#RedrockAgency – October 27, 2021

Nathan looks up from the toolkit and, for the briefest moment, looks completely lost as to what Jason is referring too. Then, like a light switch has been flipped, he snaps his fingers together in recognition. "Oh! The one from the alley! I... crap, I completely forgot to tell you that his omni was cracked...". Nathan takes his omni-tool and powers it up, the haptic interface casing a muted glow as he places it on the

table. He opens up a file and widens the screen. "Here. Renala sent over everything she found. There was a bunch of unimportant junk in there or stuff that didn't really seem relevant, but I made copies of a few things. Here." He turns the screen around to Jason.

Jason has only just begun using the rotary tool, the hum drowning out Nathan's snap as he works on buffing out the scratches and imperfections his previous work left across his trigger. This isn't exactly his area of expertise so, for a seasoned gunsmith like Nathan, his pace is probably laughably cautious. It's not until Nathan mentions the omni-tool that the humming filling the room comes to a sudden stop and Jason flicks his

gaze Nathan's way, his interest apparent on his face. He's quick to set the tool and trigger aside, one hand moving to his hip as he shifts to face the screen, brows furrowing. "Alright..." he mutters as his gaze passes across the screen to try and pick out what Nathan is trying to show him, "...what am I looking at here?"

As Nathan said, there isn't too much to see. However, two things stand out. The first is a message log between the deceased and an unknown sender. Although message log might be generous, as it partially implies that there should be messages back and forth. It seems that Adrian only ever recieved messages from this person, never sent any back. At least not on his omni tool. The latest message was two days before the encounter in the

alley and simply reads; "The Watcher is coming. Make sure you pass along the information." The second point of interest is a picture file that was attached and a small note that was added alongside it. The picture is of a familiar white armoured individual with a shoulder cape and odd, brown mask. The picture has clearly been taken in a hurry and at a distance, as the angle is off kilter and blurred. The note was dated the day before

the alley and reads; "Adrian, I took this over at the Pit earlier today. It's like they said, he really is here. Must've had business with Mischa or something. Look after yourself, this guy is really bad news. I'll see you on Omega when you're done. - Primlio."

Jason blinks a few times as he reads through the messages, the lines in his brow only deepening. "...The Watcher...?" he asks, momentarily peering through the holographic image to the man on the other side of it before his eyes return to following lines of text. "Any of these names mean anything to you, Ten?" he finally asks once he reaches the end, gaze fixed on the image. "Primlio? Mischa? The Watcher?" The final name comes

with an additional muttered, "Sounds like some kind of... superhero reject... I mean-... c'mon." he continues, gaze finally flicking back to Nathan, "Who wears a fucking cape?"

Nathan can't help but snicker at Jason's final comment, leaning over to tap the top of the haptic interface. "Primlio and The Watcher don't mean anything to me. I'm going to forward the names to some friends and see if they can't scrounge anything up. But Mischa on the other hand...". He frowns and leans heavily on the table top. He chews on the inside of his cheek for the moment before saying, "I know she's in charge

of this place called the Pit here on Aite. It's some old quarry that got mined out and abandoned a while back before it got taken over by Mischa and her own. Now they run it like some sorta remote hub." He looks up back at Jason. "Almost considered going over there when I first moved to Aite. Before Redrock."

Jason studies Nathan as he speaks, arms folding across his chest. Given what was said about their ol' recently-brainless friend Mr. Arsure, it's not hard to figure out where connecting those dots probably leads and his expression darkens. "...This have something to do with the-... uhh-..." it takes him a moment, but the name eventually finds him, "...Solar Falcons you mentioned?" he asks, looking as if he's not quite sure he got

the name right.

Nathan turns his head to the side. Clearly Jason got the name right, judging by how deep Nathan's brow furrows. "...Probably. I know he said he left and all, but I don't trust anything he said. If the Solar Falcons are involved then...". The man takes a moment, a barely noticeable grimace passing over his features. "Then they're likely in the area. Or at least have some presence."

Jason lets out a sigh, nodding a few times as Nathan confirms his curiosity. For a moment, his gaze turns to the workbench, focused on an arbitrary point amongst the tools and weapon parts laid out as he sorts through the information in his head. "This-... Watcher guy didn't seem any happier about seeing Adrian than you did." he muses, recalling what ended up to be a night jam-packed with good times. He gives a small, knowing

tilt of his head, "Guess that goes without saying considering he's the reason I spent the next few days cleaning pieces of Adrian off of my jacket but, reluctant or not, they clearly had business together. But-... what was that he said? He said he was buying intel off of Adrian that would help someone, right?" Another sigh escapes him, deep and heavy as he rolls his head back and looks back to Nathan. "So... what are we

thinking? Obviously the guy could've been bullshitting us. But, slavers and pirates aren't exactly known for their loyalty. Guess Adrian could've been playing both sides? Selling inside intel to make a few credits on the side?" he muses aloud, spitballing thoughts Nathan's way.

((what ended up being a night*))

Nathan turns his gaze back towards Jason, taking a moment to consider that. "Could've been the case," he says, nodding slowly along with the thought. "The Falcons tend to punish traitors and backstabbers quite harshly, but I suppose if enough credits are on the line then... yeah, that makes sense. The question is, who was it helping?" He hums, fingers drumming against the table. Plenty of questions, not enough answers.

"There's also the possibiltiy that Adrian was telling the truth and he really didn't have anything to do with the Falcons. Argh, this is going to give me a headache." He rubs his brow in irritation.

Jason draws in a deep breath when it becomes clear that Nathan doesn't have any more solid of a conclusion than he does. "Yeah..." he mutters. Another short silence follows before he speaks up again. "What we do know is that tall, bright, and murderous knew our names." he says, a sharpness entering his look. "I don't like the idea of someone knowing more about me than I know about them." The last thing he needs are more enemies.

Maybe it's true what they say. When one door closes, another opens. The Collectors. Hunter. Rellis. Cerberus. And after finally closing those doors, more just seem to get kicked down. First Sala Piros and now potentially some weirdo stalking dark alleys and calling himself The Watcher. Never mind that looming concern that there's some pissed off batarian house out there looking for blood over the stunt Leah and Nathan

pulled. Sometimes it just feels like he's running on a treadmill. He keeps running, but he never really seem to get anywhere. He expels a breath, doing his best to push those intrusive thoughts out. To remind himself of just how far they've come.

Nathan grunts in agreement, oblivious to Jason's train of thought. His focus was on why this Watcher had their names and why he chose to reveal that to their faces. "It's like he wanted us to know that he had that information," he muses aloud, finishing his own thought process. "...But I can't think of a reason why? Just to throw us off guard?" He reaches back for his omni-tool and closes down the interface, slipping

the device into his pocket. He couldn't really wrap his head around this. And a part of him didn't want to. He wanted to just sweep this under the rug and pray that the problem just... disappeared and left him and his friends alone. Send the information to those who could do something with it and make it their problem. He tisks. Were it so easy.

Jason gives a few quiet nods as Nathan speaks. "He had the drop on us." he continues to muse. He shrugs, moreso to himself than to Nathan before looking back to the man. "If he wanted us dead, that was probably his best chance at it." It certainly adds up in his mind. Still, he can't keep the words from sounding more like he's trying to convince himself of it rather than stating an observation. Perhaps a paranoid side effect of a

dangerous career filled with far too many people trying to take your head off. "What about this quarry?" he asks, as if a nugget of the previously shared information is only just now setting in. "The 'Pit'? You said you thought about going over there, right? That mean you know where it is, or...?"

Nathan looks up and nods, motioning vaguely in a south-westerly direction. "I know roughly where it is, yeah. It has a 'landing port' of sorts," he says with air quotations, "but it's really just a large slab of rock with a staircase bolted to the side. They were looking for people who knew how to use a gun and if you had any explosive expertise, well, you were a shoe-in for a job of some sorts. But it's rough as hell

over there from what I gathered. Like a mini-Omega... just not as nice looking." His voice dripped with sarcasm there, eyes rolling. "It's a shit-hole, to sum it up."

Jason listens, offering a small snort at the mention of Omega. It's hard not to feel some sort of attachment to that hunk of junk. It's pretty intrinsically tied to his relationship with Vasquez, for better or worse. Still, message received. Scum. Villainy. A strange smell that you can't quite pinpoint the source of. "But the Pit and the Solar Falcons?" he asks, offering a small shake of his head as he tries to make sure he's got

everything correct, "No strong tie there as far you know?" He seems confident in that assumption, spurred on by the fact that Nathan considered going there at all.

Nathan shakes his head. "No, none at all. At least, not when I considered going. I probably would've bombarded the place if I even caught a whiff of the Falcons being there." He's being hyperbolic. He would've only considered it while he was loading his grenade launcher for a totally unrelated reason. "But we can't rule out the possibility that they might be there now or at least have some sort of presence."

Jason nods a few times, giving a heavy snicker at the mention of potential bombardments. As Nathan finishes up, another sigh slips out as they seems to find themselves with little more than assumptions. "Alright." he huffs. "Reach out to your contacts and keep me in the loop if you hear anything back. In the meantime? I guess we just keep our heads on a swivel." Business as usual, unfortunately. "No reason to think our friend is

gunning for us and, if he is? At least there's a good chance we see him coming." A lopsided smirk crosses his lips as he tries to inject a bit of levity into an otherwise frustating situation. "Bright ass armor, cape flapping in the breeze?" Just ignore the fact that he pretty much snuck right up on them in the middle of an engagement. "And if your people aren't able to put our concerns to bed?" he gives an almost reluctant

tilting of his head back-and-forth, as if weighing the option in his head, already hating the words before they even leave his mouth, "...Then maybe we consider taking a little trip to this quarry. Just a bit of intel gathering. Try and see what we've got on our hands."

Nathan grins at Jason alongside his snicker. Before his head bobs up and down in agreement to the initial plan. Keep Jason in the loop, easy enough. And he had a point. Assumptions lean towards the fact that The Watcher is probably not gunning for them. After all, what reason could he have for doing so? The smirk widens at the quip. He also seems to ignore the fact he just appeared and disappeared in the blink of an

eye. However, the last segment of their 'plan' causes Nate to do a double take at Jason, incredulous look in his eyes. "Wait, you serious? You think that's a good idea? I don't think we need to-...". He cuts himself off sharply, considering it in his mind. "...well, if it's just information gathering... that can't go too wrong, right? We're charismatic guys after all."

Jason puts both hands up, palms outward, as if pleading his innocence. "Just some information gathering!" he repeats in agreement with Nathan, as if already considering how the discussion with Vasquez might go if it comes to this. "Yeah we are! Charismatic and charming!" he adds overtop Nathan with a non-chalant shrug of his shoulders, seemingly unaware that the two words are synonyms. "And only if-... if-... you know-..."

he dips his head, "...we don't like what we're hearing from your contacts. Hopefully it won't come to that."

Nathan gives a small laugh at that, turning his gaze off to the side. The question he has now is if he should mention this to Leah? He doesn't really want to get more people involved that necessary, especially considering everything that everyone has been through the past couple of months. Then again, it's not really his place to make that decision for her. Eh, he'll cross that bridge when it comes to it. "Only if we

don't hear something good, roger that. God, I hope that come up with something. I don't really want to go chasing masked weirdos across Aite as my New Years agenda."

Jason lets out another sigh as he turns back towards the workbench. "You and me both. Think I've filled my 'masked weirdo' quota for one lifetime." he mutters without bothering to offer context as he scoops the rotary tool back up. "And, I mean, if this is just a case of some caped psychopath zipping around the Terminus putting slavers in the ground?" He glances back to Nathan with a shrug, a couple of hums sounding out as he

tests the tool briefly, "As far as I'm concerned? Job well done. I'm not about to stand in his way."

Nathan hums in agreement, turning back to his toolkit and placing a hand upon the lid. "That we can both agree on. I won't be shedding any tears," he says. He reaches into the toolkit and plucks out a flat-head screwdriver, idly twisting it around his fingers. "Well, we've got some semblance of a plan. I'll fire off a few messages tonight, then all we have to do is play the waiting game. Easy." He nods once, then

pauses. Thinks. Considers. Then peers at Jason. "Wait, what do you mean 'filled your quota'?"

Jason gives a stern nod as his focus slowly returns to the work he started before Nathan's arrival. The question draws a wince out of him. "Long story, Ten. Lonnng story." he sighs, implying that's one for another day before trying to quickly move on. "Anyway, how is all-..." he glances in the direction of the man beside him, gesturing with the tool in his hand to his own chest, vaguely in the area of Nathan's recent wound,

"...that healing up?"

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