Topic: Flesh & Blood - A Night City Adventure
X00032:8.Y00001:12.Z00054:5, Rya Mendez’s Listed Address - Outside on the Street | Night City Integrate | Midcity | UrbanZone - March 9th, Day 3 (Sunday), 6:50 AM PST
Weather Conditions: High City (Thunderstorms, 15 mph winds from the NE.) | Midcity (Rain, 10mph winds from the NE.) | Undercity (Fog and Rain, no winds.)
Air Quality Index: High City = 25 | Midcity = 42 | Undercity = 75 (masks required)
Finally, Luther stops, Ghlahn at his side, his gaze piercing the predawn gloom. Near a dumpster sits a well-constructed tent made of old military grade canvas. No trash exists within two meters of it and the space that the other homeless are giving the abode shows a certain level of respect. Furthermore, there’s a light on inside, small and dim but visible through the centimeter wide crack between the flaps and Luther has seen the light be blotted out on a couple of occasions indicating that the occupant is awake.
Up the street a ways, Echo parks the jeep facing back towards the building. The negotiating party is well within sight and the Edgers have a decent vantage to watch everything transpire.
“Morning, Choombatta. I hope that I’m not disturbing you in your tent while others are in the Sandman’s Playbox,” Charlie announces himself from where he has stopped. “If you have the time to parlay, perhaps this night might end up benefiting two parties instead of one. Interested, Choomba?”
“Go the **** away, corpse,” a low male voice growls from within the depths of the canvas castle. “Leave me in peace.”
His initial approach ineffective, Cred Stick Charlie dips his head a bit and allows the rain that has gathered on the brim of his fedora to drizzle off in a small waterfall before his face. This man is exactly who he wants to work their cause. He’s obviously a loner, but his response shows mettle and his desire to be left alone in his own version of serenity tells the fixer that he’s likely a thoughtful man. Just what’s needed for something like the task the Edgerunners are facing.
He attempts another approach, this time attempting to just draw the target into the false dawn for a better look at him. This takes a few tries and well thought out phrases but eventually the man emerges.
He stands almost two meters in height, flowing from the interior of his abode much like an octopus from his hole. He’s thin, gangly, and one-legged using an old crutch wrapped in duct tape. His black face is scarred by acid or fire making him hideous to behold. To Ghlahn, it is obvious that he’s the victim of a napalm attack. His missing leg combined with that injury and his inability to replace the limb with cybernetics and get a skinjob means he was most likely military—probably fought in one of the many wars the U.S. is engaged in within the jungles of South America or the wilds of Africa and the Middle East. He’s a casualty of patriotism, or, at the very least, a man who had no future and banked it all on serving his country. To Cred Stick Charlie, he’s a wounded soul who hides from Public scrutiny—a tragedy of the World as it is now and a cast off from humanity.
No matter how the two Edgerunners view the man, the conversation continues with Luther slowly winning him over. His name is Edgar but the “locals” call him The Alien. Whether Edgar cares for the moniker or not isn’t apparent. He’s cautious. He has lost faith in the World. It is to this casualty that Cred Stick Charlie latches onto. The Alien has a chance to do some good, to help a young boy in trouble. The gamble pays off. Fifty credits and Edgar will go into the building, to Rya Mendez’s conapt where he will see if she’s home. He’ll recon the area and see if there are any Reefers hanging around that the Edgerunners might have to contend with. Then he’ll reconnect with Charlie and Ghlahn at his tent to give his report. The fifty also buys his silence.
As far as the Reef is concerned, they claim the territory but not as an Enclave. There are frequent engagements between the Reef and local boosters, crime syndicates, and other powers in the area. Cops are practically non-existent so the homeless attempt to remain neutral in every way. The privileged living indoors have to deal with builder nanites tearing apart their insides of their buildings for materials to use elsewhere. Often, these inhabitants are aligning themselves with one faction or another just out of necessity. Without some affiliation, they become prey. Whether there are any Reef inside the building is yet to be seen. It’s a little after seven in the morning on a Sunday… Edgar is doubtful that he’ll run into any unless they’ve got business (personal or professional) with someone in the building that’s concluding or beginning. The Reef have their Enclave nearby and that’s where they would be residing. Less likely they are ambushed by an enemy within their walls.
If there are Reef present, The Alien will check and see if they want to meet with Luther. Edgar doesn’t want to know what about and he obviously doesn’t accept that it is related to the rescue of the boy.
“That’s one tall dude,” Blossom whistles past the stick protruding from her plump lips. She’s running three background apps as they sit in the air jeep watching the fixer and his CEE-metal companion work. One app is monitoring power usage in the area, another is keeping tabs on traffic cameras (though there aren’t any in the area, she’s hoping that she can spot anything that looks like trouble coming their way no matter the odds), and the third is scanning message boards and chat sites for any mention of the missing boy. She doesn’t need to monitor the work since the AI in her agent will notify her if any of her parameters are met. She can focus on the Real World instead.
“He is that,” Echo replies leaning forward and crossing her arms on the steering wheel. “Probably doesn’t blend in too well.”
Blossom laughs lightly. She’s seated in back of Echo on the bench seat with Bloodbank and Fixer while Casino is in the passenger seat up front. Glancing away from the working fixer, her attention is drawn to the medtech as he places his weapon on his seat. Rolling the sucker from her right cheek over to the left, she narrows her eyes behind her heart-shaped sunglasses.
“Expecting trouble, sweetcheeks?” she asks when he sets it on the seat next to him.
“They’re on the move,” Echo interrupts. Blossom quickly readjusts her focus and watches as Cred Stick Charlie and Ghlahn begin to make their way towards the jeep while the tall Frankenstein’s Monster begins hobbling off in the direction of the building.
“Looks like it worked,” the netrunner states.
“Whatever ‘it’ was,” Echo casts a sideways glance at Casino in an attempt to gauge his thoughts. She hasn’t known the mountain of a Solo for long but feels an irresistible draw to him. He’s moody, unpredictable, maybe even impulsive, but he’s a deep well and she recognizes a lot of emotion within him. Is he broken? Luke says she’s into projects. He’s warned her against those kinds of relationships many, many times. The funny thing about it? That kiss back in the alley… that’s as close to a relationship as she’s ever had. She’s been too afraid to open herself up to anyone in the Family, romantically, that is. Confusion over the way she feels about this brooding soldier floods her mind as she takes in his rough features. Why now? Why him? No answers are readily available.
Arriving at the air jeep, Charlie and Ghlahn rejoin their companions and report on their success. Now comes the waiting part. Every op has at least one period of time where this is the name of the game. Knowing this doesn’t make it any easier. Minutes pass just watching The Alien—a name that Blossom thinks fitting—make his way down the street to the stoop. When he disappears inside, the tension in and around the vehicle is palpable. Nearly a half hour passes before Edgar hobbles out the door and down the stoop. This is the catalyst that sets Charlie and Ghlahn back in motion, returning to the homeless man’s hovel.
Timing their arrival at the tent so that they meet up with The Alien, Charlie offers a greeting with a nod of his head.
“Your Rya Mendez ain’t home,” Edgar rumbles through his burnt lips. “Some old lady was there. Named Marta. Weren’t no Reef inside to deal with. That Marta, she didn’t let me in and didn’t open the door wide enough for me to see past her. Couldn’t tell if there’s a kid in there. Sorry.”
Paying the man his fifty credits in cash, the pair of Edgerunners return to their companions and fill them in.
“So, we go pay this Marta a visit and see what we can learn, right?” Blossom remarks.
“Nicely?” Echo adds, moving from the driver’s seat so that Charlie can take possession once again. Standing in the misty morning air, wind gusting about her, the nomad leans down so she can hear what the others are saying. “I’m not keen on roughing up a gray-hair.”
(OOC: March 9th, Day 3 - Sunday, Time is 07:43 AM PST)
Posted on 2019-04-05 at 14:51:34.