Dr. David Vorn leaned against the hospital wall, trying to blend in with the gurneys, IV stands, and general carts before someone spotted him and called him off for some sort of duty. Or, spirits forbid, to do rounds again before he left.

This is it. No more double shifts. Ever.

“Excuse me, are you Dr. Vorn?”

Oh, god. He tilted his head back, thunking his skull against the wall. “Yes,” he said unenthusiastically. The other guy didn’t take the hint.

“Can I get your opinion on a case?”

No. Frag off. He sighed and finally looked the other man over. He was a tall, pale, gangly human, with an unruly crop of rust red hair, oddly gold colored cybereyes, and a nervous air. “Are you sure you want me to look it over?”

“Yeah. Most definitely.” He was nodding before he started talking and continued the strange, jerking bobs until a few discordant seconds after he finished.

Damn. “All right.” He gestured for – he peered at the other man’s ID badge – Dr. Vincent Taylor to lead the way. Taylor went down the hall in a jerking, bobbing gait that did NOT look comfortable or healthy, but managed to get him along at a fair clip. He stopped at a corner room and disappeared inside without so much as a warning.

David followed, but slowly, reluctant to get back to any semblance of work. Fifteen minutes. That’s all I have to stay awake for. Just fifteen minutes. He sighed again and picked up the chart at the end of a huge bed holding a troll. Ryan Wong, admitted 1300, for – what the bloody hell? “This is a simple hit and run case.” He turned to Taylor in confusion. “Just overnight observation. Why – ”

“Omigawd, doc, ya gotta do sumthin’!” A gurney suddenly barged in, holding a moaning, panting woman with a distended belly barely concealed with a sheet, pushed by a man best described as falling down drunk.

Automatically, David moved over to check the pregnant woman, ignoring her hysterical whoops and gasps and her husband’s (or whatever’s) equally intelligible slurs. He pulled back the sheet to get a better idea of what exactly was happening, then froze. Gods DAMN it, why do I get all the crackpots? “Congratulations, madam,” he dryly told the gray haired elf, “it’s a healthy young basketball.”

The woman stopped screeching, glared up at him, and drawled in a thick southern accent, “Well damn, I was hoping it would be a football.”


“Oh thank you man, y’ll never know what thish meant ta me, I’ll never ferget’t in m’life -”

“Get off me!” he yelled at the drunk who had attached himself to his leg, blubbering and ranting as best as he could. The doctor could only back up helplessly, unwilling to resort to violence to get the man off but unable to do nothing. He kept backing until he ran into the bed and a hand the size of a ham wrapped around his face and another held what felt like a gun to his head. David froze.

The man continued blubbering. “Eh, Don?” the woman asked, sitting upright and glaring down. “Don, it’s ok. We got him. Don?”

No response. “Don!” she snapped, kicking him. The drunk finally stopped and looked up. “Shut up,” she informed him.

The man looked from her to David, then stood with the precise care of the habitually drunk. “Schoory.”

“Yeah, whatever,” Dr. Taylor snapped, gliding over to the intercom. “Thump? How’s everything on yer end?”

“On a clear day, you can see forever,” a deep woman’s voice warbled from it.

There was a collective pause from the lunatics, then the elf snorted. “Well, looks like it’s all clear,” she drawled. She glared to the left and made a face. “Well, if you understood it, you tell everyone else.”

David watched in shock. There was nothing there, but she continued on. “Shy? You?” she threw back to the empty air. “Don’t gimme none‘a that drek!” She turned back to him. “Goddam spirit,” she drawled in a near confidential whisper, “allus thinks he knows best, showin’ off ”

The Pack

Once, the Pack was a team of slightly berserk shadowrunners that had a philosophy of spitting in the corps’ collective eye and partying hearty. Today, they are a group of psychotic lunatics that have somehow managed to avoid Darwin’s theory in the heart of the Rotten Apple.

The closest the team has to an original member is Scorpion, a human samurai. While he considers himself to be ‘the sane one’ of the team, he’s one of those people that seems to be on an eternal overdose of triple espressos; he’s nervous, has a tendency to twitch, continually overreacts to minor news, and generally needs an elephant tranq to relax. His habits of bloodthirstiness and wenching make the fact that he’s a licensed street doc rather unsettling.

The ‘calming influence’ (as she puts it, and nowhere near the truth) is Slappy, a squirrel (many claim it’s actually a rabid squirrel) shaman named for her ability to take massive damage and bounce right back for more, along with the habit of dishing out massive pain in melee. Even if she does constantly hold conversations with her ‘spirit allies’, not many have the courage to call her nuts. This elf is a strictly no-nonsense person with remarkably limited patience except when it comes to magic and cooking (her specialty, so long as no one minds no meat and lots of nuts).

While Scorpion likes to think he’s in charge, the team actually listens to Donnie D. This formidable phys ad is actually best known as the eternal drunk of the Duck Pond, a small bar/restaurant/club in what was once the Village. Few realize he’s actually the owner. While Donnie’s magical abilities are greater than your average adept, they only seem to work when he’s roaring drunk. This has been a problem for the team, but not so much as the one time they tried to sober him up for a run (which was disastrous, to say the least). Generally, the only signs of his habit are extremely bloodshot eyes, slurring, and a tendency to weave slightly when walking (or running, or standing still). He somehow manages to use a gun very well, though.

Thumper is the most annoying to the rest of her teammates. The massive troll decker speaks almost exclusively in song, taking snippets of various tunes to suit her needs. And if they don’t... well, tough. So long as they’re close. Add in the fact that she is apparently obsessed with late 20th century music for her uses (can’t use modern stuff, nooo), she manages to push buttons very easily. She is apparently oblivious to the fact that she does this; she “never sings” (although this could just be to yank chains some more). Despite her annoying habit, she is a skilled decker.

The runner up for most annoying is the rigger, R (short for Road Runner), who is an admitted kleptomaniac and adrenalin junkie. Any time not taken up with care for her precious vehicles or ‘pets’ (paranormal – and usually highly dangerous – critters that love her as much as she loves them) is spent finding new and improved ways of making a dwarf’s life dangerous.

Rhino is the newest addition to the insanity. While physically imposing, the troll samurai prefers to try the peaceful solutions first (but when the drek hits the fan, get out of his way). Due to the fact that he never says anything – or that he can’t (no one knows, and he hasn’t admitted to anything) – little is known about him other than he likes (and is very good at) painting. However, his silence makes him prime target when any of the others needs to talk about their latest problem.

Let me out of here!!!! A.K.A. Home

I actually wanna go back. To see more bloopers.

Questions? Complaints? Flames? Send it all to Norcumi@backtick.net. I prolly deserve it. ;)

Well, the characters belong to me, and everything else belongs to FASA. No infringement is intended.