Forced Entry

Ditch quickly hopped onto his motorcycle and kicked it to life, taking up the pursuit of Ghoul’s vehicle as it left the club. Paladin was the next out of the club doors, and followed suit. The two were in two-way communication via their commlinks, and coordinated their efforts to keep up with the car while not looking like they were trying to keep up—as far as they could tell, they had been successful. They followed Ghoul up to the point where they were certain he was pulling into the alley-warehouse where they had encountered him previously, and discontinued the pursuit.

During the “chase,” Mr. M and Ivory joined Bookworm in his car as he headed out to support the effort. In the back seat, M examined the chips for any chance of determining their point of origin, not really expecting to find anything and finding what he expected; he jacked in to make sure they had the right stuff, and forcing himself to stop after a few minutes, decided it would be a bad idea to ever do it again—good stuff. As Ditch and Paladin called in their findings, they all agreed to meet at Vapor’s new bar, Transporters.


Vapor welcomed his DXM former-teammates into his automotive-themed bar, and inquired about the “new guys” (Paladin and Ivory). They were sure he knew why they had come, and were reluctant to remind him of the life he was trying to give up, out of respect for that decision. They admitted they were just here looking for a safe place to talk shop; Vapor offered his staff-room for some privacy, and as they settled in, he remained in the room to listen in.

Ivory started making some phone calls to her contacts, to see who might have some information regarding Tanaka Saiko’s comings and goings. Her Hawk Wheels biker gang guy-who-knows-a-guy, Axel, wasn’t available, but she did manage to catch an old fixer she used to run with, Bob. He told her of Tanaka’s father, Tamuka, and his company, Tamuka Imports & Exports, with warehouses at Pier 47; he also said they had a couple of Lone Star cops on “retainer.” After Ivory shared the info with the others, Mr. M pulled out his brand new deck and jacked into the matrix, to see what he could find out about the company, and its local holdings. He found the place quickly enough, but their security was no joke; alarms were sounded, and he had to bail before being back-traced. They definitely had CCTV at the warehouse, but he was unable to get any video from them. Meanwhile, Ditch and the others reviewed available satellite photos of the warehouse area to look for potential ways to sneak in and out. The team had no direct evidence that Tanaka was producing the “Cecilia” BTL chips at his father’s warehouse, but they were convinced enough that it was so that they decided to execute an “exploratory” surgical strike to see what they could find. All the tangling-with-Yakuza talk was causing Vapor some understandable concern for his safety, and he politely encouraged the Team to leave before someone he’d regret came looking for them here. They had what they needed for now, anyway.


The Team went to the docks south of downtown, parking their vehicles a block or two away from the address they had, and stealthily approached the warehouse to reconnoiter. As they observed, they saw a van arrive at the front gate. A security guard got out of the van to let it through the gate, and into the warehouse itself. Inside, a handful of rifle-armed security types dismounted before the roll-up door was closed behind the van, two of which went back outside and started combing the nearby container-yard for possible intruders, eventually posting up at the door. The Team assumed the arrival of the van was a result of M’s triggering of the facility’s matrix security protocols. The Team also observed the CCTV network cameras on the building’s exterior—good coverage, that would make a stealthy approach difficult, but they weren’t going to see what they needed to see from outside. To start, they needed to get eyes on the inside. It was decided that Bookworm would cast a Fly spell on Ditch, allowing him to avoid the cameras and land on the warehouse roof, where he could find a way to gain entry (the spell would last a minute or so before wearing off—a one-shot). At Ditch’s word, Bookworm would cast Fly on the rest, in turn, so they could follow up.

As discussed, the spell was cast, and Ditch flew over the warehouse and landed on the roof, near an elevated section to the fore. The only point of entry he could find there was some heavy ventilation louvers; he produced one of his monowire blades and, as quietly as he could, sheared off the bolts that held the frame in place, and crawled through, climbing on top of the crane assembly there. He spotted two of the guards on the floor inside, and the light switches near the front roll-up door on the other side of their van. Ditch texted the others with his plan: on their ready-signal, he would give a ten-count and drop, killing the lights and taking out as many of the guards as he could, while the others took care of the two outside, before making entry. Bookworm started his casting with Paladin. Then the signal was given, as Paladin launched himself over the warehouse toward the outside guards.


Ditch gave a silent count, then maneuvered into position, hanging over the area with the switches, and dropped to the warehouse floor, rolling to a stand and slapping the light-switches off. Ditch’s cybernetic eyes allowed him to see perfectly in the darkness, while the guards fumbled around trying to locate the intruder. Ditch heard the footsteps of a third guard coming out of an adjacent room and, quickly and stealthily, climbed up on some nearby containers; he lined up his shotgun, loaded with an APHC slug, and shot guard number-three through the heart before he could turn the lights back on. The others sprayed fire blindly at the location of the shotgun’s muzzle-flash but hit nothing but air, as Ditch was elsewhere, quickly maneuvering into position to kill them. As Ditch crept slowly around a pile of crates to come up behind the two, a fourth guard had emerged from a back office and had managed to fumble his way straight to the light switches, and turned them back on. As the lights warmed up, Ditch slashed guard number-one’s skull with a monowire blade, decapitating him instantly. With the lights now on, and in plain sight, Ditch tried to put down guard number-two quickly before number-four, at the switches, could line up a rifle shot on him; his quarry got off a rifle burst at point-blank range, but none of his rounds struck cleanly enough to penetrate Ditch’s reflex armor. Ditch sprang forward to slash him deep through the sternum, before rolling back behind the crates in a crouch, just in time for a long burst from number-four to explode through—struck again, but the bullets were slowed by the cover and again, failed to penetrate his armor. Number-two didn’t get far before passing out from blood loss. Ditch sprinted for the darkest corner he could find, and waited for an opportunity to take out number-four; some minutes passed in a stand-off, as neither were willing to expose themselves to attack, the guard crying out for aid from his fellows.

Meanwhile, outside the warehouse door, Paladin landed behind one of the guards and ran him through with a monowire katana, then turned his attention to the other, who was bringing his weapon to bear. In an instant, Paladin fast-drew his machine-pistol and pulled the trigger—mechanical failure—as his intended target fired his assault rifle; a lucky burst that nearly killed Paladin outright. Mr. M and Ivory were some distance behind, still flying to the scene; seeing their teammate in apparent trouble, they began firing as they flew in. Taking quick and desperate advantage of the distraction, Paladin flew up to the roof of the warehouse to recover, and passed out. As M and Ivory exchanged fire with the remaining guard, still closing the distance. Bookworm followed up, but diverted to land next to Paladin, and used his healing magic to bring the fallen teammate back to a more-functional state (though still seriously wounded). The remaining guard was struck many times before finally succumbing to M’s and Ivory’s fire. As Bookworm joined them on the ground, Ivory produced a tool kit and went straight to bypass the locks on the roller-door.


A couple of minutes later; Ditch had stolen away into a nearby office, and was using the dark hallways to circle around to the other end of the warehouse; Paladin had limped through Ditch’s entry-point on the roof, and was situated atop the crane assembly, unseen; and Ivory succeeded in releasing the lock on the roller-door. As it lifted slowly open, Mr. M was incautiously standing in plain view in front of the door, and was reminded of his folly by automatic fire from around the van, from where guard number-four had relocated himself in an attempt to get a better angle on Ditch’s last-known position. The three at the door used the van as cover to return fire on number-four, while Paladin rained down fire upon him from his vantage atop the crane—number-four tried in vain to escape, crawling a few yards before slipping into unconsciousness and death. As Ditch continued to creep toward the back of the warehouse, he was fired upon through a window by a fifth guard, using another pile of crates as cover in the middle of the bay; Ditch crawled under the window, through the broken glass on the floor, to emerge in the shadows on the other side of the window, hoping to catch number-five by surprise. He was not aware of the sixth guard, who had emerged from another office, and was rushing to enter the corner-office behind Ditch, reacting to his fellow’s direction; Paladin spotted the maneuver from above, and commed Ditch to warn him.
To be continued…


  • Again, the GM’s schedule allowed us to go long on the session; although it was probably the longest session we’ve ever played with this group, we still ended up cutting out in the middle of the fight, to be continued
  • The players had been talking about needing an HQ of some kind, the obvious choice being a bar/club with a private floor, basement, or whatever, for the Team; taking advantage of Vapor’s retirement, the seeds of such a place are now sown
  • M’s matrix run was the first time we used the hacking rules from Pyramid 3/21, “Console Cowboys and Cyberspace Kung Fu”—only a taste, at this point; we’ll see how it works out in the future
  • As with last session, Paladin’s player was having a particularly bad night at the dice; this time, the GM’s dice got involved as well, and dealt him a Critical Hit that nearly cost him his life