Kera's Night Out
|Kera's Night Out|
|Some Poor Fragger Who Was in the Wrong Place at the Wrong Time|
|Casualties and losses|
|The Last Remaining Shreds of Kera’s Metahumanity||Miguel Chau|
In which the newly Infected Kera goes out to finds herself a nice snack.
Just prior to the run, Kera (along with her fellow runner Seven) went on a metaplanar journey to the Well of Souls (see: Lasciate Ogne Speranza) as her body died and metamorphosed into a vampire following infection with HMHVV Strain I (see: A Grown Up Fairy Tale). Now she has woken up, and she feels the hunger pains threatening to overwhelm her.
Nothing much in the way of a proper meet – Kera thanks Seven for his hospitality and leaves his Tacoma apartment where his lodge is located, then hops on her monowheel and sets the autopilot to take her to Redmond (specifically Touristville, where she lives, and also her new hunting grounds). On the way she calls up her fixer and gets him to give her a mark on a low-rent bounty hunter’s host (the sort of place runners go for off-screen drek jobs when they haven’t had Haven work for a few months).
Since Kera has a bounty hunter’s licence, gaining access to the host is a simple matter, and soon Kera’s matrix persona has a mark on it and is rezzed into the old-timey tavern host and checking the bounty board for suitable targets. Her goal is a low-paying bounty (so the target won’t be too hard for her to kill on her own) that doesn’t care about the target being brought in alive. Quite quickly, she finds her target – one Miguel Chau, a 0 SC street-level runner who was kicked out of Neo-Haven (yeah, he's that bad) and who has just enough cyberware in him for the 162s to pay for his corpse. Chau has evidently gone to ground somewhere near Touristville, so one quick matrix search later and Kera has a new bounty along with a small file on his known associates.
Arriving at the Touristville boarder between Bellevue and Redmond, Kera runs into her first obstacle – a manned SIN scanner. She has a residence in Touristville attached to her real, actual SIN, so that isn’t the problem. What is a problem is that the pawn manning the scanner is Aware, and takes a quick look at her aura just to check against the AR visualization that’s on file. She puts her new talent to work, using the trick she learned from initiating following her recent metaplanar journey to mask her aura as resembling her regular, uninfected self. Thankfully she is initiated and the pawn isn’t, so she passes by his notice, explaining away being duel natured as happening to take a look at his own aura in turn. He just nods and waves her through, and soon Kera is prowling Touristville looking for her target.
One of the photos she has depicts Mr. Chau drinking at a small nameless hole-in-the-wall with a roughneck ganger-looking type. She finds the bar, but does not find Chau there – she does however catch sight of his drinking buddy, so she goes out into the allyway (still dressed in her urban camouflage Big Game Hunter armor from her last job) and successfully manages to hide until the man comes outside to urinate. Casting foreboding on him and sending a shiver up his spine, she sneaks up behind him and presses her shotgun barrel into the small of his back, demanding to know Chau’s location; one successful intimidation check later and she has the address of his bolt hole.
Arriving at the bolt hole, she finds a locked basement door with no astral defenses present. Projecting inside, she sees Chau behind another locked door in a small room holding what looks like a shotgun (and that he’s whacked out on long haul and novacoke, having been awake for the past 38 hours). After taking psyche and casting a forboding spell on the room, she approaches with stealth and breaches the first (wooden) door with her shotgun (after a slight misfire from a critical glitch which causes her to nearly breaks her nose with the butt of the weapon). Descending, she is noticed by Chau, but doesn’t care as she sees him poke the shotgun through the gun port and casts stench inside to further overwhelm his senses and make him afraid of what comes next.
Chau blasts through his gun port with flachette rounds, not able to see that this bounty hunter has actual armor unlike the last ones, and Kera puts her new vampiric reflexes to the test and handily dodges them. After several failed attempts to blast the lock off (including another critical glitch, which nearly ruins the environment of fear she is trying to cultivate in order to create an emotional link between Chau and herself for the upcoming essence drain), Kera finally manages to destroy the maglock and enter the bolt hole proper. Chau has changed out his ammo for armor-piercing slugs, but the shot just bounces off the Big Game Hunter armor and Kera takes away the weapon with calm resignation.
Kera's prey backs into the corner of the room, overturning furniture and blubbering pathetically, begging for his life and promising a stash of hidden money if Kera spares him. She just locks the door and knocks him out, restraining him before administering medical treatment. One edged intimidation roll later and she sees the fear in his eyes, so she removes the helmet and bites into his neck, experiencing her first (but certainly not last…) taste of metahuman blood as she drains all 5 of Chau’s essence to restore her own.
After experiencing the ecstatic joy of feeding for the first time, Kera is elated and feels more alive than she ever has. After draining Chau of blood and filling up several bags to store in her walk-in freezer (where she keeps the bodies she reanimates, of course), she calls the number from the bounty board and drags his corpse outside. A short time later, an “ambulance” shows up and Zigzag emerges to provide Kera with her bounty payment – after a quick assensing check to confirm that she’s a neonate vampire, the ghoul just grins and hands her some contact information as well, in the highly-likely event that she requires her services in the future.
Returning to her apartment, Kera stores the blood (and moves her bed into the sunless freezer as well, making a note to get herself a proper coffin like she now realizes she’s always wanted) before checking her answering machine and noticing that she has several messages from her employers at Lone Star. She makes a very valid excuse for missing work, which is that she just underwent a metaplaner journey and initiated; since she is now a much more valuable asset to them nobody has a problem with this unscheduled absence.
However she does run into issues when she goes into work (having shifted her schedule to all night shifts for obvious reasons) – she manages to hide her infected nature using masking from the security Awares, however she cannot hide the fact that she is now always duel-natured. Passing it off as a side-effect of the initiation process, she is able to con the un-initated rank-and-file security, however she knows that she will not be able to hide forever before an initiate (or just someone with a higher magic rating than 3) assesses her and guesses the truth, so she resolves to learn as much as she can as soon as she can in order to better hide her new condition from “normal” people (i.e. spending all her free time taking ranks in Astral Combat until she can learn to be a Duel-Natured Defender).
- 4,000 nuyen
- Free Contact: Zigzag – C1/L1 “Mobile Body Disposal”
- 5 points of sweet, sweet essence.
Kera: [locking the door] "Yes, you will give me everything you have…"