Yeah, nothing topped the events of last week. Guard duty was more or less a snooze fest. I reread the copy of The Book of Five Rings. I need to pull out some choice quotes if I expect to inspire my compatriots.
The week ended uneventfully. Father asked to meet him on top of Stratosphere Casino. I didn’t realize he was being literal until he led me to the top of the Stratosphere. We sat down at a table, again, at the top of this casino, and he proceeded to tell me about kamis. (I thought he said “commies”.") The kami in the table appeared and started chatting us up. He…it…the table had never had a view like this one.
Father needed my help. The Harmon Hotel was scheduled for demolition in 2012, but it was fast tracked to this week. He needed me to get in and extract the kami so he could bring it to a better place.
I drove by there the next day, seeing if I could just waltz in. The place was guarded and I could not see any alternate ways in. It’s not like I can fly. Well, that Esperonda guy can jump really far, maybe if I try hard enough I can fly…
I attempted a bit of subterfuge to gain entry but that didn’t work either. I parked around the corner and start running towards the hotel. When the guards stopped me, I identified myself as being with the Sheriff’s department and asked if they had seen a suspect duck into the abandoned building. No go. I gave them a fake description and set off running again.
The Taoka Corporation really wanted this building demolition.
Not having much luck, I gave Gunnar Esparza a call and asked for some help. He didn’t very interested until I mentioned the Taoko Corporation. He must’ve had some dealings with them or something. In the mean time, I would give him a hand tracking down some guy. Discreetly, of course. He also mentioned something about cyclopses. Cyclopsi? More than one cyclops.
Ms. Laurel Kladokas needed finding someone, so I joined them at the Luxor. As we went up the elevator, Gunnar pulled his piece, and I did the same. Not knowing the full situation, I probably should have asked questions. Laurel stepped out and spoke with someone while we stayed out of sight. She gave a short scream for help and Gunnar jumped out and fired a shot. I don’t think it made much difference. Whomever shoved Laurel back into the elevator, and then they made an appointment.
Thinking a strategic retreat was in order, I told Laurel to accept the offer and then pressed the elevator door closed. The guy didn’t seem to bad, considering Gunnar took a shot at him. Looks like we made a bad choice here.
We went our separate ways for the evening. I proceeded to stake out the Harmon Hotel and noticed that a shift change occurred at midnight. However, the efficiency of the change was something I had rarely seen before. Cops aren’t this precise, and neither are the feds. This smelled of former military or mercenaries.
The next morning, I traveled to the Mirage to help Gunnar find a guy named Sylvester Guiler. We set about casing the casino floor until we spotted him. Once found, Laurel went in and did her thing, entrancing the guy with her looks. Gunnar stepped in and they spoke about stuff. Something about a pool convention.
I hung back and pretended to be part of the crowd. Another guy joined the group. Victor something or the other. After a few moments of chit chat, Victor and Sly excused themselves and went towards the back. Gunnar followed them, and then I did. We got there just as they pulled away in a Ferrari. Gunnar did get the license plate, but as I punched in the info, what spit out was a squeaky clean record for one Victor Fingers. The record was too clean.
Laurel went to her appointment while Gunnar and I cruised about town for a bit. We listened to the Eagles. This Hotel California sounds like a cool place to visit.
Second-hand retelling of Laurel’s meeting with her half-brother. I just fell out of a building. Sue me.*
The cyclopes didn’t hassle her this time around. I do believer she went without her gun or she handed it over willingly. She entered a lavish hotel room and, for the first-time, met her half-brother. DON FRICKIN’ HENLEY. I got to see if she can get me an autograph.
They sat down and chatted for a bit. Don…Mr. Henley…I’ll call him Don. Don told her about his life, and how he came to know about his true lineage. Apollo was all like “No, I am your father.” and Don was totally “NOOOOOOOOOO” and ran away and formed the Eagles. Something like that. Don warned Laurel to stay away from this one hotel in California. The children of Apollo check in but they don’t check out.
Don asked Laurel why she wanted to meet with him. “Am I your last hope?” “No, there is another,” she replied, rather cryptically. She wanted Don’s help in locating another half-sibling of theirs. What kind of help, I’m not sure.
With the meeting concluded, Don gave Laurel a gift. He gave her a guitar string that he kept around his neck. It had the power to….entrance people? I’m not sure how it works. She left and headed over to Gunnar’s hotel. Gunnar and I were at the Tosche Station picking up some power converters. I think.
*These painkillers aren’t as strong as I thought. At least this Star Wars marathon will keep my mind off the pain.
We adjourned to Gunnar’s hotel room and started planning for tonight. We decided that Laurel was going to distract the guards while Gunnar and I snuck in and extracted the kami. What could go wrong, right?
We drove up there in Laurel’s car and she dropped us off a few blocks away. We got closer and saw that there was a crowd in front of the Harmon. Lights lit up the exterior. Yeah, something went wrong. The building was coming down. Tonight.
With the front of the building lit up and the focus of hundreds of people, we found an adjacent building and climbed to the top. We were lucky that someone had thoughtlessly left a door unlocked. Once on the roof, Gunnar jumped into the other building.
I made it across too.
We landed, and we waited to see if anyone was around. All that was heard was some clicking sounds and hissing. Hydraulics, most likely. I was able to get the kami to show itself and it tried to enter the magic bottle, but it said that something was tethering it to the building. We had to find out what was happening and free it.
Several floors down we found a large circle with a magical symbol etched into the ground. Well, Gunnar said it was a magic symbol. There was also a large spike that embedded into the circle. And bombs. Bombs everywhere. And the bombs were set to detonate in sixty seconds.
Gunnar ran over to the spike and tried to wrench it from the ground as I tried to defuse a bomb. I have minimal bomb training, so I wasn’t having much luck. It was much harder when Gunnar yelled out something about shinobi and I saw one attacking him. I told the bombs to go screw itself and started rushing over to help Gunnar.
Halfway to Gunnar I got caught by surprise by a shinobi and I got slashed pretty hard. Not fun. I had to help defend Gunnar so I ignored the once attacking me and shot at Gunnar’s shinobi. Well, rather than get slashed with his hands full, Gunnar dropped the spike and pulled out his axe. We were able to kill one. The other one threw a ninja star at a bomb and set one off.
As the building began to collapse, Gunnar ripped the spike from the ground and I ran and got the kami into the bottle. I was a bit further along than Gunnar when another bomb went off, throwing Gunnar towards the window as I dived out.
I fell a long way down and hit the ground with a thump. Quite surprised I was alive. I got up, gave a thumb’s up and started hobbling towards Laurel. Then some lady in a limo looked at me, twisted something, and my leg felt like it was on fire. I hit the ground pretty hard. Again.
We escaped by the skin of our teeth. Laurel patched me up a bit.
The next day, there was a report about the implosion of the Harmon Hotel and about mysterious figures that were spotted leaving the building. Wonder who that could have been.
I called in sick. I was a walking mass of bruises and I don’t think the Sheriff would appreciate me coming in like that. After a few days I was almost in perfect health, so I gave Gunnar a call to see if he still needed help with Sylvester. To the Mirage!
When I got there, I was going to talk to management about Mr. Guiler and see if I could get a room number, but Ms. Laurel had beaten me to it. Sometimes feminine wiles beat police badge.
Gunnar jumped into the room and searched it while Laurel and I stood watch in the hallway. Gunnar found a claim ticket, but he needed Sylvester to claim the package. So we planned to spring a trap. Gunnar would wait for Sylvester in his room while Laurel and I stood watch. So Laurel waited around the corner and I stood by the elevator.
And we waited.
Around five, Sylvester, covered in dirt and carrying a large bag, exited the elevator. I held the door open for him as he stepped out and I stepped in. He seemed a bit nervous to see me. As the doors closed, I sent a text to Laurel and Gunnar that the target was on it’s way.
After a minute or two, I exited out the elevator and proceeded to stand watch outside the room. Laurel joined me and we waited. Then we heard someone taking a shower. We think it was one person. We were texted by Gunnar about Laurel accepting a date from Victor. I decided to disappear before Gunnar and Guiler left their room, so my involvement with this was possibly a bluff by Gunnar.
Downstairs, The four of them met up and went to dinner. I looked in and could notice the awkward silence. Boy was I glad I wasn’t there. I peeked in a bit later and noticed that they were having lobster. Dang, I sure wish I was there.
Victor excused himself, leaving the three to finish their meal. They got up and headed towards the claims desk. Again, I followed. Discreetly. They got the case, and Gunnar headed off. We all met up at Gunnar’s other hotel room where we got a chance to take a peek at it’s contents. It was the black raven cloak that Baron Samedi took from us!
At this point I’d like to note, for the record, that I called dibs on it when we first found it.