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Skipping Work #2
Jason steps into the hallway and starts towards what should be Taro's office given the window layout from the outside. "Me and Renala are coming to Taro's office." he announces over comms to avoid getting shot the moment they step in front of the doorway. He gives a glance over at Renala, "We'll take everything we can from his terminal. I want you to start sifting through it right
Jason is correct. He'll see the door Victoria's standing in and a ladder. There is a closed door across from Taro's office with a sign saying 'Bathroom' right beside it.
Victoria steps into the hallway and moves, spotting Jason. "They got two batarians under their employment. I saw a batarian in the video." She stops for a moment, trying not to let her emotions take over "One of them is here and the other has not reported in."
Jason stops outside of the room, gesturing for Renala to enter and begin doing her thing. "Yeah... Like I said in the briefing, the implication here seems to be that their operatives who failed to report in are the ones who got V. Renala is going to grab everything she can off of Taro's terminal. Irelia- our person on the inside- seems to think he had something else going on that she
didn't know about. Hopefully it's connected and we can find some information we can act on." Holding his Revenant with one hand, he reaches his other out and pats Victoria on the shoulder, "We're going to find her, Vicky. I promise. Just have some patience."
Mendez steps out into the hall and past Jason and Vicky. "I'll keep the hall secure." he says, his monotone voice booming in the hall as his gaze drifts to the approaching Renala, "Do what you've gotta do."
"Well, why can't we question some of the other operatives about their location. They might know. Renala can get everything off the terminal while we question." She shrugs his hand off her shoulder, she just wanted to get the answer of where Vay is.
Renala stands up and jogs into the room. "It'll only take a minute," she enables her omni-tool while closing the distance to the terminal and pulls out a cable from her hardsuit. "Trying to break into it now." She plugs it into some point on her armor and the terminal, and she starts tapping away on the omni-tool.
Jason gives a sigh, nodding slowly. "We're going to, Vicky. I just-..." he tilts his head apologetically, afraid his words may offend her, "....Can you keep it together? I know this one is close to home for you-... for most of us, for that matter. But I don't want to bring you in there with me if you're going to lose it on them. For all we know, they could have absolutely nothing to
Victoria just shakes her head "Fine, I will go wait outside. Because that seems to be thing I can do." She heads back into Taro's office and vaults out of the window, see saw that as the fastest way out of the building and was keeping to it.
Jason groans as Victoria walks away. "Come on, Vicky! I didn't mean it like that. I know this is difficult..." he calls out after her.
Mendez posts up in the hallway, paying little mind to Jason's talk with Victoria. He keeps his shotgun lowered, gripping it in both hands as he watches down the corridor
So far, the Avoren mercenaries are keeping their word. The asari on the roof is currently walking over to the other downed turian, and the locked door in the middle to Mendez' right remains as such. The outside is also clear.
Victoria has managed to vault out of the window and does not reply to Jason's words as she waits outside in the snow.
Jason shakes his head but he doesn't exactly have time to waste patting everyone on the back. He turns away from the door to Taro's office and gives a shout through the door to the other Avoren mercenaries. "I've got some questions I need answered. Open the door and keep your hands where I can see them." he says, hefting his Revenant up in both hands, but keeping it aimed at the ground.
There's a silence for five seconds before a sigh. "Fine," she says and she walks over to open the door. Both Irelia and the batarian are in a full suit of armor including helmet, but the weapons are not on their person. The room has two desks with shut down terminals to the right on the same wall as the door, three bunks along the opposite wall and lockers along the left wall.
Jason gives a brief glance past them to make sure the room is clear before easing up. Unaware that it's actually Irelia, he makes no acknowledgement of her. "A friend of mine was taken this morning by some of your people." he says, getting right down to business as he glares at the two of them from behind his visor, his gaze coming to a rest on the batarian, "The one we have on camera
Victoria leans against the wall next to the window of Taro's office. She saw herself as being nothing more than a hindrance to this job.
The batarian shakes his head. "He came in two weeks ago to give his report, and that's it," he says. "Taro is notorious for assigning us on short notice, but between jobs is time off."
Jason sighs and nods slowly. "Anything I can use? Does he have a place in Freedom Falls he stays? Do you have contact info? Something?"
He enables his omni-tool. "Don't think he has," he says, "but here's his contact info." He sends it over. Name: Aralan Khorranak. He pauses for a moment. "The shuttle's in for repair," he continues, "so unless they have a vehicle that I don't know of, they must have picked a spot close where they picked up your friend."
Renala chimes in over comms. "I found suprisingly little," she says. "He either wipes his stuff on the regular, or there's an archive somewhere else. There's a single message in his inbox you should look at when you're done talking with them.."
Jason brings up his omni-tool to accept the data, looking it over briefly. He gives a nod. "Appreciated." he says as the glow of his omni-tool begins to dissipate. As he hears Renala chime in, he gives a loud sigh. "Copy." he responds over comms. He looks between the two mercenaries, "We were unable to find much on the terminal. Where does he archive his data?" he asks. "Let's just skip
over the bullshit where you try to mislead us. We're going to tear this whole place apart if we have to." he says earnestly, "So the more you help us, the sooner we get out of here."
The asari speaks up. "He memorizes the important facts and deletes them, I think," she says. "Must be, because he never looks anything up when I speak... spoke with him about jobs. And, well, he managed the tech around here and didn't bother with documentation. Nevertheless, I haven't heard anything about an archive."
Victoria is still outside, waiting to see if she is needed for anything. Although she believes that won't be the case.
Jason bites down, cussing under his breath and lowers his gaze. "They're saying he just memorizes shit." he reports back over comms. "Start sweeping the place. Grab whatever data you can off the rest of the terminals. There was one where we entered from. It looked damaged, but maybe you can pull something from it. I'll check that message as soon as I'm done speaking with these two." he
says. Looking back to the two mercenaries, he shifts his weight. "That leaves us with one last point to discuss. I know what you were doing." he says pointedly, "Extortion. Collections by any means necessary. With Taro gone, this is your chance to turn things around." he pauses, his gaze shifting between the two, "That isn't a request. Get your shit together and turn this company around,
or get out of the game. Because if we have to come back here we're going to turn this place into a crater in the ground. Am I making myself clear?"
Victoria does not say anything at first and just looks towards the ground. It takes a few moments before she speaks "That I feel useless. I can't do what I want to do, everything was finished before I could actually help." She stops for a moment "Hell, I did not even know what to do until Mendez showed up and took charge."
The asari sighs. "You're hopelessly optimistic," she says. "For one, this company is going to hell. With 2 dead employees and 3 going rogue, it'd take a miracle to get back up. Secondly, companies need people like us to keep their clientelle honest, because no real insurance company will help you out here."
Uvena walks over to her and throws an arm over her shoulder. "I contributed little, as well," she says, "but that's a good thing, it means our tactical plan was incredibly effective."
Renala nods. "Copy that," she says before unplugging and moving back into the hallway. She enters the office they entered through to inspect the terminal.
Jason rolls his eyes from behind his visor. "Then let me just say it plainly. I'll get the 'hopeless optimism' out of the way for you: If I see you or your people in Freedom Falls, I will personally put them in the ground. Understand? I don't care about your reasons or your justifications. This is your 'get out of jail free' card being played right here. I've got two employees that
would love to be the ones in here with you right now. One of which your company is responsible for nearly killing before kidnapping her daughter, the other who is afraid she may never see her girlfriend again because of you. I'm the only thing keeping them from coming in here and taking your damn heads off. And to be entirely honest? I'm not too sure I wouldn't prefer it that way. I still
have no solid leads on where my friend is." He pauses, reigning himself in as he realizes he's letting his frustration get the better of him. After clearing his throat he continues, "So right now you should probably be thankful there's a little 'hopeless optimism' left on this planet."
Victoria just gives a shrug "I just want to find the guy who took her and make them pay. That is all I want to do now and if I can't do that then I am useless." Her tone a mixture of anger and sadness.
The asari lowers her head. "We're taking that card no matter what, really," she says. "I've handled economical bad times before, but this... is something else." She says, before going quiet for a few seconds. "I don't have anything solid to help you find the three missing operatives," she says. "We run our operation on a tight budget. In remote operations, our team will set up in an abandoned and defensible building if possible, and rent an
Renala enters the room behind Jason. "I got nothing out of that terminal," she says. "The shot seems to have hit precisely where the storage device is." She moves on to the nearest terminal and starts working.
Jason sighs as he hears Renala. How convenient. Or just a purposely placed shot. "I'll take that into consideration." he responds to the asari before nodding further into the room behind her. "Alright. You two stay in here. We'll be gone soon enough." he says, turning on his heels. He starts back towards Taro's office, glancing over his shoulder before entering, "And remember what I
Victoria just nods at Uvena's words and does not say a word, her silence tells that she agrees with the asari.
Jason steps into Taro's office, moving right over to the terminal and giving it a look over, assuming Renala left the message up that she wanted him to read.
Mendez remains out in the hall, having loosened up a bit now that the fighting has died down. He simply keeps watch, making sure nobody else is skulking about.
There is a message on-screen, and it appears to be the only one in the salarian's inbox. https://aiterp.net/story/S123a0c77yfs5h1f
Jason reads through the message, furrowing his brow as he gets to a part indicating that someone in Redrock has already met the author of the message. "Renala, I just took a look at that message." he says over comms, "Seems like solid information. We've got a name, a rough location, and a way of getting in touch with them. Is there any chance we can use Taro's omni-tool to transmit
Renala leaves the terminal behind and moves to join Jason at the office. "That wouldn't change anything," she says. "They'll see the same signal no matter what device transmits it as long as we use their key." She crouches down besides Taro and searches his armor for an omni-tool. "It seems they counted on Taro keeping it safe."
Jason gives a slow nod. "Regardless, having his omni-tool to send a message from to accompany it might help sell the lie, right? I've got the name of one of their other operatives-..." he pulls up his omni-tool interface, checking over the contact info once again, "...Aralan Khorranak." he says, glancing over the interface to Renala as she enters the office, "Might be able to throw
together a quick message using some of the info we've pulled together to keep them off alert. Keep them at ease."
Renala picks up the omni-tool. "Maybe not," she mutters when trying to use it. "It's taken a few hits, but I'll see what I can do." The omni-tool has certainly seen better days. There are some bulletholes in it and the interface is too distorted to read.
Jason glances over at the jacked up omni-tool and sighs. "We'll work with what we have. Just-... do what you can, alright?" he asks. "Have you finished with the other terminals? I'm not going to feel comfortable until we've got V out of their hands, so if you're done, get ready to mount up."
Renala puts the omni-tool away. "I only found personal stuff on the one I checked, and the message she sent you before we arrived," she says. "I doubt I'll find anything more useful than that, though." She gestures to the terminal on Taro's desk. "Any idea which one of us she's talking about in the message?" She does cast a glance at the window.
The asari on the roof is where she was a couple minutes ago, and the other two are still in the room. There is no movement in the hallway or outside.
Jason gives a shake of his head, activating comms to get it in the air. "Get ready to head out, everyone. Jasper, pick up Sioria and meet us on the southern side of the building. We've got some intel we can act on, people." he says before adding, "The message to Taro from the kidnapper here implies that they met one of us this morning after grabbing V. From the name, I'd pin the sender
Jasper's voice chimes in over comms. "Be there in two shakes of a dog's leg!" he says. A moment later Sioria would be able to see the shuttle skirting just outside of the forest in the distance, heading her way.
Victoria eyes go wide after hearing about the kid napper being asari and begins to growl. She activates her comms "I question two asari this morning. They were both separate. Whichever one it is, I am going to fucking murder."
Uvena frowns. "Calm down, this outburst doesn't help," she says. "Where did you meet them, and did you find out what they were up to?"
Renala moves over to the window and climbs out of it. "I saw you chat with an asari on the store's security footage," she says. She gets out of the way to let the next one through.
Jason gives one last glance to the dead salarian in the room before following behind Renala to the window. "What did we talk about, Vicky?" he asks as he hops out the open window effortlessly. "Keep your shit under control. Are you in this to help V, or are you in this for revenge?" he asks pointedly.
Mendez remains behind for a few moments longer before returning to Taro's office and starting towards the window.
"One was going into the Respite for her coffee, the first one went into the store." She stares Jason down when he asked if she was in this for helping Va'ynna or for revenge. "I am in this to save my partner, my lover." She says her words full of spite for a moment there.
Jasper lowers the shuttle to hover just above the hill Sioria has been perched at, opening the shuttle doors for her to hop in. "Yer' ride is here, milady."
Jason shakes his head, letting out a deep sigh. "Then start acting like it. Sounds to me like all you care about is hurting the people who hurt you..." he adds pointedly as he steps past Victoria.
Sioria stands up and walks to the shuttle before hopping in. "Why thank you, my kid sir." she says, then heads into the cockpit. She puts a hand on Jasper's shoulder. "Lets go get our friends."
Jasper gives a soft nod as the shuttle doors slide shut. The shuttle lifts up a few more feet before moving towards the building. "Here we come, folks. Let's get the heck outta here."
Mendez hops out through the window a few moments after the others, but he turns and makes sure to keep an eye on the office behind them, unwilling to just take the mercenaries on their word that they won't attack.
Uvena looks towards Jason. "So what's our next step?" she asks, not having overheard all of the discussion inside his office.
Renala enables her omni-tool and keeps an eye on the hallway camera's feed while she waits for the shuttle to come pick them up.
Jasper quickly closes the gap between the hill and the building, setting the shuttle down about 15 feet from the others who have amassed just outside of the window. The shuttle doors slide open as it touches down. "Alright, everybody onboard! Where we goin', Jason?"
Jason looks to Uvena as the shuttle nears. "Next step is we get your daughter back." he says. "We found some info we can use-..." he pauses as the shuttle doors slide open and Jasper speaks up, breaking his gaze from Uvena and looking to the older man. "I'll send you the coordinates as soon as we're loaded up." he informs, stepping forward to climb into the shuttle. Once inside, he
remains near the door, looking out towards Uvena. "Sounds like they were planning to try and ransom her back tonight. We've got a couple names and a general location along with a way of getting directions to their exact location. Unless they've got some outside help, there should only be 3 of them."
Victoria make her way on board the shuttle, she takes the same seat as she had on the trip to this waste of space of a building.
Sioria stands to the side of the main shuttle door. "Heyo." she says with a smile, now not wearing her helmet. "Welcome aboard the good ship Mariposa." It seems she named the shuttle, but its likely just for show. "Always liked that name. Either that or the 'Kicked Avoren's Ass'." She sits down next to the door as she listens. "Onwards and upwards. Are we shooting to kill, boss?" she
Uvena is right behind Jason and sits down beside him. "Good," she says. "Three people shouldn't be hard to deal with."
Mendez hops into the shuttle, causing it to list slightly as his heavy weight offsets the balance a bit. He immediately moves back to his seat, quickly strapping himself in before even bothering to remove his helmet.
Jasper gives a shout back as he hears Sioria. "Betsy! The ol' girl's name is Betsy!" he says as the shuttle doors slide shut.
Jason holsters his Revenant and unclasps his helmet, tucking it under one arm as he holds onto a handhold with the other. He glances over to Sioria, greeting her with a nod, a small smile tugging at his lips at Jasper voices his affection for the old beat up shuttle. "I don't expect them to just let us take V and leave without a fight. Just make sure you check your targets. Wherever
Sioria nods in confirmation. "I try for nothing less than clean shots, sir." she says with confidence, then looks back at Jasper. "Betsy..." she says, then sneers slightly. "Mariposa's prettier, but hey!" she raises both hands. "Your ship, your name."