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Author Topic: Space Cowboys for Hire [Month 7] (New Blood Welcome)  (Read 32089 times)

ConscriptFive

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Re: Space Cowboys for Hire (A PvE AR-like) [Turn 4]
« Reply #270 on: June 17, 2020, 11:22:58 am »

Mission Report Part (4/9)

Flossmore Resort Rescue and Demolition

With only a few hours of daylight in an arctic winter, it's already dark as your team lies in ambush along the road between the resort and prison.  D-Day was coming soon, and they still didn't have a bead on Lise Schubert.  Kidnapping was a ballsy move, but if anybody knew where she was, it would be Assistant Warden Calvin Oglivy.

With Anna's in-town mission at an end, your team vacated the Slavic Vor-affiliated motel, as it was too compromised to hold a captive.  It was awkwardly busy at the mineshaft site with the full compliment of nine operators, but its remote location provided the isolation they would need.  Since the rest of your team ran off into the woods to pull off the kidnapping, Anna holds down the fort and preps for interrogation.  She'd hoped for an in-town takedown, but got overruled.

Nikita pulls solo recon from a hide site near the resort.  For the kidnapping to work, your team needs a clean grab.  A failed or witnessed snatch would surely result in an immediate change to the security situation across all of Flossmore.  As the key spotter, she keeps a watchful eye on traffic on the road.  Another vehicle catching them in the act would be disastrous.

Back at the ambush site, Vic the Pipehitter inspects the SUV recovery winch grapple on a large tree branch.  They'd practiced this back at camp, but deadwood is anything other than uniform.  On Nikita's signal, they'd drag the debris onto the road, mimicking a windfall.  Despite being a SUV, no one in their right mind would slam a Porsche through an obstacle, right?  At the very least, you'd think the driver would step out and take a look at it before wrecking a luxury vehicle like that.  That should be just enough time to rush him.  If his stealth, speed, and violence of action fails, Vic's shotgun is pumped with birdshot to attempt a non-lethal takedown.

Simon the Tactician anxiously keeps checking his smartphone for missed messages in the other SUV.  The roadside ambush and kidnapping is a risky maneuver that could easily compromise the strike on the resort.  He'd considered baiting Assistant Warden Oglivy on business meeting with Vic's "Rodrigo Lopez," but everyone agreed there were no better meeting/kidnapping sites in-town.  It would be doubtful a wealthy man would come to a trucker motel, and setting up anywhere else would be another multi-day round of ISR and prep.  Even if they did pull off a surgical snatch in-town, they'd probably get witnessed at the initial meeting and/or the cross-town exfil to the minesite.  Having nailed down a commute schedule, Vic the Pipehitter was particularly adamant the roadside ambush was a more secure takedown.  With no better alternative, Simon had to agree.

"All stations, this is Ravenclaw.  Target inbound.  One vic, two pax."

On Nikita's signal, Ethan activates the winch, towing the deadwood onto the road.  Redbrick quickly runs out into the road to unhook the tree branch.  Retracting the cable and going into hiding, they hope their roadblock looks natural.

Vic and his fire team lay low as hi-beam headlights illuminate the woods.  Long ghastly shadows move increasingly quickly and then suddenly halt as a vehicle screeches to a halt nearby.  A car door swings open, leaking the polished sounds of "Huey Lewis and the News" into the winter woods.

Simon watches through the FLIR binos, "Driver is out. Go, go, GO!"

Vic pounces.

The driver whirls around from looking at the roadblock, just in time to catch a buttstock to the face.  The driver goes down hard, but the passenger in the front seat frantically climbs over the center console into the driver seat.

Erik Heller sees it and levels his AS Val carbine on the windshield, "Don't frakin' do it!"

The now driver does it, and throws the vehicle into gear.  Erik fires a burst into the windshield hoping to spook the driver.  Despite a spider-webbed windshield, the vehicle pulls off in reverse.

Simon yells at Hoxton, "Hit it!"

Simon braces as his SUV peels out the the woods behind the target vehicle.  The last thing he sees before the vehicles collide are red tail-lights flying by.

It could've been a lot worse.

Luckily for almost everyone involved, the target vehicle was indeed a Porsche Cayenne luxury SUV.  Your vintage Landrover nearly T-boned the Porsche, but instead caught the passenger-side front fender.  Slammed askew, the Porsche spun off into the woods with its airbags deployed.

With Vic and Redbrick handling the first captive, Erik and Salt sprint down the road to the collision.  Nearly out of breath by the time they reach it, the heavily armored shooters smash out the driver side window to yank out the dazed woman driver.  Apparently she hadn't time to get her seatbelt on, and probably would've been fatal ejected out the vehicle if it weren't for the full set of airbags.

Simon calls out, "Raptor, you good?"

The front brush guard may have kept their vehicle intact, but the 1980's safety standard SUV lacked airbags or other collision safety features.  Both men were rattled hard, but their newly acquired military helmets saved them from some head trauma.

Hoxton rubs his neck in the driver seat, "Still in one piece, Greybush."

"Pipehitter, this is Greybush, we're uninjured.  SITREP?"

"Greybush, this is Pipehitter, no casualties and we got a jackpot.  I say again, jack-frakin'-pot."

***

Anna double-checks her face mask as the two SUV's pull up to the mine site.  She got the jackpot call from Simon, but they'd been keeping radio silence ever since.  Simon comes over to speak with her as they unload two blindfolded and gagged captives.

"Okay Nightmover, we got a development."

"I though I told you not to talk to them yet.  'Setting the conditions' is very important-"

Simon interrupts, "The girl had a chirper anklet on her."

"Frak."

"Yeah, we cut and ditched the thing easy enough, but it looks like 'Cyndi' isn't a free woman."

Anna pauses, "Well okay.  The clock's ticking so I'm still going to focus on the HVI.  I'll get to her in a bit.  Just keep her comfortable until then."

Simon shakes his head, "If she's a prisoner, I'm guessing some sergeant back at the prison has to do roll call on her and she just missed it.  Maybe he'll write it off to Oglivy's executive privilege, but maybe he won't."

Anna smiles, "Maybe you should have let me honeypot him like I wanted, boss?"

Simon shrugs, "Shoulda, coulda, woulda, right?  I'm setting a hard deadline of 48 hours.  I'd love to rescue Miss Schubert, but that may prove a bridge too far.  As they say, 'an emissary takes what is offered.'"

Anna doesn't seem to get the reference,  "I'm not one for poetry Greybush, but I'll make that fraker sing by then."

***

While Anna begins her interrogation of Assistant Warden Calvin Oglivy, a Gator ATV tightly packed with three operators arrive.  After Nikita parks the vehicle, Erik and Redbrick exchange a fistbump before returning to camp duties.  The two had been tasked with disposing of the Porsche Cayenne.  While damaged at the ambush site, it was still serviceable and needed to be removed from the road as evidence.  As enticing as grand theft auto is in the New Worlds, concealed tracking beacons are common for vehicles.  With several days of work still to go, someone tracking a beacon back to camp would be a disaster.  Demolition was the safest option.

Elsewhere in the camp, Simon rummages through the various pocket litter they recovered from the two captives and their vehicles.  Back in the day, litter could be key intel to win and lose wars.  Messages, photos, and maps were all hard copy and thus could literally end up in enemy hands.  Perhaps the most consequential bit of litter in Military Intelligence history was General Lee's Special Order 191, that was carelessly discarded and discovered by the Union.  The Union used this key intelligence to end the Confederate invasion of the North at the Battle of Antietam, generally regarded as the turning point of the First American Civil War.

Of course, in the digital age, no one carries anything hard copy anymore.  Picking through Oglivy's wallet, almost all of it is unremarkable: currency, forms of id, random retail rewards cards.  Anything truly of value would be on a smartphone.  Naturally, Oglivy had a smartphone but without means to unlock or otherwise hack/exploit the handset, it's safely stowed with its battery removed.  Cyndi did not have a smartphone, which would be unusual if she wasn't an inmate at the prison.

With no hot intel standing out, Simon begins the dull task of summarizing the litter for the benefit of the interrogator.  It's mostly fragmentary biographic data, but it's better than nothing.  He shuffles through the various banal rewards cards when one of them catches his eye, "Wagner?"

***

"Now, now, now, I've always had an eye for talent, and I can tell you're a smart one.  Whaddaya say, we make a deal?"

Anna gives a dismissive laugh, "You are in a world of shit Oglivy.  What kind of deal could you possibly make?"

"Well, not me per se.  But I have people for this kind of thing.  You know, a K 'n R policy.  I'm sure you know what that is, right?"

"No shit I know what 'kidnapping & ransom insurance' is.  And?"

"See, I knew I was right about you.  The policy is with Wagner Group.  Have you heard of them?"

Anna isn't familiar with them, but plays it off, "So?"

"I mean, they're as old school as it gets.  Supposedly go all the way back to Putin's Spetznaz on the Old World.  You know, the Battle of Odessa and all that.  Now, I don't want to put words in their mouth, but I can tell you a secret about them."

Anna doesn't like where this is going, but stays in persona, "This better be good."

Oglivy smiles, "Now you seem like a really smart girl.  The annual premium on that K & R policy isn't cheap, and they have a reputation to maintain.  Knowing their reputation, I can't guarantee the safety of your co-workers.  But a smart girl like you has to look out for herself here.  In my wallet, you'll find my insurance card with them.  Call the number on the card."

"And then?"

"Do what they say.  They may be rough around their edges, but they keep their word and reward those who aid them.  But you don't have a lot of time."

Anna laughs, "Whatever you say, bud."

"Now, now, now.  It's called the prisoner's dilemma.  Perhaps you should Google it when you get the chance?"

"You're about to lecture me about how I'm in peril?"

"Just something I remembered from back when I did my MBA.  You're smarter than all of this.  You need to call that number before somebody else does."

Anna rolls her eyes, "The only dilemma here is the one you're in.  We'll get to that though, but first I gotta piss."

Anna steps away from Oglivy and thinks to herself, "I gotta find that card."

***
« Last Edit: July 28, 2020, 05:32:30 am by ConscriptFive »
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ConscriptFive

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Re: Space Cowboys for Hire (A PvE AR-like) [Turn 4]
« Reply #271 on: June 20, 2020, 08:11:09 pm »

Mission Report Part (5/9)

Flossmore Resort Rescue and Demolition

Meanwhile, Salt volunteers to take the first watch on Cyndi, "Keep her comfortable?  What does that even mean?"

Salt mulls over the situation, "With what's at stake here, we can't afford to wait on Anna.  As clutch as she has been, Anna can't do two interrogations at once.  Is it still an interrogation if the girl isn't even an 'enemy' anyways?  Let's get her 'comfortable' and see how this goes..."

Bringing Cyndi a meal, Salt sits down with her and they start talking.

Seeing that Cyndi still is on edge from the initial capture, Salt reassures her, "It's alright.  We know from your chirper anklet that you're not one of them.  We can arrange a way out for you."

Cyndi shakes her head, "No... I don't want any trouble.  I just want to do my time, repay my debt, and put this all behind me."

Salt is surprised that Cyndi doesn't leap at the chance of rescue, "We can get you out of Flossmore.  Drop you off at Harad."

Cyndi laughs indignantly, "And wait for the Marshals to track me down?  Then end up spending a decade in Flossmore repaying my own bounty?  I just want to do right, and move on with my life."

Salt acknowledges the merits of her argument, but pushes back, "We're about to hit that place hard enough to put it out of business.  You seriously think you're going to stroll back into Flossmore and not get punished as a suspect?  I hate to put it this way, but you're now on our side whether you like it or not."

Cyndi takes a long pause and stares at the ground, "You know I had a good thing going, right?  Half the folks in my cellblock are scraping rancid yogurt off recyclable plastics all day.  I charmed myself into being Oglivy's little pet.  It paid well, and I was treated like a person again."

Salt gives her a sympathetic ear, "A girl's gotta do, what a girl's gotta do.  You're young and have your whole life ahead of you."

Cyndi fights back tears, "I guess I'm never going back to Rivendell am I?"

Salt smiles at her comfortingly, "Girl, there's a lot more to the 'verse than Rivendell.  Hell, growing up how I did, I never thought I'd end up where I am right now."

"...As a kidnapper?"

Salt laughs, "That too.  But we're the good guys, and we're going to do the right thing here."

Cyndi comes around gradually and explains her situation at length.

Cyndi was an intern at a Rivendell-based accounting firm when she was accused of embezzlement and sent to Flossmore.  After a few months of sorting and cleaning recyclables, Assistant Warden Oglivy came by for a direct inspection.  She kissed up to him, figuratively and then literally.  Cyndi soon became his mistress and began working increasingly better assignments.  When he moved over to lead the resort, her re-assignment to the resort naturally followed.  In total, she's been with Oglivy roughly six months.

On a personal level, Cyndi still considers Oglivy a friend and a "good boss."  She normally wouldn't go for an older married man, but she could always break up with him if she really wanted to settle down a serious relationship.  Despite that he's already cheating on one woman and the general quid pro quo of their relationship, Cyndi is convinced he genuinely cares for her and her future.  Putting aside the institutional atrocities of both the prison and resort, Oglivy's a pretty ordinary guy and "not a sadist or anything like that."  Yes, he may have used the general authority of his office and the environmentally-implied threat of coercive violence to obtain a young mistress, "but it's not like he's a predator."  When she returns to the free world, surely her future white-collar employers will value her work experience under Oglivy and he'll provide a great letter of reference.

Throughout all this, Salt resists ths urge to proverbially smack her upside the head.  Hoping not to completely insult her, she goes on a more neutral tack, "Well it looks like you're about to go on a different life-plan now."

Cyndi laughs darkly, "I guess the Oglivy chapter of my life is over isn't it?"

Salt gives a knowing nod, "His future is not looking too bright right now, and neither is Flossmore's either."

Cyndi sighs, "Well, what now?"

"We'll get to that.  But first, what kind of work did you do at the resort anyways?"

***

By the time Anna finds him, Simon has already wrapped up exploiting their captive's pocket litter.  He greets her, "Hey, how'd it go in there?"

Anna states with confidence, "It's a work in progress, but we'll get there.  Anything interesting in the pocket litter?"

Simon shakes his head, "Not really.  The usual biographic fragments, but nothing unexpected.  I just wrote up the summary for you."

Anna asks incredulously, "Seriously?  Nothing strange at all?"

Simon laughs, "Well, okay.  So he did have one interesting card in his wallet."

Anna plays off a slight sigh of relief, "O-oh?"

"AAA.  How is Triple A still a thing?  How would roadside assistance even work up here?  Do they airdrop the tow-truck in?"

Anna hides her disappointment with a laugh, "Maybe he just keeps it for the discounts?  You know, five percent off on all rub and tugs really adds up.  You should look into it."

Simon laughs, "Maybe I will then."

After her chat with Simon, Anna quickly combs through the pocket litter.  However, she doesn't find the Wagner Group card and Simon's report doesn't mention it.

Anna next finds Erik, who's well on his way to putting himself to bed, "Hey, quick question."

"Shoot."

"So when you and Wreckx-N-Effect ditched the Porsche, did you find any unusual pocket litter?"

"Uh, we handed over everything we found.  You'd have to check with Greybush on that."

Anna persists, "Are you sure?  Maybe Wreckx-N-Effect decided to keep something and not tell anyone?  You know how he is."

Erik looks at her askew, "Black?  You think he stole something because-"

"What!?!  NO!  Gorammit... Just forget I said anything."

With Hoxton and Nikita off together somewhere, Salt with Cyndi, Ethan already asleep, and not trusting Redbrick at all, Anna's last option on her supposed bathroom break is a quick chat with Vic the Pipehitter.  She was unimpressed with his previous "work" at the resort, but the surgical takedown has restored her faith in him.

Vic sees her coming, "So you crack that cocksucker yet?"

"Not yet, he's playing it tough but he'll see how that goes.  I'm taking a quick breather before really laying into him."

"Nice.  I'd love to get a piece of that action.  That was in the plan anyways, wasn't it?"

"Yeah, sure, sounds good...  Anyhow, when you took down the HVI, did you find anything unusual on him?"

"Uh, not really?"

"Not really?  Was it something you didn't tell Greybush about?"

"I mean, I kinda expected a man like that to be packing protection.  It's not like he can't afford it.  Maybe he's some kinda treehugger pinko who doesn't believe in guns?"

"Heh, good catch.  But nothing else?"

"Nope, anything we strip searched off him was handed over to Greybush."

Another dead-end, Anna wraps things up with him, "Oh I bet you did a real thorough strip search...  Anyhow, great work on the HVI takedown by the way.  Maybe you could teach me a thing or two some day, eh?  Later, Pipehitter."

Anna gives him a playful jab before moving on.  By the end of the exchange,  Vic is left thoroughly confused about exactly what just happened there.  But hey, Anna flirted with him and he gets to deliver some medieval justice on an evil sack of shit.  Best mission ever.

Having exhausted her options, Anna goes back to Simon.  "Pipehitter, we need to talk."

Simon puts down his smartphone, "I'm all ears."

Somewhere in the mine shaft, someone turns on a folk music bass-guitar riff.  Then some Dylan-esque vocals kick in:

Well I don't know why I came here tonight,
I got the feeling that something ain't right...


"Pipehitter, have you heard of Wagner Group?"

"Of course.  Old school Slavic operators.  Not Tier One's, but pretty damn close in my book."

I'm so scared in case I fall off my chair,
And I'm wondering how I'll get down the stairs...


"So our HVI says has a K 'n R with them.  He should've had a card in his wallet."

"Is that so?"

Clowns to the left of me,
Jokers to the right, here I am,
Stuck in the middle with you...


"I didn't see it in the pocket litter and I've asked around..."

"Why are you so interested in it?"

Yes I'm stuck in the middle with you,
And I'm wondering what it is I should do...


"Greybush, there's a phone number on it-"

“-and?"

It's so hard to keep this smile from my face,
Losing control, yeah, I'm all over the place...


"If one of us calls that number, we're all fraked raw.  Whether they cut a deal or not, they can geolocate the smartphone, and we all get whacked in our sleep.  That card needs to be locked up."

"I mean, we wouldn't want that to happen.  But if that was the case, why didn't you bring that up earlier?"

Well you started out with nothing,
And you're proud that you're a self made man...


Anna sighs, "You're right.  I should've brought it up immediately.  But I wanted to lock it down myself."

"Well what do you think happened to it then?"

And your friends, they all come crawlin,
Slap you on the back and say,
Ple-ase... ple-ase...


"Frak, I don't know.  Maybe the HVI is lying, maybe Wreckx-N-Effect ran off with it.  Speaking of people running off, where are Raptor and Ravenclaw?  Did they dodge out before we get hit?"

"That's some serious shit you're slinging around there Anna.  Have you seen the Treasure of the Sierra Madre?"

Trying to make some sense of it all,
But I can see that it makes no sense at all...


"Is that a movie?"

"Yeah, an old one."

Is it cool to go to sleep on the floor,
'Cause I don't think that I can take anymore...


"I respect you Greybush, but we don't have time to talk about another 1980's flick."

"It's actually an old black and white film and I assure you, we have the time."

Clowns to the left of me, jokers to the right,
Here I am, stuck in the middle with you...


Anna eyes over Simon warily, "What kind of shit are you pulling?"

Simon pulls the Wagner card from his pocket, "You're one hundred percent right.  This card is a death trap for all of us.  I was tempted to burn it in the campfire on first sight."

Well you started out with nothing,
And you're proud that you're a self made man...


Anna's mouth is agape as he then puts the card back in his pocket, "But why did you do this to me?"

"Paranoia is a helluva drug.  You need to be shown you can trust us with this kind of vital intel."

And your friends, they all come crawlin,
Slap you on the back and say,
Please, please...


Anna rolls her eyes and then comments aloud, "Who the frak is playing that music so loud?"

"It's a catchy oldie.  It always reminds me of Reservoir Dogs-  GORAMMIT!"

Simon has he frantically rushes to where Assistant Warden Oglivy is being held.  The first thing he sees is Vic "Mr. Blonde" Vega dancing to the music with a straight razor in one hand and a severed ear in the other.  The bound and gagged Oglivy is drenched in blood down his right side, all originating from where his ear used to be.

Simon points at Vic, "YOU.  OUT.  NOW!"

Vic initially seems confused about this, then gives a wink as he comes to some realization.  As he passes by him on his way out the door, he whispers to Simon, "Good cop time."

Anna catches up and runs straight into Vic outside the makeshift cell.  He's put away the razor but is still carrying the bloody severed ear, "What the frak, man?"

"What?  You just told me I could interrogate him."

***
« Last Edit: July 28, 2020, 05:32:20 am by ConscriptFive »
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ConscriptFive

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Re: Space Cowboys for Hire (A PvE AR-like) [Turn 4]
« Reply #272 on: June 30, 2020, 08:35:43 am »

Mission Report Part (6/9)

Flossmore Resort Rescue and Demolition

...and that's why I've been trying to get him to take Amira on.  She'd make a great Princess Jasmin.  A woman of color would be a super inclusive move for the cast."

Salt grits her teeth as Cyndi enthusiastically discusses the day-to-day workings of "The Mystical Kingdom."  As Vic had discovered on his previous undercover investigations, the newly opened resort is a high-end adult-entertainment destination, featuring a fantasy motif princess and her castle.  The specific princess changes per guest-order, but there's only a handful of choices and most "cast members" accordingly play multiple roles.  "Cal" had wanted more choices, but most of the more modern Disney princesses require power vocals that are hard to come by.

Those difficult singing roles have since fallen exclusively on a cast member who has become known simply as "The Feature."  There simply couldn't be a Prince Charming Experience without Elsa, Belle, or Ariel, yet only The Feature can pull off those roles.  Supposedly, Cal had wanted her to do Pocahontas and Moanna as well, but the ethnic hair and makeup tests were rejected.

Salt laughs to herself that despite everything, brownface proved too much for even Calvin Oglivy.

Her origins are a bit of a mystery, however.  No one in Cyndi's cellblock have seen her around, suggesting The Feature is held elsewhere.  There's a common rumor that's she's a hired employee, since PCF residents aren't even supposed to get into erotic services and she doesn't wear a Chirper on the resort.  But Cyndi knows that The Feature still takes the prisoner bus and not the employee bus, so Cal must've worked that out with the lawyers somehow.  "Obviously," the Chirper comes off when she goes into costume, especially given the amount of nudity required.  Furthermore, she's an intense method actor "who insists" on a constant Royal Guard escort and doesn't socialize with other cast members.  However, as far as Cyndi can recall, she's also never seen or heard her true name anywhere.

Cyndi muses, "I mean, if I was doing what she was doing, I'd insist on stage names only too."

Salt pushes back, "Sure there's a stigma against legal sex workers, but that level of secrecy is pretty mysterious don't you think?"

Cyndi shrugs, "I honestly never thought about it too much.  Actresses are weirdo's anyways."

Salt smirks and moves on, "Okay, so you're there every day, right?  Is The Feature too?"

"Uh, most days I think.  Except right now.  She's not needed."

"Huh?"

"It's actually a really exciting time at the Mystical Kingdom, somebody finally booked one of the Girl Power packages!"

Salt tries her best to match the enthusiasm, "Oh, you don't say?!?"

"People need to know that strong is sexy.  I couldn't tell from the name, but I think the guest is a woman too!  Isn't all love beautiful?  I think it's fantastic we can provide non-hetero-normative services like this."

Salt almost rolls her eyes, "Yeah, you're really doing God's work here...  So what is The Feature doing then?"

"There's supposedly some dancing but not a lot of singing, so Cal decided to sit her out.  We do have another ELSA69 coming in the day after tomorrow though.  ELSA69 is our most popular booking after all."

***

Salt hands off her guard shift of Cyndi and makes a beeline to Simon, the Team Leader.  Seeing him uncharacteristically worked up, she approaches carefully, "Hey there... something going on?"

Simon lets out a long sigh, "Just got done dealing with some casual mutilation.  Thank God for the PFASK, right?"

Salt's eyes widen, "Somebody hurt?"

"Only the HVI.  It's been taken care of.  Don't worry about it.  That's my burden of command, Trinity."

"If you say so, Greybush... In other news, turns out Cyndi is quite the chatterbox.  I think I just answered PIR 1."

"You questioned her?"

"No, she just felt comfortable enough to talk to me.  Did you want me to tell her to shut up?"

Simon laughs, "You got me there."

"She said a lot about the resort, but bottom line up front, Lise Schubert is going to be on the morning prison bus in two days."

"I mean, that's all we need isn't it?  How confident are you in the intel?"

Salt shrugs, "Cyndi still doesn't know what exactly our mission is, and apparently Lise Schubert's enough of a point of gossip that talking about her in normal conversation wasn't too suspicious.  There's another ELSA69 booked in two days, and they need her midday to get her hair and nails done.  Turns out this guest also has the castle tower upgrade, so she's probably staying overnight in the castle too.  Cyndi's not exactly an ally of ours, but I don't think she's smart enough to plan and execute that elaborate a lie."

"If it is a lie, Anna will find out from the HVI, I'm sure.  We kept the captives apart for a reason.  Great initiative, Trinity."

***

When Simon tells Anna of Salt's findings, she's irritated someone would dare interrogate "her" detainee.  That aside, she is intrigued by the intelligence provided.  It should've been her, the HUMINT'er, to get that intel, but it's something to work with.  Despite her best efforts (and Vic's... efforts), she hasn't gotten anything from Assistant Warden Oglivy.  He mostly alternates between weeping in despair and screaming obscenities at this point.  Oglivy's convinced he's either going to die or watch his interrogator get gunned down by Wagner Group.  Neither of those end states involve him freely providing intelligence to his captors.

Settling down to review Salt's surprisingly thorough debriefing of Cyndi, Anna regrets her full focus on the HVI.  Anna let Salt get a freebie, and now she looks incompetent with how much of a fiasco the HVI interrogation has become.  In theory, Vic's abuse could've been used as a part of a "Jeff and Mutt" strategy, but was a complete misfire with how badly it was setup.  She would've liked to get more use her proven elicitation skills, but now Oglivy needs time to recover.  She can't exactly have a conversation with a traumatized puddle of blood and tears.

Contrary to every police procedural ever shown, suspects/detainees practically never confess/break on initial interrogation.  For some reason, prisoners get really reluctant to confess to offenses that may result in long term incarceration or execution.  While people like to idealize interrogation as a test of wits, most interrogations become a test of willpower and endurance.  Expertly crafted logic and persuasion become irrelevant if no one is listening, and sheer stubbornness can frustrate even the best prepared interrogators.  As the hours drag on, Anna is learning this first hand.

Ultimately, Anna finds some comfort that Salt's intelligence has lowered the bar for the success of her own interrogation.  As is, they now have enough intelligence to go forward with both mission objectives.  Still, single source intelligence can be risky, and if she can get the HVI to corroborate any of it, she can chalk that up as a win in her column.

***

The day after the kidnapping, Team Leader Simon gathers your operators for a briefing.  It's been an eventful night to say the least, and the rest of the team need to be brought up to speed.

"Alright folks, first things first, I'd like to thank everyone on the bang up job we did on that snatch and grab last night.  That was a surgical snatch and we all should be proud how well that went."

Hoxton suppresses a giggle upon hearing the word, "snatch."

Simon continues, "Since then, we've also answered PIR 1, and now have an actionable time and location to recover Lise Schubert.  I am formally greenlighting operations on both mission objectives right now."

Your operators quietly approve of this news.  Redbrick nods with a grin as Vic mutters, "We're fraking Irene."  Ethan shrugs, "I guess Anna came through after all."

Simon corrects him, "Actually, it wasn't 'Nightmover,' but Trinity that we have to thank this morning.  She's the one who answered PIR 1.  Both of them are still hard at work as we speak though.  We owe it to them to work just as hard.  Pipehitter, we have 24 hours until we're hijacking a bus and storming a castle.  We need your expertise to plan and rehearse both those assaults before then."

Vic answers, "Too easy boss."

"We're going into the lion's den tomorrow, folks.  That's not a lot of time.  Get your gear tight, and rehearse your CQB with Pipehitter.  Blood will be spilled, and we need to be sure it's not ours."

Simon ends the briefing and your operators eagerly get down to planning and drills.  Simon is smugly satisfied that this also keeps "idle hands" from further interfering with the two interrogations.

Meanwhile, with PIR 1 fulfilled, Salt probes for leads on the other three PIR's.

As far as PIR 2 goes (prisoner confinement means at the resort), Cyndi works at the front reception desk and isn't involved in handling prisoners (as privileged as she is, she's still a prisoner herself).  Cyndi doesn't seem aware that "PUC's" are a thing, and speaks about prisoners in general.  She knows about her own Chirper anklet, and that there's a guard force that escorts other prisoners behind the castle, but that's about it.

For PIR 3 (emergency procedures), Cyndi had a silent alarm button under the counter at reception.  She was never told what it does and she's never had to use it.  Back at the prison, the guards would use fire alarm pulls as a general lockdown alarm and "obviously" they could do the same at the resort.  Just like Stan the Laundryman, she was instructed to shelter in place during an alarm, which in her case was to lock herself in Cal's adjacent office.  Cyndi had never heard of the "CERT," but "obviously" the prison and resort must have an armed response force for emergencies.

Finally, for PIR 4, (physical security measures and obstacles) Cyndi hasn't seen much of the resort beyond reception, but Cal has told her about how much he wanted it to look like a leisure destination and not a prison.  Cyndi doesn't think there's even a perimeter fence.  She's never been in or behind the castle, but almost all the doors on the guest-side use common mechanical keys.  However Cal and some other personnel can touch their ID cards to quickly access some door locks in what sounds like a RFID proximity card system.  Double-checking the HVI's pocket litter, both Cal's employee ID card and keyring were recovered.

Speaking of Assistant Warden Calvin Oglivy, Anna's final day of interrogation remains an ordeal.  Despite everything, the HVI remains largely resistant to exploitation.  Sure, he occasionally slips up and lets a fragment go, but he's not freely talking shop like his subordinate is.  She's able to use that to confirm some of Salt's intel, but ultimately her first operation as an interrogator is a disappointment.  Perhaps if she had more time, focused training, focused prep, and wasn't unexpectedly forced into an extreme interrogation plan, she could've gotten a better outcome?

Dejectedly eating her dinner, Anna checks her smartphone for any last minute intel from Jeff and Stan.  She'd effectively ghosted them both since vacating the motel, and had been too busy with interrogation duties to string either along anymore.  After scrolling though various "u there?" texts, she checks their social media profiles, just in case they happened to leak something pertinent.  Anna nearly chokes on her cheese tortellini MRE when she finds a post both of them shared:

A Personal Message from Warden Rayburn

Hello my fellow members of the Flossmore family.

Assistant Warden Calvin Oglivy's unexpected absence from day-to-day duties has been duly noted.  We will be leveraging all our resources, on and off world, to bring him home.  While this is a quickly developing situation, I assure you that our investigation has revealed several leads they are following which should be resolved shortly.  The situation is under control, and any statements otherwise are unfounded rumors and gossip.

Furthermore, in these trying and uncertain times, we must remember we're all in this together.  After all, we're in tie business of hope.   Together, as a family, we will rise above this unprecedented situation.

There was no one harder working than Cal Oglivy.  His work ethic and dedication to this family were nothing short of steadfast.  He's always been there for us, and together, we must do what we've always done: keep calm, and carry on.  We owe that to our residents, each other, and ourselves.

It's what Cal would've wanted.


***

Receiving Anna's news about Warden Rayburn's message, Simon rallies everyone for an emergency briefing.  Putting on a brave face, he tries to open with something positive, "Alright folks, we've all been working hard and I like what I've seen.  Pipehitter, you've done a great job training up the plan of attack for tomorrow morning."

Salt gives Vic a congratulatory slap on the back, and everyone else murmurs their kudos.

"Nightmover has caught some traffic that our HVI's disappearance has hit the local media.  This isn't unexpected, but I was hoping we'd get a least another day of grace on that.  However, I am still greenlighting both mission objectives, and H-Hour remains unchanged in T minus 13 hours."

The demeanor of the room collectively drops at this news.  Your operators mutter and look to each other for assurance.  Ethan raises his prosthetic hand and asks, "Greybush, what does the PCF think happened?  Are they suspecting foul play or that he just ran off with his mistress?"

"We don't know, Zero Cool.  They know that he's missing, and presumably they're still trying to figure out what happened."

Anna follows-up, "Greybush, how do we know our basecamp is still secure?"

Simon shrugs, "Our grab was clean enough to not leave too much evidence, and hopefully our demo job on the HVI's Porsche fried any trackers before they could be activated.  I also haven't turned on the HVI's phone just in case.  We've kept the captives deep enough down the mineshaft that even if they did conceal some kind of beacon or transmitter, it shouldn't be able to broadcast to the outside.  I doubt they have enough intel to warrant an assault on our camp, but we can't rule out a search party stumbling onto-"

Anna interrupts, "The CERT may be junior varsity, but what about another PMC?  I'd bet there's a reward to recover the HVI."

Simon hides his irritation at Anna's interruption, but understands exactly what she's alluding to, "Yes, Greywater is onworld at the unlisted spaceport, but them openly turning on us would probably be considered a conflict of interest and generally a bad faith business move.  I doubt they'd risk that on a major client like DFUC.  But it's possible a PMC like Wagner Group might get involved.  They do offer K n' R policies if I recall correctly.  Still, we're going to be out of this site by daybreak, and I don't see an offworld team deploying to sub-arctic Lossarnach and assaulting that quickly."

Anna gives a sly wink to Simon, but Salt pushes back, "But like you said, accidental contact is still a possibility, right?"

"That's correct Trinity.  I wish we had better night vision gear, but we're reinforcing full light and noise discipline from here on out.  Also, we're doubling the nightwatch.  I know we were all hoping for some good shut-eye before gameday, but we can't afford to get sacked so close to the endzone."

Salt's a little thrown off by the sports-themed mixed metaphor, but is satisfied.  Erik looks over to Redbrick, who gives him a nod before he pipes up, "Greybush... now I personally demo'd that Porsche to throw any pursuers off.  Too dangerous to hang onto that hot a ride, right?  Well, now our HVI has gotten super hot.  Plus, I'm guessing Nightmover is done with him.  Should we take that in consideration?"

Simon looks at Erik Heller askew, "I'm not sure I'm following..."

Erik winces slightly as he's pressed to get more direct, "Now the original plan had us juggling the HVI up until the end, and then cutting him loose.  Do we really want to hang onto the hot potato for so long?"

Simon remains confused, "Gibson, I'm still lost here."

Erik sighs, "The original plan was pretty generous, but it was built for one captive, not two.  Now the girl probably won't be a problem, but the HVI might.  What's-her-face is apparently coming with us off-world, but you really want to leave the HVI as a loose end?  Why should Nightmover risk her ass for a piece of shit like him, anyways?"

Simon begins to catch on, "So what exactly are you proposing, Gibson?"

"I mean, I get it Greybush.  Plausible deniability, right?  The plan from the brass was to cut him loose outside.  But it's freezing outside, and we're in the middle-of-nowhere.  I'm all for pulling a 'Wind River' here and letting nature take its course."

Simon scoffs, "No, absolutely not.   That's not how we're going to operate."

"Greybush, you know this is a bad move for OPSEC.  Plus, we don't owe this guy shit.  The girl played ball, but this guy can go frak himself."

"Gibson, we are not-"

"Greybush, we got a lot of plates spinning tomorrow, and we don't need another."

"And I'm saying that I'm the Team Leader, and this is how it's going to be!  We are done talking about this, Gibson."

Your operators fall to an awkward silence, entirely unaccustomed to seeing Simon get this angry.  Erik backs down and exchanges a sidelong glance with Redbrick.

***

It's well past midnight, and Simon still can't put himself to sleep.  If anyone asked, he'd claim it was the long hours of winter darkness throwing off his circadian rhythm.  However, the real answer was good old fashioned anxiety.  While this wasn't his first rodeo, this was certainly his biggest.  Furthermore, Warden Rayburn at the PCF had surely called Wagner Group by now.  He be surprised if an advance team hadn't landed at the in-town spaceport by now.  Their camp would be safe for the night, but all bets would be off for anything beyond that.

Regardless of how well they perform in the next few hours, it's going to be a bloodbath.  Armed guards are likely, and they have no reason to hold back against armed intruders.  While their kidnapping op was surprisingly clean, it's been written into the plan to be as violent as possible on the resort assault.  It's tactically sound (though grenades or incendiaries would help), and likely in line with what the client wants, but he still feels a core of unease about being a terrorist for hire.  Hopefully they'd at least be considered 'freedom fighters' by the exploited PUCs.  There would certainly be righteousness in that at least.

It's also entirely possible Simon would be bringing someone shipside in a bodybag tomorrow.  Yes, Vic's plan seems sound, and their rehearsals looked crisp.  Still, lethal combat was nothing to take lightly.  The USMC plate carriers were a godsend, but they're not invincible.  Even if he had one back in rural Anghabar, it probably wouldn't have saved him from the gunshot that put him in the hospital.  He prepared his men the best he could, but he still wonders if we could've done better.

Simon also felt a sense of guilt hiding the true threat of Wagner Group.  But as leadership, it was his responsibility to keep his men focused and "inside their lane."  Wagner could prove to be a serious threat, but ironically enough, the best course of action was for them to "keep calm and carry on" as well.  He already saw how much they put Anna on tilt, and there was no sense riling up the others just as bad.

Deciding he's not getting anywhere in his sleeping bag, Simon stands up and stretches.  Maybe pacing will help?

Salt is on nightwatch and acknowledges him, "'All quiet on the Western Front,' Greybush."

"Good to hear, Trinity.  Just doing a spot check.  Who else is on right now?"

"Wreckx-N-Effect is on.  What the hell is that even a reference too?  Some kind of hip-hop thing?"

"I think so.  He did the whole 'I like big butts and I cannot lie...' song."

"No, that was Run DMC, the guy with the big clock necklace..."

"Trinity, you're thinking of Puff Daddy.  You know, the copkiller thing..."

"Greybush, are you kidding me?!?"

"What, are you saying I don't know classic hip-hop?!?"

Ethan calls out, "Oh for frak sakes, you two!  Get a room!  Some of us are trying to get some gorram sleep."

Simon and Salt share a hushed laugh together.

Simon tries to segue, "I'm glad to ran into you tonight.  It's nice to get some downtime, isn't it?"

Salt tenses up and eyes Simon warily, "Uh, yeah.  I kinda bit off a lot to chew with Cyndi there.  I've been working my ass off and I'll be glad when we're all finally aboard the Centennial Hawk with Lise Schubert."

Simon steps in close to her, "I've been meaning to get some time off-line with you Trinity.  Especially with how things could pan out tomorrow."

Salt becomes acutely aware of the carbine she has at a low ready, "It's been fun Greybush, but I really should get back to nightwatch-"

Simon persists and whispers, "I need to know that you're going to be okay out there.  You know, given what they did-"

Salt brushes him off indignantly, "I said I'm good.  I would've been back on duty last month had the brass chilled the frak out about it."

Simon backs off with his hands up, "Hey, I didn't mean anything by it.  It's just something we needed to talk about."

"Trust me, I just spent a month talking about it with some 'counselor' who probably bought his 'degree' online.  I'm done with it."

"I do trust you Trinity, I'm just trying to look out for you.  If there's anything-"

They're interrupted by muffled male shouting and the piercing clatter of metal on stone.  Several fast clatters then follow.

Both Simon and Salt recognize the sound and rush to Oglivy's cell.  He's dead with multiple gunshots and a panting Redbrick is standing over him covered in blood.  Redbrick gestures down to the fresh corpse, "Motherfraker rushed me when I saw his cuffs were off."

Salt shakes her head in disbelief.  She mouths to Simon "burden of command" before going back to nightwatch duty.

***
« Last Edit: July 28, 2020, 05:32:06 am by ConscriptFive »
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ConscriptFive

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Re: Space Cowboys for Hire (A PvE AR-like) [Turn 4]
« Reply #273 on: July 11, 2020, 03:54:42 pm »

Mission Report Part (7/9)

Flossmore Resort Rescue and Demolition

Anna reassures Cyndi as she drops her off at Cooper Point Spaceport, "Don't worry about Cal.  He's been taken care of."

Wheter it's the darkness of pre-dawn hours, or the paucity of Anna's statement, Cyndi remains confused and shaken.  Still, she has no choice but to comply at this point.  The waiting Centennial Hawk whisks Cyndi off world without protest.  It'll be a few hours until the entire operation wraps, and it was safer to get her out of the equation sooner, rather than later.  Her loyalty was questionable at best, and Anna would rather not babysit her once the lead starts flying.

Waving farewell to the Greywater guards, she fires up the Gator ATV and drives off to join the team at the ambush site.  With Oglivy dead and buried, there wasn't a good reason to keep the mine shaft camp around either.

At the ambush site, Simon warms his hands in the passenger side seat of the Landrover SUV.  Sitting still in the dark was literally freezing, and he couldn't imagine how Nikita the Scout was fighting off frostbite in her solo hidesite.  With Anna on the Gator ATV, she was out there alone and without a vehicle until the action kicks off.  Nikita was a surprisingly tough girl for her petite size, and he had to respect her for it.  She was young too.  To protect their families, your operators avoid getting in to personal details, but she and Hoxton were obviously the youngest operators, possibly not even in their twenties yet.

Speaking of Hoxton, he was seated next to him in the driver seat of the SUV.  This was their first mission together, and he still hadn't really spoken to the kid that much.  Now was as good a time as any to get to know his junior soldier better.

"Hey Raptor, heard you had a great time hunting Smildon in these woods.  It ever get this damn cold?"

Hoxton's laugh is muffled by his balaclava, "Nope!  We were way south of here, and it was the warmer months.  I know this is supposed to still be Lossarnach, but it's like a whole 'nother planet."

"Bah, as the old joke goes, climate change is just liberal fake news, right?"

"I damn sure wouldn't mind some global warming right now, for sure."

Following a lingering pause in conversation, Simon moves to a new topic, "Say, what ever happened to that little dino of yours?"

Hox's pained expression is concealed by his balaclava, "Yeah... I had to give Sid back.  Chief really didn't like him."

Simon can tell he stepped onto a sore subject, "Oh, sorry to hear that."

Hox continues, "I think it ended up for the best.  Namata has a saying: Question not the strings of the universe that pull you onto me.  I've even started doing some volunteer work with PETA back shipside.  It's really straightened me out and provided food for my radiant soul.  Ever notice how people feed their bodies, but never their souls?  Our intellectual shells have pushed us over the millennia to where we are today, where food is in abundance in a once uninhabitable cluster of rocks.  But why is depression still a plague upon mankind?  Because our intellectual shells cannot provide sustenance for our radiant souls.  Our souls are starving yet our tongues only taste processed flesh of the dead.  Ever notice that?  Namata has really opened my eyes to how the universe works.  You should meet him some time-"

"All stations, Ravenclaw.  Target inbound.  One vic, unknown pax."

Your operators spring to action.  As before Ethan's SUV deploys a fallen tree branch across the road.  Assaulters on the road side prepare to storm the prison bus when it stops.  Should the bus try to reverse out of the ambush, Simon and Hoxton's SUV is emplaced to intercept and ram.

Hi-beam headlights crest on the horizon and wind their way through the woods.  With the distinctive hiss of air brakes, the bus comes to a sudden halt.  Watching through the FLIR binos, Simon sees the driver stay in while one of the passengers dismounts.  To his dismay, the driver stays behind the wheel as the passenger begins clearing the deadwood from the road.  "Dammit!  Go, go, GO!"

Closest to the roadblock, Redbrick fires a short burst from his suppressed Val carbine into the back of the man dragging the wood.  Illuminated by the headlights, he falls face down writhing in a growing puddle of red blood on white snow.

Simultaneously, Vic and Salt pop up from cover and rush through the open doors of the bus.  Vic is on point and paints the driver-side window with bloody grey matter punctuated by skull fragments.  A CB radio mic falls from the dead driver's hand and dangles from the dashboard.  Vic buttonhooks left down the aisle, fiercely appraising three dozen faces now staring him down in terror.  He doesn't spot any more staff up front, but the back of the bus is too hard to read under low-light conditions.  Per CQB doctrine, he doesn't stop in the "fatal funnel" of the doorway and power-walks down the aisle, leaving room for Salt to follow him on the breach.

Or he was, until the tazer struck.

Vic falls to the ground as he's blindsided by a tazer to the thigh.  Face down in the narrow bus aisle, he reflexively convulses but manages to sweep the tazer leads with his hand and rip them out.  At some point in this process though, the barrel of the Val gets wedged underneath the legs of the bus bench, thwarting his efforts for a smooth recovery.

Vic may not have seen the ambush, but Salt did.  She makes the guard next to Vic, but a packed bus provides too messy a "background" to get a clean shot.  Reluctant to over-penetrate into a prisoner, she sprints down the aisle to muzzle thump the would-be-hero in the face.  The guard was so fixated on Vic, he doesn't see Salt coming and takes a deadly blow to the temple, bulging his left eye out of the socket.

Remembering Vic's instructions to keep "violence of action" on CQB, she suppresses her urge to assist her downed fellow assaulter, and bypasses him to clear the rest of the bus.  Salt vaults over Vic with a surprising amount of athletic grace given the circumstances and sweeps the back of the bus.  She finds one last guard who's huddled in his seat trembling.  Vic gets to his feet as she drags the cowering guard out of the seat to strip his gear.  Salt calls out to him, "Pipehitter, you good?"

Vic acknowledges her and calls it in on the radio, "All stations, vic secure."

Your operators converge to search and handle the personnel on the bus while Anna retrieves Nikita on the Gator ATV.

Vic hastily strips the disfigured would-be-hero outside the bus and warns the others, "Fraking driver had a CB radio.  I don't know if he got a call out or not.  So move with a purpose, folks."

Vic hands off the guard to another operator and returns to the bus to looks for Lise Schubert.  Having met her previously, he's most qualified to recognize her again.  Turning the cabin lights on, he sees a diverse and confused mass of humanity.  Expecting to find only attractive young women, the behind-the-scenes work details apparently make use of prisoners of all ages, genders, and ethnicities.  This does make the young Austrian blonde stand out though.  Vic the Pipehitter approaches her with an out-stretched hand, "Come with me if you want to live."

Lise Schubert takes his hand and immediately bursts into thankful tears.  Her long nightmare is over.

"Hey, uh, excuse me, Mr. Terminator.  But the wind shakes the barley?  You know what I mean?" a familiar streetwise voice calls out from the back of the bus.

Vic looks over and recognizes the red-haired "Princess Anna" from his stay at the Flossmore resort.  "I'm here to rescue a singer, not a poet."

"Okay, so maybe you're not who I thought, but perhaps you recognize me?  It would be worth your while if you did."

Vic looks over to Lise Schubert, "You know what she's talking about?"

She immediately responds, "Why yes!  She's my sister, Princess Anna!"

Princess Anna responds with frustration, "Frak me.  She's a special child isn't she?  Google Grace O'Malley from New Dublin.  Just get me to Rattlesnake Ridge on Harad and you'll get a payday from a certain unnamed third party.  That's all I should say in mixed company."

It's Simon's call and they don't have a lot of time to get the bus moving again before the resort gets suspicious.  They don't have the time or connectivity to check her claim in the middle of a roadside ambush, but Simon decides to throw her on Anna's Gator ATV to Cooper Point along with Lise Schubert just in case.  All the other prisoners will have to take their chances during the assault.

While Anna makes a beeline for freedom with the two princesses, the rest of your team wrap up at the ambush site.  Salt finishes up stripping the guard she captured and finds nothing too unusual: asp baton, tazer, OC spray, handcuffs, PTT radio, personal cell phone and a key ring.  A photo ID badge was clipped to his shirt pocket.  It looks similar to Oglivy's and she assumes it doubles as an RFID keycard just as Oglivy's did.  She recognizes the name on the badge but the photo seems off.  She grabs the man by the chin and stares down his tearful face.  "It IS him," she thinks to herself.

Taking quick glance around she shoves him to a blind spot behind the bus.  The man falls onto his back and cowers.  Again weeping, he raise his hands defensively to his face, expecting a beating.  Salt instead wordlessly pulls up her balaclava, letting him get a good look at her face.  The man on the ground freezes, his face aghast, as he recognizes her.  Before he can say anything, she hipfires a sloppy three round burst into his groin from her supressed Val carbine.  She takes her time pulling her balaclava back on, giving him ample time to suffer before finishing him off with a coup-de-grace to the head.

Returning to the rest of the group, Salt feels a wave of emotions, but isn't able to really address it right now.  After all, this isn't exactly in the proper time or place for introspection.  There's still work to be done, and she'll have plenty of time for contemplation back shipside.

Simon confirms the headcount as your operators board their improvised trojan horse of a bus.  So far, so good.  Yet another surgical snatch with a possible bonus VIP.  If only the rest of the mission could go so smoothly.

***
« Last Edit: July 28, 2020, 05:31:52 am by ConscriptFive »
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Re: Space Cowboys for Hire (A PvE AR-like) [Turn 4]
« Reply #274 on: July 19, 2020, 10:09:31 am »

Mission Report Part (8/9)

Flossmore Resort Rescue and Demolition

"Stan the Laundryman" Wellmark adjusts the earflaps of his furry ushanka hat before stepping off the employee bus.  The ushanka itself was vaguely comical atop his graying middle-aged head, but after so many hard winters in Flossmore, Stan cared more about frostbite than fashion.  It's not like fashion mattered that much anyways.  He'd been 'off-the-market' for a good twenty years before his wife died of influenza last winter.  It had been long enough since then, and he had put himself out there, ...but not really.  Who was he dressing to impress?  The rural dating scene for a man in his early forties isn't great.  Sure he had a decent job, but most country girls leave for the cities, and most would rather grow old with someone closer to their own age.

Of course that Mariana girl was a fun; but predictably she flaked out on him.  He knew a girl like that would never settle down with him, but who was he to look a gift horse in the mouth?  He idly checks his smartphone as he gets off the bus.  Yep, radio silence.  Oh well.

At least the administration had finally come to its senses and opened up the castle as a waiting room.  A sheep-like herd of Flossmore PCF employees trudge into an industrial-looking loading bay.  It's drafty with the door propped open, but it's still a welcome refuge from the freezing Arctic winds.  Folks unbutton their coats and make water-cooler gossip as they wait for the prisoner bus to arrive.

While they wait, "Septic Steve" strikes up a conversation, "Man, cold enough for ya?"

"At least Oglivy signed that memo before running off.  Not all of us could park their Porsche curbside."

"Ain't that the truth.  I heard he's got alittle something else to help keep warm too.  The blonde girl up front is gone too."

"Ha, he ran off with Mindy?"

"Yeah, you know who I'm talking about.  For some reason Admin never details me girls like that over in Sanitation."

"Steve, you expect a girl like that to take your shit?"

"Well technically it's not my shit, I'm just the one getting rid of it."

Both men laugh and the conversation trails off.

"Well if ain't good ol' Stan Wellmark!  Heard you were pulling some shifts down here!"

Stan turns to greet a man in uniform carrying a clipboard, "Ed!  Well, college on Rivendell don't pay for itself, eh?"

"Jesus, they grow up so fast now, don't they?  What's he studying?"

Stan shrugs, "He's still undecided.  It's still his freshman year though."

"Ah, don't worry.  Our fathers were first generation colonists who owned nothing but the clothes on their backs, but they got the ball rolling for us.  We gotta do the same for the next generation.  You did a damn great job raising him, Stan.  Why, when we were his age, we were getting piss drunk and fraking around in the woods with crossbows."

"...anyhow, usual crew on linens?"

"Sergeant Ed" looks over his clipboard, "Hmm... yeah... no surprises there.  Hey, I gotta sign in some other folks, but it's good to see you up here at the resort.  Find me during lunch and we'll catch up."

With time to kill, Stan feels a familiar pressure on his bladder and looks for a restroom.  He presses his badge against the RFID sensor, but it refuses to unlock.  A bystander comments, "Yeah, I don't think they cleared us for this building."  Stan sighs and fastens his coat to step outside.

Stan relieves himself in a dark-green plastic Port-a-John.  He'd recently developed chronic kidney stones and drank water like a fish to manage them.  He had to hit the john more than he'd like, but it was better than chronic pain.  Finishing up his business, he hears the hiss of airbrakes as the prisoner bus parks.  But then, extended metallic clatter punctuated by screams.  Some sort of construction accident?

Someone screams out a Kyle Dinkheller-esque plea, "You don't have to do this!"

A blaring klaxon kicks in, followed by a looping robotic female voice, "SHELTER IN PLACE.  SHELTER IN PLACE."

It was an active shooter situation, and Stan knew the thin plastic walls of the Port-a-John wouldn't stop a gunshot.  He cracks the door carefully, spying the bullet riddled body of Sergeant Ed next to the prison bus.  He couldn't see anybody armed, but the shooter must've made his way inside the castle.  The futile plea didn't sound like Ed's voice.

Stan makes his move and sprints out of the Port-a-John, taking cover behind the bus.  He had hoped he'd get further, but he's not in the shape he used to be.  The icy air stings his throat as he pants for breath.  Finding his bearings, he sees the door to his linen room across the parking lot.  He may not have RFID badge access to the rest of the resort, but he knew he could get into there and find shelter.  Hastily scanning for the shooter, he makes another break for it.

Huffing and puffing, his meaty hand slaps his badge against the door sensor.  It blinks red.  In exasperation, he tries again.  It blinks red.  "I do NOT have time for this!"

Cursing new technology, he fumbles out his keyring.  The adrenaline has shot his fine motor skills, and it takes an agonizingly long time to pick out the right key.

The looping automated warning on the loudspeaker is interrupted by a panicked live voice, "Shooters in the castle!  Shooters in the castle!"

"Shooters?  As in more than one?  Shit."

His key bounces off the door handle.  Looks like Admin finally removed the obsolete mechanical lock at the worst possible time.

Dumbstruck at his bad luck, he remembers there's a side door and scurries around the corner.  The side door was almost never used and probably wasn't slated for an RFID upgrade.  Stan finds the keyway still intact and stumbles inside, slamming the door behind himself.

Speaking of slamming, Stan is nearly knocked out as he catches a blow to the head.

The offending steam iron bangs against the floor after being thrown at him.  An older woman apologizes profusely, "Oh dear!  I didn't know it was you Stan.  I'm so sorry."

Stan is seeing double from the concussion and takes off his ushanka hat to check for bleeding, "Geez Mabel... I'm okay, I'm okay..."

Mabel tries to tend to him, "I thought you were the shooter."

"I know, Mabel.  Just give me some space.  Didn't know you still had an arm on you."

"Neither did I.  All those years of fast pitch softball I guess."

Mabel's phone rings, "It's my husband!"

She speaks with him over the phone, "-I'm safe, honey.  What's going on? ... Jeff said what? ... Oh my.  ...  Okay, I'll be safe, honey.  ... I love you too."

***

Phil Malone hangs up the phone and takes his break-action double barreled 12 ga off the wall mount of his den.  It was his father's shotgun, and in his own 41 years on the frontier, he had never fired it in anger.  But now, "ne'er do wells" had come to town, and placed his wife and son in danger.  As a husband and a father, he didn't have a choice, did he?

Having taken the shotgun off the wall of the den, he stood face-to-face with his father's classic John Wayne poster also decorating the den.  The black & white lantern-jawed portrait was captioned "A man has got to do, what a man has got to do."  Phil Malone thumbs two shells into the shotgun and pockets a few more before taking off in his Ceramic White colored Lincoln Town Car sedan.

***

Stan and Mabel stay low to the floor of the linen room and avoid the windows.  They stay off their phones, lest they miss a shooter trying to breach the room.  Mabel clutched her steam iron whereas Phil couldn't find his own improvised-weapon.  They were up against a professional crew, and any weapons would be better than nothing.  But in a room designed for prisoner labor, the lack of such options was a feature, not a bug.  Stan was tempted to wrest the iron from Mabel, but she'd already demonstrated herself as surprisingly capable with it.

With the alert klaxon blaring on a loop, they can't hear much, if anything, going on outside.  Both reason they're pretty safe in the linen room.  Sure the castle may have an arms room, but at least in the linen room, they shouldn't need one.  Anything the armed thugs were after would presumably be in the castle, and they wouldn't bother searching a commercial laundry room.

The first hint that they were in danger was a smell; vaguely chemical and increasingly acrid.  Mabel first notices the ceiling tiles letting out streams of white steam.  A ceiling tile gives and falls to the floor, revealing bright orange flames spreading across the attic insulation.  Both wordlessly stare in horror.

Stan comes to his senses first, "We need to get out of here!"

Mabel begins to lose it, "But where, Stan?  Where?!?"

"Anywhere but here!"

Stan grabs her and drags her to the side door crawling on all fours.  Luckily, he remembered from his training to never stand up in a fire.  He pops the door open, and the gush of fresh air causes a flashover inside the building.  Slightly singed, the two rest against a snow bank at the side of the snow-plowed parking lot.

Their rest doesn't last long as they spot a masked and armed figure carrying a red gas can.  They make eye-contact and he drops the can to shoulder his carbine.  Stan scrambles behind the snow bank before he hears a short burst of Doppler effect incoming fire.  Mabel doesn't follow.

Trying to break contact, Stan bounds his way around the parking lot.  He moves quickly, but cautiously making sure he doesn't get shot in the back.  He hunkers down as he reassuringly hears several familiar hollow pops.  Canisters of tear gas rain down on the parking lot as the CERT arrives on scene.

A choking white fog settles over the parking lot as the canisters spray out their payload.  Somewhere, dark blue Ford Broncos full of CERT troopers were lobbing canisters with their Milkor Stopper riot guns.  Twenty years ago, Stan had been in the pipeline for becoming an OC agent specialist.  Warden Rayburn was just starting the CERT back then, and Stan feels a certain bitter-sweetness having to witness them in action as an civilian.

The incessant blaring of the loudspeaker is interrupted by the thunderous echo of shotgun blasts from inside the castle.  Bursts of automatic fire follow as a firefight ensues inside the castle.  Two Landrover SUV's pull up from the woodline to the castle backdoor.  They linger only for a few seconds as the tear gas hits them.  Nearly colliding with each other, the two SUV's peel out from the parking lot.

Backlit by several buildings set ablaze, two armed figures run up to the parking lot as the SUV's leave.  They wave frantically at the fleeing vehicles before running after them.  A helmeted head peeks out from the back door the the castle and immediately recoils from the tear gas.  After a delay, the two SUV's hurriedly brave the tear gas again and attempt a pickup.  Stan sees three figures dash out and mount up from the castle.

A fourth figure follows but immediately doubles over heaving.  One SUV takes off as the passengers on the second SUV try to hectically wave him in.  Out of nowhere, a Ceramic White Lincoln Town Car screams around the corner of the castle into the parking lot.  Glass shatters as shooters from the lead vehicle open up on it.  The sedan fishtails out of control and collides with the second truck.  The fourth man from the castle hadn't mounted yet, and gets taken out by the colliding vehicles.  Two passengers run out and grab the body, its legs bent in unnatural angles.

Stan takes satisfaction that at least these thugs had paid a price today.  "They may have hurt us bad, but at least the hardworking folk of Floss-"

KABOOM!!!!

***
« Last Edit: July 28, 2020, 05:31:43 am by ConscriptFive »
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ConscriptFive

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Re: Space Cowboys for Hire (A PvE AR-like) [Turn 4]
« Reply #275 on: July 28, 2020, 05:26:14 am »

Mission Report Part (9/9)

Flossmore Resort Rescue and Demolition

Covered in blood, CS gas residue, and now concrete & plaster dust, Salt rips off her caked balaclava in the backseat of the SUV.

Vic is hacking up a lung, but calls out, "Everybody up? ... Zero Cool... get us the frak out of here!"

Ethan can barely see through his inflammed eyes and the general obscurant throughout the parking lot, but finds his bearings.

Redbrick is alive, but mangled badly and incoherent.  Salt rips off his balaclava to clear an airway.  His legs were shattered by the car wreck, with broken bones protruding through his torn duty trousers.  She pulls the tourniquets from the PFASK and ties not to think of MacGuyver back at the Red River Riot.  She calls out as she works, "I got Wreckx back here, but he doesn't look good, Cowboy."

"How bad?"

"I've seen worse, but he's incoherent and non-ambulatory."

Vic punches the dashboard in anger before calling it in, "Greybush, Greybush.  This is Pipehitter.  We are Oscar Mike.  We have one casualty.  Wreckx is WIA critical."

In the lead vehicle, Simon grits his teeth through the casualty report.  Redbrick was down, the Cooper Point Spaceport was a non-trivial distance away.  He looks over to his driver, Hoxton.  His eyes are blood shot from CS gas exposure, and like everyone else, he's taken off his contaminated balaclava.  Heller and Nikita are in backseat, taking turns flushing each other's eyes out with a canteen of water.

Back in the trailing vehicles, Redbrick is babbling something as Salt cinches down the second tourniquet.  His legs are a torn mess, but at least he won't bleed to death from them.  His pain must be unimaginable, but the fentanyl lollipop will help.  Salt was always duly suspicious of hard drugs, but this is exactly the situation they were meant for.

As the fentanyl settles in, so does Redbrick.  He isn't writhing in pain anymore, and he's generally... sedate.  He still winces whenever a bump in the road bends his legs wrong, but otherwise, his pain is managed.  Redbrick's condition may be stable, but Salt keeps a dutiful eye on him.  He gestures her close and pulls out the lollipop long enough to tell her something.  She smirks and undoes his belt to take a gander.

She reassures him with a smile, "Still as magnificent as always, Wreckx."

To herself, she thinks, "Fraking men."

***

Your convoy makes decent headway into the forest.  Your team did plenty of pathfinding and trailblazing beforehand, and the SUV's generally handle the rough wintry terrain well.  Simon regrets having to leave the prison bus behind, but he had already learned that lesson from the Red Cross on Anghabar.  He would've liked to stuff a few prisoners into the back of the SUVs, but the parking lot got too ugly, too fast for that.

Speaking of things getting ugly, Simon was fairly satisfied with how the final assault went.  They were as savage as the plan demanded, and held their ground in their first firefight to boot.  If what they just did didn't make DFUC happy, nothing would.  He'd been too busy to confirm with Anna that Lise Schubert made it to the spaceport, but what could possibly go wrong there?  They may've lost Redbrick, but at least they earned a six figure payday for the company.  He hated this kind of cold math, but as long as Ocean PMC stayed in business, Redbrick will be back in one piece in just a few months.

Of course the new hardware helped too.  Various pieces of the breaching kit came in handy: from cutting restraints on the bus prisoners, to forcing open doors inside the castle once the electronic locks were seemingly shut down.  Simon's not sure how they would've completed either objective without them.  The USMC plate carriers saved lives as well.  The CERT and guards came at them with mostly buckshot.  The exterior plate carriers were tore up, but the soft armor coverage was enough to keep stray pellets from puncturing their thoracic cavities.  Simon personally took a more direct hit, likely shattering his front plate.  It knocked him off his feet, but he's obviously still breathing.

But then there was the tear gas.  Still, he should've anticipated that law enforcement, and especially a prison guard force, would rely so much on it.  Everybody's a tough guy until the CS/OC hits, and he had no idea who would prove so sensitive to it.  Redbrick seems to have had a particularly bad reaction, and that cascaded-

"Greybush, Greybush.  This is Pipehitter.  We got a tail."

Several dark blue Ford Broncos tear through the woods on tire chains.  Your team recognizes them from the photos Jeff sent to Anna.  Traditional blue and white lights strobe and sirens howl through the winter woods like wolves on the hunt.

Facing hot pursuit, your SUV's pick up the pace.  Salt holds Redbrick secure as the vehicles toss about on the rough roads.

Vic turns in the front seat with his Val carbine, looking for a line of fire, "Trinity, I can't hit shit from up here.  You got a shot?"

"My hands are literally full, Cowboy."

Vic unbuckles his seatbeat, "Gorramit, I'm coming back there."

Vic's a big guy, and even bigger in full kit.  Climbing across the cabin of a moving vehicle is a task, and he gets snagged on something halfway through.

Ethan warns Vic, "Hey, hey!  Watch the gear shift!"

Vic barks back, "Just frakin' drive, okay?"

"Your sling is snagged, just back up abit."

Vic flails about and the vehicle swerves after he inadvertantly kicks the driver.

"What the frak, man?!?"

Luckily the swerve was enough to jar Vic loose and he falls face first into the backseat.  "My bad, Zero Cool.  Just keep us enroute."

Between Salt, Vic, and the future double-amputee, the backseat is a tight fit and Vic can't help but throw some elbows and knees getting himself situated.

"Geez Cowboy, pretty sure there was an unspoken rule in 'TC Three' not to do that to the casualty."

"Eh... he'll live.  Just pass me mags as I need them."

The tailgate window shatters and blows out as Vic begins laying down full-auto suppressive fire.  The lead CERT vehicle falls back from the initial shock, but soon realizes the relative ineffectiveness of fire coming from your team.  Vic's a good shooter, but from the back seat of a speeding vehicle, there's not much more he can do but spray and pray.  Furthermore, the Val carbine may be full auto, but it lacks the range, firepower, and general performance of a proper machine gun.

As much as Simon would like to maneuver his vehicle to support the rear vehicle, the terrain keeps them choked in single file.  It may keep Simon's truck out of the fight, but it also keeps the other CERT Ford Broncos blocked out as well.

Twenty round magazines don't last long in a firefight, and certainly not a full-auto one.  Vic had already burned through most his combat load in the castle, and was now pulling mags off Redbrick's chest.  As he reloads yet again, he calls out, "Zero Cool, what's our ETA looking like?"

"Almost out of the woods.  Five?  Ten minutes?"

In the lead vehicle, Hoxton can see the woods beginning to thin out and gets more aggressive in his driving.  "Almost there, guys.  Hang on, cause we're going pedal to the metal."

While they had hoped to get a shot at the CERT trucks, everyone instead buckles up and braces.  Loose objects in the cabin become projectiles as Hoxton pushes the limit of the Landrover's off-road suspension.  The lead vehicles charges forward in a sprint to the finish line.

"Nightmover, Nightmover.  This is Greybush.  We are coming in hot.  Multiple pursuers."

Back in the rear, Ethan calls out to his truck, "Light at the end of the tunnel.  Gonna hit it."

Ethan floors it as Vic opens up another burst of suppressive fire.  He barely keeps his grip on the weapon but flings hot brass throughout the cabin.  A hot casing ricochets and lands down the back of Ethan's collar.

"Shit, shit, SHIT!"

Painfully distracted, Ethan undercorrects on the steering wheel and the truck's fender clips a tree trunk.  Before he can respond, the SUV spins out and rolls over at the edge of the woods.

Simon's lead SUV is waved through the front gate of Cooper Point Spaceport and squeals to a halt.  Anna has her battle rattle on and rushes to the vehicle,  "Did you see it?!?"

Simon looks across the clearing and doesn't see Vic's truck anymore.  "Pipehitter, Pipehitter.  Status?!?"

Anna points out the spot in the woodline, "They just wrecked right there, boss."

Simon hops out of the vehicle and pulls out the FLIR binos.  The hot vehicles stand out in the cold, and he quickly sees other vehicles hungrily approaching the crash site.

Simon goes through the options in his head.  His men are down and their truck is a write-off.  He could try extracting them with the remaining Landrover SUV, but against a single vehicle, the OPFOR would just focus fire and wipe them all out.  Two elements were the only way to go, but can he honestly risk an ATV in a firefight?  The ATV driver would literally be bait with zero cover-

HONK! HONK!

A gunmetal-grey Ford F-150 Greywater Solutions technical screeches to a halt beside your team.  Erik Heller yells from the driver's seat, "No time to explain!  Get in!"

***

Evelyn Salt unbuckles her seatbelt and falls to the roof of the overturned SUV in a thud.  She tries to reestablish her bearings, and immediately notices Redbrick is missing.  Vic is crumpled in a pile unconscious.  From what she can tell, Ethan is still buckled in the driver seat.

The whoop of approaching police sirens is unmistakable.

"Cowboy, Zero Cool.  You guys okay?  We gotta move!"

A moan comes from the driver seat and Vic stirs next to her.

She keys her radio when she hears Simon's call, "Greybush, Greybush, this is Trinity.  We wrecked bad.  Pipehitter and Zero Cool are down.  Wreckx is MIA."

Salt doesn't have time for a conversation and crawls over to Vic.  He's battered and dazed but she doesn't see any mass hemorrhages.

Ethan cries out from the driver seat, "Shit... you guys okay?  I think I broke my nose."

"I'm good Zero Cool.  Checking on Pipehitter now.  Do you see Wreckx?"

Ethan notices the entire windshield has been kicked out.  His eyes track a bloodtrail across the snow that leads to a badly mangled body.

"He got thrown from the vehicle.  Looks KIA-"

"WE HAVE YOU SURROUNDED.  STEP OUT OF THE VEHICLE WITH YOUR HANDS UP," a stern voice commands on a bullhorn.

"Motherfraking gorram cocksuckers," Vic exclaims as he comes to.

"Well stated, but a tad homophobic, Cowboy.  Can you move?"

"I've been worse.  We gotta go... where's Wreckx?"

"He's KIA outside, Cowboy," replies Salt as she tries her door.  It's either bent or stuck on the terrain.  She tries throwing a shoulder into it to no avail.

"My door is jammed.  Yours?"

Vic's door resists, but he slams it hard enough to jar it open.

"Wait, so how we doing this?  We can't possibly sprint across the clearing without getting shot in the back.  I'm telling you right now Cowboy, I'm not going back to those savages."

Ethan chimes in, "You two can Butch Cassidy this is if you want, but I'm not down for suicide today."

Salt replies, "I mean, it's only a short term trip to the undiscovered country, right?  It'll be like a vacation.  And I get to take a few of those motherfrakers-"

Her suicidal musings are interrupted by the hollow pop of a Milkor Stopper riot gun.  A tear gas canister bounces off the overturned undercarriage of the SUV and lands nearby.

"Gorramit," Vic checks and reloads his carbine.  He looks to Salt expectantly.

Salt laughs morbidly and clutches something in her pocket.

To the opening power chords of Dio's "Holy Diver," Anna lets rip a long burst of tracer'd 7.62mm NATO from the Greywater M60 machinegun.  Heller is heavy on the gas pedal as they cross the clearing, and the shots go wild, but it's enough hot screaming lead to make their point.

Holy di-VAH!
You've been down too long in the midnight sea,
Oh, what's becomin' of me?


Vic ducks back inside the truck, "Greywater finally got their thumb out of their asses!  Keep yer heads down!"

Ride the ti-GAH!
You can see his stripes but you know he's clean,
Oh, don't you see what I mean


Derived from the impressive, yet deeply flawed, Wehrmacht MG 42 and FG 42, the M60 was the US military's post-WW2 general purpose machine gun.  Known colloquially as "The Pig," it was a heavy infantry weapon that ate through a lot of ammo and was prone to fouling.  Currently pintel-mounted and fed from an ammo box, Anna isn't tremendously affected by these short-comings, and maniacly flings lead into the woods.  Sure, it would be nice if she actually hit somebody, but that's not exactly the point of suppressive fire.

Gotta get away
Holy Di-vaaaaa-aaaa-aaaah


With the Greywater technical drawing all their attention to itself, Simon and Hoxton's SUV speeds towards the wreck.  Expecting to carry someone out, Simon hops out with his Colt Python revolver drawn and a Halligan bar slung on his back.  He's dismayed by the tear gas, but at least it's only one canister as opposed to the full volley back in the castle parking lot.

Got shiny diamonds,
Like the eyes of a cat in the black and blue,
Something is coming for you,
LOOK OUT!


Heller pulls the Greywater truck up to the forest road and pauses long enough for Anna to lay down two long and accurate bursts.  Despite their claims, most of the CERT trucks are still on a column down the road.  Anna has them in enfilade, and she lights up the lead truck and over-penetrates into others behind it.

Race for the morning,
You can hide in the sun til you see the light,
Oh we will pray it's all right


Devastated by effective fire, the CERT falls to pieces.  The driver and occupants of the lead vehicle are dead, immobilizing forward movement on the narrow road.  Other vehicles try to pull out of the kill zone while they still can.  Meanwhile, their dismounts in the woods cower in confusion, fearing machine gun fire and being abandoned by their trucks.

Gotta get away,
Get a-waaaaay,


Simon baseball slides the final stretch up to the vehicle.

Ethan is impressed, "Geez Greybush, I never thought I'd be so happy to see Greywater machine gun peeps like that."

"It's complicated.  Where's Wreckx?"

Ethan points the body out to Simon, "Looks pretty KIA from here."

"Eighth Commandment.  You guys ready to assist on recovery?"

Between the velvet lies,
There's a truth that's hard as steeeeeel, yea-aa-ah,
The vision never di-ie-ie-ie-s,
Life's a never-ending wheeeeeel, say


Simon and the three survivors bound the short distance to Wreckx's mangled corpse.  The blood trail is obvious enough to follow, as his tourniquets were stripped off as he skidded across the icy forest floor.  He was in bad shape to begin with and hopefully the traumatic ejection from the vehicle was a sudden death.

Holy Di-vah,
You're the star of the masquerade,
No need to look so afraid


CERT trooper Jeff Malone peeks from cover as the machine gun fire stops.  The gunner on the truck furiously waves at their assistant gunner to fetch another can of ammo.  Everything may have gone to shit, but Jeff sees his opportunity and takes it.  He levels his Benelli shotgun from cover.

Jump, Jump,
Jump on the tiger,
You can feel his heart but you know he's mean,
Some light can never be seeeeeeeen, yeah!


With the truck at a standstill, Nikita passes off another ammo can to Anna.  Anna frustratedly kicks aside piles of brass and black metal disintegrated link to seat the ammo can on the pintel, and then inexpertly opens and refeeds the machine gun.  It's not rocket science, but it's not the kinda thing you want to figure out during a firefight.  With the gun noticeably down, a few CERT dismounts pop up from cover and make a retreating sprint to their vehicles.  With Anna unavailable, Nikita pops off a few snap shots with her carbine.

Just as Anna charges the M60, she squeals as her leg is raked by buckshot.

Nikita spots the shooter and puts him down without an ounce of remorse.  "Nightmover, you hurt?"

Anna groans, "Not bad... I got this."

Holy Di-vah,
You've been down too long in the midnight sea,
Oh, what's becoming of me?
No! No!


Vic hears Anna's cry and angrily burns a full mag firing blind into the woods.  Rallied near Wreckx's twisted remains, the others join in trying to make up suppressing fire for the down machine gun.  They can't however, as they reach their last carbine mags.

"Gibson, Gibson, this is Greybush.  We have Wreckx, but we are running red on ammo.  We need that gun back up."

Heller responds curtly, "Roger that.  I'm already on it, Greybush."

Ride the ti-gah,
You can see his stripes but you know he's clean,
Oh, don't you see what I mean?


Anna grimaces through the pain and lets rip on the M60 again.  The temporarily emboldened CERT collectively decides it can't take anymore, and their vehicles make a hasty retreat back down the road.

Heller calls it in, "Greybush, Greybush, we got them routed.  You're welcome."

Gotta get away, get away,
Gotta get away, get away,
Yeah!


Jeff Malone wheezes from his sucking chest wound.  Whatever carbine he was hit by managed to puncture his body armor.  Rolling in pain on the forest floor, he sees the CERT trucks drive off without him.  He could expect no quarter from these armed goons and his best option was to lay low and play dead for now.  Surely his teammates will rally and come back for him.

Holy Diver, sole survivor
You're the one who's clean


The threat abated, your operators switch to the inglorious duty of mopping up.  Anna gets a bandage on her leg as Salt and Simon load Wreckx's corpse into the SUV.  Ethan and Hoxton work on the vehicle recovery winches as the remainder dismount and start dead-checking the fallen.

Holy Diver, Holy Diver
There's a cat in the blue coming after you, Holy Diver


Jeff's heart drops as he sees the armed thugs slow walk through the woods, double-tapping every body they come across.  "No way out now.  A man has got to do, what a man has got to do."  He draws his 9mm Glock sidearm and springs to his feet.

Oh, Holy Diver,
Yeah, alright
Get away, get away, get away


Anna finishes wrapping the Israeli pressure dressing on her leg, "Gibson, you can shut that shit off now."

"Hey, it's not my track, but makes a nice morale booster.  Let's get a second opinion.  What do you think, Ravenclaw?"

Nikita turns to join the conversation, "Yeah... definitely not my jam.  Maybe-"

Nikita stumbles as she's shot in the back.  Jeff gets a moment of satisfaction before Vic guns him down with the last of his carbine ammo.

Nikita tries to get back on her feet as quickly as possible.  Almost apologetically, she tries to reassure everyone, "Nah, guys.  I'm good.  It hit the back plate."

Despite everything, mopping up goes without further interruption.  The wrecked truck gets righted and the wheel alignment is intact enough to be towed by another vehicle.  Everyone is aboard the shuttle and off Lossarnach, before a second counter-assault is attempted.

With many of your operators in various states of injury and generally tore up, most are dropped off at the Mothership before delivering Lise Schubert and Grace O'Malley to the city of Rattlesnake Ridge on Harad.  Both a woman and your least injured operator, Salt volunteers to escort the trafficked women to the final hand-off.

Upon arrival, Lise Schubert is giddy as a schoolgirl and gently guided onto a leather upholstered shuttle on the spaceport tarmac.  Her tuxedo'd bodyguard doesn't speak to Salt during the whole exchange and only acknowledges her with a nod.

As for Princess Anna...

"Well frak me sideways, you crazy bastards actually did it."

Salt laughs with a shrug, "Well that's one way of putting it.  So where to?"

"Don't worry about me.  You got me where I need to be.  Time to disappear like a fish among the sea.  You seriously don't know who I am?"

"That's a no.  'Your sister' there was the objective and we were paid a pretty penny for the blood we spilled today.  You may not be able to afford that level of commitment, but I'm sure Mr. Goldman can negotiate an equitable settlement."

"Goldman?  Sam Goldman?  The interstellar merc lawyer?  Well this all makes a lot more sense now.  Heard your kind was abit on the pricey side.  You took a chance on me though, and our organization will be grateful for that.  The debt will be repaid, but you may have noticed I've been off the grid for a bit.  You'll have to take an IOU for now."

Salt shakes Grace O'Malley's hand in farewell and palms her a business card.  In parting, Grace examines the card.  It features a light blue diamond with "Ocean's 10" printed on it.  "Got a need?  We will help."

Spoiler: Mission Summary (click to show/hide)
« Last Edit: July 28, 2020, 05:31:07 am by ConscriptFive »
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Naturegirl1999

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Re: Space Cowboys for Hire (A PvE AR-like) [Turn 4]
« Reply #276 on: July 28, 2020, 08:53:32 am »

What does WIA stand for?
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King Zultan

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Re: Space Cowboys for Hire (A PvE AR-like) [Turn 4]
« Reply #277 on: July 28, 2020, 09:12:31 am »

I think it means Wounded In Action.
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The Lawyer opens a briefcase. It's full of lemons, the justice fruit only lawyers may touch.
Make sure not to step on any errant blood stains before we find our LIFE EXTINGUSHER.
but anyway, if you'll excuse me, I need to commit sebbaku.
Quote from: Leodanny
Can I have the sword when you’re done?

Naturegirl1999

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Re: Space Cowboys for Hire (A PvE AR-like) [Turn 4]
« Reply #278 on: July 28, 2020, 09:13:06 am »

Thanks
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ConscriptFive

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Re: Space Cowboys for Hire (A PvE AR-like) [Turn 5]
« Reply #279 on: July 28, 2020, 11:13:21 pm »

Turn Five

"How much more idiotic could Flossmore have been?  Did they seriously think they could keep such a high risk business venture profitable in the long-term?"
"Oh, come on.  Like you wouldn't have paid a premium to put that uppity commie-pinko Schubert in her place?"
"Good sir, I am a man of taste and refinement... yeah, you got me there."


                     --Overheard gossip at Twenty Forward Lounge on Mothership Leviathan
                  
Contact Phase

You, along with the entire system, is rapt by media coverage of the "Flossmore Rampage."  Following chaotic social media posts from the townies of Flossmore, Warden Rayburn makes a formal press release.  Anghabar-based Black Mask terrorists had lethally struck the prison, murdering countless God-fearing country-folk and releasing the dangerous Black Mask operative Grace O'Malley and others to further torment the good people of the Thiel Planetary System.

With Flossmore PCF having freshly perjured itself, Amnesty Interstellar publishes their comprehensive investigation in a multi-part series titled "PUC's to Princesses: the Peversion of the Penal Process."  In the past two years, Flossmore PCF had moved beyond their original charter as a for-profit debtor's prison and begun attempting more lucrative ventures.  While the AMR-sponsored internees were increasingly an open secret, it was generally considered a common-sense solution to the crisis on Anghabar.  Housing a glut of insurgency prisoners out of theater in Lossarnach was simply a smart business move for both AMR and Flossmore PCF.  But the legal construct of a "Person Under Control" was dubious, and the implications abhorrent.  Most people would agree that Flossmore had crossed a red line when they employed the PUC's for sex work.  Certain moral norms trumped the libertarian criminal justice laws after all.

And that was just the opening of the series...  The second part of the series details the peculiar case of how the blossoming influencer daughter of a prominent Green Party politician vanished from plain sight and became a trafficked high-end escort at Flossmore PCF.  Amnesty can't explain who, how, or why Lise Schubert was taken, but alludes to sort some of vague interstellar political conspiracy.  Amnesty found no evidence in the judicial system listing a probable cause for arrest, and whistleblowers from the PCF confirm that she was held under alias and essentially off-the-books.  As far as associations with the insurgency, there is no evidence that a young glitterworld gal like her had ever set foot on Anghabar.  In captivity, Lise Schubert was compelled to perform numerous unpaid acts of a sexual nature, from which the PCF was extraordinarily well compensated for.  Amnesty advances the theory that Lise Schubert's case suggests that the PCF held other innocent PUC's completely unrelated to their internment contract with AMR security services.

The third and final part of the series showcases the moral and cultural travesty of the so-called "Mystical Kingdom."  Absurdly claiming Fair Use doctrines, Flossmore PCF flagrantly capitalized off erotic services set in well-known intellectual properties.  High-end clients could book erotic services under a variety of specific themes.  It was a remarkably grandiose operation, including a full size fantasy castle.  While most witnesses and staff claim that all the theses sex workers were duly-compensated and consenting adults, Lise Schubert's case is indisputable evidence to the contrary.  Furthermore, Amnesty has whistleblower testimony stating that Assistant Warden Calvin Oglivy advertised to prospective clients that the sex workers were PUC's as a signature feature of the resort experience.

The fallout of this viral investigative journalism began as a snowball and then became an avalanche.  First, the elderly Warden Rayburn resigned and retired in shame, claiming that Assistant Warden Calvin Oglivy was behind all these misdeeds.  Based on his career reputation and lack of concrete evidence against him, he takes a large severance package and leaves the town of Flossmore altogether.  Purportedly Warden Rayburn plans to spend his golden years in obscurity, preferably in a warmer climate with Country Club access.

Furthermore, the extensive capital investments to build the Mystical Kingdom never broke even.  The debtor prison ironically became a debtor itself, and declared insolvency.  Yet the PCF was an institution too big to fail, especially with the ongoing crisis on Anghabar.  Coalition Forces (CoFor) under Confinity orders took the unsual step of applying Eminent Domain to all PCF assets.  Off-world uniformed CoFor personnel deployed to take over physical operation of the prison on Lossarnach.  Upon arrival, all local staff are immediately terminated from employment.  As the old saying goes, a new broom sweeps clean.

But the PCF wasn't the only ones to suffer in the town of Flossmore.  Even if the catastrophic damage from the Flossmore Rampage could be repaired, Flossmore's dream of rehabilitating itself as a tourist destination was gone.  After both the Rampage and Amnesty's P2P series, no one but the most adventurous and deranged could stomach Flossmore as a leisure destination.  With the failure of the resort, and the CoFor takeover of PCF operations, unemployment surges.  A town already in mourning for their murdered loved ones, the people of Flossmore prepare themselves for an even longer and harder winter than expected.  Many wonder if it's finally time to move to greener pastures.

AMR considers itself something of a victim as well.  They thought they had legally outsourced specialized services to a trusted contractor.  They had no idea the PCF would do what they did, as labor duties were not explicitly detailed in the scope of work.  Furthermore, AMR had no legal or ethical grounds to meddle in the affairs of a private corporation on another planet.  Requiring such oversight would be a dangerous infringement on corporate rights.  For some reason, this non-apology was of no consolation to the fully enraged insurgency.  As a concession to an already tenuous security situation, AMR changed tack and announced they were unilaterally canceling deportations to Flossmore PCF.  Future detainees would remain in AMR custody on Anghabar.  As a gesture of good faith, most PUC's already on Flossmore would be exiled to Harad on AMR's dime.

But what about the Flossmore Rampage itself?  Amnesty's P2P series didn't cover it, noting it occured after they completed their investigation.  They parroted a common public sentiment that Flossmore PCF had recklessly generated a lot of enemies very recently, and that someone should strike them so suddenly and catastrophically was entirely coincidental to Amnesty's unpublished investigation.  Still, everyone has their own theories.

Flossmore apologists are fond of the theory that it was an inside job by Oglivy.  Those who knew him remember Oglivy as a hard-working, brilliant, ambitious, but morally flexible man.  He conspicuously abandoned his wife and disappeared on the eve of the Rampage with his mistress.  The theory goes that the exorbitant costs of the new resort were merely to launder his extensive embezzlement.  With the resort construction contracts all paid out, he cashed out his cut, and had it all burned down to cover his tracks.  Today, Oglivy's off living in ill-gotten luxury with his trophy mistress somewhere out in the 'verse.

Others believe a version of the initial story put out by Warden Rayburn.  Murderous Black Mask terrorists hopped worlds to rescue Grace O'Malley and take out their anger on her captors.  Lise Schubert wasn't even the primary objective, but her rescue is further proof the Greens have been backing the anarchy on Anghabar.  The Rampage was an impressive feat if anything, and highlights the growing need for a CoFor intervention to end this violence.

Some criminologists and security analysts get closer to the truth, insisting that this had to be a professional hit.  Only pros could pull off such a complicated operation.  DFUC had the motive, but it was too sloppy to be their own SIMBa.  DFUC must've contracted the operation to a PMC.  The barbarism of the Rampage fits the modus operandi (MO) of Wagner, but they don't have the legal top-cover to risk such a high profile black operation.  But most critically, the PCF guard force reported seeing what resembles a Greywater Solutions gun truck.  The Mothership Leviathan is "in town" these eight months, and Nick Clay's Greywater has demonstrated a certain fondness for excessive force.  Sure, it could be Danny Ocean's Ten, but this was nothing like their previous MO, and Danny Ocean would never collaborate with Nick Clay like that.  Though they can't prove it, "experts" agree it was probably Greywater Solutions that executed the Flossmore Rampage.

(OOC Commentary: Congratulations players, you've completed your first major plot/quest-chain.  By now, you've accumlated a relatively comfortable amount of IC resource.  More importantly, you should've seen enough to understand your operators, the game world, its' mechanics, and generally how my GM-brain works.  You've finished the tutorial now, so expect gradual rule modifications accordingly.  It shouldn't be anything too unforeseen, but this is a friendly heads up that you've unlocked the "real" game now.)

Ops Chief Neil MacCauley and Legal Counsel Sam Goldman meet you in the conference room for a formal briefing.

Sam breaks the ice with a whistle, "Well, well, Mrs. Ocean.  We made some serious bank last month.  Yes, we took some losses, but they were well within acceptable attrition forecasts."

Neil scoffs, "Attrition forecasts?  We're rebranding casualty rates now?"

Sam shrugs, "Potayto, potahto."

"As I'm sure you've heard already, our guys pulled through, but got beat up.  Batiste was mangled pretty badly, but the Clinic didn't see any problems with his TI mods.  We're gonna miss him these last few months, but he'll be back, Ma'am.  Hunt and Chapman will have some scarring, but nothing debilitating.  Vega jacked up his left shoulder at some point.  Probably a dislocation, but the Clinic took care of him.  As long as he doesn't push it too hard, he should be fieldable this month.  It's worth mentioning USMC body armor saved a lot of lives out there.  Plenty of superficial contusions that could've been more traumatic.  Vega, Templar, and Taylor could've had fatal wounds otherwise.  Prompt tactical casualty care from the PFASK has also been key in mitigating the severity of our casualties."

Sam follows up Neil, "As for our last two clients, they've gone radio silent.  After something that newsworthy, I'm sure their Legal Counsel have advised them to keep their heads down until the smoke clears.  Both did pay us in full however, so presumably they were satified with our work."

Neil chimes in, "Anything from the O'Malley girl?  IOU's aren't very enforceable for extralegal services rendered."

"Good question.  As various sources in the media have confirmed, the Grace O'Malley in question was indeed somebody.  The name itself is presuambly an alias-"

Neil interrupts, "Revolutionary guerillas prefer the term 'nom de guerre,' Sam."

Sam rolls his eyes, "Potayto, potahto... as I was saying, it's probably not a legal name, but instead a nostalgia'd choice from history.  She was a sort of romanticized Irish pirate queen who famously earned the peer respect of Queen Elizabeth-"

"The one who lived like forever?"

"No Neil, the first one.  Ever see Shakespeare in Love?  That Queen Elizabeth."

"Gorram travesty of a movie.  Stole the Academy Award from Saving Private Ryan.  Demonstrably Harvey Weinstein's worst crime that he was never jailed for."

Both you and Sam pause to look at Neil incredulously.

Sam resumes his briefing, "Anyhow... She seems to be the real McCoy and deeply involved with the Anghabar insurgency.  Salt opened a line of communications with her, and we can develop her as a formal contact if you'd like."

"Really?  You don't consider her a conflict of interest?"

"Not yet, at least.  AMR is a multi-faceted organization and our efforts with AMR CI/FP haven't progressed particularly well.  We aren't that beholden against the insurgency yet.  Furthermore, we haven't confirmed what kind of work Grace O'Malley offers.  It would be premature to make that kind of determination without seeing a single contract offer."

Neil shrugs, "You're the lawyer, Sam.  Nothing makes me happier than some de oppresso liber action, though.  Not always the best for staying in the black, but there's more to life than money, right?"

Sam laughs, "If you say so."

Sam resumes his briefing, "As for business this upcoming month, Amnesty, DFUC and the Greens are probably lying low.  With the change in management, we're no longer in conflict with Flossmore, though local warrants may be an issue.  On the high-end of clients, Tyrell might be operating again too.  Also, let me know if you want to follow up with Grace O'Malley."

"Here's an updated list of contacts for the month."

Spoiler: Contact List (click to show/hide)

"Accordingly, here are my recommendations:"

Quote from: Contacts Vote (pick 5)
(0) Lossarnach Country Club:
(1) Potter Properties: Sam
(0) Anghabar Mining and Refining:
(0) Tyrell Dynamics:
(0) Disney-Fox-Universal-Comcast:  **LIKELY UNAVAILABLE**
(1) Anghabar Mining and Refining CI FP: Sam
(0) Los Tornadoes:
(0) Swearengen's Gentlemen's Club:
(1) Slavic Vor: Sam
(0) Casa Nuova:
(0) Goodhaven Sheriff:
(0) Harad Marshals:
(0) Flossmore Warden:
(0) Coalition Expeditionary Forces:
(1) Interstellar Red Cross: Sam
(0) Amnesty Interstellar:  **LIKELY UNAVAILABLE**
(0) United Labor Movement:
(0) United Green Party:  **LIKELY UNAVAILABLE**
(0) Interstellar Geographic Society:
(1) Grace O'Malley: Sam

Before you close out the meeting, you decide to raise one last issue.  "Hey, I've been meaning to ask this.  Can we get IT to take care of the spam problem."

Neil raises an eyebrow, "Spam problem, Ma'am?"

You pull up your email and put it on the projector.  Yet another odd message from "GandalfTheGrey@confinity.com."  As far as you can recall, it's the same damn poem since last month.

Sam nearly spit takes his coffee and begins pacing around the room, "Sam, you better take this one."

Sam takes off his glasses rubs the bridge of his nose, "I don't know how to say this politely Mrs. Ocean, but that isn't spam."

"Well, I've been getting the same gibberish constantly for at least a month."

Neil winces and paces some more.

"Well okay...  It's an honest misunderstanding, Mrs. Ocean.  Some VIP's liked to speak with Danny personally."

"Gandalf the Grey is some kind of VIP?"

Neil sighs in the back of the room.

"More like the VIP, Mrs. Ocean.  In case you haven't noticed, Mr. Thiel has a bit of a thing for Tolkien."

Neil laughs, "That's one way to put it.  It's practically a fetish at this point."

"Neil isn't wrong.  He was a bit of an eccentric in the Old World, and now he's practically in his own universe."

"Or literally his own planetary system, Ma'am."

"Anyhow, I gathered he and your husband would speak occasionally, Mrs. Ocean.  I don't have the foggiest clue about what however.  I could only speak with his personal staff for the more brass tacks stuff.  That kind of nitty gritty was beneath a great man such as him."

You reply, "Well I'm not sure what they were talking about either.  Here, take a look."

Spring birds singing,
mantling about the branches.
A familiar tune,
For whose song is this?

The Ochre Owls?
The Tapered Robins?
The Semini and Alchies?
The Blue-winged Finch?
The Nightingales?
The Orchard Kite?
The Red-breasted Nuthatch?

Birds which the Once Man has warned.
Chaotic birds are the old-timers.
The cover-tailed and storm-colored,
Woodpeckers in autumn,
Ashen Woodpeckers in spring.

Is it the wails of the forest doves,
the long-lived daughters of trees?

From the ripe heads of this species,
The moth hosts to the monsters of the forest.

Heirloom bird charms cannot be bought.


Neil shakes his head, "Gorram old-timer weirdos."

Sam squints and spends some time reparsing the text, "Mrs. Ocean, well that's something...  I'm not sure what, but something.  However, we do need to craft a response.  If you're not up to it, I can handle it for you."

Quote from: OOC: Writing Contest
Describe or write an appropriate email response to Mr. Thiel.  Per usual contest procedures, GM will choose either "the best" or fusion of multiple submissions for the Event Resolution.

If no submissions are received, Sam will craft a response.

Naturegirl1999

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Re: Space Cowboys for Hire (A PvE AR-like) [Turn 5: Contact Phase]
« Reply #280 on: July 28, 2020, 11:51:44 pm »

Code: (Contacts (Pick 5)) [Select]
(0) Lossarnach Country Club:
(1) Potter Properties: Sam
(0) Anghabar Mining and Refining:
(1) Tyrell Dynamics: NG
(0) Disney-Fox-Universal-Comcast:  **LIKELY UNAVAILABLE**
(1) Anghabar Mining and Refining CI FP: Sam
(0) Los Tornadoes:
(0) Swearengen's Gentlemen's Club:
(1) Slavic Vor: Sam
(0) Casa Nuova:
(0) Goodhaven Sheriff:
(0) Harad Marshals:
(0) Flossmore Warden:
(0) Coalition Expeditionary Forces:
(2) Interstellar Red Cross: Sam, NG
(0) Amnesty Interstellar:  **LIKELY UNAVAILABLE**
(1) United Labor Movement: NG
(0) United Green Party:  **LIKELY UNAVAILABLE**
(1) Interstellar Geographic Society: NG
(2) Grace O'Malley: Sam, NG
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Stirk

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Re: Space Cowboys for Hire (A PvE AR-like) [Turn 5: Contact Phase]
« Reply #281 on: July 29, 2020, 12:00:03 am »

I'm guessing our pirate princess has a large bounty on her head. We can probably get into ARM's good graces with a little tip off, collect the bounty, and help with a little arresting without betraying our "don't betray the client" rule. Otherwise like normal we're just shooting in the dark when it comes to picking out who to ask for jobs.

The message doesn't have any obvious code in it. It doesn't make any sense if you take only the first word or whatever, the long string of "The bird" does away with that. We see...9 bird types + the moth. If we assume the woodpecker is the prison and the "Ashen" was saying we burned it down, we have 8 "Large" organizations matching these, and can assume that each one lines up with one of the birds that suits it best. It looks like he is asking who we're working for.
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Powder Miner

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Re: Space Cowboys for Hire (A PvE AR-like) [Turn 5: Contact Phase]
« Reply #282 on: July 29, 2020, 12:18:59 am »

Code: (Contacts (Pick 5)) [Select]
(0) Lossarnach Country Club:
(1) Potter Properties: Sam
(0) Anghabar Mining and Refining:
(2) Tyrell Dynamics: NG, Powder Miner
(0) Disney-Fox-Universal-Comcast:  **LIKELY UNAVAILABLE**
(1) Anghabar Mining and Refining CI FP: Sam
(0) Los Tornadoes:
(0) Swearengen's Gentlemen's Club:
(2) Slavic Vor: Sam, Powder Miner
(0) Casa Nuova:
(0) Goodhaven Sheriff:
(0) Harad Marshals:
(0) Flossmore Warden:
(0) Coalition Expeditionary Forces:
(3) Interstellar Red Cross: Sam, NG, Powder Miner
(0) Amnesty Interstellar:  **LIKELY UNAVAILABLE**
(2) United Labor Movement: NG, Powder Miner
(0) United Green Party:  **LIKELY UNAVAILABLE**
(1) Interstellar Geographic Society: NG
(3) Grace O'Malley: Sam, NG, Powder Miner
I'm starting to sour on CI FP -- the surly attitude there after our first failure doesn't bode all that well for our reception if another mission turns out messy, and I don't feel the two-man mission to go investigate is necessarily all that great anyway because of the high risk and need for a second person. O'Malley is likely to be on much better terms with us, so I wouldn't mind wheeling around to her side (my ULM vote is also for this reason). Tyrell would also be nice since they should have some decently-paying jobs, and our last job with them went very well. My other votes are kinda throw-away.
« Last Edit: July 29, 2020, 12:21:10 am by Powder Miner »
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Shadowclaw777

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Re: Space Cowboys for Hire (A PvE AR-like) [Turn 5: Contact Phase]
« Reply #283 on: July 29, 2020, 12:48:43 am »

Code: (Contacts (Pick 5)) [Select]
(0) Lossarnach Country Club:
(1) Potter Properties: Sam
(0) Anghabar Mining and Refining:
(2) Tyrell Dynamics: NG, Powder Miner
(0) Disney-Fox-Universal-Comcast:  **LIKELY UNAVAILABLE**
(1) Anghabar Mining and Refining CI FP: Sam
(0) Los Tornadoes:
(0) Swearengen's Gentlemen's Club:
(3) Slavic Vor: Sam, Powder Miner, SC777
(0) Casa Nuova:
(0) Goodhaven Sheriff:
(1) Harad Marshals: SC777
(0) Flossmore Warden:
(0) Coalition Expeditionary Forces:
(4) Interstellar Red Cross: Sam, NG, Powder Miner, SC777
(0) Amnesty Interstellar:  **LIKELY UNAVAILABLE**
(3) United Labor Movement: NG, Powder Miner, SC777
(0) United Green Party:  **LIKELY UNAVAILABLE**
(1) Interstellar Geographic Society: NG
(4) Grace O'Malley: Sam, NG, Powder Miner, SC777
Slavic Vor: We should probably dabble in Criminal activities since it’s another side of the game, just because expectedly they should offer less difficult jobs for higher cash rewards, since they can’t do their jobs legally and therefore come to us. Even then is really bad to lean on this group for them to trust us as our contact?, maybe they’ll realize we seek easier and less explosive gig than last time.

Harad Marshal: This is a contact we gained through a mission and should be slightly stronger than the rest?, and we should probably take it. The first one we took was extraordinary easy

IRC and Grace’o’Malley: We already have continuing plot threads with them, so we should probably still continue them.

Actually it seems all the missions we have preference for will be pretty combat centric around them, with one being based around a insurgency, there was way too much combat for a rescuing doctor mission for IRC, but the United Labor is very much a mystery but by choosing them we become tankies and therefore that’s a win.

I’m against Tyrell, on the facet that their missions take significant to our majority of our manpower to be done right, and with having 2~ severe enough wounds that effect stealth as well as gunfights, it should most likely be avoided.
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Kashyyk

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Re: Space Cowboys for Hire (A PvE AR-like) [Turn 5: Contact Phase]
« Reply #284 on: July 29, 2020, 12:52:27 am »

Code: (Contacts (Pick 5)) [Select]
(1) Lossarnach Country Club: Kashyyk
(2) Potter Properties: Sam, Kashyyk
(0) Anghabar Mining and Refining:
(2) Tyrell Dynamics: NG, Powder Miner
(0) Disney-Fox-Universal-Comcast:  **LIKELY UNAVAILABLE**
(1) Anghabar Mining and Refining CI FP: Sam
(0) Los Tornadoes:
(0) Swearengen's Gentlemen's Club:
(3) Slavic Vor: Sam, Powder Miner, SC77
(0) Casa Nuova:
(1) Goodhaven Sheriff: Kashyyk
(1) Harad Marshals: SC77
(0) Flossmore Warden:
(0) Coalition Expeditionary Forces:
(4) Interstellar Red Cross: Sam, NG, Powder Miner, SC77
(0) Amnesty Interstellar:  **LIKELY UNAVAILABLE**
(3) United Labor Movement: NG, Powder Miner, SC77
(0) United Green Party:  **LIKELY UNAVAILABLE**
(2) Interstellar Geographic Society: NG, Kashyyk
(5) Grace O'Malley: Sam, NG, Powder Miner, Kashyyk, SC77

Lossnach, Goodhaven Sherrif and Int Geo have all been pretty solid and safe jobs, if a little light on danger pay. (Just what we need with low man power). And I'm just curious about what the heck a small realtor would need a PMC for.
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