As a trained sniper, Niko felt most comfortable being up and away from it all. It wasn't necessarily because he enjoyed taking people's lives away, but rather he thought of the detachment from the center of action helpful to his state of calm. It was very reminescent of using a plane to assault a ground target. The pilot does not feel the kind of pressure he would in aerial combat, with another guy firing missles their way. His brother was a decent pilot, so he knew the feeling right off when Niko described it. Anyway, the point of this was that Niko elected to take up position on a roof. It was generally out of the sight of people, it had a commanding view of the parking lot that WU would be taking their mark, and was a little hard for somebody to sneak up on him here. Of course, it wouldn't be a proper stake-out without an interruption, so there goes his cellphone with the ringtone
he chose for the army. Sighing, he picked up."This is Niko. What's up?""Corporal Niko Renzo?""Speaking.""This is Central Dispatch. We've just been notified that your brother, Lieutenant Jonathan Renzo, is currently hospitalized in critical condition-"
Niko's eyes shot open, his jaw going a little slack as the dispatcher relayed the news. Winger was alive, but he'd taken severe rib damage, hip damage, and broken his left arm. His entire respiratory system was traumatized from the impact, like he'd been hit be a large truck, but that wasn't the case at all. He was found in an alley too narrow for that."How did this happen?""We don't know, sir. He was found in an alley with an as-of-yet unidentified individual that we believe he shot to death. It's possible that this man had performed the deed himself, but with him being full of holes, we may never know."
Maybe not, but Niko had a suspicion. If they hired one assassin, why not two? One for each brother Renzo."Could you ask that someone watch over him? Police, if nobody else? I'll try to arrange something more permanent.""Police are already watching him, due to the investigation of the man's death.""Right, gotcha. Goodbye."
Those rotten bastards!
They really were! It wasn't just him they wanted! They wanted the rest of the family wiped out to cover their trail! He was sure of it! Niko looked out from the roof, all sides, trying to find any sign of Wu. Not yet... Why? What was taking him? Agh, dammit... This couldn't wait. He had to make a call, himself. Winger needed proper protection, and besides, he might need to check up on..."Athena? You alright? ...are you there?"
He'd dialed the number, got an answer, and then kind of a muffled groan. For a moment, he feared the worst, but then when he got "Hangover."
in response and heard her hunting for some coffee, he was a bit more relieved. They hadn't gotten to her. No, apparently, the hair of the dog that bit you was all she had a fight with, really."I got to drinking last night after I covered my bet by buying rounds for the house. Sorry you didn't win, by the way, but then the girl ya lost to is really something, so don't feel bad.""I don't, really. But that's not what I'm calling you about. I need you to do something for me, Athena. My brother's in the hospital and..."
He explained his situation, basically all that he knew in brief report. Athena listened while audibly drinking her coffee, and then..."Oh, shit. I guess that was real, then.""...what was real?""Well, I'm glad you told me this, Niko, because I just found a dead guy in my living room.""WHAT?!""Dead guy, maybe late 20s, broken wrist, broken neck... Yeah, looks like I killed 'im last night. Too drunk to register what happened, and went right to sleep."
Niko was dumbfounded, then shocked, then angry. They DID try to kill his mentor, and the man they hired got to do it was ended in about half a second while his target was thoroughly intoxicated
. He didn't know if that was a comment on Athena's skill or the other guy's lack
of skill...or both! Just then, he noticed Wu Han with another man entering the parking lot."You do what you have to about that, but I need you to keep an eye on Winger in case he's still in danger. I gotta go now, g'bye!"
He almost dropped the phone, trying to jam it into his pocket, before slipping down to the ground via drain pipe. Wu Han would hear the sound of Niko speeding towards the business suit long before he
did. At about the last second, he'd started to look back, but by that time, his legs had been swept out from underneath him and his body shoved to the ground by Niko's right hand. He'd basically grabbed him by the tie for that. If he'd shoved down at his head, the back of the man's skull would've caved in, and he was sorely tempted to. The client - or rather, the mouthpiece they sent to speak FOR the client - found his target - which is to say, Wu's target - scowling down at him."My brother is in the hospital and you hired this assassin to kill me. Or rather, you were told to do so. Now, I could've done alot worse, just now, but I didn't. Don't make me want to. Give up your client, and then go into hiding, for all I care. He's the one I want, not you."
The mention of 'He' was under the assumption that this man's boss was ultimately the CEO of the Martian Mining Corporation, Brett Tavors... He needed proof, though, and this was the most solid lead he'd gotten, as of late. Apart from a clandestined attack on the home office itself, Niko wasn't gonna get much better than this, he was sure.