2019-07-24 - Building A Better Mousetrap


London brings news of a new threat. Another day in SHIELD.

Log Info:

Storyteller: None
Date: Wed Jul 24 04:19:18 2019
Location: Mind Machine Interface Unit

Related Logs


Theme Song



"I hear the choppers comin', they're flyin' overhead. They come to get the wounded. They're leavin' with the dead. Airboooooooooorne. Rangeeeeeeers. Lead the way." That is the sound Jeriah London coming down the hallway toward The Mind-Machine Interface Unit, occasionally known among the tactical personnel as the Skynet Unit.

He is not, fortunately, singing that song at full volume like it is traditionally sung and he is not doing the little chants that go with it. He is, however, walking to the beat whilst half calling cadence and half humming to himself. Old habit.

At least he's not doing 'Columbo'.

Knock knock. "Harper? DeHaven? Simmons?" Still with the last names. That too is habit. "Someone at the front desk told me you'd be back here. Anyone home?" This time he doesn't seem to have any of those big dogs with him. This time, also, he's not dressed in tactical gear. It's still kind of military. Black tee shirt with a logo on the left front chest and a bigger version on the back (A snarling robotic dog's head), boots and work pants. No weapons though. Or, no visible weapons anyway. He's got a pair of thick leather gloves tucked into his belt. He may have been working in the shop again.

Which would explain why he smells like flux.

Jemma is in the Mind-Machine Interface Unit and actually looks quite drained. She's been working long hours, no doubt about that, but she *has* been trying to sleep. She's been experiencing some pretty lucid nightmares - some of that Kelly might have caught on their link between them.

The biochem came in here not too long ago, looking for Kelly. Right now though, she's staring at the door as Jeriah walks in. "Mister London." It's tart and polite. Like she has been with him since he tried to hack her … twice.

Kelly Dehaven wasn't in the lab, she was out getting some lunch. She returns, chopsticks shoving noodles into her mouth as she walks through the door to find hey! People. Slurrrrp. Chew. Swallow. "Oh. Hi!" She says, her cheerfulness a bit strained. She glances around. "Did I miss a meeting invite?" She doesn't usually do that, what with being mentally connected to her calendar…

Kelly heads over to her workstation, so she can put down her pad thai and wipe her mouth with a napkin. "Tell me there's not a crisis."

There's a crisis. There's totally a crisis. See, Roy was out on the streets, and he came across this box. And this box, well..

Roy's arriving in the lab currently carrying a small bundle in his hands. When he shows up in the lab that he knows Kelly's in, there's a grin towards the woman as he holds out his hands. What has he found in the box??

A small Russian Blue kitten, not bigger than the palm of his hand, with green eyes, much like Kelly's. "It was the runt of the litter." he's explaining. "I mean, last one in the box, and I just couldn't leave it, and I thought you know, I'd bring it to you.. and you'd be…."

"Oh, hey, Jemma, uh.. London, right? Or was it Istanbul now?" he asks, a lift of his brow, before he coughs, realizing this is awkward as he presents the kitten with the haphazrd bow around it's neck to Kelly.

"…anyway, I thought you'd be.."

"…Feline the connection." Because she's a cyborg-tele-connector. Get it?

"Still London." The merc says as he leans in the door frame. "Doc Simmons. How's the head?" If she's still sore at him for breaking into her mind… well, okay that's probably fair. But he can't resist all the same.

"And now there's a cat. Is it a lab cat or a house cat or… you know… lunch?" He's been places where that option is, as it were, on the table.

"No, no crisis unless one counts a cat. And no meeting invitation. I'm getting up to speed on what you folks are doing or at least as much as anyone would tell me and since I am waiting for several hundred pounds of metal to cool off I thought I'd come down here and ask if anything came of those drugs I offered up. And also what the hell is up with the drugs to begin with? 'Cause SHIELD still absolutely hasn't told me why finding them was enough for them to buy out my contract, stuff me on a quinnjet and fly me nonstop here to talk to you three. You… one. You… Okay I'm really not clear on how many of you there are. Can we just go with the number of bodies present?"

Are they a hive mind? They really hadn't clarified that. At all.

Not a hive mind as far as Jemma is concerned. Kelly had firewalled the connections fairly well. "Hello Kelly, I was hoping for a consult … I've having some pretty lucid nightmares and I'm hoping my implants are ok… since you know, someone hacked them."

Flat look at Jeriah for that. "My head … we're going to find out."

The big thing with Jemma's transformation is that no one knows the side effects. Highly experimental would be an understatement.

"Hello Roy. At least it's not Bezas." The small russian blue gets a look from the biochem. Not really a cat person, she's not. The pun though, does elist a groan.

"I'll let Roy explain about the drugs."

Kelly Dehaven gives Roy a skeptical look as he comes in with the box, because he's entirely too smiley. Peeking in there is the tiny kitten and she blinks at it. Then blinks at Roy. "Please tell me this isn't a zombie kitten." She says so very seriously.

The redhead reaches in to lift the kitten out, cooing at it a bit. At least until Roy's pun. She gives him a pained look and nods to her workbench. "Sit. EAT." OK, it's her lunch but clearly he needs it more.

London just gets a confused look from Kelly as he tries to figure out if there's one or three of them. "What *are* you going on about?" She gently scritches the kitten as she goes over next to Jemma and starts to pull up some diagnostic displays on the screens, feeding it data from the cyborg's implants over the last week while she lets Roy talk to London about the drugs.

Even as Kelly commands him, Roy goes over to take a seat. The kitten remains in the box for now, as he looks down at it. "It's not you, kit, it's me." he promises it, before his attention returns to the conversation at hand. He reaches for the fork, then stops himself. Work. Concentrate.

"So this drug calls itself Thunderbolt. First popped up in Afghanistan, where apparently it was being field tested by the Taliban, ISIS, what have you. Anyway, from what we've seen, stuff's stupid powerful."

"It rewrites you on the DNA level. From what we've seen so far? Makes you super strong and able to take a hell of a beating, while shoving you into such a euphoric state that even Florida Man would be envious." Because clearly Florida Man exists, right?

"What they don't mention is the side effect which seems to be a rough fifty fifty shot that the drug will literally melt your brain and cause it to leak out your face." he shrugs his shoulders. "Monkey Paw's revenge type stuff. Speaking on monkies, seems to be made from the fluid of the Madripoorian Spider Monkey, thought to be extinct. And there's only one place to find them."

"So who wants to take a guess at how many things you need to be vaccinated against before travelling to Madripoor? Or you know, how much fun you can have in one night? Puts Bangkok to shame."

"You three are linked, DeHaven or that was what I was told last time. And I'm still unclear if you're all sort of together in a big mental stew or are still separate people."

That's kind of a good question isn't it? Roy and Jemma would certainly probably say they're separate people but are they? Are they really they're all linked in through Kelly's head? And who, after all, is in charge of that little triad?

London tracks the cat with his eyes, and notes when Kelly starts to examine Jemma's data. Then, however, Roy is speaking and he focuses back on the archer.

"The stuff I intercepted looked like it was going to be peddled to local Brits. Makes me wonder what for though. If you were a bad kind of person you wouldn't want to empower the folks who were most likely to try to stop you. However I suppose if it's side effects are lethal that might be considered a benefit. Wouldn't be the first time folks in that part of the world have tried that…"

"So how are they getting spider-monkey juice from a species of dead monkey, then? I take it that Madripoor is a major source of the stuff if not THE major source? I'm guessing you have to have more than the standard deployment medical package for going there. And I'm guessing the locals don't take government travel cards."

He seems to chew on that info for a few minutes. "Sorta makes the next thing I came here for a little bit more disturbing. I got some info from a friend of mine. Bit of a drug deal, but it works."

Drug deal. That's grunt slang for 'acquiring something through unofficial channels.' He might not be aware of the unfortunate connotations that has for Roy.

Jemma shares a look with Kelly as she coos at the kitten. Jemma might not be a cat person, but that's kind of cute. The bow, the cooing … all of that. "Thank you. You could have had lunch. I would have come back." she says quietly as Kelly starts to test her implants.

The data is interesting. It looks normal but Kelly will see that there's extra bits there. Where there should be spaces, it's being filled in. Extra information being written in.

"It seems the brilliant scientists of Madripoor have been able to clone the extinct creatures. Think mosquito in amber, Mister London." Jemma adds "I'm working on synthesizing an antidote for the affected from a sample that Roy was able to obtain. Ultimately, what we want to do is shut down their lab - this is a finite resource and destroying it, removing the monkeys will put a dent in their operations."

"Well, I wish I'd seen the clone instead of the *zombie* monkey." Kelly complains with a mock-shudder. "The smell *still* lingers." So, so icky. The kitten continues to get scritched with a finger while Kelly listens to the conversation.

The redhead has to turn her head to frown over at London as he insinuates they're a hive-mind. "If you make a conference call, are you suddenly a single organism, Mr. London? No, I don't think so. Besides, if we were a singular entity Roy wouldn't be surprising me with kittens and Jemma wouldn't be having dreams on her own."

"Speaking of witch… Did they recycle your hardware?" Kelly looks over at Jemma with some concern. "It looks like you've got old data popping up here…"

"Unless, you know, Kelly put it in my head that she really wanted a kitten. And then I went out, found some poor schmuck on craigslist that happened to have said kitten that she wanted, murdered them, hid the body, stole the kitten and came up with the perfect groan incuding pun." Roy responds. That's for mentioning a drug deal. His mind doesn't like those things.

"And think of it this way. You get a bunch of people running around super-doped and causing mayhem, the police are gonna concentrate on them. There's nothing more dangerous than someone that just discovered their powers and don't know how to control them yet. I heard that in some briefing once." Probably when he infiltrated the Friends of Humanity, but he's not going too deep on that one.

"So yeah, kill the monkies, kill the pill. And Jemma's working on an antidote, so Bob's your uncle, we may have a breakthrough soon. Anyway, what do you have?"

"Did you?" Do all that stuff he just said. London looks at Roy very intently for a moment before levering himself off the door frame and going over to one of the empty work stations.

"Hope you don't mind, while I'm bringing this up, though, take a look at this…" The mercenary tosses something on the table with a clatter. It's a folding bow. A VERY techy one but instead of the place where you should be able to nock an arrow, there's a small knob like device. It would very much get in the way of a real arrow, but it is perfectly lined up with a circular hole in the bowframe.

"Point, Doctor DeHaven, I suppose. It just seems odd to me. I mean, I link to my drones, or to computers but neither of those things have minds of their own. Er, well, mostly." Everyone present has seen the pooches act like, well, pooches.

"By the way you've mentioned a zombie monkey twice now? And apparently zombie does NOT mean clone?" He glances back over his shoulder first at Kelly then at Jemma. Zombie?

"Anyway it does sound like we have a plan Roy. But I might have a wrinkle for it. This footage was picked up by a Mossad station in southeast Asia."

Kelly can very likely sense when Jeriah connects to the workstation, it's on the network after all and she's plugged into it. And she can sense when he loads the file and hits play. The footage is low quality. It shows a jungle and several soldiers in what are Malaysian uniforms firing on something in it. Something with the profile of a man. And a bow. A bow that seems to shoot some kind of plasma bolt.

"That figure is some kind of unregistered combat android. It took out forty malaysian soldiers operating against local cartels before being brought down with an anti-tank missile. The station logged a lot of wireless traffic in the area and it kind of looked… like… this…"

When the graph of the traffic comes up there's only one thing it looks like. A computer, being driven by an organic brain.

"I think, Harper, that someone is sufficiently irked with you that they've decided the best way to fight fire, is with fire."

"My implants? Some of them would have been modelled from previous Death Loks. So, possibly? The centipede serum that used to stop the necrosis, was a modified version that was developed from samples of the others as well." Given the Death Lok protocols were supposed to be used on the dead and Jemma hadn't died, who knows what complications have been introduced from an already complicated situation.

"That does look like new data though. Are the implants giving you anything by way of diagnostics?" They aren't. They're operating just fine.

"Roy bought us a zombie monkey. We conjecture that the cloning process wasn't fast enough." Kelly might add to that explanation, Jemma's frowning at the footage.

"That's brainwaves from an organic brain." There's horror in her voice as she makes the leaps of logic. Kelly will get all this - the way Jemma's mind makes though logic connections. "That's an android with an organic brain and it's … it's what… "

She really doesn't want to think that on top on everything else they have, they now have an android archer gunning for Roy.

"When was this taken, Mister London?"

"Would the serum be able to carry memories? That doesn't sound right.." Kelly says, pulling up other bits of data to try to cross-reference things when London taps into her system. She gives him a Look and shoves a .gif file back up the pipe at him, a little girl from an old TV show putting hands on hips and going 'Rude!' that takes up most of his HUD. And repeats. And repeats.

London will be able to get rid of it without too much trouble though, as Kelly gets distracted by the *other* items on his network. Hey, he went and connected up to hers. She 'pokes' at the pooches, looking over their OS. The android archer? She'll catch up in a bit. Puppies! The new kitten needs a noble steed.

"You know.. SHIELD likes to recycle - what if it recycled a past Death Lok? I mean, gross, but.." Roy shrugs his shoulders, starting to say more when London brings up the footage. Reaching into his side pocket, he pulls out a Slim Jim to chew on - Kelly's lunch forgotten as he watches the footage.

"Oh. Man." he says, eyes wide. "I am putting /that/ on my Christmas list. It can clean the house and go out and bust up bad guys and I can finally catch up on my Overwatch. It's even got a brain! We can call it Mister Chips!"

If immitation is the sincerest form of flattery - making an evil robot you is downright awesome!

"No onboard ogranics, Doc…" Jeriah corrects. "It was being controlled remotely, hence the spike in traffic. But we do believe that it was being controlled by an organic based computer and I have never seen anyone use anything like that before. A bit different from my implants. I'm talking about vat growing a brain and turning it into a processor."

Wait. Wait that might sound familiar to Kelly.

If Jeriah seems a bit distracted it's because he is. He has to try several things to clear that gif and by the time he has Kelly has gotten into his drone system and opened up the OS files. And found the feature that lets people ride them. Because yes, they're that big and they're fast. So they can be used for that.

"Oh hell, DeHaven what are you-"

Clackclacklacklacklacklacklacklacklacklacklacklacklacklack. DOG! It tries to halt on the polished floor but winds up sliding straight toward Roy, spinning full three sixty as it does and banging hard into the table leg right next to him with a huge amount of noise.

"-doing…" Jeriah sighs. Is the dog damaged… no. Is Roy damaged? Doesn't look like it. Is his lunch damaged.

Oh… dear.

"It'll cook and clean for you sure. If you can convince it not to burn you to a crisp with that thing…" He gestures at the energy bow on the table.

"This footage is almost a week old. The parts were taken in by the local government. Don't ask how I wound up with the bow, best that you not know."

Jemma bites down on the retort to use her name but stops. Kelly might feel it though, the spike associated with that. "I'll have to investigate how they synthetized the serum. The store of it is minimal and they had to modify it for use in the living. No one really knew how it worked to begin with." Talk about ick. "They might have Roy. A horrifying thought but there's been a few." Jemma had thought they were all in service still.

Oh she wants to know how London got that bow. Very much but there's other things to worry about. Like that Dog. "Can't you control them." It's a sharp retort to the merc who's now part of their team. "I suppose you're going to need more time in the engineering shop."

"If that's a week old… Roy, can you take point on that. Find out everything you can and where it might be. That's another complication we're dealing with."

Welcome to SHIELD! Don't let the crisises hit you in the face.

Well. Now Kelly's lunch is on the floor. Or was, as the pooch seems interested in gobbling it down and has managed to get the container lodged on one ear like a hat. It's… not attractive.

Kelly pulls the kitten closer to her chest protectively as there's that big crash and gives London big, innocent green eyes. "What? *You* connected up to *my* network." She points out. "And really, there are easier ways to do that. *Why* do you have some many of the subroutines running autonomously?" London might want to disconnect from the network before she starts fiddling around.

Y'know. More.

Roy sidesteps when the dog comes rushing in - but unfortunately, he cannot save Kelly's lunch. It's lost to the floor. "Eh.. oops." he manages, looking chagrined at the deceased meal. And then Jemma's speaking to him. "Oh sure…"

But that bow. Oh man. He could do so much with that.

It may even put all his trick arrows to shame. He could finally be worth a damn.

He may have been able to protect Lian.

It's that last thought that hits the other two in his connection the hardest as he pulls up, stiffening. "I have some things I need to look into, if that's going to be an issue. I'll see you tonight, Kelly." Gracing her cheek with a quick kiss, he gives the dog a pat as he's retreating - quickly.

"I connected to SHIELD's network. Your network is in there." Jeriah points to Jemma's head as Roy heads out. He does give the man a nod and walks over to pull the dog off the food. "Ew. Now I have to clean that."

To answer both questions about his drones he just shrugs a little. "My systems aren't designed for the number of connections I have, so the drones are semi autonomous. Which means that sometimes they act like real dogs. To the point of eating food off the floor. Which is obnoxious because I certainly didn't program them that way."

So why do they do it? Good question.

"They behave when I'm paying attention to them th- what ARE you doing?"

He hasn't disconnected yet but he is seriously thinking about it.

Someone has to clean up. Jemma starts that process. It's not nice, but someone has to do it. Besides it lets her think on the problems she's just been presented with.

She doesn't feel the spike from Roy, thanks to Kelly's firewalling. It's London who gets the smirk.

"Turn about is fair play, Mister London. Kelly, don't hurt him. Too much."

"Well, someone's systems suck." Kelly says, smirking over at London.

The smirk doesn't last long though. SHE certainly catches the rush of thoughts, the spike of guilt that comes from Roy. Her gaze follows him out the door as he kisses her cheek, but she doesn't follow. Sometimes, he needs some time alone before he's ready to be reassured.

With a sigh, Kelly brings the 'dog' over towards her so she can put the kitten in a storage compartment between its shoulders that opens. "Be a good drone and keep track of the kitten until it's time to go home, OK Brutus?" She pats the dog and looks over to Jeriah. "No. This lab is as much part of my network as Jemma is." Which is definitely not how that usually works. "I use the computers to do the processor-intensive stuff." Like bleeding off the extra data from Jemma.

"Why are we adding non-standard kittens to my dogs and naming them now?" Jeriah asks rather flatly. But he acquiesces… and disconnects from the network.

"I won't let him eat it." Beat. "Probably. I'll be in the workshop when you want it back."

It. The kitten. Not his dog. At least with him out of the network he's the only one controlling them now.

He is. Isn't he?

"Actually first thing. Let me help you clean that up Simmons. Then back to the workshop."

Where he'll be… well actually, both Jemma AND Kelly might be interested in what he IS doing. After all. How often do they have an augmentics engineer at their disposal. Even one who is self taught?

"Kittens are definitely not in the Tee-Em." He mutters, as he goes to find a broom.

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License