Harmony Craig Bottow
After April sells her fearmongering “wasteland cult” story, Cortez tells her about a job. She needs April to use her undercity contacts to put together a small crew that can do a very subtle hit on a sensitive target. Specifically, she needs the ex-model Sebastien removed permanently from the life of Hermes’ top simstar, Yvonne. Seb has been dragging her down for months now, and Hermes can’t have these unnecessary lost profits. Cortez tells April she’ll get a cut, as long as the job is super discreet. April agrees, in exchange for running her piece in primetime. Cortez gives in.
Out in Yerbal, HCB gets in touch with Neonet, beams them test data from his implanted black box-they say they lost his signal after he went down-it seems Olympus Prime had established a wireless deadzone around their base. Otherwise they, of course, would have sent a security team out to retrieve him. Since he had vacation time approaching anyway, NeoNet suggests that he take a month or so off, to recover from his ordeal. He agrees. It seems like this crew might have the thrills he’s seeking.
Once they return to the city, Fat Carl tells them that he’s had a bunch of odd types looking for them-of course he didn’t give up any info, but still, they might want to watch their backs. The only one they asked for by name was Remus, the rest were just descriptions. A couple of corp heavies, some Japanese looking folks, and this odd looking dude in animal skins with a birdskull necklace that he kept rubbing. Barry heads off to help Yoleus on a big drug deal. The team tracks down some rating 4 micro tranceivers, so they can communicate better without relying on comms, a weakness they discovered in the cave raid. Ivan goes off to taxi for a while. Since Fat Carl’s has gotten a little too hot, Remus goes into hiding at April’s secret apartment-she has been putting Scrounge up as well, since his lair was destroyed.
HCB, Scrounge, and April all get together to plan the current job-they decide to approach Seb at a public club opening (“Upsilon”) that him and Yvonne are being paid to attend. They hope to entice him away from the public eye with the promise of some rare and radical drugs, and then feed him some poisoned shit and make it all look like one big accident. April decides to attend as her media personality, with Scrounge along as a photographer/paparazzi. April attempts to approach the VIP area and talk to Seb for a “story,” but is rebuffed by event security, who don’t seem impressed by her Hermes press credentials. HCB decides to pretend he’s some player and tells Scournge and April to play along-Scrounge begins following HCB taking pictures and proclaiming that he can hardly believe that Mr Bottow himself is here. April starts crowding HCB, trying to get an interview. The security guard at the VIP area lets HCB thru, to get away from the press, although he doesn’t recognize him, he figures he’s not nobody. HCB sits down and orders a drink, and sends some provocative messages to Seb and Yvonne’s table-he gets invited over and scoped out by security, but Seb seems pretty easy going, and they chat about street drugs and piloting. Seb suggests they bail on the party and go for a ride in his private heli, which is up on the roof. HCB agrees.
HCB talks him up the whole time about how he’s some corp’s upper managment’s kid, and he has a line on this awesome new deepweed variant that’s about to hit the streets, and if Seb wants a taste, he can score him some. Seb is flying dangerously, as he is all fucked up, but seems pretty into HCB’s plan-he arranges to meet him before some boring private dinner the next night, so that he can get all ripped first. He sets HCB down on the roof of a random building, declaring that he is drunk and is going home. HCB looks up the building in a matrix directory and convinces someone at the desk to open the rooftop fire escape for him. He joins back up with April and crounge, and they concoct the second part of their plan.
HCB buys some seizure and vomit inducing drugs, and then the team has Barry supply the deepweed, modified with some seriously lethal poison-they figure it would be suspicious if HCB didn’t do the same drugs as Seb, so they contact Doc Todd ahead of time to tell him what poison HCB will need curing of-and hope that he can avoid inhaling too much. Barry acts as HCB’s bodyguard on the deal, they meet Seb and his two bodyguards in an abandoned house in Mad Martians territory. As expected, Seb wants to smoke right away as well as buy some for later, and he pulls out a fancy vaporizer with two hookah like pipes attached. Him and HCB both inhale, HCB triggers the seizure drug and then passes out from the actual poison, Seb looks poorly as well. The two sets of bodyguards edge out carrying their charges with their guns in each other, and then race off to hospitals: Seb to an upper city ICU, HCB to Doc Todd’s, where he administers the antidote none too soon. Upon waking, HCB receives a call from Seb’s bodyguards, letting him know that they’re onto him. April posts fake bio and obituary for a Craig Avery, a conman that the obit claimed used HCB and other aliases/stolen identities in pursuit of his marks. Seb is soon announced to have died in surgery, and the team gets paid. Barry is still looking to buy more rockets, and HCB puts the word out that he would love to acquire a rocket pack.