Interlude on Sihnon

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Ship's Pilot

Posts: 254

Joined: Wed Nov 13, 2013 10:25 am

Location: IC The Roisin Dubh. OC York.

Character name: Det McNally

Post Tue Nov 12, 2013 8:22 pm

Re: Interlude on Sihnon

McNally sat in the pilot’s seat, looking out over the spaceport, brooding over a cup of coffee supplied by the Preacher who was currently in the mess describing the events on Zenith to an incredulous Mei and Marshall. The journey back from the Bund had be uneventful and, arriving back at the Roisin, Alisha had headed for her cabin while McNally made his way to the flight deck where he knew no one would bother him. Regan, Hopscotch and Tobias were elsewhere, according to Chai, ‘gathering the fleet’ he’d said. McNally had just nodded and made for the cockpit, leaving the hatch ajar and throwing his coat onto the back of the pilot’s seat... his seat, he thought... but for how much longer?

The sky beyond the windscreen was criss-crossed with contrails and exhaust blooms as vessel arrived and departed, small Chariots and vast Titans, venerable Fireflies and sleek Huntresses, ships of all sizes with all manner of modifications, the bustle of a busy spaceport so different to the panicked departures from Zenith.

Behind him the hatch whined a little. He inclined his head, knowing who it was without having to look. ‘What’s on your mind?’

Alisha came to sit in the co-pilot’s seat, her hip-flask gripped by both hands while elation and revulsion contorted her features. ‘What are you going to do?’ she asked finally, then dared to look at McNally. ‘Shouldn’t you warn the others?’

McNally shrugged slightly. ‘I don’t think so,’ he said softly. ‘There’s nothin’ they’ve said nor done to get her all riled up. Her beef is with you, us... me!’

‘What do you think she’ll do?’ Alisha asked, gulping from the flask as she prepared herself for the worst.

‘Oh, she’ll do just what we’re doin’,’ he replied, his eyes following the trace of a high altitude ship. ‘Figurin’ things out. We’ll know soon enough when she’s made up her mind.’

‘And then what?’

McNally shook his head. ‘Then we take whatever she throws at us.’ He frowned then as he lost sight of the vessel he was watching, then blinked and looked off into the middle-distance. ‘In the end, she’ll not do anything drastic, ‘cause she knows I’ll take her down with me.’ His voice sounded odd, a little off and distant.

For a moment Alisha wondered if he’d been drinking. ‘Don’t do anything stupid,’ she said. ‘Surely we just lie low on the ship an-’

‘I’m not going to do anything stupid,’ McNally said sharply. ‘That’s what I expect the other folks to do.’ He fixed her with a determined gaze. ‘An’ speakin’ of stupid...’ he gestured to the hip-flask. ‘Don’t go gettin’ ideas about loading up and headin’ out. She makes the move and we respond just like decent folks.’ He rose suddenly, smarting as his side complained.

‘Do you want me to take a look?’ Alisha asked, suddenly reminded that that woman had tended McNally and she had yet to assess how good a job had been done.

McNally scowled slightly, about to deliver a terse response, but he stopped himself. ‘Okay, here’s the deal. Put away the rot-gut and we’ll go to the infirmary. Then you can do your doctorin’.’

Alisha glanced down at the hip-flask, slowly capping it. ‘You promise not to do anything stupid?’

He frowned at her, lost for a moment in a memory, of Molly asking him not to go off with Zeta and instead stay with what remained of the McNally family in Marauder’s Reach. She had asked for his promise too... a promise he had broken. Alisha’s eyes carried the same light, the same concern. ‘Gorram,’ he murmured. ‘Okay, I promise.’ He gestured to the hatch and Alisha led him off the deck.
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 8:22 pm

Re: Interlude on Sihnon

With McNally reclined in the chair, his shirt and waistcoat slung over the back, Alisha very carefully removed the dressing covering the wound. There was a flicker irritation that crossed her face when she realised that that woman had actually done an excellent job at administering first aid. It seems that being an outlore you needed to know these things.
“It’s Shoddy work..” She lied, “It’s going to need a couple of stiches, I’ll just get you a local-“
“Don’t be botherin’ with that, save it for folks tha’ needs it.”
“You sure?” she smiled, pulling her tools out of various draws and precisely setting them out other along the counter.
“I’m sure I’ll manage” he replied with a wry smile

“If you’re absolutely positive… This is going to sting… a lot.” Very gently Alisha started to clean the wound so she could stich it up, as she pressed the antiseptic cloth to his side he flinched.
“I told you” she murmured.
McNally just grinned at her, “Your hands are freezing!” he complained.
Alisha chuckled slightly, “I make up for it with my amazing bedside manner, and sparking personality”
She threaded the needle, and readjusted the lamp so she could see, and started to sew up what McNally had called a flesh wound.

As her fingers remembered the familiar motions, her mind was free to wander. She wanted to tell Det that it had been an accident, that she hadn’t meant to cause them such trouble. That the fact that she could pull the trigger scared her, that she had made her feel sick to her stomach.
She wanted to tell him that she didn’t belong in the black, that it seemed every time she stepped from the safety of the ship trouble finds her.
She wanted to tell him that she doesn’t want to find her Brother, doesn’t want to know the truth in case it breaks her reality of how she sees the ‘verse. She wants to believe Wyatt is innocent, and that the whole thing was a misunderstanding.
She wanted to tell Det how much he had stung her when he had snapped at her back in the yard, telling her she should run back to her folks sooner rather than later.

But she didn’t.
Alisha was silent as she worked, her hands moving with a practiced swiftness.

Finally she applied a new dressing just to keep it all clean till it had started healing. “There we go, all done… Much neater than Donuts super glue and duct tape”
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 Pilot

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Joined: Wed Nov 13, 2013 10:25 am

Location: IC The Roisin Dubh. OC York.

Character name: Det McNally

Post Tue Nov 12, 2013 8:23 pm

Re: Interlude on Sihnon

‘Escorting her from the Bund?’ Chang Li muttered softly. ‘Sun shao jei? You’re sure?’

Fung’s head nodded once, the jowly, thickset enforcer at the head of a small group. ‘They escorted Sun Mei-Zing and her minder to a ship,’ he said. ‘It had a strange name, Row-izin Duh-bah, and a black rose symbol.’ He looked around at the others. ‘When they reappear we can take them, bring them here and deal with them.’

Li shook her head. ‘I will not strike back like a lunatic Gong enforcer,’ she said calmly. ‘My brother’s life was worth more than simple retaliation.’

Fung frowned. ‘But Mama Cha-’

‘But nothing,’ she snarled, reaching her feet. ‘Keep watch but do not act. If any of you dare lift a finger against McNally or the girl without my express permission I will personally cut that individual’s throat and then have every man and woman in his family sold into slavery out on the Rim.’ She sank slowly back into the chair. ‘Now go, leave me.’

Fung bowed and lead his cohort towards the stairs as the bartender came over with a steaming cup of coffee. He placed the cup down but didn’t move away. He remained at her side, breathing evenly. ‘What are you going to do?’ he asked finally.

She raised her eyes to him. She had shed no tears, she felt no grief. In fact her brother’s death had become a blessed relief, but... ‘Retribution is expected,’ she remarked finally then turned her gaze to the coffee.

‘You know McNally will protect the girl,’ the bartender said. ‘If you want blood for blood, you will have to go through him... literally.’

She sat back and regarded the occidental man with amusement. ‘Retribution in expected, not necessarily blood for blood. There are other ways of making the girl suffer... without ‘going through’ McNally shian shen.’

The bartender frowned. ‘Why do you like him?’

‘Jealous?’ she countered quickly.

‘Of course not,’ he replied, too quickly. ‘But it seems he has more... latitude than others.’

Li shook her head slightly. ‘He is a dangerous man and I cannot control him. If I were to merely seek vengeance, he would strike back and cause such chaos and mayhem I would be weakened and the Gong would be back. No, McNally shian shen will need careful handling.’ She sipped the coffee and nodded to herself. ‘We open tonight as usual, then, tomorrow morning, you find this ship and invite him to meet me here tomorrow night. I shall discuss then with him what my terms are to protect this girl that means so much to him but does not share his bed.’

The bartender opened his mouth to speak but hesitated and, thinking better of it, bowed obediently. ‘As you wish, Mama Chang,’ he said, turning back and stepping to the bar.
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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CEO of Black Rose Freight

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Joined: Tue Nov 12, 2013 6:54 pm

Character name: Regan

Post Tue Nov 12, 2013 8:23 pm

Re: Interlude on Sihnon

It seemed quite incongruous, in the Administration block of a modern, busy spaceport. An oak panelled, plush carpeted office suite, complete with coal fireplaces (mercifully unlit on this roasting hot day) and marble mantelpieces. Regan watched the smoke curling up from the end of a particularly fine cigar which the Preacher had miraculously produced that morning at breakfast, before lighting its' twin and puffing away benignly. Across the desk, a nervous little man in shirtsleeves and a very bright red waistcoat was shuffling flexis into two little piles. He pushed them, side by side, over to Regan.

"I think you will find them all in order Captain, erm, Larsen. Title and registration to two ships, a Traveller class, to be re-christened Roisin Oiche, co owned by Black Rose Spacefreight and Captain Tobias Irvine, and a Huntress class, to be re-christened Roisin Fuil, co owned by the aforementioned company and Captain Astrid DuPont."

Regan placed his thumbprint on the two sets of documents, as Chairman and CEO of Black Rose, and then passed them on to Tobias and Astrid who did the same. There were three sets for each ship. One for the Captain, one for Black Rose, and one for the authorities. Everything above board. Kinda...

******************************************

They had arrived at the offices as Captain and crew. They returned across the tarmac as Captains. Berthed next to the Roisin Dubh were her new sisters, even now being painted in their new livery, and neither of them, thankfully, pink.... The makings of a crew were already starting to assemble on each. More would follow. The Rose fleet was growing.... As they approached, they passed close to a pair of young Chinese men, lounging against a large crate and apparently looking for work. The pair watched intently as Regan, Hopscotch and Tobias stepped aboard the Dubh, and one of them scurried off to report to Mama Chang....
If you ain't crew, you ain't family...

kid

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Ship's Engineer
Ship's Engineer

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Joined: Wed Nov 13, 2013 8:32 am

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Post Tue Nov 12, 2013 8:23 pm

Re: Interlude on Sihnon

Kid had dived into the depths of the new ships the second they had arrived. Every so so often she would appear back on the Roisin Dubh to grab another piece of equipment before vanishing again. As the new captains finally made it back from their their paperwork trip, she strolled down the ramp of the Roisin Fuil, wiping her hands clean on her jumper and grinning. She nodded at Astrid "You might need to replace the grav dampners in the next six months or so, depending on how much your mechanic can coax out of them, but apart from that, she's in excellent shape. Should certainly be able to fly circles around the Dubh. And I found a couple of excellently-hidden little compartments I think we may find a use for." She nodded to the third ship. "As for the Oiche, she's going to struggle to get full fuel efficiency, but she's in fairly good shape." She looked from face to face at the three captains "Congratulations! Two healthy girls! "
Nah, ship didn't need those parts anyway...
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Ship's Pilot

Posts: 254

Joined: Wed Nov 13, 2013 10:25 am

Location: IC The Roisin Dubh. OC York.

Character name: Det McNally

Post Tue Nov 12, 2013 8:24 pm

Re: Interlude on Sihnon

McNally held a support stanchion in place while Kid welded it. A little essential maintenance, she had called it, just to reinforce a buckled pressure bulkhead under an engine mount. He turned his head away as the welder flared brightly in the dark interior of the Huntress. The crackle and spit of molten metal drowned the steady tread of deck-boots as Chai appeared in his field of view. As Kid’s welding torch fell silent, Chai nodded to her. ‘You still need him?’ he asked, glancing to McNally briefly.

Kid grinned back. ‘No,’ she replied brightly, slamming a heavily gloved hand against the support. ‘She’s all shiny now.’

McNally stepped back from the support spar and turned to retrieve his shirt from another support rail. ‘There a problem?’ he asked, seeing a tension in Chai’s face.

‘Might be... you’ve got a visitor,’ Chai replied. ‘With friends... looks like a Triad to me.’ He walked alongside McNally as they reached the ramp, then stopped and placed a hand on McNally’s shoulder. ‘We don’t have a problem, do we?’

McNally shook his head firmly, tucking in his shirt tails. ‘No, Chai, we don’t have a problem at all.’ He sighed slightly, staring around the landing field. ‘If anything happens it’s my neck... no one else’s. I can take care of it.’ He headed down the ramp into the blazing sun.

‘And if you can’t?’ Chai asked.

McNally glanced back. ‘Then I’ll be dead.’

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

The Chang enforcers had backed off from the three Roisin ships but the occidental bartender remained in the shade of the Roisin Dubh’s nose. McNally sauntered over, leaning against the smooth flank of the ship, and regarded the bartender with a slight frown. ‘What’d’ya want?’

‘Mama Chang wants to see you, tonight.’

‘Tonight, uh?’

‘You’re to come alone and unarmed.’

‘Shi ma,’ McNally muttered seeing the man glance around nervously before nodding. ‘Dang ran, she calls and I’m supposed to go runnin’ to her like a lost puppy,’ McNally said finally, tugging a rag from his belt and trying to wipe grim from his hands.

‘She wants to discuss terms,’ the bartender said, looking at McNally’s boot-caps and mopping his brow.

McNally shrugged. ‘So she’s willin’ to listen to me? Or is she just gonna tell me the way it is?’

The man shook his head slightly and finally looked McNally in the eye. ‘I don’t know,’ he snapped. ‘I don’t even know why she’s wasting her time with a go neong yung duh like you.’ Suddenly the nerves were gone and his eyes blazed with anger.

McNally only smiled back. ‘There it is,’ he said softly. ‘I was wondering when that old green-eyed monster’d rear its ugly head.’ He pushed away from the ship and strode past the bartender. The man grabbed for his arm, but McNally effortless shrugged him off and turn to face him. ‘You wanna throw down, go for it, but I doubt you’ll have much more fight than the Red Pole did.’ His fists were clenched as his eyes narrowed on the slender man, seeing the flames of ire in his eyes die back to embers in the face of a physical confrontation. ‘She doesn’t even know, does she... you deliberately let her brother come after me, just ‘cause you were afraid I was stealin’ your girl.’

All the anger left the man, his fear returning. ‘Please, don’t say anything, just... just go, don’t see her tonight, I’ll tell her you refused and... and that you’ve got many friends here who will protect you and the girl... and th-’

‘Jien ta duh guay, if I don’t step up she’ll have a price on Alisha’s head before we leave atmo,’ McNally growled, taking one pace towards the man and sending him back against the side of the ship. ‘Fang xin, I’ll not say anything to her. What’s done is done and blamin’ you ain’t gonna change much.’ He rubbed his chin ruefully, figuring things out while the bartender cowered. ‘Tell her I agree, I’ll be there, alone and unarmed.’

The bartender shuddered visibly as he shifted away from McNally and the ship. ‘She... she wants to send a mule to pick you up... so you’re not late.’

‘And not followed?’ McNally asked, already knowing the answer. ‘Okay, fine, what time?’

‘Er, nineteen-hundred hours.’

Suddenly Alisha’s appeared around the side of the ship, her genial expression fading fast as she recognised the bartender. She looked to McNally with a severe frown. ‘What’s he doing here?’

McNally just looked to the man. ‘Kwai jio kai, ma shong.’ The man nodded, bowed and dashed towards his bodyguard.

Alisha’s gaze followed him and she watched the small group head off towards the spaceport entry. ‘Are you going to tell me what’s going on?’ she asked, an edge to her tone.

‘Mama Chang wants to discuss terms,’ McNally replied calmly and strode purposefully towards the aft cargo ramp.

Alisha followed in his wake, jogging just to keep pace. ‘What did you say? What’re we going to do?’

He reached the foot of the ramp and stopped, looking down at her. ‘We are not going to do anything, I am going meet with her and you are staying here.’ He turned to head up the ramp but her hand caught his arm. He stopped himself from shrugging her away and looked back into her eyes.

‘You promised,’ she said. ‘You promised!’

He placed his grimy hand on her clinically clean fingers and gently squeezed. ‘She wants to discuss terms,’ he said.

‘It could be a trap,’ she murmured.

He gave her a half-smile. ‘It probably is.’

‘So don’t go.’

‘Alisha, I have to,’ he said, taking both her hands in his. ‘If I don’t she’ll send her dogs after us and you’ll never be able to set foot on a Core world again. Guai, she might even put a bounty on your head and you’ll be lookin’ over your shoulder for the rest of your life.’

‘Fine, I’ll come with you.’

He shook his head firmly. ‘No, she wants me to go alone and unarmed.’ She tried to protest but he cut her off. ‘Alisha, this is my territory, this is what I know. It’s not a stupid move to go, it’s just... risky. She needs word to get around that she is in control and doing things the right way. I have to do this... alone.’ He looked down at his filthy fingers, seeing the smears of oily grime he was leaving on her skin. ‘You have to promise to trust me on this. I go tonight and I’ll make sure everything’s fine and you’ll be in the clear.’

Her eyes were almost tearful, but her anger stopped her sobbing like a girl. ‘How do you know?’ she hissed.

‘Because I know what’s going on here... and you don’t,’ he said calmly. ‘You just have to trust me.’ He looked at his hands. ‘Looks like I need to clean up a touch.’

‘Yeah,’ she remarked, her head low, treading up the ramp.

‘Why were you lookin’ for me anyway?’

‘Oh, Lock’s making coffee, I wondered if you wanted some,’ she said as they reached the quarterdeck.

He nodded. ‘Tell him I’ll be right there.’

She regarded him uncertainly. ‘Tell him yourself,’ she murmured finally. ‘I’ll be in my cabin.’

He watched her walk away and disappear into her quarters, then he turned to the wall and slammed his forehead against a coolant pipe that was at just the right level, the painful impact making a satisfying ringing sound.

He did it again as Poppy emerged from her cabin. ‘Oh, er... are you okay, McNally?’

‘No,’ he said, resting his head against the pipe. ‘I’ve got a headache.’

‘Do you want me to get Button?’

‘No,’ he said softly. ‘Thanks, but I’ll be fine. Just need a little fresh air.’ He strode away from the cabins, went through the cargo bay and headed back down the ramp into the hot afternoon sun, heading in no particular direction.
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

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Joined: Wed Nov 13, 2013 10:25 am

Location: IC The Roisin Dubh. OC York.

Character name: Det McNally

Post Tue Nov 12, 2013 8:24 pm

Re: Interlude on Sihnon

Regan had asked Chai to keep watch for when the mule arrived. McNally had mentioned it briefly when he had reappeared from his afternoon ‘stroll’ before retreating to his cabin to brood, Regan leaving him for a while but eventually feeling like he had to know.

‘Ching jin,’ McNally called as a knock came at his door.

Regan stepped inside, finding the fist-fighter dressed relatively smartly, seated on his bunk. ‘What’s going on, McNally? Why’s there a Triad looking for you?’

McNally smiled tightly. ‘Alisha trod on a few toes,’ he replied. ‘I just need to iron out a few creases.’

‘If this comes back on us...’

McNally shook his head. ‘It won’t.’ He weighted the small silver-grey revolver in his hand. ‘It comes back on me, alone.’

Regan shrugged tension from his shoulders. ‘Am I gonna need to find a new pilot?’

McNally looked at him, his eyes devoid of emotion. ‘Fang xin, Regan, you’ve got plenty of contacts.’

From the cargo bay, they heard Chai shout, ‘McNally, they’re here.’

McNally nodded to Regan. ‘See you later.’

Regan watched him go, shaking his head slightly. ‘I hope so,’ he muttered. He was about to close the door when Alisha emerged from her cabin. She looked gaunt, her eyes glazed. ‘He’s gone already,’ he said as she stepped unsteadily to the open cabin.

‘He left his hat,’ she said, her voice slightly slurred and she went over to his bunk, sitting down and picking up the hat. Only then did she what had been hidden beneath. The small silver-grey revolver, the gun he had lent to her once, the gun that seemed to mean so much to him... the last weapon she imagined he would be without. Tears filled her eyes and she grabbed it and lurched past Regan, staggering down to the cargo bay and out onto the landing field to see the large transport mule rumble away. She slumped to her knees, feeling sick, shaking with the small pistol clutched to her chest. Chai was at her side and gently lifted her up.

At the foot of the ramp, Regan looked on. ‘Feng le hwen dan,’ he said as he went to help Alisha back aboard.
Captain Det McNally
‘If you can’t do somethin’ smart, do somethin’ right... if you can’t do somethin’ right, do somethin’!’

kid

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Ship's Engineer
Ship's Engineer

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Post Tue Nov 12, 2013 8:25 pm

Re: Interlude on Sihnon

Kid leaned up against the bulkhead and watched the mule vanish round a corner. She turned a small receiver over in one hand. She’d been right. The kids had been able to get right up to the mule and crowd round it before being shooed away. None of the occupants had given the port rats more than a glance. You got down-and-out kids asking for change everywhere. Stripping down the tracking device that she’d accidentally activated all those months ago had been easy, and it had been almost ridiculously simple to pare down the important components into something about the same size and weight as a small-calibre bullet.



It would have taken an idiot to not notice that McNally had been walking around with a bullet hole in him. Kid wasn’t sure if he was assuming everyone hadn’t noticed or that they didn’t care.



One of the port rats ran up to Kid eagerly, hand already outstretched. She dropped the agreed-on sum into the grubby palm. To her credit, the youngster carefully counted it out before pocketing the lot. As she turned to head back to the gang, Kid’s hand landed on her shoulder and spun her back round again. “I’ll be taking the bug back an’ all.” The urchin shrugged and produced the emitter “You’ll have ter ask us to not do things again in the future.” Kid checked the device over to reassure herself it was all there. At the last second, she’d shaken her head. Almost imperceptibly, but the port rats had good eyes. They could spot an unguarded wallet from three buildings away for a start. “So why’d you change your mind?” Kid shrugged “He didn’t want the help. ‘Sides, if he’s strong enough, he’ll survive.” As the rat ran back to her pack, Kid pushed herself away from the shadows of the Huntress.



Survival of the fittest was something the street kids understood. What she hadn’t added was that one of the men in the mule had recognised her. He probably wasn’t any higher than the hired muscle he’d been when Kid had worked alongside one of the triad’s offshoots out toward the border. But he knew Kid, and he’d seen the aftermath of some of her work. And for a brief moment, she’d seen fear in his eyes. It might not count for much, but if it came down to a fight, that fear would cause him to hesitate. And that might just save McNally’s life.
Nah, ship didn't need those parts anyway...
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Ship's Pilot

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Joined: Wed Nov 13, 2013 10:25 am

Location: IC The Roisin Dubh. OC York.

Character name: Det McNally

Post Tue Nov 12, 2013 8:25 pm

Re: Interlude on Sihnon

The mule headed towards the Old City, a district in the control of the Gong. That confirmed it to McNally, it had been a set-up all along. Why she had involved him he had no clue but it was probably nothing more than serendipitous coincidence. He shook his head as the enforcers around him eyed him, more than a little nervous. A couple of them had already experienced his skills the last time he was on Sihnon, when he came looking for Mama Chang and found her daughter instead, the others now by reputation and, for what it was worth, it gave McNally an edge. If they feared him she feared him. The mule pulled up sharply and swung awkwardly into a side-street, leading into an open concourse surrounded by brick-built warehouses. The vehicle stopped and there was a gesture for him to get out, his boots crunching onto broken paving, tufts of blue-grey grass around the place. A killing ground?

‘This way,’ a familiar voice said, the bartender, dressed in a formal grey suit held open a door leading into one of the warehouses and McNally gave the entourage of enforcers a brief nod of acknowledgement before going inside. His pulse quickened as, before him, beneath a single potent spotlamp beam, Chang Li, sat beside a small table, was wearing the very same dress she wore when they first met. Her demure expression conflicted with her overtly sexual manner, her long legs displayed to him with no hint of underwear beneath the sheer material of the cheongsam. It was a ploy designed to put him off his guard and, for a few seconds, it did, then her read the movements in the shadows and heard the men enter behind him.

He walked over, seeing the table laid for a meal and the other chair which the bartender pulled out. She bade McNally sit and he slipped off his coat, the bartender taking it from him. ‘I want it back,’ he remarked, never taking his eyes off her, and sat down. ‘I thought we were meeting at the bar?’

‘Change of plans,’ she said, her voice as silken as her outfit and she leaned forward, licking her lips provocatively. ‘I didn’t want any of your friends interrupting our discussion.’

‘You don’t pick a fight with them and they won’t pick a fight with you,’ he said, sitting back back and inclining his head. ‘Oh, an’ tell that kid to stop pointin’ a gun at me. Then I’ll discuss anything you like.’

She smiled slightly and gestured almost imperceptibly. ‘You make them nervous.’

‘Good,’ he said, looking around the empty warehouse.

‘And they expect you to be armed.’

‘They patted me down in the mule,’ he said. ‘You mind telling me why we’re in Gong territory?’

Her eyes closed momentarily and there was a play of emotions on her face. ‘I... I wished to show there were no hard feelings from my brother’s actions and they afforded me this location.’

‘Dang ran, your brother was selling you out, wasn’t he,’ McNally said with a chuckle. ‘What did they offer him if it wasn’t control of the Chang?’

‘We’ll never know,’ she replied.

‘And how were you going to get out of that without me? Did I just happen along at the right time and you decided it’d be more convincin’ if I broke you out and went up against your brother and the Gong with you?’

Her pleasant half-smile evaporated and she straightened. ‘Perhaps I underestimated you, McNally shian shen.’

‘Perhaps you did,’ he replied. ‘You still haven’t answered my question.’

‘Your timing was impeccable,’ she said softly. ‘And you’re right, it did afford more in the way of... credibility... to my predicament.’ She smiled slightly. ‘And the Gong were able to have some of their own problems solved, you might say.’

McNally nodded. ‘I figured so. So you help the Gong save face and what? They help set up your brother?’ She nodded slightly. ‘So what was supposed to happen to him?’

She lowered her eyes. ‘I intended to end his life myself, make an example of him.’

McNally chuckled again. ‘So when he burst out on us, Alisha took away your opportunity to consolidate your authority... hence your current problem. If you’d killed him, no one would question it, guai, bao bei, even if I’d done it, no one would’ve blinked seeing as word’ll a’travelled that you and I have been... intimate. But Alisha put a bullet through his throat and right through your perfectly executed plan.’

Her eyes met his and she grimaced slightly as he mentioned Alisha’s name, but her tone was still even and tender. ‘So you understand the position she has left me in, and, by association, you. If you insist on protecting her you leave me little option.’ She seemed to settle a little. ‘So I have a proposition. Remain here, in Sihnon City, as my consort. I will grant you all your wildest dreams, all the money and influence a man could crave, and once I have an heir, you can have any woman you like.’

McNally raised his gaze to the searing single spotlamp and the blazing light burned into his brain. ‘But I could never leave.’

‘No.’

He closed his eyes savouring the afterglow as he slowly shook his head. ‘I’ve never been one to be settled, let alone controlled. I don’t like bein’ used and I’m afraid your fashion of doin’ things would fracture my calm real quick. I’ll run guns to folks that needs ‘em, but activities such as drug trafficking and slavery sticks in my craw.’

‘Then give me the girl, Alisha,’ Li almost spat the name. ‘I’ll make an example of her, I won’t kill her, but she has to pay for what she has done.’

McNally leaned forward, his palm banging the table. ‘She saved your hide, that shotgun blast woulda hit us both and I figure he’d’ve finished us off given half the chance. And he woulda had that, too thanks to your...’ He only just stopped himself betraying the bartender, but he saw a glimmer of recognition in her eyes in the same instant.

‘Ah, yes,’ she remarked, waving to her right. ‘I almost forgot.’ Fung, the towering enforcer, now smartly dressed and bearing a neck tattoo with the Chang’s Red Pole symbol, hauled the thin Occidental forward. The man’s hands were bound and his mouth was stuffed with a rag muffling his sobbing cries. ‘My darling Lucas,’ she said. ‘So loyal and willing... and so jealous. I should tell you, McNally shian shen, that I rejected him the first time he offered himself to me instead of paying off his debts. I suppose I should’ve seen through his deception then but I had only just inherited my mother’s position and I had my brother to contend with.’ She regarded the bound man as though he were a wayward puppy. ‘It’s such a shame he couldn’t bear to see me with another man, I don’t mind an audience on occasion, but to allow petty jealousy to get in the way of a business arrangement. And he’d almost paid off his debts. Another two years and he would’ve been eligible for my attentions.’ She looked to McNally. ‘He confessed to me earlier, trying to convince me that you had powerful friends, that I had to be wary of you now and you would not come here without some escape route.’ She frowned then, slightly. ‘But you haven’t, have you, McNally shian shen?’

‘You’ve got him and me right where you want us,’ McNally said calmly.

She nodded. ‘Indeed I have.’

McNally didn’t see a signal even if one was given. Fung drew a blade across Lucas’s throat, the muffled cried becoming muffled gargles as his lifeblood billowed from the wound and splashed on the concrete floor. McNally looked away as the body fell, twitching as the man bled to death in a matter of seconds, the slowly congealing puddle of dark liquid spreading slowly towards the table.

‘I didn’t think you’d be squeamish,’ she remarked as Fung disappeared into the gloom once more.

‘I’ll kill a man if need be,’ he said, finding an amused expression on her face. ‘But I don’t like executions.’

‘Shi ma... but here you are,’ she said, rising slowly and stepping around the table to stand at his side. She ran her fingers through his hair and lifted his face to hers, then straddled his lap. ‘I want the girl and yet you present yourself as a... sacrifice in her place?’

‘If need be,’ he croaked, her closeness putting him off guard again.

‘Why are you so willing to protect her?’ Li asked. ‘What control does she have over you?’

‘She’s not controlling me,’ McNally said, fighting the bestial urges stirring deep within his body. ‘She’s a little girl, lost in the black, she shouldn’t even’ve been here. She shouldn’t’ve gotten involved in any o’this.’

She caressed his ear, teasing and tickling and enjoying seeing him flinch away from her gentle touch. ‘But she is here... she is involved. Give her to me, I promise she won’t be permanently harmed.’

McNally gritted his teeth. ‘No!’ he snarled. ‘You got what you wan’ed, you even have a corpse right there to show to folks, so you can leave Alisha the gorram well alone!’ He realised his hands gripped her hips and he could smell her sweet perfume, a heady cocktail of cinnamon and sandalwood. ‘You want to punish me for her crimes, you go ahead, but I’m not becomin’ your consort and I’ll be leavin’ here one way or another... the fashion’s just down to you.’

She leaned back slightly, feeling his strong fingers pressing against her sides, reading the conflicting emotions, anger and desire battling for supremacy with anger winning. ‘Why is her life worth more than yours?’

‘If you can’t figure that out, maybe your momma didn’t teach you everything,’ he grunted.

She sighed and rose from his lap, her dress falling just so and denying a glimpse of her naked pelvis and she stepped away from him. ‘You’re passing up the chance of a lifetime, McNally shian shen,’ she said, over her shoulder. ‘Many men would give their lives to be mine for even a night.’

‘I’ve already had an afternoon,’ McNally remarked, regaining his composure by degrees. ‘Your move.’

‘You drive a hard bargain, McNally shian shen,’ she said, turning back to him. She gestured into the darkness and he heard a door opening and the turbine of the mule wind up. ‘If she is so important to you?’ She saw him nod. ‘Then I will not harm her.’

He looked at her quizzically. ‘Are we done?’

‘For now,’ Li said softly.

Fung appeared and handed McNally his coat as he rose. ‘Until when?’

‘I’ll let you know,’ she said. He nodded again and turned to follow Fung to the door when she called out of him. ‘McNally shian shen?’ He looked back and she crossed the room to him. ‘Perhaps one last kiss before you go, to show our mutual respect?’ He frowned but didn’t resist as she pressed her lips against his. He returned the kiss to her, slipped an arm around her back and pulled her close, tasting cinnamon on her tongue. She broke the kiss and murmured, ‘thank you, McNally shian shen.’

He nodded. ‘Until next time,’ he said, turning and striding towards the door, his footsteps even until the floor seemed to shift and his mouth went dry. He licked his lips, feeling his tongue thicken and he staggered and stumbled to his knees. He brought a hand to his lips and felt a tingling in his extremities as he tasted something synthetic behind the cinnamon flavour. The world was spinning as Li stood over him. ‘You... dr-drugged... m-m-me,’ he slurred, his mind fogging and his vision blurring.

She smiled broadly. ‘I think now is an opportune time to recommence our discussions,’ she said as her enforcers approached and hauled McNally to his feet. ‘Get him ready,’ she remarked, directing the men to another light that bloomed down from above illuminating a steel and wood frame.

McNally’s boots dragged across the concrete as his blurred vision fixed upon the apparatus and he hoped that the drug would render him into unconsciousness, but hope was fleeting as a small oriental man in a white smock appeared to one side, preparing an injection. Dread roared in his ears as he finally accepted that, whatever she had in store for him, he would be fully aware of every moment.
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 8:26 pm

Re: Interlude on Sihnon

You just have to trust me. That’s what he had said, but each minute dragged by painfully. She had started by trying to judge the time, how long would it take for them to get to the bar, and then the same time for them to get back. Every pained minute longer than that was torment, every minute longer was unknown.
It was the not knowing that made her skin crawl, her mind kept flicking to the worse case scenario. That Det McNally wasn’t coming back.
That he would die at that woman’s mercy, and it would be all her fault. That would be five deaths… five murders on her head, even if she had only pulled the trigger on one.

Five? Would it really that many? its such a monumental number.

Alisha had tried to settle, but she found she couldn’t, she was wound to tight, her head spinning tales of woe and horror the longer McNally was gone. She just couldn’t shake the feeling of dread. In the end she had found herself sat on the floor of McNally’s room his hat upon her head, and a half empty whiskey bottle within easy grasp.

Socks was sprawled across lap her demanding her attentions, which she was more than happy to give, talking through her fears as he watched her with amber eyes. She had stopped drinking when Socks appeared, his judgmental stare making her think twice before she picked up the bottle again.

What if he needs medical attention if…. When he comes back. She was inebriated, but functional, listening to the familiar groans of the Rosin, the pounding of blood in her ears as she waited.

“Come on Det… Where are you… You promised nothing stupid…”
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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