July 1, 2019 at 5:15 pm #20234
Rebbeca shares the information with her pals and says “So, missed him by 10 minutes dammit we are too slow.”July 1, 2019 at 5:23 pm #20235
“Jist rotten luck – we moved when the rain started, which were the smart play.” He felt the seconds ticking by in his head as they waited to hear from Preston. “Stumpy’s files say anythin’ ’bout other planes parked here? An’ they fuel status?”July 1, 2019 at 5:39 pm #20237
Becky looked, but found no vehicle capable of a similar range ready to go.July 1, 2019 at 6:23 pm #20240
> 7000km? That’s a long way right? Lots of national borders potentially… these people don’t strike me as overly covert, is there a flight plan somewhere that will give us a destination?
July 2, 2019 at 4:51 pm #20254
- This reply was modified 2 weeks ago by Aria.
Rebbeca texts >> Well, most private planes are to get to the airport. That plane is to directly get to their destination. I know it is a long shot, but if we only missed him by 10 minutes it is unlikely a coincidence. So I speculate that they figured us out and smuggled Veljanov out of here. Now they need to find a place which is out of reach for us, and the only obvious answer is space. Getting Veljanov to space quickly is probably their goal anyhow. It is logical considering the big money involved, and the possibility of extraction.
Kit can you figure out which launch sites are available within 7000km of here?July 2, 2019 at 4:57 pm #20257
“Alrighty then, we missed the boat an’ nothin’ here ta jack. All the rest o’ this grand deduction we can do anywhere, so let’s make sure that don’t include here. Time ta move.”
<<Presto baby, tell yer friend whoever or whatever they is that we’s takin’ ’em on they safe passage out offer – all terms agreed.>>
“Lily, yer still on point.”July 2, 2019 at 4:59 pm #20259
”Great so no need to murder anyone, did we agree not to steal anything? “July 2, 2019 at 7:13 pm #20281
“Hell no. Grab whatever don’t slow us down.”July 2, 2019 at 11:04 pm #20285
Preston had taken the long moments to drop to cold sim, then AR, then do a physical scan around the Gaz, just in case they’d been rumbled. Then he told the team <<My friend here can’t tell us where V. went — due to confidentiality under SK and Panama state law. I guess I can’t ask him to violate that>> He was so happy that it was possible to add tone to AROs, so that they could read his pleasure with this information.
<<I suspect that taking extra gear with you would be considered damage to the base, and may void the safe passage offer. I can’t promise that is the case, but asking seems like it would guarantee a negative.>>July 3, 2019 at 4:52 am #20292
Al smiled at the message. It seemed hints were being dropped. A quick mental calculation told him that Panama was exactly within range of the transport that had taken off.
The good news was that nowhere in Panama was far from water where he could put the Snakehandler down.
The bad news was that there would still be an awful lot of dense jungle that a base could hide in.
So they continued on their way out, hoping the safe passage deal was bona fide. As for stealing stuff, he figured Becky had heard Preston’s message as well and would do a cost-benefit analysis of any potential thefts on her own.July 3, 2019 at 4:33 pm #20306
Demeter kept its word – the team didn’t meet anyone on their way back to the airlock – not even the medical people that should have carried the unconscious pair back to the infirmary.
July 3, 2019 at 5:34 pm #20308
- This reply was modified 1 week ago by Jack_Spade.
Preston thanks Artemis for being so honorable, then with relief leaves the host.July 3, 2019 at 6:41 pm #20309
Someone or something had indeed screened their exfil.
But that in no way lessened the retreating trio’s caution as they made their way stealthily up the ridge toward the Gaz and their camp. The pouring rain was a help, but they were on their guard for hostile action from the space camp every step of the way.July 4, 2019 at 2:46 pm #20325
Preston stayed in AR to maintain his marks on the host, but to also keep an eye out around the Gaz. He let the team know that as far as he could see things were clear, and when they got close enough he checked them out for marks.
* Monkey: My team, nobody gets to mark up their gear but me!
* Gamma: I can’t stop others from putting marks on them, but it does make me grumpySpoiler:July 4, 2019 at 3:49 pm #20330
So far there didn’t seem to be any attempt to hack the team’s gear. Lily, Al and Becky had nearly reached the edge of the crater when the alarms started.
<<I am sorry Preston, but I couldn’t keep your intrusion any longer from Hades. For your own best interest, please get away from here as quick as possible.>>
The rain was still coming thick and heavy, making the ascend slippery and difficult. By now the daylight had faded away to only a murky gloom.
On the plus side, normal rotor drones weren’t able to fly in this weather and even the small ones with the advanced anti-grav drives had trouble staying airborn.
The team suddenly felt a kind of vibration in the ground. A rhythmical stomping. IR-sensors suddenly noticed two sources of IR-light, like two glowing eyes in the darkness coming nearer. A heavily armored monstrosity on two legs revealed itself, carrying a large shield in front of its armor plated body and a kind of spear in its other hand.
Al realized that he was looking at an anthrodrone – probably some kind of NeoNet Juggernaut derivative. It seemed to have both a laser weapon and another, futuristic looking weapon integrated in its arms.
And as if that wasn’t enough, it was followed by two other drones, moving on five legs and looking like giant spiders with two miniguns each mounted at their torsos…
[/spoiler]July 4, 2019 at 7:30 pm #20339
The crest of the crater lip was in spitting distance – assuming a person could even spit in all this rain.
Al squinted back behind them – with cybereyes, squinting had no effect whatsoever, but old habits died hard – and did not like what he saw.
“Angels, apostles an’ saints,” he cursed, “We ain’t winnin’ no gunfight with that sorta hardware.”
Picking up his pace as best he could on the unsure ground, he made sure his body was between the pursuing anthroforms and his boom back as he extracted a bundle of plastique bricks out along with a pull detonator. Stuck the business-end needle into the clay-like substance and armed it.
“KEEP GOIN'” he shouted.
Steps from the cover offered by the crest of the ridge, he slipped and fell – on purpose. Shoved the huge charge deep into the mod as if pushing himself up from the ground, then kept climbing for the crest,stringing the all-but-invisible cord behind him.
And trusting the voodoo gods to let him know when to jump if those things got trigger happy.July 4, 2019 at 7:48 pm #20342
<<Drek meeting fan>> Was all Preston sent to the team before jacking out and re-booting his deck. He switched to his internal link to catch any communication from the team, and was just deciding whether he should try making it to the top of the crater wall in the crazy hope of providing covering fire when the Gaz started moving in that direction on its own.
* Coleman: No point risking an asthma attack until I see how far it can make it on its own.
* Oleg: Unless of course the A.I. took it over and it is fixing to run over the others when they get close
<<Al, tell me that you called the Gaz?>>July 4, 2019 at 8:03 pm #20343
Spitting silty ash mud from his mouth after his fake fall, Al shouted into his lapel pick-up <<Damned straight I did, Presto baby. Buckle up! Don’t let the asshole hack her, an’ if they do, remember I showed ya where the manual override switch is on the way ta Vegas.>>July 5, 2019 at 4:19 am #20351
Rebbeca responds with firing an electricity arrow at one of the smaller drones, and then she activates her pulse armor. The black body armor begins pulse with massive light and then dims and massive light again. While it would not help her against ranged attacks, it may make physical attacks more difficult to pull off – and that big drone seems to like it close and personal.
these seem more dangerous due to their miniguns.
Kit takes the initiative and dataspike two of the smaller drones trying to make himself useful. His deck is not ideal for that kind of stuff, but with the fork, and hammer programs Kit thinks that he has a shot.
He also texts Preston >> Natural Intelligence Preston, let’s kick some matrix ass!
July 5, 2019 at 4:17 pm #20370
- This reply was modified 2 weeks ago by Gilga.
The arrow hit true and disabled one of the drones.
The Juggernaut drone moved it’s spear hand to allow the laser barrel in its arm a clear shot and aimed a red, high intensity ray at Becky that was all to clearly visible in the falling rain, although the rain did take a bit of the power out of the ray.
Almost immediately afterwards, the second spider drone opened fire from one of its miniguns, creating a deadly zone of suppressive fire, while Becky noticed that her deck was assaulted by the repulsed damage of her own dataspike.
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