A Shooting Star

To: <sexysubjects@drakadia>, <sexysubjects@xilonba>
From: <duchess@drakadia>
Re: Shōrai

So let me tell you a story. There once was a young boy of Japanese ancestry. He had dream. Big dreams. Ginormous dreams. Dreams the likes of which the world had never seen, because they are dreams, and dreams are invisible. This boy was incredibly handsome, no, beautiful, and dreamed at being the best at a certain activity, so good at it he might be famous the world over. He worked hard over the years, leveraging his natural gifts until he held the star position in a local, uh, trade union for this activity.

But soon he found that his dreams were unrealistic. There was no room for advancement. No room for growth. Being amazingly talented didn’t make you a businessperson, and it’s the businesspeople who really rule the world. No matter how good he got, somebody else would own him. The dystopia he’d been brainwashed since birth to ignore suddenly became disturbingly real to him, so he took his amazing talents out into the world and took up the noble art of Shadowrunning.

And then he died a horrible death, miserable and poor, because Ichi was never as beautiful and charismatic as me and should have stopped trying to steal my clients years ago. That’s how you get taken out by the Yakuza. Seriously, what an idiot.

The point is, when talented people get involved in glamorous work, they quickly learn that it’s the talentless, corporate types control them. They get disenfranchised and start looking for something exciting, and the dirty, deadly world of Shadowrunning starts looking glamours, in the same way the mechanised meat slabs that play Urban Brawl are “beautiful.” If they’re lucky, they realize what a horrible decision they’re making and get back to their masters. If they’re unlucky, the end up dead. Luck is on your side, though, because no matter what happens, you’re getting paid.

I’m sure a few of you have heard of the up-and-coming J-Pop sensation called Shōrai. “The Future of Pop Music,” as the corporate types call her. “My future Waifu,” as her stalker fans call her. “Our Client and Valued Team Member,” as you’ll call her. Shōrai contacted me a few weeks ago, despondent about how Horizon is treating her “art” and wants to get away from it all for a while and try Shadowrunning. You’re going to be her Bodyguards, Personal Assistants, and Team Members all at once.

She’s paying well – around ¥50,000 a week. She’s pretty used to being pampered, though, and so you’ll be expected to make sure she’s comfortable while also letting her experience a few real jobs without sugar coating it. Finding the balance there is your problem, not mine, as is finding the jobs. Honestly, just do whatever work you’d normally be doing for your fixers and bring her along. If your fixers aren’t cool with that, though, Shōrai, who’s real name is Kiyomi Arita, by the way, has at least one job of her own in mind. Oh, she also needs to make it look like this wasn’t her idea so she can go back to her old job afterwards without repercussions, so you’ll need to abduct her and make it look shady, probably during one of the many times her tour passes through here.

Oh, and why am I making you do this? Well, Shōrai’s voice is almost inhumanly perfect, especially when heard in person. I stopped by one of our artifact warehouses the other week. One of the workers there put on “Dreams of My Heart’s Sweetness” to liven the mood and the few uncontained artifacts in the room started going berserk. We had to get the entire awakened staff on deck just to turn the music off, since the reaction fragged up all the wireless signals in a five mile radius. Shōrai has almost certainly used an artifact at some point in making her music, and I intend to leverage this favor to get access to it. So try not to frag this one up, guys, or if you do, at least get some information out of her before she bleeds out?

Don’t let me down, or else! XOXO.
- The Duchess

A Shooting Star

Xilonba clarionx clarionx