It was after work when I decided to do something with that strange business card I got. I had tossed it into the trash at first, but that guy gave me the weirdest vibes. And the way he talked about Okusan just worried me, so I fished the card back out and went upstairs to go find her.
Okusan rarely talks about herself. She’s an older woman, has run the Shokudo alone for as long as I’ve known her, and takes shit from no one. She’s generous, but ruthless. Puts a roof over the heads of the sorriest girls I know (and eh… yeah, that includes me), and then puts ‘em to work. It’s no paradise but there are far worse places I could be. Of course I’m defensive when it comes to my boss.
It was back to work now that I had my fun… I was almost regretting that I’d have to go back to the Shokudo. But in the end, I still have a fondness for the place. I can pretend I’m just someone ordinary every day I hand off a noodle bowl to a customer. And so I was gearing up to do just that today.
Kikuko gave me the address of some old “heritage” temple in the International District. I knew all about it. It was a cheap place to rent for groups and sometimes my family and our neighbours would rent it out for a big junk sale (or yard sale, as they would rather call it), but that place was practically falling apart. Well, I guess it was probably some other organization. After all, it was a pretty big order, almost as big as the one for that Mann Co or whatever it was.
I haul everything to my Scoot and tie it all down as best I can, and then I’m off. Not exactly riding like the wind but whatever. It’s this own guy’s problem for not ordering just down the street.
John will probably be mad if he finds out I’m writing about this at all in the first place, but I just had to. I don’t mean to pry or anything. I just want to know how I can be closer to him. By any means possible.
That didn’t sound so threatening in my head…
W-well, [Galena] and I are now following John through some gated condominium cluster. It’s a sleek property, new, but also not very fancy. There’s just boxes of rocks for landscaping and judging from the units we pass by, it looks like a wageslave holding pen. But it does feel very private. Compared to the Shokudo, or Delivery’s place, this is already a step up in the world.
[Galena] had sent back my plan with all of her usual notations. I was shocked she agreed with most of it, actually. I guess at the end of the day, I’ve always got a plan on my mind. There’s always going to be times when I wing it, but hey, I’d be dead if I wasn’t thinking towards the future. In addition, she’d get us a burner getaway car, something inconspicuous, that we could park a ways away, so they wouldn’t see a big ol’ truck parked nearby. Quality amendments, just like I’ve come to expect from my chummer.
With that said, we did a sort of conference call in the early hours of the morning to make sure everyone knew the whole plan. John was going to pose as a potential hire for the temp agency and we’d get him to carry in our pop can thing hidden in a lunch box. Then [Galena] and I would just walk into a call center orientation and pretend like we work there. Near the end of the day, we’d dump the security badges, hide out in the closet, and work from there as we’d wait for security to die down. [Galena] gave me a full rundown on the lab schematics she’d pulled from the host, with all the camera blind spots marked. And she brought up the fact that she’d be preoccupied disabling the pressure plates and cameras in the lab, so John and I better be conscientious about staying out of the camera’s eyes on the way there. I could do that, null sweat.
So after a day of setbacks, I finally decided to put my first plan into action. Okusan had managed to get a lunch order out of one of the companies in the Slater Building. Something like… Man… Staffing… I can’t remember. They’re a temp agency and people come and go all the time. A bunch of regular business types. And they wanted a company luncheon for a lecture series they’d be doing today. This was a good opportunity to at least peek inside the building and get an idea of how everything would be laid out inside. Schematics are one thing, but being there for visuals ain’t bad either.
John had been tracking who comes and goes outside. Other than the temp agency, there was some call center for something. Then there’s the… Medd Co? I dunno. It’s a drug research clinic. They’ve got their own door where people go in and out at virtually all hours. The front door of the Slater Building is a regular parade of people flashing their badges to security to be scanned, but visitors to any of the businesses could apparently get a guest badge. Overall, getting in would be easy. The Renraku people were obviously a step above, but we’d figure things out on the fly. First of all, we knew that we could at least pose as an employee at any of the businesses in here. They were all hiring, with their high turnover and a need for warm bodies to fill cold chairs. Or in the case of the clinic, were in dire need of guinea pigs and/or fluid donation.
First of all, I stumbled upon a little something-something. From the look’s of it, it might be [Galena]’s. All you chummers out there might want to take a look!
Back to the job at hand: Even though we got ourselves a job, Okusan wasn’t going to let me off work tonight. John and [Galena] drafted their plans to start locking down the details on our plan, but I was stuck waiting tables, waiting to hear back from Okusan if I’d be able to get my butt through the door. She might be running a noodle shop in a rough part of town, but she’s not without ability to pull a few strings when the time calls for it. I think around here she’s even got more clout than my fixer.
I guess Okusan did let me off a little early, and while that didn’t help me so much for the job at hand, I did decide that maybe I’d pop in to see my folks. I know I don’t reach out to them for info on my runs, but knowing my mom had a life with Fuchi once upon a time, I just wanted to see if she knew anything. Even just a snippet, I thought it’d be fine to ask.
[Hoi chummers, the header bar has a couple new links. For those of you who want to filter posts, I’ve now got [#downtime] and [#runner log] tags. You can hit the links at the top of the blog to filter either-or, or find the tags in the posts themselves. So for those of you who want less fluff and more action or vice versa, there you have it.]
John called us up in the middle of night. And there are very few reasons why he would ever call me. It’s always the middle of the night when he calls. Don’t these Johnsons ever sleep? But of course, I’m never going to ignore a job where I get to work with John, so I rolled out of bed and saddled up for another run.
I arrived at the joint after meeting up with [Galena] first. She wasn’t so thrilled about this whole “get woken up at random hours of the night” thing either. The location was some discount clothing store for teenage “rebels”. Prepackaged grunge and anarchy-for-sale and all that. I thought to myself that elf bitch (like I’d forget her!) probably would come here to shop… I know, I’m being a grump. So’s [Galena]. We can both be grumps together, ne? Johnson said he’d be wearing a gold watch, so I kept my eyes peeled. John arrives and gives us the look, but doesn’t actually come over to talk with us. Well… we’re about to negotiate a job. It’s probably for the best.
I got a few more hours of sleep before I woke up to the blaring beep of Delivery’s alarm. He fumbled with his commlink until he managed to silence it, but I was already awake. The sun had yet to rise. I buried my face into one of his musty old pillows, but I figured I might as well get dressed to head into work. Delivery was also picking up articles of our clothes scattered on the ground. He found his favourite pair of beat-up jeans and his work t-shirt and was already half-clothed.
I only felt a little guilty that I was still doing the FWB thing with Delivery even when I was trying my damned hardest to be meaningful to John. But like a beef bowl, it’s hard not to return to what’s comfortable. It’s cheap. It’s accessible. And I’m a lady who’s always craving a good meal.
shamanicshenanigans said: Hey-o Sora. I hear you got a bit of a boy problem. Gimme the deets and I'll see what I can do to help.
I woke up to my commlink beeping in the middle of the night. Delivery groaned as he had to get to work early. I sent this guy a message saying I’d get back to him. He’s a regular down at the Shokudo, and goes through more guys in a week than I have in my entire life.
N-not that I’m jealous or anything. Barry’s boys are a little too… beary… for me anyway.
But he is an ork, and I guess he’s handsome enough. Not too fit though. Maybe he can help me out.