Wednesday, 5 June 2013

Shadowrun: All Glory To Tarantino - 10/04/2013

So, our operation had just hit another snag.

Heading up the the room of a hidden scientist with murder in mind, two of our heroes had just found they'd been beaten to the punch. Opening the door, Killbo and Leona (weapons in hand) found the room to be a wreck. The bed had been upturned, dresser flung to one side and various shattered items were scattered across the floor. Of Llewellyn himself there was no sign. no blood stains, no traces of any struggle, no indication that he'd been jumped and then removed.

Killbo, in full paranoid mode, proceeded to enter levels of deduction and jumping to conclusions that would be CSI blush. Ransacking through the place he began looking for any and all signs of where the man had gone, Leona sitting back and just letting him go ahead. Hey, she wasn't being paid to do any of this. Well, admittedly she did have the excuse of not being able to track any blood claiming that "I'll be smelling wine for weeks" and pointed out nothing magical had gone wrong. 

The bugs in the room had been deactivated and lock smashed but mysteriously Llewellyn's com-link had been left behind. Pocketing it Killbo also noticed that while the room had seemingly been taken apart as if looking for something, it had been done in a textbook manner. As if done via an instruction manual and not by someone who knew specifically what they were doing from experience.

Several minutes passed with Killbo becoming increasingly hellbent upon trying to find out the mystery to this room. Unnoticed by his player, the GM had in fact been giving him increasingly less subtle hints that the room did not have the answer. That the room had little to do with the plot and that he was running out of time. It eventually took Amoral's player directly informing him of this fact before the dwarf finally got the message and left to find more clues elsewhere.

One of the few things we did manage to gather was that it had likely been Aztech who had kidnapped the man. Twenty seconds later we were scoping out their room, eyeing up the guard who was mysteriously standing out front. Every Aztech scientist and their bodyguard might have been in the party but that didn't mean the room might not be being used to hold Llewellyn in. With Killbo giving the order to unleash a "drunken haze missile" upon the guard, Leona took him down with a stun bolt. Promptly placing a half empty wine bottle, one of a brace she was carrying, into the unconscious man's hands. With a follow-up spell "find fuckers" she peered through the walls into the next room to see a very drunk Llewellyn being held by two guards.

Our problem in this case was that we needed to kill Llewellyn and recover any data we could that he was going to leak to Aztech. However we couldn't just shoot him in the head, we needed to make it look like an accident. We cycled through every plan imaginable trying to think of a way to kill him from gas leaks to medical drug overdoses. Going through precision planning, thoughts on how to use the air vents, the number of stun grenades required and how much timing we would need.

Then two of us remembered we had mind manipulation abilities, memory editing spells and a talented magic user; and opted to re-enact the "I shot Marvin" scene from Pulp Fiction.

Sometimes I love the freedom RPGs offer.

With Leona's more personalised spirit Mwongo being the one with most of the abilities we needed, Killbo allowed himself to be possessed again. Unfortunately with Chummer working this time it didn't result in a super saiyan dwarf, instead the spirit took over his body and promptly broke out one of his cigars. Dropping any ideas about air vent infiltration, Leona hit Mwongo with an invisibility spell and then hammered loudly on the door. With a wine bottle in each hand and using negotiating tactics Crazy Hassan would be proud of, she forced the door open and tried to press alcohol upon them. All the while trying to be room service of some sort.

As the guard at the door tried to deal with the overzealous red eyed African woman reeking of wine fumes, Mwongo snuck inside and promptly mind controlled the guard next to Llewellyn. The scientist's head disappeared in a whirlwind of crimson chunks a moment later before both guards were promptly clubbed to the ground. A memory edit later had them believe a very different series of events: Having lunged forwards Llewellyn had grabbed the guard's rifle demanding to see it, resulting in the gun going off while he was taking a big long look down the barrel. A few more implanted memories to excuse the unconsciousness and we were good to go.

This did still leave the problem of the missing information we were to recover. As Leona started to search for the papers Mwongo was dispelled, Killbo retaking control of his body with a lingering urge to get dreadlocks. The corpse of the recently deceased scientist was soon revealed to hold what we needed, a data-chip with encrypted files hidden in an indescribable place on his body.

Our job done, we retreated back to our rooms as Amoral got out of his MMO session. Yeah I skipped most of his stuff because it involved a lot of background fighting we didn't really go into. Imagine Left 4 Dead with more swords, spells and you'll have a good idea what it was like. By the end he was just in front of the puzzle section of the quest and waiting for a chance to give a letter to the scientist.

With most of our disappearances having gone unnoticed it seemed everything had gone off without a hitch. Only Hendrick attempted to ask what had happened as a haggard looking Killbo stumbled back into the room; quickly deciding that he really didn't want to know.
That done we skipped to 09:00AM the next morning with Amoral looking worse for wear. Having gotten very little sleep between the raid and hostage situation, he was on the verge of collapse and with a desperate craving for coffee. 

Arriving each in the bottom floor cafe in their own turn orders they began to search for new targets. Leona was first there, serving breakfast in her usual self serving manner, while Killbo scanned the crowd. Spotting the Evo scientists on their own and Hoda heavily guarded, he also spotted Ergu and Lansdale arguing in the corner. Glitching this he also thought he spotted the presented for a minute or so. More interestingly he picked up certain words from Lansdale which were along the lines of "A lucrative opportunity at Evo" and "a troll of your talent," which immediately got his attention.

Taking a table nearby to the two Killbo started to listen in on their converation. Picking up certain details like the fact Lansdale is in pneumatics rather than biotech. As such he was likely sent purely to recruit others.

Amoral promptly arrived at this point and all hell broke loose. Suffering from minor withdrawal symptoms, he started chugging any and all nearby coffee and started trying to improve everything in sight. Thankfully this didn't get the attention of the guards, who were a bit more alert after last night's assassination, only resulting in a staff-member bitch-slapping him back to sanity. This just resulted in him trying to consume all food in sight. Eventually getting close enough for Killbo to drag him into a seat, and lucid enough to listen, the dwarf gave him the chip to decode.

Leaving Amoral to his work, Killbo headed off to get a bit of advice from Nifty. Knowing the latter was an assassin and Killbo couldn't just carpet bomb the guy's location, he asks about poisons. Nifty, being a close and personal killer with a sniper rifle, has little experience with them but suggest painkiller overdoses or a malfunctioning medi-kit. Both would require getting him wounded first. Dropping a hint of appearing in the entrance hall at 10AM, he leaves to continue his own work.

Picking up the paper Nifty had been reading, taking note of a few things happening in Seattle. Stories ranged from a jail-breaking drug user on the run (clearly Wilson), a chain of bank robberies whose methods and names seem very familiar to Killbo, and the Great Fire of the Seattle Extra-Territorial. This ended in a funny story about someone who was apparently knocked unconscious by food she had ordered.
Out the window it was clear there were a few more mercenaries on partrol now, more than Killbo seemed to remember looking at the facility. Another point of concern.

Unfortunately before he could focus upon this something else got his attention. A dejected looking Barton, one of the Evo scientists we were after, stumbled in heading for the bar. Shooing away his bodyguards he sat down and ordered drinks. With this being the one time he seemed to be without armed assistance, Killbo took the time to recruit him. Using advanced knowledge of bars and beverages, Killbo recommended hurlg. This resulted in Barton collapsing unconscious mid depressed rant, just after downing the first of six shots.

Taking this time Killbo proceeded to edit the recruitment message into something more suitable with various eloquent terms surrounding booze. So far as  we could decide it followed something like this:
"A man's talent matures with age like a good beer, but only if it's kept in the right cellar. (...) You are the hops and you will always be provided the best barley. (...) And you'll always have a keg of your own."
Cue two of the man's co-workers appearing to drag him away just as the dwarf finished.

Back at the cafe, Amoral cracked the encryption. Turned out it was of us. Specifically while we were running through Zainou's facility in Norway guns blazing. The entire file consisted of CCTV footage, details, analysis and information from he entire event. And we were to give this to "it's just business" Johnson. Thankfully we were all wearing nanopaste disguises so it wasn't clear who exactly this was, but it was still a point of concern.

With nothing to be done about this, Johnson likely putting a hit on our heads if we tampered with the data, he opted to start dicking about in the background. His fevered state resulted in him performing acts like overclocking a stranger's com-link with a fork and some meat, turning it into bacon flavoured data. Somehow we guessed that we would see one corp or another advertising "the Baconsphere" as a new operating system once this was over. Promptly heading to the main stage as things were being set up, he entered just in time to be enraptured by a display on stage: A coffee flavoured pill which prevented technomancers suffering from fading. 
A quick roll of the dice made him barely restrain himself from leaping onto the stage and pillaging every sample in sight.

This was at about 10AM so Killbo was soon in the entrance hall waiting to see what Nifty meant. It was soon obvious with the receptionist now someone in a wheelchair (Speak-Easy, Nifty's hacker) manning the desk, passing on a note. Managing to speak in private for a minute we were offered an opportunity. She had a way to the top floor via the elevator, but without disable access it was useless to her. She would give it to us in exchange for full details on what was up there. Not willing to pass up the chance, Killbo took her up on the deal.

With some time now available to him, Killbo began trying to shadow a few people to confirm his suspicions. First a patrol of mercenaries, as their groups seemed to be suddenly growing and shirking in numbers which was less than successful. The second was Poultry, the cyber-troll, who was checking various closets and side entrances. A guard was now on the door to the closet Killbo had caught the bomb being planted in and he heard the words "And you're sure the others haven't been found? ... I'll check on the others." being made. So now we had the corrupt head of security to deal with not to mention, going by the number of doors he was checking, enough C4 to blow the memorial centre into low orbit. Something soon confirmed by Killbo checking one broom cupboard with several pounds of C4 inside.
Way too many to manually disable, the best way to stop it would be to find whatever was supposed to trigger the detonations.

Back in the hall, Amoral was keeping an eye on Lansdale. Preparing a display of his own, the scientist was making small talk as he served drinks, his experiment involving a safe version of Tempo (mind reading drugs). With him testing his own product, it was time for Amoral to find a way to poison him during the display.

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