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[5e IC] Sunt Venatores Venationem

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Poindexter

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« Reply #150 on: (18:21:19/05-14-15) »
Once in the cab, Rebecca takes off her helmet, revealing her flushed face topped with sweat matted hair. She leans back in her seat, feeling safe for the moment. Achak tells the driver they're headed for the Holy Trinity Lutheran Church and she wonders why, exactly. What connection does he have to this church? The car hasn't traveled more than a block or two when Saahir responds to her text. Professional.

<<@Sister Rebecca [Saahir] Ya know, sometimes I wonder if you're a bit more of a worldly woman than you let on.  CAS from Seattle is quite a hike, omae.  I can get you +1 down the pipeline.  Probably take a few days, 2k>>

<<@Saahir [Sister Rebecca] I am still of the world, not above it. I assume such a low price is for payment upfront. I may have to leave before I can collect payment for services rendered in the UCAS. If that is to be the case, how much does your quote rise for payment on delivery?>>

She spends the remainder of the car ride with her eyes closed, her commlink turned off, and her focus deep in prayer. No particular prayer, just the deep meditative state she was taught to use to find her center in times of great stress. Let yourself be empty, and the lord shall fill you with his grace. She's really hoping for a little of that right now, but perhaps that's the problem; too much hoping. She's just as on edge as she was before when the Americar pulls up out front of the Holy Trinity. Once the driver has been paid, and the bags have been unloaded from the trunk, Achak speaks up.

"Let's get inside and change," he says to Sister Rebecca. Then, lower, "No need to be inconspicuous here. If anything, a display of strength might keep trouble at bay. If you want peace, prepare for war, or so they say."

Looking down at her armor jacket from the night before, she shrugs. "I am already prepared."

"I have a squat nearby, just a block or two. It's not nice, but it's safe."

She nods at him and is about to respond as the man from inside walks out to greet them. He and Achak certainly know eachother.

"Hoi!  I could really use your help here for a second. You can place your bags in the east antechamber.  They'll be safe there.  My acolytes skipped out after the morning service, and I really need to prepare for tonight.  Say, who's your friend?"

"Pastor Llewellyn, please meet Sister Rebbeca. Sister Rebecca, this is Pastor Llewellyn. Sister Rebecca is a coworker who is in-town for the weekend on business."

"Pleased to meet you, Pastor." She nods, smiles, and shakes the Pastor's hand, but is obviously distracted. There are just so many places around here that an ambush could come from. Of couse, this was Achak's home turf it seems, so it's probably a bit safer than it looks, but still, she stays visibly on guard during the introduction.

She puts down her bags with Achak and proceeds to help him prepare the church for evening service later on. While the two of them are dusting off pews, she finally starts talking. "So, you know this church? Is this area where you grew up?"

A few minutes later, as he's gathering up with wine from the previous service to dispose of, she asks him, "How soon are we planning on leaving town? My superior has an appointment set for me on monday morning and he'll need to be notified if I can't make it."
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Tecumseh

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« Reply #151 on: (19:32:04/05-14-15) »
While he's washing his hands after wiping down the altar, Achak reboots his comm and makes sure that it's running silent. He speaks with Sister Rebecca while they work. He speaks lowly in deference to their surroundings, but doesn't try to avoid being heard by Llewellyn. Best he knew anyway.

"I actually grew up in the mountains east of here, in Salish-Shidhe," he explains. "The Cascade Ork tribe is predominantly ork, but with many dwarves and trolls too. They have some mining and timber operations but the chief industry is smuggling. So I got started smuggling." He shrugs, indifferent to the ostensible illegality of it.

"It brought me into Puyallup a lot. There are tunnels going in and out of Carbonado, plus panzer runs over the mud and lava flats are common. The local gang was a big customer, and eventually I fell in with them. Stake and I met at a, uh, nightclub on the west edge of town, which eventually brought me into this line of work."

Achak looks around the church, his eyes running over the ceiling, then down to the walls and the windows. "I didn't give this place a second thought until recently. The previous pastor reached out to me after Yohan... during a dark time. I found comfort that I wasn't finding elsewhere."

He brushes off his hands and looks mildly surprised to hear that she has an appointment. There had been rumors that Marcus kept his charges on a short leash, but this was tight indeed.

"When and where is the appointment?" Achak asks. Then, thinking that maybe Llewellyn shouldn't be listening to this part, "My best guess is we'll be departing tonight or tomorrow morning."

Once the work is complete, he grabs the duffel bags with his armor, club, and Ares Alpha and drags them to the restroom. Superman had a telephone booth but for Achak a bathroom stall would have to do.

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« Reply #152 on: (18:00:26/05-15-15) »
@Mercer,

At a distance out of sight, Mercer tracks the Shin-Hyung further into the Puyallup Barrens, waiting patiently for Tiny and his companion to lead him to Ikiryo.  When he sees the ARO stop moving, he considers punching the accelerator, thinking the fight is already in progress, but GridGuide lists the nearest church as eight blocks away, so he reconsiders.  It's a gambit to be sure.  It's not like GridGuide is exactly up-to-date when it comes to businesses and pop-top shanty-town churches, but the way Tiny was discussing the intel he was receiving, it makes Mercer think that the opposing team is making a scheduled stop first.

He's right.  Inching his Roadmaster up to the edge of a derelict building a few blocks away, Mercer grabs Vera -- first to put good eyes on what's going on and second to put down Ikiryo should the opportunity present itself -- and peaks around the corner.  Drek.  The Shin-Hyung is pulled up next to an Americar and another Roadmaster, and four runners are loading up their gear.  A Concordant pulls in on the other side of the Roadmaster, and Mercer gets a brief view of the profile before he disappears into the armored vehicle.  That's Ikiryo all right.  Tiny enters the Roadmaster wearing his Lined Coat and exits a few minutes later in full armor, donning a Ballistic Mask done up like a Daikijin and carrying what Mercer is pretty sure is an Auto Assault 16.  He waves the rest of the runners in the Roadmaster, closes the side door and rides on the runners as it tears off at a surprising clip with the Americar following behind, probably on autopilot. 

His mask on, his gear prepped, Mercer rushes to  his own Roadmaster and puts it on course for the church.  No use in hanging back now.  Yeah, they may see him coming, but if he wasn't in the fight early, he wasn't going to be in the fight at all.

As Ikiryo's group tore their way to the Holy Trinity Lutheran Church, Mercer could see a scrawny-looking ganger, note their approach and punch frantically at his comm from a rooftop.  This could turn out to be interesting.

Ikiryo's Roadmaster stopped within five meters of the church's front door, and three of the five runners spilled out.  Tiny led the charge, and comes to a standstill two steps before the door.  Ikiryo follows, and takes his position just to the right of the door, and the man Mercer recognizes from the noodle shop approaches Tiny on his left.  He turns invisible breaches the troll's shoulder, and Mercer notices Tiny rearing back to kick in the door

@Sister Rebecca and Achak

"When and where is the appointment?" Achak asks. Then, thinking that maybe Llewellyn shouldn't be listening to this part, "My best guess is we'll be departing tonight or tomorrow morning."

Before Sister Rebecca has a chance to answer, Achak receives a comm from Rusty that makes his blood run cold.

<<@Achak [Rusty] Your unexpected company is coming hard and fast and is packing hardware.>>
« Last Edit: (11:36:30/05-18-15) by rednblack »
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Tecumseh

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« Reply #153 on: (18:57:39/05-15-15) »
Achak is coming out of the bathroom when Rusty's message comes through. His heart sinks, not so much at the threat but at the setting. Not here, not the church, he privately begs, but his hearing is sharp and he knows that the threat is already upon them.

"Llewellyn! Get in the bathroom, face down! NOW!" he screams at the pastor. He trusted his tone and his outfit would convey the gravity of the situation. A part of him would love to stage an ambush for whatever comes through the door, and bellowing like this makes that impossible, but collateral damage was unacceptable. No need to instruct Sister Rebecca separately; she will understand what is happening.

In an instant, Achak has his Ares Alpha up at the high ready as he slides to a knee behind a pew, peering over the top for a target.

His gut tells him that it's not vampires. For one, it's the middle of the day. Second, vampires don't generally come hard packing hardware. That meant mundanes, which also meant that the sawdust grenades loaded in his Alpha were going to be useless. Not that he should be using grenades indoors in a church anyway.

If only the opposition felt the same way. He glances nervously at the windows, wondering if there will be flash bangs and tear gas. His chemical seal could handle the gas, but the visual obstruction would just make shooting that much harder. Every missed shot would be a hole in the wall to patch, or a window to replace, a pew to repair.

He tries to think of a prayer but slips into old habits and comes up with a curse instead. Come and get it, you motherfragging titty-banging two-balled bitch.

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« Reply #154 on: (14:10:08/05-18-15) »
Why here, why here, Achak keeps asking himself. Fifty meters in any direction and I could unload on these slots. He's embarrassed that his "leadership" has put the church at risk, and the self-doubt resumes.

The screech of the Roadmaster and the heavy footsteps tell him what's coming. That's a troll! he realizes, gulping down his rising panic. Not the time for sawdust grenades. He mentally ejects the clip, initially unsure of what to replace it with, given the environment. His hand brushes the clip of high-explosive grenades. After a moment of hesitation, he reaches for the flash-bangs instead. I will not defend the church by blowing it up. Everyone has their personal limits, and Achak just bumped into his.

Another <<MARK Granted://Device:whatever>> message pops up on his image link. At first, it annoys him deeply. Why the hell did I drop eight grand on this fragging commlink that gives out MARKs like candy on Halloween! An even more terrifying possibility is that the commlink really is that good, it's just that the opposition is even better. That doesn't bode well for the next sixty seconds.

The concern flips to elation an instant later when it dawns on him that his commlink has been granted the MARK, rather than given it out. He dismisses his anxiety about having his Ares Alpha bricked - or, worse, firing independently - and celebrates by mentally activating the chemical seal on his armor. Kneeling behind cover, he readies himself for the fireworks.
« Last Edit: (15:11:48/05-18-15) by Tecumseh »

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« Reply #155 on: (19:33:02/05-18-15) »
Mercer follows the small caravan to the church, taking a few seconds to place a tracer on the Concordant as he drives by, having delayed just enough for the other Roadmaster to disappear around the corner. He keeps tabs on it through the eyes of his drone so that he isn't too concerned with losing sight of it - in fact, he paces himself so that he is always a corner behind. As they travel, he swaps out the tracker rounds for some armor piercing rounds - he'll have to make the first shot count.


The team of runners arrives at the church before him, of course, pulling up just outside the entrance, and three heavily armed and armored combatants rapidly exit the van and deploy around the front doors of the church. From what he sees through the drone, they set up with Tiny ready to kick in the door and the Invisible Man set to enter first. Ikiryo brings up the rear, covering with an assault rifle - and Ares Alpha by the look of it, the iconic grenade launcher clearly visible from the drone's angle. The Invisible Man disappears in preparation of breaching and Mercer's timing hits paydirt as he rounds the final corner just as Tiny leans back, gaining leverage to place his troll sized boot through the doors. Vera is primed and ready, waiting to take advantage of the moment before the other team could react. A quick assessment of the situation from what he had seen through the drone provides him a target - Tiny. The Invisible Man is, well, invisible and the other two runners are still hanging out in the Roadmaster, beyond easy reach. He wants Ikiryo alive, and though he could shoot to maim, it's much easier to shoot to kill. Once most of Iki's team was "disabled" it would be easier to employ less lethal means to capture him. So Tiny gets the short straw. Or the dense projectile, as the case may be.


The last dilapidated building slides out of view as he enters the intersection of the last corner before the church. As the church is revealed his adrenaline spikes and the whole scene slows as he lines up his shot. Telemetry data from the smartgun link calculates wind speed, bullet drop, and a dozen other factors to give an ARO that Mercer adjusts until it lines up with the troll's spinal column. The van is slowing, and the rough roads of the barrens make shots like this tricky, but the vehicle is moving at slightly more than a jogging rate when Mercer exhales slowly and gives the mental command to fire. Vera sighs and pushes against his shoulder as she blows a lethal kiss.
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« Reply #156 on: (22:48:34/05-18-15) »
Tiny pushes off his back foot preparing for the inevitable.  The doors may say "Pull", but in Tiny's experience they tend to open whichever way he wants them to.  His kick is high and well-placed on the jamb and middle hinge, but before he can connect Vera's payload strikes him square between the shoulder blades.  It's an impact first, as the bullet tears through his body armor and flattens itself against his dermal plating.  And then fire as the realization dawns on him that the plating is cracked.  He lets out a low "Ouf," as his foot connects.  The door resists, creaks, and then it seems to be only Tiny's weight that pushes it down and into the sanctuary.

Achak and Sister Rebecca see a grenade seemingly thrown from nowhere, as the troll hunches on one knee, and then the blinding, deafening pop of it as it lands at Becca's feet.  Steeled for the worse, Rebecca stays standing and watches the light bend around a man in a chameleon suit who peels off to the left and behind a pew,out of sight. The troll looks up, belabored and, as far as Achak can tell through the ballistic mask, right into his eyes.  His grinning red maw terrifying and wounded, and he pushed himself up with the barrel of his giant drummed shotgun as a third runner enters the church.

Wearing a tight armored jacket with the collar turned up and a plain black matte ballistic mask, the newcomer swings an assault rifle up in his right and fires six rounds at Achak, giving Tiny the time to lumber to the right of the open door, gun held low.
 
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Tecumseh

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« Reply #157 on: (01:41:56/05-20-15) »
Achak stares in horror as the demon-troll bashes its way into the church. Oh God, his brain says. Oh God, oh God.

The amount of armor on the troll does not escape his notice. What can I even do to it? he asks himself. He's a sharpshooter and would usually go for a headshot but the ballistic mask negates that. So what then? Shoot the genitals? The eye, knowing it will hit the mask but maybe to obscure its vision with scorch marks? He wishes that he had gone with APDS - he knows a nifty trick where armor-piercing bullets of a multiple-round burst follow the path carved by the first.

Achak is caught staring too long and is flat-footed when the man in the armored jacket cuts loose with a 6-round burst from his assault rifle. Achak is too slow to duck and catches a hot round slicing through his armor across the top of his left deltoid. It stings like an animal-fondling assjacker slitspurt and brings tears to Achak's eyes. He can already tell that it will interfere with his aim.

I need Jazz! he thinks to himself, seizing on a ray of hope before remembering that he hermetically sealed himself into his armor moments ago. That and his Jazz is across the room, tucked away in his duffel bags. Damn! Damn damn! I should have gotten that auto-injector like Stake told me to!

Achak does not fail to notice the man in the chameleon suit. Why didn't we get the chameleon coating? his right-brain asks with a told-you-so tone.

Because it's expensive as humping an elven princess and doesn't work unless you do your weapons too. We gave that money to the church and did a soup supper for 500 squatters, his left-brain answers.

Who went on to feed 50 fomóraigs or whatever those really fragged-up ones are, the right-brain retorts.

Shut up shut up shut up!

Achak tries to resume his tactical thinking. He saw Sister Rebecca conjure, and can feel the spirit with his magic sense. Maybe that would even the odds, but the astral feels crowded in here...

Flash bang? Can't catch Sister Rebecca in the blast. Probably won't faze the troll.
Suppressive fire? Can't catch Sister Rebecca in the cone. And in the church with EX-explosive? Oh God.
Jump out a window and retreat for Rusty's backup? Can't leave Sister Rebecca to face them alone. Already lost Stake. That can't happen twice in one life, let alone twice in one day. Rather die. Dog silently reaffirms this.
Blast the ceiling with a high-explosive grenade and bring the roof down on everybody? Yeah, right, only the troll would walk away from that.
Come out swinging and figure it out as you go along? Bingo. Punch Death in the throat repeatedly as he drags you away.

Achak grips his Alpha tightly, using the pain of his shoulder to channel his concentration into comforting thoughts of revenge.

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« Reply #158 on: (18:33:17/05-20-15) »
She's getting ready to answer his question about tomorrow, when he interrupts her, screaming at the priest.

"Llewellyn! Get in the bathroom, face down! NOW!"

The big man then dives behind one of the pews as cover. The good sister knows what's going on and she darts the opposite direction, looking for her own cover. She doesn't quite manage to reach it before all hell breaks loose, but she does manage a call to the astral. "I require rage and lightning! Barachiel, Aid me!" Then, everything hits all at once. First, she feels the drain set in from the summoning. I was too quick. Too informal. Angels don't like that." But then, not even a breath later, she's nearly knocked off her feet as the door gets kicked in and a flashbang goes off right at her feet.Her ears are ringing and she's a little disoriented when she makes it cover, just barely noticing the man in the chameleon suit before she ducks. He's the main threat. Achak can handle the troll. Then she hears the assault rifle and realizes the troll didn't have one. A third. No problem. Achak can handle the rifleman, I can get the invisible man, then we team up on the troll and Barachiel can handle the astral. Then SNAP! Her link with Barachiel is broken and she starts to panic a little.

BLAST it ALL! My angel is down, I'm wounded, so is Achak. We're surrounded and outnumbered by demons on the astral, shadowrunners in the physical, and all before I can even get my helmet on! I guess we know who planted the stealth tag, at least.
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« Reply #159 on: (22:52:23/05-21-15) »
Achak assesses his options. The troll is terrifying but the reality is he probably can't hurt it with his current loadout. Instead he pinpoints the prick who just pinked him in the pectoral. He forgoes a targeted shot in favor of a three-round burst spread out in a fan. One of the rounds drills through the target's armored mask before exploding like a miniature grenade, sending a puff of red onto the Ten Commandments posted next to the exit.

He doesn't have a chance to celebrate. His eyes go wide as sees the gigantic barrel of an AA-16 swing around on him. "The Warhammer" - Achak wants nothing to do with it. He immediately drops, trusting in the full-body armor to reduce the impact of his face-plant, as the troll begins to redecorate the nave, chancel, and altar. Achak is so thankful that he hasn't been torn limb from limb that he isn't even bothered that the troll is undoing all the cleaning Achak just finished.

While hugging the bedraggled carpet and waiting for the terrifying roar of shotgun to subside, Achak mentally ejects the clip of EX-explosive and slaps in a clip of APDS. He gets another MARK? Oh wiz. No idea what to do with that.

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« Reply #160 on: (18:58:06/05-25-15) »
Things had never been going so badly for Sister Rebecca. Still squinting her eyes, trying to make out the invisible man, no doubt sneaking around the side to try and stab her or something, she hears the telltale sound of flame behind her. She wheels around, strapping her helmet on as she does to face the massive fire demon that had just materialized directly behind her. It was exactly this sort of ambush she had been hoping to avoid by summoning Barachiel, but he had proved to be not even a speed bump for this fearsome demon that was now lunging toward her. She speaks calmly and evenly into the subvocal as it spreads it flaming wings wide around her. "Keep on the troll. I will deal with the spirit." She's far too slow, however and the mighty Blade of Gabriel has barely cleared it's scabbard before she's choked by fire and death. The creature is far stronger than she is, and despite her jacket being heavily fire resistant, she can feel it starting to give out almost immediately. She struggles as hard as she can against it, but she's too weak to escape on her own. Marcus's words run through her head as she gives every ounce of fight she has to avoid cooking to death inside her armor.
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« Reply #161 on: (22:47:26/05-25-15) »
Even at this distance, the sounds of the fight in the church can be heard. Even more so because of the audio enhancements built into his mask. Flash-bang. Controlled burst from an assault rifle - that'd be Iky, since Mercer saw the muzzle flash as he stepped through the door. Then another assault rifle - return fire, but all of the combatants were now out of view giving him no idea how effective it was. Then the unmistakable sound of an auto shotgun - that could only mean that Tiny was still in the fight. Mercer cursed under his breath.


If the Hunters are worth their salt, they can hold these chuckleheads for a few seconds. If they couldn't, then Mercer didn't need them. Only Survivors need apply.


But even the best, caught unawares and outnumbered by professionals, would have a poor chance of survival. He knew that there were two runners still in the van, and having spent two decades in the same seamy underbelly of civilization as your average Shadowrunner, Mercer had a fairly good idea of how they worked. Two in the car meant two of the three - Decker, Rigger, Mage. Mages usually threw their mojo from the back lines, but still on the field of battle. Only the cowards hung out in the van and sent their spirits in unattended. So Mercer's money was on Rigger and Decker. Which meant that the Hunters could be facing uncooperative equipment.


And what of the Rigger? He had seen no other drones. Was he just a getaway driver? Seemed an extravagance to have a dedicated Rigger only for getaway duty. Unless they were preparing for the possibility of the Hunters fleeing by car. Either that or the van had more nasty surprises in store. Well, whoever is in the van, let's rile 'em up some, maybe split their focus, give the other Hunters some breathing room. He swung Vera slightly to the left to bring the front of the van into her sights and, using what he knew of his own van, lined up a shot with the engine block. This'll give Iky one less escape route, and maybe tick off the two in the van. Another soft exhalation and the satisfying sound of the bullet hitting the dense metal of the engine block rings out. The van won't be going anywhere for awhile.


Not much else I can do from out here. Guess it's time to join the meet & greet. He's about ready to have the Roadmaster's pilot park him outside the church when a new thought strikes him. "Well, Vera, how do you feel about sending the kids to church?"
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« Reply #162 on: (11:00:24/05-26-15) »
The roar inside the church is deafening.  The slugs from the massive troll's shotgun blows the back of the pew above Achak to shards as the rounds explode upon impact, leaving a deep crater nearly ten meters wide in its wake, and a few rounds pass above, striking the altar with small bursts of fire.  On the south wall of the church, the spirit, charcoal black with cracks of fire seeping from beneath its "skin," the fire spirit's jack-o-lantern maw hisses smoke and flame as it attempts to hold its quarry.

Achak knows the invisible man is around somewhere, no doubt stalking up to his flank, but in all the chaos he's lost track of him.
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« Reply #163 on: (16:14:25/05-28-15) »
Achak slams face-first into the floor to avoid the horrible roar of the fully automatic shotgun. He sends a mental command to his Alpha to eject the clip of EX-EX. While his hand is digging out his clip of APDS, it brushes against a popper of Jazz.

Yes! Achak thinks to himself with triumph, spying a ray of hope. I thought I left these all in the duffel bags! But I put one there last night then forgot about it! Lord be praised.

Praising the Lord for combat stimulants might be theologically questionable, but in the current circumstances he's more concerned about losing another teammate fairly dramatically and directly in front of him.

He sends a mental command to his helmet to unseal, then slams the popper into his face and huffs. Awww yeeeeeaaaaahhhh.

The world slows down a tick. It feels like all of his neurons are firing at once.

Where's that little twerp I can't see. Well, bigger problems at the moment. If he sneaks up on me, that's what armor and shock frills are for.

Deciding that a fully-automatic shotgun is still his biggest threat, Achak pivots so that he can fire prone underneath the pews. He lines up a shot, hoping the troll stays still long enough to shoot him in the foot.

Okay, lion, let's put a thorn in your paw, he thinks as he pulls the trigger.

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« Reply #164 on: (04:20:33/05-29-15) »
Mercer is getting his mental ducks in a row - the door is there, the van is there, this drone is closer to one, and so on - when a jolt of pain shoots from his eyes. His vision pixelates visibly and he can feel the heat being given off by the devices on the back of his eyelids. He's startled, but not surprised. In fact, he's actually pleased. There you are. I've been expecting you.


Then it strikes him - the jammer is still in the smuggling compartment. Blast! I knew - well, hoped - this was coming, and I'm still caught unprepared. Sloppy.


He sends a mental command to his cyber eyes to turn off their wireless - reducing the functionality of the smartgun link, but he wouldn't be needing that for a few seconds. Moving back to the rear of the van to where the smuggling compartment is expertly hidden under the rearmost seats, he sends the mental commands he had prepared before the decker had pulled his attention from the Hunters in the church to focus it on Mercer. The first drone is directed to discreetly enter the church ASAP and give him eyes on the fight there, the second to try to find some way to see inside the opposing Ares without revealing itself. The drones had been drifting lazily about the area, hiding and watching the church from afar, but now sprung into action, moving as fast as the could without giving up their stealth, closing the distance between them and their targets. It would be another 10 seconds before they were near position, and it would seem like a lifetime, but he had things to do anyway.


Starting with getting the jammer turned on. Between the general noise here in the barrens, and the poor quality of the public grid, the decker had an uphill battle as it was. The distance between the Roadmasters didn't help things much either, but the jammer would make it twice as bad. He was concerned that the excess noise might discourage the deck head and force him to focus back on the other Hunters, but there wasn't much help for it. Or was there?


He'd have to park near the church and near the other Roadmaster. But if the enemy vehicle and its hacker were within the range of the jammer, it would hardly matter what he chose to attack. While he prepared to open the compartment, he tried to find a good spot to direct the pilot to park.
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