Monday, 24 August 2009

Gunfight in Down Below pt 1

The elevator descended into the lower levels of the space station around Ishomilken V. For a considerable amount of time this has become a Guristas station in all but name. And the lower levels were not for the faint hearted. But as they say, needs must when the devil drives, and today the devil wore snakeskin.

Angelina checked again the clip in her weapon and the blade on her forearm. Her comunit was giving her trouble, but then she had never been this deep into 'down below' before.

The elevators opened out onto a broad avenue, people thronged the passageways and entrances to shops and facilities. Techs mingled with pilots, who rubbed shoulders with bio-vat creations that were called soldiers. The mingled smells of thousands, the aroma of cooked food, the stench of rubbish, and the inability for the ventilation to move a tenth of the stale air made the sensation somewhat different than usual. She stepped out, her boots clicking over the metal bulkhead and into 'down below'. All around eyes looked at her. Some openly, others from shadows. Yet more didn't bother. If there was something to see they would see it eventually. Whispered voices already proclaimed her arrival, silent pulses on com-units warned people of her presence.

But as she walked on deeper, looking for a particular building it was obvious that she was here for a reason. A group of kidnappers accessed an information portal to find out the price on the head of the pirate who walked through and upon seeing the price and who it was decided not to bother, there were easier targets. An assassin for hire who was checking lists of potential marks saw her walk past just as her image came up. He checked her background and flicked to another mark. Before too long those people in the know knew who she was, and a few knew why she was here. And those who had allegiance to the Guristas let it be known that any loyalist who touched her would answer to a higher power. Those who did not were warned and those who were worthy were told of the plot to abduct her sister. Most of the backed off. Most.

She stopped outside a particular bar and waited for a few moments then walked in. The information she was given specified a table, a rough description and a time. As she walked in a man at the table she was looking at looked back. He smiled, as behind him he had ten men. Hard, brutal men with shimmering neo-lectic tattoos that moved across their bodies. Serpentis. All of them armed. Angelina stood there alone. Until a familiar hand touched her shoulder.
"Got your back Ange," said Eliza, and nine men and women spread out behind her. Lithe, dangerous looking, all with Black Rabbit tattoos, the best from both their crews, all armed to the teeth.

Angelina turned to the Serpentis agent.
"You know why I am here. This ends now."
"There is only one way this can end. Badly. Neither of us can backdown. Neither of us really wants to."
"That much is true."
"There will be others who come, regardless of who dies today."
She swept her long duster back revealing the butt of her pistol.
"You could call off the contract on her and return to Serpentis Prime."
He laughed, "I would be in disgrace, my life would be worth spit."
"Spit is more than it will be worth if you dont."
"And you will beg me to die a thousand times once I get you back to the pens."

For a few moments there was silence then both sides reacted at the same time. Weapons flew into hands and the air was filled with bullets, screams, oaths as Guristas fought Serpentis.

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