Interlude to Episode 16
RUSTY: "I wouldn't have that alien fuck sniffing my shit, let alone your grid-box...."
ELSWORTH: "That was me Jean, I asked Crimson to sniff around a bit...."
CRIMSON: "I AM in your proximity...please cease referring to me as though I were not present...."
RUSTY: "Shut up, freak. Don't you all see this alien is a spy!?! Jesus! ...oh, sorry Father...This group has been looking into alien activity in the Terra-Sol system for a couple of years now...and you let this wired-up-6-foot-tall-walking-vibrator waltz in here and have access to everything you know!?! Francios said you guys were awesome, but how can you just trust this alien in our midst? Jesus-Pete! He's an alien with wires and shit stickin' out of his friggin head...(Rusty then imitates Elsworth's voice...)'Well, nice-ta-meecha Mr. Freakin' alien...please invade my boss's personal grid box and retrieve all her secrets for us!' (and then back in his own voice...)where did this alien come from? At least I have references, and have been temporarily transferred to your unit from another law enforcement agency...where did this toaster-with-legs come from, and WHY?!?!"
(After Rusty's tantrum, there is a moment of silence while everyone considers Rusty's question...and them someone speaks...will it be your character?)
CRIMSON: Crimson is his own man. Aleerians were once human. They are just further down the cybernetic path - "that humans will surely follow." Billy is a prime example.
As far as my loyalties go, I am an Orion citizen, KBI agent, ranked first in class. I believe in a higher power, who is so technologically advanced that even the mechalus can not comprehend. Your Catholic religion is much like our own. It is our belief that in the persuit of technological advances, we will be able to one day reach a point where god will accept us. "We were made in his image." However, we must not lose site of our own humanity.
Unfortunately, there are some Mechali that do not understand this quest and have deterred down a path that I fear is truely the devils work, which will be our downfall. I appologize, I digress.
Steele reaches for his liquour, a filament emerges from his left forearm and sucks the class empty.
BILLY: Alright guys , I think we need a team building night and go over the fine points of working together and respecting the orders of our superiors within reason . Why don't we go to the local pub and get to know our new family members and rehash what we've dine as a team. And Rusty if you don't start respecting our team members a little more we,ll let Stephanie show you the finer points of hand to hand from the weaker sexes point of view. Jean if you'd like to join us first rounds on me.
STEPHANIE: OK, Everyone I have about had it from all of you. Yes I am pissed I didn't sign up for running with a bigot a toaster and a gun theif but I have tried to make the best of it. The next person that gets out of line will have to deal with me in the gym and we will see who walks out of it with the most bruise's. We were put together as a team and my life will at one point or another be in each of your hands. I will not have this anymore. If you can't get along I suggest that you request a reassignement. If you don't want to be reassigned then start acting as a team.
Billy I will make my own decision's on who's ass I will kick and who's I will not. Just make sure before you tell someone that I might kick their ass that your name isn't on that list also.
As for you Elsworth, I don't like the idea for you checking someone's grid box without the rest of the team knowing about it first. And if I ever catch someone invading my privacy like that you will be the first to pay for it. Do you have that. Doctor or not I don't care.
JEAN: "I suggest everybody, CALM THE FUCK DOWN! If there's any ass to be kicked around here I'll do the kicking. DO I MAKE MYSELF CLEAR! Now I think Mr. Eagleclaw has an excellent idea, let's all go down to the Hope (the Forlorn Hope, a local neighborhood bar, and a hangout of the 14th marines) and hoist a pint. That may have sounded like a request but it really wasn't. You know I'm really a charming and lovely women, BUT DON'T PISS ME OFF!"
ELSWORTH: "Hey, I asked Crimson to look at her grid box after WE ALL talked about it. Now, Rusty was being aloof, and may not remember us all deciding to look at Jean's Grid Box traffic, but you guys are leaving me high-and-dry trying to claim we didn't discuss it. Stephanie, Billy, and Jason all seemed to think it was a good idea Jean...and I admit, I am the one who asked Crimson Steele to look at your grid box, but we made this decision as a team. It was a dumb decision, but it was a team decision. And, as a team, I think we need to go to that bar and talk out some issues. We really don't know a lot about Crimson, and maybe we need to know a little more about him."
RUSTY: "I'm never one to turn down a friendly invitation to a bar, Jean. I'll go, but by the end of night I expect to know a little more about this Crimson guy. And I'm not a bigot...I respect all races...all HUMAN races. I have worked endless hours helping the mutant population in the ganger parts of town...and who "mutated" these humans without even a thought to the consequences...fuckin' aliens. I'm no bigot...name one freakin' GOOD ALIEN this group has ever met...name one...of course, feel free to wait until we are at the bar, and I have a frothy beer in hand...." (and Rusty heads for the door...)
I will take out my phone impute the code for my computer Gauntlet in the trunk hooked up to the special antennae
in the car to record and transmit (Im a skill level 3 in surveillance).My gauntlet will transmute to my ear peace
their conversation . ( Is that using advance technology per suggestion?;-))
BILLY & STEPHAINIE STUMBLE BY: Approaching the table Billy recognizes one of the guys. What was his name…Tim, Tom? No you're pretty sure it was Tim. "Hey Tim, join us for a drink? We've got the big table over there", Billy wobbles as he points towards the table Jean and the rest of the team is sitting at. "Thanks guys, but we're just going to sit and bitch about work. Don't need the boss listening to that you know", Tim replies winking at Steph. Steph smiles and leans a little too far forward slowing keeling over towards Tim. Billy uses the opportunity to act like Stephanie has knocked him off balance and grabs the edge of the table placing a K96 model holo device on the underside. The video feed won't do much good, but the audio should be just fine.
Tim reaches up to catch the falling Stephanie, his right hand accidentally closing on her breast. As she is leaning over him, he whispers something in her ear. ("I didn't know you cared darling. Why don't you meet me in the bathroom in a few minutes" he says squeezing your breast.) Steph rights herself and she and Billy make their way back over to the table.
CRIMSON: Crimson tells the party what he found sniffing around the grid boxes:
"I was able to track the Grid-Box that Jean received through 348 different Grid sites on 18 different secure servers including the Orion DOD secure site and the Arasaka site. The trail led to a machine in the Investigative Services Division (ISD) office, on the Evening Star. ISD is the law enforcement division of the Pax Combine."
JEAN: "Why don't we start at the beginning and try and figure out what we know. Some of you guys got started with the bureau working on the Kercinkov case. A real cluster fuck that was. But let's boil it down to what we learned form it.
1) We know Kercinkov had information he was selling to VoidCorp on alien bio-technology.
2) While we don't have any evidence on this I think we should assume that the technology was stolen from our friends at the OSS. Specifically this Majestic group you guys have uncovered.
3) Next you guys stumbled onto the Dreaming Man drug and found some connections with the OSS. Again I think we can lay this at the feet of Majestic. They appeared to be doing some field trials of the drug on hapless junkies and recreational users.
4) What we don't know on this is; Whatever happened to those bald-headed freaks? What were they called, Warriors of the Eye? Warriors of the Third Eye! That was it, wasn't it?
5) On Dreaming Man we know it was a Psionic enhancing drug.
6) Down in Panama I don't know what we figured out. The Aztecs are an oppressive government and would be a good place for these Majestic pukes to try out some of their shit. But we don't have any evidence one way or another on that. What we do know is there was some weird shit going on there. Dead men walking, and all the villagers seemingly dead from the exact same cause of death! And Keepler has never come clean about why he shit his pants and launched a cruise at that pillar.
"Am I going to fast? Any of you guys have any thoughts on this stuff?
ELSWORTH: "Jean, your speed is just fine. We'll catch Stone and Rusty up later. Actually, I appreciate you bringing some focus to all of this!"
RUSTY: "Later, egg-head. Me an you will talk later. Please continue, Jean. I just recently read the reports since Elsworth joined up and began writing his book-length reports...I'll try to offer an outside perspective."
JEAN CONTINUES: "Don't worry Stone it'll all be clearer once you're sober". Looking at Elsworth she asks, "He does get sober sometimes, doesn't he? HEY SKIRT, we need some shots over here", she says, winking at Rusty. "I like the Doc's reports. They keep the bastards upstairs happy. I guess he speaks their language. Anyway, where was I? Six or seven? OK seven it is";
7) We got lucky when you guys went to the Evening Star and had that run in with that associate of Kercinkov's. That sick fuck gave us the disk that Kercinkov had the stolen bio-tech on, to save his own skin. You guys also ran into something in the tunnels of the asteroid, but we'll get back to that in a minute.
8) We set up that VC bastard Dulvolchet with the info. That didn't break my heart any. Son-of-a-bitch was always trying to get in my pants. I think when you set him up though you ran into VoidCorp's pet aliens. The ones Stone ran into just the other day. Those tall freaks...
She says, nudging Stone in the side. Stone however is face down on the table and isn't moving. "Jesus, I sure as hell thought he'd be able to take his liquor better than that". Elsworth quickly comes around the table to check on Stone. After a second he announces, "He's ok, just a little overmedicated. Probably best he dropped off for a minute anyway." OK then, I think nine was next. Rusty, get that bitch over here for another round. Anyway;
9) Our horny chummer Dulvolchet then proceeded to talk some shit to you guys on his way out of town. He gave you the VC spin, but trouble is he may at least have been partially right. Certain elements within our government are playing with Alien tech. I think that scares the hell of the Corpses (VoidCorp). They want us to do their dirty work for them and get it shut down. I don't have any trouble with our buys looking into the tech, only the way they're doing it. Fraggin, testing on the general populace and a bunch of helpless nut cases, besides all the secret shit. That ain't the Orion way. Makes me think they've got a reason to keep everything dark. Nobody'd put up with it if they knew the truth.
10) That reminds me of something else. Your little lovefest with Concord. Didn't think I knew did ya! Well it's drive, you gotta play this how you think is right. But I'm gonna tell you now, you got no cover from me on that one. If the Feds come down on you there's nothin I can do. You made this decision unilaterally, I wasn't consulted otherwise I'd of told you that up front. I don't blame you, but you need to know I can't do anything on that count.
11) Dulvolchet did give you guys a lead, which confirmed the source of Dreaming Man as someone or some group in the government. Going to that sanitarium, and following the drug back from there through the dummy drug company and on to Fort Clark. It seems pretty clear we can call this Majestic work as well, and can assume that they have a base of operations in the ROP at Fort Clark.
"Why don't you guys talk for awhile. I'm getting thirsty. Hey Billy why don't you go fuck that waitress. Then maybe she'd bring us some beer".
BILLY POINTS TO JEANS LEFT: Uh, Jean .. she put a pitcher down next to you while you were on #7.
ELSWORTH: "At a time when we did not know who to trust...when we had no idea who was in on the conspiracies...we DID turn to Concord. I don't regret it...I won't cease contact with them, at least on a casual basis. Concord is our insurance policy. When your own government contains factions willing to kill you for what you know, you have to have some sort of trump card in your pocket. You may consider us completely advised that you won't back us up in that area."
RUSTY: "When its all said and done Jean, you can't promise us you will protect us from Majestic, or any of these other...."
ELSWORTH: (interrupting Rusty) "I got the feeling the other day, that had we not gathered the information we did on Majestic...Agent Smith would have been able to take us into custody. Let's say for a moment we didn't get the info we did...let's say that we didn't get the scoop on Majestic...would you have been able to protect us? Assuming for a minute the answer is NO, I think that is an excellent example of why we need Concord as an option. Don't get us wrong, we appreciate your efforts on our behalf. But, you have to admit you can't protect us when we stick our neck out for something important...."
BILLY: You know Jean , I wouldn't put it past those arrogant OSS fucks to use their alien tech to bug our office on their last visit . If I called in would you OK me checking out some equipment to sweep the area around where they had access ?
JEAN: "Doc, those bastards weren't going to walk out of there with you, no matter what. We all might not have liked the alternative, but I wasn't going to let'em walk off with you, rest assured. I don't blame you for going to Concord. I still think you're Orion patriots. Hell, I believe in what Concord stands for. But that said, what I'm tryin to tell you is the bad guys get wind of it they could use it against you and there's no way I'd be able to cover for you. It looks bad. Talkin to another stellar power. They could do a lot with that. I guess what I'm tryin to tell you is; watch your ass!"
Jean takes another shot glass from the table and quickly knocks it back, slamming it down on the table next to four others, lined up in front of her.
"Hey, keep an eye out for Wild Bill, guys! He'll probably be in later. Hangs out here at The Hope. He used to work down on Rayburn Ave. and might have some interesting insight to share, as long as we keep the cold ones coming. What? Sure Billy. Do whatever you want on the conference room. Can't hurt any. I have the place checked out every time those pricks come to visit."
ELSWORTH: "Jean, you were sort of on a roll there summing up our investigations. If you wouldn't mind continuing your analysis before you do a few too many of those shots...."
RUSTY: (interrupting Elsworth) "So if Jean here knows you guys went to Concord for a little help, then how hard will it be for the psychic-alien-clowns to find out? Seems like this little group's activities are an open book, perhaps we should publish a fuckin' schedule of our day-to-day shit in the Star of the Plains!"
ELSWORTH: "Well, Stone did most of the foot-work establishing our Concord contacts...let's see...a little STIM injection ought to do it........There! He's coming around. Perhaps he can shed some light on how Jean found out about our contact with Concord...unless Jean feels like sharing...."
BILLY: " Hey Jean Wanna Dance " lets see what our friends at the back table have to say about this. I'll wait to see if Wild bill shows up and then go back and sweep the whole floor and if I find any thing I'll try to triangulate location and contact group.
STONE: "If Broken Knuckles hadn't-of shot me, I would'a been fine! Panzy-Assed Butt Munchers, the lot-of-em! "As much as those goat-herder's are good for, they seem to have us where they want us: Wandering around, let'n us find something here or there, but nothing substantial. I don't know if they know about the GC. If they do, it should scare em, a little. What are they going to do? Just because our own crap for brains department can't seem to support us, the unifying gov'ment (GC) might just be the leverage we need. AND...we just might want to advertise what we know. Then, Jean, when they kill us all, you might be a little sorry for not giving us the support we need!
There should be around the clock full force mission, dedicated to cracking these cases or case or whatever.
Stone sniffs the air for any sign of unwarranted attractions, nayerdowells, etc. -2 bonus for enhance senses: 16/8/4
ELSWORTH: "Stone, I'm not saying that Jean hasn't helped us. But considering what we believe is going on...perhaps the KBI should be focusing more resources on this whole Majestic/Orion/Alien connection."
RUSTY: "In the name of survival, I think we should either go after these fucks...investigate them, persecute them, prosecute them, or we should just forget about them all together. Its all or none. Nothing is more dangerous than 'dabbling' in these matters without a real commitment to getting to the bottom of it. I was surprised that Stone and I were the only ones to go after the FON leader we ran into. He knocks the shit out of us, then makes his escape down an elevator shaft...I yelled over the COMM, 'Let's get this guy!' But no one backed me up except Stone. Makes me wonder about what you guys are willing to risk to stop these fuckers."
ELSWORTH: "The FON leader you spoke about was one tough son-of-a-bitch. He just about killed Stephanie...perhaps we were a little out-classed there...."
RUSTY: (interrupting Elsworth) "FUCK THAT! It is all or none when it comes to this sort of shit! These people are terrorists...they kill innocent people...INNOCENT PEOPLE! We are all that stand between these monsters and little children and their mothers. You ever see what one of these bombs does in the middle of a crowd of children and their mothers...to hard working commuters on their way to work...to a church congregation! Next time we have a chance to catch a terrorist leader...we go all out...we put it all on the line to catch that leader....IS THERE A PROBLEM WITH THAT? I mean, let me know now if we are just here for the cool armor and guns...if we are just here for a paycheck...if we aren't willing to really risk it all to bring these monsters into custody...I WANT TO KNOW NOW IF THAT IS HOW IT IS!"
ELSWORTH: "That is NOT why I am here, Rusty. I will put it all on the line every single time to catch these fuckers...I'm just sorry I was acting as support personnel on that mission. How about the rest of you? On the video it did seem like some of you got distracted from the task at hand, and didn't go after the terrorist leader...."
JEAN: "STONE, you ungrateful SHIT! If it wasn't for me you'd still be drinking your own piss is some London nuthouse. I give you assholes every GOD-DAMMED BIT OF SUPPORT YOU DESERVE! I'd like to see you do better. You think every breeder on Terra-Sol gives a shit about what we're dealing with? Do you think even 10% of em would even believe any of this shit in the first place? The ones that would are probably Stone quality nut-jobs anyway. How can you guys trash the KBI? How the hell many agencies of a state government would give you the kind of cover from the Feds you get at the KBI. I appreciate your enthusiasm but you best think about getting the fucking job done and a little less about blaming everybody else because it ain't easy."
"Well Doc, I know a lot of people and they tell me a lot of things. I just listen. That's how I find out what's going on."
"After that outburst I think I need another one of these to get back on track" Jean says belting back another shot. "Anyway, lets get back to something constructive. What number was I on? 12, OK.
12) What did you guys do next? Oh yeah. Your little archeological dig. I think we learned a lot from that, I just don't know how much is relevant to the other stuff we know. I'm sure it'll all get clearer with time, but anyway, we found out that Majestic knows about the origins of E. Ex. Goblinus. It appears they may have been experimenting with the virus and their Dreaming Man drug. Next a Gray ship shows up. Then a Majestic team shows up right afterward. That would indicate to me they're getting help form those little gray fuckers. I think The Dreaming Man is just more alien tech.
You know I was thinking. Why the hell does VoidCorp get the big tall aliens for their pets and we get the little pussy ass looking ones? That just sucks.
13) Next you guys got in touch with the voice on The Evening Star. You know I've got a theory about that voice. If it's true it would indicate that E. Ex. Goblinus and The Dreaming Man don't come from the same place… I think the voice is an AI… Even beyond that I think it's an alien AI! I got from your conversation with it, that either it or its creators are responsible for E. Ex. Goblinus. We know the gray fucks tried to attack it. They're behind Majestic having The Dreaming Man. Ergo the E. Ex. Goblinus belongs to this now third group of externals. Christ, it's hard to tell the players without a scorecard. I think the key to understanding this whole thing might be in finding out why E. Ex. Goblinus was introduced onto Terra-Sol.
14) I haven't got a clue what we learned from that fat bitch at the whorehouse, other than there's some very strange shit out there. I wouldn't be surprised if she has some peripheral connection to all this shit but dammed if I can figure it out. We do know that the Yakuza knows a little something.
"Ok Billy lets dance, I'm getting tired of talking for awhile".
ELSWORTH: "Hey, I just got a message on my med gauntlet. Earlier, I ordered a video analysis of the video from the fight scene at the FON hideout. Analysis of the video reveals that there is some unusual bending of light around the terrorist leader. It also reveals that when Stephanie was missing the leader with her attacks, those misses were consistantly equal distant from the terrorist. This suggests the leader was possibly wearing a displacer field that made him appear at a location where he was not. I suppose this sort of effect could also be produced using paranormal means, but the second part of the information I received seems to rule that out."
"I also ordered a DNA analysis of the FON leader's blood...I gathered the samples from Stephanie's knife. The identify of the individual is clear. He is one Emile Esterbon, without a doubt the most highly wanted Terrorist in Known Space. He is completely notorious...practically a terrorist celebrity. The video images of Esterbon look nothing like the last autheticated picture we have in the KBI files...but I had it checked twice and the DNA is a perfect match. Further testing reveals that Esterbon had some form of stimulant in his system. The experimental test looking for the DNA marker that can denote Psionic abilities showed a NEGATIVE for Esterbon. This suggests it was some sort of displacer field that made him so hard to hit, and not some sort of mind trick."
"This guy would have been a good catch...perhaps the Catch of the Century. I guess we should sort of lay off Jean...I think she is doing what she can."
STONE: We have our answer friends. We are on our own. I'm done arguing. We have all the evidence anyone would ever need for full task force. I'm done playing. Let the fucking fuckers fuck the fuckers!
Number one rule of any ground pounder: Get the right tools for the right job or not at all. I'm not here to save the fucking universe. You think any of this is good for my knoggen? If it's a state job they want, then it's a state job they're gonna get. And by the way, what is the "fucking job?" Why is a state agency worried about Federal affairs? Shouldn't we be focusing on stolen cars and shit?
Hey, where is everyone? Did I pass out again? Shit... Hey punk! were you talk'n to me?
BILLY: On the dance floor With Jean, " Well Jean , I don,t think whoever is the real enemy is is going to have a chance against us , they will never know what to expect from us because we have to be the most dysfunctional squad ever brought together but I think it works. How ? Sigman Fraude couldn't answer that ."
STONE: "Jean, hey, like, you know? I was just saying.... byegones..... the beer and all. You know my background with the RECON squad at Orion. A real good mind-fuck, that was. You've been good to me. I'm sorry. I just don't want what happened to me, happen to everyone else. We need to stick together and kick some alien ass! (no offense, Red)." As Stone slugs Crimson in shoulder, sending some sort of light to go off in the alien's head.
RUSTY: "Wow. Neat trick, for a freak."
BILLY: "Stone, you are off the charts, man! But, you're growing on us... a little sticky growth. The kind that keeps coming back for more. Here's to the team. Gulp."
All: Here! Here! Gulp, Gulp, Gulp, Gulp, Gulp, Gulp........
JEAN: "Whoa Billy, I think I better sit down for a minute." Jean kind of stumbles back to her seat. Grabbing a shot out of Jordan's hand she knocks it back in one smooth motion. "Maybe we better wrap this up before I go bye, bye. Ok so number 17." Jean is drowned out by a chorus of 15! "Oh fuck you guys. 15, 16 just listen up."
15) I think we learned a couple of things from Doc's little trip down memory lane. First it confirmed everything we were suspecting. There is a secret organization within the Orion government that is having dealings with Externals. We even learned their name. Majestic or Majestic 12? Something like that.
16) We also learned that there's some other organization out there trying to do the same thing we are.
17) We'll have to do this again sometime. Maybe next time we can try and figure out some of the questions we need to get answers to.
With that Jean keels over face first into the table.
RUSTY: "Dumb broad..."
ELSWORTH: Elsworth rushed to her side. "Well, shit. Let's see...external analysis shows a high BAC level...as well as slight neural suppression...but liver function is at sufficient levels that the only threat to Jean's life is a mild hang-over. One little dose of Detox ought to prevent the hang-over, and perhaps she'll come around enough that she can help us get her home...."
RUSTY: Rusty nudged Stone, just as Stone had begun nodding off again. "Stick around after the light-weights leave...then we'll get this show on the road!"
STONE: Stone lifted his chin off his chest, one eye open, the other just a glistening slit. "What...what about...about that Wild Bill...Bill guy? Think he'll...he'll show up...tonight?"
RUSTY: Rusty nudged Stone a lot harder. "Shake it off, Stone. Jesus Christ...(Rusty looks upwards) sorry, Lord...you need to stop taking that medication. There's nothing wrong with you...fuck what Doc says...and these meds are fucking up your drinking!"
STEPHANIE: Goes over and picks Jean up. Looks at the boy's and say's don't get any idea's. I'll take Jean home. At this point Jean and Stephanie leave.
GM: Michael Cross (e-mail)