Episode 8 – You Can’t Win Them All
Sunday, July 16, 2028
Early in the afternoon Vera looks in on Lee. She is now able to talk quietly thanks to the Czech doctor’s care. Vera had explained her injuries and the cost (about 10,000-eb plus the cost of eye replacement) to the ravaged dancer. The dancer will want to talk to Lars. She can afford new cybereyes, but has only about 2000eb after that for surgery. Wouldhe help her? Lars promises her an interest free loan and all the time off she needs for recovery. She will have a job here when she is ready to come back.
Lee explains she was the victim of a blitz attack as she walked to thecorner store near her apartment in the Central Precinct. She never saw her attacker, but he seemed to know about her, where she worked, what she did. Either she or he was alwaysblindfolded/masked, but he was white, probably in his early to late twenties. She can’t place it, but the voice sounded familiar. Lars has Vera make arrangements with the Union City Hospital for Lee’s surgeries in about ten days.
Monday, July 17, 2028
Lars has a 10 am appointment at the offices of Rodriguez & Rodriguez with one of the brothers, Diego Rodriguez, in Perth Amboy. He brings Max with him. While waiting for the appointment, they see someone walk by with a poster for a charity fundraiser concert sponsored by the Jose Mart Society at the Waterfront Park to raise money to benefit the relief efforts in Cuba from the recent Hurricane Murray on Saturday, July 23rd. Lars and Max make note and plan to attend.
Diego Rodriguez’s suggestion is for a multimedia campaign with local TV, radio, billboard and print adds. The proposal is for a 3-month ad campaign, which will cost 100,000-eb (this is the lowest level of business that they do). This includes the shooting, taping and photography of all the commercials. Lars will have to supply the dancer and audience talent at his own cost. They want 50,000 eb down immediately (the 5000 eb already paid counts towards this). The payments will be 30,000eb on
September 1st and the last 20,000-eb on October 1st. The print campaign will start this Friday, the
22nd, the radio spots will start the following Friday, the 29th and the TV spots will begin Friday, August 4th. His photographer will be at the club tomorrow at Lars’ discretion, but he will want to watch the girls. The first photo shoot will be Wednesday. They have to schedule a video shoot at the beginning of next week to be ready for the TV campaign.
Lars likes the idea and agrees. He signs a contract for their services and pays the full 95,000-eb balance up front. Diego expresses some surprise that a Union City business would come down here, but Lars makes a convincing argument about the wisdom of expanding his client base. This meshes well with Rodriguez & Rodriguez’s desire to also expand their client base to the north.
Back at the club, Mario starts to research the ‘in’ styles around Yale University on the NET Unfortunately, he has no “Wardrobe & Style” skill (typical for a geek) so he gets a good cross section of what people are wearing there, but no clue on what’s in. Veragets 200-eb from Lars when he returns to get some appropriate clothes for her to infiltrate the campus. Tyrone asks for som clothes money too, but Lars rejects his request.
They set Mario to research anything their five targets have in common. He discovers that, besides the personal friendship between Reverend Gaston and Carl Farnum and the working relationshi between Dean Sara Woodson and Master Hector Sands there is really nothing. Well, there is nothing except maybe that all these people are considered leaders of the moderate wing
of the New Haven Commune.
Tuesday, July 18, 2028
Lars and Cliff go shopping with Vera to find her some clothes so she can ‘fit in’ undercover in New Haven. It dawns on everyone that Vera with her base Appearance 11 (a natural 10 plus Euro bioware) isn’t going to blend in anywhere except at a high priced fashion show. Also, she will be a former porn star trying to go undercover at a college. Yeah, good luck with that!
Eduardo, the photographer and video shoot director shows up that night. He is handsome an charming. All the dancers AND Vera fall over themselves to get his attention. This Lothario flirts with them all and offends none. Vera actually takes a shift dancing and returns to the table to find two of the other girls with Eduardo. She eventually gets them back stage so she can have him all to herself.
A group of 12 bikers in colors show up, and are loud but flush with cash. One gets a little fresh with one of the girls and she slaps him. The others laugh at their friend. Vesposer comes over to see what is going on, and the bikers tense. Trouble is averted by Lars, who intervenes. They are just loud and boisterous.
Before he leaves that night Eduardo tells Lars that he needs about 12 people to be at the shoot tomorrow dressed like he wants his customers to look.
Call is at 12 noon. Lars recruits some regulars and staff to play the part of the customers.
Wednesday, July 19, 2026
Eduardo comes and does his shoot for the beginning of the print campaign. All goes well. The director informs Lars that the video shoot will be next Tuesday, July 25th at 10 am, and he will need a score to two dozen ‘customers’. The script will be available Monday.
Thursday, July 20, 2028
Max decides to cross check some of the research and finds a data term downtown and spends a few hours on it. Vera helps Lee back to her apartment down in the Central Precinct and makes sure she has everything she needs. The Czech doctor arranges for some of the other girls to look in on her from time to time and does so herself to monitor Lee’s recovery.
The Team decides to drive to New Haven and scope out the job. Max suggests that they don’t all go in case they are stopped. They look like and are an Edgerunner team after all. Lars decides tha only he will go in his Daihatsu Family Cruiser. His drive is uneventful and gets off Interstate 95 at the Oak Street Connector. As that road crosses the railroad tracks he comes to a toll/guard booth. They take one look at his plate (Union City, NJ) and ask him to pull over to the ‘welcome area’. The militia member ‘Greeter’ is polite and asks why he is here? He claims to be a tourist and curious about this ‘great city’. When asked, Lars produces his identification (passport). Since he is a British National, he is then asked for his visa, and produces his green card. The Scot acknowledges that he is armed and shows his license. The guard asks to see the weapon (a pistol) and notes the weapon’s serial number. When asked how long he plans on staying, Lars tells him that this is just a day trip. The
militia man smiles and asks him to wait here. A bit later the guard comes back with his stamped and approved day pass and wishes him well.
I am not sure if Lars realized that the day pass was because he was a foreigner national. A U citizen would be just noted and let through. That fact he had Union City, NJ plates on his car got him pulled over. The Commune considers Union City less an American city and more of a ‘criminal enterprise’.
Just past the booths there is a series of motels and Lars stops and gets a room. He produces his papers, and then the clerk asks suspiciously, why he needs a room if he is staying only today. Lars replies he wants a room to freshen up after the drive. This puts the man immediately at ease, and he cheerfully rents him a room. Lars cleans up and walks to Yale University. There he goes to the main
buildings and seeks out the admissions office. His request for admission information is greeted with a little confusion as that is not the way the college is usually contacted, but they give him, what he requests. The Brit then heads over to the Ezra Stiles College and finds himself a seat on a bench in that college’s private green, which is located between the Dean and Master’s offices and residence tower. Lars divides his time looking and the information he just got and casing the place. As he sits there, Master Hector Sands walks right by him. Yes, it would be so easy to just shoot him, but he realizes he would never get away. A little after an hour goes by when two security guards walk up to him and ask for his identification. He produces his city pass, and the suspicious guards, who seem to know how long he had been sitting there to the minute, inform him that this is the private green of the college. Lars apologizes, produces his admission information, and tells them he is thinking of attending the school and was just resting here as he read the information. The guards’ attitude changes immediately. They become friendly and helpful. Still, he must move on although they give him a phone number where he can get a tour and a chaperone, which will be happy to show hi around. Lars thanks them and heads back to his motel room and vehicle. He checks out and returns to Union City.
Friday, July 21, 2028
Lars instructs Mario to do NET research on the security measures that surround New Haven. Everyone is busy getting ready for the evening at the club. It is a good Friday as
business continues to improve.
Saturday, July 22, 2028
Max, Lars and Trini go to the fundraiser in Perth Amboy for Hurricane Relief in Cuba. While the
crowd is overwhelmingly Hispanic, they are made to feel welcome. This is in stark contrast to the reports they have heard in Union City. Max wanders thru the crowd and gets a feel for the scene. There is nothing but good vibes. Lars and Trini go up to the fundraising tent, where he transfers a donation of 1000-eb to the cause. Diego Rodriguez is there and sees Lars and his sizable donation. The Scot and his wife are invited into the VIP tent. Diego introduces them to the local business folk. As this is a family affair bringing Triniis a masterstroke. She is young, attractive and knows how to hob nob with the people here. Lars gets an introduction to Augustine Hernandez, the President of the Jose Marti Friendship Society and his wife. The four chat and make friends. Lars informs Diego that he would like to be put on the list, if there is one (yes), of potential contributors to
causes like this. He feels very strongly about supporting causes in the area that do good works. Of course, he is immediately put on the donor’s list.
That night at the club, business is again good with no more trouble. All the girls have copies of th first print ads for the club and look for their pictures.
Sunday, July 23, 2028
Again, it is a quiet Sunday. Max goes to church along with the ‘religious’ crowd. The Team is no longer treated as curiosities there, but as members of the community.
The Team has a meeting to hear Mario’s findings. The New Haven ‘security perimeter’ starts in the west at the West River and follows it north through West River Park, then up through Edgewood Park. At the end of that park the waterway becomes too small to act as an effective barrier. Just north of the intersection of Fitch Street and Whalley Avenue a chain link fence topped with barbed wire starts and encircles Southern Connecticut University then follows the north side of Arch and Morse Street to Edgarton Park. There it hooks up with the Haven Arcology that occupies the old site of the East Rock Park. There is another fence that starts at the southeast end of the arcology and runs to the Quinnipiac River. There are also fences on either side of the rail line running south of the city along the highway, which is also fenced. Most people now feel this job will not be as easy as they originally thought.
That night Lars, Cliff, Max and Mario take the van to Connecticut out to the Wilbur Cross Parkway by the old overgrown Oak Lane Country Club. There they park and release a Bell Minibee to scout out the West River and Edgewood Parks. They find no fence there and no guards. They only spot the IR signature of a couple ‘knocking boots’ in the woods. While they are there a car goes by and pulls over about 50 meters ahead of them. The Team immediately pulls out, and the vehicle starts to follow them. The other vehicle turns off at the first crossroad. They decide to recover the Minibee and try to cross the river that next night. They sleep on the new information and will meet tomorrow as Mario digs for further information.
Monday, July 24, 2028
The script for the first two TV commercials arrives. All the dancers will get a good scene. Mario continues his research on New Haven, but learns nothing really relevant. While he is doing this the rest of the Team meets. Lars wants to send someone across the West River and test the perimeter defenses. He asks Tyrone, who is eager to go, but the young man says he does not know how to swim. Lars decides to send Cliff instead.
That night Lars, Max, Cliff and Mario drive out again to New Haven and the Wilbur Cross Parkway. They drop off Mario and Cliff. Mario uses his locate remote function on his deck and finds an electronic perimeter on the river. However, at least a quarter of the remotes are off line or malfunctioning. It seems the Commune’s budget isn’t what it used to be. They find numerous safe crossing points. These are mapped and the van then returns to Union City by morning.
Tuesday, July 25, 2028
Eduardo and his video shoot crew arrived today, and shot the first two of three commercials for the advertising campaign. Lars had selected a group of good customers who were excited, along with the staff to take part. Again, the advertising company went over to Sal’s Deli and bought lunch for everyone. They finish the shoot on time and business is actually up for a Tuesday.
After closing Lars, Cliff, Max and Mario go again to the Wilbur Cross Parkway in Connecticut and launch a Minibee drone. This time they fly it to Carl Farnham’s house to scope out the defenses there. The report said they were extensive, and the camera’s watching the roof and door confirms this. Mario locates a spot in the corner of the yard that seems clear of any surveillance (and he was right). He unloads a Grid Bug there and approaches the back door camera. The Bug’s induction leg taps into the system and confirms the other two were tied into a system. The roof camera turns on a variable timetable so they did not want to mess with it in case the system is being monitored. Mario sends the Grid Bug up to enter the house through the roof vents. There he finds it has a triple screen that he has never seen before. The Bug is small enough to climb through, but before he does, he has the Bug extend its induction leg and touched the inner screen. ZAP! The Bug is destroyed. The screen was charged. He recovers from the shock (he is tapped right in), and switches back to the Minibee. The lights in the yard are up along with the alarm. He takes off and gets the Minibee safely out of there. They then return to Union City before dawn.
Wednesday, July 26, 2028
Lee has her first surgeries today, and Vera is there to be with her. All goes well. The Team decides that this job might be too much for them. They decide to kill James Osterman, the co-editor of the Yale Politic tonight so at least they can see if this job is possible for them. It is decided that Lars and Cliff will penetrate the perimeter on the West River, cross the city in Blackjack Stealth Suits, and slaughter everyone in the house in what they hope will look like a home invasion gone wrong. Well, that is the plan anyway.
Max and Mario drive Lars and Cliff to the area west of the West River Park. Lars and Cliff move thru the wetlands and across the river through one of the major gaps in the electronic frontier that they had discovered earlier. The other two continue to drive within 10 miles to maintain radio contact. The stealth operatives move the almost two miles to James Osterman’s two-story duplex without being noticed. They arrive just before midnight. The neighbors are still up. There is light coming from two of the bedrooms upstairs in the target house, and from the living room there.
The two assassins come up on the porch to the back door and look inside. Here are two of the target’s roommates talking on the couch. The door they want to enter is right in the center of one of the student’s field of vision. Lars tells Cliff to pick the lock on the door. Cliff decides to check if the door is alarmed first. That is a good choice because it is. It is a simple alarm, which the Jamaican easily neutralizes. Still, Lars decides they will wait there until the two go upstairs to sleep. After about 45 minutes the neighbor’s back light comes on and their back door opens as a man comes out to walk his toy poodle, Muffy, one more time before going to bed. Well, the Arasaka Blackjack Stealth suits keep the two hidden, mostly. Muffy takes a whiff of her backyard domain and senses some wonderful new odors. Yes, the smell from the swampy river area of the West River is on the suits. The dog starts to bark and heads over to the porch the two killers are on. Of course, her master follows too. Muffy is barking, following the sent down and pokes her nose against the suit. Just then the wife from next door comes out to ask what is going on. Well, enough of this.
Lars pulls out his silenced 14mm pistol from behind the suit. The first round blows a small hole in the lady’s forehead, and most of her brain matter out the rather large hole in the back of her skull. His second shot blows the annoying yapper, Muffy, right off the porch. For some reason (beyond me) Cliff does nothing. Well, the man, who has just seen his wife and dog slaughtered yells and punches Lars. The only result is sore hand for the neighbor. Lars fires at the man and misses! The second round drops him. Still, there is no actions from Cliff. Now the guns are silenced but a 14mm still has some sound. Maybe not enough sound to alert the students inside, but the yapping puppy, the yelling husband, and the sound of bodies hitting the ground does get their attention.
Lars bursts into the target apartment, where he sees one student heading towards him at the back door. The Solo quickly shoots him. The other is nowhere to be seen. The Scot rushes into the living room and looks around. There he sees the other student in the hall pounding on the alarm button of the security system. He kills him quickly, but the alarm has been sounded. Lars fears a quick police reaction time, and calls a retreat before running upstairs and killing the primary target. The two go to the extraction point. Unfortunately, a police Bell Minibee picks up Lars a couple of blocks away, and starts to follow him. The two do not see the tiny drone, which brings a police helicopter. It is clear that the chopper is trailing them so the two split up. The police follow Lars. At the sound of approaching police cars, Lars looks at a map and sees that he is within a block and a half of a wooded park. He heads into the trees to lose the helicopter. He is still unaware of the drone, which is how he is being tracked. In the trees, he loses both units, but the police now have ground units around the park. Here he changes direction and goes north, hoping that the search will be concentrated to stop him from heading in the direction he was previously going. This is a smart move as he is able to get through the thinly guarded north side of the park. From there he heads northeast and is able to slip out of the city. Police air units started to patrol over the West River. Lars ordered Max and Mario to head back to the city with the van. The two assassins will be on their own.
Cliff continues to the prearranged extraction point, but stops at the Ella T. Grasso Blvd. where he finds a line of militiamen on the road. Quite a number of them are carrying some kind of hand held sonar/radar device. The drone has tracked them for a while, so the authorities calculated where they were heading. The militia has practiced this drill for years and is now implementing their prepared search. As Cliff waits and ponders what to do, he hears the sound of dogs. They are police search dogs, looking for him. He moves away from the sound and finally decides to try to stealth through the gauntlet. His suit defeats the sensors and his skill is no match for the militia. He is able to get to the river and across it before the ring of searchers gets even remotely close. Both Cliff and Lars head west across Connecticut, and manage to link up before dawn on Thursday.
Thursday, July 27, 2028
The news is filled with reports of the attempted assassination of the co-editor of the Yale Politic. The New Haven Commune accuses the Federal government of being behind the attempt, which is, of course, denied. Well, it is true, elements of the Federal government were behind it, but it was in no way sanctioned by the current administration. The use of Arasaka Blackjack Stealth suits and 14mm pistols made any cover story about a ‘home invasion’ gone bad not viable.
The two would be assassins make their way across Connecticut during the day. They run out of power, but their basic skills keep them from being seen. Later in the afternoon, Max takes the van out and is able to pick them up at a safe distance. Back in Union City, Lars leaves a message for Carlo Gigantino that he will be ‘unable to do that favor for him’. Well, the Mob Boss already knew that from the news. The mobster is not happy. He is thinking maybe these people aren’t as good as they seem. Still, Gigantino considers what to do about them now.
That night business steadily improves at the club albeit slowly. The Team has met its first major setback.
Friday, July 28, 2028
The Team stays close to home mostly. Some are still nervous about the reaction of Carlo Gigantino, the Consigliere of the Lacono Crime Family, in relation to the failure in New Haven, but there is nothing on the wind as of yet. Lars goes to visit Lee to see how she is doing. She will have a few more surgeries over the next week, but the doctors are very happy with her progress. It is a pretty good night at the club. Lars and his crew are treated as members of the neighborhood and it is apparent that the kindness and understanding he has showed to his employees is earning their (and others) good will.
Saturday, July 29, 2028
In the morning is becomes known that one of the girls in the Tonnelle Street Irregulars is missing. The gang is looking everywhere, and considering the reports that are circulating about the rapist turned killer called the “Chomper” they are all worried.
Around noon Captain Liam O’Neill, the head of the Precinct’s C-SWAT, his chief lieutenant, and two officers are leaving Sal’s Deli after picking up their lunch. An explosion centered just inside the door kills the Captain, the lieutenant and six others. The other two officers along with twelve others including Sal’s wife and a few other mobsters are wounded. The Jose Marti Brigade quickly takes credit for the blast. Their message promises further strikes against the Mob and their corrupt police lackeys. The Cemetery District is shocked. There has not been a terrorist act here in over a year and a half. The police descend on the neighborhood.
The club does not do well that night as people stay away and off the streets. Business does not completely disappear, but this does not help improve the customer base.
Sunday, July 30, 2028
It is another quiet day in the neighborhood. Church is well attended as the father says a prayer for the two officers killed in yesterday’s bombing. Many more pray for the girl from the Tonnelle Street Irregulars who is still missing. There are many who attend multiple masses in fear of some kind of police retribution for the Jose Marti Brigade’s strike at Sal’s Deli. The detectives question many people. The CSU team continues to probe the site for clues.
That night Lars gets a message to check his NET box. There are instructions for a new mission from his employer. All electronic copies of the plans for the underground portions of the Union City Arcology have been lost. There were five numbered hard copies. Four are known to have been lost, but there is one copy outstanding. It may be in the Northeast Investors Group Office for planning and construction. That office is now located in the combat zone area of north Jersey City. Lars is given the address. He is to find it.
Monday, July 31, 2028
The missing girl from the Tonnelle Street Irregulars is found down dead on the beach in Weehawken. Police confirm she appears to be a victim of the “Chomper”. The Bergen Precinct C-SWAT gets involved in the investigation of the bombing. The Team meets and discusses the new assignment. Lars wants to armor up and shoot their way through any gang interference. Cliff suggests a stealth operation. They ponder the alternatives.
Episode Nine – Hey, Am I Going to Regret This?
Tuesday, August 1, 2028
Maria comes into work in tears. The police came by yesterday and seized her brother, Antonio, who was back from seminary, to interrogate him. They reported that he tried to escape, so the police shot him. Vera consoles Maria, who is really not capable of working tonight. The housemother calls Lars to come back to the employees’ break room and talk to the waitress. The Scot investigates and he finds that the four suspects were ‘shot while escaping’ by members of the Bergen Precinct C-SWAT. The recent bombing that killed Captain Liam O’Neill and his top lieutenant earlier in the week had removed the only two members of the unit that were not ‘cyberpsycho’. Forty-eight hours after the death of their commander, they ran out patience and took matters into their own hands.
That evening three friends of Tyrone come to the club. Sammy Johns, the ‘Brains and a local smooth talker (fixer), Travis “T-Ball” Sims (solo) and Tammy Grimes, a driver (vehicle Zen) who Tyrone had a crush on forever are also there. Now she dates Sammy. Lars is suspicious of this visit by ‘old friends’; especially when they are a bunch of cyber teens! Lars positions himself to listen in on the conversation. This turns out to be well founded since his friends want Tyrone to help them burglarize a semi-legal trucking company’s cash payroll in Queens this coming Thursday night. Tyrone agrees. That night Tyrone goes to the north Jersey City Combat Zone and check out the offices of the Arcology Planning Group. On his way there he is wounded by some random boosters and must return.
Wednesday, August 2, 2028
Nina, the tech, rushes into the club. The C-SWAT execution squad has arrested her husband, Luis. She fears if nothing is done, he will be dead by tomorrow. The woman insists that her husband has nothing to do with the Jose Marti Brigade. Lars calls Detective Wachowsky and tells them they have the wrong man. Luis is a supervisory engineer with the city’s water & sewer department. The detective knows that C-SWAT is out of control, and decides to claim him as an informant, who are the only people leaving C-SWAT’s custody alive. Lars also goes to see Salvatore Marcello, the lieutenant in charge of the neighborhood. He brings the Scot to see the local capo, Michael Rotelli. Lars claims Luis as ‘his’ man and asks the capo to intervene with the police. Rotelli says he will see what he can do, but to go home now and wait.
The club opens but there is still no word. At nine o’clock Lars gets a call from Detective Wachowsky, telling him to come to the rear entrance of the Bergen Police Station and wait. He gets there and waits for forty minutes before the back gate opens and four police carry a beaten and unconscious Luis out and drop him on the sidewalk. They scoop up Nina’s husband and Vera treats his wounds. Both requests, from the Mob and detective, were enough to convince the crazed cyberpsychos of the Union City C-SWAT to kick him loose.
Thursday, August 3, 2028
So far there are 6 reported dead from the C-SWAT ‘investigation’, but Lars and his crew know that the number is really at least 20. So far the local media remains cowered, but the pirate radio stations report wildly varying stories. Luis is told about Lars ‘claiming’ him as his man by his wife, Nina, who helps nurse her husband back to help. Luis swears to be there for Lars anytime he needs him. He becomes Lars’ man.
Sammy Johns calls Tyrone and tells him they have to post pone the job, since they have increased the guard composition.
Back in Jersey City the Team approaches the building that housed the Planning Offices stealthily and finds that two boosters guard it. They retreat to get heavier weapons.
Friday, August 4, 2028
Lars and Trini are invited to the Annual Newark Rainbow Conference Dinner a week from tomorrow. It is 500-eb per couple and is sponsored by the Roman Catholic Church. Cliff and Max each get a Drive +3 skill chip and install them.
The Team again armors up and heads to Jersey City. This time they mow the two booster guards down and move in to the building. On the second floor, they run into more boosters and get in a firefight. The Team’s rush is stopped by a kilogram of plastique. That halts them temporarily as they shake off the stun effects of the explosives. The boosters beat feet and flee. The Team decides to bypass the heavily guarded third floor and head directly to their target on the fourth floor. There they do not find the plans, but do come up with the fact that the chief designer has the complete set of original plans with him. They also have his name.
Saturday, August 5, 2028
The local priest from the church next door leads a protest in the neighborhood against heavy-handed C-SWAT tactics and deaths of many young Hispanics. Riot police show up. The Team stays inside, watches and records the protest with their security cameras. C-SWAT AVs show up and the crowd gets restive. Then C-SWAT AVs open fire on crowd with their mini-guns after a police car’s window is shot out (by a hidden police sniper, but this remains unknown to the public). The Team watches as the crowd is mowed down. Lars goes berserk and tells everyone to get in the biggest armor with his or her baddest weapons because this massacre is too much. He is going to take on C-SWAT. After the firing stops, the crowd starts to get up slowly and limp away. C-SWAT had used rubber bullets! Lars and the Team step back from a confrontation with C-SWAT. The crowd disperses with 2 killed, 14 seriously injured and 10 arrested. Business at the club is off again for a Saturday night.
Sunday, August 6, 2028
Seven of those arrested yesterday are released in the morning including the priest. A mass is said for the dead from yesterday’s riot. Lars sends a copy of the riot footage to his employer. He also talks with Detective Wachowsky again about the activities of C-SWAT . There is little that Wachowsky can do, but it is clear that this cop is honest and hates what goes on in his own department. This is just the kind of man that the Team’s employer wants to know about. Lars sends a NET report on him.
Monday, August 7, 2028
The Union City DA announces that the remaining two from Saturday’s ‘riot’ have confessed to setting the bomb that killed Captain O’Neill. Their taped confessions are shown on video, and their beat up condition is ascribed to injuries they sustained in the riot. No one really believes it, but no one can do anything about it. The ‘bombers’ are reported to have implicated many of those killed by the police in the past couple of days. The two are executed just before the public announcement. Police make a couple of further arrests based on these confessions.
Tuesday, August 8, 2028
Tyrone, Cliff and Vesposer buy Endorphin/Surge Chips.
Wednesday, August 9, 2028
Reverend Claudel Gaston of the Haven Ministries is found murdered in his Rectory with his head bashed in at New Haven. He is the apparent victim of a robbery, but the police refuse to confirm this hypothesis. This was one of the targets of the failed job they tried to do for Carlo Gigantino in Episode 8.
Thursday, August 10, 2038
Lars and the Team have a meeting in the morning. They are going to have a ‘Ladies Night’ with male strippers. They call the ad agency to make an appointment to talk this over. The Scot also tells Mario to find out what happened to the designer of the Union City Archology underground.
Friday, August 11, 2028
A pair of coordinated killers posing as graduate students assassinates Dean Sara Woodson and Master Hector Sands of the Ezra Stiles College of Yale University in their offices. The two killers fled the scene. Police have thrown a cordon around the city in an effort to capture the assassins.
Mario reports that the designer of the proposed Union City Archology underground retired to Idaho with his wife, years ago. He has no phone, but they have an address. The Team decides to send letter to the designer instead of making a road trip. Lars spends a good chuck of change to have the letter delivered by messenger with a ‘return receipt’.
In further news from New Haven, James Osterman, the co-editor of the Yale Politic, his girlfriend, roommate and a PCC militia member serving as Osterman’s bodyguard were found murdered in the student’s apartment. The killings occurred sometime the nightbefore but the bodies weren’t discovered until members of the Politic’s staff went to the home when they could not contact Mr. Osterman. A police spokesman is quoted as saying that from the scene it looks like a home invasion
gone bad, but in light of this morning’s murders and the alleged attempted assassination of Mr. Osterman last July 26th, the police are treating this as a political killing.
Saturday, August 12, 2028
This morning at the funeral of Reverend Claudel Gaston, former PCC Commandant Carl Farnham was shot and killed by an unknown sniper as he walked up the steps of Reverend Gaston’s former church. A series of explosions around the front of the church followed in which five people were killed and another twenty-eight were injured. A police spokesperson said that the explosions masked the assassination and the following panic and confusion allowed the killer to temporarily elud authorities. The Politburo of the New Haven Commune has declared martial law and gone into secret executive session. Sources close to that government have said that the feelings in the city are that this is an attempt by the Federal government to destabilize the current regime. A spokesperson for Acting President Hargrove denies any governmental involvement.
At the Cardinal’s Palace in Newark during the Rainbow Conference Dinner, Lars is asked a lot of questions about the police action last week. One of questioners is Paul Ortega, son of the owner of the Perth Amboy Clay Works, and secretly a member of the inner command circle of the Jose Marti Brigade. The Jose Marti Brigade will judge Lars’ answers as they decide if they will contact him. Being too anti police will get him talked to by Sal, since the Union City Police are monitoring the event. There are also a number of middle level Union City Mob figures here as guests.
Sunday, August 13, 2028
It is a nice, quiet, churchgoing day.
Monday, August 14, 2028
Lars gets a reply from Idaho. The architect passed away a few years ago. His wife moved to Atlantis off Miami. She has an address there, but only an unlisted phone number. Lars sends the
widow a letter by courier asking if she has a copy of the old plans to help with sewer problems in Union City.
There is a surprise inspection by the police of the business. Chief Barone is there and strikes up a conversation with Vera. He is cautious, but testing her out. He tells Lars the Union City Policeman’s Benevolent Association is throwing a retirement party for Commander Louis Rinaldi, the former Commander of the SWAT division. As a ‘donation’ to the association could he send over a couple of girls to perform and ‘entertain’ the notables this coming Saturday, August 26th? Lars is invited too of course, but the Chief would like it if Vera would be the feature attraction. There is going to be planning meeting this Wednesday night in the Pyramid. Lars is given the address and invited.
Tuesday, August 15, 2028
Detective Wachowsky visits Lee while Vera and Lars are there and goes over her story. The
detective asks for the names of the vendors that the Post Orifice uses as that might be a connection to all these rapes and homicides. Kicker is told to get the officer the club’s information.
Wednesday, August 16, 2028
Lars, Max and Vera sit down and plan out a coming monthly Ladies Night! As they are talking, Lars’
business landline rings. An electronically altered voice on the other end introduces himself as Jose Marti and asks if Lars has wanted to speak with him. Lars says yes, he would like to talk. The Scot
is told to come to a warehouse in Elizabeth, NJ alone tomorrow at noon. He agrees.
The apartment where the meeting of the ‘Retirement Party’ committee is belongs to Junior’s. He directs Lars over to some paperwork and starts to talk to the assembled Mob capos, talking
about this Irish crew that has stepped out of line for the last time. Lars realizes quickly he is talking
about the O’Neill Crew that hangs out at Kelly’s Bar a bit east of here in the Bergen Precinct. These are the same people that tried to get the booster gang to take him out. It seems that this crew was also in league with the Jersey Horde and had been tipping off the Raffin Shiv when the drug
shipments were being made to Union City. The O’Neill crew was allied with Carlo Gigantino and the wanna be Don is afraid that if this issue is brought up at a Family meeting, the Irish would get warned and flee. So Junior does his best impersonation of Henry II reciting his “Will No One Rid Me of This Turbulent Priest” speech from Murder in the Cathedral. Chief Barone discusses the fact that the
police surveillance system in the area of Kelly’s Bar will be down this coming Saturday Night in that neighborhood. Also, the local of the sniper on duty and where the bar’s security system feed was divulged. Then Junior asks Lars if he has everything he needs. Yes, indeed he does!
Thursday, August 17, 2028
Lars goes down to the warehouse by the docks in Elizabeth, NJ. Inside the first large room is a table with a note on it. A trap door opens beneath him and drops him down to a waiting boat that ha electronic shielding against bugs. The boat takes him under the docks to another active warehouse, where he is loaded in a truck. There he meets masked members of the Jose Marti leadership. Lars tries to convince them of his sincerity to want to help rid the city from the oppression of the Mob over
lordship. They offer a test. They want a contribution of 200 kilos of C-6 and an explosives kit with extra detonator wire. Get them that in a timely fashion and they
Lars immediately contacts his arms supplier in Newark. Yes, he can do 200 kilos by tomorrow. It will be 40,000 eb. Lars gives him 10,000 eb cash down and the rest tomorrow on delivery. As his
contact is leaving he asks Lars, “I’m not going to regret this, am I now?” Lars assures him that he
won’t at all.
Friday, August 18, 2028
Lars and the Team go to Perth Amboy and make plans for an advertising campaign in the beginning of October for the first Ladies Night. They put 10,000 eb towards it. That evening they pick up the C-6 but when they do not contact the Jose Marti Brigade right away.
Saturday, August 19, 2028
The Kelly’s Bar Hit: That night Mario sends his bugs and taps into that bar’s security system. He readies the system and then turns it over to Cavendish to run. Mario then puts on a disguise and goes to Kelly’s Bar as a look out. Max sets up a sniper post to neutralize the O’Neill sniper. Cavendish takes over the local system when Mario has all the O’Neill Gang identified in the bar. Then the van pulls up to the front door and Vesposer kills the front door guard. Max neutralizes the sniper. Lars and Cliff walk through the door with assault armor on and open fire with borg assault rifles at the O’Neill’s tables. Two rounds later every O’Neill along with anyone else at their tables (4) are down too. Lars steps up with his 14mm pistol and puts a coup de grace shot in every mobster’s head. No one else in the bar breathes or wants to look. A bartender had pulled up a shotgun, but the two just stared him down. The two helmeted figures just walked away. The police arrived ten minutes later. Nobody saw anything.
Sunday, August 20, 2028
It is a quiet day in the neighborhood. The city is shocked by the wanton murder at Kelly’s Bar last night, but really “nobody liked those guys.” There is a feeling of anger building in the city and its greatest in the south where the boosters under Metalloid are making more and more noise.
Monday, August 21, 2028
The Team contacts the Jose Marti Brigade and arranges the drop off of the 200 kilos of C-6 and assorted ‘party favors’.
Tuesday, August 22, 2028
Lars and the Team drop off the explosives to representatives of the Jose Marti Brigade. They tell Lars that they will be back in contact in about ten days. They strongly hint that they already have plans for all these explosives.
Episode Ten – The Storm Clouds Gather
Wednesday, August 23, 2028
At 3:30 am in the morning, Patrick O’Connell, their Mob lawyer, who is a grade A scumbag, calls Lars and tells him that they have a meeting today and he should write the appointment in his calendar today for noon. He is very insistent that Lars gets up NOW and write this in his appointment calendar.
Well, the morning is very routine until just before noon, when a Detective Lt. Arthur Harshburger, Detective Sergeant Neil Johns of the New Haven Police Department and Investigator Peter Smalls of the (New Haven) Commune Security Committee (escorted by Commander Joseph Mazinni, the chief of detectives, for the Union City Police) come to “interview” Lars McGregor. It seems they are investigating a series of political assassinations that have occurred recently in New Haven. The initial questions revolve around his trip to New Haven last month and his being questioned on the Ezra Stiles Green at Yale University. Lars explains that he is interested in furthering his education here in the United States and drove out there to look over the campus and pick up some materials form the admissions office. The interrogators seem to accept this explanation and ask a few more perfunctory questions. Finally, Investigator Smalls asks the question: “Why did you and your crew kill the O’Neill gang at Kelly’s Bar last Saturday night?”
There is a brief moment of silence. Lars denies any involvement with the killing. Commander Mazinni declares that Lars’ name has not come up in their investigation, and there is no evidence linking Lars to that crime. After a few minutes debate, Lawyer O’Connell appears for his ‘appointment’. Smalls, who is also a lawyer, challenges his presence as proof that the Union City police department may be complicate in warning Lars of this investigation. Smalls grabs Lars’ appointment calendar over the Scot’s protest. Since Smalls has a subpoena, he checks the book. Well, the reason for the late night phone call now becomes clear, and Lars can say, no, the police did not ‘tip him off’. Attorney O’Connell now insists that he confer with his client. The trio from New Haven tries to deny him that, but Commander Mazinni insists that the lawyer and Lars get to speak privately. The officials from New Haven want to take Lars into custody as a Material Witness and bring him back to New Haven. Commander Mazinni points out they have no authority to do that, and he doesn’t feel that there is sufficient evidence. Attorney O’Connell’s assistant, who was waiting for such an order, files an injunction against the New Haven authorities in Union City court within minutes of this confrontation. There will be a hearing in the morning down at the Union City courthouse.
That night the three friends of Tyrone come back to the club. Sammy Johns, Travis “T-Ball” Sims and Tammy Grimes tell Tyrone that the Queens trucking company burglary is on for tomorrow. Lars is still suspicious of this visit by old friends’, and positions himself to listen in on the conversation. Afterwards Tyrone does let Lars know he is going to do a little moonlighting. After all he has to ask for the night off. Lars tells him OK, as long as the job isn’t against the Mob here in Union City. Secretly he plans to follow the teens and make sure they don’t get into too much trouble.
Thursday, August 24, 2028
Judge Barone is presiding. New Haven has Material Witness Warrant for Lars. Lars, through his lawyer, maintains that he was interested in getting a college education and is still interested. In the courtroom are Trini, the local priest and a bevy of Mob wives showing their support for Lars. Investigator Smalls, who is also a New Haven Assistant City attorney, says they have witnesses, who place Lars at the scene of the murder of the O’Neill gang last Saturday night. They present evidence that the O’Neill gang was responsible for the series of assassinations in their city recently and the Kelly’s Bar massacre was Lars cleaning up the ‘mess’.
New Haven is only partially right. The O’Neill Gang did do the hits in New Haven after the Team here failed to complete the mission. The O’Neill Gang did the New Haven job for Carlo Gigantino in exchange for the right to continue to pressure Lars into selling them the Post Orifice. Junior authorized the hit on the O’Neills because he finally was able to prove that the calls from the captured satellite phone in Episode Six that tipped off the Jersey Horde about the Mob chemical shipments came from that Irish crew.
The judge insists on hearing the witnesses that can put Lars at the scene of the massacre last Saturday night before he rules. Judge Barone agrees to close the courtroom to protect the witnesses’ identities but refuses to hold Lars without bail. He grants bail at $100,000 (50,000 euro), and forbids Lars to travel no farther than 25 miles from Union City until the hearing, which is scheduled for tomorrow. Lawyer O’Connell has the bail posted before Lars gets back to lock up. In fact, Lars makes it to the courthouse lobby before the New Haven authorities do. This infuriates those officials as the local mobsters snicker at them.
In the afternoon a letter arrives from Florida for Lars. The widow of the architect, who had the plans for the proposed arcology underground, donated them to her husband’s alma mater, where they are in storage waiting to be curated and made available. The plans are, of course, in the Haas Library at Yale University in New Haven. That might be tricky for him to go now, all things considered.
That night, Tyrone goes to meet the rest of his old gang. He takes the subways to Queens where they had planned to meet. Lars heads out in his van along with Max and Vesposer. The plan is to keep an eye on the job. Well, while Lars is keeping an eye on Tyrone, the New Haven Police are keeping their eyes on Lars. A mini drone follows the van to Queens. Max gets out of the van and heads to watch the gang’s meeting place. The drone can only follow one so it keeps on Lars and Vesposer.
Tyrone meets the other two members of the team. They are Roscoe “Slim” Peters, a ganger with good awareness (lookout), and Paul “Fats” Ateyo, a Samoan who is a thug. The job is very simple. Disarm the alarm, neutralize the guard, and open safe. T-Ball clobbers the guard, and ties him up. Lars parks a block from the scene of the crime. Well, the flying remote spies the burglary in progress and thinks that Lars is the getaway driver. The New Haven police drop a dime on him. In a few minutes the area is filled with police. T-Ball tries to shoot his way out and is gunned down. “Fats” surrenders to the police. Slim, Sammy and Tyrone slip through the forming police net. Tammi hears the sirens and makes good her escape, since the New York City police are focused on Lars and Vesposer. Lars gets his phone call and calls his attorney. There is nothing connecting him to the crime and he is a block away. The two are released by dawn. Max is on foot and hears the sirens too, so he fades away and goes back to Union City. Lars tells Attorney O’Connell how this all came to be, and the lawyer tells Lars that he will take care of it.
Friday, August 25, 2028
At court there is morning testimony and three scared and reluctant witnesses show up with primarily hearsay evidence. Two of them claim their evidence came from their cousin, who was at the Kelly’s Bar talked to the New Haven investigators. That witness was hit by a car last night and killed. In the afternoon, the judge hears from Lars. There is not a lot of hard evidence to back New Haven’s claims. Judge Barone announces that he will give his decision on Monday, bail and restrictions are continued.
That night Lars is approached by Vera and a group of his dancers. They want to have a fundraiser to help with Lee’s medical expenses. The group asks if they can do this two weeks from tonight. All the girls are willing to give Lee any money they make to help. Lars agrees and says he will help with the advertising and waive stage fees for that night. Of course, unknown to his girls, he is the one who will receive most this money since he advanced Lee the costs of her various surgeries. Vera knows this, but also realizes that Lars probably would have agreed to this anyway.
Saturday, August 26, 2028
Metalloid, a booster leader from north Jersey City holds an outdoor televised rally of booster gangs. He actually gets them to behave and get behind him. He is a charismatic leader, and complete sociopath. For those fans of old “classic” B movies, this is the gang leader from the beginning of the movie, the Warriors (“Can you dig it!”). His appeal and message is starting to send shivers through the authorities in Union City.
That night the Union City Policeman’s Benevolent Association is throwing a retirement party for Commander Louis Rinaldi, the former leader of the SWAT division. As per his agreement Lars sends over a couple of girls to perform and ‘entertain’ the notables. He brings Vera as per the chief’s request and also brings Alize. Vera plays the chief and ends up spending the night with him. The two enter in ‘arrangement’. Vera becomes the chief’s mistress and gets possession of a beautiful hotel room in the Mob hotel in the Central Precinct. It has a connecting door to a room that is reserved exclusively for Chief Barone. She will spend two evenings a week with her at his pleasure. Her private life remains her own. During the evening Lars is summoned to a private meeting with some of the Mob leaders. As he enters Carlo Gigantino leaves in a foul mood. Lars is formally made a ‘Mob Associate’ much to the anger of the Consigliere . Lars is told to be at Junior’s office this coming Tuesday morning with Max to discuss his future.
Sunday, August 27, 2028
Tammi, Tyrone’s old friend, comes to the club in a panic. It seems last Friday night, Slim died of a drug overdose. They were all sad since he was trying to quit but they didn’t think too much of it. Well, on Saturday, “Fats” was “shivved” at Riker’s Island while in custody. The police have no suspects. This morning, Tammi went out to do some errands and when she returned, she found her boyfriend Sammy Johns shot to death in their apartment. Her neighbors tell her a couple of Italian looking white guys showed up and that was that. She feels (quite correctly) that she may be next. She plays up to Tyrone, who goes to Lars. The Scot makes some inquiries and yes, this is the Mob cleaning up that little mess, which might have bad repercussions with Lars’ pending New Haven matter. Lars vouches for Tammi, and the hit on her is called off. Oh, yes, and Tyrone finally gets laid!
That evening Lars also puts Mario to the task of researching the curator assigned to the plans they want from the Haas Library.
Monday, August 28, 2028
Just after noon Judge Barone returns his decision quashing the warrant on the ground it is nothing more than hearsay. New Haven authorities announce an appeal to Federal Court and ask bail and restrictions to remain. Smalls also asks the judge that a monitoring anklet be put on Lars, which the
Judge immediately rejects. The Judge does continue the rest of restrictions with an additional 200 miles of range from Union City.
Later that afternoon, Vera is with Lee near the spot she was attacked, which was outside the small store a block and a half from her home. Vera sees a creepy delivery driver whose stare makes her wince, then the driver’s countenance brightens up, smiles and waves a friendly hello. She then
recognizes him as on the delivery driver that serves the club. Come to think of it, he was the one that
‘looked the wrong way’ at one of the Button Men’s ‘Molls’, and got beaten up by the gang. It was Vera herself that had treated his injures and put him on the road to recovery…..to kill again. That dead ‘Moll’ was also the one who was eventually killed by the “Chomper”. Vera picks right up on the profile the Team had worked out. She hustles Lee back to her apartment, and calls Lars with her suspicions about ‘Mr. Delivery Guy’. Lars tells Vera to wait there. He then calls Detective Wachowsky and leaves a message that he might have the name of the “Chomper”. The detective should go to Lee’s place.
Lars gets together with Max, Vesposer and Tyrone. The Scot asks Tammi, if she can drive? He
tosses her the keys and the young girl gets her ‘audition’. Tammi pops the hood, and checks out the
engine. Max decides to look under the vehicle with his bug detector and sure enough there is tracer bug. They remove it and destroy the device. She jacks into his van and they all head to Lee’s place. Lars tells her they are in a hurry and again, “Can you drive?”
Tammi tightens her seatbelt as a Union City Police cruiser comes around the corner towards her. She hits the gas and peels by the cop. The cruiser rips around to chase as Tammi bangs a left and accelerates. The cruiser is behind her quickly as the two tear down the street. Tammi then hits the brakes to right before the point of spin out then pulls a bootlegger reverse into the oncoming lane. The cruiser tries to follow, but slides sideways into a pole. The cops are unhurt, but their unit was out of the chase. The Team then speeds over Lee’s and hears the full story. Detective Wachowsky gets the information from Vera. As this meeting goes on it becomes obvious to Lars and Vera that there is something going on between the detective and Lee.
Tuesday, August 29, 2028
Lars and Max head over to the Pyramid for their meeting, and again Max checks for bugs. Sure enough they find a new tracker. The two suspect that the New Haven PD is responsible (and they would be right). While the two are waiting for their meeting with Junior in the Mobster’s outer office at the top of the Pyramid, they see the video news of the capture of the Jose Marti Brigade Headquarters. There is a news conference going on now at that location. As the Inspector in charge of the Southside Precinct is giving a short speech on the air, he, thirty cops including high-ranking officials and much of the Task Force is killed, when the Brigade drops the building on them. Max is watching TV when this happens, but Lars is looking out the window and sees the building implode and collapse. The news media is stunned as their news crews are buried under tons of debris. The Jose Marti Brigade quickly takes credit for the attack. Lars, who has a demolitions skill of 6, judges that the explosion took about 200 kilograms of C-6. Well, they know now what the terrorists wanted the explosives for. After another hour, Junior sends word that they can go home. He will talk to them later. Things have come up.
Detective Wachowsky gets a warrant to search the delivery driver’s place. It contains a photo ‘trophy’ wall and extensive clippings of his media. The forensic evidence is overwhelming and they arrest him easily while he is working. Wachowsky makes detective sergeant two days after this arrest.
The Jose Marti Brigade contacts Lars and agrees to meet with his employers. The contact protocols are initiated and this group is handed off. The Team has completed this assignment. That night, however, Karl, the weapons dealer that they bought the C-6 from comes into the Post Orifice in a panic with a pair of bodyguards. Lars tells him, yes, he passed the C-6 on to the Brigade. Karl
can’t believe he would be so stupid (or cold blooded?) enough to give something so traceable to a terrorist group. Karl and his crew quickly leave.
Wednesday, August 30, 2028
Lars and the Team hear on the news in the morning that Karl and two of his men were killed last night in a firefight with Union City Police in Jersey City. Jersey City files a protest over this jurisdictional intrusion, but does little else.
The Team gets together to brainstorm on how to acquire the plans for the underground portions of the old arcology. It was finally decided to ask Luis, the assistant chief engineer at the sewer plant in Weehawken (and Nina’s husband), to call ask to see the curator about the plans. If he could get an appointment then the Team would give Luis a great deal of cash to acquire the plans. Luis, who owes Lars his life, agrees gratefully to help.
Thursday, August 31, 2028
Lars arranges to get Tyrone and Tammi handgun lessons at a local range. Max goes out to buy
a few things and again a third tracker is found. He removes it and buys 24 showers in a can and
a case of chocolate flavored armor saver drink. Lars hears from the police about the incident of one of their cruisers getting bounced off a phone pole while chasing his van. Lars tells them to talk to(now) Detective Wachowsky as he was racing to ‘save’ two of his girls, one of which was a previous victim. This was just after he gave the detective the key piece of evidence in the case. No, Lars
is not going to get a ticket over this.
Luis gets his appointment today and goes to New Haven. The plans are in three, five foot long plastic tubes each consisting of many pages. The curator would like to help but he has not the time or money to copy them. Ten thousand euro in cash motivates the poor curator to immediately run off a copy of the plans on to a chip. Lars gives Luis two thousand euro for his time and trouble. Lars
then drops a copy of the plans to his employer in their NET box.
Friday, September 1, 2028
‘The Chomper’ gets some swift justice and goes on trial quickly. It is public and televised so the people can see ‘law and justice’ at work. Vera and Lee have to testify so most of the Team shows up in court. The defendant speaks little and bows his head with some apparent remorse. The verdict is swift, but when asked if he hadanything to say, the “Chomper” starts ranting at the victim’s families,
taunting them with obscenities and glimpses of how he killed and abused his victims. ‘The Chomper’ is dragged out screaming and right to an execution cell.
A new assignment arrives in the NET box. They are to explore the old arcology underground and see how much was actually constructed. The Team looks at the plans but really can’t understand them. They call Luis and he agrees to come over tomorrow and help them read the drawings.
Saturday, September 2, 2028
Luis comes by and spends hours poring over the plans. He also brings what information he could
compile on the current state of the Union City underground. He finds a possible half dozen access points. One is in the upper reaches of the Pyramid behind several walls of security. There are entrances at each of the three residential ‘wells’. Two of these were never dig and the third was filled in after a reported cave in years ago. The remaining possible entrance is in the Palisades cliff face in Weehawken. The city completed a water and sewer processing station of the arcology. Luis think he has found a possible entrance through a little used major drainpipe, if indeed there are any underground tunnels left. Lars, Tyrone, Luis and Max gear up to explore it on Sunday.
The club’s business starts to pick up again as the advertising campaign starts to show some affect.
Sunday, September 3, 2028
Lars and Max head to the water and sewer plant at the base of the Palisades in Weehawken with Luis. They check for tracking bugs, but none are found. The New Haven PD is on a limited budget, after all. As it is Sunday, the engineer gets them in easily and they make their way to the large pipes coming out of the cliffs. Inside the eight-foot diameter pipes there is some water flowing but not enough to be a problem. The four move carefully up the incline, but they fall quite a bit due to the slime. Eventually they make it to where the incline levels off a bit and they follow Luis’ lead as he makes his way to a hatch that will hopefully lead them into part of the old arcology underground. They find the hatch in the ceiling and after some effort get it open. They are now in a room, that doesn’t appear on the city plans, but does on the old arcologyplans. It is wet, dark and slippery in
the room, but there is a door out. That
door opens to a short corridor and another door. Through that portal they find a bigger room with three larger corridors heading off into the darkness. One tunnel heads off to the northwest, another
goes west, and the last heads southwest. They deduce that the west corridor might head to the pyramid, and the others would head to two of the supposedly unfinished residential ‘wells’. They decide to head down the southwest corridor.
It is a long walk, but it just goes on straight as if dug by some kind of mining machine. Eventually, they reach another large room with a few alcoves off it. There are also two other corridors heading off of this room. One of them heads north to what they believe might be the pyramid. The other heads northwest to where the collapsed well should be. They decide to head northwest. After another long and boring walk through the dank tunnel they reach a series of doors along the
wall. The Team checks these rooms as they go. These were obviously some kind of machinery rooms to move large amounts of air. Most of the rooms are not finished but there is some ductwork in them. The tunnel finally ends in a collapsed wall. As they check the last door on the north side of the tunnel, they find most of the equipment still there and large air ducts running along the west wall. Lars opens an access hatch to one of the large ducts and looks inside. It is not so much what he sees, but what he hears that is unsettling. The three hear voices in the distance. They can also feel fresh air moving through the duct. Lars removes any noisy gear he is carrying and heads down the passage heading north.
After about a hundred feet he comes upon a grate on the left side of the airshaft. He carefully looks inside and sees a room containing about thirty rough beds with about twenty young women in there. Many of them are restrained in some way. Lars quietly continues down and discovers a couple of more similar rooms. Finally he reaches a room that is brightly lit. It is a film studio. In it they are shooting a video. He recognizes Salvatore Sallucci, head of the White Slavery operations talking with another man that he has seem, but not met. These two are watching the shoot. Lars watches for a while. He is shocked to see that they are shooting a ‘snuff flick’. A young Hispanic girl is tortured and brutally slaughtered. Lars heads back to the others and informs them of what happened.
The rest of the Team enters the duct, but they head the other way this time. They move slowly and carefully through and come upon room after room of slave pens, storage rooms and drug labs. Lars
is recording their progress on a DataTel mapmaker and realizes that they are slowly moving in a circle. At one point the reach what looks like a conference room. They quickly shut off all their electronics because inside the room a couple of Mob guys are performing a security sweep. The Team waits and listens. It seems this coming Tuesday there is going to be some kind of important meeting here.
When the Team reaches the westernmost part of the circle, there is another hatch that is to the west. They realizethat they would never have recognized it if they hadn’t opened the first one or didn’t have the plans. They exit the duct and find another ruined machinery room. There is a tunnel heading west out of this room that is not on the original map. The Team follows it and in about two hundred meters it ends in a long rectangular room. There are rusted doors on thenorth and south walls that they can’t open with the tools they have, and a large floor grate in the western end of the room. Down below there is a very shallow stream of running water going through a large north to south tunnel. Luis looks at his plans and tells the Team that this might be the old underground aqueduct that used to feed northern Jersey City.
They head back to the ductwork and reenter it to continue their explorations. They make it almost back around to the film studio where they find another exit from the duct system that should lead to a
series of rooms that head of to where the northernmost residential ‘well’ was going to be build. Sure enough the tunnel is there and they follow it as it heads northeast. It ends in a large room with small alcoves of it similar to the first one they found. Max realizes that this is where the north residential ‘well’ was going to be built. They find two more tunnels heading out of here. One heads southeast
back towards the water and sewer facility, and the other goes due south, wherethey think the pyramid might be. Theydecide to head due south.
The tunnel ends in a ‘T’ where they estimate that the pyramid would be. The new tunnel runs in a large circle with three more tunnels heading off it back to the other ‘wells’ and the water and sewer plant. They find an access through some more ductwork into the base of the Pyramid. The Team
checks their plans and realizes that they are inside the central shaft of the Pyramid. They look up and realize they have a straight shot to the top past all the security posts. Also, the bottom of the shaft contains the security computer for the entire complex. Lars decides not to move up the central
shaft without Mario. The Team heads down the tunnel that they believe should take them back to the water and sewer plant. They are right and they exit the underground and go home.
Lars prepares a report for his employer and sends it out. He has already decided to listen in on the meeting on Tuesday. This discovery promises to be the biggest intelligence bonanza of the mission. It seems the almost completed residential ‘well’ did not collapse completely. The Lacono Mob has felt so safe down there for years. They have gotten sloppy with their security. This could be very useful.
Monday, September 4, 2028
Lars buys Tyrone a Gibson Sneak Suit so he can have an improved chance of success moving through the heating and airshafts of the remaining living shaft of the old arcology.
Tuesday, September 5, 2028
Lars, Max, and Mario escort Tyrone into the underground to watch the young prowler as he moves into the duct system to record and witness the Mob leaders meeting. What he overhears is astounding. It is the monthly meeting where they discuss the secret details of their operations. Tyrone records both video and audio of the Lacono Mob’s illegal activities. Who runs what, along with frank discussions of the crimes (ranging up to Priority One and Two) that they committed are recorded right from the mouths of the Capos and other bosses. It is more than Lars ever dreamed of getting.
Wednesday, September 6, 2028
Lars and Mario put a report and an audio-video copy of last night’s Mob meeting into their employer’s ET drop box. They fully realize that this is the ‘Rosetta Stone’ as far as understanding the Mob’s operations.
Thursday, September 7, 2028
Preparations are made for Lee’s benefit tomorrow. Otherwise, the day is quiet and uneventful.
Friday, September 8, 2028
In the afternoon there is a communication from their employer in the NET drop box. Lars and his Team are to record and document all the activity in the Lacono Mob’s hideaway in the old residential ‘well’ where last Tuesday’s meeting took place. They are to document all illegal activity with audio and video with a concentration on the white slavery, porno (and snuff) film business, and the drug operations run out of there. Mario and Max go shopping to acquire the equipment they don’t have to follow their new directive. They buy the gear in cities that are NOT under the thumb of the Five Families.
That evening is Lee’s Benefit. The place is packed. Detective Sergeant Wachowsky brings a small horde of police with their freshly cashed paychecks. The evening is an enormous success and almost pays off Lee’s entire debt. The dancer will be able to comfortably pay off the remainder within the month. Lars gets to know Wachowsky’s friends and add to his list of honest cops for his employer.
Saturday, September 9 & Sunday, September 10, 2028
The Team sets up surveillance on the rooms in the ‘Well’. They are very careful not to leave anything out or on that could be discovered by a security sweep.
Monday, September 11 through Thursday, September 14, 2028
The Team’s entire effort is now concentrated on its surveillance of the ‘Well’. No devices are left planted that are not held by a Team member except for Mario’s various remotes, which are monitored constantly. Every few days this information is sent on to their employers.
Friday, September 15, 2028
Lars’ scheduled hearing in Federal Court in Philadelphia. New Haven’s case has not gotten much better, but it is presented in a more coherent and forceful manner. Patrick O’Connell, Lars’ attorney, does a good job on his behalf, but the City of New Haven’s #1 legal team outmatches him. The court says they will rule by the end of the month.
Saturday, September 16 through Sunday, September 24
All of the Team’s efforts are now focused on maintaining the business of the club, their surveillance on the ‘Well’ and the Mob’s operations there.
Monday, September 25, 2028
The Federal Court in Philadelphia refuses to overturn the Union City court’s decision. New Haven announces they will appeal to US Supreme Court and asks for restrictions to be continued. Bail is continued, but Lars is now only restricted to not leaving the country.
Tuesday, September 26 through Thursday, October 5, 2028
The Team continues to monitor the Mob’s activities in the ‘Well’. They follow the video news with great interest at this time.
Friday, September 29, 2028
The political situation in New Haven has been deteriorating rapidly. The recent assassinations have removed a number of leading moderates from the local Politburo. The more radical and inexperienced members of the Commune have moved into positions of power. Their paranoia is fed by recent court decisions, and a campaign of misinformation by rogue elements in the CIA. Finally, a piece of ‘intelligence’ is uncovered by the Commune that a government supply column that is traveling from Bayonne to New London is part of a government plan to overthrow them and supply the ‘counter revolutionaries’ that they have been arresting over the past few weeks.
Commune security forces attack the supply convoy as it moves on Interstate 95 through New Haven. They kill a number of Federal troops and some of the more radical soldiers execute some of the wounded before their officers can stop them. All of this recorded on video. The column is found to contain only non-military supplies (food, toilet paper etc.). The Federal government demands that the killers of their troops be turned over to them and that the Commune disband their militia. The Commune refuses.
Saturday, September 30, 2028
Federal troops move out of New York City and come up Interstate 95 to just west of New Haven. Troops from New London move west down that same highway and close off the route from the east. Elements of the 81st Airborne Division fly into the Hartford-Brainard Airport, and then move south on Interstate 91 along with the remnants of the Connecticut National Guard that remained in Hartford. The battleship USS New Jersey and its escorts build up steam in Bayonne as the Federal Government now demands that New Haven demobilize. The Commune remains defiant and mobilizes the militia reserve. The response to the mobilization call surprises the Commune as many hide and do not answer the order.
Sunday, October 1, 2028
In the early morning, the USS New Jersey and its escorts move out into Long Island Sound, as more Federal troops move in and finish the encirclement of New Haven. Radical militia members start to execute the reservists they catch, who did not report for duty.
Monday, October 2, 2028
In the morning the troops from Bayonne deploy in a demonstration close to the western edge of the city. The militia responds and moves to block them before they can enter New Haven . Once the militia is outside the city proper and digging in, the USS New Jersey opens fire with its main and secondary armaments. Federal aircraft destroy the feeble anti-aircraft defenses within the hour. By afternoon every militia facility in the city has been destroyed by pinpoint air strikes. The militia forces outside the city are annihilated or surrender. Federal troops enter the city by evening.
Tuesday, October 3, 2028
In contrast to yesterday’s massive assault, Federal troops now work their way through New Haven with restraint. The Federal troops are greeted by most of the population as liberators. Many clusters of militia defenders are talked into surrendering, and firefights are few. It becomes clear that special operations troops have been busy as many of the more radical members of the Commune have been eliminated or detained by now. By nightfall, only the main campus of Yale University remains in Commune hands.
Wednesday, October 4, 2028
At 9 am, the surrender of the Yale University campus is agreed upon. A presidential pardon is granted to all Commune members except for about a dozen of the leadership and militia, who committed a number of unforgivable atrocities. Still, they are treated with magnanimously at their trials. None are executed and the longest sentence is ten years.
Thursday, October 5, 2028
In the morning, there is a message in the NET drop box for Lars. He is come alone to a private supper club in Manhattan that evening. He shows up after making sure he is not being followed and is met by Marta, the executive secretary of Nicole Alexander and Robert Hastings, one of her attorneys. To Lars’ knowledge, Nicole Alexander is a wealthy South Africa expatriate with extensive real estate holdings in New York City. Her pleasant and friendly manner masks a ruthless and cold-blooded soul. Lars used to work for her two years ago (in the New York City Campaign). The two share a similar flaw. They are both ‘danger junkies’ with a lot of ‘moral flexibility’. It was Nichole that sent him to the Caribbean after a well-publicized ‘firing’ to prepare for a ‘job’. Although they haven’t spoken face to face in years, it is she that Lars believes he is working for.
Marta expresses her (and Nicole’s) gratitude for his splendid work in Union City, but now it is time to proceed to the next phase of the plan. She informs him that the Jose Marti Brigade will bomb his club, the Post Orifice, this Saturday morning. He must clean up his operation in the underground by then and be ready to move. Lars is to arrange with the bombers access to his club and make sure none of his people are killed in what will be a small but destructive blast. He is then to arrange for repairs, and take his team out of the city while the repairs are made. The Lacono Mob is to be informed that he will be back in two weeks when (hopefully) the repairs will be finished. No one is to be told where he and the Team will be going. Lars is given a location in Upper Bucks County in Pennsylvania to go to where he will be instructed further.
Friday, October 6, 2028
Lars meets with the Team in the morning and informs them of the upcoming ‘bomb’ attack. He sends them down to the underground and removes the surveillance set up.
That afternoon, Attorney O’Connell calls and informs Lars that the US Supreme Court has refused to hear the New Haven Case. Lars’ passport is returned along with the bail.
Saturday, October 7, 2028
The Jose Marti Brigade bombs Post Orifice in morning. No one is killed. Lars tells Mob he is going to lay low for a bit as club is rebuilt. The Lacono Mob immediately sends some of its contractors over to start work repairing the damage. The builders estimate it will take two weeks. By evening an ‘angry’ Lars is on the road with his Team.
They arrive at the location in Upper Bucks County and are met by another team, which are electronic security experts. They scan the vehicles and equipment. Then the two groups go to a warehousing complex just north of Philadelphia. They are met by Robert Hastings, the attorney. Inside the warehouse there are sleeping areas and beds set up for them. They are required to turn over any cell phones and radios they possess. Vera is also asked for her hotel keycard to the room adjacent to Chief Barone’s hideaway. Attorney Robert Hastings tells them to get some rest. It’s going to be a long day tomorrow.