On the Maelstrom's Edge

Dungeon Stomp
Pan

Into the caverns, this place reminds me of one of the those old dungeon stomp games. People appear
out of the darkness going through their day to day. Two kids run past playing some game. A person
comes out a side ally with a cart nearly bumping us, as we all reach for our weapons. We are tense for
good reason too. Right as we walk past a noodle factory we start seeing people paying attention to us.
People like the ones out front. We are on their turf it’s hard to see how this won’t end badly. Maybe
with the proper show of force though they will backoff.

No such luck we try to sneak our way through, wander through a storage area, sneak through a nursery
school, fucking screaming kids, then back into the dungeon. We try to go up but we hear even more
boots coming down. You can feel this is going to go bad, it almost has a slow steady drum beat. As we
get boxed in, we just slow down more and prepare for the fight. Having gimpy with us makes it seem
even more slow motion. It’s not like we can leave him behind.

What comes next is out of a western, or a kung-fu trid…or some crazy combination. The locals go to
ground sensing the growing triad presense. Suddenly they start coming at us from all the alleys. Luckily
most of them don’t have guns. Hell in these close quarters you might not even need them most of the
time. I’m sure these walls don’t stop bullets too well either, each miss probably hits a handful of houses
or businesses. Before I can think more about the reasons for their lack of guns it’s a blur. Lloyd has his
shields up and has the littlest smile. I can tell he’ll be hard to kill so I back his move. Gimpy makes it
even more of a western, gun in each hand they just keep blasting. Accurate too, timed shots, damn I’m
liking our odds more. He’s starting to remind me of Clint Eastwood now though.

Me I stick to cover leveling anyone who threatens me with shotgun slugs. It’s vicious, eventually though
they close the gap. Clint wanders off after some guys with pistols I heard shooting at us. Lloyd comes
back to me right as they rush. They close the ground too quick for us to cut them down. As they get
to me I drop the shotgun and fall back in a fighting stance. I guess that little bit of Jeet Kundo training
I took helped. Block block fire, they snuck a couple hits in but nothing too bad. As the last dropped
spraying me with blood, it suddenly was just deathly quiet.

All I could hear is the ringing and Lloyd asking me if I was ok. I nodded. Then this shouting Capital voice.
Hey action stars come here. Well Shaggy pulls us out of the warzone. I wonder if it was the pure desire
for cash, or just not wanting to see it escalate. Either way it’s appreciated. We pay him for his time,
take a breather and get some info about where we need to go.

I’m sure it’ll be easy from here.

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Whirling Death Machine
How a little Chinese man almost killed Lloyd

Marco

As we move through darkened alleys, and try to head up a set of stairs that leads to our destination, triad soldiers head our direction cutting us off. We backtrack and head into a warehouse, unlock a door to sleeping room, then head into kindergarten where we scare a class of kids. We glare at them as they scream and cry then head out into new alley. Triad troops surround us and we enter combat. Two unarmed soldiers rush forward and I take out them out, but not before I take a stunning kick in the upper chest. Pan kills off my attacker and I move up to kill off the two attackers on Lloyd. removing both in quick order.

Pistol armed triads move down another alley to attack us. I catch one in the armor, shake it off then take cover around a corner as I shoot down the alley at the advancing soldiers. Lloyd moves down alley towards Triad, bullets impact uselessly on his psionic armor, the triads pull back, giving me enough time to move up behind Lloyd and take out the guy peering around the corner.

Lloyd heads down to help Pan as I march forward to the last remaining triad to get a prisoner. We trade shots, he getting the best of me as I catch one in the chest, it spins me and my armor absorbs the blow. I move up to remove his cover, but my damn leg twitches and I loose my aim… he smiles at me. Pan and Lloyd fend off a group of melee armed triad that keep appearing out of the darkened alleys. The gunfight between myself and the goon is like a bad movie, shots flying, lots of noise ,but no impacts. I finally take out the grinning triad member with a shot to his knee, he falls groaning and screaming with pain. I turn reload and head back toward the fight which seems to have intensified, as I make it halfway down the alley, three guys with pistols appear at the head of the alley and open fire on me, the bullets ricochet off the tight corridors. I take out the first guy with a shot to the chest and miss the second guy with a quick shot over his shoulder. I head out of cover to engage them up close but my shots go wild, I must have startled them with my boldness because their shots go very wild and put holes into a nearby garbage pile. I take out one of the goons, but it seems like I’m going to replay my last gunfight. The Triad goon and I continue to trade shots, a click echos from his gun, I smile as his weapon goes empty, I bring up my Punisher but the gun jams, The Ironfist close behind and at this range the impact from the bullet throws a bit of bio-matter into my face as the goon falls to the floor with a smug smile on his face, my gun clicks empty.

As I turn to engage the remaining triads, Pan and Lloyd are standing there in the midst of a pile of bodies. A strange goofy white kid pops his face out of a door and beckons us into hiding.

We follow the kid into a safe-house past a couple of old women and end up in a small shop with a Chinese kid playing with a robot toy. We take a rest to repair our wounds and our equipment, the small kid lends me a hand with my gun while Lloyd and Skinnay negotiate a price for assisting us in our search. He informs us that a local hacker was the guy trying to kill us and that he was using his uncle’s monastery as a link to the outside world. He agrees to take us near the local hacker’s residence.

We follow Skinnay to a small darkened room where he explains to us how to get to the local hacker’s room. We head up the stairs, I slowly make my way up behind Lloyd and Pan and we encounter a small Chinese man at the top, who was waiting for us. Combat begins as an implanted shotgun blasts away into Lloyd. The wired street samurai makes short work of Lloyd as we exchange bullets and sword play in the staircase… Lloyd drops as the Samurai leaps out of sight into the darkness.

We pull back to tend to Lloyd’s wounds meeting back up with Skinnay… miraculously Lloyd pulls through with a last ditch effort of his psionic power. We clean up quickly and head back to our original target.

Pan Quickly breaks through the security and we enter a dingy cluttered apartment with a scared kid holding a grenade. Before we can talk him down, the Samurai climbs over the balcony, the kid turns and throws his grenade at the Samurai. Lloyd and I move forward to engage as the kid makes a beeline for the doorway. The samurai manages to pitch the grenade over the edge as he leaps onto the balcony and runs into the room. Both Lloyd and I are able to catch him with a few shots, but not before he slashed the kid down with his sword. We blaze into him with our guns and manage to stop him just as he’s about to escape off the balcony.

Pan and I manage to tie off the serious bleeder in the kid’s arm before he dies of blood loss. We scan the room to ensure we are safe and collapse after the sudden onslaught of adrenaline ends.

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Paranoia
Pan

As I think back to the face of that receptionist all I can think is, he’s some robot part of some plot to stop us. Some fake vat flesh covering over an android frame…maybe a actually human chipped and under their mind control… that is what paranoia is isn’t it.

Everyone is against us…me…the details are murky even as the story comes together.

Thinking back to the foot print someone pointed out in the mud, I immediately compared it to my own and think some other version of me tried to kill or at least stop us on that space station.

My brain has been wandering more like this…gotta focus. Can’t put too much trust in these guys around me to get it right.

Now here I am in some alley, gimpy just shanked some low-life. Good stab too right between the ribs. Lloyd puts his buddy down with a silenced gun. Not as smooth as I would have hoped…but I think I’m beyond that now. Hungry for answers, done playing nice, I’ve been feeling too much like a pawn in this game. I think it’s time for an upgrade…rook perhaps.
Now lets see if we can find the mother fucker who tried to crash us and figure out why.

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Bad Teeth

The alarm klaxon blared from above, warning of some imminent danger.  The ground is shaking and the water covering the surface is rippling with the vibrations.

I yell over to Pan, “Which one of these is worth taking?” she quickly points to one of the computers as she dives to avoid falling debris.  I grab the case, holster my gun and head for the staircase, which looks like it is about to become scrap metal at the bottom of a pit.  The staircase sways back and forth as we clamber up trying not to lose balance… This damn leg of mine just won’t cooperate.

The staircase gives way just as I reach the next landing and I jump for the edge sticking the landing… I turn back and throw my hand out for the girl as she loses her footing and begins to tumble over the edge.  Catching her hand, preventing her from falling to her death, I reach over with my other hand and  pull her up by the back of her jacket and drag her to safety.

Rock and metal debris continue to rain down onto us as we make it out of the missile silo and up into the bunker.  Finally we see daylight at the end of the tunnel as we burst out of the bunker back into the stinking hot jungle.  Gulping for air, I hit the ground and lay there for a few moments catching my breath and checking to make sure I haven’t lost any parts along the way.

As we take a breather, we get an emergency message from the ship that there are hostiles trying to steal her.  Quickly we make our way back to the landing zone, where we are greeted by a medium sized group of militia types.  We spread out and move forward slowly hoping to take them by surprise, but they had more soldiers hidden in the jungle and instantly the bullets start flying.

I split from the group hoping to flank the enemy position, but run into a couple of shotguns blazing away.  Catching one in the chest, I duck behind some trees to check the damage and find that my armor took the brunt of the shot.  I get a few shots off at the shotguns, but an assault rifle off beyond the ship begins laying down fire on my position forcing me back, but not before I drop one of the shotguns.  As I make my way further into the bush, the assault rifle catches me between armor plates and throws me to the ground.  The wound is excruciating, but my body has learned to compensate for pain.  I stumble back to my feet and take another shot at the shotgun which happens to be the more threatening opponent at this point.  Catching him in the face, he is thrown backwards over the rock, I make a slow advance while Pan and 
Lloyd engage with their leader and the two assault rifles.

The leader goes down and the militia begins to falter, making quick work of the remaining soldiers we secure the area.  Lloyd attends to the wounds using his psionic powers to mend the tears in our flesh.  We gather the weapons and ammunition and quickly get on the ship, the radios of the soldiers are beginning to warn  us of more troops arriving at our location… I don’t think we could handle another group.

Scanning the computer on the flight, we discover information that points us in the direction of Mercury.  Supposedly some Monk in a monetary was the one attacking us, why… We have no clue, but I seriously want to know!  We dock up with a transport ship and make our way to Mercury.

Pan uses her hacking skills to locate the broadcast signal that has been attacking us, it originates from a wireless balloon that floats above the monastery.  Tracing that signal, we a led to a warren of apartments and businesses outside the spaceport.

The signal, Pan explains, is originating from a source inside the warren of homes and businesses, but it’s not too exact, somewhere on the fourth floor I think I hear her say.  A we look at the daunting task of finding a way into the mismatched building, Lloyd sees the monk duck into a street dentist.  Lloyd and I follow into the dentist to see what is going on, while Pan stands outside and guards.

The receptionist at the counter, an aged Chinese woman, shrieks at us in her native tongue… I can’t figure what she’s saying so I point at my teeth and say loudly, “I need dental work.” she smiles and nods her head and hands me a stack of about 100 pieces of paper for me to fill out… Lloyd uses this opportunity to slip into the back and look for our Monk friend.  I continue to draw the womans attention by almost yelling my questions… I figure if I keep pointing at my teeth, looking ignorant of the fact that yelling won’t make her understand me better and pointing at the paperwork she’ll never notice that Lloyd has gone into the back…

This continues for about 5 minutes or so, I can see the look of frustration on the poor woman’s face… Lloyd exits the back room and shakes his head… I look at the woman and say, rather loudly… “no problem anymore, must have work it’s way out… Thank you anyways!”. We exit the dentist with the old Chinese lady staring at us with indignation.

Lloyd tells us it was someone else and that he got a closer look and from a distance they were twins… Or something like that.  We head over to the building that we originally came here for and immediately are accosted by a thug in a cheap suit…

With a cigarette barely hanging onto his thin lips, he glares at us with a hungry look… “What you want?” he asks in his broken English.  I let nice guy in the bunch talk it out as I size this schmuck up… After a few moments of haggling, it looks like we’re about to get through this doorjamb, when Pan notices his backup making his way across the street…  Lloyd continues to haggle with the guy as we notice his attention flit over to his buddy, his hand tightens on the grip of his smg.  Quickly I draw my knife and step into the guy, his eyes flash a brief look of surprise as I continue forward and drop his body into the alley, drawing my knife out of his chest and wipe off the blood on his jacket.  From my right, I hear the cough of a silenced pistol as both Pan and Lloyd enter the alleyway with me… Crap, so much for keeping a low profile!

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Whitewash
Pan's research

You are able to pull up information on project whitewash. The information that you can gather is limited but deals with a cybertronic black operation that targeted a few facilities on Luna as well as a facility in orbit around earth.

One of the facilities targeted was the one that AJ had in his memory. The operation was targeting scientists at the facilities as well as information regarding a Venusian research facility as well as a mercury research facility.

The operation went off without any issues until half way through the operation when The Cartel was alerts to the attacks. The Cartel moved in quickly and stopped the battles and forced the cybertronic operatives to fall back.

Cybertronic insisted that they launched the attack in defense of their corporation, that a cabal formed from members of the other corporations were planning to launch an attack of devastating proportions against all cybertronic employee/citizens.

The whitewash operation was partially successful, it forced the cabal corporations to halt their research. The locations of the other research facilities were not discovered as far as you can find out, but the research you uncovered hinted that the other facilities were very important to the evidence cybertronic required to incriminate the other corps.

Research

> Research. The name of the game is slow and careful. Especially after the Bauhaus assassian squad.
>
> So I’m going to check our ID match algorithms.

Your match program finds approximately 1 million individuals that match around 3000 specific different faces, the ratio is evenly spread out amongst the different faces and spread out all over the known verse.

> Also project whitewash, ID the building, pull all info.
Whitewash still pulls nothing. The building pulls up as local on Luna. It is currently owned by a Bauhaus subsidiary called Umbrella Corporation.

> Look into hacking it etc.
It is inaccessible remotely, so you cannot hack it.

> Probably setup remote survaliance as well. If it’s local.
You setup surveillance on the building and get the day to day activities. There are a good number of people working at the facility. From what you can see, physical security is tight but not overwhelming, very subdued.

> Put the datapad back together.
The data pad is going to take a while. You will need to rebuild the drive sector by sector, you need may need to send it out to a guy you know who has some experience in rebuilding drives.

AJ and I dropped this off with an old associate of mine to work on. It’ll take sometime.

Work with Phin

Full scan and autopsy on our bauhaus friend. Trying to figure out how I heard him in my head. I’m going to sweep him and the car for bugs and act to jam them even if I don’t find any.
You do a full workup on the dead Bauhaus soldier. No cyberware. His name is henrick feuring. He works for umbrella corp, stationed at the Luna building. He is a captain in the Bauhaus military special forces. He has an apartment in Bauhaus sector off military campus. He is not married, no kids, parents dead. No infractions in his military record. Multiple commendations.

I let everyone know I was warned via internal radio before the shot was taken. I didn’t know I had an internal communicator before that moment.

The voice in your head was not bauhausian. And there is nothing you can find from any checks on his body or the vehicle that would point towards the transmission coming from the bauhaus soldiers. You detect no bugs anywhere on the body or the vehicle, and you disable the tracking system in the vehicle.

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Trusting Myself
Pan to the team

Trusting myself
Ok Lloyd, I need you to do me a favor. I need you to poke around in my head. I’m not normally the type to like to share info, or trust others but I’m feeling less like I have an option. Shit is getting crazy and I think some of the info might be hidden in my own head. Now don’t mess around in there or anything. I think I’m also going to have a brain and cyber scan going on at the same time. Full system diagnostic basically. So Lloyd I’m going to have Phin and AJ sit in too.

I’ve gotten bombarded with images recently, like the sight of some people have unlocked some old memories. I put some work into recreating this from them. Having a headware computer does provide some advantages. Take a look at this video. This first happened when I saw that bitch Captain Menednez? That is really why I didn’t like her so much. Hell she was probably just in the same boat I’m in.

Also I’m going to share all the research records,

I think it’s all linked to Whitewash. Combine that with the files AJ found and there are a lot of questions I can’t answer.

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First Day On The Job

It’s been so long since I have been in the Sol System… but memories of good times on Earth rush back into my mind as I see the familiar glow of my home as I approach Luna… I know I can’t go back.

I have one name that will bring me answers to my questions, Whitestar… Roger Whitestar. It was his ships that brought us to New New Mexico and it was his ships that brought us supplies, he will know why Umbrella left us to die.

I scan the newsfeeds looking to catch up to the current events and looking for any information about Roger Whitestar. Unfortunately I find that he has been incarcerated and that i cannot visit him, but he has a daughter and she runs his former company. I contact her and explain that I once worked for her father and that I am looking for work. She seems to be distracted and after a short conversation she asks me to talk to a Dr. Phineas Rothstein at her transport company and to tell him that I would be tagging along for a transport shipment involving jewels?

Luna is so overcrowded, the masses of people here are staggering and fill me with a bit of claustrophobic anxiety… everyone is looking at me, they can see my scars, they can see my weakness as I walk. I hide my face and keep my head down, I hope I don’t get asked for identification, I lost it many months ago on New New Mexico somewhere in the mountains… I didn’t think I would ever have use for it again.

The Whitestar Agency is clean, I feel out of place, the young woman behind the desk is beautiful, I’m sure she thinks I’m hideous… keep the scarf up, don’t let her see your face, she’ll only turn away in fear. Damn those creatures for scarring me, damn Umbrella for leaving me for dead.

The Dr. arrives and I am brought into his office where I am met by a handsome man, a strange young woman and an android that seems more suited to killing than being a gracious host. We talk about work, I explain that Ms. Whitestar had offered me a job to assist in their current operation and that I would like to accompany them and help where I can. The android, Joe I think they called him, wants to test how accurate I am with my weapon. The girl watches me closely, she can see through my scarf, she can see the scars and thinks I’m hideous… please stop looking at me, all you need to know is I won’t screw you over and I’ll watch your back. That’s how it was for all those months in the mountains, I made sure the colony survived… but I failed them in the end… I need to make amends for my failure.

The ship is sturdy, but the ground crew is lackluster in their ability to maintain the vessel… within 5 minutes I spot a minor but noticeable problem. The ground crewman that is nearby is unwilling to help… he gives me some sort of Labor Union excuse and tells me to go fill out a form… it’s a minor problem but still it’s a problem… I fix it and get onboard for the flight to the space station.

The journey to the station becomes a nightmare as the ship is attacked by a hacker. The ship is thrown about and it becomes obvious that we are doomed to crash into the docking bay, but through the skilled piloting of the Dr. and the expertise of the young woman at fending off the attack, we manage to make a hard touchdown in the landing bay.

The station attendants are none to pleased by our arrival and they end up costing us a meeting with the prospective employer as they attempt to sort out our landing problems and find out if I am who I say I am… I knew the identification would present itself as a problem… life was so much easier on the fringe.

We wait another day to have a meeting with the high powered official. The ship is attacked a second time while we sleep… the oxygen levels are drained from the ship, but we manage to open the doors in time to let in fresh air while the girl, Pan, fixes the computer system and removes a virus from the memory core.

The meeting goes as planned and we end up moving some jewels from one station to another all while making a good sum of money. I’ve yet to be paid though… I’ll need some cash to find a place to live while I find my answers.

On the way out we are attacked a third time, but this time we locate the exact signal of the attack and make our way to a location in the jungles of Brazil on Earth. The signal leads us to an abandoned missile silo in the middle of the jungle. Tracks are found, but they seem old… we follow them deeper into the facility. After a bit of exploration, we locate a computer terminal in the bottom of the missile silo which is where the cyber attack originated, but it is not the original source, this is just a transmission station. As we begin to think about what steps we need to take next, alarms cut through the silence and I immediately take up a defensive position.

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The Adventures of Pan and Android Joe

Pan and Android Joe scan video footage of the attack on the café. They discover the following: the bullet that killed Annika came from a sniper shooting from a nearby office building. They begin to plan an office break-in. Pan installs ninjaware98 into AJ’s mainframe to prepare.

Pan and AJ hack the police system to get the police report from the café shooting. They find out that the remaining bodies from the hit squad were taken away by Bauhaus. They also learn that pressure from an unknown source effectively closed the police investigation. There is no information or investigation on a sniper. Media reported the attack as a battle between rival gangs. Pan modifies the evidence so that it is unlikely to ever lead back to the Whitestar Agency.

Pan and Android Joe travel to meet Pan’s contact, a middle-aged technician named Coleman Galloway. Coleman shows some interest in Android Joe, and then Coleman and Pan get to work talking about the broken datapad. Coleman examines the datapad and explains that it will take some time, at least a week, to repair and extract the information. Pan gives Coleman a Whitestar company mobile phone for secure communication. They say farewell and then Pan and AJ head back to the neighborhood of the café attack.

Parking a few blocks away, Pan and AJ hit the street. The building is called “HLG Building 1.” Pan and AJ slowly walk by to scope out the security situation and then turn down an alley to begin the break-in. They hack the building system, and download security footage from the day of the café attack. They learn that the sniper was in place on the 30th floor before the café meeting with Annika began.

Retracing the sniper’s path, Pan and AJ unlock the loading dock and take the service elevator to the 30th floor. The 30th floor is unused office space, clear of people and equipment but with a good view of the street. Pan and AJ find the sniper’s likely position and discover a hole in the window. The hole was laser cut to facilitate the barrel of a rifle. The find a spot of gun oil and take a sample. They also find some hair follicles, perhaps belonging to the sniper.

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Mirror
Pan Adventure 6

Joe pops up this picture…of me? Looks like me from an alternate time line or something. Either some really crazy shit is going down or someone is trying to mess with me. Both are possible, but I think it’s the first. I immediately felt an effinity to Joe, but I just assumed it was because I like robots, not because a brain similar to mine developed his style and structure. Funny, I’d have probably called him Killbot too, and making him so polite about it is perfect.

Of course now I have to share with all these guys, at least give them my back story. This whole thing gets my mind racing, could people have been fucking around in my head? They did some work but I’ve always felt after that point and even before it the data hung together. I did my research, it’s a pretty ellaboate back story someone wrote-up for me back through childhood if it’s not real. Until I know why someone whould go through all that effort. Mom existed, I have a past, don’t go jumping too far down the rabbit hole. This is something simplier…but what.
Project Whiteout, that sounds like a good place to start.

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Mind fucks
Pan Adventure 5

Since we’ve gotten back to the ship I’ve been taking every free minute going through my video of our fight with the Dark Legion. I fought the Dark Legion, that was amazing. Who would have thought what would have come of signing on with Morn. I mean this is a big deal. I can’t wait to hear the online buzz this video causes; this information has to get out to the world.

First I gotta clean off all the stuff that makes us identifiable. Names, modify voices, blur video etc. Of course the right people will probably be able to connect the dots, like that captain. I didn’t like that cunt…I think I was worried about her stealing my data. That and the mind fucking. That is messed up even if it’s being done by some “nice” Chinese old man.

I gotta look into ways to stop this bullshit, technology, mental exercise, there has got to be a way.

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