Hedion 02

Admiral Duck Sauce 2010-09-05 03:52:58
Eo quickly, quietly, and competently supplies Tanakta, Zakest, and Haralin with their refreshment. The spare-framed servant offers polite suggestions to accompany the sunburst and scrofa, or when any other vague request is made, but when any of the three name their desires he simply produces the items without comment. You all have been coached well enough to know top shelf, impressive choices, and in Khalkiota the menu is expansive enough that they have everything. You might stumble a little bit should a future establishment not have the top 2 or 3 choices, but if that were to happen perhaps you shouldn't be in such a low-class place.

The stims electrify Haralin and Tanakta's senses, and you realize not only does Eo have to take into account your orders, he has to be aware of and compensate for the ambient haze of secondhand pharma in the club. Playing these roles is almost addictive - after all, the last time you were yourselves, you were stuck on a humid jungle hellhole for a week with no backup. It takes a lot of focus to manage your true selves, your cover's motivations, and still portray the false fronts, the emotions that you want others to see. The private booth is a godsend, as it provides a live-fire test of sorts for Luis/Zakest's hint of disgruntlement. Angel's not under a lot of scrutiny yet, but he strives to keep badass Earth thoughts out and the badass Imperial thoughts in.

Tanakta's sunburst has been eaten but Haralin's only about halfway through the scrofa when a chime at the chamber door draws Eo away from his party cart. Instead of opening the door, Eo simply bows his head at the wall console, reads a message, and turns to face Haralin.

"My lord, the Steward of Akis, Abe Saloma, will join you." It comes out in Eo's unassuming, acquiescent voice, but it is not a request. Eo returns to his station and begins mixing a drug bowl, presumably to have ready for Saloma when he arrives. Considering the time it takes to prepare your average bowl of pharma, the Steward is probably arriving in a minute or two.


Semi-anonymous sex with a wealthy, attractive stranger isn't a bad way to start off a secret mission. Watching it, however, is a terribly awkward and uncomfortable way to start one. Hugh considers the meager silver lining - at least he'll have plenty of fuel to play up his cover's resentment of his position. Ugh, he's not going to be able to say the word 'position' without thinking of this dirty, dirty room.

Zaef's spent enough time on Earth to know what an Xbox is; after all, Diego Garcia is a military base, filled with a bunch of the target demographic. Zaef therefore knows that the woman (she hasn't offered her name and Zaef didn't really get a chance to ask) is simply trying to get "Achievement Unlocked: Have Sex With a Sports Celebrity" checked off her list before her friends can beat her to it.

Outside, Arketta and Robin share a few amused looks. The sound of approaching footsteps on the flawless floor makes both women jump back on the clock. Two well-dressed but not nobility-gaudy men approach the two warrior women. One's left his military-style mohawk out to pasture, while the other man's dark skin is mottled with tan marks, leftover flesh regrown by kaukas. They walk right up to Robin and Mohawk asks, "Is that the Bloodwraith in there?"
punkey 2010-09-05 10:00:21
Haralin nods, and cuts another piece of scrofa flank off. "Eo, a cut of sunburst. Tanakta's rarely wrong when it comes to matters of flesh." He looks to Zakest. "Watch and learn, Zakest. This is how things are done, whether in the palaces of Napai, temples of Sambasan, or furthest edges of Imperium space."
skullandscythe 2010-09-06 17:34:26
admiralducksauce wrote:

"There's your precious privacy," the woman jokes to the Bloodwraith. "You want a slam or stim or you more of a zonk man?"

Zaef's fingers twitch, and he stares at the stims for a couple seconds longer than the rest. "None for me, thanks."
CrazyIvan 2010-09-07 05:19:41
Tanakta looks up at the news that they're being joined, slightly shifting his position to cover the door.
Admiral Duck Sauce 2010-09-07 21:52:44
Eo alerts Haralin, Tanakta, and Zakest with a brief "The Steward is here, my lords", before the chamber door admits two Turai that look quickly around the private room with practiced detachment. A waft of cloying drug-smell precedes Abe Saloma into the chamber. The Steward of Akis is tall and handsome, marred by a too-tan skin color that's clearly not his normal tone. Silver and black hair sweeps back from clear, alert eyes, and he somehow manages a broad smile around the stench of the drug-stick clenched in his teeth. His robes are more official than noble - Saloma wears an ornate but comparatively simple long coat in purple, gold, and white. A little floating drone accompanying Abe doesn't cross the chamber threshold; the little machine hovers outside the door.

Tanakta sees Abe's two Turai and figures on a third just outside the chamber. Given that Saloma is the Steward, there's probably more than just the three nearby.

Abe tosses the stick into a waiting receptable and takes Eo's pre-prepared drug bowl with a practiced ease. He heads for the most comfortable-looking seat and plops down. He savors a quick waft and smiles at the three newcomers. "Welcome to Akis," Saloma says, waving one hand around to indicate the arcology's splendor. "I heard from our mutual pink-haired ravilar friend that you're here with some business. 'Abe', I said to myself, 'you know you're a sucker for someone who likes to mix business and recreational drug use', and so to my busy schedule's chagrin I came down here to meet you."
Admiral Duck Sauce 2010-09-07 22:52:42
Haralin nods respectfully to Saloma, and sets his drug bowl aside. "Well, it is a pleasure to receive you, Steward. I am Dropchief Haralin Arakuna, and this is my associate, Agent Zakest Nasa and my bodyguard, Tanakta." Haralin raises his glass to his lips and smiles. "What did you hear of my business here?"

"Not much," Saloma replies. "I heard that you have a Talon of the Tainted Mother... somewhere," he continues, looking around in jest for Zaef. "And that he's assisting you with Expansion business. Terrorists helping out Expansion on a settled world is understandably a subject that I find intriguing, so when you told Chaev to invite his master down here, I accepted. Granted, a ravilar's master - and his subjects - are the entire Imperium, but I'll do in a pinch." Abe's smile stretches a little further at his supposed levity. "So! Enlighten me."
Admiral Duck Sauce 2010-09-08 03:08:40
"Well, you know about the ongoing struggles against these terrorists, yes?" Haralin asks. "I am here exploring a potential solution for our troubles with their cowardly forces when we finally capture them."

Abe sits back, ready to hear more. "Go on, chief."

"The Arena is not adequate for dealing with so many terrorists, so the current proposal is to simply execute them as we find them," Haralin says. "This strikes us as a terrible waste, and I am here exploring for an potential expansion of the Arena into new areas. Sub-Arenas, as it were. Place them on Imperium-held planets, where there's a large number of common citizens who need to be placated by the violence of the Arena. Now, this obviously has advantages for the Imperium as a whole, but I am far more interested in the advantages for those who receive these expansions. Local attendence and concession sales are lucrative as it is, let alone the possibility to dispose of disliked elements...the possibilities are endless, wouldn't you agree?" He takes a drink.

It's ironic that the Steward has green eyes and doesn't know US currency. "How does Utari figure in? He's... what? Consultant? First victim?"

"More of a promotional puppet," Haralin says. "I keep him away from the Truthseekers and education grids, he promotes the sub-Arenas to the local populace. Surely you've seen the enthusiasm for his presence, even amongst our peers. If he promotes this project to the locals, they will fall over themselves to pay the local government and attend."

Saloma nods, seeing phantom lats, the Imperial currency, pour down from on high. "I'm glad you approached me about this venture, Haralin. After all, I don't think Expansion has the authority to conduct projects like this. You'll need a partner." The Steward smiles, calmly wafting some of his own concoction towards his face.

"Of course," Haralin says. "My presence here is as much personal interest as it is duty. Someone had to take charge of this project, and I figured, it might as well be me." He smiles a shark-toothed grin. "I would never be opposed to helping the Emperor and myself at the same time. A win-win, as it were. How about you, Steward?"

"I think we can come to some sort of arrangement," Abe says. "How far have you progressed, and what do you still need?"
Community Lotion 2010-09-08 19:59:39
admiralducksauce wrote:

Outside, Arketta and Robin share a few amused looks. The sound of approaching footsteps on the flawless floor makes both women jump back on the clock. Two well-dressed but not nobility-gaudy men approach the two warrior women. One's left his military-style mohawk out to pasture, while the other man's dark skin is mottled with tan marks, leftover flesh regrown by kaukas. They walk right up to Robin and Mohawk asks, "Is that the Bloodwraith in there?"

Robin makes sure her com is open, so that Hugh is aware of what transpires in the hallway. Surely he'd like a distraction by now, she thinks, with an internal laugh.

Robin shifts her weight onto the balls of her feet, and keeps her knees slightly bent. She squares her shoulders to the man approaching her. To any highly trained fighter, such a movement would indicate that Robin is ready to go on a moment's provocation.

Looking up into Mohawk's eyes, she snarls a reply. "What makes you think you can demand anything of me? We're Turai, and we've business here." She directs her voice to the man behind Mohawk. "Some should reconsider how they approach people, if they are interested in doing business as well."

She keeps a steely lock on Mohawk's eyes, primed for anything.
Admiral Duck Sauce 2010-09-08 20:22:15
Hugh's vox crackles clearly with the conversation outside the room. Meanwhile, Mohawk reflexively bristles at Robin's tone but stays still. The mottled man with him puts a calming hand on Mohawk's shoulder and nods to Robin. His voice has a bit of low-end phlegm to it, like he's speaking into a fan. "Business? It's business we come calling about." Phlegmy's eyes flash in understanding the type of Turai Robin is. "Lucrative business. My master wants to talk it with your charge in there, if that is indeed the same Bloodwraith what beat Arno Forliris, the Hammer of Yut-5, in under thirty beautiful seconds. Come! Certainly Khalkiota's fineries are better when you can enjoy them rather than standing here unable to partake?"
Gatac 2010-09-08 21:23:34
"Tell the gentlemen to wait their turn," Hugh voxes to Robin. He switches his vox off and turns to the amorous pair. "By the Emperor, Utari, sink your spink already or I swear I will drag you off her and out of here bare-assed!"
skullandscythe 2010-09-08 21:47:42
Zaef focuses on making his partner moan louder. It might drown out whatever the hell Swao's saying.
Community Lotion 2010-09-08 22:36:52
admiralducksauce wrote:

My master wants to talk it with your charge in there, if that is indeed the same Bloodwraith what beat Arno Forliris, the Hammer of Yut-5, in under thirty beautiful seconds.

Gatac wrote:

"Tell the gentlemen to wait their turn," Hugh voxes to Robin.

Robin moves towards Phleghmy, completely ignoring Mohawk. She leans in close, her face lined with the self-important excitement of an incorrigible gossip. "Did you know that Bloodwraith didn't train for that fight at all?" Her speech speeds up with the stimulus of secret knowledge. "Almost no one knows this, but, he had not slept the entire night before, and didn't take a single stim before that fight!"

"Were you there?" she coyly asks of the dark skinned man, her demeanor indicating that she would certainly be impressed if he were.
Admiral Duck Sauce 2010-09-08 23:37:56
Robin sees the man desperately want to lie, but surprisingly he hands out what is probably the truth. "... No. Lord Iyuzo attended the festivities. Not even he has dispensation to bring his entire entourage to the Arena itself."

"Or he didn't deem you worthy to accompany him," Mohawk chides. "Lord Iyuzo loves the Arena," he explains the obvious to Robin. "But their security does not care from what family you hail or how many holdings you have."


Zaef and his new friend finish "sinking the spink", as it were, much to Hugh's eternal silent gratitude. The noblewoman immediately manages to take up three-quarters of the ample bed space, frantically tapping away at her vox before gathering up her equally ample and complicated formalwear. Her body language is clear - bored now, I paid for the room, get out.
Admiral Duck Sauce 2010-09-08 23:38:21
"Well, as I'm sure you're aware, we just finished scouting Todaki, and we have a site pre-chosen for investigation. Rectenna Array 11 is an ideal location, and we already have arrangements taken care of. There's a family of traitors living there, yes?" Haralin asks.

Saloma skips offering any opinion on the Quises and replies, "You're not planning on shutting down an array for some Arena spinoff, surely? It's a waste of infrastructure if nothing else, why not some agro territory where all you're uprooting are plants?"

Haralin waves dismissively. "The array can be integrated into the Arena design," he says. "And besides, what better way to showcase Hedion's importance to the local systems than showing the raw energy of its greatest export cooking an unwary fighter alive?"

"Local flavor," Abe adds, an imaginative smile creeping back across his face.

"That is what Hedion offers that Todaki and the others did not. A chance for a truly unique showcase. Local species are nothing compared to what we can have on offer here," Davis continues. "All we would need to do is muscle the locals peasants out of the way, which should be a simple task of issuing them decommissioning orders for the existing rectenna array and pacifying the crowd when they start acting up," Haralin says. "The presence of the traitors there makes blaming the uprising on seditious forces easy enough, and then we have a problem-free plot of land for the Arena expansion, and other projects besides." He smiles and takes another deep breath from his bowl.

Abe matches Haralin snort for snort. "I like the sound of it. Gonna have to have my people run some numbers, though. Logsitics stuff, don't worry about it. I'm sure Akis is the right location for this project." Abe gets up, a little more shakily than when he sat down. "Make me a vox chan and we'll talk tomorrow after I run those numbers. I like what I hear, I can string up those traitors by week's end." Abe's eyes take a darker cast as he weighs human lives against payola and comes to the same conclusion he's probably come to several times before.

Haralin smiles and celebrates with another deep snort of stim. "Excellent. Zakest, set the Steward up with a vox channel."

Zakest casually taps out a private communications tunnel for the Steward and sends the relevant details.

"Thank you for your time, Steward." Haralin salutes Saloma with his drink. "I look forward to doing business with you, and possibly on other projects very soon." He smiles, the stims amplifying the pleasure of the moment.

The Steward returns the smile and it appears genuine. "Always nice to meet people who have their priorities straight," he says. Saloma waves his Turai out and takes the drug bowl with him. "We'll be in touch." They leave and the privacy shields once again flick back into place once the portal is sealed.

Haralin takes another huff from his drug bowl, and frowns. It seems it's running low. He passes it back to Eo for a refill, and looks to Tanakta. "I think that went well, don't you think, Tanakta?"
CrazyIvan 2010-09-09 00:37:47
"Is there another way for things to go when you tell a man you're inclined to make him rich enough that he can buy his next mistress a gemstone the size of a gateship?"

Taking a bite of his sunburst, he chews softly.

"The local flavor was a nice touch. Sportsmanlike."
skullandscythe 2010-09-09 16:37:35
Zaef wants to stick around about as much as the woman wants him to. He pulls up his pants and only stops to make sure he still has everything he came in with before heading for the door.

His only acknowledgement to Swao's presence is a small smile and short comment: "I wonder if anyone else here is interesting in meeting with me..."
Gatac 2010-09-09 16:48:22
"Yes, you have some dedicated 'fans' outside, Utari," Swao replies. He switches on the vox. "The prisoner's about ready to go. Ask the gentlemen where they would like to conduct their business."
Community Lotion 2010-09-09 19:42:10
Robin nods in response to Swao's command. Arketta moves to clear space around the door.

Robin turns back to Phleghmy. "You are in luck. The Bloodwraith is in the mood for business, and will meet your boss. Where does he propose to meet?"
Admiral Duck Sauce 2010-09-09 22:56:28
Phlegmy taps his vox and says, "Lord Iyuzo, the Bloodwraith would love to meet you. Where shall-" the man's vox interrupts him with a faint crackling reply, and the mottled-skinned man looks up at Robin. "My master invites you all to share his table on the main floor."

Zaef readies himself quickly and Hugh follows him out of the chamber, where they see Arketta, Robin, and Segal Iyuzo's two men-at-arms having their chat in the glistening hallway.
Community Lotion 2010-09-09 23:10:34
Robin watches the famous celebrity file into the hall. His skin is flush, pupils dilated, and he's still trying to put his clothing into proper order.

She looks over to Arketta and rolls her eyes as if to say this fucking guy, and then falls into place at the rear of the retinue.