Birds of Prey

Dieter 2002-12-10 23:20:28
The next events happen with such dramatic poise and flow that I'd like for all of you to imagine the opening/closing music from the movie Casino is playing the background.

Artis gives Andrew the ubiquitous what the fuck are you looking at?

Milliseconds later, things go downhill real fast.

James get up from the table, affording Andrew the shot he was looking for. The suppressed noise of his pistol is further aided by the bellowing of Harry on stage.

Those icy fingers up and down my spine,
The same old witchcraft when your eyes meet mine,
The same old tingle that I feel inside

The shots tear through other side of the linen tablecloth, striking Artis with sinister surprise, but his armored liner absorbs most of the damage.

Artis, along with having a terrible pain in his lower abdomen, now sees three scorched and smoking holes in the tablecloth where James had just been seated.

(and that's also initiative...;))
Dieter 2002-12-10 23:54:42
Artis, needless to say, isn't pleased with Andrew's answer. He retorts by pitching the table at him.

The table goes flying towards Andrew, but the trajectory is way off. It doesn't hit him, but it's enough to make Andrew say what the hell? and distract his next attack.

As Andrew tries to get a bead on Artis, someone in the audience yells.

Oh my gawd! That man's got a gun!

Andrew thinks to himself...

Oh bugger...not again

He quickly fires off a wide burst of 7.65mm fury. The shots go wide, shattering glassware other tables nearby.

The audience (as if on cue) goes nuts.

(Gatty, what's Jess doing?)
Dieter 2002-12-11 18:41:06
Jess takes this moment to play the part of the fragile female stereotype. She screams at the appropriate moment, taking cover underneath the table. Jess also attempts to radio Buzzard with a heads up on his impending whacking-to-be.

Through the scuffle and near-riot atmosphere, Jess is able to hear what seems to be an equally violent ruckus on Buzzard's end. A voice breaks in over the channel.

"Oh...god. Is there anyone there? Help...oh shit, not the knees!"

*thwip* *thwip*

Two suppressed gunshots ring out in Jess' receiver.

Above the table, Gavin glances quickly at Artis.

You wore your vest...good man. It's clobberin' time!

Gavin charges forward at Andrew, tackling him to the floor.

Brian emerges from backstage just in time to see Gavin take Andrew down. Harry jams the mic into one of the speakers onstage, sending a horrible stream of feedback throughout the room.

*New round*

I'll also post an update initiative list.
Dieter 2002-12-12 16:26:08
The team moves in concert with the situation at hand.

Brian sees to the dazed Harry while taking up a cover-fire position onstage.

Gavin begins to get up from tackling Andrew, who appears to be out for the count right now. Jess, deciding discretion being the better part of valor, pulls Stewart's stunned self under the table with her.

Be a good boy and stay out of it... (Readying her pistol...just in case)

Artis helps Gavin to his feet.

"We gotta go after James. This may be our only chance."

The two make for the entrance as a stream of law enforcement officials head there.

Didn't we just leave this party?

Gavin and Artis frantically search for James through all the mayhem.

"There he is!" Gavin says, as he spots James heading for the Casino's main exit.

(Edited by Dieter at 3:25 pm on Dec. 12, 2002)
Dieter 2002-12-12 18:13:21
Artis reaches for his remote-key fob.


The car's lights flash on/off and it starts up with a high octane groan. Artis begins steering it towards the front entrance.

Gavin keeps a keen eye on James' movements as he makes for the doors. He spots two females hastily filing in behind James as if taking the roles of bodyguards.

Back inside the HoB
Stewart appears to still be stunned. Jess keeps a watchful eye over him and attempts to contact Buzzard.

"Buzzard? This is Hummingbird...are you there?"

Static fills the other end of the line.

Up on stage, Brian is just waiting for something else bad to happen. He then notices the slew of casino security guards and other law enforcement filing into the audience area.
Dieter 2002-12-12 23:15:35
Brian, never being one to miss a good firefight, takes off in search of Gavin and Artis. He comes on the comm channel.

"Harry, when you're done better check up on Buzzard. Jess, I'm not quite sure what to do with Stewart, but don't let the police have him. I'm heading for the main entrance."

Main Entrance, Mandalay Bay Casino: 11:03pm PST

James and his female entourage file out the main entrance with Artis and Gavin on his heels. He waits quite stoicly for his ride to pull up. The valet gets out as Artis and Gavin try to blend into the crowds people coming in/out of the casino.

Sedgewick casually walks over to the driver's side and speaks to Annie and Tracy, glancing over to Artis and Gavin's positions.

*Activate Villain Soliloquy-Mode*

"Ladies, you know the rendevous point. I will see you there. I doubt my two captors (glancing again over to Artis and Gavin) would have the audacity to challenge me in a public place, so I'll leave it to your able hands....Cheers."

James gives a final smirk of some other time perhaps, then gets into his car. It pulls out leaving Annie and Tracy waiting for Artis and Gavin's next move.

*De-Activate Villain Soliloquy-Mode*

(Edited by Dieter at 4:31 pm on Dec. 12, 2002)
Dieter 2002-12-13 15:38:55
Artis and Brian, seeing the futility of their current endeavor, decide to head back into the casino and regroup.

They get close to the entrance, trying to blend in with the crowd as best they can. Gavin manages to give them the slip by ducking behind a rather large group of German tourists. Artis does not fare so well. He gets caught up in a large swarm of geriatric gamblers no doubt coming back from seeing Wayne Newton at the Stardust.

Out of nowhere, Tracy and Annie come up to Artis, with Tracy putting on the distinct look of a jealous lover.

"You bastard!", slapping Artis in the face with the back of her hand as Annie goes in for a kick to the knee. The slaps lands squarely across Artis' cheek, leaving a hand-sized mark. Annie's kick hits a little too high glancing off his thigh.

Before Artis can properly react, Tracy begins reading him the riot act.

"You fucking bastard! So, this is what you meant by working late?! My sister thought she saw you here and had the decency to call me. Where's that no-good, two-timing friend of yours?! Is he also out blowing the rent money on blackjack and whores?! WELL?? ANSWER ME!"

(Edited by Dieter at 8:53 am on Dec. 13, 2002)
Dieter 2002-12-13 18:11:15
Artis begins to walk out of the casino, not turning his back on them.

(hands open, palms out)

"I'm sorry, I've never seen you or your sister before.... If you want to slap me around you should buy me dinner first."

Annie and Tracy seems unsure of what to do next. They glance at eachother and nod. Tracy says,

"Do you DARE walk away from me!"

Artis calmly replies back, still making for the exit, but glancing for police/security locations.

"I can have you brought up for assault. You're drunk or something, go sleep it off and find your husband in the morning."

At this point, Artis notices out of the corner of his eye that Annie is now speedily approaching you from behind...he's about 20ft from the Agency car. He breaks into a run, while remotely backing the car up, then pulling it towards him so I he doesn't have to run as far.

He makes for driver's side and gets in. Annie jumps on the hood as Artis peels out of the parking area and heads for the end of The Strip.

Weighing his options.

Should I use the guns, slam her into a storefront...nah, I'll just slam on the breaks.

Artis accelerates the cruiser, the engine groaning below the now clinging Annie. He yells out to her,

"Can you fly Annie?", slamming hard on the breaks.

Annie flies off the hood, landing about 10 feet ahead of the car. She seems injured, but not down for the count. Artis switches on the onboard HMG and gives her a spray of Chanel No. 7.62mm. The bullets stitch Annie, but the psycho-bitch just won't drop. She gets up and pulls out an SMG.

Not wanting to prolong this fight, Artis floors the Cruiser. She goes completely under the car, being struck by the bumper and both front/rear tires.


Artis checks the rearview mirror, revealing the now very bloody mess known as Annie. He pulls up to her, cuffs her at the wrists and ankles, then throws her in the backseat. A cursory first-aid examination of tell Artis that she'll probably die in less than 15 minutes.

Not wanting an MDK on his if gunning and running her wasn't enough, Artis finds a quiet spot to think things through. He pulls into a dimly-lit motel parking lot and strip searches Annie for any bugs/wires. Ten deadly weapons and 5 minutes later, he finds nothing but a cel-phone..which had remarkably survived the order and has been ringing since Artis pulled into the lot.

If this is traced, it would be bad

Artis smashes the phone to a pulp and stabilizes Annie with a liquid-skin...make that three LQ's. Assured that Annie is subdued and not going to die, he throws her in the trunk then calls the rest of the team.

(Edited by Dieter at 11:11 am on Dec. 13, 2002)

(Edited by Dieter at 11:38 am on Dec. 13, 2002)
Dieter 2002-12-13 18:37:01
Main lobby, Mandalay Bay: 11:22pm PST

The rest of the team (sans Artis and Jess) regroups for a huddle.

Brian tells them that he and Artis got seperated at the main entrance. Artis has yet to resurface.

Harry and Gavin head for the room to try and find Buzzard. After a very thorough search of the room, it appears to not have been touched since they left earlier in the evening.

Inside the HoB

The Vegas CSU is on the scene as well as many, many other law enforcement types. Two major incidences at the same hotel on the same day is nothing to scoff at.

Andrew came to shortly after the police arrived. Jess promptly whacked him on the head several times before revealing herself from under the table as the bereaved female companion of Andrew.

The detective in charge of the crime scene is brought to them. As the paramedics begin to work on Andrew, Detective Schwarz...a rather portly, grey-haired man with a southern-twanged accent begins to question Jess.

"So, how ya'll doin'. I'm guessin' this hasn't been the Vegas experience ya came here fer. For the record...what's yer name, relation to the feller or yours, and what exactly happened here tonight?"
Gatac 2002-12-13 18:57:33
*Time to solidify my story...*

Jess clears her throat, reaches for her (fake) driver's license and shows it to the policeman, giving her best impression of a causal if insecure woman who just got caught in the crossfire.

"I'm Kimberly Westlake. I was just visiting the show with my friend Andrew here, and then the fight broke out. Someone was shooting, and...and..."

Switching to the "I might as well burst into tears right now" look and voice...

"It's over now, isn't it ? My god, Andrew, he needs an ambulance, I think he got hit in the chaos..."
Dieter 2002-12-13 19:20:42
The EMTs are putting Andrew on a backboard...more as a precaution than anything else. The medics give the detective a thumbs-up and begin wheeling Andrew away on a gurney.

Schwartz holds Jess' hand.

"Easy there, ma'am. We've got everything under control. It looks like your feller's gonna be jest fine. He probably just hit his head ducking under the table. I think the medics just wanna take him to the hospital to be sure. Now, if it's alright with you, I'd like to take you to my precinct and get a good statement from you as you appear to be a key witness. I'll personally give ya a ride to the hospital afterwards."

Schwartz sees the paramedics are about to leave the room.

"Eh...excuse me ma'am. I gotta go find out which hospital they're taking your friend to. Stay put, I'll be right back."

He goes over to the medics and gives them a pretty authoritative look. Jess reads his lips,

Dang it! I told ya to bag his hands..there could be gunpowder residue on them. Bag 'em as soon as you leave it?!"

The EMT's nod and Schwartz comes back over to Jess.

"Sorry 'bout that ma'am. They wouldn't tell me where your friend was goin', so I had to yell at 'em. Andrew is going to to UNLV General. It's right near the precinct. I'll even get the ambulance a police escort if it'll help you come with me."
Gatac 2002-12-13 21:15:08
*Time to switch to sympathetic mode.*

"That's a nice gesture, but you needn't win my coorporation. If my statement helps with arresting the people responsible for this...this...mess, then I'll gladly come with you no matter what."
Dieter 2002-12-13 21:35:40
Schwartz scratches his five o'clock shadow then looks in an agreeable manner to Jess.

"Alright. We'll head over to the precinct now."

Jess and the detective cross over the police line annexing off the HoB from the rest of the casino. He takes her to a side entrance when most of the "first on scene" police had parked. Schwartz gestures over to a fairly beat-up late model Ford Taurus and they both get in.
Dieter 2002-12-16 17:42:46
Antique Shop, Mandalay Bay Casino: 12:09 PST

Finding nothing of relavance in the hotel room, the team (Harry, Gavin, and Brian) reach the next logical place where Buzzard could be.

Most of the shops are still open, but the antique store's wire-mesh gate is down and the lights are out.

Agency Car
Driving around the strip and trying to figure out what the hell to do with Annie...Artis gets hungry and stops at the local BK to get a burger and some onion rings. Sure enough, as he's walking out of the establishment with a mouthful of rings, he hears a thumping sound coming from inside the trunk of the car. The few onlookers nearby (about 50ft. from the car) aren't making much effort to see what's going on, but they are a bit curious.

LVPD: 2nd Precinct
Detective Schwartz appears to have bough Jess' jilted lover/inflight romance story. As Schwartz is filling out the report in triplicate, his phone rings.

Schwartz here. Uh-huh. Uh-huh. That's right, she's sitting here next to me. Uh-huh. Uh-huh. I see. I'll be right there.

He hangs up the phone, pauses slightly, then turns to Jess.

"Ma'am, I'm gonna have to ask you to wait here. It appears that your boyfriend just created a bit of a ruckus in the hospital's emergency room."
Dieter 2002-12-17 20:30:41
Harry reports in with the team's findings/actions thusfar.

Nightengale gets on the phone and seems mildly irritated by the scene caused at the House of Blues, but all things considered, it was probably the best course of action given the situation.

His orders are as follows:

1-Find Buzzard. His last contact came while talking to Jess earlier. He has not reported back to anyone since then. Contact HQ the minute you find him.

2-Take Annie to safehouse 22-Victor and begin her interrogation. A doctor (Codename: Stork) will meet you there to watch over her condition. Annie is the second best lead you have and probably has vital information to share. Do whatever it takes (short of killing her) to obtain all pertainent information.

3-Jess should continue the "relationship" with Andrew if possible since Andrew will no doubt keep in close touch with Sedgewick.
Dieter 2002-12-17 21:27:40
Artis gives everyone at the BK a dirty look...the usual WTF are you looking at?!.

Being Vegas and the one-time haven for organized crime, most simple folks tend to keep to themselves...this situation included. They look at Artis with a scrutinizing eye, but otherwise go back to their Whoppers (TM) and Whopper Jrs (TM) respectively.

Artis gets the call and coordinates to 22-Victor. It takes him a rather sparse residential area about 5 miles outside of the city limits. The house is a typical Spanish-style villa, matching tile for tile every other house in the neighborhood. He thinks to himself.

What a damn coincidence. Meeting a doctor at a Spanish-style safehouse. This time I'll be ready for the f-ing commandos.

Artis pulls into the driveway then checks on Annie,

(opens trunk)

She mumbles futilely through her gag. He's not quite sure what exactly she is saying, something about his mother.

Yup. Still alive...still subdued...still bitchy as ever.

(slams the trunk shut)

He rings the doorbell. Moments later a woman answers the door. It opens enough to get a good look at both Artis and herself. She's about 5'3", early thirties, looking alot like Winona Ryder.

"Uh...can I help you?"
Dieter 2002-12-17 22:31:33
The woman gives Artis a strange look, pauses for a second, then opens the door the rest of way.

"Agent Goose, I presume. Only someone from the Agency would give such a cryptic answer to a basic question. You field agents really should work on your people skills...honestly. Anyway, I heard you have a patient for me?"
Dieter 2002-12-18 17:24:10
"Sure do." I'll get Annie out of the trunk, make sure all her bonds are still tight, then get on the phone with the team to update them (and in case Stork turns on me or Annie busts loose, I'll already have them on the phone).
Dieter 2002-12-18 17:42:58
Stork looks at Annie.

"Shit! What did you do to her over?!"

She takes over the reigns of Annie. And as she does so, Annie's wrist cuffs pop off. Annie takes a swing at Stork, but is ably dodged by the good doctor. Stork responds back with a knee to solarplexus, knocking the wind out of Annie as she falls to the ground.

Stork then rolls Annie over and pulls out a crumpled up roll of duct-tape from her back pocket.

"From the intel report I got our Ms. Manners, I figured she'd try something like that. It looks like we have an escape artist on our hands. (kicking Annie in the ribs for effect) No matter, duct-tape is just as good and doesn't use any locks."

She pulls Annie up on her feet and smacks her in the back of the head as she escorts her inside the house.

"Let's go bitch."