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Current "I'm an actor. I will say anything for money." -- Also Charlton Heston
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Starting up a preimum service of content from actors like Radcliffe, Day-Lewis, Bruhl, and Craig. Calling it OnlyDans.
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Please, guys. The status bar is for more important things... like cringe status updates.
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Gotta love people suddenly becoming apolitical when someone is doing something they approve of.
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Deleting statuses? That's a triple cringe from me, dog.
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Bio

None of your damn business.

Most Recent Posts

PART I


“There was nothing wrong with Southern California that a rise in the ocean level wouldn’t cure.”
― Ross Macdonald





ACCESSING GOLDEN STATE BUREAU OF INVESTIGATIONS (GSBI) CASE FOLDER #050520551321

......

ACCESSING ADDENDUM FILE #090220550025: AUDIO, VISUAL, AND MEMORY INFORMATION AUDIT (MIA) OF DI KIMBERLY MORGAN GATES, BADGE #1988

WRITTEN TRANSCRIPT FOLLOWS:

......

ASA Tompkins: It is currently September 2nd, 2055 at 12:25 AM. Speaking is Assistant State's Attorney Paul Tompkins. Present are myself, GSBI SAC Gilberto Hernandez, and our interview subject. Kim, state your full name and rank for the record, please.

DI Gates: Kimberly Morgan Gates, Inspector Detective with the GSBI.

Tompkins: And you affirm you give this statement to us on your own freewill?

Gates: I do.

Tompkins: And you consent to undergo MIA readings concurrent to your statement?

Gates: Do I have a choice?

SAC Hernandez: *clears throat*

*Five seconds of silence follow*


Gates: Guess that answers that. So, yes I consent to undergo MIA readings concurrent to my statement. Furthermore, I swear the following statement I give is the truth as I believe it to be, as any MIA readings will confirm. There. Everyone’s asses are now covered.

Hernandez: I'll fire up the MIA.

Tompkins: Alright, Kim. Just walk us through the whole case from start to finish.




Los Angeles
May 5th, 2055
3:45 AM

The chirping of my terminal woke me up. My eyes fluttered in the darkness and I groaned as I rolled over to the screen resting on my nightstand. The display flashed an incoming call from a number I didn’t recognize and one not in my contacts. The area code was a Simi Valley address. Simi Valley was an LAPD stronghold dating back to the days of Darryl Gates. Back in my time in the LAPD I was among the small minority that actually lived in the city I was sworn to protect. The lateness of the call and the area code gave me enough confidence to accept the call.

“This is Gates,” I mumbled.

“Inspector Gates, this is Detective Rick Jackson with LAPD's OCU.”

I was glad that Jackson didn’t opt for video calling me since I rolled my eyes at the mention of the Organized Crime Unit. At least three of four times a week I received requests for further info from half of the OC squads across Golden State. Everyone knew cybercrime was a huge part of how these guys operated these days, but more often than not their requests were just shots in the dark that often lead to little or no information on the suspected criminals they were chasing. Just another way these guys could use me to make it look like they were doing work.

“You realize cybercrime is really a nine to five type job, yes? No need to call in the middle of the night about someone phishing for credit card---”

“It’s about a murder,” said Jackson. I watched the soundwaves of Jackson's voice flow up and down across the terminal as he spoke. “Gangland style execution tonight in Los Feliz. Biometrics list the victim as one Spencer Duckworth. He’s got a rapsheet a mile long.”

The news took me back. It was a name I hadn’t heard in years. That was the real surprise, not the murder part. I knew eventually I'd get a call from some other cop about Duck's incarceration or untimely demise.

“I know Duckworth,” I said softly. “He is -- was, I guess -- my CI.”

“We know. He also had you listed as his next of kin of all things. I figured with you being a fellow cop I don’t actually have to worry about doing the notification in person. Saves me a trip and--”

“Are you still at the crime scene?” I asked. I was already throwing back the covers and wide awake.

“Yeah, and I see where you’re going but that’s not necessary, Inspector. I’ll send you all the information we get from the scene if you want to take a look.”

“I wanna see it with my own two eyes,” I said. I padded across the carpet of my bedroom towards my closet.

“Murder is LAPD business, Inspector.” I could hear the agitation in Jackson’s voice. I half expected him to call me lady instead of inspector. “If we find something related to your field we’ll ask. Not a lot we can gain by having a Statie computer cop take a look at the crime scene.”

“How about a Statie computer cop who was former Robbery Homicide?” I asked with just a hint of humor in my voice. “Now please send me the address of the crime scene or I may be forced to call Captain Bala at home. I know he also works nine to five, wonder how he’d feel about a Statie calling him in the middle of the night requesting access to his crime scene because his detective wouldn’t allow it?”




I used the commandeer function on my app to get a Ryde from my apartment in Crenshaw up to Los Feliz. My status as non-emergency law enforcement meant I had to abide by Executive Order 28 and use ride shares and public transportation wherever I needed to go. But thankfully the state picked up the tab for me.

The car buzzed up Western Avenue in the light early morning traffic. I sat alone in the backseat and absent-mindedly watched the car pilot itself into the right lane before taking a right turn at the next intersection. The monitor mounted to the backseat ran ads and news updates. The commandeer function meant you get the basic package from Ryde. I could have paid out of pocket to have an ad-free trip, but at this point it was all white noise to me. As was the news. More updates on the ongoing Belt famine, Nevada’s formal request of annexation into the GS, and lighter news on some new content coming to YouSee. Everything had happened, but yet nothing had happened.

My thoughts were on Duck and the last time I saw him. One of my first cases with the GSBI. San Francisco PD needed help tracking down a group of Onionheads working for some human traffickers. We’d met at an 80’s themed diner in Silver Lake for breakfast. He’d given me the information I needed to track their routing and I’d given him one get out of jail free card, good to cash in on anything up to a Class C Felony. We chatted a little after the transaction was done. His birthday was coming up at that point. About to be twenty-two and still living on the wrong side of the law.

“You were just a kid when I first busted you,” I said as I put my handheld against the payment terminal on the table.

“Something like that,” he said with a chuckle. “I knew I’d fucked up when I saw that GSBI badge. It wasn’t some LAPD redneck that had busted my ass.”

“A sixteen year old with enough stolen credit card money to ride around South LA in a custom Model 10? You’re lucky I got you before the LAPD did,” I said with a wry smile. “You’d be in LSP until 2100 if anyone other than me had gotten you.”

“Guess you got an eye for talent,” Duck laughed. "Know a good snitch when you see one."

I took a sip of my coffee. Duck, never a coffee drinker, had a glass of retro New Coke with breakfast.

“You know I have connections with a lot of cybersecurity people,” I said after a short silence. “They’re always on the lookout for someone smart they can make into a white hat. There’s a lot of money to be made doing work for these tech companies. And it’s all legal.”

“Then I wouldn’t be your snitch anymore,” he said. “You’d lose one of your best assets.”

I nodded and shrugged. “It’s a sacrifice I’d be willing to make.”

He smiled and looked down at the table, settling into something like a deep thought. He looked back up at me after a few long moments.

“What they do is legal,” he said, “but I’m not sure how much more moral it is than what I do. At least I’m honest about my shit. Yes, I scam people out of their information, but I’m not using that for anything other than to make my pockets fat. What do they do? They take all that information -- credit card, bio readings, data history -- and make money off of it. We’re both criminals, Detective, the only difference is nobody’s gonna pass legislation making my shit legal.”

“I respect the principal,” I said before adding. “But you know your luck can’t run forever, right? Eventually you’re going to get arrested for something I can’t help with… or worse.”

“Tell you what,” he said with a smirk. “We’ll make a deal. If I make it to thirty without getting arrested or washed, I’ll hang up my black hat and put on my tie and collared shirt for you. I’ll become some corporate motherfucker at a cubicle all day.”




Los Feliz
4:30 AM

I stepped out of the Ryde and completed the transaction on my handheld before the automated car disappeared into the night. The address was the site of a public housing zone. Low-rise apartments that stretched out across the entire five block radius. Everyone living here were either on UBI or some form of GSER. Los Feliz had once been a “bad neighborhood” at the end of the 20th century, but gentrification had turned it into a clean, crime-free, and expensive neighborhood in the early 2000’s. But the cycle had revolved back around so that the affluent, wealthier, and by and large whiter citizens of Los Feliz moved on to the next hotspot twenty years ago. What was left behind here were the people who couldn’t afford to move, or simply didn’t want to.

A trio of LAPD squadcars down the block were parked in a semi-circle in an open space that served as the neighborhoods courtyard. The blue LED lights of the cars cast the entire courtyard in a bright blue glow. A drone with LAPD markings flew overhead, hovering slightly to monitor me before moving on. A uniformed officer keeping watch in front of the cars eyeballed me as I approached. I held my badge up in my right hand, my left hand up in the air for a bioscan.

“Who called the Staties?” He asked as he scanned my palm with a handheld.

“Detective Jackson apparently needs some help.”

I walked past the cop and on to the crime scene. Smaller drones hovered over the area, taking photos and video of the activity onsite. A few crime scene techs were directing the drones with their handhelds. A blue tarp rested over something in the middle of it all. I couldn’t pull my eyes away from the tarp. This was far from the first time I’d visited a crime scene where someone I knew was the victim. And like in the past, the body held a strange gravity over me. Maybe it was the old murder cop inside of me yearning to break free?

“You must be Gates,” a gruff voice said from my left.

Rick Jackson looked every bit like the caveman cop I assumed he was. Graying hair with a ruddy face, fat body, and a gun on his hip like the Santos Bill had never existed. He wore a polo shirt with the LAPD logo on the left breast pocket. His khaki pants were too baggy and drooped down around his hips, a side effect of Jackson not realizing his stomach had expanded. He was still buying pants with a smaller waistline, forced to wear them beneath his natural waistline underneath the gut. The heavy gun meant he had to constantly keep pulling up his pants.

“Inspector Gates,” I corrected. “I’d like to see the body.”

Jackson led me towards the tarp. The ground we walked on was muddy. This being LA, I couldn’t remember the last time it had actually rained naturally.

“We think it was a pretty straight forward execution,” said Jackson. “Victim’s listed address was at this apartment complex. Despite his criminal history, he was on UBI.”

“He made his money as a scammer,” I said. “But you can still get UBI with a criminal record. I’m sure people argue they need it more than most.”

Jackson grunted in response, his way of avoiding a political debate in the middle of an active crime scene. He pulled a pair of black vinyl gloves from his back pocket and slipped them on. I stood back and let him pull back the tarp.

Duck’s body was on its stomach, his head turned to the right. I could see the blank, lifeless eyes looking at nothing in particular. Under his left eye was the exit wound, a bloody hole that still had traces of gore and brain matter around the edge. His face was frozen in a look of mild inconvenience, like getting killed was just a bother more than anything.

“Stippling on the entry wound indicates the barrel of the gun was right against his head. We found a .45 casing, but no bullet yet.”

“Check the ground,” I said after looking away from Duck’s body. “The muddy ground? Bullet probably went through Duckworth, into the ground, and nicked an irrigation pipe buried down there.”

Jackson’s face flashed with confusion, until he looked at the mud and something clicked.

“Someone do a scan,” he ordered one of the techs. “Metalurgic, within a ten foot radius of the body and no deeper than two feet.”

“I assume his brain was too shredded for a MIA reading?” I asked Jackson as he stepped away.

“Even if it wasn’t we were too late,” said Jackson. “Patrol didn’t arrive until forty-five minutes after the call. The brain was long dead at that point.”

Jackson continued on about the chain of events after the discovery, the process of how patrol calls the Hollywood Homicide and how homicide, seeing Duck was a figure with organized crime ties, gladly called OCU and their one man on-call tonight, Jackson to handle the case. LAPD is at its most efficient when it comes to passing the buck. While Jackson went on about this, I was barely listening. Instead my eyes looked around the courtyard for some sign of a camera. There were very few places you could go in Golden State that weren’t being surveilled. Something or someone was always watching.
“No cameras?” I asked Jackson.

“Used to be,” he said. “Entire courtyard was wired up by the security company who protects the place. But someone cut the cords about four months ago and the company never fixed them. According to them the courtyard was a low-risk environment. Not worth the extra money to fix it up.”

“Everyone has handhelds, Detective,” I said. “It’s the law. Someone somewhere in the apartment complex has to have some sort of video around the time of the shooting.”

Jackson bristled and hitched his sagging pants up. “Are you telling me how to do my job?”

“No,” I said. “Just suggesting it.”

Jackson whistled at the patrol officer keeping guard at the front of the crime scene.

“Start knocking on doors,” he said. “Get everyone’s device and see what you find. You take the apartments on the top floor, I'll take the ones on the ground.”

I looked back at Duck’s body and thought back to our last conversation a few years ago and his promise to get out by thirty. I knew then it was probably the closest Duck would ever come to retiring from the life voluntarily, and even then it was some half-assed measure to placate me. I’d know plenty of criminals like Duck over the years. Be it hackers, stick-up men, or drug dealers. They never get out of the criminal life until they’re forced.

“Twenty-seven,” I said softly to myself. “You almost made it.”
Pax Narcotica:
A Narco Cartel RP

“The Americans take a product that literally grows on trees and turn it into a valuable commodity. Without
them, cocaine and marijuana would be like oranges, and instead of making billions smuggling it, I’d be making pennies doing stoop labor in some California field, picking it.”

-- Don Winslow



A masked Mexican soldier patrols the streets of Veracruz, on October 10, 2011.




TL;DR Summary:

  • Mexico in the late 2000's to early 2010's
  • Be it cop, sicario, or kingpin you're involved the Mexican Drug war.
  • GM has final say on all character/cartel choices.
  • No US faction will be playable.

In Character Info

Mexico, the land of pyramids and palaces, deserts and jungles, mountains and beaches, markets and gardens, boulevards and cobblestone streets, broad plazas and hidden courtyards, is now known as a slaughter ground. The Mexican Drug War is in full force and you're in the middle of it. Bodies and bodies fall day after day in the wars between the narcotraficantes who have formed their own shadow governments across the nation of Mexico. Now these quasi-kingdoms fight and die for the right to fuel the United States' massive drug problem and all the cash that comes with it. Armies pledged to one faction or the other roam the land and fight each other, the Mexican police and army forces, and even the United States in complex, bloody wars that every aspect of society it touches. Join the fight on whatever side you'd like and try to take the crown for yourself. But be careful. People don't run the cartel; the cartel runs people


Out of Character Info:

So essentially this will be an RP set in Mexico during the ongoing drug wars. My wish is to run it as a hybrid of a NRP and a conventional game. There's a focus on the cartels and the factions, but there's also a focus on the individuals within those factions and the toll the war takes on everyone. You've got the option of taking over a faction, but also just being a single character. I just want to let everyone tell good stories.


Faction Sheet

Faction Name:
Territory:
Allies:
Faction History:
Important Characters:

Individual Character Sheet


Name:
Location:
Allegiance:
Personality:
History:
Gotham City
Diamond District
11:20 PM


Got a joke for you.

A lock is like a woman.

It's expensive?

No, that's not it.

A lock is like a woman.

It's what stands between you and money?

No, still not it.

A lock is like a woman.

It requires just the right touch.

--CLICK!--

There it is. And there it goes. The deadbolt lock was free. With it gone there was just a single lock on the doorknob that I could have opened with a strong look. I popped it free quicker than a high school boy pops off his girl's bra. And just like the proverbial teen necking in the backseat of a car I was in the promised land.

Through the door and down a dark corridor was Zinkman & Sons Diamond Exchange, one of the top diamond emporiums in Gotham and by extension the entire east coast. I am Ahab and this is my white whale, I am Javert and this is my Jean Valjean, I am the Trix Rabbit and these are my Trix. I'm at the finish line after sixteen months of prep, recon, and manipulation. I bribed bureaucrats at City Hall for copies of the building's blueprints. A hacker I know who owes me more than a few favors broke into the security company's mainframe to pull out their security schematics on the place. I dated Issac Zinkman's youngest daughter for six months just to get a feel for the family and learn any trade secrets. We broke up two weeks ago. Oh, Cinnamon. You had the face of a horse, but the body... of a horse. And now that I think about it, was Cinnamon your real name? I thought it was your nickname... and there was that strange way you laughed at my jokes, like a neigh or something...

....

Did... did I date a horse for six months?

Before any more thoughts of my potential bestiality could fill my head something hard and firm found itself resting on the back of my neck.

"Don't move," a voice said from beside my ear. "You're coming with me."

"Or what?" I whispered back.

"Or--"

Something sharp and painful coursed through my body. My feet fell out from under me and I slammed to the floor writhing in pain. The electricity was still working its way through me when a black sack was pulled over my head. Just for good measure a sharp kick to the face bloomed more pain through my body and knocked me unconscious.




Gotham Heights
1:12 AM


When the bag came off my face I was relieved to see that I was not in a police station. That relief quickly vanished when I saw where I was. It was a large, open-ended room with high ceilings and ivory furniture that matched the ivory carpet, that matched the ivory walls. Pretty much me in my black burglar outfit now stained with my own blood stood out in the room like a sore thumb. Even the two muscular thugs flanking both my sides were dressed in ivory shirts, slacks, and shoes.

"Did I die and wake up in the 70's?" I mumbled to myself.

"If only kid."

In the middle of the room, in a big chintz chair the color of -- what other color but Ivory -- was Rupert Roth. I didn't know Roth personally -- I wasn't big time enough to -- but I knew him based on the stories I'd heard about his underworld exploits. He looked like an extra from a bad disco movie. He wore an ivory shirt with half of it unbuttoned, a large gold necklace and medallion caught in the steely gray fur on his chest. He had on a pair of ivory pants that would have looked embarrassing on a man half his age, but made Roth look clownish.

Rupert Roth was the last great Jewish gangster in America. Now days most people associate the mob with the Italians, and it is a fair association to make given the sheer numbers involved. But back in the day Jews were the top dogs in the underworld. Guys like Arnold Rothstein, Bugsy Siegel and Meyer Lanksy handled their business like CEOs and quietly made millions. Murder and violence were involved, sure, but not like it was with the Italians. More importantly, they got out of crime and went legit. Roth had followed that model very well. A gambling empire amassed in the late 60's went major league in the 70's and he removed himself from crime altogether by the time the FBI started hitting the Gotham mobs hard. Now the only organizations Roth belong to were the Chamber of Commerce and the Rotary Club. But there was still that edge. He still had the juice that made him very dangerous, and had me scared shitless to be dragged into his living room in the middle of the night.

"Johnny Lamonica," he said after a moment of silence. "I've heard of you."

"Good things, I hope."

Roth waved his hand in a so-so manner.

"I hear that you're smart, I hear that you're a good thief, I hear that outside of some trouble as a kid, you ain't never been pinched."

"And that I like long walks in the moonlight and a good '62 Bordeaux?"

"I'm questioning your smarts, Johnny," Roth said, ignoring my joke. "First off I've had a tail on you for a solid week and you didn't see him, and then your here with me making stupid jokes."

"Sorry," I said with a shrug. "It's a defense mechanism, I guess. Why have you been following me?"

"Issac Zinkman is a close and personal friend of mine. We go to the same temple, we sit on the same charity boards. He knows who I am and about my past. So, he comes to me asking about this guy dating his little girl Cindy--"

"Cindy," I said with a sigh of relief. "That's right, Cinnamon was her nickname... thank god."

Roth looked at me with contempt and with a slight nod of his head the muscled gorillas on my right slapped me across the face. My face which was already operating at a dull painful throb exploded in pain. My ears rang and I had to bite my tongue to keep from crying out. Roth stared at me long enough to make sure he'd gotten his point across before starting back.

"So Issac has this funny feeling about the guy his little girl is dating, especially after they broke up two weeks ago. So he comes to me and says 'Rothy, this putz made my little girl cry. Find out what he's got to hide and then fucking burn him.' And what do I find out, but the fact that this son of a bitch is an ace burglar, a burglar with a rep across town as reliable and smart, two things that are almost impossible to find when it comes to crooks. Not only is this guy a burglar, but he's planning on robbing my dear friend blind. You, my friend, are in for a world of hurt."

"Unless," I said cautiously, mindful of the two looming thugs on either side of me. "If you were going to hurt me, you would have done it right away with no spiel, or you would have turned me in to the cops. You did neither, so I'm waiting for the part where you give me options."

Something passed across Roth's face. It could have been a smile. It may have been a snarl, or it may have been gas. It was probably something of a mix between the three.

"Smart," he said. "Just like they said. Option 1. I inform Issac that you not only broke his little girl's heart, but also that you were in the middle of stealing his entire life's work when I caught you. Knowing my friend like I do he will kindly ask me to feed your own balls."

"A cannibalistic eunuch. Not the way I wanna go out."

"Option 2. You're a thief. Steal something for me and we will call it quits."

"Steal what, and from where?"

That look again. I was now certain that pained grimace had to be Roth's version of a smile.

"The where is easy. GCPD headquarters. The what? Now, that's gonna take some explaining..."


Then
Kenya


Bruce Wayne stood over the frightened man with a large knife in his hands. The beaten and bruised man was on his knees in the tall grass. Tears rolled down his face and mixed with the blood dripping from his mouth. He sobbed and begged for mercy in Swahili. Kraven stood behind Bruce and watched his protegee with crossed arms.

"Do it," Kraven said. "This is the last lesson, richboy. You have successfully captured your quarry. Now, finish your kill."

"No," Bruce said, looking at his master. "He's a poacher. He needs to be brought to justice."

"You have hunted down this cheater and made him feel like the beasts he hunts. Now like those animals, he will have his throat slit. You want justice? This is justice, richboy. This is not man's law. This is the law of the wild. Fair and cruel, richboy, this is justice."

"No," Bruce said again. He let the knife fall to the ground. "Not like this. We may hunt animals, but we are not animals. I'm sorry, Sergi. I made a mistake."

Bruce turned around and walked through the grasslands while Kraven watched. "YOU THINK YOU ARE BETTER THAN ME?!" He yelled as Bruce walked away. "YOU ARE NOT! NOBODY IS BETTER THAN ME! I AM KRAVEN THE HUNTER! RUN AWAY, RICHBOY! RUN AWAY!"




Now
The Bowery
3:00 AM


Kraven the Hunter carefully crept down the alley. Each step was careful and precise. His shoulder was bloody and burning from the trap Wayne had sprung on him earlier. Since then Kraven had made sure not to make any move without carefully weighing the consequences of it. Wayne was trying to make him his prey, but Kraven knew better. He could not be snared and he could not be defeated. He was the best and no one would ever come close to him.

"Run away, richboy," Kraven muttered under his breath as he spotted an object on the ground. "Run away."

Kraven approached the object and squatted down beside it. A metal cable lay on the ground, knotted together like a noose. It was a hastily made snare trap, Kraven observed, but it had been made rather well considering the circumstances. Kraven eyed the trap and found the trigger in the middle of the noose. He stood and walked a safe distance away from the trap. Taking a dart from his belt, Kraven tossed it at the snare and hit the trigger. The noose closed and zipped upwards towards a fire escape ladder.

"You see?" He shouted in joy. "Nobody is better than me! I am Kraven the Hunter. Who are you, compared to me?!"

Kraven watched the cable go up and smiled at his cleverness... but then stopped when he noticed the trap's counterweight, a large tool chest, was falling down to the ground towards him. He rolled to his right just as the heavy box crashed into the ground. The heavy chest exploded in a shower of metal and tools.

Kraven rolled to his right and looked up just as a large steel toed work boot crashed into his face and knocked him hard onto his back. Kraven felt blood in his mouth and at least two teeth rattling around free from the gum. He dribbled out blood and enamel as he looked up.

"Who am I?" Bruce Wayne asked as he stood over Kraven. He was dressed in the clothes he had found at the hardware store. "I'm Batman."




Both Kraven and Bruce crashed through a brick wall as brick dust and concrete power flew through the air. The two men tumbled across the floor of the rundown building. They came to a stop just feet apart from each other. Both men started to pick themselves up. Kraven moved for the large knife on his hip but Bruce's powerful leg swooped in and kicked the knife from Kraven's hand. The blade clattered away and Bruce drove his shoulder into Kraven's body. He picked the Russian up off his feet and slammed him into the wall of the building. The Russian desperately tried to find any opening to get leverage on the other man, but was unable to find any purchase. Bruce punched Kraven hard in the sternum while the hunter wrapped his hands around Wayne's head.

"I will not be defeated," Kraven said through a bloody mouth. He worked his thumbs into Bruce's eye sockets and started to create pressure. "You want to be bat? Now, you will be blind as one."

Bruce yelled in pain as Kraven drove his thumbs into Bruce's eyes. Bruce reached out blindly and slammed the back of Kraven's head into the wall. The attack caused the hunter to pull back from his eye-gouge. With his free hand, Bruce punched Kraven hard in the jaw and jumped back. Kraven fell to the ground as Bruce wiped trickling blood from his tear duct.

"Surrender," Bruce spat.

"Never," Kraven countered. "A hunter never gives up. To give up is to die. For the hunter, there is only the hunt and death. This, you never understood. You could be a great hunter. Instead you would rather dress up like fool and cry for mommy and daddy. You are useless."

"And you're vain," Bruce said with a hint of a smile as he breathed heavily. "That's what made this so easy. For years they've called you the world's greatest hunter. You've believed in your own legend, Kraven. You've become complacent - cocky. I threw you off your game so much tonight it's pathetic."

"Lies! I am the greatest!"

"Really? Look around. You're here in a unfamiliar environment with a foe you underestimated. He's taken the upper hand, stripped you of all your weapons. He did this because he knows you better than you know yourself. Tell me, what's the first rule of the hunt?"

Kraven roared and charged towards Bruce. Wayne crouched, ready for Kraven's strike. The hunter slashed wide from up top a move Bruce was ready for and easily countered. He grabbed Kraven's wrist and twisted it until he heard a loud pop issue from the arm. The twisted wrist hurt, but Kraven fought on. He kicked his leg up, Bruce dropped low and swept his leg at Kraven's one standing leg.

The hunter fell backwards and landed hard against the floor. Bruce pounced and landed on Kraven with a strike. He broke two of Kraven's ribs with one punch, his left collar bone with another. Kraven fought off the pain and tried to throw his pupil off of him. Bruce responded with a punch to Kraven's right kneecap. The knee buckled and made a crunching sound and Kraven screamed in pain.

"You're beaten," Bruce said as he loomed over Kraven with a fist at the ready to inflict more punishment.

"This... cannot be," he said, his voice filled with frustration as well as pain. "I am Sergei Kravinoff, Kraven the Hunter. The world's best."

"There's this saying a man told me once. It's something to say when things don't go your way. It goes, ,'Иногда вы едите медведя, а иногда медведь ест вас.'" he said in perfect Russian.

"'Sometimes, you eat bear,'" Kraven mumbled under his breath, the ghost of a smile on his face.

Bruce reared back for a final knockout blow to the beaten Hunter.

"'Sometimes, the bear eats you.'"


-30-
T H E L O S E R S
Cpt. Franklin Clay, 33 (b. 1935)
Lt. William Roque, 29 (b. 1939)
Sgt. Carlos "Cougar" Alvarez, 25 (b. 1943)
Sgt. Linwood "Pooch" Porteous, 21 (b. 1947)
Cpl. Jacob "Jake" Jensen, 23 (b. 1945)
Marie Tran, 22 (b. 1946)
Based in Saigon, Vietnam
Active since approximately late 1967


Character Concept


"We the unwilling, lead by the unqualified to kill the unfortunate die for the ungrateful."

That pretty much sums up the average soldier's opinions on the Vietnam War. It's a fucking mess if you ask anyone who is even paying attention and there seems to be no end in sight. While President Johnson digs his heels in with an unprecedented bombing campaign with the ever optimistic goal of turning North Vietnam into the world's biggest parking lot, the CIA opts for a more surgical approach.

Green Beret Captain Franklin Clay heads up a new unit of less than desirable soldiers known as The Losers. Their targets are high-ranking VC members, as well as VC sympathizers and collaborators operating in South Vietnam. With intel given to them by their Agency handler, Max, they carry out a covert war designed to draw bring South Vietnam to the negotiating table and to get President Johnson four more years in the White House. But as Clay and his team wade deeper into the murky waters of Vietnam, they discover their work is in service of something much sinister than even the propagation of the US industrial death complex.




War, crime, death, history, conspiracies, and nihilistic characters if I can find the time to post. That's all I offer and nothing more.

Key Notes


TBA

References / Sample Post


<Snipped quote by Byrd Man>
Yeah it's good I guess.



I felt like making a rash decision tonight.

T H E L O S E R S
Cpt. Franklin Clay, 33 (b. 1935)
Sgt. William Roque, 29 (b. 1939)
Sgt. Carlos "Cougar" Alvarez, 25 (b. 1943)
Sgt. Linwood "Pooch" Porteous, 21 (b. 1947)
Cpl. Jacob "Jake" Jensen, 23 (b. 1945)
Marie Tran, 23 (b. 1945)
Based in Saigon, Vietnam
Active since approximately late 1967


Character Concept


"We the unwilling, lead by the unqualified to kill the unfortunate die for the ungrateful."

That pretty much sums up the average soldier's opinions on the Vietnam War. It's a fucking mess if you ask anyone who is even paying attention and there seems to be no end in sight. While President Johnson digs his heels in with an unprecedented bombing campaign with the ever optimistic goal of turning North Vietnam into the world's biggest parking lot, the CIA opts for a more surgical approach.

Green Beret Captain Franklin Clay heads up a new unit of less than desirable soldiers known as The Losers. Their targets are high-ranking VC members, as well as VC sympathizers and collaborators operating in South Vietnam. With intel given to them by their Agency handler, Max, they carry out a covert war designed to draw bring South Vietnam to the negotiating table and to get President Johnson four more years in the White House. But as Clay and his team wade deeper into the murky waters of Vietnam, they discover their work is in service of something much sinister than even the propagation of the US industrial death complex.




War, crime, death, history, conspiracies, and nihilistic characters if I can find the time to post. That's all I offer and nothing more.

Key Notes


TBA

References / Sample Post




Industrial Pak
12:50 AM


I ran barefoot across the factory rooftop, gravel biting into the soles of my feet. With my running start I hurled myself into the air over a gap between buildings. I hit the roof of the adjacent building hard and landed with a hard thump. Recovering from my fall, I stayed low to the ground and hugged the shadows. Even in the dark I could feel his eyes upon me. It had been years since he had taught me the hunt, and I had learned well. But laying in the dark, with the a crushing sense of foreboding creeping in, I knew who the real master was. I took a deep breath in an attempt to clear my mind. Kraven was the better hunter. On that fact there was never any doubt. But he didn't know this city like I do. He's the master of the jungle, but the urban jungle is a different story.

Gathering myself, I began to creep across the rooftop. I prepared for an ambush after the crunch of gravel that accompanied each footfall. I made my way to the fire escape and climbed down towards the street. As I started down I heard a sound. A new noise amidst all the sirens, hoking horns, and sounds of industry. A gentle sound. Like rope tearing through the air.

Letting go of the fire escape I fell back towards the ground as a bola struck the ladder and wrapped around the rungs. Falling towards the ground, I straightened my body and dove from two stories up into a trash dumpster. I may have hit trash but it was all glass bottles and plastic trays. Cut, bleeding, and in pain, I climbed out the trash and hurried into the shadows.

"That was my warm-up," Kraven's voice echoed through the alley I was seeking refuge in. Although his voice was close, there was no sign of the man. "So far, so easy. You are predictable, richboy. What will you do, now?"

The courthouse clock four blocks over chimed one in the morning. That's when inspiration hit me like a bolt of lighting. Standing I darted from the shadows and ran down the alley. Kraven chuckled and the sounds of his laughter followed me out the alley. Leaving the alley, I ran across the street to another building's side. Once there I jumped on the building's fire escape and climbed up to the rooftop. A moment later I was running as fast as I could and leaping across the gaps between buildings.

Footsteps crunched behind me, distant at first they were rapidly approaching.

"I have tracked down cheetahs, gazelles," Kraven yelled. "Do you think you can outrun me?!"

"No," I hollered back. I could feel the gentle vibrations getting stronger as I approached the edge of the rooftop. "But I know the 1:05 can outrun you!"

Jumping from the roof I landed on the last car of a passing subway train as it tore past the building. Struggling to find a foothold, I managed to stand up and look back at Kraven as the train carried me off into the distance.




The Bowery
1:35 AM


I jumped off the subway while it was stopped at the station and melted into the shadows. The stunt with the train had bought me some time, but I needed to go on the offensive. A few blocks away I came across a closed hardware store. The doors and windows were barred, but it wasn't entirely impregnable. I kept a running total and I went in and took the items I needed. I made a note to send the money to the store the next morning.

If I lived to see the morning.





2:45 AM

Kraven could tell Wayne was nearby. He could smell him. Even through the repugnant stenches of this city, Bruce Wayne had a unique scent. He smelled like silk suits and money, like all people of wealth. Despite the year he spent at Kraven's side, Wayne had showed his true colors at the end. He was not a hunter, just a rich boy playing hunter.

Kraven jumped from a rooftop and landed in an alleyway. Bruce's scent was close now. Creeping, Kraven approached a trashcan. The smell was coming from the can. Looking inside, Kraven saw a pile of dark clothing and mask. On the shirt was the symbol of the Batman.

"Ha!" He scoffed aloud. "This is how richboy beats me? He gets naked and tries to hide his scent? It is a valiant effort, but it will fail!"

To show his rage Kraven kicked over the trashcan. A wire attached to the can's underside snapped. The spring loaded trap underneath the trashcan sprung, shooting a half dozen nails out at Kraven. While most of the nails missed, one lodged into his left shoulder, another nail struck his right forearm with a glancing blow.

"Ah," he grunted, holding his shoulder. "Clever, richboy... very clever. You fooled me. You will not do it again!"

Kraven yanked the nail from his shoulder. Holding it up, he noticed there was a balm slathered on the tip, mingling with his blood. "What..." His knees buckled as an intense burning sensation hit him. His shoulder irradiated in white hot pain. Kraven ground his teeth in pain and roared out into the night.

"DEAD! YOU ARE DEAD!"

Fighting his pain, Kraven saw a fire escape and jumped at the ladder. He grabbed a rung and fell back to the ground. Holding his hands up, he saw the grease covering his palms. The hunter yelled out in frustration again.

From a distance, a figure in work boots, jeans, and a hooded poncho watched Kraven from the shadows. The shoe was now on the other foot. For all his skill and ability in the jungle. Kraven was out of his element. In this concrete jungle, in his domain, Bruce Wayne was the hunter. And now Kraven had become the hunted.


Then
Kenya


Both Bruce Wayne and his mentor Sergi Kravinoff, better known as the legendary Kraven the Hunter, were walking through the knee high brush of the Savanna. Both men carried opposite ends of a large wooden stake. The carcass of a boar swayed gently back and forth from the pole by its feet. They carried the dead pig towards the hut they had called home for the last few months.

"Our time here is ending," Kraven said nonchalantly. "I have taught you almost all that I can teach. You can track, stalk, and hunt masterfully."

"You've been a good teacher, Kraven," Bruce said.

"You have been a good pupil. Not too bad for a rich boy."

Bruce chuckled softly. No compliment from Kraven ever came without some small way to undercut the praise. "I can make arrangements and be on my way by the end of the week."

"Good. Because tonight, we will have our final lesson. One last hunt."

"What will we be after?"

"Tonight," Kraven said with a twinkle in his eyes, "we hunt the most dangerous animal,"




Now
Old Gotham
12:05 AM


I shot out a grapnel line into the night and waited for it to catch on the nearby building. The party was barely over, and I was out looking for trouble in a city that had it by the handful. This is where I belonged. Give me the stash houses over the penthouses. And, besides, Billy Russo was in need of a talking to.

Alfred found out rather quickly that Kraven was at the party on Russo's invitation. I normally made it a habit of not inviting mobster trash to my parties, but the people at the foundation were responsible for sending out invites. They would also need a talking to. The line went taught and I swung into the air. I released the line and activated my cape's glide flight function. I flew over the courthouse that I shared a name with and glided over the rooftops of the oldest part of the city like the winged creature some criminals believed I was.

KRAK!

Rifle fire broke the stillness of the night. I grunted in shock as my grapnel line went slack, the rifle's bullet severing the line. I began to free-fall towards the street, tumbling and twirling through the air. I struggled with my belt and pulled out an emergency line. Desperate I wildly aimed at a stone gargoyle on the building above me. The line caught and I jerked with the sudden stop. My body swung to the right and crashing through the office building's window. I fell hard to the floor and rolled to the stop, dazed and in pain.

That's when I heard the footsteps.

"This is what you have become?" A voice said from above. I felt strong powerful hands on my neck. I was picked up and shoved into the face of my former teacher. "You were a great hunter once," Kraven said with a sigh.

"And you used to be sane," I growled as I swung my arm at Kraven's head. He had his hand out and waiting, dropping me to the floor with swift counterstrike. He twisted my arm behind my back until I felt a sharp pain. Kraven growled and kept twisting my arm. I could feel tendons twisting, the arm in danger of popping out of the shoulder socket.

"I could kill you now, it would be easy. For a week, I watch and wait. I see you in action. And I am disgusted by what I see?"

"Someone who can kill, but doesn't?" I gasped.

"No. I see a once great hunter reduced to being a fool in a costume, a fool who relies on toys and not the hunters instincts."

With his free hand Kraven reached down and ripped my utility belt from my waist. "I am going to kill you. I was paid to kill Bat, and I will kill Bat. But not before I shame you to the point where you will be begging for death."

Kraven brought down the butt of his palm on my head, knocking me unconscious in one fluid motion.




I came to groggy and dazed. I ran my hands across the ground and felt gravel. Through my half shut eyes I looked up and saw my bare hands. Kraven had stripped me of my gloves and gauntlets. Standing up, I saw what else he had done. In addition to my belt and gloves, my boots and cape were gone. Just my suit and cowl remained. I was on a rooftop somewhere in the industrial area of town. Factories, plants, and smokestacks cluttered up the skyline.

"Your toys are gone," Kraven's voice said from somewhere close, somewhere I couldn't see. "All there is now is the hunter and the hunted. It is time for you to die, richboy. The hunt begins now."


Ural Mountains
Then


The two men lay flat on their stomachs on the snow-covered mountain ridge. They had each come into the mountains with very little supplies three weeks ago when their hunt began. A few weapons and a rucksack with clothing, but no food and no water. They would find their sustenance on the mountain, the same mountain would provide shelter. The only thing they carried now were their hunting knives and the rifle they shared. They opted for knives most times to conserve ammunition. At last count only six rounds were left.

"I see something," the younger man, Bruce Wayne, said under his breath. Like his partner, he wore white camouflage and his face was covered in a frost-speckled beard. A large brown bear stepped out of the snowy woods and lazily plodded towards a stream below. Bruce saw the dark markings on the bear's hindquarters and knew it was the same one they had been tracking for the past week.

"This is your kill," the man to Bruce's right said. For the past six months Bruce had been under his wing. The legendary man they called the Hunter had already him so much about tracking, scouting, and of course hunting. The only hunting Bruce had known prior to this was duck hunting with his uncle once when he was a teenager. And even that had only entailed shooting at a pack of birds as someone else found them and stirred them up. Thanks to the Hunter Bruce could not only hunt, but also survive and thrive in some of the harshest wilderness this planet had to offer.

The Hunter cycled a round into the rifle and began to hand it to Bruce before he stopped himself and laughed. "I forgot. Man who wants to be hunter, but not use guns. For you there is only one thing."

Bruce pulled his hunting knife from its side holster. It was ten inches and had a serrated blade. "Me against a bear with nothing but my knife... Kraven, are you sure?"

"What is the first rule of the hunt?"

"'Know your prey, watch it. Study it, get inside its head. Know it like it were you own flesh and blood.'"

"Da. For past week, we watch, we study. We see bear in fighting. We know bear's every movement, we know how bear thinks. That is most valuable weapon, worth more than a thousand of my rifles."

"You're right."

Bruce began to slowly creep through the snow. He was stopped as Kraven grabbed his ankle. "I will watch," he said with a nod. "If need be, I will but bear now... but then again, maybe not. When I was in Spetsnaz , we had saying when we did not live up to expectations: 'Иногда вы едите медведя, а иногда медведь ест вас.'"

"What does that mean?"

"'Sometimes, you eat bear and sometimes bear eat you.' In your case saying is quite literal, no?"

"Yes," Bruce said as he began to crawl towards the bear. "Quite."




Wayne Tower
Now


"Oh, Bruce, let me introduce you to one of our newest ADAs... Pretty young thing. Maybe even a potential candidate for the seat in the upcoming election."

"And me without my checkbook handy. Maybe they won't want to talk to me..."

Mrs. Van Patten, actually Judge Van Patten, laughed and took my hand. I followed behind her and let her lead me through the crowd gathered in my penthouse. The Thomas & Martha Wayne Charity Fundraiser, a black tie event that I was hoping to turn into a yearly gala. All proceeds were going to helping lower income Gotham residents find permanent work, affordable housing, and any medical treatment they would need. I may be doing... interesting work as Batman, but the work as Bruce Wayne is just as important, if not more important, to the future well-being of the city.

"Bruce Wayne," Mrs. Van Patten said as she stopped in front two people. A tall, handsome man in a tux and a shorter, blonde haired woman beside him dressed in a navy evening gown. "I want you to meet the District Attorney Office's newest star, Miss Janice Porter."

The blonde woman smiled and held her hand out for me. I shook it and grinned. "Well, the judge said you were a pretty one. I had no idea she had a habit of making understatements."

"Oh, Mister Wayne," Porter said with a laugh. "I'm flattered, by both your words and Judge Van Patten's. This is my fiancé, Henry."

I shook hands with the man accompany Porter and nodded. "So, the judge tells me you may have eyes for the DA seat?"

"That's putting the cart before the horse. I've only been in town for a few months. Lots of factors to consider, and the election is a long way away."

"Well, if you're ever interested in making a run I have lots and lots of disposable income, and like most people with too much money I like to meddle in politics. If I like what you have to offer we can work out a deal."

"I'm flattered, I really am. But for now--"

She continued to talk, but something across the room caught my eye. Someone with their back to me but with an unmistakable frame.

"--so just take a rain check."

"Will do," I said with a nod. "It was a pleasure meeting you both. If you'll excuse me."

I walked through the crowd and caught snippets of conversation as I navigated through the social scene.

"--missioner Pauling is just in it for the pension now, milk more time until he can retire--"

"--blepot is supposed to be coming back to town with some new business venture. His father, Chester, was always such a good businessman--"

"--And Mister Fields, let me introduce you to Miss Felicia Hardy--"

"Excuse me," I said as I approached the man. "I'm looking"

"You seek someone," the man said. He slowly turned around and revealed his face. Years had passed and there was more gray than I had remembered, but I would never forget the face and cold eyes of my one-time mentor. "And you have found them. Hello, richboy," Sergi Kravenoff said with a smirk.

"Kraven," I said without any warmth in my voice. "What are you doing here?"

"Not so happy to see me? We may have not parted on the best of circumstances but you were still my friend."

"You didn't answer my question," I said. "What are you doing here?"

"The hunt, my friend. Always the hunt. It calls me to Gotham."

"But there's nothing to hunt in the city," I said with a skeptical look.

"I am working for a client. They wish to bag big game. They call me in to hunt."

"What are you hunting?"

"I am--"

"Pardon me, Master Bruce," Alfred said as he approached us. "Councilman Dickerson is requesting your presence."

"Duty calls," I said with a glance towards my awaiting guests. "Enjoy the party... "

"I will try. If only you would serve vodka. Drink of real men, not champagne."

"I'll see what I can do."

I nodded and followed Alfred through the party. "Soon as you can, Alfred, I want you to pull the guest list for me. See who has plus one invitations and run those people through the computer downstairs, combing through their recent financial history. Look for large amounts of cash that have been withdrawn within the last thirty days. After that talk to security about the man I was talking to and see if he came here alone or with a guest."

"The large Russian?"

"Yes. He's here tonight on business, I know it. First rule of the hunt, Alfred: Know your prey. Watch it. Study it. Get inside its head. Know it like it were your own flesh and blood.'"

"Inspired poetry, sir. But who is he?"

"Sergi Kravenoff," I said, turning to look back at him. His eyes were watching me, unblinking and focused. "And he's one of the most dangerous men in the world."
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