String Theory

Operation Rollup
  • Nasir, an ex-Pakistani Intelligence Cuckoo, who engages the group upon discovering they face a threat similar to one he has seen in the past. Some of the team has worked with him in the past but Robin remains skeptical.
  • Scarlet arrives in Belgrad suffering from amnesia. She holds it together however (Stability check). Under hypnosis she recalls an attack through a window. Analysis of her wounds and other clues support the narrative of an attack on the cabin. A single strangely blurry photo shows her attacker (thanks to a Photography spend). Oddly everything but the intruder is in focus.
  • To remove the local human trafficking operation and destroy this node of the conspiracy, the team decides to split in two. One team will blow the warehouse while the other hijacks the next outbound shipment of slaves/refugees/werewolf food. Robin fails her Preparedness roll roll to retroactively have the command words for the werewolves.
  • Robin and Nasir infiltrate to plant the charges (Robin piggybacks and Nasir uses his MOS). John (now on the other team) constructed them from materials procured by another team member (with Preparedness). They have some extra punch (since he spent extra on the Explosives roll)
  • John and Guy plan to hijack the truck once the container is hooked up. Guy uses Traffic analysis to find where the truck is likely to get bogged down on the way to the warehouse. He and John then hook themselves to the bottom of the truck and ride it in.
  • Scarlet meanwhile hacks the security cameras (Digital Intrusion) and watches. She makes her Sense Trouble roll and alerts the others to Serge’s arrival. The guards sicken as he approaches and he crushes the neck of the survivor.
  • Inside Nasir begins setting charges while Robin takes the high ground. They both maek the necessary Infiltration checks.
  • As Serge forces his way in, Guy and John roll out from under the truck and jump in. Guy uses his Driving MOS to avoid anyone catching them on foot.
  • A car chase ensues as one jeep races after them. Two goons fire from the jeep while John fires back at the driver. One wheel is shot out before John puts two rounds in the driver ending the chase.
  • Inside with the charges set, Nasir and Robin bug out, exiting just after the back guards move in to save Danilo Brigovic from Serge. They steal a boat, drive across the river and then trigger the bomb.
  • Scarlet plants evidence to suggest Islamic terrorists were behind this. Guy ditches the truck and everyone evades the police. One last video feed shows Serge emerging from rubble (despite taking 18 explosive damage, 9 falling rubble damage, and many machine gun rounds).
  • The team individually leaves Serbia. Guy under the guise of “El Gordo” a food blogger, Nasir as Fazah Ahmed, an American Embassy Staffer, Scarlet travels as a doctor without borders and John uses his old military historian. Robin travels as translator. All make their cover checks.
  • John meets his mentor The Chessplayer and gets intel connecting a Dr. Gomez to the group creating these werewolves. Scarlet builds a dossier on her and the team plans to trail her when she next moves someone.
  • Robin meanwhile gets a line on a lucrative bank heist for their next gig. The target is a Swiss bank in the process of being acquired by Black Sea Bank, a tool of the Lisky Bratva.
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The Red Eagle
  • After holding up in the mountains for month, the team has put together a plan of action. They intend to shake Brigovic to see what he knows and who responds.
  • Joining them on this mission is Guy, a wheelman and smuggler who used to work with John when he was with the CIA.
  • John meanwhile looked into Madison. His mentor the Chessplayer informed him about a rogue operation in Germany that might be related.
  • Once back in Belgrade, John and Robin slip on board the mobster’s party barge under the guise of a rich heiress and her bad boy date. After staging a fight between the two (and 2 point Flirting spend), Robin gains Brigovic’s trust. He takes her up to his room for some privacy.
  • Robin convinces him to engage in some playful bondage. Once he’s tied up, she Interrogates him (1 point spend) to get the details on his employer.
  • She learns The Bride and Madison are the same person. She and another operative, Talbot, help over see the human trafficking operation here in Belgrade. The laptop theft was for the Bride and not a normal operation. She extracts info on his warehouse’s defenses, robs his safe, and takes his phone and laptop.
  • Outside John scouts the defenses. Brigovic’s door is guarded by his bodyguard. Once Robin alerts him that she is done, he distracts the guard (via Intimidate spend) to give a 3 point Infiltration refresh for Robin’s escape.
  • The pair then slip aboard Guy’s boat before anyone is the wiser.
  • John gets a call from the DOD, Sergei is dead. John goes to check it out. With Guy driving the getaway car and Robin on overwatch, he pretends to be a cop and checks the corpse.
  • Sergei however reanimates and attacks him. John shoots him through the temple (and out the other). Black slime oozes from the wound as Segei throws him across the room. John manages to escape Sergei to the street. As he leaps into Guy’s car, Sergei jumps on the back. Guy shakes him and they toss a molotov (thanks to Preparedness) at him for good measure.
  • The team reassembled at the hotel. John showers. Examining some of the dirt from the corpse, they learn he likely was at Brigovic’s warehouse. Also the black slime seems to be a bacterial mass, specifically containing the black plague.
  • At that point the hacked lobby cameras (Electronic Surveillance) alert them to the authorities arrival.
  • As Robin and John sneak out the back, they notice Madison and her allies waiting for them. A rooftop chase ensues: from fire escape to rooftop, down a storm drain and through a market, before the pair get some bicycles and head fro the meet site.
  • They lose Madison early with another Molotov and Preparedness roll.
  • Guy wanders out, trying not to attract attention (and uses Preparedness to wipe the hotel video). He then races to meet the others, just missing them at the market. He instead finds Madison at the meet and drifts into hit her. She takes a lot of damage and ends up underneath his Audi.
  • John spots the trouble and Guy floors it going nowhere. Madison begins to lift the car and he ducks out, cutting the fuel line along the way. As Guy calmly walks away, John ignites the gas, killing Madison and destroying the car.
  • Robin snatches Madison’s phone and with Preparedness takes a limb (with an axe and heat resistant clothing). They then escape into the city.
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Post Mortem
  • With John hunting down a lead of his own, the rest of the team take a train across Italy and then a ferry to Corsica.
  • In transit Scarlet and Robin investigate a suspicious delivery van. Some quick cell phone investigation (and Criminology spend) turns up that the men in the cab are “Lefty” Rico and Bronco, Italian hit men associated with the Serbian mob.
  • In the vehicle bay, Robin watches the men (plus a third) talk. Lefty seems worried about something in the van. After Lefty and Bronco head upstairs, she sneaks up to van. She spots a werewolf inside and it smells her. As it bursts its chains, she shuts the door and finds cover.
  • Up above, Scarlet attempts to impersonate a German tourist but fails to blend in. As a rain storm moves in, she is spotted and Lefty grabs her. She quickly escapes heading down below.
  • As Scarlet hits the fire alarm, Robin targets the gas tank a nearby car as the werewolf escapes. The blast burns it badly and wounds Lefty as he hurries after Scarlet. He warns Bronco to remember the word and then fires at the women.
  • Scarlet shoots and kills Lefty while Bronco is torn apart by the werewolf. The sprinklers turn on.
  • The werewolf charges them and a pair of sailors who came down to deal with the fire. Robin gets bruised up and a sailor dies before the ebast is taken down by close range gun fire.
  • Scarlet grabs the dogtags from the body and a sample of its blood.
  • Robin grabs some notes from van (aided by a fire extinguisher she retroactively grabbed via Preparedness)
  • After a comedy of failures to avoid officials, the pair escape police scrutiny and reach the safe house (it involved a successful Disguise by Scarlet, a failure by Robin plus a failure to hide. she is saved by a rumor about speedboat created by her companion)

Werewolf intel

  • The body was that of a man, heavily modified by surgery and drugs. Signs of adrenaline and steroid abuse were present.
  • Dog tags identify him as Sgt. Patrick McDermott, a former navy SEAL. He was connected to Madison Smith’s unit.
  • Some chemistry work allowed them to concoct drug regime to counter act the artificial adrenaline in the creature’s system.

Going Forward

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After mapping out connections, the team decided that targeting Danilo Brigovic would yield the most intel for the least work. With Scarlet hanging back to pour over the laptop contents, John and Scarlet geared up for a return trip to Belgrade.

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The Call
  • Madison Smith is noted as John’s personal nemesis.
  • As the agents review the data at hand, Robin gets a call on her burner phone. The caller Josef Lisky, head of the Lisky Bratva, wants the laptop and agrees to pay 200 euro each for it. They agree to meet his agent, a vor named Foma Zivanoviv, at One Beirut in two nights.
  • Scarlet investigates the Bratva via Lennart’s laptop. With Accounting help from Robin she learns a couple items:
    • The dossier connects the Lisky Bratva’s funding to the conspiracy, and suggests that a lot of their cash comes out of Odessa.
    • „Accounting traces clear connections between the conspiracy, the Lisky Bratva and the Black Sea Bank. The takeover of the Koernersbank is seen by most commentators as a bizarre misstep by the Black Sea Bank, with some speculating that the BSB is trying to buy respectability and a toehold in Switzerland. Certainly, the move makes little financial sense.
  • After flagging those sections in her copy of the computer, she installs a tracer program on laptop.
  • Robin scopes the club, using Architecture to gain pool of 9 points to spend when dealing with infiltration, combat or escaping the building. We also establish that (via a Criminology spend) that she knows Foma and his tells.
  • Two night later they go to the club. Robin goes in alone, meets with Foma, reveals via video the laptop, and get half of the payment wired. As the others enter the club, Scarlet (via a lucky Sense Trouble notes incoming attackers (one of whom has a bomb vest) and warns Robin.
  • Robin checks that the Russians were not aware and then escapes through a window, grabbing a light and swinging down to the second story rail from the VIP room. she then dismounts from the rail to the dance floor. All in a miniskirt. She gets an Athletics refresh.
  • Then there is an explosion. An athletics roll is made to avoid damage from debris. They spend their pool. Only Robin takes any damage.
  • As Robin escapes out through the sewers, others move out with the crowd. They spot and evade searchers by ducking down an alley and hiding in a garage (found via Human Terrain spend)
  • As they hide, they overhear the men discuss how their boss Asif Amjad, ex-explosives expert for ISIS, will be upset. But they seem more afraid of someone called “the Bride.”
  • They then retrieve the jeep from meet site A, drive to site B, grab Robin, and then pick from their many escape options. Ditching their plan to fly to Morocco, they take a boat to Cyprus. They have Hot Lead 5.
  • From there they take a charter to Athens. At the airport, they hack the security camera and lay down a false trail (Electronic Infiltration contest).
  • They drive north to Albainia, ditch and clear the vehicle, and take train north. Hot Lead 7.
  • (Failing a pursuit roll) On the train they are attacked by goons. Robin hears them coming and sets up an ambush.
  • Robin throws pack into lead goon, surprising him (investigative spend of infiltration). John unload shotgun into goon, Scarlet also fires. Robin does support, spraying fire extinguisher into hall (investigative spend of shooting to boost Hit thresholds by 1) and turning off lights quickly (investigative spend of athletics to do the same).
  • Once most are down, Robin grabs one as a mook shield and does second attack at goon with machine gun. The return fire is mostly absorbed by the now dead goon.
  • John Intimidates the last one into surrendering. They learn the contact info for his boss.
  • They then ditch the train and steal a boat, since John remembers he can Pilot a boat. They escape to Italy. Hot Lead 9.
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(S)Entries , Part II
  • Anton turns the tables on Scarlet, escapes and attempts to capture her. She manages to evade him and rejoins the others.
  • After patching themselves up at Serge Milic’s safe house, they do some digging. Along the way they try to trace the money trail for their payment. Scarlet messes up and Serbian gangster come for them. Serge is not happy.
  • After escaping the gangsters, Robin uses her contact Zer0 to track down Rubek to Lebanon.
  • Using cover identities they cross the border to Montenegro and then fly to Lebanon.
  • They arrive too late and discover Rubek is already dead. From hotel footage and evidence at crime scene, he was killed by Madison Smith, a supposedly deceased comrade of John’s. She must possess superhuman strength and a poisonous (paralytic) bite.
  • The group finds another safehouse via Scarlet’s contact Peter Yared. There they dig into the laptop and into Brigadier-General Malcolm Lennart himself. They find his mother recently recovered from cancer thanks to the help of Panecea Pharmaceuticals which suggests he might have been leveraged by the Conspiracy.
  • After recovering the SIM card from Georg Rudek’s phone, Scarlet tracks his recent calls to a boat in the Danube in Belgrade. That boat belongs to Danilo Brigovic, a boss in Nasa Stvar.
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(S)Entries
  • Hired by Georg Rudek for parties unknown, Robin, Scarlet and John (all cover identities) agree to steal a laptop from Brigadier-General Malcolm Lennart, a Canadian Air force officer working with the UN.
  • The job goes off without a hitch but as they cross over from Sarajevo to Serbia, they find themselves pursued by a group of bikers, the Night Wolves.
  • Though John does a fair job at the wheel of the Jeep Cherokee, they eventually crash into a barrier. Robin managed to commandeer one of the motorcycles and helps whittle down the gangs numbers.
  • After overpowering and/or killing the remaining bikers, they take the survivor Yoan to interrogate.
  • Yoan reveals the gang (based out of Bulgaria) was directed by their boss Boris (deceased by a good shot by Robin) under orders from their chapter boss Axeman.
  • Having extracted all information, they eliminate Yoan, find and disable the tracking device on the laptop (which is a modified version used by the Canadian Security Intelligence Service), and exchange their jeep for a stolen car.
  • Robin calls the contact number and leaves a message about a change of meet location to a night club she knows well in Belgrade. She also plants burner phone number on the ditched jeep for pursuers.
  • Robin takes them a nearby safe house with surveillance supplies which Scarlet uses to keep an eye on things.
  • Scarlet uncovers Anton’s ambush preparations. Quietly John takes out his sniper while Robin sneaks into Anton’s car and puts a gun to his head. When he resists she underlines her point by stabbing him in the leg.
  • Persuaded Anton directs his goons to leave the money in the club and drive away. Scarlet retrieves it and find it is fake.
  • Under pressure Anton babbles about vampires and claims he no longer has their money.
  • Then Werewolves attack. One savages Scarlet badly while another gives Anton’s BMW a sunroof. John wrestles with a third. Robin and Anton manage to throw theirs on a wrought iron fence while John barely escapes.
  • Robin leaves Anton under the watchful gun of a very hurt Scarlet. She then retrieves John in a second stolen car.
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