Bug City Express

Location, Location, Location.
One Ares field test in the whole Zone

The mob was growing weed on a roof right in Union territory. Yeah, was. Information for information. Had a run in with an incubus, the vibrosword works pretty well, though Patch gave it rather more what for with her gun.

So, several places down, more to check out, seven days to go.

Sadly Not a Hat Trick
This Bear is Armed

CAC pulled us out of the Zone when we had no helicopter and no signal. One good turn requires another; they got word about a biodrone system Ares is going to be testing in Chicago. It’s not consistent with their beliefs.
Dr. Quibbler has what she called a ‘personal dispute’ with another department, and wanted their field test to fail.
Ares, having had our services before (and not being too beholden to their Firewatch captain Slick fell afoul of) requested Danny to provide us to provide security for a field test being conducted in Chicago.
We let Danny know to tell Ares we were unavailable for the time in question. Getting paid twice for the same gig is one thing, managing to run both sides and not get caught out is more advanced. About that getting paid twice—Dr Quibbler stopped by Soundwave’s place with a data dump running for her life. Neeko and Slick’s spirit quest may have been the end of subject two- subject 3 is the one being field tested. Vat grown bears loaded up with cyber-enhancements enough for a whole runner team.
Zephyr picked up a stronger firewall for her movement by wire and Musketeer IC as well. Patch also improved her comm security. Soundwave went shopping since this run needs some hacking and his tool cupboard was bare.
Eleven days til the dance, and the venue is to be located.

Whatever Gets You Through the Night
You don't choose your friends, they choose you.

One burnt-out townhouse. One unconscious rigger. A doctor that is conscious and the mana coffin she’s very concerned about. An orc shaman and two very banged up elves. Oh, and no signal. Just another night in the Zone.

You do hear the bullet that doesn’t get you, and sometimes you get a drop on the grenade. Wasp bug spirits. Jimmy Qwan. Bear spirit, KE4. The Nitama is no more, it’s been snapped. The team should start carrying body bags, considering the bounties on some of the people we ‘meet’.

In the morning the doctor asks what’s the plan. Since we’ve got no signal we have no plans. And then… Ghouls she was opposed to, but the CAC if she has to; she went to walk astral to find a mage loitering.

Just before dusk the CAC appear, and the dickering is left until later, considering the Zone and nightfall. Patch got a knife, for those hard to open packages.

You Knew It Couldn't Be This Easy
Gangbangers Have No Respect

The Doctor finished her consultation; one mana coffin added to manifest. Slick got a lift from his roomies prior, said the ebb was giving him a headache. Then there were true spirit wasps. Patch was most effective with the grenade launcher, Zephyr may have hit a few, and Neeko napalmed once.

There was a crash. There was safety foam, and some bangers thought lifting the coffin a wise strategy. Granted, not just anyone could still catch up with them after such a crash. Damn maggots. Seriously, out of their territory seriously.

Two try to take care of things while the other three carry the ball. One took serious leg trauma behind a light pole, while the other gained an exit wound for a head. Patch kept following Zephyr.

So, up ahead with the mana coffin. A troll decides to get involved, try to jack the coffin. The maggots (Swampthangs. Zephyr did just do a sprint after a helicopter crash.) get quashed, Zephyr puts down some ’that’s my property, thanks for stopping them’ fire, and the troll gets out the anti-tank gun.

Zephyr fires, toasting the gun and blowing the troll through a wall. Coffin pulled out of the alley’s field of fire. Then it’s a bit of a slog back to the rest of the team.

The doctor is conscious, but Soundwave is not. Time to take cover in a brownstone as there is no signal. Good thing about a burnt out shell, don’t have to clear it.

We've got your Doctor and incoming Bug Spirits
It's the Zone. Of course there will be hazard payments

Before we left Danny’s post-bidding war, the Thamaturge that will be leading the investigation of the royal jelly talk with us, the most salient point being that more samples would be well compensated. Ares likely wants an exclusive.

Zephyr might not understand the finer points of magic, but the ability to pontificate has its uses while living by committee. Mr. MacGrevner missed the co-op meeting, so the guest pass system that he’d worked so hard for has been rolled back—just takes permission from the security guards, not ratification at the prior meeting. Daddy has been making some interesting investments, including one warehouse that got shot up awhile back. Mom is cross with her reduced ‘allowance’, despite her renumerative salary. Harold’s okay; his parents jumped ship for inducements with Ares in Detroit and have Lots of New Friends.

Patch has found a line on some upgrades she’d put spiders out for. Slick sent his pistols in for detailing along with double clipping, to switch between lethal and non-lethal ammo. He went on a spiritual journey with Neeko and purified a Bear spirit.

Soundwave continued to look for his smart tires, and reset the ATV turret to more standard configuration; jump in not quite ready.

The good doctor wanted (well, Ares wanted for her) an escort into the Zone, to a hardened research installation. Soundwave got to fly a massive helio, the group was swarmed by mosquito Bug Spirits, and learned that insecticide could be a ’Runners good friend. As can the quartermaster. Patch broke in at least one researcher and conducted guard inspections.

Once more into the Zone
Nothing makes a fixer's day like a bidding war

Danny had another tip from Liz, again for Royal Jelly. North, inside the Zone. Between habits for spells, smart tires, and cybernetics, the team gave it a shot.

There was a mana ebb. Check.
There was a three foot across cockroach spirit, dragging a corrugated sheet of metal in its mandibles through a hole in a warehouse wall. Check. Zephyr with ultrasonics determined there were two more within.
Patch got the goo off the head of a second roach when it appeared, a mana bolt having “popped” the first one before a sample could be acquired. Neeko sensed it, and it was like a focus despite those being solids and this not so being; definitely bug spirit (or bug shaman) created. Off to Danny with the goods.
Your fixer, he plays the odds. Not all tips are good, but you have to check them out or you miss The One. Clearly, he didn’t think this was going to be the day. And yet.
Team gets the upfront and invited to stay while the bidding works out. Corporate shaman of the winning bidder comes to certify (five Shadowrunners nonchalant does add a certain… just saying.) and the payment comes through with plenty of ones and zeros in the right places.

Not bad work if you can get it. Better than shaking the neighbor relating to his devil rat fighting. Doctors consulted agree-when duraskin is contraindicated by essence deplete, you’ve got a lot of enhancement. It shows.

Target Acquired
Hitting the broad side of a warehouse

Our ‘esteemed’ patron finally got the information he sought from his acquisition, namely where the BTLs are made. He decided the best way to twist the screw was to adulterate the BTLs, make demand dry up from corrupted files. His two man team needed a distraction, it was better if it could look like it was in house. This is likely related to his ‘disappearance’, his being short-handed.

Zephyr and Patch decided going in on wire would make the message not take long enough. Three nights after the patron’s call and a two vehicle drive up and open fire happened. Soundwave strafed the building with the turret mounted machine-gun on Slick’s ATV, Patch got out of Neeko’s car and dragon’s-breathed three cars.

That side of the building will never be the same, the doorway is wider, the windows have lost the walls they were in… Patch demonstrated good armor, and Zephyr even off wire knows bullet time. There was a bolt failure that put the turret out of the game, a burning hedge, and an unfortunate taking of cover behind an ex-wall.

The team got paid in full, Patch went hunting with Slick, ‘never again’ and ‘hellhound’, Neeko bought a hush hush spell, Soundwave bought tires, and Zephyr got her heart overclocked.

A Connected Man Would Like A Consultation
Chip-heads, bloodsports and the Mob

Danny had a Detroit Mr. Johnson appear (yeah, like that stopped Danny for long); the idea that there was a perceived need to fortify our weapons was intriguing.

Turned out the job was in parts. First, secure a bloodsport gladiator that’d ran from one of the Warehouse Arenas. If Mr. Johnson can be trusted (ah, he can, but about what?) the BTL and gambling revenues were being harmed by the old hands being too good at staying alive. So MacAvoy’s men started rigging contests, taking fresh ‘talent’ off the streets.

As this was all being conveyed, with enough posturing to make a peacock proud, Soundwave’s van was starting to be carjacked by more than an average thief. Zephyr ran out to put paid, and did slice the tough’s knife in twain, and made him drop the other. Slick shot him, and there was a foot chase.

Having ones eyes shut down was enlightening. Password changed, administrative access now needed.

There was a barghest (creepy hellish-hound), and its pack of mongrels. Neeko’s mana bolt put the doggie down. After that Slick secured the sought gladiator. A philosophy discussion between Slick and Soundwave later, and Neeko’s driving the chiphead back to the meeting site.

We were more efficient than expected; the gathering of intel will take a bit. Soundwave is upgrading Slick’s ATV turret. Zephyr finds that Mr. Jones went ‘missing’ the day before he hired us. Interesting. Neeko bound a bear spirit.

Complications multiply

So, just as we head back into the building, Ares Fire Watch appear laying claim to the building that we secured from a hybrid bug spirit, a true form and a troll.

They’re more than we can handle so we don’t gainsay them. They head into a near two story building, gunfire and grenade explosions result, and there is a small issue when their leader reaches the roof. Slick fires, seeing a bug spirit. He now has an Enemy. Firewatch rides off. Time to see what the fuss is about, first in the second building, then in the original target.

Second building, no sign of what they found, but they did take out a wall and there was blood left. In the first building, Slick, Zephyr and Patch do a standard ‘leap frog’ up to the fourth floor. There’s a hole in the ceiling and a waxy hive about the size of a large nightstand.

A bug spirit is attached to Slick like a bee on a wall. Zephyr does a little shoo-ting, checks on the hive. The eventually identified Jimmy Kwan, Tong Adapt enforcer, punches Neeko in the back of the head with a sharp crack. Later it’s learned that one of the bug spirits was messing with organic eyes, making people see things. Like Neeko thinking Slick was a bug spirit or Slick thinking Sam [Fire Watch dude] was a valid target.

Slick tried, after being disarmed of his tomahawk, to escape from the window onto the second story roof of the next building. He missed, and became bad news for some wild dogs. Zephyr puts down the hive to go check on Slick, calls ahead to CAC and lets Patch and Neeko know his condition.

Patch finds out the hand’s medkit is a wonderful thing. A bug spirit flies off with the hive.
After making it to the CAC so Slick and Neeko can receive treatment, Zephyr calls Danny to give him the status report. The Ares Fire Watch team were exaggerating about the building’s ownership, and Danny was perplexed about them leaving the way they did, considering the hassle they’d come down on him with. The waxy hive was a bit confounding, and it came out that the corporate type that gave Danny the tip also sold the information to Ares.

Jimmy Kwan was turned into a flesh form bug spirit back at in the day—this is likely what the troll was as well. The hive may have been related to a nymph, a not yet Queen.

Zephyr asked some of the Detroit originating mob kids to have their pals back home give Harold a friendly hi. Apparently he can travel about without a minder.

Soundwave got cameras for inside of his van, and Slick once he was recovered enough went on an ammo run.

Neeko amazed the CAC doctors with her overnight recovery of her skull fracture. Danny decided that Slick’s fees and the arms shipment to CAC offset each other. There was also a bit of shouting, since Firewatch team captains aren’t the sort Danny likes in his grill. Between knowing more about bug spirit abilities, and Slick’s acknowledging that Sam couldn’t have been a smooth time, Danny seemed to come around.

Your Mission (I wouldn't take offense if you don't accept it)
Bees, hives and royal jelly.

Patch accepted a hand, new to her, for Peter’s extraction. Neeko bought a car, Patch will drive.
Slick did a little bondsman bountyhunting, had to shoot up the Mrs but he did lock the door behind him, a true gentleman. Soundwave isn’t accepting Danny’s calls. One of the cocktail set, a pleasant human male, has relocated with his family under suspicious circumstances-Must establish contacts suited to learning more. Healing at the hospital may pay, but it is exhausting.

Danny knows how to time a call. Patch is on the mend and would like her finances there too. He’s got a tip on a possible royal jelly hive, is paying for the looksie, the information and sample if we can manage.

Troll, drunkard, possible bug shaman. Hybrid bugspirit with a knight errant arm. Killed. True form, also killed. Troll started rumble with Neeko, Zephyr and Slick go while Patch holds the stairs. Good thing too, bees, it had to be bees.


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