Demons of a Fallen God Part 3 – Dredging the Bottom (#Shadowrun)

With the runners having fled Ukraine, the media is making a spectacle of the events in Kiev.  The runners are being blamed for the explosions and framed for the death of their fixer. Interpol has been called in on the hunt for these “terrorists”.  The shadows are much less one-sided on the issue, but there is enough debate about what’s going on that an air of mistrust is brewing. After a week of laying low, so far, there hasn’t been any signs of fallout.  Emmerich reaches out after a long silence and says he has a line on some work. The meet is tonight at 10:15 at Das Rattenloch, if they’re interested in what Mr. Johnson has to say. The options have been slim, due to the media slander against them, so he apologizes for the type of work.  He recommends “gutter chic” attire (essentially club wear for a dive)

Scene 1 – The Rat Hole

When the runners look up Das Rattenloch, the address they are given doesn’t conform to any actual building, but rather an area on the waterfront.  The water surrounding Hamburg is still heavily polluted in this area and the air is filled with a sickly tang of industrial chemical and human sewage.  The lights from the street, and the wharf lighting don’t reach down here as the stairs descend downward, closer and closer to the water’s edge, below the tide line.  Only an hour before, the entire area was under the thick, black sludge.

Upon getting to the edge of the access way, a water drainage pipe is visible with AR signage only, proclaiming that the Rathole is just ahead.  With only AR or low-light vision to guide them, they find a sealed metal door, black with sludge with rust around the edges. Banging on the door will hear the latch be released and the door open.  An ork with several obvious transhumanist cybernetic mods and an LED tattoo over his mouth nods in welcome as the tattoo forms a marquee welcoming them to the club.

The club is a series of connected tunnels, sealed off from the drainage system, with only the minimally required structural supports remaining.  The makeshift sound system, is wired haphazardly, dangling from the roof in various places, blasting whatever the most recent hacker has decided to pipe through the system (currently, that would be Fresnel Fuzz, a form of manipulation of white noise to create rhythm).  The room is crammed with bodies, gyrating to the music/noise in whatever way they feel is appropriate. The bar is an armored booth with bulletproof glass, where you interact with the menu and barkeep via AR. All the drinks are in unmarked clear bottles. Some look dangerous…

Asking at the bar for Mr. Johnson gets them thumbed to a corner of the bar.  In the corner furthest from where the entered is a human man picking his fingernails with a combat knife.  He is heavily tattooed, wearing combat boots (which are propped up on the table as they approach) and riding leathers.  When the runners walk up, he pulls his boots down and motions for them to sit (the chairs look less than comfortable). He speaks with a German accent, but his tattoos definitely reveal him to be Vory.

“Welcome.  Your fixer assures me you can get the task I require complete and yes, I’ve heard all the dirty rumours about you.  I don’t particularly care. I am smuggler by trade and normally, I don’t require outside intervention for getting my goods into Germany, but recently the corporations have been trying to assert their control of the city again, which is complicating a time-sensitive delivery.  Therefore, I need to secure alternate avenues.”

Mr. Johnson places a dossier on the table, topped with a picture of a grinning man in a suit.

“I have chosen this man:  Albrecht Wrangel. He runs a BMW facility in Emden, which could easily mask my merchandise among the amount of product he moves.  However, he is closely watched by his keepers and my associates can’t get close to him. So, your job is to find significant leverage against him that I can use to persuade him to agree to my plan.  Personal or professional, or any combination of the two… I don’t care. Give me the power to manipulate him and I will pay you 3000¥ apiece for your troubles.”

Naturally, he is low-balling the team, using their reputation against him.  A shrewd negotiator can bump up the price a little, but on paper, the job is pretty basic.

Once the runners agree, he nods and shakes the hand of whatever negotiator was working for the team.  “Great, here’s my commcode and call me when you’ve got something I can use.”

Mr. Johnson

Vory Smuggler – Connection 3, Loyalty 1

Possible Sources – Shadowrunners, Underworld, Smugglers

1/2 – Mr. Johnson is Erik Moser aka “Iron Ghost”.  He is a smuggler that runs the Baltic Sea, moving weapons and drugs throughout the Scandinavian Union, Germany and Northern France.  He has known ties to the Vory, but has burned bridges with the Russian Vor.

2/4 – Not a typical hiring party, but when the corporations are involved, he has numerous companies looking for him in regards to stolen property and can’t afford to be seen in the area.

4/10 – The Red Vory are none too happy with the Iron Ghost having stolen their Baltic weapons trade and are offering a small bounty on the smuggler.  So far the amount is small enough that no one takes the contract seriously, but if he continues to undermine the business out of St. Petersburg, he could find himself in dangerous waters.

Albrecht Wrangel

Factory Foreman – Connection 4, Loyalty 1

Possible Sources – Corporate (Heavy Industry), Charity Organizations (North German League)

1/2 – Albrecht is a man who rose from humble beginnings in Bremen in the ranks of BMW, starting off as an apprentice mechanic, but showing a head for business savvy.

2/4 – He has been heading the manufacturing division in Emden for the past 6 years and is a resident of Wilhemshaven.  He is a known philanthropist, giving to several German charities for rebuilding Northern German infrastructure and housing the homeless.

4/7 – Albrecht has been the proverbial playboy for many years, never settling down, but lately he has a girlfriend that has been lasting far longer than any previous relationships.  There is talk that he may finally have found the one person he can spend his life with.

7/11 – The numbers put out by Albrecht’s BMW plant are extremely impressive, cranking out more units than any other German facility, while producing a reduced environmental footprint.  Saeder-Krupp parades the numbers proudly, but many think the facility is doctoring their numbers.

Matrix:  The German grid is very comprehensive so Noise is almost not a factor save for areas with a lot of wireless traffic.  Luckily, the runners are likely avoiding major population centers to avoid being detected.

The grid for Das Rattenloch is as chaotic as the club itself.  Hackers pretty much have the ability to render the space as they wish, so it’s a dizzying array of hacker tags, overlapping themes but a distinct lack of Matrix security, leaving the system wide open for people to do as they wish.

Scene 2 – The Law Catches Up

As the runners are getting ready to head out to start digging up dirt on Albrecht Wrangel, any runners that have not wiped out their old commlinks find themselves being trailed by the local authorities.  Within Hamburg, the police will resort to simple tailing, but once outside the city, the runners will find themselves running into roadblocks and security checkpoints. If they continue to resist throwing away their commlinks and any other traceable hardware, the police will continue to track them down and depending on how the runners behave, the police will bring in bigger and bigger weapons to take down the runners.

Interpol Police

B4 A4 R4 S3 W3 L3 I4 C3  Init 8+1D6

Physical Limit 5, Mental Limit 5, Social Limit 5

Armor 12

Skills: Pistols 4, Clubs 4, Intimidation 6, Perception 3, Running 4, Unarmed 4

Knowledge:  Local Crime 3, Law Enforcement 4

Qualities: Toughness

Ares Predator V (Pistol, Acc 5(7), 8P, SA, AP -1, 15(c), Smartgun)

Armor Jacket

Defiance Shocker (Taser, Acc 4, 11S(e), AP -5, SS, 4(m), Melee Attack)

Erika Elite

Stun Baton (Club, Acc 4, Reach 1, 9S(e), AP -5, 10 charges)

Jazz * 2

Optics – Contact Lens 2 (Image Link, Smartlink)

Vehicles are BMW I8 Interceptors for chases and Dodge Goliaths for Roadblocks (see Rigger 5)

Scene 3 – Submerged Industry

Both of the towns of Emden and Wilhelmshaven are afloat by corporate will alone.  When the Black Tide hit Northern Germany, many of the northernmost towns were wiped off the map.  However, the manufacturing facilities in Emden and the port in Wilhelmshaven justified their salvation.  Saeder-Krupp in partnership with Proteus shored up the city limits, cleaned up after the disaster and returned the cities to their original glory, save for the North Sea now completely surrounding both cities.

The feel of the two cities are very different.  Emden definitely gives off a working-person’s vibe, with factories and manual labour being the primary focus for the city.  The housing is basic, but comfortable enough and the roads are extra wide to allow for the large number of trucks that roll through the city.  Wilhelmshaven, despite having a deep water port, is more of an executive’s town. The waterfront sees more cruise ships than freighters any more and as a result, the city is very clean looking, with more land per home and greater police presence.

Albrecht Wrangel lives in Wilhelmshaven and works in Emden, so his commute accounts for a chunk of every day.  On the surface, Albrecht looks like a boy scout. No back taxes, gambling debts or ties to organized crime. He’s a poster boy for Saeder-Krupp’s automotive division, as BMW has been turning out some very impressive numbers since he took the foreman role.  His girlfriend is from a well respected family in the AGS and he seems to dote on her hand and foot.

He spends a considerable chunk of his personal wealth on charities and digging into his life reveals little of note.  The runners will need to dig into his place of work to find the dirt they need for leverage against him.

The factory in Emden is large and impressive.  The robotics that fill the factory floor run day and night with minimal supervision, but security is always around to ensure the grounds remain secure.  The site maintains high safety standards and hasn’t had any incidents of note. The information the runners are looking for is locked away in a hidden node on their server.

In one of those “it’s always been done this way” processes, the waste from the manufacturing process that has been recycled so many times, the material is useless, many of the more hazardous materials are collected by the machines in an automated process and siphoned off into a bin that is loaded onto a truck and discarded.  These volumes are never recorded on the system, making the plant look more efficient and “green”.

The hidden subsystem contains the subroutine that powers the process as well as coordinates that are to be loaded into the truck that deposits the waste.

Even though there is no evidence that code was written by Albrecht, Mr. Johnson says he can use the data and wants photographic evidence of the dump site.

Matrix:  The area the runners are in is vastly Saeder-Krupp controlled and the local grid is very similar is structure and function to the S-K Corporate grid.  Once they need to gain access to the BMW Factory host, they step into something a little more unique.

BMW Factory Grid

The logo for the BMW grid is a BMW logo that immediately shifts and contorts robotically to allow the hacker to step into a BMW showroom.  The air smells of new car smell and the space is climate controlled to perfection, like a suitably air conditioned building in the middle of a warm summer day.  The sales staff are attractive men and women, standing off to the side, smiling without approaching to give a pressure-free environment to peruse the cars. The cars are all interactive, allowing the user to add or remove features from the displayed model, to show them what the color looks like, or whether they like the feel of the cabin.  Accessing the sales staff starts the ball rolling on making a purchase. Accessing the service department take them into an impossibly tidy garage, with a rugged looking mechanic greeting them, asking what the problem with the vehicle seems to be.

If the hacker finds his way into the manufacturing floor (easiest point of entry is through the vehicle customization interface), they are instead greeted with a much less sculpted interface that directs the build order of vehicles and the individual protocols of the robotics.

Icons for files in the main dealership are rendered as carbon contracts, while in the manufacturing system they are rendered as the ordered parts the robotics draw from.  Employees, while rarely logged in, use personnel ID pics over humanoid icons. IC appear as S-K officers, as there is no sense beating around the bush any more once a threat has been identified.

Host Rating 7

Standard Configuration – Attack 8, Data Processing 10, Sleaze 7, Firewall 9

Security Protocol – Patrol IC running at all times, no onsite decker but one quickly logs in remotely at the first sign of trouble.

Once an alarm has been triggered, IC activates in this order: Probe, Scramble, Track, Jammer, Marker, Crash.  If an IC is crashed, the host will reboot the IC before moving on to the next stage. A security spider will log on after 3+1d6 combat rounds after the alarm is triggered.

Scene 4 – Historic Blasphemy

The coordinates in the software points to a small cape of land left over from the Black Tide between Emden and Wilhelmshaven.  The Earth is still poisoned from the Black Tide and the roads don’t provide any official exits from the highway, however there are gaps in the guardrails that a trained eye can pick out and leads down old ill-maintained roads from the small farming towns that used to dot the area.

The location is tied to the outskirts of Aurich, where most of the town was erased by the surging tide and the rest was left a toxic mess.  The dump site itself is the former site of Neuengamme, a sub-location of a Nazi concentration camp. The astral space here is tainted by both the site’s history and the poisons leeched into the Earth.  The only living things here are creatures scavenging for food and warped by the environment. The toxins have erased their fear of humans (or anything, really) and will attack anything they perceive as a threat.

Use the Flatworm Viper and Radhound from Howling Shadows.

The old buildings where many old barrels have been dumped serves as the Flatworm Viper nest, while the Radhounds walk the grounds, looking for food.

Once the runners get proof that BMW has been dumping their waste in the old concentration camp, Mr. Johnson will be satisfied and pay the runners what they were promised.

>> That’s a pittance to get paid for getting tangled up in the wyrm’s company.  Count me out of this one…
>> Wraith

>> It’s Hamburg… someone wanting to make a name for themselves will take it.  My question is why BMW?  There are other companies that ship out of Wilhelmshaven…
>> Czerna Woda

>> Maybe Mr. Johnson is being honest that BMW’s shipment is the only one big enough to conceal their shipment.  They’re definitely the largest name on the wharf.
>> Fulcrum

>> Mr. Johnson, honest?  If you believe that, I’ve got some voting stock in Saeder-Krupp I’m selling cheap…
>> Wraith

~ by 1nsomniac on January 9, 2019.

One Response to “Demons of a Fallen God Part 3 – Dredging the Bottom (#Shadowrun)”

  1. […] via Demons of a Fallen God Part 3 – Dredging the Bottom (#Shadowrun) — The Data Haven […]

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