The party rests up for a while. April spends some time in the hospital, and then gets back to work. Unbeknownst to the rest of the team, she has been recording all of their runs on a headware sim recorder, and then having her elven coworker Yann Tillberg upload them to popular cold- and hotsim matrix nodes. he edits out the faces/defining physical characteristics of team members and notable others, as well as altering backgrounds and such, to avoid easy identification of the runners and their locations. april plans to begin offering her branded runs thru a pay-per-view service after first giving out some free teasers.
scrounge returns to his sewer lodge to lay low for a while, after he hears that some Striking Crane clan operatives are in town looking for him.
Barry hears from his Mad Martians gang boss, Yoleus, that the MM’s are considering an alliance with a neighboring gang, the Problem Children. The idea is for the MM’s and PC’s to team up against a gang that abuts both of their territories, the Black Shadows, who are the largest and most powerful of the undercity street gangs. They don’t really compete with organized crime, but they’re powerful and fairly wealthy, as their usual activites are kidnapping and extortion. If the MM’s and PC’s stop feuding along their common border, they can unite to take some turf off the edges of the BS zone. Barry calls up Remus, who’s been laying low above Fat Carl’s, and the two head over to PC turf to meet their contact.
Meanwhile, in PC turf, an ex-seattle based elven organlegger and rigger named Ivan is meeting with the PC gang boss, 1-Shot Wade. Wade tells him about the proposed alliance with the MM’s and fills him in on the job details, as well as the other members of his team. He meets up with them outside the Ares tower base, and fills them in. The job is to tail some BS operatives thru the uppercity until they kidnap a popular simstar, Jina Eson. Wade got wind of the job thru a source inside BS, and offered the truce to Yoleus to focus on this job and attacking the BS. After the kidnapping, the team is to follow the BS goons stealthily to their safehouse, and then infiltrate and rekidnap the simstar. They are supposed to make it look like an inside job if possible, to sow confusion in BS ranks ahead of the joint PC/MM invasion.
The team heads to the uppercity to pick up the tail, and begins following the simstar’s limo in Ivan’s tricked out taxi. They see the limo pull to a stop in front of an accident, and some BS ops jump onto the roof via ziplines from the buildings above. 1 cuts thru the roof with a monofilament chainsaw and the other fires some quick bursts into the cab, presumably dispatching the simstar’s guards. The BSers enter the limo and the team sees a dead body kicked out the door. The cars involved in the accident clear out, as does the limo. The team tails them to their safehouse, a four story multi-unit, fortunately a ways away from BS turf. Some BS guys take the girl inside, while some others take off with the limo. Another BS car pulls up out front and sets up across the street. Ivan rigs in his car while Remus hacks (nothing like two passed out-looking dudes in a cab) while Barry decides to scale the nextdoor apartment building to try to get a look.
Remus finds some building plans, and also creates a camera loop on the front door security system. Barry notices a sniper covering to street from the roof. Remus exits the matrix and makes his way to the building across the alley-he talks his way in, makes his way to the roof, hacks the fire alarm, and sets up his sniper on the fire escape. he takes out the rooftop guard, and Barry jumps over from the (higher) neighboring building, barely making it. he uses his selective sound filters to listen for more exterior guards, and hears a car approaching-it pulls into the alley parking behind the safehouse-maybe to get the girl? Ivan reenters his flesh and squeezes thru the crack between two adjacent apartment buildings to get into the alley parking behind the safehouse. he sneaks up on and silently executes the driver. remus covers the windows on the back of the safehouse from across the alley and tries to figure which room it is-he thinks he figures out the proper floor-sees some BS goons thru on a window on the right.
Ivan and Barry converge on the fire escape outside the window, Remus snipes 1 goon thru the window and Ivan and Barry bust in and quickly dispatch the other, all silenced weapons so far. they are in a surveillance room, and the girl seems to be across the hall. barry exits the room, and with his advanced hearing picks up a guard at the end of the hall on the stairwell. he (amazingly, for a geared-up troll) sneaks up on the guard and gorily separates his upper torso from his abdomen with his monofilament thumb whip. Ivan goes across the hall, and knocks. the door clicks and a voice says “come in.” Remus can’t see much, as the room is pitch black.
Ivan and Barry enter, but are quickly blinded when the lights flare on. they are also greeted by submachine gun fire-always a pleasant surprise. Ivan takes some serious wounds, but Barry manages to shake off most of the bullets. Remus quickly regains his sight and snipes 1 guard who is in his line of sight, but hiding behind a sofa from the team members in the hall. Barry launches in a grenade and takes out the other guard (who goes flying out the window), but also lightly wounds the hostage. The submachine gun fire and the guard crashing thru the window seems to have alerted the other BS’ers. Ivan tries to sow some confusion by talking into one the dead goons’ earpieces that the dead goon has gone rogue (he picks up his name of a license in his pocket), and then takes the body with him. Barry takes the hostage. Remus bolts down the fire escape, and the team enters the idling BS car in the parking space.
They start turning around (Remus driving (poorly) while Barry sets up in back and ivan rigs). Ivan pulls his cab around the corner, deploys the concealed autocannon, and blasts the BS car in front of the house, and then the front of the building for good measure. as the exit the alley, two more BS cars come racing up in pursuit. Barry knocks out the back window in the stolen BS car and launches some airburst grenades while ivan continues blasting with the autocannon. they round the corner and quickly destroy the last BS car. However, their car has taken some heavy machine gunfire damage, and is barely limping along, so they all switch over to Ivan’s cab, with the hostage in the (refrigerated) trunk, and make their escape, as sirens begin to wail behind them. Remus realizes that he knows of this simstar-she is Jina Eson, and is dating his much more famous and more popular brother, Romulus. Only then do they realize that the hostage definitely also saw all of their faces, since they weren’t even wearing masks. Total amateurs…..
Next up, they figure out what to do with a wounded simstar…..will Remus seek revenge for his brother’s slights?