Battle In the Boneyard

GM: Kensai
Players: Kensai, Ecco
Synopsis: Kensai leads Ecco to a short, cheap job, where they must protect a weasel of a fixer from the consequences of his own actions.
Date: April 16th, 2082


Kensai ducks out of the door to Joe’s Dropoff and looks down to Ecco as they leave the dropoff, and he gestures for her to join her as he ambles down the street. "My client appears to have bypassed the meeting at the dropoff entirely, and set about his work on a different timeline than discussed. He is meeting with others in a place called the 'boneyard zocolo.'" He casts a sideline glance at the woman with him. "You mentioned boneyard in the bar. Are you familiar with it?"

"It is place I was just at, well, perhaps same place. The boneyard is rail cars homeless camp not far from here." Ecco points off in a direction, "I come with. I pit fight there, before showing up at bar." And she turns to start walking in that direction. With a quick look, "Why would fancy person like yourself be meeting person in place like Boneyard? It is for people… like punk. You say before, or gang." Probably messing up words, it may be difficult through her thick accent to detect any concern she may have but her tones aren't shifting. It's all just matter of fact.

Kensai says "Because I don't know these things," he replies. "I arrived in Denver yesterday. My contact has some gear he's arranged for me, but apparently… I have to do some more work to earn it." He gives her another look, then gestures with his head and ducks down an alley.

"Homeless people," he says. "Poverty. Even cheap suit will stand out, yes?" He makes sure no one is watching, and then unceremoniously pulls the blazer off and tosses it aside, now standing in just ill-fitting slacks and a white button up shirt. "Better?" He asks, as he starts rolling up his sleeves, further revealing the gunmetal grey of his left forearm. "I do not wish to stand out."

"More work?" Ecco shakes her head, "This partner that you say, is not sounding like good partner. They are bad, do not show up on time, seem not to agree to thing and stick to deal. Person who is not of their word, is bad person." She offers with a sigh and nods, "People take advantage, because not from here. It happen to me as well." There's the comment about not wanting to stand out and she offers, "Yes, suit is always stand out. Make look like person from corp side. Not a lot of street folk like corpers. Everyone is same, and good, until not. To me. You are fine." And she continues to walk, though she does grip something at the side of her hip, it is somewhat invisible, and holds it like it's a 'mask' and then puts it on her face and even moves a strap. It's clear that this is an otherwise invisible mask, "Just incase." Technology is wonderful.

Kensai shifts a little, taking a sheathed knife out from the jacket and hooking it to his belt. "I agree," he says. "I am displeased. But I do not how thinks work on this side of the rules - so far the moment, I wait and learn. I am grateful for your thoughts." He gives her an appreciative smile again, unable to hide his appreciation of her costume, and then steps back out to the street. "You fight in the pits?" He asks as he walks. "It makes sense, given your muscle mass. Are we going the right way?"

There's a nod to the displeased part of the conversation and Ecco sighs a little at that. She's definitely not liking this 'partner' person of Kensai's already. Probably got lots of ideas about them being lazy or stupid, weak, trying to push over a foreigner, etc. It makes her clench her fist tightly, making the faux leather glove tightly stretch a bit over her hand, and then she breathes in more, raising up her shoulders. "Muscle mass? You have notice? That is nice compliment. I am strong. Yes. I fight in pits. They are way of making food and living, keep mind sharp and body honed. We go right way, up here, past that pile of junk, and tents, we take left. There are rail cars abandoned, it was interesting fight, used to open ring space, harder to maneuver inside."

Kensai makes a noncommittal noise, as he follows Ecco's directions and they turn into toward the abandoned trains. "Sounds like a good place to earn renown and honor. What about nuyen? Is it lucrative? I have participated in a few melee combat tournaments in my history. I could use some money."

"This contact is a friend of a friend. Not even mine. If it goes poorly, I have no compunction about reminding people the value of honor. Even a ronin deserves honesty. If one may be so bold as to even self-describe as that. There is money to be made in this task, though - would you care to have my back?"

With that there's a little shrug, "It is not as gainful as many things. Ninja work is better pay." She looks over to Kensai a moment as she's continuing to walk, heading toward the trains. "It is place to earn renown. Honor? Not so much. You fight? Are strong? Maybe practice together?" She questions as she listens.

"Ronin? Is this your name? I am Ecco. I come along, make sure you are safe. Not know that you fight. Person in suit, rarely strong in battle. More… words type, and you speak better than me, so I assume, fancy weak man. I apologize."

The Boneyard seems to be centered on what residents call the Zocolo. This area is set up as a fly-by-night marketplace, with hawkers selling everything from Rat-on-a-stick to loose rounds of ammunition to clothing.

Shattered rail cars lie scattered as if left by some angry giant, their rusting skeletons littering the area. At one point a car is thrust into the sky while others teeter precariously where tipped to one side, bits of metal and debris providing nooks for hiding or squirreling away goods.

Like some elephant graveyard hundreds of boxcars dominate the area, with the occasional discarded locomotive or tanker car providing a break in the monotony. Curtains line some openings where doors have been torn away, with clotheslines strung here and there with clean but ragged clothing upon them.

Signs of life are strewn through the area in the flickering fires in battered metal barrels, the smells of foods cooking over open flame and broken microwaves, the sounds of voices calling.

Kensai shakes his head. "Name? No. A description, perhaps, for one who has abandoned his former employer and now seeks fortune." At her comments about man-in-suit, he laughs a little. "Yes, I fight. It has been me primary education and occupation. Perhaps the suit being ill-fitted was an advantage- it can be beneficial to be underestimated?"

He looks around him as they walk. "I see what you mean by standing out," he tells her. "I did not expect this. I knew such places existed, but work has rarely taken me there. Those were jobs for less… other men."

As they walk, he turns there path toward a small trash-can fire behind one of the food shops. A narrow little man waits them, with a lean and hungry look on his weasel-like face. "You're the contact, then?" He asks, looking Kensai up and down. "Well you're the tallest japo I've ever seen, and your shoulders will do the trick, but you're not much to look at. Who's the bird? Did you bring your new output to a gig? Ain't that kind of escort mission omae."

As Kensai talks, Ecco smiles and laughs slightly, "Benefit to be underestimated. Yes. Many discount small human woman. All times." And she taps herself up near her exposed collarbones. Though when she does this it shimmers the light a little, all that skin is covered by a form-fitting outfit that's either skin toned or equally invisible, like her facemask. There are a few nods, "I am glad I not come as Supergirl, to this place. It not fitting, but she is blue, red and gold, very stand out."

There is that nod of hers again, acknowledging the conversation. And then they turn, moving along the broken machines and big boxcars, she points off in the distance where there's a single rail car pointed vertically, and there's some other broken mental bits with a stacking of some other cars, these have doors open and broken sections that people could hide in, "We fight in that, earlier. Can move from place to place, but added much … foot work, while also fight."

When they come amongst the person that's the 'contact', Ecco tilts her head in his direction, "Bird? I am not bird. I do not wear feathers." She isn't speaking very loud, but definitely aloud and not just to herself. Though she looks defers to Kensai in this situation, "He is your friend of friend. You talk, I glower."

Kensai lets out an appreciative sound as she talks about the footwork, and the look he gives her is his most intense yet. "Now you speak my language. Is there anything better than a strong fight with your blood up, where the conditions make things difficult for any but the truly skilled?"

After being accosted by the weasley man, Kensai fixes his own glower, the implacable stare of a lifetime soldier-bodyguard-enforcer of corporate will. "I am he, yes. You are Timpleton?"

"Got it in one. You're a smart one, aren't you?"

Kensai's face turns from glower into scowl, the implacable look already spoiled by curling emotion. ""I am exactly what Miyagmi said of me," he replies. "Do you have what was requested?"

"Yeah," the man says, tossing Kensai a long coat. "There. Hurry up. The meet starts in a few and I can't have you dressed like a saraiman."

Kensai does -not- hurry. "And the gun?"

The man nods to a case, and as Kensai goes to retrieve it, the man looks at Ecco with a leer in his eye. "Toots," he says. "We're going to have some people show up here in a minute. I gots a deal with them that has to go down, and muscles here has been hired to help keep me safe. There's a nice fat five thousand for you if you help out. You might keep their eyes busy.”

With the conversation turning to fights, Ecco grins, "Strength, meet strength. There is no class, no poor, no rich, no starving, no hate. Just battle, to be better. There is only fear that I may die comfortably in my bed." And she then turns to the person talking, this Timpleton.

She lets him speak and there's a back and forth and when he turns his attention to her, and comments about 'keeping their eyes busy' she smirks, "Unlikely." She says, and reaches up to pull up the tucked away hood from under her jacket. It goes over her hair, and then she shimmers a moment, going into Predator mode. She walks in the direction of Kensai, not even leaving foot prints in the dirt and she mentions, "I will be behind them. If honorable, do as they say, they are fine. If not… I will help keep safe." And she goes off to a place to hide.

Kensai takes a submachine gun out of the box, looking it over. "This is in terrible condition," he says. "When is the last time it was cleaned?"

"How is that my business?" Timpleton asks. "It's the right kind, isn't it? Even has the fancy smartlink upgrade you wanted."

"Accurate," Kensai says, still growling. "SCK Model 100. INternal smartlink-upgraded to martlink 2. Appropriate full metal jacket rounds… and the weapon diagnostic indicates it is serviceable. It will do."

"So nice to hear you say that," the tiny man says, and then some orks are filing into the area. Dressed in local colors, somewhere between ute and hispanic, the three of them fan out around the fire, the one of them in the middle wearing a higher quality of battered-up armored bolero jacket than the others.

Off to the side, and virtually unseeable, Ecco is hanging out along near some of the rail cars. She doesn't need a terribly large amount of cover for purposes of hiding right now, but she's still using some of it to keep herself protected from 'stray fire'. That's the thing they teach you in spy school, if you are sneaking into a place be mindful of the things not being targeted at you that may hit you anyhow. Hunkered down just past the meeting point, behind the Orks that file in, Ecco just waits.

They never had a chance to exchange radio frequencies, hell they barely got to names and she still thinks his name is Kensai. Thermal vision and regular vision more or less pass over her predator disappearing trick, and while she waits she pulls out another object, something getting the same readout from her Ruthenium sensors and staying just as hard to find as her. She slowly, and quietly, untwists it, holding it in both hands. Of people she's met, Kensai might actually recognize the sickle connected to a long two meter chain with a weight on the other end type weapon… too bad he can't see it. It's pretty cool.

Templeton switches straight into business mode, suddenly less abrasive and more… almost servile. The gist is that these orks paid for goods, and they received them, but their quality is lacking. The orks get heated, and then Tempelton's anger starts to leak out, and his voice raises to almost like a shrill pitch, one of the orks begins to stalk toward him, a small knife sliding out of his sleeve and into his hand.

Kensai is right there, one hand behind his back holding the submachine gun clear of getting too close, the other is extended toward the ork, palm outward, fingers spread, in what is both a gesture of peace and of warning. His face is fierce and implacable, and the low words of threat he growls out weighty with warning… but something just doesn't take. The force of personality to back the words just isn't there, his voice lacks conviction, and even his hand wavers. The ork snarls, sweeps out an arm, and sends Kensai sprawling. The tall man hits the ground, almost tangles in his new coat, but then he's up on his feet with the grace of a cat, and his demeanor has already changed. The speaker is gone. The predator is out.

She said she was strong. She said that she did pit fights. She even called herself a Ninja. Which is a little inappropriate when talking to a Japanese man, but then things start to happen. There's a confrontation, things are escalating, and then the shit starts to hit the fan. Growing up to be a trained Russian military spy doesn't give you a lot of morals when it comes to death. And so, that's when it happens.

There's not even a sound, as Ecco's feet run across the dirty floor in this area, but she is flicking out an invisible sickle of death. The chain snags it, back, as she spins and starts to disrupt her predator mode for those who know she's coming. The chain is pulled back, wrapping around her waist, as she twirls just a few inches off the ground and then sends the bladed end out, unspinning her body as it arcs and is yanked back right at the neck of one of the ork goons, pulling through, nothing but spraying blood suddenly coming from his decapitated body.

Before the other goon can say, "Wha-thuh?" fully his jaw is ripped off of his face, and there's blood dripping from an invisible sickle that's back in Ecco's hand. She's still miss predator 2082, but she's come to something of a stopped forward motion as the two bodies go falling to the ground creating small dust clouds around their bodies.

Kensai doesn't hesitate. He's already moving, the sub machine gun having been knocked out of his hand in the tumble - but his hands are fast, and as he moves his fineblade clears its sheath. He strikes with a katana-blow, rising from the sheath on the right up to the left shoulder. The boss seems better to the rest, and able to defend. He turns, blocking most of the blow with his forearm,.. but Kensai turns his hand, and the blade drags along the ork's arm. Not the killing-blow he meant, but enough to draw blood.

It's a flash of violence. The ork's boss in his fancy jacket tries to use his head to take out the in-his-face Kensai, who in turn leans/ducks out of the way and plunges his knife into the ork's ribs - a blow that would have been crippling if it didn't drive right into an armor plate.

And in that moment, Templeton screams and dives for cover.

The boss ork is left, and already hurting. And he's still running around and being slashes up. It's then that Ecco swings her weapon out, this time going right past him, the blood trail it leaves it the air coming close to Kensai but being yanked back before it hits him. She's spinning, putting her back to the Ork, then pulling on the weapon and twisting, letting the long chain wrap around him, as she ducks and weaves to avoid it. Once she has him wrapped up, pulling slightly around his neck, she braces her knees into his back and pulls him to the ground bending him over backwards and holding him there.

That's when she comes back visible, completely, just holding him, "Should not have been dishonorable." Though she just keeps him stuck for now.

Kensai raises his knife to strike again, to finish the job as he sees his opponent wrapped up- but as he sees Ecco appear and he recognizes her face, something seems to shake him free of his need to kill. Instead, he flicks the blood off of the blade and lowers it all the way to his hip. He is silent for a moment, as if listening to something with no sound, and he looks at the carnage. "The price of dishonor is steep," he replies, and looks to Templeton.

"Yeah," the weasley man says, rising from where he was hiding. "It is!" He stoops and picks up the fallen submachine gun and advances, lowering it, aiming it at the figure… "I'll show you!" He sneers - and then Kensai knocks the gun out of his hand. "He is beaten," The tall japanese man says quietly. "Enough is enough."

He looks down at the ork. "You will relent. You will allow my principal to walk away, and you will never broach this matter again. Else that ghost and I will find you. Hai?"

Still on the ground, Ecco is just there holding onto the Ork, not making him pass out just yet, because well. They are talking with him and that means that he has to be able to breathe… at least a little, in order to speak. When Templeton is bringing up a gun and pointing it in the direction that she's in… she's about to unravel this man and go after him, but instead Kensai has him taken care of and she speaks to Kensai about Templeton even though they can be heard. "He is weak, terrible person. I understand why these orks want to kill him. But, it is not the job."

Keeping the ork in this clearly uncomfortable and painful situation she asks him, "Speak up. You come back and hurt weasel man I find you, kill you, and your gang. You will not see me, you will not hear me, and in the middle of the night you will only awaken by the warmth of your own blood spilling out of your mouth. You understand?" She tilts him to the headless goon corpse lying on the ground still sputtering blood from his neck hole.

The ork practically oinks. "Got it. No messing with him. Not my biz anymore. Swear on my mother's best litter."

Timpleton stands there, shaking with fury, but he does not seem to want to cross the Kensai - Ecco team any more than the ork does.

Kensai looks back down at Ecco. "Release him if you see fit. Templeton here will give us our payment and we will go."

Squeezing the Ork just a little harder, Ecco holds him there and then says, "If I not think that man would should you while you were unconscious, I would choke you out. Do not make yourself dead by changing bargain." And she then rolls over, pushing the ork into the ground face first as she unravels her weapon. Ecco then feeds the chain back into the shaft of the weapon and twists it closed, before hooking it to her leg again, it soon disappears, and she watches the Ork making sure he does not turn and fight.

"Pit fighting, it has more honor than this. You understand. It does not pay as well, and I am on mission bigger than these lives." Ecco comments to Kensai, continuing their previous conversation with little regard for the others present.

The ork boss doesn't even pause to see if his associates still live - he simply fees. "I agree completely," Kensai says, looking to Ecco, finally shifting his knife and going to pick up his new gun. "All that honor means, in this case," he adds, rising, turning to Templeton. "Is I do not kill you where you stand for your disrespect to my friend earlier. Do you understand?"

He lifts a hand before Templeton, red-faced, begins to speak. "All that stays my hand is that you are my employer. Once you pay us, that relationship is ended. Be wary of what more you say…" He scowls. "And if you fail to pay us, you have terminated our agreement and added betrayal to your crimes."

Templeton shrinks back at that, cowering, and then hastily drops some certified credsticks out of his sleeve before turning to flee into the night.

Of course they aren't still alive. One's missing their entire head, the other is missing most of their face. Ecco tilts her head a little back and forth, making her bright pigtails bounce a little as she thinks, "Hmmm. I think it is same as my kind of honor. If person is jerk face, like this man." She points to Templeton, "Then it is hard to want to kill him. He is stupid enough that he may one day die to strong person because he cannot keep mouth shut, but, good fortune and likely exploitation has given him money. He hires people like us. If I die, once hired, I know, I agree. People like orks, they know, they agree implicit to job they take. He would cry like baby." She laughs a bit, at Templeton, "If even just meet my mother, her ladle always find way to hit me in the head." A quick couple of laughs as she walks back over by Kensai, as Templeton runs off.

"That man does not deserve to live very long. But I… I am trying best to be more like Miss Marvel and less like Harley Quinn. Even though Harley is amazing in own right."

Kensai says, "If he crosses my path again," watching as the man disappears from view. "And it is within my power, it will not go well for him." He kneels to gather the credsticks, and as he rises back up he offers two of them to Ecco. "You were impressive. A ghost, bringing death. Is that a kusarigama? I have seen one in active use only twice - by… people who move the same way you do."

Pulling back out her weapon, Ecco turns off the ruthenium and she holds it but brings it up to let Kensai view it. She smiles brightly, "It is dance partner. In Russia, we learn to dance, and we pick out weapon. Many chose small knives, and others swords like you. Some pistols, and other type weapons. I found my feet, with this, and ever since we have been together." She twists it and opens it up some. Right now this weapon has a similar red and black motif on it, with her name 'Ecco' in the side, it's clearly one of the many patterns it can take. "People think it is difficult to use, but it is … more, asking then it is telling. You understand? That is why people confuse."

Kensai says "I have never tried," admitting. "Only been at the receiving end. It proved incredibly effective against my katana. I had to close to knife range." A brief, wistful look crosses his face at the mention of the katana, the same look he got earlier when lotus was singing her beautifully melancholy song, then shakes his head. "Regardless. We are paid, the battle is one, and we are unscathed. I have another appointment, for which I am over-late.”

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