Mission 03 – The Grab – Part 2

Written by: Cho          Played on: 11 Apr 2009
PREVIOUS: Mission 03 – The Grab – Part 1
NEXT: Mission 04 – Thrash the Body Electric

Marius calls Lady Jade to let her know we are enroute to the drop. She has another team waiting there to recieve the girl. Marius sets the van in motion while Wheeler speeds ahead to check out the drop, ever wary of a double cross.

I have a few minutes of solitude to reflect on what we’ve done. We’ve taken a little girl from her mother. We’re delivering her to somone of unknown intent. But maybe she is her mother? I don’t know. It all seems like an odd setup. Almost as odd as that low flying helecopter. What is it doing in downtown Denver?

The chopper, Wheeler would later identify it as an Ares Dragon, has heavy military stylings. It swings low over the highway next to us, letting the pilot, its occupants and the chick manning the mounted HMG-2 in the doorway all get a good look at us. The older burley guy we saw before is riding shotgun near the pilot. There’s also a troll in the back with the gunner. They’re all wearing custom armored rigs and are armed to the teeth.

Marius guns it, at least as much as a Bulldog Step Van can be gunned, implying that we have no intent to stop. The chopper easily keeps up, though Marius does his best to swerve across the road to at least keep them guessing. They fire a few shots, but they appear to be warning shots since they could easily blast us off the road.

We knock out some windows and fire return shots, though I’m not sure what if any damage we’re doing. Clint starts working up a spell in the back, but he doesn’t say what for. Eventually the chopper lifts up above us and we have a hard time tracking it. Marius keeps trying to dodge them, though none of us are sure what we’re dodging.

It quickly becomes apparrent when the troll from before, with a repelling line hooked to the back of his vest, slams down onto the hood of the van. His massive hands clamp onto the frame and we can feel the whole van slow and dip under his weight. Its difficult to shoot him past the driver, but we do our best. He seems to be shrugging off most of the small arms fire as he slams a fist through the window and grabs Marius by the throat and starts trying to rip him out of his seat.

Overhead, the chopper swerves suddenly, but stays on us. I glance at Clint and note that he seems to be completely focused on the chopper, moving his hands slightly and chanting. The chopper swerves again as the troll up front repeatedly slams Marius into the dash and window. Some iron fisted will must be keeping the elf concious and in control of the vehilce, we haven’t crashed yet.

Clint seems to finish his spell, and directly in front of us, the helecopter swings low… lower… lower… It impacts the street near the median at a steep angle. The rotors break off and it begins to roll and slide down the highway. I get a quick look at the chick on the gun, her face does not look pleased as she rolls away from sight, dangeling just outside the cabin. The trolls eyes widen suddenly as the rope on the back of his harness pulls taught and he’s ripped from the front of the van.

Marius slams on the breaks as the wreckage looms before us. There’s a lot of flying debris as the helecopter comes to a stop. There’s a lot of screaming in the van as we slide right into it. After a few moments of coughing and sputtering as smoke fills the cabin, we assess our situation and then evacuate the van. Wheeler has arrived just in time to see the helecopter come down. He’s as surprised we survived as we are.

There’s the twisting of wreckage, a loud squal of metal, as the troll, battered, cut and bleeding, shoves his way out of some wreckage. We simultaneously fill him with lead and put him down.

This turned out to be a pretty epic final battle for the team. They were outgunned for sure, but they had the advantage of a victim that the oppossing team was unwilling to shoot at.

Clint ended up using a levitate spell to overpower the pilot and the helecopter’s rotors to bring the craft into the ground and crash it. It was a pretty smart way to deal with an obviously more powerful piece of tech considering how underarmed they were. Unfortunately, Marius didn’t make his ground pilot rolls well and they lost the van in the crash.

Our van is shot, but Catherine appears allright. She was probably the most relaxed of all of us during the crash due to Levi’s drugs. We drag her out and hold up a civilian in a car at gun point who came to a stop behind us. Jumping in their car, we make our way out and then ditch it about a mile from our destination. We hook Catherine up to Wheeler on his bike and he takes her the rest of the way while we hoof it.

The team on the other side is happy to take the girl off our hands. They all seem to be of at least partial Japanese descent. We get a call from Lady Jade as we head home. She thanks us for the work and sends over the payment, plus a little extra for the help earlier. I’m just glad the whole thing is finally over.

At home I wash up, my numerous cuts and bruises sting in the water, but I made it out without any massive wounds. After the shower, I plop down in the couch to watch the trid. I feel like I deserve some couch time.

I flip through the channels, but stop on a news story showing Catherine’s face. The report just seems to be discussing the broad daylight kidnapping at the school and I munch on some soy chips and muse at the details they got right and the ones they got way wrong.

I stop chewing as they cut from the kidnapping report back to a live scene. I recognize the street. I recognize the building we dropped Catherine off at. It looks a little differant now, with the swarm of Knight Errant Police and other emergency workers at the scene.

The report reviewed the details they knew so far. Catherine had a tracking RFID tag implanted that led police to her location. There was a several hour standoff with police and the criminals that had kidnapped her. Finally, a ransom was negotiated for her safe return. During the exchange, however, a sniper on a nearby rooftop fired… killing the young girl. Police persued but were, ultimately, unable to apprehend the shooter. Meanwhile, the criminals at the warehouse entered into a bloody firefight with police and were all put down.

My heart drops even further into my chest as they show the same school picture I still had loaded on my comm of Catherine and run a brief obituary.

Catherine Westmore. Age 11. Spent her last day being kidnapped, held ransom and shot dead during the subsequent exchange. She is survived by her mother, Donna Westmore of Boeing Federation employ. Father not listed.

Who can spot the forshadowing for a future run? Any takers?

There was a lot of good response from the players after this run. They generally seemed very invested in what had happened and unhappy with the fact that the girl died, even though they weren’t the ones who pulled the trigger. They still felt responsible. I was told point blank by a player, “I hate the corporations. I’m all about taking it to the man and making them pay. But I’m not a bad guy. This run made me feel like a bad guy.”

Ultimately, the investment in this run got to pay off much later in a subsequent, related run.

PREVIOUS: Mission 03 – The Grab – Part 1
NEXT: Mission 04 – Thrash the Body Electric

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