Spider's Cage

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Spider's Cage
LocationHorizon Grid, Matrix
Status Threat Level: Semi-Prime
Factions Involved
The Walking People
Host Security
Master Morty
Black IC
Casualties and losses
Captive Matrix individuals were rescued.

The Beginning

M_07 from the Walking People has been contacted by Rachael, an e-ghost from Horizon. The Walking People began investigating a ghost story in the Matrix, a job that occasionally pops up to look for a host and investigate; while many have seen the offer, they believe it to be a honeytrap from GOD. Those that accept the job and investigate never return. The members of the Walking People who went to check this out didn't return. M_07 is one of the remaining members and he offers to forward Rachael's bounty to those who accept, since the e-ghost is also concerned about the possibility. Morty and Spider meet him in their host where he offers them very bountiful payment in Nuyen, but also how to contact Rachael for the job. She has further leads that might lead the two closer to the host. The bodies of the Walking People tribesmen are taken to [Night Claws (Contact)] who manages to stabilize them with IV-dropped nutrients; jacking them out would certainly render them braindead, so the only way to extract them is to go in the host they're in and get them out.

The Host

Finding the host with Rachael's help is relatively easy, but maintaining lucidity upon entering is difficult. Both Morty and Spider are utterly absorbed in the dream-like fugue state the host inflicts upon them and they manage to wake only after some subliminal triggers implying that things may not be as they seem. In a clinic, they're waiting for appointments when Spider comes to her senses and realizes what they were doing before entering, helping Morty remember his true self as well. They're bound by rules of gravity and physics even while in the Matrix as long as they're in the host; Matrix perception checks had revealed the host to be a rogue UV host with a Host Rating of 13. Merely entering the damn thing had been a challenge.

They agree to do their 'annual check-up' as guided by one of the programs posing as a nurse and come to meet a sharply dressed doctor who asks peculiar questions about their mental state. Headaches, feelings of disassociation, inexplicable feelings of wrongness in the world, et cetera. Most likely, the program was probing the new personas for any signs of waking up from the UV fugue state. As they managed to lie convincingly to the program, they're allowed to go. From there on, they start moving around in the atrociously crowded city, cramped and claustrophobic in every sense of the word. The streets are filled constantly with crowds and skyscrapers fill every city block to create suffocating, narrow street lanes. Spider and Morty make their way to a nearby netcafeteria where they use a data terminal to look for further information. This seems to be detected by the host's protections and almost immediately they spot a suit-wearing woman approaching the cafeteria, gun in hand. The two leave the cafe and try to lose their pursuer in the crowd, running into an alleyway and jumping across fences with gravity-defying jumps, hacking their personas' statistics for temporary boosts in physical ability within the host.

More of the Black IC begin to appear in the alleyway, trapping the two on both sides; while Spider and Morty avoid their pistol shots, clearly analogous to powerful data spikes, they're saved by masked rebels on the rooftops that give the two an opening to escape the alley ambush. They manage to rendezvous with the rebels later, revealed to be one of the Walking People tribesmen as well as some other independent deckers that had taken the investigation job. They were trapped but have avoided detection so far; one of them even appears to be running on a Ring of Light deck of all things. Their investigations have shown a nearby nuclear plant to be a hive of activity for the host and that they seem to be forming chunks of big data based on the captive deckers' behavior. Their speech patterns, decisionmaking, subconscious tells, whoever runs the host is studying the very essence of metahumanity, the entire host acting as a rat maze.

Morty and Spider concoct a plan to hack a news tower and broadcast a message to the entire city about the truth of the UV host, hopefully snapping all the dreaming deckers awake to cause as much chaos as possible. In that chaos, they'll then infiltrate the nuclear plant by flying there with hacked physics runtimes and try to find the exit to the host. With further bending of physics, they begin even clipping through solid objects like walls, rendering most security systems obsolete. The blatant violation of physics is detected and there's a brief attack against unknown forms of IC before the two manage to upload the broadcast to every monitor, radio and commlink in the host.

With the first step successful, they manipulate their personas to be able to fly across the sky directly to the power plant where they find multiple captive personas, unable to interact with the host in any way. After a brief decryption and defusing of data bombs, they manage to get several of them out of their containment only to meet a foreign persona that offers cryptic warnings to both of them, implying that it knows the two deckers have angered a larger entity. IT doesn't directly engage with them, exiting the host immediately after which Morty and Spider also do, having guided dozens of captive personas to the exit as well. They send the remaining rebels who are trapped in the city the message about the exit being in the power plant and derezz from the host, snapping back into the real world.


Rachael and M_07 are glad to hear people are safe and offer to spread the word about the UV Host, advising all to steer clear of the job offer from now on.


--- Run Rewards for "Spider's Cage" (Semi-Prime, 32 RVP)

  • 60,000 Nuyen or 120,000 as Cyberdeck upgrades or modules, courtesy of Rachael the ex-Horizon AI (30 RVP)
  • 6 CDP for learning stuff about Matrix threats and spooky drek.
  • -15 GOD Reputation (because some unknown entity ratted out both Morty and Spider to them)

Spider's Initiation Discount

  • Optional Positive Quality for Spider: Tough As Nails 1 (Physical) (5 RVP)
  • Optional Contact for Master Morty: Von Neumann, 8/1 Xenosapient AI (8 RVP)

Player After Action Reports (AARs)

Master Morty

"Diving a UV Host with Spider... Fun times. This one was almost worth staying for, a utopia of near perfection, everyone working together to maintain the perfect unity; to perfect. It was almost the experience I seek, I was clearly tempted to stay, but living under the thumb of anyone doesn't really appeal to me. I prefer to be the Master, and until I can find a way to become just that, I will continue my search for ascension. I will build my own utopia, and all of creation will be welcome to bow down before me."