Mykolaiv, Southern Uckraine
A cold breeze came from the river as a freighter slowly started to dock into the shipyard. Most of the southern coast side of the Ukrainian city of Mykolaiv was occupied by a gigantic naval factory created at the dawn of the 20 century but upgraded during the Soviet Union years. Mykolaiv served as an important port and shipyard for the U.R.R.S. And its architecture mixed parts of the former imperial Russia with soviet factories and buildings. A splash announced that the anchor was down and that the Dock workers could already start to move the containers out of the ship. A young man, wearing dark blue jeans a white t-shirt and red sneakers descended from the main deck through a wooden plank. He sported short light blond hair, almost white. His eyes had black sclera and golden iris. But that wasn’t the weirdest part, his arms, and under his jeans, his legs, were made of some kind of alloy, making him seem some kind of robot. Yet he was not, Asura, or Az as he liked to be called was a cyborg, once a human enhanced with advanced technology from the shady Brahma Corporations, a rogue laboratory that built the most advanced weapons to sell to the best buyer.
Az thanked the ship captain, that so kindly brought him for free. –Ya don’t need to thank me friend, anybody that saves me and my ship deserves more than a one or two favors.- The captain, a rugged and seasoned sea wolf, of Russian ascend, was talking about an incident 4 weeks ago, in which Az, during another of his deliveries helped him and his crew when a rogue robot built by the Soviet Union started malfunctioning when the ship was transporting him to be disarmed. The young Cyborg Courier fought against it and disables it before anybody or anything got destroyed by the Rampaging Soviet War Machine. – Even so, I really thank you Captain, I’ll come back before you know it, as I’ll need the right back and you are returning after unloading all the cargo right?- The Captain laughed and replied – You really love yer show? Or you are scared of what yer pretty lady boss will do if you get there late?- The sea wolf laughed out loud, and some of his crew did as well, when against common sense Az blushed. –Nothing like that I only want to keep working, I’m still paying the damage of my landing in the city- said the Cyborg while scratching his head.
–Tough luck robo-kiddo, we may stay a day or two, my boys need some rest and some booze, come after you delivered the package and we’re going to show how the men of the sea throw a party!- The Captain said with a wide smile, Az sighed and said his goodbyes, hoping that the drunken sailor won’t get into any fight, something that only would increase his stay here instead of going back home and keep working. And he really was scared of Catherine, his boss. –I’ll be back in a couple of hours, don’t drink too much Captain- With those words the Cyborg left the dockyard picking up some speed, moving through the deserted warehouses that once hosted the Soviet Union Warships and Cruisers. He was carrying a small object a strange looking statue that seemed Chinese in origin, or so Catherine said. The man that asked for the delivery had a really thick Russian accent and seemed travel weary he asked for an express delivery to Ukraine for an Art Collector. Catherine sent Az, since she smell something fishy about the transaction after checking with some contacts in the Art Market that told her the statue wasn’t any kind of Chinese art they knew, or of any kind.
Even so she decided to take the job as the money was good and she didn’t saw any risk in a delivery so simple. Yet she was wrong, as the delivery wasn’t as simple or harmless as she thought it was. The Art Collector waiting for it wasn’t alone, as he and a small group of people in black and red robes waited the artifact. They were the Scarlet Steel Gathering (Alystalbor) a group of mystics created by the Soviet Union to study and investigate the arcane arts. After the fall of the Soviet Union they went into hiding, and planned to complete only one objective, they reached the conclusion that the fall of the Union started with the death of Joseph Stalin, so they decided to bring him back, and not only giving him renewed life but also the power to reconstruct the Union and destroy their enemies. The Artifact was the last part they needed, to say the truth what was hidden inside it was the key ingredient for their elixir, a sacred wine that was said to belong to one of the fabled 8 Immortals of Chinese Mythology Zhang Guo Lao, which according to legends carried powerful necromantic enchantments.
Asura the Cyborg Courier had a strange hunch about the package he was carrying yet he didn’t say anything and mostly dismissed as nothing in his Sensorial System raised any red flags. He wasn’t expecting to find anybody that wanted to prevent the delivery. He was wrong