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Peregrine Weyr > Beaches > Shadows and Skullduggery

Posted by: Ferret Nov 29 2011, 06:27 PM
It was a bright summer's afternoon and, on the beach, there was a party. Or at least it appeared to be a party. There was some food and drink, but the entire event held a solemn tone not usually seen in such festivities. It was, at best, a convenient excuse to get 'the group' together without causing too much suspicion.

Where could a large group of people gather without attracting too much attention? That had been the question. The Peregrine itself was obviously out of the question; clever robots had been able to listen to the scientists talk. It was all too easy to imagine the tables reversed. The Crackdust would have been David's next choice, if only because no one would question people gathering there but it was still too close. Even the Weyrlake seemed too close. Just anyone could walk on by and notice, 'ohai, large group of people, I should see what's going on'.

The idea of a sort of telephone tree, with everyone contacting one or two other people, held some appeal. But it also held a lot of opportunities for miscommunication.

The beach was perfect.

David looked uneasily at the group, warily aware that he didn't know all these people very well. Personally, he'd attempted to invite along Grace and Jax, as well as passing on news of the meeting to John, Cortana, and Sam. But apparently those three had been hard at work gathering more allies. Well... perhaps the more, the better.

[[ooc notes: Characters involved -
Corvis of Medusath
You don't HAVE to post because I know big rps can get pretty... messy and not everyone likes that. If you don't want to post, we can just assume your character is present and listening. Really, this is just a convenient way to exchange information between characters and ICly make sure everyone is on the same page. :3 ]

Posted by: tuathade Nov 30 2011, 12:00 AM
Sam was mildly frustrated. His attempts to recruit Thomas from xenobiology had failed spectacularly. The rover’s inability to actually talk had been a bit of an obstacle… Every time he tried to display words on his screen, he would be swarmed by a fair of firelizards batting at him like cats at a laptop screen. This was, understandably, a serious barrier to communication. He’d attempted to resort to a form of charades, but it was surprisingly difficult to communicate “the Intrepid science team are doing something bad and you should join our secret investigation team!” via waving robot arms and beeping Morse code.

Eventually, he’d just given up and accepted that his friend was probably not coming to this meeting. The message would get passed on eventually. And for the moment, David needed him more.

Getting down to the beach had not been easy. Requesting a dragon carry him there hadn’t really been an option. Sam never went anywhere on dragonback, and asking to be carried now would attract the wrong kind of attention. It was a long walk for anyone, human or rover, but Sam had the benefit of not needing sleep. Not to mention he was designed for this kind of work.

(The black flit was confusing him, though. She was still sitting on his back, having followed him all the way down to the beach. Sam liked having a new friend, but… Whose was she?)

Sam looked around the beach, lens swiveling back and forth to take in the small crowd. Some of them he’d ‘talked’ to before. Others… he guessed must have been either David’s or Cortana’s friends, or else recruited by others. He didn’t say anything, but he did sidle up to the nervous-looking Doctor and warble a quiet note of reassurance. Everything would be fine. They would all figure it out together.

Posted by: Grayson Nov 30 2011, 02:48 AM
Thoom. Thoom. Thoom. Thoom.

Either someone got extra-busy in the smithy and had managed to create something truly monstrous, or a set of red power armour was out for a jog along the beach.

It was armour maintenance day. Draco had set that up quite specifically. And after checking, repairing, maintenance and polishing, he traditionally went for a run just to make sure all systems were online and properly functioning, and possibly in the so-far-vain hope that something worth fighting might try to attack.

He wasn't expected back until the small hours, no-one knew where he went running and no-one cared. No odd breaks in his patterns, no clandestine behaviour, just the sergeant being a Marine again for a day.

And then he actually got round the last rock and saw the size of the gathering. He stopped dead in a spray of sand, then pulled himself together and headed for the group, unsealing his helmet and tucking it under one arm as he went. After all, it wasn't as though he was exactly low-key.

Thoom. Thoom. Thoom.


Posted by: Thessalian Nov 30 2011, 02:55 PM
No one ever questioned it when Kezia went on walkabout. That was, after all, her job. So when she got her invite to this particular meeting of clandestine-ness, she simply picked up a couple of her haversacks and took off. She'd asked Morrigan to feed her rodents while she was away. "...alsomaybepetthem," she'd added, a little embarrassed. The two fuzzy annoyances she'd 'rescued' from her own delivery to the xenobiologists (Spaz and Nugget, she called them) had grown on her. Kind of like fuzz on cheese left for too long, sometimes.

So when she turned up, it was in more or less full pack - snacks, hunting bow and arrows courtesy a really nice Woodcrafter she'd met once, and haversacks that, by the time she got to the beach, are at least partially full of bits and bobs that the science team might enjoy poking at. She had plastic bags, too, as there was the possiblity of picking up some of the local sea life. And ... "Yes, people," she said to Draco. "They happen at meetings. Also rovers. Hey, Sam. Hey, flit." She patted the rover, then offered pettings to the flit; an absent sort of thing. "Hi, all."

Posted by: S'yal Nov 30 2011, 04:50 PM
Zwecklos had set off much earlier then a human or larger robot would need to. His agonizingly slow movement made it difficult to get anywhere- He was thinking of asking Barrett to fix that. Now, the tall man would probably not do that. But it never hurt to ask.

Asking was how he managed to get to the beach on time! He asked someone to give him a ride, and leave him in the sand. Do you know how hard it is to walk through sand when you're the size of a shoe? Very hard. Zwecklos knows this. By the time he got to the 'party', Zwecklos was feeling miserable. Or, as miserable as a small robot could feel.

This was taking a long time. Zwecklos was an impatient guy. Maybe he needed a little skateboard to push himself around on? Zwecklos liked this idea.

Anyway, Zwecklos spotted David. David! He didn't really know David, because Barrett usually swept him away and scolded him for bothering people. But Zwecklos wanted to know David! David seemed cool! So the little bot moved over slowly, chirping up at David.

He wasn't talking, though. This was a super stealthy spy mission, and spies didn't talk- Oooh, that dude was in armor!

It was very hard not to talk. But Zwecklos was determined to be a good spy. Then people would like him!

Posted by: Darastrix Dec 1 2011, 02:01 AM
Schuldig wandering away from the Peregrine wasn’t an unusual occurrence. As far as he was concerned, it was a place to keep his stuff. He was either blasting music in his quarters, screwing around (figuratively), screwing around (literally), or doing something (gasp!) productive while blasting music in his quarters. Not many people would guess that loud power metal was conducive to concentration, and he figured that some aboard the Peregrine had no idea that he ever did anything useful. He’d found back in school that the more hedonistic one was, the less people thought that one might actually be intelligent or might pursue anything other than pleasure. (He would always remember the phrase ‘You passed?’ with a sense of smug amusement.)

So if he happened to step out to visit Crackdust, sun near the weyrlake (while wearing sunblock of an ungodly SPF), swim in the weyrlake, or take himself down to the beach where it was less likely that he’d get yelled at for stripping down completely, it was looked on as just another day of slacking for Intelligence Officer Schwarz. And with the casual mentions of wanting a flit even after he’d managed to impress his lovely copper Mastermind (or ‘Liebchen’ as she was referred to in private), it would more likely cause eyerolls than eyebrow raises if he decided to go hunt for flit eggs along the beach. And he was planning to do that, too, because well, why the hell not? Liebchen could use a companion to play with when he happened to be busy.

He’d brought the little flit along with him, of course. Currently, she was draped over his shoulder like a shiny red-orange towel. If the light wasn’t hitting her hide directly, she looked almost like an oddly-coloured section of his hair. Or, in this case, a ponytail, since he’d pulled his hair back due to the heat.

“Holy fuck, it’s hot,” he announced as he walked up to the group. “Someone thought to bring beer or something, right?”

Posted by: Thessalian Dec 1 2011, 04:38 AM
Schuldig got a smirk from Kezia - though her eyes lit on his new companion and rested there for a second (no, I don't want one; what would I do with one? except send it scouting for me and feed it and pet it and shut up I have enough pets...). The flit got a softer smile than Schuldig did; all the psych got was the smirk and, "You never know your luck."

And lo! Distraction! Thank the gods of every galaxy. She looked over at the thing moving on the sand - they made crabs huge in these parts ... and mechanical-sounding...

Ah, Zwecklos. Kezia liked Zwecklos. If she knew a damn thing about computers, she'd programme him for 'drunk mode' and take him to karaoke night at Crackdust. Because of the funny. Still, poor little guy was struggling. "Hey, Zwecklos. Need a lift? C'mon; Barrett'll plotz if he has to clean sand out of your legs and such. Up y'go." She picked up the little AI and settled him atop her haversack so he could see. "I'll give you a lift back, if you want. Don't want Barrett thinking something ate you."

Posted by: Azumi Dec 1 2011, 12:11 PM
Hiking to the beach had been a bit of a bitch, to be perfectly honest, and even though she had been there a little while now and was no longer huffing and puffing in exhaustion (she was however huffing and puffing on a cigarette and drinking a beer. Stay classy, Grace), there was still that tiny question as to how David had gotten here so early and set everything up.


Standing off to one side of the slowly growing crowd, she took another drag from her cigarette and blew the smoke out towards the ocean. Each new arrival got a judgmental look, but other than that the Botanist didn't do much by way of interacting....Though she did take up a tight hold on her beer in response to Shuldig's lovely question, and Draco got a mental 'wtf' and a 'Oh look, Iron Man is here.'

Military personnel and their silly outfits. Grace would never understand any of them. Ever.

Some-what crossing her arms, Grace sighed and kicked the sand a little with the toe of her boot. A small sand crab emerged a moment later and hopped away before burying itself near one of the six feet of the larger of the AIs.

"Hello, Sam." The greeting was late and out of the blue, but admittingly Grace hadn't noticed the robot's arrival that fully until then.

Posted by: Dragonfire Dec 2 2011, 04:06 PM
Beach ball, check. Sarong, check. Itsy-bitsy-teeny-weeny purple polka-dot bikini? Check.

The nice thing about having a dragon was that hiking all the way down to the beach wasn't a terrible pain in the ass. The bad thing was that going dragonback anywhere in a bikini was freezing. Rhaetia belatedly found this out when they hit the winds on their way there, and managed to huddle the sarong around her as an improvised blanket. At least they weren't going between - no unsupervised doing that, yet. She probably (maybe) would have remembered to bring actual warm clothes if that was the case.

At least the sand was warm, if nothing else. "No beer, dearie. Sorry! Megs still won't give me any, even if I swear it's for someone else," she cheerily announced to Schuldig. The beach ball, however, she sent upwards into motion with a flick of fingers. "I did bring an excuse for being down here, though. Beach volleyball, anyone?"

It was immediately attacked by a divebombing Fafnar, who hugged onto it as far as he could spread himself, with a shrieking chirrup and a burst of Colours!. Marvin, coiled around Rhaetia's neck limply, only looked disgusted. As usual.

Oh, come now, it's hardly the time for that, m'dear. Work first, then play! Ixioth admonished, arching his neck and surveying the assembled humans-and-AIs, some of whom were unfamiliar to him. What's the scoop, then, chaps? Any new developments to report? he queried to the collective.

Rhaetia sighed, shrugged in a helpless fashion, and for the benefit of the dragondeaf present, said "Ixioth's being a fuddy-duddy and begs to hear any new news."

Posted by: Celaeno Dec 5 2011, 03:34 PM
Cortana still wasn't exactly sure about a large group meeting. The small group meeting that had been called entirely by accident had put her on edge enough-she was still looking over her shoulder, literally and physically, for anyone questioning why such an odd group of people would decide to go spend some time chatting.

It almost sounded like a set up for a bad joke. An AI, a space marine, a scientist, and a scout walk into a conference room...

But not meeting would likely do more harm than good, even if they stayed in touch via e-mails. Sometimes you just didn't want to leave things to encryption. Encryption could be broken; she'd proven it herself. So she'd rounded up Chief and they'd both set off to the beach. She didn't expect much commentary from the Chief himself, but she was willing to trade recent facts. And she wanted to see what other allies had been collected, besides.

"Sorry we're late," she called. "If anyone could help me think of more excuses besides 'oops, I'm being picked up, have to go' for abandoning the labs, I'd appreciate it." She looked around at the group, resting her chin on one hand thoughtfully. "So has everyone been filled in on the very basics, or do we need to do some catching up?" Cortana hoped everyone had been filled in with something besides 'beach meeting'. Otherwise it was going to be a very nasty surprise.

Posted by: Darastrix Dec 10 2011, 12:49 AM
Schuldig shot a smirk of his own at Kezia while she fussed with Zwecklos. It looked like someone had a soft spot for flitters. Not that he knew anything about that sort of soft spot, personally, mind. Study and observati—oh, fuck it. Why was he making excuses in his own head, anyway? Not like anyone there was able to read his mind.

“Nothing new that’s relevant from my end,” he said, glancing toward Ixioth as he idly rubbed a finger over his copper’s snout. Turning back to Rhaetia, he added, “You know, if you need anyone to help you with some sunblock while we talk….” He trailed off and grinned, though his attention was arrested when Cortana and the Chief arrived.

“Basics: we’re in a bad science-fiction-slash-fantasy horror movie with Salvador starring as the mad scientist,” he announced. “And if you want, you can say you wanted to tag along to potentially observe some flits in the wild or some shit.” He gave a one-shouldered shrug, careful to not disturb his passenger. “I dropped here and there that I’ve been wanting to look for a nest to get a friend for Mastermind to play with when I’m busy.”

Posted by: Ferret Dec 23 2011, 02:25 AM
...yep. Clearly, no one would ever question the presence of the Doctor, a suit of power armor, a super intelligent rover (super intelligent, of course, being a relative term). a scout, another AI, a psychologist, and allll the others on the beach. Clearly, David had thought through this whole plan thingie. Possibly he only planned it as far as COOKIES. He nodded absentmindedly towards the chirping robot, Zwecklos. That black flit fluttering around Sam was beginning to get to him, honestly. Surely it was owned, yes? He was pretty sure black flits didn't survive in the wild at all.

He opened his mouth to launch into an explanation that, no doubt, would have taken several minutes to explain when Schuldig cut him off with his split-second explanation. "Weeellll... that's a fairly simplistic way of looking at it," he said, clearly wanting to go into a much longer and more complete explanation. But they probably wouldn't have the beach to themselves for very long. Fine. He'd have to just cut out some of the non-essential bits, preferably before he got completely distracted by the copper flit on Schuldig's shoulder.

"Look, we don't have anything particularly actionable yet. We've got suspicions, some vague e-mails, and shadowy connections. That's not something we can really go to anyone about." Besides, who could they even go to? Wellll, besides the Weyrleaders, of course. Considering R'ley's original reaction to Alex, David wasn't too keen on bringing up more ~*science*~ to the woman in case she happened to own some sort of collapsible flamethrower.

"We need to get more time to let Cortana get into the e-mails. And we'll need someone to keep an eye on the Hatching Sands when the eggs are laid. He already messed with a wher egg without the mother noticing. The more eyes, the better. I'm going to ask Leola and I'saac to keep an eye on that front since they have the most legitimate reasons to be there. Anyone have any ideas on how to buy more time for Cortana?"

Posted by: Thessalian Dec 27 2011, 08:56 AM
Ooh. Itsy-bitsy teenie-weenie purple polka-dot bikini. Rhaetia, you tease. It got an approving smile, that did, as ... was she absent-mindedly trying to scritch a shoe-sized rover-bot? Nooooo. Thoughtful tic, honest, guv!

David asked for ideas on how to buy more time, which really did get Kezia looking thoughtful. "Well," she said, musing, "depends on what sort of time you want, and from whom. I'm assuming you want something relatively non-destructive, because dropping a viral infophage into the relevant systems is going to destroy your evidence and the few I've still got aren't particularly choosy anyway. Random flits distracting people are just going to get the flits punished, which is probably a bad idea. If you want the xenogeneticists working overtime, I can probably come up with something - but if I have to drag in something that's going to try to eat my face, I want priority on the healer's triage list." Smirking, yes, but not precisely kidding. There are things out there, and not all of them are shaped like chicken nuggets.

Then she shrugged. "As for Doctor von Hybridstein ... can't anyone find an excuse to get him out of the lab? I doubt my usual way of distracting someone would work with that one, but there's got to be something that could lure him out for awhile. Maybe somebody could take him between, or something? That's bound to make him curious. That's ... if any of the dragons who know about this would be happy letting that guy anywhere near them. And I wouldn't blame them if they didn't."

Posted by: Grayson Dec 27 2011, 11:57 AM
Draco took a look round at the conspirators and... aha, Grace. She would know what the arcane words meant. He pulled something small from his belt, the heavy metal gauntlets manipulating it with care.

"Doctor Augustine? List of books in a box requested from storage cavern X-3 by Gene...ticist Roderick, three days ago at 10:24am local."

The recording device was simple enough. Standard, in fact. The two voices on it were natives, but from what Draco remembered they'd been spot-on - and of all the scientists here, he knew Grace best, and knew that if she couldn't understand the words, she'd know who would.

The blood-red power armour lumbered over towards Grace, stopping a few feet short to offer her the gadget.

And then the topic of distractions came up. "I'll get myself stationed where I can see the main way into the Hatching Sands, when I'm on duty," he offered. It wasn't much, but it was the best he could do without being too obvious - and he knew his eyes were superior to standard human. Hopefully that would help.

Posted by: Ferret Dec 31 2011, 04:32 PM
Ok, think think think think. Between all these people, all of these brilliant minds, they would come up with some way to get Salvador out of the lab for a few precious minutes. David felt like the solution was staring them right in the face. Kezia definitely had a few good points although, in David's private estimations, she was a bit too eager to use extreme methods.

In fact, it was Draco who gave the Doctor the idea. "Sergeant? You're brilliant. Grace! Gracegracegrace." Perfect! Skittering over to the botanist-turned-hybridling-master or whatever they wanted to call her, David put his hands on her shoulder. "Grace. Do you think you can come up with some sort of hybrid related problem? Something Salvador would need to see. These are his pet projects. He's going to want to keep close tabs on them. If you report some sort of a problem, he'd have to leave his lab, right?"

With his brain sparkling now, more ideas were occurring to him. He certainly wasn't going to comment on how Kezia's lure-----the promise of between had worked like a miracle on him. No, that was just silly!. Instead, he focused on the woman's talents. Specifically, her ability to sneak around. Plus, she was a sort of official-unofficial Candidate, right? No one would get suspicious of her snooping around. "I have something better in mind for you. I was able to fit, so you should have no problem. There's a secret entrance to the Hatching Sands. It's not very well guarded. It's practically a game to sneak in. We need someone to watch it and you're just the woman for the job."

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