Episode 18: Whispers in the Mind / Marrionettes Dance

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Episode 18: Whispers in the Mind / Marrionettes Dance

Post by Slipstream »


Gavel Republic, Chinese Border

Three large Chinese APCs sit one side of the border. Military personnel wait. A rush of air and one Tilt-Rotor lands on the other side. They open up and a dozen Japanese soldiers walk out. Two of them carry out what looks like a Chinese nuclear warhead.

The gate opens and the Nuke is walked across the border. No one says anything to each other.

A gun shot…another. Both men carrying the nuke fall. A missile takes out one Chinese APC. The two military groups are caught in a crossfire. The ambushed soldiers have nowhere to go. Some attempt to dive into their APCS or Tilt rotor. Another missile from another direction takes out the rotor as it attempts to lift off.

…The dust settles. A dozen Class A cyborgs in heavy jet-black armor stalk slowly in. They move with cat-like precision to the scene. One Chinese survivor, critically wounded, reaches for a radio. He’s shot dead in the back of the head. Two cyborgs approach the nuke. They scan the area…both sides are dead. The personnel in the checkpoint are dead. Another Class A walks in. Unlike the others, he doesn’t wear a helmet. His long hair flows in the wind away from his olive skin. A soldier reports in a harsh, electronic voice.
“Its not here. There is no reading from the warhead.”
“A deception…” The Middle Eastern accent is easy to spot.
“Information was faulty…” The soldier walks away, leaving Calliedh alone. His face twitches. He turns around.
“I know…” He says to himself.
“I know!” He repeats. He pushes a finger against his temple…
“I KNOW!” Finally, he grabs onto his skull with both hands.
“Stop it! Stop it!” He falls to his knees and screams.


The nuke plan was kept under wraps. Only a few people in the government knew about it…meaning there is a leak, which Section 6 will work to uncover. It was a test to figure out the mole. S6 will inform S10 when they have a lead or a suspect in custody. The nuke was never there. What’s ironic is that even though the two governments are mobilizing for war, their intelligence services are suggesting caution. The spy community apparently likes it better when they are close to war but not actually there. Given recent incidents, both Public Security and the Chinese Te-Wu Secret Service have been in contact.

The Minister of Foreign Affairs contacted the Chinese Secret Police directly. With the evidence Section 10 has acquired, they have allowed for this peace offering. It is important for this to be done right. Roy Sharron knows the Chinese Intelligence Operative, Nano, and could help plan the exchange.

The orders are to retrieve the actually nuclear warhead from Spring 8 facility and deliver it to the Chinese Intelligence safely. They have satellite footage of the ambushed incident. It shows 12 highly trained Class As that vanished as quickly as they appeared. They have gotten a visual on one… Calliedh… Word from Section 6 is that he has been out of Egypt for the past three months, ever since the Kuma incident.

Sharron checks his contacts and discovers that Calliedh went on a mission to Japan to hunt Sharron down but vanished when he entered the country. He has not been heard from since then. That was more than three weeks ago. Section 10 preps for the mission. The Arm Slave is back from repairs. Ben pilots it. Gregori chooses a section of the Northern Islands abandoned by Russia but not yet repopulated to the capacity of Etorufu. They select an abandoned town on a relative small island. Sharron contacts Nano and they set up the location and trade. Soon after, Section 10 heads for Spring 8 to pickup the nuke. They meet Hakase Asuda, creator of the modern Neurochip found in the Tachikomas.

Section 10 arrives first and checks the area. Unknown to them, Calliedh knows of possible trade location for the actual nuke. He also knows where the nuke would be hiding…the Spring 8. How he has access to the spy satellite above is not known. But he also planted cameras at these possible trade locations. Section 10 discovers such a camera…but did it alert the enemy in time?

Sharron approaches where the Chinese transport helicopter is due to land. When it lands, he activates an active visual barrier, making the Chinese landing site completely invisible. Nano and two armed cyborgs leave. Nano and Sharron meet and they walk back to the Japanese tilt-rotor where the nuke is hiding. Unfortunately, Calliedh did spot the group and a supersonic bomber roars to their location. When it passes overhead, the payload doors open and drop spheres drop like ball bearings to the town. They crash down around the group as Nano and Sharron walk across the block. They dive for cover. Sharron tries to get Nano back to the chopper but is cut off in a building as four Forced Entry Arm Slaves drop. Almost half a dozen more armed Class A cyborgs drop in other buildings. Ben in the Type 1 Arm Slave squares off and takes out two of the Forced Entry units. Ben hacks into another and uses it to squash a few of the enemy cyborgs. Calliedh is here and he keeps Sharron and Nano under fire. Both of Nano’s escorts are taken out.

A well-placed grenade critically damages Ben’s Type 1, forcing him to eject. He and Greg get pinned in another building. They fight out while Sharron tries to get Nano to safety. His life is of the utmost importance. All but Calliedh are taken out. Calliedh and Sharron meet face-to-face and spar. Sharron is wounded but manages to hold his enemy at bay as Greg and Ben move in. Calliedh knows his time is up. He mentions that “she’s in his head” and puts a gun to his head. However, during the spar, Sharron damaged the weapon and it won’t fire. Sharron fires into Calliedh’s neck, killing him but sparring the cyberbrain. They drag his body back to the tilt rotor. There, Nano retrieves the nuke and returns to China.

Back at Section 10 HQ, the group scans over Calliedh’s cyberbrain. Greg finds a few images of dark corridors and a huge room with a massive cylinder with wires hanging out. However, he cannot find anything else. The cyberbrain’s memories have been wiped. The other members of the enemy party are identified as several different soldiers from mercenary groups and secret service personnel known to be in Japan. Some are MOSSAD while others are known CIA operatives. There would be no reason for them to work together like this. Greg believes everyone one of these soldiers have been hacked…but by whom?
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