Honoka - Welcome Wagon

Description: Gedo Street is friendly and welcoming! They'll even do custom detailing for your vehicle while you wait, free of charge!

Long ago, Southtown was just some city, a suburb of a much, much larger city. But, over the period of a mere decade, it grew to such a degree that it completely eclipsed the city it once supported -- and soon became the metropolis its parent could never hope to be.

Historians can agree on only one factor for this -- the rise of the Syndicate. Sure, you can point to the success of Howard Enterprises, or the Mishima Zaibatsu, or any number of other factors -- not the least of which are the fighting entertainment events hosted here -- but organized crime had a definite backroom influence on all the above.

But that is ancient history, as far as the denizens of Gedo Street are concerned -- for these are the slums. And here... Daigo Kazama has managed to ally the local forces under his wing. He holds no claim to be the leader of this group -- and yet everyone looks up to him anyway.

So when a gentleman steals from the Syndicate, as he has this week -- it's pretty clear that the Syndicate needs to retrieve their payment -- with interest. But when said gentleman flees into the bowels of Gedo Street, holing up within one of the run-down apartments in the projects -- this may present a slight logistical challenge.

Or it might, if the streets weren't completely empty. The thief had run into the streets while school was still in session, in the middle of broad daylight. It ought to be a simple matter to walk in right into the projects.

In theory.

Stealing from the Syndicate? Not something those looking to live long, healthy lives tend to do. But as with any organization of its size, there's always someone who gets too big for their britches and decides to skim a little from the coffers, thinking they'd fly under the radar of their bosses. These would-be thieves are eventually tracked down and taught a lesson - maybe not immediately, but everyone eventually faces the wrath of Mr. Big sooner or later.

This particular case wasn't anything special, so the usual team of legbreakers were mobilized to deal with it. Five men, armed with knives, bats and whatever other melee weapons they preferred, jumped in their van and headed for Gedo Street. The Syndicate doesn't think much of the place, and neither do the gentlemen out for blood. The van pulls up to the empty streets and dispense the gang, dressed in either tacky suits or bootleg sportswear. Three Japanese, two Caucasian and one African. Following the man wasn't hard; they just had to catch him.

"I think I see him," one says, wearing a red blazer and popped yellow collared shirt. They start running.

In general, vans are curious vehicles. They have a nice, big, glass windshield. They have four big tires. And if you block the side and rear windows... well, that leaves the big, bulky mirrors to either side as the ONLY way to see what's behind the vehicle. Very, very awkward.

Especially if people attack from above. The Gedo projects consist of a number of squat, ugly, three-story buildings with fire escapes, with lots of blind corners and alleyways. And in one building in particular, a young woman with jet-black hair pulled back into a bun just happens to be talking with some of her associates when the van makes its appearance.

She doesn't budge from the table. The half-dozen Gedo students, decked out in black, in the room with her make up for that, rushing to the open balcony to take in the sight. The legbreakers disperse -- it's an unusual sign, and they look back towards the ringleader for guidance.

She holds up five fingers, retracting one each second.

On the count of five, the students disperse without a word. They, too, are armed with melee weapons -- aluminum baseball bats, chains and sickles, brass knuckles. And they're quite good at leaping from one fire escape to the next.

And with the legbreakers neatly out of earshot, they all descend upon the van, moving as if a pride of lions attacking an elephant. It starts with the back of the van -- the sounds of boots slamming down onto the van's hard shell. But an instant later, the steel-toed combat boots of a senior boy -- tall, Japanese, with bleach-blonde hair -- slam into the windshield, shattering the safety glass into a vaguely translucent curtain, effectively popping it right out of its seals as the student kicks the driver in the face.

It takes but moments -- enough time for the van to sustain superficial damage, and one flat tire. And then, almost as quickly as they came, the students start to disperse into the blind alleys, with only the blonde senior within arms' reach.

And their mysterious ringleader watches from a safe distance, on a third story balcony, with a faintly bemused smile upon her face.

The driver, listening to J-Pop on the radio, has no idea of what is about to take place. All he can register is movement in one of the side view mirrors, and then the windshield getting kicked down as two boots slam into his face. He is soon out cold, the gun from the glovebox falling out before he has a chance to use it.

The thugs hear the commotion and quickly hurry back, to see their van wrecked and the driver out. "What the fuck?" one asks. They talk amongst each other while the leader examines the damage. "Someone's playin' with us," he observes. "My guess? Gedo kids. Fuck it. We'll find the target. Louis, call up a 'friendly' tow."

It would be hard for Miko Kobayashi to hear the legbreaking squad talking amongst themselves, but that's... kind of the thing the psychic is trying to practice: reading thoughts at a distance. She can tell that they're simultaneously frustrated, pissed, and bloodthirsty -- and she can also tell that the emotions are taken down a few notches whenever one of them speaks. It's true that she could probably surmise as much from body language alone -- but then it wouldn't really be practice for her.

She narrows her eyes a bit more. The students had each dispersed into a different alleyway. She signals one of them. And the distinctive sound of a spraycan's shaker ball can be heard off to the distance. Two cans, shaken in unison, and the distinctive hissssss of graffiti being applied to a wall. Presuming that the blonde senior is left to his own devices, he'd spraypaint 'GEDO TERRITORY - KEEP OUT!' in a prominent location on the route that the van would undoubtedly need to be towed out.

But in case that was too subtle, the puppetmaster Miko calls out from the third story, "Hey. I saw what happened to your van... bunch of lousy Gedo punks. Really ought to be more careful where you park, though!"

It'd probably be easier to take her at face value if she weren't also wearing a Gedo uniform. Or if she didn't step back inside to safety, shortly afterwards.

The thugs all glance up at Miko when she shouts at them. They recognize the uniform, and slowly realize they're being played with. They start to grip their melee weapons tighter, itching to add a couple smart-ass kids to their hit list. The leader, however, ignores her and starts leading the thugs through the alleys to find their target.

Their target seems to have fled to a dead-end alleyway. He's not from around here -- or else the students might have helped him out. He's wearing a dark red dress shirt and suspenders, and white pants. Probably the worst choice ever for fleeing from the Syndicate.

And while Miko wasn't sure before, she knows now that the leader won't be cowed by simple threats. He's no fool -- indeed, he's just as cold and calculating as she is. Perhaps moreso. And he's trained his followers well enough to instill them with loyalty and trust.

There's little chance of her six students winning without guerilla tactics -- not against coordination like that. And reinforcements won't be arriving for another fifteen minutes, once school -officially- lets out. No. Hit and run is pretty much the only option left.

No one's going to be saving you today, thieving dude scrambling back into the corner. As if that would help him get away from the armed men marching towards him at a wanton, deliberate pace. As if showing the fear in his face would grant him mercy.

Miko gives telepathic orders to the students she's been working with: Disperse. Let them go about their business for now. They've shaken up the hornet's nest, and left a clear message in spray paint upon the walls and streets: The Syndicate may control Southtown -- but right here, right now, they're trespassing on Gedo soil. The ball is in the Syndicate's court... for now.

"Didn't YOU go to Gedo, Takeshi?" One thug asks as they stalk the alleyways, knocking their weapons on things out of boredom. "Yeah, wasn't like it is now. Now? It's like...things are organized. Like we are." "Yeah right. Dumbass teenagers can't do anything, man."

The leader in the tacky red jacket, one of the other Japanese, keeps his eyes open, glancing at the roofs above them, until they come to their target. "Fifteen minutes, then we're out of here!" he says to the others. They surround the poor man. "Takeshi, Louis, correct this sadsack's lapse in judgement." The two go and start wailing on the guy, while the other three keep a lookout. The leader opens up his phone and dials a number. "Found him, boss...yeah, we're busy with him right now. We're in...yeah, we're in Gedo territory. The van's busted."

Another pause, amid the blubbering of the thief and the WHUMP of weapons against flesh. "...it was them. You want us to push back?" Another long pause. "...okay."

Log created on 21:21:08 03/24/2015 by Honoka, and last modified on 23:24:50 03/24/2015.