Kitten Caboodle aka Kit
Aradia, the Street Witch
The team spends some time processing the scene after they interrupt the ritual and finds, as well as the disturbing artifact, evidence of another one as well, which is absent. It seems the threat isn’t over, though at least there isn’t a dragon Queen roaming the streets. They sell the insect shaman’s body to the Draco Foundation for a decent chunk of change, and decide to sell the info about their whole investigation and discovery to Ares and then Aztechnology with a few hours exclusivity each, and then pass it on to the Shadow Chapters, which stresses everyone out. Avocado is really opposed to the corps getting the data early, but gets out-voted, and they begin convincing Juan Xiuthuitl to sign up with the Shadow Chapters by using the info as a carrot, so not all bad.
The team then helps Long Pigs Farm write and post a public apology for the use of one of their trucks, which includes offering up some info about how the recent increase in hunger has effected the infected. LPF announces they’re hosting a public barbecue at their front gate and any are welcome. Kit and Hotkey and some other techies also help them set up a new system called GreyNet to help with authentication and whatnot to make sure people feel safe receiving deliveries from them, and also to help keep their people safe.
The crew then makes a plan to do some drugs at Freaktown to celebrate and go to another Bugstomp rave at Midway that evening, but get distracted when Avocado gets worried about the corps pulling something during their window of exclusivity. He and Carol engage in a semi-tense, semi-friendly bet about what will happen. They hear about a strange short-duration loss of connection a localized area on NooseNet, and head over to investigate, first checking to make sure that Tate didn’t get grabbed with the dragon. He didn’t, and has quickly converted one of his clinics to an isolation ward to treat the large, dangerous patient. It seems well guarded, so the team heads to the spot of the outage to investigate. With some careful CSI work they determine that someone arrived and left rapidly, using hover/aircraft with stealth tech and heavy-duty jammers, and used the Cleansing meta-magic and a cleanup crew to leave very few traces.
However, just a hint of constrained buginess hints at Ares’ involvement, though the team can’t figure out what exactly they did or who they took or whatever. They head back to the bolthole to chill til evening, and finally hear back from Beuregard Shan about the Avatar card- apparently a trio of assassins have been using the disguise of young party girls to get close to Monad or other CFD-infected targets and eliminate them, seemingly on behalf of the Corporate Court’s unofficial assassin org, the Coalition. It seems like the corps are cleaning house ahead of the Monad’s launching their spacecraft.
The team determines based on this that Joseph Mnguni, the head of Izolo Inc., may be a target since he is depicted on one of the cards linked to the Avatars, and decide to use this tip to try to get in good with Spinrad, and get Miranda King to sign up with the Shadow Chapters locally. Avocado does a decent job selling this all to MK, who seems skeptical but agrees to look into it. The team also finds with some research that Mnguni has some ties to the Heavenherds as well as to Thomas Roxborough and Universal Omnitech, from their time in Azania back in the day.
Finally ready to party, they head to Freaktown to pre-game with a contact of Aradia’s, and Kit grosses everyone out by demonstrating their CFD digestion by eating a pizza slice folded around a live rat, after asking for a Manhattan at decidedly the wrong kind of spot. They also find out that some of the changelings who live here who SURGEd during the Year of the Comet developed a FABIII immunity as part of it, and work as cleanup crews for areas where it may be present. Most of the team smokes some Chicago Grey, and Avocado learns a dangerous new trick: if he drinks blood from someone while they’re high he get trace effects, which activates all of his addictions.
The team then heads to Midway for the rave, and notices security is a bit on edge. Spotting an ex-corp combat hacker he knows, TT chats Angoka up, and finds out that the Freewatch crew that had been offering training and bug-fighting tips never showed up today and has been in a comms blackout- no call, no show, so folks are concerned. Carol and Avocado share a worried look and decide to cancel their bet, though Carol tries to justify it as a thing that was gonna happen sometime, and only happened now because of the team’s info, so it isn’t really their fault. Regardless, seems like Ares is making moves to be the only real bug fighters in town.
Avocado gets pulled aside while the rest of the team parties and dances, with TT impressing everyone with his good list of local contacts, especially some gritty old-timers like Wingman. Red, Old Crew and Quantum Princess tell Avo that they want his team to trade on the good name the team has built to contact every corp Johnson, freelance fixer, and other person who puts up money for runs, and get them all to meet up irl and talk through how they’re going to work together to fight the bug threat. Red, OC, and QP will start spreading the word through runners and the Shadow Chapters, but the team has a unique positions in town as not having made a lot of high level enemies, so they seem well suited to the task of getting the middle managers to meet. Simon Andrews is already on board and has a spot lined up.
The team begins calling around the list, and making a few additions of other mover and shakers they think should be present. Most people quickly agree due to the team’s good rep, a few are hard sells, and the only “no” they get is from Miranda King, who asks for a briefing upon her return- apparently the team’s Tarot tip paid off and she’s out of town for a bit helping deal with the aftermath. So they seem to have made good progress on getting in tighter with her but Spinrad won’t be repped at the meeting. Everyone else is planning to be there. Now the team just has to provide security and make sure it stays safe.