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Hunting Ghosts (Aphelion)

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Draskovic's office had been a bust.

By the time Mal and Teddy got there local law enforcement was just about ready to swarm the place. Some smooth talking on his part had gotten them out of there without arousing suspicion, but also without any evidence that might have been there. It had been quite a blow. The dead businessman had been their best lead so far on the Assassin's Guild, and there was no telling what they might have found there. Anything mentioning the guild would be crucial to their efforts, and one way or another they would need to find a way to get to it.

Luckily, Adaanai and Pavel had been far more successful in their mission to infiltrate Night Rhythm, a club owned by a local gang, the Dead Eyes, Draskovic was known to have ties to. The pair had managed to copy the club bosses hard drive, and even magically bug the entire building. While the drive was taking some time to decrypt, but the bug was already baring fruit. Currently Mal was sitting at the kitchen table of the groups safe house, listening to a conversation between two high-ranking Dead Eyes members.


"We're fucked! You hear me? D-O-N-E Fucked!"

"Calm down."

"You fuckin calm down! Draskovic is dead! We both know what that means!"

"Yes, his contingency; I'm well aware."

"Then why ain't you freaking out?! He's got enough dirt in that fucking file to bury us ten times over, and it's set to be released in the event of his untimely death. Which you may have noticed just happened!"

"Then why haven't we heard anything? It's been three days since he bought it, but there's been nothing; no news coverage, no cops knocking on our door, not a damn thing."

"What are you saying?"

"I got a hunch... that whoever bumped Draskovic off is trying to get to us through him. Like, he managed to get that file, and he's sitting on it."

"Assuming this is true, why ain't they contacted us? I mean they got us by the short hairs here."

"I dunno... but we better find out."


Mal paused the recording there, and regarded the assembled members of his team.  

"You heard 'em. Somebody's putting the squeeze to the organized crime in the city, and they're using the Assassin's guild to do it. If this is true, we need to know more."

With a few taps, he pulled up a map of the city, "Besides the Dead Eyes, there are three other major gangs in the city. The Black Knife Boys, The Day Walkers, and the Red Phantoms. Adaanai, Teddy, and Pavel, each of you pick a gang, and get me eyes, ears, or both inside their operation. Elekteri, you keep monitoring the Dead Eyes bug and let me know if anyone gets in contact with them. I'll be making a some plans for our next move."

"Let's get to work, folks."

@Zashiii @L E V I A T H A N @ODSTDRAGON @Laughingmad

Spoiler

So I want you guys to be more involved in the story, and not just following after me. For this, I want you guys to come up with the details behind all four of the gangs, as well as how you guys bug their hideouts. @Laughingmad I want you to write the Dead Eyes being called by the Third Party. Just have him be obliquely threatening for now.

 

 

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The operations in Joran were a success. What did success mean? More Work.

 

     Such was the situation, but that was the path of success; Keep working, succeed, keep getting more work, repeat. It was a monotonous cycle, but not every operation was annexing a highly advanced settlement West of a Desert and East of an Ocean!

 

     In this time, Adaanai had taken the heed of Mal and did what he had to do. Blend, connive -- handle altercations accordingly. Aphelion was not some place that made you greater than you were - you either had it in you or you did not. The Khaiperi Stallion liked to think he was capable and prepared for anything, but a humbled mind reminded him otherwise. 

 

     While within Joran, he had left his steeds and responsibilities with the rest of his clan, as was their duty when he went away on business. With him, he brought nothing but a case full of gear, reagents, and crude resources. Anything used for blending in or getting by would be solely found within Joran - specifically similar to that of the Black Knife Boys. Dressy, almost flashy apparel was donned. Finely cobbled boots, slacks, a fitted tunic, and a jacket to be doused in memorabilia. Every Boy had a Knife, as per the name. This, in truth, was a long black steel folding knife, reminiscent of a spanish navaja meeting a wakizashi. Quick flick, quicker cuts. Some of the Boys even modded them for bevel-sake and exalta augmentations.

 

     Ada was more than capable of enhancing his own blades, which was nifty considering they wanted to hand him some poor quality "starter" set. 

 

"Remember: Don't lose this; protect it with your life, Addy."

 

"I swear on my word, Sir!" He barked, bowing his head to his Oyabun. 

 

"You had better; your head will be mine, if not. Find your Brothers and settle in."

 

      And he was off; ushered away by attendants in the undercarriage of the Black Market Joran Sect's territory. The Boys, His new Brothers, all howled as they made off to initiate and inlay their mark on his gear. They also showed him where he might rest and keep his things for the time being. Weeks of association and odd end jobs for the oyabun finally started to pay off. 

 

     In the odd hours and times of low population -- sometimes not even waiting for such times -- Adaanai began his Craft. He once again had formed a traceable mineral dust and bugged the interior, the people, their items and the housing. mineral crust formations were laid in vents and on walls -- dominantly places that went without much physical, biological touch.

 

     At times, he'd don one of the collapsible masks Aphelion afforded and move in the darkness, planting actual bugs more Mal's style in hardware where he could. Vehicles, weapons, samples of drugs and evidence of crime were abundant. It was an interesting difference from Natural Living, but Adaanai was known for his adaptability. With his free time, he mapped out everything he could for the good of the Operation, occasionally dead dropping and relaying when he could manage it. 

 

     More often than not, it felt like, he was being brought into more and more illegal work and altercations, be it slicing up a business and its owner or shaking down dealers and selfish pigs in the pin. They were not the worst of groups, but they had their faults for definite. Ada would see to their demise upon his exit, but until then... He played the Game. "Addy", as they knew him, was a prominent figure in the public eye due to his lawful or outright defensive approach when it came to commonfolk. His Brothers had been weary at first, but some of them appreciated the interpretation of the work set upon them. Too bad they hated Terrans. If they knew of his origin, he'd truly be butchered in this town without a second glance.. much like victims in this city already have it made.

 

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On 6/1/2020 at 6:22 PM, danzilla3 said:

"Besides the Dead Eyes, there are three other major gangs in the city. The Black Knife Boys, The Day Walkers, and the Red Phantoms. Adaanai, Teddy, and Pavel, each of you pick a gang, and get me eyes, ears, or both inside their operation. Elekteri, you keep monitoring the Dead Eyes bug and let me know if anyone gets in contact with them. I'll be making a some plans for our next move."

After the success of their previous operation, it seemed that Aphelion was on a roll. While it helps boost the group's moral, Teddy hoped that the success did not get too much in their heads. After all, overconfidence is a slow and insidious killer.

When the discussion was concluded, Teddy headed back to her quarters. She needed time to prepare. While she was confident enough that she could force her way through the organization and claim it as her own but there must be a more peaceful way. For now she must do some scouting and reconnaisance. In her defense, the gang's name 'Day Walker' sounded pretty cringe and childishly edgy.

The next day, she set out in search of this 'Day Walker' gang. Not exactly search as she had no leads in finding this edgy gang. However, she did have a trick up her sleeve. Before her previous organization was dissolved, Tedimius was a very important figure to its structure and creation. That was mostly due her ablity to 'connect' two or more entities together even at a distance. There was this psionic virus that she developed which infects people through physical contact and airborne droplets. Once infected, they were now her sleeper agents for a short period of time. Having spread the virus to a few individuals yesterday, now she only needed to watch and wait.

 

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"Understood, I will notify you immediately. I suspect we will not have long to wait." This routine was fast becoming commonplace; the others setting out for field work leaving Elekteri to watch over bugs and report his findings. Not that he ever minded it, of course. He lacked the capability to complain or argue, and most importantly, refuse a command from his superiors. It didn't matter how his capabilities were used. Successfully completing the mission was all that concerned him.

Barely fifteen minutes passed since the others left before the Dead Eye's received a call. "Mal, I have confirmed contact from an unidentified third party." Whoever was calling used a voice modifier to remain anonymous. A predictable move for a blackmailer. "Hello gentlemen! I haven't much time to talk, so I'll just skip the formalities and cut straight to the heart of the matter. As you are no doubt aware, a certain man has recently been murdered, and a certain file is now in the hands of his killer. It's a shame really. If any of that file's contents were to be leaked to the authorities, the consequences would certainly be fatal to your "organization". Oh, but there's no reason to panic; you see, there is a way to prevent any further mishaps from occurring. Alas, my time is already nearly up, so it seems I'll have to hold off on the long-winded explanation. For now, just be aware that some form of payment in exchange for the safe return of your papers will be necessary in the near future. You will hear from me again soon. Goodbye for now."

Elekteri reestablished contact with Mal and gave him a brief summary of the blackmailer's spiel. It was unclear who they may be, and what exactly they wanted, but they made their intentions of getting it very clear.

Edited by Laughingmad

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