|The Enemy Within: Unexpected Aid|
|Summary:||Following leds towards two of his missing miss agents, Jeff Ryan finds out that there may be a bigger problem forming than just a simple civil war.|
|Cast:||Jeff Ryan, Leodhais, Larry|
Smiling Skull Tavern <Jasper Point, New Luna>
- New Luna -
- This small, rustic stone building has the feel as if it's been here since antiquity. The lacquered, slatted wooden floor is rough in some parts and stained in others, a testament to the amount of use this place gets. About a dozen round tables are spaced evenly around the common area, and a badly-scratched gunmetal gray bar sits in the northeast corner. The chairs and barstools are pitted and their paint chipped, as if they were bought at a second-hand store. The patrons here are generally a lively bunch, with miners and lumberjacks being the primary professions. Many a lewd bar song or friendly dart match occur here, both taken with the same gruff frontier spirit that seems to pervade this town. A thick, wooden door leads outside to the street.
One eye Larry, weapon designer and alt-Lunite, he's pretty much where he is everyday. That being, sitting at a table by himself, reading over a local news paper.
The bartender on the other hand, the same gent with the come over as the other day, is currently leaning on the bar, flipping through a soft back book.
The robed alt-lunite and ex-Senator enters the bar, it takes him only a few seconds to spot Larry and he heads over to his table.
At the sound of the Lunite's footsteps, he gives an acknowledgement, in the raise of a hand "Senator," Larry says, not even looking up from the news paper. "How goes things?"
"Could be better," says the Founder. "My people weren't in the factory."
"One was," Larry replies, as he turns a single grey eye up to Jeff. He's not one for wearing an eye patch or using a glass eye, so it's just a view of an empty socket.
"There was only a factory floor, an office and a dirty toilet," notes the lunite. "Where was my man?"
"They moved her out," Larry replies, before looking back down to the paper and flipping through it. "I only really know of one... And that was a she." The one eyed man gives a vague shrug. "She was drugged, so she most likely doesn't know what was going on."
"Where would the have moved her to?" Jeff leans forward on the table earnest. "Where?"
"Distance," Larry warns, as his eyes flick up to Jeff. He seems pretty much non-caring. "They've got an unmarked barge... They move things. People, weapons, vehicles."
Ryan leans back and rubs his brow, "Where?"
"That is something I don't know," Larry replies, slowly shaking his head. "There are whispers from some of the troops about an island that's beauty hides its dangers... But they most likely just took your people out to sea and executed them."
At those last two words desperation enters Jeff's eyes. Not the voice though, not that cold hard voice, like synthesised gravel, "I need more than rumours of a beautiful island."
Leodhais walks in, looking around curiously, yet cautiously, making himself as small and Not Obvious as possible, listening.
"Perhaps you don't," Larry replies, looking up to Jeff. "Perhaps the solution is under your nose, and you're simply failing to take note." He settles back into the chair, and puts his leg up on one of the legs. "I tell you what I hear, and what I hear is what I've told you. But there are bigger things brewing..."
"Your weapon?" asks Jeff. "Or is there something I'm missing. There's always something I'm missing."
Leodhais picks a seat at a table, settling down and folding his hands, resting his chin on them.
"You've already seen one of my designs... Crude, yet effective," Larry replies, with a cruel smirk. "I'm also pretty sure that you might have seen the schematics for that railgun on the wall... The future in warfare." His single eye drifts across to the outsider, and then he arches a brow.
"Why didn't you come to us?" asks Ryan. "We could use your talents, and not just for this civil war nonsense." He looks resigned. "There's more ahead of us than killing one another."
Leodhais remains seated at the table, silent, not appearing to be watching much of anything but the walls.
"Why didn't you come to us?" retorts Larry. "We could have used people like you instead of power mad people like Hart and Fitzgerald." Back down to the news paper once more. "Not all of the People's Army are 'evil' like your kind like to believe. And it works the same in reply."
"I've never believed they were," says Jeff sadly. "Perhaps not even those two, very few people do what they do out of a sense of hatred and vengeance. Often we're just misguided and don't realise that the very thing we wish to avoid is the same path we're taking. I've seen it before, I have no doubt I'll see it again." Jeff taps the table, "I've failed our people again. Is there anything you can tell me to see I don't compound the error?"
Larry settles back. "Anything I can tell you?" he mutters, as he raises his head and looks up towards the roof. "I'll be in touch in a couple of days, and I'll have a chat to a friend... I'll provide some uniforms of the regulars and claim that four of your militia men have deserted their posts... Wouldn't be the first time that they've had ex-NLM soldiers with them."
"When this is taken care of," says Ryan. "I promise I'll do what I can to heal these wounds. Whatever it takes. I've been asleep far too long."
"Excuse me," Larry says, as he slowly stands up and takes a cane that was resting beside the chair in hand. "But I really should get going." He slowly limps towards the door, leaving the news paper behind. He's pretty much ignoring everyone on the way out.