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Message no. 1
From: Michael Nixon mnixon@****
Subject: An Occurrence at an Ares-affiliated Warehouse
Date: Wed, 3 May 2000 13:26:59 -0700
(Re: Short story challenge)
His 12th floor apartment was dark when he woke up, Fast Eddy saw. He
checked the chrono display on the wall and saw that it was still the middle
of the night. On the floor beside his cot lay an armoured jacket with a long
rip down the back and an empty holster. Eddy found the accompanying Browning
Ultra-power lying on the ground beside his cot, likely having fallen from
his hand during the night.
Eddy closed his eyes, and gave a long sigh. Memories of the botched run
and the terrible nightmare that had haunted his fitful sleep came back to
him now. The run was supposed to be a cake walk… infiltrate a small
corporation’s warehouse and steal the inventory list. The Johnson had said
that he was planning a later run, but they would need to know the contents
of the warehouse to be sure the object of their desire was there. The
corporation was supposed to be new on the scene, and Eddy hadn’t expected
their security to be so good. Neither his background checks nor his Johnson
had said anything about drones inside of the warehouse, armed with automatic
weapons. Eddy had expected to be able to pull this one off alone while his
usual accomplices were out of town following up on another job.
Eddy remembered the warehouse vividly now. From the outside it was a
nondescript warehouse building. It was painted grey, and had the corp’s
insignia on the back wall. Eddy paid the most attention to a small grove of
trees inside the compound’s fences. The corp must have been doing some
eco-iniative, as it had left a little green space near the warehouse. Eddy
thought it would be a wonderful place to sneak into the warehouse’s side
door from. He had waited until night to approach, in dark camo gear and
armoured jacket, with night vision goggles strapped to his face. He
remembered clambering over the chain-link fence and dashing into the grove
of trees. No alarms had sounded and Eddy thought he was in good. The side
doors were secured by a maglock, but Eddy knew how to bypass it. He remember
ed the bumpy ground and tree branches whipping past his face as he raced to
the door, and quickly bypassed the lock.
The inside of the warehouse was equally nondescript. It seemed huge as
only half of it was filled with shelves and stock. The back half was a large
garage with transport trucks parked in front of large doors. The office was
on the other side of the warehouse and Eddy had quickly made his way across
the warehouse to the office. It was small, with room for a few secretaries
and a manager. Inside the manager’s office Eddy had found his objective.
There was a rack of datachips sitting beside the manager’s computer
terminal. The Johnson had told him that the first one was the latest one,
and therefore, the one they wanted. Eddy remembered reaching for it…
His nightmare was his mind’s recreation of the events following that. In
his dream, the moment where he reached for the ‘chip was ultraslow. Looking
down he could see the stripes on his camogear blurring and blending
together. His gloved fingers seemed huge and they inched toward the ‘chip.
Finally they reached it, and everything sped up. A loud siren went off,
screeching in his ears, warped in his mind. Up on the wall, a small
variegated door Eddy hadn’t noticed before had had slid up into the ceiling
and a small rotorcraft drone had shot out, buzzing fiercely. He ran for the
door then, shoving the datachip into his pocket. The hallway outside the
office was crawling. At one end of the hall a tracked drone was sitting with
an SMG atop it. A small sensor dome on the front was flashing. Eddy dove for
the warehouse proper as the gun fired a burst in his direction. Another
wheeled mini-tank was at the other end of the hall. It fired at him in a
burst of light. The inside of the warehouse was bathed in purple light as
strobes lowered from the ceiling, flashing in time to the wailing siren. The
drones had slid silently into the warehouse behind Eddy, firing on the go.
Eddy dashed around cartons and shelves. Then at the side door he had entered
through, he had made the mistake of looking behind him. There, not 30 metres
behind him, the wheeled mini-tank was sitting, tracking him with its SMG.
The huge-seeming barrel of the gun and the slow flashes of light that issued
from it transfixed him as the gun fired. He must have turned at last- his
jacket attested to that. He remembered being thrown outside by the force of
the shots. His trip home on his Scorpion was a dim recollection of pain and
anger. “No more milk runs,” he promised himself.
Suddenly, Eddy felt a burst of pain inside him that broke his reverie.
He quickly sat up in bed, which sent more pain coursing through his body. It
seemed like his entire body was on fire, especially his chest. He looked
around the room, anxious to see a source of comfort. Nothing. His apartment
was suddenly empty of furniture and appliances. Even his cot was gone. Eddy
clambered off the floor, screaming in pain. His eyes focused on the chrono
display, flashing the time in purple. Eddy ran towards the door, blood
suddenly spouting from his back, and pried it open. A wall of purple light
confronted him, along with the sound of a siren wailing in his ears. It took
on an organic sound, like the sound of rushing blood, and Eddy collapsed,
falling into the hallway.
There, in the darkness of the Seattle night, Eddy lay on the cold dirt,
blood pouring from wounds, saturating the ground beneath him and then
pooling around him.
Purple light flickered from inside the building to the tune of the
wailing siren, and there, surrounded by clicking drones, Fast Eddy gasped
his last breath, grasping hands cuddling his intestines and died.
Inspired by “An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge”, by Ambrose “Bitter” Bierce.

I hope y'all like it, and any feedback is welcome.

"But Brain! How are we going to find lederhosen at a time like this?"
"Don't ask."
Message no. 2
From: CEvans9159@***.com CEvans9159@***.com
Subject: An Occurrence at an Ares-affiliated Warehouse
Date: Thu, 4 May 2000 03:24:47 EDT
Very nice!

Message no. 3
From: Rat winterhawk@*********.net
Subject: An Occurrence at an Ares-affiliated Warehouse
Date: Thu, 04 May 2000 13:24:39 -0700
From: "Michael Nixon" <mnixon@****>

<snip story>

> I hope y'all like it, and any feedback is welcome.

Cool stuff! :)

"Cuddling his intestines"? Eww... :P


Rat - winterhawk@*********.net
Winterhawk's Virtual Magespace - Shadowrun Fiction and More!
DOD#1211 1999 K1200RS - "Dunkelzahn"
"The pickles are staring at me..."


These messages were posted a long time ago on a mailing list far, far away. The copyright to their contents probably lies with the original authors of the individual messages, but since they were published in an electronic forum that anyone could subscribe to, and the logs were available to subscribers and most likely non-subscribers as well, it's felt that re-publishing them here is a kind of public service.