The Second Strike
|The Second Strike|
|Part of By Royal Decree|
|Casualties and losses|
|Black Site Agents|
In which the runners liberate a group of prisoners from a mysterious black site.
Mysterious forces continue their plans, building off the momentum of a prior mission. Ares employee Alissa Johnson was kidnapped from her room inside of a corporate compound. With few signs of the perpetrators, the crime was a mystery, Ares working quietly to investigate the intrusion, but not finding much.
Orchestrating events from behind the scene, the J pulled together a team of runners to recover Alissa from the organization that took her, wanting her free for unspecified purposes.
The runners are contacted individually by their fixers and told to meet with their Johnson (evidently an elf who has been making waves in Bellevue’s social circles in recent weeks). They find themselves directed to a warehouse, where they are met by an elf at the door and lead inside to meet with their Johnson. Before telling them what she needs from them, she asks what they want from her - after a brief debate (money, cyberware, bioware, magical supplies, etc.), the J settles on magical supplies and the team accepts this agreement. She tells them that a new gang has been making their way into the city, and that they have kidnapped several people; she has narrowed down their location to a section of Snohomish, and wants the team to track them down and rescue them (especially one who is of particular importance to her). Before they leave, Newt assenses the J and manages to pierce her masking, revealing her to be an elvar - a type of fae spirit - which she shares with the rest of the group.
The team heads to the target area of eastern Snohomish, finding a crappy biker bar (McShane’s) to hang out in and plan their search. One near-bar fight with a bunch of meta-racists later, and Babylon and Spider head to a no-tell motel to conduct some legwork (with Sanjuro to watch over them while they’re unconscious), while Charon waits around the neighborhood to ask around about rumors and Newt investigates as stealthily as she can.
Babylon summons a spirit and asks it to search for the missing person using the picture that the J provided (accompanying it on the astral), with the trail leading to Murry Contracting, a small time construction firm which has a standard ward around it. Spider performs a Matrix search on disappearances in the area, finding that a worker at a nearby factory went missing recently - aside from both missing persons being women however, she doesn’t find any similarities.
While the two of them do their work, Charon heads back to McShane’s and manages to ingratiate herself with the crowd there, convincing them she’s no friend of metahumans and asking them about the goings-on in the neighborhood and about Murry Contracting, though she doesn’t get much useful information; while she does so, Newt scouts out the building physically, looking for signs of alternate ingress points and delivery routes.
Deciding to hit up the Murry Contracting host, Spider notices that it has both a standard destination host as well as a private one; after a failed attempt to hack the private one, she manages to slip inside and finds the place swarming with IC that were deployed to search for intruders, as well as a hidden industrial host. Managing to avoid the notice of the IC, she slips inside and takes a look around, locating a spider and a rigger. Giving the team a moment’s heads up, she engages in cybercombat with the host occupants and the IC, briefly forcing them from the host and quickly grabbing as much camera footage as she can before jacking out.
While the rest of the team get into their armor and prepare to go loud, Newt manages to break into the building, avoiding the notice of the cameras, and find a hidden entrance inside the garage; locating a hidden lever which is presumably used to open it, she uses her psychometry on it to discern that it controls the entrance, feeling the impression of people being lead through the underground base towards a prison block. With the team en-route, Babylon calls up Ether to confirm they aren’t walking into a stronghold of the Ancients or one of their allies, and Charon contacts Silas Vespasiano to figure out if this relates to any Black Lodge interests.
Since the building is full of elves, Babylon proposes taking Charon to them and telling them that she caught her lurking about and that she has a hacker associate to convince them to let her take Charon to the prison cells, while Spider waits to re-infiltrate the host and take control and Newt and Sanjuro (assisted by Babylon’s summoned spirit) prepare to infiltrate through the secret tunnel and draw their attention so that they can all fight their way out together through the escape tunnel.
Babylon approaches the entrance with Charon in cuffs, announcing her presence in Sperethiel and telling the elves inside that she’s reinforcements sent by their bosses and that she caught a vampire sneaking around who was working with a hacker to infiltrate the facility. They are naturally suspicious, especially as they’re on lockdown from the hacking attempt, but a pre-edged con manages to sell the lie enough for them to put both Babylon and Charon in cuffs and escort them inside to the prison.
Once they’re in position, Babylon injects guts and Charon activates her terrorscape, catching the guards off, well, guard - at that moment Spider jumps back into the host and data spikes the decker and the RCC to hell and back, while Sanjuro charges inside and slices down the first elf she sees. Babylon’s spirit of man joins her as backup, while Newt rushes up to the rigger’s armored vehicle and attempts to drop an HE grenade down the barrel of it’s assault cannon; the rigger inside is able to just avoid this however, and Newt barely avoids blowing herself up. The rigger turns their assault cannon on Sanjuro, who’s shot in the chest and soaks it like a champ.
Inside the jail cells, Babylon pretends to cower while Charon goes super saiyan with state of purity and is subsequently lit up by all the other elves present; Babylon uses a chaos spell on the mage and the adept, managing to just avoid a sword slash from the latter, while Charon smashes her way out of her restraints and proceeds to go ham on them, with Spider subverting the prison infrastructure to open the cell doors all while dodging blows from acid and black IC. Out in the garage, Babylon’s spirit manages to slam dunk one of Newt’s grenades into the rigger’s assault cannon, disabling it, and dodges a blow from an incoming fire spirit; Sanjuro chops off the vehicle’s other gun with her sword, and the man spirit deletes the fire spirit with an astral punch. This is enough to goad the rest of the opfor into backing down for the moment.
On the host, Spider continues to battle with the IC, taking a bad hit before managing to get the rest of the doors in the facility to open; however as the IC re-deploys it manages to tag her with a brutal data spike, blowing up her deck and frying her brain in the process. Babylon has her ally go to Spider to pull her jack and trauma patch her, while the rest of the team quickly gather their target (along with the other prisoners) and loot the place for intel about what’s going on there; while searching, Newt discovers and psychometrizes an “interrogation” chamber, earning herself some trauma as well as a key piece of intel which she shares with the team.
Quickly retreating through the escape tunnel (which emerges some distance away in a field of soybeans), the runners manage to escape along with the prisoners, bringing a nearly-dead Spider to the hospital in Sophocles for some medical attention; while en-route, Babylon receives a call from Amrei Veidt, who offers her extra money if she shares a copy of all the digital information recovered from the site - she does so, and has some extra cash wired to her, which she shares with the rest of the team.
At the handoff, the team provides their J with everything they found, and receive their promised payment. In the process Newt mouths off to the fae a bit too much, insulting her to her face and gets magically compelled to grovel for forgiveness before being allowed to leave with a grudge.
16 RVP -> 19 for 1 hour over time 20,000 Nuyen (10 RVP) - (40,000 in foci or reagents) Note the focus is made by "Sarah" if you choose to take it 4000 Nuyen (2 RVP) - from Amrei's bonus 5 Karma (5 RVP) 6 CDP (2 RVP)
For Charon, 1 Chip on Silas Vespasiano
Optional Stuff for Babylon, taken from other rewards: R4 Weapon Focus Hermetic Katana - 28000 in gear rewards (7 RVP) Optional Contact: Amrei Veidt as a 6/2 contact w/ 1 chip (7 RVP)
Spider can buy Rootkit at Chargen price
And just then, Charon hangs up first.
Charon: "Get fucked, nerd."
Player After Action Reports (AARs)
Well that was a shitshow - nearly got into a bar fight with a bunch of metaracists, our hacker went loud with no notice and subsequently got their brain fried, and I nearly got cut in half with a sword. It was a really nice sword, and it’s mine now, but still, if this is what every job for the fae is like I’m going to have some words with whoever’s in charge in the Seelie Court. Frag, we did NOT expect a damn Tir spec-ops team in there, and barely managed to get out alive - frankly I can’t believe that plan to get in worked as long as it did, but somehow here we are.
So our matrix person almost died and Newt got traumatized and then almost got killed by the J who is an "Elvar" and a bunch of metaracists almost died after they were rude to us and it was just a mess. I'm glad Newt's okay. I'm glad Spiders okay. I try so hard to work on my sword stuff and then people run off and get almost killed and I can't help them!!! It's so frustrating! Babylon was really nice though she turned me into a tiger when I asked.
I haven't run with a team that competent in a while. It's a bit relieving to see that I got some professionals to work with, it's just-- they really need to learn how to play more subtly in unfavourable environments. Walking into a Snohomish bar and almost starting a barfight is like, good god, man, get a grip and play for the job, not for your ego. I know, I know, that's rich coming from me, but they can go on their crusades on their own time. On the job, it's more important to do what you're there to do. Too bad it ended up being a dead end, though -- I wasted hours of my life talking to some forty-year old closetheads for no actual benefit. Christ, I felt my IQ drop.
"That. Fucking. Johnson. Mind magic. Mind magic! That fucking fae used mind magic to make me grovel because I wouldn't let her talk down to me. This whole job was a mess. It went loud way too early and we were forced into an incredibly bad situation. I don't know what Babylon and that vampire did in that bunker but I'm amazed they managed to come out alive. Of course I had to assense the bunker's contents, including a torture table, all for extra information to give to the J. Who then mind magicked me. At least Sanjuro was there."