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Re: Jade Imperium - Afghanistan, Pt. 3

skullandscythe posted in Jade Imperium - Afghanistan, Pt. 3 on 2018-05-07 11:15:27
Zaef looks over at Angel. "We can cover Luis and Arketta at the far end of the roof...and set an ambush for the fools who show up there."

Re: OOC

skullandscythe updated in OOC on 2018-05-07 09:54:42
It is (kinda) done! Here are the links for the conspiracy map for Operation SWITCHBACK:

Map
Key

Hopefully this will make it easier to keep abreast of developments.
Some notes:

I've done the map this way because I anticipate that conspiracy maps for any given op will end up as a tangled web of conflicting factions and interests - so, for clarity, the arrows explaining connections between parties are links, leading to a spreadsheet line. All the factions and individuals have similar links to bios as well. We can then expound on the ties between certain parties at length without worrying about covering the map in text boxes, and we don't compromise clarity with terse boxes that only explain half the connection. Things will get cluttered enough just mapping the factions and connections.

Also, this was done in Google so people besides just me can go in and edit these maps, in case I'm not available or - quite probable- I missed something as well.

Anyway, feel free to go in and have a look. I've not settled on this format yet, but I need feedback on what you guys need/want before I make any changes or try a new setup.

Re: Empire

MikeS posted in Empire on 2018-05-07 00:33:23
Takao only nods. His friends were not raised samurai. They wouldn't understand.

Himiko is not making a mistake. That would imply having a choice. She has none.

Family.
Duty.
Honor.

Those are the way of the samurai, whether they are sword-wielding bushi or daughters of lords.

He has to let Himiko go. But not alone.

He falls in step with her, to her left and two steps behind, like a second int a duel. For a duel this is, unlike any Takao has fought before, and if his draw is slow, someone else will die in his stead.

He locks eyes with Ikishi, and his right hand rests on Mizu's tsuka, ready to strike down the demon summoner as soon as her treachery is revealed.

(In case it matters: Sense Motive: 1d20+27 = 31. urgh. add action die: 3; total 34)

Re: Empire

Admiral Duck Sauce posted in Empire on 2018-05-06 10:47:27
"Sometimes you cannot know a truth until you attempt it yourself." The Blue Oni nods to Himiko. "Some mistakes are meant to be repeated."

Re: Empire

punkey posted in Empire on 2018-05-05 15:47:56
"Himiko, stop," Kirika says.
Himiko does stop, but Ikishi clears her throat. "And what can you...tell her...that you have not said already?" She hacks up...something. "Do not pretend...that you can still change...her mind."
"Why do you feel you must do this?" Kirika asks softly. "You obviously do not want to, you never did. Tell me, why?"
Himiko sucks in a breath. "If you had a chance - the slightest chance - to save your parents," she asks, "would you - would you not take it?"
Kirika looks away. That question hits her hard, but after a moment, she takes a breath and responds. "Makoto Kamura was born to a Lord and his adventurer wife," Kirika starts. "He said he loved them very much - even when he imprisoned both she and her mother to force them to train his soldiers so that they may oppress his people. That Lord killed her mother when she refused - and Makoto killed him with her mother's sword in return."

Kirika shakes her head. "We owe our parents many things, Himiko. We do not owe them absolute obedience, and sometimes...a parent is beyond saving."

Re: Jade Imperium - Afghanistan, Pt. 3

e of pi updated in Jade Imperium - Afghanistan, Pt. 3 on 2018-05-05 15:46:41
Arketta's shout is about all Luis can hear over the ringing in his ears and the stabbing pain in his head. It takes a few moments of careful inventory via nerves and the suit's data to realize that's the only pain he's feeling that's critical though. Limbs intact, no major bleeding...and I need to focus, he thinks. He coughs partly be reflex and looks around to find Arketta, managing a nod as he gingerly picks himself up onto his hands and knees. "Arketta! Are you okay?"
Arketta crouch-runs over to Luis and looks his carapace over. "Are you all right?"
Luis nods forcefully. "Yeah, yes, I'm fine. I'll be up in a moment. That was...god, who stores stuff like that?" He pulls himself into a crouch. "Any hostiles still left?"
Arketta shakes her head. "Not that I saw, but it won't stay that way."
Luis nods. "Yeah, somebody will be coming to see about that."
At that moment, his vox chimes. "What the fuck was that?" Ngawai shouts over the vox.
"That was the bad guys being even worse at storing explosives than I thought they could be," Luis says. "I think we pretty much ripped up their entire storage area, but anyone left is probably headed our way."

Re: Empire

Gatac posted in Empire on 2018-05-05 13:10:27
It was a dark and stormy night...wait. No, actually it's a warm, cloudy afternoon when you make your way back to Lady Ikishi's island/mansion/deathtrap, finding things arranged much like earlier. Whether that means that nobody thought to take down the lunch ensemble or Ikishi knew you'd be back, you cannot say, but the cold chill running down your spines seeing it is very real. Still, with the whole team assembled - Kiara watching from the skies and Kagemaru presumably ready to pounce from the shadows - there's an air of finally taking the fight where it belongs. But for now? For now, blades stay sheathed, pleasantries are exchanged with the servants, and Ikishi is carried out of her mansion again, seemingly nestled still deeper in her palanquin. With Copperhead at her side, Himiko takes the first step forward.

"So...you have arrived," Ikishi croaks from out the shadow. "Come now, child...we must not...dawdle."
Himiko is quiet for a moment. Years of being raised as a noble's daughter, to be seen but not heard; but also years of apprenticeship to Lady Ishikawa. You can all but see the silk slide off the steel as she raises her voice. "Do you love me, mother?" she asks.
"...of course...Himiko," Ikishi coughs.
Himiko touches her hand on Copperhead's arm, and he gently releases her. Haltingly, she takes a step towards Ikishi. "If it is so easy for you to say, oka-san - then why was it so hard to show?" She sucks in a breath. "Years, mother. Years with the truth being kept from me. Years where I imagined all sorts of horrible fates that could have befallen you, to explain to myself why you were not there."
"Himiko..."
"What was I to do?" Himiko cries. "Father would not speak of you! I only had my imagination to go on. Can you even begin to understand how much this secret hurt me? And then, to finally learn the truth - that there was no horrible fate involved at all. You were here, all along, an hour's ride from the only home I knew. If I had had the merest hint of that - do you even know what I would have done to seek you out?"
"Yes," Ikishi says. "Do not imagine...that I don't know you. You were raised...and taught...well. But I could not...risk your interference."
"INTERFERENCE?" Himiko shouts. "Mother, all I - all I wanted was to - hold your hand, to - to feel the contours of your smile, to hear you - to hear you say my name. And when I came to you, all you wanted was to use me. You still want to now. Did it ever occur to you that I might want to speak to you as a daughter to her dying mother, not as a playing piece to a strategist? You say you know me, but you only ever knew me as an ingredient in your plans. As a threat to them."
"Himiko..." Ikishi wheezes. "You are."

The sunlight of afternoon glances off the tears running from Himiko's sightless eyes.

"I look at...your allies," Ikishi says. "No doubt they...told you not to come. But you did. You came to see me. But you are not...here to gain my affection. You cry...but...you are not that selfish."
"I came to save you," Himiko whispers.
"Of course you did...Himiko," Ikishi says. "And if you had come...earlier...you might have...pulled me from my path. Destroyed...my life's work."
"What work?" Himiko replies, fury rising in her voice. "My friends already told me everything. How you lied, cheated and killed your way to the top. And how you intend to subjugate everything and everyone to your will, for your benefit!"
"I never said...it would be entirely selfless," Ikishi says, waving her jittery hand. "But you must see...the bigger picture -"
"The bigger picture is nothing," Himiko says. "All it does is serve as an excuse for whatever cruel thing you wish to commit in its name! You pretend to be so much wiser than everyone, but you're just following the easy logic of tyrants from past ages. You cannot build a golden palace on a foundation of corpses!"
"And what do you...think...Empire is?" Ikishi spits back. "Now...cease your prattle, Himiko. You're not...here to lecture me. Another habit you...picked up from your friends? You speak as if...you're better than me. You've come...to prove it. So approach me...and we will...settle this business."
"- yes," Himiko sobs quietly.

Step by careful step, she starts her walk towards Lady Ikishi and an uncertain fate.

Re: Jade Imperium - Afghanistan, Pt. 3

punkey updated in Jade Imperium - Afghanistan, Pt. 3 on 2018-05-03 00:48:42
Hale looks at the weapons in their hands, and at the door. "I think maybe we let them come out first," he says. "And then..."
FTE nods. “And then we’ll make sassy one-liners over their corpses as we drop these empty rifles like badasses.”

(FTE Sneak: 1d8 v. 1d4 = 4 v. 1)
(Hale Sneak: 1d10 v. 1d4 = 6 v. 2)

Having learned their lessons from last time, when Hale and FTE reengage their camouflage, they stay out of the line of sight of flashlights and floodlights. Subsequently, when eight militia charged out the door, rifles and flashlights in hand, none of them even have a chance to see either one before it's way too late.

(FTE Full Auto: 2d10+1d8 v. 1d4x4 = 4 v. 2, 3, 1, 2)
(Hale Full Auto: 2d10+2d8 v. 1d4x4 = 9 v. 1, 1, 2, 2)

Both Hale and FTE rotate out of cover at the same moment and let loose. Hale has his rifle on his cheek in a perfectly braced shooting position, sliding from target to target, while FTE opts to just one-hand the rifle and hose the group down. Either way, between the two of them there's more than enough bullets for everyone, and once the smoke clears, none of their targets are moving anymore.
"Heinz! America's favorite ketchup!" FTE drops its smoking AK like a mic and turns to Hale. "Okay, now you try one." It surreptitiously grabs a fresh rifle while it ponders what with all the stink about using Narsai bullets.
"They're smoked," Hale says, then picks up a rifle of his own. He pulls the action back to load a round, and the whole rifle snaps in half - one of the rounds having punched a hole clean through the action. "Guess they weren't the only ones to fall to pieces."

----

"Heads up!" Angel calls, and pivots towards an stairway further down the rooftops. Zaef might not be able to see it, but Angel's glasses picked up the infrared signature of two human bodies clearing the stairwell.
Zaef moves into position to confront them, but then a door mere feet away kicks open and two other men press out, guns pointed straight at Zaef.

(Zaef Fight x2: 1d10+1d8 v. 1d6x2 = 7 v. 4, 5 v. 2)
(Angel Shoot x2: 1d12+1d10 v. 1d6x2 = 11 v. 5, 6 v. 5, 7 v. 2 damage)

Angel's rifle slides cleanly to his shoulder, sights already aligned and on target the moment cheek hits stock. A clean squeeze later and a 7.62mm round blasts the back of the man's skull off. Zaef, for his part, pivots on his heel and leaps into the air to dodge the burst of automatic fire sent his way. Spinning twice in midair, Zaef lands on his other foot and buries a blade up to the hilt in the skull of his first target. The other man tries to react by shoving his muzzle into Zaef's stomach to make damn sure he can't dodge away, but it does him little good when Zaef's off-hand carries a blade across and through his throat. Angel's second shot sails straight through the last man's chest, dropping him to the roof, dead.

At that moment, a titanic blast rips through the area, knocking both Angel and Zaef off their feet.
"What the fuck was that?" Ngawai shouts over the vox.

Re: Jade Imperium - Afghanistan, Pt. 3

punkey posted in Jade Imperium - Afghanistan, Pt. 3 on 2018-05-02 23:02:16
(Ngawai Shoot: 2d10 vs. 1d6x2: 7 v. 2, 3 v. 3)

Ngawai came here tonight looking for blood. These bastards had threatened her daughter, threatened her husband, threatened her. And in her mind, you threaten to kill any of those - especially the first two - then you'd better invest in either a lot of weapons or a life insurance policy. And now that they had put a hole in Garrett? She's done.

Vision red, Ngawai stands up, rifle steady and pulls the trigger once - bullet goes straight through the man's head - and another - hole through the chest. The man falls and lays still, not dead, but hoping that whatever the ghosts that are shooting at them are pass him by. Ngawai stomps over to the bodies of the fallen militia, and looks them over; missing heads, eyes open and unmoving, they all look very dead.

That is, until the last man groans ever so slightly. Ngawai steps over him, and he can instantly see that his ruse is blown.
"'Please, mercy!'" he cries, not that the woman behind the impassive chrome helm understands him. "'I will leave you alone, I will run away, just let me -'"
Ngawai's answer is a long burst of automatic fire, the impact of a dozen rounds tearing the man's torso, arms and head to ribbons. She glares at the body for a moment longer before running back to Garrett.

She takes a knee next to him. "Can you move?"
"Yeah, I'm fine," Garrett says.
"Do you need a kauka?" Ngawai continues, unhooking the ring from her belt.
"I'm fine, lahna," Garrett says. "Suit sealed it up, I'm feeling fine."
Ngawai's helm stares at Garrett's for a moment longer. "Are you -"
"Yes," Garrett says, reaching up and giving her shoulder a squeeze. "I'm sure."
Ngawai holds the gaze a moment longer before standing up. "Then get your ass up, we've got more assholes to kill."
Garrett stands up - with a momentary hitch where he braces himself on his rifle. "Lead the way."

----

(Luis Tech to cause boom: 2d10+1d8 vs. 1d6 = 10 v. 3 - BIG boom)

Luis knows explosives well enough to know that whatever janky-ass storage system Wazir's little insurgent shopping mall is using, it's not protected against sympathetic detonations - right here is a crate of Semtex from some Russian construction firm, stored next to boxes of RPG-7 rounds, across the way from crates of grenades from who knows where. That should be enough boom to cause some problems, so Luis plucks a brick of Semtex out of the crate, tears it in half, jams grenade detonators in both halves, and - after getting enough space - underhand tosses one into the Semtex crate and another at the pile of grenades.

Just as the second wad of Semtex leaves his hand, he sees that they're not grenades at all - it's hard to read old Cyrillic model numbers in the dark, after all. Instead, they're a few pallets of rounds for the RPG-7 - thermobaric rounds.
Luis's eyes go wide. "Oh, shit! Go NOW!"

(Arketta Run: 2d8 v. 1d8 = 2 v. 5)
(Luis Drag: 2d8 v. 1d8 = 8 v. 8)

Arketta turns and makes a break for it - but doesn't see a rock buried in the dirt in the dark and trips, falling headlong forward. Luis doesn't hesitate - he grabs the back of her armor and drags her. Arketta does her best, but she still outweighs him by forty pounds, and it's only with her help scrambling on her hands and knees that they get close to the gate leading into the bazaar itself. Luis heaves with all his might and manages to throw Arketta the last couple feet to the gate before -

(Luis Damage: 2d8 v. 2d8 = 7 v 4-1 DR)

Before two small blasts turn immediately into one enormous one. Luis doesn't have time to process anything before his internal vox deactivates his hearing and the blast wave lifts him up and throws him through the air. All he knows is he lands and rolls, and when he stops sliding, he still has all his fingers and toes and his carapace and internal vox both tell him he doesn't have any new holes. Neither one tells him about the splitting headache he now has, but it's better than it could have been.
"Luis!" Arketta shouts in fear, jumping up and running towards him.