Shadowrunner Network Exposed
Date: 8/11/2082 By: Carly Reeves
"Carly Reeves here reporting for KSAF; I’m standing outside Metroplex Hall in Downtown, where earlier today District Attorney Mark Donaghy made a speech regarding the ongoing Light the Shadows campaign, which today enters its eighth week with no end in sight.”
The camera cuts to recorded footage of the steps of the seat of the Metroplex government, where DA Mark Donaghy stands behind a podium with a large AR screen in the background; the screen displays images of murder, mayham, and other assorted wanton violence, periodically intercut by still photos of infamous shadowrunners (the likes of Frag Face, Rambozo The Clown and the late King Beef can be seen, alongside many other distinctive and recgonizable likenesses) and the various acts of destruction they have committed throughout the city, along with estimated body counts (stretching into three and four figures).
"Shadowrunners.” The word is filled with venom, and there is nothing short of utter loathing in the District Attorney’s voice. “This is the name for the plague upon our fair city. This is the reason why you, law-abiding citizen, cannot afford to risk leaving your home even in broad daylight without risking becoming mere “collateral damage” of one of these ruthless criminal operations which claim more and more lives with each day that passes.”
At this, the frame cuts back to Carly Reeves.
“For those of you watching at home, what you’re about to see here may be distressing.”
Cut to a chaotic scene apparently recorded from the perspective of a handheld commlink, depicting a heavily armored figure with a liminal body shouting in what seems to be binary code; they appear to be using a chainsaw on innocent civilians, and the smoldering aftermath of a rocket-propelled grenade impact can be seen in the background. The screams and sounds of chainsawing continue for about 10 seconds before the image returns to the District Attorney.
“This. Will. Not. Stand. As a duly elected representative of the people of the Seattle Metroplex, I say no more! No more will innocent civilians be made into the victims of callous murderers, no more will our fair city’s name be dragged through the muck as a wretched hive of scum and villainy - no more will these monsters be free to roam our streets, committing such wanton slaughter with impunity. They will be made to answer for their crimes, I promise you that.
Many people have asked me what the Light the Shadows campaign has accomplished as it enters its eighth week - some have even suggested to me that this initiative is nothing short of a waste of resources and talent which could be put to better use elsewhere. I would ask those of you who harbor doubts as to our goals to watch the following clip and ask yourselves whether or not our endeavors have been ‘worth it’ when confronted with the victims of senseless tragedy.”
A series of short clips are played on the AR display, depicting scenes from interviews with eyewitness to various crimes as well as with the next-of-kin of those who have been killed in events such as what KE is currently dubbing "the incident with the minotaur".
“I would now like to invite someone to speak and to shed some light on this matter, so to speak.”
At this point, Donaghy welcomes a second figure into frame. Their face is digitally obscured, along with their voice, and they wear a simple black suit and tie; from their height and build they appear to be human, though even the figure’s metatype and ethnicity is difficult to determine.
“Greetings. I’d like to start by thanking Mr. Donaghy for allowing me the chance to speak to you today. Until very recently, I was a shadowrunner. I take a great risk in coming here before you today - there will be a price put on my head for it, I’m sure of that - but I feel that I must speak out. There exists within our city networks of organized, freelance criminals who have banded together to aid and abet each other; this network includes a wide variety of shadowrunners, along with what are known in the community as ‘fixers’, as well as fences, smugglers, mechanics, talismongers, and countless others who sell their illicit services to them.
Among its members it is called ShadowHaven, and along with a splinter group known as the NeoHaven is responsible for sheltering those who commit the most egregious criminal and terrorist acts in our city. Among their ranks are the worst of the worst - wanted fugitives, psychotic mass murderers, unrepentant terrorists, and even vampires who drink the blood and souls of the innocent are welcomed with open arms, given the resources and connections that they need to get away with their crimes and continue to terrorize the city in the process. They held a wake for the one who called himself King Beef - to honor his memory. Do you think they honor the memories of their victims? I can assure you from firsthand experience, they do not.”
A hush gathers over the assembled crowd as they take in the anonymous runner’s words; Donaghy returns to the microphone to speak as the blurred figure is led off by police escort. The District Attorney allows a moment for the message to sink in before speaking again, his deep voice calm and full of authority as he addresses his words directly into the camera.
“I want it to be known to any associates of this ShadowHaven: we will come after you with the full authority of the Metroplex government, and we will prosecute you under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act to the fullest extent of the law. You will not be allowed to profit off of this network of murderers and terrorists any longer; cease your association with them immediately, or face the consequences. To those shadowrunners who are a part of this network: come forward and confess your crimes, and you will be granted amnesty as this person has been. I am not a fool or a zealot - I know that not all of you are wanton murderers, but you shelter them amongst your ranks, and if you continue to do so you will be treated as an accessory to their crimes. This wave of violence and mayhem will cease, one way or another.
You have been warned.”
The feed cuts back to Carly Reeves, who gives a small nod to the camera before signing off.
“Stay safe out there everyone.”