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BY THE DUST OF 'EM ALL: Chapter 3

 Post subject: BY THE DUST OF 'EM ALL: Chapter 3
PostPosted: Wed Aug 22, 2007 4:53 pm 
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DOWN HIVE MISFIT
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Location: WANDERING THE BADZONES
CHAPTER 3. SHOOT, LOOT AND SCOOT

The Stranger never felt nervous. So why then was he shaking he wondered. Too much had happened at the party last night. The Vindicators knew his real name, his co-worker revealed as a stripper and Creed Hex had his eyes on him. He finished the remainder of his scraggy cigar and spat it over the refuse tower he was standing on.
He felt the hairs on the back of his neck stand up and he instinctively spun around drawing his laspistols.
“ Easy handsome!” A womans voice said.
“ Sorry to startle you. Your Dax right? Yeah, I work for Grimskull too. My name is Nadine. Sorry to have to meet you way out here but, these Van Saar’s are a paranoid lot.”
The Stranger holstered his pistols and leaned back against a rail. Nadine pulled off her hood and crossed her arms.
“ Look, I got good news and bad news from old Grim. Good news is he is paying us up front. Bad news is the plan has changed.”
The Stranger shot her a dirty look and said,” So whats the plan then?”
“ We are still gonna scrag them two Saar’s but, we also gotta raid their stash. Seems they are holding big time creds. Bigger than one gang ought to have, you dig? Grim says they holding for that fat scumbag Oskar. He wants us to shoot, loot and scoot. Only thing is we need to do it all in the same night. That’s the problem right there.” She said adjusting her bosom.
“ That’s a big problem alright. What did Grim say exactly?”
The Stranger snapped.
“ Calm down big boy! You are gonna do the actual hit, Im the bait…The Orphans are going to help too.” She said matter of factly.
“ I don’t know them well enough to trust them…but I think they will do it just to get some revenge. When’s this all supposed to go down?”
She grinned and winked.” Two nights from now. Until then Im supposed to keep you company.”
The Stranger frowned.” I thought Grimskull said for us not to be seen together so no one could connect us to the hit?”
She laughed and stepped in towards him.” Who said we have to be SEEN?”
He tried not to blush and straightened up.” Easy darlin’. I aint trying to blow you off, but I aint trying to get involved either.”
She rolled her eyes and smacked he teeth.
“ Your loss Dax, or STRANGER or whatever the frag you wanna be called. I’ll be at the Lobo if you change yer mind”
She turned on her heels and walked down the stairs, her steps echoing in the quiet, gloomy dome. He shook his head and tried not to laugh. What the hell was this broad thinking. He never could mix work and play. He hoped to the Emperor this job went smoothly. This is the exact reason why he liked to work alone.
Women. They only complicate things but dammit he loved them!

The Lobo was a crummy night club that had a decent bar and some rooms for rent above. He hadn’t been there since he was a kid. His brother Jester had often visited to pick up women or just to get away from the dark bars of Dead Mans Hole.
Memories flooded his brain. Jester and The Iron Fists. Once a top rated gang. Jester was as lethal as Grimskull in those days, but his true power lay in his charisma. He could talk anyone into doing anything. The Iron Fists ruled Dead Mans Hole. No one dared enter their turf. The Stranger had also been a part of the gang. In those days he was nicknamed Sparky, the gang naming him that on account of his attitude towards everything. He always had a spark in his eyes it seemed. He missed those days. He sighed and entered the Lobo.
Nadine sat sulking in a cheap vinyl booth. He walked over to her and took his coat off, sitting down next to her.
“ What do you want?” she asked rolling her eyes.
“ Looks like you need a friend.”
“ Piss off” she said, finishing her drink.
“ Look, maybe we got off on the wrong foot here. I aint to good with women. Im better with guns you know?” said the Stranger fumbling to light a fresh cigar.
“ That so? Well, look Dax, Im tired and you want to continue this I would much rather prefer it after a shower….If you care to join me.” She stood up, leaving some creds on the table.
She winked at him and whispered in his ear, breathing heavily and pouting her luscious lips.
“ Room 9v.”
He watched her head for the stairs, her ass swaying back and forth.
He drank one beer and then walked up the stairs, smiling to himself.

The Stranger entered her room slowly. She had several small candles lit. Her leathers, coat and weapons lay spread out on the bed. He sat down on the edge of her bed waiting for her to emerge from the wash room. Nadine opened the door half way and poked her head out.
“ Are you coming or what? You’re a looker but boy you need a bath!” she said teasing him.
He smiled and began taking off his clothes. He locked the door and pushed a small table against it. He pushed open the door and stood staring at her wonderful body for a moment. He sighed his good fortune. A hot shower and a hot woman, if he died tomorrow he would at least die happy.


The Orphans gang was a rag tag bunch. They hardly ever had money to buy ammo and lacked the man power to work their own turf. They had lost two leaders in the last four months during shoot outs with the Vindicators. The Stranger had contact with them through Rex Deevo and Linor. He decided they should met just outside Green Water, away from prying eyes. Nadine came along with him, just to ensure they didn’t try and jump the Stranger for his stash.

Their leader was a wiry young Orlock that everyone called Jay Bird.
His other two gangers were Bad Bill and KC Killer. They were tough kids but lacked the gun power to put up a decent fight against Hunter and the Vindicators.
The three Orphan’s loitered around one of the many ruined hab blocks that were scattered throughout the Badzones near the Red Wastes. Nadine followed just behind the Stranger as he nodded to the gangers.
“ Ok boys, here it is. I work for someone that wants the Vindicators out of the picture as much as you do.” The Stranger said. The Orphans stiffened a bit, their curiosity getting the best of them.
Jay nodded and light a reef.” Ok then, lets talk inside.”
The Stranger and Nadine followed them inside the abandoned homestead. They sat around a dusty iron table and continued their discussion.
“ The other thing is, my employer also wants a certain member of the Watch, who happens to be a friend of your rivals also dead. My offer is this. I give you creds to buy guns and hire some new blood. All you gotta do is shoot em up when we say to. The next thing is that you keep your mouth shut and we all live happily ever after. So what do you say?” The Stranger said, raising his eyebrows.
Jay Bird shot a nervous glance at his two gangers. They exchanged several hushed words and then Jay shook his head up and down
“ Ok Stranger, we’ll do it. The first thing is, I want to scrag Hunter myself. The second is I want a cut of the stash you gonna rip off.”
Nadine bit her lip. The Stranger face grew dark and his choler grew.

“ No.” He said.
“No! You got some balls, coming to me for help and then trying to elbow us out on the Guilders dough! You want our help or not man?” Jay said placing his palms flat on the table and glaring at him.
“ You can kill Hunter, the moneys not for anybody but my boss. If you have a problem with that we can find someone else to do it….like maybe those Eschers…what are they called?” He said turning to Nadine.
“ The Hellbent Lucys.” She stated flatly.
Dizzy and his men relaxed. Their pride getting the better of them.
“ Alright then…we’ll do it. I just got one more question. Whats with all the sneaking around? I mean gang fight is a gang fight right? Aint no civilians getting shot up.” Jay proclaimed.
The Stranger and Nadine looked at each other.
“ You just do as your told and the Orphans will rule this side of the Zones.” The Stranger smiled.


The Vindicators club house also served as their base of operations. It was a well constructed steel and stone pillbox if you took out all the luxurious furnishings and gambling tables. The Vindicators were seventeen strong including Hunter. They were all hardened gangers and had enough firepower to take on an Arbite Riot platoon. The club house was well protected from the inside out. The Stranger knew the main gun fight would take place on their front porch. He hoped they would take the bait so he could boost the safe box full of creds before he would be spotted. That much would be for sure. He was definitely going to shoot his way out of Green Water with Nadine at his side.

The Stranger readied himself in the darkness while Nadine silently loaded and armed her weapons. He nodded to her as they adjusted their night vision goggles. They were two stories above the club house, their line of sight allowing them to peer down into the entranceway. Hunter and three gangers sat at a small table shooting dice and smoking. To their left the gangs heavy, Ironside was cleaning his heavy bolter. Strider and four others patrolled the grounds. The rest of the gang was either inside or out working the turf.

They nodded to each other again and began moving down the bulkhead ladders as quietly as the could. The air was hot and heavy, it smelled like wet dust and the air left a copper after taste in his mouth. Nadine sprang from the final landing on to the gritty floor. She rolled forward and side stepped into a crouching position. The Stranger followed suite and drew his pistols. They were a mere twenty meters from the front door. Showtime was about to commence.

The Van Saar sentry team took a brief minute to smoke and goof about, and in that brief moment one of their gangers, dropped to his knees, a gapping hole in his chest spewing blood everywhere. The Vindicators took the offensive shooting blindly into the shadows. They raised the alarm and the rest of the gang ran outside guns blazing. Strider dragged the dying ganger to the door way where Ironside stood, lugging his heavy bolter in one hand. They shouted curses and kept firing but still the attacker would not show themselves.

Finally Jay Bird and KC Killer rushed out from behind the vent system they hid in, screaming for vengeance and firing their weapons. The rest of the Orphans trailed them, all twenty of them.
Auto pistols and shotguns sounding off and chain swords singing.
Over the ruckus the Stranger could hear Hunter ordering his gang into action. The two rivals battled hard but still no sign of Creed Hex and there were to many Van Saars blocking the door. Nadine smacked her lips and pulled the pin on a grenade. The Stranger looked at her sideways, but she smiled and tossed it into the crowd of fighting maniacs.

A loud BANG was followed by a blinding flash of light that lasted just long enough for the Stranger and Nadine to sprint past the bleeding Vindicators an into the club house. Everyone seemed confused but continued to fight on regardless. Six Van Saars already lay dying and two were already dead. The Orphans howled their hate filled war cries, lusting for the Vindicators blood.

The Stranger blasted open the safe box and began packing the stacks of creds into a small bag he had tied to his belt. Nadine covered the doorway ready to put a hole in any head that popped into her gun sights. Tossing the final creds in the bag the Stranger tapped her on the shoulder and they both turned and headed for the back exit.
“ Leaving so soon Mr. Kelly?” A voice said followed by the ominous sound of a melta gun being juiced up.
He turned to see Creed Hex aiming for him.
“ Drop the creds and I’ll let you live, but the whore dies Im afraid. I can imagine you thought you could actually pull this off…tsk tsk Mr. Kelly. Nothing gets past me young man, nothing. I figured if this slut found out about old Oskars loot she might try and lure some stupid two-bit hood into doing her dirty work. I honestly thought you were better than that, your brother would have never let any woman, much less some second rate gutter slut, tell him what to do! Shame of it all!”
The Stranger glared at him as Creed began squeezing the trigger, sweat poured down the Strangers face and Nadine grabbed his arm. So many thoughts ran through his head. He wondered what the afterlife would be like.
He didn’t even flinch as the he heard the click of Creed’s gun, he waited for hot flash of the melta shot but it never came.
Instead he was greeted by a hailstorm of rubble as the ceiling collapsed. Nadine pulled the Stranger out of the worst of it. Creed had not been so lucky. His body was smashed to a pulp, his gun still smoking from the discharged shell.
The entire building shook as the Orphan’s heavy shot several more krak missiles. The Stranger picked himself up and dragged Nadine with him through the freshly breached wall. Jay Bird was squaring off toe to toe with Hunter in an old fashioned knife fight. The rest of the gangers fighting amongst themselves. Hunter already suffered too many wounds, Jay’s blade dripped clots of blood. The young Orphan leader toyed with Hunter, slicing, jabbing but never delivering a fatal blow. The Van Saar leader was an excellent marksman but was no match for the young Orlock who reveled in close combat. It was painfully obvious who was going to win.
The Stranger raised his pistol and aimed for Jay Bird as Nadine raised hers and aimed for Hunter. Always watch your back in the Underhive.
The two gang leaders never knew what hit them. They fell over on each other, there brains spilling out in a charred mess, like burnt ground beef.
Nadine tossed some grenades at the remainder of the two gangs, who were still oblivious to the murders and darted for the tunnel system that would lead them under the sump river that flowed around Green Water and back home.

Nadine slept like a baby. The Stranger sat smoking his hash cigar, the neon lights of down town Badsville flickering in the damp gloomy room. He felt somewhat empty. He had no idea why though. Had old Creed’s words actually bothered him? Had killing Jay Bird? He didn’t know. He couldn’t stop thinking about his brother though. He needed to tie up some loose ends before he could continue running gigs for Grimskull. Some? Hell, ALL his loose ends! He laughed to himself. He had some serious cleaning up to do. He closed his eyes and let the smoke flow from his nostrils, the silhouette floating for a few moments until he finally fell asleep.

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PostPosted: Thu Aug 23, 2007 6:49 am 
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Another intresting read.

One thing though. I would encourage you to seperate the converstations. It's hard to read and track who's talking. I'm not sure if this is 'required', but it does make it easier... for me anyway.

Here's an example:

Quote:
He felt the hairs on the back of his neck stand up and he instinctively spun around drawing his laspistols.
“ Easy handsome!” A womans voice said.
“ Sorry to startle you. Your Dax right? Yeah, I work for Grimskull too. My name is Nadine. Sorry to have to meet you way out here but, these Van Saar’s are a paranoid lot.”
The Stranger holstered his pistols and leaned back against a rail. Nadine pulled off her hood and crossed her arms.
“ Look, I got good news and bad news from old Grim. Good news is he is paying us up front. Bad news is the plan has changed.”


It would 'read' better - IMO - like this:
Quote:
He felt the hairs on the back of his neck stand up and he instinctively spun around drawing his laspistols.

“ Easy handsome!” A womans voice said. “ Sorry to startle you. Your Dax right? Yeah, I work for Grimskull too. My name is Nadine. Sorry to have to meet you way out here but, these Van Saar’s are a paranoid lot.”

The Stranger holstered his pistols and leaned back against a rail. Nadine pulled off her hood and crossed her arms.

“ Look, I got good news and bad news from old Grim. Good news is he is paying us up front. Bad news is the plan has changed.”



Now that I re-read this section... Nadine's conversation in the middle... It does not seem to 'flow'.. but that may be intentional. And it might just be me.

Then again, I have some kind of (as yet) reading comprehension thing.

Keep up the good work, and take my points with a grain of salt. The only way to get better is to keep writing. :borg

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PostPosted: Fri Aug 24, 2007 10:26 pm 
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Location: WANDERING THE BADZONES
Thanks s4G! Yeah, Im not really good with the structure of conversation and am working to better it.

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PostPosted: Sat Mar 21, 2009 9:44 am 
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s4G is right on the money here, it does make it much easyer to read!

As he said another intresting read, im really getting a feel for the charaters!

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