Comic 930 - Get more blood

Posted on 13th Apr 2018, 12:52 PM in Shipping Off to Southden
Get more blood

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Author Notes:

Morgenstern 13th Apr 2018, 12:52 PM edit delete
You finish your ice cream, and give Baby Red a pat on the head. ...Er, on the top. Michelle sets the small meat orb back down, and the two of you head to the Mars base for your blood transfusion.

Dr. Finch prints you blood, and you steadily work on converting (at least a significant amount of it) to better blood, like you did with Elizabeth.

You also mention some of the trades you hesitated on--the ones you might still take, but wanted to come back to. ...And some of the questions the tradesmen either couldn't answer, or answered without answering.

"...Interesting," Dr. Finch says in direct response to the tradesmen's comment about Faraday. "So we have what we need... hm. Hm hm hm. I may have to think over this more, then--I was approaching this as though we were still lacking... something, some material, some key element, some Zone Fifty secret perhaps. Knowing that I just need to take what we have and do something different with it... hm. Yes."

You get to the part about trading your eye for the role of the tunnels.

"Nah," Michelle says. "No way. We don't need to know what they're for, we ain't gonna let it get that far to start with."

Dr. Finch nods. "I'm quite sure that as we poke more holes in Thale's plans, the purpose of the tunnels will become apparent regardless. The tradesmen did mention that stopping the tunnel plan involves dealing with the bioprinter problem, yes?"


Dr. Finch nods. "Then Thale plans to use the tunnels to transport said bioprinters, that much seems obvious. Why is a mystery we can live without solving, I suspect, even if it doesn't reveal itself."

You bring up the conundrum of the most useful bunker. Both in terms of resources, and in terms of... something else, maybe.

"No deal," Michelle says. She crosses her arms. "We can get guns. That weird trade-stuff-for-better-stuff ritual might give us all the gun we need. Bulletproof vests ain't expensive. We got money here, and we can get money in Southden. We can buy you more stuffed animals... but we can't replace 'em, y'know what I mean? You already lost one memory from your childhood, I don't want you throwin' another one away. Resources ain't a problem, unless that bunker's got an arrest warrant for Patton Thale hidin' inside."

"To be fair," Dr. Finch says, "not all elements of survival are purely combat related. We've been surprised numerous times already by what Zone Fifty could develop... we could be surprised yet again. On the other hand, the tradesmen did admit themselves that sentimental value is value of a kind--it is entirely your decision whether that's worth giving up in the hope of being surprised."

Dr. Finch adjusts his glasses. "I am... more curious about the other bunker, the one that would allegedly best assist you in defeating Thale. Its asking price is absolutely NOT one we will pay, of course, but... what could possibly be in it? Not resources to help us merely survive... something separate, something distinct. Not a weapon, then. ...Hmm. For the tradesmen to state outright that it's a powerful question..."

Dr. Finch shakes his head, furrowing his brow.

Michelle shrugs. "S'gotta be somethin' huge, I just got no idea what. Maybe Thale's got a self destruct button, or there's a Undo Evil Plans spell scrawled on a bunker wall somewhere. Anyway, it is a bunker, right? So Fuse's program'll get it sooner or later."

Dr. Finch thinks a little more... but then solemnly nods. "True. ...That is true. It may take time, but we'll have cracked that code eventually. I am just... immensely curious what that bunker could house."

"My question," Michelle states, "is what we're gonna do tomorrow. We know what we gotta do to bust Thale's plan--get to the hackers, get to Gargan."

"Or worst case scenario," Dr. Finch adds, "figure out which sections of those tunnels would be most efficient to blockade. Admittedly, that task would be easier if we knew what the tunnels were for. Distribution of bioprinters, surely, but... from where? And where to?"

Michelle exhales slowly. "Thale only really trusts himself, right? What are the odds all the tunnels lead out from Thale Energy? Maybe the idiot's sittin' on his whole supply."

"We should absolutely not be approaching Thale Energy," Dr. Finch says. "Not without serious preparation."

"Oh, hell no," Michelle says. "Nah, that'd be nuts. If we broke in for the printers, we might as well break in and go after Thale. No, I was thinkin' like... if his dumb plans for the tunnels are gonna start there, we just gotta cut off all the main tunnels leadin' out from there. We ain't gotta go into the building itself, we just gotta cut the building off from the rest of the network."

Dr. Finch nods. "That is, of course, assuming that is his plan. Going for that interception and being wrong would only expose ourselves, not to mention the risk. Even the tunnels near his headquarters are likely safeguarded."

"That's all the worst-case, anyway," Michelle points out. "That'd limit the damage, accordin' to the tradesmen. We oughta really be lookin' for the hackers, and figurin' out how to shut down Gargan's operations."

You finish receiving blood.

"For now," Dr. Finch states, "I recommend that we all rest. We can discern the next step and how to go about it tomorrow."

"No matter what we do," Michelle says, "we're gonna need to do more prep, and prob'ly play around with all the weird stuff we're findin'."

You all head back to Bunker A, and you go to bed. And you cuddle your plushies. ...And Willard.

What will you do tomorrow?


Portal In Time 13th Apr 2018, 1:45 PM edit delete reply
Portal In Time
Give our smol rat boy a peck on the head, then ride to the end of the mars tracks.
Twyll 13th Apr 2018, 2:29 PM edit delete reply
I feel like the Mars tracks aren't necessarily the most pressing issue right now. We could possibly build another Sanguine and send him out there, but the Tradesmen seemed to imply that we don't have anything new to discover there, and we DO know that the tunnels, the hackers, and the bioprinters are an imminent threat.

I agree with smooching the smol rat though. And a pat on the... self... for Baby Red too!
a_name 13th Apr 2018, 1:45 PM edit delete reply
I propose blooding some lower-tier animals (rodents, mostly) and use them to scout the tunnels. The tunnels might be huge, but Jane can do this from the comfort of the bunker, as long as she wants. It may take a long time, but she's bound to find something.

To catch the hackers... hmm. Maybe they can be lured to some sort of digital honeypot? Like, Fuse could silently tamper with a bioprinter so that it can trace back the location of a connecting hacker, and then make some ruckus in an hospital to "buzz 'em". Also a good opportunity for the pink-haired nurse to woo Michelle a bit more.

There's still the issue with Faraday. Maybe the secret is with the ghost-gun. They could have used it to "capture" ghosts... and probably it can be used to capture Faraday as well, and to condense her to a more approachable shape.
PurpleKetchup 13th Apr 2018, 1:47 PM edit delete reply
There's so much stuff to do, I don't even know.

One detail I noticed from # (damn, that last part is so packed with info...) is that 'our enemies' are still unaware we blooded animals.
Maybe the cultists back then thought Willard was controlled by a mutant like the Many, and Thale didn't pry their memories further when he got control over them again.

Anyway, we still have to refurbish Ilworth, help the Zene/Crease/Mav gang, restore Faraday, heal Elizabeth, learn magic with Pierce... I'm probably forgetting something, and that's just working on the nice side of things.
Twyll 13th Apr 2018, 2:16 PM edit delete reply
I think they all died before he got a chance to probe their memories, so yeah, that would make sense.
Twyll 13th Apr 2018, 2:27 PM edit delete reply
First of all, after a healthy breakfast, we should start our morning meditation club. And don't forget to include Faraday! She'll only benefit from being able to have more mental focus. Tesla might find that it helps her with her anxiety, as well. Liz might also find some benefit from it.

It seems like the tunnel issue is the most pressing thing. I agree that blooding some more rats and cats and having them scout the tunnels would be an excellent idea. If we absolutely need to, we can blood some rodents in a safer place like Southden or even Ilworth (probably plenty of critters there, in the presence of human shelters but the absence of humans) and then transport them through the bunker so we don't have to expose ourselves to danger in the lower tiers. Alternatively, we could have our cats and ravens capture some critters for us. We have some options for getting more critters without getting shot, is the point.

I like the idea of a honeypot trap for the hackers. We should ask Fuse if he can set up something like that. We may need to be physically present at the location in order to deal with any monstrosities the bioprinter in question produces, or Fuse might need to physically tamper with the device, so we should try to find a poorly guarded hospital or one with few staff-- or even better, one that's maybe newly constructed (or reconstructed, after the Tobu hack) that hasn't been opened yet but that has had a bioprinter delivered to it already.

Finch should continue working on going through the book with Pierce. We might find some kind of divination spell or something that could help us locate or snare the hackers, or learn more about the *principles* of divination that we could maybe apply with our own innate powers.

Finally, we might want to have someone do the trading ritual with some of our handguns that Shirai gave us, and see what we end up with. Maybe have Michelle do it, if she's alright with that, because the Tradesmen might take that as a cue to give us something that's useful *for her* specifically.
Guost 13th Apr 2018, 2:35 PM edit delete reply
I'd like to check the money box again. It's been a significantly longer break than with our first test and I wonder if the result will differ in any noticeable way. Not like that'll take much time.
fellow 13th Apr 2018, 2:42 PM edit delete reply
We aughta give Elizabeth some level and try to have her recall something about Thayle's plans. We could also try to search her subconcious by putting her to sleep and syncing to her if she agrees to it, though that could be risky and time consuming.
pkrankow 13th Apr 2018, 3:10 PM edit delete reply
Cleantex and write down ALL the bunker information. The entire master list and all the details. Maybe credentials will spill out for Fuse.

If we get credentials our week is set. If not we need a mini super computer. Get several good machines, used or new, and make a network cell. We probably will need a near-supercomputer at some point at the rate we are going.

Read about condensing ourselves in GAC and then go meditate with Faraday and Telsa (and anybody else who wishes. Maybe yoga too?). Share with them what we learn that may apply. Do this early in the day.

Practice moving mass between ourself and our red. We want just a drip.

I would bet the last piece of Lasker is on Mars. We need suits for 4, 2 tube size, and a vacuum capable golem. Ok, 2 not tubes probably would do, and I bet raw Mars would not kill Jane...but really lets not find out.

A straight up electric golf cart with a true sealed battery probably will be fine on Mars. Lower the air in the tires to half before taking it through the airlock, or get solid tires or a foam fill kit. A lifted machine with big tires might be better, but nothing silly. Get a large garden trailer for it as well.

We need to expand our intelligence network somehow...

P879 mentioned power station stuff in Ilworth

Dinner party on Mars, with movies. Work on housing in England.

I am sure there is more...
lil Joshu 13th Apr 2018, 4:03 PM edit delete reply
lil Joshu
Blood. The. Doors.

Not only is it a security measure, but it may grant us a level of control of them, speeding up our access to the other bunkers.
Wii G 13th Apr 2018, 4:13 PM edit delete reply
I think we'd need to actually know how the doors work to control them.
lil Joshu 13th Apr 2018, 4:16 PM edit delete reply
lil Joshu
We can sense things with the blood. It will help us understand them more. For one, at the very least, we'll learn if it's a lot of instances of a single door, or multiple doors that are connected in some way.