The team continues their investigation of Test’s mysterious background and rescue, and it’s crossover with Kinnie’s side job for Plan 9/10. They do some further surveillance of the corp team picking up live bounties from The Pit, and confirm that it’s a Renraku team, ID-ing the guard and driver as internal security contractors, and confirming that a Renraku subsid rents the lower levels of the Midtown former HQ of NeoNET. Avocado and Beanie perfect disguises and impersonations of the guard and driver based on their surveillance footage, and them watches them for a few days to familiarize themselves with schedules and routes. Avocado and Teeth both take a day off to initiate, gaining expanded magical powers. Avocado also founds his own magical society, of which he is currently the sole member.
They check in with Sojourner and are told that the 10 packages they are to bring into the lab are prepped. They tell Sojourner to deliver them into the Pit to the bounty warehouse, and make a plan to meet them there and take over the Renraku truck. They stock up on other gear they feel they might need, and get the rest of the job details. They are to bring the 10 packages into the lab, plug them into a secure offline server in the lowest level and then take them back out again. Test also wants some revenge, so he buys a squirt gun and upgrades it to spray acid. They also buy some explosives, in case they need to blow their way out (as the Axemen rescue team did with Test).
They head into the Pit disguised as bounty hunters, and convince/bribe/intimidate the other bounty hunters hanging around that day to clear out. Avocado then lures the Renraku truck in with a con and commanding voice combo, they bribe the Winter Systems border guards further to allow it. The team has loaded Sojourner’s packages (10 body sized hardcases) onto rolling carts in the warehouse, ready to slide into the Renraku truck. The truck backs smoothly in, and they get ready to KO the guards. Unfortunately, Test gets spotted sneaking up to the vehicle, and the guard on the outside shoots him. They quickly KO that guard, and Beanie starts impersonating him to keep the nearby bounty hunters from getting involved.
The driver starts accelerating out of the building again and drops some flashbangs out of the truck. Test and Hotkey manage to hack the vehicle and shut it down, and then start taking over the drivers’ comm. Luckily they’re in a matrix dead zone so they’re having to hack via mesh but the driver isn’t able to get a signal out. He tries to pull down shades to conceal himself in the cab, but Teeth glues his hand to one of the shades and then starts engulfing him with an earth spirit. Avocado demands he open the door and gets a text response of “please don’t kill me i have children” as the door opens. Teeth doesn’t care, and the earth spirit crushes the guard til he pops, exploding all over the cab of the truck.
They get it backed up into the warehouse, clean it up as best they can (Avocado runs out for some Cleaner Cleaner), and they get everything loaded in. They also load in the one bounty they bought from legit hunters- an unconscious man who isn’t magical. They aren’t able to confirm anything else about him. They plan to free him eventually, but decide it’s easiest to bring him with for now to avoid questions and complications. They cut off the KO’ed guards head- after a long convo about how noone brought a knife, Teeth interjects with “maybe THIS will help!” and draws his monosword, easily performing the decapitation- and glue it under a seat in the cab so they can easily access the implanted comm (the driver’s was destroyed). They prepare to roll out, and hope that Kinnie and Arthur are ready to get picked up, as they need some additional brains for the rest of this mission to hopefully go better…
They do some hacking prep on the truck and guards’ comm, and head out, with Arthur and Kinnie jumping in the back at the last minute. Kinnie has restocked on some of his various scifi weaponry in preparation and Arthur gets a bullwhip. They gain access to the Renraku subsid through the secret entrance Kinnie spotted, and Avocado and Beanie sell their cover ID’s. Unfortunately, Beanie trips a bunch of alarms when he starts a firefight with the guard detail who comes out to grab the deliveries. The team easily takes out the guards and gets the scientists ID, but they struggle to overcome some security features that are auto-activated in the room.
Most of the team takes some damage from some CS gas before Hotkey and Test reopen the exit and close the dispersal vents, and Kinnie has to use a grav grenade to keep a mechanical security shutter from closing off the door to the interior. Beanie swims through the grav field with magic assist from Teeth, and cracks the door lock. They get in a rolling firefight with 8 more sec guards and manage to handle them with decent tactics, but it seems like the guards are fighting a delaying action, retreating as the team closes in. Test mutilates and possibly kills the scientist with acid, in revenge for the tests run on him in this facility. Kinnie is not down with this.
The team finds a first aid and eyewash station, and cleans themselves up of the gas’s effects, takes a minute to patch up, and continues on into the facility. They push further in, and find some creepy holding cells right next to a cafeteria and staff lounge. They come under assault from a Red Samurai detail, and Kinnie quickly goes down. Beanie and Avocado bypass some traps and find another lab area, full of dead test subjects and poison. Beanine gets a little info from a secret note one has. They find another room full of servers with some kind of enormous processing core.
Hotkey retreats towards them, firing at the Red Sams, and is also ko’ed. Teeth, Arthur, and Test fall back towards the entrance, taking out 1 Red Sam, and injuring more, but Arthur and Teeth are both ko’ed. Test escapes in a huge smoke grenade cloud, grabbing the control tablet and bringing the biodrones with him. GC makes contact with him and guides him through some air ducts, along with a Monad named Magnus Jam- the bounty from before, who Test frees on his way back out.
Beanie rigs up a trap for the Red Sams and he and Avocado lure them towards the server room, where they barricade and hole up. 1 more Sam down. but they start blowing through the door. They also put shock/magecuffs on all the downed runners for later interrogation. Test pops out of the ducts behind the Sams, and gets Magnus to go back from fallen teammates. He gets HK and Kinnie, and then starts shooting back at Sam with the laser rifle. They also send up a biodrone with acid sprayer, who douses the Sams before getting annihilated. Avocado tricks one more with his Commanding Voice into getting killed in another trap.
The Sams break through the server door, destroy Beanie’s body completely, and KO Avocado. Beanie finds his consciousness loaded into “Marry Me…”, and finds GC’s avatar, a Paladin on a winged steed, ready to give him a ride- he tells Beanie they need to reach the top of the nearby tower but will have to hurry. They fly up and GC uses some special items to crack the top open. Meanwhile, irl, they send 2 more biodrones with Kinnie’s grav grenades charging towards the surviving Red Sams as they emerge from the room- the resulting mix of 2 grav fields carves out a huge negative space from all the material surrounding it.
Test gets the surviving biodrones up to the lab and hooked in, with Magnus’ help, and sees a potential way out at the bottom- into the underground? Magnus has now gotten Teeth as well but reports more guards incoming- they need to go! In Marry Me, Beanie and GC dive into a strange tunnel at the top of the tower, and find themselves rocketed through the resonant realms along the channel Test has opened. They struggle to hold onto themselves before slamming into… something unfamiliar. IRL, The biodrones all stand up (except 1, which Test has to remote control- hmmm) and everyone drops through the hole.
They find 2 Rat Pack smugglers waiting, one of who EMP’s the whole team (to be safe, as requested, she says), as the other seals the hole above them with foam grenades. They hustle out of there, and get back to the lower levels of Terminal, to the Monad street doc they know there. They get patched up as GC uploads off the bodies onto the matrix, and find that the mysterious 7th body contains Beanie. He asks to move over to HK’s deck for a while, hating the meat body, and does so.
They get an upgraded TacNet as thanks from Beanie, get paid by Sojourner, and get their gear and selves repaired. They are told they best lay low for a while, as Renraku is on the warpath. Apparently “GC” was the controller AI for Grand Central Arcology and transit hub, and chaos ensued when he shut down unexpectedly, resulting in deaths and injuries. Renraku also captured Arthur and presumably knows the teams names, faces, safehouse, etc. They decide to lay low in Jersey with Nanuli again for a while while the heat dies down and plan a con to spin they public story away from them, allowing Renraku to save face in some way and hopefully abandon the pursuit.
They decide to look into the IOND investigation next, as it’s the only job they have in the Outer Burroughs, and they’ve been warned to stay off Manhattan for a bit. HK gets a message to his family and warns them to lay low for a while too. Enkaa agrees. GC tells Test he discovered a bit about Test’s past- he tells him his personality was fully overwritten and erased using CFD nanites in a carefully managed infusion, so whoever he is now is whoever he is going to be. Test and he agree to celebrate it as a fresh start for both of them, as GC says he was only awoken by Test’s connection to the Resonance in the middle of a UV node test that GC was curiously monitoring without his programmers knowledge.
The connection to the strange Kingdom of Velkar in Marry Me has been a lifeline, but now they can play from anywhere :). The team heads to Jersey and hides out, hoping Arthur isn’t getting too brutalized and wondering what they’re gonna tell Aylin. Beanie also announces his plans to retire from the physical world for a time, being short on funds for another fancy body, and work on developing a Shinto-esque cult of AI worship centered on AI-run spaces (such as Grand Central).