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[Rated M, 16+] Contractors: Acknowledgment Zer0 | Co-hosted by Lvl 19 Hollow

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"We'll be spending the next 2 days getting to know each other. We're fooling each other if we think we can learn how we operate in the field. There just isn't enough time for that, but the trust needs to be there. Weaver has already taken out three American Contractors. We don't need to add any more to that list. So, the plan will be a simple one: The five us will split into three groups once we land outside of Talifah."


Like that, Catcall started going into detail on how they were going to be acting and working with in the coming days. To Aero, this would be an interesting turn of events that would be unfolding. It sounded challenging...and lord knew he could always use more of that.


"Dust-, er, I mean, Aero, you'll make up your own group and have a vantage point over Talifah to not only look for Weaver with your better-than-average eyesight but also provide us cover if we need it. Once Weaver is found we'll all converge on the location. Simple."


"Heh, to be honest, that actually would be best for me anyway." Aero nodded toward Catcall. "Just know that with my Latent Potential, I can't see through buildings unless the target is in view from a window. However, understood. I'll take look out."


Now they were getting somewhere! Look out, sniping...this was what Aero was good at. However, given the location they were in, he'd definitely have to work on getting everything prepped.




The next two days, Aero would be given ample time to get to know his team. He didn't care about past (to be honest, none of them did), but he preferred to know about the skill sets of the team. He wished to factor these variables to help with strategy.


Aero firstly got acquainted with their team leader: Catcall. Latent Potential dealt with vocal manipulation and being very sensitive to the changes in one's vocals. It was easy to figure out that Catcall was definitely the type of woman to deal in interrogation, given the fact that she could pick up on the changes in vocals along with using this ability to mimic explosions and the like...interesting...


Echo...well, he was surprisingly a quiet conversationalist...not much talking. Regardless, Aero figured out his Latent Potential. Something he called Tremor Sense, which was something that was used for reconnaissance...smart. Not only that, there was another part, something known as SFX, something dealing with sound waves...


Then was...well...Mute. Nice young lady, iiiiiffff you thought nice young ladies were sadistic people who wanted to stab the living hell out of people. Nevertheless, Aero found that Mute's Latent Potentials, a sort of "muting" power was actually very interesting. It was great for stealth missions, plain and simple.


Finally...there was the first Contractor Aero met during this whole ordeal: Griever. Now him and Griever truly didn't see eye to eye...but nevertheless, neither one let it get between their job (at least Aero hoped this). The Latent Potential that Griever had was actually a complex one that Aero was interested in. He was, in short, able to reinforce objects or weaken them to his will. It seemed like the best option for dealing with those with riot shields.


Each one of the members of this team had their own strengths and weaknesses, however, Aero was definitely able to see how come each one was chosen by Pulaski. Now...if they could work together.




Situation Room

1:45 P.M. Central

Blind Faith


Aero pulled his mask on, fastening the radio headset and immediately synching it with the frequency the rest of the team had. The pressures of a new mission, the young sniper knew the feeling well. However, he grew all too a custom to it as he exhaled slightly. Pulaski was giving everyone the run down on how things were going...until he stopped to mention him.


"And finally, Aero, Catcall believes you could be an integral part of this mission. Assuming you can snipe your target non-lethally through multiple ten inch thick stone buildings, you might be more than a look out.  When your mission is concluded, you're to rendezvous with Helo 1 in the east quadrant of the city.  But you will not receive pick up unless you have the target, or the target is dead. And if he's dead, boys and girls, if he's dead, that means this mission is a failure, and we'll be back at square one.  So do your jobs, and do 'em right."


"Understood, Director Pulaski, sir." Aero gave a stern nod, loading "Angel", tossing it on his back as well as holstering "Tombstone".


This was it...




“Well!  Go on then!  Let ‘er rip!”


Aero grabbed the parachute with the others, putting it on as he looked at Catcall. "Catcall, I'll radio you when I am in position." he simply said, before running and jumping from the plane, hurling towards the earth as he quickly pulled the ripcord and watched as the parachute shot out from the pack, catching the air to slow his decent.


He exhaled slowly as he descended towards the location, trying to pick the best location to land. It had to be high...it had to be in good position to where he could see his objective...then again, he wanted to keep away from the marketplace right away. He'd cause a panic.


Instead, Aero planned to head outside the market, and start scaling a building to get set up.

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Eliza had spent most of the plane ride annoyed at Agent Live and his incessant need to make passes at her. It seemed that no matter how many times she shot him down, he either didn't care or simply could not take the very blatant hint that she wasn't interested. Right now, she was only focused on the mission. The plan was supposed to be simple and simple plans meant that less things could go wrong, but in truth the plan was only 'simple' because they were working with so little information. They only knew what Weaver looked like and that he was dangerous. They knew that he was going to be in Talifah, but they didn't know where. They were on a timetable and the last time they had all be on a mission together they had tried to kill each other. Things were definitely not as simple as they appeared. 


Some of her worries had been quelled by learning that Chatterbox's Latent Potential could aid in reconnaissance, but she feared that McGoo's, and to an extent even Daddy Issue's, unpredictability would jeopardize the mission. Trusting other people wasn't exactly her strong suit and this was really putting her in unchartered waters. Taking a deep breath, Eliza reminded herself that trust was the nature of the beast that she had decided to get into bed with...or rather the decision had been made for her but still there was nothing she could do about it. Just keep moving forward. She had said it before and she would said it again, there was no accounting for other Contractors. 


“Land!?  Ha!  Hahahahaha!  You kids are really off your mark, ain’t cha!?” A sinking feeling overtook Eliza's stomach, like someone had just thrown a heavy stone into a calm lake. “Pulaski says you're to meet up with a ground team in the valley!  Counter sign is 'It's in the shop!'  Well!  Go on then!  Let ‘er rip!” Eliza briefly thought about flicking him off, fed up with his attitude but decided he wasn't worth it. Instead she had to focus on how the plan was already coming unraveled. 


"Gonna kill Pulaski for not telling me about this." She muttered.


"Catcall, I'll radio you when I am in position." Dusty reported, grabbing a parachute and immediately taking the plunge. He had been briefed that this mission may very well rest in his keen eye and sharpshooting ability if Weaver proved to be a handful in close quarters. Eliza had feared that he would've been upset that he was going to be stuck with look out duty for a large part of the mission, but Dusty seemed more than happy to utilize his skill set to help the team. Hopefully the others would prove to be just as forthcoming. 


Figuring she should try set some sort of example, Eliza grabbed a parachute and slung it over her shoulder. Immediately she began to have trouble fastening it with one arm and turned away from the group, refusing to ask for help. It seemed she would rather plummet to death with a faultily secured parachute than to get aid from one of her teammates. After wrestling with the parachute, she turned back around, unfazed. "I'll see you on the ground."


In truth, Eliza had never jumped out of an airplane before. Guiding a parachute to the ground with one arm wasn't exactly the easiest of things, but she didn't have much of a choice. Spinning a bit out of control at first, Eliza managed to catch a favorable gust of wind where she could correct her descent after leaping from the plane. She recalled that when landing you had to be careful or else you could break your legs. She actually laughed at the thought of it. The team leader breaking her legs before the mission even started. 


As the ground neared, she bent her knees and buckled to the earth, rolling end over end before coming to a stop. Pausing she slowly moved her arms and legs to make sure nothing was broken. Reassured that nothing was, she felt a small bit of satisfaction that she had stuck her first skydiving operation. 

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Mute smiled politely as the details of the mission were being given by the Director. However inside she was quite upset at the fact that she was told to avoid Griever. "I bet that woman did this to keep him to herself, she's not going to get away with this, I'll be with him no matter what."

However she didn't say any of this. She knew perfectly well that defying orders wouldn't be safe, at least not openly doing so. Not to mention it wouldn't be very polite to tell the Director "no" to his face.
So she nodded calmly as she sat straight and proper on her seat.


Once the pilot came in Mute found herself giggling slightly at his words. She liked this one, he was certainly honest feeling. And that was very nice indeed. She made sure he could see her smile at him appreciatively while he and the Director exchanged words. It seemed that they'd be heading out very shortly.


She glanced once more around the room. Her allies in this seemed capable, though she worried that they wouldn't be able to work together well. The fact that they didn't actually know anything about what their target can do was quite worrying. Her mind went over what she had learned and she struggled to figure out what his abilities could possibly be.


Realizing her musings were making her seem distracted she snapped out of it. She had to pay attention, be polite. She might be among killers but that wasn't any reason to be rude.

The trip there was long, but she amused herself by observing every inch of Griever she could and committing it to memory. She also tried to speak with Live when she could, as she was amused by the man's occasional crude joke and his overall friendly attitude. She was especially amused at how not amused Catcall was at some of his words.

When Mute wasn't watching Griever she was watching the other girl. She kept having the thought, especially after Live told them about the impromptu skydiving they were to do, that it would be so easy to shove her off and leave it at that.

But no, if she wanted to get rid of her love rival she'd have to be more subtle about it. Thankfully she was quite good at subtle.


Standing at the open plane door, Mute wondered if perhaps she should have looked up how to use a parachute. No time for that, two of them had already gone and she wanted to stick close to her rival if she could. And so, without further ado, she jumped out and sped downward towards the ground.

Fiddling around with the straps and strings and such she was able to work out what she had to use to safely descend. And, after seeing Catcall's timing, she was able to figure out about the right way to go about this.

It reminded her of the unusual math problems her tutor used to give her. Things such as "If you throw someone off a ten story building at a 40 degree angle, how far away from the building will they land?" While she wasn't the best at it she knew enough about angles and velocity to time the landing correctly.


She gave Catcall a smug smile as she landed mere feet away from her, slightly more gracefully. Though she quickly turned it into a much more polite and appropriate expression. "Well that certainly was interesting. Are you alright?"

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The past few days had lead the group to this moment. As they were in the moment, Echo looked around to his other comrades on this mission, recalling what he had learned about all of them. There was Aero, a man whose skill set and powers were far more geared towards recon, lookout and sniping. Overall, he seemed to be fairly objective oriented and while a lone wolf by nature of what his specialization was, he himself didn't seem like one that would put his own whims above a mission. Next was Mute, the girl he had been on the same floor with for most of the prior mission, who seemed to be more in the stealth in department as her powers seemed to be somewhat opposite to his own. He had really no comment on her attitude, nor the fact that she always seemed to be around Griever for whatever reason, and so he seemed to be perfectly fine with her.


Next was Catcall, the leader of their squad, of which Echo found it interesting that, in contrast to the prior person, her powers were quite similar to his own. Of the group, she definitely did seem to have a more commanding presence then the rest of them and Echo wasn't in any position, nor did he have the opinion, to disagree with the decision of her being put in charge. All that left was Griever, the man whose powers and skill set most classified him as an assault. While the man definitely was more geared towards straight combat than anyone else here, he was the only one with a personality that Echo was unsure of. He seemed to have a much more lone wolf feeling to him than Aero did, and given his capabilities Echo wasn't quite sure what to think about how he'd act in the coming mission. Nevertheless, Echo was ready to work with each and every one of them here in this mission. 


As they reached their target area, the group was then informed that they were meant to be leaving the plane via jumping. While not visible across his expression, Echo started to become slightly nervous at the news, tapping his finger against his leg in response to these nerves. He didn't quite like the idea of having to fall through the air for an extended period of time, as it made there was no surface for him to use tremorsense against, effectively partially blinding the boy. Nevertheless, it was part of the mission, and so he would have just had to swallow these nerves down and take the leap. Putting on the parachute, Echo took a deep breath before leaping out of the plane, plummeting towards the ground. The dive having gone without much incident, Echo landed on the ground next to his other comrades, removing the chute and giving them a thumbs up to indicate that he was fine. 

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"Looks like we all made it then." Griever called out to the group as he marched over to them from the crumbled parachute that laid sprawled across the ground. In his left hand, John brandished a large metal suitcase that would occasionally let lose a tell tale metallic clunk after every few steps. Though they had been told multiple times the team's ride into the the hot zone would offer an extensive armory, Griever preferred hand pick his own weaponry before hand and simply carry it around him from the beginning. If worst came to worst and their entrance was compromised; he wouldn't be caught without his Remington 870 Express Tactical, and the FN P90 that he borrowed from HQ...


Casually dusting the dirt off of his suit, Griever watched as a large military issued jeep came into view before puling up near the group of assassins. A subtle flash of the vehicles lights was all the Contractors needed to confirm that the jeep was in fact their transport, and as the team slowly began climbing into their seats, the driver gave them a proper salut before driving off into the night without a word.


"You'll find an a assortment of weapons and equipment in the duffle bags behind your seats." The nameless driver addressed his cargo before making a sharp turn that would certainly send anyone not buckled in tumbling around the inside of the vehicle. "The area I'll be dropping you in will probably be the least saturated with enemy mercenaries, but I'm sure there will still a few still posted around the far edges of the market..." The driver delivered his briefing in a smooth monotone, not once taking his eyes off the road. "These guys will be aggressive on sight, and will not hesitate to open fire should they confirm that you in fact a hostile. This particular group is small time compared to the people you guys are used to dealing with, but don't underestimate their firepower... Ground units have been known to carry Ak-47 rifles as well as a small side arm, and it's not uncommon to see an RPG amongst their ranks." 


Pausing to give the Contractors a moment to process the information he had presented, the driver made another sharp turn before continuing. "At this time, the market should still be somewhat populated; you'll have your stragglers from the night time rush, hagglers, drunks and of curse bums begging for food and coin. Heads up though... the locals aren't very fond of outsiders, and the presence of the mercs seems to have everyone restless. Even the police are scared of these guys and will likely turn a blind eye to anything unsavory they might try, as long as they don't directly injure the civilians... That means you're going to want to keep your heads down. Stick to the shadows and only talk to someone if you absolutely have to." 



A lofty silence hung in the air as the Contractors were forced to accept that the odds were heavily stacked against them. "We'll arrive at the market in an hour if we continue at this speed. Hq has received a tip off that our target will be somewhere in the area for a meeting... I'm sure I don't have to tell you that this is a very big opportunity." 




A small cloud dust took to the air as their ride silently pulled off, leaving the five Contractors at the edge of the market. The air seemed to grow cold as a group of locals took sight of the strangers, and horridly grabbed their children and moved them to the into a nearby building. Despite the time, the market still felt somewhat alive, with bodies smoothly gliding in and out of tents and chattering to the merchants that sat lazily behind carts the held a plethora of trinkets.


Watching as young man quickly ran into his home and loudly shut the building's wooden blinds, Griever hoisted his suitcase over his shoulder and on to his back before shifting his gaze to Catcall. "Alright, so how do you wanna go about this?" He carefully studied her face for any signs of doubt with his usual expression before offering his opinion. "I'd say our best bet is to snag ourselves one of these mercenaries and see what they could tell us about their client's whereabouts..."  








Hi guys, Hollow here to introduce a new feature for this RP! Players, meet the mini-map... I'll be using this sexy little guy to keep track of our positions whilst on missions, as well as mark our enemies and objectives.




Circles = Players: Red is Ren, The cyan is Hollow, green is Sonic, pink is cow, and dark blue is skaia.


Pentagons = Mercenaries, and the arrows will be used to indicate their current movement across the map.


Squares = Police. Whilst not openly aggressive to players, you can expect them to move towards an notable disturbances and probably wont be trying to take you alive...  






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"You'll find an a assortment of weapons and equipment in the duffle bags behind your seats."


Aero quickly began to rummage through the bag, before finding something he knew would be a good thing to have. A cover that was in camo that reflected upon the current landscape. He needed this...getting at a high enough area and having this over him would at least increase his chances of being hidden. "I'll take that..." he said, pulling the cover out and folding it up before tying it to Angel's strap.


"The area I'll be dropping you in will probably be the least saturated with enemy mercenaries, but I'm sure there will still a few still posted around the far edges of the market...These guys will be aggressive on sight, and will not hesitate to open fire should they confirm that you in fact a hostile. This particular group is small time compared to the people you guys are used to dealing with, but don't underestimate their firepower... Ground units have been known to carry Ak-47 rifles as well as a small side arm, and it's not uncommon to see an RPG amongst their ranks."


A frown would've been seen on the sniper's face, had the mask he wore not hidden it. Naturally...we get that I'll be needing to be look out and there's already going to be opposition... he thought, before nodding. Keep it cool...this is nothing you can't handle. Help these guys out the best that you can. Gotta ensure the success of this mission...


Aero exhaled slowly, finally calming himself. He had assessed the abilities of those around him...and he could easily help Catcall formulate a plan. Twas no problem at all...




"I'd say our best bet is to snag ourselves one of these mercenaries and see what they could tell us about their client's whereabouts..."


Aero looked over at Griever, as the group stood in the marketplace. He wasn't wrong in his approach...but then again...


"Hold up a second..." Aero mumbled, activating his Latent Potential, Sniper Vision. It was an open area, so he was thankful for that. Which meant he could see the heat signatures of the mercenaries around the market. "...I'm counting eight. And given the color their heat sigs are giving...they're calm but alert."


This seemed a bit bad for them, but Aero kept his composure. He moved slightly towards Catcall and began to throw out his suggestion. "Catcall, we still don't exactly know which of the eight has the RPG. This would be the perfect opportunity for Echo to use his Tremor Sense. He can possibly figure out which of them has the RPG. Once that happens...we could pick that person away from the group and interrogate."

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Eliza knew that for the most part the equipment in the bag would either prove useless to her or foolhardy to try and bring on a mission without first testing its capabilities. The only thing of value to her in the duffel was a simple garb of a robe-like design that was common of the people of Jordan to wear. Accompanied with the garment was an equally simplistic pashmina scarf that could be used as head covering. Normally, Eliza would like to make her own disguises, but the last two days had been a bit hectic and wardrobe had fallen to the bottom of the to do list. Fortunately, it seemed like Pulaski didn't have his head completely shoved his ass. 


Rolling the clothes up, not wanting to don them immediately, she put them in a smaller pack that would be slung around her shoulder and snugly fastened, less of a hassle than the duffel. The rest of the trip went by without event, Eliza chose to spend it pouring over the details of the plan that she knew she could control. There wasn't a whole lot. It was something that was becoming all too common in this very short time she had been around these people. Unpredictability. She didn't like it. She could only hope that their success would offset her anxiety about it all. 


"Alright, so how do you wanna go about this?" Griever asked. Ideally, Eliza would've liked to avoid all of this. Had she been allowed to come on this mission alone she could've come to the market disguised, the mercenaries wouldn't have suspected a thing and there wouldn't be a need for more conflict. The objective was to deal with Weaver. It wasn't to waste time taking out the hired guns. 


'That's not how teams work.' She reminded herself. Things were different now. It was useless to think about how she would've done in the past. She had to focus on how the present.


"Aero's right. This is a perfect time to get as much information on the enemy as we can before we start making noise. Echo, put that sixth sense of yours to good use and give me a report." Eliza paused, giving Chatterbox a look. "Don't spare the details." 


Once the RPG was located Eliza had to make a decision on who to send to retrieve the mercenary. Naturally she trusted herself the most to get the job done and she had the skill set to do it, especially with the newly acquired disguise. However, Mute's abilities made her the natural choice for stealth objectives. Of course, Eliza didn't trust her anymore than she could paint her left fingernails. Which was to say not at all. Still, perhaps this was her chance to earn that trust. 


"After we find that RPG, Mute will quickly, and quietly, retrieve the mercenary that is holding it for interrogation. We have to avoid detection for as long as possible, is that understood?" She made sure that the last directive was addressed to everyone, just in case one of them felt some need to prove themselves in an act of moronic bravado. 

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Everyone made it just fine, well that was simply delightful. "Good job everyone, I would have been very sad if any of you got hurt." There was absolute sincerity in Mute's voice, as she actually meant her words. With a single exception, of course. Catcall would have been better off losing a leg to go with the missing arm. She didn't say that, however, that would be rude.

She bounced up to Griever, and smiled. "I knew you'd be safe, of course, you can do anything can't you?" Her eyes sparkled with admiration.
One the driver arrived, Mute turned her attention to him, however. It was impolite to ignore a new acquaintance. What kind of lady would she be if she did such a thing? And so she tried, despite his unemotional attitude, to speak warmly towards him during the trip. Though she was bold enough to try and brush her hand against Griever, blushing whenever she made contact.


It seemed they were in quite the dangerous city. Mute couldn't help but be amused at how wrong it seemed for her, in her sundress and hat, to be in such a place. But perhaps it would give her the advantage she needed.

"I'd say our best bet is to snag ourselves one of these mercenaries and see what they could tell us about their client's whereabouts..." 


What a good plan! Mute was about to volunteer to grab one of them. She would make herself look so useful and selfless to The One, it was perfect! But then...

"After we find that RPG, Mute will quickly, and quietly, retrieve the mercenary that is holding it for interrogation. We have to avoid detection for as long as possible, is that understood?"

SHE took her moment away from her. With a huge smile, Mute stood in front of Catcall. "Oh golly that's such a GREAT idea, thank you for suggesting me ma'am, what would we do without you?" There was absolutely no hostility in the girl's voice, however, when she was sure only Catcall would notice, she dropped her facade briefly and glared at the one-armed homewrecker.

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After having landed and taken their uneventful, if not slightly nauseating, car ride the group had eventually found themselves in a marketplace. Retrieving his bag from the car, Echo examined the contents, making sure that everything was in order, before closing it and carrying it around. A simple assault carbine, a handgun, an assortment of stun grenades and a singular combat knife. His gear was fairly standard, as was most of theirs, which was all Echo truly needed. After all, a Contractors worth was measured in their skills, not how big the wallet that paid for them was. With all that settled, it seemed that they were to get down to reconnaissance. As Echo was told to find the man with the rpg, he gave a slight nod of acknowledgement as he bent down and touched his hand to the ground. 


Echo wasn't quite sure if his teammates realized that his power didn't have quite the same degree of determining friend and foe that Aero's did. Whereas that man saw in colors, Echo only saw in shape. And given that he had never actually seen any of these mercs before, pinpointing them would be like trying to find a needle in a haystack, on its own. Thankfully, there were other factors that were there to aid in his search. First off, due to the sniper of the team, he aware that there were eight of them, allowing him to know when he had found all of them. Secondly, given that they practically ran the area, they were probably not afraid to flaunt and showcase their weaponry, which meant that even if the bodies themselves were unrecognizable, the weapons's shapes were ones he was very much familiar with. As such, all he really had to do was find those shapes, especially the long cylindrical one of the RPG, and he would be golden. 


Not too long after he had started, Echo nodded to himself, now having the mercenaries shapes and locations figured out. Standing back up, he looked to Catcall and said, "I found him." With that, Echo went to relay the information of the RPG holder's location to the rest of the group. 

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"Good work Echo." Mute said cheerfully, smiling politely at the non-talkative young man. She looked over in the direction Echo indicated and nodded to herself and adjusted her hat. "Well, I guess I'll get going then. M-miss me?" She said to Griever, with a light blush, before walking past and heading into the market. She made sure to not bring attention to herself, but continued to act naturally, checking the various stalls and sites around the market, inquiring about a few certain items and looking at the merchants with a dazzling smile.


Slowly but surely she moved towards the mercenary she was after, who seemed to be off towards the right, away from the rest. Which made sense, you wouldn't want such firepower in a concentrated group.

Mute acted as though she wasn't paying any attention to the man, as she walked closer, looking around at the market and remarking about how quaint it looked. When she got close enough to the mercenary, she glanced around to be sure she wasn't being watched, and made a bee-line towards him.

"Hello sir, um, I'm not too familiar with this place could you help me with something?" While she spoke, Mute fiddled with the hem of her dress, seeming uncomfortable.


As she stepped closer she brought her knife out of hiding and held it to the man's groin. "You're not going to be able to make any noises soon, so don't try. Come with me and you'll make it out of here with all your pieces intact." That said Mute activated her silence field around the two, and attempted to escort the man around and back in the direction her group was. Though she didn't head straight there, to avoid passing by the other mercenaries she could see.

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 "Well, I guess I'll get going then. M-miss me?"


"Yea yea..." Griever grunted as he pivoted slightly to allow for Mute to pass by him. "Just be sure not to draw any unnecessary attention. We already seem to have a little audience." He tried is bet to avoid eye contact with the young woman. Having spent most of the drive to the market playing a high-stakes game of "don't make any contact with the potential serial killer sitting next to you", the man couldn't help but feel a tinge of relief after finally being out of her presence.


After watching is tiny tormentor vanish into the Market, John glanced around at the merchants as they spoke amongst themselves, occasionally nodding over to the group of americans as they spoke the men and women whispered in their native tongue. Sighing, he placed his back against a nearby cart and turned to his attention to the other. "I'm sure we could find some pretty decent booze here if we try hard enough. The homemade stuff is always the best..." He spoke in his usual tone as he set his suitcase down on the ground.





"You think you'll get away with this?!" Mute's captive attempted to scream but instead was met only with deathly silence as he mouthed the words. Clutching his RPG tightly the man allowed himself to be guided by the American as she kept her knife discreetly pressed to his lower back.


The market patrons seemed to also sense that something was amiss, though given the Mute's innocent appearance, many simply assumed that the mercenary was escorting the young woman somewhere. An unusually civil gesture coming from the group of thugs, but not something unheard of when a beautiful woman was involved... 


Though on the north side of the market, one of patrolling thugs had set his sights on the group of foreigners that seemed to be suspiciously loitering outside of the market without cause. Having not been in the mood to bother contacting any of the other patrols, the mercenary sighed in annoyance before adjusting the strap on his Ak-47 and slowly making his way towards the group of potential trouble makers.  "Damn americans..." He growled as he pushed his way through a small group of shoppers. 


Surveying the scene from the corner of his eye, John let loose a sigh before casually picking up his suitcase and moving towards Catcall. "We've got one at ten o'clock..." He spoke in a low tone as he boldly stepped into the woman's personal space and placed his hand on her side to make it seem as if they were a flirting young couple. "Looks like he's alone, but he'll definitely call for backup once he realizes that he's not only outmanned but out gunned." His gaze shifted to the direction that Mute had went as he whispered into Catcall's ear. "I don't think I need to tell you how far south this will if we all got brought in for questioning, and had left the rest to Mute. Turning this place into a shooting range would be just as bad, but if it's just one of us, he won't feel the need make scene." As he spoke John brought his suitcase up towards her body. "Take the kids and my gear and go meet up with our little head case. I'll hang back and make sure things don't get more messy than they need to be." 


[spoiler= Map]




Circles = Players: Red is Ren, The cyan is Hollow, green is Sonic, pink is cow, and dark blue is skaia.
Pentagons = Mercenaries, and the arrows will be used to indicate their current movement across the map.
Squares = Police. Whilst not openly aggressive to players, you can expect them to move towards an notable disturbances and probably wont be trying to take you alive...  






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Talifah, Jordan

Marketplace, 3:58 A.M.


Purposely but gently bumping his shoulder into his comrade's as he passed by, the armed guard drew his ally's attention to the American tourists.  "Hmm? Al'abalih," he grunted in Arabic as the other guard brushed passed him.  Only raising his head to get a good look at what the fuss was about, the guard tilted his head in confusion and annoyance at how stupid it was that the Americans were traversing unfamiliar territory at such an early time in the morning.  Shaking his head, the guards joined one another, dressed exactly alike and both wielding AK-47 machine guns, tightly gripped.  Pushing up slowly and cautiously, the two guards trailed a third, watching carefully as he seemed to be escorting a younger American girl to the group of adults.  


Their clothing was soft and loose, but appropriate for desert combat.  Light colored turbans and long cotton pants to keep themselves cool.  Their mouths and heads covered, they pushed upwards behind Mute and her victim, not realizing he was the one being held hostage.  The two guards stopped, snickering and sneering softly as they watched their friend coolly escort the young girl to what they assumed to be brother's and sisters.  Letting their guard down and relaxing a bit, one of the two guards leaned against a large wheel barrow, his right hand loosely on the butt of his gun.  "Athir, " the first asked, nodding towards the Americans.  "Ma ryuk fi hudha?" he asked, chuckling softly.


Athir turned his head quickly, smiling beneath his cloak, before turning back to observe the tourists.  "Hal nassu 'annana kunna fi halat harb?  Will tell them go home," Athir joked.  "Kayf jariyat," he said turning to the man who bumped him.  "Burhan.  Lays 'asrahum algharib?" he asked, noting the extreme differences in their appearances, ages, and heights.  


Burhan shrugged.  "Americans strange.  Always different.  But never organized.  Madani sawf nursil lahum beydaan."


But Madani could say or do nothing of the sort, as Mute kept her prisoner from speaking.  As they drew closer to Mute's  group of friends, he remained calm, unmoving, as he waited for  a chance to escape. and fight back.  But he had to act carefully, less he be killed by his own men for betrayal.  Being one of the few of his men fluent in English, he knew he had to speak carefully to these people.  If they were this bold, they were probably dangerous.  With her silence field fading, Mute emphasized the danger that Madani was in, inching her weapon closer to his testicles. 


"If you even whimper without my say so," she said with a grin.  "I'll put you down faster than a sick dog.  Kay?" she asked.


Madani nodded, finally able to hear Mute's voice.  Sweat nervously beading from his brow, he turned his head to Mute slowly, blinking nervously.  "What is it you want?" he asked finally, his only free hand twitching as the weight of the RPG in his other hand became annoying.  Madani looked up from Mute, to the others surrounding him.  They looked him up and down as an enemy, and he did the same to them.  But Madani understood that they were at a stale mate.  The RPG had been loaded long before these Americans arrived.  At this range, it would take the push of a button to kill them all and end their adventure.  Or even if they decided to kill Madani before he could act, they would draw attention to themselves and be outmanned and out gunned in seconds.  In truth, Madani was still at an advantage, even at knife point.


But Eliza knew this as well.  She initially winced when Griever put his arm on her waist, trying her best not to lay him on his ass, but she knew why he did it.  She took a deep breath and analyzed the situation, noting the guards that Murdoch pointed out, even though they seemed docile.  She shook her head, remaining uncomfortably close to Murdoch and trying to play into his role of boyfriend and girlfriend, albeit unwillingly.  "Come with me," Eliza said.  "We need to back her up.  Aero, Echo, find a place to set up.  You can be our eyes in the dark.  Let's go," she ordered, casually taking Murdoch's hand and moving towards Mute.


"Roger that," Aero nodded, casually strolling away into a dark alley.


Echo only nodded, sinking silently into the street as he blended among the commoners and went to work.  


Upon meeting with Mute, Murdoch and Eliza played the role of the touring American couple, who's troublesome little girl had gotten herself into a mess in a new place.  "Aww, Julie.  Why are you bothering this poor man?  Making trouble again, are you?" Eliza said, trying to hint at nearby guards who were watching them.


"Julie?  What are y--oh!  Uh, sorry. . .m-m-mom?" Mute said, forcing herself to laugh.


Eliza quickly shook her head.  "I am kinda like a mom, since ours isn't here, right sis?" she emphasized.


"Right, right!  I guess, so--" Mute caught on, but was interrupted by Madani.  "What is going on?" he whispered harshly.


Eliza's fake smile faded with her back turned to the other guards, as she stared Madani in the face and mimicked his voice.  "Shut up and play along.  You've got some information for me, and you're gonna give it to me."


Madani froze at Catcall's words, as he finally realized what these people were capable of.  His thoughts of suicide became more clear, and his advantage faded in his thoughts, as his lips quivered as he spoke.  "You. . .you're all--"


Mute edged the knife along Madani's pants leg, before he could speak any further.  "That's right big guy.  And if you thought killing us was gonna be easy, you've got another thing coming," Mute said softly as she titled her blade at an angle.  "Now.  You're gonna tell Kitty here what we need to know.  And you're gonna find us a nice quiet place to talk.  Lead the way," she said tapping his thigh with the metal of her knife.  Madani nodded slowly, extending a hand and pretending to guide the 'tourists' to a local residence.  Just beyond the marketplace, out of earshot and out of view of guards, a concrete shack with boarded wooden windows and a mudslab stone roof and a single tin hand made carport over a rust bucket was the next stop for the Contractors.


Catcall peered slowly around the residence, checking the outside and corners for other possible guards, dogs, or disturbances.  Griever stood near the front door, listening intently to the inside to try to make heads or tails of whether or not anyone was home.  Mute kept on the heels of Madani, occasionally shoving him forwards to keep him on his toes.


"Looks clear.  Might be one or two inside.  I heard snoring," Griever whispered as Catcall returned.  


Madani waved a hand a Griever, assuring them it was safe.  "There is no one home!  You hear things!"


"Shut it!" Griever started, turning to Madani.  "You give us away, and I'll let Little Bo Peep cut your nuts off."


"Hey!  Shut up!  We don't have time for this crap" Eliza butted in, looking from Griever to Madani and back.  The boys were silent, as Catcall took point.  "Pay attention," she replied, placing a hand against the door and pressing her shoulder against it slightly.  Eliza could feel the door give way just slightly, meaning it wasn't particularly strong, nor was it locked.  "Eyes up.  Watch your corners," she commanded, forcing Griever to turn around.  "On me."  The Contractors and Madani lined up cautiously behind Eliza, as she opened the door slowly.


But as Griever, Catcall, and Mute entered the tattered down home of civilians, they stopped, and stopped too late.  Opening the door, they spotted a small family of three, sleeping in a huddle on two beds pushed together.  And that's when Madani broke away.  Shoving himself away from Mute and barely escaping Griever's reach, he dropped his rpg at his feet and took a blade from his boot, before shaking awake a mother of one, and covering her mouth to keep her from screaming.


A startled older gentleman bolted up right at the commotion, to see his daughter being held at knife point, and three strangers in his doorway.  He began to yell in horror, as the Contractors looked on, panicked.  The screaming woke his grandson, causing the boy to begin to cry before sprinting over to his grandfather's side.


"Shut up!  Shut up!  Shut up old man!  You too kid!  Shut up!" Madani called out.  


"You son of a jabroni.  I'm gonna slit your--" Griever began.


"I said shut up!" Madani screamed, holding the knife up to the muffled screaming woman's neck.  


"Easy there, buddy.  We're just gonna ask some questions.  Nobody has to--"


"No!  Shut up!  I'm making the demands now!" Madani barked, pushing the knife against the woman's neck just enough to make her whimper.  "I'll ask the questions!  And you'll answer.  And if I don't like your answer, someone's going to die!  If you move out of my sight, someone will die!  If you say anything I don't like, someone will die!  Understand!?" he asked, no longer willing to cooperate.  "Nod if you understand," he growled.  "Nod!"


Griever, Catcall, and Mute nodded slowly, as Madani now took control.


"Good.  Good.  Now close the door.  You're going to start by telling me who you are and why you're here."

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Eliza briefly toyed with the idea of trying to incapacitate the man. In truth, it didn't really matter if he killed the woman that he was holding hostage or the whole family, for that matter. They weren't a part of this mission. Collateral damage was a reality of this job. It happened on the last mission. There had been a lobby full of innocent people that had been fired into. What was one person? Or even one family? As long as the plan was back on track, they were expendable. Of course, if something were to happen with the mercenary in the struggle...then they would be back where they started. And suspicion had already been tossed their way.


"Plus I would think that you would want as little innocent blood on your hands as possible. Red doesn't wash off red." Her conscious delivered a bitter diatribe against her calculative assessment of the situation. The thought of her past transgressions made her sick and wiped away any thought of allowing these people to be collateral for the mission. Eliza gave Madani a cold glare.


"Despite what you think, we're not American." Eliza said, her voice adopting a British accent. It was actually the voice of an actress that starred in one of Eliza's favorite TV show about a decade ago. "We're operatives from MI6, or at least I am. Those blokes technically are American, bloody annoying. But, SIS hooked me up with them for my op here." 


Eliza waited to see if he bought it, or at least believed it enough to allow her to continue. "We're supposed to be gathering intel on the local militia forces to make sure that we aren't gutted, like a few years ago by ISIS." Figuring this would be a good time to sink her hook, Eliza flashed a smile. "Listen, MI6 would pay you a lot more than these damp squibs for whatever information you have."


Eliza hoped that Daddy Issues and that poor excuse for a Cuckoo Bird would be able to hold it together long enough to maintain the charade. Of course, if they didn't then this family's blood would be on their hands, not her's. 

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"Aero, Echo, find a place to set up.  You can be our eyes in the dark."


"Roger that." Aero nodded, casually strolling away into a dark alley with Echo following close behind. Alright. This works out for us now...putting the two of us in a position to call out patterns and send in information. he thought, his eyes surveying around him to find a good building and spot to take a position from.


However, Aero was stopped when he felt Echo tapping his shoulder. He pointed to a building near by that actually was a bit aways from the market itself, but still within the general area.


"That spot will do nicely. C'mon." Aero said with a firm nod, as he and Echo made their way to the building.




It wasn't long before Aero and Echo made their position on the roof of the building, already covered by the camouflage covering that was complimenting the current terrain style. Aero looked down scope and began to survey the area once more. However, he saw something that wasn't there. The man with the RPG...and three of his squad members.


"Damnit...Echo, I need a location on where those four are at." Aero said, glancing over at Echo. "We need to know where that RPG is."


Echo only nodded, his hands already on the roof of the building as he began to use his tremor sense. Finding the RPG wasn't as hard as it was the last time. He was able to remember the shape of the weapon so finding it would be ea- "Damn..."


"What are you seeing Echo?"


"Found the RPG...and the others." Echo started, before sighing. "Unfortunately, seems their in a predicament." He moved his hand and slightly pointed into the direction of a building. "There. Catcall and the others are in there...and the RPG guy seems to be..."


"Holding hostages?" Aero asked, seeing Echo nod. A common tactic, hostages. An easy way to get information from a party and an easy way to get to said party's heart. Which is more valuable: your own life or the lives of the innocent that were dragged in? "Damn. What's worse is that I can't see in there...no window visible in sight. So I can't get a shot."


Things were seeming bad now. However...


That leaves seven armed mercenaries in the market. Guess it means its time to start clearing the way out for us... Aero thought with a smirk. "Echo. We need a noise...and that sfx thing you have might do the trick."


"What noise do you need?" Echo asked, understanding where this was going.


"Just something to get the attention of the mercenaries...we'll take them out one by one." Aero said, already equipping the silencer to his sniper rifle.

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"MI6?  You're from England?" Madani said, starting to chuckle.  He shook his head, pointing his blade at Catcall.  "Something about that doesn't make sense, girl!"  He quickly put the knife back to the victim's neck, pressing it closely against her throat, causing her to squeal.  


"What I don't understand is, if England and Jordan are allies, why would they send spies in the dead of night to track militia?  Would Jordan not want to keep it's relation with England on good terms?" he asked, gently sliding the knife across the mother's neck, causing her to wince as he drew a small amount of blood, but stopped before doing any real damage.  "Or do you take me to be stupid!?" Madani barked.  "Now.  We're going to try this again," Madani growled, snatching up the woman's left hand, and slicing off her pinky.  She howled in pain, trying to pull away and tucking her injured hand into her night gown.  Her son lurched forward out of the grandfather's hands in an attempt to console his mother, wailing for her, but the older man pulled the boy backwards out of fear for his safety.


"You're gonna tell me what's going on!  Or her screaming will draw every one of my men from here to the border, and you'll be dead in minutes," Madani said, placing the knife back to the mother's neck.  "Now talk!  And if you try that British crap again, I'll slit her throat, and the boy will be next!"

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