Word on the street has it someone at "Beppo's Trattoria" in Little Italy is looking for a Netrunner, and possibly others, for a job tonight. Probably nothing too major since it's just hit the street ... or maybe it is major and something just came up. One way to find out.
It's about 9 PM and Hernando is eating a nice kibble with chicken flavor in a stall in the streets of Chinatown, when he hear a conversation "about someone who need a runner in Beppo's Trattoria". Hernando simply leave the place and go to Little Italy. In little Italy, he passes by the Tokyo luxury's apartments and thinks that maybe he will be living in one of those places. Or maybe not.
He stops in the restaurant, take a good look to see what kind of people is there, sits and asks for the cheapest food available.
Looking around the restaurant you get the feeling nothing here is cheap, it all looks like real food!
The restaurant, visible employees and most customers, might not be to out of place for 100 years ago ... 1920.
Everyone in the place, except you and a couple other people at a booth near the back seems to be part of the ever-so-rare "middle class" or slightly higher. The two at the booth seem to be sharing a basket of bread sticks and some wine, a rather large man in a conservative suit stands nearby at a door that probably leads to a private dining room. Just then the door to that back room opens and a pimple-faced kid of about 15 exits carrying a deck similar to the one you had when you were 12. The man at the door looks into the room for a moment then points the kid to the front door of the restaurant and signals one of the people at the booth to enter the back room.
"If I had, the job was already mine"- says Hernando smiling. "But as usual, it must be something that they don't want to risk any valuable person. So, you like Italian food? I prefer Mexican.
Hernando is telling half trues: he never tasted italian food (he was to poor to that) and only ate a taco once. But he won't admit that to a stranger.
At this point another person enters the restaurant.
They're wearing a hooded cloak of some sort so all you can really see is some cheetah pattern boots ... with claws?
Those boots are odd ... damn odd ...
As the person pauses a moment to look around you catch a glimpse of their ... face ...
Awwww hell ... it's one of those exotics, a furry!
Even tho the cloak conceals most of their body you can tell it's not your run-of-the-mill cheap augmentation either .. there's some serious scratch here.
"Oh wonderful, anyone that goes exotic ain't too tightly wound to start with, then add a ton a cyber and you get a real nut case." Your companion comments.
"Yeah, to get the money to buy that kind of modifications you must have a ton of money and be ready to accept anything they propose you. Well, you could use it in a better deck and programs" - he says smiling to his companion.
Hernando doesn't have any prejudices against people "different", he just thinks it's a waste.
This throwback might be a torpedo ... you've been scanned, evaluated for threat, and cataloged ... it's not a pleasant feeling. The muscle at the door to the back room visibly tenses and fixes on the exotic. They lock eyes for a moment ... then the exotics hands slowly emerge from slits in the cloak ... empty. They look fairly normal, except for the fur, claws, roughened palms ...
You, and others in the room, release a breath you didn't even realize you were holding and things return to normal. That was surreal, a cartoon moment you might expect in a movie but never in real life.
"Who is that? No one that looks like THAT passes unnoticed." Your companion asks.
You don't have a clue ... but (s)he's right ... no one like that stays under the radar, no matter how hard they try.
The 'cat' approaches your booth, and to no great surprise they don't even move like a normal person, it's subtle, subliminal, but noticeable to someone like you, raised on the streets.
It stops and looks at both of you a moment, you, of course, instinctively took the opposite side of the booth from your companion ... one of you needs to make room for the new arrival.
There's a noticeable Japanese accent but the English is perfectly understandable, you're almost positive it's female.
The 'cat' looks at the inside of their left wrist ... and uses a claw tip to type on the micro-comp apparently located there ... "G - a - z - e - l".
"Ahhh ... gazeru. Perhaps so. I assume this is where we await an invitation to join the hunting party?"
The Pasta Boy muscle at the door seems content to let you three deal with each other.
Since you're speaking to the 'cat' your pervious companion makes no move to allow her into his/her side of the booth. Yet seems riveted on the 'cat', even tho (s)he is trying to be nonchalant about it, exotics this extreme are pretty rare and they've probably never actually spoken to one before.