Part seven in the Rainbow series:
“The fuck you doing here?” the intimidating genefreak interposes himself bodily between the group and the door. The bouncer wears a number of atypical surgeries, presumably with the intention of enhancing his threatening size with monstrous features. Bones broken and recast at strange angles give him twisted alien proportions. The intensity of his glare is difficult to hold, widely spaced eyes bulge with the altered shape of his skull. Grinning widely he reveals his teeth, sharpened to razor points a well practised threat.
Hood pulled low and stood behind her companions bodies, Sonorous had hope to avoid this. The Miserable Club and her had some history, she’d insulted them publicly when new to the undercity by vandalising their network. Hired as a data extraction specialist by the pair of Voodoo Rats, she hangs back keeping beyond reach of the gangster.
Standing firm, Feral gets up in the face of the bouncer, returning the glare with animalistic ferocity. The tension in the air is laden with bloodlust, the street beyond the gangs clubhouse abandoned but if a fight were to break out the numbers within remain unknown.
“I said…” The bouncers deep gravelly voice threatens once more, “The fuck are you lot doing here.”
“Alright boys,” Jazz’s sultry voice replies, “Lets not do anything we’ll come to regret.”
“We’re here to see Squid,” Feral growls through clenched teeth.
The bouncer leans back, crossing his arms and resting his weight against the door frame. An eyebrow raised in what might have once been a suspicious expression, “He expecting you?”
“That’s right,” Feral answers.
The bouncer shrugs his broad shoulders, shaking his head and chuckling, “Wait here.”
Stepping inside the derelict warehouse, loud music blares out in the moment before the door closes once more. Alone in the street, Sonorous looks out from under her hood, searching for any security. There’s none. The Miserable Club are fairly small time, but she’d expected more than just a doorman. They may simply be that stupid.
Confident that she wasn’t being watched, she pulls out her tablet and scans for open network connection ports. Closest port, The Miserable Club. At least they secured that much, she thought. No time to bust it open, she slips the tablet back into her pocket. Meanwhile, Feral has taken the bouncers position leaning beside the door while Jazz checks her make-up her small mirror. It would be a conservative claim to suggest the pair stand out.
True to his name, Feral looks like a wild man. Short but broad and covered with thick black hair, he’s had a couple minor surgeries to enhance his appearance like the bouncer. His canines have been enlarged just enough to be noticable while deadly looking metallic claws have taken the place of his nails. In addition practical muscle grafts and iris slits identify him as one who has spent a great deal of money on making himself more dangerous.
Jazz on the other hand is slender and perfectly symmetrical. Crafted for beauty and elegance, the extent of her surgeries have left her somewhere within the uncanny valley. Unlike the loud posturing of her partner, Jazz’s air of menace is effortless and mysterious. Sonorous had seen what Feral could do, she understood exactly why he was here, but Jazz had always kept her hands clean whenever they’d worked together. Which admittedly had not been often.
“See something you like, darling?”
Sonorous instinctively looks away, heat rising in her cheeks at having been caught staring. She’d been certain she hadn’t been obvious.
“Don’t worry, I don’t mind. I paid a lot to look this good after all.”
Forcing herself to return Jazz’s gaze, Sonorous notices Feral glaring at her behind the other woman. No matter how many times, those two always gave her the creeps. Then just in time to break the awkward tension, the door opens and the bouncer steps back onto the street, “You lot can come in. Start anything and I don’t have to tell you how it’ll go.”
The three step through the door, Feral leading the way with laser intensity. Inside the building feels like a dingy bar, loud rock music blasts from the speakers that hang in every room. A dozen or so gangsters populate the rooms, smoking, drinking and talking. A couple Sonorous recognises, so keeps her hood low and turned away from their attention.
From the directness of the path Feral takes through the dimly lit rooms, she gets the sense that he’s pretty familiar with the layout. They find squid in a back room, tinkering with something that looks broken. As they enter he drops the trinket on the bar, replacing it with a drink and approaches them.
“Feral, Jazz,” he states the pair’s name as a greeting before looking expectantly towards Sonorous.
“Do you have it?” Feral’s rudeness for once appreciated by Sonorous as it draws Squid’s attention away from her.
“Of course,” Squid replies, extending a hand expectantly, “The money?”
Jazz steps forward placing a thick envelope into his hand. He empties the contents onto the bar, revealing a stack of blank currency chips. Pulling his phone from his pocket he scans the chips one by one to confirm the amount promised was present. Satisfied, he pockets the chips and steps behind the bar and kneeling retrieves a phone from the safe and handing it to Jazz. She turns it over in her hands a couple times, before passing it back to Sonorous without looking away from Squid. Sweetly she then says, “We’d like to check it before we go.”
“We’d appreciate a private room, if you don’t mind.”
His interest already moved on from the group, he waves a hand absently towards the door, “Back out the way you came, door across the room to the left.”
Waiting in the hall, a couple guys are lingering who weren’t there when they’d entered. Knives worn openly on their belts, obviously suspicious their eyes track the trio without subtlety as the move to the room Squid had indicated.
“Time to earn your pay, walker,” Feral states.
Settling into one of the empty seats, Sonorous retrieves her tablet without response. Wirelessly connecting to the network, she closes her eyes and dives.