Clutch of Dragons

Midnight - part four
  • Transport attacked by a mated pair of greater thunderbirds en route over the Rockies. Killed both birds and carried on to San Bernardino!
  • Ricky flew off quickly and then you hired a van from a local place.
  • Discovered that the suburb was heavily under the thumb of two gangs – the all-elf Ancients, and the Burning Angels
  • Found an Ancients bar and waited until a woman in a green and black leather jacket with a green and black mohawk arrived to speak with them. She explained that the Ancients don’t have much to do with Sonora as she’s in tight with their enemies, the Burning Angels.
  • Saiph and Mel holed up at the safehouse the Ancients provided while Gabriela schmoozed a couple of Burning Angels posing as a potential “groupie”
  • Ancients reported back that the Burning Angels were apparently very excited about an incoming shipment, and took the runners to the warehouse where the t-bird was going to land. They scoped the place out and came up with a plan (below) and saw the layout below. Black crosses generally are cybered footsoldiers in the Burning Angels. The ones with green circles around are magicians (Magic 8). The one with a black circle around it is an apparently mundane human with several spells on it, and three of the five black crosses around it were heavily cybered guards, and the other two were adepts. The red cross is a Force 6 Guardian Blood Spirit.

2013 06 25 22.47.44

  • Update Jane-in-the-Box as to the situation, that Sonora is handing the Sextant to the Azzies via the gang

The plan

  • Be concealed by Jackie’s spirit
  • All three on roof of warehouse
  • Opening salvo vs. group by the water and kill them before the footsoldiers make it up to the roof
  • Hope that t-bird lands and doesn’t leave
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Midnight - part three
  • Team systematically killed the thirty land-based Mafia troopers, and sank the boat with the anti-aircraft gun on it. The other two boats fled at that point.
  • Inside the Spire, they met Ricky Steelsky, a burly human Caucasian male in his 40s, who explained that his people were shipping Sonora and her team of two to Denver as a stop-over on her route to San Bernardino near LA
  • Given the huge help the team had given Spire Enterprises, he agreed to take them straight to San Bernardino. The only choice necessary was whether to take the usual, long route around that had many stops in small towns and was relatively safe, or the much more dangerous, quicker route across the Mojave Desert, a place full of angry paracritters, well-equipped bandits, and Ghost knows what else.
  • The team naturally chose the dangerous route. After a short rest and a stop-off to collect their gear from the rented SUV, the flight straight to San Bernardino started…
  • Around this time, the team took a call from Jane-In-The-Box saying that the ritual had revealed the Sextant was in Des Moines but moving quickly west – fitting with the Denver intel.
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Gabriella - Midnight Mission Notes
  • The team and me are heading to Chicago to try to recover the Sextant of the Worlds.
  • We are pretty sure it’s in the hands of a mage called Sonora and her team of mercs/runners an that she’s trying to leave the area with it.
  • Upon arriving in Chicago we are greeted with a pathetic reflection of a once great urban metropolis. It looks like a UCAS sprawl to the uninitiated but the beating heart of the city has been left beaten and scarred by it’s past. Kind of place you don’t want to live in, just visit for business.
  • We headed out of the O’Hare sub-sprawl and into real poverty, desperation and all the nasty shit that creeps in to take advantage of folks in that kind of situation. Gangs, drugs, guns, tribal mentalities and corporate ‘secrets’ will all abound in this messed up wasteland. Can’t help but wish the bombs had completely levelled this whole place.
  • Caught up with Quicksilver and traded in Mercury’s favour for some info. Sonora has a 50k bounty on her head, go figure. Bet that Sextant has something to do with it so I’m not sure cashing it would be wise. Heading up to Lake Calumet now.
  • Note to self: “The Greek” from Detroit has a smuggling base here & they don’t seem that bad comparatively.
  • They aren’t here (The Greeks base on the lake), but have headed off to the Spire (about 2h in the direction of the CZ border). We are heading off straight away.
  • Note to self: Mel can handle almost 25 thugs at once with one spell.
  • Drek! Bug dogs nearly did for us. Doing what I can for Mel & Saiph. They should have completely levelled this place.
  • Note to self: That said if you could find away of dealing with the howls you could really keep something secure out here.
  • Outside the Spire now. The Greek’s men are besieging the joint. There are about 30 outside with 10 on boats. The Union chummers inside number about 10 and are offering some serious gratitude in return for help. They’ve sent off a bird which probably contains Sonora and her team (because they would have totally dealt with these chumps if they were still waiting to leave) so we need the flight plan. Looks like we are going to help the Union.
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Midnight - part two
  • En route to CZ border, accosted by 25 street gangers trying to steal their stuff. Mel cast a Manaball, killing five outright and seriously injuring the rest…
  • Former wall around the CZ is a multistorey heap of snow-and-ice-covered rubble. Gates are wide open but blocked by metre-high snowdrifts. One of Mel’s spirits Concealed the team and their SUV, which was left behind.
  • Unbroken snow as you walk through the Zone – entire place has an insect spirit background count
  • Abandoned cars covered in snow give cover all over the place
  • After about three hours of walking, they saw dog tracks and heard mixed barking and chittering. Walking on for another half hour, Saiph shot one of the bug-dogs and started a fight in which the Roach hybrid dogs used their Fear power to good effect to break them up, and two of them severely injured Saiph. Both Gabriella and Saiph turned into their drake forms, Saiph destroying much of his cold-weather gear in the process.
  • Heading up towards the spire took another hour and a half; from about half an hour out, you could see plumes of smoke and hear gunfire – Gabriella and Saiph picked up a distress signal, asking them to go get help for the Spire from the Union, 3 miles north up the coast. The message said there were about 30 guys besieging the Spire, plus an ack-ack gun that meant they only just got their last bird away.
  • Astral recon revealed 40 or so people besiegers (10 on various boats, 30 on land clustered around braziers), and about 10 people inside the Spire – plan to attack brazier groups one by one.
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Midnight - part one
  • Starts about a fortnight after the events of Dusk

Set-up

  • Called in by Azadeh. The drakes have discovered that the Piri Reis Map can be used to track the location of the Sextant of the Worlds, using a particular four-hour ritual (which has the side effect of leaving the caster mundane for 12 hours – currently only Rainwalker can do the ritual, and it only narrows the area down to 10-20km). It seems the Sextant is currently in Chicago – you’re needed to go and get it quickly!
  • Charter plane from Edmonton International Airport to O’Hare International in Chicago takes 5 hours. It’s a nine-seater Honda HA 520 jet.
  • There’s a big storm blowing through, so wrap up warm! Also includes a case of general equipment and bribes: cold-climate survival gear, 8 MREs, 5 Rating 3 Medkits, 100 antibiotic tablets, 3 pocket water-purification systems.
  • Rumours say that the team with the Sextant is led by a mage called Sonora (human Latina)
  • Please no grenades or anything near the Sextant!
  • Given details of Motel 5½ (off Route 294, outside the O’Hare sprawl to avoid police – note no reservations as there’s no Matrix access there!), a satellite uplink, a picture of the Sextant, and info about a trading post in Southside called Póg mo Thóin. Run by an elf called Sean who owes Quicksilver a favour, so drop his name if need be. He charges ammo for drinks.

Sextant

Chicago

  • SUV waiting for the team, Gabriela disables GridGuide to leave O’Hare Subsprawl.
  • Route 294 passes walled-off corporate enclaves and fortified business parks until the end of O’Hare territory, where border security is really tight for people coming the other way. Past the checkpoints, freeway has ice and snow.
  • Outside the O’Hare Subsprawl is basically feral – Motel is about one hour’s drive away from O’Hare border.
  • Occasional barricades on freeway exits, manned by people in layers of tattered clothes and carrying heavy weapons. Wireless signal ebbs and flows but is generally a bit crap.
  • At the exit, there are rusted-out cars parked across it, leaving only enough space for one car to pass. Path beaten through the snowdrifts. Dozen dudes armed with rifles wearing skimasks sitting on the barricade. They’re the Windy City Tollkeepers and they want bartered goods – Gabriela talked them into letting all three drakes through for one clip of regular ammo.
  • Motel 5½ is a two-storey L-shaped building set around an open parking lot. Rooms face out into the lot, but the windows are all boarded over with hard plastic. Rooms decorated haphazardly. Large generator for heat and power. No running water, chemical toilets. Front office actually a small bar (fresh water and homebrewed alcohol). Local biker gang hangs around for security. Awakened ivy grows in the area, and it has no background count. Wireless is hugely unstable and effectively nil. Paid for a week’s stay for everyone with two of the medkits, getting keys for rooms 1, 2 and 3.
  • En route to Póg mo Thóin (2hr journey), the team saw seven humans being attacked by wild dogs. Mel and Saiph intervened, saving the humans’ lives. They were very grateful but could offer nothing in return.
  • Póg mo Thóin has a trading post/meeting place/info exchange on the ground floor and a bar in the basement. Very very dingy, smells bad, serves awful booze. Live music played badly, ammo for drinks, Irish-themed with Irish (not Tir!) flags on the walls.
  • In exchange for the favour he owed Quicksilver, Sean pointed the team at a bounty hunter in the bar called Bosc. Bosc explained that there was a 50k bounty on Sonora (and 5k on each of her four teammates), and that he had been planning to chase her down. She’s apparently been seen around the Lake Calumet smuggler haven, which is run by Mafia Don Roland “The Greek” Stephanopoulos, who operates out of Detroit. Also bought some snow chains for the tyres with a medkit.
  • On the way to Lake Calumet, they barrelled through some Human Brigade territory concealed by one of Melika’s spirits. The same spirit also caused a blizzard over Lake Calumet.
  • The smugglers were all locked up tight from the blizzard, but by paying a box of assault rifle ammo they revealed that Sonora (plus an ork woman and two human men, all Hispanic) had been through with a large box – they sent her away to the Spire (an independent smuggling outfit based out of the old Truman Tower in the Containment Zone), as she only had nuyen to offer and they only take trade.
  • They also revealed that the Spire was about to be brought under the Greek’s control, and if the team wanted to get involved they needed to get there quickly; Lake Calumet’s about 2hrs drive away from the CZ border.
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Brindar Operations Report: Dusk

Mel, Gabi and I were assigned to follow up on suspicious activity by a metahuman named Mordecai and to acquire whatever item he took an interest in. We travelled to Hawaii where he was last seen.

Mel used spirits to track Mordecai, while Gabi discovered that he was in the company of Katherine Silveroak, apparently an elf of some note. It appeared they were present for an auction of artefacts. We made contact with Silveroak and Mordecai under the guise of tourists with similar interests. Gabi made efforts to ingratiate herself with Silveroak and secured us an invitation to the viewing prior to the auction. At the viewing it became clear that the artefact we had expected was not present and that Mordecai took an interest in a specific item.

After the viewing we were permitted to stay the night in the palace and opted to do so to establish the security on the items. While engaging in astral reconnaissance Mel spotted a thief stealing a valuable object from the palace. We reported this to the security and offered to recover the item in the hopes of securing an invitation to the auction.

With a little effort we discovered that the item had been stolen by a local organised crime group. We established the item’s location and retrieved it, although we were caught in a brief fire-fight in the process and were forced to kill all involved to ensure operational secrecy. Upon returning the item we were rewarded with invitations as hoped.

The auction was to be held on an island. Mel’s local knowledge informed me that the island had many clear sight-lines. We rented a small boat which I was to use as a firing platform and to allow tactical mobility beyond the transport being provided by the palace. Gabi and Mel attended the auction, maintaining their cover as interested parties, and established that the artefact in question was purchased by a third party, narrowly beating Mordecai and Silveroak’s bid.

The buyer made an attempt to leave by speedboat. I disabled the engine of his boat with a well times shot, causing it to capsize due to the excess speed. Mel, having already entered the water in anticipation, made incredible speed in closing with the target, apparently attacking him in some way. I finished him with a second shot, enabling Mel to take the artefact from him and carry it to shore. Gabi maintained her cover and met Mel and I at the hotel, from which we extracted quickly to the airport.

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Downtime post-Dusk

Group Funds: 27,000¥

  • Jane-In-The-Box is really impressed with your work. She asks you to meet her in the canteen for a drink to celebrate. When you get there, however, you discover every single other drake in Lake Louise is there; you’ve never seen everyone all at once like this before!
  • Ryan Mercury and Azadeh are both at the front, along with Rainwalker in human form, leading the applause. The entire room erupts in celebration at your achievement in recovering the Piri Reis Map.
  • You’re each given a Blacktooth Dagger, sheathed inside a Drake Day Bag, as part of this formal rite of acceptance. In there, there’s also an optical chip detailing the standard gear you’ll get for each mission.
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Dusk - part five
  • Started to plan – noted the thematic similarity between Sextant of the Worlds and Piri Reis Map.
  • Discussed the relatively likelihood of artefacts actually having ancient magic, or having recently acquired magic due to their cultural significance.
  • Called Jane-In-The-Box , and told her that Mordecai was after the Piri Reis Map. Jane offered a budget of 1,000,000¥ for the auction.
  • Further planning ensued.
  • Melika warded three waterproof map cases
  • Saiph and Gabriela hired a Dolphin II from a nice old lady:

Dolphin

  • Melika stated that she didn’t want any harm to come to the Princess, whereas Gabriela asked that Katherine Silveroak not come to any harm either.
  • The two women arrived on the island, whereas Saiph was stationed on the yacht keeping the place under overwatch from his sniper rifle
  • Gabriela did well at not accidentally buying anything, but was then outbid for the Piri Reis Map by Medjay, who beat Katherine Silveroak out at 2,100,00¥
  • Medjay left shortly after his victory in a speedboat; Saiph destroyed the engine with a single sniper round, Melika (who had kept up by swimming in drake form with help from a spirit’s Movement power) knocked him into unconsciousness with a manabolt and then a second sniper round finished the job. Melika bit off Medjay’s arm and swam off with it and the Piri Reis map.
  • Gabriela managed to avert suspicion through her pre-existing goodwill from Kimu Kekoa, the head of security, and a fake phonecall. She made her way back on the luxury cruiser.
  • The team retrieved their gear from the hotel, and returned home on a charter flight. VICTORY!
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Dusk - part four
  • Assaulted the Naheka-_gumi_’s _wakagashira_’s home compound, and broke into the safe, taking various of his notebooks and the stolen statue
  • This set off an alarm as Gabriela didn’t have the boss’ RFID access tag, but did successfully deal with the maglock and physical lock
  • Saiph shot the first guard to investigate, starting off the combat
  • Mel dropped a Powerball on several guards, injuring them very badly and killing one as he fell from the tower.
  • Gabriela went to leave with the haul, and shouted at Hideo and one of the guards not to move a muscle (using her adept powers to make it stick)
  • Mel got injured by a spirit of man that was patrolling, went berserk and changed into her dracoform before destroying the spirit with magic
  • Saiph killed Hideo Naheka and his other guard
  • Gabriela killed two guards, while Mel killed the remaining four
  • The trio fled with their ill-gotten gains, having killed everyone in the compound who witnessed Mel as a dracoform
  • Having gone via the hotel to change, they went to the palace and handed over the statue in exchange for three tickets to the auction that Saturday, on on the secure Ni’ihau (Forbidden Island) enclave – home to the kahunas and the bloodline of Kamehameha. Only the Awakened and people of the royal line can set foot on the island without permission!
  • Met up with Mel’s ex, Hokulani (the PI) and arranged to sell her the notebooks for 10 grand. She went off and made some calls to arrange the funding and
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Dusk - part three
  • Gabriela called security to report the theft, and after ten minutes of security searching the area, the local head of security (Kimu Kekoa) came and took Mel’s statement, explaining that a statue of King Kamehameha I had been stolen
  • Gabriela offered the team’s services in finding the lost item, which Kimu accepted because Mel’s a kahuna. She sent a Water Spirit to find the statue.
  • Reviewing the footage revealed the thief was an ork using a variety of adept powers, despite appearing mundane when Mel assensed him.
  • Gabriela went hunting for clues, finding small samples of sweat and blood near the vault and signs of escape outside. Upon asking, one of the guards lent Saiph an Ingram Smartgun X and a AZ-100 stun baton.
  • Saiph followed up on Gabriela’s leads and discovered the thief was a really good runner and jumper and ran through a public park near the Palace and onto a main road and presumably got into a vehicle. Gabriela asked the Palace staff for access to the camera feeds, which they said they would work on.
  • Mel identified that ALOHA, a terrorist organisation loyal to the dragon Naheka, are the most likely to strike against the royal family due to their dissatisfaction that the Ho family aren’t pureblood Hawaiian. She then called her PI contact and learnt that ALOHA forces were rioting and fighting against royal forces as they had allegedly stolen a valuable heirloom. The PI sold the information that she knew an ALOHA-linked fixer called Hippo who’s at a bar called the Three Friends.
  • On the way to the bar, the team stopped at their hotel to equip themselves
  • The bar was in a pretty dodgy area but thankfully there was no local violence
  • The team identified Hippo in the bar and Gabriela went to talk to him. For the low price of 500, he revealed that the thief was Tyson “Hāmau” Alualu and could be found at a brothel called the Dancing Ork. A spot of talking and intimidation led to the discovery that he sold the the statue to Hideo Naheka, wakagashira of the Kawaru-gumi.
  • The team checked out Hideo’s compound and discovered it had about ten armed guards, plus a spirit. It looked a bit like this:

Imag0216

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