Tales from the Hard Side

Season 2 Augmented new year


Episode 9 | The Darkener II - Miles left behind

Cast of Charakters:

  • Dr. Gunna Gunnadottir, going for the clues

Storyboard: The unsettling events of the last months left miles behind, Dr. Gunnadottir once again concentrates on her studies. Her initial test-series brought her to the conclusion that her newly filed-in project "SoberRose" was indeed very promising. First results indicated that SoberRose could advance magical knowledge a lot. Psycho-receptive experiments were alltogether faulty but her magical-receptive experimentation series resulted in a huge succees. SoberRose seemed to be a more or less controlable magical plant-organism which, after being exposed to high magical energetic levels, were able to advance to semi-consciousness. This and many more facts seemed promising enough for Ruhark Corp to shift substantial amounts of money into her new pet-project.

Meanwhile Dr. Gunnadottir also began meeting Prof. Stern in the cantina for some time. He seemed genuinely nice and definitely brilliant about his own area of expertise: magic and cybertechnology.

But usually - when everythings takes the right turn and the world seems a nice place - trouble comes the other way. Uthar Ruhark III. needed another personal favour and Gunna knew that she was in the middle of things instantly. Prof. Stern went missing and Gunna was supposed to silently and lonely check his laboratory for answers about his whereabouts. And after a short investigation it became very clear that Prof. Stern was gone for good. But where and why?

Traces where nowhere to be found, posivitely wiped out, and security recordings seemed to be corrupted. But a missing picture of him and a young lady were intriguing. A quick check of Stern's personal netbook showed another grim face of Stern's decision to be gone. A virus which seemed to be waiting just for the lucky one who activated Stern's account went into action and corrupted all traces of Wulf Stern as well as his projects but also - and this seemed mildly disturbing too - of everything called Rose. Since this virus, which was instantly identified as a mutation of the infamous "Miles"-worm by antivirus software, seemed to have been active but only on a very subtle level for quite a while, all the Sysops had a very hard time saving at least some information and holding together the basics of Ruharks Network.

Gunna embarked on a quest about this young lady and discovered facts about a daughter of Wulf Stern who died after being treated with cybertechnology in a hospital complex near Detroit. As it seemed, after a grave accident, the cyberdocs in trying to safe her life did underestimate her allergic reaction to cyberware and Laura Stern died on the Operation table. This was a hot clue and Gunna went to Detroit.

After a generous donation to her institute the head of DUCC (Detroit University Clinic Compound"), Prof. Helen Phelps-Bielfeld, opened the archive and let Gunna even exhume the body of Laura Stern. It became clear that the death certificate had been tinkered with and that Laura Stern's Brain, her spine and most of her face had been sold to her father three years ago. The rest was burried six feet under.

On the flight back Gunna also checked everything personal about Stern's two assistants who were supposed to be on holiday at the moment. And there she found another clue. A female project colleague on the same level was friend to one of them and was sent a huge data package from his account for safe-holding. She was about to thrash the data when Gunna requested it and checking this data (after Ruhark Sysops disarmed a dangerous databomb) she found safe copies of some of her project notes as well as cryptic comments of Stern about "SoberRose being vital and needed to be changed into BitterRose to be better suited for project Darkener, but beware of the side effects" and that "BitterRose seemed to be the holy grail of magical cybernetics with its transformation and adaption to human physiology". Stern noted also something about a "Stern reversion effect" as a consequence of experiments.

Back at Ruhark Corp Gunna composed a report presuming that Prof. Stern did most probably defect to former customer and now holder of the town of Sober, Sir Alistair Duncan, a very rich individual. Prof. Stern seems to have had help by professional shadowrunners and seems to have taken his assistance as well as the still preserved body of his daughter which he could secretly have hold in Ruhark Corp all the time, most probably to Sober itself where he spearheads research of BitterRose as well as the cryptic project "Darkener". Project "Darkener" could be about creating magical receptive cyberware and proving it by creating a full converted cyborg who seems to have not lost all humane essence.

Implications: Sir Alistair Duncan is too dangerous to be confronted openly about taking over one of the most vital employees of Ruhark Corp. So now there are the questions of how do we fill this gap, how do we cope with this new competition and how can this prevented to happen in the future. And at last there's the question if Ruhark Corp will survive the loss of one of its most expensive project teams as well as having been left with devastated data banks.


  • 5 Karma points
  • Status: Slowly Gunna rises up the ladder in her company. Hopefully the company around this ladder does not break apart.


  • BelniFore

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