Online-Roleplaying.community

Go Back   Online-Roleplaying.community > treehouse's Games > Containment

Closed Thread
Thread Tools
  #1  
Unread 13th of October, 2009, 08:55
treehouse's Avatar
treehouse
Evolved Ulgurstasta [Epic GM]

User is offline
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Member: #1471
Location: Tulsa
Posts: 7,114 (1.62 per day)
Prologue: Lady in Gray (IC)

A biting wind chased the old Englishman across the street, nearly knocking his hat off as he sought shelter in the shadow of a drab, brown building. He was trying hard not to be shaken; a rather self-indulgent, retired lifestyle may have softened him to an outsider's view of things, but Ewan Doyle was not a stranger to death. He had seen it many times, even caused it on a few occasions as he sought to serve Queen and Country, and was intimately familiar with the symptoms - glazed, open-yet-unseeing eyes, the stink of final defacation, and depending on the age of the corpse in question, the unnerving stiffening of limbs as rigor mortis sets in.

The body he had just discovered had been that way for a while, he deduced semi-calmly before exiting his old friend's apartment and making his way back to Tol-gan Road. It was not a good idea to be discovered in the living quarters of anyone who had been struck down by Contagion, and that was clearly what had killed Gregory.

Ewan reflected bitterly on the events of the past few months even as he considered how to send an anonymous tip to the Hong Kong Health Administration. When Contagion first landed, it had been mistaken at first for a particularly nasty strain of the flu. By the time authorities realized what was going on, it was far too late for any attempt at containment. Ewan still had a finger on the pulse of local intelligence circles, and it hadn't taken long for the name Ashes of Adam to reach his ears.

He snorted involuntarily, drawing concerned looks from nearby pedestrians. He belatedly remembered how dangerous it was to make any sound resembling a cough nowadays in public and began walking even more briskly. He was parked half a mile north, a decision that he might have rethought if he had had an inkling that the weather would turn poor so suddenly.

He reached his lot a moment later, still wondering how long Gregory had been dead. When he caught sight of his car, ages-old instincts kept him walking when he normally would have stopped dead in his tracks. A gray luxury sedan was idling three spaces away from his car. Perched on the top of his car was an apparently forgotten cup of gourmet coffee that he hadn't put there.

The windows of the sedan were dark, naturally. The signs were clear though; someone wanted to meet with him privately, and they knew MI6 protocol. He considered briefly what to do.
  #2  
Unread 13th of October, 2009, 10:59
Darius's Avatar
Darius
The Phantom Poster [Epic GM]

User is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Member: #1110
Location: Maryland
Posts: 3,490 (0.75 per day)
Ewan reached into the pocket of his trench coat and fingered the pistol that he carried there. He then pulled out the cellphone that was nestled near it.

He wrinkled his nose slightly and smiled as he opened the cell. He wasn't actually calling anyone, but it gave him a chance to move to one side to look at the license plate.

Just because they know MI6 protocol means nothing. Then again...

He moved closer to the car, his face a studied blank as he tried to catch movement out of the corner of his eyes.

You'd think I was too old and tired for anyone to try to assassinate. All my old friends and enemies are dead or retired, at this point my old enemies are as close to me as my friends. Worse thing I ever did was survive the Cold War. No place in this new world for an old warhorse like me. Still, could be worse. Could be dead like Gregory.

He came up to his car and took the cup of coffee off the roof. He watched for movement in the periphery from the other car.
  #3  
Unread 13th of October, 2009, 11:12
treehouse's Avatar
treehouse
Evolved Ulgurstasta [Epic GM]

User is offline
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Member: #1471
Location: Tulsa
Posts: 7,114 (1.62 per day)
The plates on the car were unremarkable, and local at that.

As soon as Ewan picked up the cup of coffee, the passenger door of the sedan opened, as if responding to a signal he had sent.

The interior of the car was dark, but he could make out the outline of a lone figure on the other side of the passenger's seat, talking on a cell phone. They did not glance in Ewan's direction, but he knew he would have just a moment to enter the car before the door closed again, and whoever it was that wanted to talk to him waited for another opportunity to make contact.
__________________
More cocks! Everywhere I look there are cocks! I seem to be surrounded by cocks! -itches

I'm like Jesus, but with more car chases. -BigRedRod

Every outfit has a guy like me. We're usually called "Shut the hell up!" -Doombot
  #4  
Unread 13th of October, 2009, 11:20
Darius's Avatar
Darius
The Phantom Poster [Epic GM]

User is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Member: #1110
Location: Maryland
Posts: 3,490 (0.75 per day)
He set the cup on top of his car and deliberately took his time putting the cell phone away.

He smiled slightly and entered the car. "What do I owe the pleasure?" he asked, eying the occupant carefully. "I can't remember the last time I was invited to the ball," he said.

2000. An affair involving North Koreans and computer parts. It has been a while.
  #5  
Unread 13th of October, 2009, 12:05
treehouse's Avatar
treehouse
Evolved Ulgurstasta [Epic GM]

User is offline
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Member: #1471
Location: Tulsa
Posts: 7,114 (1.62 per day)
As Ewan approached the sedan, he could make out the sedan's passenger more clearly - an Asian woman in her late twenties or early thirties, wearing a gray, skirted business suit and wearing glasses. Ewan heard the tail end of her conversation as he crawled into the backseat, noting the clear, pleasant English accent that didn't fit her porcelain face.



"..and I will have to call you back later, at any rate. I have company. Ciao."

Her phone snapped shut with a click as Ewan closed his door. She turned slightly so she could face him, smiling, but said nothing as they pulled out of the lot. He could not see the driver, as the backseat was completely partitioned from the front with what Ewan could only assume was soundproof material. He couldn't suppress a raised eyebrow as she tapped a button on the discreet console in front of her, which caused a low-pitched, slightly irritating buzz to hum through the air around them.

Sound scramblers? What could she possibly have to say to a retiree that requires such cloak and dagger?

She cleared her throat as they pulled onto a main street, northbound but cruising at an easy pace that reassured Ewan slightly. If they were abducting him, they weren't in a hurry. Not that anyone would notice his disappearance for at least a few days...

"Thank you for getting into the car, Mr. Doyle. It would have been bothersome yet understandable if you had made me try harder."

She pulled a leather-bound folder from the slim briefcase beneath her legs, handing it to him without a word. He suspected the contents, and was not disappointed as he cracked it open and found a dossier with him as the subject. By the thickness of the folder, he was sure it was quite detailed.

"You are a formidable man, Mr. Doyle. A master of disguise, unparalleled information broker, veteran of all three great shadow wars of our age, and I must suppose after all that a favored knight of the Queen..."

Her mouth curved as the smile became more pronounced. She seemed delighted to be in his company.

"My name is Emily. I have a job offer for you."
  #6  
Unread 13th of October, 2009, 12:26
Darius's Avatar
Darius
The Phantom Poster [Epic GM]

User is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Member: #1110
Location: Maryland
Posts: 3,490 (0.75 per day)
"If we are to be on a first name basis, than I must insist that you call me Ewan," he replied with a smile that forced his eyes to squint slightly.

"Forgive me, Emily, the eyes aren't what they used to be," he said, reaching into his pocket and producing a pair of eyeglasses. "And I'm assuming by the hardware and the fact that you didn't see fit to call upon me in my usual places of business that you seek to employ me in some capacity other than my ability to poach a rising sous-chef from a competitor or understand how to properly haggle for the first catch of the day. In fact, given that you see fit to call attention to my less public curriculum vitae, I would have to guess that you know a bit about the business as well, hmm? I would hate to think you were wasting your time, but I am strictly retired. I hung my hat up a long time ago with nary a regretful look back. Besides, I can't think what an old dog like me could offer you." He flipped through the dossier, his face a careful mask of nonchalance. There were things in there that he had almost forgotten about except in his nightmares. Things he had pushed so far back he wished they could remain forgotten.

So much blood under the bridge, what?


He dropped the grin slightly. "I think you were misinformed of the knighthood. My actions were never public enough to draw that much attention, more's the pity. I am afraid that I am just simply, Mr. Doyle, though as I said, you may call me Ewan."

[ooc: using cold read on Emily for four questions
1. What does she do for a living?
2. Where did she grow up?
3. What is her favorite restaurant?
4. Where was she educated?]
  #7  
Unread 14th of October, 2009, 03:54
treehouse's Avatar
treehouse
Evolved Ulgurstasta [Epic GM]

User is offline
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Member: #1471
Location: Tulsa
Posts: 7,114 (1.62 per day)
[Cold read results - I'm awarding you two action dice to avoid questions #1 and #4. Her accent is too perfect for her to actually have been raised anywhere in England; there is no regional inflection at all. You believe English is a second language that she has mastered completely, and more than likely she grew up in or around Hong Kong. Her slim figure and white teeth don't indicate a fondness for unhealthy food. You take her for a 'Kato's Garden' kind of girl. Kato's Garden is a restaurant in HK's commercial district that caters to jet-set power players and other wealthy individuals. Ewan has had cause to visit the place once or twice, usually on someone else's tab.]

She did not seem daunted by his early refusal.

"Very well then, Ewan. I am well aware of your current status. I have reason to believe that I can lure you out of your comfortable existence here and back out onto the field, but you will need to give me the benefit of the doubt for a moment.

"I misspoke a moment ago. It is not so much a job offer as an opportunity. Forgive me for saying so, but sitting around in a penthouse sipping cognac and waiting to die is a supreme waste of talent in your case. I want to give you an opportunity to matter again.

"Have you ever heard of a group known as Ashes of Adam?"
  #8  
Unread 14th of October, 2009, 04:36
Darius's Avatar
Darius
The Phantom Poster [Epic GM]

User is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Member: #1110
Location: Maryland
Posts: 3,490 (0.75 per day)
Ewan's smile vanished.

"Two things, Miss. The first is that you always say what you intend to say in this business. To do otherwise projects a sense that you are new to this and don't know what you are doing. It gives off the impression that your an amateur. I'm too old to be working with amateurs. But, you have solid information regarding me, which means that you have solid backing. Maybe that gives you some room for error, but I don't think it does." Ewan paused, and drew a long breath, gauging Emily to see how she reacted. This might be an interview, but Ewan knew that these things worked both ways. He wondered how long Emily and whatever organization she represented had been gathering information about him.

"The second is that you don't insult the intelligence of your audience."

He tossed the dossier onto the seat of the car next to Emily. "You know bloody well what time I wake up in the morning, when I eat breakfast, and when I use the loo. You were waiting by my car. You probably know what I'm doing out in the middle of the bloody night. So. You know I'm familiar with the Ashes of Adam. My question to you then is, what is your connection to them, and how do you want to involve me?"
  #9  
Unread 14th of October, 2009, 11:36
treehouse's Avatar
treehouse
Evolved Ulgurstasta [Epic GM]

User is offline
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Member: #1471
Location: Tulsa
Posts: 7,114 (1.62 per day)
Emily's demeanor didn't change, but Ewan sensed that she was ready to get down to business.

"I actually know little more about them than you do, and you know how precious little that is. After the virus was first recognized for what it was, some of the best video analytics experts in the world were given the task of trying to discern as much as possible from the one recorded communication we have from Ashes of Adam. They were not able to learn much, but the pointless exercise did do one thing - it made the fact that we had prior warning one of the worst kept secrets in the world-wide intelligence community. The name Ashes of Adam and all that revolves around it is still a crackpot conspiracy theory in the public ear, but it will not be too long before the truth is out. There will be riots, rebellion, and eventually wars.

"I work for a coalition of world leaders who have a goal - to hunt down the people responsible for Contagion and bring them to justice. In the process, we hope to find the original mutation of the virus and reverse-engineer it to develop a cure. For this reason, they have created International Directive 73."

There was a righteous note in her voice that made Ewan think of certain idealists he had worked with in the past. Idealists usually died pretty fast once it came down to wet-work, but there were a few who had turned their passion into useful energy and gone on to do incredible things. It was hard to tell what sort Emily was.

"Unfortunately, the Coalition cannot pursue this goal openly for two reasons. The first I already mentioned - if the public finds out that we had three months' warning of Contagion, there would be a massive breakdown of world order. As you can imagine, that will make controlling the spread of the virus harder, and will ultimately lead to more deaths.

"The second reason you have already guessed by now. We need to operate in the most efficient manner possible, and that will require doing some things that may not be precisely lawful, or ethical in some cases. For this reason, we cannot use current members of any of the national agencies, or anyone who could be traced back to a current ruling body. International Directive 73 thus implies the creation of independent cells in every 'ground zero' city. I am here in Hong Kong to facilitate the creation of one such cell, and I want you to be my point man."
  #10  
Unread 14th of October, 2009, 23:16
Darius's Avatar
Darius
The Phantom Poster [Epic GM]

User is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Member: #1110
Location: Maryland
Posts: 3,490 (0.75 per day)
Ewan's mouth went dry and his hands went slick, just like they did everytime he was in a fight. He kept his eyes blank though.

"You want deniable assets," he said, then shrugged. "Makes perfect sense to me. Have you already assembled operations and tactical teams, or am I expected to do all my own recruiting start to finish? What sort of resources are going to be made available to me? You say that you are authorizing me to act in a extra-legal manner. I take it that means you are more concerned with results than how we go about achieving those results, with an eye toward not further destabilizing Hong Kong, of course. Does this mean you and those you report to won't be constantly looking over my shoulder second guessing my decisions?"

He paused, mentally ticking off what resources he already had available to him and what he was going to need. He knew he was too long in the tooth for field work, which meant he was going to have to run things from behind the scenes. That meant putting together a team he could trust, or at least had leverage over. Given the nature of Contagion, that meant that he had a limited amount of time to do it, and he had not, in fact, prepared for the eventuality of being thrown back into the thick of things. He had almost gotten used to being a spectator. Almost.

"You are asking me to stick my neck pretty far out there. Not to be totally crass about it, but what are you offering me, other than an end to my quiet and not-totally undeserved semi-retirement?"
  #11  
Unread 15th of October, 2009, 05:20
treehouse's Avatar
treehouse
Evolved Ulgurstasta [Epic GM]

User is offline
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Member: #1471
Location: Tulsa
Posts: 7,114 (1.62 per day)
Emily shook her head before he was done talking.

"We will leave the creation of the team in your capable hands. You will be well-backed financially, although we will have to bring equipment and resources to you through non-standard routes to minimize exposure. You will receive assignments, but as you get leads mid-assignment you may have to go your own way in pursuing them. In that sense, you will be semi-autonomous. We will also provide a home base that is well-hidden but fairly central. I will be you sole point-of-contact for all of this; I will promise to try not to interfere in your operations, but if I have advice please listen to me. I will try to be direct with you at all times, but sometimes I may act on information that you do not possess."

She paused, taking a deep breath. Ewan knew the real bombshell was about to drop.

"As for your team...we need people who cannot be traced back to any governing body, not just because there is no link but because no sane person would ever try to make a connection. You will be doing things that benefit the public, but the public will not interpret it that way because of the nature of the people on your team."

Emily glanced at Ewan, trying to read his reaction as what she was suggesting sank in. She did not make him finish her train of thought.

"We need you to hire a team of outlaws and pariahs - people whose actions don't need to be disavowed. Of course, they do need to be reliable, but they cannot appear that way to outsiders. I have dossiers for three dozen locals who would fit various roles in your outfit, and match the other criteria. If you are accepting this job, I will give you the dossiers and a week to make your selections."

As if reading his mind, she added, "And we will be able to give you leverage on all of them. Find out what they want and offer it as payment for their services. Try to stay away from blackmail; we do want them to be loyal to you, or at least predictable in their disloyalty depending on who you choose.

"As for your own compensation...you already have money of course, which we will happily give you more of. I sense that that is not enough, so now would be a good time to name your price."
  #12  
Unread 15th of October, 2009, 06:31
Darius's Avatar
Darius
The Phantom Poster [Epic GM]

User is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Member: #1110
Location: Maryland
Posts: 3,490 (0.75 per day)
"A week?" Ewan asked. He shook his head. "All right. I'd like to say that I've done more with less, but that would be a stretch. I'll see if I can't put together a competent team in that time. I can only hope that your research on the potential recruits for my team is as thorough as the research you've done on me."

He paused, then took a small notepad and a pen from inside his jacket pocket. He jotted down a name and an address.

"Twenty years ago, I had a go at being a family man. It didn't work out for a number of reasons, and my wife decided that being a single mother was better than waiting on me to come back from another 'business trip.' I don't blame her, but as a result, I have a son whom I haven't seen since he was three. His name is David Paulson. I want him provided for, a fund set up for his benefit, any trouble he runs into smoothed over." He tore off the sheet of paper and handed it to Emily. "More money for myself is always nice, as well," he said, with a smile. "If you could find a way to keep me supplied with Silk Cut, I'd appreciate it, but that might be asking too much. I quit smoking years ago, but it seems like this might be a good time to start back up."
  #13  
Unread 15th of October, 2009, 07:27
treehouse's Avatar
treehouse
Evolved Ulgurstasta [Epic GM]

User is offline
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Member: #1471
Location: Tulsa
Posts: 7,114 (1.62 per day)
She took the sheet, glanced at it once and put it in her briefcase without saying anything. Her brows were creased ever-so-slightly, and Ewan wondered if his price wasn't one she had expected.

Emily then produced a tiny flash drive from a pocket, placing it in Ewan's palm.

"Password is 0856212. Everything you need is in there; try to keep your team small, no more than ten including you. I know this is short notice, but as you can imagine we are anxious to get things off the ground. Also, take this," she said as she handed him a black smart phone that looked exactly like the one she had been talking on when he entered the car. There were no manufacturer's markings on the phone, and he doubted it had a serial number.

"Please don't use it for personal calls, it uses an encrypted signal so it is hard to triangulate, but it's a good way to draw needless attention if used more than sparingly. You can reach me when you need to with it. I will provide one for each member of your team as well. If you are ever exposed, get rid of the phones first."

Ewan was surprised when he looked out the window and realized that they were pulling back into the lot. The cappuccino was still perched on the top of his car; the whole encounter had only taken a few minutes, but he felt as if hours had passed.

"When you are done making your selections, call me. I have a few locations in mind for your headquarters, and I would like the input of you and your entire unit. I have an acquisitions team in town, so it will probably only take 72 hours to get you fully operational."
  #14  
Unread 15th of October, 2009, 11:25
Darius's Avatar
Darius
The Phantom Poster [Epic GM]

User is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Member: #1110
Location: Maryland
Posts: 3,490 (0.75 per day)
"So I'll be talking to you in seven days then," Ewan replied. He pushed open the door, then paused. "Next time make it PG Tips instead of coffee, and have it be hot."

He stepped out of the car and closed the door behind him. His lip curled up in a slight snarl as he backhanded the cup off the roof of his car. "Nothing like a pretty face and a nice pair of legs to ruin what was otherwise a perfectly atrocious night," he muttered. He hit the remote keylock on his car and climbed in. He rubbed his eyes and shook his head briefly. "Right. No rest for the wicked then."

He started the car, put it in gear, and headed for home, his computer, and the start of a Herculean task.
  #15  
Unread 16th of October, 2009, 09:56
treehouse's Avatar
treehouse
Evolved Ulgurstasta [Epic GM]

User is offline
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Member: #1471
Location: Tulsa
Posts: 7,114 (1.62 per day)
[Ewan returns to his apartment and immediately begins going to work. He reads through all thirty-seven dossiers in the flash drive he received from Emily, which takes the better part of the next day to do properly. The evening after his meeting with Emily, he begins making some preliminary selections based on the sort of missions he imagines this team will be called on to do (lots of 'wet work', but also some intelligence-gathering, infiltration, and field investigation). He uses a few trusted contacts in his network of eyes and ears in HK to put out some feelers, and almost immediately gets a return. A bike with plates matching the ones in Preston Cody's dossier is currently parked in front of a bar right off of Fenwick Pier in the Wan Chai District.]

It was nearly four in the morning when Ewan finally arrived on Fenwick Pier Street. He had been to both New York City and Hong Kong, and he knew which one he considered the 'City That Never Sleeps'. Traffic here was always dreadful, regardless of the hour.

He ended up parking about a block away from the dive where his first quarry was last known to be. It wasn't as cold as the previous night, but he still shivered when he stepped out of his car and a breeze carrying the scent of salt water washed over him. He tried not to think of a particularly nasty affair involving an oil rig full of corpses that always came to mind now when he smelled the sea, and began shuffling up the sidewalk.

When he reached the bar ("Deviate Delight"), he quickly scanned the narrow, full parking lot, sighing with relief when he spotted a nearly pristine Harley Davidson Dyna Glide leaning against the brick relief.



He glanced at the picture saved on his new smart phone, comparing plates to be sure. It was entirely possible that his quarry had had his keys confiscated by the establishment's owners and ended up taking public transport home, but Ewan doubted that whoever ran a place named 'Deviate Delight' was interested in public safety.

The more likely alternative was that Preston Cody had been drinking for at least six hours straight. Either that or he was dead.

Ewan walked inside to see which it was.

[Let Mercutio post next. Try to describe the interior of the bar as well as your character, and whatever he is up to when Ewan walks in.]
  #16  
Unread 16th of October, 2009, 11:46
Mercutio's Avatar
Mercutio
Grave Digger [Epic GM]

User is offline
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Member: #1485
Location: Ocean City, NJ
Posts: 8,215 (1.87 per day)
Preston had been on a bender, and it was one hell of a week. His wife had refused the collect call from Hong Kong, as even Preston had to concede was probably the right thing to do, and told him not to bother trying to make his visitation this month. Not that he could have made it anyway. He had been pooling money to try to make airfare one way from Hong Kong to London, but at the rate he'd been successful it wouldn't have been until well into the next year that he'd actually have been able to fly.

Rather than keep squirreling his money away in an endeavor he knew pretty damn well was going to end in failure anyway, he decided to get drunk and get laid, preferably in that order. Three days later he had succeeded in both, but mostly the former. Hong Kong's red light districts were pretty easy to navigate safely if you knew the underworld codes and could move around without drawing too much attention to yourself. Trouble was Preston had been gathering too many eyeballs of late, so rather than float from bar to brothel as normal, he had just holed up at "Deviate Delight." Owner Baozhai Chang owed Preston for a little favor, but still insisted the American pay for all his drinks.

Preston sat alone at a booth along the back wall. It's not that I'm paranoid, he thought, but there really are people out to get me. It was the typical alcoholic's paranoia, but in Preston's case it was certainly more likely than not. Since stripping was outlawed in Hong Kong, "Deviate Delight" had set up private booths which were really just standard restaurant booths that had curtains which could be drawn. Any waitress on staff was available for private shows at a booth, but most of the girls were "Gwailo" like Preston himself. While he was American and the "gai" Russian or eastern European transplants, the Hong Kong natives didn't distinguish. White was white, and Preston himself was starting to think like a native.

Since none of the girls interested him tonight, the rail-thin spooky white guy was sitting alone, deliberately avoiding eye contact with anyone, even when ordering another Tsing-Tao to replace what was probably a half-full bottle on his table. Then an old "Gwailo" walked into the bar, and even through his drunken haze, Preston got nervous, inched his hand into his trench, pulled off the release and eased his secreted pistol into a pocket, finger at the ready.
  #17  
Unread 17th of October, 2009, 02:43
Darius's Avatar
Darius
The Phantom Poster [Epic GM]

User is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Member: #1110
Location: Maryland
Posts: 3,490 (0.75 per day)
Ewan caught sight of the rail thin man who had the junkie build and veteran's eyes. "Easy there, son" he said, falling into Cantonese, as he approached. Ewan reached into his pocket and pulled out a roll of HK dollars. "Whiskey for me, and another for whatever he's drinking," he inclined his head toward Preston, after flagging down one of the waitresses.

"Son, you don't know me, but I do know a bit about you." Ewan smiled an easy smile that did nothing to hide the dark circles that had started appearing under his eyes. "Preston Cody, formerly of the US Navy. Divorced, one kid, ex-wife and daughter both in England now." Ewan slowly looked around the bar. "Guess you don't see them much do you, what with airfare being as expensive as it is? I suppose there isn't much steady work outside of the military for one who has your skills, is there?"

"Lucky for you, you are a specialist in a field where I find myself needing a specialist."
Ewan paused, looked over at the private booths. "If you are interested, why don't we get one of those private booths and talk about it away from over curious ears?"
__________________
Ewan: Tell me, when you drove up, did you see a sign outside that said "dead ninja storage?"
Kat: No, I didn't...
Ewan: Do you wanna know why I don't have a sign like that? Because storing dead ninjas, isn't my business!
  #18  
Unread 17th of October, 2009, 08:23
Mercutio's Avatar
Mercutio
Grave Digger [Epic GM]

User is offline
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Member: #1485
Location: Ocean City, NJ
Posts: 8,215 (1.87 per day)
"You've got me at a disadvantage. Why don't we start with your introduction first? I figure you can't go into details over what this is about which is why you want the private booth, but you can start with your name at least."

Preston eased his finger off the trigger guard but kept the handle in his grip. It was an imperceptible shift in the power dynamic here, but Preston felt assured that he still had the upper hand. See, he had nothing else to lose, while the guy sitting in from of him looked like he had had enough years tohave at least something left.

"Just so you know, those private booths are not really all the private, nor would they do much to keep info from curious ears. Pretty sure Chang keeps miked cameras over each booth. Those curtains are really just to make guests feel more secure. So I think we might just be better off talking here. If you've got something you need to show me--pictures for blackmailing me, more court documents to serve, or whatever--that might best wait until we hash out what you've came to tell me. Say, you don't happen to have a pocket white noise generator or anything do you?"
  #19  
Unread 17th of October, 2009, 11:06
Darius's Avatar
Darius
The Phantom Poster [Epic GM]

User is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Member: #1110
Location: Maryland
Posts: 3,490 (0.75 per day)
"Son, I'm not in the habit of blackmailing people I want to work with." Ewan sat down across from Preston and accepted the whiskey that the waitress brought over.

"My name is Ewan Douglas, and I am a facilitator. Right now, I've been hired by an interested party in facilitating the creation of a team with a very specific goal in mind. This interested party is greatly concerned regarding the recent sickness that's been going around and is very keen in locating its source."

Ewan paused and sipped his whiskey. "You come highly recommended in your field, and I have assurances that some aspects of this job are going to be very noisy and very wet. Hence, why I need someone like you, someone who is not afraid of a little dirt."

Ewan tapped his fingers against the glass. "I'm not in the business of blackmail, but I can tell you that those I represent are well connected. They could see fit to reward a loyal and capable employee with all manner of things. Employment in London, for instance, so you could be closer to your daughter. Money, if you would just prefer to climb into a bottle and between a whore's legs if that's more your preference. Something else entirely, if neither of those appeal to you."

Ewan smiled, a sad tiny thing that didn't touch his eyes. "This is a one time offer Preston, and I'd love to say that I can give you plenty of time to think it over, but I'm on deadline and you aren't the only person I need to talk to. Why, I'm even skipping over the typical audition process."

He reached into his pocket and produced a business card. It had Ewan's name and the phone number and address of a restaurant, Ma Tseng's. "You have twenty-four hours to think it over," he said. Ewan downed the rest of his whisky. "So unless you have any questions that you want to discuss here?"
  #20  
Unread 17th of October, 2009, 11:35
Mercutio's Avatar
Mercutio
Grave Digger [Epic GM]

User is offline
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Member: #1485
Location: Ocean City, NJ
Posts: 8,215 (1.87 per day)
"No need to think about it. Not that I want to appear desperate, but even if this is a boondoggle of epic clusterfuck proportions, it'll be better than what I'm doing now. I've been accused of being hasty, which is probably true, but I know an honest outreach when I see it."

Preston took his hand off the pistol completely and reached out with that hand for the business card.

"You obviously know that wet is the only way I work, like a vocation. Truth be told, it's more like an avocation. Much as I let myself get sloppy, I try to keep my skills honed. Hell, that's why I came to Hong Kong in the first place. There's a hidden wu-shu dojo down the street, not generally open to gwailo like us, but I managed to convince them I was for real. The sifu doesn't agree with my lifestyle, but helps me train anyway.

"Anyway, I'm in. I get the feeling this is bigger than you're letting on. Money is nice. Seeing my daughter'd be nicer. But I have no illusions that I'd be even a decent influence on her. Maybe someday when whatever we're being enlisted to do goes public, I'll look less like a loser in her eyes. Details later, I hope?"

Preston put the card into an interior coat pocket, but the action gave Ewan the briefest glimpse of the outline of a revolver in a hidden patch. Preston smiled. "Never have too much protection, you know? Between that and the bike, it's a wonder I even have enough cash for drink. Hey, would you mind picking up my tab here on the way out? Chang's about as close to a friend as I've got here, and I'd like to keep it that way."
  #21  
Unread 17th of October, 2009, 11:58
Darius's Avatar
Darius
The Phantom Poster [Epic GM]

User is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Member: #1110
Location: Maryland
Posts: 3,490 (0.75 per day)
Ewan peeled off a few hundred. "That should cover you and your tab. Meet at that address a week from now. 10:00 pm. You'll get the rest of the details then."

Ewan sniffed slightly. "You might want to think about a shower too, while you're at it, son. It's like standing downwind from a brewery."
  #22  
Unread 17th of October, 2009, 21:25
Mercutio's Avatar
Mercutio
Grave Digger [Epic GM]

User is offline
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Member: #1485
Location: Ocean City, NJ
Posts: 8,215 (1.87 per day)
"Yeah, a shower. Right."

Preston took the cash and waited for Ewan to leave before motioning for a gai to come over. He whispered in her ear and showed her the cash, after which she took his hand and led him to a private booth.
  #23  
Unread 18th of October, 2009, 05:46
treehouse's Avatar
treehouse
Evolved Ulgurstasta [Epic GM]

User is offline
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Member: #1471
Location: Tulsa
Posts: 7,114 (1.62 per day)
Ewan returned to his apartment immediately after his interview with Preston. He knew he should feel happy - the gunslinger was rough around the edges for sure, but his portfolio had been beyond impressive, and his psychiatric profile was nearly perfect for this unit's designation.

It was discouraging, though, when he checked the status of his other candidates and saw that no others had materialized yet. He knew it was naive to expect more so soon, but if he ever needed a massive infusion of serendipity, it was this week. He decided to catch up on sleep in case the next day brought him more than one lead.

He was rewarded for this course of action when he awoke around noon and checked his email.

I am interested. Meet me this evening at the World Carnival. Walk through the main gates at 8:15, stand by the information kiosk and pretend to answer your phone.


Ewan sighed. He hated meetings that weren't on his own terms. The sender was 'Unknown', so he wasn't even sure which candidate this might be, though he had a suspicion.

It was nearly eight by the time he reached the World Carnival's main gates. There was a bit of a line to get inside, which gave him time to think. Earlier in the afternoon he had received two more promising leads, so tonight promised to be a busy one.



As he paid for his tickets, he wondered how long events like this could continue in a city wracked by plague. The breaking news story today had been the declaration of martial law in Berlin. He had done this kind of work in a curfew city before, but it was much easier to have an open time table.

Ewan felt a little bit foolish as he stepped into the shadows next to the colorful information kiosk, but he forced himself to pull out his phone and put it to his ear. It was 8:15 sharp.

[Mercutio next]
  #24  
Unread 18th of October, 2009, 21:59
Mercutio's Avatar
Mercutio
Grave Digger [Epic GM]

User is offline
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Member: #1485
Location: Ocean City, NJ
Posts: 8,215 (1.87 per day)
Case stood in a crowd that was gathered around a midway game. It looked like some sort of ring toss with glass bottles. Winners appeared to be able to take home giant stuffed Hello Kitty dolls. It was weird how that iconic feline had become a world-spanning motif in the zeitgeist, an rare oddity of pop culture that Case didn't know much about. To him, it looked just like one stupid cat. Of course, the computer geek had never been much of a cat person. Hell, he was usually so focused on his monitor that he couldn't even care for the easiest animal of all--the Siamese fighting fish. The only time he'd tried one was when his mother had suggested it as a way to meet somewhat responsible women at the pet store. He still wasn't sure where that idea had sprung from, but it was a bust. And the fish died a week later anyway.

Turning his attention back to the info kiosk, he realized that his brief reverie had prevented him from watching his contact walk into the Carnival. Usually he could tell more about people by their walk than by talking to them, but this guy had managed to walk in, pull out his phone, and wait there. Case wondered how long the man had been waiting, but that didn't make him rush at all. He pulled out his phone and sent an encrypted text to the phone number that had been provided to him.

Standing by ring toss with phone in hand.
  #25  
Unread 19th of October, 2009, 01:36
Darius's Avatar
Darius
The Phantom Poster [Epic GM]

User is offline
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Member: #1110
Location: Maryland
Posts: 3,490 (0.75 per day)
Ewan heard his phone beep and looked down into the display. He refrained from shaking his head and walked over to the midway game instead, his phone still held by his ear. It was one of the two that he had expected it to be. Some of the others had more to lose by appearing in a public place than they had to gain by it, though this type of cloak-and-dagger was usually reserved for amateurs who had seen to many movies.

He turned pausing to look at the dolls, his back turned to Case.

"Case McCoy, my name is Ewan Doyle and I have a job offer for you. You come recommended, and I believe I can make you an offer that is most assuredly in your best interest."
Closed Thread

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT +10. The time now is 13:48.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Graphics by Koert van Kleef (T0N!C) and Lyle Warren