Topic: RECAPS: SD Shadowrun: Burnout's Story

Re-posting my recaps from the initial FIYD thread. We can discuss whether we have all recaps for a single campaign in one thread or if it splits by writer/character.

Prologue (Combat Test)

Burnout pulled into the roadside parking spot and unjacked from his car. He looked around; the area hadn’t changed since his previous time passing by.

Subway station on his side of the road, two warehouses on the other side. A few other cars parked alongside the road. Three gang members, uneasy.

Testing his new cybereyes, he zoomed in on the bangers. Armed but not heavily armored. They wouldn’t be a problem. Which isn’t to say that Burnout was confident he could take them all out; he was, but more to the point they had no impact on his mission. Drop a signal hijacker on the roof of the south warehouse, which had no affiliation with or against the local gang.

He checked for traffic, and when the road was clear, Burnout stepped out of the car. At that point, three things happened.

First, a gust of wind caught his Armanté coat, causing it to flare slightly. He grinned internally; never hurts to look like the badass you are. Leather-looking armored longcoat, leather boots, sharp shades. It’s all about the look, man.

Second, he noticed a man that seemed out of place. He was just too kitted out for this part of town. Burnout hadn't noticed him on his earlier drivebys either, which meant he was, up until that moment, doing a good job blending in.

Third, the bangers noticed him.

One ran out in the road, yelling to the others, and brought his gun up.

The man sprinted to the north warehouse wall - the one belonging to the gang. He planted a foot off the wall and did a backflip off it, landing in a crouch then making for the corner. It was a decent dodge move, Burnout thought, but he could have just as easily run for the corner immediately instead of delaying himself. Still, it would've been hypocritical of Burnout not to acknowledge just how badass it had looked.

Furrowing his brow, he rewound the scene in his cybereyes. As he thought - the first foot planted on the wall slipped a good two inches. He'd missed it at first because his polarized shades were interfering with the new eyes' optics. Burnout made a note to himself to ditch them for a less obtrusive pair; the cybereyes had flare reduction built into them anyhow.

The man had apparently been trying to scale the wall of the warehouse to get to the roof, launching off a sign along the way. Now the man was stuck at ground level and firing at the banger in the alley between warehouses. He was either brave or high, and Burnout wasn't ruling out "both".

Or, he was a runner.

Burnout looked at the roof, then at the man. That would've made sense, what with the badass recovery backflip. The banger the man had been firing at sprinted up with a knife (really?) and the other two fired at him. The man hit the pavement.

"Frag," muttered Burnout. He turned and ran back to his car, and felt the impact of bullets on the back of his coat. They didn't hurt much, but they did throw him off balance enough to bring him to the pavement. Not to be deterred, he bounced back up and sprinted to his car, climbing in and slamming the door. He jammed the ignition button and cringed as the windshield took more damage. Nothing got through, though; most consumer cars used strong enough material that a few bullets wouldn't hurt the occupants. His Saturn Tethys was no exception, but it did have a few modifications that could return the favor.

First thing's first, though - the guy dying on the sidewalk.

The two bangers on his side of the road were standing straight in front of the car. He could take them out, but there was still Knifey next to the dying guy.

And Knifey had been the one to shoot him.

He was going to regret his decision to pursue multiple targets - or at least, to shoot Burnout. Because now Burnout was behind the wheel - and jacked in.

Burnout jacked into the car through his Control Rig, the Saturn becoming an extension of himself; for all intents and purposes, the car was Burnout. He peeled away from the curb and crossed the street, aiming for Knives.

The banger dodged. Somehow. Burnout scowled at himself; some of that could be blamed on the polarized lenses, but part of that was just sloppy driving. No excuse. He checked the guy on the sidewalk quick - he was bandaging himself up quickly, and assuming he could get to the car, would make it. "About damn time!" the man cried.

The nerve of this guy, this stranger. Burnout waved for him to get his ass in the car, then checked his rear scopes. The two bangers, now on the other side of the road, had jumped back so as to not get hit by the car, but were bringing their guns back up to bear. The car was between them and the man on the sidewalk, so he was safe from their fire. The one who had dodged was on the trunklid of a Buick parked on the side of the road, directly out Burnout's driver side window. He rolled off the trunk and smashed in the window of the Buick, climbing in, while the other two fired harmlessly into the rear of Burnout's car.

Burnout sighted the two bangers with a scope on the rear of the vehicle, then unleashed one of his modifications. The rear license plate flipped up, revealing an Ares Alpha assault rifle - and a volley of fire that took down first one banger then the other. The man on the sidewalk backed up to the aluminum wall and pulled a long-barreled assault rifle (from where?) and fired into the rear of the car that Knifey was trying to hijack. It didn't connect with the banger but there was a satisfying bang as it hit the trunklid, signifying an explosive round. The man crawled around the front of the car and Burnout popped the door open. The man climbed in the car and the door closed automatically.

"Whisper Wind," he said by way of introduction, trying to gain his breath.

"Really? I would've expected that from me." A shot spanged off the outside of the car. Burnout pointed up to the opening sunroof.

"Huh?" Whisper asked. "Oh. Elf." He flicked Burnout's ear and pulled himself and his rifle up through the sunroof and lined up the other banger across the road.

"Burnout. Try not to bleed all over the place."

"No promises." His foot slipped on the center console and his shot went wide.

"I think you need new shoes."

"Tell me about it." Whisper Wind dropped back into his seat. "Can we buzz?"

"Sure." He slammed the car into reverse and cranked the wheel, facing the rear of the car at the Buick that Knifey had broken into. He smiled and peeled out.

Underneath the rear-facing Ares Alpha, the underslung grenade launcher thoomped. A grenade sailed through the air and in through the shattered car window. A look of pure terror washed over Knifey's face - followed by confusion as with a small flash and a fshhhhh sound, the smoke grenade unleashed its payload, filling the car in seconds.

Burnout drove away, the gun retracting back under the license plate. "Non-toxic, but he's probably not having a good time in there."

Whisper Wind laughed and flipped an obscene hand gesture out the window. Burnout did the same. This could be the start of something special.

Boter, formerly of TF.N as Boter and DarthArjuna. I like making movies and playing games, in one order or another.

Re: RECAPS: SD Shadowrun: Burnout's Story

The Team (Session 1)

A few days later, Burnout found himself on the same stretch of road.

Because of what happened with Whisper Wind, he hadn't had the chance to actually complete his mission. Whisper, obviously, had run into his own problems. Seeing that their missions weren't mutually exclusive, they had decided to work together - and hired a third shadowrunner, a troll named Dave.

Dave. Like all runners, it was undoubtedly an alias, but come on man, where's your sense of style?

Burnout had a bad habit of being recognized at the most inopportune times, so they'd parked an extra couple of blocks back and Burnout was doing reconnaissance with a swarm of MCT Fly-Spy minidrones. Once again there were two gang members on one side of the street and one in the alley across the street; the alley one was loading crates of something into a box truck.

Burnout needed to plant his signal jacker into a support beneath one of the buildings after the previous plan fell through. Whisp meanwhile had to kill the leader of this gang, a guy by the name of Michael. That in mind, the elf sent more drones into the subway station beneath the target building and continued to scope it out while Whisper Wind climbed up a nearby building, making his way to the warehouse that the banger was loading the truck from.

Occupied as he was scouting out the subway (two more bangers and some security cameras), he almost didn't notice a banger come around an A/C duct on the roof and stab Whisper.

"What the hell, I thought you said this was clear!"

"My bad! That one's my fault." He held out a hand to Dave, keeping him from going in - let Whisp quietly take out the guy on the roof and continue as plan-

"ALERT!" came a cry from the rooftop. Burnout checked his drone up there - in a brawl, the banger had dropped his commlink, but realized belatedly that he wouldn't need it when backup was within earshot.

Burnout nodded to Dave, but the troll was already charging the bangers across the street. He drew his shotgun, lined it up, and BLAM the banger was missing a head. After another moment, the second one took a blast too, but managed to stay standing. Dave took cover behind a car.

The rest of the gang members reacted. The two in the subway made for the stairs; on that same level, a guy came out of the men's restroom, followed shortly by a disheveled-looking woman. And up top, the guy loading the truck dropped what he was doing and climbed into the driver's seat.

Burnout unjacked from his drone Personal Area Network and switched over to the car control and moved to block the alleyway entrance. He slid sideways into place (style) and opened up on the emerging truck with his two forward-facing Ares Alphas. First he tried to take out the truck itself, maybe score a lucky hit against the engine block, but at the end of the day, it was a big commercial truck and his weapons were just assault rifles. Setting a goal for himself to upgrade them at some point, he switched tactics and fired at the wheels, blowing out the front passenger side tire.

Across the street, Dave had taken out the second banger and had climbed on top of the awning over the subway stairs, ready to take out the gang members as they emerged. On the rooftop, Whisper wasn't doing quite so well and rolled off the roof, landing on the truck. He'd just managed to regain his balance when the truck turned sharply coming out of the alley. (Burnout had left it room just in case; he wasn't willing to let the truck total his car for this assignment.) Whisp fell off the side of the truck and landed on the pavement near Burnout's car. Aggravated that he was getting away, Burnout went to pursue the truck... and saw that in his haste to get out, the banger had left the rear doors open. The rigger grinned and switched weapon systems, and fired a high explosive grenade from one of the Alphas. It sailed clear into the truck, and after a moment's delay, BOOM. The truck didn't take much damage but its cargo had been decimated. Some fluid of some sort sailed on the back, getting on Whisp and the car. Burnout casually hit his windshield wipers to get it out of his sight and brought his car back into the alley to see what the fuss was about.

Dave somewhat calmly asked Burnout and Whisp to take care of the guy on the roof, who was still up there and taking potshots at him. Burnout stepped out of his car and fired his pistol at the banger, and Whisper finished him off with a ground-level shot.

Dave ducked down into the subway; Burnout heard some muffled screams. "I'm going to see what's in these crates," he said to the others. "I'll be right down."

"Awesome," said Whisp. He sounded a little out of it; maybe it was the fall he'd taken.

Burnout peeked inside one of the crates and amended his diagnosis - it was probably the crates of Bliss he'd vaporized. He caught a faint whiff of it himself before closing the crate. He patted the lid. "I'll be back for you later."

He jaunted across the street and skipped down the subway steps to rejoin the others. Three of the four had been killed; two were tangled in such a way that Burnout thought one had been used as a weapon against the other. I underestimated Dave. He does have style.

This level was where people could buy tickets, sit and rest, or throw junk into the fountain in the middle. A cursory glance confirmed that they had done just that. The last banger - the disheveled girl - was standing shakily atop a spreading pool of her own urine. She was undoubtedly new to this whole gang thing. Burnout lightly hopped over one of the bodies and said, "I don't suppose you'd take it the wrong way if I asked you to drop to your knees?" He looked around distractedly as she complied and found what he was looking for - a terminal in one of the walls. He started to make his way there. "Can I ask your name?" he asked, not quite looking at her.


"Sofie! Pretty name." He switched to his PAN and sent some drones down a level. There were tracks, but no cars - or people, or equipment. He switched back over to the meat world, where Whisper was getting closer to Sofie, a gun pointed at her back. Vaguely aware that he wasn't quite within his own faculties, and that Whisp had been hit harder than he had, he said, "Whisp, you mind checking those bathrooms, make sure there's nobody else whizzing in here?"

Whisp reluctantly agreed. Dave, meanwhile, took Sofie with him to check the lower level.

A few minutes passed. Whisp proclaimed an "all clear" in the bathrooms, Dave saw signs of recent occupation below, Sofie was shocked that the leader had bugged out and taken the operation with him instead of lending backup, and Burnout managed to completely fry the signal jacker. It wasn't his area of expertise, but he'd been carefully instructed. Just, he couldn't quite remember if it was blue stripe to green wire, or green stripe to blue wire. Also that apparently soldering wasn't needed. He tried to fix it but eventually gave up; he was only making it worse. Why couldn't all electronics work on internal combustion or hydrogen.

click "Hey, Jackstand."

"Burnout! What're you up to?"

"I'm in a bind. I'm at the subway stop on 32nd and Main and need a Mark 75 signal jack."

"Ouch. When?"


"Alright... I think I know a guy who knows a guy who knows a guy, I'll see what I can do."

"Thanks man. I owe you."

"Yeah. And call more often, would you?"


Burnout overpaid for the signal jacker (with complementary and quasi-trustworthy installation included) while Sofie was eventually let go with a couple doses of Bliss for her trouble (she was obviously an addict that Michael had been taking advantage of). Good will to and from others was like currency; it had to be hoarded and spent carefully. And considering he was down to his last couple hundred nuyen, Burnout needed all the alternative currency he could get. Speaking of which - he loaded up four fifty-dose crates into his car. Three were left. Looking out on the street, he saw a Buick missing a window - unmoved since he'd chucked a smoke grenade in just a few days prior. Hoping that meant it'd be here later, he loaded the last three crates into it.

He didn't want to be a drug dealer, but if he could find one he could offload it in bulk - quick money with none of the mess. Hopefully.

At the end of the day, he got paid for his efforts. He split the proceeds with Whisper and Dave.

Michael was still out there. Dave still had a mission to do. And darn it, they worked well together. Burnout considered his compatriots. Yeah.

This could work.

Boter, formerly of TF.N as Boter and DarthArjuna. I like making movies and playing games, in one order or another.

Re: RECAPS: SD Shadowrun: Burnout's Story

Tracking Down Michael (Session 2)

The next day, Burnout, Whisper Wind and Dave went to work picking up Michael's trail.

The station that the gang had been operating out of turned out to not even be an operating station; it was part of a planned line expansion that was never completed. After some time comparing the plans with city maps, the three of them found another station, this one even less finished that the first. Its entrance was chained up. Ticket booths hadn't been installed. Only part of the fountain was in. There were no security cameras, and the bathrooms were unfinished.

Whisp led the way to the equally abandoned lower level, then on foot down the tunnel. Eventually the municipally-dug tunnel ended and a rough hewn tunnel took over. Tracks continued in a functioning but haphazard fashion and the route veered off of the planned expansion.

Eventually, it opened up into a large underground cavern. A single dilapidated subway car sat on the rails ahead, stopped at a rickety platform. Running water could be heard somewhere in the dimly lit expanse.

Whisp snuck forward, but was seen by a lookout in the car.

"You! Stop!"

"Oh, hey!" said Whisp, trying to play it cool. Dave edged closer while Burnout flew a drone in to get a closer look. "I think I'm lost. Can you help me out?"

"Come here." The lookout - recognizably a part of Michael's gang - stepped outside of the car. Burnout's drone found four more guys playing cards inside. From the drone's perspective, it was obvious the winner was cheating.

Whisp stepped a bit closer. "Hey, you know what, I can just go, I didn't want to bother you."

"No, wait here for a-" The lookout noticed Whisp's rifle and brought his own up nervously. "Hey! Drop your weapon!"

"What? Hey, I can just go, you don't have to worry about-"

"I said drop it!" He called over his shoulder back into the car. "Tim! Come out here!"

Dave edged closer to the car as the cheater groaned and set his cards down. "What is it, Gary?"

"Dude's armed!"

Whisp set down his rifle and slowly circled around, warning his teammates under his breath to avert their eyes, and putting Gary between him and the car. "Sorry guys, I really just wanted to-" Whisp set off a flash-pak, blinding them, and Dave ran up and blasted at one of them. Burnout relayed his current intel and then ran into the firefight as well, tossing Whisp back his rifle when he got to it.

For once, all three runners did good by themselves in the firefight, instead of just relying on Dave. The troll was hit a few times, but things were looking up - until Burnout took one hit from a yet-unseen sniper across the underground stream. He hit the ground and crawled behind the subway car. Whisp took his rifle, sighted, and counter-sniped with one shot.

As fast as it started, the firefight was over. Dave patched up himself and Burnout, and entered the car with Whisp while Burnout set back to exploring the cavern with drones.

Inside the car, Dave found a commlink on one of the gang members and tried a redial.

"Who's this?" asked a casual voice on the other end of the line.

"This is Dave," Dave said. "Can I assume this is Michael?"

"Sure is."

"I've got someone here who wants to talk to you." Dave offered the commlink to Whisp, who vehemently refused it. The troll placed it in the human's hand anyway; a bit hard to argue.

"Fascinating. That sounded messy," Michael continued. "I assume you already took out all of my guys?"

"Uhhh, yeah."

"Did they at least get some of you?"

"No, not really."

"Well, how many of you are there? I had six there."

Whisp made a show of looking around, though the link was voice-only. "About a dozen. You?"

"About a thousand."

Burnout, overhearing this outside, rolled his eyes and climbed up inside the car. "All clear out here. Some of the guys are getting restless."

"They can wait." The three of them started poking around the car; equipment of some sort - most likely for the manufacture of Bliss - was scattered around it. "Now, Michael. I don't suppose you'd like to tell us where you are?"

"I don't suppose I would. Why are you looking for me? Is it personal? For money? It'd have to be for money. How much am I worth?"

"Two thousand." (The actual bounty that Whisp had signed on for was ten thousand.)

"I'll give you twenty thousand to leave right now."

Dave crouched next to a wire mesh crate and wrinkled his nose. "Make if forty thousand and we don't kill your cook," he said. A man was curled up in a bed of his own waste, seemingly asleep through the preceding firefight. Dave slapped him around a bit to wake him up.

"Hey, that's uncalled for," Michael said over the commlink. Whisp belatedly realized that Michael could see what was happening and looked around. a Fly-Spy drone in different colors from Burnout's was sitting on the makeshift card table. Whisp yanked out his knife and made to stab it, but it flew away, disappearing into the cabin.

"That," observed Burnout, "was slightly called for."

Over the next half hour, the team explored the cavern and spoke to Walter, the imprisoned man. The cavern turned up nothing but the occasional glimpse of Michael's drone and the stream continuing downriver with no way to navigate it; Walter revealed that he had been prisoner for around three years. Together, the four of them destroyed the equipment, hoping it'd be cathartic for Walter.

With no leads, the team started to take the car back down the tracks, but Burnout realized that just as his drones couldn't go far enough downriver to see anything, Michael shouldn't have the range for his drones to spy on the group. They went back to the cavern, searched it again, and Burnout found a cable at the bottom of the car connected to the rail. Waiting until he could see Michael's drone, he cut the cable, and the drone dropped to the ground, inert. Either Michael had figured out a way to use the rail and car as an extended radio antenna, or there was a device somewhere in the car that was retransmitting the signal (a device which, thinking back on it, Burnout had probably destroyed in the zeal to destroy the rest of the machinery).

Following the rails back down the tunnel, Dave spotted an out of place wall. A cable bundle snaked from the rail into it and a small drone-sized hole sat next to it. Burnout sent one inside, finding that the secret door could only be opened from deeper within the hallway on the other side.

The hallway descended a short distance then opened up into a large control room. Four guards stood near the entrance. Three deckers worked at various control stations. One rigger sat in a chair. And someone sat in the middle of the room not doing anything, but doing so in a way that made it obvious that he was Michael.

The team looked at each other. They couldn't get in, and they definitely weren't coming out. Now what?

Boter, formerly of TF.N as Boter and DarthArjuna. I like making movies and playing games, in one order or another.

Re: RECAPS: SD Shadowrun: Burnout's Story

Heist Aftermath (Session 12)

The heist had gone off more-or-less as planned. The team had gotten paid, in some cases just barely making back what was spent on it. Shadowhawk gave Burnout crap for not trying to renegotiate after the job incredibly well done; he wasn't entirely wrong. When Burnout did runs on his own, he'd negotiate the price, do the run, get paid; with a team and a higher caliber of job, with more variables for how well the job went, the idea of renegotiating afterward just hadn't occurred to him. Some experience to tuck under the belt for the future, apparently.

The next few days passed by in comparative peace. The team made another trip to the subway offshoot cavern, with two goals in mind. The first was hardware recovery - retrieval of the large server machine from the camp downstream. This involved Dave's considerable strength and measuring weight against the inflatable dinghy's inconsiderable durability. Eventually, though, it was recovered.

The other goal was reconnaissance. The stream in the cavern had a source that was obstructed by an overhang that dipped into the water; exploring it would mean swimming an unknown length of time upstream in the dark. Not something anyone was comfortable with. Burnout had previously tried shopping for underwater drones to only be confronted with pricetags upwards of 500 nuyen, perhaps closer to a thousand, so he tried a different tactic:

A toy submarine.

The only one he could find was pink. Tickled at the idea of it, he bought it, and he and Whisper spent the day turning it into the finest seafaring vessel they'd ever seen - at least, in their eyes. Connection to Burnout's drone control system, upgrading the camera, improving the motor, adding to the battery life. They maxed out its little neon chassis with everything they possibly could, and after careful consideration dubbed the sub the "Tsunderine".

On this trip into the cavern, Burnout piloted the sub upstream, and found that after only about twenty feet it opened up into another, smaller cavern. The stream again was sourced from behind a wall that dipped into the water, and the flow was faster, and Burnout wasn't able to progress any further. From his limited point of view, it appeared that there were no other entrances into this cavern, and there was no equipment present that might be of some interest to the group. Pleased with the Tsunderine's maiden voyage, he brought it back, and they returned to their various home bases.

Upon returning from the cavern, and knowing it'd take some time for Shadowhawk to get anything meaningful from the server, Burnout helped out the best way he knew how - he decided to get in touch with Brennan Kelley.

In a previous life, Brennan had been an acquaintance of Felix Mulwray while the latter worked at Saturn. Nowadays Brennan was the design lead for the corporation, itself through numerous connections a subsidiary of Ares Macrotechnology. Brennan was a man of habit, and so that morning Burnout eschewed his signature jacket and found some business casual in the back of his closet, and waited patiently at the coffee shop down the road.

He was not disappointed. Brennan grabbed his coffee, turned away from the counter, and saw a ghost, which smiled and waved him over to its table.

"It's... it's you!"

"Sure is."

"But... you died."

"Faked it. Kinda had to."

"I went to your funeral!"

"So did I. Kind of weird. I'd recommend it if you get the chance."

Despite how long Felix had been gone, Brennan had very little difficulty believing it was him. This somewhat disappointed Burnout; he was hoping to reveal how with Jackstand's help he'd snuck designs for a new car into the systems of various employees, the Saturn Legacy which was just now hitting production lines. Still, saved him the trouble of having to convince him.

"So... what brings you back? From the dead?"

"Well, first off, if it's no trouble, I'd rather my return stay on the down-low."

"Yeah, yeah, no problem."

"Second off, the reason I've been off the grid is a project I've been working on. It involves artificial intelligence. We're a small team, very devoted and fiercely independent. Lately we've gotten some rumblings about some megacorps that are interested in the prospect and have kind been digging around us. I know that automotive design is kinda far removed, but considering the direction autonomous cars sometimes seem to take, I was wondering if you'd heard any rumblings."

"Oh, man. Bad news, man, stay away from that stuff."

"Kinda late for me. Why do you say that?"

"Aztechnology wants in. Saeder-Krupp wants in - and you want nothing to do with anything Lofwyr's near."

This so far only confirmed what Burnout and the team knew. Still, he did a good job acting surprised, especially at Lofwyr's name. He let a shiver run down his back; not hard, as it always seemed to be there, waiting, and even after release still wanted to paralyze Burnout at the thought of what he was getting into.

"What about Ares? Have your higher-ups shown any interest in the prospect?"

"Well, that's the thing. They were, but then they were visited by diplomats from the Front Range Free Zone. After that meeting, they sent out a memo - don't do it. The stakes are too high, just don't even touch it."


"Yeah. Apparently Ghostwalker himself is looking into things, and we don't want to cross him."

That, the team didn't know. The shiver was involuntary this time. "Ghostwalker."

"Yeah. However deep you are, walk away."

Burnout took a deep breath. "Afraid I can't do that. But, if you ever need to reach me... say you have more info for me, or you need something done that a dead man can do, here's my number. But remember - this meeting didn't happen."

"Yeah... yeah. Thanks." The two nodded and stood up. "It was nice seeing you, Felix."

"You too."

Brennan kept nodding absently as he walked away, dialing his phone. "Yeah... yeah, I'm taking the rest of the day off. Don't quite feel right."

The Front Range Free Zone, and by extension Ghostwalker, were now a third party involved. Whisper had a favorite saying that was starting to rub off on Burnout:

"Fucking dragons, man."

Boter, formerly of TF.N as Boter and DarthArjuna. I like making movies and playing games, in one order or another.

Re: RECAPS: SD Shadowrun: Burnout's Story

His Own Petard (Session 13)

Shadowhawk dug into the server and it was another couple of days before anything came up. Eventually he was able to find out that Michael had been working for Ghostwalker. Whether Michael was an outright employee or just a subcontractor, it was hard to tell from their correspondence, but confirmation that Michael - still not confirmed to be dead - was working with the recently-revealed third party now on the hunt for the AI made a headache for everyone.

Meanwhile, some of the packet sniffers that the team had set up over a month prior - seemed like years at this point - turned up the barest of hits on Digi-Walt (for lack of a better name), tracing to a federal prison on the outskirts of town. Discussions were had on potential ways to get it, ranging from Dave getting a new security job to Dave getting arrested (somehow it always fell to Dave), but no serious planning had yet begun.

The next day, Burnout and Whisper once again returned to the cavern, this time with one more modification to the Tsunderine - a small, waterproof capsule on the bow in which a single Fly-Spy drone could take shelter. On the way down, they noticed that the train car was missing - it'd previously been outside of the caved-in bunker. As for the bunker itself, the hallway leading to it was now cleared of rubble. They cautiously continued down to the waterfront, where they found no car, but the platform had collapsed, and a large pile of rubble sat across the tracks from it. The activity all looked to Whisper like it was a couple days old, but they kept a watchful eye as Burnout once again sent the Tsunderine upstream.

Before even launching the drone from the sub, they immediately noticed something new in the smaller cavern - a waterproof pod sat next to a communications array, powering it. Launching the drone, Burnout took a closer look. The text was in Spanish; the parts sourced from a company based in the Yucatan Peninsula. Aztechnology, almost certainly. A further look (after beaching the sub so he could give his full attention to the drone) revealed nothing but a naturally eroded hole in the ceiling leading to another cavern system. Burnout returned the drone to the sub, carefully unbeached it (telling Whisper that a reverse mode for the motor should be the next modification), and brought it back, then went back up the subway system in search of the car.

On the way, they got a call from Dave. "Hey guys. You know the prison we've tracked Digi-Walt to?"

"Yeah?" said Whisper.

"I checked the inmate list. And there's a block full of smart psychology types. Others too. The types you'd want together for research into anything even remotely close to this."

"Great," said Burnout. "What's the good news?"

"At least half of them are human pieces of shit that experimented on metahumans."

"Greeeat," said Whisper, visually not taking offense. Every metatype had their own sacks of crap. "Let us know if you find anything else."

They found the car at the first station, where they'd first encountered Michael's "gang" two months prior. It was burned out and mostly demolished, having just been preserved enough to be a self-powered cart on wheels. Burnout took another drone up to the next level to see if anyone was there.

There was someone, but she likely had nothing to do with the car. She was spray painting something on the wall.

Whisper leaned in closer over to take a look at the video screen. In the intervening two months, benches had been smashed, the fountain damaged, and graffiti covered most of the flat surfaces. "WE ARE WE" messages had an alarming percentage of real estate.

"Is that Sophie? ... and is she writing We Are We stuff?"

Burnout peered closer. Sure enough, she was quoting a passage from one of his Manifestos. He shook his head; he'd known that We Are We was out in the wild and had taken on a life of its own; had counted on it, in fact, for it to be an effective diversion from the team's activities. But it was still disturbing to see in real life; the grotesque mixture of pride and dread filled his heart as he watched.

"Well," he said after a moment, "Do we talk to her?"

They had last seen Sofie over a month ago, when she stole the wallets of many of the patents at Catherine's clinic, blew it all on Bliss, and OD'd. Burnout insisted on getting her help; they found another clinic (or was it a full-on hospital) and got her admitted. Burnout wrote her a note - he wish he'd remembered what it said, but it was something along the lines of, "I saved you. Don't screw up again because I might not be there for you. Turn your life around."

From the drone footage, Whisper guessed that she didn't look high, but still wanted nothing to do with her. Eventually, Burnout decided to sneak up the stairs while Whisper watched from the shadows.

"Hell of a taste in role models," said Burnout casually from near the bathrooms.

Sofie's head whipped around and a grin lit up her face. "Burnout!" She ran up and tackled him into a hug. "Oh my God, it's so great to see you!"

This was probably one of the last things he'd been expecting. After the shock passed, he returned the hug. "It's good to see you too! You're looking well." He meant it; her face was full of natural color and her eyes seemed healthy. Whisper confirmed quietly over comms that there were no apparent signs that she'd been using recently.

Sofie told Burnout about We Are We, and he encouraged her to go on. She quoted some of the Manifesto material. It was apparent that, recovering from Bliss, she'd instead latched onto the political movement. Burnout was mostly sure that it was an improvement.

After going on for some time, Sofie's eyes unfocused and she bit her lip. Then, she nodded, and said, "I trust you. We've got a meeting in about an hour, I'd like you to come."

"Sure." She started ahead. Burnout, conscious that Whisper would be left behind without a ride, dropped his keys softly for him.

"Rooftops," he then heard over comms, from the parkour specialist. Sofie turned around to see him blushing and picking up his keys from the ground, then following her.

She led him through various streets and alleys before finally arriving at an alley door. She knocked a secret knock, said, "He's with me," and entered. The irony of Burnout, the original writer and creator of the We Are We manifestos, needed to be vetted to gain entry, was not lost on him.

Inside the room were about half a dozen people. Sofie had made it clear on the way that this was the leadership group of the organization; there were other groups - cells, to be charitable - but they took directives from this one. And this group contained Sofie, a couple of people that Burnout recognized as patients from Cath's clinic (apparently Sofie had returned, apologized, and evangelized)... and Lofwyr.

Silver-haired, golden-eyed, Lofwyr. Head of Saeder-Krupp. Great Western Dragon. Personification of one of at least two antagonists in the entire Digi-Walt saga.

Assuming leadership position of We Are We.

And, perhaps most terrifying, Lofwyr seemed to recognize Burnout as well.

They both played it quite cool. Burnout bullshitted about admiring the ideals that We Are We had come up with, while Lofwyr bullshitted about thanking Burnout for helping Sofie and how great a help she is. And poor Sofie stood beside them with no idea.

The meeting lasted for an hour and a half. Early on, Burnout got a text from Whisper, stating simply, "Had to go get bread from the store." Burnout played it off and put it back away turning his attention back to the drafting of another Manifesto. Lofwyr tried to involve dragons, casting them in both positive and negative lights (and one in the know could see which dragon was which); Burnout played up his innocence and meely suggested that dragons weren't good iconography for the "We" side of the equation. Sofie backed him, and her influence being apparently quite heavy they got it struck from it, while simultaneously adding something about "The imprisonment of the soul" - something to work in once the prison job went down.

There was also talk of the next job - a mostly written Manifesto (ending We Are Here instead; Burnout argued for it still ending with We Are We to keep the idea decentralized) and a plan to knock out power to the city center again. He argued to knocking out power to the prison, as it'd go with the other one, but the group seemed to settle on two plans - first the city center with a Manifesto of growing influence, then the Imprisonment Manifesto with the prison job.

After the meeting, Burnout exchanged contact information with Sofie and called Whisper.

"You need to come here."

"Copy that."

Burnout retrieved his car and drove over to Whisper's apartment. The runner was waiting outside. "I ran into an old friend."

"Great. I ran into an old friend of yours too. And I need a drink."

The two of them went back to Burnout's place. The AI thinktank had mostly turned in for the night; Whisper and Burnout were alone in the garage.

Whisper went first. "An old contact of mine from way back contacted me about picking up a contract he'd started. He really needs Armand Hammer the... sixth?... kidnapped. He hasn't told me why, but I don't think it's just for the money - which is 200,000 nuyen in total. He's the only one of his team that made it out, and he's in rough shape."

Burnout hemmed and hawwed. "I don't know, man. The only reason I was okay with the last job like that was because it turned into a reverse of that job when someone else had done that job already."

"Yeah, I know. I need to find out why he's so intent on it. There's a week left to do it."

"Well, I'd vote against it. But if you're going to do it, I've got your back."

"Thanks." It struck Burnout how it seemed like the two of them had known each other for years, when it'd only been a couple months. Old friends. Being hunted by dragons and the like tended to distort one's sense of time.

Oh yeah. Speaking of which. "My turn. With one of your old friends."

"Which one?"

"Lofwyr." He let that hang for a moment. "Who apparently is now the head of We Are We."

Whisper sputtered, looked at his drink, and downed it. Burnout did the same. He contemplated that with Lofwyr in charge, the movement might be more focused and less of a generalized terror organization... but it was wishful thinking. They each grabbed another drink, and again downed it. They sat in silence for a few moments.

"I have meddled in the affairs of dragons," said Burnout, almost to himself.

"Fucking dragons, man," said Whisper softly.

Boter, formerly of TF.N as Boter and DarthArjuna. I like making movies and playing games, in one order or another.

Re: RECAPS: SD Shadowrun: Burnout's Story

Should be noted that we "technically" don't know about Ghostwalker yet (Holy shit, I got the name right on the first try. I'm a god.) all of the Tsunderine and We Are We stuff is happening while Shadowhawk is cracking the computer. (We were just given some hints by out glorious DM about what we "will" find on it.) But we can probably say you're starting to pull off files that suggest Ghostwalker is involved somehow.

I think at the start of next session is when the comp will be fully hacked.

Re: RECAPS: SD Shadowrun: Burnout's Story

Well, we know that Ghostwalker is a thing because of my meeting with Brennan; granted we might not technically know how connected Michael is to all of it. Still, it plays well in the story tongue

Boter, formerly of TF.N as Boter and DarthArjuna. I like making movies and playing games, in one order or another.

Re: RECAPS: SD Shadowrun: Burnout's Story

Right right, forgot about that. Yeah, I guess it's mostly the Michael/Ghostwalker/Nightshade connection that's the big bomb from the computer.

Re: RECAPS: SD Shadowrun: Burnout's Story


Burnout did something he never thought he'd do in his life.

He stepped out of the cab.

He was dressed in the same business casual he'd worn to his last meeting with Brennan. The setting was different, however - a bar after the work shift, rather than a lunchtime cafe. This was partially so as to not disrupt his former workmate mid-day, and partially to sleep off the rest of the fucking-dragons-man hangover he'd incurred with Jackstand the night prior.

He spied Brennan at the bar, chatting with another straight that Burnout didn't recognize. He made his way over and motioned for a drink. The bartender popped the cap off the beer and started to hand it to Burnout, then caught his eye and stopped. "Wait... you're..."

"Yes," Burnout said softly, "and I'd appreciate it if you kept it to yourself." He dropped payment on the bar - with a tip that was more appropriate to a party of eight at the most expensive steakhouse in town - and nodded to the television, currently on a news channel replaying some of his antics from the previous night. He suppressed a smirk as they replayed the clip of the jump from one parking garage straight into another. "And don't worry, I like this place." A convenient half-truth; Burnout hadn't been a fan of the place when he was legal a lifetime ago, but allowed that it may have changed; and in either case, the bartender's shoulders loosened up and he slid Burnout's beer the rest of the way to him, then went to switch the channel to troll league baseball.

The guy that was talking to Brennan had moved away, so Burnout slid over to take his spot. Brennan glanced over then did a double-take followed by a spit-take. "Jesus. What the hell, man?"

"Would you believe it was a disagreement over taco trucks?" He nodded toward an empty booth and started towards it.

Brennan hung at the bar for a minute, already regretting being about to follow him, and downed the last of his drink. He tailed Burnout to the booth and snatched the Shadowrunner's beer from his hands before he could take a sip and got started on it. "Start talking," he said, when he finally came up for air.

"The matter I asked you about last time. A had it, S-K wanted it, and G wanted to keep it from both of them."

Brennan took a minute to parse the abbreviations for Azetechnology, Saeder-Krupp and Ghostwalker, respectively. "And you thought it'd be a good idea to get tangled up in them? What did I tell you?"

"We were already sorta tangled." He pulled out a paper and turned it to the inside of the second section. "While the news is all concerned about my escapades, they - and most of the military - were ignoring the prison out here where the battle for the research was going on. I was the distraction while they... destroyed the AI." He only hitched slightly and fortunately Brennan didn't seem to notice.

"So now what? Congratulatons, Felix, everyone knows about 'Burnout' and you can't go anywhere in this city without someone wanting to turn you in. Hell, there are probably other Shadowwhatevers taking on contracts to bring in your head. So what do you plan on doing, dying again?"

"Considered it. Considered retiring Burnout and bringing back Felix, revealing the death certificate as a fake, something or other. Not quite sure yet. Go back to the quiet life."

"Yeah, good luck with that here. Too many people would recognize you, I think." Brennan took a swig and saw the look Burnout was giving him. "And no, you can't use me as a reference, and I won't be putting in a recommendation for you to come back." He let a small smirk touch his lips. "Your show car last night was a Chrysler-Nissan. Not even giving us good press, man."

Burnout laughed. "Only 'cause I didn't want to risk the Saturn." He smiled as silence passed between them. On the TVs, a steel-reinforced baseball punched through the outfield wall, but underneath where it would normally be ruled a home run; after a moment's deliberation, it was called a ground-rule double and the commentators talked about it and other rules that would go into effect next season.

"You've gotta get out of town."


"It's not that I don't enjoy these social calls," Brennan said, finishing the beer. "But just talking to you after all you've done is enough excitement in my life. Your life ain't for me, and my life ain't for you any longer either."

Burnout just nodded, then refocused on a display on his cybereyes for a second. "I need to get going. Got another goodbye to say."

"Right." Brennan and Burnout got up and shook hands. "I kind of wish I'd known you better before you died. The first time, that is. Then I'd be getting asked about you more."

"I hear the press gets suffocating," said Burnout with a smile. "Take care."

"No. I'll be fine. You take care."

Burnout tossed off a salute, walked out, and hailed another cab.

This had been fine. Fun, even. He was not looking forward to the next conversation.

[more to come]

Boter, formerly of TF.N as Boter and DarthArjuna. I like making movies and playing games, in one order or another.

Re: RECAPS: SD Shadowrun: Burnout's Story

An hour later, Burnout was in another bar. The last one, Jimmy's, had been nice; well-lit, the kind of place suits go when they want to feel edgy but with no real excitement.

The Dirty Dipper was like Jimmy's with a goatee. Complete mirror-universe opposite. It was nominally a Shadowrunner bar; at the very least, it was easy for a runner to find work at such a place. Burnout semi-fondly reminisced about meeting with the Yakuza in a different establishment during that whole ordeal. Things turned out alright in the end but maybe this time Burnout could keep from fumbling over his own words.

It didn't help that he was still wearing the polo and slacks from his last meeting. When he'd arrived at the Dirty Dipper, the bouncer tried to tell him, "You don't belong here." Burnout just stared at him wordlessly, waiting for recognition to click into place. When it didn't, he theatrically raised his arms. Half the cars on the street had started beeping and flashing their lights*; after a few seconds, their engines rumbled to life. Finally the bouncer's eyes widened and flicked to the portable TV kept by the door, where naturally he'd had news footage from the prior night - accompanied by some surveillance photos of Burnout - playing on repeat.

Nobody else challenged him.

His eyes unfocused as he re-read the message he'd received from Sophie last night. She wasn't happy about his attack on the We Are We headquarters during the distraction.

Of course, saying she "wasn't happy" about it is as much a glorious example of understatement as saying the Dirty Dipper was "somewhat dangerous" or that the bartender had "been in some scuffles" before.

Frankly he didn't even know if Sophie'd show. He replied and told her he'd explain himself, but he wasn't sure she'd take him up on it. Truth be told, he was pretty positive she wouldn't, and part of him wouldn't have minded.

But, no - here she was now. When Burnout had first seen her she was a waif with a gun, gaunt and strung out from Bliss. Now she was a healthy, confident, and pissed off ball of energy storming his way. He braced himself as she stared him down, chewing on the inside of her cheek, before sitting across from him. The patrons who had noticed her saw who she was talking to and pointedly turned back to whatever drinks, drugs, or dregs of society they had been dealing with.

"How dare you."

"It's not what you think."

"Not what I think? You ran three cars into the building, stuffed with explosive. I call that a deliberate attack."

"Not on you. On James."

"That's supposed to make me feel better?"

"Yes, because James isn't his real name."

"Well, obviously."

"It's Lofwyr." He waits a fraction of a second for recognition to kick in. "Dragon. Head of Saeder-Krupp. You remember how I found you working for Michael? He was working for Ghostwalker. Who was working against Lofwyr and Aztechnology. And Lofwyr is still interested in stuff in this city so he co-opted We Are We and made it his own. Oh, did I not tell you? I created We Are We. A run went bad and a police station blew up and I made up the Manifesto to cover my tracks." He wasn't yelling, but Burnout put forth no effort to keep his voice down. Patrons did that thing where they lean closer to eavesdrop without actually leaning in. "It was a fake movement I made up to take the heat off of us. And then people responded, they took it. And then Lofwyr corrupted it and used it for his own personal gains."

"I don't believe you," Sophie said immediately. Burnout was hurt that she wouldn't even consider what he had said, just flat-out denied it instead.

Still, he pressed on. "And the thing that had him so interested was an artificial intelligence, which Michael had kept captive. Which got away. And which Aztechnology trapped, and kidnapped Michael. And that we worked to take away from them and destroy at the behest of Michael's boss, Ghostwalker himself. Who, did I neglect to mention, is also a dragon. And we did that last night and what I did was basically the distraction. Getting rid of the We Are We HQ was a symbolic bonus."

"I can't believe you... I looked up to you." Her eyes were welling up, but her face was still full of fire.

"I'm sorry. For what it's worth. I came to ask you two things... or two present two options. First is that you could leave it behind. This city, the dragons, the terrorism, and come with me. I don't know where I'm going, but it won't involve any of this." Her glare confirmed his suspicions that she wouldn't even consider it. "Or, you can stay here.

"You can stay here and continue your work without the corrupting influence of a dragon. Maybe be smarter about it, less suicidal. Send a message without going up in flames. That life isn't for me, but it might be right for you. You believe in something. Make it happen, and don't let anybody tell you how to do it.

"I didn't make up We Are We to be an actual movement with direction, but it still felt wrong to me somehow that Lofwyr had made it so centralized and about his agenda. Take it and decentralize it. Democratize it. Make it for the people of this city. For you. For people like you. People like Michael. People like Jackstand and Jim and even rank-and-file shirts like Brennan." He was only half-talking to Sophie and at this point was remembering the people that had helped him in his life here in Seattle. "Make We Are We count for runners like Shadowhawk and Whisper, and ex-runners like Dave. For..." he tried to remember his recent dwarf companion's name and couldn't, so he just made an expansive gesture to imply "everyone". "This place sucks, Sophie. So go. Make this movement your own, do what you want with it. Make it count."

Sophie continued to glare at him. Maybe she'd taken affront to being told how to run her terrorist organization. Or maybe she was still devastated that her hero had betrayed her so thoroughly. Burnout hoped she'd understand eventually why he did what he had done. It hurt to see the hatred in her eyes, and the tears running down her cheeks.

Finally, without a word, she stood up. Patrons pulled back but didn't make any attempt to restart the conversations they had put on hold to listen in. Sophie glared for another moment, then turned her back and headed for the door.

Burnout stood up and called, "Sophie!"

She reached the door then hesitated. She didn't turn back to him, but... maybe her head turned, slightly, toward him. Burnout idly rapped a knuckle against the table, forming in his mind the last words he might ever say to the one person he'd managed to save through this whole ordeal.

"I'm proud of you. Good luck."

She may have nodded. Burnout wasn't sure. She left the bar and the door swung closed behind her.

Again Burnout felt self-conscious about his wardrobe, and the entire establishment sitting silent, staring at him and at the ghost of his failure. He walked out, passing the bar and dropping some nuyen on the counter. "I'm afraid I won't be attending my going-away party," he said to the bartender, "but I'll cover the tab." He traced Sophie's steps outside of the bar; in the street, there was no sign of her. Just the suffocating, clouded-over sky and claustrophobic buildings laced with gridlocked traffic.

Yes. Some time away from this is exactly what he needed.


*Shadow, maybe instead of "ignore limits" which are pretty damn high anyway, I could have the ability to control cars without a rigger interface? Let me know your thoughts.

Boter, formerly of TF.N as Boter and DarthArjuna. I like making movies and playing games, in one order or another.

Re: RECAPS: SD Shadowrun: Burnout's Story

He spent the night preparing things. Food, gear, repair supplies. Scrap and tools. It'd be the road trip to end all road trips and Burnout wasn't even sure if he had a destination.

The sun began to rise as clouds finally began to break up. The sky was tinged with brilliant purples and oranges and the ground itself was painted like a tapestry, seeming more dream than reality. Burnout drove out of town in his Saturn Tethys, first of its kind and holding sentimental value of his first life. He'd used it extensively in his second life, modifying it and making it his most trusted steed. And now he rode it forward to an unknown third life.

Following him by remote and pilot program was the matte grey Chrysler-Nissan Skyline R74 that he'd used to such effect two nights prior, adorned with an orange and purple Solo Jazz pattern on the sides. It'd been intended to be demolished along with the others but Burnout had done so well that he was able to make a clean break. Maybe he'd sell it down the line; with his newfound infamy, it might even command a higher price. And even if it wasn't an investment, it was still a surprisingly capable vehicle, and Burnout hated to be rid of it.

Taking up the rear was the Kenworth G460. A dark blood red cab with an as-yet unpainted trailer, it was what Burnout had fantasized about with the truck heist that had ended with the target vehicle scuttled (as cargo and occupants were airlifted by Chinook). Burnout had bought it and outfitted it as his own armored carrier and assault vehicle but had not found a use for it; perhaps he would in the space between cities. It never hurt to be careful.

This small convoy continued down roads that were abandoned, and clean pavement gave way to blown-over roadway. Dust billowed up behind the three vehicles. And in the distance behind them, gaining ground, more billowing dust followed.

Burnout checked his mirrors, then the sensor arrays on the Kenworth in back. Satisfied, he continued on his course.

A lowered Hyundai Shin-Hyung, bright green with black stripes. A heavily modified Ford Americar, bright yellow with red stripes. A Mitsubishi Striker, robin's egg blue with splatters of red suggesting blood coming up from its absurd body kit. A bone-stock Porsche Aguilar.

By twos and by threes, the street racers of Seattle formed up behind Burnout. They didn't know where he was going either. They didn't care. Some were prepared, like he was. Others weren't. A Mack Hellhound that someone else had likely loaded with supplies for the exodus was bringing up the rear.

Collectively, dozens if not hundreds of vehicles rode into the sunrise, ready to face a new day.

Boter, formerly of TF.N as Boter and DarthArjuna. I like making movies and playing games, in one order or another.

Re: RECAPS: SD Shadowrun: Burnout's Story

Shadowhawk wasn't used to the space he'd won himself in the short time he'd been part of that crew.  He sat in the glow of at least half a dozen variously sized monitors with computers, servers and components practically cocooning his chair.  He seemed to be simultaneously coding and building something as lines of text spread across multiple screens and the smoke of his soldering iron rose in a steady stream.

A small black screen within a screen flickered to life displaying a wavering blue line.  "Sir, you were correct."  Shadowhawk didn't look up as he muttered, "Obviously, did you do it?"  The line flickered as the speakers somewhere in the room projected the voice it represented, "I did as you asked.  I apologize for the duration of my absence.  He was far more ostentatious than I expected.  He patronized two drinking establishments, however, only a few of the other patrons thought to record the experience.  They will find the results less than newsworthy."

"I told you he doesn't now how to not make a scene.  It's your own fault if you didn't listen," Shadowhawk responded, finally looking up only to turn his attention to a series of windows that appeared on his screens.

"Indeed, I apologize again, sir.  You were correct, also about his exit.  It does not appear he even attempted to disguise the vehicle that was used during the siege.  I believe I was able to mask most of his departure, though, it is unlikely I could have sufficiently disguised the entourage that accompanied him out of the city."

"That's fine.  While you were out I "leaked" some information suggesting the cities street racers would be looking for a new place to shack up after the serious beat down they got by the cities new superstar.  I also posted a handful of sightings around the city."  He turned to look at the blue line, "Burnout did a good job, he deserves some rest," then he punched a few keystrokes and the windows came to life.  A series of videos of a convoy of race cars heading out of the city.  A series of different videos of the lead car freeze frame and zoom into a clear depiction of the driver from various angles.  A map of seattle and surrounding areas depicting the trajectory of the convoy.  A zoomed in shot through three wall sized panes of glass showing a man shooting a creature with bizarre cyber enhancements.  A vastly accelerated video of a man being forced to undergo cyber enhancements followed by a series of stills identifying the man as the one being executed.  A video of a man outside a seedy hotel taking a shot at a man with white hair followed by a series of stills identifying the shooters as the same man.  A long distance video of the white haired man coming out of nondescript building, followed by a video of three race cars crashing into and destroying that same building superimposed by the various manifestos of We are We, finally showing a still of that same man again in front of the Saeder-Krupp logo.

"Assuming I'm left alone, of course."
"Yes sir," and the window closes.

Last edited by Kal Spiro (2016-09-09 03:08:43)

Thumbs up +2 Thumbs down

Re: RECAPS: SD Shadowrun: Burnout's Story


Boter, formerly of TF.N as Boter and DarthArjuna. I like making movies and playing games, in one order or another.