily pushing the movement his body could take on a sprint, either way it wasn't human in the slightest and that made for a bit more advantage than the shooter probably hoped for; trying to lead a running target took practice, trying to lead a target that suddenly exploded with an enormous dash resulted in hasty firing. So it came, another burst of lead filling the air and taking off bits of the old roadway and concrete barriers.

By then the target dropped prone, hand and knees catching him as he sprawled out and made himself almost razor thin, maybe a tenth of his previous profile. The hunter slid a bit from the sudden transfer of momentum, the impact of throwing himself down to stop the shooter's aim was worth it all however, especially as he leveled the hand-cannon back in the direction of the muzzle flash. Thinking at blinding speeds, the height of an adrenaline rush and being boosted by a metabolism not meant for the body, all of him was going faster than he could register; everything was just reactionary now. All his eyes could look for was the red sight as it fell roughly on where the shots were coming from and an opposing, unusual shape to the environment. A harsh breath and a few more shots cracked the slide back, gas venting from the louvers that flanked the barrel.

There was no time to hesitate there or admire any hits or curse any misses, only roll several times over to the right. It was a ploy to keep the aim off him and allow further jacking-up of the ganger's shots; mobility and speed were his strengths in between making himself small. The positive to this was at least this weapon wasn't automatic like the last, the volume of fire was livable, but damned if it did not keep slowing him down, especially after he already had enough problems with a walking tank. Speaking of said killer cyborg, the dull thud of an explosion, a grenade, rattled the narrow alleyways down below; probably one of an entire handful and the sole thing the boosters might be carrying to really even hurt the solo fighting off their little squad. Regardless, it put a lull into the gunfight down there as it moved and kicked up a storm of dust as its fragments ricocheted and rabbited wildly against the bricks, making a hazy, nasty gun battle on the lower level more chaotic.

The pause suggested a few things, one being Golemeth was dead - a laughable possibility, but not implausible - or that the fight was just transitioning. Almost assuredly the latter, as either the man, machine, whatever he really was, found some place to set himself up that they couldn't shoot him and had to bombard him with things in the hopes of even nicking his chrome and ironed up muscles without some bigger guns or they had lost him and he was still moving, throwing out the boomers in the hope they didn't get surprised. Theron hadn't the opportunity or the moment to decide which, instead firing a few more shots with a bit of added aim, his arms stretched out before him and the gun doing the rest of the work, pouring it on against the ambusher. His nerves burned like fire in the heat of the moment, every impulse and input shooting back and forth, but the real question would be when he moved again if the shooting would come back from the ramp or if a round downed or disabled them.

No time to wait and find out, only move again, so he hopped to standing with alarming speed and zigged rather than zagged. Theron wasn't a soldier, but corporate killers weren't hopeless or naive; it didn't take some foreign literal trade war to teach you to go where they don't expect you, especially when they beat it into you each time you got it wrong. After all you were their investment and their property, but those were trainers and stun rounds, these were the "hopped-up psychopaths" and "put bloody holes into you where crash out" rounds.

Now if only he could take down the one, Theron could deal with the other and get back to hunting the hulked out freak.

Hidden 2 yrs ago Post by Hekazu
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Hekazu Cleric to Dice Gods

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"Yeah, but you know what the trenchcoat said man. It isn't going to be as smooth, not a day longer." Croaks did hear the words over the music playing in the bar. Croaks could only puff air through his nose and shake his head, downing the rest of the sickly yellow drink that left the taste of very cheap booze into his mouth, coupled with a few chemicals. He could taste yellow. Tasting colours should not be possible, his body tried to remind him, but that was a remnant of old times, centuries ago when humanity had not lived in megalopoli such as Night City. Here it was very much the norm, especially in the combat zones.

The bigger of the two men ran a finger over his gun, sitting neatly on the worn faux-leather cover of the seat on his right. Of course, it was technically against the rules of this shithole to bring guns in. But this was their shithole. The best bar in the zone the amphibians governed, not that would have been much of a merit, but it was still the best. And like usual, if he just turned his head around, he could not count the number of fellow amphibians with one hand, though that was if he did count Ribby in that little arithmetic. "Yeah, I know we ain't got the eurobucks to go to that man. But you know that we can't just call it quits here, bro", he retorted, waving at a passing waitress who was quick to take his order for another drink and then be on her way. It didn't go past Croaks that Ribby took a long look at the woman's behind. Not that it was anything new.

"Don't you bro me at a time like this, bro", Ribby remarked sarcastically, "this is serious business." The joking tone had vanished in an instant after the punchline, and the man leaned over the table, a few wires poking out from the back of his neck. "This is our whole life, man. You can't just say that you'll go find the old dealer of the good shit like that and leave the rest of us here, trying to fend off all the rivals for fuck knows how long!" Ribby scratched his neck with an annoyed expression on his face, but Croaks couldn't find a fault in his statement.

The track playing on the background changed, and with that the lights took on a different formation. Croaks turned to look over his shoulder. "A new face, huh?" he recalled this one being specifically reserved for such occasions. An ingenious type of messaging to the security, really, what with there being no real dance floor so nobody could get all pissy about it. Ribby cleared his throat, and Croaks would return his attention back to him. "Ah, yep, the whole 'finding a new way to keep things rolling' thing… you have been pulling on your plugs again bro", he bought a bit of time, while Ribby focused on rewinding the vehicle interfacing chrome back into his neck.

With nothing too outlandish happening despite the sudden track change, Croaks received his new drink from the waitress and rubbed his forehead with his free hand. "Well unless you got any better fuckin' ideas, bro…", he finally conceded that he wasn't exactly coming up with everything, and to his surprise Ribby would be reduced to sighing just as well. The man took the shot glass full of sickly green stuff and downed it with one swig. Only way to drink that repulsive stuff, sure, but Croaks still didn't get why the hell this dude claimed he enjoyed it.

Ribby sighed, scratching his neck once again, managing to pull the plugs back out from their sockets. Croaks sighed in return, Ribby noticing his glance and getting the small servomotors back to work in pulling the cords inside. "Okay, I'm just as fresh out as you are bro. We gotta do something, and unless we can think of anything else we ain't gettin' any cash an' gear from just sittin' about. Gotta do somethin', and that somethin' is gon' be you headin' out then. Jus'… don't go and kick the bucket, ya?"

"I'd never do that, bro", Croaks assured his friend, tapping him on the shoulder with his fist and getting back to the drink at hand. It wouldn't take too long for one of the lower ranking gangsters to come to their corner table though, one with a cotton patch over her eye. Oh yeah, this was the one whose mask had sprung a leak. Nasty business.

"The newcomer's looking for you two", she informed the two, Croaks nodding and taking a less relaxed pose, Ribby leaning back towards his chair just as well.

"Well, show 'em here then", Croaks would tell the gal impatiently, who would proceed to do just that. Wonder who was coming?
Hidden 2 yrs ago 2 yrs ago Post by SleepingSilence
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SleepingSilence OC, Plz No Stealz.

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A thing that never stopped irritating her; was despite living in a criminally active city, nobody had properly tightened security. A measly fingerprint lock that could be overridden with an 8 digit pass-code that took no time whatsoever cracking from the grease staining the keypad from pressing the correct ones? Are you kidding? Maybe that was just because she was so good at her job, or perhaps everyone’s incompetence assisted in perpetual, productive wrongdoings. Her self-reminded annoyance served as a momentary distraction of thought, necessary to not have apprehension while heading indoors...

It was foolhardy to claim that it was too quiet, but the atmosphere crept along her skin like centipedes crawling up her legs. She was certainly followed, possibly ever since she entered into the alleyway across the street, and into another building closer to simultaneous shootouts changing the late night forecast into a hailstorm of smoke and bullets. Her steps clanged like an iron bar smacking against someone’s back, the clamorous echoing inside only drowned out from her ears approaching the ensuing chaos. Guided by long dim, ceiling lights as she rushed through a lengthy cramped corridor, into a wide open room with slightly brighter ceiling lights causing a green hue, staring down a pair of double translucent glass doors between two sets of staircases leading to the second floor.

Turning her head having that paranoid fear that every moving shadow is a stalker with murderous intent. Catching the glimpse of the object slashing overhead to carve into her left shoulder, cutting the air as she pivoted right to dodge the attack and confront the hostile. A katana held in his left hand. She jumped backward, avoiding the following horizontal mid-slash going right to left. She attempted to pull out her pistol, not enough time, her muscle-bound opponent lunged at her thrusting his blade, as she leapt and rolled out of way. Her opponent quickly facing her standing on all fours, his glowing deep-blue eyes discerning her movement. The dangerous situation slowed to a crawl, something clicked into place her mind like the last piece completing the puzzle.

Her opponent was carrying no visible guns? Holding weapon in one hand, due to the heavy power glove equipped to the other and he had no apparent armor. Besides a potential bulletproof vest underneath his clothing, but he was using visual enhancing equipment. Likely a separate entity from the outdoor firefights, needed to eliminate first and ask questions later. Processed in within a single moment, wiping out her Beretta from her holster and taking aim, the bang echoed, bullet deflecting off the katana with his precise movements rushing at her. Predicting her slim chances firing off a successful shot, she haphazardly half-stuffed her gun back into her holster. Her previous degrading treatment was about pay off; circling past still running on all fours like it was natural. He staggered spinning himself around, reaching down and grabbing inches away from her tail. She swung upright on two legs with a fluid non-stop motion, ascending the west stairs. Her gun falling out of the holster and landing on the fourth step.

Her mistake sunk in her gut as conflicting thoughts screamed at her to run versus retrieving it while having the opportunity. He was already behind her, hastily kicking the Beretta between the cracks going up to the fifth step. She turned and grabbed her opponent’s raised wrist, wrenching it away until the blade scraped the wall. Striking her head with a powerful uppercut; the helmet absorbed the blow, but was knocked clean off and ricocheted off the wall and bounced off the steps onto the ground. Using the glove to reflexively grab her arm, still twisting his wrist as her maw opened wide and lunged forward, sinking her fangs into his arm. Tasting the iron in the blood spurting in her mouth as it gushed from his arm preparing a right hook. Avoiding it by jumping backwards onto the next step, releasing him and grabbing her firearm with the same hand. Watching the glove slam into the wall with a thunderous clang, leaving a sizable indentation as he ripped it back and let out a growl through clenched teeth. She pulled her gun and aimed at his groin, pulling the trigger as his eyes glowed blue again, lowering his arm and directing his katana downward to deflect the bullet into the railing.

“That’s what I thought. When you rely on the equipment for battle, you lose.” Promptly kicking the katana from his grasp, clattering to floor beneath with his careless foot movements knocking it aside to dodge another shot aimed at his shoulder. Swatting the gun out of her hand, feeling like he broke her hand with the sheer veracity of his swing. The gun tumbled down the stairs just above the first step. She countered with a flurry of blows as he closely shielded his head with crossed arms. He glanced below at his weapon, thinking for a split-second about recovering it, an involuntary distraction invading the mind. Letting her tightly grip the railing by the wall with her hands and jump up, swiftly plunging both legs into his stomach. His last ditch effort to reach out and grab her failed, shoved backward, skidding his back into the steps in his descent before his skull made acquaintance with the tile. She dived off the steps as he pushed against the floor to sit up, connecting with his solar plexus, keeping him flattened and causing him to sharply gasp, kicking the Beretta by his feet behind the stairs.

“I don’t need my guns for this.” She pounced down her hands landing against her shoulders.

“Get off, beast! I said get off!” His voice was deep as an ocean, but his wave of demands reflected a glimmer of weakness, she couldn’t help but think they were pitiful to have as last words. He reached up to grab his sides to throw her off, but he was too late. The shocked stare in his eyes, seeing the saliva dripping from her jaw onto his lips. The sound of a crunch was followed by a scream, he writhed and squirmed on the ground vainly attempting to get her off. She spit out the flesh and blood ripped from his face, taking several ineffectual blows to the face with his bare fist. Sinking her jaws into his neck, just as he gripped the back of her head with his glove, immediately weakening his grip. Pulling her head away, only yanking the collar off her neck. His stunned body unable to react to her fists smashing his face repeatedly, until covered in her opponents blood. Finally, he stopped thrashing about like a beached trout.

No such luck. She found nothing while patting him down. Pulling herself up and pulled off his shirt, wiping her face and hands and tossing it on top his mangled face. Coming to realize how fast her heart was pumping letting her adrenaline was wane, as she took a minute and a half to catch her breathe.

“Hm - I was right about the vest too.” Scarlett thoughtlessly picked up the broken collar from between his limp fingers, but tossed it away. Putting her helmet back on, then retrieving both her Beretta’s which she inspected before returning them to her holsters and shrugged. “Least my equipment wasn’t damaged.”

This final mission wasn’t off to the best start; one body dropped, just to head out into more danger and being nowhere closer to discovering anything worthwhile to locating the lieutenant. Plus, she could really use some booze to wash the bad taste from her mouth...
Hidden 2 yrs ago 2 yrs ago Post by 13org
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13org Stay fresh!

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As Nina got out from the shower, she calmly walked towards the bed, stopping in front of the locked chest in front of her bed, where she kept her crossbow and the armored suit, she took a brief moment looking at it. On top of the chest were a tight, long sleeved turtleneck sweater with white and black horizontal stripes and black jeans, carefully folded. Wearing only her underwear, she grabbed the black jeans, putting it in front of her legs while standing in front of the mirror, admiring her figure for a brief while. Her athletic body with perfect dimensions, her firm muscles and even her bio-cybernetic legs, displaying an exotic, unique beauty drew a fair bit of stares.

"Maybe tomorrow..." Nina said to herself in a disappointed tone, remembering about the reservation on the La Croix restaurant she would miss, but as she looked to the sweater and the jeans again, she hesitated for a bit before finally taking them. If she was going on a gang's place, going with casual clothes would be much better than going with a freaking armored suit... It would be much more... respectable and fitting with the code of conduct an outsider should have when going inside a gang's hideout and it would attract less attention... Well... it would attract a lot of attention, but not the wrong type...

"And I deserve wearing something pretty every now and then, right?" Nina thought to herself with a giggle as she finished wearing the clothes she had separated, standing in front of the mirror admiring her figure with a satisfied smile.

She had planned to commemorate her birthday that day before receiving a call from a man called Ribby, from the Colonel's Corner Amphibians about a possible job. She even had a reservation for the La Croix restaurant on the City Center, which she could afford thanks to a job she completed earlier in that week that gave her a bit of spare money but she couldn't afford to pass up a good opportunity to obtain some valuable intel.

While her financial situation was honestly... far from perfect, spending a little bit once per year to have a fun, relaxing day was something she could do. Wearing beautiful clothes instead of armor and forgetting about any job was good not only to relieve her stress, but to her self esteem as well, after all... Not being able to talk with anyone about her old life and having to keep that a secret was pretty stressful sometimes.

The apartment she was renting was located in a pretty discreet part of the town. Cheap due to the proximity to dangerous districts, it's residents were mostly families or old people who didn't have enough money to go to a safer part of town. It was the perfect place for Nina to hide due to the fact that most gangs had an unspoken honor rule to not mess with the people of that building. The old gatekeeper, who coincidentally was also the landlord, was a man that most inhabitants liked due to always having a smile on it's face. While his job as a 'guard' was merely symbolic, seeing as due to his age he wouldn't be able to fight even against a lowly thief, people knew that whoever messed with him would attract a lot of attention. In that city replete with violence, the 'Old Albert' as he was known, was a proof that there were still kind people alive on that city.

"Hey missy! Getting out again? Ye looking mighty fine lass!" Nina heard the familiar voice from the old gatekeeper and a hearty laugh as she got down the stairs, approaching the lobby.

"Thanks Albert!" Nina said with a kind smile and a chuckle to the old man. As she stopped on the lobby to greet him.

After looking to her and seeing she wasn't wearing her armor, Nina could see the worried expression on his face, partially hidden behind his thick mustache.
"Just... be safe, ya hear? Honest, carefree smiles such as yours are rare to find nowadays... Oh, and happy birthday!" Old Albert said looking at her with a worried expression, as he handed her a silver necklace with a small, cute silver fox pendant.

"It's not much but I hope you like it." the old man said, with a kind smile looking at her.

"Thank you... A lot." Nina said, going over the counter and hugging the old man tightly for a moment before wearing the necklace and heading out.

Getting on the bar that Ribby indicated wasn't that difficult for Nina. Few were the people that could keep up with her as she moved through the Night City's combat zones, thanks to her speed and how silently she moved herself while avoiding unnecessary conflicts. Being an information broker/runner meant that Nina was mostly regarded as 'neutral' in the gang's eyes, doing business with all of them. That didn't mean she was trusted or seen as an ally, but differently from the others on that same line of work, Nina had an advantage regarding those matters... Her cheerful behavior, smile and innocent appearance made others quickly dismiss her as not posing a real threat, thus, trusting her a bit more.

While the Colonel Corner's Amphibians weren't an overly aggressive gang, Nina was still careful walking through their territory. She had already made business with other gangs before and she knew how... tense things could get regarding the more... aggressive gangs. Since she didn't knew that well if the Amphibians were one of those, when she arrived on the bar, she was sure to show them that she wasn't armed... Not that she would able to hide something using those clothes but the intention was more important.

"Hey, would you know where I could find Ribby? He was the one that invited me. Said he wanted to talk about some things." Nina said, waiting for the waitress' answer.
Hidden 2 yrs ago Post by Hekazu
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Hekazu Cleric to Dice Gods

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The fresh arrival was met with the waitress looking her up and down, the woman clearly weighing if she should believe the story she had been told. But it was not her job to question. The gang would handle that part, that much was clear. They got to take guns in, and they would handle any gang business in here, even if it meant shooting. And now in this case it involved checking the validity of something. Again, not her job. Nina would find herself directed to the bar counter, from where someone would apparently come and fetch her after a moment. The table Ribby and Croaks frequented was not far from there, but it was conveniently out of view.

"You don't look like a combat zone type of gal", the barkeep would mention. His entire right arm was very barebones appearing chrome, while his left hand was just exposed servomotors and joint pieces. To top it off, he clearly had some discount cybereye, the light simulating a live organ within it shimmering every now and then. "But then again, you did come here on business as far as my ears served. If you want anything to drink before going there, now would be your time to order. Wouldn't want to go in with a dry mouth, would you?" the man would try to get a sale out of her. Success was not guaranteed, but hey. No use letting an opportunity just slip away!

After a whole ten minutes or so, a bare chested man with diving goggles on his forehead, a torn denim vest on his shoulders and a limp on his left foot approached her, holding an old heavy pistol that resembled closely the model the police force used on their lower ranking people. "So you wanted to have a talk with the bosses, huh? Well you come this way then and we'll see to that won't we?" The young and scrawny man waved with his free hand and began walking away, not waiting to see if the info broker was following or not. She either did or she missed her own chance. Was none of his business.

In the meantime, Croaks had been looking at Ribby and the man's explanation with a raised eyebrow. "So in short, you called in an info broker to point me in the right direction… and you still try to keep up the act of not wanting me to go anywhere on this case?" he asked of his business partner who would lean back and scratch his forehead.

"Well bro, thing is pretty simple. I knew you'd be goin' either way. I don't like it, but if you gotta go then I should at least set you up with a fighting chance you know?" he would explain, to which Croaks couldn't help but laugh. Ribby had always been the smarter of the two, and it would be just like him to pull a trick like that on him. But he would never say something like this out loud. They both knew it just fine on their own.

It was around then that the limping guy would be there, waving the free hand at the two bosses. "Hey, so, the pretty gal's here. Right. I'll leave you to it", he explained and turned around, showing to Nina that this was where she'd find who she had been looking for. The gang leaders turned their eyes on the approaching woman. An athletic one. Apart from her attire, she looked the part of what would be expected of one. Croaks pulled his gun on his lap and made space in the table in case she wanted to sit down, while Ribby just nodded at her.

"So. Lieutenant Davison. We need all that you know. What do you have and what does knowing it cost?" Ribby got right down to business while Croaks sipped from his glass.

"It's many sorts of vital, so don't be holding back now. We won't like it if we end up driven out of this here zone", Croaks would add, instinctively picking up the role of the tougher boss he kept thanks to his more imposing presence.

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Hidden 2 yrs ago Post by Terminal
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Terminal Rancorous Narrative Proxy

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In the end, it was all a matter of death and more death. Possibly die now, or definitely die later. The simplicity of that realization did absolutely nothing to help quell Tracy's tremulous nerves as he rocked forward from where he was sitting, pushing himself back upright with both hands, one awkwardly clutching at the replica uzi still. He did not even wince when the first of the thug's bursts started firing down the overpass. He had known they were coming.

But he winced perceptibly when he heard the distinctive return-fire from the poser who had been coming on up. Then Tracy's eyes widened as he took a moment to realize that he could actually hear and place the shots from the overpass. Which mean the second firefight that had kicked off after Tracy had shot at the poser had either come to a close or was settling down. Managing to completely push the thought of the poser on the overpass out of his mind, Tracy rushed out of the back alley, across the street, and peered down at the lower street from over the lip of the high road's safety rail. He was struck at once by the peculiar fact that not only was the scene entirely too quiet, but that there was entirely too much ambient noise. Too much of the sounds of people ambling and moving around normally, of distant voices in close proximity. He could not really see where Golemeth should have been standing as the area was obstructed by a condemned three-story complex, but he could swear he heard multiple voices down there.

Taking a moment to think, Tracy then remembered the posse he had seen heading down the street, doubtlessly to flank Golemeth. He supposed that could be them down there, having come down around on the high road's short exit ramp onto the street below. But that was ridiculous. Even if they had caught him by surprise, the idea of Golemeth getting geeked by a bunch of random two-bit street roughs was laughable.

...Which prompted Tracy to begin swearing viciously up and down as he trailed along the safety rail for the high road to peer around the edge of the complex only to see the colossal heap of scrap metal and munitions platform that had been Golemeth collapsed in the middle of the street, the barrel for the machine gun still visibly smoking lightly. How?!? Golemeth had been tanking hits for the last few hours without showing any signs of wear, how could some idiots with shoddy replica guns have possibly felled him-

Which was when Tracy noticed the distinct lack of blood, viscera, or even of scattered circuitry. Golemeth was collapsed and motionless on the ground, unmoving, but also apparently uninjured despite that. It was then when Tracy's attention was drawn to the figure standing over Golemeth, and Tracy mentally breathed a sigh of relief. It was a Hardware Spider.

The figure was disturbing to look at, or at least would have been if Night City had not already been filled to the brim with much stranger and more alien sights. Wearing ratty, baggy pants over a skin-tight one-piece polysuit with silver tracers along the limbs, the distinguishing feature of this and every other Hardware Spider was the hunch-backed configuration of gleaming gunmetal-grey hardware chassis protruding out from and along their spine, with multiple cables running from the top and into the back of their shaved head. Composite-armored casing for their Spider's hackware was actually the least intrusive of the augmentations made to their body despite being fused directly with their spine and hooked into multiple cerebral datajacks - the silver tracers along their one-piece polysuit were not for show, as they were the external motivators for the Spider's wireframed body, and near the end of their arms was a pair of wrist-mounted, high-velocity, subsonic, precision flechette-launchers. Now that Tracy had a better look at the street, he saw that the gangers who had been cruising to flank Golemeth from behind had held up and were circling around the Spider and his prize warily, and rightly so. Everyone in Night City knew that trying to mess with a Spider was dicey, even when you outnumbered and outgunned them. Their sophisticated neural-linked hardware, almost always coupled with omnidirectional monitors, could let them see a bullet moving past as though it were as slow as a lazily drifting leaf. The wireframe augs surgically installed in their limbs were powered, which meant they could also react and move nearly as fast as they could think, which meant trying to standoff with one was almost always suicide.

Surrounding the Hardware Spider as they were, outnumbering him and outgunning him, it was not a question of whether the gangers could take the Spider on - they could see everything and were as fast as bad news, but they were not invincible - there was just the sticky problem that, whichever of them decided to start hostilities would invariably die instantly when the Spider reacted to them beginning to move to attack. None of the thugs wanted to be the first one to shoot, and so for the moment a fragile detente existed between the Spider and them. What had happened here was apparent - Golemeth had been rampaging through the streets for hours, laying waste to any poser and solo that got in his way. It only made sense that either somebody higher up in the local food chain would have sent a heavy-hitter after him in response, or else the Spider had come out of their lair of their own volition. Likely because they knew what Tracy did about Golemeth and their connection to Davidson. They had tracked Golemeth via some kind of netrun, and then had just shut down everything in Golemeth's body, turning them into an oversized paperweight. The towering monster was still alive, but probably entirely immobilized and unconscious.

The Spider's presence was both a blessing and extremely bad news. Tracy immediately knew that the situation was preferable to the previous arrangement - the only drugs the Spider might conceivably be hopped up on were opioids instead of steroids, and they were unlikely to be drunk, outraged, and inclined to shoot absolutely anything that so much as twitched or looked at them funny. A Spider Tracy could doubtlessly negotiate with or outmaneuver with a bit of acting and quick thinking. It was also preferable to trying to do the same with a large group of posers who would instantly know Tracy was not one of them and who would be too stupid to trick. The downside, of course, was that the Hardware Spider's mere presence meant that the squall that had been Golemeth's shooting spree might shortly turn into a hurricane if there were any more heavy-ordinance solos like the Spider closing in. Which meant Tracy had to get down there a minute ago. But it was not like he could just haul up Golemeth and drag him off, so what was the goal here...?

No sooner had Tracy begun to think as much, when a small disc-port popped up from a small concealed ridged set in the behemoth's back, and the Hardware Spider reached down to retrieve the now-exposed laser disc protruding from Golemeth's body. That was it. Tracy immediately forgot about trying to interrogate Golemeth, which had frankly always been an awful proposition to begin with. Chances were, if he had the information Tracy needed, it was now on that disc - and that would be far more pliant.

Even as Tracy started to turn towards the exit ramp down towards the lower street, starting to plan how to work the scene to his advantage, he got the niggling feeling he had forgotten something important...

Like the fact that Theron had been barreling down the overpass when Tracy had left the back-alley, and that the shots from that direction had stopped several moments ago.

@The Harbinger of Ferocity
Hidden 2 yrs ago Post by 13org
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13org Stay fresh!

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Nina simply smiled after she saw the waitress looking at her up and down, deciding if she should trust her story or not. Nina had already made business with other gangs before, so she was kind of accustomed with that. It was always somewhat a tense situation when an outsider was on a gang's hideout. She still remembered how nervous she was on the first times she made business with other gangs. With time though, Nina learned that keeping a smile on her face was the best tactic to disarm any possible hostile intentions and to simply made negotiations easier overall. Differently from the waitress though, the barkeeper was much more talkative, not only complimenting her saying she didn't look like a 'combat zone' girl but also trying to sell her a drink.

"Well... Appearances can be deceiving..." Nina replied to the barkeeper, giving him a mischievous wink. As she looked at him though, she realized that indeed she indeed didn't looked like someone who would have business on the combat zones, especially thanks to the pretty clothes she was wearing. Not even her biocybernetic legs could help her a bit to look more like a 'combat zone gal' as the barkeeper said.

"I thank you for your offer, but I'm afraid it wouldn't be a good idea to drink before making business." Nina said with a chuckle after he asked if she wanted to buy something.

After a few moments, a bare chested man with diving goggles came to take her to his bosses, whom one of them was probably Ribby, she supposed. Following the limping man, Nina was careful to make a mental map of the bar and where he was taking her. Not only that, but she also noticed that the handgun he was using was the same model the police used to give to their lower ranking officers.

Upon being introduced by the limping man, who promptly left her alone with Ribby and another man, Ribby went straight to the point, asking her about what she knew about Lt. Davison. Nodding towards the other man and sitting down on the chair he offered her, she simply listened as both men talked.

"Lt. Davison..." Nina repeated, sighing.

"It wasn't easy to get any information about that man, you know? It's almost like he completely vanished from the face of the earth... Nobody seems to know anything about him and if they know, they never say it wanting to monopolize the information for themselves... One thing made me curious about him though... It seems that a lot of things someway or another are connected to him... Especially regarding classified equipment... Not the kind that you would find laying around anywhere..." Nina said, carefully watching the men's reactions as she spoke. Albeit she was being delicate about all that, she knew very well that not only their, but the situation to all gangs was like a powder barrel... It would only take a small spark for things to turn into complete chaos. Ribby as well, probably knew that.

"Regarding the payment... Money is always welcome... A girl needs to have some spare money not only to buy some clothes, but some... 'accessories' as well, am I right?" Nina said, looking to both men with a cheerful smile and a small laugh as she analyzed their reactions.
Hidden 2 yrs ago Post by The Harbinger of Ferocity
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The Harbinger of Ferocity Aspect of the Ferine

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The resultant lack of gunfire opened an opportunity, however brief it was, for the man to snap back to his feet. It wasn't the most masterful kip to standing, nothing like some of the chipped-out martial tweakers were running from the world's best, but it was certainly graceful in an almost inhuman manner. Still, no rebuttal came his way and the hunter made a fateful decision in the flash of a few seconds. If he was going to catch and cutoff the quarry and potentially another target, he needed to get there and fast. The easiest way to do it? A short fall a long way.

Each old concrete barrier that lined the sides of the crumbling roadway was either window level or just narrowly higher than some of the surrounding structures of the hazy, night drenched slums. So he barreled at full speed across to cut the distance, as well as any retaliation he was about to get. Nothing came, either because the power he was packing punched harder than it looked, he rolled the dice right and got lucky and tagging the gunner in the eyes, or the other guy just decided it wasn't worth sticking his head up yet. Didn't matter much in the end as Theron leapt, one boot on the rim of the roadway and the next on the air.

He sailed a short way over the roof, landing on his target and rolling several times over himself. The blunt impact might have knocked the wind out of him, even sprained him, if he hadn't the limberness of a gymnast to some extent or rolled with impact. It would hurt, tomorrow that is and that's all what really mattered. Most people did not walk off a ten or so foot fall on to hard gravel, all of which skidded around him and slid him to a stop. Glancing left and right, soon looking up, he scrambled to his feet and peered over the several storied roof. The issue now?

Finding anything, everything.

So he listened and he smelled, trying to orient himself, whipping around one way in fierce stare then another, gun angled high in hand. The sensory information in the heat of a rush like this was blasting through his mind at freight train force and it took everything he had to process it fully. That delay is what separated him from the techies and gear rats, the ones who plugged their brains into everything and hacked it all up with wires and metal. Sure they could get it and process it faster, but unless they were splashing huge chunks of credit, it wasn't about to get understood better or faster. That hung him up for a moment, a good moment, but once he got the taste for it - literal taste - he had an idea.

They weren't far, a short ways away and down another alley, judging by the thickness of it. Between that and the calm in the midst of the storm, the neurons firing said the target was down. The hows and whys were the next questions, yet there wasn't time to worry about those. Vaulting another low, waist high brick wall, then putting both boots down on a slant, steel roof. Navigating it, it was all over shortly as the ensuing standoff was at last met - a bunch of boosters and...

A damned harness jockey, some rigged up metal frame cyberware piece. "Spiders", usually because they plugged more limbs into themselves than they ever needed and had all too many optics crammed into them, so much that they often had wires and framework plugged directly into them. The shiny and chrome of beloved augments, dashed with some almost intentional weirdness for effect, the kind exotics rolled with. Theron swallowed and steadied his breath, racing heart tempering from his perch three stories up. Glancing at the wrist of his roughed up jacket, the same that ate a portion of the fall, he could see at moment's notice it wasn't coincidence either - that the moment was cooling.

Finger dancing the plastic frame of the hefty pistol along the side, a couple of the pursuers of the now trapped Golemeth shared uneasy stares at one another. Theron could kill the technorat, the Spider, with this much distraction and firepower he had, but that wasn't the part that worried him. It was the "shoot everything" response the gangers and the geeky killer probably had if it kicked off, meaning over half of them were getting tagged by something. Ironically Golemeth would probably be fine, but the rest of them? Scav food and free cyber just sitting out in a bloody slum street.

Brushing his nose with the back of a wrist, Theron shook his head, "I don't want the gun or gizmo, I want him."

A few of the wary eyes shifted from the robotic monstrosity and the unconscious brute then snapped back. Theron threw a bit more to sweeten the dialogue, "Pick your prizes, as long as he ain't dead or dying from it."

The hunter neglected to mention that he really did not need the solo alive, rather just his brain mostly that in one piece, but work paid better when you brought people back alive, especially tanks like the one man army there. The hardware wasn't worth much, hell half of it had some sort of hole in it from tonight, and all the things keeping Golemeth alive were all internal cyber by the looks of it. But the rep? The credits? Much, much better. The laser disk and whatever was on it? Bonus if he put hands on. The weapon and the tech? Just more money. The entire bit about not dying in a stand off? Hard to put a price on.

The only unexpected party was the one the rooftop hunter now heard coming, brow quirked at it reflexively and the rest of him turning a bit at the waist to follow it. Some of the others took heed and glanced back, almost sharing the words Theron muttered under his breath.

"Now fucking what?"

Hidden 2 yrs ago 1 yr ago Post by SleepingSilence
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SleepingSilence OC, Plz No Stealz.

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Her lone look and long-lasting lover’s lament lured her to a lengthy labyrinth leading to little but leering at lurid landscape. Dammit, she completely abandoned her objective, instead going on a wild goose chase. Why did a similar birthmark from her memories that she could’ve easily misremembered cause such an impulsive reaction?

Simmering and stewing in her thoughts, sitting on a stool with her arms crossed. A picture was supposedly worth a thousand words, but her recorded footage and strained explanations wouldn’t be satisfy her master. Stalking the recognized target like a beast and chasing its prey, turning a street corner then sprinting off in a separate direction and never looking back. Ruining her chance to learn about Lieutenant Davidson in the process. As if she stepped through a painting into another dimension, gore spread across walls like paint becoming the creators’ canvas.

Inside a large data storage room with enough toppled dented shelves with dismantled dossiers splattered onto the floor, the excessive blood bleed the ink upon the pages. Two stiffs in this room alone, one suffered death by a thousands cuts if you rounded down. The other body had been smashed beyond recognition, making her unable to elucidate what unfolded. If theft was the primary motivation, why did the culprit clearly drag out all his victims’ demise? Before she started to question why was she lingering long after losing track of her person of interest. But she already knew that answer; delaying the inevitable of having to explain to him why she disobeyed vital orders.

Holding her breath to escape the stench. The sheer graphical randomness only expanded her imagination as she left the room and sauntered down the high-tech hallways. A melody of the low pitched buzzing of generators and sounds of gas hissing from ruptured black hoses that connected from wall to wall, aided the atmosphere. The cyan lighting further illuminating the dismal display, least that’s how she could imagine getting it described by the psychopath that proceeded here. Four more bodies. One hanging from a wide transparent window from the eastern wall, along with their severed head and the shattered glass littering the ground. Trying to carefully cross around the pools of red, stepping over the one too many chopped-off limbs toward the merging hallway to the right...

These certainly weren’t perpetrators of the previous firefights, now happening multiple blocks away from Scarlett. Hell — there wasn't even a stray firearm in view. Though that was her speaking too soon, catching an accidental whiff and following the potent aroma of the spicer ingredients often used for ramen. Noticing a pair of bloody footprints scampering into the available exit, a cramped kitchen finding numerous bullet holes and shells scattered throughout the area...

She walked into the small restaurant and scanned her surroundings, several booths with some empty bowls and chopsticks, an Ingram MAC 14 in disrepair beside a dismembered gun wielder lying face up in the booth. Their mouth covered with a dark bandanna, not masking the horror expressed in their lifeless eyes. A broken ordering machine/ATM rotting in the corner. Tall bar stools adjacent to a couple cans of soda spilled onto the dining countertop. Scarlett felt the chill of wind coming from the exposed entrance that lead to the outside streets. A single step difference from being indoors and on the stone sidewalk, approaching a plastered missing persons’ poster and seeing Davison’s information brazenly displayed. Just nothing she hadn't been briefed on extensively that also wasn't public.

She peeled it off the wall, letting out a disappointed sigh. But then her eyes suddenly stuck to the back like a dart hitting the bullseye. That’s exactly what she needed! Walking out underneath the glow of the cartoonish neon sign hanging above, displaying a colorful bowl of ramen with a face and showing they were open 24/7. She dashed off, also less fortunately smelling the pungent garbage bag pile as she passed by. The burden of concern lessening upon her shoulders, maybe reporting her findings wouldn’t receive scornful retaliation after all...

"I just hope I'm not wrong about this..."
Hidden 1 yr ago Post by Hekazu
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Hekazu Cleric to Dice Gods

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The bartender did not make attempts to hide his disappointment when the newcomer refused to drink. "That's going to bite you later, I assure you. Those two are pretty wary around people who seem wary themselves. 's for your own good. But hey, can't force you", the man said with a glint in his eye. Was he being serious or just playing in with the last minute salesman tactics of feeding false information in hopes of coaxing the sale out of the other party? Well whatever it was, it did not appear particularly successful with one of the amphibians arriving much too soon for any potential sale to be made. The man behind the counter clicked his tongue and returned to cleaning things with disinterest. Life was what life was, especially in the Night City. Not all hands dealt were winning ones.

At the table though, the gang leaders were very much holding the better cards. Croaks leaned back in his chair impatiently, his fingers rapping against the hard plastic surface of his gun. It was surprisingly hard to tell from metal spare the sound, and it really made him regret not having cut his fingernails like he had sworn he would do in the morning. The impacts echoed through them uncomfortably, and gave his whole gesture the telltale rattling sound of something going on while he would have preferred it to remain a silent gesture to add a bit of pressure. It just lost something when the partly hollow sound was there, you know? But Ribby appeared to have similar concerns in mind to his partner in crime. They were getting nowhere.

As the younger of the two placed his hand on the table, the three leftmost fingers of his left hand pointed out, Croaks leaned forward and turned his eyes to stare into Nina's. "Thing is, we sort of knew all that. I thought an info broker would pick up on the very visible equipment she has seen carried around here that we have not exactly scrounged it from the gutters. Even this babygirl in my lap, from those stores. So unless you've got something more to add, you might find your paycheck waaaaay more thin than you'd wanted. 'fter all, I don't see no reason to pay for things we already knew for a fact", he laid down the argument, demanding to know more before they discussed terms further. Ribby slowly balled his hand into a fist again and cocked his head to the side.

The question was, what would the woman have for them next. "Of course, if you know anything about the guy in the trench coat that came and told us about this in the first place, that'd be swell too. We are pretty sure he was a corporate guy of some sort and we were damn close to shooting his head off, but he had this air around him. Air that said that you mess with him and the gang goes poof. Possibly literally. You never know when the corps put 'splosives in their emissaries", Ribby would offer one way of earning one's pay, one that they probably had the most to learn about. But that meant it was just as unlikely for her to know. But if she did, well, they would be able to put in the cash for it, he at least hoped.

Croaks cracked his neck, taking a few seconds to rub the sore spot with his hand before saying just a few more words: "But yeah, if you have anything new then we do have what to pay you with. Let's just say we ended up a shipment short, so there's a lot of cash to draw from. Speak, and we answer in eurobucks." Should be convincing enough, he hoped. And if not, well, they had more guns here. She had tech on her. Rippers might pay a pretty penny, if she wouldn't turn out to be useful in any other way.

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Hidden 1 yr ago Post by 13org
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"Hey! No need to be so impatient!" Nina said, sighing as she heard Ribby and Croak's harsh words.

It wasn't surprising they wanted to go right to the point, but Nina just wanted to test the waters a bit. Not only she wanted to know what exactly did they knew, but it was also a way to tell them that she wasn't simply a mindless information seller, but she knew how exactly the situation was. It was a little... trick... she learned with some other information brokers as a way to secure possible clients. After all, information coming from people who knew how the situation was in the area and wasn't merely 'memorizing words' and selling that, was much more safer and reliable.

"Don't think this is all I know. I know that what I said now isn't exactly... secret. I just thought you guys would find that getting info from someone that knows what is happening around these parts and know the situation that is happening is more way more reliable than if you were talking with someone who just 'happened to hear someone talking about it', don't you guys agree?" Nina asked, with a mischievous smirk.

"Well... that and it may help you guys to see the benefits in working with me... A loyal clientele is always welcome, you know?" Nina said, with a smile.

The hollow sound plastic as Croak tapped his fingers on his gun was also a reminder that Nina was completely unarmed apart of her knife and wasn't wearing any equipment, but that fact didn't faze her. Nina still believed that negotiation would go perfectly well.

"To the interesting part then, shall we? Does the name 'Murkywater Security' ring a bell for you guys?"
Nina asked, with a mischievous smirk as she leaned on the table.

"Those who knew Lt. Davison often said that he was a very greedy man. It's not a secret that he pretty much sold equipment to gangs on opposite ends of a conflict without even hesitating..." Nina said, carefully watching both men's reactions.

"Until there, everything is ok, right? Well... What if I said to you guys that a few months before Lt. Davison disappeared, he met up with some guys who definitely weren't from any gangs around here? Not once or twice too... but quite a few times to be honest..." Nina continued, still watching their movements. Nina knew very well that they were armed and the fact that they were tapping their guns while talking with her was a clear warning that they wouldn't hesitate in using their guns if she proved to be useless to them.

"From what I've been able to gather... Whoever these guys were, Lt. Davison's dealing with them made the guys at Murkywater Security pretty irritated... Him selling things to gangs & etc. wasn't something that had anything to do with Murkywater, but the second he started to speak with these other guys, it suddenly became their business." Nina continued.

"Call it female intuition, but I think that these guys at the Murkywater Security are more than what they appear to be... Mostly always, my intuition is spot on, but it's still, just a hunch..." Nina said, resting her head on her hands, leaning over the table.

"About the guy in trench coat... I'm not sure if that's your man, but I've heard some rumors about a corporate solo with dark skin, trench coat and a beanie hat... Not sure if that's really him but I wouldn't be surprised if this guy had something to do with Murkywater too or maybe another corp." Nina completed with a mischievous smile as she looked at both men.

"If things are as I'm theorizing... It wouldn't be surprising if there were other corporations involved in this behind the shadows... Maybe other corps who themselves don't like Murkywater that much? Maybe rival corps..." Nina completed.

"For now, that's all I have. But I could search around some more if you guys agree to form a... temporary partnership..." Nina said with a wink and a discreet laugh.

"So... Was that info good enough for you guys?" Nina asked, looking to both men.
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Hidden 1 yr ago 1 yr ago Post by SleepingSilence
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SleepingSilence OC, Plz No Stealz.

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The flourish of lights illuminating the cracks in the pavement and noise coming from the grungy streets with dilapidated and modern structures sharing space. Sirens, screams, shots, the smoke pouring from buildings that never stopped burning her nostrils. An abandoned security vehicle in the middle of the road, stripped of an engine, radio and its tires. A huddled group of young hooligans with baseball bats, sitting by a dumpster fire and chucking some emptied plastic jugs inside. One boy striking a fleeting glance with Scarlett, giving her a vacant, yet fierce stare, looking as if he face-planted into powdered sugar. The city really brought a new meaning to crystal clarity.

Her full sprint passing through couldn’t slip past reality, getting caught in the moment. How was she going to return without transportation? That recollection shattered her stride like a bag filled with hammers thrown into her plans. She hadn’t remembered to specify a retrieval time and location, did that idiot explain anything? Would she have bothered to listen even if he did? She groaned aloud and smacked the side her helmet, then thinking about her limited options. Balancing the risk of the police, shootouts and further chaos for the chance of having her ride waiting there like a carriage ready to whisk her away. It reflected a fantasy that made the broken fragments laying beside the overflowing trash can belong to a glass slipper, and the pool of chunky orange goop from a crushed pumpkin. But the distinct smell of booze and food poisoning clung to her, as she only kept walking to distance herself from the oncoming nausea...

After six minutes of ambling across sidewalks had elapsed, a couple of revving motorcycles had simultaneously pulled over toward adjacent empty bike racks with loose steel chains piled on the ground on the street corner ahead of her. She suddenly recognized at least one of the drivers as he removed his headgear, another Reaper apart of her masters hirelings. The face of forty going on twenty-five from cybernetics, dressed like money didn’t matter, the artifice clear as his glossy sheen in his eyes. His voice being the most apparent giveaway of his age, sounding like the cigarettes he smoked bore holes in his lungs.

“Lookin’ for a ride, Scarlett? We were just heading back to The Fortress.”

What were the odds? She hated the very concept of fate, and calling it fortune was debatable, more accurately a set of circumstances that settled her prominent query. Still as the air she remained silent and standing, making her decision underneath a flickering street-lights exposing Scarlett's soaked red body. Interrupted by a familiar sneering sound from the armored woman removing her dark hood and showing off her long synthetic bright blue hair, like she was proudly displaying the mop dyed with window cleaner, affixed to cover her balding spots.

“Let the self-serving mutt find her own way home.” The woman cawed, an appropriate description given her similarities with scavenger birds. Scarlett kept her mouth shut, answering with a nod of acknowledgement, while hiding a smirk and sauntered up to the man’s motorcycle. Briefly touching her holster, inserting her fingertip and feeling where she’d hidden the folded piece of paper. “Bitch, get your own boyfriend to drive you-Oh, right! He’s dead. Not that you wouldn’t fuck him, if he had any bones you could stick-”

Something would have snapped before she finished her sentence. Charging her and lunging at her like a beast, knocking her off the motorbike and slamming her backside into the bike rack. Her weapon stuck strapped ineffectually to her back pinned to the concrete. Scarlett’s concentration unbroken by the shouts of the other men who she knew couldn’t kill her, let alone stop her fast enough. Scarlett quickly binding her movements with the chains, leaving her cries as her last desperate struggle. Proceeding to bash her skull with her fists continually smashing in a blind rage until the blind would have equal measures to recognize the leftovers...

But her inner demons were pacified, with the first man snapping at her.

“Cut that out, before I inform the boss how much his ammunition you wasted on a single flunkie that you let escape and it comes out of your paycheck.” He warned through clenched teeth and a low growl.

“Don’t talk about that with her around.” She muttered in a defensive tone, facing away from them and pulling her hood up.

“Scarlett isn’t going to tattle. She’s a good girl. So no more bickering.” The man stated in a casual way, though she’d long gotten used to the pet-speak. The man pointed over to the third wheel who remained entirely silent. “Get on with Chaz, he won’t bite.” He chuckled at his own statement failing to brighten the mood. Scarlett hopped on rear of the motorcycle and awkwardly put her hands on the stranger’s shoulders, least they were clean and didn’t wreak...

With the sound of burning oil, they sped off toward The Fortress. Scarlett despite her best effort to focus on the road, got lost in her anxiety...

“Just get back with the news in one piece. Nobody else can know about this. If I’m right, anyone trying to discover Davison’s whereabouts would kill for this information…”
Hidden 1 yr ago Post by Hekazu
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Hekazu Cleric to Dice Gods

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Well now they were actually getting somewhere. So, Davison had found himself new clients. Didn't sound all that implausible actually. He'd always tried to see if he could get the gang to buy just a bit more lead. If they would be looking for something just a little higher end. He had wanted those eurobucks. But being a dumb fuck about it did tend to get one into trouble. Yeah, figures. Croaks glanced at Ribby, who he found was already looking at him. The two nodded at each other and returned to listening what there was to be said, though the rapping of the fingers on the gun of Croaks' didn't cease for a moment.

Ribby was happy to hear that the broker indeed had something new to tell them, but it would take a fair bit more for Croaks to be as impressed. What had been told was something, sure, meant he didn't need to go talking to rivals, but he wouldn't really have gone talking to rivals in the first place. Unless this Nina had more to tell, it was as good as a waste of money. But since she knew things, they wouldn't be gunning her down at least, that much was clear. No reason to tell her that just yet though. Could get more out of her that way.

Ribby didn't like how she played her cards on trying to get them to be staying customers so plainly on the table. It took balls, sure, and that was a good thing in someone they needed on the streets, but that was just bad business practice. And it made this a binary decision, more or less. If they'd go to anyone else she would take it personally now. And that would mean losing a contact. Bad, but nothing irrecoverable. Just something one would rather avoid. Croaks didn't mind one way or the other though. He spent this time drawing a deep breath and pushing the air through his nose with an annoyed glance that said "hurry up" written on his face. After all, his role was that of the impatient one.

At least it didn't take much of vocal encouragement to get the broker to go on. According to her, it was likely that the other people were other megacorporation bodies, and now Murkywater was mad because that meant weapons in the wrong hands. That would make this a bit beyond the capabilities of a gang like theirs and the worry reflected off of Ribby's face, but Croaks took it with the disinterested gesture of raising his gun a bit and dusting the body of it of imaginary dust with his palm and running his fingertips over the magazine embedded in the plastic. It was speculation, little more than that. Nothing to get worried about. Could just have been gangs the corporation was trying to hold back just as well.

It was when she switched subjects to the beanie head that Croaks set the gun back down again and took a sip of his drink before leaning a bit closer towards Nina. This was something he really preferred to know. She was more or less certain that the man had megacorp connections, though Ribby could actually confirm that for her. "I'll give you a nugget, but I'm gonna cut that from the pay. The guy that fits that description and showed his face here just when the lieutenant went missing? Ya, he had a logo on both the beanie and the trench. All in black, so hard to see, but I could bet my arse the "MW" would stand for that Murkywater lot", the brains offered to cut a small deal with the one that liked knowledge for sales purposes. And with her having offered a partnership of sorts not long before the offer, he figured it would do no harm.

"About that partnership though…", he would add before sucking air in through his teeth and raising his glass to his lips, Croaks knowing all too well what that sign was. Ribby was jealous. He'd called this woman over to help Croaks out, and now she was winking and offering partnerships and all, and to top it off she wasn't ugly or anything. The bigger man smirked and let out a muffled chortle before again turning back from his 'brother' to Nina.

"Yeah. We can do things with the data. As long as it turns out its all true, you'll be just fine as well", he responded and dug out a small stack of eurobucks from his back pocket, having to lift his rear off the chair for a moment to be able to reach. "Lessee here…", he mumbled while flipping over a few of the inconsequential bills while Ribby performed the actual procuring of money and tossed a small chipcard onto the table before Nina. "Ah, there we go", Croaks would put his wallet down and nod towards the payment on the table. "About that gang up though. Wanna talk more 'bout it? Cuz I'll be heading out anyhow, and it won't hurt to have people on the side."

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