Interlude on Sihnon

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Ship's Pilot

Posts: 255

Joined: Wed Nov 13, 2013 10:25 am

Location: IC The Roisin Dubh. OC York.

Character name: Det McNally

Post Tue Nov 12, 2013 8:09 pm

Interlude on Sihnon

The deck rattled as the Roisin Dubh descended towards Sihnon. McNally’s grip on the yoke was more relaxed than the last time, the spoilers having deployed properly and allowing him to guide the ship in on a steady track. ‘Hope Button appreciates this,’ he murmured to himself with a slight chuckle as he eased the thrust-levers back. The clouds broke as the ship breached the cloud-base and the spires and columns of Sihnon City came into view, the diamond sparkle of sunlight against heat-reflective plexi. He felt his shoulder’s relax slightly, vaguely aware he had been tense for a few days. In the aftermath of Zenith, he had lowered his guard somewhat and perhaps opened up to the crew a little more than he had been comfortable with, but it was done and he couldn’t go back and change what had happened. He felt somehow vulnerable and being vulnerable made him nervous. He needed to get off the ship, for a few hours at least, just to settle his nerves, calm himself... and get Alisha a decent weapon.

His mind wandered briefly, recalling the afternoon he had spent in the company of Chang Li, aka Mama Chang, and felt a different kind of tension in his body. He blinked away the reverie as he heard boots hit the deck plate behind him.

‘Estimated time to touchdown?’ Regan asked.

McNally glanced at the chronometer. ‘Thirteen minutes.’

Regan nodded. ‘Good, I’ve received a wave from Mei, she’s getting packed. Seeing as there might be ‘interested parties’ out there I said I’d send someone to meet her, probably get the Preach-’

‘I’ll go,’ McNally said suddenly, cutting across Regan. ‘I’ll go, take Alisha with me.’ He glanced to Regan seeing a quizzical expression. ‘I don’t wear insignia, remember? And Alisha’s new on the crew. No offence, but the Preacher’s pretty distinctive, especially in the company of a wh... a companion.’ He returned his gaze to the console. ‘In any case, I look like more like random hired muscle and, if anyone is payin’ attention, they’ll tag me as comin’ from a different ship entirely.’

‘You feelin’ okay, Chuckles?’ Regan asked quietly. ‘You carry on like this, you’re liable to become a useful member of this crew.’

‘I just do what I can,’ McNally remarked flatly. ‘You’d better go tell Alisha that we’ll be on the move as soon as we hit dirt.’

Regan smirked. ‘Yessir,’ he said with a mock-salute, then left the deck.

The comms crackled suddenly. ‘Tango-Charlie-Zero-Four-Heavy you’re cleared for landing. Make your heading zero-niner-five magnetic. Your allocated landing stage is platform six-eight.’

‘Roger,’ McNally replied softly and started the turn.
Captain Det McNally
‘If you can’t do somethin’ smart, do somethin’ right... if you can’t do somethin’ right, do somethin’!’
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Ship's Doctor
Ship's Doctor

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Joined: Tue Nov 12, 2013 6:52 pm

Character name: Dr. Alisha 'Scrubs' Corbon

Post Tue Nov 12, 2013 8:09 pm

Re: Interlude on Sihnon

Alisha glared at her reflection, the image of herself stared back in anger and her frustration. Just one sip… That’s all it had been, it had taken seconds and a falter in her will power and her dry streak had ended. Her flask had slid out from under her bed as they entered the atmosphere, the words inscribed glinting up at her invitingly, Life.. it’s all thirsty work… She had been so good, so careful to avoid temptation, surely she deserved a sip, just a little one before they landed, to settle her stomach she had told herself.

Three mouthfuls later the same words mocked her, and she stared at her reflection irritated and demoralised, salted tears stinging her eyes. She raised the hip flask to her lips with the intention of draining what was left, when she was interrupted by a knock on her door. “One Minute” she called hurriedly putting the lid back on the flask and stashing it under her pillow. She checked herself in the mirror quickly drying her eyes, thankfully they didn’t look too red and puffy as she opened the door to see Regan stood in the corridor. She grinned, “What can I do for you Cap’tin?” She asked cheerily, maybe a little too forced.

She was sure he noticed, but Regan at least had the courtesy not to say anything about it, “Chuckles is takin’ you landside when we touchdown, better grab your things you’ll ‘be on the move as soon as we hit the dirt’” He grinned, “ETA 8 minutes.”

She smiled back “Ok, no worries… I’ll just grab my things..”

As Regan turned away, Alisha darted back into her room and shut the door, taking a closer inspection of herself in the mirror, and attempting a quick cover up, she couldn’t bare to see the look of disappointment in McNally’s eyes, she had enough guilt looming over her. Corbon futilely tried to tame her hair and make herself look more presentable, pulling her white coat over her shirt and waistcoat, finally she brushed her teeth to try and disband any lingering smell of whiskey on her breath.

With one final look at herself, as satisfied as she could be with her appearance, she made her way to the Flight Deck, pausing in the doorway as McNally brought the Rosin Dubh down.
Her fingers nervously played with the cap on her bottle at her hip, now only containing water. Her mind wandered to the hipflask beneath her pillow.
Her mouth felt dry and she suspected water wouldn’t quench her thirst.
OOC- Cassie
IC- Dr. Alisha "Scrubs" Corbon- "If you can't do somethin' Smart, do somethin' Right... If you can't do somethin' Right, do Somethin'"
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Ship's Doctor
Ship's Doctor

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Joined: Tue Nov 12, 2013 4:09 pm

Character name: William Burton

Post Tue Nov 12, 2013 8:17 pm

Re: Interlude on Sihnon

Burton was settling his stomach after the approach and landing, glad that this time it had been sooth and nothing had fallen off, or worse...
He looked down at the sick bag clutched tightly in his hands and wondered for the umpteenth time why he didn't just find a ship that didn't fall apart during entry, or better yet have exploding bits, or why not just find a nice world and stay planet side?
Shaking his head, he couldn't leave Regan and Lock. The three of them had been through too much together for him to leave, and anyway, what captain in his right mind would take on a ships doctor that was not much use while in flight? He hated the flying, but he loved seeing new worlds and would get bored if he where stuck on one.

Feeling better he wondered with mounting excitement what Sihnon would bring. Whatever happened he doubted it would be anywhere near as bad an Zenith. He gave a slight shudder as he remembered the Reavers, the other horrors and finally Os. Nothing could be that bad!
Getting up he folded the bag away and put it in a pocket.
Grabbing his data slate he skimmed over the things he wanted for the infirmary.
"See you've got your priorities Doc." Poppy said looking over his shoulder and noticing that 'sick bags' was at the top of the list.
He looked up and gave a nod.
"Have you seen the way that Harrison flies?" He asked going a little pale at the thought. "And Lock and Regan won't let me in the same shuttle as them. So..." He shrugged.
He thought back on the soldier, Harrison seemed to be getting better, he wasn't so nervous and jumping at shadows anymore. Corbon, Lock and him had worked hard trying to help, but he didn't think they'd every completely fix him. Something had snapped and hidden away in his head and there was no way they could get it back. It was up to Harrison to fix himself now, though he would do all he could for him.

With a spring in his step Dr William Burton headed off for the cargo bay.
I hate flying!
This one's got no pulse. -Next!
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Ship's Pilot

Posts: 255

Joined: Wed Nov 13, 2013 10:25 am

Location: IC The Roisin Dubh. OC York.

Character name: Det McNally

Post Tue Nov 12, 2013 8:18 pm

Re: Interlude on Sihnon

McNally regarded Alisha as he rose from the pilot’s console, his eyes examining her carefully. ‘Y’okay?’

She nodded fast. ‘Fine,’ she replied, a little too emphatically.

He stopped short of the hatchway and rubbed his beard. ‘You still packing that little pea-shooter?’

She patted her pocket. ‘Until you buy me something better,’ she said with a knowing grin.
His manner changed subtly, his back stiffening as he passed her and tramped into the common area. He grabbed his belt-rig from where it was hung on a peg and slipped it around his hips. He already wore his chest-rig secreted beneath his waist-coat. He picked up his coat, slipping it onto his shoulders. ‘You’re going to be too warm, wearing that,’ she remarked.

He took up his hat and brushed non-existent dust from the brim. ‘S’that so?’ He glanced at her and inclined his head aft. ‘Let’s go find out, uh?’ He led the way down to the cargo bay and then tramped out into the early afternoon sun.

She prodded his upper arm. ‘Told you, it’s hot as hell out here,’ she said softly.

He paused to place his hat carefully on his head. ‘Yep, but it’s just like Hera... it’s a dry heat.’ He started off away from the ship, his eyes scanning his surroundings while Alisha had to jog just to avoid trailing in his wake.
Captain Det McNally
‘If you can’t do somethin’ smart, do somethin’ right... if you can’t do somethin’ right, do somethin’!’
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Ship's Pilot

Posts: 255

Joined: Wed Nov 13, 2013 10:25 am

Location: IC The Roisin Dubh. OC York.

Character name: Det McNally

Post Tue Nov 12, 2013 8:18 pm

Re: Interlude on Sihnon

Alisha stopped at a junction as McNally kept walking. They had left the spaceport behind, McNally leading her through an alternative access point which was bustling with passengers from a large transport in from Boros. She almost lost him twice in the crowd but neither of them had been checked by Feds manning the customs post. Now she was certain he was heading in the wrong direction. ‘Hey, wait,’ she called after him. ‘Det, wait.’

He turned on her in an instant, gripping her lapel. ‘Watch what you call me,’ he hissed, his eyes narrowed and gaze hardened. ‘What’s the problem anyway?’

Her lower lip trembled. ‘Erm, I thought Mei was lodged in the Bund district?’ She watched as he nodded once. ‘So... that’s...’ her voice trailed off as she glanced to her right. ‘That way... isn’t it?’

His head slowly swivelled down the road as a mule rumbled past. ‘It is,’ he said, then returned his glower to her. ‘Cept we ain’t goin’ there yet.’ He let her go and stalked off. ‘Come on, you’re wasting time.’

She straightened coat and let a shudder run down her back, reaching for the hip-flask that she left under her pillow. ‘Gorram it,’ she growled and trotted after the purposefully striding pilot. She caught up with him, only then realising where they were. He descended steps to the door to a certain bar, his fist landing twice against the wood. ‘What’re we doing here?’

‘Shoppin’,’ he said.

The small barred window opened and the Occidental bartender peered out. ‘We’re closed,’ he said, after only a moment’s thought.

McNally frowned. ‘I’m here for business,’ he muttered. ‘To speak to Mama Chang.’

The bartender’s eyes flicked sidewise nervously. ‘She’s, erm, indisposed.’ Behind him, a Chinese voice called out and he turned away. ‘It’s fine, just a delivery of... parts. For her workshop.’

McNally’s shoulders tightened as he heard the bartender’s lie. ‘What the...?’ he murmured to himself.

The bartender’s eyes came back to McNally. ‘Meet me around back.... and I’ll take delivery there.’ McNally was in motion even before the bartender had closed the window, passing Alisha and heading along the front of the street.

‘Where’re you going?’ she asked. ‘What’s going on?’

‘Trouble,’ McNally grunted, reaching a narrow alleyway and pausing to glance down. At the end a small wooden door opened and the bartender’s face appeared, his hand beckoning them quickly. McNally darted down, Alisha at his heels, and they were ushered into the yard adjoining the workshop. ‘What’s happening?’

‘The Red Pole’s done a deal with the Gong Triad,’ the bartender said, his voice low. ‘They’re in there now, discussing terms.’

‘How many?’ McNally asked.

‘The Red Pole has three enforcers with him,’ the bartender murmured. ‘The Gong’s Red Pole is in there and he had four with him... and two of them have rifles.’

McNally nodded, his eyes half-closed. ‘Chang Li... where’s she?’ McNally asked.

The bartender nodded up the stairway to the private apartment. ‘She’s locked in there. The Red Pole changed the code and...’

McNally shook off his coat, casting it onto the workbench, and yanked his waist-coat open, pulling both Colts from his chest rig and holding them out to Alisha. ‘Here, you’ll need these.’

Her jaw dropped. ‘What?’ she said finally.

‘Take the gorram guns, girl, I need someone covering my hide when the time comes.’ His hardened gaze remained for a few seconds, then softened slightly. ‘Alisha, I need you to help me. Or else I maybe goin’ in there alone an’... that ain’t never gonna end well for me!’

Alisha shook her head in disbelief. ‘You’re not seriously considering going in there?’

‘I sure am,’ he replied. ‘You gonna back me, or what?’

‘Give them to me,’ the bartender said. ‘I’ll do it!’

‘No!’ Alisha growled, her hands shaking as she took hold of the heavy Colts.

McNally nodded back towards the bar. ‘Git back in there ‘fore they get nosey!’ As the bartender headed back into the main building, McNally rummaged in the pocket of his coat, bringing out a small white device dangling several wires and clips.

‘What’s that?’ she asked.

‘Bypass unit,’ he muttered as he headed for the stairs and climbed to the top. She followed him, her eyes scanning the yard below. ‘Keep them pistols raised a little so if you hafta, you just look and shoot,’ he said as he pulled open the access panel on the door lock and attached a couple of the clips. He tapped a couple of codes into the unit. ‘Got it,’ he said, unhooking the unit and slipping into his waistcoat pocket while unlimbering his Vulcan and racking the action. A moment later the door clicked and he nudged it open, gun raised, eyes peering into the gloom.

Alisha stole a glance, seeing his shoulders relax slightly as he strode into the apartment, his Vulcan lowered by his side and she followed him into the plush apartment. She shoved the door closed and scanned the large open-plan living area. ‘Wow,’ she murmured.

McNally chuckled, then strode towards a half-open door, kicking it wide. There, recumbent on the bed, was Chang Li, shackled at wrist and ankle, gagged, and wearing only a short black silk slip. She slept in spite of the bindings stretching her elegant body on the counterpane. He holstered his pistol and sat on the edge of the bed, his presence rousing her from a fitful sleep, her eyes blinking open and widening as she saw him. He gently loosened the gag and gave her a lop-sided smile. ‘Well, Chang shao jeh, I do like this new look.’ His fingers tugged at the chain to her securely fettered wrists. ‘Kinda suits you. All I need now is a whip.’

The Oriental beauty worked her jaw and licked her lips. ‘I have one, over there in the closet,’ she remarked, rolling onto her front and peering provocatively over one shoulder. ‘Perhaps if you have time? I have been a very naughty girl, but my brother is such a prude.’ She then caught Alisha’s disdainful gaze. ‘Ah, but I see your friend does not approve either. Such a shame.’

Alisha scowled at the Oriental woman’s mocking tone. McNally glanced to her, seeing the turmoil in her expression. ‘Keep the door covered,’ he remarked, rising and scanning the room. ‘Where’s the key?’

‘My brother has it on him,’ Li murmured.

McNally took a hairpin from the small pile on the bedside table. ‘No matter,’ he said, bending the metal and setting to work on the manacle locks at her wrists, popping them opening in short order.

‘That’s another reason why I like the wrong type of man,’ Li said, sitting up and stretching her arms while McNally set to work releasing her ankles. She caught Alisha’s gaze again, the medic standing at the threshold of the bedroom. ‘Do I make you jealous, mei-mei?’

‘Jealous?’ Alisha murmured. ‘Of a jien huo like you?’ Then she looked away as the woman’s expression showed amusement.

McNally saw Alisha look away but the bloom of colour on her face spread to her ears and he smiled slightly. ‘Don’t think she considers this a suitable way for folks to behave,’ he said, helping Li to her feet.

‘What’s your plan?’ Li asked, padding to the closet and taking a pair of coveralls from a hanger. She pushed the straps of her slip off her shoulders, letting it pool around her ankles. She paused, turning toward him and seeing in his eyes that glimmer of desire.

‘Uh, apart from gettin’ you back in charge,’ McNally said, momentarily distracted. ‘I can’t say I have much of a plan aside from puttin’ a shootin’ iron in someone’s face and forcin’ ‘em to back down.’ As he spoke there was tightness in his throat as he watched her step into the coverall, only zipping it halfway. He shook his head slowly as he scolded himself silently for liking the wrong kind of woman.

Li reached into the back of her closet, the soft sounds of metal against wood, and she drew out a short-barrelled pump-action shotgun and a box of shells. She perched on the bed and started loading the shotgun. ‘Uncomplicated and direct,’ she remarked winking as Alisha caught her eye once more. ‘Just like you, McNally shian shen.’ She rose, racking the action. ‘Shall we pay my brother and his new friends a visit?’

McNally looked to Alisha, seeing her uncertain gaze. ‘I’ll take point,’ he said, drawing both his Vulcan and his long-barrelled Colt. ‘Alisha, you stay on my left shoulder and cover anyone I’m not, okay?’

‘Okay,’ Alisha said, not feeling even remotely okay.
Captain Det McNally
‘If you can’t do somethin’ smart, do somethin’ right... if you can’t do somethin’ right, do somethin’!’
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Character name: Det McNally

Post Tue Nov 12, 2013 8:19 pm

Re: Interlude on Sihnon

There were voices, laughing and joking, in Chinese and English, polyglot cacophony which covered their approach. McNally was at the front, his Vulcan poised ahead, the barrel gently pushing the door open, the view from the bar showing three men seated, two with their backs to the bar, facing the front door. The Red Pole, Li’s brother, was seated opposite, but he was distracted, wearing a false smile, obviously under some duress. Behind him were three Chang enforcers, all apparently unarmed. Three other figures stood beside the seated strangers, two men cradling carbines and a woman with a double-rig of automatic pistols. McNally glanced back and nodded to Li as she gestured forward. Alisha’s face was ashen and McNally wondered if she was going to puke there and then, but he made the decision and moved, nonchalantly pushing the door wide and striding out into the bar, two guns raised. Alisha followed close, raising the two Colt 45s, poised on one of the carbine-toting man and the other on the woman as McNally covered the two seated men. Li move wide to McNally’s right, aiming at the second carbine-carrier. Behind them the bartender froze in place, ready to duck out of sight.

All conversation stopped, the silence only broken by the scrape of chairs and the snick as the female enforcer drew her pistols and turned on the intruders. The carbines were also raised as one of the two visitors, a young Chinese with slicked hair reached his feet, right hand slightly behind his back.

Li’s brother had frozen for a moment, horrified by the intrusion, then he staggered to his feet and backed away, his guards regarding Li uncertainly. While they may have acted against McNally and Alisha if so ordered, with Li there, they obviously feared her enough to remain at least neutral.

Li took a step forward, fixing her brother with a steely glare. ‘What do you think you are doing, Fan?’ she snarled at him.

The one seated man, shaven-headed and portly, turned slightly, a cigarette in his hand. ‘He is agreeing to hand over the Bund District to me... to avoid bloodshed,’ the man remarked.

Fan spoke up, his voice quavering. ‘This is the Red Pole of the Gong,’ he blurted. ‘I’m trying to protect our interests!’

‘Our interests?’ Li shrieked. ‘Our interests? Or do you mean further your ambitions? You have no right to offer anything other than hospitality on my behalf.’

McNally watched the seated man, the so-called Gong Red Pole. He was too calm, too relaxed and the slender man next to him, with the hand at his back, he was more... McNally’s left hand angled down slightly and he squeeze the trigger. The pistol shot jolted everyone except Li and the seated man as a slim throwing knife fell to the floor from the hand of the slender man. The man grasped his forearm as blood seeped between his fingers and all eyes were on McNally. ‘Sorry,’ he said. ‘You’re Red Pole, here, was about to do somethin’ stupid.’

The seated man rose slowly and turned to face McNally. ‘Ah, truly a man of wisdom,’ he said bowing slightly. ‘I am Gong Lau, Dragon of the Gong Triad... very astute of you...’

‘McNally,’ came the curt reply as Fan gasped, visibly shaking. ‘Now, the Dragon Lady here is right, her brother there ain’t the man to talk to ‘bout territory. So if y’all wanna depart nice and pleasant-like she can take care of business with her brother and then she can be in touch later to settle things peaceably.’ He glanced to his left as he saw Alisha’s arms shudder slightly. ‘R’else my pal here’s gonna get all unnecessary and start shootin’.’

Lau seemed amused as he bowed to Li. ‘A most inelegant situation, Mama Chang,’ he said. ‘But you know I will take the Bund eventually. You cannot stop me.’

Li smiled slightly and turned her shotgun onto Lau. ‘What’s to stop me ending this now?’

Lau shook his head. ‘You are so keen to die as you must rely on luh suh like him,’ he gestured to McNally, ‘and his terrified ma tze.’ His cold beady eyes settled on Alisha and she glanced to him, her arms beginning to ache with the weight of McNally’s Colts. Lau continued. ‘Give me the Bund or there will be bloodshed, now and later, whatever happens to me today.’

McNally felt his stomach drop as he saw Lau’s hand flick ash from his cigarette, seeing the pistol-toting woman react first, raising her pistols and preparing to fire at Alisha. He lunged into the unsuspecting medic, sending her crashing to the floor, and dived back as pistol shots careened by, levelling his Vulcan on the girl and squeezing off one shot that caught her left shoulder. While he fired blind with his long-barrelled Colt, sending the Gong Red Pole to the floor and forcing one of the carbine-men to duck, he saw Li swing her shotgun and blast the other carbine-carrier at point-blank range, pitching him back onto a table.

On the far side of the bar, the three Chang enforcers dragged Fan towards the stairs and safety while the firefight ensued, the remaining carbine-man raising his weapon towards Alisha. McNally drew a bead on the woman with the pistols but caught the gunman’s action, kicking out to a chair which skittered across the floor and took the man in the groin. His weapon coughed as he doubled in pain, his weapon spitting shots into the floor and sending splinters flying, leaving McNally free to fire twice more as the woman fired back.

Alisha has been on the verge of vomiting but the roar of gun-shots deafened her and somehow suppressed her need to throw-up. Time itself seemed to slow down as she saw McNally jolt, crimson blossoming from his side as he weaved towards the bar, exchanging shots with the pistol-toting woman. Li racked the action on her shotgun as she hit the floor and blasted the other rifle-man, the shot taking his legs from under him, his weapon peppering ceiling and bringing plaster down around him. Alisha shuddered as Li blasted the gunman once more, ending his struggles and then turned towards the wounded man still prone on the ground. Alisha’s hands ached, her grip on McNally’s Colts vice-like, but she saw her chance and lifted both arms, almost not wanting to see where she was aiming as the pistol-girl raised one pistol at McNally as he crashed into the bar. Li’s shotgun fired again, spinning the woman around as McNally shot her twice more and she crumpled into a lifeless heap.

Time then seemed to freeze, just for a moment, and Alisha’s arms failed her, the pistols thudding onto the floorboards, her arms shaking and her legs weak. She wanted to puke again and she needed to pee badly, but the ringing in her ears disorientated her for long seconds and she just lay there, breathing shallow and feeling faint.

Finally McNally reached her, taking and holstering his Colts and then lifting her unsteadily to her feet. ‘You okay?’ he asked, patting her down.

She could see his lips moving but she couldn’t make out the words. Even her own voice sounded numbed and distant. ‘I think I’m going to throw up,’ she managed to say.

McNally smiled tightly as he held her upright having found no wounds or injuries. ‘You’ll be fine,’ he muttered. ‘Just breathe deep... you’re okay.’ He moved her to one side and perched her on a chair, turning away.

In an instant it seemed Alisha’s senses had returned as she saw the rent in his shirt, stained scarlet. ‘You’ve been shot,’ she said, catching his arm, her nausea all but forgotten.

He glanced down. ‘What, this? This ain’t shot, there ain’t no bullet in there, s’just a graze.’

‘You’re bleeding,’ she hissed.

He eased her arm away. ‘I ain’t got time to bleed right now,’ he said, moving across the room to where Gong Lau and his wounded but still breathing Red Pole sat, Li standing over them with her shotgun poised. She was already ordering her enforcers to remove the bodies and, as McNally reached her shoulder she was delivering an ultimatum to a disquieted Lau.

‘Unless you want more trouble and more bloodshed you will agree to my terms Gong Lau,’ Li said with a sweet smile. ‘I have more allies like McNally, here, in the Bund and I am more than prepared to fight you for it. I give you your life and that of your nephew here... and that is as generous as I feel.’

Lau pursed his lips as he regarded McNally coldly. ‘You certainly are a force to be reckoned with, McNally shian shen.’ His gaze then went to Alisha. ‘But your friend is-’

‘She’s doin’ just fine,’ McNally snapped, his hand falling to the grip of his Vulcan. ‘She’s just shocked at your bein’ so impolite as to start a shootin’ match in a nice place like this. That an’ disrespectin’ Chang shao jeh. An’ there was me, tellin’ her what a nice place Sihnon City was.’

Lau smiled slightly. ‘Quite so.’

‘Well?’ Li asked. ‘Do you want to live or does the Gong Triad require decapitation?’

Lau’s meagre humour evaporated. ‘I agree to your terms, Chang shao jeh.’ He turned to his wounded nephew and jabbed a fat finger at the door. The bartender was already there, observing the street as the two living Gong Triad members moved to go. The bartender opened the door and ushered Lau’s nephew out as Lau paused. ‘McNally shian shen, what if I were to double what she pays you to work for me?’

McNally shook his head. ‘You assume she pays me,’ he said. ‘And you assume I work for her.’

Lau frowned. ‘Don’t you?’

‘Nope,’ McNally replied with a wink. ‘I was just passin’ through.’

Lau’s frown turned to a look of abject dread as he shuffled from the bar and the bartender threw the bolts and let out a breath as he crossed back to the bar. ‘I don’t know about any of you, but I need a drink, he said.

Alisha was on her feet. ‘Damn right.’

As several of Li’s people began clearing up the debris of the firefight, McNally sidled up the bar next to Alisha. ‘You sure you wanna be drinkin’?’

Alisha’s eyes seemed to glaze over as she look at the array of bottles behind the bar. ‘What do you think?’

He didn’t answer as the bartender poured her a glass of bourbon and she drained it in one gulp. He took up his own glass and turned his back on her slightly as she drained a second tumbler-full and heard her sigh.

‘I’m sorry,’ she said.

He swirled the bourbon in his glass and took a sip, feeling the sting from his side suddenly. ‘So am I,’ he replied.
Captain Det McNally
‘If you can’t do somethin’ smart, do somethin’ right... if you can’t do somethin’ right, do somethin’!’
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Character name: Det McNally

Post Tue Nov 12, 2013 8:19 pm

Re: Interlude on Sihnon

Alisha’s put her hand over the glass as the bartender offered her another refill. Her stomach churned and she listened to the scrubbing of blood stains from the floorboards as Mama Chang’s cohorts went to work covering up the fact that three people had been killed less than an hour before. She gazed over at McNally, sat on a chair while that woman bandaged him. She wasn’t jealous, she told herself, just... why was his manner with her so easy, so relaxed, and yet with everyone else he was so reserved and discomfited. It didn’t make sense. He laughed with her, smiled and looked at her meaningfully. He had a connection with that woman and he had helped her kill three people. Alisha looked away as McNally turned his head, looking towards the bar and she pushed the glass away and shook her head to the bartender once more. ‘I’ve had enough,’ she murmured. Then she stole another glance to McNally. Chang Li was leaning in whispering in his ear and his eyes flicked to Alisha as he smiled slightly. It made her skin crawl as the beautiful and dangerous Oriental woman rose slowly and sashayed from the bar.

McNally reached his feet and slipped his shirt on, then he donned his waistcoat, pulling it down to cover the worst of the stain and the tear. ‘You okay?’ he asked.

‘Fine,’ she replied, her brow furrowed. ‘Are we going now?’

‘Not yet,’ he murmured, nodding back through to the workshop yard. ‘This way.’

Alisha followed him uncertainly, reaching the yard as a Fed-transport cruised low overhead.

He was over by one of the workbenches and she was handing him something. ‘Nice,’ Alisha heard him say. Then he was approaching her. ‘This is for you,’ he said. ‘Hope you like it.’

Alisha took the bundle, something heavy wrapped, crudely, in cloth. She opened it up, pliant leather creaking as she unveiled a glimmer of oiled gunmetal and a smooth wooden pistol-grip. ‘What the...?’ Not just a pistol, but a pistol in a purpose-made holster and a small box of .45 shells.

‘Seeing as you needed a better shootin’ iron that that little twin-barrel rib-tickler,’ he said softly. ‘I had Mama Chang find somethin’ fittin’. I don’t know where she finds this stuff... but she finds this stuff.’

Alisha was confused, elated and angry. She loved the gift but the circumstances seemed so terribly wrong. ‘It’s...’ she raised her eyes to his. ‘But you and her, you just...’ Tears threatened and she bowed her head. She heard his breathing, even and measured.

‘We killed folks,’ he said flatly. ‘Folks that was plannin’ on killin’. Us as we were there, but others had we not been. Maybe even Li.’

Alisha’s lifted her gaze to him again, a jab of anger spurring her. ‘What does she mean to you?’

McNally frowned slightly. ‘I... ah... I honestly don’t know,’ he said softly. ‘I know she’d want me around a lot more but she also knows that I’m not... reliable like that. We’re just, ya know, casual acquaintences.’

‘And you’ll kill for her?’ Alisha’s voice had an edge.

He grimaced slightly. ‘Like I’d kill to protect you or Regan, the Preacher, Mei, any of ya. Damn right I’ll kill to protect them what mean somethin’ to me.’ He shook his head. ‘I don’t expect you to understand, you’re no older than Chang Li, but she was born into this life and you? You were born somewhere so different, so isolated... if you can’t accept the ‘verse is this way, you need to go runnin’ back to your folks sooner rather than later. Or maybe you forgot that your brother’s a murderer an’ you need an outlaw like me to hunt him down for ya. Li’s just a damn sight prettier for an outlaw... and I don’t need to be anythin’ other than me around her.’ She shrugged tension out of his shoulders and took up his coat and hat once more. ‘Anyway, there’s your gift... and your welcome.’ He turned away and went back to Li.

Alisha loosed her belt slightly and slipped the holster into place, securing it and getting the feel of the pistol under her right hand. She frowned at McNally as Li seemed to soothe him, holding his hand with some affection but his eyes were cold and empty. Alisha looked away as she drew the pistol, feeling the weight, and opened the loading gate, loading the shells carefully. She slipped the remainder of the box in her pocket and holstered the pistol wondering if she, indeed, was prepared to kill to protect those who meant something to her and she bit her lip.

Suddenly there was a shout and the door from the back of the bar burst open, Chang Fan, Li’s brother, stepped out, the pump-action shotgun in his hands, aimed at McNally. Li yelled a warning as McNally pushed her behind him, his hand taking long moments to reach for a gun. Fan raised the shotgun, his finger on the trigger and he prepared to fire, having got the drop on the cursed Occidental for once.

The crack of a 45 calibre pistol sounded first, however, Fan’s neck blooming crimson as Alisha’s shot took him from the side. His arms fell and he dropped the shotgun, stumbling and finally collapsing to his knees as his life-blood drained from the jagged wound in his throat. He absently raised a hand to the wound as if to stem the flow but took his palm away and gazed dumbly as his blood dripped from his fingers. His eyes rose to McNally’s almost beseechingly. Then he slumped forward, face hitting the dirt, the sand turning to black tar.

Alisha looked at her hand, the gun in it, the gentle curl of smoke and the strong smell of cordite. ‘I just... I didn’t mean to...’

McNally was at her side, his hand taking the gun from her and depositing it in her holster. Then he turned to Fan’s lifeless body, seeing Li kneeling beside him, her expression neutral and her eyes half-closed.

Alisha was almost sobbing. ‘I didn’t mean to kill him... I just...’

McNally gripped her arms. ‘I know,’ he hissed.

The bartender and several Chang enforcers burst into the yard seconds later. ‘He grabbed the shotgun and barred the pass door,’ the bartender said, then looked at McNally. ‘He was going to kill you.’

Li raised her eyes at last. ‘She killed him,’ she said, pointing to Alisha. ‘She killed him for you McNally shian shen.’

McNally’s shoulders tensed and he turned to Alisha. ‘We’d better go.’ He manhandled Alisha towards the door to the alleyway and glanced back. ‘So long, bao bei.’ Li’s eyes were filled with tears but she said nothing.

They reached the street with McNally still gripping Alisha’s arm and propelling her up the street.

‘I am going to puke,’ she said and he pushed her into another deserted alleyway as her stomach rebelled, emptying its contents into the gutter. She coughed then hawked and spat bourbon-tainted bile and mucus, pulling the bottle of water and swilling out her mouth. McNally held her steady and she regarded him. ‘I’m sorry,’ she murmured.

‘Don’t be,’ he said as he shook his head. ‘You did what you had to.’

‘I didn’t even think I just...’ she leaned back against the wall. ‘I don’t even remember drawing, aiming, I don’t remember anything... I just shot him. I killed him.’

McNally grasped her hand and began to lead her out of the alleyway. ‘Well, we’d better keep movin’.’

Alisha stopped him. ‘Why? You and her are... friends aren’t you?’

‘You killed the Red Pole of the Chang Triad,’ McNally answered as if that explained everything. ‘The only reason either of us are still breathin’ is that Chang Li owes us her life. Trust me, things work different in the Triads an’ no matter how much affection you think she has for me, Mama Chang ain’t gonna stop her dogs comin’ for us if they start bayin’ for blood. Why do you think neither of us killed Gong Lau’s nephew? You kill the Red Pole and you mean to harm the Triad.’ He hauled her along, barging through people until he reached an intersection leading to the Bund district. Only then did he relax slightly, the surroundings distinctly less Oriental, making for the rent-rooms and comfort-houses.

As they reached a palatial apartment block Alisha stayed him. ‘What have I actually done?’

McNally regarded her, seeing the cold fear and disbelief in her eyes. ‘You’ve declared war on the Chang Triad,’ he said softly. ‘They’ll want blood for blood. Unless Li can convince them otherwise.’

Alisha’s eyes widened. ‘But he was going to kill you!’

‘And if I’d killed him, Li would’ve been honour-bound to absolve me of blame,’ McNally said, strangely calm. ‘But I didn’t kill him. You did. Listen, if it comes down to it, they can have my scalp.’ He shrugged slightly. ‘Li might insist on that anyway... it ain’t seemly for Triads to hunt women for killlin’s they do... better hunt their men-folk. That’s why Chang Li, Mama Chang, is such a strong leader and why the other Triads are scared of her. She’s practically untouchable.’

Alisha looked to the sky. ‘I didn’t mean for any of this,’ she wailed.

McNally stroked her cheek softly. ‘Hey, look at me,’ he said and her baleful eyes met his. ‘I’m not going to let anyone hurt you, not your brother, not Chang Li, not anybody. They go through me first and I’ll stop ‘em if it’s the last thing I do.’ He took a deep breath. ‘I figure I dragged you into this so I’ll just have to get you out of it.’ He glanced at his watch. ‘Mei’s gonna think we’re leavin’ her here,’ he said finally. ‘Are you okay?’

Alisha frowned. ‘No!’

‘Good,’ he said. ‘Neither am I.’
Captain Det McNally
‘If you can’t do somethin’ smart, do somethin’ right... if you can’t do somethin’ right, do somethin’!’
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Ship's Doctor
Ship's Doctor

Posts: 161

Joined: Tue Nov 12, 2013 6:52 pm

Character name: Dr. Alisha 'Scrubs' Corbon

Post Tue Nov 12, 2013 8:20 pm

Re: Interlude on Sihnon

Alisha was pale, almost as white as her coat as she let McNally lead her through the crowded streets, her gaze flittering from person to person, half expecting to see malice and anger in their eyes as they came for her. No one did.

But that didn’t stop the icy fear coursing through her veins. And not just fear, but disgust. She had trained for years to be a doctor, a surgeon, a medic, she was not squeamish when it came to the human body, but now her insides twisted, the taste of bile burned her throat. She had killed a person.
She hadn’t just shot at him. She had killed him.
And even worse, she hadn’t consciously thought about it, just acted.

She could almost hear Donuts words of ‘wisdom’, when she had shown her trepidations about wielding a gun at Zenith. When you draw tha’ gun, you best be lookin’ to use it, and I don’t mean shootin’ an arm or a leg, you shoot to kill, head or chest. You need to decide in that instant, whose life is worth more, yours or theirs…

Except it hadn’t been her life.
It had been McNally’s. She had made the decision without thinking, in that instant, his life was worth more.
She couldn’t even be sure that had she been forewarned that it would have changed her actions. Does that make me a bad person? She pondered following closely in McNally’s stead.

He caught her anxious stares as he manoeuvred them both to where they would be meeting Mei and Marshall. She looked lost, a girl run off to the black, and jumping into trouble way over her head.
OOC- Cassie
IC- Dr. Alisha "Scrubs" Corbon- "If you can't do somethin' Smart, do somethin' Right... If you can't do somethin' Right, do Somethin'"
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Ship's Doctor
Ship's Doctor

Posts: 163

Joined: Tue Nov 12, 2013 4:09 pm

Character name: William Burton

Post Tue Nov 12, 2013 8:20 pm

Re: Interlude on Sihnon

Burton whistled happily as he walked through the streets. It was nice to be planet side again. The sun shining on his back, fresh air in his lungs, he made a face as something not too fresh wafted on the breeze. At least it isn't recycled he decided.
Consulting an information terminal he headed off in search of the supplies he needed.
I hate flying!
This one's got no pulse. -Next!
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Ship's Pilot

Posts: 255

Joined: Wed Nov 13, 2013 10:25 am

Location: IC The Roisin Dubh. OC York.

Character name: Det McNally

Post Tue Nov 12, 2013 8:21 pm

Re: Interlude on Sihnon

Marshall opened the door slightly, relaxing almost instantly when he saw who was standing in the corridor. ‘Where’ve you been?’ he asked, seeing McNally’s severe expression, then opening the door wide.

‘We ran into a little... trouble,’ McNally replied as he ushered a pale and gaunt Alisha into the sumptuous apartment. Mei’s bags were packed and she sat at the console checking through a few waves.

‘Where’s the bathroom?’ Alisha asked suddenly and Marshall directed her through another door.

As they disappeared, Mei shut down the screen and regarded McNally with a cold glower. ‘You’re late,’ she said.

‘Yeah, like I said, we ran into trouble,’ McNally replied as she went to the window, his hand resting on the grip of a grossly oversized pistol the like of which Mei had never seen. He caught her concern as his thumb brushed the hammer a few times. ‘Nothin’ we couldn’t handle. Don’t worry, no one’s after us, I’m just a little... wound up right now.’

Mei’s keen hearing picked up the sounds of someone vomiting. ‘Is she all right?’ Mei asked as Marshall reappeared.

The tall man shrugged slightly. ‘She said she needed to puke... then started pukin’.’

Mei shook her head. ‘Well, as long as she doesn’t leave a mess or they’ll charge me extra for clean-up.’ Her eyes went McNally, steeling herself for the cutting retort... but it never came.

McNally’s eyes scanned the room and he looked back out of the window. Finally he said, ‘If the Chang contact you for more money, let me know... I’ll settle it.’

Mei opened her mouth to ask how McNally knew who ran the apartment block but Alisha reappeared, still ashen, but with a hardened glint in her eyes. ‘Sorry about that,’ she murmured, sipping water from her bottle and wishing it were something much stronger.

‘Another one of my lousy landings,’ McNally said, looking to Alisha and seeing recognition in her eyes.

Alisha nodded. ‘Yeah,’ she said forcing a chuckle.

McNally looked to Mei. ‘Y’all ready?’

‘I have been for over an hour,’ she said softly, frowning slightly as McNally again said nothing in reply other than looking uncomfortable. Only then did she see the ruddy stain on his shirt, partially obscured by his coat and waistcoat but briefly visible when he reached for her cases, and the tightness on his face as he took the weight of one case on his left side.

‘Here, Marshall, take this one f’me!’ McNally said, straining slightly as Marshall took the case from McNally’s left hand. McNally then looked to Mei. ‘Once we’re outside, take Alisha’s arm, she’s the most respectable lookin’.’

Mei nodded as Marshall led the way outside, Alsiha following. She glanced once more to McNally seeing his grimace and the confusion behind his eyes, and she began to wonder what had actually happened.
Captain Det McNally
‘If you can’t do somethin’ smart, do somethin’ right... if you can’t do somethin’ right, do somethin’!’
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