The Den Games Network Forum RPG
virtualoctopus, CKW, Wesforce, Nyerguds
"Is this line secure?"
The female voice inquired. Overmind replied quickly.
"It´s really secure, you know who I am, Eva. I had put some nasty codifications, even laser coded transmissions to keep this secure."
The woman smiled, there was a man's arm hugging her.
"Fine then. I´ve managed to understand what the keys are for. Duke's mission to find and interrogate Crystal is not needed."
"Okay, but let him have a break, relax and make some friends. He needs rest and low level running... before we brief him in the next step."
"Wise choice." Said a manly voice. It was Dragon, next to Eva.
"This is all a mess." Alexeiv sighed. He often fooled people to think he was creepy... and evil, that he was no clean water.
But... He wasn't like that. He just sheltered well, like someone who never had true family.
"it's easy to tell your life... And get spotted. I´ve never exposed me too much, and never gave my true feelings out."
It was time to start. For once. That girl, Crystal, felt terribly shocked to hear his name. Maybe she was trustworthy.
"here ya go sir" said the worker, handing him the 10-pac of minidiscs (in a container the size of a diabedic test-strip conainer) and the MD Drive to convert the data from the regular discs to put the data onto the discs.....
"Thank you si..."Plugin started... the worker never saw it coming....
"YAAAH!!! GET IT OFF GET IT OFF!!!" yelled the worker.
shots rang out...and the zombie fell down.. dead...Plugin's pistol smoked...
"you just be glad that thing didn't get ahold of ya...." said plugin, re-loading his gun for later.
"t....thanks.....here... have a discount card... 50% off merchandise for one purchase......"
and with that, Plugin marched over to the counter and bought the products...
"have a nice day sir." said the cashier...
sure... said plugin, as he left the building and headed back to his room...
"that's a different way of putting it....." thought Plugin..." have a NICE day..... but live here's been a living hell"
"oh well, better get home soon so i have time to transfer all that data.... FRAG, i haven't even decided what programs i'll need to bring... let's see....a deception program, or two.... a few SOPs... (System Overload Protocols), maybe a disruption program.... can't forget my edited avatar list... hmm, that leaves 1 disc left.... perhapse that anti ICE program i've been working on.... needs testing sometime...
The next morning, Crystal gathered her things, pulling on casual clothes - Trousers, tight black t-shirt. Clothing to last hr she stuffed into her bag, along with some tools: Electronics kit, thermographic goggles, a spare ID Credstick she had been saving for an occasion (she hoped she wouldn't have to use it here: Mr J was meant to be supplying one).
She put her gun into her coat pocket just for while she was in Zombie-town. Last night only proved you can't be too careful here.
Papi also woke. Crystal had a message for her.
Come on, we've got a plane to catch.
Carefully, they picked their way down and out of the building, abd across to a safer part of town where a robocab took them first to where Papi's gear was stored, and then to the Air/Spaceport.
Crystal found she had received another anonymous message telling her to meet 'Smith' at the entrance to the corporate terminal.
'Smith' turned out to be a stony faced black Ork in a suit. He recognised the two, and ushered them into the private walkway that would take them out to their planes.
And there they were, fuelled-up and ready on the tarmac. One BAe/IWS 500 Executive and one AET Silver Kestrel. Both executive jets could carry around ten people.
Sasha and Iceman were waiting for them.
"As soon as everyone's here, and our pilots are rigged up, we can get moving. Stow your gear. Its time to work."
Papi promtly went to put a foot locker away, a grin on her young face. Right before it was to be tucked away inside the Executive she just had to be reminded whats in it. After the hydraulic hissing of the doors, her face really lit up. Or rather, what's inside.
Under the layers of bubble wrap were 2 semi-automatic pistols, a assault carbine with a nice stash of banana clips, and most iportantly, a brand new Particle Projection Cannon.* Papi just gazed at the silver and black piece of machinery, and took an owners manual out the locker before she closed it. She just started reading while strolling around the airfield. This was a newer model, and she needed to know the querks of it.
Maniac arrives at the airfield in his black/red reflex colored Nuovo Inzio B-12, but not in the usual skidmark-laden style that left the rims spinning for hours. The machine just lurched to a stop, and out popped a dismal looking Maniac. Today was the day he'd have to part with the B-12. Maniac after staring and taking pictures, spoke something into his SUV's control pad. The Nuovo then rose to life and left the scene, en route back to its residence.
Now, as if a husband's wife had left, he just had to look at something else sexy. He didnt bother with bringing magazines(just a bag full of clothes, washrags, and a USP) and, he thought the better parts of them would be seen live. He was standing outside in his own fantasy world, gazing at everything worthwhile. His little lust fest was interrupted as Papi stared down at him.
"I can see your eyes through those shades. I dont like where they went. Knock it off."
This wont be a fruitful as Maniac hoped...but still liked what was walking away.
Iceman peered over Papi's shoulder as she was checking the foot-locker.
"Heh... You think you can smuggle those into North America? Not in this plane you won't."
His eyes narrowed to a steely glare.
"Dump everything but the pistols. Now." He didn't raise his voice - But he sure had an edge to it. He meant business...
Meanwhile, a screech of tyres and the roar of engines came from behind Maniac as three security patrol vehicles sped after the Nuovo Inzio he'd arrived in - Chaos enused, as a taxiing HSCT supersonic airliner had to screech to a halt.
"What crazy fragging Psycho drives a sportscar onto the runway of the World's busiest fraggin air-spaceport?" Someone was heard to yell.
Whether the Six-wheeled sportster could outrun patrol vehicles was one thing. Whether it could do it on autopilot on crampled, busy Britsprawl roads was another thing entirely...
The chasing cars sped out of sight, leaving Maniac to load his gear.
Papi did a quick turn, giving Iceman an equally imtimidating glare.
"Keywords, chap. On this plane. " And with that, she took out the semi-autos and stuffed them in her bookbag, then tossed the whole kit and kaboodle inside the jet, landing softly on a plush seat near the back. She then started walking around again, this time yakking on the phone. She stopped and went back to Iceman.
"Somebody coming for that. Be a good little boy, and dont tamper with it please?" She smiled radiantly, drowning Iceman in sarcasm, then continued reading and walking again.
"You made me lose the page, you picky fragger."
Maniac got a chill, something was wrong, and it involved his beloved. He couldnt put his finger on it, so he resorted to talking to it personally. He gave it the "recall" command, through the pad and waited until the B-12 came back. But noo...he's on a secret mission, and the security was jeopardize it. He gave the B-12 a "home" and "evasive" command.
'Evasive' made the car drive like a race car on steroids, it would take any mean possible to get to its location; as long as there is a clearing wide enough for the car to squeeze through and no organic objects in the way, it would get there. It was designed for people with high positions who needed to escape quick. Or speed nuts who wanted a wild ride, in Maniacs case.
He picked up his bag and sat in the AET jet, watching TV, visibly nervous.
Chance and Ash arrived in a most inconspicious way, dressed in casual civilian gear in a taxi. Smith brought them through the terminal, careful to check behind him constantly for any unwelcome tailgaters.
The soldier was dressed traditionally in black trousers, shirt and casual jacket. A cap pulled low over his face kept his treated horns flat and inconspicious against his head. One could not see his eyes under the goggles, but the businesslike look of the military gear had been softened by a wraparound pair of large shades carefully customised to fit around the lenses of the mil-spec goggles. His pistol was tucked inconspiciously under the jacket, clips strapped liberally to belt and backpack. Chance had decided to bring his hand-claws afterall, concealed under his sleeves. He reasoned that he could explain them away as shaman totems.
Ash, dressed in a flame-retardant getup of black-blue Nomex jumpsuit, carried her katana in its scabbard on her back. A smaller blade rode at her hip, while her lethal hands were kept inside her traditional nomex-kevlar gloves. She too wore a cap... Any passerby who sized her up was reminded of the female actress in the old (and "redone" as with the Star Wars movies) film "Terminator 2".
They didn't carry much firepower, heeding what Johnson had already told them... No banned weapons allowed.
Jessica Hayes arrived, carrying nothing but a duffel bag that had a change of clothing and her Compact Deck (CD for short ). Jessica had left her assault rifle with that Johnson person, the weapon easily surpassed the maximum limitations set for the mission.
Alone, unarmed and with no other alternative, Jessica Hayes approached the 'Smith' character and was ushered onto the craft....
Rusty, who lived near air/spaceport, had boarded the craft before anybody else and sat in a heavily reclined seat and watched people board the aircraft. Finally, Ash and Chance stepped into the passenger cabin. Rusty yelled at them from his seat.
"Oi! You two! Sit 'ere, I've bin saving some seats for yah!"
Alanya looked at the other people on the runway. She was really tired; it had been a long night. She had visited Wirecat, and given him her cyberdeck to take with them. Now, all she could do was hope that the smugglers she paid would get Wirecat and Sarah into the UCAS... and her deck with them.
Johnson's people had been waiting for her at the Henshaw garages in Angel, and they had taken LEE's body away to put the on the aura-faking skin cover.
So now I'm here... with nothing but a few program sticks.
She looked at one of the sticks. It was the program the Goblin had given her in Transys... the AEROS. She had scanned the program stick and removed the 'little joke' Overmind had hidden on it... meaning she could use it now. She had transferred it to one of her newer, safer and smaller sticks. The Goblin seemed to have been fond of old hardware.
She walked towards one of the planes.
Silvia looked out the window of the airplane. After Red told her about the 'run she was determined to help. She didn't care about money... this was personal. It was about her home.
She had immediately booked two tickets; on for her, and one for Mary. Silvia really had no idea what she would do, but she didn't care. She knew the Terganon spaceport by heart, and would have little difficulty finding Red there.
She looked at Mary, who was sitting next to her.
"Are you OK? You don't look too good."
"Oh, don't worry." Mary replied. "I really wonder what Terganon is like."
"It's the last bit of fresh air in the world." Silvia said.
"Oh yeah. You'll see."
Silvia was lucky she still got hold of some tickets. It had taken her most of the money to get a decent business class ticket, but she didn't have much problems for the rest. Silvia was a resident of Terganon, and Mary was granted a three-week visum because she was invited there by Silvia. The only problem they had had at the airport was the security mage that got a terrible headache after trying to examine Silvia's astral signature... but one of his colleagues quickly took over. The other mage didn't seem to have much problems with Silvia's screwed-up astral presence.
And now they were on their way to Terganon.
Silvia smiled, and leant back in her seat.
Chance moved over, reaching out to clasp Rusty's offered hand in a comradely shake as Ash followed rather inquisitively.
"Relax Ash... This bugger here is Rusty. Don't worry, he won't bite. Though he's Australian, he's actually a pretty ok guy. Rusty, here's my wife, Ash." Chance introduced the two of them as Rusty bit back a pun on the follies of marriage, laughing at Chance with his eyes as he did so. He reached out for Ash's hand, noticing the gloves that she wore.
She didn't pull them off before a handshake, something that Rusty, being an officer and trained in the traditions of a gentleman, noticed. Ash noted the momentary quizzical look in his face.
"My hands are a little bit sensitive to the London air here... Chaps the skin." she said, offering a quick half-smile that she hoped was convincing.
Chance settled down beside her, stretching as he pushed himself back into the comfortable seat. He hadn't felt such at ease for a long time... Rusty was a fellow ex-soldier who he trusted well, the former having pulled Chance out of a hot zone with a timely helivac more than once. It felt good to be in the company of a soldier from the old days again.
"So, what have you been up to?" Rusty asked.
Chance started to talk while they waited for the rest to arrive, speaking about their experiences so far, Ash occasionally piping in to add in a detail or another or to keep Chance from jokingly over-embellishing several of the runner's exploits. There were a few Freudian slips... both soldiers nearly reverting to obscenity-scattered grunt-talk before remembering Ash's presence. Chance also had to lead Rusty away from some of their old experiences during the Asian Wars... some rather sordid details were better left unknown to Ash!
Red was the last to arrive, hurredly making her way to the runway after a brief argument with a security guard. It had been a busy night - dropping Mary back with Silvia, and making the vital arrangements for her stuff here in Britsprawl - she didn't know when she'd be back, so someone would have to keep an eye. In the end, she'd decided to take with her her motorbike, the bag of drones, her Shardehouse, and a case full of clothes. Having already got the bike stashed in a crate with the transport company being paid, she had stuffed the gun into her satchel, and was carrying the suitcase as well.
Boarding the plane, she collapsed into a chair. Although this flight wouldn't be long, hopefully she could catch a sleep.
Sasha looked around, down the aircraft, and turned to Iceman.
"Everyone iz here, yez?"
Plugin woke up... he had slept in, and needed to hurry and get his stuff together.... he hid his weapon, ammo, and all stuff that could get fried or detected by the metal detector in a small old lead-laced briefcase. he had used it on a number of times to get past security... mainly because he knew what was best for him, not security...
when he got to where he needed to be, he saw the security dudes head into the pathway to the plane....frag, he was gonna miss it... he ran towards the gate, and made it just in time before it closed... the security turned around...
"hey guys, i want no trouble... i'm with them..." said plugin, and they let him through...
"GET THE FRAG BACK OUT HERE NOW!" Iceman bellowed. He didn't care how tired his charges were. As an ex military officer, he was used to giving orders and having them obeyed. He went into both the plains and got everyone back out, even if he had to scream his head off or drag them out.
Soon he had Crystal, Chance, Ash, Papi, Maniac, Red, Rusty, Alex and Alanya on the tarmac before him again.
He walked up and down the line, as if inspecting his troops.
"Look at me when I'm talking to you, bitch!" He snarled at Crystal. She slowly raised her head to meet his gaze. When he did so, he said: "And no talking back either!" He laughed cruelly, walking on so the daggers Crystal stared at him only bounced off his back.
"Hmm, ex-military." He asked Chance, approvingly. Chance nodded. "You fought the Japs?" He guessed, correctly. When Chance confirmed this, he clapped him on the shoulder. "If you work for a living, we're going to get on just fine." He grinned. Out of respect for Chance, he didn't ride Ash, and moved onto Jessica.
"Female pilot. Enough said." To underscore that, he winked at her and licked his lips, moving onto Papi and Maniac.
"I'm gonna be watching you two." He said coldly. "None of your fragging lip," He told Papi, "And if you get cold feet when our arses are on the line," He said, staring down Maniac, "It'll be the last thing you ever do."
"Alanya..." He tested the name, not liking it one bit and showing his distaste plainly.
"You're our decker. Not that I like you fragging tuskers... But we actually need you on this one." He leaned forward and whispered into her ear.
"But if anything untoward happened to our resident decker, I'm sure Mr J could find a replacement."
The coldness of his words shocked even the Ork decker. Iceman winked at her too.
He ignored Alex. For now.
Next he came up to Red and Rusty.
"Well, my comrades. You'll be our pilots. If you crash us, I'll rip your balls off with my teeth. Both of you/"
There was an awkward moment of silence. Red and Iceman stared at each other coldly. Rusty bit his lip.
Then Iceman threw back his head, laughing like a drain.
Rusty nervously laughed a bit too... So did Maniac, against his will.
"Now, one more thing." Iceman shouted. "I want you all to grab the arse of whoever is on the right of you."
When his charges hesitated he screamed "DO IT NOW!!!!"
Red grabbed Rusty's ass. Hard. Rusty jumped and touched Alex, with a look of horror on his face. Alex grinned and touched Alanya's gnarled behind. Being Cold and military minded, he dug his nails in. Hard. Alanya slapped Maniac, who jumped even higher than Rusty, and moved towards Papi... then thought better of it. Iceman didn't notice. Papi grabbed Ash's ass and jerked away, imagining flames. Ash and Chance were comfortable enough with each other, but Chance was thankful for Ash's gloves. Chance grabbed Crystal's ass. Crystal, feeling empty air to her right, shrugged and grabbed herself.
"Okay." Iceman said, satisfied. Everyone expected him to say something corny like "Your asses are in each other's hands now - Don't frag up."
But he didn't. He just told them to get onto the planes - And wanted them to get on in the way he wanted them too:
Red would pilot the Executive, with Sasha, Chance, Maniac, Alex and Jessica.
Rusty would pilot the Silver Kestrel, with Iceman himself, Papi, Ash, Crystal and Alanya.
Grumbling, the 'Runners settled down. It was too early for this crap... And they were supposed to listen to this fragger?
And clearance came through for take off...
In an hour, they were gliding over the Atlantic Ocean at 30,000 feet.
Meanwhile, on Terganon Thomas Fellowgreen wandered the streets. He was doing his daily walk around town, surveying damage. While there hadn't been much done physically, emotionally, well you could feel the panic in the air. Terganon wasn't used to attacks, people here thought nobody could touch it. While people acted as if there was nothing wrong, getting together in "national pride". If you mentioned it, well... they bit your head off isn't an expression around here.
Tommy pushed his way though two pairs of legs, fragging elves, going around being so tall! What right did they have! I mean, it was nothing if they stepped on each others toes, but Tommy didn't like being kicked in the head, or crushed in a stampede. Many a great Gnome died that way, twas why they are so rare. Not to mention the fact nobody bothers to check if you just ran over a racoon or a Gnome. Was a sad old life, but Tommy had made it worth while.
He was a half-Dragon slayer really, couldn't handle the big buggers, yet. He only got the little ones by catching them alone, drugging their drinks and desposing of the bodies over the edge. T'was the beauty of the city.
But, when he wasn't carrying a box of pills and a body bag, He was doing his job, newly appointed head of international relations. It was his job to sort this attack out, and ina subtle manner, he was doing it badly. He wanted the attackers back, he'd waited all his life to destroy the city from the inside, now he could! But not too fast, Dragons were clever buggers, he had to have a well organised mind, stop people probing around in there. And he'd managed it, he'd bloody well done it! Any dragon messing around with his feelings would feel the words "Good for the City", "Care for the people" and now he'd added "National Pride" to sway the misguided fools. And Light Frag it, it had worked! But for now, it would have to wait. For now, Tommy was off to meet Yellow Jerry, a Goblin. Tommy liked Goblins, as he could actually speak to their shoulders, rather then their legs. While Goblins are few in the city, Tommy had noticed a lot more recently. All knowing each other, and all running around, speaking in hushed whispers.
Oh well, no matter. Tommy walked on.
Alex looked back at himself... A black suit, red tie, white shirt...
Whether it was intentional or not, Alex´s look as civilian gave even more creeps than when in militar. He looked like if he were not human at all. Like a cold-minded bodyguard. The black leather gloves he was wearing, to not reveal his fingerprints didn't help too much.
It was too ironical, that a pricky liutenant like Iceman was behaving like a low level sergeant speaking to his soldiers, even him, despite he was colonel. But, Alex knew that Iceman still retained some of his abilities, the ones who kept him being a top soldier... and his former buddy and teacher.
Alex thought once again in his lowered equipment. His dear Glock 50 was bigger than 9mm, so he had to manage with a cheap 9mm RSP, a russian pistol... that russian COPS used. However, this time he could brought a medkit and a defusal kit... So in the case they were threatened with bombs he could be useful.
He gave a look to his teammates... Thus describing them briefly mentally. He was not making cliches, or anything. He was just using what he had.
First, there were Red,Shasha, Alanya... people like them, runners who didn't show of their past too much, just enough to struggle...
But, Crystal, Jessica, Chance and Ash were different... They seemed more interesting. Crystal looked like she wanted to tell out her experiences with Wolf, and to be answered back... Jessica seemed somehow familiar, but he didn´t know why.
Chance and Ash were exsoldiers... GOOD ex-soldiers, for what he could see. Maybe they could be friendly with him, despite he was so creepy.
"So... Chance Vei, no? I have heard of you. I have heard good things of you. You were an excellent soldier." Alex started to talk. Planes and pre-mission transports got him bored, and it was then, only then, when he was talkative. He hoped to be answered back.
The dragon city of Terganon floated like some colossal spinning top above the ocean waves. Below it, the massive hydro-electric generators were just visible in the blue-green sea, linked by apparently frail cables – but really, as most of the passengers knew, they were several metres thick, and carrying the power generated from the ocean waves to the massive superstructure above it. This dragon city was the largest in the world – and an architectural, technological, cultural – and probably about another sixty other –ultral – wonder. Red didn’t even think she’d ever seen a dragon in the flesh before (excluding Silvia, of course), so she was slightly aprehensive - although typical Red character and force of personaility overcame this. Already, she could see the specks of dragons in the air above the place.
The small executive jet - not worth operating for anything apart from a wish for privacy - headed towards the airial construct. Red hadn't been at the controls of something this big before, and, aside from a slight feeling of paranoia about the mysterious warning she had recieved, she was enjoying herself. Infact, it had only been the money that had made her take it on, in the end - that and the fact that she didn't think anything that bad could happen on a floating island guarded by 100 foot flying lizards. To one of them, like Silvia, even it was a familiar sight – she’d spent much of her life there, but to her friends, it was something totally alien, something they might never expect to visit in their entire lives.
Three weeks earlier, they had barely escaped with their lives from Transys Arcology, in a massive incident that had shook both Scotsprawl and the rest of the world. Now, they were making their way to another victim of the chaos that seemed to follow them wherever they went. The foremost dragon city.
After the Geneva buclear attack had been firmly established as the work of a rogue Dragon known as N’zar, and the subsequent attacks on various Dragon cities (the infamous Terganon bombing being the most high profile), it was clear that dragons were becoming somewhat of a pariah – not something you’d say to the face of a twenty metre long carnivorous flying lizard, but nethertheless apparent. Trade in the massive merchant-cities, positioned at strategic points across the world’s oceans had dropped, as corporations found easier, less risky ways to move their massive shipments, without having to involve the dragons, who were undeniably linked to Geneva, the social turmoil in Orkislavia that had followed the death of the notorious Mawrose Delori, and there had even been reports of dragons in the Scotsprawl sky before and during the Transys Arcology fiasco (although these were proving very hard to verify, with the majority of witnesses to the former having been inside the Arcology at the time of lockdown).
The sound of a dwarven traffic controller hissed from the voicebox. Acess was granted. It was time to come in to land.
"Thanks... Just doing my job." Chance replied to Alex. The former was still chafing from the treatment from Iceman... Hell, he had left Officer Cadet School a lifetime ago, and didn't need to be reminded of all that spit-shine and salute crap all over again. For a moment, he had wondered if Iceman was going to demand salutes from the ex-officers (Chance, Rusty, Jessica and Alex).
Suddenly, when placed next to Iceman, Alex didn't seem such a jerk afterall.
"Just call me Chance... That's what everyone calls me." Chance replied. Even though he had heard that the Iceman was a colonel, and Chance was a mere 1st lieutenant who was outranked by a great deal, Chance could not resist asking about him with distaste in his voice.
"That Iceman fellow. You know him? What's this with his inspection crap anyway? Hell, he's behaving like a freshly-minted lieutenant dealing with a bunch of pimply high school kids fresh into boot camp." Chance said, getting more irate at the way that that idiot had pushed everyone around... Had that prick seen even half of the things at Geneva... he would have probably pissed his pants and cried for mommy.
"I know that man rather well... And as a favour to an ex-brother in arms, I'll advise you not to trust him fully. He's a viper." Alex replied. "Last time I saw him, he was just a lieutenant, a junior one at that."
Chance narrowed his eyes at the thought... Officer ranks were rather sacred, and if Iceman had pulled strings to get colonel shoulderboards, Chance would be hard-pressed not to spit on that bugger. Still, orders were orders... Iceman was the leader for the mission and Chance would obey the code of military conduct by following orders... for the time being. It helped that there was another Colonel on board too.
Chance couldn't salute when strapped and sitting down (it was an insult to do so) and so nodded to Alex.
"Thank you for your advice. Colonel Alexander Alexeiv."
"Just call me Alex."
Silvia walked through the Airport. Mary followed her, and looked around in the building. This place had wasn't a good example of what Terganon was like; not at all. The official buildings in Terganon were made for Dragons... the corridors in this airport weren't even big enough to let a dragon pass through them. Silvia had always liked the airport though. It made her feel much less small than the rest of the city.
They passed a tourist shops selling Little Big D. Dolls and other stuff like that, and went towards the exit.
The Terganon traffic outside consisted of mainly metahumans, since most dragons preferred to fly to wherever they wanted to be. But sometimes a dragon did walk through the streets of Terganon. When a dragon approached, the crowd quickly split and kept a safe distance, and closed when the Dragon had passed. People were used to them.
Not all of Terganon was like this though... most of the inner sections were completely off-limits to every non-dragon, with the exception of people that worked there. in maintenance and such.
But since the attack on the city the crowds on the streets were remarkably thinner. Not that that really bothered Silvia at this point. It just made it easier of get through.
"Come on!" she said to Mary. She walked to one of the taxi park places and called a cab.
Apart from the Taxi's there was no car traffic in Terganon. There were monorails for the metahuman population, but Dragons didn't have much trouble flying from one side of the city to the other, so they never bothered making Dragon transport. The taxi's were only there to reach the most outer parts of the city, where there were no monorails.
Like Silvia's home.
The cab driver stepped out of the car, and opened the passenger doors. He was dressed in a very formal-looking grey business suit, which really didn't suit him; the driver was an Ork.
Silvia didn't care. She knew what Terganon was like, and didn't want to waste any time at this point. Mary would have time enough to gaze at it later.
They stepped into the taxi. Silvia plugged her credstick in the slot and told the driver the address, and the cab drove off.
The two Jets so kindly acquired by Mr Johnson's organisation - Whoever they were - Touched down on Two of Terganon's smaller landing strips. Moments ago a huge HSCT supersonic airliner had landed on the main runway. Crystal had seen it from a distance, and felt dwarfed by the huge 'plane. It made her feel like she was in a VW Elektro compared to the HSCT's Rolls Royce.
The 'runners stepped off their 'planes - The air here was fresher than most of them had ever known. It was a whole world away from the muggy, thick-aired Britspraw summer.
The clouds were pretty clear today, too - You could look up into the sky and see for miles.
Crystal did look up. There, in the distance, an airship was busily crawling through the sky, probably going to moor itself to one of Terganon's towers.
A shadow passed over her, over all of them. When she realised what it was...
She froze to the spot. Her skin crawled. She felt like Ice was running through her veins, and that she would die in the next moment.
She reached for the grenades hanging from the front of her combat jacket. If Cy could just fly in front of the thing long enough... If someone were to distract the beast... What was it carrying? That huge silver cylinder clutched under claw with a Radiation/Magical Hazard warning badge on it...
"What's up, never seen a fragging Dragon before? Get movin'!" Iceman snarled.
Crystal fought down the urge to hit the man. He wasn't there, when N'zar had buked Geneva. How could he know?
The Dragon that had flown over them was long gone. But even here, in the (in)famous dragon city... She'd never get used to seeing them.
Off the edge of the runway, glittering blue/green waters swelled under the hovering city. The waters here actually supported a lot of marine life, and didn't contain half the corrosives the waters around the British isles or any good sized sprawl port did anywhere in the world. She knew the Dragons kept them clean somehow. Probably some magical cleansing ritual. They didn't see fit to let common humanity in on their little secret. Maybe they knew that humans would just re-pollute everything again anyway, in the name of progress.
Iceman barked some instructions the are moment everyone was off the 'planes.
"Alright. Its 14:00 hours. We'll leave here for the Continent about 21:00. We've got to find that fragger Bashir, find out what he knows. You and you -" He pointed indicating Rusty and Alex. "You stay back and keep an eye on the 'planes. We may send some more fraggers back to relieve you. Everyone else... Lets go shopping!"
The 'runners filed into Corporate customs for routine credstick scans. Ork and Troll gards dressed in silly-looking quasi-mediaeval uniforms checked their fake IDs (supplied by - yep, Mr Johnsons), and grunted. No 'Welcome to Terganin' or such crap.
The place was a hive of activity. Suited people of all sorts of races, nationalities and Corp affiliations buzzed this way and that. The city attracted commerce like flies on a week-old corpse. The Dragons accepted these traders, if they didn't particularly like them. Crystal stiffened when she realized, in theory, that any of them could be a Dragon in human form (assuming one stooped so low as to walk with humans).
And then there were the tourists.
"Gee honey... Get me a holopix with this here quaint street-trader will ya?"
The 'trader' in question was a Female Elf in a tight top, miniscule leather skirt and thigh-high boots, hair swept up in a shiny black arc.
"Hmm... Lets take a look around." Iceman grunted to the 'runners.
when on the plane he was quiet... mainly programming in his head... ideas on what to make next...
after they landed, Plugin just followed the group... pistol now shoved in his jacket, loaded with the safety on...
The taxi stopped. The Ork driver pulled the credstick out of the slot, gave to back to Silvia, and opened the doors.
Silvia stepped out of the car, and started running towards the big dragon-sized house. She was extatic.
"I'M HOME!" she yelled. She looked back to Mary, who just got out of the cab. Silvia's eyes glimmered with pure happiness. "Finally."
The Ork closed the passenger doors, got in the car and drove off, back to the taxi parking spots in the city.
"Come on!" Silvia said. "What are you waiting for?"
"Don't you ever get tired?" Mary asked. "I mean, you've been busy all night with that weird ritual."
"Oh, that. Well it was the only way to get Raven's gun with me... I had to Store it. And the security mage didn't notice!"
"The security mage collapsed on the floor while scanning you, Silvia. And that young girl that came to replace him barely dared to look at you."
"Well I'm here now, with Raven's gun. No problem!"
Mary sighed. "You should really learn to worry a bit more, Sil. The world isn't as open to you as you think it is."
But Silvia didn't seem to care at all. She ran towards the small door (next to the big, dragon-sized one) and rang the doorbell.
Much to her surprise, the person who opened the door wasn't her mom. It was a man that looked like he was in his mid-thirties. He was wearing a black suit.
Silvia frowned. "Dad?"
The man smiled. "Hello, Silvia!"
He reached out for his daughter and hugged her. "It's been more than a slegging month!"
"I know." Silvia sighed. She looked at her father again. "Why are you shapeshifted?"
Vorug smiled, and looked at Mary. "I thought this would be best to greet any guests you might have."
Silvia looked at Mary, and then back to her dad. "Oh, right! I'm sorry. Mary, this is my dad, Vorug Serthedal. Dad, this is Mary Turin."
Vorug smiled. "Nice to meet you."
Mary seemed to feel a bit uncomfortable, knowing that that man was actually a Dragon, but she managed to produce a nervous smile.
Silvia rushed into the house to find her mom. Mary followed her into the house, and looked around. The house was huge. She could see a dragon-size vidphone somewhere on what seemed to be a higher floor. Silvia didn't bother taking any stairs though. She took off the synthleather jacket, unfolded her wings through the holes in her shirt and beat her wings to get to the next floor.
"Please, sit down." Vorug said to Mary.
"So, What's with all the Goblins Jerry?" Tommy asked, The pale yellow skinned Goblin didn't respond. "Come on Jerry. They know summat don't they? It's comin' ain't it?"
"I do not know what you are getting at Tommy, But just because I'm a Goblin, it doesn't mean I know every Goblin on the planet." Replied Jerry, in his usually manner. It was hard to tell if Jerry was lying, just because he seemed to belive anything that come out of his mouth. This was a Goblin who could say the world was flat, and make you belive it!
"Fair do's... Fair do's... Thing we're gonna be attacked again?"
"No doubt. Hard to belive, all these lizards here..." Jerry sat back in his chair, sipping a drink. "But, when... when it happens is an open book."
"Aye to that... Aye to that. Ah well, better be going." Tommy got up. "Don't hold this information out on me though Jerry..."
"Off shopping?" Inquired Jerry
"Gotta keep an eye on the bloody tourists..." He muttered, then walked off, back into a street of legs. It was hard to be the little man in a tall mans world.
He dodged his way though a sea of legs, the only big folk he liked were big folk in skirts, cept them Scottish fraggers, they were just sick. He'd thought of hiring an ork to carry him or something, but decided they might be too stupid to understand things like "Stop", "Move" and "WHAT THE FRAGGING HELL ARE YOU DOING!!!!!"
He walked towards the crowded shopping centre, carefully observing everyone, looking for someone suspicious. He liked suspicious, they might take a chunk out of this Light forsaken place.
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