Gearing Up
by Tokyo Rose

            Nobody called Desmond Ortiz “Desmond”, and very few people called him “Mister Ortiz”, other than his employees.  Thanks to his portly build and large bald spot, he was “Monk”, and had been for years.  Despite his nickname and genial appearance, his last appearance in church had caused one of the few documented cases of spontaneous roof collapse in New Troy’s history.  He ran the Ortiz Mercantile with an iron hand, an iron heart, and a profane vocabulary that could kill a scorpion at ten paces.  That said, if you wanted something soon, and with a minimum of questions attached, “Monk” Ortiz really was your guardian angel...which probably said a lot about guardian angels in this day and age.  The sound of boots on floor pulled his attention away from his data screen, and his professional smile slid into place on a fine layer of snake oil.  “Well...look at what the fuckin’ cat dragged in.  Johnny Black, as I live and breathe.  What brings you to my fine establishment?”

            The rangy Wastelander smiled.  “As soon as you open a ‘fine establishment’, I’ll tell you what brings me to it.  I came to this dump because I need to stock up for a run, and believe it or not, you come highly recommended.”  He tossed a data chip on the counter, and it slid to a halt almost exactly an inch from Monk’s hand.

            “Johnny, Johnny, you wound me to the quick with such slurs against my character!  Have you no respect for an upstanding businessman?”

            “You know any?”

            “Hell no.  Look at my customers.”  Both men laughed as Monk plugged the chip into his machine.  “Big list, Johnny.  Holding a party?”

            “I wish.  Got some young idiot who thinks he’s found the Lost Archives... wants me to run him and his buddies and more gear than good sense to the backside of Hell to retrieve ‘em.”  Black chuckled.  “I think he’s full of crap, but if he’s stupid enough to go and rich enough to pay me, I consider it a moral obligation to take his credits.”  He nodded to the data chip.  “Food and consumables for six people for thirty days, emergency rations for five more...five twenty liter drums of PVV-80 lubricant, same for hydraulic fluid.  Four sets of BR-540 chipsets for the drive brain, four extra first-aid packs.  There’s a few extra things on the chip, but those are the biggies.  Can you cover that?”

            Monk scrolled down the list on the chip, raised an eyebrow, thought for a minute, and nodded.  “It’s a big order, but I can fit it in.  Take about an hour, assuming you have the credits.”

            Lambert grinned.  “Funny thing, Monk—that’s exactly what your sister told me.”


            “Probably.  I’ll be down at Mama Holt’s getting a coffee.  Tag my link when that stuff’s ready, and I’ll run it you the wear and tear on your delivery droid.”  He was still chuckling when the door closed behind him.


            Mama Holt’s wasn’t the fanciest place in New wasn’t even the fanciest place in the Trade Quarter.  It was one of those not-really-secret places that always seem to exist in big cities.  The lighting was dim but comfortable, the décor was mostly polished wood and spotless plaster, and the food was solid, simple fare served up in big helpings.  It was a quiet place where a good meal, a good measure of peace and quiet, and a thick slab of pie could be had by anybody, and a quiet card game could be had by anybody allowed into the upstairs salon.  Duke Lambert tipped his hat before taking it off, and smiled to the young lady working the door.  “Coffee, pie, and a small table in the back, if you have one, Anita?”

            “Certainly, Mister Lambert...follow me?  I’ll seat you and bring your coffee over in just a minute.”

            Lambert sat quietly, sipping his coffee and watching the light crowd of afternoon customers while his mind played with what he’d learned during the meeting with Cent-Comm.  He was still running through scenarios, and cups of coffee, when his comm vibrated in his pocket.  He pulled it out just long enough to see who it was, then scooped up his coffee and walked out to the vestibule before returning the call.  “Monk?  Black here.  Problem?”  

            “No real problem, Johnny.  All your shit’s ready to ship out.  Just need your credit stick and print.  I also found that info you asked for on ‘Connie’.  You getting sweet on a plastic girl, John?”

            Lambert chuckled.  “Artificial sweetener’s bad for your health, Monk.  I’m just getting too old for some of those long runs.  I’m looking for a co-driver and engineer, and let’s face it... if I’m gonna be sharing cubes with somebody, I’d rather ‘somebody’ that looked like her than like you.”

            “Johnny, as much as it wounds me, I have to give you that one.  Get yer ass back here and pay for this stuff, okay?”

            “Be there in about half a cup, Monk.”  He clicked off the link, tossed back the last of the coffee, and went back inside to pay his tab, all the while wondering exactly how deep a shit-pit he’d agreed to go snorkeling in this time...

Black's Briefing
by Tokyo Rose

Marion Lambert took a long sip of coffee, and used the moment to size up the… person across the table.  It was never easy to play poker against an android, and he had the distinct feeling that Cent-Comm hadn’t asked him here to play penny-ante.  “Thanks kindly for the coffee, ma’am, but I get the feeling you didn’t invite me here for coffee and conversation.”

“Not really, Mister Lambert.  New Troy needs someone with your... unique set of skills, and while you don’t come ‘highly recommended’, you do have a track record for discretion and...ethical behavior.”

Lambert half-smiled.  “You need a freight hauler?”

“Don’t be disingenuous, Mister Lambert.  We both know that if I concatenated the criminal records of your various aliases and printed out the list, I could pave a highway to New Sparta with them.  If I needed a simple truck driver, I could get one a lot cheaper.”

The half smile became a quiet chuckle.  “I could try the ‘affronted innocent’ act, but what the hell, we both know better.”  Another sip of coffee.  “ need something moved from A to B, and you want plausible deniability in case something goes wrong.”

“Not something.  Someone.”

Lambert set the coffee mug on the table and nodded.  “You want me to smuggle Lynn Taylor out of Nova Roma for you.”

It wasn’t really possible for a doll to do a spit-take, go pale, or look faint, but Cent-Comm managed all three at once.  “How in the name of Helios—”

“Calm down, ma’am.  You don’t have a security least not that serious a one.  It’s just an obvious guess, based on available data.”

“I’ve made a point of not putting anything about this out on the webs, or even having open meetings about it.  Who tipped you off?”

“Even if it was ‘somebody’, you know damned well that I wouldn’t tell you... but since you asked, it had to be somebody important.  If some common citizen had gotten scooped up, you’d ignore it.  If it was somebody moderately important, you’d just send Livius a credit chip, and he’d send you a citizen.  That leaves the really important people, and there aren’t many of those.”  Another sip of coffee.  “If it was somebody who knew something, Livius wouldn’t be sending you a message.  He’d strip their brains for whatever it was, and never tell you he’d done it—they’d just be gone.  That leaves a very important person, who’s important for non-obvious reasons, who goes outside New Troy often enough to get grabbed.  Lynn Taylor’s been dating a kid from Sparta for a while now, so she was an obvious guess.  You just confirmed it.”

Cent-Comm scowled faintly.

“Don’t be fooled by the hat and tie, ma’am.  I make my living brokering goods and info.  If I wasn’t really good at putting facts together fast, I’d starve.  Or get shot.”

“So.  Will you do it?”

“It’s a challenge.  If I say ‘yes’, you do realize that I’m going to have a lot of conditions on this, don’t you?”

“Such as?”

“With all due respect, ma’am, this isn’t my spat.  I live Out There.  Whatever happens if and when I do this, a week later, I’ll have to do business in Nova Roma.  I can’t let myself be implicated in some plot that winds up blowing a big crater in the city, or shooting up the place.... well, not too badly.”  Lambert chuckled.  “Anything that looks, smells, or acts like New Troy Mil-Sec will change the game from ‘if I get caught, I go to prison’ to ‘if I get caught, I’ll be executed, if I’m lucky’.  Anything that does too much damage, and I’ve lost a large and profitable market for the rest of my life.  If you want me to try this, it’s got to be a sterile, covert operation, or I can’t afford to play at any price.”

“I see your point.  So...”

old incentives
by Centcomm

Been updating various profiles -  so for your enjoyment here are some of the old incentives ..

also looking into trying to find out something to help with donations - maybe offering artwork or something for a donation 5 to 10 bucks gets you soandso , if anyone reads this let me know via PM...



Dollys Broke MOM!!!!
by Centcomm

just a little thing i found -


and just for fun

enjoy :D

thank you !
by Centcomm

ok this is awesome 37 subscribers - *gleee* there is no way to thank each of you as much as i want!

set construction and other issues are still being worked out - my poor computer really really hates me, also on a personal note its well known that a lot of people happen to use the same tools as i do - however i constantly hunt for "diffrent" items and often spend hours trying to make something my own - recoloring / retexturing and so on about 4 years ago ( maybe 2 ) i picked up a aircraft with the intent of useing it in the story - its a nice model well constructed , good textures - a week ago or so the same model shows up in 4 other webcomics ..

this is the craft in question -

sighs found out DAZ put the bloodything on sale so now everyone seems to have bought it and used it the same week..

i go to a lot of trouble to make this little comic the best i can for you guys . and i dont want to seem as if im "copying" other daz / poser comics- trust me im not, any vehicle , prop or set that appears in datachasers is not "borrowed" from another comic nor are ideas. my universe is mine - it would be nice to do this as a tottally drawn comic but thats not possable at this time - so ill use the media i have. i know a lot of daz /poser also use a fuax "drawn" render style or post production in photoshop to make it seem "drawn" but its not - and i prefer the clean render sttyle im useing. so onward and outward - again i cant thank all you guys enough -

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