[FF] Gunslinger Girl Echoes

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[FF] Gunslinger Girl Echoes

Post by sasahara17 on Thu 10 Apr 2008 - 5:45

Disclaimer; Gunslinger Girl belongs to Yuu Aida. What limited reference to The Handsome Men belongs to Person With Many Aliases. I’m just borrowing them.

Note; This story is entirely fictional. Any resemblance between
anything featured in this story to actual people and institutions is
entirely coincidental.

---

Cops and Robbers I

---

4 April 20XX

‘It’s not everyday that something so extraordinary happens that everything just grind to a halt. Today was such a day. How often is it that someone attacks a WTO assembly…, and actually succeeds? Not very often, I’d wager. And on top of that, CNN had front row seats to see the building go up in a ball of fire.
The office is swamped with calls. Can you believe it? The attack happened on the other side of the pond, and we’re the ones getting phone calls all the way London .I haven’t a clue what’s going on other than the fact I’d been called back on duty at one in the morning after pub night.
And of course that nobody saw who bombed the building.
No one attacks a WTO assembly and gets off Scott-free. It just isn’t supposed to happen. Well, for some odd reason, I’m being sent over to the Americas to help sort out that mess. Don’t know why the requested me though, there are other blokes in the force better than me at this sort of stuff.’
---
18 May 20XX
---
“…and so to sum up today’s investigation, we are no closer to finding out the perpetrators to the attacks than when we first started.” Saul Wiggins, head of the investigation, sighed. “Any suggestions on what we should do tomorrow? I’m all ears people.”
“How about we the blood samples by the forensics again?” One tried.
“That was one of the first things we did.” Another replied. “They all belonged to those of the victims.” It was as if whoever carried out the attack had disintegrated himself. They’d tried everything in the book, and nothing was working. Fingerprint analysis, ballistics analysis, everything had come back to naught.
Without even a starting point to begin with the investigation was at an impasse right at the starting line. The frustration in the room was evident. With the pressure from the press and the public, the weight bearing down on the investigative team was immense, and they were feeling it. Over a month had gone by, and the team had yet to make even the slightest progress into the matter. Despite the fact several of the best minds in law enforcement were gathered in the room, this case was making a mockery out of all of them.
“So what do we do gentlemen?” Wiggins sighed. “At the rate we’re going, I’ll be announcing that the investigation failed by the end the week’s out.”
“How’s about we ask the boy?” Foster jabbed a hand in Will’s direction. “I remember him muttering something about having it all figured out a while ago.”
Wilfred Sheppard, commonly known as Will to his friends, was a young man. At five feet five in height, he was considered rather short, especially for an Englishman. His diminutive stature, shaggy unkempt brown hair and round glasses made the young detective seem studious, and some may argue this was rightfully so.
Many of the investigation team were less than receptive on having him on the investigation, for good reason. While the rest of the team were made of old drizzled veterans, Will was ‘the kid’, the young novice upstart from England who happened to get assigned to the investigation. His small stature and weak personality did little t help his credibility.
“Okay, I suppose that’s better than sitting around watching the hands one the face move.” Wiggins decided. “Okay Sheppard, do you have anything to add?”
All eyes in the room settled on the twenty five year old detective. The young man gulped. “Well I… Um…” he stuttered. He started to sweat as he fumbled at his tie. “Well… there’s this thing…”
“Speak up boy!” Someone, probably the German man going by the name Zimmerman, shouted.
That obviously didn’t help things. “Err… um…”
Wiggins sighed. “Take a deep breath Sheppard.”
Some in the room burst into laughter. Will felt his face turn red hot with shame. How embarrassing.
Taking a deep breath, Will steeled himself for what he knew was going to happen and said with all his conviction to his assembled audience…
“I think the United States government is deliberately sabotaging our investigation.”

---
Much later, in a bar far from the Hotel room where the investigative team were discussing further options, Will sat himself down on one of the bar stools and sighed. As expected, he was thrown off the investigative team. Joy.
Soon drinking a galss of his favorite cocktail,Will shook his head. He merely reached the logical conclusion. After the forensics test had come back negative, Will had begun to suspect that the information that the team had been receiving was being doctored.
He watched as all the team’s inquiries were shut down by lack of conclusive evidence, shortfalls in manpower and unfortunate ‘circumstances’. The CIA, strangely in charge of the investigation, while very polite and seemingly accommodating, often took them on long unnecessary trips that were ultimately fruitless.
Why was the CIA even barging in on this case anyway? Wasn’t this the jurisdiction of the FBI? Something smelt like a pile of dung, and it wasn’t the stuff on his shoes.
Will wasn’t a believer in circumstance, so he reached the only possible conclusion.
Still…
“Why did I have to go and say that?”
The United States Government, THE United States Government, was hampering a high profile police investigation to a terrorist attack on their home soil? Ridiculous! They’d have taken him more seriously if he had went and said that he’d found the cure for cancer!
Will felt a migraine coming back on. “When I get back to Cardiff and the lads hear of this, am I going to be the laughing stock of town…”
“That is assuming you do go back to Wales.”
Will paused in surprise. Someone had taken a seat down beside him on the bar counter, an old man dressed in nondescript clothing. The stranger signaled to the bartender. “Two glasses of your finest please.”
“Who…?”
The stranger cut him off. “In three days time a previously unheard of religious fundamentalist group affiliated with known terrorist circles known as the Crimson Justice will claim responsibility for the crime. The group itself is fictions, it does not actually exist. It is a fabrication by the Central Intelligence Agency as a front.”
“The investigation will be called off, and the public will have a face to put on the enemy.” The man spoke in a soft but clear voice, his nonchalant voice sending tingles down Will’s spine. “Do I have your attention yet?”
Will glanced nervously around. The patrons in the bar were oddly disinterested in the conversation. “Who are you?”
“Not the average bloke on the street.” He took his glass off the counter and raised it to Will’s face. “Drink? I’m paying for it.”
Will shook his head slowly. Something was very wrong with this man, he could feel it.
“Pity. Out of an investigative team of twenty of the best investigative minds in the world, only one of them had the sense to realize the United States Government was sabotaging an international investigation, much less say it in public.” He snorted. “And you would think after being shoved all that shoddy forensic evidence they’d have wizened up.”
Everything about the man in front of him screamed ‘spook’. And not just any ‘spook’. One of the big fish; the guys who called the shots. Will started to become very frightened. “Why are you telling me all this?”
As Hollywood movies went, at the rate this was going it wouldn’t belong before the scene where Will would be face down in a ditch for ‘knowing too much’.
Will made a mental note to stop watching all those gangster flicks.
“Simple. Job offer.” The stranger placed a small envelope in front of will on the bar counter. “Out of twenty prospective candidates, handpicked candidates, you were the only one who passed my test young Mr. Sheppard.”
He never said hat the job offer was or what he was even testing. As for how he got Will’s name… that was kind of expected anyway.
“Airline ticket. All expenses paid. Geneva airport where a chauffeur will take you to Charmonix. As for the job, it’ll only be explained when you get there” The man explained. He looked the young man up and down. “You look like you need a drink.”
Will finally took the glass on the counter and drank.
“Why should I even consider this?” Will said completely overwhelmed. “I’m a detective. Scotland Yard. I’m no American. What does the CIA want with me?”
“And I’m not from the CIA. Just look at the offer.” The stranger replied, leaving a very large tip to the bartender and getting up from his seat. “I’m sure you have a reason, Young Mr. Sheppard. Good evening.”
Wilfred watched the man leave with his two things with trepidation. His mind was reeling. What the hell just happened? His attention slowly drifted to the envelope.
Will regarded the small brown object with deliberation before he caved into his curiosity and opened it. Shuffling the contests in the letter like a set of cards, Will was initially amused by the contents. Inside was an airline ticket to Charmonix, several colorful brochures of something called the ‘Institute of Children’s Advocates, Rights and Education’, even more brochures of Charmonix including a skiing discount coupon, and finally a business card.
It was the business card that caught Will’s eye.
Impossible.
For a moment Will just sat there, eyes wide disbelieving at the small white card in his hands. Right underneath the fancy crayon sunflower and smiley face I-CARE logo was the name and phone number of a man he had wanted to meet face to face for the last seven years.
“Davion!”
Will bolted out of seat, startling several of the other patrons, and bolted out the exit. Rushing out into the streets of nighttime Manhattan, Will tried futilely to catch a glimpse of the man he should have recognized the moment he had laid eyes on him.
Jonathan L. Davion, former head of the United Kingdom’s Military Intelligence Division 5 and the only man who could tell him the truth of the ‘Chelsea Power Station disaster’ was sitting right next to him, and Will was too much of a douche to notice. How could he not recognize his brother’s old boss?
As expected of the old spy master, he was gone like a ghost. “Shit!” Will said under his breadth. No way was the former head of Mi-5 a member of some I-CARE outfit.
Seven years he had wanted to question the former head of Mi-5. Tonight the man was right in front of him, and he was gone before Will could even realize…
“Shit!” He cursed again.
Was Davion playing with him? Will didn’t know. All he wanted… Will looked down at the airline ticket, the one that Davion had provided him, clutched in his hands.
The empty street before him silently mocked him.
“Charmonix it is then.”


Last edited by sasahara17 on Thu 10 Apr 2008 - 21:04; edited 1 time in total

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Re: [FF] Gunslinger Girl Echoes

Post by sasahara17 on Thu 10 Apr 2008 - 5:46

---
21st May 20XX
---
“Could you move? I’m in the window seat.”
Wilfred’s eyes rose to meet the young girl standing beside him. “Uh, sure.” Wilfred quickly unbuckled his seat belt and moved out of the way, allowing the young girl to squeeze into the cramped space to her seat.
The girl quickly moved herself pat him and sat herself down all the while muttering darkly to herself, clearly furious at something. Will glanced around the aisle, but could see no sign of her guardians. Was she a lone traveler? She looked no older than her early teens.
“Excuse me miss, are you alone?” Will asked curiously as he sat back into his seat and unfurled his newspaper.
“My guardian is in a company paid trip on Business Class.” She answered sourly. “I’m capable of taking care of myself.”
Will took note she used the term ‘company paid’, but took no further heed of it.
“Right then…” Slightly taken aback by the girl’s distant behavior, Will returned to his seat. “You fine by yourself?”
“I’m perfectly capable of taking care of myself!” She snapped with much annoyance. “How many times do I have to repeat that?”
“O… Okay.” Will awkwardly rubbed the back of his neck. What a temper.
“The nerve of that girl!” She continued seething quietly to herself. “Ten months since I last saw her and the first thing she does is… ooh!” She suddenly glared at him, and will felt himself feeling the need to shrink into his seat and disappear. “Some people a really need to be taught some manners!”
“Uh right.” Will tried not to point out her hypocrisy, but he really wasn’t up to arguing with this girl. “Whatever you say.”
Her voice wasn’t so quiet anymore, and she was beginning to attract some attention from the neighboring passengers. “Gloating over her business class seat… I’ll wipe that smug smile off her stupid face! So what if she gets to have a better seat than me? Nicholas is just more frugal than Max! It’s the recession, so every little bit counts!”
Aren’t you acting a little jealous? Will didn’t know who she was raving about, but all his common sense was telling him to stay the heck out of this.
“Excuse me miss, but could you please try and calm down?” Will said nervously. “You’re disturbing the passengers.” Namely himself.
It was as if a switch went off in her head. Suddenly the irritated girl realized that she wasn’t quite alone and she was making quite a scene. A young couple in the center role were pointing at them, the young toddler in the seat fin front of her had popped his head over the headrest to see her embarrassing tirade… no less then five people had turned to witness the fit. Turning to look at Will, the girl’s jaw opened slightly and her entire face turned red with embarrassment.
“Um, I think it’ll be a good idea if we try to stay quiet for a while” Will tried to be casual, but he couldn’t help but feel the numerous eyes on them.
They probably taught she was his sister or something.
“Oh my god…” She buried her face in her hands and crouched low, trying to avoid their gazes. “Quiet. Quiet is good.”
Ah teenagers.
Following that, Will and his travel mate understandably attempted to make themselves scarce.
---
22nd May 20XX
---
After takeoff, Will had eaten the unsurprisingly bad airline dinner they had provided him before joining his neighbor in sleep. In fact he probably would have slept through the whole flight if an excited squeal from beside him hadn’t woken him up.
“I can see it! I can finally see it! Europe!”
Will rubbed his eyes sheepishly as he was roused into the waking world. “What now?” he murmured with annoyance.
The adolescent traveler beside him was once again making a fuss. This time she was in far better spirits and was looking out the window. The bright rays of the sun were shining into the dimmed cabin through her open window... which would be nice if the cabin wasn’t dimmed and the majority of the passengers asleep.
“Window… bright…” Will muttered as he adjusted his glasses and too his embarrassment, quickly wiped the small line of drool that was coming down his mouth. Around him, quiet murmurs of disgruntled passengers could be heard.
“Oh!” She realized, quickly pulling the window blind back down to shut the cabin back in darkness.
“Bloody hell.” Will sighed. “People are already annoyed with us from earlier.”
She began twirling her long hair with her finger and bit her lip. “Sorry.”
Knowing him, it would be a cold day in hell before he would be able to get back to sleep. Well, since his traveling companion was giggling about Europe, it likely wasn’t worth it anyway. “Well I guess I’m awake now.”
Her cheeks turned red with embarrassment. “I’m really sorry about the way I was acting earlier.”
“Rough day?” Will chuckled.
“Met an old ‘friend’. Found out she was going where I was going.” She grumbled, the distaste evident in her tone.
“It’s alright.” Will said. “It’s doubtless going to be time for breakfast soon… I would have had to wake up then at any rate.”
“Oh.” She smiled weakly. “…thank you.”
“You are welcome, Miss…”
“Miss Victoria, Victoria McDouglas.”
---
Fortunately, most of the passengers had either managed to get back to sleep, or were sleeping so soundly they hadn’t woken up in the first place.
Having nothing much to do on the plane, the in-flight movies being quite a bore, they decided to talk to each other.
Her name was Victoria McDouglas, eleven years old. She was quite tall for her age, and from their conversation, quite intelligent and well mannered as well. She had light brown hair that reached her waist and wore a conservative black dress, something which struck Will as quite odd for a girl her age.
She was with her father, whom she didn’t name, on a holiday to the Alps. As it was her first time to Europe, Victoria was very excited, so much so that when she realized Will was a goodness to true Englishman, she questioned him ever so courteously about the places he had been.
Fortunately for Will, breakfast arrived just as he had predicted, and the topic soon moved off her badgering of what his home town of Cardiff was like.
“I’ve always wanted to come to Europe.” She said when she had finished her food, setting down the knife and fork at the perfect five thirty position on her plate. “I’ve never been out of the States’ before.”
“So what are you panning to do for your holiday?” Will asked, before chomping down another helping of pancakes.
“It’s not polite to eat with your mouth full, Will.” Victoria giggled. And she had good reason to, Wilfred was shoving food into his mouth so quickly he seemed like he was inhaling his breakfast.
Contrary to popular opinion, the ordinary English person on the street was a far cry from the stereotypical English gentry and ladies of old. Will should know, as a detective he’d witnessed his share of pub brawls when the Arsenal and Liverpool fans went to war back In his academy days. The sheer number of people in a city like London meant being polite all the time would be a huge inconvenience.
“Oh err, sorry about that!” Will felt his cheeks turn red hot with embarrassment.
For shame, Wilfred Sheppard, fine example of an Englishman you are.
“It’s okay.” Victoria giggled again. “My father was planning to take me skiing. Charmonix is famous for its slopes this time of year. It’s also supposed to have breathtaking views. I’ve always wanted to go to Charmonix.” Victoria explained. “Have you ever been to Charmonix before Will?”
“Charmonix? I’m sorry but I haven’t.” Will habitually rubbed the back of his neck. What a coincidence, he was going to Charmonix as well, except for a very different reason. “Many of my colleagues at work have been there, but I’ve always been too busy to go there.
“Have you been skiing before?” Victoria tried again.
“Err, no.”
“Camera? Photography?”
Will rubbed his neck. Unless forensic photographs of very grisly crime scenes could be considered to be photography… “Um, no.”
“Oh.” Victoria deflated ever so slightly.
Will made a point in his head to get off his workaholic bum and go see the world more.
“But I’ll be going there though.” Will continued. “It’s supposed to be really nice all year around. I’m sure you will love it.”
“You’re going to Charmonix as well?” Victoria said, slightly invigorated.
“It’s a delightful coincidence isn’t it?”
“That’s right!” Victoria clapped her hands together with excitement. “So you’re planning to go skiing or mountain climbing?”
Will rubbed his neck. He couldn’t ski OR mountain climb. “More or less. After I take care of some business, I’m planning to take some time off. Skiing and the like.” Taking skiing classes more like it. Was his bum going to be sore after this trip.
“Business?”
“I’ve been invited to see this I-CARE philanthropy. It’s being run by an old friend of by brother’s and I thought I’d drop by to see the opening…”
Victoria began to study him just as his words left his mouth. Will fidgeted uneasily under her gaze. “Um, Victoria?”
“Will, what was your occupation again? I’m sure you mentioned it earlier when you were talking about Cardiff.”
“I’m a detective.” Will said. “Scotland Yard.”
“Aren’t you a bit young to be a detective?” Victoria leaned in closer to Will. Convexly, Will backed off from her. It wasn’t everyday he was being probed. Her hazel brown eyes were so close he could see his reflection in them like they were glass…
For some reason, alarm bells started going off in the back of his head. Will didn’t know why, but suddenly his intuition, his detective intuition, was telling him something was off.
“Victoria…?”
“Never mind, I guess I’m just being too hopeful.” Victoria sighed. “You might be one of the real guests anyway.”
“What?”
“Hey Will, what were you saying about Edinburgh Castle before breakfast arrived? Something about it having dungeons?”
---
“Wow, I never knew Britain could be so interesting!” Victoria giggled. “I never thought that Cardiff was such a weird place!”
“You’d be surprised at the kind of things that happen there on a daily basis.” Will continued. “I swear that place is a magnet for all kinds of trouble. I should tell you about the notorious pacifier thief a few months back. By god that was a weird one. Had a half mind to throw him in a mental facility that one.”
“Is it true that weird stuff happens in London on Christmas day?” Victoria asked.
“Only on Doctor Who…”
“Hey Dweeb!” A new voice interrupted them, “I was completely bitch’in up in business class, then I thought of little ol’ you. So I decided came back here to see how you were hanging out.”
Leaning on Will’s seat was another girl who was around the same age as Victoria. She was a striking girl, her long shoulder length black hair red highlights done in a tight ponytail with and wore a bight red jacket over a fashionable sleeveless turtleneck shirt and denim jeans.
Victoria glared at her counterpart angrily. “Iris.” She growled.
“I was expecting you to be so totally bugged out since you’re like, so poverty. Instead you’re flirting with Barney here! I'm totally grossed out.”
“Um, my name’s not Barney…” Will began.
Victoria glared daggers at her arch-nemesis. “If all you did was come back to insult me, I’m not amused.”
“What-ever.” Iris waved. “Your handler so totally threw up on one of the stewardesses earlier. Spazzed out after having too many drinks. He’s like completely stoned right now. Max is like completely sketchy about what we’re going to do since we’re so close to landing.”
“Nathan you idiot…” Victoria sighed. “Okay, I’ll take care of him when the plane lands. Happy?”
“Fer sure. Later, bitch.” Iris sauntered off, waving lazily behind her as Victoria glared venomously at her retreating back.
“Friend of yours?” Will asked curiously as he shifted in his seat to make room for her to move into the corridor.
Victoria snorted. “Hardly.”

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Who is that hot glasses wearing babe I wonder...
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sasahara17

Male

Forum Posts : 1001

Fan of : GSGs? Claes-sama and Elsa-chan. Outside that? Bloodhound Jr. and Saber

Original Characters : Wilfred Sheppard, I-CARE agent.

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Registration date : 2007-11-09

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Re: [FF] Gunslinger Girl Echoes

Post by sasahara17 on Thu 10 Apr 2008 - 5:48

---
Geneva Airport
---
Will suppressed a yawn as she stepped through the arrival gate. Now he gets sleepy. Well bugger all. Stretching his arms, Wilfred wondered where Victoria and her valley girl ‘friend’ had gone off to. After the flight had landed, she had bid him farewell before disappearing completely. He didn’t even see her at customs.
“Strange girl.” Wilfred concluded. Stifling another yawn, Wilfred decided to quickly locate his chauffeur so he could quickly get to Charmonix and get some shut eye. Geneva airport was a rather small terminal when compared to Heathrow or other high profile airports, so it was little trouble locating the person Davion had graciously sent to pick him up.
It wasn’t hard to miss the man, especially with the banner he was holding with Will’s name on it. He looked like a big thug from those action flicks Wilfred watched back in the academy. The man was built like a heavyweight boxer, and in that white polo shirt and slacks, Will suddenly realized how small he really must be.
Will cautiously approached the large man and held his hand out. “Um, would you happen to be the man Davion sent to pick me up?”
“You the new guy?” The large man asked bluntly. “You’re shorter than I thought you would be.”
“New guy?”
“Oh yeah, you’re not with us yet.” Theo admonished himself. “Names’ Theobald McReady. Call me Theo. Sorry about the way I’m dressed. A friend spilled some vodka on my suit this morning. I’ll take your bags, those spindly arms of yours look like they’d break if I touched them!”
Will didn’t doubt that one bit. “I can carry my bags on my own…”
Theo easily accosted the two duffel bags from the young detective and walked towards the car park chuckling all the while. Will ran after him. “Hey!”
“I’ll let you handle your own stuff when you put some meat on those bones.” Theo chuckled. “I’m not letting those little kids one up me again!”
“Wha-?” What kids?
“All in good time pal, all in good time.” Theo assured the younger man.
So this was the boy that Davion was so ‘excited’ about. All brains and no brawn. “The old man sure knows how to pick ‘em.”
--
“I can’t believe you messed up so badly!” Victoria said crossly at her handler as they walked out past immigration. It had been some time since the civilian passengers had disembarked, Victoria and her guardian had a slight complication in getting through immigration.
Their check in baggage, the ones with their ‘equipment’, had been picked as a random check. It’s should have been a simple matter in showing the right documents to the immigration officer, but lo and behold, Nathan had forgotten to pack them.
It had taken a call from the airport directly to the U.S. Embassy and then to Interpol to finally confirm to immigration that yes, all those Berettas were legal.
“Well, at least I have my darling Viccy to take care me as always.” Nathan teased.
“This is why I said I should be the one to pack our bags.” Victoria fumed. “We’re now very late. I hope the driver didn’t leave without us.”
“Of course he won’t.”
“This is Max and Iris we’re talking about here.” Victoria said. “They know us all too well. I wouldn’t put it past them if they got fed up waiting for us and told the driver to just leave.”
“If it comes to that, I’ll just call I-CARE and arrange another pick up.”
“You’re impossible.” Victoria sighed.
Nathan shrugged carelessly and walked ahead of her, leaving Victoria to push the trolley with all their bags loaded onto it along. How had this ass become a handler again? She’d never understand Nathan.
Wheeling the trolley along, Victoria looked about the arrival hall for anyone carrying a signboard with their names. No sign of them. Figures, Iria and Max had a long time rivaly with them, and Victoria knew they wouldn’t suffer for Nathan’s idiocy.
Her eyes drifted to the large doors of the airport. Beyond those doors, there was a whole different world before her. She smiled.
“I’m finally here…”
---
Charmonix was a small village situated in shadow of the French Alps, very close to the French-Swiss border. A quiet peaceful settlement, the village had since become one of France’s premier tourist locales, the natural beauty of the mountain being its strongest attraction.
One particular resident of the village was having a bad day.
She was just minding her own business when the inconceivable happened. Halfway between the relatively short trip between her apartment and the place of her work, her trusty Vespa scooter stopped working.
“What the…?!”
Moving over to sidewalk so as to no impede what sparse traffic might be waiting behind her scooter. Dismounting from her bike, the young woman groaned as she bent down to inspect the problem. “Damn it, I’m a hacker, not a mechanic Jim.”
Sighing, the young woman produced her cell phone from her salmon pink jacket and dialed... just as her battery died on her. Elisabeth frowned darkly.
Her Vespa never broke down. Why…?
A shiver ran down her spine.
“This can’t possibly be a good omen.”
---
“So what exactly does I-CARE do?” Will asked now that they were cursing down the highway in a black sedan.
Theo shrugged. “Institute of Child, Advocates, Rights and Education. What do you think we do?”
“It’s not the kind of outfit that you’d expect the former head of Mi-5 to associate himself with.” Will pointed out.
“Listen kid, this is serious spy stuff. I don’t k now what the boss was playing at when he openly showed himself to you, but this sort of knowledge could get you killed.” Theo lectured.
Will wanted to point out that Theo himself was being awfully cavalier about this secrecy stuff, but wisely kept his mouth shut.
Well, the secrecy part wasn’t the only thing the large man was being careless about. “Could you please slow down?” Will murmured uncomfortably as they blew past another law abiding citizen at a fast speed.
“Pah, says you boy-scout. I have a deadline to meet.” Theo said.
“At least put your seat belt on. I’m a detective you know. I’ve seen my share of road accidents…”
Theo’s phone rang. Despite being the driver, Theo casually took one hand off the wheel and answered the phone. “McReady here. Neville? What’s up?”
Will’s jaw visibly dropped. One hand on the wheel, not paying full attention to the road, speeding… recipe for disaster. Tightening his hold on his seatbelt, Wilfred prayed to god he didn’t become a statistic with this maniac at the wheel.
“I’m on my way… yeah I have the new kid. Scrawny British guy. Yes… What? Go back to the airport? What about Cortez? Wasn’t he supposed to pick them up? …Bullshit. Geez, and I just came from there… Okay. Stupid troublesome dolls… Right. See you soon too.” Placing the cell back into his breast pocket, Theo turned to look at his passenger. “I take it you’re one of the ‘ten under the speed limit’ type of drivers aren’t you?”
“Eyes on the road. Please.”
---

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Who is that hot glasses wearing babe I wonder...
avatar
sasahara17

Male

Forum Posts : 1001

Fan of : GSGs? Claes-sama and Elsa-chan. Outside that? Bloodhound Jr. and Saber

Original Characters : Wilfred Sheppard, I-CARE agent.

Comments : A walking idea powerhouse.

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Re: [FF] Gunslinger Girl Echoes

Post by sasahara17 on Thu 10 Apr 2008 - 5:48

“This place is… rather posh isn’t it?” Will said as he strode into the lavish lobby of the mansion that was I-CARE’s headquarters. He couldn’t help but feel that he’d stepped back in time.
To say the lobby was impressive was an understatement. The red carpet was literally rolled out on the stylish stairs that lay in the center on the chamber. Many paintings adorned the hall and the intricate woodwork on the walls seemed to radiate glamor and prestige. There was even a glass chandelier hung low over the stunning interior.
“Actually, we’re expecting visitors today.” Theo explained. “I-CARE’s formal inauguration is today, and lots of big names are going to show up.”
“Somebody has quite a bit of money to throw about.”
“What, you think we rolled out all this for you? Anyway, the boss wants to see you A.S.A.P.” Theo chuckled. “Someone will put your stuff in one of the guest rooms until we decide whether to stick you.”
“You seem pretty confident that I’ll take the job.” Will pointed out.
Theo grinned. “Call it a hunch. I’ve got to get back to the airport to pick up some… equipment, so in the meantime just wait here until one of my colleagues shows up to show you about.”
Willfred didn’t miss the slight discomfort that Theo had when mentioning ‘equipment’.
“Okay, I’d better get going.” Theo finished. “See ya kid.”
“Right.” Will replied as the big man left. “Just wait here, in this big empty lobby all by myself.”
Will wandered around the lobby for a while before noticing a set of very expensive looking chairs. Deciding there wasn’t much point standing around while waiting for something to happen, Will plopped himself down on one of the chairs and, seeing as he had nothing better to do, began to run through everything he’d turned up about the agency in the short time he’d known about it in his mind.
I-CARE. As the name suggested, it was an international child welfare agency dedicated to advancing the rights of impoverished, exploited and abused children in countries around the globe. Created with the support of the United Nations, numerous and was primarily funded by numerous first world countries and several notable multinational pharmaceutical and biotech companies. Headed by renowned philanthropist Dr. Richard Greene, I-CARE looked to be as innocent as the Red Cross. Davion’s name wasn’t listed on their staff list. Still…
Will didn’t know why he smelt something off about this place, Davion’s involvement not withstanding. Perhaps, like Theo, he had a hunch.
“Excuse me.”
Will was shaken out of his thoughts by a girl who looked to be about fourteen. Will did a double take. She was dressed in a long grey trench coat over a formal work suit. Her darkened skin and blond hair in twin pigtails made him uncertain of her decent.
“You must be Wilfred Sheppard right?” The girl greeted. “I’m Triela Hartman.”
“One of the children here?” Will asked as he shook her hand.
She frowned slightly. “I’m older than I look.” Triela quickly regained her warm smile and continued. “I was asked by one Jonathan Davion to come ‘fetch’ you.”
It was then Will noticed her discomfort, a slight hesitation and aversion at something. Perhaps it was his clothes?
“Lead on.” Will jumped to his feet.
Triela led him down a pretty straight forward jaunt through the corridors of the massive four story mansion that was the I-CARE headquarters. It was a pretty straightforward building, all based in one large building with a north and south wings that contained most of the offices and dorms annexing the central building.
Once out of the lobby, Will could easily see the preparations for the grand opening in full swing. People, presumably servants from their attire, were rushing about frantically making last minute preparations.
His guide was silent the entire time. Feeling rather awkward Will tried to start a conversation.
“You live here?” Will asked her.
“I work here.” Triela answered stiffly.
Will blinked. “I thought I-CARE opposed child labor in all forms.”
“Did you get that from the brochure?” Triela snorted. She stopped outside a set of doors that led into the south wing of the compound. A sign over the door stated ‘Authorized Personnel Only’ in about six different languages. Triela swiped a card, presumably hers, on the nearby card reader and promptly opened the door. “This way please.”
“Authorized personnel? You?”
“Yes, me.” Triela said with a little pride. “This way please.”
--
“So how come this place has so many security doors?” Will asked curiously.
“… I’m not even going to answer that.” Triela said as she swiped her access card through another card reader.
“How much security does this place need?” Wilfred said. “It’s a philanthropy right?”
Triela rolled her eyes before walking up to the eye reader to open the nextsecurity door.
--
“Is this what I think it is?” Will pointed at the elevator door that had suddenly opened where a previously inconspicuous wall had been.
“Of course it isn’t a secret elevator.” Triela said sarcastically. “It’s our extremely big and expensive garbage chute that doubles as a secret elevator.”
“Right…”
--
“And now an underground facility. I guess this means I-CARE isn’t an ordinary child welfare agency.” Will surmised aloud.
Beside him, Triela resisted the urge to pound her head against the side of the corridor. She settled on massaging her temples. “If this is what Ferro used to do on a daily basis, no wonder she’s so uptight…”
--
“He’s in here.” Triela sighed with relief as they stopped outside all metal door that reminded Will of an interviewing room for prospective employees.
“That was a very fancy tour you gave me Miss.” Will stated.
“We don’t normally have it here, but the south wing is currently undergoing… renovations, so in you go.” Triela opened the door. “All further questions and quires please direct it to my boss.”
Will walked into the room. Behind him, Triela let out a relieved sigh and closed the door. How did Ferro do all this so often?
The room itself was fairly nondescript, resembling a standard office Will would expect to find in a regular workplace, save there were no windows.
And seated at the table was Jonathan L. Davion himself. “Hello Wilfred. Please take a seat.” Davion motioned to one of the fold up chairs across from him.
“I apologize for having to meet you here instead of my usual office.” Davion explained as Wilfred cautiously seated himself across from the daunting man. “For the duration for the official opening of I-CARE, I cannot afford to be seen. Especially with all the guests that are arriving. Bad form you know, with all the work that we put into keeping up appearances and all.”
“So you do work with I-CARE after all.” Will said, more for himself than anything else.
Davion leaned forward in his seat until his elbows rested on the desk and his fingers, locked together in a triangle obscured his mouth. The round spectacles the old man wore glinted dangerously in the light.
Willfred shivered. Where had he seen this before?
“Let’s get down to business Mr. Sheppard. I’m sure you already know who I am. I’m sure Triela showed you enough of our facilities to tell you we are indeed a secret organization.”
“Who do you work for?” Wilfred asked, then quickly shut his mouth. Did he just interrupt a spy master in the middle of a monologue?
“I’m getting to that.” Davion said with slight amusement. “And to that answer, our organization is affiliated with Interpol, with funding from the several of its member counties. Now as I was saying, we are a secret service founded to combat a certain arms trade. A new type of weapon has flooded the underground arms market recently and it is I-CARE’s job to control if not eliminate it.”
“Aren’t you revealing a little too much?” Wilfred warily pointed out. Will needed to know if the option to decline did not include leaving the building in a sealed body bag.
Davion smiled knowingly behind his hands. “Actually Mr. Sheppard, I haven’t even begun to tell you anything yet. Now…” Davion lowered his head so the glare form his glasses disappeared. His eyes locked onto Will’s.
“This is where I hand you the two pills. I want you to join us Mr. Sheppard. However, you are a good man and you are still a British national. I can only tell you more if I can join us.”
“And what would happen if I refuse?”
“You can leave, and you will never hear from us again.” Davion stated. “Except of course, if you try and use any of the very limited knowledge you have gained here to carry out your own investigation, at which you will be paid a visit by my counterpart in the North wing.” Will could have sworn Davion smirked. “He will be… less accommodating, than myself.”
“Bugger. I get it.” Willfred sighed. All this cloak and dagger stuff was tiresome. “Well, this is all well and good, but I just came here to ask you some questions…”
“About Richard?”
Willfred froze.
“I-CARE’s mission, our mission, actually is a consequence of what happened in the ‘Chelsea Power Station’ eight years ago.” Davion stated. Will had to visibly make and effort to stop his fists from shaking. Whether they were shaking in surprise in anger, Will could not tell. “So, unless you want the truth about your brother’s last mission, I’d take the red pill if I were you.”
Will lowered his eyes and bit his lip. Damn him! It was more effective than a gun to his head, Davion had him under duress!
“Of course, there are the other benefits of an additional salary, free room and board…” Davion continued as if rubbing it in.
“That’s pretty low of you, you know that?” Will whispered.
“Like I said…” Davion removed his hands. The coldest most ruthless smile Will had ever seen came into full view. “I really want your services.”
Wilfred Sheppard felt like screaming. But what else could he do? If he wanted to get the answers he had searched for these last eight years…
“Fine you sodding bastard. I’ll take your bloody red pill.”

---

A/N God I'm sleepy. I'll post a proper A/N some other time.

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Re: [FF] Gunslinger Girl Echoes

Post by Nachtsider on Thu 10 Apr 2008 - 7:57

I-CARE sounds familiar.

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Re: [FF] Gunslinger Girl Echoes

Post by Wileama on Thu 10 Apr 2008 - 9:47

I believe we toss around various names in one of the threads. I think it was idea and concept, but don't quote me. Anyway I-CARE was the one that got used. As you will see it is something of a sick joke, among other things. The name always brings a smile to my face.

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Re: [FF] Gunslinger Girl Echoes

Post by Nachtsider on Thu 10 Apr 2008 - 11:51

Thing is, Wil, I-CARE is the name of a real educational institution - one aimed at intensive language skills - that has branches where Sasahara and I hail from. I underwent its program during my early years, and was wondering if Sasahara had experienced the same.

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Re: [FF] Gunslinger Girl Echoes

Post by ElfenMagix on Thu 10 Apr 2008 - 17:26

Is this posted on Fanfiction or just here?
Sounds good.

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Re: [FF] Gunslinger Girl Echoes

Post by Nachtsider on Thu 10 Apr 2008 - 17:27

Sasahara's already published it at Fanfiction, Elfen. And yes - it is good.

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Re: [FF] Gunslinger Girl Echoes

Post by ElfenMagix on Thu 10 Apr 2008 - 17:34

Thanx.
I'll get to it when personal problem get out of the way.

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Re: [FF] Gunslinger Girl Echoes

Post by Wileama on Thu 10 Apr 2008 - 20:14

I did not know I-CARE was a real organization. Considering the name though I'm not that surprised that it's taken though. Anyway I'm not the most impartial when it comes to this story, but yes I'm really looking forward to the next chapter.

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Re: [FF] Gunslinger Girl Echoes

Post by sasahara17 on Thu 10 Apr 2008 - 21:05

An orginisation named I-CARE really exists?! Uh Oh. Better fix my disclaimer and fast!

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Re: [FF] Gunslinger Girl Echoes

Post by Wileama on Thu 10 Apr 2008 - 21:46

There are actually quite a few different I-CARE organizations, just try googling it. I got 12,900,000 hits.

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Re: [FF] Gunslinger Girl Echoes

Post by sasahara17 on Sat 12 Apr 2008 - 3:21

Wileama wrote:There are actually quite a few different I-CARE organizations, just try googling it. I got 12,900,000 hits.
Ah, so there are.

Finally, the Proper A/N;

I'll be posting here and on FF.net. this not only allows the forum goers to get the half completed chapters when i deem them ready to be released, but It also allows me to ask mt readerbase for help. Becuase I have little experience with most things (firearms for instance) I many suddenly pop up at odd times to ask seemingly wierd and nonsensical questions atht actually have great relevance to the plot.

Can anyone tell me which sidearm, the Springfield Armory XD or the Smith and Wesson SW99, will be more 'cooler' to see in action? I'm putting it to a vote since I just can't decide which one to do with.

I have the entire story mapped out from beginning to end... I hope. Still, suggestions are welcome (ask Wil, several of his suggestions have played a large role in shaping this thing into what it is today).

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Re: [FF] Gunslinger Girl Echoes

Post by sasahara17 on Thu 17 Apr 2008 - 17:06

http://www.fanfiction.net/s/4202063/1/Handsome_Men_Lost_Episode_DaiKrauser

sasahara17 wrote:I challenge anyone who reads this to confidently proclaim that (s)he
can identify every single anime, game and pop culture reference I’ve
put into this.
Respond to challenge on this thread (too lazy to create a new one). You won't believe the number of times I've missed a refrence in my own piece of work when I was counting them all. Right now I put the figure at about 60 individual refrences.

And in other news, Echoes Chapter2 Part 1 is off for proof-reading along with Marked Chapter 5. Stay tuned.

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Re: [FF] Gunslinger Girl Echoes

Post by sasahara17 on Sat 19 Apr 2008 - 19:34



---

Chapter_02

---



Cops and Robbers II

---

“You bastard!” Will’s fists pounded the table in front of him. “You fucking bastard!”

“If it wasn’t for the fact half my employees reacted this way when they learned the truth, I’d dock your pay and have you taken out to our garden shed.” Davion said with slight amusement. “Pity, a young man like you would make good fertilizer for our new garden.”

“Those are children!”

“Now you see why I said my counterpart from the North Wing make you disappear?”

Will seethed. “How can you do this to children? Are you inhuman?”

“It’s not as if we have much of a choice. Tea?” Davion offered a small teapot to Will who angrily refused. Had anyone other than them being present, it was quite surprising at how the old man calmly regarded his newest subordinate. Filling a cup for himself, the old man continued. “The illegal arms trade we are dealing with ARE those girls. The only way we can properly handle this on an even footing is to fight them on their own terms.”

Will bared his teeth angrily. “You still haven’t told me what my brother has to do with any of this.”

Davion snorted. “Did you seriously think I’d tell you straight after you said yes?”

“Of course not.” Will shot back. “But I am wondering how any of this relates to my brother’s last mission, one that you sent him on!”

“Mr. Sheppard,” Davion said settling his teacup down. “I think right now, before anything else, you need to calm down. Just look at yourself.”

Will paused. Right now, he was far from composed. He was stark raving mad! While it was understandable given the enormity of had just been revealed to him, Will could also see how he wasn’t the best conversationalist right now.

“But…”

“I’m happy you accepted my offer, but I’d like to talk with you after you get that head of yours back in order and not a moment sooner.” Davion said. “I’ll send for Triela.”

Will slowly got back into his chair. Suddenly he felt so drained. “Is she…”

“She’s the most senior cyborg operative we have, so much so she’s not even on the active roster anymore.” Davion said in a manner of fact tone. “Why not have a nap in one of our guest rooms? I know jetlag can be a bit of a bother. You ought to sleep it off while I figure out where to put you.” Davion sipped some tea from his cup. “Are you sure you don't want some tea?”

---

---

“A warm welcome to all our assembled staff. I know the past few weeks have been trying…”

The voice in the background barely registered in her mind.

To Victoria, it seemed she had barely even put her luggage into her new dormitory before she was ushered into the grand hall. She was feeling tired after a long plane trip, and wanted nothing more to take the rest of the day off to regain her footing.

However, I-CARE’s ‘opening ceremony’ in the evening was something she and all her new comrades were absolutely required to attend.

Although the ‘formal’ ball would be held above ground in the central building’s great hall, the actual opening ceremony, where the cyborgs and their handlers would be introduced to the staff of I-CARE would be held in one of the hastily converted training chamber in the underground facility.

This was where she was now, backstage, waiting for Davion to finish his inauguration speech and introducing the centerpieces of the organization, the cyborg teams. Victoria looked to her right and left, aside from Iris and Max, she did not recognize any of the other girls and handlers.

While some of the other girls shifted nervously and were smoothing out their dresses or straightening their ties, Victoria merely regarded the entire situation with a sort of calm.

“So, the Handsome Men only sent two.” She said quietly to herself.

“Well, the higher ups were stingy. Can’t blame them for not wanting to let go of a million dollar investment.” Nicholas said behind her. Looking over her shoulder, she noted his tie was cooked.

Giving a sigh she reached over and straightened it for him. “This is our first impression on our new colleagues. Please don’t embarrass us.”

“Yes mother.” His childish comment sent a small wave of giggles among other assembled eight girls with her, and in particular Iris had to clam a hand over her mouth to avoid erupting into full blown laughter. Victoria shook her head sorrowfully.

“…and so, I am very proud to introduce to you the ten cyborg teams of I-CARE…”

Victoria did a quick head count. There were nine cyborg teams. Why did he say ten?

“Agent Hartmann, please show the young ladies and their guardians onto the stage.”

Victoria did a double take. Did Davion just say, Hartmann?

As in THE Triela Hartmann?

The door to the room opened, and the legendary cyborg stepped into full view of all the assembled cyborg teams. Several awed and excited gasps could be heard around the room, and two girls who seemed to be familiar with each other began talking excitedly together in Russian. Even the handler seemed surprised.

Victoria could see Iris’ breath catch in her throat.

“Okay girls, that’s our cue.” Triela said.

---

It seemed the whole world was watching them when they filed onto the stage. Lined in a row behind the podium the girls stood gracefully, their handlers standing behind them. It felt like a school lineup.

“I’m sure you are all familiar with Agent Victor Hartmann and Agent Triela Hartmann.” Davion continued his speech from the podium. The oldest cyborg team seemed to inflate with pride as he said this. “No doubt you are familiar with them in their efforts in helping us establish ourselves as a proper organization. However today I am honored to introduce the other cyborg teams that will be working with us.”

Victoria’s eyes quietly swept the crowd, taking note of every face among them. She felt a sigh of relief when she didn’t see the man she met on the plane among the audience. He seemed too kind to be working in a place like this.

“Oh no.” Nicholas whispered from behind her.

“What is it now?” She whispered back.

“Nature calls.”

“What?”

“I think it was that mink I drank on the plane. Mind if you cover for me while I just step ou-”

“No.” It took and immense amount of self control on her part NOT to belt her handler there and then. How irresponsible could her idiot handler get? “Can you hold it in?”

“I think so…”

“Then shut up.”

“…and so with the arrival of the final component of the Institute of Cyborg Arms, Regulation and Extermination, I formally deem I-CARE to be fully operational.” Davion concluded.

There was a slow silence at first, until someone started clapping. That eventually picked up speed until a thunderous applause erupted through the assembly.

Victoria quickly covered up her annoyance at her incorrigible handler with the brightest smile she could muster. Although the applause was loud, she could see the reservations behind some of those eyes. The young girl had no doubt that her troubles were only beginning.

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Re: [FF] Gunslinger Girl Echoes

Post by sasahara17 on Sat 19 Apr 2008 - 19:37

---

23rd March 20XX

---

The first thing he noted when his consciousness returned to him was that his head was throbbing.

“Bloody hell.” Will swore, “What happened last night?”

Taking note of his surroundings, he was relived to note he was fully clothed, even if he was in the rumpled clothes he had been wearing since his plane trip. He was lying on a bed in a small sparsely furnished room. There were several large empty bottles of wine lying scattered around on the floor. Looking around, Will’s mind slowly came back into focus.

Oh yeah. After he met Davion, Will went straight up to the guest room and got himself completely sloshed.

But who could blame him? The young detective palmed his face as his mind wandered back onto the information that had turned his world upside down. It was insane. Either this was the most elaborate practical joke he’d ever encountered, or this world was really twisted.

“Cybernetically enhanced assassins in the form of children…” Will’s fists tightened. “Damn, I wish it were just a dream.”

Cyborg assassins. It was the stuff of science fiction. Davion had said for years, children had been taken and modified to inhuman assassins by government’s world wide, including their own. When Will heard this, he’d asked Davion to repeat himself.

As if that wasn’t enough, he went on to say that the WTO conference had been attacked by cyborgs, not originating from any of the known government agencies that employed ‘extra ordinary junior operatives. It was only the intervention by something called the Handsome Men that had managed to mitigate the slaughter and apprehend the mystery gunman.

It was discovered not too long ago, that there was an underground arms trade of juvenile killing machines, sold on the black market to any willing buyer. Up until the WTO attacks, it was thought the existing cyborg agencies were keeping a good handler on the problem. However, the WTO attacks changed all that. With little else on this mysterious organization and the level of illegal cyborg usage on the rise, I-CARE was founded to investigate the matter.

It was the stuff of fantasy.

“This is so far-fetched.” Will groaned. “Look at myself. I’m having a hangover and mulling over all kinds of fanciful bullshit.”

Will looked around. There were bottles of alcohol all over the room. Perhaps it was all an alcohol induced dream? This did look like a hotel room, and he did drink quite a lot of booze…

“Mr. Sheppard? Are you awake?” A voice called from the other side of the wooden door to the room.

Triela.

“Shit…”

Welcome to reality Will Sheppard.

---

“Holy… what the hell did you do to yourself?” Triela exclaimed as she carefully stepped around the mess he’d created. “You stink of booze!”

“What are you doing here?” Will asked exhaustedly as he righted himself into a sitting position. He was far from presentable, he looked like crap and his clothes were so rumpled right now.

“Davion sent me to give you a tour of our facilities while finalizing your transfer today.” Triela explained. “We’ve had a whole new influx of personnel yesterday, and they’re being briefed…”

“Personnel?” Will asked curiously.

“The cyborgs and their handlers. The ball yesterday was partially for their benefit as well.” Triela shrugged. “It was a co-incidence that you arrived when they did.”

It was then Will remembered that this girl in front of him, just over half his age, was one of those killing machines as well. Observing her quietly, Will honestly could not see anything different about her, save for the way she was dressed.

“Anyway, my job is to get you familiar with our surroundings.” She looked at him oddly and her adverted her nose. “I think our first stop is the showers. You smell horrible.”

Will groaned.

---

Will, newly showered, adjusted the tie on the very nice grey suit he’d been provided. He’d never worn a suit this nice before. He checked the label on the suit for future reference. M and S? Guess they really have raised their game recently.

“You look smart.” Triela commented as Will stepped out of the men’s changing room.

“Err… thanks.”

“Anyway, we have quite a bit to cover today.” Triela said. “I’m sure you’re excited about your new workplace. Since it’s about time for breakfast, how about we hit the cafeteria? I’m starving.”

Triela began walking down the hallway, Will closely following beside her. From were he was standing, she didn’t look any different from a regular preteen girl.

He cleared his throat. “Pardon me asking, but are you really…”

Triela sighed. “Does everybody have to ask me that?”

Will rubbed the back of his neck with embarrassment. “Sorry.”

“It’s okay.” Triela said resignedly. “Up until yesterday I was the only cyborg in the building. Give a good guess how may people had pestered me about that little detail.”

“So you are one?”

“YES.” She said with finality.

“Can you prove it?”

“Okay. Give me a knife.” Triela stopped in her tracks and began to roll up the sleeve of her right arm, flexing her fingers all the while.

Will looked confused. “Why?”

“You ever seen Terminator Two? Remember the scene where Arnie shows of his hand to… ah, so you HAVE seen it.” Triela grinned evilly as Will paled and began waving his hands frantically. “So? You really want to see?”

It took three minutes for Will to talk Triela out of that idea, and a further two for him to comprehend she was pulling his leg the whole time. In the end, she simply took him to the training room where she put a dent in a three inch thick metal plate with her bare fists.

It spooked Will about how strong she was, but it sure beat her ripping the skin off her forearm.

---

“Okay, so now I can accept you’re a cyborg. Don’t you have, well, better things to do?” Will asked over breakfast. “I mean, you are a… cyborg right?” The word ‘cyborg’ rolled off his tongue awkwardly. It was rather difficult to see this girl as an unstoppable killing machine, even if she could punch through tank armor.

“Care to elaborate.” Triela asked, practically inhaling a triple helping of pancakes and honey.

“I mean you’re supposed to be a superhuman assassin right?” Will said. “How come you’re showing me around instead of doing other things?”

“I haven’t been on the active roster for two years.” Triela revealed.

“Huh?”

“Long story. Anyway, I’m ‘retired’ now, so these day’s I’m mostly used as a trainer to the newer girls and as cheap muscle.”

“And so you’re showing me around?”

“It was either that or help put ten kids into their dorm rooms.” Triela smirked taking a silver coin out of her pocket. “Victor and I did a toss up. Honestly, this is the easier job…”

“Victor?”

“Victor Hartmann, my handler.” Triela answered. “You’ll find out what a handler is later, but in a word he’s like my partner.” She chuckled twirling a silver coin in between her fingers. “He’s probably having his hands full right now.”

Coin toss indeed, the sucker.

---

Victor’s self esteem was at an all time low.

“No, no, no, Mr. Hartmann! Fluffles must always sit on a shelf higher than Cuddles!” the young girl below him said. Giving a resigned sigh, the German man removed the fluffy pink rabbit and placed it on the shelf above the blue stuffed bear. If it wasn’t for the fact she was so short…

“Hey, Hartmann!” A man called from the room across the hall. “We can’t seem to assemble this double bed! You have experience with things from IKEA right?”

“I’ll be right there.” The man once known as Hillshire felt the distinct urge to pound his head into a wall. Heck why’d he even put it up to a toss anyway?

Oh right, this was Triela he was talking about.

Now did he think about it, she might have used that trick coin she got off Bianchi…

A loud crash from the other room.

“Oh shit! The bed collapsed!”

“No swearing in front of the kids Theo!”

He was beginning to have second thoughts about his ticket back into Interpol. Maybe he should have stuck with the SWA.


Last edited by sasahara17 on Sun 20 Apr 2008 - 1:29; edited 1 time in total

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Re: [FF] Gunslinger Girl Echoes

Post by sasahara17 on Sat 19 Apr 2008 - 19:38

---

And after breakfast, Triela gave Will a full tour of the I-CARE building.

Situated slightly away from the main hot spots of Charmonix, the I-CARE building was a refurbished European mansion in the outskirts of the small town. Four stories tall, it was an imposing building with a grand interior filled with luxurious antiques from a bygone era.

Once owned by a famous French noble, the grand mansion had since been ‘donated’ by its last owner, a pharmaceutical tycoon, to the United Nations for use as the offices of a philanthropy. While the grand lobby remained unchanged, many of the guest rooms and master bedrooms had been converted into offices. Even the master bedroom had been converted into a boardroom.

Only the entire north wing of the building were used by I-CARE’s Intel department. Their main jobs were to put on a good showing of being a respectable philanthropy and handle all the public relations and press outbreaks the operations division might have.

The south wing was home to the operations division.

Top floor offices were used by the highest ranked personnel in I-CARE. The second floor, just below that, was used as a dormitory for the cyborg operatives and a few remaining guest rooms for staff members who decided to stay overnight. This was possibly meant to keep them away from prying eyes. Finally the first floor and ground floor contained the offices to the ordinary staff members and agents.

One final new installment to the lavish mansion was the conception of a new level to the building, an underground facility nearly thirty feet underground, accessible only by elevator. Hidden underground, all the aspects that absolutely needed to be concealed were located there, including the sizable armory and cyborg facilities and training grounds.

Despite all this, I-CARE was still an untested force. Although the entire agency had been assembled in record time, it was apparent that its handpicked staff had a long rocky road ahead of them, as both professionals and as humans struggling with their very ideals and morals.

---

“… and this is where you’re going to be likely to work.” Triela announced stopping outside a set of large double doors which read, ‘South Wing – Support Team Offices’. Walking though those doors, Will was greeted by the right of a fairly standard investigative team workplace.

There were plenty of wooden desks and computers, a pin up board full of notices and photographs. There were two doors on the east and west walls each, presumably to the offices of the higher ranked staff.

Strangely enough, the entire area was completely empty.

“Most of the staff have the day off, They’ve been working around the clock to get this place set up. Tomorrow is when work really starts.” Triela explained. “We did put I-CARE together in three weeks. I think we all deserve it.”

Will picked up one of the name plaque lying on one of the occupied desks. It read ‘Erickson Fettel, Support Team 1’.

“A Support Team?” Will asked as he set the name plaque down.

“You’ll be working as one of them. Probably the first one.” Triela confirmed.

Nodding Will look one last glance around the room before signaling Triela he was done and turning to leave.

“Cafeteria, Medial room, Davion’s office…” Triela said as she listed off the places she had shown him on her fingers.

“So is that everything?” Will asked from beside her.

“Actually, we have one last stop before I hand you back to Theo who’ll take you to your new residence.”

“Where to?”

“Well, we’re assassins right?” Triela grinned. “Can’t do much blacks ops stuff without a piece.”

---

The armory was one of the underground facilities, and what a marvel it was.

“Is this really the armory?” Will said in awe. While there were indeed weapon racks and shelves full of ammunition just like he’d expected, there were work benches and pin up boards full of weapons blueprints everywhere. There were at least six people scurrying about, all busy with with whatever they were up to.

“Well, its part armory parts research department.” Triela explained. “Apparently Davion struck up some deal with Heckler and Koch, and they sent an entire team here to help create a weapon that can kill a cyborg.”

Will blinked. “Isn’t that… kind of morbid? Especially considering you’re one as well?”

“Nope.” Triela replied. “Heck, it’s actually quite flattering that they think so highly of us that an entire firearms team has to come down here… that’s her. Juliet! Over here!” She waved at a woman in a set jumpsuit tinkering with a disassembled rifle.

“Who’s this?” Juliet asked curiously as she strode up to them. She was a slightly plump woman with curly hair that reached to her ears. Her freckled face seemed was almost always framed with a jolly grin.

“He’s St-1’s new guy.” Triela introduced him. “Wilfred Sheppard. He was with Scotland yard. Will, this is Juliet Montague, our master of arms.”

“Pleasure.” Will shook her hand.

“Please just call me ‘Master Guns’. I assume you’re here for your cannon?” Juliet laughed.

“Um, right.”

“Here’s your service pistol.” Juliet walked over to one of the gun racks and handed him a Heckler and Koch USP. “USP45CT. We don’t have much data to go by on the enemy right now. So until we get a better picture we’ll just go with that.” She laughed heartily, noting down the serial number of the gun on a small writing pad, presumably for future reference.

“We also have the modular XM-80 modular weapons system.” Juliet dragged him over to one of the weapons racks to show him the said weapon. “It’s a completely versatile weapon capable to tackling all manner of situations, because of its complete modularity! Six different rifle lengths! Three different calibers! Two adjustable scopes! A few moments you can swap a few parts and it can tackle a whole new set of problems! It’s the perfect weapons system!”

“Er…” Wilfred was suddenly struck with a revelation; this woman was crazy.

“Juliet Montague?” Will wondered aloud. “Wait, you worked for Heckler and Koch right?”

Juliet’s smile increased. “Why yes! In fact, I still am. I-CARE approached us for help in their endeavors, and we were all too happy to supply a team! In fact I designed the XM-80!” She patted his shoulder happily.

“If you want any modifications to your boomsticks, don’t be afraid to come running to me okay?”

Triela clapped her hands happily, her eyes sparking with recognition. “Hey I’ve finally got it! Isn’t this the same team that lost that competition that the American Army held for a replacement for the M16? The one between the FN-SCAR and the HK XM-”

Suddenly, Juliet’s grip on Will’s shoulder became vice like. Her smile locked into place, and the room temperature grew eerily cold. Suddenly all eyes in the room were on the Italian woman, who was now radiating malice and unfathomable anger like a beacon of death.

“Oh fuck me blind, some idiot mentioned the trials to the boss.” One of the aides quivered.

“Um, Juliet?” Will said nervously. “You’re hurting my shoulder. Please let go.”

“We. Did. NOT. Lose.” Juliet said in a frosty but polite voice.

Many who could, took a step back in fear. Those that could flee, did.

“Hey, um, it was a close one! You guys were this close to beating FN, you really were. It was just that their gun ended up being a little better than yours when the points tallied…” Triela honestly tried to diffuse the malevolent aura sweeping the armory, she really did.

“That horrible monstrosity of a gun is NOT better than MY modular weapons system.” Juliet said in a very pleasant tone. The kind of tone that is used when a housewife armed with a big nasty frying pan cheerfully informs her husband she knows of the ‘other woman’.

In a word, she was pissed.

Triela gave Will a reassuring pat on the shoulder… “Sorry Will, I’ll take care of your funeral arrangements.” …before bolting like a bat out of hell.

“No wait…!”

---

“I guess that explains why HK was so willing to send one of their crack weapons designers down here.” Will sighed, nursing an icepack over his head. “Guess the taste of defeat really stung.”

“This as an opportunity to fine tune her gun for round two.” Triela observed. “Anything that can take one of us down would sweep the competition easily.”

“How’d you know about the competition anyway?” Will asked. “I’d never heard about it until you brought it up.”

Triela stiffened. “I… used to have a friend that was a fan.”

“A friend?” Will asked curiously.

He didn’t miss the haunted look cross her eyes. The sorrow and grief in the eyes of one so young made Will instantly regret asking that question. “It’s none of your business.”

“I’m sorry.” Will whispered. She had been so friendly and helpful through out the entire day. Will realized he must have touched something really sensitive. What had she seen to gain eyes like that?

---

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Re: [FF] Gunslinger Girl Echoes

Post by sasahara17 on Sat 19 Apr 2008 - 19:40

The rouge mansion was a small apartment block just minutes aware from the Charmonix’s town centre. Only a few stories high, the building painted pink, stood out among the less flamboyant homes around it.

“You stuff was delivered here yesterday.” Theo said as Will stepped out of the passenger side door. “Your new place is the one on the top floor. And you’ll be needing this to get in…” the American tossed Will a set of keys, which the latter fumbled and dropped into the ground.

“Thank you for driving me.” Will said after scooping up the fallen keys from the ground.

Theo smirked as he stetted back into the drivers seat and placed his hands on the wheel. “Hey, don’t thank me. You’ll be rooming with two people up there. You’re one lucky bastard, you know that?”

“Huh?” Will tilted his head in confusion.

“Later new guy!” Theo hit the pedal, and with a screech of tires and one cloud of smoke the black sedan took off at a speed that was definitely illegal, leaving a coughing Will in his wake.

---

Wilfred whistled as he stepped into his new home. For a flat in Charmonix, the place was sure impressive. But first, he had to answer nature’s call.

Walking past the kitchen and living room, he noted a door in the passage between the master bedroom and the guest room. Seeing as nobody else seemed to be in…

“Guess this must be the loo…”

Will opened the door and…

Complete silence.

Wilfred’s belt was undone, one hand on his pants the other hand still on the door handle. In front of him a beautiful girl in her late teens, naked save for the ‘Lord of the Rings’ towel she had wrapped around her body. Both had frozen in their tracks when they had seen the other. Two shocked brown eyes stared onto an equally amazed blue and green one.

In his defense, the redhead was supposed to go out and fix the broken lock on the bathroom door that day, but as fate would have it.

Silence. Until…

As with any warm blooded male, Will’s eyes went straight to her… respectable… chest.

What happened was a natural reaction to that sequence of events.

“AIEEEEE!”

“OH BLOODY HELL! SORRY!”

A resounding slap echoed through that particular neighborhood in Chamonix as the offended female gave the young man what was coming to him. It was a very, very hard slap.

It was the first time Will had ever walked in on someone in the bath before, much less the first time Will had ever walked in on a girl almost completely naked.

And for the life of him as he fled out of the bathroom, chased by flying bathroom amenities, a red handprint beginning to show on the side of his face, Will couldn’t help but think…

…that was one big chest.

---

---

Way to start your tenure here, Mr. Sheppard.

---

---

---

A/N

I fond an internet connection! Yays for me. Unfortunately it’s a dial up, and everything on this forum is taking forever to load.

This is the first part of Chapter 2. FYI It (and Marked 5) will not go onto FF.net until Ive gotten a better internet connection since this is driving me up the wall.

I’m never taking my ADSL for granted ever again.

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Re: [FF] Gunslinger Girl Echoes

Post by Nachtsider on Sat 19 Apr 2008 - 23:30

Nice going thus far. The IKEA scene with Hilshire was comic gold, and I'm really interested to know what could have possibly touched a nerve in Triela. My only problem was with the last part about the bathroom. It's a little too fanservice-ish for my taste, plus it smacks of the near-obligatory 'protagonist-walks-in-on-an-attractive-seminude-woman-and-gets-a-slap' scene that abounds in so many anime and manga series.

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Re: [FF] Gunslinger Girl Echoes

Post by sasahara17 on Wed 23 Apr 2008 - 22:07

Thanks for the feedback Nacht. I'll work on cutting down anime cliche more in the near future.

The comedy part will stay around for a bit longer, since all I'm doing now is introducing the cast. Once St-1 begins their first operation thing expect things to start moving.

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Re: [FF] Gunslinger Girl Echoes

Post by sasahara17 on Fri 30 May 2008 - 2:50

Just noticed this was under the Plot Bunnies Section. It's not so much a Plot Bunny as it is an actual Fic, so I'm kicking this thing back to where it was back in the Fanart/Fanfic forum.

EDIT - Forgot to ask, anybody intrested in drawing facial portraits of OCs?

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Re: [FF] Gunslinger Girl Echoes

Post by Guest on Sun 1 Jun 2008 - 23:49

Now I know where "The Fox" will get his cold bloodedness from.

I wonder will we see how the traits that currently effect the Steiner start in this story sence you have a character with the Steiner Family name.

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Re: [FF] Gunslinger Girl Echoes

Post by sasahara17 on Mon 2 Jun 2008 - 2:47

Paladin wrote:Now I know where "The Fox" will get his cold bloodedness from.

I wonder will we see how the traits that currently effect the Steiner start in this story sence you have a character with the Steiner Family name.
Errr.. what? Would you please re-clarify this statement?

...is there a typo some where?

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Re: [FF] Gunslinger Girl Echoes

Post by Wileama on Mon 2 Jun 2008 - 3:13

I was just about to ask the same question...

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Re: [FF] Gunslinger Girl Echoes

Post by sasahara17 on Mon 2 Jun 2008 - 3:39

Well, I'm guessing Paladin's seen a Battletech reference in there... somewhere...

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Re: [FF] Gunslinger Girl Echoes

Post by Guest on Tue 3 Jun 2008 - 0:29

sasahara17 wrote:
Paladin wrote:Now I know where "The Fox" will get his cold bloodedness from.

I wonder will we see how the traits that currently effect the Steiner start in this story sence you have a character with the Steiner Family name.
Errr.. what? Would you please re-clarify this statement?

...is there a typo some where?

In one word.

Battletech.

I was refering to how Davion was acting when we first meet him.

The "Fox" I was refering too was Hanse "The Fox" Davion Late First Prince of the Federated Suns (Later through marrage the Federated Commonwealth) one faction of the BT universe the Steiner's are the leaders of the Lyran Alliance formally the Lyran Commonwealth (also a faction) currently the traits of the Steiner family is stab each other in the back in order to get the throne. After Hanse's death his wife "Archon" Melissa Steiner was in charge but was later assasinated by her cousin who was later assasinated by melissa's son Archon Prince Victor Steiner-Davion who deposed by his sister Katherine who was orcestrateing the whole plot behinde the scenes.

In short take the Gunslinger Girl's Italy & put it in outer space & give each of the girls a giant robot between weighing somewhere between 50 to 100 tons with enough firepower to wipe a modern armored division completely off the face of the Earth then you will have Battletech.

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Re: [FF] Gunslinger Girl Echoes

Post by Wileama on Tue 3 Jun 2008 - 10:04

I know what battletech is, but I don't know anything of the back story. As such the comment seems, even now, super random...

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Re: [FF] Gunslinger Girl Echoes

Post by LoC978 on Tue 3 Jun 2008 - 14:26

yeah... much like Wil, I know a little about Battletech (stuff like "The Timberwolf is a 75 ton mech and looks really cool... and I piloted a lot of 'em in the Mechwarrior games")
... that being said... talking about the backstory of the Battletech universe is probably equivalent to speaking Ancient Greek to most of the people on this board, myself included.

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Re: [FF] Gunslinger Girl Echoes

Post by sasahara17 on Tue 3 Jun 2008 - 18:43

I tried following the Battletech storyline a few jears ago, but I was lost quickly in the flow of things. All I managed to get was Inner Sphere = Good, Clans = Bad. Then suddenly the Federated Commonwealth breaks in two, and the Davion clan starts dropping like flies. Gave up following the plot at that point.

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Re: [FF] Gunslinger Girl Echoes

Post by sasahara17 on Fri 27 Jun 2008 - 3:01

Cops and Robbers III

---
24th March 20XX
--

Wilfred awoke the next day well before the alarm was supposed to go off. He was surprised he even managed to get any sleep at all, given that both jet lag and the previous days events made him stare up into the moon for what seemed like the whole night.

Despite this, Wilfred still felt drained. He was so not looking forward to today.

Perhaps out of spite, his new house mate had shoved him in the ‘spare bedroom’… or as Will saw it, the attic. It was cramped mainly due to the low ceiling, and the ‘door’ to get in was a square hole in the wall that he had to crouch to get though. The only bright spot was that window in the roof gave him a rather spectacular view of the moon and stars. Except it was perpetually open, and when the sun came up it would make his room very bright.

Will gave a soft moan as he checked the digital clock on his bedside, and wondered not for the first time just what he managed to get himself into.

--

Wilfred was surprised to see he wasn’t the only one awake that morning.

“Oh, good morning Elisabeth.”

“And good morning to you too pervert.” Elisabeth addressed cheekily without moving away from where she was in the kitchen.

Such was the sight that greeted him when he descended the step ladder from his humble sleeping quarters to the living area of the shared penthouse. The redhead, still in her pink nightclothes was in the kitchen making a breakfast for two.

“I’m surprised you’re up this early.” Will said. It was quarter to five, and Elisabeth was preparing what seemed to be a traditional bacon and eggs breakfast.

“After what you did to my innocence yesterday, of course I couldn’t sleep.” The teenager responded.

Wilfred gave a resigned sigh at the girl.

Elisabeth C. Freeman, aged nineteen. The first girl he’d ever walked in on in the shower, and his new housemate and colleague at I-CARE. Although she was still hardly dressed for the day ahead, the geeky redhead was very much awake, perhaps out of habit or the pervious days events.

Wilfred was thankful she so understood about him walking in on her. Perhaps him groveling at her feet might have had something to do with her forgiving him so soon.

Will didn’t know how someone so young could have gotten mixed up in this I-CARE business, but he did have his suspicions. Hell, Wilfred still had a hard time figuring out how anyone could end up working for an organization like I-CARE.

Speaking of which…

“I thought you mentioned we had a third person living here.” Will said curiously.

“That’ll be Sung. She just didn’t come home last night.” Elisabeth answered. “She was out drinking yesterday. Called to let me know she wouldn’t be back… Help me set up the table with you? Third Drawer to my right.”

“Oh.” Will scrambled over to the cupboards, narrowly squeezing past the younger woman and ticked out the cutlery. “You sure she’ll be alright?”

“I wouldn’t worry about Sung. She’s supposedly some big shot Interpol lady. I think”

Will raised an eyebrow and paused. “You think?”

“Well, she’s a bit odd you see…” Elisabeth said hesitantly.

The look in her face told Will all he needed to know. The young man sighed and hung his head. Another weird thing to add to an already large pile of weird things. This was getting more and more bizarre as time went on.

--

It was still a good amount of time before they were expected to turn up for work, during which Will spent most of his time unpacking the small amount of belongings he had brought with him to Charmonix while his young house mate went though her morning rituals.

As it turned out, the previous day’s ‘incident’ was made more ridiculous when she had revealed there were in fact two bathrooms in the penthouse, one near the two main bedrooms and one right text to the kitchen…. Which he had waltz right by in his ignorance, resulting in the event that Elisabeth claimed would scar her innocent mind for life.

Oh joy.

With his first day at his new job bearing down on him, Will’s mind mused over whole series of questions that plagued his mind.

What would happen to his life back in England? Would his friends from Scotland Yard wonder where he had gone? What about his family? He couldn’t imagine them sitting around wondering where he’d gone. His parents had died when he was younger, and Richard...

Was he really making the right choice by coming here? Wilfred was but a humble rookie detective, not some spook. That alone was a signal to him that he was in over his head, but there was that wee bit about child cyborg assassins. He could really get himself hurt, or even killed.

Despite this Wilfred still felt a sense of burning… it wasn’t excitement, but that was probably the word that came closest to it.

“Hey, scruffy. You getting ready or not?” Elisabeth called from below. She managed to startle the young man, that he jumped a bit and hit his head on one of the wooden beans on the ceiling. “Hey you okay?”
“Just dandy, thank you.” Will assured her, nursing his sore temple.

Poking his head out from his hole in the wall (literally), Will took a glance at Elisabeth … and blinked. He blinked as if to reassure himself that he was indeed seeing what he was seeing. “You look like a computer geek.”

The redhead was wearing a baggy pink hooded jacket at least two sizes too big for her as if to compliment her long braided red hair. Her blue sweat pants and mountain boots painted a rather odd picture. And then there were those glasses…

“For your information, I AM a computer geek.”

‘With a body like that I couldn’t have guessed’ Will was tempted to blurt out. He managed to hold his tongue and say instead, “Err… sorry.”

Elisabeth smiled. “Don’t worry, I’ve been called worse. So are you taking a shower or what?”

--

“That's pretty interesting.”

Victoria barely paused in mid stride at the unfamiliar but authoritative voice interrupted her concentration. It was a rarity back in the States that someone would interrupt her morning practice, mainly because her colleagues had grown used to her odd habits, but Victoria realized just how odd she must seem to an entirely new set of coworkers.

“I'm practicing.”

“It’s six in the morning.” Triela pointed out as she into the empty hall that was to be used as a sparring room for the Cyborgs. “It’s much too early to do any training.”

“That’s a matter of opinion.”

Triela observed the younger cyborg thoughtfully as Victoria moved purposefully around the room. “I’d hardly call dancing with a Beretta in each hand is the normal way to practice bal-“

“Gun-kata.” Victoria corrected as she finished her katas with a flourish.

Now done with her daily exercises, Victoria holstered her two Berettas in what seemed to be one swift move before walking over to a towel she had one the side of the room and wiping her sweat away.

Triela have a healthy chuckle before assuming a more serious expression. “I’ve heard the rumors, but I never thought I’d meet one of us who knew the art.”

“That’s about the only reason why I haven’t been taken off the active roster.” Victoria admitted "There aren't many practitioners out there, let alone one that isn't rouge..."

“Where’d you learn it?” Triela asked. “I was watching, and I didn’t recognize the style.”

Victoria flinched for a brief moment. Recognize the style? The way triela said that, it was as if she met Gun-kata practitioners all the time. Well, this was Triela Hartmann after all. Such things were expected of her. But still something just didn't sit right with Victoria. Victroia mentally filed that piece of information away.

“Long story. However, in a short word… it was self taught.”

Disbelief briefly flashed across Triela's eyes. “You’re kidding.”

Victoria shrugged as she draped the towel over her shoulders. “Believe what you will. I’m not of the level you would expect some of our adversaries to be of yet, but that’s why I keep the Carbine around for more conventional fights.”’

“I’ve fought a few Gun-kata users before.” Triela admitted. “Every one of them was a force to be reckoned with. Yet I glanced at your mission record…”

“It confused you.” Victoria sighed.

Triela wouldn’t be the first person puzzled by the problem that Is Victoria McDouglas.

“Well, I’d expect someone with a skill like yours to be as good as me, not have a file with a seventy percent success rate.” Triela shrugged. “Every time I’ve met a gun-kata practitioner, the SWA normally needed at lest three cyborgs to bring them down. I can’t see a real reason why your service record has to be so...”

"Erratic?" Victoria rolled her eyes.

"More or less."

Victoria looked at Triela dead in the eye. “Nobody told you? Any of you?”

“Told us what?”

Victoria sighed. Trust Mr. Superior to send damaged goods over to the Europeans without telling them what the catch was. And trust Nicholas to be too irresponsible to even care. “The thing is, I have this problem…”

--

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Who is that hot glasses wearing babe I wonder...
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