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> Tangled Currents - Annex
Mercy
post Dec 9 2016, 06:58 AM
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Wednesday 12 June 2075 1835 Willy's Bar Seattle


You are sitting on your favorite stool in your favorite bar watching your favorite Blood Bowl teams duke it out. Actually, this is your favorite bar only because you can sometimes get a free drink or two, you usually take whatever stool is available, and you barely even know what Blood Bowl is. But it takes up the time and you can ignore the nags from Sevras about the amount of beer you are drinking. A buzz on your 'link gets your attention and you look at the screen to see if the call is worth taking; after all, there are just way too many fraggers just calling about nonsense, like the overdue rent. This time it is Hex and you take the call because it might be a job that can help keep the rent guy off your back for another month or two.

>>Hey, Annex. You sober enough to take a job? One of my contacts called me looking for an operator and I thought of you. Not sure about the pay, but it is probably more than you are making sitting on a stool in a bar. Which one is it this time, anyway?<<
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Sakuro
post Dec 9 2016, 07:45 AM
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He didn't drink alcohol. Never touched anything that affected his mental faculties in a detrimental fashion. But Sevras harped on him about drinking root beer. Arguing about rotting teeth and diabetes. Someone went overboard programing her medical autosoft. He had to sneak out of his own house and hide out in a bar just to satisfy his sweet tooth. Do you know how many bars served root beer? Probably one in all of Seattle. This was the only bar he could get away with it without getting ragged on anyway. Or at least that was the case unit Hex called him and teased him about being sober. Shortly after he thought about answering, and thanks to his DNI, his com channel opened. No escaping the matrix.

>>If I tell you the name, you will just come here, and spoof goes my sanctuary. So forget about it.<<

Annex thought the words, and they were sent through the comlink as audio, or maybe directly to Hex' brain. However the decker was operating at the moment. He thought about the idea of a job, All the possible bad jobs there could be, and took a drink from his bottle. Finishing off his second root beer of the night. That mortgage though. He shook his head. A man had to pay the bills. Still, there were things he refused to do. Most of it was a matter of professional pride. Thoughtfully he eyed the empty bottle held between two fingers.

>>I could use some nuyen. What do you know about the job and the Johnson?<<
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Mercy
post Dec 9 2016, 03:06 PM
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Wednesday 12 June 2075 1837 Willy's Bar Seattle


>>Fair enough. Still keeping that habit of yours from your toy, eh? Anyway, the Johnson is Ni Ni Xiaolu. If you are interested, you go down to Chinatown and see her at 2100 tonight. She sells antiques to tourists. Her store is close to the arch so a smart guy like you should be able to find it easy enough, but I will send you an ARO if you are interested. I do not know much about her, but I looked up her shop and it seems to be doing well. Should I let her know you will be there?<<
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Sakuro
post Dec 9 2016, 09:53 PM
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Chinatown. Antique shop. Annex mulled over those tid bits. He was going to stick out if he went there. Or possibly get passed off as a tourist. Some thought was given to why an antique dealer might hire him and how they could put up a reasonable payment. Chinatown also meant Triads, in a more obvious way that it might elsewhere. It was also worth considering why the job made Hex think of him, given the lack of details offered. Felt like something was purposefully being held back by the decker. These things and more went through Annex's head without any effort and in a matter of seconds. The result was a brief pause as he considered what Hex had said, then his response came over the Matrix.

>>Tell her I will meet her. The ARO would be appreciated as well. I will let you know if anything comes of it..<<

2100. That was about two and a half hours away. Estimates of travel time based off of traffic this time of day were mentally calculated without conscious thought. Gave him time to scout the area while he got a bite to eat. Been a while since he had some Mandarin food too. Annex ordered one more root beer and took his time finishing it off before heading to his car.

GridGuide was alright. Especially if you needed to take a nap on a long trip or if you were bleeding out and needed to stich yourself up. But Annex was one of those people who liked to be in control. He wanted to steer his own way through life, not let some software tell him where to go. Besides that, he actually liked driving. So with his AR alight with helpful AROs and data he drove through the streets of Seattle to the International District. It had been a while since he had visited that part of the city, so familiarizing himself with the layout was good scouting as he searched for first a spot to grab something to eat, then did some sight seeing before he headed to the meet at the antique shop.
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Mercy
post Dec 10 2016, 11:44 AM
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Wednesday 12 June 2075 2000 Chinatown Seattle


You arrive at the huge parking lot at the entrance to Chinatown with about an hour to go til your meeting. Even though the main boulevard is wide, only pedestrians and the ubiquitous pedicab are allowed on the street. All cars and buses must park in the lot. The entrance to Chinatown itself is marked by a large, ornamental arch. At this time of day, the boulevard is crowded with tourists and locals going about their business. Shops line the busy street, with narrow doorways leading to the apartments piled on top of them. Many of the locals are dressed in traditional Chinese garb for the many tourists that throng the area. For their part, the tourists are dressed in almost as many styles as there are people. A quick check shows that restaurants, bars, and gift shops are by far the most common ground floor structures, although you can see AROs that lead to two brothels that are advertising the best in paid companionship. The wide street continues out of sight and only the upper floors of the buildings give a hint at the extent of the place. Noodle shops vie with other hawkers for space on the crowded thoroughfare and you can find both a small restaurant and a noodle shop conveniently located across the street from Ni Ni's antique shop, where the windows advertise authentic Chinese antiques for discerning clients. A quick glance at the windows of the shop reveals nothing more than you would expect to see in any gift shop, although there does seem to be an abundance of jade visible. A quite large Chinese gentleman is standing near the door, although he seems very bored with his lot in life.

The smells of the street are quite mouthwatering and you should probably decide on the noodle shop or the restaurant to watch the shop from.
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Sakuro
post Dec 10 2016, 02:47 PM
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So many tourists. So many people crowded about. It made Annex extraordinarily conscious of potential pick pockets. After taking in the tourism geared fašade of the neighborhood Annex ducked into the noodle shop across from Ni Ni's antique shop. While waiting to be seated, or finding his own if that looked to be the case, he took in the aesthetics of the establishment, the mobile staff, and layout of the interior. An effort was made to acquire a location was tactically relevant to his needs. Something that did not offer much exposure, allowed for mobility and egress if needed, and gave him a view of both the interior of the dining area of the noodle shop and the street outside.

When he was settled down and had a menu in hand Annex looked it over, but had an idea of what he wanted already: something spicy and savory with a beef flavored protein source. So he was quick to supply an order to the member of the waiting staff that approached him. For a beverage he went with water. No ice. Three root beers was enough for one night. Annex was relaxed in his chair, but observant. Taking in the interplay of people as they moved about or dined. Both inside and out of the noodle shop.
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Mercy
post Dec 11 2016, 06:16 AM
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Wednesday 12 June 2075 2010 Chinatown Seattle


The noodle shop is quite small, consisting of a counter and six stools placed along it. Of course, some patrons are just ordering food as take-away and are not remaining to eat it. The menu is pretty much simple, with pictures and words in English along with the Chinese characters as well. You can point to the picture of what you want and the girl behind the counter nods and smiles, saying thank you and turning to yell out something to the cook in the small kitchen. The seat you have selected gives you a good place to observe the goings on of the people in the street. It is painfully obvious who the tourists are and you wonder if you stick out as much as some of the camera-toting masses swirling past you, looking for the best bargains among thousands of bargains that are filling the AR with their ads.

It had stopped raining as you were pulling into the lot and water is still running from spouts and doing its best to give the crowded place a clean smell. Bright neon lights are reflected in the puddles of water on the street and you definitely see at least two pick pockets at work and are pretty sure that there must be others that you do not see. You have heard that prostitution is rampant in Chinatown and you can see at least three large and well lit brothels and two smaller, less gaudy ones from your vantage point. The counter in front of you has glossy adverts for escorts that you can summon to your side by calling one of the provided com codes.

The dish you ordered arrives in a steaming bowl and the pretty girl behind the counter smiles as you slot a cred stick to pay for the food and add a small tip. She reaches a hand out and taps one of the glossies in front of you. "This one nice for you. Order from here and get ten percent discount. Very clean. Very sexy. You see."
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Sakuro
post Dec 11 2016, 08:51 AM
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Once again Annex was at a bar. Why couldn't he escape these places? Had to be the leather duster he wore. Too much cowboy in his attire must have homed him in on them. Even though the duster wore was more of a modern and sleek style than the rugged old west motif would require. When his food arrived he took up the heated bowl in his left hand and raised it a little higher than chest height. He was going to start in on his meal right away but the girl behind the counter spoke to him, sharing with him information of a discount at one of the brothels.

Sky blue eyes moved to the space that she had used her finger to indicate. Though he did not exactly seem enthused by the prospect of a discount on a currency exchange for sexual services Annex made a visible motion to the glossy if it had an AR counter part so that she would be able to register that he was filing away the bit of information on a Matrix level. Which he did. Someone he encountered might be looking for an escort. It was also possible that one of the prostitutes or the manager could turn out to be a source of information to tap. He did not have the time right now to look into cultivating that type of asset though.

"Thank you for the advice. What is your name? I will let them know you sent me if I go there."

After his display of interacting with AR Annex took a capture of the girl's face and mentally attached the image to his file on the brothel she had pointed him towards. A notation followed including her name, if she provided it, and the words 'noodle shop girl'. Once he had that bit of information Annex did not press for further conversation. Even though Asian women were especially appealing to him, his libido usually took a back seat to everything else going on in his head.

Before taking up a fork like a true outsider who made no attempt to be otherwise, he used his right hand to waft some of the rising steam towards himself and inhaled the scent of the food. The fork when put to use, was stabbed into the mass of saucy noodles a twirled, as though he were eating spaghetti. Bringing up the forkful of noodles, soy based meat substitute, and a reasonable approximation of vegetables he shoveled it into his mouth. Annex chewed at the food with the haste of a man used to having very little time to get a meal down. Or at least one who was conditioned to eat quickly.
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Mercy
post Dec 11 2016, 04:55 PM
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Wednesday 12 June 2075 2015 Noodle Shop Chinatown Seattle


The young woman smiles at you. "I am called Suki. Thank you for asking. Enjoy food, please. Let me know if need anything else." She moves off to deal with another customer who has sat down at the counter. The glossy did indeed have an AR link and you can store it with the rest of the information you are gathering. Suki had provided a set of paper-wrapped chopsticks, but also the fork you have decided to use. The water is chilled but grows tepid without ice.

You watch people pass by the open front of the shop and feel a slight brush of evening air. The sky looks to promise more rain at any moment, but this is Seattle and the sky is always promising rain and frequently delivering it. From your vantage point, you see people come and go from the antique shop across the street. Most are tourists, but there is an occasional oriental face as well. While you are watching the large man outside the place is replaced by an even larger man, who takes up the position of door guard as he pulls his collar up against the slight chill and lights a cigarette.
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Sakuro
post Dec 11 2016, 09:22 PM
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Annex did not drink much of the water until it was close to room temperature. He did not like cold drinks. It was something that had begun to turn him off when he began trained athletic activities in childhood. The cold did not agree with fluidity of muscle movement and could be a shock to the system. There were similar reasons why he always let his root beer go flat before drinking it. After years of not drinking carbonated beverages, the carbonation did not agree with him anymore. Really, the health conscious side of the man told him that he should not even be eating or drinking anything too sugary, but he always had a sweet tooth.

To Annex it seemed less likely for a local to patronize a shop catering primarily to tourists. So when he saw some people with oriental features visiting Ni Ni's antique shop he took captures of their faces. He also made a note of whether they left with anything, then filed it away with his collected observations. When the door guard at Ni Ni's changed, he looked at the time stamp in his AR and marked that down as well. The routine act of a guard shift caused him to think back, reflecting on the other establishments he had seen and whether any of them had obvious security as well.

Noodles were slurped at and chewed down quickly. Annex was not a professional speed eater, but bowl was emptied fast, and washed down with a goodly amount of lukewarm water. Which did not do anything to help the sensation of capsaicin burning his mouth. The bowl was set down on the counter and the fork he had used rattled in the curve of the container. With his hands free he used napkin that came with his eating utensils to dab at the corners of his mouth, but employed the tip of his tongue to clean whatever sauce had lingered on his lips. He was not in a hurry to leave though. When someone came to collect his dish Annex placed an order for some pot stickers and sauce to dip them in.

The weather shifted, suggesting rain. Annex was already taking into consideration the ways a downpour may aid or hinder his activities.
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Mercy
post Dec 12 2016, 02:46 AM
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Wednesday 12 June 2075 2040 Noodle Shop Chinatown Seattle


Suki comes by to pick up your empty bowl and takes your order for pot stickers and sauce. Your observation of the antique shop across the street lets you see that almost no one leaves the shop with anything more in their hands than they had coming in, leaving you to think that one reason might be that he authentic Chinese antique business must suck. Certainly some of the people that have gone in and come out while you have been watching have appeared affluent enough to have been able to purchase something, but it looks like no one has purchased anything.

The shop has an alleyway at its right side as you face it, but the shop shares a wall with the building on its left. You have seen two rather pretty young women standing near the alley and even seen one go into it with a man dressed as a tourist while the other lit a cigarette and leaned against the wall of the building. The man came out of the alley with a smile on his face and the women began talking to people passing them on the street again. Both of the women are dressed inappropriately for the potential rain, but you cannot argue with the view you are getting of their legs and bare midriffs.

The building to the right of the alley is the restaurant you could have been sitting in if you had not settled on the noodle shop. There are, indeed, two men at the door acting as doormen and they seem to be more for looks than anything really related to being on guard. The man in front of Ni Ni's shop could put both of these guys in his clothes and had room for another. The building to the left is apparently another tourist souvenir shop and seems to do far more business than the antique shop does. You get to this conclusion by watching several people go in and leave the store with packages in hand.

The pot stickers arrive and Suki smiles very prettily at you as she wishes you good eating. She is rather pretty in a way and seems to have an easy time talking to the people who come and go, most of whom are oriental and give you the occasional odd look.
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Sakuro
post Dec 12 2016, 04:13 AM
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The pot stickers were eaten more slowly than he had devoured the noodles. As though he were snacking rather than having a meal. When he dunked the pots stickers into the sauce he fully submerged them, making sure a liberal amount was coating the morsel before taking a bite. A point was made of eating them in halves. He was content in keeping to himself and not get drawn into the world around him. The looks he received did not go overlooked, but they were not paid much concern. At least as long as no signs of a potential threat were arising. Annex observed the interaction between his fellow diners, and the noodle stop girl about as much as he looked outside.

Though he ate considerably slower with his pot sticker snacks they eventually vanished into Annex's mouth. A check of the time in AR informed him he still had some time left before the meet with Ni Ni. Unrushed he was content to study his environment passively. To afford himself continued welcome from the staff he purchased a dessert. An almond and coconut flavored treat to give him something sweat after all the spice he had eaten earlier. That same idle snacking pace was maintained as his dining experience neared it's end. When he was finished Annex passed a cred stick over the countertop register to leave a tip for Suki. It was a frugal tip, the bare minimum to be courteous, but it was a tip.

With some time to spare before meeting Annex walked off his meal, but kept the antique shop in sight. Moving down the block he took in the sights and did a little window shopping without actually spending anything or going inside of any of the businesses. Eventually, a couple minutes before the meeting, Annex came up along the sidewalk leading into Ni Ni's antique shop and made his way inside to take in the interior of the establishment.
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Mercy
post Dec 12 2016, 03:29 PM
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Wednesday 12 June 2075 2058 Noodle Shop Chinatown Seattle


Your short walk on the main street has given you the impression that there are lots of tourist-oriented gift shops here, all selling pretty much the same sort of stuff. You also passed by a massage parlor that offers "special services" with extremely beautiful young women, a drug shop, a talismonger, another restaurant, a gambling parlor, and a large bordello advertising sex in the most descriptive manner and providing a menu of options. You were also accosted by a man wanting to sell you some name brand com links for a really good price, four young women who wanted to know if you wanted some company while you walked, and a young boy who offered in broken English to walk with you and be your translator.

The breeze picks up just a bit as you turn for the antique shop and you feel a few drops of the promised rain, which causes the crowds to move a bit quicker. The first thing you notice as you approach the shop is that the very large man in front of it acts much like a breakwater, causing the people to flow around him as he does a very good impression of an immovable object. The second thing you notice is that the shop windows do not contain much of anything in the way of merchandise, but are empty of the normal collection of (plastic) ivory carvings and tee-shirts. In fact, the only decoration in the window display are three large pottery urns. You do, however, see a small sign in the bottom left corner of the window indicating that it is a product of Ares Armor-Glass.

The man at the door does nothing more than look you over as you approach, nodding at you as you reach out for the door and you hear a slight tinkle from an overhead bell as you pass into the shop. The interior is neat and orderly, with only a few items on each of the several shelves. The right wall has some tall urns against it in some well-done display. A set of four chairs around a small table take up a good bit of the space at the left wall. A counter runs half the length of the far wall and you note a beaded curtain filling a doorway behind the counter. A single shop clerk is with the only customer you see, but she does look up when you enter and indicate that she will be with you shortly, so please browse. You idly look closer at one of the smaller pottery pieces on display and note that the price has been set at 85,000 nuyen. Examination of some of the other pieces leads you to the conclusion that nothing in here has a price less than 35,000 nuyen.
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Sakuro
post Dec 12 2016, 09:03 PM
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Even if meat space had a spam blocker Annex would not use it. Too much information would be lost. Everything and everyone, told you something potentially useful. You just had to look at it the right way. The guy pushing comlinks was brushed off though. So were the pretty women. Pretty women were a distraction and a distracted man was a defeated man. When the boy offered to act as a translator for him though, Annex accepted. He did not feel he needed one at the moment, but he saw a young person who was making an effort to earn some money rather than playing or chasing whatever gender appealed to them. During the walk he asked about some signs and Chinese characters, but mostly he inquired into the neighborhood and the people in it. Nothing overtly suspicious, but he was probing to see just how aware the kid was of what went on in Chinatown. Before reaching the antique shop he thanked the boy for his help and gave him a couple nuyen, then sent him on his way.

His duster had a hood, but by the time the rain started to fall it was not necessary to pull it up over his head. Maybe on the walk back to his car it would be. At the shop he nodded in acknowledgement to the oversized doorman, then later to the clerk when she indicated that she would be with him shortly. Annex was not particularly in antiques, but he made a circuit of the room and took in the stock on display. Quality, condition, apparent age, and pricings were all noted. Idly he wondered at their histories. What had those objects seen in their time? No doubt each one of them had a stories. Collectors bought items for their stories as much as their rarity. When his circuit of the room neared the beaded curtain he glanced to it, but his eyes did not linger, and he moved on.
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Mercy
post Dec 13 2016, 04:57 AM
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Wednesday 12 June 2075 2100 Ni Ni's Antique Shop Chinatown Seattle


As you walk about the display room you realize that your knowledge of Chinese antiques is pretty fragging sparse and that you have no real idea of the age or value of the things on the shelves. You see the beads part and an exotically beautiful woman walks through them and past the counter. The clerk quickly bows her head as the woman passes her to approach you. She holds out a delicate hand and her almond shaped eyes mirror the smile on her lips. "Mister Annex." It was not a question. "My name is Ni Ni Xiaolu. You are right on time. I like people to be punctual. Thank you for coming to see me on such short notice. Will you please come this way?" She motions to the beaded doorway and walks that way. Her movement is very graceful, but you somehow have the impression of a tiger ready to pounce at any moment.
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Sakuro
post Dec 13 2016, 05:35 AM
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Hearing the sound of a third set of feet, these new ones drawing closer to him, he glanced to the side without turning his head. Seeing the woman out of his peripheral vision he turned to face her as she closed the distance between them. Annex did not smile back, but he did take her hand when she extended it. His leather gloved grip was firm, but not challenging or aggressive. After she introduced herself he repeated her name, both as a form of greeting and as a mnemonic device to help the name go along with the new face.

"Miss Xiaolu."

Annex did not actually shake the woman's hand. Just gripped it for a couple seconds, long enough for introductions to pass between them, then released. When she turned to lead the way to the back room he followed. Black boots lightly rapping over the floor at a leisurely pace. A hand moved ahead of his, brushing aside the beads ahead of him, leaving them to swing back into place after his passage. Even after they were away from prying eyes and ears he remained quiet for a time, giving Ni Ni the opportunity to enable any anti-surveillance she wished to. Then he provided a short prompting to encourage her to express her objective.

"Tell me what it is you would like to accomplish."
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Mercy
post Dec 13 2016, 06:13 AM
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Wednesday 12 June 2075 2101 Ni Ni's Antique Shop Chinatown Seattle


Once past the beads, you find yourself in a narrow, well lit hallway. Without turning her head, Ni Ni responds. "I said I like people to be prompt, Mister Annex, not pushy. All in good time."

She reaches the door at the end of the hall, she opens it to lead you into a very large warehouse. Where the outer shop had been quiet, the larger place is much louder. There are several large pieces of furniture being covered in some sort of cellophane-type plastic wrap, including a large bureau, dresser, and the headboard of a large bed. An electric fork lift is moving crates from a truck bed to places in the warehouse. Ni Ni leads you into the large room, heading for a set of steps that lead up to a room that overlooks the activity on the floor. Twice, a man will come to her as she is walking, holding out a pad, which she takes and reads as she walks before nodding and giving the pad back along with some instructions.
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Sakuro
post Dec 13 2016, 06:33 AM
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It would have been out of character of Annex to talk shadow business when they were not at least behind closed doors or over a secure Matrix line. So he did not. The prompting was not meant for when they were walking down halls or through warehouses. Only when they were in a secure environment, where they were not likely to be overheard, would that come. Until then, he remained silent. Observing, yes. But making no effort to engage in small talk.

His eyes narrowed against the initial change in noise pollution as they entered the warehouse. Mentally he thought about the relation of the antique shop to it's neighbor and how they two of the buildings were built up along side each other. Patient and unrushed Annex look in the layout of, and visible stock within, the warehouse. Creating a mental map of the terrain. People working there were marked as well. Their numbers counted on the way to the steps. As men approached Ni Ni he would look to them, watch the interaction, and listen to what was said. But not interject.
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Mercy
post Dec 13 2016, 02:35 PM
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Wednesday 12 June 2075 2104 Ni Ni's Antique Shop Chinatown Seattle


You note about fifteen men and women working at one job or another in the warehouse. You do get an odd look or three as you follow Ni Ni across the floor to the stairs. Chinese seems to be the only language spoken.

As you approach the stairs, you see a man who might be the twin of the mountain outside the shop standing there. He, unlike the others in the warehouse, is paying a great deal of attention to you. He takes a step forward but Ni Ni raises a hand and sends him back to his position without saying a word. Two levels of fifteen steps leads to a small landing and the woman in front of you opens a door to usher you into a small office. She motions for you to take a seat at one of the two chairs at a small table and joins you in the other one. She steeples her hands and looks at you for a moment. You note that her English is quite good as she says, "Mister Annex, I have a.............problem.........that I would like someone to take care of for me and I have been told that you might be the person to help me. Can you tell me a little about yourself?"
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Sakuro
post Dec 13 2016, 10:12 PM
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Another door guard. When he saw the man Annex sized him up, as he took into account everything he could perceive within his environment. He looked for the telltale signs of augmentation. Eyes that look inhuman or more glossy than wet, oddly sized body parts, or an abundance of reserved energy. When the man made a move forward he was already thinking of how to dispatch him quickly and what he could use to his advantage in the warehouse if he were 'wared out. A conflict was no expected, as Xiaolu signaled the man to stand down, but that did not stop Annex's mind from working through it. It was a reflexive process drilled into the man.

Up two sets of fifteen stair, across a landing, and into the office Annex went. He took a couple steps into the groom, them moved off to the side to allow Xiaolu to go ahead of him and claim her seat. After she indicated one for him he advanced again and settled down into the offered chair. Leaning back in a relaxed fashion he brought his arms up to the chair's armrests and laid them there. The image was one of leisure and comfort, even if he was looking at everything in the room as an weapon or tool and contingent plans were running through his head. He was watching Xiaolu, studying her demeanor and body language. Listening to her tone when she spoke. Slow to get to the heart of the matter. Cautious? Curious?

"I have had special operations experience, do not possess any magical aptitude, and no noteworthy Matrix familiarity. Beyond that, I am not going to share any details concerning my background."

There was a degree of firmness in that last statement. An unspoken 'do not pry in my life, and I will not muck up your's'. It was not hostile, but made a boundary clear to someone who was socially aware. A short pause followed, then Annex raised his hands, palms up, in a brief inviting gesture. When he spoke one could imagine him seated behind a desk encouraging a client to share their difficulties with him. Attentive but not subordinate.

"Tell me about your problem Miss Xiaolu and I will tell you if I am able to help you solve it."
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Mercy
post Dec 14 2016, 06:02 AM
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Wednesday 12 June 2075 2110 Ni Ni's Antique Shop Chinatown Seattle


Ni Ni seems to be considering things for a few moments then nods and places her hands palms down on the table. "Alright Mister Annex, I will tell you what I need. I do not know what you have heard about the gang wars that erupted in the Redmond Barrens early Monday Morning? Even the newsies don't know what was going on, but whatever it was, it certainly left a lot of death and destruction behind. Many businesses were damaged or destroyed and a lot of the existing..........arrangements..........for protection and insurance have disappeared, leaving the area clear for various unscrupulous people to move in. Normally, I could care less about what happens in that sink hole of humanity, but it happens that my goddaughter is trying to run a business there and I am afraid that she may be in trouble. She would never come to me for help, due mostly to my alleged links to a certain organization. For that reason, I cannot send any of my usual associates out to help her and am looking to have a round eye do it."

She looks at you closely. "I would like you to go see her and get hired to protect her place. What ever she can afford to pay you, take it. I will clear the difference between that and 10K Y per month, with a two-month bonus at the end of it. I will be very displeased if you let on that I have sent you. Given the type of business she runs, and the thugs that will be trying to fill the gang vacancy left after the fighting died down, I expect that you will need to be quite good at protecting yourself and her. Her name is Willow and she runs the Willow Tree, a bar and brothel almost in the center of the Barrens. Are you interested?"
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Sakuro
post Dec 14 2016, 06:48 AM
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He listened without rushing Ni Ni or interjecting. Even when she asked her question about his knowledge of the recent gang issues, he remained silent, allowing her to speak without interruption. The mention of the Barrens caused him to narrow his eyes in a thoughtful fashion. It was a gangland warzone at the best of times. After the woman finished explaining what she wanted he did not answer her question right away. He actually thought about it. It meant stepping away from his, relatively, comfortable life and going to a hellhole. Possibly for months on end. At length he nodded in the affirmative though.

"This is something I can do for you. However, I would work for you and answer only to you. I will not report to any of your subordinates and my payment is to come from your hand. Any report I give, is to you. No one else. If there is a change in your directive, it must come from you personally. In the event that, for whatever reason, I need to work with your subordinates I will have operational command. Further, should I need to go beyond your goddaughter's establishment and eliminate a substantial threat to her or her business there will be an additional cost. I will also need two thousand nuyen upfront for arranging lodging in the barrens. A cheap vehicle for transportation well be needed as well."

After stating the conditions he would operate under there was a pause as he took a moment to regard Ni Ni. As long as there was no an immediate refusal, he went on.

"If you can agree to these terms, tell me about your granddaughter. Anything you think may be pertinent."
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Mercy
post Dec 14 2016, 03:07 PM
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Wednesday 12 June 2075 2112 Ni Ni's Antique Shop Chinatown Seattle


Ni Ni looks at you for a moment. "Ostensibly, you will be employed by my goddaughter and will report to her, not me. If you want to come to Chinatown every month to get paid, that is fine by me, but I can arrange for the money to show up as cred sticks at your place of work. I can accept all the other requirements you have stipulated, but I have questions about your demand for extra compensation for doing your job away from her building. What exactly do you mean by that?"


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Sakuro
post Dec 14 2016, 09:00 PM
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Annex thought about what Ni Ni said for a handful of seconds, then nodded his agreement. He had primarily been establishing a chain of command. The person paying him, Annex himself, then everyone else below that. It was, hopefully, only an additional step to extend that to Ni Ni's goddaughter and would not become an inconvenience to do so. He was ready for Ni Ni's question about further costs and when Annex responded it was with the demeanor of a professional seeking reasonable compensation for going above and beyond a routine service, rather than someone trying to squeeze every nuyen he could from a client.

"Ten thousand a month will cover looking out for her and her interests on a day to day basis under normal conditions in the Barrens, as they stand. Events may arise where it would be necessary to be proactive in removing threats to your goddaughter, rather than reactionary. Someone may work through intermediaries. If I have to track down such a person, this is one example that would incur additional fees. Another example would be a scenario in which one member of a gang may begin a feud with her that the rest are compelled to support due to whatever code they operate under. These are things beyond what is normally expected and require substantial effort or time on my part to deal with."

After explaining his meaning, Annex allowed a momentary pause to give Ni Ni some time to think on what he had said. Then he continued, his right hand raising to gesture towards the woman across from him.

"Should something that I feel would require further payment arise, I would make an effort to contact you before proceeding further. If for whatever reason I am unable to contact you, I would take matters as far as I felt were needed to ensure your goddaughter's safety under the expectation that my good faith is reciprocated later with fair compensation."
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Mercy
post Dec 15 2016, 06:21 AM
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Wednesday 12 June 2075 2115 Ni Ni's Antique Shop Chinatown Seattle


Ni Ni thinks for a few moments, obviously considering your words, then smiles. "I think we can agree to that, Mister Annex. I will give you your advance and you may spend it as you please, but you have to let her hire you. In the event that she does not, I am prepared to let you keep the 2K Y and supplement that with an additional 2K for your troubles, provided you make an effort." She puts an AR up of an attractive oriental woman of perhaps twenty-five years old and slides a piece of honest to god paper across the table to you. "This is Willow and this is the address of her place in the Barrens. I would appreciate it if you could get moving on this somewhat quickly. Are you immediately available? As in tonight?"
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