|This was an initiation run.|
In which Spider finally manages to graduate from university.
Two years ago, Spider was caught changing her grades by her graduate supervisor, Professor Riley; since then, she has been forced to undertake shadowrunner work with Riley as her fixer. Now that she has a good amount of experience under her belt, Riley has been talking about how she's ready to learn some new techniques.
Spider is at home recuperating from the fallout of her last job (see: Fortunate History) and pondering her future when she gets a call from Professor Riley to come to her office. Heading out in her Comet, she encounters some gangland violence from the 405 Hellhounds en-route which causes her to be late for her meeting. Riley is uncharacteristically happy however, and instead of castigating her for her lateness she asks about Spider's thesis and tells her she has an opportunity for her. Spider is hesitant, but wanting to know more, accepts, granting Riley a mark on her deck to examine her work (and getting a cryptic message from her mentor in the process) before jacking into a host with her to meet with Riley's old mentor.
Inside the dojo-like host, Spider meets with Moto, Riley's Hapsum-Do master Moto, who takes measure of her and immediately attempts a data spike which is rebuffed by her firewall. Pronouncing her "acceptable", he has her and Riley move to a makeshift (meatspace) dojo which has been set up for the purpose while keeping her EAARS engaged.
The Duel, in Meatspace and Cyberspace
Riley brings Spider to a conference room set up for the purpose, where a scared young woman waits. Spider recognizes her from one of their shared courses, and it soon becomes apparent that she was caught cheating much like Spider once was, and that Riley plans to press her into being a runner for her as well. Spider is overcome with sympathy, however she is in the middle of being tested and must focus. On the matrix, Spider spots out Moto and attempts to GBoGH 3 marks onto him, which he barely manages to resist - he proceeds to data spike her, which she just manages to block. In meatspace, Riley tells Spider to focus her mind as Alexa reluctantly hurls stunbolts at her. Spider focuses on dealing with Moto as quickly as possible, managing to rebuff his brute force attempt at acquiring marks before getting her own and slamming him with a data spike strong enough to overwhelm his firewall and knock him off the matrix, just in time to avoid a flamethrower from Alexa.
While Riley works on putting out the resulting small fire and deals with the fire alarms, Spider has a heart-to-heart with Alexa - it quickly becomes apparent that the poor kid isn't cut out for the runner life and is terrified of the idea of being forced into Spider's position. Spider decides that she can't let this stand, and goes to confront Riley over the matter.
Spider tells Riley that she needs to let Alexa off the hook or else she'll turn the both of them in for their many, many crimes. Riley keeps her cool, bringing Spider into her office for a private chat, before chewing her out over her insolence and presumption that she has any power in their relationship. Spider stands her ground, saying that she has enough dirt on Riley to bring her down with her, and whips out a metalink to call KE - with her finger on the last button, Riley attempts to data spike the burner commlink but is rebuffed by Spider's firewall. Bidding her to sit down, she asks Spider if she's really willing to risk everything for someone who she doesn't even know, and it becomes clear to her that Spider is willing to take that risk. Riley fumes with quiet rage, castigating Spider and telling her that she should be grateful for the opportunities she's had as a runner to expand her horizons and test her limits. Spider is able to intuit that Riley, a former runner herself, perhaps regrets settling into the comfortable life she now lives and is living through the exploits of her "proteges"; she expresses some amount of sympathy, and through a combination of intimidation and negotiation is able to convince Riley to let Alexa off the hook and allow her to graduate if she continues to work for her.
Riley is flummoxed, but can see that Spider isn't bluffing and isn't willing to take the risk, so she agrees to the deal - Spider will be allowed to finish her coursework and present her thesis, and going forward their work will be on more equal terms. She also receives a notification in her calendar for another training session with Moto so that she can learn the Way of Unified Mana.
- IG6 discount
- College Education
- Sensei (Cracking - Professor Riley)
- 8 CDP
Alexa: "You do crime?!?"