Monday, March 14, 2011

Crime Network Session 3: Payback Served Lukewarm

The cell phone rang. Maggie (a PC) stared at it but did not answer. The phone rang again. The name of the caller appeared: Nathan Kerrigan. Maggie handed the phone to Owen (a PC) who hesitated for just a second and then answered.

Kerrigan was puzzled, fuming, and mourning all at the same time. He wanted to know what the hell was going on. He wanted to know where "Mean" Mike was. He wanted to know if the group had found the rat. He wanted to know who the hell had drilled holes into his favorite daughter's hands. He wanted to know a lot of information; Owen gave him very little.

Owen told Kerrigan that the group had eliminated both Darren Lynch and "Mean" Mike as the rats of the organization. Owen told Kerrigan to not ask any further questions over the phone but did mention that another one of the group's contacts had been found dead after being tortured with an electric drill. This information sent Kerrigan into a fit.

Finally Kerrigan told Owen that he had seen on American television that British troops were being redeployed to Belfast to crush their group for causing so much mayhem. He told the group to lay low until he was able to return back from New York where he was with his comatose daughter Fiona (ex-PC). Little did he know...

Hours later that night the group loaded three crates of newly arrived Russian AK-47s into the rear of a non-descript work van that they had recently "borrowed". John (a PC) took the wheel, and the group, with Tony Martino (an NPC) the leased Sicilian hit man, drove off towards the meeting with Erik the Skin that they had set up weeks before.

When the group arrived at the construction site they were greeted by Erik the Skin and two of his men. The sidekicks were both armed with assault weapons and looked considerably more perturbed than when the group had seen them last - it might have been because the last time the group was saved from Welsh Bob by the two armed men and the group drove off without attempting to assist their saviors...

However, Erik seemed unfazed and greeted the group with his traditional hug and kiss to Maggie. He was initially angered when he heard what had happened to Fiona Kerrigan, (the drills through her hands that has left her on death's doorstep) but then realized that his new weapons dealer was certainly attracting a considerable amount of unwanted attention and channeled his anger into skepticism.

While Owen attempted to reassure Erik about the group's intentions and future plans, Maggie's phone vibrated in her pocket. This time she had remembered to turn it off. She ignored its vibrations, and then again when it vibrated again just moments later.

Owen was able to convince Erik that the C.I.R.A. was the supremacists best weapons' option and Erik conditionally agreed to stay exclusive with the group. As the group was readying to depart, the supremacist's enforcer, Larry "The Bullet" waltzed in and was introduced. Larry is an intimidating figure; he stands 6'4 and has the words skin and head tattooed on his eyebrows. He is known in the criminal underworld as being one of the most vile and vicious creates to ever prowl the night. After the uneasy introductions were made, John, feeling the most unsettled, escorted his comrades back to their van and they promptly departed.

While the group was driving away Maggie flipped out her phone and listened to her messages. The first message was from one of her contacts, an old neighborhood lady, Nell, who kept an eye on thing and reported back to her. Nell's message mentioned that she believed that something was going down that night and that Maggie and her friends should keep their heads low. Maggie could hear the concern in Nell's voice and hoped that the old lady was wrong. She wasn't.

Seconds later after Maggie deleted Nell's message, she listened to the second message. The color drained from her face as soon as she heard the voice scrambler. The computerized voice asked Maggie if she had ever heard that you weren't supposed to talk about people behind their backs and that he (the mystery person) was going to punish old Nell for her sins. Maggie then heard the sound of an electric drill whirl to life, Nell's screams and sobs, and then silence.

Maggie immediately blurted out what she had just heard on her phone recordings. As John turned around in the driver's seat he accidentally turned the radio up to full blast. Before Owen could turn it back down the female disc jockey on the radio made mention of a home in the area that had just exploded. "It was the family home of two brothers who were expert bomb makers for the C.I.R.A." she said.

Owen knew the two brothers well and knew that they would not "accidentally" blow up their family home. He knew that something wasn't right. He called some of the group's C.I.R.A. members to see if something was wrong. After numerous no answers or straight to voicemail messages, Owen knew what he wanted to do. He knew that old Nell must have been right and that they should simply keep their heads down. Except, Owen wasn't about to take anything from anybody; the cops. the paramilitaries, and especially not the British. No, Owen thought. It's war.

Owen remembered that Nathan Kerrigan had mentioned that there was a stash of money hidden in the basement of Murphy's Pub. He told John to go retrieve some and that he and Maggie were going to get "the neighborhood" involved.

An hour later, just past 2 a.m. on Sunday morning, John navigated his way through the last hasty British checkpoint and returned back to "the neighborhood." When he arrived, Owen and Maggie were stringing detonation cord in loops through the street while armed "civilians" reinforced windows and doorways. John was stunned. He wanted to know what was going on. Maggie, with excitement in her eyes, shouted "it's gonna be great! We're gonna call in a C.I.R.A. meeting to the police, and when they arrive..." He voice was interrupted by Owen wielding a megaphone and shouting at specific locations where he wanted his new conscripts to be placed when the authorities came. John looked around in disbelief. "What the hell is happening," he wondered silently to himself.

A few hours later, the call was placed. It was from a C.I.R.A. double-agent who the authorities believed was working for them. The double-agent told the dispatcher that there was a meeting of top C.I.R.A. members and that the meeting was about to conclude. Over a police radio that Owen had obtained from a local contact, the group listened to the instructions given to numerous local units to come and arrest all those present at the meeting. Maggie smiled, Owen grinned with pleasure, and John stared deadpan.

Minutes later the first three governmental vehicles arrived. The first was an ordinary police car, followed up by the heavily armored van that Welsh Bob notoriously rode around in, and the last was an undercover detectives unit in an unmarked car. The police car drove all the way down the dead-end street and stopped just inches from where a C.I.R.A. IED was located. The armored van skidded to a halt and the undercover vehicle followed suit.

Behind the governmental procession a large truck pulled up perpendicularly behind them and blocked any escape possibility that they may previously have had. The clutch of the truck was slammed into park, the parking brake was engaged, and Larry "the Bullet" threw the keys down the street as far as he could. He chambered a round into his newly acquired AK-47 and prepared himself the excitement of his life.
The police hopped out of their cruiser and the undercover detectives followed suit. However, the armored car in the center of the queue was still. Without hesitation Maggie depressed the first detonator that she had. The underside of the undercover detectives' car was propelled into the air and three of the four detectives were pulverized instantaneously. The fourth was blown into the side of nearby building and lay still.

The police in the front of the ambush raced out of their car towards the house at the end of the street. The other two ran towards the buildings on either side of the street. Rounds were shot at them and impacted much too closely for their liking. Sirens could be heard in the distance and they all knew that if they could reach safety and hold up that their reinforcement would arrive soon.

The two officers that ran straight into the house at the dead-end burst through the window after finding the door blocked by a large obstacle. As they came through the window Tony Martino shot one in the throat, just above the neck of his body armor. The policeman dropped to the group with a thud and clutched at his wound while his partner turned his attention towards the assassin and fired. The distance was so close that it was almost impossible to miss. Tony Martino was hit in his right thigh and joined the wounded cop on the floor of the old row home.

From the sitting position the Sicilian ignored his burning leg wound and fired off two more shots that hit the standing policeman in his left knee. The man, caught unawares and with a newly shattered knee, face-planted to the ground. Tony Martino, without compulsion or remorse fired two rounds into the man's exposed skull. When he was sure that the man was dead, he pushed himself up with his gun, hovered over the throat-shot policeman, raised his weapon and ended the man's struggle for breath.

Back in the street, the armored van's door swung open and five SO15 members plunged out, geared up and dressed all in black. The first man out of the window was dropped by a almost point blank shotgun blast to his exposed face. The man crumbled to the cobblestone street beneath him while Owen racked another armor-piercing shell into his shotgun.

Welsh Bob, now leading the SO15 assault squad, fired at the unseen assailant and lead his troops towards Owen's position. His black ski-mask clung to his sweat-soaked face as his body was still filled with the adrenaline that cursed through his veins from his earlier torture sessions with the old C.I.R.A. contact. He put these heightened senses to good work in covering his men with his modified Enfield assault rifle.
As furious and as filled with bloodlust as Owen was, he was not suicidal. Before the front door was breached by the anti-terror team Owen was already racing down the back steps towards the waiting getaway car. When he opened the driver's side door he heard the flash-bang go off and he knew that the remaining locals who occupied that home were going to be dead within seconds. He prayed a Hail Mary while he turned the key in the ignition; success! Owen revved the car to life and honked three times to get John's attention. Second later, John ran up to the car and Owen slammed his entire foot onto the accelerator and the car sped off.

Maggie, still perched in her over-watch position, saw that the SO15 squad was out of sight and that more police, Northern Irish paramilitaries and British soldiers were en route towards the battle and that it was fast approaching her time to leave. She set down the rifle that she had been shooting and detonated the second explosive that she had prepared. The now empty police car at the beginning of the queue exploded and its burning hulk rested in the middle of the street; a silent testament to the effectiveness and violence of the C.I.R.A.

Maggie then made her way out of her house and slipped down a small partially-hidden alleyway and began to made her way to the "rally" point.

Minutes later a British anti-riot unit arrived and began to swarm the neighborhood. Hundreds of shots were exchanged and carried on long into the night. The group watched the running street fight on television from the solace of their safe house. What infuriated them the most was the reintroduction of British troops onto Irish soil. Owen had gotten what he wanted, but he still didn't have to like it...

While Owen finished patching up Tony Martino's wound he concluded his phone call to his Mafia bosses back in Sicily. When he finished his conversation that he held entirely in Italian, Tony told the group that they needed to pack their bags as they were heading to Sicily to help his masters with a rat problem of their own. It would also be a great place to lay low while the British swarmed all over Northern Ireland like a bull in a fine china shop.

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