This run began with a slightly odd meeting place. The Johnson was looking to meet in a funeral home, and specifically requested that the team bring nothing larger than a pistol. Pondering that it might be a trap, Corn loaded up the car with the heavy artillery, but only carried a pair of pistols inside. A pair of guards waiting outside the funeral home gave the team a once over before waving them inside. Within the main viewing hall, they found their Johnson waiting with a shotgun in her hands, but not pointing at the characters. Dressed in a tight fitting blue leather outfit with chrome studs and chains accenting her ensemble, she gave a nod and the door closed behind the team. Slowly placing the shotgun on a nearby coffin, she began her pitch. Introducing herself as ‘Alpha Blue’ (A local shadowrunner known for specializing in bodyguard work, well regarded as a professional), but then gave them her real name of Erin Scott. Giving them this information in the hopes of building a level of trust, as what she wanted to hire them for was sensitive. Her brother, Neil, had recently died and Erin was convinced it was murder by the Multitech Corporation. Her brother had sent her a file containing an image of a blueprint he had been working on and discovered a particular flaw that would reduce costs substantially, but increase the likelihood of failure exponentially. She was looking for evidence that Multitech was cheating its customers; and wanted the team to hunt down the evidence, as she was going to lay low in case whomever killed her brother would come after her.
Negotiating from 20,000 nuyen up to 35,000, the team took the job. Erin offered a few suggestions as where they could start looking. One choice was Neil’s rented office space in downtown, possibly tracking down the fence who gave Neil the blueprint who went by the name of Vanian who had a physical storefront in the Redmond barrens, or tracking down the blueprint’s designer Dutch Donovon that Neil referenced in his file to Erin. Setting up a drop box so they could get in contact with her, Alpha Blue collected her weapon and headed out the back.
Deciding to start with Neil’s rented office, the team headed to downtown. Finding the location in question fairly outdated, security looked particularly lax. A single guard was visible from the outside, enjoying in-depth AR or VR entertainments. Deciding to appear like a corporate financer and technical advisor, Tazer and Pharaoh decided to try and stroll right inside holding a conversation about a mythical product while Corn waited in the car. The guard in question didn’t seem to pay two people this late at night discussing business, and didn’t stop them from riding the elevator up to the second floor. Following the suites to Neil’s office, Pharaoh started to pull out the tools to disable the MagLock only to have a wandering security guard turn the corner. Concealing the tools and continuing to play their parts, the guard wandered by and took the elevator to another floor. Pharaoh quickly popped the lock and the two slipped inside the office.
Neil’s office was fairly small. The main room was taken up by two tables and a desk that were covered in partially built hardware. Different devices of all sorts seemed to be Neil’s forte. Two doors led off from the main room, both opening quickly to Pharaoh’s autopicker revealing a storage room and a main office. Pharaoh started to look through the office as Tazer searched the main room. Tazer was the one to find a device attached to a wall with a distressing countdown. Someone had been there before them and left a present with less than 20 minutes left on it. Quickly calling out for Pharaoh, the duo realized that the only member with demolitions training was waiting out in the car. Corn, after breaking out his demolitions kit, headed inside playing the part of the after hours, on call maintenance worker. Complaining all the way past the guard and up the elevator to where the other team members stood staring at the bomb. Quickly getting to work, Corn was able to defuse the device and immediately threw it into his pocket. Hey, free explosives. Coming up empty on their search, Tazer and Pharaoh were going to leave first while Corn waited until they were at the car. The duo was momentarily surprised by a single person who got off on the second floor with just a “Oh, excuse me.” before heading down the path to Neil’s lab. Corn’s augmented hearing picked up the individual coming closer, but then to pass right by and head into another room. Corn waited a few moments before heading out as well with his new toy under his jacket.
The team’s next stop was to Vanian’s store, located right on the edge of the Redmond Barrens. A small, maintained place which has the moniker of ‘Touristville’. Basically a place where the good citizens of Seattle could see the ‘wild and lawless’ portion of the city, while still protected by law enforcement with heavy weaponry to keep the real Barrens experience at bay. Pulling up in front of the dark building, Pharaoh sent out his flying drone to scope out the area, while Corn went around the back to check for dumpsters. Finding a heavily secured door guarding Vanian’s shop from any alley occupants, Corn re-joined the team after deciding against dumpster diving in a community trash bin with assorted sex stores making up the bulk of shops in the area. Checking the front door, wary of any possible traps as the bomb from the lab was still fresh in their mind. Their careful progress was rewarded in that they didn’t find any explosives, but instead a pawn shop with two killed employees and quite a mess from the previous people who obviously searched the place. As Tazer and Pharaoh spent their time searching for anything of note, Corn used the opportunity to load up on all the valuable items now left unsecured, including a custom pistol that looked like it was carved from a single piece of obsidian, resting inside a wooden box with a strange Japanese symbol engraved on it that no one could identify. Tazer made the lucky find of a physical letter addressed to Vanian listing a different address than the shop, likely a home address. While taking the goods out to the car, both Corn and Pharaoh (Via his flying drone) noticed a group of five men walking down the street. Four of whom were wearing long coats large enough to conceal assault rifles, while the one in the lead looked rather nicely dressed in custom made clothes. While the group of five approached at an unhurried pace, the team bolted back inside and made preparations to defend themselves. The four trenchcoat wearers spread out around the entrance of Vanian’s building while the well dressed man ducked under the display window (Just to be safe) and called into the open shop “Anyone willing to talk?”
Slightly taken aback by the development, Pharaoh decided to be the spokesperson and stepped out into the open to parley after the well dressed man showed his hands were empty of any sort of weapon. Corn stayed back in the dark to cover Pharaoh in case the communications went sideways. The man introduced himself as Steve and said that he was looking for Vanian, as well as trying to probe for as much information as he could from Pharaoh. Realizing that Pharaoh was apparently a Shadowrunner; Steve gave a slightly dejected sigh, stating that they were likely on the same run. Offering a bit of a compromise in that they meet at another location and they might be able to share any sort of info tomorrow at a Goth club whose name I made up on the spot and can’t remember now. When Pharaoh accepted, Steve and his men took off, walking at the same unhurried pace as before. Once clear, the team piled into the vehicle and took off quickly.
Vanian’s home was an apartment within Touristville, and actually quite nice by any standard in Redmond. The fake marble flooring was in good shape, the doors seemed to be on their hinges, and Tazer’s polite knock at Vanian’s door was answered by only a single high caliber bullet that gave her a bit of a bruise. Vanian screamed through the increasingly bullet ridden door that no one was going to kill him, that he had seen what happened at his store and nothing was going to get him. Firing his pistol every so often as to keep anyone from getting him, unaware that Corn had already identified what type of gun he was using from the report, and counting how many bullets he had left. With two left in the magazine, Tazer finally seemed to talk Vanian down enough to get some information out of him. Two weeks back a ganger wandered into his shop and sold him a cybereye without knowing how much they generally went for, so Vanian bought it for a song. Hooking it up to a commlink, he had found an image of what looked like an optical blueprint and sent it to Neil to see if he could figure out what it was. Then after Neil was killed, his shop got raided while he watched from his home as the shop’s security sent the images to his commlink before Vanian severed the link. Tazer asked if he still had the Cybereye and Vanian was more than happy to get rid of it, before packing some goods in a pillowcase and telling the team to leave so he could escape without anyone following him.
Pharaoh took the eye and was able to find a handful of other images inside the memory, not enough for the full blueprint, but enough to identify the flaw in the chip design, but not enough to replicate it in full. The other images were just too corrupted. Finding a serial number, he then tried to contact the manufacturer and see if he could find the name of the original owner via tech support and came up with one “Griffin Moore” of Multitech. Checking that lead, he found an obituary for Griffin Moore who had apparently been killed in an automobile accident three and a half weeks ago and interned at the Hammond Necroplex where his body was supposedly cremated. Unlikely due to the cybereye in their possession looks like it was pried out with a knife instead of professionally removed. One final bit of legwork in investigating the Hammond Necroplex discovered that three weeks back they apparently suffered a natural gas explosion that killed thirteen employees, but the shadow community had discovered that the thirteen killed were on four different floors of the building. Sending a note to the Lone Star woman who offered them the bribe to stay out of Renton for 60 days, asking to see the accident report of Griffin’s death was where we wrapped up for the night. Leaving the team with a few different leads to follow up as we start the next session.