Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Shadowrun: Datastream

Never gonna get used to the feeling. The thought crossed his mind anytime he did the deed, crossing from some proverbial plane of existence into one with far less flesh in it, as someone somewhere had once told him. It had been odder at the time, though. Which was natural when you were shoving moving bits into your brain, or whatever went on.

Even now, that he didn't feel like he needed some atlas to get around or a GPS to give him directions, for the most part, there was still something decidedly unnatural to it. Part of him was okay with that. It kept him distanced from the folks who had decided that this was where they were meant to be. The type to jack-in and log-out from life. The other part wasn't really okay with it, since it meant that this still didn't feel entirely right, even though part of it was routine by now.

As if on cue he pressed himself up against the distorting dark wall of flashing pixels to his right, not allowing himself to move until the floating geometrical mess of an eye that was scanning the area passed him by. Not getting caught this time, because it definitely wasn't worth the mess.

Once the thing had passed, he let himself detach from the wall, continuing on his way. Despite whatever he told himself, he had absolutely no idea how much further he needed to go. Sure he had been given directions, as vaguely as possible as was the norm when getting mail from a stranger involving the opportunity for work. That didn't mean he had gotten much better at judging distant though. Sometimes what he felt was bound to be a walk around the corner was a walk around so many corners it wasn't even funny.

Well. Someone might have found it funny, given that sometimes he felt that those treks probably needed to be made just to gather the most menial of information. Some bookie's real odds, rather than the advertised ones. A piece of security from someone's terminal. So on.

He paused as the path dead ended, a node firmly planted in another wall, which he promptly took to accessing. A bit of struggling with it was all it took, leaving him with nothing more than another address, this one existing without the reaches of cyberspace.

There was a short moment where he could feel his stomach churn, his actual one. Blinking a few times, he glanced around his room, giving his device a small shove away. Even if it didn't do much for his stomach, it always helped his state of mind to keep the Matrix as far away as possible after he was done with it. Soon enough he'd have to be dealing with it again to look at the address he'd found, likely a meeting spot, or another place with another clue to find another address. At this rate he felt like he'd be hoofing it around half of Seattle, just to find some work.

But it still wasn't anything new. Or at least, this part of it wasn't. Not anymore. A number of people named 'Johnson', a number of strange dive bars or upscale joints, and a number of jobs. The job itself was always the odd part. If it wasn't retrieving some freaky item from some messed up hole in the wall, it was dealing with people with names he still found odd, even if he'd had to give himself one.

With a sigh, he stood, wandering off to the kitchen, idly giving the far wall a glance as he passed it. At some point not too long ago the wall hadn't been there, having been ripped apart in a matter of moments by some helicopter at the end of another odd night. Somehow, probably due to the fact that he promised to pay for it and then some, he hadn't got evicted.

Pulling a can out of the fridge, he turned once more, returning to pick up the discarded device. Tossing it back on his desk, he sat down with a sigh. Routine. Open can, take sip, start messing with address, take a sip, get ready to go, chug, toss can. Reaching for the can, he squinted in thought, trying to recall whether or not he had ever managed to scrub the blood from his black coat after the last job.  Either way, there wasn't likely going to be time to correct it, which meant that on route he'd best start planning on the excuse for it.

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