Samantha “Dave” Nu-Gen (Security Team: Sniper) Player: Seth
Sgt. Stewart “Stu” Dirth (Security Team: Hoplite Infantry) Player: Alexander
Asa Ivorsson (Infiltration Team: Security) Player: Kurt
Albion Bernal (Infiltration Team: Hacker/Async) Player: Will
Taharqa Horemakhet (Research / Old-Earth Specialist) Player: Yishai
Background: Firewall detects some high-profile anomalous activity, a potential existential threat: Trancom recently recovered an alien artifact that looks suspiciously like an old-earth Nubian tribal totem from the 3rd millennium (BC). The freelance gatecrasher and Pandora Gate software coder Andrew Scott has been contracted by Trancom to research the artifact and promptly disappears for several months into his lavish private compound in Coventry, an O’Neill Cylinder habitat in the Mars Phobos Lagrange point 2 region.
Operation: Firewall requires immediate covert infiltration of the compound and extraction of any research data from Scott’s private compound, and retrieval of the artifact itself if possible. Proven agent Asa Ivorsson, recently returned from the Outer System, and the new hacker recruit Albion Bernal, are the only sentinels in the area available for immediate deployment. Cpt. Miller recommends the two. Little does Miller know that Ivorsson’s sanity will be jeopardized by Bernal’s concealed async abilities. A security and research team (Nu-Gen, Dirth, Horemakhet) will link up with the infiltration team asap (~1 week).
Ivorrson and Bernal arrive at Coventry by public shuttle and carefully reconnoiter the target compound for 5 days using a teleoptic from the other side of the Cylinder. After moving to the locale of the compound, additional observation reveals that a nearby service building provides access to maintenance conduits running under the compound. The habitat network is quickly infiltrated and from the relative safety of the conduit, the local compound mesh and security systems are also hacked, providing covert/admin-level access. Viewing the target house floorplans, a blacked-out ‘safe-room’ is identified on the 2nd floor. Returning to the surface, the infiltration team dons chameleon cloaks and after Scott leaves the target house for his morning swim, crosses the 200 meters of open lawn, enters the house and reaches the safe-room door, which turns out to be a high security airlock-type door. Bernal attempts to psi-grok the door, causing Ivorsson to undergo a psychic episode which both mistook for a defensive emanation from the door itself. Bernal manages to snap him out of the VR-like episode using another async ability (‘Subliminal’).
By this point the Security Team is in position, with Nu-Gen observing from high altitude, tethered to one end of the rotating habitat cylinder in zero g, and Sgt. Dirth descending covertly into the compound, watching for appearance of security forces. At this point things begin to go wrong as a previously undetected female pleasure Pod appears from one of the bedrooms adjacent to the safe-room. Ivorsson quickly bags her head with a prisoner mask, but the alarm is probably out by that point. Three Black Moth mercenaries appear in quick succession from a hidden cell or portal under the compound pool. Two mercs are dispatched quickly by the security team, but the 3rd manages to intercept panick-stricken Scott on his way back to the main house and up the steps to the 2nd floor, where Ivorsson waits with another prisoner mask, while Bernal hides in the crapper trying to hack the merc tactical VPN. The merc fires two plasmaburst smart grenades up to the 2nd floor, incinerating the Pod, then a 3rd out the window at Sgt. Dirth who was approaching across the compound. Ivorsson was roasted but survived, and the 3rd grenade misses Dirth. Making an amazing shot, Agent Nu-Gen destroys the missing grenade which was already curving back toward Dirth. The 3rd merc runs across the kitchen in full view of Sgt. Dirth, now at the living room windows, who prevents his forward progress with a few well placed assault rifle bursts. Ivorsson plunges down the steps and into the kitchen, only to be hit by a full burst of merc SMG fire. Ivorsson rolls to the side and scrambles out of view. Bernal is unsuccessful in hacking the 3rd mercs entoptic AR display, but Sgt. Dirth takes him down with a few carefully aimed shots.
Sgt. Dirth and Ivorsson retrieve Scott and drag him to the 2nd floor, where he’s required to open the safe-room nanobot-lock. Additional use of psi-sleights causes Ivorsson to go off the deep end, however he’s seriously weakened and thus easily knocked out by Sgt. Dirth. The team observes a unique computer installation, probably a quantum computer of unimaginable power, with the artifact attached to the system through some kind of biological interface. Bernal quickly jacks in and retrieves a large volume of information, deletes everything and covers his traces. Afterwards Sgt. Dirth tosses in a few EMP then Plasmaburst grenades to destroy the system.
A hasty exfiltration commences. Dirth (carrying Ivorsson) and Bernal, with Scott masked and in tow, retreat across the grassy sward under chameleon cloaks, back to the habitat service building, even as various habitat emergency service vehicles begin to converge on the compound. Bernal briefly pauses in the service building to cover his infiltration traces and post a delayed script to warn habitat system admins of their specific infosec vulnerabilities. Nu-Gen climbs back up the tether to the near end of the O’Neill Cylinder, ditches his gear and merges with the crowd. The team contacts Firewall and arranges for evac through a private shuttle. Agent Horemakhet meets the team at the shuttle and begins investigating the artifact during the return trip…
Mission Outcome: research data retrieved; target artifact retrieved intact; Andrew Scott captured and returned for interrogation; cortical stack of destroyed compound Pod retrieved; traces of habitat system and compound security system hacking successfully removed.
Additional Results: minor collateral damage to the habitat (target compound); 3 security personnel morphs destroyed; 1 civilian morph (Pod) destroyed; target research data and computer destroyed or heavily damaged; covert status potentially compromised.