Cyberpunk 2036

Episode 25 A McGuffin Called Agrippa

The group gets about three weeks of rest before their next job. They spend the time healing up and replacing damaged gear.

September 13th, 2038

Riptide gets a call from Mouse regarding a job opportunity. He has been offered a job that pays $50,000, which he is willing to share in a five way split. This means a $10,000 payday for each member. The job requires them to get a room at the Hotel Hamilton. There he would use a write-once-read-once box called an Agrippa to download a data transmission. They would then take the Agrippa to the Night City Transit Center and place it in a locker. Then they would mail the key to a designated address.

They agree to take the job, which will take place the following evening. In the mean time, Riptide acquires the use of a cargo van from his contact at the Night City impound yard. Helios scopes out the Transit Center and Saito picks a place to perch that will allow him to cover the team while at the hotel.

September 14th, 2038

At 6:00 PM they meet at the Forlorn Hope. After a quick review of the plan they get started. Helios dresses as a homeless person and waits it out the Transit Center. Saito, disguised as a janitorial worker gains access to the building to the East of the Hamilton and positions himself on the roof. The others take the van to the hotel.

When they arrive, Mouse checks with the front desk to see if he has any messages. The clerk hands him an empty envelope with an address already printed on it. They then head up to their room.

At 8:00 PM, Mouse jacks in and establishes the connection. The Agrippa begins the slow process of downloading the information. After several minutes, Saito spots several unmarked vans pull up to the hotel. Roughly 15 men in tactical gear get out and start conferring with one another.

With the information still downloading, Zen starts hitting buttons on the elevators to tie them up. Riptide breaks into the hotel room next door in case they need a back up escape route. Unfortunately they cannot leave until the download is complete.

The download finally finishes and Mouse jacks out. Unfortunately, at this point the tactical team is literally at their door. Riptide shoots out the window in their room. The strike team blows a hole in the door and demands that the team drops their weapons and surrender.

Zen secures a grapple line at the window. With Mouse clinging to her for dear life, she climbs outside, six stories above the ground. Riptide tries to hold off the strike team, but is forced to dive for cover, as the room is ripped apart by suppression fire. Before Riptide can recover, one of the strike team races by him, the bionic legs propelling the commando with superhuman speed.

When the commando gets to the window he aims down, intending to shoot the descending edgerunners. Riptide tackles the man, sending them both flying out the window. Both are able to grab onto the rope, Riptide having the slightly higher advantage.

Meanwhile, Saito begins firing at the vehicles, disabling the engines. He then opens fire on strike team members that are exiting the hotel, trying to keep them pinned down so that the others can escape.

Riptide and the commando continue to struggle against each other on the line. The commando then uses a retractable blade to sever the line below him. Zen and Mouse, who are still several floors above the ground, plummet to the earth. Both are badly injured as they slam into the ground, though Zen is able to remain conscious. Although barely able to walk on her own, she picks up Mouse and attempts to escape under the support of Saito’s sniper fire.

Another commando leans out the window and aims his weapon at Riptide. Knowing he is outmatched in this situation, Riptide surrenders, and he is hauled back up into the room. There he is handcuffed and interrogated about who he works for. He tells the truth and indicates that he does not know whom they are working for.

Helios, upon hearing the situation over his tactical radio had made his way to the hotel. Zen was still trying to get out of the area when he arrives and adds fire support to her and Mouse’s escape. He then gets into the van and picks the two of them up. They pick up Saito a couple of blocks away. They then drop Zen and Mouse off at the hospital. Helios and Saito then go to the Transit Center, renting a locker and placing the Agrippa inside. They then mail the key in the envelope.

They are forced to abandon Riptide who is under heavy interrogation. He eventually claims to work for Bill McKlusky. Calling his bluff, they load Riptide into a van and take him down to the marina to point out McKlusky. He does and they snatch McKlusky off the street. Both are then drugged and taken to an undisclosed location.

September 15th, 2038

The two fixers awaken, tied up in a warehouse. Not surprisingly, McKlusky is extremely unhappy with Riptide falsely accusing him of being behind the data theft. Meanwhile, by accessing the registration of the vans that the strike team used, the team learned that a German biotech company called Teschen Biotech employed the strike team. Further research determines that the company has a warehouse down by the New Harbor Marina.

Further complicating the issue is a call from Mouse. He is still in the hospital, but had regained consciousness during the night. The TV was on in his room when he saw a report indicating a shoot out between two heavily armed groups at a home out in Pacifica. The news reporter indicated that it was suspected that the Russian Mob owned the home. Mouse recognizes the address as the one on the envelope that they sent the key to.

The news also reports that Police want Gordon Marsden, the owner of Club Atlantis for a data theft involving Teschen Biotech. Mouse indicates that he believes that the fixer that hired him, named Mr. Go, may have been Gordon Marsden.

They considered the situation they are in. Teschen Biotech has Riptide in custody and its only a matter of time before they learn where the Agrippa is. The fixer that hired them is on the run. And the intended recipient of the key was apparently killed in a raid out in the suburbs. It was a complicated situation, but they knew their first priority. They had to get Riptide back.

Investigating the warehouse that Teschen owned, Saito was able to confirm that Riptide was there by scanning it with the thermo-graphic imager he had recently installed in his cyber optic. He then used the thermo-graphic imager and his heavy sniper rifle to shoot through the walls at the guards who were present. With the guards pinned down, Helios charged in and after an exchange of fire, was able to drag Riptide out. They opted to leave Bill McKlusky tied to his chair.

With Riptide rescued, they have to determine what to do next. Should they sell the info back to Teschen, or try to contact the Russian mob? Riptide, however, has a different idea.

Riptide calls Tobias Luna. He inquires if Tobias knows about the data theft from Teschen Biotech. Tobias states that he has been following the news. Riptide then states that he has the data and is interested in selling it. Tobias seemed shocks but quickly composes himself. He says that if Riptide actually has the data, Biotechnica will pay $100,000 for it. He gives Riptide a time and location to bring the data.

The next step is getting the Agrippa back. Helios again disguises himself as a homeless person and goes to the Transit Center. He spots a couple of individuals who are keeping an eye on the lockers. Riptide and Saito than create a disturbance in the Transit Center while Helios goes to the locker, picks the lock, and grabs the Agrippa. He immediately exits the Transit Center and makes sure he is not followed. Riptide and Saito then leave making sure they are also not followed.

Riptide then rendezvous at the location Tobias told him about. It appears to be some sort of “Black Site” for Biotechnica. The Agrippa is given to Tobias who has the data downloaded onto a terminal. A couple of computer techs then dive into the data and after a few minutes confirm that the data is legitimate. Tobias makes the payment as promised.

Riptide asks what the data is. Tobias explains that Teschen has created a nano-tech treatment that will initiate a sex change at the genetic level. Once completed, the subject’s new gender would be confirmed by even DNA tests.

He also stated that his intelligence agents are telling him that World Genetics had extracted the head researcher on the project for Teschen, and that they were likely behind the theft.

Riptide says that the Agrippa was to be sent to the Russian mob. Tobias thinks on this for a minute and then says that the team was likely set up to be to take the fall for a double cross. Mr. Go was probably contracted by World Genetics to steal the data. He took the job but intended to double cross them and sell the data for a bigger profit to the Russian Mob. By hiring the team to download the data and send it to the mob, Mr. Go could claim it was the edgerunners that betrayed him. He gets paid by the mob, and the team gets the blame for the double cross.

Mr. Go’s plan backfired however. Now the team got paid and Mr. Go has an arrest warrant on his head. Corporate espionage usually leads to a life sentence. This mission had its usual share of complications but things turned out better than expected. For the second time in a row, they ended up getting paid twice their original fee. Plus they moved closer to getting themselves back in the good graces of Biotechnica, although Tobias made it clear that would not happen as long as Helios was alive. They didn’t need to have Tobias as a friend, but it couldn’t hurt to have a corporate ally, now could it.