Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Advertising Supplement/Drinking Establishments/Mahoney's

Type: Pub

Location: Lower Downtown, Level 7, Bezin Walk

Description: Mahoney's is not at all what you'd expect from a drinking establishment in Lower Downtown. It's clean, dry and despite being filled with an assortment of unsavory types, is extremely quiet and orderly. This well behaved crowd is due to the manager, a Shaktar named Mh'Nhy.

Mh'Nhy was a successful operative, reaching SCL 4C.7 before taking a Black Op in Cannibal Sector 4 that resulted in his near death. For anyone else, the injuries sustained would have resulted in a trip to LAD. As a proud Shaktar, Mh'Nhy felt LAD violated his beliefs. The rest of his squad didn't have the same sentiment and exhausted their medical kits to buy enough time for a proper medical evac. The squad succeeded. When Mh'Nhy awoke nine days later, he found himself alive but scarred and partially lamed in his left leg by the massive injuries. He was furious. He had been cheated out of an honorable death. Even though the Shaktar High Council accepted his newly rendered condition, citing it as evidence of the strength of his ties with his friends, he was shamed. He tendered his resignation with SLA Industries and was subsequently denied. He was ordered to take an extended leave and reconsider his options with the company.

Mh'Nhy decided he would use this time to explore Downtown. For once, he would walk the streets of the city for pleasure instead of duty. While on Level 7, he decided to stop in a bar called Oscar's for refreshment and hopefully some conversation. He found the bar empty except for the owner and namesake, a 67 year old man. Oscar Dervin, just glad to have a customer, called the Shaktar to the bar and started chatting with him like an old friend. Mh'Nhy took a liking to the old man and stayed for a few drinks, eventually excusing himself to use the facilities. During this time, a group of Krosstown Traffic members came in looking to collect some protection money. Oscar explained business was slow and he had nothing to give. The gang members were not pleased and began trashing the bar. Hearing the commotion, Mh'Nhy rushed out and confronted the gang members. Even lamed, one Shaktar Operative is more than a match for eight gang members. However in the ensuing fight, a fire started. The gang members were dispatched, but the bar was burning. By the time the Shivers arrived and extinguished the fire the bar was nearly gutted.

Mh'Nhy was ashamed. By helping, he caused far more damaged than the gang members could have hoped to do. Oscar was heartbroken. He did not have the resources to rebuild the bar and since his apartment was upstairs, he was now homeless. Mh'Nhy knew what had to be done. He offered his own money and help in rebuilding the bar. Oscar thanked him for the offer but said he was too tired and old to start over. He was ready to give up and start collecting his regular 40unis of welfare. Mh'Nhy would not budge. The Shaktar Code dictated he was bound to help this man.

The big ugly lug leaned in close and looked right into my eyes. 'Then you shall not run this bar anymore. It is not fitting that an elder of any race should be made to toil. I shall run this establishment for you. Because of my actions, I will see to it you retire in comfort.' I'll be damned if he wasn't dead serious and good to his word too.

-Oscar Dervin 897SD

Mh'Nhy contacted SLA Industries and the Shaktar High Council to inform them he had found his future with SLA. He would operate a bar Downtown and report any useful intelligence back to SLA. Both groups reluctantly agreed. While it was unlikely any subversives would frequent a bar run by a Shaktar, at least his presence would go a long way toward suppressing the civilian population in the area and cleaning things up in general. Mh'Nhy had one other request. Since the bar was owned by Dervin, he should be made an employee of SLA Industries and provided appropriate housing. A few phone calls and favors cashed in found Oscar with a SCL 11 ID card, a modest income and a warm duplex in Suburbia.

Within a week work crews were brought in and began rebuilding the bar as Oscar had dreamed it. Mh'Nhy worked daily with Oscar to ensure no detail was overlooked. Real wood paneling, leather seats, a kitchen to cook real pub food. The apartment was rebuilt and the building waterproofed. In between construction, Oscar taught Mh'Nhy the basics of running the pub. Mh'Nhy paid for everything. His final gift to the pub was a massive bar, handcrafted of the finest woods and metals from the Shaktar Homeworld. Printed above the door and etched onto the huge mirror over the bar was a message in the four major languages: “All are welcome. All are equal. Within these walls let no hand be raised in anger, lest it be never raised again.” The pub would be a neutral site.

The day of the grand reopening found the old man and Shaktar standing before the pub. Mh'Nhy was angered to find the work crew had left a tarp hanging over the entryway. Testily, Mh'Nhy yanked down the tarp to discover the “Oscar's” sign was gone.

In its place was a sign that said 'Mahoney's.' I faced the old man who was grinning like a child. 'It's only right that a pub be named after him who runs it.' He had the audacity to poke me in the chest. 'You run it now,' he said. 'Problem is your damned Shaktar names are a pisser to pronounce. I figure that's as close as anybody's going to get.' I am not too proud to say I wept at the old man's gesture of kindness. That night I began creating his braid of friendship.

-Mh'Nhy (Mahoney) SCL 4C.7 901SD

Interview reprinted with permission from 3ird Eye News

Oscar would stay on in an advisory capacity, showing Mahoney the ropes and getting the pub up to speed. Business was understandably slow at first. Civilians were afraid to go into a pub run by an Operative. However, Mahoney made it clear that the pub was totally safe. While within the walls of the pub, neutrality reigned and was rigidly enforced. Regardless of any differences among the patrons, violence of any kind was not permitted. Any violation would result in a lifetime ban from the pub as well as a report to the Shivers. It took a couple of weeks for word to get out. The result was nothing short of remarkable. A visitor to the pub could very well see Operatives sitting with Tek Trex employees or members of rival gangs having a friendly game of darts. The bar is even quiet enough to enjoy the live music that plays most nights. The quiet is due to the other rule at Mahoney's There are no secrets. Mahoney made it perfectly clear to his customers that anything said in the club is fair game to be reported to the proper authorities. Known subversives and wanted criminals would likewise be immediately reported.

Patrons love it. It is one of the only places Downtown to get away from the insanity of life on Mort and be as safe as anyone can hope to be.

Oscar still comes down and tends bar for a couple hours each day, chauffeured to the pub in his custom Augustus. You see, Mahoney makes sure his friend gets a large cut of the profits on top of his “salary.” The two can often be seen sitting in their private booth sharing drinks and laughs. Oscar is never seen without Mahoney's Braid of Friendship. Mahoney lives contentedly in the modest apartment above the pub.

Monday, October 19, 2009


Issuing Department: Enquiries
Color Code:BLUE
BPN #: DT/542999/GA
Surveillance: Third Eye News
Squad/Operative Undertaking: Team Spartan
Date Issued/Date Completed: 10/16/902, 10/19/902

- Squad dispatched to Level 7 of Lower Downtown to follow up on reports of increased gang activity in area.
- Undercover activity determined that gang "Red Rain" was attempting to increase area of operation.
- Intelligence gathered by squad indicated a large Red Rain presence scheduled for 20:50 10/18/902.
-Squad established an ambush for scheduled meeting time.
-Gang members arrived as scheduled.
-Ambush successful. 32 Red Rain members neutralized or incapacitated.
-Shivers called in for clean-up and detention of survivors.
- Squad continued patrol until the end of required time.

Collateral Damage to SLA Property:MODERATE. Firearms discharged in a civilian area. Multiple applications of Ebon Bomb ability by Operative Obsession. Extensive damage to intersection of Sacco and Clemson. Damage mitigated by level of potential resistance.

Squad Fatalities:None.

Conclusion:Shivers reported sharp decrease in gang activity after squad patrol. BPN satisfactorily completed. Individual payout: 202c/Operative. SCL +0.1/Operative.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Advertising Supplement/Beverages/Product Review/Popskull Coffee

Popskull Coffee is the name brand of a line of canned, self-heating coffees. Simply pull the tab, and a chemical reaction occurs that safely heats the contents until the drink is piping hot. Popskull is most famous for the absolutely fantastic amounts of caffeine and other stimulants they pack into each can. To the uninitiated, a can of Popskull is a potentially traumatic experience. Mind-splitting headaches and audio/visual hallucinations are not uncommon for first time drinkers.

Why has Popskull become so popular since its creating back in 898SD? It works. People don't drink Popskull for subtle nuances of flavor. Nothing keeps you going on a drawn out White BPN like a can or two of Popskull. You can be sure that any Shiver Sleeper APC is going to be well stocked. Every dorm in Meny has at least one Popskull vending machine in the lounge.

Popskull? Oh man, holy shit, yeah! I mean that stuff is like anti-Drum! Wow! I can get twice the work done with a steady supply! Have you tried it? It's like anti-Drum! I mean just the other day I was on a BPN and..wait, what were we talking about? Popskull Coffee? Oh man, holy shit, yeah!

- Harsh, Brain Waster, SCL 10A.3

With tongue firmly planted in cheek, they named their coffees after medical conditions that cause severe head and face pain. Their inventory currently consists of six styles, with special flavors rotating in and out seasonally.

Subarachnoid Hemorrhage – Hearty Dark Roast

Orgasmic Cephalalgia – Caramel Latte

Chiari 1 Malformation – Cappuccino

Basilar Migraine – Espresso

Trigeminal neuralgia – Double Espresso

Temporal Arteritis – Classic Mild Roast

Popskull comes in a self-heating twelve ounce can and costs 2 credits/can.

Popskull Coffee is a subsidiary of Itztrong Beverages, a wholly owned subsidiary of SLA Industries

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Intelligence Report/Soft Company/TRIAD


Type: Independent Soft Company

Products/Services: Mercenary Squads

Company Line: Tactics - Recon - Infiltration - Assault - Defense

Public Information: TRIAD has only recently gained Soft Company status. Very little is known about this organization, which is quite bothersome to SLA. TRIAD is a Prop team. Generally SLA doesn't make a huge fuss over solo Props. Props generally want nothing to do with each other. Often they end up inadvertently helping SLA handling issues Downtown that Shivers can't be bothered with and Monarch aren't capable of handling. What is alarming to SLA is when Props start working in groups. A single Prop, though well trained and equipped, is generally no match for a seasoned Operative. When you have a squad of Props, solo Ops are suddenly outmatched and Operative Squads find themselves with a serious threat on their hands. Another point of concern is the question of from where is TRIAD is getting its Props? There doesn't seem to be any change in the current Prop population aside from normal attrition. All the regular faces like Spooky, Bane Root and Red Harvest are still at large. In fact, the “regular” Prop population is pissed about TRIAD:

It's a bunch of bullshit. People are running to TRIAD because they can hire out a full squad instead of one Prop at a time. Dumbasses see those flash uniforms and think that means quality work. Those plonkers are taking money out of my pocket! Free market, my ass.

-Ground Chuck (Prop)

SLA Intelligence: TRIAD has things that have Props mad and Shivers nervous. TRIAD has a standard kit for all of its Props. The standard TRIAD squad wears armor equivalent to HARD armor and carry 10mm automatic rifles. What's of particular concern in the armor and weapons don't appear to be of SLA or DarkNight manufacture. Recovered hardware shows that SLA and DarkNight technology are being used, but the overall construction is being done by a third party. While weapons and armor are third party, other equipment (medkits, communicators, etc.) are salvaged and repurposed SLA and DarkNight gear.

According to intel, TRIAD does not hire out individual members. The smallest available unit is the “Fire Team” of three Props. There have been confirmed reports of squads as large as twelve in the field. Prices for TRIAD tend to be a bit higher, with 200u/squad member being average. Prices can go much higher if heavier armor or weapons are requested/required or if the job is particularly risky. TRIAD's members are highly skilled and motivated and are well versed in small unit tactics. TRIAD's base of operations is currently unknown. They do not operate out of the Depth Charge and regular Props have been quite clear that TRIAD members attempting entry will be in for a violent welcome.

SLA has dispatched a team of Dark Finders into Downtown to locate and disrupt TRIAD operations. Several White BPNs are in the works to do the same.

Employees: Unknown. Estimated between 25-100.

Facilities: Unknown. Size of organization would indicate necessity of a base of operations.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Entertainment/Magazine/Uptown Woman/Interview

The Mouth That Roared:
An Uptown Woman Interview With 3ird Eye's Rita Hurley

Rita Hurley graduated from Meny with a Media Package in 899SD. She joined two fellow graduates and formed the Operative Squad “The Blue Deuce Trio.” Hurley acted as the squad's camera operator and medical support. Her camera skills were shaky at best, bad enough to earn the nickname “Hurl-O-Vision” among her Third Eye controllers. However, she did have two things going for her: she was very pretty and could talk endlessly. Her running commentaries during BPNs gained an almost cult-like following. Betting to see how long she could talk before taking a breath was common in the Third Eye control room. Unfortunately, her combat skills were a bit lacking. She was always so focused on her commentary she became a liability to the squad. Hurley was forever giving away their position with her constant chatter. Undercover operations were totally impossible. After a handful of BPNs, Hurley was asked to leave The Blue Deuce Trio.

Third Eye, seeing raw talent and a modicum of potential offered Hurley a low-level position in the news room. Hurley would work mostly as an errand girl, running coffee and copies for the front line employees. She stagnated there for a couple years until she miraculously managed a scoop on a DarkNight insurgent living undercover in her apartment building. Operative squad “Team Spartan” was on Blue BPN in her building when the insurgent, fearing blown cover, opened fire on the Operatives. The insurgent was quickly neutralized. Hurley, sensing opportunity, grabbed her camera and set up an impromptu interview with the squad.

She showed the report to her superiors at Third Eye, who gave her a break and a 20 second spot on the evening news. Team Spartan would eventually set up a deal with Hurley, ensuring their team's camera footage would always go to her first. Hurley now had a fairly regular supply of solid combat footage and Team Spartan had an advocate in Third Eye. Hurley has risen on the ranks, now commanding as much as 90 seconds for her reports. As long has first dibs on juicy footage from a charismatic, up-and-coming squad, her career can only improve.
Uptown Woman caught Rita Hurley in a rare moment of downtime and put her on the other side of the microphone to discuss her big break and her relationship with Team Spartan.

Let's start with the scoop that gave you your break with Third Eye.

RH: It was totally nuts! I was doing some post-production for a couple of fluff pieces on my oyster when I heard gunfire down the hall. I'll be honest; I hid in the tub until the noise stopped. Then I grabbed my Ronker and went out to film the aftermath.

UW: And that's when you got the interview?

RH: Not just then. Fiddich, the squad's Frother, was still totally whacked out of his skull on UV. When the Shivers showed up, he went after one and they had to Hotline him. I just filmed the DarkNight's body until things cooled down.

UW: What did you think when you approached the squad for an interview?

RH: I was pretty nervous. They were still pretty worked up from the fight. Their squad leader, Obsession, is this Ebon who do I put it? She's beautiful beyond description. I'm sure you've seen her on the vid by now. Then there was Craig Ferguson. He was all guns and attitude but you could tell that was just a game face. Last was Glen Fiddich. He was still a bit twitchy from the Hotline and coming down off UV. He might as well have had a flashing “DANGER” sign over his head.

UW: How did you finally talk to them?

RH: Just looking at this squad, I could tell they would make great video. I just took a breath and asked Fiddich for an interview.

UW: We all saw the piece; he wasn't very talkative, was he?

RH: (Laughs) No. I've found he generally isn't. Glen's not like most Frothers you see on the vid. When he's not juiced for combat, he's very quiet and reserved. If you can get a handful of words out of him, you're pretty lucky.

So the Frother wasn't talking. Amazing. Who was next?

RH: I tried Ferguson. It was really cute, you could tell he was trying so hard to look tough for the camera. He was nice enough, but he lacked...(frowns and looks to the ceiling)


RH: Exactly! Cookie cutter Strike Squad. There was no doubt he was good at his job, but gunheads are 10 unis a dozen on Mort.

Why hadn't you approached Obsession? Why not start with the team leader?

RH: Oh my God. I was so intimidated by her. Her looks literally take your breath away.

UW: Until she opens her mouth.

RH: (Laughs) I know! I think Ferguson had said something she didn't like, because she laid into him hard enough to make a Waster blush! Then there was the bandoleer of coffee.

UW: A bit of a caffeine addict?

RH: (Shrugs) Not my place to say. She just might really like coffee. She had about a dozen self-heating cans in a bandoleer slung over her shoulder. As soon as the fighting stopped, she cracked a can.

UW: You must have hit it off with the squad. They won't give any footage to Third Eye unless it goes through you first.

RH: I was blown away when they requested that. There was no doubt in my mind they were going to be big and they wanted me as their mouthpiece. When they got a Financier, they even instructed him to deal solely with me as far as media coverage went.

UW: What does the future look like for you and Team Spartan?

RH: Amazing. They've made some changes to the squad. They picked up K'Dgh, a Shaktar, and Tawna, a Wraith. The Shaktar is one those Sector Rangers, so we can hope for some great footage from the Cannibal Sectors. They've already pulled off a couple of high profile BPNs and even worked with Symbiote on a joint operation.

UW: That can only be good for their image. And it looks like Ferguson has left the squad?

RH: Not exactly. He's on a “medical leave.” The squad hasn't told me what that means and his files are sealed.

UW: Well, if anyone can find out, I'm sure Team Spartan's personal media liaison can.

RH: I hope so. I love those guys. We've been nothing but good for each other's careers.

UW: Thanks so much for you time. Best of luck to you and Team Spartan.

RH: You're quite welcome! It's been a real pleasure!

Copyright 902 Uptown Woman Magazine. All rights reserved.