Disposable Heroes

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Solidus
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Disposable Heroes

Post by Solidus » Tue Jul 30, 2019 1:52 pm

SOLO

Z Ratio took two sprinting steps before slamming down to his knees to slide the rest of the way across the polished black synth-marble floor to take cover behind one of the large pillars that dominated TBO's headquarters lobby. The practiced way in which he drew his Gunshin Gladius 1911 from its kydex holster one handed while simultaneously connecting its smart-link hardware with his own smart-link implant in his forearm, smooth as oiled crystal, seemed at odds with the tension in his voice.

"Fuckheads. Incoming. Front door." He whispered through gritted teeth into his throatmic. His retinal display projected targeting information from his handgun through his smartlink across his field of vision. Multiple heavily armed bad guys, he chuckled inwardly at the thought, on their way to ruin his day. The frustrated tension that had been plaguing Z Ratio while waiting for the dataminer to do her job 20 floors above him gave way to a much more welcome anticipation. Bad guy problems were a specialty of Z Ratio. He didn't much care on which side of the bad guy equation he landed on any given job. He just cared about the job; the contract. The contract was life. The contract was God. Z Ratio was a devout worshipper. Wishing only to see and do amazing things in the service of his God. Z Ratio wasn't alive unless he was working. Working meant being on the sharp end; nice suits, nice gear, bright eyes, sharp teeth, and impossible odds. Z Ratio bared his teeth in a grin. Life was about to get good.

“Copy that. Deal with it and then regroup on the roof.” Came the voice modulated reply from Z’s throatmic.

The shatterproof plasteel doors leading from the lobby to Weishaupt Avenue were ripped from their hinges (though, as promised, they remained unshattered) with the sound of wrenching metal and cracking glass. Two chrome cylinders, each about the size of a Zot cola can, came rolling through the newly ripped up doors. Z Ratio quickly ducked back behind the pillar and tapped a stud on his Thrash BattleShades, the lenses instantly darkening to full opaque. The flashbangs both detonated before Z Ratio could clap his hands to his ears, instantly giving him a splitting headache and ringing ears, but at least he could still see. He cleared his Thrash shades and keyed his Internal Cyberpump, a soft sigh escaping his lips as a custom cocktail of combat drugs flooded his system. Z Ratio shuddered slightly and again was reminded of liquid crystal flowing through his veins when he tapped. The dramamine derivative, made especially for him by his dealer, steadied his hands and just the right amount of FTS made staring into the abyss and screaming in defiance a seemingly biological imperative as opposed to a decidedly bad idea.

"Sirikit , I'm engaging. See you on the other side. I'm Walking on Sunshine now." True to the words spilling out of his pharma-induced rictus grin, Z Ratio keyed up the song of the same name on his complant and reached into a small molle pouch on his hip, palming two small cylinders about the size of spark plugs.

Purple targeting lasers cut through the flashbang's smoke that was slowly being cleared by the TBO building's internal environmental control system. The lasers seemed to pull the incoming 6-man stack of SECTeam operatives, sporting the latest in ceramic combat armor, through the door and into the lobby like the strings of a marionette. As they fanned out in an attempt to dominate the room, Z threw a static grenade followed by a thermite grenade in rapid succession from his position behind the pillar. When he felt the skin prickle sensation of the static grenade detonating, attacking any open communication networks with buzzing chaff like so many enraged hornets, he stood up and pushed off of the pillar and propelled himself into the center of the lobby at an angle. His right arm extended towards the SECTeam operatives and the handgun in his hand started to bark death, sending custom .45 Hot Loads into the faceplates and neck joints of their armor with cybernetically enhanced accuracy and speed. Each step propelled him further and faster; his vatgrown enhanced muscles cracking the faux marble under his heavy combat boots.

Z Ratio abruptly changed angles as the SECTeam operatives attempted to regain the initiative with massed gunfire. An admirable strategy that might have given the corporate enforcers the win, except for the detonation of the thermite grenade that doused them and their immediate surroundings with burning thermite, creating a firestorm from anything the thermite fuel touched. Z grinned ferally as the returning gunfire lessened and his steps continued to propel him to the elevator shaft and relative safety.

o/~ I"m walkin' on Sunshiinneee....whooahoa o/~ Three more steps and freedom. Z pulled out his belay device, ready to clip in to the pulley he'd installed on the elevator cables when he spared a look back over his shoulder. Six slumped, shot, or burning figures registered on his targeting HUD. He allowed himself a mental pat on the back and then slumped forward, his body no longer obeying his commands as a gunshot registered in his ears, vision blurring to black. His last thought barely registering as the synapses went dark:

. o O (Guess there’d been seven...) O o .

Seth
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Re: Disposable Heroes

Post by Seth » Thu Aug 08, 2019 12:56 pm

Awesome!!!!! I wish there was only 6. I wanted more. Thanks for this!

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Solidus
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Re: Disposable Heroes

Post by Solidus » Thu Aug 15, 2019 1:50 pm

SECTEAM

"Tango Down. Moving in." Smokey tendrils rose from the barrel of D'Amato's Sanguinuis pulse rifle as her combat helmet HUD registered no life signs on the mercenary who had just sliced through her SECTeam squad like a hot knife through butter. The razor sharp focus and calculations afforded D'Amato because of her neural co-processers, recently purchased with last week’s bonus, had made easy math of the merc's trajectory as he abruptly changed angles and continued to rip through her team. If D'Amato hadn't been riding a massive Black-19 spike, supplied by the skin derm she had patched onto her neck on the jumpship ride over, she might have felt a twinge of admiration for the way he'd handled himself. The Black-19 didn't allow for such things, though. Cool, calm, cruel and perfect - that's how she'd described riding Black-19 on mission to the corporate shrinks during her training and selection.

"Negative, Sergeant D'Amato, stay put until backup arrives. ETA 3 minutes." Came the reply from her subdermal radio, patched through to her TBO SECTeam combat helmet. Her irritation bubbled up slightly through the Black-19 in the form of a slight frown as she ran more calculations. She was up for another bonus, it appeared as though the people assaulting the building were limited in number, and, most importantly, the incoming backup team was Dylan's team. She couldn't have Dylan get this week’s bonus.

"Repeat last, Control. I think the static grenade is messing with my gear." D'Amato switched off her radio as Control squawked at her again to wait and stepped the rest of the way into the TBO lobby, careful not to touch any of the remaining thermite fuel that was still eating away at what used to be her colleagues and coworkers. The flames had subsided and now everything the thermite had touched was just burning down in angry red outlines. She paused a moment to let her helmet scanner look over her team. Some still had lifesign. Oh well, tough luck. The bonus for each kill on a defense mission like this was well over 10,000 credits. She'd already bagged one. This just meant more for her. She'd tell her teammate's clones, digital and biological backup copies of their consciousness and memories, activated and already decanting after their deaths what had happened. The ones still holding on to life would shuffle off soon, their own clones activating back in the corporate clone vaults.

She made sure to check her corners as she glided over the expanse of the lobby to the fallen mercenary, her ceramic armor barely whispering across the faux marble as she moved. The crumpled form of the mercenary stayed where it was. Her helmet scanner played over the corpse and showed an impressive suite of combat implants and equipment. She saw the belay device on his belt and looked over to the elevator doors. It looked like he had set up a pulley system to piggyback on the elevator cables. Smart.

Well, D’Amato was pretty smart too. She clipped in her armor’s built in belay to the pulley and was immediately ripped 20 floors up, the pulley system terminating at the 20th floor. She unclipped her belay and dove into the elevator lobby, rifle coming up to her shoulder as she scanned the surrounding hallways. Blood and carnage greeted her vision; office and the regular security shift workers lay slumped, beaten and cut up as far as she could see. There had been some return gunfire, she saw, but whatever had come through here had cut through the TBO personnel like some sort of mad god. D’Amato waited a moment, letting the information from her armor’s visual and auditory enhancing sensors wash over her. She heard voices and counted at least 3 heart beats coming from the meeting room down the hall, in addition to something that wasn’t reading correctly. She tapped her helmet’s sensor array, hoping to clear the error, but it persisted. She shrugged mentally before standing up and moving down the hall, her rifle held up at the ready. She let her front sight guide her as she cleared corners and rooms, moving to where her armor told her the enemy was. She risked another scan as she stopped outside the door to the meeting room. Three heart beats blipped in on the sensor, plus that strange error. Two of them had combat cybernetics, one was armed with a firearm of some sort. The third figure seemed to have a decking implant suite; their heart beat beating much slower than the others. Probably jacked into the matrix, D’Amato thought to herself. That makes things a bit easier.

She closed her eyes and took a deep breath, feeling the Black-19 still coiled in her bloodstream like potential. She stepped back and aimed at the target holding the firearm before flicking off her safety and squeezing the trigger slowly, anticipation building as she waited for the shot to break. Hypersonic HEAP rounds ripped through the wall and into her target, her s-link registering nothing but hits. She waited until her armor’s sensors showed the target slump, unmoving before she switched to the second tango. Before she could fire another round, the second merc came through the wall in an explosion of drywall and plasteel, rushing right at her. D’Amato had just a brief moment to appreciate how her muzzle flashes reflected oddly on the mercenary’s cybernetic limbs and bright red Ares Blocker Vest before he was on her. Her armor registered damage as she tried to fend off the mercenary’s punches. Each hit slammed into her like a freight train, the merc laughing loudly. She jammed the butt of her rifle into his face, buying just enough time to pull her sidearm and shove the barrel under the merc’s chin. His cybernetic limbs were wrapped around her throat, crushing the armor. She pulled the trigger and was greeted with a splash of gore. The merc, from threat to meat in the blink of an eye, still had metal hands around her throat. She peeled them back and kicked him away, gasping for air. The Black-19 reasserted itself, knocking back the panic she had felt. D’Amato stood up and picked her rifle back up after holstering her sidearm. Two more down, that’s a cool 30,000c total so far.

D’Amato stepped into the meeting room through the hole in the wall made by her attacker, noting that the 3rd figure had not moved. The figure, female and young, was slumped in a chair, data-jack cable trailing from her DNI jack in the back of her head to an expensive looking deck on the table. D’Amato chuckled to herself as she raised her rifle and took aim again.

. o O (Fucking deckers) O o. D’Amato thought to herself. She started to squeeze the trigger but a strange flicker out of the corner of her eye made her pause. She turned to get a better look and suddenly felt a sharp pain in her chest. Her legs went weak and she looked down to see about a foot of black metal protruding from her chest.

. o O (Not like this...a fucking sword?!) O o . The sword was ripped out angrily and D’Amato slumped to the ground, unable to speak. She watched as the air in front of her rippled and seemed to split away like pixels on a broken data-screen. The air continued to ripple and fade until it revealed an androgynous figure, nude, but devoid of any identifying genatalia, standing in front of her with a large sword in it’s hand. The figure had long flowing black hair, untied, that framed a strangely emotionless face sporting makeup reminiscent of a Kabuki doll. The figure reached down and grabbed D’Amato by her armor’s chest piece and lifted her up, seemingly without effort. It pulled D’Amato close, its forehead up against the faceplate of D’Amato’s armor. D’Amato watched in horror, feeling her life ebb out as the Kabuki killer’s face smiled slightly and kissed her faceplate where her mouth would have been. The figure carried D’Amato, one handed, over to a window and looked out, the city’s lights playing across the Kabuki killer’s skin and black sword like a lover’s fingers. D’Amato could hear the rotors of an approaching Aerodyne and allowed herself, for a brief moment, a sliver of hope. She looked at the approaching AV and then back to the figure holding her. She saw rage flit across its face before she felt herself shoved up against the window. The Kabuki mercenary winked at D’Amato and planted a foot in her chest, sending her through the window and out into the night, darkness swallowing up her consciousness as she fell.

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