Trojan Horse – Root of the Problem (Shadowrun)

The team is contacted by their fixer for a job that promises decent pay, however the fixer warns them about their potential employer. Though the Johnson has a clean reputation for contracting to shadowrunners, their fixer has never dealt with them and urges them to be on their guard. The meet is at 9PM in the storeroom of the Bellevue Pour House.

Scene 1 – Unconventional Conduct

The Bellevue Pour House is a dive that barely deserves mention in a district like Bellevue. It has been said that the establishment puts the “ass” in “class” and judging from the interior there would be truth to the rumours. There is a ring in the center of the bar were ork and troll bikers are hooting and hollering over two practically-naked women are wrestling in a vat of semi-congealed soy. The woman are surgically endowed and this is obviously not their first match here, seeing as they are less about proper technique and more about groping sloppily at one another in order to earn more money from the spectators.

If asked about the meet the barkeep, an ork that calls himself Moses, tells the runners that they’ll be allowed into the storeroom when the time comes, but not earlier, since he doesn’t want them mooching his stuff. Seeing as the bar is well-stocked with better alcohol than one might expect from the establishment, the argument isn’t totally devoid of merit.

Once the time for the meet arrives, Moses tells the team that they can go back into the storeroom, but not to touch anything. Waiting for them in the storeroom are two men: one is a scrawny human with his hands cuffed behind his back and the other is a Knight Errant Officer in uniform and armed. He makes no effort to go for his weapon, even if the runners do.

Welcome. I assure you that despite my instincts, I’m not here to arrest you. As much as it pains me to admit it, I am in need of your services. From what I understand from this man,” he says, indicating the cuffed man, “you are the people I want.”

This man is named Lorne Edwards, former associate of David Meath. According to Mr. Edwards here, Mr. Meath contracted your services under the guise of a neighbourhood watch to track down a certain type of BTL that was being trafficked into the city. While the way you dealt with the situation was… messy, it certainly stop the drug for the time being. However, the Triads won’t give up so easily, so we require a more permanent solution, so we don’t have this problem in the future. We want to dispatch you to Hong Kong to track down the source of this BTL and stop it for good. Knight Errant has no jurisdiction there, which is why we require you. We are prepared to handle your travel expenses and pay you an additional 6,000¥ apiece for you to locate the Triads’ source of manufacture, destroy it and determine who developed this latest software. A code snippet from their development server would be worth extra, though the code does not need to be functional.”

The Johnson does indeed want the BTL’s stopped and is willing to hire runners to get it done. Despite his obvious disdain for the team, he has hired runners before and has a good reputation for not backstabbing the teams he’s hired. Because he is hiring known felons he is intentionally low-balling the figure on payment.

Mr. Johnson is willing to haggle on payment, though he does not give the runners the option of turning down the job. After any negotiations are complete, he wires the team their flight itinerary. They have until 8AM to figure out their equipment and board their plane to Hong Kong.

Mr. Johnson
Thresholds: Matrix (1), Corporate (2), Law Enforcement (2)

1 – Mr. Johnson is Lieutenant Chris Phillips, a six year veteran for Knight Errant.
2 – Lt. Phillips has an atypical view of law enforcement for an officer from Knight Errant. He cares less for the company’s bottom line and more for the pursuit of justice. His attitude has got him in trouble from the parent company on a couple of occasions, but the perceptions of the community have made him untouchable.
3 – Began working black bag operations two years ago, when a Yakuza boss got off the hook for crimes where evidence was overwhelming against him, but pressured the jury into a non-guilty verdict. Hired runners to “see justice done”. Knight Errant doesn’t condone his methods, but sees the work he does as good PR, so they give him a long leash.
4 – Rumour has it that he works with several underworld groups, but no one has managed to “buy” him yet.

Scene 2 – New Ground

The runners arrive in Hong Kong to find the city a bustling hive of activity. Since most of their gear was likely left behind, due to customs, the runners will likely want to acquire weapons and equipment for the task ahead. As well as equipment, they are going to need information. However, the largest purveyor of information in the city are also those they are tracking down. Luckily, not all Triads play nice with one another and if the runners learned who was responsible for distributing the drugs in Seattle (Black Chrysanthemums), they can potentially find a Triad willing to deal with them.

The Red Dragons are the largest Triad in the city and have a dim view of their smaller rivals. If the runners are willing to jump through the right hoops, the Red Dragon will allow the gwailo runners to operate in their city. The Ten Thousand Lions are a small outfit, forged by the ruins of the Yellow Lotus Triad, which the Red Dragons destroyed years before. Heavy in the BTL trade, they seem like a good fit and they are currently working with the Black Chrysanthemums in some way out in Kowloon. The local Red Dragon contacts direct the runners to Kai Tak Night Market for answers.

The Kai Tak Night Market is a great place to fence goods and acquire all things illegal, but it is run by the Ten Thousand Lions and the runners will need to shake people down for information on the Desire BTLs. A firefight here could get ugly very fast. At either end of the old runway at Kai Tak Airfield are the Kowloon Bay Typhoon Shelters, which are obviously the way the BTL’s are leaving the city. The floating boat city is a rats nest of docks and moored ships. Finding a single smuggling ship here would be like finding a needle in a haystack. The locals at the marina speak a multitude of languages, including Cantonese, Hindi, Vietnamese, Bahasa and Filipino, just to name a few, so if the runners are familiar with other languages, there is likely someone here they can get information from (English and Mandarin are not readily spoken here though).

Whether they extract or bribe the information from someone, they learn of a chip manufacturing facility deep inside Kowloon. While the facility is relatively small, it employs a small number of the desperate under the watchful eye of the Black Chrysanthemums.

Scene 3 – Halting the Presses

The building in Kowloon is little more than a warehouse with an office block set in the front. The building is poorly maintained, but is still structurally sound. The Triad members will actively hunt down anyone who doesn’t belong at the building, so a fight is inevitable here. In order to keep the proper amount of fear over the employees, there is a basement level where a pack of ghouls wait for the next disappearance needs to be arranged. Not only does this building manufacture the chips, but it also eliminates the most severe of the junkies to avoid drawing the same attention the chips did in Seattle. The entrance to the basement area (old maintenance tunnels) is in the North corner of the office section, where the floor has collapsed.

This Factory, most likely inhabited somewhere in the 2050’s has been built using the flying star method of Feng Shui. For this building, water seems to be it’s element. Water in Feng Shui can also mean paths or roads, so it is applicable that the pathways through the factory are symmetrical and all aligned to the northwest corner. The layout mimics the “flying star” grid used to calculate the optimal direction for the building. In the front foyer there are dried up ponds, most likely once filled with Koi. A large divot in the front lawn suggests there was once a fountain placed there, most likely themed to the river and grid like layout of the building.

This scene is a measure of the pure level of destruction the runners can deliver to a facility. While the building and the equipment within it are all viable targets for destruction, many of the facilities are the downtrodden and desperate, who are under the oppression of the Black Chrysanthemums. Cutting down innocent civilians will earn the team Notoriety. The Triads, however, will not make the distinct between innocents and runners.

Use the stats for Organized Crime Gangs for the Triad members, though feel free to upgrade their equipment, as they are not in a part of the city that the police will come running to, should gunfire break out. Use the stats for Ghouls in the core book for the Ghouls in the basement, which will be released once the Triad realize they are under siege.

If the runners capture one of the Triads, or question one of the fleeing workers, they learn that, while the chips are printed in bulk here, the programming is done elsewhere. The Ten Thousand Lions have a software studio somewhere in Tsim Sha Tsui, where a legitimate software company covers up the Triad operation. However, they do not know the name of the front.

Scene 4 – Finding the Source

Tsim Sha Tsui is in the Yau Tsim Mong district of Hong Kong. The area is a spam zone, polluted with holographic advertisements, RFID scanners and people walking shoulder to shoulder in all directions, both tourists and locals alike. The area looks like the polished veneer of the Island skyline, but the Triads run an underground business pipeline out of the area and the tourist destinations run in all directions.

Finding which software company the Ten Thousand Lions has leverage on will require new information from local sources. There are several people the Triads have blackmail information on, but eventually one piece of information will float to the surface: a programming firm that that does contract work for Xiao-Renraku called Yau Guang Software Development had a recent addition to their payroll, but none of the regular staff know what project he is working on.

The mystery programmer is an abducted man named Temur Jarai, a Mongolian who had been working with Evo. He is a technomancer, who the Triad has leverage on and is trying to use recent knowledge acquired during his time with the megacorp.

Abandoned Warehouse - Kowloon Yau Guang Software - Upper Yau Guang Software - Ground

Yau Guang software development building was created using the “flying star” method of feng shui. It includes making a 9 square grid, the direction the building will face is determined by the years it is occupied. For the Yau Guang building the flying stars predict it should face east and that the building’s element is wood. The Eastern direction gives the front reception strong sun exposure in the afternoon/evening. The light bounces off the wooden walkway and is then channeled through the forest-like wood sculpture, that bores a path through the building guiding the light right to the core of the structure. The round splayed out design also represents the sun as It bathes the many trees and plants within with needed sunlight and brings the sun’s warmth and blessing to the employees within. The sculpture itself is of light pine, a softwood that is stained with a light golden hue, representing wealth, stability and monetary happiness. The many trees throughout the building are braided money trees, said to bring great wealth and good luck as long as they flourish. Many of the walls are decorated with a golden stained woven pine plank pattern, it acts as sound proofing and decoration. The cubicles and walls are varying shades of yellow, which in ancient Chinese culture has been equated with the color of gold. During the time of the emperors, yellow was reserved only for the emperor and his household, representing royalty and exclusivity.

The police will respond quickly, as Yau Guang is a legitimate company, whom the CEO owes a debt to the Ten Thousand Lions. Whether the police or the Triads arrive first is up to the GM. When they track down the imprisoned programmer, the runners can either extract the man or merely take what he knows. Evo has been experimenting with improving their IC by threading Resonance into the code to add new abilities into the existing code.

The runners will likely want to get the man free of the Triad’s grip (getting him out of Hong Kong somehow) and reporting back to Mr. Johnson. If they help Temur out of the city, the team can earn some extra Karma. Mr. Johnson defends his reputation and pays the runners so long as they can convince him that the BTLs have been destroyed.

Ten Thousand Lion-Funded Software Company
Thresholds: Underworld (2), Corporate (2), Regional Contacts (1)

1 – The Lions are prevalent in the Yau Tsim Mong district and have their hands in a lot of pots, thanks to their old ties from the Yellow Lotus days.

2 – While most companies are victims of the usual protection racket business, a few run software development for the Triads themselves to use.

3 – The most recent item on the Ten Thousand Lions resume is they recently kidnapped a programmer and recently put him to work for them.

4 – Yau Guang Software Development recently had a new employee added to the payroll, but no one seems to know his purpose in the company, except the president of the company.

>> I know better than to mess with the Triad’s stuff, especially on their home turf.  Combine that with working for Knight Errant and you can count me out.
>> Annarchy

>> Didn’t you lose someone close to you to BTLs, Annarchy?  That’s not enough incentive for you?
>> Informer

>> Fuck you, Derek.  Leave my feelings on drugs out of this.  I’ll deal with that in my own way.  You want to crucify yourself in some foreign city, be my guest.
>> Annarchy

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~ by 1nsomniac on April 28, 2014.

One Response to “Trojan Horse – Root of the Problem (Shadowrun)”

  1. […] team is contacted by their fixer about a job from a Johnson they’ve work for before (Trojan Horse – Root of the Problem). He is an officer with Knight Errant and needs some covert work done. As per the last time they […]

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