It began innocently enough, at a supermarket checkout. Corbin was standing in line with bananas and tequila in hand. You know, the usual staples. Lyz was bored out of her skull, so she amused herself with casing the grocery store like she was going to rob it. You know, the usual Thursday afternoon.
Their phones rang. The problem was Lyz didn’t own a cell phone, and Corbin’s phone didn’t sound like that. So they checked their pockets and the CID said, “Ms. Fellows.” How’d that get there? They had been called in for Department-7 work.
They met Norman at the door. He still didn’t get any of Lyz’s jokes and he got down to business: Car jackings, lots of them. They were all within 10 miles of the warehouses, all of them turned up later wrecked, and nobody had any suspects. Except Department-7 suspected shadowkind or magic. You know, the usual suspects.
Norman loaned them some surveillance equipment and a bait car. Unfortunately it was Ms. Fellows’ green Corvette, which was an accident waiting to happen. Corbin took the keys so Lyz couldn’t cause that. They also requisitioned some spell support from Steve, with a plan to trap a perp in the rigged bait car red-handed. ’Course, no plan survives contact with the enemy.
Crunch. It happened that night at a red light when a police cruiser plowed into the Corvette before they’d even gotten it into position. The driver was nowhere to be found, but it looked like there was movement inside. When the cruiser sped off, Corbin tossed Lyz the keys to the ‘Vette and the chase was on. With the back end of the car doing a passable accordion impression, there wasn’t any point in driving safely anymore.
They tailed the cruiser to a warehouse that looked like an inept chop shop. The car parts strewn everywhere were too mangled for reuse or resale. Things scrambled out of the cruiser and into the darkness and hid among the automotive detritus. This was definitely Department-7 style weirdness.
Corbin made a move for the shadows to sneak up on whatever it was hiding in the warehouse. Lyz tried the diplomatic approach. “You no take weapons,” the shadows responded. Things really went sideways when the police showed up and announced they had surrounded the building. It turns out if you steal a police cruiser, they notice that. “Make them go away,” the shadows insisted.
Lyz and Corbin knew their being here was pretty suspicious by itself, so they made a deal: you scratch my back, we don’t all get put in prison. Simple, right? Corbin startled them all from hiding to emphasize the danger they were all in.
The shadows pitched one of their own, the one that drew the short straw, out into the light of the headlights to negotiate. Grubnut was his name, a goblin recently arrived from the other world. It turned out he and his fellow numbskulls were getting their kicks driving these “weapons” like medieval battering rams into whatever they felt would look better with a vehicle jammed into it.
Grubnut, Grognard, Griphook, and Gymn had a hidey hole under the floor of the basement. Just as quickly as they thought they were safe, something big, hairy, and it turns out, stupid, smashed through the hatch where the lot of them had hidden. Why the cops hadn’t yet raided the warehouse was anybody’s guess, and how Big Hairy and Dumb got in was an even bigger mystery. BH&D found Gymn and screamed, “BOSS WANT ANSWER!” Gymn was paralyzed with fear, so BH&D tossed him into a wall to get him talking. That only mildly killed Gymn.
Corbin got a bright idea and emerged from hiding. “Thank God you’re here! I need your help finding those goblins for The Boss.” True to his namesake, BH&D bought the ruse and Corbin was just about to walk out to “go find the goblins” when either the bruiser developed a momentary spark of intelligence or his desire to smash got the better of him. Lyz popped out of hiding to spin the quickly unraveling lie back into shape. ‘Course, it didn’t get them far, and Lyz had to put a in BH&D’s head before he could hose them down with his submachine gun.
They made a break for it, the gunshot sure to draw in the police. If BD&H got past the police, there had to be an opening in the perimeter. The fire escape spilled out into the tree line and gave them cover. Lyz and Corbin took the goblins to Department-7. They needed to be tagged and orientated, and their deal involved getting the goblins more “weapons” anyway. They just didn’t know it would involve passing driver’s ed.
They did however spill the beans on The Boss. Louis Corsone was doing a veritable hiring fair for small time shadowkind crooks. The Corsone Syndicate only played with the big boys, so this meant something was up. Finding out would be for another time, however.
Things wrapped up with something ominous. Doesn’t it always? Liz and Corbin shared a dream: Some pasty fat man in a 3-piece suit went on about them “staying out of things that didn’t involve them.” It was rather non specific.
It was clear now that things were going to get worse before they got better.