So, I'm making a Shadowrun Character, and I don't really know much about him. I've been instructed he is a cop, which means that he needs to have the SINner negative quality. I wanted to try and stay away from a cowboy cop type, so I decided to go with a slightly different archetype. He's got a softer touch with people; he's gregarious and a little free with money. This also comes through in the fact that he's a team player, but a bit old fashioned seeming.
To help play that up, we're making him look physically older by giving him a beard. We're also going to make him seem that way by giving him some anachronisms, like having a pet dog and Animal Empathy. To help keep him from becoming too tech savvy, we've weighed him down with three ranks in Gremlins and Simsense Vertigo. His other positive qualities are Toughness (a nice, generic trait that is always helpful and will help solidify his role as the old, well, tough guy, in the group) and a Home Ground in a neighborhood he normally patrols.
I've yet to assign him any other stats, skills, gear, resources or contacts, but I'm starting to get an idea for how those should work.
* * *
"You're here early Ross," The ever-too-cheery, coffee-fueled receptionist chirped. My head hurt; it always hurt after nights like last night.
"I never left. I don't think half of the guys have had a wink's sleep, so maybe dial it down a tone and order some coffee," I said handing her my credstick. "On me, but just between you and me, OK?"
The chief had the force out all night on some errand we didn't really understand; when the city said we were needed, we jumped, or so he said. I had suited up like any other night with Vic when it happened again.
"You're off the comms Sumter," Vic said through his helmet. I tapped my radio; it was indeed dead.
"That's the second time this week," I said. "I'm telling you Vic, those electronics nerds don't know shit."
"Mine has worked fine since it was issued, even after your other partner chewed on it a little."
"Don't give Lincoln a hard time," I said. We'd named him after the monument we found him near when we drew the lucky straws and got an easy route one night. I'd convinced the chief to let us keep him as a good will ambassador. Lincoln was large for a Shepherd, maybe 100 pounds, so I was convinced he was mixed with something else. Vic said the only thing he was mixed with was bacon and hamburgers.
"I don't spoil him any worse than I spoil you," I had told Vic at the bar one night. It was true, I always bought the first round, and we rarely ever stayed for two. He reached over and pulled the radio from me, bringing me back to that moment.
"Go get it checked it out; we can't have you out there without it," He told me. He was right, and they shuffled him off with someone else who had a partner flake out for some reason. They stuck me in the ops center, a place I hated. All of the various video feeds, and augmented views of the city were disorienting; I don't know how the young bloods did it. The city didn't feel natural or alive like this, it was like a stale, elementary school diorama. And I know of which I speak, since, with Lincoln as my goodwill ambassador, I got sent to whatever school needed a cop for show-and-tell.
Everything had gone well till the VR display rotated. I don't mean in the way it is supposed to rotate; I mean that we were suddenly looking at the city upside down. It took a hard reboot to get it fixed; after that I was relegated to coffee duty.
"Like hell you didn't touch anything Sumter," the chief had shouted at me, splashing coffee as he wildly gesticulated. "Just shut up and watch how we do real damn police work."
And that's what I did as I got the coffee, all night. The patrols called in; it was a normal night for everyone except we all knew something was going on. I don't know if the chief knew exactly what was happening, just that something was happening. Through the night I'd tried to piece things together, but the patrol routes seemed the same as every night; everything seemed the same, except more. People were doubling back over routes; it was a good way to make people nervous.
Then the coffee machine had gone on the fritz, which is when I found myself back at the entrance to the station sliding the receptionist some money to bring us the blackest, hottest coffee she could find. If those assholes in electronics can't even keep a coffee maker online, it was no wonder my gear was always off-kilter.
I made my way back into the ops center, and the chatter was starting to die down. The morning light had that effect on the chief, even though we all knew how bad it was getting. It sort of washed away the worst of the worse. Vic had said it didn't really wash it away, just made it scurry and hide.
"Sumter, you saw the route we had people doubling over last night?" The chief asked me as people started to shuffle about, yawning and looking at their watches. Some were scratching at nascent morning stubble; I had given in and grown in a rich, full beard years ago when I started. Just another reason that the young bloods called me Grandpa; it wasn't even salt and peppering.
"Yes sir," I said. It was one of our regular late night routes because it cut through some of the worse neighborhoods that bordered on the not-yet-terrible neighborhoods. I figured it was because we wanted to keep those neighborhoods from going bad; Vic said they just had the money to pay for the extra attention. I wasn't ready to give in to that cynicism yet.
"Good," The chief said, drowning the last of the stale coffee from last night. "Since you did jack shit last night, you get first dibs on that route. Bring Samuels or someone from the morning shift with you. And for God's sakes, don't break your fucking radio again."
So, a regular day.