What a month. We moved some basic equipment into the new Lazarus HQ just in time to throw a small case-wrap/New Years party in the new observatory, nothing like my typical New Years plans, but hey – the Ottoman was in no condition to bring in a year, either.
New Years Resolution: Upgrade the Cyberware. No spending any money until I got my cyberware hardened – with the money I’ve been making between Lazarus and Aquino Automations, there was no excuse to have unshielded cybernetics – especially with the sort of characters we’ve been dealing with lately. Of course with the Ottoman under renovations, and the little-fish clubs flooded the run off, there was a lot less temptation at the tables than usual… The eyes were a simple fix, but for most of a month, I felt like I was swimming through molasses as agility enhancers adjusted themselves.
On the bright side, It was a month with no distractions in the hangar – the shop was mostly up and running thanks to a healthy investment of the cred burning a hole in pockets – it’s not like I had anything else to spend it on! It’s got basic set-up for anything machine-work/repair the crew might need, it feels like a second home already. The front office was in working order, mostly thanks to the efforts of Candy and Mac – which is especially impressive considering their very tastes and ideas on how things should be done, I think it still breaks Mac’s heart that we didn’t hire a “leggy dame” for a receptionist! At least they didn’t let Pit or Wormwood decorate anything on the main floor – now there’s a way to frighten off clients! The rest of the place is a work in progress, still needing work, but mostly needing time. The office was tense with the open questions of Wormies “extra-curricular activities” and the “Omaha” photo of what is presumably Mac’s grandfather, as soon as my systems were up to par, I knew I needed to get away for a little while, let things sort themselves out.
Once I felt fully recovered, I hit a number of small clubs, hustling poker pushing the house as far as I could before moving on to a new one – it felt great after so long! With a sizable roll built up, I felt it long overdue to take in the sights at the newly refurnished Ottoman. Quality food and exquisite drinks comped to the room, a couple of lovely ladies to help enjoy the luxury, and the thrills of a real casino – this was what money was made for! As hard as it was, I played it smart: Hustle the small time, loose at the Ottoman. The perks of the Platinum Club and the good will of the Bey is worth far more than anything you could buy for cash. Besides, The Bey has made a subtle, non-official encouragement of fleecing cheats before they cause problems with “honest” patrons, so life is good. After a few nights of taking in the Ottoman’s hospitality and a couple new suits from the brilliant on-site tailor, I felt fully recharged and ready for action – hell, if Aquino Automations says in the black and we pull off a couple more paydays like the last few, I just might talk to The Bey about renting out a suite on a more permanent basis – now there’s a real dream!
Fully recharged and ready to go, I had nice weekend with the family – Lechon roast and moon-cake for Chinese New Year, farewell Metal Horse, Welcome Metal Goat! After too much lumpia, San Miguel and questions about when I’m going to settle down and start a serious family, there was a minor scuffle with the Sumantings, but nothing serious – not enough to ruin the weekend.
Before I knew it, it was Monday – and there was a message on my comms for a business meeting at the HQ. Back to work, business as usual. Hopefully, the issues are cool enough deal with, without any major issues keeping us from staying professional.