2020-03-15 - Find Me Hound Corpses


After Veronica rolls outside, she calls Ava. RESCUE is going hound-hunting.

Log Info:

Storyteller: None
Date: Sun Mar 15 00:00:00 2020
Location: RESCUE Campus

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As soon as she is outside in the hallway Veronica initiates a call, routed to her smartglasses and her earpiece, connecting to Ops and Communications. "Good afternoon, Karl. I need the Sergeant, please. Thank you."

"Sure thing, Doctor Kelsey. I'll transfer you over to her," the man answers pleasantly before the line silences again for several seconds.

"Posse here," the former sergeant cuts in, with the crispness afforded by their less austere non-tactical phone network and a good noise-canceling microphone.

"Hi, Ava." Veronica offers, identifying herself clearly for her friend and head of security. "I am reporting in. Domino is recovering. Her injuries are not life-threatening, but they are serious. She should be fully operational in a few days, probably up to eighty-five percent in a few hours. Hank is fully recovered physically, though he will have high caloric needs for a day or two." OK. Emergency is now over, everyone is safe.

But Veronica is not done. "Unfortunately, this is part of a bigger problem. First things first, I need a flight of Humblebees deployed over that same zone ASAP. I need to know if the bodies of the hound-like creatures we spotted are still there. If they are, I need us to work on mobilizing a defensible reaction team to that site to recover those bodies, the one in the tunnel, and to make an examination of the tunnel in moderate detail."

Roni takes a breath. She hates saying what she's about to say. But she has to say it. "I need you to make sure they take a full shooting team with them. I have no proof they will be in danger, but I have a very big suspicion they might be, and I REFUSE to lose anyone on this. If necessary, Ava, I will go myself." She wants to send Ava so goddamned badly she can taste it. But she can't. Not YET! SO MUCH TO DO!

There's silence on the other end of the line for several seconds, then Ava unmutes. "Drones on the way," she replies in terse neutrality. "Give me the bottom line up front, Roni. What are you worried for?"

Veronica breathes deeply several times before she speaks. She is way, way worked up. "Hank was tracking those things. But Neena was hired and sent after only one of them, with no idea how bad they were, or how many there were. And the person who gave her the contract has tried to disappear." Tried. Apparently Roni's contacts will be finding that guy's rump whether he likes it or not. "I cannot know why they wanted them hunted, and I am concerned they might have wanted her dead. Or, worse for our team, might want the bodies enough to fight over them. And we need those bodies for intel if we can get them." The emotional tension radiating out of Veronica's voice is … considerable.

"Tactical breath, doc, you lost me," Ava chides lightly, presenting calm in the face of Roni's agitation and, at least by her standards a relaxed tone. "Start further back: what's the risk if we do nothing? What's got you so worked up?"

"There is the potential that there are more - possibly a lot more - of those things, and that they may be able to use the tunnels beneath the Zone to get to the rest of the City of innocent civilians." Veronica answers. There. Ask her a direct question, get a direct answer.

Not the truth, mind you. What has her worked up has only a little to do with that.

"Before you try to lecture me about the military or SHIELD or the Avengers or PCB, remember that we have the skills and the tech to do this, and do this now. Fast. No delays. We don't have time to bring someone else up to speed and convince them to give a damn, take this seriously, and proceed. I am all for information sharing, but we are moving ahead with this." Yeah. Veronica is still very, very worked up. Wound tight.

When it's Ava's turn to reply, the chief of security's voice is firm. "We have neither the skills nor the tech to go dog-hunting or win those corpses in a fight. I'll setup drone teams hauling out the two small ones. A squad of Humblebees can handle the load, and if they get shot down we've just lost money. I'm not spending casualties on those bodies."

"They will go directly into quarantine and the drones will get a full hazard cleaning. The disaster zone is a hot soup of CBRN that's closed for a reason. Whatever made them could have left behind parting gifts."

"I don't want to spend bodies on this, Posse. But there are already losses. Innocent lives." And wow, Veronica is highly invested here. "Send the drones, we assess from there. I have to work on another call. Then I can check on and refurb the drillipedes and the Ramblers and get them ready to redeploy to map that tunnel network." She sighs explosively. "I'll be in my office if you need me." Her office. Not her lab.

"Roger. Be ready to give me the whole story then," is all the security chief answers, and then the line goes dead.

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