Only God Knows

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Only God Knows
Part of Festering Infestation
Date2082-02-09
GMAsmodeus
LocationRenton
Status Threat Level: High
Factions Involved
ShadowHaven
Carolina Petrovski
Tamanous
Skimmer
Babylon
Dolos
Alchemist and Ghoul Sniper
Casualties and losses
None Two skilled assassins.


Summary

Three elves protect a Humanis member from being assassinated. How did we come to this, even.

Background

Carolina Petrovski tried to purge Renton of all non-human influences with the Renton Crusade, a temporary alliance of metaracist gangs. Using the ghoul outbreak as an excuse, she made a move against the infected and Skraacha alike before being beaten back by runners in a shootout in the Ork Underground where she lost most of her forces. Ever since, she's focused on improving Renton's infrastructure, campaigning to fund a new hospital and fix up some of the roads. Despite this, she's attempted to look into the source of the ghoul outbreak and where it began so it can be nipped in the bud if it ever rears its head again.

The Meet

The team's invited to a biker bar in Snohomish known as the House of Odin. The background count's immense and just by showing up, the three elves are eyed up suspiciously by the bikers. Skimmer in particular gets bothered for wearing a literal Christmas elf outfit, having come straight from work with Saint Nick. Babylon ends up getting scammed by the bartender who sells her a bottle of 'Blood of Valhalla' for 2,000 Nuyen, and only then are they told to stop bothering the bar, instead gestured to the back room. A True Blood stands guard, but a closer look from Babylon shows her that it's in fact a genuine zombie, inhabited by a mediocre necro spirit. Surprised by this, they go past the creature and meet Carolina behind curtains, accompanied by a smoking yellow-eyed vampire. Carolina explains that she's gotten intel about the source of the ghoul outbreak being Tamanous dumping bodies underground. She's begun putting pressure on finding them and has even gotten files about a planned assassination attempt on her directly. The following day, she'll hold a public opening ceremony in northwest Renton for a hospital that is especially equipped to deal with infectious diseases. Tamanous has plans to take her out then, and the runners will instead have to intervene, preferably capturing the assassins alive and keeping her body double alive. She herself "will naturally not trust her life in the hands of three knife ears" -- as she eloquently put it.

The Plan

Given that Carolina knows exactly what the event's going to hold, she has plenty of information to give. The three elves (or technically two elves and a dryad) make a plan to employ the vampire informant's help to erect mana barriers in an apartment block adjacent to the plaza where the event is held, then to keep an eye out for astral presences. Given this is Tamanous, the assassins may be dual-natured. In addition, they have a bodyguard in the form of Skimmer to stay near the double.

The Run

Things begin roughly, with Babylon spotting a bomb under the stage with her chemsniffer nails. It's removed carefully and disarmed by the security detail, but after that comes a peculiar astral signature on Carolina's double's hip. A keychain appears to be an alchemical preparation with great power and Babylon's fire spirit, Hammurabi, manages to identify it. Skimmer removes it carefully with a pair of tongs, then has Hammurabi take it into the mana barrier-reinforced flat nearby where Babylon's unconscious body was mere moments ago. Skimmer also stops the double from being poisoned via a glass that had its inside coated with a thin layer of cyanide and arsenic. With these three attempts already being thwarted, it seems that the assassins were well prepared. Still not finding anything, Babylon's astral form begins to get annoyed.

Skimmer's supernatural intuition lets him stop a tracker chip from being shot at the double, catching it himself and later removing it to run a tag eraser through it. Having approximated where it came from, the fourth floor in the shopping mall on the other side of the plaza, he asks the security detail of the event to send someone to investigate it. Dolos trails three security guards into the mall and uses invisibility to follow them, barely escaping detection as an unwanted element by casting Control Thoughts when one thinks he's spotted him. One of the team's spirits enters the gym where Skimmer saw the shot come from and investigates the fire escape stairwell, coming face to face with a pair of individuals. One immediately throws a Blight Grenade at it, forcing the spirit to materialize, and the ghoul sniper opens fire on the creature, missing just barely by shooting through the blank hole that constitutes the spirit's head. The guards hear this and begin running towards the fire escape, but Hammurabi and Babylon get misdirected by one of her spirits twisting the message as it relays it to instead be sixth floor, sixth room, locker number six.

The alchemist and ghoul jump on the guard rail and start rapidly grinding their way down before getting tagged ever so briefly and knocked off balance. He falls down, cracking his head like an egg and splattering at the bottom floor. His death detonates the fireball preparation in the apartment block, barely contained by the mana barriers that crack and shatter. Babylon flies after the ghoul and, as an astral entity, easily catches up and bolts him unconscious. While the alchemist's commlink's wrecked beyond repair, they get the ghoul, his rifle and commlink intact.

Aftermath

Carolina's impressed by the results. The team peers through the ghoul's commlink and checks the files, finding abduction routes and drop-off points as well as a connection to Renton's Knight-Errant training academy where they picked up surplus gear and posed as cops in Downtown Seattle to kidnap victims. All of their routes intersect in the ACHE, unfortunately. The ghoul's cutter nanites activate, but the vampire present, later revealed to be Mr. Herenight, keeps him alive via magical healing as the cutters rip through his body over and over again. The horrifying screams echo into the biker bar where the team is debriefed, and while Carolina's about to drop their payment for not getting the alchemist alive as well, she's persuaded to pay in full. Herenight, having convinced Carolina to use her resources for this cause, offers limited service in talismongering as a reward. He's unlikely to be seen again by the runners, but Carolina's found out where the organ farm is. Now it's time to strike.

Rewards

  • 32,000 Nuyen OR
  • 64,000 Nuyen worth of foci, provided by Mr. Herenight
  • 2 CDP
  • 3 Humanis Reputation
  • Optional Contact: Carolina Petrovski, 6/1 Humanis Leader (6 RVP or 12 personal CDP)

Player After Action Reports (AARs)

Babylon

I'm not sure if Carolina is secretly an elf-lover or just enjoys bucking tradition, but I'm not complaining - getting paid to guard a Humanis VIP was too hilarious an opportunity to pass up, plus it was worth it just to see her squirm a bit. Frag she really missed her calling as a black mage though, using her *sister* as a body double... I mean like, damn, I thought I had a black heart but that's cold. Still, it was fun playing Mean Girls with her, and that bar had great drinks, so I'm not complaining. Job itself was a wild ride, but Skimmer was a pro as usual and Dolos managed to hold his own as well, so we managed to pull it off in the end. Gotta say that Hereknight guy creeped me out though; I played nice, but I sincerely hope we never cross oneanother's path again. Still, the guy makes one hell of a focus - this ring is probably the nicest thing I've ever owned, and holy frag does it ever pack a punch.

Skimmer

"I find myself walking around in Samsara's shoes this time around, playing the meat shield to Carolina's little sister/body double. It's a harrying position to be in, and I don't much like it. But, I was the one best suited for it, so I guess I win. Thank god Babylon and Dolos were on the team; they did all the heavy lifting as far as brain work was concerned. Hell, I almost watched lil' sister drink poison, blow up, and take a missile up the hoo haw. Thank god for team work. I guess it could have gone worse, and technically we did a good job; I just can't help thinking I would have felt better shooting someone..."