November 9, 2018 at 1:34 am #10639
The streets of punishment town are mainly deserted, few people venture outside during the night. Perfectly reasonable considering the apatite of the people guarding them. When she finds someone outside for the first moment she thinks it is a little boy, then a brief moment later she notice that it is a spirit. Nevertheless, he plays by himself and continuously kicking a football (soccer ball in American English?) back and forth through a wall.
He speaks to Misery in her mother tongue (which one is it?)
“I haven’t seen you around here…” he seems to struggle a little bit “It is strange that I cannot guess your name. Perhaps you do not have a name? How could you not have a name? My name is Naim…”
A second before Misery verbalize her communication he says “You are looking for a bar? Nobody goes out at night, but there are motels with bars. Some of the motels have bars where the guests drink. Go to ‘Castle’ motel, you won’t like the Hilton… Too many wards… You can stay there to sleep if you like. Electronic store, is in the city square you will find anything there but only in the morning. “
She decided already to speak, and her mouth was going to ask for directions, but the boy seemed aware of the things a split second before she could vocalize them, their connection remanded her the one conjurers have with spirits. They don’t read minds, and yet they just know what you want to say to them.
November 10, 2018 at 2:48 am #10695
- This reply was modified 9 months ago by Gilga.
Misery raises an eyebrow, but in a day already full of unwanted discoveries, this is just one more pile of drek in a field already ankle deep in brown stuff. She shakes her head. What a fragging disaster…
She brushes past the boy-spirit-thing, looking around, pale eyes scanning run-down, semi-permanent structures with measured haste. Then she shakes her head. All bad.
And now a free spirit is giving her directions, directions in a town where no one goes out at night. She’s fragging nocturnal, what the hell]/i] was Ben thinking, sending her here?
Misery walks down the pre-fab that does its sad, cracked impression of a sidewalk until she finds a bench and sits down to consider her options. First, she can do the job. Its a bad job, full of unknowns, with no crew and iffy support, for someone she doesn’t know, in repayment for an agreement she doesn’t remember, to a result she doesn’t want.
Okay, maybe she can’t do the job.
Second, she could go in for the other side. She’s a vampire and a sorceress. If she can convince this bloodsucker that she’s an asset rather than competition, something might be worked out. He’s obviously out of the reach of Ben and Gindi, or he’d be dead already. Adding her power to his seems like a pretty good short term route to protection.
On the flip side, if he’s that powerful, she could overpower her and use her like a damn battery, just like…like…
She curses mentally for about thirty seconds as the memory will not come, exercising the obscene vernacular of hebrew, english, french, mandarin, japanese, and arabic.
She shakes her head. Okay, bad idea, even if she still can’t wrap her head around why. That leaves…what? Leave? Let Ben hold the bag, drop the pills, and buzz turbo out of here? She considers this. Is she that cruel? Is she cold enough to possibly wipe out a man’s life for convenience? A flash of memory, of draining three young women, killing them to fuel a spell because she valued one life more than three.
Yeah. Yeah, she was hard enough.
Misery sits for a long moment, looking at her commlink, an empty link full of empty lies. Then she shakes her head and speaks a word, and the link blows out, the equivalent of a main ground line ripping through its fragile electronics, sparks and discharge flickering from her fingers.
Then she stands, turning back toward the gate, and heads for the guards, ready to burn her SIN and get herself deported.
(Misery – Fin)November 10, 2018 at 4:11 am #10702
Finale, and a new run?:
Midnight Punishment Town 12th December 2078
Punishment town was created as a way to deal with the magical threat that Jerusalem had turned into when magic emerged. The once majestic city became a center of occult activity, and the Old City became a portal that delivered unspoken horrors and a variety of spirits that were never seen before in the sixth world. Most of these spirits were malicious, and dealing with them required magical corps that were more than what the small country could naturally produce.
Faced with such a magical challenge to handle, the government embraced HMVV and even genetically enhanced the disease. HMVV allowed turning an ordinary person into a magic soldier; some strains unlocked the capability to summon spirits or cast spells. These were readily cultivated, weaponized and were sent to contain Jerusalem and keep the magical catastrophe at bay. All these vampires needed to feed. The increasingly tyrannical government decided to establish Punishment town for the deadbeats of society and its political rivals. Either you pay your taxes, or you join the magical core and guard the front, or you pay with your essence and live in one of the Punishment towns.
Yes, Vampires are welcome – as long as they stay around Jerusalem and feed only in Punishment town. Citizens are happy, as long as Tel Aviv is secure, and they don’t have to know the price of security so close to Jerusalem.
Ben was unpacking the crates at a nearby supermarket people needed to eat, and produce was uncharacteristically available in Israel. Part of the national paranoia is independent food supply, and so there is fresh produce. People eat well, but the food is expensive, and if you can’t pay, they’ll either infect you with HMVV and send you to guard the border or place you in Punishment town.
Once done, Ben received money envelops from several men that patiently waited for him to finish unpacking without offering a hand. The lucrative part about supplying food to Punishment town was that people wanted to get out. Some of them could pay – quite a lot to get out.
Ben’s return cargo were five children, the price of extraction was so outrageous that most people could only save one of their children. Ben shipped these to a Kibbutz named Yavne’s group where they lived in a commune with the other children until a relative came to pick them up. To some of these children nobody came up, ever and so Ben adapted two of them, a boy named Ron and a girl named Maya. He was utterly sterile due to excessive military augmentations and gene therapy, and the life Ben could give these children as an outlaw was never secure, but he cared for them as if they were his own.
He placed each child in one of the crates and piled the empty boxes above them. What was worse? Vampire food with a family, or free but orphan to all practical means.
Ben did not know. He just did what he could to survive. There was little legal market value to ex-special ops soldiers with PTSD. So he delivered vegetables and returned children, and occasional criminals.
Ben is also a fixer, some of the people he fishes out of Punishment towns are shadowrunners. These cannot pay for their extraction, but some investors would often spend the cost in exchange for a service.
One of this investor was Meir Gindi, a shady real-estate tycoon. Some vampire criminal was strongarming him, and Meir wanted him dead. “The man got to my child Sharon, he almost killed her,” he said, and Ben emphasized.
So Ben accepted a large finder fee if he could find an assassin. There he saw her, a beautiful, breathtaking remarkable Banshee. Nobody could refuse her, and she was a powerful mage. Though the Banshee was not interested in wealth, she wanted to disappear- she had enemies. So the deal was brokered, magical alteration in exchange for an assassination.
The treatment did not go right and said assassin lost her memory. Remembering nothing of her commitment, and resenting Ben for trying to manipulate her into doing the deal anyhow. Ben could not tell Gindi that he lost the assassin, so he decided to go with and get her to do so anyway. You do not promise a mighty man that you’ll kill his rival and then back down. Especially not after some money exchanged hands.
Ben did not understand how fragile his world was, until his partner in crime a Decker that named herself Data Dancer, which Ben named Double D (despite her actual more modest cup size) called him. ”She is… Gone Ben. Completely off the grid, biomonitor link and even social profile.”
Damn[\b] Ben replied, he had no assassin, and he was committed. He delayed Gindi for a month now, with various excuses hoping that the pretty Banshee would recover from the treatment. He sighed Gindi was probably already monitoring her to see what the hold up is about, there is no way he missed that she disappeared.
”I am skipping town Ben; you should do the same.”
I’ll go pick up the kids, and grab a flight
Israel was his home, but Gindi was a powerful man and a criminal. They must run – he’ll never forgive them. Ben was already halfway home when another message arrived.
It was a picture of the two kids, unconscious in some construction site. Ben realized that Gindi knew about Ben’s safehouse. He probably began digging for leverage once Ben delayed, and when the asset bamfed Gindi decided to act.
He texted back
>> They are still kids… I can explain.
No, he could not run away now. He messed up, is kids were captured and he had to do something about it.
The reply was prompt:
>> If you want to meet them come to TLV tower. Ben knew TLV tower, it was Gindi’s new construction site, another place of living for the well to do.
Ben came – knowing well that it was a trap. It was he only way to see the kids again. The kids were there, peacefully sleeping in holes, with a cement truck closeby. Gindi has his pet mage, along with ten goons, two of which were dramatically aiming a pistol o the kids. They weren’t dead yet. There was hope.
“I am here, no need to get worked up. I am not running away from my problems” Ben said, he placed his gun on the ground and raised his hands.
A tall man in too flashy, too expensive suit that Ben identified as Mr. Gindi asked ”The asset, where is she?”
Ben replied “I lost her. “ he did not flinch, did not apologize – he knew well that begging for mercy to a guy like that was not going to cut it. It will only make Gindi crueler.
”You helped her escape. I know about the medical facility, I know you drove her to Punishment town. Which one do you like best, the girl or the boy.”
Ben wanted to fight but he knew that he wouldn’t be quick enough. Eleven of them, one of him and they had magic on their side.
“She lost her memory. We tried to get her to do the job anyway. It was too much to place on a terrified soul. She couldn’t do it, I genuinely tried. “
Gindi simply said ”Smartass… You arrogant prick, you helped her escape, didn’t you? Did you feel sorry for her? Fell in love with her? Did you fuck her? Is that why you mess with me? Because she fucked you, look where you are now and where she is. Stupid Ben… pick boy or girl.”
“Keep both of them. I will find someone else, give me a week.” Ben offered.
Gindi’s response was shooting the girl in her head. The shot killed her instantly and splashed her brain on the ground. Maya will have no grave, they’ll pull more cement, on top of her as if she never existed. Her parents were in Punishment town. She had no documents – no accountability nobody could complain about that murder.
Gindi spoke ”I am a businessman Ben, I am not daycare, but I am not a monster. You lost MY asset, and now I took YOUR girl. An eye for an eye, I was merciful, I will not be again. I’ll keep the boy for a week, and if you do not have your assassin in the Station by his time next week, I’ll send you a nasty picture. “
Defeated, with a tear in his eye Ben shrugged “We have a deal Gindi, I’ll do it myself if I can’t find anyone better.” His entire personality cried outrage, but he knew what could and could not be done. Perhaps he’ll get even with Gindi sometime, but now he needed to keep Ron alive. The boy had nobody else to fight for him.
Ben gave the peaceful Ron a last look, “I’ll be back for you.” He promised, and entered his Gopher without looking back. Ben headed to the Kibutz to deploy the kids, and he felt nothing. Ben knew that he would never forgive himself for how he failed Maya. Then he got a pack of cigarettes and smoked it all, despite being several months with digital cigarettes, and then he went drinking – and he drunk a lot.
Finding people that had the potential to both get close to that vampire, and also assinate him was not very easy. A pretty elf may find herself at his bed, but what can she do against a vampire mage? He’ll figure it out once he sobers out – right now he just wants to forget.January 9, 2019 at 1:28 pm #13737
The “mystery solved” tugged at its moorings as the border officer did his rounds. Blinded by the cred stick he had been passed when he boarded. Appropriate tags and licences given. He bid them goodbye.
“so BB? What’s your plans?”
She raises a finger to hold the conversation as she typed furiously with her other
“aaand… OK. We’ll I have got a place for a few days now so I’ll just tourist and tan maybe”
Kev the skipper rock on his heals. “end of voyage so we drink tonight. NOT optional. OK?”
Apple and Slick bother grinned and nodded
A message sprang up from Badman. “your order is ready for collection. You really need to learn to use these things properly. It’s much cheaper. LOL”
Alex found the place she had booked. A decent shower and a burger and she was ready to go. The bar chosen for the night was not tourist it was definitely trade, marina trade. Oil under fingernails, bandaged thumbs and the like gave flavours of trades people and locals. At the same time the nature of a harbour means new face do not stop the piano.
Kev ushered them in “first rounds on me, we charge food to expenses. One last hurrah eh?”
Alex scanned the room clocking and assessing each person in turn, Wolf trotted to a table a sat expectantly. She wound her way through the crowd with ease and sat down waving the guys into seats as the caught up, then waving to Kev till he acknowledged he had seen them. He arrived with four bottles and a battered flag on a pole
“this place is kosher so mezze it best” he told them and handed out each beer ceremoniously. “to happy landing”
“happy landing” they respondedJanuary 10, 2019 at 7:42 am #13779
While being new does not turn heads, the tall blonde elf gets a lot of attention. Perhaps not the kind that will remember her the next night, but few are checking her out as she enters.
Mozart, the first officer cheers and drinks his bear looking a bit blue. He is likely counting the minutes until they are back at sea, though it may be some time to that. Kev seats with the group and congratulates them on a good delivery, his contact is now unloading their precious cargo from the marina and leaving the payment in the safe box. No connection between seller and buyer, and an impressive amount of trust. Israel is a small place, even more so in the sixth world, and organized crime is indeed organized and works out like a clock. The Bankaru puppets and weapons will be distributed to their interested buyers, and the delivery crew need not know anything.
Sam could spot a gloomy man drinking alone, on the bar. He is clearly local, but something about him feels out of place, like a sad clown at a birthday party. The bartender knows him and pours in more vodka every time he empties the glass. Never making eye contact, or billing the man. The Wolf agrees that the man is troubled, or is in trouble.
The rest of the occupants do not attract much attention, they are all having their own business – well all but two guys that seem eye Alex a bit strangely, as if looking for an opportunity to approach her.January 10, 2019 at 1:31 pm #13797
Alex offered up the next round, seeing as mozart was now three shades of green. At the bar Alex felt the pressure change. One Of the young humans slid up to her all smiles and flattery. She brushed him off with sarcastic eyebrow raises and slow shakes of her head. Wolf started to speak “I know but I’m not going to spoil a night out” she wound her back clutching the precious beers. Poor mozart was on his last sea legs.
“we better get you back to the boat or you’re going to hurl”
“it’s alright I’ll make my own way back, you guys stay have fun” he swayed to the door without a look back.
Alex raised her eyebrow to the skipper
“he’ll be fine. He just needs a falling deck” he grinned “confusion to our enemies”
“Confusion” they all drank
“partners and lovers” chimed Alex
“Partners and lovers” they all drank. Alex waited for them all to have mouthful
“May they never meet” all three men tried not to spit. Only the skipper managed.January 10, 2019 at 5:11 pm #13811
Mozart moves toward the door, and then apparently he knows the two guys that were looking at the table. They are happy to see him and chat him up briefly before the man gets outside. The rest of the evening proceeds smoothly, and the team does justice to the ‘drink like a sailor’ stigma. Some hours later, the crew proceeds to fulfill the other ‘sailors’ stigmas. Ken shrugs but wave them off as leave to a nearby brothel, but would not accompany them. “Sailors!” he says with a hint of disapproval, perhaps a bit hypocrite considering some of their cargo, but genuine. “Their party is just starting,” he says, and orders two shots of whiskey.January 13, 2019 at 5:23 pm #13908
Alex looked at the shot “do you mind if I didn’t? I think I’m going to need to stay sharp”
“sharp?” he looked at her closely “what do you mean?”
Big bird jabbed her finger into shot. Skipper looked angrily at the colour change
“hush poppet” she raised her hand “just those two idiots by the bar”
“your not just some rich girl on her travels are you” skipper asked in a moment of sober clarity
“no, I’m a predator, I’m just good at hiding it”
“we better get you out of here” he flustered
“oh don’t be silly darling. I’m no where near as drunk as anyone suspects” she smiled “you all have been drinking my beers all night”
“so what will you do?”
“leave and beat the living whatsits out of them in the car park”January 14, 2019 at 2:58 am #13912
Ken replies ”Don’t do that… You are illegal here, if they go to the police it is punishment town for you almost without a trail. It will also endanger me and my operation, and make the big boss very angry. Tell you what, I’ll get a friend to bail you out of here or at least explain how you can bail yourself out without getting tangled in the oddities of this country.
He’ll have the proper connections to make sure that you stay clean. At least hear the man, see what your options are, heh?”. He genuinely asks and seems concerned. Ken takes out his link and types “Ground Deliveries” and calls. He hands Alex the link and adds ”his shadow name is ‘Jerk’January 14, 2019 at 6:07 am #13919
Wolf flopped his head onto BB’s lap
“he takes all the fun out if life. I was looking forward to chasing one of them till they cried”
“me too Alpha, me too”
“What do you mean bail me out? I have to pay a rape tax because I ordered a flippin’ beer?” She growled “where I come from people do go running crying to the police, snitches get stitches”January 14, 2019 at 8:06 am #13924
ken replies ”They probably think that you are one of the working girls we brought in. Perhaps they think that I scummed the boss out of one of the girls. Which means that they can take you and I will not be in a position to acknowledge the loss. I can’t go to the police, and I can’t go to the boss. “.
He sighs ” You see, under normal circumstances this entire country would have been devoured by the horrible critters that escape the old city of Jerusalem. Police employes Vampires to keep them out but these need to eat, and so there are punishment towns for them to feed in. The police are the most powerful organization in the country and they are just looking for a reason to label people as troublemakers and ship them there. Our kind is tolerated because we bring new blood to these punishment towns. They do not mind us making a profit from it, as long as they get enough people there so that they do not need to deal with hungry vampires leaving their posts to feed in here.”
He explains ”As an illegal person in here, nobody is going to listen to your story – and people here do use the police if it is for their best interest. Having someone shipped to a punishment town makes up for a lot of crimes, rape of that someone included. So yes, you need to handle this situation in a way that is below the radar, and you need Mr. Jerk. Go ahead, click the button to call him. “
The two guys, looked at the people, waiting for them to sip from the whiskey and begun to grow unpaitiently when Ken talks on and on, instead of drinking.
January 16, 2019 at 3:31 pm #13972
- This reply was modified 7 months ago by Gilga.
Alex looked at the button, this was the shittiest set she had ever seen. This Mr jerk was going to piss the wrong team of runners off one day and end up dead, slowly.
She pressed the button.January 16, 2019 at 4:31 pm #13977
Without further ado the Jerk says ”What troubles did you get into this time?” there is a certain warmth in the voice despite the words, it is a reassuring radiophonic baritone voice.January 16, 2019 at 4:49 pm #13978
“Good evening Mr jerk, my name is big bird. I’m borrowing Mr skippers phone as he suggested you might be able to stop me getting into an altercation with two small time hustlers” she smiled at the old sea dog “skipper seams to be worried about law enforcement taking a dim view”January 16, 2019 at 5:44 pm #13985
Jerk replies ”Just take a photo of them, I’ll run some image recognition. If they are illegals feel free to beat the crap out of them… Otherwise, I’ll think of something… where are you?”January 17, 2019 at 3:40 pm #14019
BB geotagged the shots she sent and waited. She could see the two guys getting restless. Good what ever played out now, they would make mistakes. In her game mistakes get you killed. Wolf sighed her was hungry for a kill, impatient to be free to hunt.January 18, 2019 at 12:03 am #14044
Jerk takes about 15 seconds to respond, but then declares “Nobody important… just try not to get caught on camera. There is a blind spot about 200 meters from you in a building under construction”January 20, 2019 at 12:57 pm #14443
Alex took a note of the comm code.
“if he asks for my comm let him have it, it’s a burner anyhow” she looked down at Wolf “we hunt”
“oh good!” he locked chop “those two omegas?”
She wobbled to her feet “RIGHT I’m off, better walk this off.
Alex wobbled out of the door and down the street. She could hear the two omegas trying to be quiet behind her.
She stopped outside the building she had been told about. It was ivy covered fixer upper. She took a photo using it as an opportunity to locate the CCTV dead spot.
As she reached dead spot she heard them rush.
She pushed her way through the flimsy fencing. They followed but were expecting her to be running not advancing on them with a length of 2 by 2. The guy who was first through caught first attack. He fell to the flurry of blows, howling at plethora of broken bones. His companion was still trapped between the fence. Alex grabbed the panicking thuug by the hair and punched his in to unconsciousness.
Finished she smashed their comlinks and then picked her way back out into the street. She checked her chronograph. 4 minutes ;not bad. The length of wood had been an advantage mind you but still.
Wolf cantered to catch up.
“off course I did”
“What? They lost!”January 20, 2019 at 10:39 pm #14834
As Alex is done with her crash course of sexual education, she heard sirens, either a coincidence or an impressive response time. Not police, an ambulance. Could they really have medical insurance?
Her link blips >>[Jerk] Hot blonde with a nice ass and some fighting skills. Got a name to match the fantasy? Anyhow, it has been a pleasure to watch your back lady. Now get out of here before the ambulances arrive. Yes, I called them for medical attention. Every monster has someone that cares. Get over it. I erased your pretty face from their cyber eyes… No, need to thank me, your captain paid this time. Feel free to call if you have more troubles…January 21, 2019 at 5:20 pm #14868
BB trotted a few blocks before she settled back down to s slow bimble pace of a tourist. She headed for the crowds and then to her hotel. She ran her finger round the frame, feeling for the little wedges she had placed, and checked their spacing. Happy they were secure she opened the door collecting them as they fell.
She checked the rooms and wedged the doorgot her clothes out for morning (packing everything else), made a bed in the bath and set her alarms for six hours time.
She texted her thanks to the hacker.
“BTW everyone calls me bigbird”
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