My entry is a light mix of Cyberpunk and Noir, loosely based off hard-boiled detective stories like Tracer Bullet and such.
My name is Gale. Gale Tekanzen. I'm a private eye in the sky, the big brother of all paranoid schizophrenics. My work is unusual, but so are my clients. I stalk people long enough to find their problem, then tell them I have the answer and can give it to them for a price. It's never worked before, but I'm an optimist.
Business had been slow lately due to a restraining order issued by the chief of police and signed by everyone in the universe. I'd been borrowing money from a local mob boss to pay the bills. It's never been the smartest move, but it's easier than rigging the roulette table.
I got a call on a Wednesday night from my underground benefactor, politely requesting either payment or my finger collection. All ten of them.
I met the Boss in his office that night, escorted by two of his goons, big guys with bigger guns.
His tower overlooked the city and it was clear he intended to keep it that way. Apparently my late fines were cramping his style.
“Sixty thousand dollars,” he begins. Not a question, not an accusation. Just a simple statement. I smile awkwardly. He continues.
"Do you know what that kind of money can buy these days? Three imported cars. New.” He makes a vague gesture. “Leather seats, lining, a radio and a nice chrome finish. Cars that any respectable person would be more than happy to own.”
I nod and wave my hands in a so-so way. Social niceties have always escaped me, or so the white gloves at parties tell me.
The boss picks up my revolver, frisked from my pockets at the door. I hate to see anyone else handling Tatyana. She's my girl, and she's saved my life on more than one happy occasion.
He turns the gun over, opens the barrel and counts the bullets. Fully loaded, like me on a Saturday night. He sets the gun on his desk and motions for me to take it.
"Six bullets," he says, the calm in his voice belying his deadly temper. "One for every ten thousand you owe me. There's plenty of work in my city. I suggest you go find some. You get me that sixty grand in two weeks, however you like, and I’m willing to forget that you ever asked us for a favor. Do it without attracting attention and I’m willing to forget I ever saw your face."
A man with a loaded weapon and a city of people that want other people dead. I've solved enough cases to know that the two are a bad combination. Regardless, I take the gun and stumble out into the dilapidated streets, eager to find a contract, finish the job, and get back to good, honest stalking. Despite years of practice, my stomach always turns at the thought of taking assassination jobs. It's never hard to cover your tracks when everyone else is trying to do the same. Hunting down clues on the police force is like trying to find a gold nugget in a muddy river where everyone's having a cocktail party and rearranging the furniture at the same time.
Then it hits me like I hit the floor in the morning. The boss said I can earn the money any way I like. I have plenty of contacts who will pay an easy ten grand for the ear of a mafia member, and the Boss' goons patrol this district like ants.
I head down to the abandoned metro tunnels, where finding a secluded grunt taking a smoke is simple work. I pull out Tatyana and take aim.
My sharp wit suddenly fails me. "Hey, you," I blurt out awkwardly. The man turns to face me and the gunshot echoes through the tunnels like thunder.
I pick up the ear I so carefully shot off and tuck my business card into the groaning man's pocket.
Five more to go.
(Just a note that, although I used minor editing to rectify some awkward lighting caused by LEDs, tungsten and fluorescent bulbs, the build was done completely in shades of grey and red. All the colours are accurate.)
As always, a huge thanks to my team for tons of brilliant suggestions and critique! I couldn't have finished this entry without you guys!
Quoting Warehouse Reach (the Arbiter)
Its nice to see such a mocist as yourself still kicking. I really like your flickr page and have been checking out your mechs for some time. Do have any building style suggestions?
Honestly, I can't say anything as to your personal style. Just keep building and observing the techniques of other builders. You'll flesh out your own style soon enough.
Quoting Paul Romano
Methinks someone has watched too much Sin City :P Awesome job! You really ought to start a series!
Haha, thanks. I've never actually watched it though. It was just lind of a combo of cyberpunk and noir, somewhere along the lines of Blade Runner x Scarface.
As for the series... an interesting thought, but I don;t think I'd bea able to maintain it. I have too much to do anyways.