Party at the Fox Den

It was another wild night in Cyber City’s Inner Circle district. The Foxes were putting on a punk rock concert and faction leader Vicky Violet was about to take center stage with her band of colorful cyborgs, each one equipped with its own enhanced instrument.
“This one’s for my sister,” yelled Vicky as her pink guitar shot a laser beam up into the lighting truss, frying a spotlight. “Anyone else want to mess with me tonight?!”
The crowd offered no objections and the night’s headline act got straight into their set. The boisterous crowd of women jumped and thrashed as Vicky and her band knocked out banger after banger. The windows rattled, the floor trembled; the sound level was close to painful.
The band paused between songs. Vicky took a moment to compose herself and looked around the nightclub. It was overflowing beyond full capacity. Over to the side of the room she noticed a few new faces, certainly not Foxes. Those guys looked like Mercs. Foxes and Mercs often worked together on odd jobs in Cyber City, so one or two entering the club was not a big deal. The Foxes even had a few Mercs working security on the doors. Several of them together in the same place at the same time however was a serious cause for concern. Vicky took the mic off the stand and made an announcement.
“Welcome gentlemen. You’re in the Fox Den now.”
A thunderous roar clamored from the crowd. Some women shrieked while others hurled their drinks at the group of men.
“Our vixens have their eyes peeled so you better behave yourselves and there’ll be no trouble.”
A single arm raised up from the group of men and gave a thumbs up. Vicky acknowledged the gesture and shot another laser beam up to the ceiling to release the crowd from their patient waiting.
“All right, ladies, let’s rock!”
The next song was a smasher and the crowd went wild. A mosh pit formed and widened out to the side of the room where the Mercs were standing. The spill jostled out into the group of men and it wasn’t long before an adventurous hand reached out to grab a feel of some foxy garments.
“Wrong girl,” said the furious Fox as she swung her fist in his face, instantly flooring the Merc. The crowd went wild and reached an even higher volume. A fellow Merc dragged his unconscious teammate away from the ruckus to the ladies’ room. There was no men’s room in the Fox Den.
“What are you guys doing here?” said a startled green haired woman as she looked up from the sink.
“Just here for some good vibes. You girls sure know how to party.”
“That we do. What’s with your friend?”
“Got a bit too close to the action. One of your lady friends showed him his place. He’s lucky he still has teeth. Say, I think I recognize you.”
The green haired woman continued to wash her hands while looking him up and down through the mirror, “You’re Mercs, aren’t you?”
“Who’s asking?”
“A sly Fox. I’ve worked on a few of your jobs. Maybe that’s where you saw me?”
“I guess. What’s your name?”
“I’m Ryder. This bag of bones is Drake, he’ll wake up soon.” Ryder gave his colleague a nudge in the ribs but he didn’t move.
The relative quiet of the ladies’ room was suddenly disturbed as the furious Fox entered and saw the two men.
“If either of you lay another finger on me, or any of our girls, you’ll be eating dinner through a tube.”
“Yes, Ma’am!”
“Go easy, Rachel,” said Jade. “These guys are legit, I’ve worked with them before.”
“I don’t trust them, Jade. Watch yourself, honey.” Rachel left the room in a hurry, leaping back into the madness on the dancefloor.
“She’s a wild one,” Ryder quipped.
“Don’t worry about, Rach. We’re all a bit jittery but we’re nothing without each other.”
“What about Vicky? She knows how to work the crowd.”
“She’s our strength. We were just a group of crazy punk chicks, until she fell from the sky into our lives.”
“Fell from the sky?”
“Yeah. Her sister pushed her off the Cyber Ball. Didn’t you know? Vicky used to be a Corpo. Her sister’s still a Director there.”
“That’s insane!”
“We found her in a dumpster. She’d be a goner for sure if she hadn’t landed in there. We took her in and she became one of us.” Jade paused to reflect. “We hate everything that those greedy Corpos are doing to Cyber City and Vicky’s transformation inspired us all. That’s we chose her to be our leader.”
Drake groaned and moved awkwardly.
“I gotta take care of this guy. It was nice talking to you, Jade.”
“You too, Ryder. You should come by again some time.”
It took a few hours for the crowd to clear out after the final song. The cyborgs got to work mending the damage caused by the guitar’s laser beams. Repair drones elevated to the truss and fixed the flickering lights. Vicky and her closest faction members retreated backstage where they got straight to business. Rachel was the first to speak.
“We need better security, Vicky. There’s no reason why we should have so many Mercs up in here at once. Those guys are meant to be providing security; now they’re just sneaking in to cop a feel!”
“Relax, Rach, they’re not all that bad.”
“You would say that, Jade. I saw how you were eyeing up that guy in the ladies’ room tonight.”
“Enough already, ladies,” interjected Vicky. “I’m aware of the security issue and I’m dealing with it. But, now is not the time to chit chat.”
The bickering women nodded and walked to the center of the room where a table covered in weapons and high-tech equipment awaited.
“Strap up,” said Vicky. “We’re going to take a little trip to the Zoo.”
The Zoo was their code word for the Zeus Zoological headquarters, the Corpo organization led by Rosa Mirella, Vicky’s sister. The faction members looked on in awe, they had waited a long time for this announcement. There had long been a promise of payback for Rosa’s behavior, but nobody knew what or when. Vicky had kept her plans secret, up until now.
“Tonight’s the night, girls. I wanted to treat you to a little concert first, get you all hyped up. I hope you enjoyed that little taster, because now is when we get to play these instruments for real.
“If any Corpos get in our way, we’ll make ‘em sing. But remember, no matter what happens, no matter who gets hurt, I want my sister back here alive. Make damn sure of that.”