[NULL] The Package [R3]

Rostam, you've recovered from your night of excitement. Some mild stiffness from the unusually high level of activity is pretty standard for someone as fit as you, but you bounce back ridiculously quickly. You woke up this morning to two job offers: one from Salomé marked "High Priority", and the other from none other than the Daimyo's son, Kai — which had no severity markings on it. You're on your way now to accept one of them — which one is it?

Comments

  • Kai intrigued me... I'm on the way to accept his gig, but not without first making sure that the offer from Salomé has been handed off to the unlikely-named "Delightful," who is fast and careful, and knows to call in backup if they're out of their depth.
  • edited July 13
    Rostam, sounds like you and "Delightful" have some history. Care to tell me a little bit about what they look like, and how you met?

    image
    It's raining quite heavily as you approach YB&A corporate headquarters, just a block south of the Neon Pagoda. The streets are crowded with people. You can tell the people with non-organic sleeves, walking around without raincoats, or umbrellas, compared to the zealously covered people walking around in their birth bodies — much like yourself. The revolving doors to YB&A are in constant motion as a flux of people pours into, and out of, the building.
    Just as you enter the building, you're greeted by a holographic AI — the Kiera model, a proprietary creation of YB&A, and widely considered to be the best in circulation. "Hello, Rostam," Keira says, "I've been instructed to take you up to Sai Kai Taigen's office. Please follow me."

    The hologram then proceeds to phase through people in the crowd, leading you to the back of the lobby, towards the executive elevators. What do you do?
  • This is Delightful. I'm sure those looking through the Veil see something an order of magnitude more grand, but this is what I see:
    image
    They're professional, and we've traded jobs back and forth for a few years now. It's mostly that, a professional relationship, but they did invite to a flesh-space party once that was pretty interesting.

    I furl my umbrella just before I hit the revolving doors, but still get a little wet. When the hologram greets me, I say, "Thank you." I follow her, but obviously have to take a less-direct route to the elevators, since I can't walk through people.
  • You're taken up to the top level of YB&A. The elevator is lined with finely stained and oiled Japanese Maple, and a machined metal crest of the Yamada family is hanging on the back wall. It takes you up a countless number of stories, and opens into a beautiful panoramic view of the city. Kai's secretary flicks some buttons, and a few seconds later, Kai emerges from his office.

    "Rostam! I'm so glad you could make it. Please, come in! Come in! I hope I'm not keeping you from anything important. Can I get you something to drink? Coffee? Tea? Scotch?"
  • I smile tightly. "I am fine without refreshment, thank you, and my other obligations are being discharged by a more-than-competent surrogate." I give a slight, respectful bow. "You require my services?"
  • Kai nods, pleased with the answer, "excellent. Yes, I do, and I appreciate that you were able to shuffle your schedule around to accommodate. Seigi told me you're all natural by choice — the finest specimen unaltered humanity has to offer. I've got some highly sensitive prototype equipment from a contracting firm I was hoping you could move for me — our latest batch of couriers have all been either intercepted or ... tempted, shall we say, by their cargo. You'll be compensated appropriately, of course."
  • I nod. "This is very much in my usual line of business. How big is the package, what are the start and end points, and how much opposition am I likely to run into?
  • image
    Kai claps his hands, and motions for you to take a seat at his desk. He makes his way around to the other side of the lavish, matte black, zen-modern style, solid titanium display of wealth that is the centerpiece of his office. As he approaches, it lights up with personalized news feeds, and interface dialogs. Kiera, the AI that greeted you downstairs, steps out of the shadows, and takes up her position at his right hand side, posing stereotypically as assistants are known to do.

    He swipes through some pages on his desk, and places delivery specifics in front of you. The package isn't much bigger than a bowling ball, complete with a shock-absorbing case, and marked fragile. "You'll be collecting a proof-of-concept prototype from a private contractor's personal residence. We suspect he's being watched, so you'll need to find a way into his workshop that won't attract attention. All our couriers who didn't abscond with my property have reported lone, military tech interceptors, highly trained, cornering them, and holding them at swordpoint. Once you've obtained the package, you'll bring it back here, and deliver it directly to me. I'm sorry for all the cloak and daggers with the pickup, but I hope you can appreciate that I'm anxious to finally get my hands on this tech."
  • I nod, again. "You'll understand if I ask for the more... pecuniary... side of the contract to be established, before I accept this? What is my benefit, here?"
  • Kai looks over his shoulder to Kiera, and nods. She steps forward, and touches a spot on the desk in front of you. A small document appears on the desk, and text gradually fills the sheet, listing the terms of a contract, down to remuneration, liabilities, and an exceptionally strict NDA — forbidding you from even telling anyone about any part of this job in perpetuity.

    The money from this job is extremely generous, even for something this secretive (OOC: we're talking 3 creds). Kai leans back in his chair, fingers entwined, and says, "I hope you'll find the offer suits your needs — and you'll find YB&A has a long memory when it comes to competent people."

    What do you do?
  • I read thoroughly, then look for the spot for my thumb print. "This will do nicely, Kai-san."
  • edited July 20
    Kai smiles, and spins the document around, placing his thumb in the box for his imprint. As his thumb touches it, the paper turns red and shifts into an ever changing pattern of white noise. You've seen this before — it's a side effect of your not having a neurochip. The document has been encrypted and is only visible to the people signatory to the contract. He rises from his chair and offers you his hand to shake. "Rostam, it's been a pleasure making your acquaintance, and I'm looking forward to seeing your work. Kiera here will give you anything else you need before leaving the building."
    The AI looks over to you from across the desk wearing a muted, manufactured smile. "Shall I escort you to the exit, sai?"
  • I give Kai another shallow bow. "Thank you." And then I turn to Keira. "Please, and I'll need an upload of the specifics of the job to my tab."
  • Kiera nods, and spends some time processing the request. After a brief moment, she steps out from behind the desk, and motions for you to follow her. You hear a ping on your tab a second later. The packet itself lacks any metadata beyond the basic communication protocols used to send them. It details the location of the contact's workspace, in an underdeveloped section of downtown that is known for its clubbing, and contains more information on the physical attributes of the package you're obtaining. It also offers you a one-time biometric pass for something. "You have a one-time access to YB&A's service entrance LHB-09003 on our main development campus. It expires tonight at midnight. You won't be able to enter without also scanning the tag that is attached to the case — be sure to verify it with our contact, codename Muli, before you depart his workspace."

    If you'll let her, she guides you all the way down to the HQ's main doors, where she'll wait to see if you have any questions.
  • edited July 22
    "Thank you, Keira. I'll follow your instructions. If something happens to cause a delay, and I'm not there by midnight... is the job forfeit, or should I make other arrangements for delivery?"
  • The AI stares at you blankly for a second before answering, it looks like it's processing something. "Security protocols after 12 am change to make delivery of the object without interception by staff unlikely. I have transmitted you my personal contact information so we can arrange an alternate drop location."

    What do you do?
  • I nod. "Thank you for your help, Keira." And then I move to leave. I'll review the data, make a plan, and then do what needs doing.
  • edited August 9
    Continued in [NULL] The Tutelage of Master Seigi [T5,R4].

    n.b. — this scene has been retconned to allow Rostam a few days to complete the task, rather than requiring it be done right away.
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