Of course, it's usually more enjoyable when the occasion is less somber. Franck H-Bomb is a patriarch of the Night City Industrial scene. A huge, gentle giant of a man, he's been in and around the scene as long as anyone can remember. Everyone knows him, and everyone loves him. Anyone who doesn't love Franck isn't worth the broken beer bottle to shank them with.
Franck is one of the principals behind Das Bunker, the longest running Industrial club in town. In recent history, Franck was involved in an accident on a rainy night after the club; hit-and-run while he was on his motorcycle. He got banged up pretty bad; came away with a broken leg, and is now sans one bike, but, on the upside, he's still breathing.
As much joy as the club brings folks, there's not much in the way of medical benefits, if you're a club promoter. Similar to many people in the city, Franck was just barely treading water where finances were concerned. It's a very thin line from a roof over your head to squatting on the outskirts of the Combat Zone.
Fortunately, Franck had a lot of good karma sown. A lot.
A couple of the bigger promotions crews, as well as a number of bands, hastily organized a benefit concert on Franck's behalf, to raise funds for his medical bills. And so, our story begins.
Jack the Rabbit was just coming off the mend from the unfortunate job for the Triad, when he started getting the first texts. At first, it was an incoherent jumble, but he sooned learned what happened to Franck. He'd been made to feel welcome at the clubs, and had enjoyed each others' company in the backyard party scene, always made to feel at home. When Danny Graves (of Aesthetic Perfection) asked if Jack was in for the benefit concert, of course he said yes.
Young Wafer (nee Hannah) is affiliated with the 23b hackerspace. 23b specializes in the engineering side of hacking. arclight, one of the founding keyholders of 23b, heard through the grapevine about the benefit show being hastily put together. He was tapped for his skills, and asked to bring in any help he could, to assist with the technical side of the show. Lights, sound, electrical; whatever might be needed that night. arclight decides to throw Wafer a bone (since it's fairly obvious she's homeless) and brings her in on the gig.
Lucky Larry Diamond! Everyone's favorite MedTech. Larry was responding to a number of classified ads, when he got a response from one Lisa G. There was a live gig coming up, whose size necessitated on-site medical staff, to secure the necessary permits. Meeting with Lisa face-to-face to negotiate pay, they realize they've met previously.
The night prior to the Triad job, Jack, Larry, and Sayoko (RIP) killed some time by stopping in at Rainbow Nights. They wanted to take some of the edge off, relax a bit, before game time. Jack happened to know the band playing that night (Aesthetic Perfection) and knew the tour manager (Lisa,) and so, was not only able to get everyone in on rock star status, but was able to party with the band in the green room between the first set and encore, where Jack was brought in for a few songs.
So, of the candidates for the spot, Larry gets the gig. It's good to know people.
Sorin is... an interesting man. Born and raised in the Eastern Bloc, he came across the pond and made a successful living for himself as a Corporate. That is, he *was* making a successful living for himself, until he was separated. Sorin is unusual for a Corporate, in that he's less likely to delegate, and more likely to be "hands on" with his assigned projects, literally AND figuratively. Being "in-between work" currently (as polite society says,) he happened across the benefit show to attend, to take his mind off of recent events.
Prior to the show, setup goes fairly smoothly. Jack gets to the venue early, enjoys a drink. Wafer, relying on public transportation, gets there late-ish for setup, but still well before doors, so there's still plenty for her to do. Larry meets up with Lisa, who directs him to Jacko, the head of the security team. Clad in a black t-shirt emblazoned with "SECURITY" in big block letters, Jacko advises Larry that he's there to patch up any kids that get stomped on and broken in the pit, before they're sent off in an ambulance, but mostly, he's there to babysit any of the Rockers if they party a bit too hard. A band can't perform if their frontman or lead guitarist is asphyxiating on their own vomit.
Prep for lighting and soundcheck comes and goes, and Wafer's enthusiasm is GLARING through the fake ID that says she's of age. Since she's working backstage, and since she's (mostly) out of the way of the talent, her spazziness isn't a huge detriment. Though, it *does* make arclight idly wonder if she'll ever get around to social grace.
Doors open at six, and the line starts filtering in. Sorin is slightly offended that he has to check his weapons at the coat-check, but he's been stateside long enough to know that it's custom in a number of places in Night City, and begrudgingly agrees. Larry is on the clock, and starts walking a circuit behind the curtain backstage, checking regularly on the floor, and in the green room. Jack and Danny Graves (of Aesthetic Perfection) are starting to pre-flight for the evening, when Sami from Faderhead rolls in. Sami flew all the way in from Hamburg to support Franck, because Franck is loved THAT much.
The opening band comes and goes, and Wafer helps tear down their equipment, so the next band can set up. Sorin notices several members of Red Chrome Legion, clearly out of place with the rest of the patrons, leering, jeering, and being asses in general, but immediately, not being a threat. Not immediately. Larry continues his circuit, enjoying some of the catering in the green room, but sticking to light beer. He is on the job, after all. Meanwhile, Jack and Danny are in good spirits, while Sami seems to be pre-flighting a wee bit much.
During setup for the second band, Wafer doesn't plug into an amp quite right, and there is MUCH feedback in the venue. Momentary hiccup, with the biggest casualty being the embarrassed flush of color in Wafer's face. Larry overhears a conversation between Jacko and a few members of his security crew, to keep an eye on some Red Chrome members that are starting to get beers in them. Shortly after, a different member of security approaches Larry discreetly, and asks if he can follow him.
Being led into the green room, other band members are huddled in small groups, talking amongst themselves in hushed tones. The vibe in room has PALPABLY changed from "party" to something else. Something wrong. Being led through the green room to the adjacent changing room / showers, Sami is passed out on the floor, foaming slightly at the mouth, with a couple of rails of something, cut on the counter.
Running the substance through the analyzer from his MedKit, Larry determines that it's not just synthcoke, but pure synthcoke. REALLY pure synthcoke. "Stop your heart if you do too much" quality synthcoke. Feckin' Rockers.
Larry loads up an airhypo, and is able to revive Sami. Sami, in turn, IMMEDIATELY turns his head, evacuates the entire contents of his stomach, then starts fumbling for a bottle of vodka. Larry, in his infinite kindness, props him sitting upright, moves the vodka well out of reach, and hands Sami a bottle of water.
Meanwhile, the Red Chrome members have gone from being a nuisance, to being physical. They're trying to start a mosh pit in the middle of the floor, pushing and shoving people who are OBVIOUSLY not trying to slam dance to music not particularly suited for it.
Sorin decides he's had enough of their jackassery. He makes his way through the crowd, and puts his burly six foot frame right in their faces. One of them, at five foot ten, gets back in his face. In his heavy Slavic accent, he tells them that they should leave, before they get hurt. The one in his face, the one the others call Rooster, mocks his Slavic accent, and tells "Ivan" what he can go do with himself. Egged on by alcohol and numbers, they start to surround him.
Too bad for Rooster that Sorin has EXTENSIVE hand-to-hand in his toolbox, courtesy of one of the military outfits in the Eastern Bloc. Before he knows what's going on, Rooster is in a PAINFUL wrist-lock, facing Sorin.
Rooster tries throwing a sloppy haymaker with his free hand, and the others start in with fists. Sorin easily sweeps three of them, and puts them on their asses, but numbers win out. Too bad for the standing Red Chrome members that Sorin has Skinweave, so the best they're able to do is bruise him lightly.
At this point, the other disgruntled patrons surrounding Sorin and the Red Chrome members start paying them back in kind. There's a huge mess, as Red Chromers get punched, kicked, and treated to a boot party before security swarms in and ejects them.
SHOWTIME. Jack and Danny Graves are on! Jack, once again, jumps in with Danny's set, and is the shirtless, chisled abs / model beautiful / Night City's own Rocker everyone (in this scene) knows and loves. While Jack, in the back of his head, isn't entirely satisfied with his performance, the crowd doesn't seem to notice, and eats it up. Danny, ever the showman, knows how to work a crowd, and the crowd LOVES it.
Backstage, Jacko storms past Larry, muttering something about "...this is BULLSH!T..." under his breath.
An hour and 45 minutes later, Jack and Danny Graves wrap up their set to THUNDEROUS applause. Lights fade down, the DJ's music fades up, and Jack and Danny get backstage. Wafer, already a fan of Jack's work (and his IMPRESSIVE physique) isn't exactly subtle in her fangirl gushing. Jack, either abuzz from the performance, or oblivious to Wafer's fangirl-ness, takes it in stride. In her enthusiasm, Wafer offers to work on Jack's Fender Telecaster, which has been in poor repair for some time. When she's finished, Jack (and everyone else that saw his Telecaster previously) can hardly believe it's the same instrument! Like showroom new. Jack is so impressed, HE asks HER for her autograph on it. Cheeks flush, she signs her work. <3
Once again, a burly security type, clad in a suit, approaches Larry discreetly. There's another matter that requires his attention in the changing room. Larry once again is ushered through the green room, past bandmembers, into the changing room... where Johnny Dao is waiting for him. Johnny Dao, and eight LARGE associates.
It's clear Johnny got a good "talking to" by Militech, evident by two black eyes, a nose that's obviously been broken and re-set, a split lip that's mostly gone down in swelling, and various bruises and lacerations on his face. He doesn't make it clear how he managed to leave alive, but he DOES very much want to know why Larry gave him up. Larry leans forward, not only showing off his freshly shaven head, but showing the surgical incision on the back of his head, where Militech implanted a remote detonation device. It wasn't Trauma Team that stabilized Larry, but Militech, so they could get an answer as to why someone tried to interfere with one of their shipments. They figured anyone dumb enough to try to intercept a Militech shipment had to be small fish, and used Larry to get to the person that gave the order.
In turn, Larry is told that this whole benefit show was set up for him.
Johnny knew that Jack was well connected in the Industrial scene, and guessed that Larry would be connected to Jack. He had one of his men hit-and-run Franck, then suggested to one of the promotion crews to throw a benefit concert for him. Even poured in some of his own money through a cut-out as an angel investor. He was hoping that Larry would get hired on as on-site medical, and the gamble paid off.
Before hearing Larry's side of it, Johnny was LIVID, and was going to do Very Bad Things to him. But, Larry angrily countered that Johnny sent them into the meat-grinder with bad intel. Larry was a dead man before he ever left that warehouse.
Putting it in that light, Johnny asks Larry if he wants the taser, or the airhypo. Larry puts out his hand to one of the suited goons for the airhypo, and the goon, rather than handing it to him, grabs his hand and injects him in the wrist.
As Larry loses consciousness, he's vaguely aware of Johnny scrawling something on his neck in marker.
Larry's body turns up in Little Italy... after being dropped out of an AV-4 from around 20 stories up, sometime in the dead of night. The foot soldier that found him had presence of mind to take a pic of the body with his phone (because that's what young street punks do: take pics of bad things on their phones.)
Scrawled on the neck of the impact-pulverized body is the mark of the 14K Triad crew, and the Italian word "sappiamo," which roughly translates into, "I know."
For those curious: Johnny Dao burned his *only* favor with Arasaka to avoid Militech just putting a bullet into his skull.
Sayoko was the daughter of one of Arasaka's middle management. Dao was able to get her body back to her father for funerary rites, in exchange for a favor on down the road. So, when Dao was black-bagged by Militech, he spun it as being said Arasaka employee's "liason" for the Chinese-American population in Night City (understanding full well what part of that population Dao represented.)
After finally being released two days later, Dao finds out the car heist didn't happen, and everyone went off the grid. Since it was his crew that provided the route info for the shipment to begin with, he had his crew's Netrunners hack the city traffic camera network, and reviewed the footage from around the time of night the heist was to take place.
It's not a big stretch to figure out what crew rolls around Night City in suits, driving black, tinted window Lincolns.