High Octane

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Chapter 5- New blood

Yo Nat! Pass me the chip!“, Krypto called out- hanging upside-down from a rope tied around his feet. Nat tossed him a small case. Krypto opened it- to reveal a CPU so powerful that Krypto couldn’t even comprehend it, measure it, calculate it, or anything. With steady hands, he held the chip in a metallic assistant arm protruding from a backpack- with needle-like fingers so thin they could pierce the tiniest of holes. With machine-like precision and steadiness, the arm slotted the chip into its correct place.

“Alright, hit the power!“, Krypto called to Nat. Natasha pulled a large lever- and the massive device underneath Krypto whirred to life. Green LED lights shining. Liquid nitrogen cooling system flowing. Gears clicking. B.R.U.T.U.S was alive.

“FUCK YEAH, MAN! LET’S GO!“, Krypto exclaimed as he untied himself- before dropping roughly 20 feet and landing smoothly on an exoskeleton-assisted pair of legs.

Krypto and Nat stood before Mr Voodoo and his new recruits in the capacious bunker. Much like the entranceway, the walls were lined with pristine, shining metal. Bright white lights shone and reflected off of the walls perfectly- illuminating the bunker perfectly. In the back left corner was an open garage with numerous car lifts, shelves of tools, parts, toolboxes all scattered around the area. Miss Zero’s 2071 Cadillac Luxe sat atop one of the car lifts; a red piece of Twilight City luxury, with plaid white leather seats, pink-tinted windows, and gold-coloured trimming. B.R.U.T.U.S occupied most of the bottom right corner- where the group were stood- right outside of Krypto’s room, which was away from the other’s in the bottom left corner. The back right was lined with cars, motorbikes, quadbikes, drones. Basically what made a racing gang a racing gang: vehicles.

“I leave for a week and you two build... whatever the fuck this is!“, Mr Voodoo questioned. Krypto darted towards him energetically.

“This, amigo, is a fuckin’ supercomputer!“, Krypto responded in a Latino accent. Mr Voodoo chuckled.

I should probably explain to you who the fuck Krypto is. If you ain’t heard of this kid... well, that’s good in his books. He’s practically a fuckin’ god when it comes to technology and cars. And hacking. He’s also... well, fuckin’ insane. A true adrenalin junkie. And a mad genius. As for his style... its questionable. He wears an Oni mask around others- something about his identity, I dunno. Accompanying that is an oversized hooded jacket- colours including white, red, and black- with numerous tassels and loose straps everywhere. Underneath that is a grey... something. Jumper? Hoodie? Anyway, its grey. He usually also wears black, baggy shorts- with a white Japanese logo or word of some kind.

But the kid’s tech? Off the charts! We’re talking a smartphone which can hack cars, cyborgs, buildings. Whatever Krypto wants to control, he can control- provided it’s got some sort of wiring. The entire city’s at the kids fingertips with the press of a button. A full-leg exoskeletal system- enabling shock absorption from literal hundreds of feet and incredibly fast running. A backpack with two extra arms! He’s just completely fuckin’ mad. Oh, and lots of Juice. Juice is literally the only thing he drinks. Damn lime liquid’s got so much sugar and caffeine that he barely sleeps. I’ll leave a sketch of him done by an artist here.

See what I mean by questionable style?

“A supercomputer? How the fuck d’ya get one of those?“, Mr Voodoo pressed. Krypto cackled from behind his Oni mask.

“We built it, Voodoo!“, Krypto responded with a maniacal tone to his voice.

“But where’d you get the parts? And the schematics?“, Voodoo interrogated. Krypto appeared unable to stand still- jolting randomly. Oh yeah. He’s got ADHD. Probably why the kid never stops bouncing off the damn walls. ADHD and Juice ain’t a good combo.

“Does it matter? We’ve got a supercomputer, bro! Do you know how much shit we can do with one ’a these things? B.R.U.T.U.S could probably take down TC in an hour, amigo!”

“So you stole the schematics AND parts for a supercomputer, BUILT IT, and got it running in a week?“. Krypto shrugged- as if that were just a standard Tuesday night for him.

“Yeah!“. Voodoo put a hand on the kid’s left shoulder.

“Krypto... this is why I love you, brother!“, Voodoo responded energetically and optimistically- bringing Krypto in for a brief hug and pat on the back. The kid ain’t big on sociality.

“I told you to keep an eye on ’im, Nat!“, Voodoo exclaimed, turning to the red-haired woman standing next to Krypto.

“I promise you; he didn’t leave my sight!“, Natasha responded sarcastically. Natasha was like Mr Voodoo’s daughter. A born-and-raised street kid- much like Hugo- Voodoo took her in whilst he was still running a mechanic shop back in... I don’t know when. Voodoo basically raised Nat- training her to be a mechanic and racer. And a damn good mechanic, and an even better racer- at that. The two are extremely close. Like true father and daughter. And Voodoo’s very protective of her. Much like how he is with his rides.

She’s also like a brother to Krypto. They’re complete binary opposites to each other- as Nat’s a lot more serious, but that’s because she’s not got Juice flowing through her system 24/7. And because she’s not fuckin’ crazy.

“Where’s TC Chopper?“, Voodoo asked,

“I dunno, probably doing our taxes, amigo!“. TC Chopper’s the businessman of the Ghosty Boys. He manages everything money: the cuts, the businesses, investments, taxes. All the behind-the-scenes shit which keeps cash flowing and pockets lined. He’s damn good at it, too. Guy can crunch numbers like nobody’s business.

Krypto soon noticed Hugo and Lillian standing behind Mr Voodoo.

“Hey hey, Ace! Good to see you, brother!“, he said, approaching Hugo and clutching his arm in a handshake. “And, uh, who’s this spicy senorita, eh?“, Krypto continued, pointing at Lillian. She blushed a little.

“This is new recruit. Everyone... welcome Wraith to the family.“, Voodoo responded. “She’s our newest member.“. Lillian then went and shook hands- first awkwardly with Krypto, and then firmly with Natasha. Lillian immediately felt a connection with Nat- probably because she was the only other girl in the group, besides Miss Zero. But she was out on business, as always.

“Now, as much as I’m sure we all wanna stand on ceremony, we got a job to do. Ceremony’ll come later. Krypto, you got the walkthrough ready?“, Voodoo asked.

“Yeah, should be all good for the AR walkthrough! It’s... a bit experimental so if I accidently fry one of you... I’m sorry!“, Krypto explained, holding a small storage device in his hand. Plugging it into one of B.R.U.T.U.S’ ports, Krypto crossed his fingers for it to work.

“Pray to your gods!“, Krypto demanded, turning around to face the team.

Time to plan a heist.

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