[DVFP] Now, We Party (C 3.3, E 3.5)

edited January 4 in aw2e-dvfp
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Esco,
You make your way up to your room, but not having a key means you have to knock. You hear Isle yell, "It's open!" Sure enough, it is. Might be the only place in DVFP with unlocked doors.

What do you do?

Comments

  • Well I'll tell you the first thing I do — lock and bolt that fekin' door! I don't trust folks in my own joint — why the blazin' hell would I trust anyone here?

    Anyways, I lock up, and make my way into the room — lookin' to get my bearings. I'll put the booze down on the first flat surface I come across, searchin' for that open bottle of shite we got from the Pit. "Where you at?" I call calmly, searchin' the room
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    Isle's sitting on top of the lone bed in the place. There's a couch to the side, doesn't match, but looks comfy enough. She's wearing a towel, sitting there cross-legged with another towel on the bed in front of her. She's got few needles laid out, a spoon, a Zippo, and a small bottle.

    "Hey, lover." she says when she looks up. "Wanna fug or get fugged up first??"
    What do you do?
  • Lover... I had no idea Isle was so sentimental. She's full of surprises, I guess. A morbid curiosity nags at me in Rothschild's voice. Surprises. Those needles... They are not my preferred form of relaxation. I guess nobody's forced me to do nothin' yet. I'm surprised she's got more than one... Most of the folks I deal with share needles. That crap twigs me out...

    Fek it. Wotever it is happened to her don't matter none. I've been with all kinds of girls — it's what you do with your body that sets you apart, not what it looks like.

    I take my jacket off, and toss it on the couch. "I'm gunna fek you so good, you ain't even gunna need that dope." I make my way over to the edge of the bed, and climb on, undoing my belt, and crawling over her. I rip the towel off her, allowing myself the quickest, split-second of a peek at what I'll be workin' with before locking eyes with her, and drawing her into a deep, deep kiss.
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    Isle snickers when you pull the towel off, and there's a moment when you do see her body before joining her on the bed and kissing her. The tops of her feet, shins, and thighs are a mess of road burns, the kind of stuff that probably bit into bone, and there is a mass of red and white scars and angry wounds. There's road rash on her lower belly, too, and between her legs is a bush of curly hair that seems to indicate her most sensitive parts are still in tact.
    She kisses you fiercely, hands up to your hair, and pulling you onto the bed and trying to lay you down beside her little stash. When you come up for air, she grins, "Some big promises, Esco. I hope you deliver." She searches your eyes, knowing you saw, she's braced for a reaction now.
    What do you do?
  • That ain't so bad... It looks painful as all fek, but it's not much different from Marigold's tats, or Sash's freckles. It's a distraction, at best, if you let it be. I rip the rest of my clothes off, put a hand at the base of her neck, and pull away – keepin' my eyes locked on her. I whisper, "wrap those sexy legs 'round me — 'n lemme get at them beautiful tits..."

    I dive into another deep kiss, and unleash my hands on her body.

    Big promises. HA! She ain't gunna be able to talk right by the time I'm done with her.
  • edited January 4
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    I didn't mention it, but she reapplied the warpaint.
    Isle gleefully complies with the leg wrapping and chuckles bawdily as you grab hold of her breasts. "Didn't expect you'd wanna seal the deal, Esco, figured you got all the girls you wanted back at Diamond." she says when you ease her back on the bed.
    Those needles aren't capped, Esco, are you just leaving them be?
  • Uh... I guess? Am I in danger of accidentally sticking myself? Is Isle lookin' like she might stick me when I ain't payin' attention? That'd a different story...

    I laugh at Isle's comment, surprised that she's so interested in tearing me down a notch. I stop a moment, pulling back to get a full view of her painted face."Why wouldn't I?" My hand is sliding down between her legs, as I dig around in that jungle below for a little friend of hers... Then I hit paydirt, and smile. "Am I borin' you?"
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    Doesn't seem like Isle might stick you on purpose, but she's acting wild enough for "rolling around". Looks like you'll let it ride? Okay, good to know.
    She hisses a breath when you hit paydirt and grabs your wrist. You quickly realize she's not pulling your hand away, more like "keeping it there". "Not boring me yet, Esco." She reaches up for your shirt, "You're too dressed. Let me at that pale body of yours." She's trying to keep control here, but you've got an "upper hand", so to speak.

    So, do we fade to black here, Esco, or do you have something else you'd like from Isle?
  • Yeah, we can fade to black. I'm hopin' my skills in the sack will keep her hands away from those needles, and planted firmly on my body...

    OOC: Seducing Isle. Roll+Hot.
    (Rolled: 2d6+3. Rolls: 6, 6. Total: 15)
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    Your skills are incredible, Esco. Isle has no need for needles (see what I did there), and wow, that's so damn impressive, I'm giving you +1 Ongoing with Isle. Because... wow.

    Do you actually fall asleep with her in your arms, affectionate and all that, or do the pair of you end up worn out and sleeping side by side, sated and sweaty?
  • Not. Fekin'. Bad. Not bad at all.

    There might've been a time when I passed the fek out on top of a woman — but this ain't one of them. We finished the first round, finished the shite stuff, went for round two, cracked open the good stuff, started round three, and four, with a minor break to catch our breath, and then I lost track... After a while it was just a drunken clusterfek of sex, moanin', and exhaustion well into the night.

    As for whether we passed out arm in arm: better. I poured us both the last of that good whiskey, and offered to put some of that halucinogenic shite from the Pit into her drink. I'd already put some in mine. Whether she takes it or not, I intend on passin' out arm in arm, trippin' balls on whatever the hell that shite is.

    Seems a fittin' way to top it all off.
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    She does not object at all, and that's how you pass out, arm in arm, the wide world a myriad of colors and shapes, the needles left on the floor and forgotten.

    Are you... Opening Your Brain here, Esco? What might you be thinking about if you do?
  • You bet your arse I am!

    OOC: Opening brain. Roll+Weird. Highlighted.
    (Rolled: 2d6-1. Rolls: 3, 5. Total: 7)
  • Y'know, I can't help but think about my place in all this... The Fippers, the Fat Man, Sierra and her shite witch of an ex-master all bearin' down on me... How do I navigate all these external fekin' interests comin' in to steal what's mine?

    That, 'n how Fleece and me used to do freaky shite like this all the time...

    Good times...
  • edited January 4
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    Your mind opens to the maelstrom of ideas, of communication, of posers, posters, trolls, and identitophiles.

    Hundreds of thousands of eyeballs are glued to screens commenting excitedly about #fourhourfug and #escoflow and Islesco OTP. There are subreddits comparing techniques you used with Isle vs. Fleece. Chatter about #maskgames and #doesitgothere.

    Vid flips of Sierra hugging Fleece and kissing her cheek, Sierra hovering there with obvious aching want, saying "You are beautiful, inside and out. And I know you are in love with someone else. So, please, I don't expect anything in return, but I wanted you to know that I do, care for you."

    Pellet and Kettle reporting to a statuesque woman with blazing red hair and even more fiery eyes, bending knee and telling how easily you were beaten, how low and pitiful you were, how you begged for mercy. All honor to Gloriana. The name rings with gilded power, petty and undeserved power. But power nonetheless.

    You're woken by someone knocking on the door. Isle laughs lightly, her fingers running her over ruined flesh as if it could still feel the sensations. What do you do?
  • All honesty, I could sleep for fekin' days. I don't bother getting out of bed. "Who's fekin' there?"
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    Esco, the Feed is buzzing to know: what is Fleece to you?
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    Hate to interrupt.

    "Change of plans, I gotta hit the road," I hate how I sound apologetic, "done me a bit of bad business... you want that lift?"
  • edited January 4
    Fleece...

    You ever have someone in your life that you always had fun with? No matter what it was, they always seemed to make shite better? Fleece was that for me, for a while... We used to get fekked up, and snog each other senseless under the stars. Ride into Depot on the regular, buyin' building supplies, and restock runs.

    It ain't that I got bored of it; but like I said, eventually business at the Diamond took off, and I needed to nurse it all the time... It was just JD and me runnin' crowd control for a while. Back before Sash keepin' her eyes open, and Marigold doin' recruitment runs for me. It was all so important that I never made time to bring other folks on...

    We both got so busy that we seemed to have less and less time together we're we weren't exhausted. The rumors of what was going on at the Diamond made her uncomfortable. My jokes got old. Eventually, we got so worn down we started fighting each other... That, as you can tell, never really stopped.

    Had I thought for a minute she'd have come with me here, I'd have brought her. That image of Sierra and her, though... That sends mixed feelings down my spine.

    I've been trying to fill the hole Fleece left in me for years now... with different women, and workin' the Diamond. Seems every time I'm on my own, drinkin', she weasels her way back into my brain, and I start wishin' she was around. Sierra was the first lady came into my life that could hold my attention. I thought maybe I'd finally found someone I could co-exist with.

    I guess I fekked that up too. Or maybe I was graspin' at straws... Maybe there wasn't nothin' there, and I was just wishin' there was. Projecting Fleece onto that poor girl. Maybe she had feelings for other folks, and I just bulldozed my way though there with no plan, and no prayer.

    Maybe I ain't completely over Fleece... But the question is — if she ain't over me, am I someone she'd even want? I'd wager not.

    I hear Cinch's voice through the door, and sigh... Maybe I can sleep on the ride over. I get up and open the door, nekid as I come. "C'mon in. Lemme get dressed, and we'll head out."
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    Naked Esco? Raises an eyebrow and I clear my throat as I walk in, keep my eyes on his eyes. Like. Professional, right? But Esco can almost certainly sense my urgency, and the tinyest bit of a shake in my shootin' hand. Coming down from the adrenaline'll do that to me.

    As I enter I raise a nod to Isle, "sorry to interrupt your happifyin' Esco. I'll fill ya in on the road."
  • I can sense Cinch's urgency, and pick up the pace — at least as fast as I can. Once I'm dressed, I say my goodbyes to Isle (presuming she's conscious enough), and head out the door with Cinch. "So what the fek happened?"
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    Isle is half under covers and wears a permagrin. She slurs some joke about Cinch joining you after all, and her goodbye is a sloppy kiss before she passes out.
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    "Was wondering that, myself," I answer, tip of the helmet to Isle and out the door with Esco.

    I fill him in on the way to the car.

    "Best as I can figure, ol'Gigg hooked up somewhere with Mimi..." he may not know Mimi, "helluva rider and apparently ex-United Front. Well, I happened up them in a hell of a scrap with Mimi's ex-mates, 'front mortar 'bout to send Gigg's various parts hither and yon... well..."

    I sigh and shake my head, feels foolish after all that talk about Dremmer earlier.

    "I got personally involved in endin' the mortar fellas sentence early," I glance at him, nod, yeah... killed. "and Gigg and Mimi are fortunately still above the snakes but the front... forget all that shiite I was slingin' over drinks. Pretty sure it's comin' to powder real soon... I gotta be scarce."
  • "Holy shite, Cinch..." Wot the fek did I just hear? If I wasn't awake just yet, I sure as shite am now... I put an arm around her shoulder, and pick up the pace. "Yeah. C'mon. Let's get you the fek outta here. You need a place to hole up? Lemme get you a room at the Diamond. Nobody'll fek with you there. I'll get you sorted."
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    A serious look on my face, and surprise as he puts his arm around me. I lean into him for a couple seconds, but I'm on my own feet here.

    "Yeah... maybe I can smooth this shiite over with some well chosen words but... pretty sure they ain't gonnn commence with talking."

    I hurry with Esco to the garage.
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    You head outside into the oppressive heat, made even worse by the cool air you're leaving. As you move towards the garage, you spot a couple thugs in Union Jacks walking with purpose, but in the same direction. They haven't seen you, yet. Ahead at the garage, you see a UFer sitting on his fatboy smoking a joint and looking around, like he's standing guard.

    What do you do?
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    I clench my teeth, hiss some air, "they don't waste much time..." I try to size up the situation. They're obviously expecting me, but for the moment we've got the drop on them.
  • [CINCH]
    Reading the sitch: Sharp+1
    (Rolled: 2d6+1. Rolls: 5, 6. Total: 12)
    xp(2)
  • [CINCH]
    May be the obvious question, but what's our best way in?
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    Your best way in is over the biker. Any foolishness with hiding and sneaking will only delay you while other UFers show up. They're coming for their truck already, and they know what you did, Cinch.
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    Wish I had my stun-stick....

    I stop, lean into Esco with a hand on his shoulder, rise up a bit to speak into his ear, "I gotta go liberate my ride... prob'ly not the bettermost idea to be seen jumping in my passenger seat just now... You wanna take a walk out the gate and I'll swing by in two shakes?"

    Getting pumped up, ready to move... not really thinking of a plan. It'll come. I should ask Esco for help. he can tell I'm thinking it. But that's not how I do things.
  • Liberate... I look over to the garage and the Blazebrain blockin' my view. This doesn't look good. I shake my head, and show Cinch my knife, tucked into my jacket. "I got this," I whisper, motioning for her to stay put as I start crossing the space between me and that UF'er.
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    "Wha?" He brims with typical confidence and takes off before I can argue.

    I curse quietly and swiftly turn into cover of the traders tents across the way. Hand on my gun, I cover Esco with alert eyes, ready to cover him, and ready to bolt in when the coast is made clear.
  • If Cinch ain't stoppin' me, then I'm gunna stroll right up to him, as close as I can get — the goal being to get close enough to slit his throat before anyone takes notice.
  • edited January 5
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    Esco, Let's see you Act Under Fire here to cross the space without attracting the attention of this rocksucker who's supposed to be on watch.

    Cinch, I imagine you could offer some help if he needs it, and you're creative.
  • OOC: Acting under fire. Roll+Cool.
    (Rolled: 2d6. Rolls: 1, 3. Total: 4)
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    So Esco, you can get a free shot on this guy smoking a doobie, but you'll be wide open for those two UFers you passed. No way you can miss them. Or, you can duck out right now, just walk on into the garage. They aren't looking for you.

    What do you do?
  • Well... I ain't got any keys to the car, or nothing... And I told Cinch I got this...

    I guess I knife the tub of rocks.
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    Esco, you walk right up to dude, and he takes a puff off his fatty right as you come up, blowing some of the weed smoke in your face, "Whassup, pale rider?" Then bam, you slice at his throat. His hog's on the dusty edge of the garage's concrete, close enough to be a barrier without any of The Fat Man's Garage guards being able to say shite about it. They don't lift a finger when you move on the idiot.

    He sprays a little blood on his once-white t-shirt with The Cure on it, and starts to fall back off his hog. You hear some yelling behind you and a shot fires out, hitting you in the back (2-Harm coming at you, with that jacket, you take 1-Harm and need to roll the Harm move).

    Cinch, Sure as his word, Esco walks right up and slices the guy's throat. You spot those pair of UFer's to your left, and one of them is a downright gunslinger, she whips up a six iron and shoots Esco while her buddy screams out some alarm yell something. That UFer with the revolver, she's a southpaw, and she raises her right hand up and it looks like she's going to bring it down on the hammer to fire off a few more shots.

    Both, folks are scattering this way and that, and now that there's a fight in the street, the Garage Guards will have to do something soon.

    What do you do?
  • Harm move. Roll+1
    (Rolled: 2d6+1. Rolls: 4, 1. Total: 6)
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    Blazes she's fast. Before I can react she puts a bullet on Esco.

    Why the hell did I let him do this? This is my fuggin' problem. Cinch!

    I suddenly walk, swiftly, out into the street, weapon held in two hands, forward, "Hey!" Nice and loud, "Lookin' for me!?"

    Not hesitating, not letting her fire again, shootin' to take out the gunner. I probably know her name, huh? Damn it.
  • At first, I don't even notice I've been shot — I heard the bang, and spun 'round to see which one of those blazebrains shot at me... Then I feel something warm runnin; down my shoulder, and I know I've gotta move.

    Did that fekker fell off his bike have a gun on him? Imma grab it, and take cover behind his hog, helpin' Cinch take care of these arseheads if I can.
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    Cinch, let's see you Go Aggro on the shooter, her name's Rattler, and yes, you know her. This is what she looks like by the way:
    Rattler
    How do you know her, cinch?

    Esco, He's got a gun stuck under his belly, and he's falling off the bike. Give me an Act Under Fire here. On a 7-9, you can choose to have the gun or have cover. On a 10+, you've got both.
  • Act under fire. Roll+Cool.
    (Rolled: 2d6. Rolls: 1, 4. Total: 5)
  • [CINCH]
    Going Aggro on Rattler.
    I'm pretty much just shooting as long as her gun's raised at Esco.
    (Rolled: 2d6+1. Rolls: 2, 4. Total: 7)
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    If I have her attention, sure, I'd rather not kill her. I know a lot of the UF drivers and gun that frequent the roads and the depot. Rattler, she's held me at gunpoint a time or two, fuggin' shakedown gig they had going a couple years ago when i was a bit more green, when I fell for that shiite. She was kind enough not to put any holes in me back then, hope to repay the favor.

    "Drop yer fuggin' iron, Rattler, or I got'cha dead!"
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    Esco, You see his gun, stuck in his belt, and reach for it, but then he starts falling over, so you hop over the bike to try and use that for cover. To your left, you see three UFers, one in a four-wheeler, the other two on dirt bikes, all riding in hot from the outside, guns blazing, and the moment distracts you. You pitch over the bike, and it ends up falling over onto your left leg (1-Harm AP and you have the tag stuck under). The rider's bleeding out right by you and gunfire's all over. And dammit all, the gun's stuck in his belt with the bike over him.

    What do you do?

    Cinch, you fire on Rattler and spook her, she turns on you, too. You hit her right arm, her off-hand, and see a blood spray, hear a grunt of pain, but she's digging in, and fires back (2-Harm coming your way). Other guy's ducking for cover, though, so it's just the two of you, about twenty five feet away from each other, gunning each other down. Oh, and some UFers are coming in from out, ahead of you by the gate.

    What do you do?
  • edited January 5
    "FEK!"

    Blaze-brained, arse-headed, sun-scorched, rock-suckin', fipper-fekin', piece-of-shite, mother cooker!

    I kick at the damn bike, movin' as fast as I can to get it off me before those fek-faced UF blazebrains are on me.
  • edited January 5
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    "Shiite! Fuggit!"

    Fugg it. I bolt across the street to help Esco, just fire a couple shots in Rattler's direction to keep her head down. My gun is nothing if not loud. Rely on adrenaline to flip the bike from one side to the other and get Esco's ass into the garage. If he's hurt, we'll deal with that when we deal, but right now, get outta the fuggin' street and under armor.

    Ahead of our arrival the car unlocks and powers on.

    Think I got 1-harm. Not armored at the moment (except the head) and daredevil I hope applies just walking out into the street like this. I hope.
  • [CINCH]
    Harm move
    (Rolled: 2d6+1. Rolls: 2, 6. Total: 9)
  • OOC: Harm roll. Roll+1
    (Rolled: 2d6+1. Rolls: 6, 6. Total: 13)
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    Cinch, you come in, pull on that bike. You get it up a few inches, and Esco's trying to pull his leg, but then a few more shots ring out, and the bike slips, crashing down and mashing Esco's leg all over again.

    Esco, the pain is sharp and sudden, and it hits you out of the blue. You lose consciousness.

    Cinch, you see those Skorpions you passed before have drawn on the UFers firing wildly, and the Garage Guard are bringing their guns to bear, too. The UFers, Rattler and her buddy, they take off for the bikes, and the bikes and that four wheeler and are turning tail, this fight in here is too big for them.

    Gunfire, screams and the roar of bikes fill the air, echoing like crazy against the huge concrete walls of the garage. You can run for your car, but then you're leaving Esco passed out and alone. You could stand by him, but then you're an open target as the UFers are trying to GTFO.

    What do you do?
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    Not an option, MC.

    "This turned to a fuggin' conflagration mighty quick,"I sharply complain to myself, "Esco, you hear me? I ain't gonna get you killed, no fuggin way!"

    So we got Depot guards chasing off the UF'ers with live fire right? And us sorta caught midwise in this thing? Shiite... we don't look clean in this.

    Take a disadvantage and turn it into a plus... allright. Summoning my strength I push the bike up, throw Ecso over the tail, throw a leg over and start the fuggin' engine... gun it and head straight through the alley 'cross the way towards the low-rent... just get our broken arses off the streets.
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    Cinch, Let's see you Act Under Fire to get Esco and get that bike up and out of here. On a 10+, you're as cool as the other side of the pillow. On a 7-9, I won't even ask if you leave Esco behind, so you're getting out, but you get shizot.
    On a fail, well... we'll see.
  • [CINCH]
    Acting under fire: Cool+2
    (Rolled: 2d6+2. Rolls: 5, 1. Total: 8)
    Add +1 if read still applies. Doubt it.
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    Cinch,
    You grunt and groan, but yeah, the adrenaline kicks in and you're able to stand the bike up off Esco. You drop the kickstand so you can yank him up onto the bike with you and ride off on that fatboy. As you do, those UFers are taking off, through the gates. Rattler gets out, but her buddy is lying face down. Four-wheeler guy fires off a burst of bullets your way, a sort of parting gift, and two of them ping off your helmet. Your ears ring as you take off.

    But you get out. Ride fast and leaning low as you make it to Fall On Inn. You hear a couple bikes behind you, it's Skorpions, not chasing, but watching your six.
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    Skorps? Ok, finally something nice happens today. Joes Girl among 'em? She's still banged up but I doubt that's got her out of commission.

    If I see her, then I'll slow and take a foot for a bit to let her catch me, otherwise I throw them a salute and head for the opposite gate of the trouble and for the open road.
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    Cinch,
    Joe's Girl is there, she comes out of the inn and runs up to you, eyes searching your body to make sure you're alright. She comes up for a hug, then sees your helmet, "Fug me, Cinch, there's a hole in that!" She points towards an area you felt a bullet land.

    Ace comes out, too, looking over the both of you, "Cinch, where's your car? The United Front gave you trouble?" She's looking at you both, and that fatboy, not sure how well you'd do out there.

    Esco, you come to just outside Fall On Inn, surrounded by some Skorpions. How do you know Ace? Why does she like you so much, Esco?
  • edited January 6
    Consciousness comes back to me slowly, the world a grey blob that shifts and slides into focus in patches. My body protests when I try to shift my weight. My muscles are tense, stiff, and sore. My head is pounding. I give up on tryin' to get comfortable...

    I open my eyes instead, and scan the room — Skorpions? Wot the fek? I ain't seen one of them in ages... Ace especially — we grew up together in the brothel where I was raised. She was like an older sister to me. She taught me how to use a knife, and mix drinks, back inna day. She'd gone off to the autoduels a few months before the brothel got raided. I tried to track her down, give her the news, but life got in the way. Then I'd met JD, and we were off to start the Irons... Next time I saw her, she'd been looking for me for months. We got wasted, and reminisced.

    "Did someone fekin' shoot me?" I mutter, deciding to ignore the pain in my shoulder, and try to sit up.
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    Esco,
    As soon as you talk, Ace jogs over to you like she didn't recognize you or see you or something, "Fug me, Esco! What the hell! You got your leg mashed," she checks out your arms, your back, "Someone shot you in the back? Damn, man, did you take a knife to another gunfight?" She hugs you, then claps your unwounded shoulder.
  • The hug hurts more than I want it to, and I feign a smile for Ace. She's always been tough as nails, as long as I can remember. I'm feelin' pretty fekin' blazebrained right about now... My mouth feels stuffed with cotton, dry and sticky as all shite. I reach up, and put a hand on Ace's arm. "Yeah. The fekker had a thing or two comin' his way, dy'no wot I mean?"

    Fek me... Why's my accent always get thick 'round Ace? I clear my throat.

    "Help me up, yeah? Where am I? Wot happened?"
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    Panting, adrenaline fueled, I barely felt the bullets hit my helmet... Joe's Girl points out that there's a hole. "Wha? No fuggin' way..."

    I remove the helmet to inspect it. Maybe it dented the shell and there's bullet fragments caught in the lining. My head does hurt... though... doesn't it?

    "Shiite went from rocks to guns right fast," i explain to Ace, "got involved in a fight I oughtn't..." I finally realize Esco's coming to, "dammit Esco. This's on me, you shouldn't be smashed up on my account. No way... we gotta get you to your doc at the Irons."

    Finally answer Ace with a nod and answer in bursts between breaths, "had 'er under guard at the garage... we ain't gettin' at 'her... think I'm at war permanent like with the 'front... last thing I ever wanted." I run a hand along my head, see if I can feel blood. Damn. It's getting hot.

    "I gotta get us on the road..." I ask Ace, "can I borrow a car? Somethin' uh... inconspicuous? Guess I got a bike to trade... needs paint."
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    Joe's Girl watches as you inspect your helmet, Cinch. Sure enough, you see a small crack in the helmet, find some fragments in the lining. And a hint of blood on your scalp.
    "You sure you gotta go, Cinch?" Joe's Girl asks expectantly, worry coloring her tone. "You could crash at Fall On."

    "No, JG, if Front's rolling up on her, then she should scatter. Fat Man's goons will kick her ass out of here to keep the peace." She looks at you, Esco, "I won't even ask you to hide out and lay low, you aren't capable, you handsome devil." She tousles your hair and chuckles. "Yeah, Sta-Cinch, I can trade you a ride for the bike. You'll owe me a favor, though, since this fatboy's pretty damn obvious. And bloody, thanks, Esco."


    Cinch, what kind of car does Ace show you that she's trading for that UF bike?
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    I start to answer Joe's Girl but Ace puts it as well as I ever could, I nod along. See the blood on my palm and wonder how bad it is. Well... I'm standing and I uh... don't reckon I'm dead.

    "Tell ya what, Ace... if you find a chance to bust my car outta the garage... she's yours to race until things settle. Folks've seen 'er in the arena already so shouldn't be no nevermind you saying she's yours... deal?"

    I stop and think a moment.

    "Gonna give auth to you, Ace... you're the driver. Nobody else. Deal?"

    I look to Esco, nod, feeling right terrible about this and not knowing really how to make this right.

    ---

    Ace trades me a pickup they're only partway through readying for the arena. It's set up with off-road tires but the weapons aren't mounted yet and it's not painted with Skorp logos yet. Bonus for me.

    image
  • I look up at Ace with chagrin, and a raised eyebrow. "Yeah, I'll keep that in mind next time I'm fleeing a gunfight, unconscious, and bleeding out on a bike." I look to Cinch, waiting patiently to git the fek out of dodge.
  • edited January 6
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    Joe's Girl looks disappointed that you're leaving, Cinch, but she isn't going to ask you to stay, of course. Roark comes out of one of the rooms inside, a little drunk and bleary eyed. Cinch, from the way he looks at you, he seems surprised. Maybe he's never seen you without the helmet and that's it?

    Ace gives out a shrill whistle, and a moment later a Skorp up on top floor sticks his head out. She calls up, "Heffer! How many Fronters are outside the gates?"
    Heffer, a gap-toothed guy with a five o'clock shadow, pulls up some peepers and looks out over the wall, then calls down, "Dozen fourbies north. Half dozen east. Four twobies at each. All out of mag range."

    That's twelve four-wheeled vehicles and four bikes to the north, and six four-wheelers and four bikes to the east, which leads towards Truk Stop and has a heavier patrol presence. Mag range means they are far enough away that any rifle wouldn't hit anyone, so they can scatter if something comes outside the gates. Like buzzards.

    What do you do?
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    I listen to the report.

    "Ok... they won't know it's me right away, maybe never figure it out..." I glance around, "Esco can keep outta sight and I'll drive casual unless they get too close... can I uh... borrow a jacket?"

    My confidence is returning, talk of getting tires on pavement.

    "I'll drive out like trader-traffic. Hide a raven among the crows." I pause, narrow my eyes. "And I ain't askin' but if anyone feels like callin' attention to yourself... it'd be appreciated. We're headed East."
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    "I'm in to ride if anyone wants to drive!" Roark says before he belches. "I mean, fug it, I'd drive... but yeah, you don't want that. I can make a ruckus!"

    Ace puts a hand on Roark's shoulder, "Easy there, tiger. Listen, Esco, you got barter to trade? Skorps gotta pay rent here." She's hoping for at least a promise of something here, you know she wants to throw you some help. She's not the gang leader, though, she's just an autodueler.
  • Fek... This is all fekin' sideways.

    I look up to Ace and shake my head. "Not on me; but if they follow us all the way to the Irons, I'll pay 'em up square."
  • edited January 6
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    "Sheetfire, you pay in snatch, right? That's good enough fer me. Come on, JG, you can drive, I can make a ruckus!" Roark says while stumble-running towards a Dodge Charger with reinforced doors and a chickenwire grill and the word DO GE on the front. He dives in the open window on the passenger side and sits up, starts slapping the door.

    Joe's Girl looks at Ace, who nods, so she dashes inside to grab the keys. While she's gone, Ace follows you both to the truck you just bought.
    "Cinch, I'll keep your car safe. Promise. Ride hard and smart." She pats your shoulder. "Esco, we should meet on calmer terms next time. I'll bring some Skorps down to The Irons and fuggin' party with you and yours."
    Joe's Girl comes out and gets int he charger, firing it up. The air is crisp, and the glow of your new truck's headlights are a yellow haze. What do you do?
  • I get up off my arse, regrettin' putting pressure on my bad leg. I give Ace a hug that lingers just a minute too long... I don't give a fek if I get shite for it — Ace pulled my arse out of the fire plenty when I was a kid, and seems she's doin' the same now. I always could rely on her.

    I pull back, and nod. "Best start buildin' up a tolerance then — you won't be leavin' on your feet."

    I turn to Cinch, ready to go.
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    I nod. Heartfelt thanks to the Skorps for being here for me... even if I ain't so good at expressing that shiite... maybe it's for the uh... snatch.

    "Thanks, Ace. I wouldn't trust hardly nobody else," maybe Joes Girl. Maybe.

    I climb into my new wheels. Get comfortable in her. Deep breath, wait for Esco to climb in.

    "Let's blaze..." I'll get my head looked at later, "I'm takin' her out casual when the coast is lookin' calm... do your fuggin' thing, Skorps."

    And we roll!
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    The Charger roars to life with only a bit of a cough at the end there, a bad tailpipe or something. Joe's Girl puts on a helmet she borrowed from inside, puts on goggles, then gives you a thumbs up. She revs one more time, then pulls out, heading for the north gate. This late, the gate's closed, so she revs and waits for the guards to open up, then she sends dust flying as she pulls out fast and loud. Roark gets out and lights a fuggin' torch, hollering drunkenly and swinging it over and around his head.

    Cinch, you've got a bit of a commotion at the other gate. Let's see you Act Under Fire to get the hell out of Depot here. Esco, if you're willing to help, you probably can.
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    I give the others a little head start, then drive to the gate. My ubiquitous helmet on the floor and shades off. Borrowed jacket has me looking at least a little bit less like myself.

    "Stay outta sight till we're clear of the wall, Esco... I'll get'cha home..."

    Should I mention I'm not charging for the trip? No... think that goes without saying at this point.
  • [CINCH]
    Act Under Fire: Cool+2
    (Rolled: 2d6+2. Rolls: 3, 3. Total: 8)
  • Helping Cinch. Roll+Hx (+2).
    (Rolled: 2d6+2. Rolls: 6, 2. Total: 10)
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    With the Charger first out of the gates, it draws attention. Joe's Girl honks her horn and Roark yells like a mad man. Over at west gate, the guards open up and you ride out calm and quiet, lights off for the first hundred yards. Esco, you stay out of sight, mostly, but the second time you see the motorcycle lights you get the feeling there's something going on, and give Cinch a quick warning.

    It pays off, Cinch, and you see the Tire Trap on the road, the same set of spikes that would rip tires to shreds that you see at Truk Stop. The Front must have dropped it and are trying to corral you. You turn hard and the truck just skirts left of the trap and onto the uneven desert scrub. A few bumps is much more preferable. Then you ride hard south. The motorcycles are faster, but the truck is much better on this terrain, and Cinch, let's face it. you're just that damn good.

    You lose them and double back for the highway to head east for The Irons. Safe from the Unit Front for now. Any conversation on the way?
  • image

    I'm silent for a time, that nervous time when danger is behind but you're not yet sure if the devils lettin' you go. After a couple miles I'm sure they're not on our tail... this truck is noisy, something rattles behind the seats, and the knobby tires make a drone that pretty much swallows us up.

    I let out a breath, smack the wheel hard with a hand, "all my fault. Esco. There's no excuse..." I glance at him, he doesn't have to hide any more. "Whole United Front's gonna be gunnin' for me now... I just hope it's only me."
  • I settle in for the long ride, knowin' that won't be the only shite we see out here... Might as well rest, if not for this fekin' shoulder
    Cinch is goin' on about this being her fault or some shite. I put a hand on her shoulder. "Cinch — I just don't give a shite... I'd rather not be shot, but this is exactly why I decided to leave this Blazin' place — too much fekin' drama."

    I try and get comfortable in this reinforced war chariot, and do my best to stretch the link out of my neck. "Let's get to the Irons so we can get you sorted — I owe you that much for not abandoning me back there..."
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    Esco has a way of talking that just.... relaxes the mind.

    "Esco, if anything I owe you a helluva lot more'n that," I shake my head and try to smile, "I just wanna getcha to the doc."

    But he can probably tell I'm pretty badly shaken... glad I have the road to concentrate on and keep my mind off what happened.

    It's quiet for a while with the rumble of the tires and the squeaking of the suspension, "you uh... had a good time with Isle?" I laugh nervously, what a stupid thing to ask about right? But I add, "why the fugg didn't I go with?"

    None of this would have happened.
  • ... Fleece... shite. She ain't gonna be happy 'bout this. She weren't too happy 'bout me gettin' my face all fekked up — gotta think this'll be frowned on...

    I snort at the question of me havin' a good time with Isle. "Mis'rable," I tease, my voice drippin' with sarcasm. I close my eyes, and lean back in my seat. "Just fekin' mis'rable, Cinch. I ain't never seen so much snatch in my life. You'd've been mis'rable too... All the drugs 'n booze... Best not dwell on dodgin' that bullet."

    I'm too uncomfortable to sleep, but I try not to move. "So wot the fek happened with these union fekkers?"
  • image

    He gets a sad little chuckle outta me. Yeah.

    I tell the story, what I know of it...

    "So you know I went up against UF in the arena, s'posed to be a friendly match, me and my old chums, Ace and the Skorps. Who you seem to be more'n a little familiar with..."

    I pull the truck off-road a bit, avoiding a known trouble spot on the line. It handles better than my car, in the dirt. "Sorry 'bout the bumps," I clench my teeth a bit, but continue.

    "So right in the middle of the fuggin' match Mimi is right there trying to take me down, then she suddenly," I snap my fingers, "quits the arena, not a word, no idea... takes off, ditched her bike, her colors, even her geared-up arm... makes herself an enemy outta her team. Why the hell, right?"

    I sigh.

    "Anyways... today I run into Mimi and that fugger Gigg, who I'm pretty sure you've made acquaintance with somewhere right? They're in a scrap with some U.F. heavy gear... and well... it weren't goin' well so I step up and take a shot... give 'em a chance... but... I drew U.F. blood and they come for me... put a guard on my ride... you know about that part... and it just went from there."

    I shake my head and pound the wheel again...

    "Pretty sure I'm outta the courier gig. For a spell..." I touch my head, feel the flecks of dried blood, "Road's gonna be right hostile until the 'front gets put back in their corner."
  • I listen attentively, in spite lookin' like I'm trying to sleep. The bumps send shots of pain through my torso, though, and I suck a sharp breath in through my teeth, failing miserably to mask my discomfort. The story don't sound like anything out of the ordinary — gangs out in the valley are thirsty for blood most days. They use any excuse for "us vs them". Not like the Irons is any different — Norvell and me went to blows over less... Wot the fek do I say to that?

    "You just need a change of clothes, is all... Not be ridin' round in that fekin' car you got for a bit. You know those fekin' blaze-brained miners worked up a drill down in the Irons? They struck oil not far off from our spot. I'd bet they'll be lookin' for someone to drive it out. Get it traded... Lots of hired guns'll be on that rig. Nobody'd fek with you. I could put a word in — keep you behind the wheel, at least."
  • edited January 7
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    "Heh, you think so?" I turn and look at him, then both hands on the wheel. Offroadin' by dark you can't lose focus.

    "Can y'imagine me drivin' a proper truck like that?" I've driven a truck, not my preference but it's got wheels and horsepower. "I'd like to see what this fella can do, but... hell that might be worth a try!" I pat the dash, "either way I think I run outta' the Irons for the time being."
  • "Hell, even runnin' protection with this thing'd be worth their jingle..." I wouldn't fek with someone drivin' this truck. "Either way, the Irons wins havin' someone like you on the docket. I consider that a win, in spite of the shite circumstances that brought it about."

    I look over to Cinch, wonderin' how I can make her less tense. Don't make sense to have her all on edge, when she needs to be all loosey-goosey at the wheel.
  • OOC: Reading Cinch. Roll+Sharp. (Highlighted)
    (Rolled: 2d6+1. Rolls: 6, 5. Total: 12)
  • OOC: Spending hold 1/3 — What does Cinch wish I would do?
  • edited January 7
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    Esco's lookin' at me. All messed up there, in pain, but still sharp as a tack and eyes full'o shine. I keep my eyes front, watch the darkness and the pools of light ahead of us. I keep the road in view to my left, can just make out the occasional old mile-marker or bit of fencepost not yet torn up for scrap.

    "On the docket, huh? You know, Esco, I've been pure freelance for over a year now, this courier gig has been a good fit. Though that old car, honestly, isn't that well-suited for it... not a lot of cargo space and frankly an old mule off-road. Maybe this is... maybe it's a good thing..."

    Trying really hard to be positive.

    What do I wish Esco would do?
    Esco, been avoiding it, right? I wish you'd acknowledge that I fugged up back there. I walked you right into the street and all but made you a target. We're lucky neither of us go killed, actually... you can't forgive me if you never admit I did you wrong.
  • edited January 7
    I pause for a few minutes, and give up on trying to sleep. It hurts too bad right now. "Just so we're clear, I ain't payin' for the ride..." I chuckle, but it stings, "unless you're payin' my doctorin' bills — and I ain't gunna listen to your arse apologise the whole way home... Yes, you fekked up. Yes, I'm hurtin'. Make it fekin' right, and we'll find our stride."

    I pause again, "I gotta think Fleece ain't gunna like this... I'd appreciate it if you spun it so I didn't sound like a fekin' blazebrain, doin' somethin' stupid... Don't tell her nothin' 'bout Isle..."
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    "I'll make it right!" I get a little defensive, but then soften, "right as I can make it for you... get'cha home... do whatever needs doin' round the Irons..."

    There's this little heat burning behind my eyes. Stings, but he's right.

    "I ain't plannin' to say nothin' about this whole bag o'nails to Fleece, or anyone that weren't there. All they gotta know is we got jumped, and it weren't entirely uncalled for. Hope it ends at that."

    I really hope so. Wouldn't surprise me for some gang or other to ride out looking to get even.

    "And I ain't sharp enough to keep a track of who you been fuggin, Esco... ain't nothing to tell." Tongue in cheek a bit here. Little tease.
  • edited January 7
    I'm gunna let her have that defensiveness. If that's what she needs — to feel like she fekked up — then it's best she lets it simmer a while. Images of Fleece and Sierra flit into my brain again, and I shift uncomfortably. "Like you ain't snoggin' folks in all corners of the Valley..."

    I smile over at her, in case she didn't catch that was a joke. "Wot'll it take for you to loosen up, eh? Fek... You walked outta that one with your life."

    OOC: Spending hold 2/3: How do I get Cinch to accept this ain't her fault?
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    "I aint," I almost snap back, then turns to a smile when I realize he's puttin' me on. Truth is, I haven't been fuggin' as much as I probably should. If you asked I wouldn't be able to explain why.

    He asks that question and I think on it for a few seconds, staring out at the dark horizon, "it ain't my life I'm worried 'bout, Esco... it's yours..."

    There's more to say on that, but I keep it inside. It's the guy I killed on behalf of Mimi and Gigg, it's the poor sucker that Esco cut open on my account... it just spirals.

    I glance at him again, grimacing in pain at each bump... I turn back towards the road. We're past the worst spot, at least I can smooth out the ride.

    ---

    It pretty much is my fault, so that's a pretty tall order. But... maybe explain why you put yourself in that spot for me? Killing for me when there's not much of a real benefit for you is a pretty big deal, right? Are you just so inclined to violence that you didn't think anything of it? I don't think of you that way, you're not Gigg, who kills cause that's his way... you're something else. Almost said something more.
  • image

    photo CU0vkh9WUAAgpJW_zpsfztryvjj.jpg
    As dawn comes, you're nearing the last long stretch before you turn to head north up into The Irons. The road is long and lonely and the air outside is crisp and cool.
  • My life. Why are folks so keen on sacrificing themselves for me, but lose their fekin' minds when I take a punch, or a bullet, for them? Another bump, another fekin' grimace. "I ain't lookin' for folks to tell me what I can and can't fight for, Cinch... You and Sierra are both the fekin' same: you get in over your heads, and instead of acceptin' the fact that there are folks that wanna help you, you do stupid suicidal shite to avoid other folks takin' risks on your behalf."

    I nudge her shoulder, and sit up straight, "In the last few weeks, I've seen the Fat Man come into my brothel like he owns it, I've seen a Sub-Warden come in and treat me like a fekin' prisoner in my own home, I've had Norvel try and kill me over a business deal, I've watched my girls leave for fear of their fekin' lives, and I've had Sierra come in and fek me up to the point of bein' paranoid about a bazillion fekin' cameras watchin' every inch of me."

    That's about when the sun pops up over the horizon, and I have to stop... "It's been a long fekin' time since I've seen a sight like that..." I can't help but laugh. "Here I am, trapped in a hole, in a prison, 'cause my Ma was sent here before I was born. All I have are the things I choose to fight for — and I only get to keep 'em if I put some skin in the game." I cross my arms, and look out onto the horizon, takin' in this moment of beauty. "The fekin' UF catchin' you, doin' whatever the fek they please to you... You came to me in a time of need, and I thought I could help. I picked my own fekin' side — but if you turn me down, don't come runnin' to me again."
  • image

    I listen, feels like I'm being scolded, but also not. He's right about that, being sentenced here for something his mother must have done. Life ain't fair.

    I gaze out at the brightening horizon as he talks. The rising sun...

    "You know what, Esco," I start, take a breath, "in my head, I was the courier, drivin' you back to the Irons and keepin' you safe was my job. Just like I always say, put any fuggin' think in my hand and it's as good as there... if you look at it that way then I failed ya..."

    I reach across and flick a bit of his hair, might touch his cheek.

    "But all right. If you ain't just my customer and I ain't just your driver and we're just two fuggin' people caught up in this vulture's nest of a place an' doing the best we can... then yeah. I appreciate what you did..."

    I look at him, sitting there a mess, tease, "I mean it turns out you did a fuggin shiite job of it yeah?" I almost laugh, "But I appreciate the hell outta it and I'm proud as hell to be on your side."

    I have more to say, but I give him a moment, and see how he takes this.
  • "Ha!' oww... "For fek's sake... You ain't gotta tell me I botched it."
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    Yeah. I laugh, then a somber couple moments.

    "FPS sector chief asked me to kill Dremmer for him... for... don't matter why really. I pretty much told him to fugg off..." I chuckle, wishing I'd handled that more delicately, "And you know... I'd love to hear how you handled the Sub-Warden someday."

    Funny we both had issues with the authorities.

    "I might stick around the Iron's a while... you know. Off the clock."
  • "We can swap war stories once I'm patched up... Fek I need a drink...
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    End Scene
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