After the post on Wednesday I figured I should follow up on what happened to end the precarious situation. Don't worry, it's a quick story but it also brings up something interesting that I need to keep in mind when I am running Shadowrun, or for any future gaming events where things are similar.
As was said on Wednesday, the PCs were robbing a pharamceutical company for some drugs needed by other people. Unfortunately, the group ended up taking a lot of wounds in the ensuing fight and things were looking bad. They only had about half the stuff loaded and security was coming. Things could have gotten pretty messy.
The solution came in the form of an older dwarf man named Erick Murdock. Erick worked for the Security company and he was more interested in sending a message to the people who would strike at his clients than in putting some Runners, who otherwise had only used non-lethal rounds, in the hurt box or coffins. He offered a deal to the players. They finish their run, and he pays them to activate a radio receiver when they make the drop so he can recover the stolen goods. No muss, no fuss, and a message gets sent.
Why It Works
This works for a couple of reasons. First and foremost, as a Security company the almost immediate recovery of stolen goods looks good for them. The security on site was a bit lax with backup a bit far away (both things determined before the PCs went in) and that was something I figured a man like Erick Murdock would have advised to fix. In other words, the end situation for the Security Corp is that they recovered the stolen goods, and the only reason it was an issue in the first place is because recommendations they made were ignored. They also have the added benefit of not having a costly exchange of fire with Shadowrunners, now having an in with those runners, and they've dealt a blow to their competitor/enemy and have a line on fixing that issue.
It works for the PCs because, hey, they get paid (they were smart enough to take payment from Erick in product from the store/area rather than a traceable exchange of funds) and they did finish the job. Their reputations should be in the clear.
There is some problems in a person who hird them going missing/dead shortly after, and the fall out from the two corp wars, but that is But hey, that is the nature of Shadowrun.
The Fall Out
The fall out may or may not be interesting. There is still Erick Murdock to deal with, and he could very easily become a good ally or a deadly enemy depending on how things go. I'm thinking of making him a recurring character as he really struck a chord with me and the players even with his brief appearance on camera. I also have a couple ways I could possibly introduce him in other aspects of a few character's lives.
The parent company for the job may also get involved, but they would have to find the runners still. Moreso, they would need to know that the runners were even involved and which ones it was. Johnsons can run with a certain level of autonomy, and last the corp heard the job was handled. They are also going to have issue with the fact that someone they were trying to rip off now knows they did such.
Ultimately, I'm very happy with this outcome. While not lethal for the players it did present some hard choices and consequences from this run could go very deep indeed. It is the kind of ending that leaves a lot of loose strings to turn into their own plot threads later on down the line. Hopefully it works out that way.