A Night to Never Remember - 10

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Shadowrun:  A Night to Never Remember – 10

Roughly ripping the hood off of the Bloody Razor ganger's head, we let him see where he was, and who he was facing.  Bound to a chair in the back room of some beat-up bar in the Redmond Barrens was the where.  Mr. Johnson and his hulking ork of a chummer, along with myself was the who.  He immediately began to gibber and whimper.

Some big tough, huh?  We weren't even doing anything really intimidating yet, other than standing over him, the bare light bulb over his head illuminating us.  Well, the Johnson was playing with a straight razor, but not doing anything really overt with it.

“Nas, Nas, Nas.  Where's your sense of drama?  Your style?  You had a whole two days to get this done, and you get it done in less than twelve hours?  Where is that last minute charge to the rescue?”  The Johnson said to me, ignoring the helpless wreck before us.  He had given a touch of a fight after picking up the chips, which turned out to be BTLs he informed me, and putting them back in the case, but a club to the back of the head knocked him out easily enough.  Getting him around on the back of the Triumph had been an issue, but I had quick-tie binders galore, and was glad that Susan Hands-As-Wings had sold me on that collapsible Sissy Bar.  Just bound his hands to that, his legs to the pannier mounting brackets, and let his head loll about.

The only real issue had been waiting for Mr. Johnson to set up a meet.  I had gotten hungry and pulled a drive-thru at a McHugh's.  Luckily, they don't exactly hire the most observant people in the world to work the counters there.  And the half-dozen soyburgers had filled the hole quite nicely.  Then a trip back into the Barrens, and here we are.

“Yeah, I'll have drama when I'm not having someone threaten to mount my head in their den.”  I replied.

The Johnson smiled all the wider, and nodded.  “Good choice.  And I know you can do fast work if you need to.  So, now, about my package.”  I turned to the exit to go get the case that was now residing in the Triumph's left pannier, “Tell me why you and your reprobates ate it.”  Wait, what?

“Ate...  Don't know what you mean.”  The punk looked around, confused.  Almost as confused as I was.  This wasn't about some BTL chips?

“Nas, do you know what the difference is between the cheap and expensive artificial blueberry flavouring is?”  The Johnson asked me, as he grabbed the punk's jaw at the base, squeezing his lips apart.

“I don't know, five nuyen?”  I replied, trying to wrap my head around what was going on.

“Six, actually.  But no, it's marketing.  They just double the flavouring chemicals.  Now, for the difference between artificial and natural blueberries is this...  The artificial blueberries won't stain your teeth.”  I looked, and, indeed, there was some blue tinge to the remaining teeth on him.

“This is about those BERRIES?”  The punk asked, disbelievingly, “Dude, I can get you berries!  I can get you all the berries you want!  Just let me go, and we can sort this out!”

“Oh...  You can get me berries, right?”  The Johnson asked, a dangerous look coming over him.

“Yes.”  Our bound idiot replied, gulping.

“You can get me berries just like those?  You can get me Berries from the Canadian Shield, picked under the light of a full moon by virgin women, blessed by a druid?”  The Johnson demanded, thrusting himself face-to-face with the ragged bound form.

Oh frag...  Now it made sense.  Berries alone were expensive, but not worth this much.  But magical components, very specific ones by the sounds of it, were worth their weight in nuyen.  And nuyen was electronic money, weighing in at electrons!

“Oh...  Ohhhhhhhhhh, drek.”  Was our idiot's only reply.  His and his chummers had probably just ate tens of thousands worth of berries.

“Now here's what's going to happen, you are going to explain what happened.  And, if I even suspect that even one part of what you're telling me is even slightly untrue, I am going to erase your gang from the streets.  I will destroy it from memory.  Your members will be fed to the ghouls, and every tag that can be seen will be covered over so many times that not even a drop will remain.  In fact, I think I'll start right now with the one I see.”  The Johnson said, flipping out the razor he was playing with, as the trog grabbed the punk's arm, and twisted it, showing the tattoo, “But don't worry, see, it'll be your own symbol doing it to you.”  He started cutting, blood welled up from the wound...

“I'll talk!”  Screamed the punk.  He sobbed as the sawing stopped, composing himself, then started, “All right, so, we jacked this guy's car, figured we'd do some joy riding, get some brews, stuff like that...  Well, Spyder saw this riced up Mitsuhama...”

I punched him in the stomach for that.  “Riced up indeed.  Stylishly customized with everything having a function, thank you very much.” I informed him casually.  The Johnson and the ork didn't even flinch.

After regaining his breath, “Right, so, yeah, Spyder saw this nicely customized Mitsuhama parked near one of the warehouses we used to stash our stuff.  Figured we'd go and smash it up nice, tag it to make sure that folks didn't forget that we were still around.  Then he,” the punk jerked his head in my direction, “came out just before Tiny swung his hammer at the headlights.  Pulling out this ginormous fraggin' hand cannon and carrying some box. He ordered us away from the car, waving the gun around.  So, I shot him with the Narcojet pistol I got off the guy whose car we got.  Good shot for first time, too, right in the neck.  Didn't drop him, however.  He just stood there, dumbly.  So I ran up and grabbed the box, and went for the pistol, when he snapped, roared like some wild beast, and swung at me.  I just barely ducked out of the way when he started shooting madly.  We barely got back to the car in time and took off as fast as Tiny could drive!”

“The guy was a drug dealer, he smuggled the drugs into town, and loaded his Narcojet with them as a self-defence thing.”  I told the Johnson.  He nodded.

“All right.  Just one more question, and you can go.  Why target that car?”  Mr. Johnson asked, removing the straight razor, and wiping it clean on the punk's t-shirt, then a rag that was on a nearby stack of beer cases.

“Spyder made the choice.  She has an Uncle living it Detroit, and said that would teach the guy for buying an Import...”  The punk continued, but I couldn't hear any more.  Blood rushed to my ears at this statement.  All this pain and suffering, because my car was an “import”?  My beautiful Tengu, the car that took me through Denver, through the desert, went through hell in Seattle, burned and ruined because it was a Mitsuhama?

“MY CAR WAS BUILT IN NEW JERSEY!”  I screamed, interrupting the punk's babbling and shocking all three people in the room, and moved to strike the punk bound in the chair, I was going to beat the little fragger to death for this.  But the Johnson only grabbed my hand.  While not scrawny, he wasn't that built a human, whereas I look more like a ork with the muscles that have been grafted onto me, but he held back even my rage-filled blow like a grip of iron.  I strained against the hold, but it only tightened.

“A deal is a deal, Nas.  He's free to go.”  The Johnson said, cutting him loose with a switchblade, and pointed towards a doorway, “Get going you little piece of drek, before I change my mind.”

He looked quickly, then darted through the door.  As it clicked shut, locking from that side, the screaming started.  I smiled.  Being in the back room of the Jackal's Lantern as we were, the Halloweeners could do far worse to him than I ever could.  But I was confused at one more thing.

“They ran away, so they didn't torch my Tengu, and I was in their territory in the Redmond Barrens, how did I get home to the Puyallup Barrens?”  I asked.

“Got me.”  The Johnson said, “You can piece that out at your own pace.  As it is, it's way past my bedtime, and I just want to get home.”  He turned to the ork, “You did tip the valet at this establishment when we parked, right?”

“Oh, he dun gots a tip a'ight.”  The brute replied.

“Excellent.  Well, Nas, I suggest we take the back door, as they seem to be having a rather nice party up front, and we wouldn't care to intrude, now, would we?”  The Johnson said, smiling his plastic perfect smile and oozing out his honeyed words.

Despite the rage and drugs coursing through my system, I couldn't agree more, and just opened the door for the Johnson and his body guard.  I had a lot of respect to earn back, and every little bit was going to help.
2070. Seattle. One Elf's search for the not-so-distant past.

And Nas' trials have come to and end. The package, and it's fate, is revealed, and street justice prevails. But questions are always left wide open in the Shadows, will they be answered?

Shadowrun is a registered trademark of WizKids Inc. All Rights Reserved. This work is not intended to infringe on any copyright, and is used without permission.

Just a bit of Fan Fiction, folks. Please consider it free publicity!

Unedited folks. Just putting it up because folks are chomping at the bit for it. ;-)
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Siobhan68's avatar
I just forget to comment until now...
Blueberries, even magical ones... what a strange but cool idea!