The Second Front

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The Second Front

Post by Vexation on Mon Nov 05, 2018 9:31 pm

It was a good day for Valerie Heston. It seemed there were a lot of those recently, and from the look of things, there were more to come. She was leaning up against the counter of the butcher's shop she had taken over as a makeshift base of operations/interrogation chambers hybrid, waiting for Jet, one of her most trusted lieutenants to show up. It had been almost two weeks since the job at the Gravy Train Motel, and she had failed to thank and congratulate him properly for it. While the Witch was well aware that the job was often the reward for the demolitionist, she still felt it was important to let her men know how much she appreciated their hard work, something the bastards at Oz seldom did. Besides, she had a new job for him lined up, and another snaking its way through the tubes.
When Jet arrived, the whole room smelled of her cigarette smoke; this was common with her, as she smoked like a chimney regardless of the health risks and preferences of those around her. She had on a half cocked smirk, fresh black lipstick, and dark eyeshadow poking up behind her aviator sunglasses. She grinned widely at Jet, her teeth still abnormally pearly for her habits. "There's the man of the hour himself. Sunshine told me about the motel job. Got Bataski away from Oz, and the little Tang on our side. Very, very good, Jet. Very, very good." She grabbed a velvet bag off the counter behind her and tossed it to Jet; inside, he would find about three dozen variously colored and patterned marbles. "A present for my favorite 'illegal editor'. I hear you like the innocuous." She smirked proudly at him. "How've you been, Jet?"
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Re: The Second Front

Post by Dranous on Mon Nov 05, 2018 11:06 pm

Valerie had called for Jet again today.  An event that was always a good omen to him.  They usually meant Valerie wanted to send Jet out on another play date.  Jet was humming a tune to himself as he arrived at the butcher shop.  He rapped on the door twice before entering, not waiting for a response.  "Hiya!"  At this point in time, Jet was half used to the smoke that constantly permeated the air around Valerie.  Sure it was a bit annoying, but the pros of Valerie far outweighed the cons in Jets opinion.  "Indeed, things went rather swimmingly."  Jet continued over to the counter to stand across from Valerie.  When he stepped up, she threw a velvet bag to him, which he immediately investigated, finding an assortment of marbles.  "Aww, Valerie, you shouldn't have!  I always love getting new toys."  Jet giggled.  "I've been well! The last mission was rather impactful if I do say so myself.  And while the interim has naturally been rather uneventful, I'm rather excited to begin the bug extermination.  How about yourself?  Enjoying putting the Candy Shop Raider to work?" Jet rested his arms on the counter and lazily slumped over on it.
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Re: The Second Front

Post by Vexation on Mon Nov 05, 2018 11:24 pm

Valerie smirked at Jet's reaction to the marbles. Like a child getting toys at Christmas, only far more.... Mocca City. It's why she liked him. She tossed her spent cigarette aside and pushed off the counter. "I've been absolutely fantastic, myself, thank you very much for asking. And as much as I'd like to say I'm enjoying putting our little merc to work, there's been a bit of a snag with that, but we'll get to that later. For now, I want an official report. I want to know how everything went at the motel. Who did their parts and how well, any new information you learned, so on and so forth. Y'know, the boring stuff." She rolled her eyes, more for comedic effect than actual annoyance.
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Re: The Second Front

Post by Dranous on Tue Nov 06, 2018 12:03 am

"Ahhh, I see, I see.  Have to trudge through the official stuff if we want to be efficient huh.  Unfortunate, but it must be done!"  Jet laced his fingers and stretched them above his head.  "It was all good and fun really.  Even got Lazy-Eye and Mort into a bit of a competition!  Actually, now that I think about it, who won? Hmm.  Anyway, no major injuries to report.  Actually I suppose there were, but its just that they were all on the Ozlings side.  The breach was a bit tricky.  Unfortunately they caught wind of us before the first explosion went off, but the others held them off for long enough.  We got to the room with the contacts without much issue, but then the Ozling in charge there started going off on some booooooring rant and asking us to spare the rest of them, but luckily Sunshine shot him so I didn't have to worry about in in a roundabout way."  Jet laughed, recalling the way Sunshine cut off the Ozling.  "With all that, I wouldn't say anyone really under-performed.  Though I guess I don't think Raider took a liking to me.  He doesn't seem very happy when I try to play with his doll.  And with him being so serious, I think he was a bit annoyed with me playing around a bit and messing with the Ozlings."  Jet shrugged.  "Speaking of not taking a liking to me, Bataski doesn't seem to appreciate my pyrotechnics either.  I don't think he trusts my planning just yet."  Jet shook his head.  "On the brighter side though, he diiiiid take a partiiiicular liking to Raider.   I think the serious attitude clicked for him.  Birds of a feather and all that.  Even tried to cozy up to him a bit.  Handed him a business card and everything.  I thought his assertiveness on the subject was rather strange, but it can only be beneficial to us so long as Raider is on our side.  However, he only agreed to officially support us on the condition that Oz was completely destroyed.  No trace left to come back and bite him in the ass.  A reasonable sentiment.  Naturally I agreed as it aligned with our plans from the beginning anyway.  Jia as well so long as we keep him safe from his sweet toothed brother."  Jet pulled a business card from his pocket.  "Jia gave this to me.  His new contact info since we jumped the Oz ship.  Says he can send out his patrol beetles to hound Oz if we need 'em.  I believe sending little Lolipop with the Raider as a display of power was the kicker for him to move over to us."
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Re: The Second Front

Post by Vexation on Tue Nov 06, 2018 12:14 am

The Witch's brow furrowed to seriousness as she listened to his report, occasionally cracking a smile or letting out a soft guffaw at his more playful parts, but in the end she nodded and smirked. "Good. Glad to hear everything went so well." She plucked the business card from Jet and pocketed it for later. "I'll have him start heckling Oz soon. As far as I'm concerned, the war with them is all but over. We just need to officially end it. So I'm now going to send you on a new assignment..." She smirked and reached into her shirt, pulling out her packet of cigarettes and pulling out another one. She offered one to Jet, but regardless of whether he took one or not she continued. "About the raider... He's been forced into hiding by the big Tang. The madman attacked him in Jadetown. A civilian restaurant, too. I'm sure you heard about the brawl that took place there that had multiple dead; yeah, that was them. So the raider's keeping his head down for a few days." She grinned wickedly at Jet. "And big Tang doesn't know the raider's on my payroll, and thus under my protection. I say we announce our allegiance with him, declare my intentions with the prick, and free up the raider to move about freely again, all in one glorious sweep." She pouted for a moment. "If only I knew someone who could make such a bold and infrastructurally-slash-financially damaging statement..." Her eyes twinkled as she eyed Jet, a grin on her lips. "Ready to become a Mocca City earthquake, my boy?"
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Re: The Second Front

Post by Dranous on Tue Nov 06, 2018 1:34 am

A new assignment, just as Jet was hoping for.  However it wasn't to finish off Oz as he thought it was, to Jets disappointment.  "Ahhhh, so that was Raider and Tang in Jadetown huh?  He seems quite desperate, pulling anything in Jadetown.  I doubt the resident super took too kindly to that."  Jet laughed and waved no to the offer of a cigarette.  Jet dramatically cast his arm over his forehead, "Oh, poor Raider!  Forced to go underground.  Not being able to walk about freely to even kill one guy.  How sad!"  Jet flopped down onto the counter.  Once Valerie began explaining a need to go after Tang and hinted at his involvement Jet immediately perked up.  He stared at her and his eyes lit up like a child who was just told he was going to Disneyland.  "Oooooohh Boooooooy!  I get to stop by and say hello to the Candy Man?  Oooooooh, this is the perfect chance to show off my new toys!"  Jet indicated the velvet bag he just received and then moved his hand up in mock-salute.  "You want an earthquake?  I'll give 'em a category 10!"  Jet smiled giddily.
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Re: The Second Front

Post by Vexation on Tue Nov 06, 2018 6:55 pm

Valerie chuckled and pushed herself off the counter. "Exactly what I wanted to hear. Now, remember, this is big brother Tang. He's a pompous as who thinks highly of himself and lowly of others; fine for a politician, terrible for someone in Mocca City." Her eyes grew hard as she locked them with Jet, her tone become deadly serious. "His kind should not be able to survive here, and yet he manages to. His mere existence is an affront to all true Mocca City denizens. For once, I don't want to hear stories about what you've done. I want to hear rumors whispered in back allies in horrified voices. I want to hear ghost stories and half-baked theories because there were no survivors to explain the truth. I want to hear the screams of whatever you do from here. And I want Shoushan to hear them too. I want body parts to fly and gods to cry, I want men to be puddles and cars to be rubble. No survivors. None of Shoushan's men, none of his slaves on the sight, no one." She pulled a small, white cassette tape out of her coat pocket and handed it to Jet. "And I want him to hear this. So leave this in a place whoever comes by to investigate is sure to find it. Am I clear?" She asked. After he took the tape, her relaxed, casual demeanor returned. "The target is an old autoshop. Shoushan's 'retrieval vans' that he uses to kidnap new slaves and move around goods and the like are stored there. Some of them at least. Pick up one of your crew, I don't care too much who, and take them along to watch your back."
Once she finished briefing him, she walked around the counter and gestured to Jet. "Oh, and you seemed a bit disappointed in not hitting Oz next. Well, I've got something to show you that should brighten your spirits on the matter." She grinned wickedly and disappeared into the freezer.
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Re: The Second Front

Post by Dranous on Tue Nov 06, 2018 9:24 pm

Jet payed close attention to what Valerie was telling him, soaking up every word.  "So complete annihilation then.  I'll make it so horrifying that the kids of Alabaster High School will be talking about it the next day in their SAFE class."  He spat the last bit.  Jet took the tape and examined it for a moment before smirking and placing it in his coat pocket.  "Crystal clear, Valerie.  I'll make an effort to make it as noticeable as possible!  So an autoshop huh?  Cutting off one of his central supply stations should accelerate his drop to the dirt."  Jet wrapped one arm around himself and put his other hand to his ear, "Ahhhhh, I can hear the ticking!  The countdown is commencing!  He's reaching his final hours in the sun, and I shall be watching at the clock hits zero!"  Jet was broken from his reverie by Valerie moving to the freezer.  He gripped the counter and leaned forward with a child's level of curiosity and anticipation.
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Re: The Second Front

Post by Vexation on Tue Nov 06, 2018 9:43 pm

Valerie smiled to herself at Jet's zealotry; she looked forward to his work. She always did.
Inside the freezer, hanging from one of the meathooks, was a man, lips blued and skin pale from the cold. Jet would immediately recognize it as Oz's third in command. He was unconcious, and his front was stained with blood that had flowed from the hook through his shoulder, but the mist coming from his mouth at regular intervals showed he was still alive. "One of the other teams found little Angus here in Ruby Central." Valerie began, speaking calmly as though describing a deer she had seen the other day. "Light guard since they were in a place the cops actually did their job. Fat lot of good any of that did, of course." She walked up to Angus and firmly grabbed him by the wrist on the hooked arm, walking him up with a pained cry. "And Angus is being... Very helpful." She turned to Jet and grinned a wicked grin, one truly fitting her namesake. "As I said... The war with Oz is over. I just need the raider to do one last job for me, and then I want your help ending this." She looked up at Angus, whose eyes were wide with terror now.
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Re: The Second Front

Post by Dranous on Tue Nov 06, 2018 10:51 pm

"Ahhhh, thats fantaaaastic news Valerie!  Even I didn't realize we were so close."  He directed a cheerful smile at Angus.  "Thanks for putting in all the hard work and being so helpful!  It's good to see you again by the way!  Still hanging in there icy."  Jet stood up straight and rubbed his hands together.  "Wow Valerie, you really just made my week today.  So many surprises and good news!  I'll not disappoint!  Oh boy, one right after the other coming up.  I'd best be careful not to get overly excited for this or I'm gonna get ahead of myself."  Jet patted his cheeks as if waking himself up. "I'll start getting ready immediately!"  Jet gave a sincere smile of simple pleasure.  This is truly what he lived for.  The excitement and anarchy.  It was  growing and spreading.  And he was at its epicenter.
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