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Home for the Holiday - part 1 & 2 now posted [Chapter 7]

 Post subject: Home for the Holiday - part 1 & 2 now posted [Chapter 7]
PostPosted: Wed Dec 06, 2006 12:26 pm 
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Well, after some debate I've decided to put each 'chapter' in a seperate thread. This way I can keep comments on each section with those chapters.

For now anyway...

This chapter just sort of took shape on its own and got to about the size I like for each section before I really finsihed it - thus the part 1.

I hope you all enjoy and please feel free to post any comments...

===============================================

Home for the Holiday

“You have got to be kidding.”

“I never joke ‘little rat’.” Ian looked up over the piece of paper in his hands at Katan, his ‘handler’ for this test. The man was stoic. “This is your test. You do not have to perform the task. Simply say so and we will part ways.”

By that the Van Saar meant that if Ian should choose not to go on this little ‘errand’ he would no longer be considered for membership into the gang. Looking back down he reread the letter to make sure he was reading it right.

‘Your 3rd test is to retrieve the power cell for your las pistol, the one that you left behind in your hurry to flee your family’s business.’ Ian shook his head… how could Dyrke know about that?

As if to answer the unspoken question Katan said, “You don’t think Dyrke recruits just any street rat without checking him out do you.” Ian’s head drooped. “He ensures those within the team don’t become… a distraction later on.” Ian raised his head to protest but was cut off. “You’ve got spirit ‘little rat’, but you haven’t passed the tests yet.”

Ian’s thoughts were flying now. How was he going to get all the way back to his father’s house, or lab, undetected, let alone get back in?

“Come on. We have some ground to cover.” With that Katan led Ian back to hive city.

-=-=-=O=-=-=-

Ian emerged from the lift to a circus – literally. People filled the streets. There were several dressed in bright colors dancing and performing acrobatic tricks, several ash waste animals on display, and the street vendors were out in droves. Ian reached out and grabbed a passing bystander’s sleeve.

“What’s going on?”

“You just up from the sump?” The man asked, obviously eyeing Ian’s torn and dirty jumpsuit.

“Never mind that, what’s going on here?”

“Well, since you’re obviously not from around here… Guilder Gribly has announced a holiday. He wants to show off his wealth apparently. Hey, it’s his money. All I know is that I got half a shift off to come see this freak show that he’s brought up from the sump.”

Ian let the guy go and just peered over the crowd. “What a spectacle,” he thought to himself. “But, this could work in my favor…”

-=-=-=O=-=-=-

His destination was not hard to find. He could have found it if all the lights in the dome had failed. For the last five years he had walked to and from the place where he had been born on his way to work. Before that it was the local apprentice shops. It was a nice place by hive standards – luxurious even compared to the worker habs. It was nestled into the middle of a street off the main path, three stories high and a private exterior area sectioned off for their private use behind it. Even hear the festivities filled the street.

In front of his childhood home stood a pair of bodyguards fully decked out in mesh armor, plasma pistols and obvious bionic implants. Just the air of confidence kept the crowd on the street at a respectful distance. Not that he expected to just walk right in the front door, but it was good to know what the status was around the old place. Of course that meant it would be slightly more difficult getting to his prize.

-=-=-=O=-=-=-

The row of houses had been built over top of an old factory dome. In a few places derelict air vents continued to allow air to move between the two areas. Underneath Ian’s home was one such vent. In his father’s quest for security Ian had been sent down there to close it off and thus prevent exactly what he was doing now. Sneaking into the house undetected. When his father sent him down here all those years ago he saw an opportunity. Instead of sealing the vent off he fashioned a door instead.

The vent had gotten pretty nasty since he last used it. Soot and dust layered the surfaces all around him and it rubbed off coating his jumpsuit. When it mixed with the sweat freely rolling off his face and hands (his bodysuit recycling the rest for later use) made for a tacky mess. Fortunately his old hand and foot holds were still in place. The grill in the back wall of the upstairs hallway was still there as well. Before he pushed the screen aside he stopped to listen. Silence was all that met his ears. That was as it should be as both his parents worked, and the two servants were not scheduled to work until the 2nd shift. Glancing at the chronometer on his wrist he had a little over an hour.

Easing the grill onto the floor Ian squirmed his way onto the hallway floor. Once in side he easily made his way to his room. The door was wide open, but a quick visual inventory of the room told him that everything was still as it should be.

Racing around the room he grabbed a small duffle bag and filled it with a couple sets of clothes and some of his old tools (both medical and mechanical). He also grabbed what he had returned home for… the power cell he had set aside for his piece meal laspistol. As he turned to leave he caught his reflection in a mirror on the back of his door. What a mess. His jumpsuit was tattered and filthy; the bandage along his ribcage was saturated with blood; and his hair stuck to his head at odd angles. He almost mistook his reflection for another person. Rubbing his finger across his cheek moved the filth around but did little to clean it off. Sighing to himself he pulled open the door back and stepped into the hallway. Instead of an empty passageway his mother now blocked the only escape route.

“Well, look what the rats dragged in.”

Ian was speechless. What could he say?

“Are you just going to stand there, or are you going to say something?”

“I… I need to get going mother,” he finally managed to stammer.

“Not like that you’re not. First you are going to get cleaned up, and I am going to take a look at that… that bandage.”

“Mother you have to know by now. I’ve deserted my post at the lab. I want to see the hive for myself, not through what the house vid-reporters think we should see. You wouldn’t understand.”

“I was young once too. You don’t think I worked for your father all my life do you?”

Ian was confused. All his life his mother was the epitome of elegance. She always seemed to know the right thing to say, the right thing to do. She had been the face of his father’s business and hostess to countless business functions. More then once he had heard whispers of his mother being a distant descendant of the house founders. Now she seemed to insinuate that she had once lived a different life, one not so… sheltered?

“You see I once ran with the gangs,” his mother said, pulling her sleeve up to reveal a tattoo. A tattoo in the shape of an animal’s paw, claws extended, “’The Cats’ if memory serves, but that was a long, long time ago.”

Amber flashed to Ian’s mind but was gone just as quick. “I really must be going. They’re waiting for me.”

“Which gang did you join?” his mother asked stepping to prevent Ian from going around her. “You needn’t worry about me telling your father, just promise me you’ll return once you have spent this urge.”

“Team Delta.”

“The teams? Good, good. She seemed to be lost in thought for a while. I will delay your father and his minions how ever I can, but you are on your own.”

“Thank you mother.”

“Just let me look to that wound first, and then I you will be on your way.”

-=-=-=O=-=-=-

“Man does this feel good.”

Ian just let the water run across his face and then down his back. After his mother had pulled the bandage and scolded him for not taking better care of himself she insisted that he shower before leaving once again. The Van Saar are known to be as clean as they are technical. He could almost feel the fatigue wash away with the filth of the trials of the past few days. As he tried to prolong the experience the door to the outside room flew open interrupting his meditation.

“Time to go Ian,” his mother said as she tossed his now repaired jumpsuit over the curtain. “Your father and his gang are on their way here to eat.”

Several choice words flew through Ian’s mind, none of them he wanted to repeat aloud in front of his mom.

-=-=-=O=-=-=-

_________________
"Always mystify, mislead, and surprise the enemy; and when you strike and overcome him, never let up pursuit." ----- Thomas Jacskon


Last edited by s4G on Sun Feb 11, 2007 5:15 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 07, 2006 9:26 am 
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Quite funny actually, well written s4g, nice one (another great chapter!)
I reckon you should consolidate them once they're finished, no?
(If you don't the idea pull out nearest big gun and shoot me...

:fullauto



Owie!

_________________
You see Reilly in the Underhive, and you're lookin' at me.


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 11, 2006 8:59 am 
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Yea - maybe consolidate them every five chapters or so... Hmm...

thanks again...

_________________
"Always mystify, mislead, and surprise the enemy; and when you strike and overcome him, never let up pursuit." ----- Thomas Jacskon


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 12, 2006 4:16 am 
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very good again. nice change of pace, and use of history.

good call!

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Apologies Dyslexic.


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 15, 2006 9:55 am 
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Part 2

“Excuse me fellas – but someone just ran through the yard out back.”

The two body guards ran through the front doors and down the hall on their way to their rear of the house. Once Ian heard the back door open he stepped out from the side room where he was hiding, gave his mother a nod of thanks, and then out the door into the crowded street beyond.

Once he was clear of the house he took a moment to scan up and down the steet. In the direction of Ian’s intended exit the crowd of revelers was parting to allow a gang of armed men to pass. His father was closer than he had expected, and he was a heartbeat too late in reacting. The bounty hunter that had once aided Ian’s preparations to escape was now pointing in his direction and barking orders to the others. With no time for pretenses Ian took off running in the opposite direction.

Even though the street was packed it was far easier for Ian to wade through the masses than it was for his pursuers. That was until they started shooting their weapons into the air and demanding everyone to get out of their way. His advantage was fading fast.

Without thinking Ian darted into the nearest alley to try and work his way around his pursuers and get back to the center of the dome. Bad move, the alley was a dead end with only a pole ladder leading to the roof top. Without hesitation Ian darted up the three stories to the roof top. When he reached the top he took a moment to determine how close his pursuers were. Seeing them run into the far end of the alley he drew his laspistol and shot at the ladder’s supports. His tormentors thought he was shooting at them and all but the bounty hunter dove for cover and began to shoot back. It was now Ian’s turn to duck for cover. His las bolts had only managed to weaken the pole and not cause its failure, but he could no longer afford to linger and scampered away.

Reaching the far end of the row of hab units he looked back and saw only one pursuer coming over the far edge where the ladder was. Looking over the edge he saw a small service walkway leading across to the other row of habs. It was not much more than a pair of pipes bound together and barely wide enough to get a sure footing on. Not much else to it, he dropped over the edge and darted for the next row of habs two and a half floors up from the ground. As Ian reached the halfway point the air around him erupted with las and led slugs.

“What in Helmawr’s rump are you doing?!?”

Ian’s father’s gang had reached the street ahead of him and had set up a hasty ambush. Before any of the rounds could strike home his father smacked one of the men shooting at Ian with his power maul. It caused the man to fall to the ground unconscious immediately, and the rest of the men stopped shooting. Not wanting to wait any longer Ian leapt to catch the next roof line and hauled himself up and over the top. But instead of taking off immediately he hid and waited until his rooftop pursuer reached his side of the walkway.

It was a woman dressed in the familiar bodyglove of house Van Saar. Using his hands as a brace Ian kicked out with his right foot catching her square in the jaw just as she cleared the top of the wall. The blow caught her totally off guard and she tumbled back out of sight. Without waiting to appreciate the results Ian was off and running again.

The sound of music came to him from somewhere ahead. The Guilder’s holiday party! With any luck, and if the Emperor was with him, he could lose himself in the crowd and make good his escape.

Instead of heading all the way to the far end of this hab block Ian pulled up long enough to look back the way he had come. His rooftop pursuer was nowhere in sight so he slackened his pace to a walk. Just maybe… he waited for another moment and went to the edge of the rooftop that lined the street. Lifting his head slowly to peer over and down into the street below Ian glanced in both directions. His father’s posse was no where to be seen. But how would he get down again?

Fortune was smiling upon him. One of the habs owners had left some surplus wiring coiled up, perhaps for some project left undone. Ian quickly scooped up the abandoned wire and secured it to a venting pipe. Without further thought he dropped it over the edge of the building and scaled down to the street level.

Although his arrival caused a few heads to turn no one questioned him further than a furtive glance. Another look up and down the street revealed that his pursuers had thus far not noticed his descent. The carnival was in his original direction of flight, and although his instincts told him to double back, he continued on towards the holiday celebration.

-=-=-=O=-=-=-

Ian had managed to slip smoothly into the crowd, within eyesight of his pursuers. This time his appearance allowed him a certain amount of anonymity. He was just another reveler. Wanting to put some distance between him and his father he quickly stepped towards the bright red tent strewn in the middle of a common area.

Once inside Ian allowed himself to relax a little, the thin sheeting on the sides of the tent giving him a sense of concealment. The crowd was not as thick as he had hoped, but they moved in and around several cages of mutants and animals. Slowing down so as to not draw attention he moved along with the crowd. The cages that lined the pathway each held a different spectacle.

One cage held what appeared to be a dejected little girl, but instead of a human shaped head there was one that resembled a lizard with horns. In the next cage there stood a defiant man with four arms. Across the way a quadruped animal with a coal black fur coat that was pacing back and forth. The look in its eyes gave the impression that it would tear apart anything on the other side of the bars, if only it could get out.

“Ladies and Gentlemen!”

Ian spun around. Entering the tent behind him was an Enforcer patrol.

“Ladies and Gentlemen,” the Enforcer Sergeant repeated. “This display is not sanctioned by the ruling house of Necromunda! Please leave by the nearest exits and return to your homes! If you choose not to leave than we will take action.”

There was a noticeable rise in the tension level of the crowd. Ian could see several patrons reaching for their pistols, checking them, and then looking around for the nearest exit.

“Gotta love the Enforcers,” Ian thought to himself. The dispersing crowd grew denser as it flowed out from under the awning giving him more concealment. Looking around as he was being swept along Ian caught sight of his mother. He could swear that their eyes met, but he could not be sure.

-=-=-=O=-=-=-

“Let me see it,” was the only thing Katan said when Ian stepped through the doorway of the abandoned substation.

Ian handed over the recovered power cell. He also produced his backpack that carried his change of clothes and his recovered tools.

_________________
"Always mystify, mislead, and surprise the enemy; and when you strike and overcome him, never let up pursuit." ----- Thomas Jacskon


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