A 13 Hour Gaming Session Of Cyberpunk 2020
The Back Story: (aka the idea that became the setup for this game)
The day had been a long hot day, full of acid rain and toxic cloud alerts. It was a day to stay indoors, but when you had nowhere to go, you tried to find shelter where you could. O'Neil had gotten soaked and his skin was itching more than normal, the rashes from the last rain were worse now that he was soaked again. He was hiding under the underpass when they came for him. He knew that it was trouble, but there was really nowhere else to go and he was so tired of running. Maybe he'd get a descent meal out of it.
The black courier van moved out into the rain, it's suspension lower then when it arrived, due to the amount of bodies it now carried.
Neo-Oceanic had a bounty for people without Idents, and at 1,000 Cred per living body it was a fine business to have. But even in a place like Night City there were people who would notice. And when they noticed there would be trouble.
Kar didn't really care about the people he captured, adults or kids it was all the same to him. In fact most of the time he EMPed them, striped them of their Idents and clothes and then dumped rags and drug laced food in the back of the vans that he used. After that, he'd move them into an electrified container box for days to ripen them up into stinking like vagrants. Then, on the drive to the drop point he'd gas them to make them pliable for the Corpses. Most days he and his crew would be lucky enough to find a load of real vagrants, but some days they weren't so lucky and had to take Norms off the streets who might be missed. Kar's and his four goons had been doing this for the last two months. They were all cyber-psychotic with the desperate need to have more and more cyber added into them.
The Runners: (aka the Player's Characters)
Role - Name - Gender - Power Level - One-Liner Description
Nomad - Flint - Male - Operator - A local Transporter of goods and people and friend of Spinster.
Nomad - Shell - Female - Operator - A long distance Transporter of highly sensitive goods and 'Chrome Ripper' clan member.
Nomad - Sweetums - Male - Edgerunner - Ex-member of the Muppet poser gang. Yes he is an 8-foot tall exotic who was made in the image of Sweetums. Head Bouncer at the Razors Edge and good friend of DC.
Solo - DC - Female - Edgerunner - Owner of the Razors Edge night club, retired assassin and 'Chrome Ripper' clan member.
Solo - Spinster 'Spin' Grymm - Male - Operator - Up and coming Solo who has worked with DC in the past.
Session Start: Saturday - 1:00 pm (Everyone fed and ready to go. Thanks Trafalgar Truck Stop!)
It was party night and Spinster wanted to show his newest partner, Flint, where he liked to hang after a successful Run. The two had just finished an intense one. Their target: A fat and smelly genetic engineer, who had been extracted from his Corporate labs by the competition. In the end, the Run left nine Arasaka Security dead and Flint's hummer in flames. They had been reduced to running around in an old rusted out metrocar, that Flint had jacked. They had un-extracted the scientist unharmed, but had to hide out in that little rust bucket for hours before they could go to the drop point. That geek was ripe, he'd shit himself during the extraction and they couldn't risk letting him clean up.
It was time to uncompress and the Razor's Edge was The place to be in Night City these days. Spin had a VIP badge for the place that would get him to the front of the line. It was supposedly the only place that had a legal Slam Dance event, but that was not what made it popular, it guaranteed a weapons free place to meet, it did that with high tech weapons scanners and unbribable guards and death to any who tried. This meant that it was the perfect place for Runners to meet their employers and not have to worry about a double cross, at least not within the club itself.
They arrived and Spin flashed his card at one of the head bouncers, an impressive 8' tall cyber-exotic named after the Muppet he was modelled after, Sweetums. In they went, only to find out that Spin had mixed up the days and come a day early for the Slam Dance. They still had a good time dancing with they hotties that always seemed to be at the club, eating real food cooked by 5 star chefs and drinking alcohol that wasn't watered down.
DC was there, mother hen at the club that she had fought and bled to create. She glided through the crowded floors making the scene and touching base with everyone, be they Corpse, Runner, Family or just a Normal looking to have a good time. The dealer areas were open and the shops and recruitment centres as well. All was good within the walls of the Razors Edge, which DC knew meant that something was going to go horribly wrong soon.
Shell called. A good friend and fellow Family member of the Chrome Ripper Nomads, she was driving nearby and was calling ahead to see if DC had some time to visit with her, and maybe a room to spare at the club. DC set her up with all that and a few willing 'friends' to make sure that she could relax and unwind from her cross-country trek, that and a secure place to park her vehicle. DC finished up by alerting Sweetums that Family was inbound and to let her in through the VIP parking entrance.
Nope, Shell wasn't what was crawling up her spine... then what? who? DC kept moving, she knew if she could get to the right place and hear the right thing, she'd get a hint. That was the way her universe worked, but when she missed that hint there was hell to pay, and that always meant blood and death. DC was sick of that these days, that's why she had retired and built the Razors Edge. It was her way of keeping in the game, without having to kill everyone that got in her face. She'd even started carrying a gun with rubber-stunners, for those that were just too stupid for their own good, but not worth the trouble to outright kill.
Just as Sweetums was going off-shift Shell arrived, he personally saw to it, leaving her happily entertained in a private suite on the third floor. DC saw him and he signalled that Shell was here. With a nod, she went back to talking to the Corpse who was trying in vain to hire her. No point in making enemies without a good reason.
The night wrapped in style with Kerry Eurodyne, yes the mega-Rocker, arriving and jamming with the house band, much to the enjoyment of all. Seems he had arrived a day early and wanted to party before his west coast tour started. Could this have been what spiked DC's fifth sense? Maybe.
The next morning proved her wrong. Kids had goon missing. In fact four teens that worked helping other kids at her outreach centre. Frack! When Sweetums found out he was going to be hard to leash. He was a little psychotic when it came to kids in harm's way. As a member of the now eradicated Muppet Gang, he was hardwired to teach and defend kids.
Sgt. Strawberry, a decent Cop and good friend of DC's, was contacted to see if he had any leads. He did, in fact scores of people had been reported missing. At first it hadn't been noticed, street people in the Combat Zones moved on all the time. Since most were street people, the department didn't give a shit about it, so Strawberry was more than happy to give them everything that he had in the hope that they could do something to stop the disappearances.
Armed and dangerous, the Runners hit the streets looking to find the bastards that took their people and stop them from ever taking any others. Sweetums definitely wanted to teach them to never touch kids, it was a lesson that some, maybe most, might not survive. For days they hunted the dark and forgotten areas, but armed as they were no one was stupid enough to take them on. Their Street reps were big enough to keep the bigger gangs off them too.
In frustration, they moved to a more dangerous plan. Shell, who was not known in Night City, offered to play a street walker in the neighbourhoods that were preyed on the most. Marked with a biological tracer that DC's robotic hound 'Merc' could track, Shell went it alone as the others continue their hunt. DC also called in a favour, and the Rippers sent some members to increase the number hunters.
Shell's one conflict was with a group of three nasty whores who didn't like a 'new girl' moving in on their territory. As this wasn't the fight she was looking for Shell turned to leave, but the whores wanted to make sure that she remembered. The apparent leader slashed Shell's face, but only scored a small scratch drawing a single bead of her blood. She shook her head at the women and completed the turn. She had only taken a few steps when the crack of a small calibre gunshot echoed into the night, Shell staggered with the impact. Her Skinweave had stopped both the blade and the bullet from harming her, but skin still bled.
Shell turned back to the whores and looked at the one with the gun in disgust. She put her hand to her ear and said, "No, these aren't the ones we're looking for, don't waste your ammo, unless they get in my way again." There wasn't anyone out there with her, except the hound, but the whores paled and vanished into the night. Many nasty things roamed the streets of the Combat Zone and these whores now knew Shell was one of them.
Kar and his goons were also out in force that same night. They had a new toy, a high powered EMP canon that could drop a military Borg in its tracks, they had been told that it was so powerful that it could drop Normals too, something about shorting the nerve impulses to the brain. They were itching to try it out and in the testing managed to grab not only Shell but a few of the Rippers as well. By an unlucky happenstance, when they took Shell they also hit Merc who had been hiding in a direct line of fire to the canon.
Luckily when Merc went down DC was alerted and headed to his last know location, GPSs are a wonderful thing. There they found Shell's clothes, gear and the disabled dog. DC managed to restart the giant Alsatian again, but the EMP blast had scrambled his systems and senses, so Shell was out on the wind, without any backup or any way to be tracked.
Pissed, DC notifies everyone else that Shell is missing and to check anything that remotely looks out of place.
They started hunting, but hours passed and still no luck.
Elsewhere, Shell was waking up in a cargo container, the smell of knockout gas was still faintly in the air. She was naked and not alone. It was dark, but there were pale blue LED lights every ten feet running around the edge of the floor. She got up and started to look around. First to see where she was and then who was in here with her. There were kids, teens and the forgotten. Most were street people but two she recognised, they were two of the three whores that had messed with her, the one who had shot her and the mouthy sidekick. She also found a pile of rags that turned out to be discarded clothes. She got something on and then dropped clothes by each of the others; one, a young boy scrambled back, then when he saw what she had drop he timidly grabbed it and covered himself with a thanks. Some of the others were starting to stir as well so she finished up quickly. Just as Shell was about to touch the doors, the same boy warned her that the walls were electrified, showing her his scorched hand.
Luck finally came to the Runners. Spin and Flint were driving down a dark street when a lightening flash of blue came out of an alley ahead. They slowed the Hummer down (Flint had picked up a new one) and Spin hopped out to check it out, but all he saw was the ass end of a small black cargo van crossing the alleyway further down. They alerted the other teams to be on the lookout for it.
A while later they found it, exiting another alley and so started tailing it, while calling in reinforcements for the take down. But their luck ran out, the Van noticed them and pulled into another alley and stopped. Flint passed it and turned the corner, seeing that there was a connecting alley there. Spin got out and headed down the alley, cautiously since he knew that they had EMP weapons. Flint continued around the block and stopped just before the exit and got out. He approached it and peeked around the corner, a little more than halfway down he could see the silhouette of the van highlighted by the streetlights at the far end and something more. Sliding into the alley, Flint tried his best to move quietly down the alley towards the van. Spin finally made it to the alley crossing and came around it expecting the worst. He should have looked behind him first, Flint watched as a large shape rose up and pointed a large rifle-like weapon down the alley. A shockwave of blue electro-static energy mushroomed outwards and enveloped Spin, as Flint drew out his hand cannon that he called a gun and shot at the shape.
This was when DC and Sweetums arrived, pulling up behind Flint's Hummer. They saw the flash of blue and quickly got out and headed for the alley.
As the twin explosions from Flint's 14mm hammered into the shape, it staggered forward a step, turned, lifted it's weapon and before Flint could fire again, shot him.
DC made it there first and saw the wave of blue drop Flint like a sack of rocks and continued towards her. She knew that an EMP blast wouldn't affect her Orbital-grade cyberware, so she stayed put and drew her gun. She should have dove out of the way, as the EMP blast dropped her too. Sweetums watched as she hit the ground, enraged that whatever was in there had taken down one of his few friends, he roared and charged into the alley to rip it apart. But as he hit the alley he heard the distinct whir of a minigun spin up, so instead he slammed into the wall and as he bounced off dragged DC with him. Moments later the minigun chewed up the wall where he been.
The van got away as Sweetums had to stick with the downed DC. This was no place to leave someone laid out and unconscious. After he was sure the bad guys weren't coming to finish the job, he picked her up and put her in the back of her Hummer with Merc, who was up but still glitching. He moved the Hummer so that it was pointing down the alley and hit the floodlights. After locking it up, he got out and started down the alley, to find both Flint and Spin downed by EMP fire. Getting a little tired of having to carry everyone, he bent down and picked up first Spin and on the return Flint. As he exited, more vehicles showed up and Rippers poured out of an armoured bus. It turned out to be a mobile command station and mini-hospital. Medi (the Rippers had pretty basic names/titles for their Elders) looked over Sweetums' downed companions and did some rudimentary fixes that got them on their feet again. Flint and Spin's Cyber would require extensive re-work to fix, but at least the EMP blasts hadn't killed them. DC's orbital Cyber would be fine after a few days, the active Nanos in it were already repairing the damage, but he helped it along with a shot of Nano-builders, think food for Nanos to convert into what they needed.
As DC returned to her Hummer, she noticed that Merc was no longer in it. She checked the tracker and it showed that he was emissions cloaked, which meant he'd sniffed out something and was following it, but didn't want any scanners to pick him up. Good, maybe Shell had a chance after all.
Shell was still looking for a way out, that everything but the floor was electrified made it harder, but she had been in worse situations, not many, but a few. The others were all awake now and she knew that she'd have to do something, before people got to fighting over the little food and water that their captors had left them, or worse the panic set in. So, being a talkative type, she started up conversations with those closest to her. It was constructive talk, talk that helped her suss out who could be of help, who would need protecting and finally the worst category, who would get in the way. In that last group she mentally put the two whores right off the bat, she already knew their type. In the end she found one other Ripper, named Kel, who was badly beat up and his cyberarm had been smashed, so as to be totally useless. It just hung there sparking occasionally whenever he went to move it. An hour or so in, the whore who had shot her got up the nerve to fight with Shell. It ended poorly. Kel was laying there on the ground when she came for Shell and he kicked out her legs as she stepped over him. As she stumbled, Shell stepped aside and used an Aikido move to toss her, which had the disastrous result of face-planting her into the corner and against the walls. The smell of cooking flesh soon filled the container, but nothing could be done about it.
Luckily, a very short time later, the container was picked up and put roughly onto truck. During the move the LEDs went off, so Shell risked pulling the cooked corpse away. That's when she noticed that the doors were now uneven, the seals were cracked and outside air was getting in. Even in the heat and stink of summer, that air smelled clean and fresh to the inhabitants of the container. The drive took hours, but Shell knew that there was at least a small hope that her friends would be able to track her now.
Merc had sniffed something. The Van had been used to carry Shell. He followed it by jumping onto a Auto-bus that was heading in the same direction. It went down to the harbour and into the dockyard storage facility. Merc tried to get into it, but the need to stay hidden meant that he could trip the security systems. He backed off and called the troops.
DC, wounded and pissed, got the signal from Merc, went back to her club and armed for bear. She also called up the Rippers, who were now missing five people, and gave them the location.
Merc waited it out, in a place where he could watch the main exits and a good thing that he did. A little less than 20 minutes later a twin-trailer superhauler left, heading out of the city. Shell's tag was strong from the last trailer. As it came to a stop at some lights, Merc crawled into the framing under one of the trailers. To stay as hidden as possible he only broadcasted his location intermittently.
DC and the rest arrived at the docks just after Merc got unto the superhauler, but he didn't signal again for another hour. By that time everyone was jonesing for a fight. When they got the next signal they headed out. Hours later they were out in the wastelands between cities. There were very few places out here and when Merc's signal stopped moving, DC pulled Satpics of the location. It was an abandoned Arcology Dome that had been bombed back in '22 with biologicals that ruined the land for miles around. When they arrived, they stopped well beyond the cracked remains of the dome. This is where Merc came back and DC was able to download a more detailed look at the building where the superhauler had stopped. DC put on her Powersuit and her, Sweetums, Flint and Spin loaded up into their Hummers and headed in the more direct route as the Rippers rolled around the back and took the high ground to block off any escape. DC's team was to find and protect those that had been taken, and if possible get them out.
They got into the dome and made it to the outskirts of the high school complex, which is where Merc had left the trailers. DC dashed to the building and jumped the three stories to the roof, Powersuits rock! The other three, under the watchful scope of DC made it easily to the outer wall. As they went in from the ground, she went in from the roof access. As they started to investigate the school, an alarm went off, they had been discovered.
Spin decided that this was a good time to get out, just in case the building went up, Flint went with him, back to the loading bay and truck storage where they had found the superhauler and trailers parked. Flint got the thing started and used it to break them out. He didn't take it far, as he decided to block off the other garage where they had found 2 large black sedans parked. Flint then talked Spin into going back in, where they found a cargo elevator.
Meanwhile, Shell had been gassed again and woke up at the bottom of an empty dive pool. This time she was with other women who looked around her age. Most looked ill, some more than others. The only ones that weren't were the 5 women from the container. When she inquired about it one of the woman, who was pregnant, offered her what little she knew. They were gassed at various times without warning. Each time people would be taken and others returned, then there were the ones who were taken and never returned. The pregnant lady made note that she had been taken 3 separate times. As she finished that, gas came pouring down the 30 feet to quickly fill the pool. What surprised Shell the most was that almost everyone just sat or laid down and started to breathe deeply. She fought it, but in the end she too succumbed. Later, she partially woke up on something cold and hard where there were men talking. She took a chance and cracked a eye open. She was on a lab table, in what looked to be a destroyed school's science lab; there were more high tech items here and there, but it was a school. She must had moved or made a noise as the men noticed that she was awake and with some harsh words to each other put her under again. When she woke up again, she was back at the bottom of the pool. The pregnant one told her that she had been gone for two gassings. Soon after that they could all hear an argument above them, something to do with intruders and cover ups. That's when a different kind of gas came pouring over the edge. Propane! Shell knew that they were in trouble now, one spark and boom! She started yelling, hoping that the intruders were her people and that they might hear her and save them.
Back in the hallways, DC had met up with Merc and Sweetums. Merc had Shell's scent and they were following him to her, but those that ran this place had other plans. There was movement at the far end of the hall. They moved quickly to catch whatever it was. That's when the grenades went off, a little too soon to hurt them, and a large Samson Borg came around to finish them off, but it wasn't expecting someone in a Powersuit equipped with a railgun. One shot to the head and no more Borg.
They met no other resistance and soon found Shell at the bottom of the pool. With some careful work they got her out, but only managed to save another five, the rest had died. About this time Flint and Spin came down and found them at the pool. Sweetums and DC continued to look for others as Flint and Spin helped the six women out of the building, with Merc for a watchdog.
As Flint and Spin got the women outside and were about to go back in, the sedans burst out of the garage and took to the sky, they were AVs! Before anyone could get off a shot with something that could pierce the armour, they were gone.
DC and Sweetums didn't get far, as they found a bomb ticking down, and it was almost done. They ran like hell and just barely made it out before the entire building went up.
The Rippers moved in and after a few minutes they got the wounded patched up and bugged out. DC and her team hopped into their Hummers and provided additional escort back into the city.
-- To Be Continued --
Session End: Sunday - 2:00 am (To damn tired to continue and people still have to drive home)