Shadowrun: Frangible Reputation

Food Fight

[[Meredith, Seattle: Even the mob hates clowns]]
Tensions in Seattle’s criminal underworld appear to have increased dramatically last night, following a brazen raid by heavily-armed enforcers on a McHough’s restaurant that left four dead and over half a dozen helpless customers suffering from the aftermath of contact with military-grade tear gas during what is assumed to be a revenge killing for an abduction. Despite apparent corruption of the video feeds, eye-witness reports have tentatively linked the operation to the so-called “Vory y Zakone”, a Russian ex-patriate gang famed for their brutality and cunning. Experts at Knight Errant’s Organised Crime Unit have declined to provide an official statement, however NewsNet sources have indicated that the restaurant in question may have been a front for the Italian Mafia. Speculation is also rife that the store will be closed, following the wide spread of a gory image of the deceased owner (Vincenzo Fratelli) posed sitting beside the McHough’s mascot.

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A concert to remember

0 hours:
Oi Followers! Welcome to another evening with Maria Mercurial’s number 1 fan! Hot news tonight, you’re hearing it here first. Our favourite diva will be performing an unscheduled performance at Underworld 93 tonight! Naturally yours truly has the connections for standing room at the front row already.

+6 hours:
Here she comes, speak to you again after her set!

+10 hours:
You’re not gonna believe this followers but I just saved our lady’s life! After the show some guy went nuts and pulled a gun, turning some chick, I think it was his girlfriend, into a human shield! Then some magic blast comes flying across the room and some random in a catsuit and mask clocks the guy on the back of the head. Apparently there were some spirits there too but I was too busy guarding Maria with my life! In fact some half drunk Irish guy came my way with a chair (don’t worry I put him down with my MMA badassery).

Instead of following out star and her useless security thugs as they rushed her onto her post performance party bus (like I usually would), I made it my mission to follow these folks the rest of the night. The gunman wasn’t going anywhere but the scary leather chick, the Irishman, some enormous troll chieftain, some slick looking dwarf and some other slicker looking dude I barely saw, left the building without so much as a glance from security.

+12 hours:
I’m currently writing this from the back of a car I broke into as I stakeout the would be assassins. After bickering outside for a while with some dwarf in a suit, the group piled into a van, a hatch back and onto a bike and headed straight for SeaTac! I’m not sure what is happening but the leathery chick has just parked here in short term, looked around, walked around a bit and then rode out. I hope I can get another taxi and stay on them!

+12.5 hours:
No luck yet finding them. But I just saw some limo get pulled over by a bike cop… and what looked like the same hatch back but with cop lights on top! I’m gonna have the driver come back around just in case.

+13.5 hours:
I was right followers! They were definitely pretending to be cops. Apparently whatever they were doing led them to Mulvihill Hotel now. I’m getting a bit strapped for nuyen so I’m spying from a bush but, it looks like these guys know what they’re doing cause they just brought their whole group and a big box right past that security guard.

I’m not sure everyone, but I think these guys are Shadowrunners!

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The first arrest

+14 Hours:
Well followers, the Shadowrunners weren’t in the hotel for long. They’ve just come back out and piled into their vehicles again. Unfortunately I have no idea where they are going, I’m totally strapped for creds and favours and I’ve been tailing these guys all night. I’m gonna take the rail back to my penthouse and sleep on it. I’ve attached some images and descriptions of the guys here so if any other fans want to take up the cause, we have to make sure these guys don’t go after Maria again.

=Comments=

HoiPolloi: Take the rail eh? Why don’t you have your private driver come pick you up? Or maybe your personal jet. You are so full of it.

Maria4Eva: gd work OP! u may not b rly #1, bt u sure went the distance 4 our babe tonite!
StreetJak: I don’t give two shits about your washed up starlet, but I saw those pics before the page went down and I bet my deck that me and my boys saw your Shadowrunners tonight. At one of the entrances to the Ork Underground (not saying exactly where), us deckers and our avatars were relieving those idiot tourists and goblin thugs of their nuyen. They were swinging like morons at our avatars so we were fine. Then suddenly our lieutenant gets popped by a rifle, hit by some blast of magic or something, and then the whole place gets filled with tear gas. Most of my boys managed to get out of there, but going by the sirens, I reckon your Runners got nabbed by Knight Errant. Anybody got a line on someone dirty in the force?

Rimjob: Woah, getting into a gang fight and sticking around for the sirens? These have gotta be the worst Runners I’ve ever heard about!

Tuzks @StreetJak: Yo, digital fuckstick, that was your crew tonight? We know some guys who can back trace you from here. Y’all and your den are fucked within 24 hours. Peace.

Illuminutty: I keep tabs and have ears at every street level Knight Errant facility. Gotta keep your eyes open in all this corruption, y’know? Anyway, one of the greased palms I got sent me notes from the interviews they had with the Runners. Either they’re amazingly stupid or great at faking it, but they gave nothing away. The pigs, however, are after some pirate smuggler or something (apparently if I want all the details I’ve gotta triple my usual bribe). Whatever the case, Knight Errant are releasing them. They should be back on the street by now. If they’re after what Knight Errant are after then they’ll be going back to the Underground.

The_Goblin_King: I’ve got a nephew who does “tours” down here. I’ll see if I can get him to tag along with them and get more info.

NetFreaks: This comment string is a fuckload more interesting than Mercurio ever was.

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Specter Crocodile

The_Goblin_King: Update from my nephew. All reports about these guys are accurate. They’ve got no idea what they’re doing and they’re crazy as hell. He led them around in circles in the underground for ages, and when they were starting to cotton on they threatened to kill him unless he took them where they wanted. Whether or not he knew how to get there, he warned them against Ghost Gator’s gateway. No idea where that goes, but those fools got it into their heads it was a shortcut and dragged my nephew down there. They wandered around for another while and the last thing my nephew saw before he booked it was a giant albino gator landing on the troll and trying to bite his head off. They have to be dead.

GhostGatorChaser: It lives! All my years of searching! @The_Goblin_King, message me privately if you want some nuyen for any evidence your nephew might have found.
Undaworlda: Yo I’ve seen ghost gator too y’know? I flushed him when he was the size of my finger!
Hubcapz: Pretty sure I dated a guy who used ghost gator as a nickname. He had a fuckton of piercings down there.

TwoHalfPints: Oh, your runners aint dead. I regularly serve beers to a bunch of dockjockeys from the “ork underground area” who swear sideways they met at least three of those clowns. Apparently the dwarfAR and elf suit squeezed a colleague for whereabouts of Jack Turner, if you can believe it. When they found out where they just moseyed off. And the troll the kid said was mauled by a gator? Barely a scratch on him.

Undaworlda: Yeah, Ghost Gator aint shit.

TwoHalfPints: Alright heads up people there was an explosion just down the road from where I work. Some labourers I know came running past, described your Shadowrunners setting off an alarm at some factory then blowing a wall open, killing a bunch of workers and drones and then snatching a couple of folks and bailing into the night. No idea who they nabbed but these guys really are crazy.

Illuminutty: These Runners work with the Fuzz! Just hit up my source again, barely even had to bribe ’em they were so pissed. Apparently one of their fellow badges just picked up a career maker who was tied up in his boat not far from the factor-


THIS SITE HAS BEEN SHUT DOWN AND ALL USERS DETAINED ON KNIGHT ERRANT AUTHORITY, PENDING CRIMINAL INVESTIGATIONS -
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Hunting Jr.

As the sun fades purple in the escaping evening light, passing through the many murky clouds over Seattle, Tatanka the troll approaches the warm campfire just outside his teepee. Crossing his legs on the ground he completes a circle of native seattle creatures, such as evening pigeons, ragged rats and surprisingly large and patient ants, as they too enjoy the inviting glow. Tatanka is certain that they return to his fireside, on the far back lawn of the Sioux embassy, because they enjoy the stories he tells of his escapades in the unforgiving city, for they return even when he takes a few of their number for dinner each night. Even now a collection of mostly plucked pigeon meat rests in a hot trash can lid, dangled over the flames. As Tatanka plucks one of the wholest and prettiest feathers from his evening meal, he rests his staff across his legs and begins to speak to the creatures.

“Many moons passed after The Bison hooked claws with the Ghost Gator. I earned many treasures for my courage, and hid them in my secret place-”

Tatanka practically winks at the freshly turned pile of earth between the rows of ‘memorial cotton’ a few feet from his lodge.

“But to find a safer home, that I might speak to my ancestors in peace, I needed more treasures, more courage. So I answered the voices on the wind, I travelled to a house of feasting where my little plastic friend had a platter of food from my homeland brought to me. As I ate, my friends and I spoke to a Jon-Son in the unreal. This Jon-Son was a deputy who hoped we could make her Sheriff. She pledged many treasures, and her favour, and we accepted. I shared my feast with another deputy, one as big as I. And we were friends.

“We had to find one called Joonyah. He was a criminal, one of ambition and secrecy. We spoke far to our friends for clues and were approached by another free spirit, like The Bison, who wandered the streets, ate from the unwanted, and relieved himself whenever he pleased. Only later would my friends explain that it was deception! He was one who spoke to the people, swearing truth and intrigue. They said he was not to be trusted. His beard hung from strings.

“We also recieved smoke signals. Another faceless speaker, who claimed the deceiver was not to be trusted. Her words were not new thoughts for us but we considered their offers, and their treasures, nonetheless.

“Many tracks and scents pointed to a den of emerald and misery. My fast talking foreign friend was very excited to go. But when we arrived many deputies with flashing lights and dark scowls were wheeling the departed away. The land was thick with violence and restless spirits, and our searches within led us to tunnels underground. We were unsure if we should explore them.”

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A gun of explosions

Clearly gripping the attention of his collected animal friends, Tatanka continued his tale.
“Down the tunnel and stream we were in a familiar place of water and rock and wood. The pirate’s cove was home to many watering holes so we walked the street, hoping to find any survivors of the Murphy’s massacre. Instead we found a friendly man who offered us very still water. I liked it.
“The man told us that finding Joon-Yah would not be easy but that a friend of his might be able to help. A friend of a friend is also a friend… I think, so we followed the snakewater man’s direction to another grim house of lights and noise. This new man, much less friendly, offered us more wisdom if we helped him with three tasks. Firstly he wished us to protect his caravan of goods from bandits called Halloweeners. We were unsure but agreed.

“Early the following morning we rode out with the caravan and just as expected we were ambushed. The small one had offered me his great automatic rifle and, after many years practicing my accuracy aloft the roof of trains, I fired the bow from the open doors of the little one’s van. The bow roared with fire and the earth shook as a force like the great Ghost Dance itself tore the bandits asunder. Those that survived were unhappy and as one who could touch the spirits tried to distract us I quickly spoke the words to the winds to stop him. Their metal birds did not like this and once again I was winded and tired by their gunfire. As my friends protected me in my exhaustion, the last of the bandits fell. We repaired the caravan and saw it to its destination.

“The second task was to deliver food and medicine supplies ourselves by wagon and bicycle through the winding depths of the Underground. The supplies went to children in need and we all felt very proud.

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A thoughtful gift

Tatanka was unsure how much longer he could tell his tale in the waning light. He would need to extinguish his fire soon, lest the embassy’s roving security find his home in this secluded grove. So he pressed on,

“The man with Italian ancestors who ran the den of lights and sound could not meet us to deliver his final task. The one who spoke for him explained that a group of outlaws had been harming the innocent and taking treasures at a local marketplace. Their own lawmen could not be found, so it fell to us to stop the outlaws for good.

“We went to the place of trade and spoke to the people. Many tusked faces like mine were there and yet they did not follow my words. My friends gathered wisdom and a plan to stop the outlaws, but as they did so the outlaws arrived. My friends told me not to stop them, even as they took treasures from the innocent, but one of the outlaws, the biggest and angriest, spoke to me. He asked me who I served, whose lands I called home, and I told him. He asked for my treasures and I shared only what I could of my prized talismans and medicine. This infuriated the outlaw leader who went for his weapon. But he could not find it, instead seeing my friend of polished leather as she disappeared into the crowd. But my friend is good at being invisible and no amount of violence by the outlaws could make her seen again. As the outlaws got more angry, my small friend cleverly whispered to their ears that the unseen one had been caught and taken to the outlaw village. Cleverer still my friends used metal insects and calling boxes to track the leader back to his village.
“It was here that my friends gave me an important task. To deliver a gift to the house the outlaws lived in. They promised it was a surprise and that it would bring justice to these criminals. Relieved I would not deliver death to these men, I quickly and quietly placed the gift where I was asked and as we left the earth shook with such great force that I can only assume every sheriff and lawman in the city had come to collect them.

“Finally we met the one with Italian ancestors again. For doing so well he revealed to us that all along he had been the Joon-Yah we had been searching for. But before we would take him to the sheriff, he told us his own story, and explained how all that he had done was good, that he fought outlaws and protected the innocent and that the stories of his evil were not truth. What we had seen was true to his story, so we let him go free, telling the sheriff that the evil Joon-Yah she sought did not exist.

“She was not pleased, but Joon-Yah gave us many treasures, and we swelled with the good deeds on our hearts. Now return to your dens, city creatures, and I will tell you more tales tomorrow.”
Tatanka scooped a great handful of earth and doused the fire.

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Extreme sports

13:01 >Recieve ancient, completely unencrypted message from that big native idiot Bison.
>Apparently one of his equally dim contacts has got him a job and he’s offered me a slice. I guess I made an impression. Clack a few imaginary buttons in the air, make the lights dim a bit and suddenly he’s like a four year old at a magic show.
>I need the money and if he called up the same guys then at least I’ll get lost amongst the memorable faces.
>It is my preference.

19:50 >Got held up running a particularly tough raid.
>Arrived atop one of the taller Seattle buildings. Seems the brief already started. Something about extracting a some corp mage from a big party in a building across the road.
>Runners are bickering about how to get down there, like the don’t know basic math. Probably don’t. Calculated the descent angle and the equipment will do.
>Subtle as a hot sim, runners use drones to knock out the chef or whatever and kill the cams. We get over there to suss out the party.
>We’ve got a pic, but even so it’s like looking for a line of code in the matrix in there. So I switch over and work my way into security.
>Takes a couple of tries but I get admin control and use the interior cams to find our guy.
>Spot him inside and the runners finally hatch a plan.
>I put in a security order about one of their higher ups coming to collect him. Takes a bit of guile but it gets done.
>Phae sneaks in and then saunters, all corp like, to our boy, intercepting him from the stage.
>She runs her line and escorts him to the elevators.
>Admin Sec bot arrives and tries to lock me down. I fire off a few commands, keeping the door open for Phae. She makes it and I disco.
>Back with the nutbags, we’re doing the cliffhanger thing down the side of the building, me leading while strapped to the sweaty indian moron.
>Rifle fire high above, probably security on the roof. Runners do the best, probably cop some fire, I dunno.
>Me and the lug get to the ground, threaten some screaming people, pop the jammer a few more times and hop in the German’s van.
>The others get down, a bit bloody, and we rocket out of there after Phae and the money, to hole up and wait for the Johnson.

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Another view

And there it is, the noise that has taught me to cringe over the last few weeks, and just as I finally managed to fall asleep too. I open the new message on my com-link and my fears are realised. Well, it’s from the big one, so at least it’ll be an interesting read. Well he tried to put in English, at least up until the point it got stuck on emoticon mode…. Oh, a map with a smiley face on one of the buildings, guess that’s a start.

I roll out of bed; a sudden sharp pain pierces my side. A reminder of what these people have put me through in the last week. I guess this is why parents tell kids to stay away from “the wrong crowd”. At least these jobs pay well, so it’s not all bad. Just.

I ride up to the indicated building, noticing a collection of all too familiar vehicles out the front. Looks like everyone is here, how unfortunate. The briefing starts, seems like a simple enough job. Evacuate a mage from the building next door. My kind of work, I don’t even need these other idiots, but at least they’ll make good flak.

After some arguing, we have a “plan”, at least comparatively to what has happened previously. I wonder how long until they fuck it up. We’re going rope across from our building to theirs, take over the security, and I’m going to walk out the front door with the mark. The German easily takes the guard on the balcony down and then it’s my turn. As the rest of my companions are too fat to be held up by the grapple line, I get to swing across with a second rope, hopefully steel reinforced.

Everyone made it across with no deaths, I guess this is what you call progress. The Dwarf seems to be doing his job, and security is ours. Time to do some real work. Slipping into and around the presentation is easy enough. I explain to security that I’ve come for the kid, hope the dwarf can think on his feet. Seems everything went well, even convinced the guard to get the kid’s stuff for me.

Idiots giving a speech and won’t shut up. If this keeps up he won’t make it out of here alive. Finally he’s stopped, but seeing me puts him on edge. Not that I care, I just want to get out of here. I take him to the elevators, but something is happening in the matrix. Looks like we’re losing control of security, so it’s now or never I suppose.

Long elevator ride, wonder what the others are doing. Of course they’re having a gun fight on the side of a mega-corp building, anything else might be considered “professional” or “boring”. Works for me, they’re a distraction anyway. I causally walk out the front door, kid in tow. Nobody questions me, this is too easy. Morons have a crowd now, but Patty does a good job at clearing them away. It’s amazing how someone can be the cause and solution to so many problems. Anyway, looks like we’re off to his boat, which I can only assume is either upside down or a canoe.

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Subtle as a grenade at a helicopter

[[NewsNet Special Report – 21:58:15]]
Late-night shoppers were treated to something of a surprise this evening, as a firefight broke out on the side of the Horizon Splendour Building between building security and several as-yet unidentified assailants. Our SkyEye reporter drones can confirm that the assailants breached a balcony on the upper levels of the building via zipline, then proceeded down the walls of the building several minutes later. Why do YOU think they attacked Horizon in such a brazen manner? Click HERE to tell us what you think!

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