The Duchess Gets Back to Work …

[Present Day — Baltimore, UCAS — 2075]

I got a message that Sabot had another job for us. I am not sure if I am ready to get back to work after the … well after the incident with the Yakuza, but I need to get back on the horse as the say. The job was to extract an Ares accountant. The negotiated pay was decent and we spent a few days researching the guy and casing his place. Him and his wife had an apartment near mine. We decided to first scout the apartment as a possible place of extraction, so we posed as perspective apartment hunters so that we could get a tour of the place. It was a pretty nice apartment overall. On the way out, security had some words with us since they picked up on some matrix security issues from BetaTest poking at the host. In the end though, they let us go without incident.

Security was pretty tight at the apartment so we tracked his routine. He was picked up by an Ares Arms shuttle outside the apartment and taken to work. This was repeated in the evening when he came home. There were multiple shuttle runs to the apartment building, but this guy took the same one each day. We decided we would grab him outside the apartment. The shuttle was an Ares Roadmaster, naturally, and it just so happens that Ironclad has a roadmaster. We made a deal with him to borrow the vehicle for the heist.

So the plan was starting to come together. We would snag the target outside the apartment using our roadmaster that would look like the shuttle. BetaTest is able to spoof the signal to make the target think that the shuttle arrived, which would draw him out of the apartment building and up to the vehicle. Once the door opened, however, he would notice that this was not the shuttle so we would need to grab him quickly.

The next part of the plan was to somehow delay the real shuttle long enough to grab the target, but not long enough to alert Ares and have another shuttle dispatched. I volunteered to use the Jeep for this. Sure we can just have BetaTest brick the shuttle to stop it, but that would raise red flags with Ares. I could also just cover the road with a sheet of ice an cause it to wreck, but again, that would raise suspicion. There was a one lane – one way stretch of road that the shuttle takes. This will be the spot that I use the Jeep to cause the delay.

Initially, I though about just throwing the Jeep in front of the shuttle. It would delay the shuttle for sure. Didnt really care if it hurt me at all, but decided on a safer route instead. I would pull the Jeep out of the parking spot and block the traffic a few cars in front of the shuttle. BetaTest would disable the ingition so that it cant start. Once the target was acquired, then he can re-enable the ignition and move the Jeep.

So now that we have a plan in place, I found a parking spot that would work perfectly. The dummy shuttle was parked nearby to assume the route with Soren and Freecoil. BetaTest was in his car providing overwatch.

It was still pretty early in the morning when we got to our places. As I sat there waiting for the shuttle, I pulled out one of the BTLs I had and twirled it around in my fingers. If memory serves right, this chip was supposed to be like a slow suffocation that makes you experience the brink of death. “We still have some time …” I said to myself. I was able to slot the the chip when BetaTest alerted us that the shuttle was within range. “Another time then” I said as I put the chip away. I broadcasted my true SIN instead of my fake one. The idea being that I didn’t want this incident to be tied to anything and only look like a stupid teenage driver that doesn’t know what the frag she was doing. If my fake SIN was checked and found out, it would alert them to something going on.

As the shuttle got into view, I made sure that it passed the last available turn off before jumping in front of traffic. A slight opening appeared and I took the sharp turn to pull out. It looked natural enough that onlookers may have thought that I was an inexperienced driver that took it too sharply and was now perpendicular to traffic. Man that lady in the blue comet is NOT acting very lady like. She kept swearing at me to frag off and flipping me the finger. I got out of the Jeep and popped the hood, which REALLY made her go off her rocker.

A few moments later, Ares security got off the shuttle and came over to see what the delay was. I told them it just died and wouldn’t start. “Somethings wrong with the flux capacitor or warp drive or something …” I said to them. The guy rolled his eyes at that. “Go ahead and try to start it, its not working for me” I offered. He muttered under his breath as the Jeep wouldn’t start. The roadmaster launched surveillance drones, but they kept a perimeter around the vehicle itself. It didn’t look like they were scouting out any farther. Just in case, I let the team know that the drones were loose.

We moved our roadmaster back along the route and headed towards the apartment building. BetaTest still had the guy’s commlink looped to make it look like our shuttle was the correct one. As it turns out, most people dont really pay all that much attention to small little subtle queues.

Back to the Jeep, the security guy called in to have a replacement shuttle get moving. We didn’t have much time now and our shuttle isn’t there yet. “We can try pushing it back in the spot over there?” I said, pointing to the empty parking spot I pulled out of. I made a gesture to push the Jeep. A couple of guys from the security team went to push the Jeep. I sent BetaTest a quick message to lock up the brakes. It was cute how these big strong men tried and tried to push the Jeep, but it wasn’t budging. I laughed on the inside.

When the shuttle arrived at the apartment building, the target came out just as he was supposed to. When he walked up to the shuttle’s rear entrance, he was too busy looking at his commlink to notice Freecoil standing there. Before he knew it, Freecoil grabbed him, hit him with a tranq patch and had him on the ground. The shuttle left without further incident and headed towards the parking garage where we were to meet to swap the vehicles.

After the mark was nabbed, I had BetaTest release the brakes on the Jeep. I started pushing the Jeep again and it started to move. The guards seen this and started pushing again. With little effort, the truck was pushed back into the parking space. I apologized to the security team for the delay and they went on their way again. After the shuttle rounded the turn, I hopped back into the Jeep and left the area.

Since the security team seen my Jeep, I didnt want it to be seen anywhere near the fake shuttle. The others met up with BetaTest and moved the target from Ironclad’s roadmaster to his car. The Johnson set the drop off for 13 hours from now, so we need to lay low for awhile. Probably not a good idea to bring him to my apartment, nor to BetaTest’s. I do keep a run down hole in the wall apartment in the Brooklyn neighborhood that we can use. I rarely ever come here, but it would work for now. Its also near the drop off point. I gave the team the location and decided to stop and get some shopping done. Likely didnt have anything to eat there really and breakfast burritos sound really good right now.

I met them at the apartment and cast an invisibility spell on our mostly unconscious cargo. Freecoil and BetaTest helped carry him over to the apartment. Unfortunately, there were a few Yaks there. “Drek …” I forgot that they laid claim to the area. I quietly tried to summon up a spirit, however, my concentration was out of wack. All of a sudden, I got the person approaching looked like the Yak that I killed. The spirit denied my request and I felt the reverberations course through my body and my nose started to bleed a bit. Furthermore, it appeared that they seen through the spell.

We really couldnt afford a fight right now. I was still exhausted from the invisibility spell and now the failed summoning. I turned on the charm and offered him 1000 nuyen to shut the frag up. He accepted with a smile and turned around. We went up to the apartment and got situated. I kept scanning outside to see if the Yak dreks were making any move, but they didnt. I moved to the kitchen and started making breakfast. BetaTest was talking with the guy we nabbed about what his job was. Had to put a little fear into him first to make sure he didnt cause a scene or anything. He seemed shock when I gave him a burrito to eat. Were shadowrunners, not barbarians … jeesh. Even found an old bottle of tequila that was here. I have no idea when or how, but we passed around the bottle and gave the accountant a couple of shots as well.

After eating, BetaTest and I decided to have a little fun with the target since we still had a drek-ton of time to kill. He starting asking him questions in a customer service style about how the breakfast was.

Question 1: On a scale of 1 to 10, how would you rate the customer service you were provided?
Question 2: On a scale of 1 to 10, how would you rate the burrito you just ate?

I threw in the third question.

Question 3: On a scale of 1 to 5, how would you rate the likelihood you would suggest these breakfast burritos to family and friends?

Apparently BetaTest was taking it a little too seriously and chastised me on changing the scale range from 1 to 10 to 1 to 5. It confuses people, I guess. We had a good laugh after that. Even the accountant seemed to relax a little.

When the time came to drop the mark off, we left and headed for the warehouse we were meeting the Johnson at. It was a really shady place and seemed … normal? I say that questionably since it didn’t seem right. Something was off, but I couldn’t sense what it was. Everything seemed fine in Astral and meatspace and BetaTest said the Matrix was clear … but something still felt off.

The Johnson arrived and I got out of the car to greet them and deliver the package. We got the credsticks for pay in exchange for the accountant. As we were leaving, I caught the Johnson saying that “he will do nicely.” It sent shivers down my spine at the sound of that. But whatever, a job is a job. We were hired to extract him for the client and that is just what we did.

I got dropped off back at the apartment to pick up my Jeep and I headed back home. As I left, the Yaks were still there. I nodded as I left and he did the same. I am still not sure if I like that or not. Might need to come back and have “a little chat” with the fragger, but not making that decision right now. When I got home, I plopped on the couch and curled up to sleep. “Drek, I need to go to the shop today …” I took a nap for a couple of hours and headed in. I haven’t really been in since I got the datajack. I don’t want to deal with Star Flower and her nagging, but I had an obligation to keep. I rubbed my wrist where the jack was as I walked in the door.

The shop was empty except for Star Flower. She was sitting at the table when I walked in. “Jenessa … we need to talk, child” she said in THAT voice. “Frag me …” I muttered as I closed the door and took the chair across from her.