A bleary eyed and somewhat hung-over looking halfling almost staggers into Celita's office. The aura of stale cigar smoke permeating from his clothes causes the air-conditioning units in the room to wind themselves up a notch.
"Ya called, M'aam" he says in a thick drawl.
No, that will never do. Accent is all wrong. Gonna have to work on this. After my head stops feeling like the Bros were using it like a ball.
Vecro enters after Shokil "Shokil is that you? What an honor. You look in a similar state as before. Do those Yeti's of yours ever leave Absalom? Or did you get yourself into an always running party mode" asks a rather tall Kasatha.
Hie four hands are never just hanging or leaning, that person is always straight and use limited amount of movements to do what they want. His face is covered following Kasatha tradition, next to his shoulder flies a mote of blackness
"The bro's... well... since they found out how big the universe was... they really like to party. " says the red-eyed author.
"I'm not sure how much more of this my liver can take... but you know... I take my responsibilities to them seriously. You can't just take a being out of a simulation and not provide some moral support for them."
The liver is a rather complex organ Celita says as she reviews some data. You should look after yours. Maybe you should put some liver stem cells in the medical bank so you can grow a new one
The conference room you are in appears indistinguishable from countless others, unusual only for the number of layers of security required to reach it. Around the perimeter, Starfinder agents work at terminals and holographic interfaces, filling the room with the digital detritus of a team hastily assembled but hard at work.
Celita observes from the center of the room alongside Noname, an infamous hacker who allied with the Starfinders during #4-04: Mission Not Found. If any of you have previously met Noname, she greets you by name.
Still waiting for three more agents to arrive Celita continues, more for Noname's benefit than yours Hopefully they will not be long
Shokil brightens up when he spots the other android. "Hi K.. ahhh Noname! Long time no see."
He files away a note to see about liver cell donation for after the mission.
"Actually I've been wondering about getting one of those high-processing augmentations.. he admits quietly.
An android with dark brown skin and neon blue circuitry running across his body enters the briefing room. He's wearing a well used travel suit jacket that seems to mold perfectly to the curves of his shoulders. He glances at his Starfinder teammates, but says nothing.
An immaculately dressed elf enters the office. Every strand of his hair rests almost too perfectly around a face that has impossibly high cheekbones and a strong jaw. The dark gray glen check suit he wears is custom tailored to his body. A light blue shirt, navy grenadine tie, white linen folded pocket handkerchief, black socks and black derby shoes complete his outfit.
Cavaler Traleth, is no stranger to the spotlight. The ambassador from the elf nation of Sovyrian on the planet of Castrovel to Absalom Station is known by most.
He moves to Umbro-187's side and whispers a few words into the android's ear. Without replying, Umbro-187 quickly leaves the room.
The last to enter the room is a gloomy and rather tall* dwarf (*by the standards of their people). He is completely bald and clean-shaven (and in general resembles Riddick performed by Vin Diesel, only this is a dwarf). He looks around at everyone present, nods to Celita and silently sits down on the farthest chair.
Well ... it looks like we're all here Celita says. Welcome, agents, Celita says as she gestures to a pair of folding tables covered in notes and extra datapads. The Society needs your help.
As you no doubt know, the Data Scourge disrupted technology and communications across the Pact Worlds. It turns out the creator of the Data Scourge was one of our own: Historia-6, or “Historia-Prime” as he now calls himself. His automated battle fleet and several of his outposts have been destroyed, but at great cost. Celita’s face darkens, and the room pauses in a moment of silence for those lost.
Yet hope remains. Our hacker ally Noname has isolated a digital signature of the Data Scourge code, perhaps enabling us to track the virus to its source and deal with Historia-Prime once and for all. Noname, please elaborate. Celita taps one of the terminal operators on the shoulder.
The masked hacker Noname swivels her chair to face you and speaks with a digitally disguised voice. There’s a small piece of code that seems to be a part of every instance of the Data Scourge we’ve uncovered. Think of it as a digital fingerprint. Very hard to find. Problem is, there’s a lot of it, among a lot of instances of Data Scourge attacks. We’re going to need a lot of people working on this. If you’re useful with technology, I can put you to work right now. Noname gestures to a row of empty computer stations next to her, then swivels back to her waiting terminal and resumes work.
Celita nods. If computers aren’t your strength, there are other ways you can aid in the hunt. We need to interview dozens—no, hundreds—of people affected by the Data Scourge for clues. We need to comb the infosphere’s chat spaces for reports of attacks or damage. And we’ll need to identify potential resources and convince them to aid us. Celita ticks the options off on her fingers. Once we trace the code to its source, we’ll go there… and neutralize Historia-Prime.
Do you have questions for either Celita or Noname?
"I believe most everyone here on the station knows who I am. It's probably best if I conduct the interviews of those affected by the Data Scourge."
"I can use a word processor... but that is about it for my skills with computers" admits the bleary eyed author.
"I'm more of a .." he pauses, looks as if he might be about to thrown up and then continues "a people person."
From the aroma of stale cigarette smoke and old alcohol, anyone nearby might guess at what sort of people person he was.
Cavaler, carefully moves away from the smelly and potentially sick halfling.
"Careful, this suit is custom tailored. It would be a shame if you ruined it." he says in a rather condescending tone of voice.
Vecro listens to the briefing. And nods his head "Shokil and myself dealt with Historia-6 in the past." Played Many minds of Historia a month ago :D with phaeton as a GM
"I will help in interviewing people, if there are any clues we should be able to get them."
Now I understand why I'm here and not rotting in prison. I'm good at computers. But more importantly, I'm good at elimination. - the dwarf says in a slightly hoarse voice - I appreciate this opportunity. Let's get down to business.
You are provided a workspace and the tools you need.
Each PC must attempt any two skill checks from the following list (including the same check twice, if desired). Each PC attempts these checks individually, without the aid of others. A PC can “take 10” on these checks but can’t “take 20” due to the risk of adding false information to the accumulated data profile.
* Other. You can use any other skill to lend assistance, so long as you describe how your efforts help.
Vecro moves to his workspace and lay down his massive hammer that he kept strapped to his back. He slowly straightens his clothing and moves all the devices that he will need for the work. Before he starts working he closes his eyes and the mote of darkness spill all over his body, his face gets specific shine as he opens them and begin to work
Culture, Sidereal influence, take 10: 10 + 13 + 1d6 ⇒ 10 + 13 + (3) = 26
He begins to work through the information that they gathered, he attempts to categorize the data. He uses the fact that he knows plenty of languages to make the task easier.
When he is done with that task he spent the remaining time talking with witnesses
Diplomacy: 1d20 + 11 ⇒ (2) + 11 = 13
Twich uses a computer, and also uses her understanding of how stuff works.
computers: 1d20 + 19 ⇒ (11) + 19 = 30
engineering: 1d20 + 19 ⇒ (5) + 19 = 24 (+4 more if this counts as 'ID or repair a magic item)
Cavaler, immediately reaches out to his many constituents in Absalom Station that he as cultivated as the ambassador from Sovyrian.
Diplomacy: 1d20 + 13 ⇒ (5) + 13 = 18
Diplomacy: 1d20 + 13 ⇒ (19) + 13 = 32
The author, apparently having a hard time focusing, thinks for a moment or two. Then taking out a wrist com, starts to flick through some drafts of his current novel.
"I'm sure I took some relevant notes in here somewhere... let me see... Hackers... super computers... data centers.... explosive radius of frag grenades... no not that one... ahhh.... e-viruses."
profession(author): 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (7) + 5 = 12
profession(author): 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (5) + 5 = 10
Ahh, those rolls really seem to fit so well.
"Oh, that's right. I just got started on doing that bit of research when the boys came around."
Vecro discovers that Accordant-Contemplative-16, a Triunite priest the Starfinder Society helped in the past, is currently onboard Absalom Station to speak at a religious summit. They would likely be interested in the Starfinder Society’s recent discoveries.
Werrec locates two instance of the Data Scourge’s signature code.
Twich discovers a third instance of the Data Scourge's signature code as well as finding hardware faults resulting from the Data Scourge
Talia finds a fourth instance of the Data Scourge's signature.
Cavalier identifies potential Data Scourge targets or victims.
Shokil has little luck using his professional contacts to get additional reports of Data Scourge events.
I presume we are still in high tier?
CCombining your efforts tell you that the signature code is bouncing between numerous Drift beacons to disguise its true origin.
With the information gained could each of you make a Culture, Diplomacy of Mysticism check?
Our party average is actually 6.3, but I'm willing to play up if everyone else is.
Diplomacy: 1d20 + 13 ⇒ (19) + 13 = 32
"Well, that was a bit of a bust. So the code jumps from beacon to beacon eh? Kind of like playing hide-and-seek?"
culture: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (19) + 2 = 21
"I really enjoyed that as a kind."
Culture, sidereal: 1d20 + 13 + 1d6 ⇒ (20) + 13 + (6) = 39 wowza
Vecro pulls all of the data that they gathered and projects them in a part of the room, then using his four hands, he begins to move them around, discarding the not necessary parts. He works in silence rarely showing any emotions at moments he just pauses to process what he sees.
brings high-ranking representatives from most of the Pact Worlds’ major faiths together to discuss opportunities for cooperation between churches.
"Well... this is going to be an interesting week." notes Shokil.
"I wonder which genius came up with the idea of bringing so many folk who have wildly varying views on whether each other should be allowed to live (or even die) together. And what does the confluence of such people have to do with the Data Scourge?"
Vecro looks at the outcome
"For a faith that believes in the dialog as one of the ways to make the universe a better place it is not unreasonable to try to communicate with even the most radical. The risk here is high by the sheer amount of aliens going to participate in it, I would imagine that the conference could be tense due to different representatives, as much as some may want to sway others to better paths some may want to do the opposite."
"This looks like an obvious recipe for disaster."
Beautiful... I was once judged of terrorism... And if I hadn't been released on bail by one of your best agents, I would have been in prison for a long time. Aye, this place is perfect for such an act. One bomb is enough and then they will grab each other by the throat.
Verrek refrains from further comments.
As it turns out .... your comms buzz with an incoming message from Celita. Key development. Muster immediately.
When you get there, assuming you needed to leave the conference room to do yoiur task, Celita appears downcast as she summarizes the status of the investigation. The Data Scourge signal is using Drift Beacons as a pathway, bouncing between them to make tracking their origin difficult. We
will begin the process immediately, but the amount of computational capacity required will be… significant. She glances at Noname, who
In the meantime, we must pursue other avenues. Is there anything else you uncovered that may provide clues to the origin of the Data Scourge? Any potential allies or sources of aid you can think of?
Maybe we'll find the answers at that conference? There may be powerful individuals there. For example, the priests of Triune. Maybe they know more about beacons and signals than others? He nods at Traleth. We rely on you for this, elf.
"Yes we found that there will be a religious summit here on Absalom Station, with everyone is invited approach. Accordant-Contemplative-16 is here on Absalom Station and he should be interested in our findings regarding the Data Scourage and beacons. We suspect that the summit could be targeted by Data Scourage" he glances at Verrek
The religious conference? Excellent idea agent. Celita replies. The Church of Triune does not usually get involved in secular affairs but I would like you all to attend and use your diplomatic abilities to convince them to assist us.
Cavaler, gives Verrek a mildly condescending look and says.
"I am prepared to lead any negotiations that may occur at the conference."
As you leave the meeting with Celita and Noname, you receive a text transmission from Radaszam, the head of the Acquisitives faction. Radaszam asks you to make as many positive connections as you can during your attendance at the interfaith summit—the Starfinders could always use more allies. Radaszam’s message provides three specific contacts to make a favorable impression on: the Iomedaean, Kuthite, and Damoritosh delegates.
See handout on Slides
The hung-over author sighs. "I need to get a secretary who can arrange my booking for days that I've been to bed before.." he mutters.
Can I acquire a hirling mid game?
I've been allowed to do it, so I'll say yes. Just spend the appropriate ACP
The summit is being held at various places all around the Station but the only publicly accessible venue is a small Iomedaean cathedral. Built in an
old style, the church is a single large, open space with gleaming white marble pillars holding the vaulted ceiling. A ledge 20 feet above the floor along both sides holds carved statuary depicting the 13 Acts of Iomedae (a tale of Iomedae’s ascendency to godhood) and is also currently being used to run power cables for the media’s lighting and transmission equipment. The ledge is accessible by two ladders in the cathedral’s south end.
As you arrive, the summit participants are returning from a series of closed discussions to issue a public statement.
As the delegates line up on or beside the tiny stage, a woman in a white mantle ascends to the podium. The media spring into action, holding cameras and microphones at the ready. The holoscreens above the stage show a close-up of the woman, a human with greying hair whose mantle bears an embroidered golden sword. The screens’ captions announce her as, “High Chancellor Melorian Cadusys—Church of Iomedae.”
Thank you for waiting so patiently, she begins in a motherly voice. The Inheritor’s faithful feel very privileged to be hosting this first Interfaith Summit, welcoming the faithful of all divine beings together to discuss cooperation and coexistence. My colleagues and I have made great progress in our discussions thus far, and I look forward to many more productive hours as we envision a better future for all sentient beings.
Although Iomedae has led this effort in bringing together those of disparate and sometimes opposing beliefs, we did not and could not do it alone. High Chancellor Cadusys turns to indicate the row of religious figures behind her. I would like to acknowledge my colleagues who have been instrumental in making this Summit possible. Cadusys turns and begins to applaud her colleagues, and the crowd follows suit.
Slides updated. When you're ready, place your token near the delegate you wish to talk to
As the team leaves the Starfinder office, a buff young man approaches Shokil. "Are you Shokil? The author of Smith Bites the bullet?" he asks eagerly.
"It is Sgt. Smith bites a bullet" sighs the long suffering author.
"Could you sign my copy of it? Pleeeassseeee?"
The halfling, showing unusual good grace, takes out an old fashioned ink pen to scrawl on the paper-copy tome presented to him. "Who should I make it out to?" he asks.
"I'm Buff, ahh, Beef... ahh Biff!" stammers the star struck fan.
As the group heads off toward the summit a keen eyed Starfinder might notice the stary-eyed fan surreptitiously following his idol. Eventually the author stops and turns around. "Don't you have somewhere better to be?" he asks, almost rudely.
"ahhh... no?" says the beef-cake. An almost evil glint enters Shokil's eyes. "Want a job as my press secretary?"
Once in the conclave, the author really tries his best to get toward Accordant-Contempaltor-16, but is distracted by an interesting story being told by the Master of Tales.
Cavaler, approaches the high chancellor. As he draws near her he bows and says, "High Chancellor Melorian Cadusys, my name is Cavaler Traleth, ambassador to Absalom Station representing the sovereign nation of Sovyrian. It is an honor to meet you."