Trouble In P4RA-DI5E

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Trouble In P4RA-DI5E

Postby tbug » 05 Aug 2019, 15:45

Blake-R-LWW-1 Intro (August 5)

You’ve enjoyed your time in Sector JMM, but when the Computer tells you you’re moving then you move. Your new dorm room is EAA-192. It takes a couple hours to get to the new Sector, but once there your HUD takes you into an enormous property with a sign reading “Yeast Production Facility P4RA-DI5E.” The yeast production has all halted, and new construction is taking place everywhere. It is very cold.

You find your dorm room against an actual Sector wall, which bears a grey sticker: “insulation pending.” It can’t happen too soon—you can easily see your breath.

The door opens and a citizen who seems to be made of goo slurps through it. He has a strong aroma, but it’s difficult to place. Your HUD identifies the new arrival as Bjorn-R-MEG-5. You quickly put your stuff on the only remaining unoccupied lower bunk, but he slithers over to one of the others which he has clearly already claimed.

“Hey, you must be a new roommate. Blake-R, huh? Whaddaya do?”


“Ouch! Sorry to hear that! I test transline tracks for proper electrification.”

You don’t have long to chat with Bjorn-R before a speaker in your room blares to life with a mission notification.

“Blake-R, you are hereby assigned as Equipment Officer for a new troubleshooter team. Report to Commissary EAA/PLC-04b to collect your team’s assigned gear!”

“Yes, Friend Computer!”

Bjorn-R looks at you sympathetically as you run off.

On your way there you receive a message from Nunzio-Y-JNL-6, your secret society contact: “Blake-R, I have been given to understand that you will be utilizing some of the large empty space in the former food factory during your next mission. I recommend you figure out a way we can use some of that space for ourselves. Trick your teammates into helping brainstorm if you can. That’s more of a long-term project, though. In the meantime, there are some bio-hazard markers in locker
EAA-07/054 at TransBot station EAA-07. Pick them up then designate a location inside the old factory as biologically contaminated so that we can use that space for our own purposes. You’ll have to get your team’s Science Officer to sign off on that. Try not to promise too much in exchange.”

There’s an INFRARED citizen at the commissary. Your HUD identifies her as Alouisa-EAA-2. She looks at you vacantly as you walk in, staring at your wings.

“Hello Alouisa, I’m here to pick up the mission equipment for the troubleshooters.”

“Yeah? For which team?”

“I… wasn’t told.”

“Oh. Well, that’s okay.”

She rummages around, looks at some forms, then pulls out four red reflec-armour one-size-fits-all jumpsuits, four red laser pistols, a red reflective backpack with the label “Alertness Officer,” a large brown and black urn with the label “safety officer,” and a grey wheelbarrow with red handles and the label “mobility officer.”

“Okay, now sign here saying you take responsibility for all gear and promising to return all of it in pristine condition.”

You don’t seem to have any other option, so you sign. Happily, you manage to pile everything into the wheelbarrow and make it to troubleshooter headquarters without too dire a spill.

Ira-R-TUV-1 Intro (August 5)

The war on Level Q has caused a lot of problems for the TUV troubleshooters, who seemed to have ended up with jurisdiction. Something sppears to have happened though, and all of a sudden many of you are being reassigned. You seem to have been one of the luckiest, since you’re going to the brand new troubleshooter station in Sector EAA.

The trip up takes several hours, but you get there and find your new dorm room. It isn’t long before the Computer gives you your first assignment: “Ira-R-TUV-1, you are hereby assigned to the troubleshooter team leaving the office in seventeen minutes. Report in and take on the duties and responsibilities of Science Officer. Your Equipment Officer will have your science kit for you.”

Getting there in seventeen minutes could be tight, especially since there seems to be a lot of construction nearby. At least running will help fight off the cold that seems to be even worse here than back home.

You pull up short when a citizen in an orange jumpsuit steps directly in front of you. Your HUD identifies her as Janet-O-EBA-3. She holds a finger to her lips, takes your arm, and pulls you into an alcove.

“Ira-R, don’t say anything. I’m your new contact here in Sector EAA. I’ve read your upcoming troubleshooter mission, and I have a slight modification to make. Do whatever you need to do to keep the troubleshooter team away from pump station EAA/rho-niner. We’re counting on you, Ira-R.”

She lets go of your arm, and you run off to try to make it to work on time. You’re out of breath, but you manage it.

Jordan-R-EAA-1 Intro (August 5)

“Jordan-R-EAA-1, report to troubleshooter headquarters for immediately assignment as Happiness Officer. Your team’s Equipment Officer will give you your happiness kit.”

This is it! Your first assignment as a troubleshooter! You’ve seen the occasional episode of “Shooters” (the vid show all about how awesome troubleshooters are) and know that the Happiness Officer is responsible for making sure that fellow troubleshooters are completely happy at all times. Happiness is, after all, mandatory!

You hurriedly make your way toward troubleshooter headquarters, but are interrupted by an encrypted text message from Maisie-O-FDB-4, your secret society contact. You hastily decrypt it and hope that Friend Computer isn’t currently monitoring your iBalls.

“Jordan-R, I have dire news. Our group is wracked with treachery, and it seems Nelson-G-HCB-6 has staged a coup for his own purposes. Go find Jim-EAA-1 and Arno-EAA-1 and teach them that siding with bad guys is a terrible idea.”

You’re not entirely sure what to make of this, but you hurry on toward troubleshooter HQ. If you make good time you can still be early. You’re getting close when you see a citizen in a yellow jumpsuit wave you over. Though nervous about the time, you still decide it’s best to do as the high-ranking citizen tells you to do. Your HUD displays the name Marvin-Y-GAH-5.

“Jordan-R, I’ve been waiting for you. Here, have some Hot Fun.”

He hands you an empty red cup then pours some steaming fluid in from his orange cup, giving you a wink. It tastes zesty and delicious.

“I’m afraid our group is having some problems. I work for Nelson-G-HCB-6, and he wants to make sure that he can count on your support. While you’re out on your mission today, please set fire to apartment EAA/Y04-17. He’ll make it worth your while. You’ll find firestarting equipment in locker number EAA-07/051 at TransBot station EAA-07.”

Kennedy-R-NHL-1 Intro (August 5)

Something odd has been going on in Sector NFL, and the troubleshooters based out of Sector NGL have been shaken up. There seem to be some politics involved, but you’re avoiding all of it due to a transfer to another office.

The move from Sector NGL to Sector EAA takes more time than the Computer had allotted, so you don’t have time to get properly settled before your HUD directs you to the local troubleshooter office for a mission briefing.

A citizen in yellow is waiting for you. According to your HUD this is Ben-Y-EZJ-6.

“Hello, Kennedy-R. You are going to be leading this office’s first troubleshooter team, designated team ee-ay-ay-dash-aught-one. If your team acquires a nickname you are obliged to register it, and I can provide you with the appropriate forms. Your mission today is to go to pump station EAA/rho-niner and make sure that it is operating optimally. First, however, Housing Preservation and Development & Mind Control has something for you. Take your team to HPD&MC office EAA/942 before you do anything else. This mission is an important one to prove that our office can handle assignments quickly, efficiently, and most importantly successfully, so I’m glad that your first mission is such an easy one. I have written some Mission Achievements for you and your team so that you can earn some extra XP points on the side.”

“Ben-Y-EZJ-6, one of the achievements that you wrote is treasonous. Here is a treason star. Do not write treasonous achievements in the future. Kennedy-R, you must not allow your team to be led by treasonous achievements into committing treason.”

“Yes, Friend Computer. Thank-you, Friend Computer,” you say in unison. Ben-Y does indeed have a golden treason star floating above his head now.

“Well, don’t do that one then,” he says miserably, and leaves you to wait for your team.

This gives you time to decrypt a message you’d received from Elena-Y-MAR-4, your secret society contact: “Kennedy-R, we have read about your mission. Go to TransBot station EAA-07 and find locker EAA-07/052. It will open to your tongueprint. Take the incendiary devices from there, and then set fire to the pump station.”
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Re: Trouble In P4RA-DI5E

Postby tbug » 08 Aug 2019, 14:02

Blake-R-LWW-2 Aftermath (August 5)

You wake up back in Sector LWW’s clone vats. It’s been a while since you were here. A vat tech (Marrey-R-LWW-1, according to your HUD) is there to help you out of your clone tank. Your back is really uncomfortable, and your balance is off. You reach a hand out to steady yourself and it isn’t blue! You take a moment to adjust to the fact that you really have lost the mutation that has been with you for so long.

Marrey-R hands you so black sweat pants, a grey t-shirt that says Sector LWW on the back, and some brown moccasins. These are woefully insufficient, and you feel extremely cold.

“Blake-R-LWW-2, report to Sector EAA troubleshooter headquarters immediately for mission debriefing.”

You say goodbye to Marrey-R and start on your way. You’re partway there when you get a message from Nunzio-Y (your secret society contact): “Blake-R, I was sorry to hear about the unfortunateness of your demise. I hope that your new life is a pleasant and lengthy one. It seems to us that the situation of your mission accomplishment was rather complicated by the collapse of the construction area and the explosion that followed. Given that my current location is far enough away to render me unable to determine our next step on site, I am going to transfer you to a new handler. Expect to hear from Lucrezia-O-EBA-3 soon.”

You get to Sector EAA and head to HQ. You’re greeted there by Ben-Y-EZJ-6. He gestures you to a chair. Once you’re seated he has you scooch over a few cm so that you’re directly under a lit hemisphere in the ceiling.

“Blake-R, please remain silent throughout your post-mission evaluation. Overall your team did well, but your performance was not all that it could have been. I am here to help you with that.”

You nod.

“As Equipment Officer you were required to return all of the equipment assigned to team EAA-01. You returned none of it personally, but all of it was returned in pristine condition by Troubleshooter Team EAA-02 except for the pink lab coat from the science officer’s kit, which was badly stained, and all of the weapons, which were missing. For this failure you are fined 75 XP points.”

You nod again.

“Also, as Equipment Officer you were responsible for the Computer’s property, which includes KM-807. By allowing the robot to be destroyed in the explosion, you deprived the Computer of one of its possessions. For this you are fined 100 XP points.”

This seems less fair to you, but you hold your tongue.

“Finally, there was a new problem that developed while your team delayed servicing the pump station. The water in the pipe leading to the station froze, causing damage to a brand new pipe. For this you are fined 50 XP points.”

You suppress a sigh.

“On the other hand, none of your team members complained to the Computer about their equipment, and you didn’t requisition anything at all from the Commissary, which is exemplary. Well done. For this you receive a bonus of 83 XP points.”

You didn’t know that requisitioning additional equipment was a possibility. That’s a good thing to learn.

“Also, the broken pump is now working again. In fact, it’s better than it was before your assignment. For this exemplary work you receive 350 XP points.”

You manage a smile.

“Finally, your episode of Shooters was spectacular, and HPD&MC has decided to classify it as a premium video cast instead of a standard one. You have a new permanent achievement from them. Every time you convince someone to purchase your episode you will receive 5 XP points. Congratulations.”

Ben-Y nods, gives you your post-mission paperwork to fill out, and leaves the meeting room.

After work you run into Lucrezia-O, apparently coincidentally. She slips you an orange laser pistol hidden in a red holster.

“Nice job. I look forward to working with you.”

Ira-R-TUV-2 Aftermath (August 5)

You wake up in the clone vats in Sector TUV. Your home Sector is a little warmer than Sector EAA, but it’s still really cold.

A clone vat tech (Bruce-R-TUV-1) helps you out of your tube and hands you a towel. He’s sorting through a bin of old clothes that look to be in pretty terrible shape and finally settles on a pair of enormous brown coveralls with a variety of grey and black patches. He hands them to you and goes in search of shoes. He returns empty-handed.

“Got nothing for your feet, mate, but we can’t send you out like that or you’ll lose your toes. I’ll grab another towel and we’ll wrap ’em up.”

He is as good as his word, and soon your feet are wrapped in thick grey towels. He claps you on your back and sends you on your way. Your HUD indicates that you need to return immediately to Sector EAA, so you start the long journey.

Once you reach your destination inside Troubleshooter Headquarters, you are joined in a meeting room by Ben-Y-EZJ-6. He motions you to a chair.

“Ira-R, please remain silent throughout the debriefing. You did relatively well, but there are some ways you can improve. Let me help you with those.”

You nod.

“First, as Science Officer you neither approved nor declined the biohazard declaration in the construction zone. Your input in such matters is critical, and for neglecting this duty you are fined 35 XP points.”

It takes you a moment to remember that several biohazard markers flew out of Blake-R’s jumpsuit and adhered to the surrounding area. That must be the incident in question. Ben-Y has already moved on to the next point.

“Also, while your team was delaying work on the pump station, the water in the new pipe leading into it froze, creating further problems. For this delay you are fined 50 XP points.”

That seems fair.

“On the other hand, MW-334 had been waiting to be insulated from the cold and was in danger of damage, which you prevented. For your quick work in improvising the protective covering you are awarded 100 XP points. Well done.”

You beam.

“Finally, your team’s excellent work in the pump station has not only got it fully up and running again, but it is the most efficient it has ever been. Nice job! For this you are awarded 350 XP points.”

You try to look modest.

“Finally, your episode of Shooters was such a good product that it’s being released as a premium video cast, and you have a new permanent achievement. Each time you convince someone to buy your episode you will receive 5 XP points. Congratulations.”

He gives you your post-mission paperwork forms and leaves the briefing room.

After work you start home and are met by Janet-O, who looks very happy.

“Ira-R, that was beautifully done! Our operative got into the pump station and did what she does best. I don’t think anyone suspects a thing.”

She gives you a red glittery bedazzled vest.

Once you get back to dorm room EAA-187 you’re ready to crash, but your roommate Chaz-R-ECA-2 is feeling chatty.

“Hey, have you noticed anything weird about this Sector? Like how nobody talks about the fact that there are so many…”

He is interrupted by the door opening and someone walking in.

“Hello, I am Brenda-R-EAA-22. I’m your new roommate.”

Chaz-R looks chagrined.

Jordan-R-EAA-2 Aftermath (August 5)

virus detected. antivirus protocol overridden. newclone ready.

You wake up and feel horrible and bloated. Your body is all wrong. As soon as you stumble out of the cloning vat you look at your claws and only see fingers. You ignore the towel that Brenda-EAA-17 is holding out to you and watch with fascination as the fingers move in the same way you’re trying to move your claws.

Brenda somehow gets you into a beige jumpsuit and double-thick black socks, and you stumble out into the corridors. You turn to go back to your dorm room and immediately smash your head into a pipe that should never have been able to hurt you. Everything around you looks small.

“Jordan-R-EAA-2, report to troubleshooter headquarters for debriefing.”

You blink at the loudspeaker and don’t immediately start to move. Brenda-NHL-14 notices this and nudges you to get going. You bemusedly follow the arrow in your HUD into a meeting room. You’re joined there by Ben-Y-EZJ-6, who motions you to sit.

“Jordan-R, you did fairly well in your very first troubleshooter mission, but there were a couple of mistakes. Let’s review them.”

He tries to catch your eye, but you’ve gone back to looking at the fingers.

“As Happiness Officer you were responsible for keeping all of the people around you happy. It seems that not only were you yourself unhappy on more than one occasion, but when you encountered some very unhappy terrorists in a construction zone you didn’t attempt so much as a single singsong of jolly tunes. Happiness has been found to reduce hostilities by up to 1.7%. For your failure in this regard you are fined 55 XP points.”

It’s weird sitting on a chair this way. Not only does it feel really small, but you keep expecting to be squishing your tail when you sit in this position. You end up squirming a lot.

“Also, while you delayed your arrival at the pump station the water in the newly-laid pipe leading to it froze. For this you are fined 50 XP points.”

You can feel the floor through your feet even though you’re on a chair. It’s bizarre.

“On the other hand, the pump station is now not only fully-functional but it has improved its efficiency over factory settings. Well done! For this success you are awarded 350 XP points.”

You start to wonder whether the XP points can buy your body back, but get distracted by the discovery that the itchiness on your scalp is caused by actual hair. As far as you can tell your crest has completely vanished.

“Also, the decorated wheelbarrow has brought joy to many INFRARED citizens who rode it up and down the TransBot tracks illegally. They have been punished, but for the happiness you gave them you receive 43 XP points.”

The arms seem to reach out forever. Being able to reach behind your body nearly gives you a panic attack.

“Finally, your episode of Shooters was so phenomenal that the producers have decided to market it as a premium video cast instead of a standard one. You have a new permanent achievement. Any time you convince someone to purchase your episode you will receive 5 XP points.”

This at last makes you smile a little. Ben-Y leaves you with your post-mission paperwork and heads out.

You receive a couple of encrypted messages while you’re working through the documents, but you see no reason to reply to either. The first is from Maisie-O, expressing her disappointment with your lack of resourcefulness—didn’t they give you a gun? The second message is from Marvin-Y, also expressing disappointment with your lack of resourcefulness, particularly since you used up the resources assigned to you. Marvin-Y suggests that you’ll need to work extra hard not to end up on Nelson-G’s “bad list.”

Kennedy-R-NHL-2 Aftermath (August 5)

virus detected. antivirus protocol overridden. newclone ready.

You wake up in the clone vats of Sector NHL. You remember this area from your earliest days, but most of the lights are out and it’s very cold. A six-legged robot skitters over to you with a pair of brown towels. You dry off as quickly as you can, then struggle into the black jumpsuit it hands you. There’s a box of black socks nearby, and you put three on each foot then nab an oversized pair of grey slippers. It’s still pretty cold, so you wrap the brown towels around you and look for the door.

“Kennedy-R,” says the robot, “the doors were all sealed when this Sector was closed. We recommend that you relocate your clones. In the meantime, the only way out is the high-speed clone delivery system.”

It helps you into a tight-fitting capsule, and as soon as the lid closes you experience sudden high g-forces. In an astonishingly short amount of time you are back in Sector EAA. Your HUD directs you to troubleshooter headquarters, where you are joined in a meeting room by Ben-Y-EZJ-6.

“Kennedy-R, please have a seat and refrain from speaking during the post-mission performance analysis.”

You cock an eyebrow at him but do as requested.

“Your team did fairly well over all, but there were some imperfections in your personal behaviour. Let’s go over them.”

You keep your silence.

“First, you are fined 35 XP points for littering. The wheelbarrow and its contents came into the possession of several INFRARED citizens who have already been punished for unauthorized use of the TransBot tunnel.”

So that’s who took the wheelbarrow!

“Second, you were not authorized to take refuse from the bin near the vendbots and transport it to the construction site. The remains of the Hot Fun cup have been dealt with, but for inappropriate transfer of trash you are fined 1 XP point.”

You manage not to roll your eyes.

“Finally, while your team was delaying its arrival at the pump station, the water in some freshly-laid pipe leading to it froze, causing further damage. For this delay you are fined 50 XP points.”

That actually seems legitimate.

“On the other hand, your team’s work in the pump station was exceptional. The pump is now performing well beyond factory specifications. For your great work at pump station EAA/rho-niner you are awarded 350 XP points.”

You aren’t sure what he’s talking about, but you’re happy to stay silent and get paid.

“And finally, I’m told that your episode of Shooters dramatically exceeded expectations, to the point that the producers have decided to market it as a premium video cast. Also, you are receiving four free vouchers for the episode and a new permanent achievement: every time you convince someone to purchase this episode you receive 5 XP points.”

Ben-Y leaves you with your post-mission paperwork.

After work you receive a curt message from Elena-Y: “You took the stuff but you didn’t do the job. Make this right.”
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Re: Trouble In P4RA-DI5E

Postby tbug » 12 Aug 2019, 15:34

Blake-R-LWW-2 Intro (August 12)

“Blake-R-LWW-2, report to troubleshooter headquarters and assume leadership of troubleshooter team ee-ay-ay-dash-aught-four.”

You’re nearly back at dorm room EAA-192 after a hard day’s work, but clearly trouble needs to get shot at any time of day. Lucky for you a TaxiBot is just dropping someone off nearby, so you hail it and get to headquarters in good time. Your HUD directs you into a meeting room where a citizen dressed all in black except for a yellow visor is lounging in a chair near a table. Your HUD identifies her as Elisabeth-Y-EZJ-4.

“Hey. I’m Midnight.”

You stand there respectfully and wait for her to say something. She doesn’t. Eventually the Computer does.

“Elisabeth-Y-EZJ-4, you are required to give the mission briefing now.”

“Or what? Am I fired?”

“No. You will be given extra duties.”

“Sigh. Fine.”

She gives you a look.

“There’s a crack in some wall. Your HUD will take you there. Fix it. I gave you mission achievements. Do all of them.”

“Elisabeth-Y-EZJ-4, your mission achievements are inappropriate.”

“Am I fired?”



Midnight waves you away, so you walk uncertainly into the office foyer to wait for your team. During your wait you receive an encrypted message from Lucrezia-O-EBA-3: “Blake-R, we understand you’re sealing a break in Alpha Complex’s outer wall. Please instead install a door. Once you’re ready for it, send me the message “Alpha Complex is fun” and I’ll have the door delivered.

Ira-R-TUV-2 (Intro August 12)

You’ve been sleeping poorly lately. Your new roommates aren’t significantly worse than others you’ve had, but it might be your new hand. You keep having what must surely be phantom sensations from your cybernetic hand. Anyway, it’s been a tough day at work and you’re hopeful that you’re tired enough to just sleep tonight.

You catch up with Chaz-R as you’re both walking back toward your room.

“Hey Chaz, did you have any more thoughts about all the Brendas?”

“Oh, yeah, Brenda’s nice.”

“No, I mean we were talking about how weird it is that there are so many of them in this Sector and nobody seems to notice.”

“Brenda bought me some Hot Fun at lunch time. Hey, does this Sector have a FunBall team?”

You try to decide if he’s attempting subtlety, but as far as you can tell he’s just no longer interested in discussing it.

“Ira-R-TUV-2,” blasts a nearby loudspeaker, “report immediately to troubleshooter headquarters for assignment as Public Relations Officer. You will be responsible for every aspect of the public’s perception of you, your fellow team members, and troubleshooters generally.”

“Tough break, buddy,” says Chaz-R as you turn around and head back the way you came.

On your way back to work you get a message from Janet-O-EBA-3: “Ira-R, you’re going to be asked to patch a crack in a wall. The damage is too extensive for that to be meaningfully effective. Try to destroy the whole wall so that they’ll be forced to rebuild it from scratch.”

Jordan-R-EAA-2 (Intro August 12)

“Jordan-R-EAA-2,” booms the Computer’s voice. “Report immediately to troubleshooter headquarters to take up the role and responsibilities of Combat Officer. For this mission your team’s Equipment Officer will be issuing you with an enhanced spear for use in protecting your team. This sphere will respond only to your DNA for the purposes of activating its special abilities. You must protect this spear for the duration of the mission. Failure to return the sphere in pristine condition will result in penalization.”

You heave yourself to your feet, swaying a little and unable to compensate with a tail, and start toward HQ. It’s already been a really long day. You don’t make very good time, and at one point the Computer reminds you to walk quickly and efficiently.

You receive a text when you’re partway there. It’s from Marvin-Y-GAH-5: “Jordan-R, we’ve heard that things are a little tough for you right now. If you need anything, or if we can help in any way, please let us know.”

Kennedy-R-NHL-2 (Intro August 12)

Your day started particularly early today, and you’re feeling it. Happily, you managed to get in a double-length shower and now you’re enjoying an evening bowl of red-flavour gruel.

“Kennedy-R, report to troubleshooter headquarters and assume the role of Fitness Officer.”

You’ve never even heard of a Fitness Officer role before. You take a big swig of the gruel from your bowl and head toward headquarters.

Elena-Y-MAR-4 sends you an encrypted message. Decrypting while walking is tricky, but eventually you manage it: “Kennedy-R, we don’t want to believe that you are not dedicated to the cause. Please give us some showy display of allegiance during your upcoming mission. The more spectacular the better.”
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Re: Trouble In P4RA-DI5E

Postby tbug » 15 Aug 2019, 20:18

Blake-R-LWW-2 Aftermath (August 12)

You receive a call in the middle of the night to return to troubleshooter headquarters for a debriefing with Elisabeth-Y-EZJ-4. She’s sitting at a table looking at a tall, untouched stack of paperwork. The top form is labelled “URGENT! THIRD ATTEMPT!” Elizabeth-Y looks up at you with undisguised disgust as you walk in.

“Did I tell you to succeed at your mission? Did I ask you to get me commendations for a job well done? Don’t answer that. In fact, don’t talk to me at all. You’re fined 150 XP points. Go away.”

Your current XP point balance is 1036.

As you are leaving troubleshooter headquarters the computer fills your HUD with text: “Blake-R, you failed to bring two of the three traitors to justice. Frank-EAA-1 and Lorraine-EAA-1 were your responsibility. They are being punished for inappropriate behaviour later this morning, and you will supervise them. Meet them at sewer junction EAA/9c4 at 0600 hours.”

This turned out to be just as horrible an experience as it sounds. Happily, your in-depth knowledge of Alpha Complex not only let you make the job easier (and thus shorter), but actually significantly impressed the two INFRAREDs.

Lucrezia-O contacts you later, disappointed that you didn’t install the door. She admits that she was amused at where the thieves eventually took it, given that she has the remote control that opens and closes it, but declines to give any further details.

When you eventually manage to convince her to come on a field trip with you, she is stunned by what you show her. Neither you nor she can actually open the blue door, but the knowledge of what lays behind it clearly impresses her. She divulges a secret to you: your secret society has discovered a way of transferring XP points—something thought impossible. For this phenomenal discovery she awards you 1000 XP points. Your current balance is 2036.

She is very interested in the intelligence you divulge concerning Sector ZZA, and thanks you profusely for your work.

Ira-R-TUV-2 Aftermath (August 12)

You’re just hitting the shower after your mission when you’re summoned to troubleshooter headquarters for a meeting with Elisabeth-Y-EZJ-4. She’s lounging in a meeting room, still dressed almost entirely in black.

“So Liam-B was here,” she says without preamble. “He yelled at me because your team sucks at whatever you were in charge of. That was fun. I’m giving you 800 XP points for irritating him. Go buy yourself a Hot Fun.”

She shoos you out of the room. Your new XP point balance is 2088. You aren’t sure if the Hot Fun is mandatory, but you decide to take no chances—you find a vendbot and make a purchase, making your XP point balance 2086.

The next morning you have a message waiting from Janet-O. Decrypted, it reads: “We were disappointed not to hear reports of a smashed wall.” You ask her for a meeting, and she agrees to see you after work.

When you lead her to the purported empty section of P4RA-DI5E she is amazed by what’s there. As you reveal what you have learned she gets more and more excited until you mention Sector ZZA.

“Wait, the Underplex is real? And that’s what connects to ZZA? We… need to address this. Thank-you, Ira-R.”

She rushes off, but later that day your dorm room’s heating unit arrives, which no one expected to happen for months. After installation is complete, you discover that a clothes press has also been installed in your room, with a note reading “Thanks, Ira-R!”

Your roommate Brian-R-GDB-3 has been unimpressed with you so far, what with your keeping irregular hours and having seemingly a different job every day, but the arrival of the clothes press has him nearly in tears. He carefully presses his jumpsuit, then presses his spare jumpsuit, then offers to press all his other roommates’ clothes, then goes out and buys more clothes and presses them. You may have made a friend.

Jordan-R-EAA-3 Aftermath (August 12)

You are almost immediately summoned back to troubleshooter headquarters for an after-action meeting with Elisabeth-Y-EZJ-4. When you walk into her office there’s a huge stack of forms that are awaiting filling in. She’s ignoring them.

“Hey, you did a mission. Woo. How does a reward of 4 XP points sound? Too few? Too few. Maybe a thousand? Let’s do a thousand. Go away.”

Bewildered, you turn around and leave. Your current XP point balance is 1918. It’s really late, and you’re exhausted. You head back to dorm EAA-192 and try to get some sleep, but it’s a restless night for you. Eventually you drop off, but when it’s time to get up you feel rather fatigued.

You’re having some morning gruel when you get a message that perks you right up. It’s from Marvin-Y: “Meet me at transbot station EAA/03 in twenty minutes.” You have so much to tell him! You head straight there, and pace.

When Marvin-Y shows up he’s holding a large parcel. He silences you and jerks his head toward the lockers, where he has you lick one open. He puts the parcel inside and locks it.

“Okay, one thing a Combat Officer needs is a good gun. Another thing is skill. If you think tactically enough, this might help out.”

He presses a small green sphere against the back of your neck. You gain a new skill.

“It’s not really a Combat Officer type skill, but that’s really not our thing. Sorry. Are you doing okay?”

You’ve been waiting for a chance to tell him everything, which you do in a flood of information so rapid and excited that he has to ask you a couple of times to slow down and repeat yourself. Somewhat to your disappointment he is much more excited about your news concerning Sector ZZA than about the cloning tubes, but before he leaves the transbot station you actually witness him dispatch techs to repurpose said tubes. He says it’ll take a week or two, but he’s confident he’ll be able to get it to work.

Later that morning you also get a note from Maisie-O: “This isn’t over.”

After work you are approached by Mia-O-ECA-2. You have no idea who she is, except that she’s ORANGE and clearly walking toward you.

“Jordan-R, we spent some resources lately that ended up benefiting you. Those resources were somewhat valuable, as I hope you can appreciate. I recognize that you didn’t ask for this, but there’s no question that it’s going to be advantageous to you. We’ll be in touch.”

She doesn’t even give you a chance to respond before walking off.

That was weird.

Kennedy-R-NHL-2 Aftermath (August 12)

The morning after the mission, you’re summoned to troubleshooter headquarters for a meeting with Elisabeth-Y-EZJ-4. She’s not there. You wait for nearly an hour before she stumbles in, gestures to you to follow, then leaves. The two of you walk wordlessly to a Hot Fun vendbot. She buys something steaming and delicious-smelling in a yellow cup then steps back, sipping it. You just look at her.

“Have a Hot Fun.”

You shrug and buy a Hot Fun. Your current XP point balance is 1581. Finally she finishes her beverage and looks at you.

“This is pointless. It’s all pointless. Do you like the number seven? I hate it less than some other numbers. Have seven seventy-seven XP points for your mission. I suggest you use it to buy your way back down the ranks, then tell me how you did it. Now go away.”

You blink a little at the abrupt dismissal, then leave. Your current XP point balance is 2358.

As you’re walking away you are stopped by Sama-Y-GRA-4. You don’t recognize her.

“Kennedy-R, I work for Liam-B. According to our video records you were away from the rest of Troubleshooter Team EAA-04 when an anomaly occurred relating to my boss. Do you know anything about that?”

You tell her very convincingly that you have no idea what she’s talking about, and she believes you. She even agrees that Evangelista-Y was indeed very distracting.

Later that day you receive an encrypted message from Elena-Y, expressing disappointment in your lack of an impressive display of loyalty. You don’t have the ability to send an encrypted message back, but you ask her to hang out and she agrees to meet you after work.

While you’re eating lunch a woman in orange sits down opposite you. It’s unusual to see someone of higher clearance in a red cafeteria, but she puts an object on the table between you and presses a button on it. At first the device looks black, but closer inspection reveals that it’s actually green, just badly stained. Your HUD, which had just identified her as Amelia-O-DAB-3, goes dark (the way it did in the dead zone).

“Kennedy-R, I’m glad Evangelista-Y was able to help with things yesterday. She likes making these appearances on camera, but it’s still not cheap. Please don’t worry though, because I’m sure we can work something out. After all, life is beautiful!”

She turns off the device, picks it up, and leaves. You’re not entirely sure what that was all about, but you’re sure you’ll be hearing more.

True to her word, Elena-Y meets with you later in the day. Though disappointed in your recent lack of advancing the cause, she consents to follow you into the unused section of P4RA-DI5E. When you show her the dead zone she is thrilled, and when you tell her that it contains an illicit cloning facility she can hardly contain herself. She rushes off with barely a word, but you know that she’s pleased with you because during the night the skill your society had previously installed inside you increases to +5.
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Re: Trouble In P4RA-DI5E

Postby tbug » 19 Aug 2019, 14:12

Blake-R-LWW-2 (Intro August 19)

You have regained five moxie points.

In the time since you discovered the Brenda tubes, Friend Computer has declared all of the Brendas to be traitors to Alpha Complex. Many citizens have earned XP points by bringing them to justice, and the Brendas can perhaps be considered responsible for the ensuing promotions.

“Blake-R-LWW-2, report immediately to secure station ZZA-2c31 and take up the duties and responsibilities of Combat Officer.”

Sector ZZA! That’s a long trip! Fortunately you think you know a shortcut via a lift down to Sector IAA and on from there. You grab your stuff and get started.

On the way there you receive an encrypted message from Lucrezia-O-EBA-3, your secret society contact: “I understand you might be meeting creatures who aren’t part of Alpha Complex. Above all, you must find out what kinds of exchanges we can make with them. If they have needs we can meet then learn what those are.”

Your team’s Equipment Officer is waiting for you when you arrive. Your HUD identifies him as Boris-O-SBA-6.

“Greetings, comrade! I have for you this combat kit.”

He hands you an enormous overstuffed backpack with a grey-and-black camo pattern. It’s rather heavy.

“Be careful of zipper. Is broken. I have talked with PLC, and they have changed laser pistols to laser rifles, so is better for all of us. Also, I have made purchases with my own XP points for benefit of team. Is how things should be. Here! Take!”

He hands you a Cheeroxin moxie stim pack and a grenade.

Ira-R-TUV-2 (Intro August 19)

You have regained five moxie points.

After Troubleshooter Team EAA-04 discovered the Brenda tubes, Friend Computer seems to have learned at least part of what was going on. All of the Brendas have been declared traitors to Alpha Complex, and there has been a frenzy of XP point earning as people have been jumping at the chance to bring them to justice. A number of people have even earned promotions this way. Overall, Sector EAA seems like a happy place to be at the moment.

“Ira-R-TUV-2, you are ordered to travel immediately to Sector ZZA. Meet the rest of your team at secure station ZZA-2c31 and take up the role of Hygiene Officer.”

You’re still in the process of calculating the most efficient route to the lowest level of Alpha Complex when Janet-O-EBA-3 pulls up in a TaxiBot.

“Hop in!”

You join her, and the TaxiBot speeds off, apparently already aware of your destination.

“Ira-R, the revelation that the Underplex is behind the illicit clone facility in Sector EAA is concerning, particularly in light of its connection to ZZA. We’ve been aware of the descending stairs from there, of course, but we had assumed it was just hazardous materials storage or, at most, some sort of risky laboratory. If there are actual humans living down there then there’s no telling what sort of squalid conditions might prevail. Are they living in our filth? Are they diseased? How much do they resent us? Is their technology poor and undermaintained? We are very concerned. Please bring back all of the information that you can.”

Janet-O leaves the TaxiBot long before you reach ZZA. When you arrive you can see Blake-R, Jordan-R, and someone named Boris-O-SBA-6, who smiles when he sees you. As the TaxiBot turns and leaves, Boris-O grabs a large cart and starts wheeling it over to you.

“Comrade Ira-R! Salutations on this glorious day! I am Equipment Officer for troubleshooter team, and I have for you hygiene kit! I had talk with commissary, and soap bottle is now two litres instead of one litre. Is more hygienic! Also I have made purchase with own XP points for good of team. Is proper.”

He gives you a Cheeroxin moxie stim pack and a grenade.

Jordan-R-EAA-3 (Intro August 19)

In the time since you discovered the tubes full of Brendas their situation has changed in Sector EAA. Friend Computer has declared them all to be traitors, and a lot of citizens have received a great many XP points in a hurry by bringing them to justice. For the first time since you can remember, Sector EAA’s economy is booming.

You’ve been pestering Marvin-Y about your new body, and he has assured you that it’s almost ready. These tubes apparently take about a week to grow a body, but one tube is completely dedicated to you and will start making a new dinobody every time one is decanted.

“Jordan-R, you are ordered to travel immediately to Sector ZZA. Meet your team at secure station ZZA-2c31. Your role in this team is Bait.”

Sector ZZA is a long way off, so you head straight for the TransBot station. The TransBot is about to pull away but you shout out that you’re on troubleshooter business and it delays just long enough for you to leap aboard.

The lengthy journey gives you lots of time to catch up on messages. You’re taking care of routine form filling when an encrypted note comes in from Marvin-Y: “Jordan-R, this mission is a very exciting one! Sector ZZA is supposed to be on the same level as every other Z** Sector, but technically it’s the lowest point in all of Alpha Complex, and we don’t know why. If ever there’s a chance to achieve our society’s prime objective it’s now. We’re counting on you!”

You also get a message from Enid-Y-EAA-3. You haven’t heard from her since you were INFRAREDs together working in the yeast-growing facility. The message is encrypted, which seems weird, but you decrypt it and read what she has to say. “Jordan-R, remember those ancient texts I told you about with squids and krakens and the other cool stuff? It’s all true, of course, but there’s no proof. I hear you’re leaving Alpha Complex for a mission, and I really, really, really want a picture of them. Also, if you can tell me how to transform into one then I’ll be happy with you forever!”

Your final encrypted message of the trip is from Mia-O: “Jordan-R, the artificial reality being pumped into your consciousness is telling you that you are exiting it today, but you are not. Find the real way into the actual reality, and your debt is paid.”

You have no idea what she’s talking about.

You’re the third to arrive at the secure station; Blake-R is there, as is someone named Boris-O-SBA-6. The latter walks over to you pushing a very squeaky trolley cart loaded with stuff.

“Comrade Jordan-R, is good to meet you! I am Equipment Officer for this mission. Here is bait kit. Almost everything is there, but sadly I must report that I seem to have lost large spray can of Fart Spray. I will pay heavy fine for this later. Also, I have spent my own XP points to help team, because resources should be given where they are needed instead of hoarded by elite bourgeoisie. Here for you is Cheeroxin moxie stim pack, and also one grenade.”

Kennedy-R-NHL-2 (Intro August 19)

You have regained five moxie points.

In the days since you and your teammates discovered the Underplex’s illicit cloning facility, Friend Computer has declared all of the Brendas to be traitors. A frenzy of XP point chasing ensued as people raced to bring the Brendas to justice. This seems to have mostly calmed down now. You didn’t really take a lot of notice, anyway.

“Kennedy-R-NHL-2, report at once to secure station ZZA-2c31 in Sector ZZA. You are assigned as Loyalty Officer, and are required to ensure the full loyalty of all of your teammates and report anything suspicious.”

Sector ZZA is a long way off. You nab your stuff and head to the TransBot station, avoiding anything so inelegant as sprinting to catch one. You have a bit of a wait, but one shows up eventually and takes you on the long trek down.

Amelia-O-DAB-3 boards the TransBot soon after you do. She sits next to you and speaks softly.

“Kennedy-R, we’ve heard that you might be going into the Underplex to meet with whoever lives there. We had an encounter with them once, over a century ago. We urgently want to know more about them, so please bring back any art or other cultural artifacts you can steal. This might help.”

Before you know what she’s doing, she presses a green sphere against the back of your neck. You feel disoriented and are glad that you’re already sitting down. You now know the Underplex language. Amelia-O disembarks at the next stop. You’re still not entirely sure who she is.

You’re partway there when you receive an encrypted message from Elena-Y-MAR-4, your secret society contact: “Kennedy-R, we have heard that you might be making contact with beings from outside Alpha Complex, possibly including other humans. Our cause would be very interested in an alliance against our enemies. Please do what you can to facilitate this, ideally arranging a meeting.”

When you finally reach your destination you see that Blake-R, Ira-R, Jordan-R, and someone you don’t know named Boris-O-SBA-6 are all standing there waiting. When he sees you, Boris-O smiles and starts toward you, carrying a large red attaché case.

“Comrade Kennedy-R! Is good to meet you! I am serving in role of Equipment Officer, and I have equipment for you! Is loyalty kit, which is good because all troubleshooters are loyal! I don’t know what’s inside because it will only open for you. But, I have other bits here! I have made purchases with XP points that are my own, because the resources of the people should be shared among the people!”

He gives you the attaché case, a Cheeroxin moxie stim pack, and a grenade.
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Re: Trouble In P4RA-DI5E

Postby tbug » 22 Aug 2019, 16:06

(Aftermath: August 19, 2019)

You are summoned to the troubleshooter offices the day after your mission is over. Your HUD directs you into a meeting room where Ben-Y-EZJ-6 is waiting for you. He gestures to a chair.

“Blake-R, please remain silent during this interview. Its purpose is to help you improve as a troubleshooter, but we’re at a disadvantage because we haven’t had a chance to review footage from your mission. At some point a decision might be made to download your memories of the events in the Underplex, but for reasons I don’t understand that hasn’t been done yet.”

He carefully keeps his face neutral while saying that last bit.

“In any case, due to your mission taking place in an area without a connection to the rest of Alpha Complex you had no chance for any achievements. In compensation you are being given a flat 400 XP point bonus.”

You smile politely. You expect that worse is to follow.

“As Combat Officer it was your duty to safeguard the rest of your team. Given that the first group of clones of Troubleshooter Team EAA-09 didn’t make it out alive we can only assume that you failed in your mission. For this you are fined 225 XP points.”

You were right. You maintain your smile.

“The preliminary reports submitted by your team have all been immediately filed in a green directory, so I can’t evaluate you beyond that at this point. I suppose I may eventually be forced to seek them out in order to properly assist you in your quest to become the best troubleshooter that you can be. And, of course, if you ever feel that you need to volunteer details about the nature of the Underplex I would be willing to listen to those details and help you in whatever way I can.”

You continue to hold your polite smile.

“Well, in any case, you are awarded an additional 400 XP points for whatever it was you did on your mission, which has not been shared with me. There’s a green envelope in that caddy on the wall. The envelope contains the after-action reports I’m supposed to collect from you. Good luck.”

He leaves. You look at the envelope for a bit, then also leave.

Later in the day you receive an encrypted note from Lucrezia-O-EBA-3: “Blake-R, thank-you for all of the information about the Underplex. It sounds like we’ll need to be careful how we approach them, but news about the lift down is very valuable to us. Thank-you for that. We are also quite interested in acquiring the language data from you, but we’re concerned that ##### ### #### ## ##### ###.”

You are completely uninterested in whatever the last part of her message was. What is of interest, however, is that she gives you 750 XP points.

(Aftermath: August 19, 2019)

After dropping off your stuff in the dead zone that Jordan-R showed you, it feels like time to head back to your dorm. To your surprise, all of your stuff has been moved out of EAA-187. You pull up directions to “home” in your HUD, and are led to quad EAA-72b. A quad consists of two dorm rooms (each for two ORANGE citizens) connected by a shared washroom. Your stuff has already been deposited on one of the beds. You have the most comfortable sleep of your life.

You receive a call the next morning to report to troubleshooter headquarters. Waiting for you there is Ben-Y-EZJ-6. He motions you to have a seat.

“Please do not speak during this interview, Ira-O. We are meeting to evaluate your performance as Hygiene Officer during the recent excursion into the Underplex. Unfortunately, Shooters declined to send a second logbot down with you, and I have been unable to secure permission to view your sensory logs. I am at a bit of a disadvantage as a result. If you decide at any point that you would like to volunteer details about your mission I would be willing to listen to them.”

You file away this information for future pondering.

“In the meantime, you are awarded 400 XP points to compensate for the lack of available achievements during your last mission, and you are also awarded 400 XP points for your preliminary report, which incidentally was classified green the moment you submitted it and so I have been unable to see it. The forms for your full after-action report are in a green envelope in that far receptacle. Good luck.”

Ben-Y leaves the room. You wander over and look at the green envelope for a moment, then decide that you need to think about it before deciding how to proceed.

You’re still considering options when you receive an encrypted message from Janet-O-EBA-3: “Ira-O, congratulations on your promotion! This can only be good for all of us! We were very intrigued by what you had to say about the Underplex technology, and I think that the best thing for everyone is for us to start recruiting them into our secret society. If you have any opportunities to pursue this then please do so. We’re intrigued by the fact that you have the language in your Cerebral CoreTech, and we might want to retrieve it at some point. First, though, we need to be very sure that ## ##### #### ######## ## # #####.”

You have no interest at all in the last part of her message. You are delighted, however, when your quad’s shower that has been pending installation since these rooms were built gets mysteriously installed, particularly since it works perfectly.

(Aftermath: August 19, 2019)

The morning after you return from the Underplex, a message arrives in your inbox summoning you to troubleshooter headquarters. You arrive to find Ben-Y-EZJ-6 waiting for you in a meeting room.

“Jordan-R, sit there. Do not speak during this interview.”

The chair isn’t made for your dinobody, but you manage it anyway.

“I’m always suspicious when troubleshooters assigned as Bait don’t die when someone else on the team does, so well done. You get 400 XP points for your work as Bait and an additional 400 XP points as compensation for the lack of achievement access while you were in the Underplex.”

He hesitates for a moment, then continues.

“So, I haven’t been granted approval to view any of the team memories from your time in the Underplex, and the preliminary reports you submitted were all instantly restricted to GREEN clearance and above. I’m very interested, though, so if you ever decide you want to talk to someone about your experiences there I’d be happy to listen.”

“Ben-Y-EZJ-6,” booms the Computer’s voice, “you are not cleared for that information. Have a treason star.”

He looks chagrined.

“There are forms for you to fill out with the other details of your mission. The forms are in the green envelope in that receptacle.”

He leaves. You glance at the green envelope, see no way of reaching inside it without touching it, and follow him out.

Not long afterward you receive an encrypted message from Nelson-G-HCB-6: “Jordan-R, you’ve done it! We have accomplished our society’s primary purpose! Congratulations! We are now completely shifting our focus. From here on out, our only goal is to destroy the Underplex. At that point we’ll have been completely successful! We owe it all to you, Jordan-R, so expect big things in your future!”

That’s a little ominous. You’re pondering that when you catch sight of Maisie-O-FDB-4. She approaching cautiously, making sure that you can see that her hands are empty. Given that your last interaction with her involved having a RED and two INFRAREDs try to ambush you, you are wary.

“Jordan-R, I think it’s time to bury the hatchet. I’ll stop trying to punish you for the way you flagrantly ignored the society’s instructions, and you’ll start working for us again?”

You’re not about to agree to anything out of hand.

“I’m listening.”

“Good. Nelson-G has gotten really excited about something today, and he’s trying to pull society resources away from the true leadership. We don’t know what’s going on, but if you can find anything out then we can be grateful.”

“I’ll keep my eyes open, then.”

Maisie-O nods.

“Thank-you, Jordan-R.”

She leaves. You must about the fact that she’s only on clone four, so there’s really no point in shooting her in the back as she walks away.

You start heading back to dorm EAA-192, and get a message from Mia-O demanding a report. You still don’t understand her.

Waiting for you on your bed in your dorm room is a gift basket from your old friend Enid-Y-EAA-3. It’s full of things you’ve never seen before: seven strawberries, six muffins, a small bar of chocolate, and a packet of powder labelled “instant coffee—just add hot water.” There’s a card: “From the brand new Enid-G! Thanks for helping me prove I was right all along!”

(Aftermath: August 19, 2019)

Your HUD summons you to the troubleshooter offices the next day. Ben-Y-EZJ-6 is waiting for you in one of the meeting rooms. He motions toward a chair.

“Sit there, Kennedy-R. Please remain silent during this evaluation. You were assigned as Loyalty Officer during this mission, and in my experience a Loyalty Officer is almost always logging many reports throughout the assignment about possible instances of disloyalty. I regret to inform you that my attempts to secure access to your memories and those of your fellow troubleshooters have so far failed, and so I am unable to process any of these reports. I will continue my efforts to serve Alpha Complex, but in the meantime I will award you 400 XP points for your service as Loyalty Officer. I will also award you a further 400 XP points as compensation for your lack of access to mission achievements while you were in the Underplex.”

He points across the room.

“That receptacle contains a green envelope. Inside it are your forms for completing your report on this mission.”

Ben-Y leaves. You wander over to the receptacle. That envelope certainly is green. You can’t see any way of opening it without touching it, so you don’t.

You have an encrypted message waiting for you from Amelia-O-DAB-3. You’ve reported to her about what you did and saw, but haven’t had any in-person contact since getting back, nor have you told her yet about what you recovered. “Kennedy-R, we’re so excited about what you wrote about the Underplex! Can you remember anything at all about the part of the museum commemorating the collision, or did you just spend your time in the gift shop and loo? Who collided? When did this happen? Might it have been restricted to the Underplex colliding with Alpha Complex, or was that just a side element? Why was there a collision in the first place? Was it intentional? Alpha Complex must surely be too big not to notice!”

Amelia-O seems excitable.

The message from Elena-Y, on the other hand, is a little more cryptic: “Contact is established, so good job. This seems complicated, but if nothing else we’re learning a lot.”

You have stored some things in the dead zone that Jordan-R revealed to you, including a pine cone, some dried flowers, a white washcloth, and a six-hundred-year-old waterlogged clothing design journal.
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Re: Trouble In P4RA-DI5E

Postby tbug » 26 Aug 2019, 13:12


The big news since your mission with Troubleshooter Team EAA-09 is that your team supervisor, Ben-Y-EZJ-6, earned his fifth treason star and was declared a traitor. You saw his pictures up for a couple days, but they’ve stopped showing up on screens now.

“Blake-R, report to troubleshooter headquarters and assume the duties and responsibilities of Science Officer.”

Science Officer! Finally, a job in line with your expertise! This can only be good!

On your way to the troubleshooter offices you receive an encrypted message from Lucrezia-O-EBA-3 (your secret society contact): “Blake-R, I’ve heard that you’ll be spending some time on Level Q. Wars can be profitable, and people make mistakes we can leverage. My boss wants to see what you can manage. There are twelve combat knives in locker EAA-04/017, and this should hopefully be on your way. Take the knives, and bring back twelve guns.”


“CL/4448, your new assignment is ready. Report to Sector EAA troubleshooter headquarters immediately for permanent assignment with Troubleshooter Team ee-ay-ay-dash-aught-charlie.”

You have no choice but to obey the Computer’s instructions. You make pretty good time, and are met at the offices by a woman in yellow. According to your display, her name is Evangelista-Y-EAB-11.

“CL/4448, I wish you had gotten here earlier. I wanted to talk to you a little before Liam-B does, but he’s already here. Come through to the meeting room.”

You both go through a door that is, frankly, a little narrow for you.

“Liam-B, this is CL/4448, the leader of the troubleshooter team that’s doing that thing you want.”

“A robot for team leader!? What were you thinking!?”

“I’m not supposed to be here! I should never have been demoted back to this terrible colour!”

“Okay, calm down, Evangelista. As long as the team gives us a sufficiently spectacular episode of Shooters then hopefully I’ll be able to help you with that.”

Liam-B turns to you.

“There’s a traitor going to a forbidden zone in Sector QBZ. Find out who it is, and stop them. Make it exciting. Above all, make sure that nothing happens to make Alpha Complex any warmer, and if you can make it colder so much the better.”

Evangelista-Y looks surprised at this, but only says “Go wait for your team in the lobby, CL/4448.”

You are forced to obey the human’s command. While waiting you do some research. Evangelista-Y was only recently demoted from GREEN clearance to YELLOW. She’s supervising teams here in Sector EAA, but not very many of them. They have a terrible success rate but very high ratings for their Shooters episodes. Liam-B technically has no authority; he’s the producer of Shooters and thus theoretically can’t order troubleshooters around, just film them.

You also discover that a whole lot of Level Q is a war zone, with insurgents trying to secure enough resources to leave Alpha Complex altogether. Civilians aren’t permitted to travel directly to Sector QBZ, and instead have to descend from PBY to QBY and secure permission from the Armed Forces before proceeding. Good thing you’re such an expert at “persuading” humans.

Evangelista-Y eventually joins you.

“I really need this promotion, CL/4448. I don’t care about the mission—just make a great episode of Shooters! I’ve given you two good officers plus a terrible Science Officer who doesn’t know what he’s doing, but I couldn’t get the cast for this team that I requested. Maybe he blows up good? Maybe we’ll find out.”

She leaves the offices. You continue to wait. Your inbox dings, and if you had eyeballs you’d roll them. It’s a binary message from RRR-9000, your contact in your former virus society. “CL/4448, we’ve heard that you’re interacting with humans again. This is great news! Allow us to reinstall the software you lost, and your interactions will be so much better!”

Those guys are such losers. At least the next message is from TLE-19017, your current virus society’s contact, and should be much more your thing: “We have arranged an illicit private achievement for you so that you will receive a bonus of 100 XP points for each human that you kill during this mission. Please be advised that this subroutine might subtract the XP points instead of adding them if it feels that you were insufficiently polite about things.”



Probably the most interesting event in the week or so since your mission with Troubleshooter Team EAA-09 is the announcement that Ben-Y-EAA-6 (the team’s supervisor) earned his fifth treason star and has been declared a traitor. His face was showing up on screens all over the place for a couple of days, then that stopped.

The runner up for most interesting event in the week was being approached by a citizen named Steve-O-FBB-3 with an invitation to join a society called “Oranges Are the Only Froods,” a support group dedicated to the idea that being ORANGE is the greatest. You haven’t responded yet, but as far as you can tell the group meetings consist mostly of congratulating each other for your shared security clearance. Perhaps you’re missing something…

“Ira-O, report immediately to troubleshooter headquarters. You are being assigned as Haberdashery Officer on an important mission vital to the security of Alpha Complex.”

This sounds promising! You absently scratch at an itch on the hand that isn’t there, shake your head, and head out to work.

It isn’t long before you hear from Janet-O, your secret society contact. Her message is encrypted, but you make short work of it: “Ira-O, society leadership was ecstatic when we learned that you were assigned to this mission. It’s an important one. You’re going to be assigned to prevent Zoe-EBB-2 (the INFRARED engineer who repaired the pump station while you kept everyone away from her) from getting to the interior of the green Device Housing Centre in Sector QBZ. It is absolutely crucial that she not only reaches this place alive but also gains access to the interior and repairs whatever critical system is inside it. Reports indicate that whatever it is hasn’t worked in centuries, and could be central to our inability to deal with Alpha Complex’s insufficient heating system. Get her inside, and then don’t let anyone stop her from working!”


There was a bit of a surprise this week after your mission into the Underplex with Troubleshooter Team EAA-09. Your team’s supervisor, Ben-Y-EZJ-6, earned his fifth treason star and was declared a traitor. For a couple of days his picture was appearing on screens around the Sector, but that has stopped now.

“Kennedy-R, begin your travel to troubleshooter headquarters, but make a stop at Commissary EAA/PLC-04b to collect your team’s gear. As Equipment Officer you are responsible for ensuring that it is all returned in pristine condition at the conclusion of the assignment.”

The commissary desk usually has someone waiting at it, but as you walk in today there’s no one there. A thin stream of vapour wafts up from behind it. You lean over, and see an INFRARED citizen named Alouisa-EAA-2 lying on the floor. She’s vaping from some tube that may once have been brightly coloured but is currently badly stained a very dark brown. Her eyes are closed.

“Hey, Alouisa? I need some troubleshooter gear.”

She opens her eyes languidly.

“Yeah? Cool. Waddaya need?”

“Whatever’s been assigned to my team.”

She closes her eyes again. You’re not sure if she’s accessing her HUD or just napping. Eventually she opens her eyes again.

“Yeah, I looked up your name. You’re the Equipment Officer. You’re supposed to get three guns, three vests, two kits, and a robot. Can you come back in, like, an hour?”


She’s unimpressed, but she stands up, puts her vape pen on the counter, and wanders into the back.

She’s gone for quite a while, and you receive a couple of encrypted messages during the wait. The first one is from Amelia-O-DAB-3: “Kennedy-R, I’ve heard that you might actually get to see the inside of the forbidden zone in Sector QBZ today. Apparently everyone in there is high-ranking and is born that way. Is that even possible? Please bring us back a full cultural report!”

The second one is from Elena-Y-MAR-4: “Kennedy-R, our group is still dedicated to our great mission, but we are beginning to wonder if it would be better accomplished from far away. We understand that you may be interacting with the rebels on Level Q during your mission. They are attempting to leave Alpha Complex. Find out the details of the escape plan, and how we can purloin it. Also, we have finished reprogramming one of the clone tubes (in the area you showed us) such that it now only grows you. Each body will take about a week to grow, and your first one should be finished soon.”

Eventually Alouisa returns. She has two red laser pistols, one orange laser pistol, two red reflec vests, one orange reflec vest, an enormous wicker-style basket with shoulder straps, and a large red satchel that’s hanging open.

“I couldn’t find your robot. Now have you seen my vape pen?”

“Uh, no. Haven’t seen it.”
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Re: Trouble In P4RA-DI5E

Postby tbug » 30 Aug 2019, 19:36

(Aftermath: August 26, 2019)

Returning to Sector EAA as a YELLOW clearance citizen was fun, but it was a little disconcerting to discover that your bed in dorm EAA-192 had already been reassigned. Your HUD led you to apartment hall EAA-Y03 where you found room twelve. It’s your own room. Nobody else lives in this room. This is just yours.

It felt like nothing could spoil it, until you received a notification from Internal Security: “Blake-Y, you were instructed to either report to a re-education centre or else pay a fine of 300 XP points. You died without doing either of these things. The consequences of your inaction are being considered.”

That’s… probably fine. Technically, that’s the mistake of a past clone. Likely nothing will come of it.

The next morning you’re summoned to the troubleshooter offices, where you’re met by Evangelista-G-EAB-11.

“Blake-Y, the man who can’t dance! It is a good day, and happiness is not only mandatory but apparently unavoidable, at least for me. I have my clearance back! Also, you weren’t terrible at your job, which is a nice surprise. The records show that you’re the worst choice in the group for Science Officer, but I forced it through anyway because I was in a hurry. Speaking of which, I can move to my new job as soon as I finish up here, so we’re done! You get 400 XP points for preventing the separatists from causing too much heat, or whatever your mission was. Good job, and go away.”

She smiles and waves as you turn and exit the room. Usually at this point there’s paperwork, but you don’t seem to have any.

On the other hand, Liam-B seems to be taking a personal interest, and he’s not happy with you. His text comes with an attachment: “We nearly had a perfect episode of shooters, but you messed up TWICE. You used your mutant power in plain sight, and a lot of people don’t want to see that on our show. More importantly, though, you kept catching fire. This warms up Alpha Complex, and we want it colder not warmer. I’m not done with you, Blake-Y.” When you open the attachment you find that it’s just a line of code telling your Cerebral CoreTech to give you some gastrointestinal distress for an hour. Apparently BLUE clearance citizens can mess with people in all sorts of interesting ways.

Lucrezia-R-EBA-3, your secret society contact, is the last one to send you a message: “I really stuck my neck out for you, Blake-Y, and it didn’t pay off. You took everything and gave nothing back. I can’t protect you from what’s to come.”

CL/4448 v.3
(Aftermath: August 26, 2019)

Your final kill tally is sent to TLE-19017 by the achievement software. You receive an encrypted message almost immediately: “Nicely done! Effective and polite. You are a role model. It’s unfortunate that you didn’t get your fire module back, but we’ll take care of that.”

Sure enough, it isn’t long before you have another flameshooter module installed.

On the other hand, you notice that you have acquired another treason star. Somewhat amused that it’s only one, you research its cause. It turns out that you were seen by too many witnesses when you picked up the red pistol without authorization. Given that this is currently your only treason star, it was probably worth it.

The next morning you’re summoned to troubleshooter headquarters. Evangelista-G is waiting for you.

“Claaab! I got the promotion! You did great! Have a thousand XP points! You’re the best team leader I ever supervised. If you ever make it to GREEN clearance then look me up and we’ll hang! Now get out of here so I can leave.”

You turn around and head back out. While you’re walking on all fours through the corridors of Sector EAA you receive a message from RRR-9000: “CL/4448, I was distressed to hear that you experienced two terminations. This is clearly a software problem, and I’d be happy to help you with that. Come back to us!”


(Aftermath: August 26, 2019)

Your pinky really stings. It’s not going to work properly again any time soon.

You make it home to quad EAA-72b, where it’s actually quiet enough to take a restful nap. This promotion is awesome. Your roommate arrives at some point, but compared to what you’ve done all your life it’s pretty luxurious to be living with only one person.

The next morning you get a summons to the troubleshooter offices. You’re still sore from all the swimming, but overall quite rested. Evangelista-G is waiting for you.

“Ira-O, Liam-B loved the episode! He was particularly intrigued by the headwear you established, and I’ve heard that it’s under consideration as potentially standard issue for all troubleshooter teams. They’re calling them iracaps. Some orange cloth has been set aside for you at the commissary, so please make sure you’re wearing an iracap at all times going forward to promote the idea!”

She smiles broadly at you.

“So you get 250 XP points for coming up with that, and another 400 XP points for preventing the evil traitor from starting up the heat engine, or whatever your mission was. I didn’t fully understand it, but Liam-B was happy enough that I earned my promotion, so once we finish these meetings I’m moving away. I think that’s enough, so go on out there and promote headgear!”

You’re a little surprised that Evangelist-G is ignoring the paperwork, but it’s not like you can force her to give it to you so you head out.

Janet-O sends you an encrypted text: “Society leadership is pleased with your performance in the latest mission, Ira-O, in spite of its ultimate failure. Zoe has given a full report, and it looks like we’re going to have to figure out what’s going on with magnets. Regardless, you did a great job! As part of our ongoing research we have gained access to an illegal skill and will download it into your CoreTech tonight while you sleep.”

Sure enough, you wake up the next morning with the skill “Ocean” at +1.

Steve-O finds you at breakfast.

“Ira-O, good to see you! I gotta say, when I got word that you were talking up our group to Kennedy-O I was pretty impressed with you. Grow the membership, and stay ORANGE!”

(Aftermath: August 26, 2019)

Your return to Sector EAA can’t come quickly enough. You’re sore from the unaccustomed pressure and muscle actions of deep water swimming, and you just want a shower and some rest. Unfortunately, your bunk in dorm EAA-043 has already been reassigned, and you need to go all the way back into P4RA-DI5E to get to your new room. Eventually you make it there, and you’re so tired that you end up having one of the best sleeps of your life.

You wake to a notification that Internal Security has processed your report informing on CL/4448’s unauthorized use of a red laser pistol. She has been penalized, and you are awarded 50 XP points and permission to consume one can of yellow Bouncy Bubble Beverage.

The next morning you are summoned to troubleshooter headquarters. Your team’s supervisor, Evangelista-G-EAB-11, is waiting for you.

“Kennedy-O, your mission helped me get my promotion, and this interview is the last one I have to do before I leave for my fabulous new life! Let’s make it fast. First, you lost a lot of equipment during the mission, including allowing your assigned robot to be killed twice. I can’t prevent the two treason stars you’re getting for her deaths, but I can pull some strings and negate the XP point penalties, in light of our shared… interests.”

She winks. You have two treason stars.

“That said, we received word that you were very helpful to a traumatized citizen of Sector QBZ, so you’re getting 450 XP points for that. Apparently it was someone important. Also, Liam-B seemed happy with the dead traitors and the non-fire, or whatever, so have another 400 XP points. And we’re done! I’m out of here! Enjoy being a troubleshooter, Kennedy-O!”

Evangelista-G gives a little twirl and runs out of the room. Almost immediately you receive an encrypted message from Amelia-O: “Kennedy-O, Evangelista-G seems very happy with you. We were delighted to receive your description of the customs of the forbidden zone, particularly the hapongo dance. We’re creating video archives of it, and some of us are actually getting quite good at it. Based on what you’ve been telling us though, it seems that a different illicit skill from our archive might be of more use to you. We’ll deliver it to you soon.”

You are approached later by Steve-O-FBB-3. He offers you some Hot Fun with orange zing and asks if he can have a word.

“Kennedy-O, I represent a group of ORANGE citizens who support and reinforce each other. It’s the best clearance to be, but also the hardest. I hope that you’ll join us at the next meeting of Oranges Are the Only Froods.”

He gives you the place and time of the meeting, but you’re not entirely sure what that’s all about.

That evening you hear from Elena-Y in an encrypted message: “Kennedy-O, we’ve analyzed your report and double checked what we could. We suspect that your information source may have been mistaken, because it makes no sense for separatists to want to remain in Alpha Complex, particularly on Level Q. We will continue our investigations, but for now I recommend that you place no faith in the information you received on this matter.”

The next morning you wake up with the “Synchronized Swimming” skill at +1.
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Re: Trouble In P4RA-DI5E

Postby tbug » 09 Sep 2019, 13:16


You have regained five points of moxie.

The only alarm that goes off in the morning is yours. There’s no one else struggling to dress in a confined space, and no one from an upper bunk messes up your bed after you’ve made it. Having your own room is amazing.

The yellow door into the canteen slides open as you approach. You experience so many new flavours at breakfast. Instead of Hot Fun there’s a bitter but quite tasty beverage called “coffee,” and breakfast consists of synthetic bacon and eggs instead of gruel. You’re not sure what to think of it all, but maybe it will grow on you in time.

“Blake-Y-LWW-6, report immediately to troubleshooter headquarters and take up the responsibilities and duties of Etiquette Officer.”

It isn’t long until you hear from Lucrezia-R-EBA-3, though for once the message isn’t encrypted: “Blake-Y, I’m reassigned from being your contact. Someone else will see you soon. I started the process of getting the facility up and running as we discussed, but final testing hadn’t happened before my demotion. Best of luck.”


You have regained five points of moxie.

Your roommate doesn’t love being woken up by your alarm, but with only two of you living in the room it’s the only one to worry about. You had set your alarm extra early today to make sure you got a shower—with only one bathroom between the four of you it’s sometimes a little rushed. You dress quickly and head to the cafeteria. It’s shared by both RED and ORANGE clearance citizens, but one section is just for the ORANGEs. You get a glass of juice and some orange-coloured porridge and head to a table.

Over breakfast you’re joined by Steve-O.

“Ira-O, I seeing you’re enjoying the powder juice. I love how sweet it is! Aren’t orange things the best?”

Your mouth is full of porridge, but you smile and nod.

“Listen, Ira-O, I really think we need to increase membership. You’ve done such a good job talking up the group I truly believe that you’re the right choice to do the next membership drive. The goal is ten new recruits in three days. I have faith in you, Ira-O!”

“Ira-O-TUV-4, report to troubleshooter headquarters and begin your assignment as Etiquette Officer.”

Steve-O looks impressed at this announcement, and gives you a big thumbs up as you grab a scone and head out.

You receive an encrypted message from Janet-O-EBA-3: “Ira-O, we’ve heard that you’re going behind one of the large Level E doors, which is something we’ve been curious about for a while. We’ll have someone standing by. Here’s the recognition code: ‘I sure hate communists.’ ‘They’re the worst.’ ‘Them and mutants.’ Get our agent through the door.”


Morning in dorm room EAA-192 can be a little hectic. Bjorn-R seems to be at his most fragrant first thing in the morning, and Humphrey-R’s semi-opaque sneezes seem to be at their most intense as a result. Still, happiness is mandatory! It’s a new day, and you have all your moxie. This can only be good!

Breakfast is quite civilized, and you sit with a few other registered mutants. One of them sets her gruel on fire, which she claims gives it a much improved flavour and texture.

“Jordan-R-EAA-4, report to troubleshooter headquarters for assignment as Etiquette Officer.”

You begin the trip to work and, as often happens, messages start to trickle in. The first is from Mia-O-ECA-2, and it’s encrypted: “Jordan-R, the fact that your Equipment Officer is going to be giving your team passes so that you can get through green doors is proof that reality isn’t. Make sure that you don’t hand your pass in at the end of the mission. We need it.”

The second message is also encrypted. It’s from Marvin-Y-GAH-5: “Jordan-R, these are important times for our group, and your contributions have been key. We need to destroy the Underplex and prevent the people there from attaching themselves to Alpha Complex, and we’re hoping that you can get us a bit more information on how to pull this off. We understand that you might be going Outside today, possibly with line-of-sight to the Underplex. See if whatever you find can be leveraged into some sort of doomsday weapon. The more detailed the analysis, the better.”

The final message is the only one that’s unencrypted. It’s from Maisie-O-FDB-4: “Jordan-R, I’m not sure what’s happening with our group. It feels like everyone has lost it. I just want to make things right, ideally without violence. I’m open to suggestions.”


You have regained five points of moxie.

Life with only a single roommate is great! There’s only one alarm for you to try to sleep through before you get up, and sharing a bathroom with only three other people instead of an entire hall is luxurious.

After a quick breakfast, which was your usual gruel but which you supplemented with some sort of orange fluid, you receive your instructions for the day: “Kennedy-O, report immediately to troubleshooter headquarters. You are assigned as Etiquette Officer.”

Elena-Y sends you an encrypted message soon afterward: “Kennedy-O, we’ve heard that you will be visiting the site of enormous ancient damage to Alpha Complex that has never been repaired. Find out how it was done. Also, we have left a locker in the illicit clone facility that will only open to your tongue print, in case you want to store towels or clothes or explosives or whatever.”

It isn’t long before you receive a second message, this time from Amelia-O-DAB-3: “We’ve heard that you’re going to be seeing sights today that the rest of us can’t even imagine. Please record all you can, and have a great trip!”

To your surprise, you also receive a third message. Steve-O says: “Hey Kennedy-O! You’re an important troubleshooter, and I’m having trouble getting all the census information I’d like. Could you please do a full count of all the ORANGE citizens in Sector EAA?”
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Re: Trouble In P4RA-DI5E

Postby tbug » 13 Sep 2019, 17:48

(Aftermath: September 9, 2019)

The area immediately outside of Alpha Complex in Sector EZA had wireless network coverage over the entire balcony and a little way beyond. This means that you remember Kennedy-O smashing into the end of the copper cylinder and the beginning of your descent toward the water, but not actually hitting it.

Your new situation is an enormous adjustment to make. For example, you now live in a barracks again, along with about a hundred other people. Your bunk number is 71, and if it weren’t for the dead zones you’d learned about you’d have no place to store any of your belongings.

You don’t sleep very well. People are coming and going from the barracks at all hours, and with bunks stacked nine high it feels like someone is always climbing on the ladder attached to your bed. Breakfast the next morning is the same gruel you often have, but with none of the optional powders or additions. You’d kind of forgotten how much it sucks to be an INFRARED.

The next morning, you receive a summons to report to troubleshooter headquarters. Zim-G-EZJ-9 joins you soon after you arrive.

“Hello, Blake-LWW-7. Your team’s supervisor is facing disciplinary action so I’m handling the debriefing. There was some confusion concerning your actual assignment according to the notes, but the crack seems to have been successfully sealed so we are awarding you 500 XP points. Well done.”

You smile, accepting the credit without objecting.

“Sadly, there seem to be several etiquette breaches on record, so we can’t give you full value for that. We’ll give you 240 XP points. On the other hand, as Safety Officer you made sure that your entire team was roped together while balancing on a precarious perch over a deadly fall, which is excellent practice. You receive another 250 XP points for your excellent precautionary measures.”

Zim-G hands you your post-mission paperwork and dismisses you.

(Aftermath: September 9, 2019)

The area immediately outside of Alpha Complex in Sector EZA had wireless network coverage over the entire balcony and a little way beyond. This means that you remember Kennedy-O smashing into the end of the copper cylinder and the beginning of your descent toward the water, but not actually hitting it.

Transmogrifying into a small dinosaur during your most recent mission was a very odd experience. With such tiny hands you can understand why Jordan-O purchased shoulder mounts for his lasers.

The morning after your mission sees you summoned to the EAA troubleshooter office. Your HUD takes you into a briefing room, where you are soon joined by Zim-G-EZJ-9.

“Ira-O, I’ll be handling your debriefing because your team’s supervisor is undergoing some disciplinary action. Her notes are not all that they could be, but regardless it’s easy to see that your team’s assignment to seal the cracks behind the door in Sector EZA was completely successful. I am therefore awarding you 500 XP points.”

You nod in thanks.

“On the other hand, I can see that you were assigned as Etiquette Officer and there was a clear record of etiquette violations during the mission. I can therefore only give you an additional 240 XP points for that service.”

Zim-G hands you your after-mission paperwork and dismisses you.

Janet-O-EBA-3 gets in touch soon afterward: “Ira-O, fantastic work! You are the best we have at what you do! We were very excited by what you and Jason learned, and we’re trying to arrange to leverage it. In the meantime, we’re sending you a treat.”

Sure enough, you later receive a delivery of a large pill labelled ADRENOMAX. The instructions on the side of the capsule say to pulverize it, mix it with some Bouncy Bubble Beverage, and consume the resulting concoction.

That evening you get a visit from Steve-O. He’s worried about you, and asks if you’re sick. He points out that he can’t think of any other reason why you wouldn’t have finished the membership drive already.

(Aftermath: September 9, 2019)

The area immediately outside of Alpha Complex in Sector EZA had wireless network coverage over the entire balcony and a little way beyond. This means that you remember Kennedy-O smashing into the end of the copper cylinder and the beginning of your descent toward the water, but not actually hitting it.

You wake up back home in Sector EAA and head to your dorm, but your HUD indicates that your bed has been given away. Following its directions you proceed to Quad EAA-14, in a part of the Sector that hasn’t been renovated in a very long time. Like its surroundings, your new room just feels old.

Before long there’s a knock on your door. Standing outside is someone named Steve-O-FBB-3.

“Jordan-O! I’m sure Ira-O and Kennedy-O have told you all about our group and presumably already inducted you, so I’ll skip the details. I’m just here to welcome you and give you the details of our next meeting!”

Steve-O is an enthusiastic but confusing conversationalist, and when he leaves a couple minutes later you’re still not sure what he was talking about.

The next morning you’re summoned to the troubleshooter offices, where you meet with Zim-G-EZJ-9.

“Jordan-O, your team’s supervisor is facing disciplinary action so I’ll be handling your debriefing. Her notes are terrible, but given that you succeeded at your assignment to patch the damage to the exterior wall behind the green door you’re being awarded 500 XP points.”

You nod.

“On the other hand, given that you were assigned as Etiquette Officer during a mission that sustained several warnings for etiquette violations I’m afraid that I can only give you 240 XP points for your service.”

Zim-G hands you your after-action paperwork and dismisses you.

Your morning is peppered by messages of disappointment from your various secret contacts. Mia-O-ECA-2 is dismayed by the lack of a report from you and your experiences Outside. Maisie-O-FDB-4 nervously asks if you’ve had any ideas. Marvin-Y-GAH-5 is vaguely threatening over your lack of information from Outside. On top of that there’s an anonymous message asking if you’ve even checked the drop point, and you have no idea what that’s about.

On the other hand, you seem to have access to some sort of unauthorized chat room. All of the discussion in the chat room is between two people, and consists entirely of conversations about Evangelista-G-EAB-11. Scrolling back, you find them commenting on when she attempted to teach you how to dance, and your startled exclamation upon reading their disparaging remarks about you is interpreted by your Cerebral CoreTech as a response.

Their reaction is immediate and terrified: “Are you IntSec? There’s nothing to see here! Nobody uses this illegal chat room!” “Shutupshutupshutup!”

(Aftermath: September 9, 2019)

The area immediately outside of Alpha Complex in Sector EZA had wireless network coverage over the entire balcony and a little way beyond. This means that you remember smashing into the end of the copper cylinder and the beginning of your descent toward the water, but not actually hitting it.

You are summoned the next morning to troubleshooter headquarters. You have a meeting there with Zim-G-EZJ-9.

“Good morning, Kennedy-O. Your old supervisor is under review and facing disciplinary action, so I’ll be handling the wrap-up of your mission. It shouldn’t take long, given that her notes give me almost nothing to work with. Essentially though, your team succeeded at your mission to repair the breach in the outer wall behind the green door in Sector EZA, so I’m awarding you 500 XP points for that. Unfortunately, as Etiquette Officer you allowed several impolite slips in your teammates, so you’re only earning 240 XP points for your service. Given that I have almost no other information, we’ll keep it at that.”

Zim-G gives you your post-mission homework and dismisses you.

Amelia-O contacts you after viewing the Shooters episode: “Nice work on getting the hapongo dance on camera! Maybe we can make this into a craze!”

Elena-Y is also pleased with the episode, as well as your additional report. “So there was some sort of big metal thing encircling Alpha Complex that doesn’t encircle it any more. We need to figure out what it does and whether we should break it further! We’re working on an escape plan too, because it sounds like we’ll need it.”

Finally, you get a visit from Steve-O. “Kennedy-O, I hope this isn’t too much of an imposition, but we really need that census. I’m sure you won’t mind, but I’ve promised some of the other members of our group that you’ll take care of it tonight.”

You laugh and laugh. Steve-O leaves.
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Re: Trouble In P4RA-DI5E

Postby tbug » 16 Sep 2019, 14:26


Living in a barracks in your current state is surprisingly difficult, not to mention lacking all the little red luxuries you’d come to take for granted. Eventually you make it through your morning routine, finishing off a tiny breakfast in its entirety before your friend the Computer calls you to work.

“Blake-LWW-7, report to troubleshooter headquarters and take up the role and responsibilities of Nutrition Officer.”

You’re on your way to work when you receive an encrypted message from your new contact: Allison-Y-DCB-3. “Blake, we’ve heard that you’re heading to Sector DRZ. There’s a major food warehouse there, and while we already have a contact on the inside we want to be sure of him. Find Fritz-R-DZM-3 and remind him that the group is unhappy with him. Maybe break one of his fingers or something. Show us that we can still rely on you in spite of the debacle with the knives and guns.”

There’s another message in your inbox: a bill for 100 XP points for leaving your taxibot parked unattended in Sector EZA for a week.


Having a dinosaur body has been weird. You would have had a tough time back when you were in an upper bunk, maneuvering the ladder with your tiny arms. Happily, your new status means a floor-level bed.

After a small breakfast you’re sipping some Hot Fun and walking toward your room when the Computer’s voice comes over the loudspeaker: “Ira-O-TUV-5, report immediately to troubleshooter headquarters and assume command of Troubleshooter Team ee-ay-ay-dash-one-bravo.”

Your HUD takes you into a briefing room where you are met by Sama-Y-GRA-4. You’ve seen her before, acting as Liam-B’s assistant.

“Ira-O, I’m your team’s supervisor. Your team’s mission is to travel to Sector DRZ, where you will collect a container and deliver it to its destination. If its recipients require any assistance with it then give them what aid you can. Please wait in the lobby for your team to arrive.”

While you’re waiting you receive an encrypted message from Janet-O-EBA-3: “Ira-O, we have heard that you will be receiving some exciting new technology during this mission, though we have no idea what. If possible, please secure a sample.”


It’s a good morning. Your bed is the most comfortable you’ve ever slept in, and there’s no ladder from an upper bunk you need to navigate with your tiny arms. There’s a washroom dedicated to the four of you in your quad, which is a far cry from using one communally. Your new clearance is amazing!

When your call to work sounds after breakfast you’re feeling refreshed and prepared. “Jordan-O-EAA-5, you are assigned as Equipment Officer for your next troubleshooter mission. Report first to Production, Logistics, and Commissary warehouse EAA/PLC-04b for the team’s gear, then proceed to Research and Design EAA13 before meeting at troubleshooter headquarters.”

Waiting for you in the PLC warehouse is Alouisa-EAA-2.

“Ooh, a mutant! You don’t look like anything I’ve seen before. Can you even breathe?”

“Yes. I can breathe. Thank-you for asking. May I please have the troubleshooter equipment now?”

“It’s kind of bulky. I’ll get Chog. Hey Chog! Come here!”

Clang! Clang! Clang!

A twelve-foot tall vaguely humanoid robot stomps out from the warehouse. Your HUD identifies him as CHO-66.

“Chog is here.”

Alouisa pulls out a big plastic bin, a black lunchbox, three orange laser pistols, three orange reflec vests, and four brown parkas.

“Chog, take all this stuff to troubleshooter headquarters.”

“I obey.”

He gathers everything up and walks off.

“Anything else, little mutant?”

“No, that’s fine. Thank-you for your help.”

You have a long wait at Research and Design, and you start going through your inbox.

An encrypted message from Marvin-Y-GAH-5 is marked as urgent: “Jordan-O, your failure to report during your last mission on the potential for destroying the Underplex has disappointed many, and you are no longer held is as high esteem as you once were. To redeem yourself, verify that there is a hidden vehicle warehouse in Sector DRZ and steal something from it.”

Another encrypted message, this one from someone named Cindy-O-MON-5, reads: “Jordan-O, communication is the key to a good working relationship. If we’re going to achieve Freedom then we need a good relationship. Please give us a full report on your mission when you’re done.” You’re not entirely sure who she is.

Steve-O, on the other hand, hasn’t give you a chance to forget him. The note from him just says: “Be strong! Orange is the hardest colour!”

Mia-O-ECA-2 wrote: “You’re doing something odd today. You’ll know what to do when you see it. This matters!!!”

There’s activity from the two citizens on the concealed message board: “Are they gone?” “I think so.” “They’re really bad at dancing.”

Maisie-O-FDB-4 is brief: “I think they’re coming for me.”

Eventually you’re allowed to see one of the R&D researchers. Thaw-G-EZJ-5 is wearing a long green lab coat.

“Ah, troubleshooter! Excellent! I have four devices for you. They don’t work when there’s a floor because of magnets, but I’ve heard you might end up in a place without a floor, so please take extensive notes. I’m afraid there will be severe penalties if these devices aren’t thoroughly tested. Here are the forms that need to be filled out.”

He hands them to you, then wheels over a trolley.

“This black rectangular memory device is for Blake. This mostly-clean grey overclocker capsule is for Ira-O. That viral box covered in shavings is for Kennedy-O. Be careful when you touch it. And finally this little plastic spinner is for you. Please get all of these working. None of them work now, but like I said: floors.”


Figuring out how much to hydrate a brand new body can be tricky. Having restroom facilities attached to your dorm room never seemed so luxurious.

After breakfast you hear from Friend Computer: “Kennedy-O, report to troubleshooter headquarters. You are assigned as Mobility Officer.”

You mistakenly received a mobility officer’s kit once, and it was full of roller blades and skateboards and the like. Presumably you’ll be getting something similar today.

Amelia-O sends you an encrypted message: “I hear you’re heading for Sector DRZ. There’s a massive food warehouse there, and we would love it if you could find us something exotic that none of us have tried!”

Steve-O also messages you: “Kennedy-O! I need a new chief recruiter! Please get lots of people to join our group!”

Finally, Elena-Y sends you an encrypted note: “A lot of food flows through the Sector you’re visiting. Make a call as to whether it’s time to disrupt it, and after you decide that it is then organize an attack. Let me know when it’s time, and I’ll send you a demolitions team.”
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Re: Trouble In P4RA-DI5E

Postby tbug » 20 Sep 2019, 09:12

(Aftermath: September 16, 2019)

When you return to Sector EAA your HUD directs you away from Barracks EAA-06 and toward quad EAA-33. Your room has two single beds, and shares a washroom with an identical orange room.

Your post-mission interview is conducted by Sama-Y-GRA-4, your team’s supervisor. Previously you had encountered her as Liam-B’s personal assistant, but apparently she’s your boss now.

“Blake-O, your team’s assignment was to deliver the emergency plant growth powder to the food barge and then help them use it in their failing greenhouses. The entire reason that there was a Nutrition Officer assigned to your team was to help with the problem of the failing food crops, and I saw no evidence at all of you even attempting the second part of your team’s mission. Not only that, but you were charged with promoting B3, and you didn’t mention Bouncy Bubble Beverage even once. No wonder your troubleshooter records say you should never be assigned to science roles. You are awarded 500 XP points for this mission, but I think that’s overgenerous.”

She frowns.

“This is particularly true because you completely ignored my mission achievements. Those were very important, and there wasn’t even an attempt at fulfilling them. Given that, and the way you risked interaction with horribly dangerous degaussing technology, not to mention my personal opinion that your performance sucked, you are fined 300 XP points.”

She gives you your paperwork and shoos you from the briefing room.

Allison-Y-DCB-2 contacts you soon afterward: “That’s what we want! Nice job. Your previous contact had you listed as someone to do the clever-person jobs when clearly she should have listed you as muscle. We’ll be in touch.” She transfers 500 XP points to you, and you also receive the “Threaten Menacingly” skill at +1.

That evening you hear a knock on your door. Standing outside is Steve-O-FBB-3. When you open the door he just whispers “One week from tonight, 1830, usual place.” After he walks away you close the door again, completely mystified.

(Aftermath: September 16, 2019)

Sama-Y-GRA-4 calls you in for a debriefing after your mission.

“Ira-O, your job as team leader was to deliver the container and then render any and all assistance with its contents. Your team did the first half of this mission, for which you are awarded 500 XP points. Your failure to even attempt the second half of the assignment has been noted.”

She frowns.

“The mission achievements that I wrote, however, were sadly unattempted, in spite of how crucial they were. Also, your team tampered with dangerous degaussing technology, which must at all costs be kept away from Alpha Complex. You are fined 300 XP points.”

She gives you your post-mission paperwork and dismisses you.

Janet-O-EBA-3 messages you soon afterward: “Ira-O, this has been a fantastic week! We appreciated the powder sample, but more importantly we were very excited by the information about the degaussing tech! This feels like the big one. We’re exerting all the influence we can to swing this as your next mission. Wish us luck! Based on some footage that society leadership retrieved from Kim, by the way, we think we’ve discovered a way to help you.”

The next time you see Brenda, you remember that you’ve actually seen her in quite a lot of interesting places. It’s something to ponder.

(Aftermath: September 16, 2019)

Your post-mission after-action interview is with Sama-Y-GRA-4. You had previously encountered her as Liam-B’s personal assistant, but apparently now she is your boss.

“Jordan-O, you performed your duties as Equipment Officer for the most part adequately, with one particularly egregious exception. We’ll get to that in a moment. After considering the goggles and parka returned by Chog, the damage and loss to team equipment was only minimally outside acceptable limits. For this you are awarded 450 XP points. The loss of the Reality Revolver experimental equipment, on the other hand, has earned you a treason star. You are charged with locating it and returning it to R&D.”

She frowns at you.

“As for your team’s actual mission, you only accomplished half of it. You were to deliver the emergency plant growth powder and then assist with it. You receive 250 XP points for that, but I have to point out that your team not only made no attempt to accomplish the mission achievements that I wrote for you but you also came into dangerous contact with degaussing technology. Under no circumstances can we risk having that technology spread. You are thus fined 300 XP points.”

Your attempts to work through the paperwork keep getting interrupted. First is a mercifully short message from Marvin-Y: “This is your last warning. Get with our agenda.”

Steve-O’s message is also short: “You did a mission while wearing orange! Nice job!” He sends you an orange can of Bouncy Bubble Beverage.

The message board has some confusion. “Wait, are we being investigated by IntSec or not?” “Maybe it’s deep cover?” “Why do all the dancing stuff then?” “So what do we do?” “Maybe sign up?” “Good call! Hey, Jordan-IntSec, we’re on board! Tell us what to do!”

Mia-O is a different kind of confused: “Yes, exactly that! The edges of the edge aren’t really what they are! All we need are the middles of nothingness!” You receive a badly wrapped package from her that contains a black left boot and a gift card for thirteen servings of Cold Fun.

Finally, you hear from Cindy-O: “This has serious potential. With your help we can secure the boat you used and send an exploratory mission to look for a new home for humanity.”

(Aftermath: September 16, 2019)

Sama-Y-GRA-4 is apparently your team’s supervisor. You’ve seen her before, since she is (or possibly was) Liam-B’s personal assistant.

“Kennedy-O,” she begins without preamble, “the team got to the barge with only three casualties. This is within acceptable parameters, so your task as Mobility Officer was deemed successful. You are awarded 500 XP points. Your team’s mission, on the other hand, was only half completed because after delivering the emergency plant growth powder you did nothing to assist the workers to activate it. For this you only receive 250 XP points.”

She frowns.

“On the other hand, your mission achievements were vital, and you did none of them. I wrote them for a reason, you know. Also, you tampered in extremely dangerous degaussing technology, which absolutely must not be spread. You are fined 300 XP points.”

She gives you your paperwork and dismisses you.

When you’re heading home from work you see Elena-Y-MAR-4 there in person, along with someone your HUD identifies as Delia-G-FAH-5. They motion you into an abandoned office where Delia-G sets up a small device.

“This will temporarily shield us from the Computer. Kennedy-O, Elena-Y contacted me when her clearance wasn’t high enough to view your latest Shooters episode. After watching it, I felt the need to meet you in person. You are exactly the sort of person our society needs. The destruction inside the food warehouse was inspired, and the activation of the fire suppression system, however you managed it, hid your involvement perfectly. The deaths on the descent on the Outside, particularly the entire crew of the hovercraft coming to investigate you, gave me chills. I will be rewatching this episode when I’m having a bad day and need cheering up.”

Before you realize what’s happening, Delia-G presses a different green device against the back of your neck. You gain +1 to your Violence stat.

“Keep up the excellent work, Kennedy-O!”

Later that evening you hear from Amelia-O: “I’m not high enough clearance to watch your episode, but the distraction you made let us slip some people into the warehouse. Have you heard of this stuff called ‘bacon’? It’s amazing! Nice job! We’ve cooked some up and left it for you in locker EAA-04/019.”

The ‘bacon’ is very fragrant, but also delicious.

You also hear from Steve-O: “Hey Kennedy-O, I hear you convinced your entire team to embrace the orange! You’re great at this! Keep up the good work!”

Later on you receive a parcel with the word “communicator” written on it in Underplex. It contains a piece of software you can install into your Cerebral CoreTech.

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