For all the conspiracy theory that Roy had talked about regarding the Denver airport, your trip through it was uneventful and no immediate signs of an underground alien city. Probably for the best as Roy would be even more unbearable if he was right about any of it.
As you leave the airport, a message on your ’links directs you to the VIP bar on the fifteenth floor of the Brown Place hotel, telling you to look for the human with a white feather pin on his lapel.
The bar is packed, mostly with suits. A prevailing feeling of tension permeates the room as the suits deal with the current situation through copious consumption of drinks while bodyguards stand nearby. It’s easy to see who the bosses are and who’s the help; the help is sober. Among the suits are individuals who definitely have that runner vibe about them. Guess Mr. Johnson wants to hide in plain sight.
Speaking of, it doesn’t take long to find your Mr. Johnson. Sitting at a booth near the end of a small satellite bar, his pin is easy to find. As you approach he flashes you a million-nuyen smile of perfect teeth and activates a small area jammer for good measure.
“Thank you for coming. Things in this city are a bit frazzled of late with those rifts appearing everywhere. One must adapt and improvise. Now to the matter at hand. I need specialists to handle some reconnaissance and investigation. If you do this right, you shouldn’t have to fire a single shot. But I won’t lie; the current situation here is dangerous. That’s why I’m offering thirty thousand nuyen each for your efforts. Of course, you’ll want to ask more questions, and I’ll say that I can’t tell until you agree to the job. So how about we just get to the part where we negotiate the price you’ll need to take the job?”
After some negotiation on the price, “Excellent!” Mr. Johnson exclaims. “Now if you’ll allow me to send some data files to your comms. These files contain all the information I have regarding your assignment. Most of what you’ll be investigating are persons, or places, of interest. Do them in whatever order you desire. No detail is too small so learn whatever you can about them and report back to me. A contact number is also included. And before you ask, they come from a former associate who, wait … what’s that?”
Mr. Johnson jabs a manicured finger towards the bar as a jerking line of white light forms under an unsuspecting patron who’s completely unaware, likely because of the five shots of whiskey he’s already downed. The line surges with energy and what can only be described as a tear opens up. The bar patron and his stool are quickly swallowed with a muffled scream as unearthly light shines in from the tear. Five seconds later, several small things come rushing out.
Looking like cute cartoon animals from an ancient 2-D film but dipped in various swirls of neon paint. They hop, flutter, or waddle near the edge of the hole as another patron, also quite drunk, comments on “how cute” they are and reaches out to touch a florescent orange squirrel.
The squirrel then reveals a series of serrated teeth and tentacles and jumps toward the patron’s throat. The rest of the animals follow suit, attacking anyone nearby with a combination of razor-sharp teeth, claws, talons, tentacles or a combination of the above. Bodyguards or anyone sufficiently armed opens fire.