Welcome to part 5 of the cyberpunk adventure The Nothing’s Child. If you are new to the story you can catch up with the links below. Each section contains the links for the parts within their respective section.
The Nothing’s Child
Life is a Dumpster Dive
Answer with a Desert Eagle
Behind the Bookcase
Interrogation with no Egg to Stand On
Answer with a Desert Eagle
They did a number on my apartment. Sure, I didn’t keep much there anyway, but still. My back up decks were gone. Three hand built decks, just gone, bastards. At least I kept a safety in ‘em. Those decks will fry and take the connections down with them. Goes to show, you can’t trust anyone.
Greybunny35 was here, in the flesh. For the life of me I never thought I would actually meet her. Well, Michelle, I should say. She insisted on her given name. Felt wrong to me, she looked too much like her avatar in the Net.
“How did you find me?” I asked. “Our only contact is the Net. We always exchange through burner IDs.”
“You’re good, but I’m better.” Her smile, so smug, drove me nuts. “One of the crew must have blabbed. I knew I should have changed out the Greybunny avatar a while ago.”
“They had my contact id through text. But still, burner ID.”
“You ever hear the legend of Ghost?”
“Who hasn’t, one of the best runners ever. I heard he took down three corp runners at the same time.”
“They hired him for security at UC. At least that’s what I’ve been hearing.” She sighed and pulled her legs up to her chest. She chose the floor instead of the couch. Looked uncomfortable to me as she rocked back and forth.
“What the hell are they hiding?” I stepped out of the living room into the bedroom. Took a bit of digging but I found the spot. I hid some of my more important stuff under a loose floorboard in the corner of the room.
The hidy hole still held my Desert Eagle and a few burner cred sticks. It wasn’t much but it would have to do. The loss of my back up decks hurt. Creds were easy to come by, the work on those decks was time I would never get back.
I shoved the Desert Eagle into the back of my pants and put the cred sticks and a box of rounds in a back pack. Back in the living room, Michelle dug through the wiring shambles that used to be my hub.
“You needed an update anyway,” she said.
“This isn’t how I wanted to go about getting it,” I said. “You never answered me. What are they hiding?”
“Something big,” she said. “That’s the best I got right now. Something big enough to bring in Ghost to run Net security.”
Michelle grew quiet. The look on her face, relief, did not still my heart. Something was wrong. You could call it intuition, or gut reaction, didn’t really matter to me. Something wasn’t right.
There are two entrances into my apartment, part of the fire code. One through the living room and one through the kitchen. Either one would be a great place to mount a siege. Attack through the one and wait for escapees at the other. Of course, you could just attack through both at once.
Guess what they did. Bingo, both doors crashed in at the same time. Whoever it was they didn’t take chances. The person in the living room had on riot gear with a billy-club in hand. Fisticuffs was out of the question. But then in times like this I like to let my trigger finger do the talking.
I had my desert eagle in hand, shoved right under the chin strap of his riot helmet. That thing filled with blood and brains. We didn’t wait around for the guy from the kitchen. Out the door and down the backstairs led into the alley behind my building. I hoped that they weren’t as clever here as they were in breaking through my doors.
The alley was clear. Open on both ends, each way led to a main street. At this point, Michelle was pulling me along. I shoved my gun back into the back of my pants and kept up as best I could. We pushed it on the street running away from the front of the building.
So, they were looking for us. We didn’t even know who they were. But we weren’t going to let a little thing like that hold us back. First things first, we needed a place to lay low. I couldn’t go back to Jen’s. No sense putting her in that position.
That is the biggest difference between a free-lance runner and the corporates. We didn’t have a corporate backer to protect us when things went south.
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