|Out With a Bang|
|Location||The Body Shoppe|
|Time & Date||December 3, 2016|
|Troupe||Blood and Chrome|
|Summary||Marcus Grey saves the day. Mostly.|
|Marcus Grey, Sabrina, Sinderella|
The Body Shoppe - Parlor
The Parlor is the luxurious central hub; a large room with a warm, dark, almost gothic decor: slate-grey carpeting; crimson felt wallpaper with gold leaf vines; thick, darkly-stained molding along the ceiling and doorframes; gleaming brass doorknobs, lamps, and plaques; and potted palm trees in the corners. Richly-stained oak doors lead off in various directions, and there is a steady trickle of clients and associates coming and going between them.
Within the room there are several seating areas separated by large gaps to permit an easy flow of traffic. Fashionable black leather chairs and couches surround glossy wood coffee tables holding whatever the patrons may be enjoying at that moment while they relax and wait for their appointment; a snack, a drink, a handheld plastiscreen sheet with the latest in fashion news.
In a far corner, mostly hidden behind a large, elegant folding screen painted in a classical Japanese style, is a long couch set before a raised platform and a three-paneled mirror. Here, patrons examine the boutique's cyberware catalog in person, usually on a display brought out by a sales associate, but sometimes even on live models.
It's night, and the parlor is a quiet bustle of clients coming and going from appointments, waiting around, and being assisted by sales associates.
Sabrina gives Marcus a call.
Only a few beeps go by before the call is anwsered. "Grey speaking." his tone is cold as always.
Sabrina replies, "Hi Marcus, it's Sabrina," her tone warm, contrasting to his. "Busy?"
His tone changes to a more friendly one "Sabrina... Very nice to hear your voice. And no, im never to busy to anwser your call, or appointment"
One can almost hear the smile in her voice. "Good! Actually I need some help. Are you free for a few hours?"'.
"Let me look at my schedule....Hmm, there is actual an appointment, a very important one. A miss Welkin needs me. So where would you like me hon."
Sabrina giggles a little. "Where I'd like you, and where I'd need you... " She chuckles softly and lets it trail off. "But I need your help at the Body Shoppe... something just came up and I need some security."
Marcus Grey chuckles as she hints on his open comment. "Yeah.... You can count on me. I'll be right over. Do you need heavy calvalry or just some light infantry."
Sabrina replies, a grin in her voice. "I just need you... see you in a bit."
Marcus Grey enters from the Galleria. Marcus Grey has arrived.
Some 10 minutes go by after the call is ended and the door swings open and the hulking frame of Marcus walks inside. Dressed in his black suit with white shirt and dark expensive shades. He looks around to scan the room for any threats.
Sabrina is standing next to the reception desk, dressed in her usual corporate attire. She glances up as Marcus arrives, and flashes a bright smile. "Follow me, I'll fill you in." She heads towards the parlor.
Marcus Grey follows Sabrina into the clinic, still keeping his attention up, as she have not yet told him what security she needs. He unbuttons his suit jacket, in case ne need to access something inside the jacket quickly.
Sabrina leads the way off to the side where they can talk quietly. "Something just came up," she says. "A VIP is coming in... and she's a potential target. I needed someone on short notice, so that's why I called."
Marcus Grey nods and listen to her explaning the stuation. "Ahh. Good. I'll help you out. Do you know who is tageting the VIP. and is h... Is it a he or she? Will the person be bringing its wn security detail."
Sabrina shakes her head. "The VIP's a she... Zarria, have you met her? We've been working on upping her profile. We haven't heard of any specific threats, but you never know."
Marcus Grey seems to process the information she is feeding him. "No I don't think I have had the pleasure of meeting her." he looks around "This place is easy to oversee so as long as she is here i see no problems." he looks at Sabrina "No evident threats, i guess you want me laid back then, and keep as low a profile untill anything should go haywire."
Sabrina nods and smiles up at him. "Exactly... I don't want to disrupt too much, so her security is just a few bodyguards. But I wanted a little extra... "
Sinderella enters from the reception area. Sinderella has arrived.
Sabrina stands off to one side, quietly discussing something with Marcus.
Sinderella wanders in, looking a bit out-of-place, a somewhat dazed look on her face as she looks around.
Marcus Grey stands off to the side talking with sabrina. He nods to her "Of curse Sabrina. They will hardly notice that im here. Despite my size and hard corporate looks, its actually one of my key features.... Blend in." as Sinderella enters the reception area he looks ain her direction "Is this her?"
Sabrina glances over and looks Sinderella over. "No," she says to Marcus, then gestures to one of the sales associates. The associate heads over to Sinderella and flashes her a bright smile. "Hello, and welcome to the Body Shoppe! How can I help you?"
Sinderella looks at the associate for long moment, apparently having a hard time thinking. She looks a bit stoned. "Is Zarria here?" she asks.
Marcus Grey nods again and falls silent as he looks at Cinderlla kinda sizeing her up. He removes his dark shades and pockets them inside his suit jacket, His dull grey eyes takes in the new patron.
The sales associate's bright smile freezes for a moment, and she glances over at Sabrina for guidance. Sabrina steps away from Marcus and walks over. "I'll take it, Susie," she says to the associate, waving her away. Then she flashes Sinderella a smile and replies, "No, sorry. Is there something I can help with?"
Sinderella turns her attention from Susie to Sabrina, it takes some effort for her to focus her attention on the new person. "No, I'm just looking for Zarria. Will she be here soon?"
Marcus Grey slides a hand into his pocket and fishes a small black box out. He keeps it in his hand and his thumb taps the surface in an instinct way. His dul grey eyes narrows as Cinderella keeps talking about Zarria. He takes a few steps forward but keeps behind Sabrina to her left side.
Sabrina glances over her shoulder as she hears Marcus step closer, and waits a moment to follow his lead.
Marcus Grey grey eyes is really consentrated on Cinderella, as if he is trying to see something.
Sinderella just stands and looks dully at Sabrina and Marcus. "Uh... so... Zarria? I'm, like... a really big fan."
Marcus Grey nods to Sabrina "She is clean." and he remaiuns where he is. His thumb on the black box rests for now. But his eyes return to Cinderella with the same examinating expresion as before.
Sabrina glances back to Sinderella, "Well, she's not here now. And I can't comment as to her availability. Is there something I can do for you?"
Sinderella just stares blankly at Sabrina, like she only understood half of what she said. "Uh... well, I'll just... " She looks around, spots the couches. "I'll wait over there for her."
Marcus Grey takes the oppertunity and steps forward "Lets me help you miss." he steps up to cinderela and aims for grapping her by the elbow with one hand and her exposed wrist with his other hand, the one with his palm link, that is already pulsing with a feint red light, like some kind of surface scanner. "Our couches is nice and soft, ideal of relaxing."
Sabrina just steps aside, letting Marcus lead the way.
Sinderella freezes a bit when Marcus takes her arm, her sleeve sliding up a little when he takes her wrist, showing off an intricate web of what looks like gang tatoos on her arm. She instinctively starts to pull away a little, but then stops, not sure what she should do. She ends up just standing there and looking up at him.
Marcus Grey keeps a hold of her, but its mostly the hand with the palm link that now is in contact with her skin he holds on with, the other is just a light touch for support. His dull grey eyes takes her in again. "Its this way miss" he says with a slightly monotone voice.
Sabrina steps aside a bit and touches her hand to her ear as she sends a short message to the sales associates.
Sinderella seems to finally get her brain going a bit, and lets Marcus lead her over to the couches.
Marcus Grey takes a faster grip at her and tries to lead her thowards the relaxing area, and out of the main buisness area. "Miss Zarria will maybe be here later, but we can't promiss you that you get to interact with her, as its entirely up to her and her associates." his social skills could need abit of work, but its clear that he is running some social acting program as he need to interact with Cinderella on a more personal level "Are you ok miss. I detect some resont injury on your torso."
Sabrina watches and coordinates her employees, who begin to discreetly steer other customers out of the parlor.
Sinderella starts to resist a little, but her strength is no match for Marcus's. "No, I... I -really- need to see her," she pleads, and looks around the room, trying to find someone to help her.
Marcus Grey nods to Cinderella and idle talks har while he slowly but demanding guides her to the side "Yes I understand. And Im sure she would like to meet you too. She loves her fans (Untill 20 minutes ago Marcus didn't even know who Zarria was) and should her time schedule alow it, we at the Boddy Shop would love to set up an arangement." he looks sideways to Sabrina and sends her a wolfish smile, as he plays one of her receptionists, probaly a rookie misstake that he takes his eyes off his mark for just a few seconds.
Sabrina walks over as her employees start to clear the customers out. "Marcus, I think we need to get her out of here," she says quietly. "She needs... I don't know. Help, or something."
Sinderella lets herself be dragged along with minimal resistance. "I... but... you don't understand... "
Marcus Grey nods to Sabrina "Of curse. How close by by is Zarrias detail." his hand closes down on Cinderellas wrist and grips tigther on her elbow incase he needs to manhandle her. Can we take her out the frontdoor, or should we aim for the back. I can have a vehicle pick her up, and take her to a clinic, I think she is high on something. She resontly had major sergery on her chest region." he prepares to run a surface scan on her surface thoughts with a simple mind rote.
Sabrina shakes her head. "They won't be here for a while," she says, then glances at Sinderella. "The front door should be fine."
Sinderella pulls hard, not that it matters. "No!" she gasps in a loud whisper. "You don't understand... they'll kill me. I just need an autograph!"
Marcus Grey got an iron grip, and he instinctly hold tighter as she struggles to get free. "yes of curse you do....." he stops and turns to look at her "Kill you.... who in their right mind ould kill you for an autograph." a program in his internal brain computer fires up its scanning protocol, and he starts to horn in on her brain waves.
Sabrina's eyes widen a bit as she hears that. "We -really- need to get her out of here," she says.
Marcus Grey nods to Sabrina "She is defintly high on something, and delusional." he slowly works Sinderella around to face the door so he can guide her out in a safe and oderly way. "I have radioed a car for pickup. No reason to have a roam around the area we don't control" he looks at Sinderella "This way miss, don't worry we will have some nice people help you out."
Sabrina follows along next to Marcus, one hand still at her ear as she quietly communicates with her employees, hoping to avoid a scene.
Sinderella suddenly freezes up and digs her heels into the carpet, desperate to stay. "No!" she shrieks, "No, please!" Her fear has instantly jumped up to full-on terror and panic, cutting even through the heavy doses of drugs she's on.
As Marcus starts to drag Sinderella towards the exit, and the strange girl has her sudden panicked freakout, Sabrina pauses and holds her hand to her ear again. She looks up and gives Marcus a wide-eyed stare as she says to whoever's on the other line, "Forward the caller to me."
After a brief moment, the call is transferred to Sabrina, and she links it to Marcus at the same time. A muffled voice on the other end says, "Stop. I'm watching you, and the girl has a bomb. Stop right where you are."
Marcus Grey looks between Sinderella and Sabrina, he don't look too happy about the situation. "Are you kiding me... A freaking suiside bomber." he looks at Sabrina again and whispers 'Who is this Zarrina person' he ain't letting go of his grip on the girls arm. "Try and find out what they are after...." against he mouths to her 'Stall them, I'll check her out.'
Sabrina swallows hard and nods in response, her eyes still wide as she continues to stare at Marcus, ready to do whatever he instructs, immediately. "What... what do you want?" she asks.
Meanwhile, Sinderella stops struggling as soon as Marcus stops pulling her towards the exit.
The voice on the other end says, "We just want Zarria. We know she's on her way. If you attempt to stop her, or call MetSec, boom."
Marcus Grey recalls his previous life scan of Sindereaal and checks them out again "A section of her chest have been removed, Its big enough hold a bomb of serious size.." he them checks his matter scan to see if she was wearing any eletronic devices that could be the remote trigger device. He looks at Sabrina "They sounds serious about wanting that woman. Or they are totally trying to fake it." he looks around "We are looking at a serious remodeling of your clinic should they be serious enough. Not to mention that you and I are standing preatty close to the blast area." he smiles at her, not looking serious nervous yet.
Sabrina's eyes go a little wider, if possible, and she glances around, waving frantically at the few associates still in the room, gesturing for them to get out.
"Stop," the voice says again. "I can see you. Pretend everything is nice and normal. Again, we just want Zarria."
Sabrina mutes her end and whispers loudly, "They're going to blow us all up as soon as she gets here!"
Marcus Grey nods to Sabrina "Yes... He keeps saying he can see us. I don't think he can hear us." Marcus loosens his grip abit on Sinderella and looks around for windows and cameras in the room.
Sabrina glances at Sinderella, then swallows again. "If... they can trigger her bomb, she might have implants in her eyes that are transmitting... "
Marcus Grey nods to Sabrina "Yes..." he looks at Sinderella and nods again "Makes sense, she do have alterations to her eyes. But not her eares as I can see. (correct me if im wrong)" he looks back to Sabrina, and radio transmits a audion signal to her "What is our time frame. When will Zarrina arraive. With a little luck they don't know me and won't be prepared for my skill set, and ways of operating." a short pause in the signal "You do have to make some hard choices here, as I won't get to do alot of things before they detonate." another pause "I can seal her so the detonation won't get out and hurt anything but her. But she will be toast, and there will have to be some rumor mill controle afterwards. I can try and disarm the trigger, but then we still have a bomb that might go off. And I can shild you and me, but then your clinic is toast. What ever you choose, your going to owe me big time hon, At least two dinner dates."
Sabrina just stares as she takes it all in, her eyes as big as saucers. Finally she nods and replies on the same private channel, "I've already told Zarria not to come... it was getting too weird. And I don't care about the kid, just... do what you can."
Marcus Grey seems to take a few seconds to think. He slowly backs up thowards Sabrina while he focuses on Sinderella. He retreives from another pocket what looks like a powerfull test messure meter of some kind. His palm link connects with the device. "Ok Hon. What ever happen stay close to me, and what ever question you might have after this, I'll do my best to anwser, but know I can't tell explain everything to you.
Sabrina just looks up at Marcus for a moment, then takes a step closer and takes his arm, holding it tightly. Meanwhile Sinderella, after Marcus lets go of her, starts moving back towards the center of the room and away from the exit.
Marcus Grey steps in front of Sabrina so he kinda shields her from Sinderella. "Ok miss... or who ever controls you. Im sorry it have to end like this, but you leave us no real choice" he starts to punchin numbers on the small device."
Sabrina can guess what's going to happen, and sends out an emergency message for all her employees to get themselves and the customers out if they can, or behind something solid if they can't, and to absolutely stay out of the parlor. Sinderella glances over a little, looking like a zombie, but doesn't really react. She just walks over and sits down on one of the couches in the middle of the room and waits.
A shimmering oddly blue flickering light forms in front of Marcus and bends arounf the two as a bubble growing to engulf them. Marcus's fingers works on the display of the small device in his hand "God damn piece of old tech shit. It ain't working as fast as I would like too."
Sabrina just watches, eyes wide, trying to stay close but at the same time trying to stay out of his way, yet still holding Marcus's arm.
On the line, whoever's controlling Sinderella says, "I'm losing patience. You've got one minute to get Zarria in here."
Marcus Grey stretch out his other arm, the one Sabrina ain't holding. "Im sorry girl" he says thowards sinderella. Then to Sabrina "get ready, this will either breat the remote device and stop them from detonating the bomb, or trigger the blast effect." He points his hand out throu the shield and the front part of his arm is a weapon looking barrel of some super tech cyber installment. The barrel is some how too big for him to have disgused inside his arm. The weapon unfolds, but no shot is made.
Sabrina jumps a little, startled, and then the voice on the other end of the phone says, "I don't know what you're trying to do, but we're all done now. Goodbye."
And Sinderella, and most of the Body Shoppe's parlor, explodes in a blinding flash of light and boom so loud that it can't even really be heard. Marcus's shield blocks most of it, leaving him and Sabrina mostly unharmed, but even so the physical shock of the explosion stuns them for a moment.
When their vision clears, the parlor is in ruins, but still mostly intact. The bomb, small enough to fit inside Sinderella, and partially shielded by her body, wasn't big enough to seriously damage the building, just kill anyone in the immediate area. Which, fortunately, was only Sinderella herself.
Marcus Grey closes his eyes as the blast goes off, he then turns around and with his functional arm hugs Sabrina tight into his body to provide extra shild and protection to her. Once the blast is over and he can hear and see again he looks at Sabrina "Are you ok." his weaponied arm hangs down his side.
Sabrina just stares in shock at where Sinderella, and all her furniture, used to be. Now it's just blackened scorch marks on bare concrete where there used to be carpet. "Holy shit," she whispers as she finally gathers her wits. "Thank you, Marcus." She squeezes his arm tightly again as she just stares at the room.
Marcus Grey looks around the room and shrugs "Its just money.... And the life of girl of curse." he looks back to Sabrina "We need to investigate this Sabrina, The bad guys is still out there, and they just tried to kill us. Our advantage is they have no idea we'r still alive yet."
Sabrina is still a little emotionally dazed it seems, she just keeps staring at the blackened empty spot in the center of the room. "Yeah. Well, Zarria anyway. I don't think they really cared much about us."
And at just that moment, a MetSec squad bursts in, guns drawn, sweeping the room. They spot Sabrina and Marcus and then immediately ignore them as they sweep past, kicking in doors to check the rest of the area. "Ma'am," the leader says as he takes off his helmet and walks over to Marcus and Sabrina. "I'll need to lock down the area until we have everything sorted out." It's not really a request.
Marcus Grey is really calm as MetSec burst in, all the time he keeps an arm around Sabrina. His gun arm still down by his side. As the offices steps up to them. He flips out a badge "Corsortium Investigation is already on the site Sir. Before you reppoort anything I have to approve of it."
Sabrina just stands, still holding Marcus's arm, as she turns her attention from the remains of her store to the MetSec officer.
The officer gives Marcus's badge the briefest glance and nods. "Very good." He taps his ear and tells his squad, "We're done. Wrap it up." Then, back to Marcus, "Need any assistance?"
Marcus Grey looks at Sabrina and then back to the officer "I think we are good for now." he gives Sabrina a squeese with his fresh arm "But it would be appreciated if you keep the area on lock down for now and patrol the area for any suspicious activity."
The officer gives Marcus a long look, then suddenly gives a small smile. "Of course. Thanks for the suggestion." There's just the slightest hint of sarcasm in his voice, then he turns to Sabrina and taps his forehead, giving her a small salute. "Ma'am," he says, then turns on his heel and follows his squad out the door.
Sabrina takes a deep breath, then sighs and looks up at Marcus again. "Holy shit, what a day."
Marcus Grey shurugs and nods to her. "Yeah. I guess we should get a cleaning team here, and some redecoration team aswell. Not that I like being blown up, but im really glad you called me. And sorry if I made them blast your place, but I saw no other way to deal with it."
Sabrina shakes her head and then just laughs a little, finally relaxing. "No... it's fine. The insurance will cover it, I can replace everything. I just... you kind of plan for everything, but when something like this actually happens... " She laughs again, and shivers. "Holy fuck. I never really thought I'd have a bomber in my shop."
Marcus Grey chuckles "They always seem to try the one thing you don't prepare for." and while he talk, the huge barrel at the end of his arm slowly shrinks down and the flesh around it rebuilds itselg, as it was a 3D printer building it up again. She blue shield disaored with the blast. He stores away his device, and looks at her with a slightly nervous expression, how is he going to explain all this. "Now we just have to find the hudlums, and plan for our first or two dinner dates."
Sabrina giggles a little and nods. She watches his arm out of the corner of her eye. "Do you... need a doctor or anything? We actually have some pretty cutting edge facilities right here."
Marcus Grey takes a deep breath and looks at her with a sheepish expression. "No im good. I need a battery recharge at some point. And then I think I have to explain alittle here."
Sabrina glances around as her employees start to cautiously come back in. One of them heading straight for her. "Maybe you should explain over dinner?" she suggests, then turns to her employee. "Sally, get in touch with insurance," Sabrina says, before her employee can speak. "Then just replace everything. In the meantime, get everything cleaned up and figure out some way to work around our temporary lack of parlor." Sally just gives a brisk nod and then turns away to start directing the other associates. Sabrina turns back to Marcus and pulls on his arm, leading him towards the door. "Let's go somewhere more private."
Marcus Grey nods and he lifts his hand and wriggles his fingers as the hand is fully healed. He looks at Sabrina and nods with a smile "Sounds like a perfect plan." he hooks is arm with hers and walks along with her. He looks around as they step outside. He puts on his shades and looks around. "Lets go somewhere quickly, so we keep out element of surprice. My place or yours. No public places tonight."
Sabrina giggles again and takes his hand. "Okay, my place then. It's close."