Hale zipped through a small gap between two of the trailing trolls in the biker gang. Their shouted insults weren’t worth listening too but the extra bit of speed they put on meant they weren’t exactly happy with her showboating.
The hammer-top luxury car roared loud enough for her to hear over the sound of the road. It rusted forward, trying to make up for the ground it had lost with her unexpected jaunt onto the interstate. Currently the Spikes were unintentionally playing buffer and they were more interested in yelling at her than distracting the mobsters.
She grinned under her helmet and slowed just enough to let the lead troll catch up with her.
“You should show me some respect or my boyfriend will show you trogs how to act around your betters,” she yelled and pointed back to the car.
For a moment she was worried she had overplayed her hand but the troll pulled out a wicked looking knife, waved it at the four other bikers in his crew, and pointed it at the car. The knife wielder pointed the curved blade at her and smiled before sending the gnarled length of metal straight toward the oncoming car. Hale let out an appreciative whistle as the knife wedged itself into the windshield with hardly any resistance.
In a flash the passenger-side window slid open and a gangster brandishing a chrome-plated machine-pistol popped out. He took a moment to adjust the sunglasses he was wearing before letting loose a strand of fire. One of the bikers swerved as his rear wheel popped and the other turned their full attention on the attacking car rather than the annoying showoff.
With the Spikes running interference and the Koreans thoroughly distracted, Hale pushed her bike faster weaving in and out of traffic to make sure she had truly lost the tail. She skidded down an exit, using the curve to save on her brakes, and easily reconnected with the preprogrammed route. Even with losing the thugs breathing down her neck she didn’t know how long her lead would last. A new surge of adrenaline surged through her veins as the thought of more interference. Doubling Manny’s cut would only lessen the payday by a grand leaving fourteen thousand left over. If she survived she would put that money to good use.
The road slimmed down to a single lane of traffic and headed toward the outskirts of the city. Buildings dropped down to two floors or less and the lots widened out for fenced in loading areas for warehouses instead of office complexes and economy housing. Her destination was an unmarked cement slab of a warehouse surrounded by a twelve-foot barrier with a single point of entry.
Hale rolled to a stop by the intercom and pressed the button, “delivery.”
The only answer was a dull buzz and the section of barrier in front of her began to slide open. For a moment she considered loading another three rounds into her revolver but she doubted six bullets would really do much of a dent in whatever was waiting ahead. The gentle purr of Manny’s bike a few blocks away made her breath easier; at least she had some backup.
She led the bike through and parked it before setting the alarm out of habit. Judging from the scrambling equipment Ms. Johnson had last time Hale didn’t bother keeping her helmet on. She unzipped her jacket and removed the package as she walked toward the lone door marking the slab. It opened as she neared, an orc dressed in an expertly tailored suit waited to on the other side. Without a word he turned and began to lead her down a darkened hallway. The lights switched on before they entered the area of illumination and back off once they were out of it. Whoever Ms. Johnson was working for didn’t mind showing off on the little things.
After a few turns she was sure were just made to disorient her, the orc led her into a small open-air office where her client and one other waited. The man was of Asian descent and wore a simple yet elegant two-piece gray suit; his skin had the flawless sheen gene-treatment awarded but his eyes spoke an age much more than the thirty-something he looked. Currently those untrusting orbs were settled on Hale with an intensity that would certainly bore through her if they could.
“Right on time,” Ms. Johnson smiled at Hale and held out a hand for the package.
Hale handed her the cylinder and accepted the cred-stick that had materialized in the clients other hand. Not wanting to spend another moment in the room than she needed to she bowed respectfully to the man, nodded to Ms. Johnson, and turned to the orc before walking passed him back into the hallway. Briskly she took the three left-turns and one right back to the door, a good sense of direction was the first thing a currier needed.
Once outside she plugged the cred-stick into the port casually poking out from an inside pocket which verified the credits and sent them to predetermined accounts. The extra five hundred she owed Manny would be a simple transfer once she got to a terminal but for now everything was in order.
“Heads up,” Manny whispered in her ear.
Hale rushed to her bike, popped open the chamber of her revolved and loaded in three fresh shells as quickly as she could. She snapped it closed and brought it up just as the barrier opened fully to allow the hammer-top luxury car to coast into the parking lot. The immaculate paint job and armored windows had been given a rough treatment, the passenger side of the windshield was missing, both front tires were flat, and the engine block was smoking. Hale lowered the gun back into the holster as the car parked a few spots away and two haggard Korean men stepped out. They didn’t spare her even a sidelong glance as they walked up to the lone door and waited.
The trip back to office was a blur but she made sure Manny got the extra she had promised.