Mother Read Tanya’s text again.
Tall blond corp kid. This is a milk run. Babysit the exec for the night while he goes slumming. Meet him at La Faim. Tell him the eagle has landed. Don’t look at me the Johnson came up with that.
It was a Vampire poser bar. A lot of pale kids in fetish wear. In the basement was a full on dungeon. This was going to be fun. Thought Mother with a mental eyeroll.
The corp kid stood out as being the only one with a tan and wearing a suit in a shade other than black. He wore a grey suit with a red tie. He smiled a shit eating grin and offered his hand.
“Are you the johnson?” asked Mother.
“What’s the code word?” asked the corp kid.
“The eagle has landed. You the Johnson?” asked Mother.
“Yeah. Yeah. I am.” Said the kid.
“Half up front.” Said Mother.
The kid threw a credstick on the table and it almost slid off. Mother slotted it and transferred the funds to her account.
“What can I do for you?” asked Mother.
“Why don’t you sit down. Have a drink on me.” Said Mr Johnson.
Mother side and sat down.
“I’ll have a Seattle Sunrise.” Said Mother to the waitress wearing only a synth leather harness.
“You come here often?” asked Mother.
“Did you bring a gun?” asked Mr Johnson.
“I’m a mage but yeah. Why?” asked Mother.
“How’d you get it through security. They took mine.” Said Mr Johnson.
“I’m a mage. I left it in the car. If you want someone in this bar dead it’s going to cost extra and I would recommend you not being here at the time.” Said Mother.
“No. No. I just want to…learn." said Mr Johnson.
“Oh. You’re one of those. You watch the Trids and think I want to do that right sugar? Leave the running to the professionals.” said Mother standing.
“You started somewhere right? and I found you.” said Mr Johnson.
“I walked into the shadows because I had to. Very few do it becaus they think this would be fun darling. Those end up dead real quick.” said Mother.
“Why’d you…what was it? Walk into the shadows?” asked Mr Johnson.
“You aren’t paying me enough for the long version. Short version honey is I didn’t have a whole lot of options. Now why do you want to leave your cushy exec life for a hard one in the shadows” said Mother.
“They…they killed my dad. They said it was a botched extraction but I don’t believe it. He told me he was scared…that he found out something by accident. I…I just can’t work for the people…” said Mr Johnson looking away.
“It’s okay honey. I get you. Can’t you get a team to put you in another corp?” asked Mother.
“They’re all the same.” said Mr Johnson.
“Ain’t that the truth darling. Ok. You really want to run the shadows you need a Fixer. Your jobs are usually going to be only as good as your fixer but starting out you won’t get good jobs. With your corp background you’ll probably get some good gigs as an inside man pretending you belong, you could probably walk right in and BS your way where you don’t belong. Can you shoot a gun?” asked Mother.
Mr Johnson nodded.
“I’ll give you the commcode of a guy I have heard of that might be a good fit for you. Mention my name. But first the only way to learn how to run is to do it.” said Mother standing up.
“Where are we going?” asked Mr Johnson.
“On a shadowrun.” said Mother.
Mother put the address in the barrens in grid guide. She also messaged Terr0r and asked her to go on matrix overwatch.
“This is what I call a milk run. The Pink lodge is an initiation group but it is also somewhat like a gang. It polices certain areas. These Humanis Policlub thugs have put together a clubhouse in the barrens.” said Mother.
“The barrens?” asked Mr Johnson wide eyed.
“Yes. You want to run you are going to go to some real hell holes. It’s not all martini’s and high society like on the trid sugar.” said Mother smiling.
They pulled up to a run down apartment buildign with two blond white men out front in body armor with assault rifles.
“Now the barrens is filled with metahumans like me but a lot of orks and trolls. So a humanis clubhouse would be short lived anyway but the pink lodge especially hates them and wants to send a message. All you have to do is watch my back honey.” said Mother.
Mr Johnson nodded.
“And don’t get killed.” said Mother.
Mother got a message. Are you sure you don’t want back up? There’s 20 guys with assault rifles.
I got this. sent Mother.
“Now any team needs at the least a mage, a decker, and someone handy with a gun. You also need someone who is smooth talker but that can be one of the first three. I’m going to disguise myself and you are going to say something to get us in.” said Mother casting an illusion of a grungy human male.
“What?” asked Mr Johnson.
“Just say something to get us in. I’ll do the rest sugar.” said Mother.
Mother and Mr Johnson walked up to the guards out front.
“Get fragged wageslave. We don’t sell drugs here.” said one.
“I’m here to see the boss.” said Mr Johnson with a tremble in his voice.
“This one doesn’t hear too good.” said the second guard.
“You’re boss wants to see me.” said Mr Johnson.
“Why would he want to see you cupcake?” asked the first one.
“I…he.” said Mr Johnson.
“Can your shit. You take us to the boss or after I beat your ass he will. if he wanted you to know his biz he’d tell you.” said Mother in a male voice.
“Tell the boss we got some wageslave and his bodyguard to see him.” said One.
Two radioed it in and waved them in.
“Youre…a man?” asked Mr Johnson as they walked up the creaking staircase.
“I’m all woman. I’m an actress sugar. I play many parts.” said Mother in her usual feminine voice.
“You’re doing ok but never break character. Never admit the con. You play it all the way out even when the lead flyes.” said Mother.
Mr Johnson looked pale and fidgited.
“What do I say?” asked Mr Johnson.
“Just stall him. Tell him what he wants to hear. It’s all acting. If you pretend something and hint at things people will believe it if you sell it.” said Mother.
They came to the top of the stairs to two men guarding a door. The men waved them in. A man in body armor holding a pistol sat behind a desk. Two men stood behind him holding assault rifles.
“To what do I owe the pleasure?” asked the man.
“I represent a number of parties that are interested in backing your enterprise.” said Mr Johnson.
“Who the hell are you? You stroll in here without an invite and you’ve heard of me have you? You don’t know me.” said the boss.
Mr Johnson looked to Mother. Mother gestured for him to go on checking her commlink.
“The people I represent have heard of you…”
“Theodore Wheeler Sir.” said Mother in her man voice.
“Teddy. We know more than you think. The people I represent can’t be seen supporting your cause. Hence they sent me. But it’s not without strings.” said Mr Johnson.
“Ogun lend me the strength.” said Mother under her breath.
“Of course not. I’m listening…” said Teddy just as a manabolt hit him in the face taking him down.
Mr Johnson just stared.
Mother leapt over the table and punched both the guards nocking them uncoscious.
“Cover the door.” said Mother pulling a pink spray can out of he rtrenchcoat pocket.
The door opened and Mr Johnson fired a few shots through it.
“Get down!” shouted mother as assault rifles cut the door in half. Mr Johnson lay on the floor firing back.
Mother Painted a pink anarchy symbol the sign of the pink lodge on the wall.
“Let’s go.” said Mother grabbing Mr Johnson and jumping out the window. the ground rushed up at them and Mother cast levitate at the last second. Mother’s car pulled up by itself and they both jumped in.
“See. A milk run.” said Mother.
“I…I…” said Mr Johnson.
“Rethinking life in the shadows?” asked Mother.