From Essen with Love
|From Essen with Love|
Saeder-Krupp Heavy Industries
A Long Con's End
Due to the events of A Cornered Animal Fights the Hardest where Zenith called Amrei in order to rent an official S-K persona, she hacked his commlink and found out that he had a daughter. Going so far as to call him out when she wanted him on a job and, during From One KRIMinal To Another, even driving his daughter from her school in Bellevue to his home in Tacoma. Understanding the problem this presents, alongside a growing number of shadowrunners learning about his daughter, causes Zenith to evaluate if it really is safer for her to be kept in the dark about his profession, or if he needs to talk with her. Deciding on the latter Zenith makes waffles for his daughter to help ease the news for her. Zenith receives a call on his personal commlink with Harriot asking if she can bring her girlfriend, Gabriella Davis (the daughter of a man Zenith was paid to kill in There's No Business Like Snow Business) back to the house. Zenith says no, trying to keep the circle of regular people who know about his real career as small as possible. While mentally preparing for one of the hardest conversations of his life, his professional commlink rings. Thinking it's his fixer with a job, he's tempted to ignore it, but after checking the number, finds out that it is an unknown number, but with the logo of a golden eye. Knowing that Amrei would not accept that he was unavailable, even if he ignored her, he answers and is told by the corporate spy that he's required at a building downtown for a job in half an hour. Zenith explains that he's in the middle of something, but Amrei is very unwilling to negotiation on time. Zenith eventually manages to push her to waiting an hour, and then hangs up to discover he burned the first waffle in his frustration.
When Harriot arrives, she's somewhat nervous about a talk, thinking she is going to be punished for sneaking out and lying to Zenith during Campus Caper. Instead though, Zenith takes the time to explain that he's a shadowrunner, and the differences between reality and how the trids present the career. Harriot asks a lot of questions, about the setup scenario during The Absolute Top of the Problem, about the kinds of things that he's done, and even if he had ever killed anyone. Zenith is truthful, though doesn't go into any details, especially about his expertise in wetwork. Expressing his love for Harriot, he says that he has to go to a job, and explains that Saeder-Krupp is aware of her, and to be wary of any offers that come from the Megacorporation.
Giving his daughter time to think on the new truths that he's given her, Zenith heads towards Downtown.
Where Dragons Dwell
Zenith arrives at the S-K business to find no sign of the typical gold or dragon motifs that typically indicate S-K's presence in the city. Taking a moment to survey the area, he notices a dragonfly drone following him before he steps inside and manages to palm his revolver before he is searched by a security guard before entering an elevator. The elevator moves up the building and then suddenly slides horizontally, opening to rows upon rows of people staring at data that is whizzing past at a speed that Zenith can't keep up with. Ignoring the data, Zenith moves towards the office where guidance AROs are leading him. As the door to Amrei's office opens Zenith is surprised by seeing a drake in a business suit. Concerned about the presence of the closest thing that Zenith has ever seen to a dragon up close, he reaches for his gun before realizing what a bad idea that would be. He calms himself and lets the drake leave, trying just to stay beneath it's notice. Letting the door close behind him, Zenith approaches Amrei's desk and sits down, waiting to be told about the job that he is meant to perform for her.
Amrei explains that Ætherlink, a subsidiary of Saeder-Krupp, has a member that Amrei is suspicious of selling company secrets. However she isn't able to make a move on this person just yet as she lacks proof. Zenith's job is to sneak into Ætherlink's building in Bellevue and find the office of the target and place a data tap in the office. Before Zenith can ask why they can't just do it themselves, Amrei informs Zenith that this a test of the adept's abilities, and that she will be watching and grading him on his performance. Zenith asks if this is meant to be a solo job, or if he can subcontract out for Matrix support. Amrei explains that the Matrix won't be a problem, and that he will not be burned if he's spotted by a camera, rather just marked down on this grading system. Amrei also offers Zenith "assistance" in the form of a dossier written up about Old Tusk, his mother's old fixer and the one who had been in contact with Orion when the old Street Sam had threatened Zenith last month.
Agreeing to the job, mostly due to being unable to refuse safely, Zenith leaves the the office, catching sight of Amrei pulling up an ARO about something called "Proteus"
Zenith leaves the building after recovering his concealable weapons and resetting all his devices. He gets back into his car and begins driving to Bellevue. Once there, he begins to case Ætherlink, sneaking into a side alley and avoiding the attention of a BTL addict who had better things to do that spot out a criminal. Zenith jumps to a fire escape on the side of a building and pulls himself up, reminiscing about showing off to Scarlet when they were first starting to get to know each other. Snapping out of the happy memory, Zenith begins surveying the location, seeing a parking lot and a guard station with line of sight to the back door, along with a Maglock that seems to respond to company IDs. Wanting to check out the security Zenith begins to scale down the building with Gecko Tape Gloves, on the way down however it starts to rain and the gloves lose their grip, causing Zenith to fall to the alley below. He lands safely, but remembers another memory with his wife, where he realized he was no longer forced to succeed or die. He takes a moment of nostalgia for his short-lived retirement and notices the dragonfly drone once more before moving swiftly to the door and swiping his Maglock passkey just to check that the security wasn't too strong to be forced. The passkey worked, but Zenith backed off for the day, as he'd need an employee ID for internal security. He uses a Cellular Glove Molder to copy the prints from the door after an employee went back inside after a smoke break and leaves the back of the building.
Heading home for the day, Zenith also checks out the security guard's weapon before heading back to his car and drives back home for the night. He stays up until Black Cat, his acquisitions expert, gets a Faceless System for Zenith in the shape of a locket. He puts in a small picture of Scarlet, his missing wife, in the locket and puts it around his neck in preparation for the day ahead.
Going back to Ætherlink in the morning, Zenith tooled around in the parking lot until he found someone who looked just average enough. Trying to pull a con that he had perfected since childhood, he attempted to get hit by the car, however he saw something strange in the Astral as he was checking around, something watching him, and so he actually was hit by the car. As the wageslave was yelling at him about denting the car, Zenith crawled over to him and pickpocketed the man's ID before apologizing and moving through the security checkpoint with his new company ID. He's able to sneak through the hallways of Ætherlink without arousing too much suspicion. Zenith moves down the hallway of the the general work area, and remembers his mother showing him wageslaves as they moved around the city. She informed him that those people had sold their souls to the corporations, and were dead, they just didn't know it yet.
Shaking off his mother's words, Zenith finds his way into R&D labs and tries to look for the office of his target. However as he begins making his way towards the offices, someone flags him down and tries to get him to come to a meeting, thinking that Zenith is here as a consultant from MCT. Zenith summons up all the knowledge that his has about computers and says a bunch of words that he doesn't understand, trying to just get through the conversation. The wageslave questioning him isn't convinced of his expertise, but he at least backs off while Zenith finds the office of his target and opens the door with his passkey. The office is small, but there's a console on the desk that Zenith attaches a data tap to the console. He sends a message to Amrei to confirm that she has the data that she needs before he stands and attempts to leave the office, only to run into his target.
Zenith tries his best to come up with a con, explaining that he is a bodyguard sent to guard the target from some form of danger. When asked the exact nature of the danger, Zenith claims that he doesn't know, but that Herr Brackhaus was very concerned about his target's safety and offers him a commcode. The man begins to freak out with the thought that Lofwyr may be watching him, and Zenith is able to squeeze out of the office and leave Ætherlink. Zenith destroys the Metalink that the commcode he gave the target directed to, and ditched the stolen company ID into a vehicle's exhaust before getting into his car, leaving the area, and switching all of his car's identifiers.
A Job Satisfactorily Done
Zenith arrives at Amrei's office and goes back up the elevator and returning to the secret task force HQ that Amrei runs. Strolling in with a perhaps unearned level of confidence, Zenith waits for Amrei to tell him how he did. According to her metrics, outside of being hit by the car in the parking lot, his performance was much to her satisfaction, and she has the data that she needed. Zenith takes the datachip that has the information on Old Tusk from the S-K decker and prepares to leave. On the way out however, he asks Amrei if this corporate life that she lives was worth leaving the Shadows. Amrei seems to believe that it is, and Zenith returns home to find Harriot and Gabriella watching trids on the couch.
Heading back to his office, Harriot sends Zenith a message, asking if everything is okay, and he says that yes, and that he might have a lead on finding Scarlet. Harriot seems surprised to hear that, but asks to be kept in the loop.
- IG2 discount
- Alibi @ chargen price (4 RVP)
- 6 karma
- 2 CDP
- +3 S-K reputation
- One Silent Claw Stiletto w/ Personalized Grip
-Zenith, making the stupidest bluff he can think of in the moment.
Player After Action Reports (AARs)
Don't really like tests. Whenever someone tells me they're testing me, often the only thing getting tested is my patience. Especially when that person is as untouchable as Amrei Veidt. I've gone through my playbook of ways that I could kill her, there's no way to do it and continue being alive long enough for it to matter. The fact she works for Lofwyr is so far above my paygrade that I couldn't see that ceiling with my scope.
Lucky for me, this "test" of Amrei's wasn't about finding a Shadowrunner that pissed her off. I don't need that kind of drek on my rep. I just have to sneak into this corp and make sure she can get access to some fragger's computer. Seems like the kind of thing she could do on her own, but a job's a job and I'm not really in a position to refuse at the moment. Especially not when I get offered information that I've been looking for. The job itself isn't too bad. I get in, lie to a couple of wageslaves and get out. I wasn't expecting to have to fight off HTR since I was told this was about being unseen, but frag this was closer than it should have been a couple of times.
Amrei gets her test. I get my data, and now I get one step closer to my goal.