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No Turning Back [Chapter 19]

 Post subject: No Turning Back [Chapter 19]
PostPosted: Fri Apr 06, 2007 5:02 am 
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“Can you hear me now?” Ian whispered into Rogers left ear. There was no discernable reaction from the man. Then Ian tapped the palm of his hand with his fingers, still no reaction.

“I have good news and I have bad news Rogers. The good news is that you are healing up nicely. The bad news is that you have lost the hearing in your left ear. There’s not much else I can do for you.”

“It’s alright ‘Doc’. You did the best you could.

Ian shook his head and smiled. “’Doc’, I could get used to that”, he said to himself. Walking over to his workbench in the rear of the sickbay Ian prepared to get back to work on his various ‘projects’. Although he did not have anything promising it kept his mind off other things.

“There you are”, Dyrke said as he entered, passing Rogers in the doorway. “Have you had a chance to visit Chigger this week?”

“On the table by the door there” Ian said without getting up. He was hoping he could get back to his distractions without prolonged conversation.

“Good, good. Feels pretty heavy, Chigger must really like you kid.”

Ian just nodded and turned his attention back to the workbench.

Even though Dyrke caught on that Ian was not in the mood for conversation he kept on. “I understand Amb… I mean ‘Panthera’, lost something dear to her when you brought her in.”

“A gift from someone she considered to be a friend. A sword”, Ian replied.

“Then she might be interested in this.”

Ian turned to face his leader once more. In Dyrke’s hands he held a sword in its scabbard. It was not as ornate as the one Amber left behind but it was a fine Van Saar specimen. The scabbard was made of a dull black plastic that fit the blade perfectly.

Dyrke walked over and handed it to Ian. “I’d like for you to give it to her. I think she would prefer that it came from you.”

“These are a little hard to come by. Thanks Dyrke. I think she will appreciate it.”

Ian drew out the perfectly straight blade. The handle and blade were one solid piece. The blade used only a single cutting edge that ran from the tip almost down to the hand guard which was formed seamlessly between the blade and handle. The guard was a simple unadorned oval. The grip was overlaid with synthetic foam that both conformed to the hands of the wielder and provided a non-slip grip with enough room to get both hands around it. Sliding it back into place Ian looked back up to Dyrke, “I think she will get some good use out of this.”

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

“I hear the Escher are exceptional in hand to hand combat. I was wondering if you would be willing to show me some of the moves you picked up while you were with them.”

Amber turned away from the doorway to her room, leaving the door open but not inviting Ian in either. When she reached the far end of her small room she turned back around and crossed her arms in front of her chest.

“I didn’t think you wanted to see me anymore, now that I’m one of the Spiders that is.”

“Well, you just seemed so pissed at me the last time we talked… and I was worried…”

“About what? That the other guys would pick on you for shacking up with the new recruit?”

“Um, no. I was worried that they might mind that I was… “shacking up” … with an Escher. Because that is what I thought you were before Dyrke sent me to bring you in.”

“What do you care what they think?”

“I care because they took me in when I didn’t know where else to go. Just like they are doing for you now.”

The last statement seemed to disarm her a little and she looked away.

“Can I come in? I thought I’d check on that bruise you received while guarding the Ratskin, besides I come bearing a gift.”

“A doctor who makes house calls, how sweet.”

“Well, I’m no doctor. I’m barely a medic, but I do make house calls”, Ian said with a coy smile.

Amber motioned for him to come in, “what is this gift you speak of?”

As Ian pulled the new sword around from behind his back he stepped through the doorway and shut the door behind him with his free hand.

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

Every one of the ‘Steel Spiders’ were there. It was a time to celebrate, or so they were told. In reality it was just an excuse to unwind and spend their credits while supporting their good friend Chigger and the Bifrost. They all just wanted to forget about the Ratskin Chief that got away.

Sitting around one table Boanerges, Rogers, and Hargrave were trying their best to entertain a bar wench each. It was none too hard either as the drinks flowed freely.

Dyrke sat at another with Cacee, Katan, and their newest team member – who everyone knew now as Panthera. Here the atmosphere was more subdued, but there were no frowns to be seen.

Renold kept himself entertained by throwing a few rounds of darts with Ian. Neither of these last two had been in the mood for either ‘Wild Snake’ or ‘Second Best’ so they kept to themselves.

“Come on over here Panthera and have a seat with old Hargrave darlin’.”

This caught Ian’s attention causing his last toss to miss the target completely. Without thinking he just said over his shoulder, “She spoken for”. The room grew quiet.

“What’d you say lad?” came Hargrave’s slurred response as he stood knocking over his chair.

Before Ian could respond Amber stood up and moved in between the two men.

“He said I am not interested in your company, so have another round on him and take a seat.”

For several seconds the room stayed quiet no one really knowing what to say.

BAM, BAM, BAM! A heavy pounding on the door broke the tension within the room.

A voice called through the door, “Traitor! Come out and face the Cats! We know how you betrayed us! Amber, you might as well come out and face your judgment!”

Dyrke held up a hand to silence the rest of the room as he stood. Walking to the door he calmly opened it as several of the ‘Spiders’ readied weapons behind him.

“There is no one here by that name. You are obviously mistaken, so why don’t you just scurry back to your hole before something bad happens.”

Even from the back of the room Ian could tell the drinking hall beyond the door had also grown quiet. All of the Spiders were now on their feet.

“Dyrke, you know better than to cross us. Bring out the traitor (&#$@!) and we’ll call it even.”

Dyrke opened the door wide and stepped through. “Can’t do it Fushia. I can’t give you what I don’t have. The only people with me tonight are the ‘Steel Spiders’ and our invited guests. Besides it would be a shame to embarrass you and your girls so publicly… again”.

Ian caught Amber’s sleeve and tugged her towards the back of the group now following Dyrke through the doorway. ‘Not here’ he whispered, and then they both followed Dyrke out into the main hall of the Bifrost. All of the ‘Black Cats’ were standing there with their leader.

The two gangs spread our and faced each other. Each set of eyes were locked on their opponent. So much so that the ‘Black Cats’ paid little attention to Amber who was now dressed in the blue, grey, and black pixeled bodysuit of her fellow Van Saar gangers – and no longer sporting her distinctive ponytail. That is until the ‘Black Cat’ known as Jade caught her moving into line with her new family. But before the Escher could alert the others to her discovery a tall trench coated Enforcer stepped onto the floor in between the two gangs.

“I know you all are not thinking about what I think you’re thinking about… are you.”

The Enforcer Sergeant looked back and forth between the two gang leaders. As he did so the distinctive sound of several shotguns being primed sounded to reinforce his statement.

Ian saw that two separate patrols were no on either side of the drinking hall. On one side stood a wall of Enforcers armed with shotguns and a heavy stubber. On the other a group obviously equipped to get in and mix up as they were armed with suppression shields, power mauls, and of course the distinctive cyber mastiff. This was not a good place to be – in between the two teams and no where to hide.

“The Black Cats have crossed your path Dyrke. Your luck is about to change!” The Escher leader yelled across the floor.

Dyrke stood there and chuckled under his breath. “See you out in the wastes”, was his only reply.

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"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: Fri Apr 06, 2007 5:07 am 
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This story represents a little of the post battle sequence from the Ratskin rescue of their Chief, a little charecter development, and a precursor to the next game I will be playing with them.

To be honest that Ratskin map has been the best thing this gang has. It helped against the Ratskins (in the first game) and it will lead to a nasty surprise for the Black Cats in the next.

One things that has slowed down my notes for more stories for this gang is that they have sort of sprinted ahead of the other gangs in their GR, and many of the opponents are not eager to play because the 'Steel Spiders' are getting a +/- 2 to each scenario roll.

It will be a couple of weeks until the next story as I am going to be out of town for a week and then the in-laws come for a visit.

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"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: Fri Apr 06, 2007 7:46 am 
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good as ever :D

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 06, 2007 9:43 am 
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good read


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2007 4:52 am 
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Thank you both for the encouragement.

I was able to plat the next encounter between the Steel Spiders and the Black Cats this past week - so I could get more material to write about.

It was crazy! Of course the Spiders ambushed the Cats - I mean no one should give equal footing to an opponent of they can help it.

Ths Spiders opened up - dropped three of the cats in their first turn of firing and the Cats bottled! In order to have something more to write about I immediatly challanged the Cats to another game (they quickly picked up a Ratskin scout to counter some of my Map... the game was a straight up Gang Fight). You will have to wait to see how that turned out.

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


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