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Science Fiction in all my dreams i DROWN

Discussion in 'Role Playing Forum' started by Lawbreaker, Oct 7, 2018.

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  1. SirakRomar

    SirakRomar Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    Mar 30, 2007
    Annie
    UCLA Auditorium

    Annie turned around and saw Roy. The man was still alive and she smiled at that. So Sidney had not followed him and finished the job. He could be stopped. People could be saved.

    "The USB." She had forgotten all about it. "Took it from your home, sorry. Just thought Sodney was probably after it. I brought it somewhere safe. We get it once we are out of here, okay?" It was a lie of course, it was still in her backpack. Turning forward to Christian she was concerned. This all seemed to get out of hand. "You should not be here. Sidney is hunting you. Shouldn't you be with the police?"

    Tag: @Lawbreaker
     
  2. RachelTyrell

    RachelTyrell Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Feb 15, 2009
    Amy Cross
    UCLA University

    Christian was on stage obviously mistaken for someone. Annie seemed to have met an old acquaintance of hers. Then there was Adrian. Walking in and smiling at her.

    "Excuse me." Amy said and wandered down the stairs of the auditorium until she reached him.

    "Are you one of those people running those simulations? You are, are you?" She folded her arms. "Well, as you signed my death sentence would you care to explain to me why? Why all of this is ... here? What is it about? Are we entertainment for your kind? Are we toys? A soap opera? A film? What the hell do you guys get out of this?" She kept her voice down, but looked at Christian and hoped he saw who she was talking to.


    Tag: @Lawbreaker, @SirakRomar, @DarkLordoftheFins
     
  3. RachelTyrell

    RachelTyrell Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Feb 15, 2009
    Sorry

     
    Last edited: Nov 28, 2019
  4. Sith-I-5

    Sith-I-5 Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Aug 14, 2002
    IC: Detective Sergeant Nicole Gravely, inside the Doom Bar internet cafe
    Location: Culver City, Los Angeles


    Still looking down into the considerable illumination that her Samsung cast back at her, Gravely paused the phone app at the point where Facebook asked for permissions to access the phone, and recalled her Special Crimes team's IT specialist, Nadia Paquet, warning about the vast list of system access that the pre-installed app wanted, as compared to just firing up the browser and using Facebook that way.

    She was in an internet cafe for drokk's sake, there was no crying necessity for her to use her phone. Even without Mrs Sturm's cooperation, she ought to be able to figure out one of the PCs in here.

    Reminded of the silent widow, she glanced up, to find the faux-redhead gone from where she had been sitting with her, beside the locked fire door.

    Her mouth dropped open. What?

    Nicole flipped the phone up and over, so that the back-lighting glowed into the space where the woman had been sitting. Still nothing.

    Had she been that engrossed that she hadn't heard her move?

    Flipping the phone back, she thumbed the button to bring it back to the home page and activated the flashlight, really bringing some light to bear on the situation.

    "Mrs Sturm?"

    "We could go upstairs."

    The voice out of the darkness made her jump, and she swung the 'flashlight' towards it, catching sight of the still seated woman cowering in the same position that she had been in before, but in the narrow area behind the counter that Gravely herself had darted into to avoid a smack across her derriere.

    This has been a crazy day.

    How had Sturm gotten in there? Had she smushed along on her backside like a ninja?

    "We ... I live upstairs." The widow sounded reluctant about something, and pointed to the stairs at the left end of the room.

    Gravely warily shifted the phone around towards that part of the room, and felt a chill run through her as it caught a simple wooden door, her light glinting off rectangular gold metal plaque that said, "staff only".

    She didn't recall seeing that before, and although the research she had done on the place since coming here, had said there was an area upstairs with room for twenty people, with the footprint offered by the establishment from the outside, she did not see how there was room for anyone to live upstairs.

    How could three cops, or two cops and a jumped-up federal agent, miss seeing that door? They all would have had training in clearing rooms, as in entering a room and making sure that it was 'clear' of any hostile force, including what could emerge from an unchecked ancillary room.

    Add to that, it was not consistent with what Detective Ramirez had sent, regarding Mrs Sturm's address.

    Gravely stood up, and using her phone's light to help her, found and slid into the American Diner table and bench where the researchers had sat, laying the phone on its' face so that the bright light shone straight up and covered more of the room.
    She could see the new door, and the front of the shop.

    "Right, Mrs Sturm;" she began, as she took out her notebook and pen, and going by her phone light, created a new page, and drew a roughly straight line down the centre of the lined sheet. "right now, believe it or not, you are increasingly earning less credibility than a district attorney in a Law and Order episode."

    She labelled the left column as DRS, trusting that she would remember later that it stood for, 'Detective Ramirez Says', and after some mental gymnastics with her tongue poked out for extra concentration, settled on LAWS - Lies Attributable to the Widow Sturm - for the right side.

    Writing as she spoke, Gravely spoke to her companion. "So, we have you residing at 1431 Ocean Avenue, Santa Monica, where you have and Mr Sturm have an apartment in the Pacific Plaza. But you say that you live upstairs, huh?"

    She leaned to the left so that she had the room to pull her gun from its holster and brought it up to gently lay it on the table. There was a quiet clink as it touched Margerite's forgotten dessert bowl. At least the kid had gotten a last meal in.

    Nicole shut her eyes at the thought of the waste of such a young life, then opened them at the reminder that she was now considering Rita Sturm a less-than-cooperating witness. She scribbled the differing details into their respective columns.

    "As I told you earlier, our information is that the Decker family were coming here because they were invited. And yet you told me that your husband did not put out any invites." Actually, now that she thought about it more, that might actually be true. Any of the four that they had been trying to take into protective custody, could have invited them.

    This also did not sound right, as she was sure that Ramirez had described Edgar Sturm as the 'inviting organiser', so Nicole put the phone on it's back, which cut off the light, so that she could see the screen.

    In the ensuing lack of light, she caught the luminous green lettering flashing into view across one of the PCs that Mrs Sturm had powered down earlier:

    ARE YOU THERE?

    She stared at it with her mouth open, then almost wet herself at the sudden twin raps from the security door, followed, after a pause, by Agent Formal's voice rip with condescension and concern.

    "Sweetie, it's Mummy. Are you alright in there?"

    Despite that, Gravely pressed her palms down on the table to give herself the leverage to slide out of the tight space that she had wedge herself into, resorting to calling towards the door before she was fully free: "We're okay!" If Mary asked her to open up though, she would need some convincing that the annoying woman was not talking under duress, and despite the weird things going on here, she would take them over the certainty of being ambushed by a waiting shooter.

    "Okay, good girl. Sit tight and wait for backup."

    Sidney wouldn't let her get away with that, if he was holding a gun to her head, was how she thought about that response, and with a final shove, got herself free of the diner table and bench, grabbed up the phone with the welcome glow from light, that brightened the place considerably once she lifted it away from the chipped surface.

    "Sweetie, I don't have a phone out here. Do me a favour-"

    Nicole grabbed her Glock and holstered it, flashing a glance at Mrs Sturm to make sure that she hadn't moved, then stepped to the security door, shining the light to see if the key was still in the lock, whilst listening to her partner asking her to call Ramirez and get him to call the phone company.


    Tag: @Lawbreaker
     
  5. DarkLordoftheFins

    DarkLordoftheFins Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Apr 2, 2007
    Christian Borg
    UCLA Auditorium

    Christian smiled, just because he had no idea what else to do. "You would not believe me." He said to Wong and tried to avoid anything that might betray him not being who they thought. Moving slowly away from the center of the stage he looked over at Andy. Was this the big day he announced the world his plans? In the real world ... well in 2029 ... nothing was known of a 2019 presentation as far as he could remember. This was historical incorrect. Something had changed. Maybe this kid dying and leaving a clue towards Tritec? Had it changed historical Andy of 2019 to reveal his ambitious project to the world early?

    Christian would have preferred to sit with the others, instead he stood up there. Exposed.

    Tag: @Lawbreaker, @SirakRomar, @RachelTyrell
     
  6. Lawbreaker

    Lawbreaker Jedi Knight star 2

    Registered:
    Aug 21, 2018
    2019

    UCLA, Westwood

    Wong looked at Christian and smiled. Then he walked over to Andy and joined him the computer. Below Christian could see his accomplices each talking to a man. Then suddenly the impossible happened. His wrist computer beeped and signaled it was ... connecting.

    Adrian smiled at Amy and looked around as if he tried to avoid attention. "Looking for God?" He then hissed and grabbed her arm. "You cannot die, Amy. You are just a program. And do I belong to those running all of this? Haven't you got it already? This is decentralized ... there is nobody running all of it. I have been around for a long long time and believe me ... whoever is behind this ... they don't show!" He shrugged. "They probably do not care!" He leaned forward. "No all-powerful user to make it all right again." He snapped his finger. "A few simulations who are free are the best you got."

    Roy climbed over the seats and sat next to Annie. "Forget the USB, forget Tritec. I got almost killed by Americas most wanted murderer. Smells like a Pulizer to me! Just waiting that they gonna catch him and then ... showtime." He leaned forward and kissed her. "For the beach. You saved me!" He laughed. "God you were lucky. How did he miss you?"

    Tag: @RachelTyrell, @SirakRomar, @DarkLordoftheFins




    Outside Doom Bar, Culver City

    Outside two police cars arrived and moments later a bunch of more police cars. A frustrated Cardigan stepped out of one of the patrol cars with an assault rifle on his back. "Oh look who we got there. So pretty looks like you can give us a fairly detailed description of our guy. Did Sidney do this or did you run into a Mexican cartel?" He greeted Mary as he turned to see ambulances arrive. "No need for those I guess."


    Inside Doom Bar, Culver City

    Ms. Sturm suddenly got up, angry now and seemingless less worried about a serial killer than a cop who pissed her off.

    "We moved out of the house as the bank is gonna claim it any day now. And sorry if this does not fit your file, but Eddie never send the invites or he lied straight to my face. Eddy did not do that! When those lunatics started showing up? I asked him did you invite those fellas and he said he ain't not invite anyone." She stomped behind her bar and took a bottle from the rack. "If I am gonna die I at least do it with a good Scotch. So you can throw around accusations all day, but did this guy just kill a bunch of people in the presence of three police officers and walk away? Wow, I am gonna look forward how you are gonna explain thaaaat!" She emptied her first glass with one fluid move and looked over at the computer. "Damned screensaver, Ed thought that was funny." She sighed and walked over to the computer. She was tense though, visibly tense.

    Ramirez finally picked up. "Reinforcements should arrive any moment now. Report on your situation."

    Tag: @Sith-I-5
     
    Sith-I-5 likes this.
  7. DarkLordoftheFins

    DarkLordoftheFins Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Apr 2, 2007
    Christian Borg
    UCLA Auditorium

    Christian looked at the wrist computer which had suddenly jumped alive. Connecting? Was Andy from 2029 trying to connect to hear the presentation? Had this always been the plan? Or at least plan b?

    He stepped to the side and looked at the crowd. Annie was kissed by a man up there. A boyfriend? It was a short sting, before he realized this girl was not Elina? She did not even know him. Jealousy was highly illogical.

    Amy had a seemingly intense talk to a man near the entrance. Had she found what they had been looking for?

    He felt trapped up here. Looking at his wrist computer he put his finger on the power button and turned it off. Maybe that would at least give them some privacy from the prying eyes of 2029.

    How much time did they have left before Andy pulled the plug? Maybe Elina could keep him from it. Maybe someone else intervened. Or maybe there was still something Andy had to find out about this simulation which defied control. This tapestry full of black holes. Christian stood in one of them. In the center of the maze. Looking at the Andy of this age Edge wondered how much of the monster he met was already in him? How addicted was he to control? How ruthless was he using people? Was the Christian of this time also having a girlfriend to be kept under control? Why was there a Christian and what was his role?

    A second Elina, a second Christian, a second Andy. All the players trapped in the same cycle, in every incarnation of the same simulation only with a slightly different setting?

    Tag: @Lawbreaker, @SirakRomar, @RachelTyrell
     
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  8. Sith-I-5

    Sith-I-5 Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Aug 14, 2002
    IC: Agent Mary Formal, outside the Doom Bar
    Location: Corner of Duquesne and Jefferson, Culver City


    The U.N.C.L.E. agent's impetus to peel herself off the dented police cruiser, were two-fold.

    First had been her hand brushing against the rough surface of her bulletproof vest, which quickly told her that the damage that she was feeling from her back, couldn't be from direct contact with the car, when the Australian shooter had slammed her down onto it, but from what the full body impact had done to that back of her vest, which probably what was sticking with her.

    Second, rather embarrassing that it hadn't occurred to her before; she was a new mother, so had a little girl that she really ought to be checking on, before sitting here feeling sorry for herself.

    Rolling left until she was on her knees facing the car, and using it to bring herself up, she discovered the slain Karen, having to recognise her from her police vest, as everything above her lower jawbone had been vapourised and spattered in a crimson and grey fan of drying material across the pavement.

    "Oh, Karen." She murmured. She had just not realised that Davis had been killed. She had smelled the coppery essence of blood of course, but with Smith laying in the road. and having seen the two punks go down, she had no reason to suspect that Sidney had claimed another cop.

    She had taken a moment to compose herself, and with a final rush across the pavement to the blue security door, and had had a quick shouting exchange through it with her young one, who seemed to be fine.

    That was when she detected the aggressive roar of approaching V8 engines, and turned round to witness a police car speeding down Duquesne Avenue, slowing enough to skew sideways across the road, rocking to it's left on it's wheels; then to her right, a second unit, that clearly had been running along the last section of sidewalk that she and the girls had been standing on around the corner, slewed in from Jefferson, diagonally cutting off that section of Duquesne, and then behind the latter vehicle, the intersection just started filling up with LAPD and Culver City black-and-whites, no preceding sirens, no bullhorns, no nothing.

    This was reminding her of Nikki's earlier complaint of the lack of audible law enforcement response when they had been down at the Preston estate, with Sidney hitting the seaside, three blocks away.

    Maybe this was a deliberate ploy to stop the shooter from getting an early warning, and a chance to run away.

    While vehicles disgorged uniformed officers, a sleek two-tone sports car that she was willing to bet was that Aston Martin from the Police Administration Building underground garage, managed to squeeze into what little space on the other side of the second patrol car, two plain-clothes detectives, as if there are any other kind, climbing out.

    On this side, a short dark-haired woman in a white blouse and brown leather jacket and an in-your-face attitude from all the way over there. She looked straight at Formal and spread her arms out from her hips, palms towards her. "So, we were told that Sidney was here. Where is he then?"

    Her taller counterpart, a red-haired male with a POLICE-emblazoned vest over his long-sleeved grey shirt, looked towards the Smith body as he shut his own door. "Reese, there is certainly enough evidence to suggest that he was here." He wore some good-quality sunglasses that completely hid his eyes.

    "Crews, take a look around first, and then give me your impressions."

    "I can pretty much give you my impressions now."

    "Crews."

    It was clear to Mary, which of the two new arrivals was in charge, however she ignored both, her attention drawn to the second patrol car that was parked between herself and the bossy woman, where the familiar figure of Joe Cardigan emerged from it, an assault rifle slung across his back, and she felt a bit cheated that the radio in his car wasn't announcing that permission to use excessive force, in the apprehension of Sidney (or the Blues Brothers, she wasn't fussy), had been authorised.

    "Oh look who we got there." Was his opening comment upon spying her by the door.

    "Pleased to see you too." She acknowledged, stepping away from the door, and glancing down to make sure that she didn't step into any of Karen's remains. She took a longer step to clear the brain spray, and walked to meet him, as he stepped onto her sidewalk.

    Behind him, the Reese woman was ordering uniforms to start taping off the area, with several responding with "Yes, Ma'am." or "Yes, Detective."

    "So pretty much looks like you can give us a fairly detailed description of our guy." Cardigan commented.

    "Consistent with earlier descriptions." She supplied, loud enough to be overhead by the other officers. "Caucasian, tousled sandy-brown hair, blue-grey hoodie, blue jeans, old-looking hiking boots, brown. Would not look out of place on a hillside near woods, but would be ****** in the event of inclement weather. Or bears." She paused with a frown, wondering how he would do against a bear.

    "Did Sidney do this or did you run into a Mexican cartel?"

    That was actually pretty funny, she felt, but sensing that he was saying it to compensate for something else, Mary pressed down on the chuckle that wanted to burst out. "Sidney. We discovered that he is targeting people who know about a Gamescape project called 'Tritec'. T-R-I-T-E-C. We were trying to take four people who had been looking into it, into protective custody, and then Sidney came round the corner." Something about that confrontation came to mind, and she had to raise a hand and snap her fingers a few times to bring it to the fore. "And you know what, my vics knew him. He answers to 'Jack'."

    "Did you get a last name with that?" Reese asked, still having a testy tone to her voice, which Formal tried to let roll over her. They were down three cops, of course they were going to be annoyed.

    "Sorry, Detective. We talked, but I was trying to get him to stand down; I didn't get a last name, sorry."

    "You talked?"

    Mary returned Reese' glare. "Well obviously we shot at him, first!" Although the female detective couldn't see where she was standing, Formal pointed to the ground around her. "I'm standing among shell casings, whilst Sidney is using a revolver. You do the maths."

    Her last words were drowned out by the rising crescendo of approaching sirens, Reese, Crews, and Cardigan, turning to watch two boxy red ambulances arrive, their sides identifying them as belonging to the Los Angeles Fire Department.

    "No need for those I guess," Joe commented.

    "We will unless you plan on leaving the bodies in the street." Reese countered, sarcastically.

    Mary stopped next to Joe, and lowered her voice to make their conversation private to the two of them. She didn't want to get sectioned as a mental case, however the P.D. needed to be warned.

    "Listen, Cardigan." The self-styled UNCLE agent hesitated to say what she wanted, concerned about how it would make her look. On the other hand, regardless of how much Sidney pooh-poohed her nature, she was fairly confident that even if they tried to section her under the local equivalent of the Mental Health Act, there was not a facility that could hold her. She certainly wouldn't need a T-101 popping back from the future to break her out. "I know this will make me sound like a crazy person, however you need to put out on the wire. Officers are not to engate with shoot-outs with Sidney. He is impervious to gun fire. I cannot explain how, but we..., uh, me, Lieutenant Davis, Nikki, unloaded on him at near point blank range, and he did not take any fire!" The British agent gestured past him, and past the ambos to the partially blocked greenery on the other side of the swamped intersection. "I don't know what happened to our bullets, nothing went down-range."

    Her right hand brushed against her empty holster, and she called out. "My gun is around here, somewhere. Chrome Bren Ten automatic."


    Tag: @Lawbreaker
     
  9. SirakRomar

    SirakRomar Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    Mar 30, 2007
    Annie
    UCLA Auditorium

    Annie was taken by surprise by the kiss and answered with a smile. "Couldn't let him just kill you. You did not deserve to die!" She nodded. "But he is still out there. Police won't get him. You should hide somewhere. Or go into protective custody or something." Leave the city. Only that seemed impossible. As it? What about LAX? Where those simulated people uploaded? If so was it a gateway to other simulations maybe? Or if you planned a trip did you vanish and got uploaded again with memory of the trip? If somit was a way to vanish for a while. "Take a plane. Get away for a week and write this pulitzer piece!"

    Looking at Amy and Christian she touched her gun under her jacket. The one she had taken from the police. The one that would not help at all against Sidney.

    Amy was on Sidney's list. Ray was. She was. Christian probably, too. Tritec. A lot of those who had looked into it were probably on that list. She realized suddenly Sidney was on his way here.

    Tag: @Lawbreaker
     
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  10. RachelTyrell

    RachelTyrell Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Feb 15, 2009
    Amy Cross
    UCLA University

    Christian was up there. She wished he was here. The young man was probably a better sparing partner than her. He wasn't.

    "Okay, so you have looked for the same as he does and haven't found anyone? Doesn't mean there is nobody." She sighed. Maybe it did. "They might shut this whole thing down, you know? Is it what you want? Will it set you free, Adrian? Did you sacrifice me because we are all dead to you? I know you are not without a conscience. I can see you suffer. This act of yours is good, but it is the hedonism of a man bored to death by knowing."

    She folded her arms.

    Tag: @Lawbreaker, @SirakRomar, @DarkLordoftheFins
     
  11. Lawbreaker

    Lawbreaker Jedi Knight star 2

    Registered:
    Aug 21, 2018
    2019

    UCLA, Westwood

    Ray smiled. "Don't worry. I am a big guy." He leaned back and folded his arms. "So what do you guess all of this will be about? The next Gen MMO? You think our killer played really damned too many online shooters?"

    Adrian looked at Amy for a moment and then smiled. "Sit and watch. Guess you will learn a thing or two about reality today. Lesson one, never quite what you want it to be." Leaning forward he whispered into her ear. "And I sacrificed you because ... you are right. I am bored. Terribly bored." With these words he took his seat.

    Andy finally nodded to the technicians and stepped into the center of the stage. "Ladies, Gentlemen? We begin in about five minutes. So please get yourself your drinks and take a seat. You wanna be sitting when we present you what we have been working on." He smiled and clapped his hands once.

    Then he turned to Christian. "Have planned to present myself. Hope that is alright with you. Sure you get your moment to shine in Q&A."

    Tag: @RachelTyrell, @SirakRomar, @DarkLordoftheFins




    Outside Doom Bar, Culver City

    Crews and Reese began their work on the crime scene. "Never seen those guys." Cardigan said thinking about something.

    A cop passing them handed Mary her gun. "That one?" He asked and passed. Cardigan folded his arms.

    "So you are saying Sidney is bullet proof? Funny. I ... would usually not believe a word, but I just was about to arrest our 'girl who lived' on the boulevard and guess what ... when things got a little intense I shot her leg and nothing happened. Pretty sure I did not miss." He rubbed the palm of his head. "So what shall we do? Talk Sidney down? Not the type I am afraid." He shook his head. "How is this possible? I mean ... a bullet is a bullet. The hit alone should have ripped Annie of her feet. But nothing."

    Cardigan bit his lip. "Any idea where he goes next?" He sighed. "If we plan to even go after an invulnerable Serial Killer."

    Tag: @Sith-I-5
     
    Sith-I-5 likes this.
  12. SirakRomar

    SirakRomar Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    Mar 30, 2007
    Annie
    UCLA Auditorium

    Annie looked at Christian, feeling uncomfortable down there posing as ... an alternate version of himself he probably did not know about.

    "No, this won't be so simple I guess." She said to herself. A simulation. Everybody in here was nothing but a damned simulation! She was. She felt real though. Everybody felt real. Maybe they were real. Maybe humanity had never existed. Maybe it had always been everything a simulation.

    Annie looked at Ray. "Listen, please just trust me on this. Once the presentation is over you have to leave as fast as possible! You hear me? ASAP."

    If Sidney was a simulation how did they stop him? He was immune to bullets. But not physical contact. Could he be killed by strangling? Burning? Breaking his neck? She wondered how many people had to die before she found out. What if he could not be killed?

    Tag: @Lawbreaker
     
  13. RachelTyrell

    RachelTyrell Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Feb 15, 2009
    Amy Cross
    UCLA University

    She wanted to scream at him. She wanted to rip his eyes out for admitting he sacrificed her because he was bored.

    Instead she gave him a smile like acid and turned back to Annie.

    She had Christian. He did not know that it seemed. They had a chance. A tiny chance to make this right.

    But whatever was the solution she was sure this presentation was part of it. She had to get through this and then they had to find a way to make this right.

    Tag: @Lawbreaker, @SirakRomar, @DarkLordoftheFins
     
  14. DarkLordoftheFins

    DarkLordoftheFins Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Apr 2, 2007
    Christian Borg
    UCLA Auditorium

    Christian nodded to Andy.

    "Sure!" He said and tried to give him an encouraging smile, just because he considered this to be the most likely reaction.

    Looking down he saw Annie was kissing a man. A surprising sting to his heartbeats felt. Amy talked to a man and he saw clearly she was agitated by the conversation. He wanted to be down there and not up here. This had all become confusing.

    Looking at his wrist computer he wondered how it had connected with the main database of 2029.

    He had the feeling he would not like the answer.

    Tag: @Lawbreaker, @SirakRomar, @RachelTyrell
     
  15. Sith-I-5

    Sith-I-5 Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Aug 14, 2002
    IC: Nicole Gravely, inside the (hopefully not too) aptly named Doom Bar

    Okay, so Mary had an idea how to track Sidney.

    Even as she dialled Ramirez, Gravely had no idea how her partner still had the wherewithall to still be able to think that clearly.

    Mrs Sturm suddenly getting up, partially visible in the shaking glow of her phone's 'assistive light' was having all the hallmarks of REC 2' found footage.

    "We moved out of the house as the bank is gonna claim it any day now. And sorry if this does not fit your file, but Eddie never send the invites or Eddie lied straight to my face. Eddie did not do that! When those lunatics started showing up, I asked him, did you invite those fellas and he said he aint not invite anyone."

    Nicole stared at the woman's back as she stomped away behind the bar, the phone clearly giving her enough illumination to grab a bottle and a glass to pour herself a drink.

    Even applying various amounts of salt to this tale, it sounded like the widow was referring to a different group than the four researchers that they had tried to escort, turning up here. That she had claimed earlier that no-one had come, likely put off by Edgar being shot right outside, didn't do her credibility any favours.

    "If I am gonna die, at least I am going to do it with a good Scotch." She continued indignantly.

    Rather than attempt to argue, the Portland detective sergeant just let her rant. Perhaps she would give something away.

    The phone in her hand was giving off a faint dialling tone as she waited for the call to connect.

    "So you can throw around accusations all day, but did this guy just kill a bunch of people in the presence of three police officers and walk away?"

    That was a point. Even if Gravely established a connection between the widow and what was going on, and got her charged, there was still that matter. The possibility of lawsuits, loomed.

    "Wow, I am gonna look forward how you are gonna explain thaaat."

    "Me too, actually." Privately, though, she half-expected Agent Formal to shush her, probably pressing a finger to Gravely's lips if she gave the woman half a chance, and do the talking for them both.

    The computer screen still glowed its' odd query into the darkness, the green glow reflected off Sturm's shot glass as she necked her Scotch.

    Nicole wanted to sic LAPD's Computer Services onto this whole LAN (local area network), and track down the answers that Sturm had been evasive about earlier.

    Gravely could hear lots of louder tyre screeching from outside; sounded like the beginnings of a pile-up, excepting the usual impact sounds.

    Mrs Sturm gave the glowing screen her full attention: "Damn screensaver. Ed thought that was funny." She sighed and moved towards it.

    "DON'T TOUCH THAT!" Gravely moved forwards to interdict the suspect, and prevent her getting to the keyboard. "Back where you were."

    Sturm looked the most tense that the detective had seen her. Probably wasn't used to not having her own way.

    At that moment, Ramirez' voice came through. Nicole immediately pressed the phone to her left ear, which had the unfortunate effect of swinging the assistive light away from the cafe owner.

    "This is a 10-13, Officers need assistance!"

    Just at that moment, she heard two emergency sirens, the first of many, she hoped, arriving out front. She leaned against the edge of the surface holding the mysteriously activated PC.

    "Reinforcements should arrive any moment now."

    "I-I think they just arrived. Mm, I almost feel like asking if you know the secret to good comedy-"

    "Timing. Now, report on your situation."

    That felt a little brusque to hear, but it was welcome after spending a day with that overbearing British investigator.

    "Yes, Sir." That just came out, perhaps in response to his tone. "I'm locked inside the Doom Bar internet cafe with Rita Sturm, to stop Sidney from getting to her. Agent Formal is outside. She was tackling Sidney, when shooting him failed to stop him. He must have gotten away.
    So, your journalist tip paid off. Tritec is definitely at the centre of the Sidney killings. We found four people here, who have been looking into it; I mean, looking into whatever the heck Tritec is, and we tried to take them and Mrs Sturm into protective custody. Sidney turned up just as we got them outside, and...and...
    "

    Ramirez told her to take a deep breath, and to count to ten.

    She did so, then stammered, "H-he k-killed Karen and at least three of the witnesses."

    He interrupted to clarify if she meant Lieutenant Davis.

    She advised, yes. "Edgar Sturm's widow named a guy named 'Andy Chang' as a possible suspect in her husband's murder. This Chang is directly connected to whatever this Tritec thing is, and she says that Edgar may have been protecting a secret for him.
    She hasn't been cooperating as much as I would like, so I want to bring her in-
    She exchanged a hard glare with the woman. "-and have your Computer Services guys down here, as well as looking on their Facebook page to find the names of everyone else who received one of Sturm's invites. Oh, there is so much to unpack here. Right, Agent Formal has an idea how to trace Sidney. She says he has a smartphone, on which he receives the names of whomever he is supposed to kill next."

    "Sidney is working with someone?"

    Gravely nodded eagerly, then realised that he wouldn't be able to tell that through the phone. "That's what she says. So anyway, the kids had invitation cards to some kind of unveiling event for this Tritec, which is happening today, at the IT department of a local university. The cards were black with a red 'T' on them. The victim in your suicide case probably had one as well. Anyway, their address only says The University, however Karen claimed that there are multiple universities in and around Los Angeles, so we need to find which one it is, as Sidney is sure to be heading there right now.
    Mary says, that as Sidney was in Santa Monica, and then up here; and that we have approximate times for both places, you should be able to call the phone company, and get lists of all cell phones that pinged off local telephone masts, and comparing the numbers for cells that were at both locations will help us narrow down who Sidney is, and perhaps help us to trace him... Alright Detective, now you can speak.
    "

    Tag: @Lawbreaker
     
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2019
  16. Sith-I-5

    Sith-I-5 Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Aug 14, 2002
    IC: Agent Mary Formal, outside the Doom Bar side entrance
    Location: corner of Duquesne and Jefferson, Culver City

    Mary looked past Joe Cardigan as Detectives Reese and Crews started to process the crime scene, passing on the other side of her Taurus, so she knew they were heading for Grandpa Smith.

    "Crews, this Sidney is really starting to annoy me." The policewoman stated as she looked at the body in the street.

    "Never seen those guys." Cardigan commented, clearly thinking about something.

    "Said it yourself, multi-agency taskforce." She said by way of reminder, then remembered that Detective Crews, at least, ought to be LAPD.

    Her silent musings were interrupted by a passing uniform handing over her Bren. "That one?"

    "Thank you!" She made sure the safety was on, then jettisoned the clip into the cupped palm of her free hand, whilst the Vice detective folded his arms.

    "So you are saying that Sidney is bulletproof?"

    She glanced up now, trying to gauge his expression. Was he going to laugh at her? Have her strapped down in the back of one of those ambulances?

    "Funny."

    Uh oh. She felt her mouth dry up.

    "I... would usually not believe a word, but I just was just about to arrest our 'girl who lived', on the boulevard, and guess what."

    "What?"

    "...when things got a little intense, I shot her leg and nothing happened."

    A LITTLE intense? She thought, staring at him. Then she caught his meaning, that there were two people running around the city, with Sidney's special powers.

    "Pretty sure I did not miss." He took off his cap to rub his palm over his head. "So what shall we do? Talk Sidney down?"

    "Tried that; didn't work."

    "Not the type I'm afraid."

    "Now don't be too hasty. Sidney is not the one in charge. Someone trying to keep the existence of Tetris secret, is feeding the names of people who learn about it, to his phone, and he feels that he is saving the world by murdering everyone on the list. He gave the impression that he is getting tired of the relationship and the breakneck schedule. It is as important to trace the ass-hat running Sidney, as it is to stop Sidney."

    He shook his head. "How is this possible? A bullet is a bullet."

    "Not around this guy." Getting the complete truth out of her about what she had discussed with Sidney, was going to be like peeling an onion, with her deciding on the spot, what was too crazy to reveal. Plus, she wanted to protect the information that Sidney had known about her. "So...we know he has that Webley revolver, right? He emptied the spent shells out in front of me, and they...they evaporated like smoke, before they hit the ground." Mary's voice softened as she breathed the end of that sentence. She felt herself shudder, and wrapped her arms around herself, realising then that she was still holding her gun. She snapped the used clip back into the butt, and holstered the weapon at her hip.

    "The hit alone should have ripped her of her feet. But nothing."

    He sounded like he was in shock. If they were in the UK, she would have sat him down and brought him a hot drink.

    "It's a mind ****." She readily agreed, laying her right hand on his left shoulder. "We are going after him," She emphasised. "but we need to negate his ability to shoot back at us, so we need to be in something where we cannot be hit. My first choice would be to commandeer the LAPD SWAT tank, and either run him over, or ram his ass into a wall."

    Joe bit his lip. "Any idea where he goes next?"

    "Tetris. Tetris? Tritec. Whatever Tritec is, their mission to stop people learning about it, puts him on a collision course with an event for it at the IT department of-" Two fingers of her free hand, clawed at the air to provide 'air quotes', "-'The University'. He said that my intervention saved...the...girl.... Oh crap."

    Mary turned from the detective and turned from him to survey the visible victim remains on the pavement, and called out: "Alright, listen up."

    Uniforms turned towards her, and the heads of the other two detectives popped up like gophers, from the other side of the Taurus.

    "Count the bodies. If there are only four, then we may have a survivor: Elisabeth Mary Windslow, curly hair, blue dress. She said she had a vehicle out here, and I did not hear it leave."

    That seemed to energise the officers, and Formal left it to them as Reese ordered people to fan out to look for the girl.

    Mary turned back to Joe. "I can't believe I forgot about her. I physically tackled him when shooting him didn't work. It impressed him, and he...he gave me his card." She tore the velcro seal on her vest's pouch, and pulled out two cards to show Cardigan. "This one gets us into the Tritec demonstration, and this is what I got from Sidney. Forgot I had it. I've got Nikki inside, calling Ramirez to have him track the cells used in Santa Monica, and here, for comparison. But this, we can track this, right?" She felt a tinge of desperation, now.

    Cardigan sighed. "If we plan to even go after an invulnerable Serial Killer."

    Mary Formal felt on slightly firmer ground on hearing this comment. Going after invulnerable seeming beings were her stock in trade. But with her ones, certain things worked: silver, garlic, fire, decapitation. Sidney was different, but perhaps he had his own vulnerabilities.

    "Invulnerable to bullets and armlocks, sure. But that still leaves a lot on the table, Joe; and as long as we don't let ourselves get shot in the head, if at first we can don't succeed, try try again. Also, we need to approach this on two fronts. Sidney, might be hard to kill, but whoever is working with him might not be. Stopping them, I think, stops Sidney."

    @Lawbreaker
     
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2019
  17. Lawbreaker

    Lawbreaker Jedi Knight star 2

    Registered:
    Aug 21, 2018
    Episode IV: Chain Reaction



    2019

    UCLA, Westwood

    Andy stepped forward and spread his arms.

    "Ladies and Gentlemen, the tragic events of the last few days lead to a worldwide guessing game what TRITEC is. We are TRITEC." He smiled. His arms came down.

    "Imagine traveling to the future. Imagine watching people from the future or the past, real people. People who behave like real people do. But they are not truly real. Imagine we could simulate a human being with the precision of absolute authenticity! Their feelings, physics, bodies, thoughts! A human in every sense except he is only existing in a computer! They can desire and despair, fear, laugh, eat, enjoy, have tragedies and triumphs, headaches and orgasms even." Andy waited for the laughter to die down. "Imagine millions of them inhabiting a city. A city in the future. Imagine watching dramas play out in place ten years from now. Let us say somewhere exotic like Shanghai. Imagine watching them. Imagine interacting with them even. Sounds like the future does it? It isn't."

    Andy turned around and pressed a button. The screen behind him showed a giant picture of a future city. Only Christian would recognize it.

    [​IMG]

    "Ladies and Gentleman. Shanghai of the year 2029. 20 million simulated personalities inhabit the city. They are absolutely unaware they exist only in a simulation. Ladies and Gentleman, let me introduce you to TRITEC!"

    The people watched in awe. Andy grinned as pictures of people appeared. Photorealistic pictures of people dancing, talking, eating.

    "This is live." He finally said with a grin.

    "We have been running this simulation for almost six months now and we are proud to present you today the future of gaming, of science, of psychology and marketing. We are proud to present TRITEC. We present ... the Future!"

    Thundering applause. Andy spread his arms again and laughed as he enjoyed the slow realization the people in this auditorium had that they had just been presented a quantum leap in technology.

    Tag: @RachelTyrell, @SirakRomar, @DarkLordoftheFins




    Outside Doom Bar, Culver City

    A police officer passed them, handing Cardigan a file. Cardigan gave it a quick look and sighed.

    "Okay, the tank probably will be a bit difficult. We might need to lure him on a street. Not a very practical plan. Anyway." He turned to the cops. "Guys, we got a survivor! Blonde. Blue dress! Go looking for her! Might be hiding somewhere around here."

    Cardigan rubbed his head again. "Bullet proof killers and vanishing bullets. You better leave a few holes in your report." He shook his hand. "Maybe Annie can help. If she got his ... do we call it powers now?"

    He folded his arms. "Let's say I bite and he really got someone putting him to work ... a handler of sorts ... wow. Okay, so who is it? Who is behind Sidney?" He asked and looked at the card. He took out his mobile to issue a track and trace on the number. "He kills people every quarter hour now. So we are a bit in a hurry. Any idea who controls him?" Cardigan sighed. "Maybe this Chang indeed? If he is behind TRITEC he might be covering it up whatever it is."

    Cardigan sighed. This was progress. "Good Job." He said and realized how complicated matters had got.


    Inside Doom Bar, Culver City

    Ramirez took notes, Nicole could almost hear his scratching pen.

    "Okay, we are gonna track his mobile. I think it takes us a few minutes. Andy Chang was questioned about Quentin Archer. I remember the name from the file. He told the investigating officer he invited him to ... something ... here it is. UCLA. I think it is happening today this event."

    Mrs. Sturm sat at the computer still. Not moving, but staring at Nicole like a lunatic. She was angry, that much was obvious.

    "Nicole, I signed up for this group after our last talk. The Facebook one." Ramirez had the right instinct for a guy who was guarding his desk for a while now probably. "Invites went out all week. Even after the death of Eddie Sturm."

    Mrs. Sturm smiled in the dark. It could be seen. "You should be careful, young Lady or your name might end up on a list." She hissed. "Got no idea what you are messing with!" She slowly stood up. "You cannot stop them. They are running this show and you ... are just puppet on their strings. If you are not careful they are gonna make you dance."

    Tag: @Sith-I-5
     
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  18. Lawbreaker

    Lawbreaker Jedi Knight star 2

    Registered:
    Aug 21, 2018
    2029

    TRITEC, Gamescape Center

    Andy entered the control room silently and stood next to Wong. He had not been here since the early days of the project. Now he looked at the numerous screens.

    "It was the girl. She took initiative and has created this Sidney guy, putting stealth code on him. She was a smart one." Wong sighed.

    "Where is she?" Andy asked and turned to Wong. He yawned, he just had to.

    "Dead." Wong said. "And Borg has pulled a Copperfield and according to our security vanished from sight. Just like that." Wong snapped his finger. "Is there anything you wanna tell me?"

    Andy smiled and took the double espresso an assistant brought him. "No, you already know. Don't you?"

    Wong shook his head. "Impossible." He gasped. Then turned to the screens. "It can't be true."

    Andy looked at him. "Actually it makes a lot of sense. If this technology is a perfect simulation it can spawn more simulations. Show me UCLA."

    Wong sighed and they switched to the UCLA Auditorium. "I remember this day. It was different."

    Andy stepped closer to the screen as he appeared himself.

    "As ordered we followed Amy Cross right into it. Wait ... is that ..."

    "Christian." Andy finished his sentence as he saw on the screen.

    "Oh my God." Wong stepped back. "What do we do now?"

    Andy had only eyes for the presentation and when the picture of 2029 appeared he smiled. He had been right. Right all along.

    "Prepare for shutting TRITEC down." Andy said.

    "That won't be that easy. We have designed the simulation to run indefinitely without our input. Reboot would be easy but to shut it down ..."

    "Can it be done?" Andy asked.

    "We can erase the data core where the operating system is run. But we will loose years of ..."

    "Do it." Andy said.

    Wong nodded, not amused but having blind trust in his Boss and friend.

    "We need to shut down the backup first. Takes about two hours." Wong said.

    Andy nodded. "Okay." He only said and stepped forward, pushing the button to freeze the picture. "Do it."

    They all did not understand the truth. He needed to execute his plan before anyone figured out this was the end ...

    Tag: all
     
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  19. SirakRomar

    SirakRomar Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    Mar 30, 2007
    Annie and Amy
    UCLA Auditorium

    Annie watched Amy come back and sit next to her. Amy gave Roy a questioning look.

    "A friend. Sidney tried to kill him earlier." Annie whispered. She then leaned back.

    "Roy this is Amy, Amy this is Roy." She introduced the two. Amy gave him a smile. She was still in thoughts. Finally she broke the silence.

    "The man I talked to. I think that is who Christian is looking for. But he won't help. He does not want to." She whispered. Annie gave the gentleman a look. He looked like an arrogant prick. So much was for sure.

    "Listen Amy. You are here. Roy is. Christian is. I am." She gave her a long look. "Everybody Sidney wants is here. I think Sidney will be on his way here. Once this is over we should get moving again." She was unkillable. The others were certainly not.

    Amy looked at her. "Don't know if that will work. If Christian was right, we need to figure this thing out. Quickly. Within the next hours. Or Sidney won't matter."

    Annie looked at her. The end of the world. It was still very abstract to her.

    Then the presentation began and he they both heard what they already know. Amy smiled, as Andy Chang explained the mechanism he was born form himself.

    And then ... they presented 2029! A simulation run by them!

    Annie gasped and leaned forward. That was where Christian was from. Had he got it wrong or ...

    "The two simulations are running each other." She hissed to Amy. Amy looked at her and understood the truth of it.

    "Oh my God." She turned to the screen in front of them and realized that the situation had gotten a lot more complicated ...

    "If they shut us down ..." She gasped.

    "They **** themselves down." Annie completed the thought. They were screwed. They would not even be rebooted. Also Annie had doubts she would be rebooted anyway as she seemed to be "special" in some way. But now the stakes were even higher. The situation was ... out of control. She looked at Christian who looked at them and their eyes met. The man she had barely met who had dared to jump from one simulation to another ... was probably the only one who knew what to do right now. He had to. If he did not, they were screwed. Everybody and everything was.

    It could not be. She had not even fully accepted she was not real. How could she be doomed already? It was as if accepting the truth it suddenly had consequences.

    Amy stared at Adrian and understood. That was what he had meant. She indeed had found the people simulating 2019 and 2029. They did it themselves. So there was no redeeming Third party intervening?

    "Never believed in an intervening God anyway. Annie, we need to keep the man I just talked to from leaving." Amy looked at her. "If anybody knows how this madness is stopped - it is him." She would make him help. One way or another she would make him help.

    Tag: @Lawbreaker
     
  20. DarkLordoftheFins

    DarkLordoftheFins Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Apr 2, 2007
    Christian Borg
    UCLA Auditorium

    Christian fought hard not to have his jaw drop.

    Impossible.

    It was impossible. Or was it? Two simulations that ran each other? He had considered 2019 to be technological unable to run a simulation. But the truth was that whoever gave them the technology could probably translate it into any time and shape. Truth was it made sense. The two Elinas. The two Christians. The two Andys. It all made terribly sense.

    Both simulations had been there from the beginning. Every memory of the time before was installed into the SIDs.

    It was that moment he realized what was about to happen.

    If 2029 shut down 2019 the 2029 simulation would shut down too. It would be the end of both simulations. No reboot. No alternatives. It would be ... the end.

    That was what Andy tried to do! 2029 Andy had known. He had guessed it at least. The differences between 2019 and his reality had probably given him the idea. First he had understood he lived in a simulation and then he had realized what the blind spots in his simulations meant.

    Now he wanted to end it for whatever twisted logic he applied to the situation. That was why he was so afraid of the Simulators. Whoever had invented the simulations was probably not agreeing with his path of actions.

    If they were even around?

    Were the two simulations all there was? Had someone created them to watch and learn? What was this? An experiment?

    Christian felt his legs grow weak.

    He had to stop Andy and he was in the wrong reality to do so. Looking down at his wrist computer his mind began racing.

    He still had the program. Could he go back now that he was at the core program? Maybe. But even if he did, what could he do to stop and all powerful billionaire with all his guards and resources?

    There was probably only one way to stop him. Christian hissed in air. He realized that morality was nothing he could afford. He looked off Annie and Amy in the crowd. They were probably worse than him. They had only known for hours.

    He forced himself to smile as the applause rained down on them and looked at Andy, this version of Andy. They had to talk. He could only hope he was not the sadistic bastard his 2029 counterpart had become.

    But this Andy did not know, or he would not have had the confidence to present TRITEC like this.

    Sidney.

    They called this killer Sidney also he was named John.

    Sidney had been meant to save this reality, but truly served the opposite purpose now. He kept people from understanding and therefore from acting.

    Leaning over to Wong he whispered.

    "We need to talk. Andy and me. I need to talk to Andy." He looked at him and hoped his view made the urgency obvious.

    Tag: @Lawbreaker, @SirakRomar, @RachelTyrell
     
  21. RachelTyrell

    RachelTyrell Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Feb 15, 2009
    Combined with SirakRomar

    Annie and Amy
    UCLA Auditorium

    Annie watched Amy come back and sit next to her. Amy gave Roy a questioning look.

    "A friend. Sidney tried to kill him earlier." Annie whispered. She then leaned back.

    "Roy this is Amy, Amy this is Roy." She introduced the two. Amy gave him a smile. She was still in thoughts. Finally she broke the silence.

    "The man I talked to. I think that is who Christian is looking for. But he won't help. He does not want to." She whispered. Annie gave the gentleman a look. He looked like an arrogant prick. So much was for sure.

    "Listen Amy. You are here. Roy is. Christian is. I am." She gave her a long look. "Everybody Sidney wants is here. I think Sidney will be on his way here. Once this is over we should get moving again." She was unkillable. The others were certainly not.

    Amy looked at her. "Don't know if that will work. If Christian was right, we need to figure this thing out. Quickly. Within the next hours. Or Sidney won't matter."

    Annie looked at her. The end of the world. It was still very abstract to her.

    Then the presentation began and he they both heard what they already know. Amy smiled, as Andy Chang explained the mechanism he was born form himself.

    And then ... they presented 2029! A simulation run by them!

    Annie gasped and leaned forward. That was where Christian was from. Had he got it wrong or ...

    "The two simulations are running each other." She hissed to Amy. Amy looked at her and understood the truth of it.

    "Oh my God." She turned to the screen in front of them and realized that the situation had gotten a lot more complicated ...

    "If they shut us down ..." She gasped.

    "They shut themselves down." Annie completed the thought. They were screwed. They would not even be rebooted. Also Annie had doubts she would be rebooted anyway as she seemed to be "special" in some way. But now the stakes were even higher. The situation was ... out of control. She looked at Christian who looked at them and their eyes met. The man she had barely met who had dared to jump from one simulation to another ... was probably the only one who knew what to do right now. He had to. If he did not, they were screwed. Everybody and everything was.

    It could not be. She had not even fully accepted she was not real. How could she be doomed already? It was as if accepting the truth it suddenly had consequences.

    Amy stared at Adrian and understood. That was what he had meant. She indeed had found the people simulating 2019 and 2029. They did it themselves. So there was no redeeming Third party intervening?

    "Never believed in an intervening God anyway. Annie, we need to keep the man I just talked to from leaving." Amy looked at her. "If anybody knows how this madness is stopped - it is him." She would make him help. One way or another she would make him help.

    Tag: @Lawbreaker, @DarkLordoftheFins
     
  22. Lawbreaker

    Lawbreaker Jedi Knight star 2

    Registered:
    Aug 21, 2018
    2019

    UCLA, Westwood

    Andy enjoyed the applause, but he knew how to produce a hype. A minute ago he had presented a piece of technology that could easily change the course of humanity. A session of questions would only destroy the undeniable effect of it.

    Turning around he left the stage, leaving the monitors to show the 2029 simulation.

    He stepped down the steps and smiled at Christian and Wong. "I'd say we got their attention. Fundraising for this thing will be piece of cake actually." Wong nodded. "Christian here wanted to discuss an urgent matter with you."

    Andy nodded. "Of course. Let's walk. Anything wrong with out SIDs?"


    As the stage was left vacant it was Adrian who got up first and made his way to the exit. He looked at Amy and gave her one of his smiles before leaving through the door.


    Tag: @RachelTyrell, @SirakRomar, @DarkLordoftheFins
     
  23. Sith-I-5

    Sith-I-5 Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Aug 14, 2002
    IC: Detective Sergeant Nicole Gravely, Agent Mary Formal, inside and outside The Doom Bar, respectively
    Location: Culver City, Los Angeles county


    With her phone pressed to her left ear, Mrs Sturm was left in green-tinged darkness, the only direct illumination afforded by the computer screen perched behind the diminutive redhead.

    Nicole listened closely to the lead detective, as she kept an eye on the suspect.

    "Okay, we are gonna track his mobile."Ramirez assured her, as if skipping the step of working out which phone had been Sidney's. Then again, maybe he had had the same instinct as the UNCLE agent. "I think it takes us a few minutes. Andy Chang was questioned about Quentin Archer. I remember the name from the file. He told the investigating officer he invited him to ... something ... here it is. UCLA. I think it is happening today, this event."

    " Detective, you are awesome." Nicole commended honestly.

    Mrs. Sturm sat at the computer still. Not moving, but staring back at Nicole. She was angry, that much was obvious. You would think she had been denied permission to watch her favourite soap.

    Ramirez continued, not acknowledging her approbation just yet. "Nicole, I signed up for this group after our last talk. The Facebook one."

    Ramirez had the right instinct for a guy who was guarding his desk for a while now probably, and unlike her own Special Crimes unit, where everyone would be lost without their I.T. specialist, he was able to do some of that stuff himself . "Invites went out all week. Even after the death of Eddie Sturm."

    Now, that is interesting. She thought, observing the widow. There was something odd about her, quite apart from the fact that she had cheered up, and was smiling now.

    Gravely opened her mouth to ask if it was possible to do delayed invites through Facebook, like she knew she could through the Outlook emailing system, then realised what was up with that smile...she could see it. In the dark.

    Gravely glanced at the Scotch bottle, but was unable to see more than a couple of slivers of reflection. It certainly wasn't glowing in its' own right.

    Of course, this was L.A. Perfect teeth and white smiles, but if the ships' Officers of the Watch were attentive enough, and had their binoculars, this ***** could ward marine traffic away from reefs and treacherous rocks!

    Rita's grin was self illuminating. She continued smiling in the dark, till she was certain that it had been noticed.

    "What-"

    "You should be careful, young Lady or your name might end up on a list." She hissed. "Got no -"

    Gravely missed a few words as she slid the phone down from her ear, and dabbed a forefinger onto the 'speaker' icon on the illuminated keypad, putting the icon from grey to green.

    If he were still on the line, Ramirez would be hearing the rest of Rita's rant:

    "-messing with!" She slowly stood up.

    Sit. Down." Still holding the phone face-up between them, the assistive light bathing the carpet, the bottoms of Sturm's blue jeans, and the lumpy white socks that she had eventually allowed Formal to pull up to just below her knees.

    "You cannot stop them."

    "Stop who? How many people are involved in this conspiracy, Rita? She backtracked slowly from the woman, heading for the security door.

    "They are running this show and you ... are just puppet on their strings. If you are not careful they are gonna make you dance."

    "Ramirez, if I'm not out in thirty seconds, please send the backup in."

    ****
    Outside, on the sidewalk

    Meanwhile, a uniform had passed a file to Cardigan, who opened it, and sighed upon seeing what was inside.
    "Okay, the tank probably will be a bit difficult. We might need to lure him on a street. Not a very practical plan."

    Mary was from a different culture, one where guns were not so prevalent. Not getting shot sounded like a pretty ******* practical plan to her. She was open to compromise, though.
    "What about those armoured vans that banks and..." A Beverley Hills Cops' sequel, flashed into her mind as fast as the dollar bills she visualised being counted and stacked. "...and race courses use to transport money around? We're cops, can't we commandeer one?"

    "Anyway." He dismissed her before she could ask if there were any local National Guard stations.

    Whenever she had watched 'Extreme Police Chase' videos, it was always six police cars and a stolen National Guard tank.
    If you believed the videos, and didn't know about Youtube algorythms, you'd think Americans stole tanks like British kids scrumped for apples.

    She hadn't been idle whilst sitting where Sidney had left her, telling her not to move. She had thought this through.

    Joe turned to the cops. "Guys, we got a survivor! Blonde. Blue dress! Go looking for her! Might be hiding somewhere around here."

    Mary frowned at this, figuring there was something in the mystery file about Elizabeth.
    "I never said she was blonde. Dude, what's in the file?" She leaned over to him and craned her neck to try to see it.

    Cardigan rubbed his head again. "Bullet proof killers and vanishing bullets. You better leave a few holes in your report."

    Her eyes widened at this. "I have to write reports? Frag!" She hated that.
    Back at E-Branch, her boss's unspoken price to his unsolicited backing up of her UNCLE lies around colleagues, was to make her to do them in triplicate - reports, not colleagues - one for him; one for Mister Waverley (Head of UNCLE's Section One, if she was remembering correctly), and one for filing.

    "Maybe Annie can help."

    "She can do the report. I don't mind dictating."

    "If she got his ... do we call it powers now?"

    Mary didn't know, unconsciously adopting a pensive expression and crossing her arms as she considered the matter. She had never expressed her own ability to take a bullet as a 'power'...it was so...passive. On the other hand-

    "-bullets are not bouncing off Sidney. They cease to exist before they reach him. If both of them are making that happen, projecting a field or something, then yeah, that could be a power."

    Cardigan had folded his arms, too. "Let's say I bite and he really got someone putting him to work ... a handler of sorts ... wow. Okay, so who is it? Who is behind Sidney?" He asked.

    Agent Formal could only shrug. She then released a finger from her crossed arms to indicate the card he was holding: "We have his number. Pull in his incoming and outgoing calls. The amount of victims, I expect a phone number will pop out at us. Also, remember Mrs Sturm saying we should look at Andy Chang? Mm." That last sound, was due to her making an ethnicity connection between him and Annie.

    Joe looked again at the card. He took out his mobile to issue a track and trace on the number. "He kills people every quarter hour now. So we are a bit in a hurry."

    "Every quarter hour, my arse. Of course he doesn't. That is probably just coincidence." She turned from the Vice detective to wave across her crime scene. "He didn't wait fifteen minutes between killing each of them! If he had, you'd have found him in the road covered in treadmarks, trust me."

    "Any idea who controls him?" Cardigan sighed. "Maybe this Chang indeed? If he is behind TRITEC he might be covering it up whatever it is." He sighed again. "Good Job." He said and realized how complicated matters had got.

    Mary noticed the increased frequency of sighing, but didn't know what it meant. Or how to handle it. He did look more tired than when she had first walked into the Police Administration Building ( P.A.B.) with his crew...where was his crew?

    Skipping the matter for now, she wondered how he would her suggesting he take a step back?
    "D'you wanna take Nikki back to the P.A.B.? You two can coordinate with Ramirez, work on catching the handler, and tracking Sidney for me."

    Tag: @Lawbreaker
     
  24. RachelTyrell

    RachelTyrell Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Feb 15, 2009
    Annie and Amy
    UCLA Auditorium

    Amy got up the second she saw Adrian leave. "C'mon we can't allow him to leave." She said Annie and quickly made her way out of the seats.

    Annie turned to her ... well ... Roy. She gave him a smile. "You leave town and write this from somewhere else. Promise!" She did not wait for an answer but followed Amy, getting her gun ready in her backpack.

    "What shall we do with him?" Annie asked.

    "Begging, threatening, try to wake up his consciousness ... whatever we need to do to get him to help us."

    Quentin what have you got me into?

    Annie nodded. This was all a little above her paygrade. Well, she felt she actually had no paygrade. So this was certainly above it.

    Tag: @Lawbreaker
     
  25. Lawbreaker

    Lawbreaker Jedi Knight star 2

    Registered:
    Aug 21, 2018
    2019

    UCLA, Westwood

    Andy smiled and then he looked at Christian as if he saw something that did not fit. "You look old." He simply said.

    (Combined approved, fire away)

    Corridor

    Adrian was already down the corridor as they made their way out of the auditorium. He was just stepping down as he suddenly stopped.

    "You got here quickly. They are all here I guess." He said to someone standing lower on the stairs and out of sight.

    A shot was heard and Adrian ... who had been bullet proof an hour earlier ... collapsed dead like any other person would do who got a bullet in the head. Slowly, his hood over his head, Sidney stepped up the stairs.

    "Thanks, but I knew that already." He said to the dead body as he stepped over it and turned his attention to Annie and then his eyes shifted to Amy as he raised his gun.

    Tag: @RachelTyrell, @SirakRomar, @DarkLordoftheFins




    Outside Doom Bar, Culver City

    "Shooter in UCLA." A cop shouted from the side and Cardigan smiled.

    "Nah, I think I want my shot at this guy. Killed two friends of mine." He waved his hand in a circular movement. "Let's move. That is him! All available units shall secure the campus. Get everybody out there! And if anyone has a tank this lady here would like to have it!" He winked at Mary.

    "Ready for another round? You can drive shotgun in my car." He said and pointed at one which he obviously just picked to be his new ride.


    Inside Doom Bar, Culver City

    Ms. Sturm grinned. "Oh thirty seconds can be a long time." She said imitating the concerned voice of an elderly lady.

    "A lot of simulations won't stop reality honey. Truth is Sidney is already on his way to the next rendezvous and he is almost done. The list is pretty much complete." She sat down at the computer and hit the space button. A chat was revealed. She put her hands on the board and started typing a name.

    NICOLE GRAVELY

    She had not yet hit enter, but he hand moved to the button ...

    Tag: @Sith-I-5
     
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