Log Title: Happy Fun Zone
Summary: MI-5 calls in the Joes to retrieve a package from an eldritch land of smiley faces.
As logged by Cookie
Log session starting at 18:58:02 on Wednesday, 20 February 2019.
A remote mountain in the Yukon Territory of Canada has attracted the unwanted attention of several Transformers. The mountain itself gives off a strange radiation, disrupting the cloaking devices, communications, and sensory arrays of anyone who comes near. Several of the slopes are covered by an advanced alien camouflage netting, concealing the comings, goings, and activities of the Cult of Galvatron.
A troupe of G.I. Joe task force members has had a marker called in by MI-6 for their assistance with earlier work in occupied Washington D.C., at the helm of this sortie is Lt. Cmd. Norris Blake, a blonde British anti-terrorism and counter-intel operative.
Without much explanation, the entire team is loaded onto a military transport helicopter and issued cold-weather gear, with the briefing to happen during transport. Norris raises his hand over his head, to hold onto one of the chopper's handles, practically yelling in order to communicate to the huddled team. "Recent recon by Five Eyes reported a radar anomaly up in the Yukon Territory as of 17:00 yesterday. As was protocol, a four man team was sent from the CSIS to investigate, fearing yet another Cybertronian attack or base setup..." He rolls out a basic map on the ground as he kneels to mark it. "The team noted and infiltrated a foreign structure in the area, with promise of an update in three hours. We received a partial transmission back from them. The team showed sign of compromise and severe emotional distress after entering the AOE. They claimed to have found a mainframe that managed a partial upload via a briefcase satellite system. Since then, the ground team has gone dark, and the signal shut off."
Norris looks around slowly, a warning look in his eyes. "I'm not going to lie, whatever is within that AOE appears to be otherworldly, if not out of nightmares. We've taken a precaution."
The two Corporals with him start issuing out large goggles affixed with a gas mask, and optical gear to the team. Lt. Cmd. Norris continues, "We've been developing a trauma-recognition and filter software with optical capability. The idea is that it can blur or otherwise censor horrific sights, allowing troops to remain mission capable, when engaging. The current censor software is...." He blanches, "A bit esoteric currently, but given the confines of this greenhouse, I must insist their use. The mission as it stands is to recover the suitcase computer system left behind by the last team, recover the previous team if they are alive, and extract as fast as possible. Five Eyes has agreed, based on the footage found, to destroy the base immediately as it is deemed a class 4 health and safety hazard, so our window of opportunity is limited."
Cookie accepts her set of goggles and looks at it, bemused. "Actual Peril-Sensitive Sunglasses," she comments, under her breath.
General Hawk looks over the map as he listens to the situation. "Sounds like a typical day at work." he says, getting into his cold weather gear.
Wet Down takes the hardware, inspecting it as he turns it over in his hands. "What sort of OpFor are you expecting that this," he lifts the headgear, "is going to be necessary?"
Lt. Norris Blake raises his hands, "Now Five Eyes isn't going to call for the site demolition until you're clear, but you need to understand that if mission contact is lost for two hours, or the partial team extracts without you, that there's going to be a narrow window before the site goes up. This mission is going to require firepower, and decontamination protocols the moment you extract from the site. I'm adding in two MI-5 agents with you, " He jerks a thumb back to Cummings and Mitchell,. "They are familiar with the censure goggles, and are meant as additional fire support."
Lt. Norris Blake raises two fingers to Wet Down, "Its bad. Volatile bio-weaponry. Bad enough that you're getting this additional hardware, any specifics are just going to make it worse. We have little to no idea of their combat capability, but there will be an active OpFor within the greenhouse."
Cookie slips into her cold weather gear, taking time to cinch things down as best she can, short as she is. "Volatile bio-weaponry that requires censoring but not hazmat suits? So, we're going to be shooting at shoggoths, then." She keeps her suspicions that MI-5 just wants to keep some things secret to herself.
"Whatever the mission, we do what we have to do." Hawk says, getting his gear settled in place, and the goggles secured. "Missions like this tend to unfold as they go, so stay on your toes, and keep a lookout for your teammates."
Lt. Norris Blake raises an eyebrow at Cookie, and manages a grim look. Apparently he's heard that line before too...or perhaps said it himself earlier...
Wet Down goes over his own gear, making sure everything is strapped, cinched, and clipped in place. He then turns to Cookie and starts going over her gear as well; making sure it's secure. "Right, I guess I'm bringing the SAW with the unknown factors in play."
The two corporals put on their mission gear as well, both kitted with rifles with undercarriage launchers. The optic system kicks online for the team, registering each other well enough in only a slight loss of optical capability. Norris continues, "Its not a perfect system, but we feel that it's going to help remove negative effect on the field." He raises two fingers to his comm piece, "We're almost there. Ready in ten..."
Salvo looks like an Eskimo in her cold-weather gear - possibly the most heavily-armed Eskimo in the history of Inuit culture. She secures the experimental googles over her dark eyes, and then begins triple-checking her weapons ... which might take the entire rest of the trip. As they approach the landing zone, Salvo hefts her weapons and ammo - nearly enough to shift the weight of the chopper if she's not careful. She nods her readiness to anyone watching.
General Hawk does a quick check on his M16, then his sidearm before slinging the M16 on his back. He then checks a supply of handheld missiles from his backpack, and satisfied they are in working order,secures them again and shifts his pack into place.
Cookie waits while Wet down goes over her gear, then turns and returns the favor with his, just as if they were about to dive underwater instead of jump onto a snowy mountain.
The chopper lands, the back hatch opening. There's a small team of also-heavily parka'd individuals, some of which with radio equipment. There's a few temporary tents set up, one labeled for medical. Another helicopter takes off as the team takes to the ground. Norris does a comm check, and goes through weapons check with the others. "Alright." His voice muffles with the gas mask, "There should be a transponder for the brief case, but there's something about this mountain range that is masking the signal, when we get close enough it should pop up."
He steps towards a makeshift airlock, set up on site against the greenhouse door. As he does, six riflemen raise weapons to condition two, just in case...
"That would make it too easy." Hawk says with a bit of a smirk.
Salvo hops off the chopper, slinging her main combination rifle over one shoulder as she hefts her ammo case, her second and third primary weapons strapped tightly to her curvaceous body. She adjusts the googles and gas mask over her face, taking down the hood long enough to adjust the straps before pulling it back up again until they move out. Salvo is from Samoa... this isn't exactly her kind of weather.
Wet Down steps off the helicopter and then tightens up his own mask. The SEAL not quite as (overly) armed as Salvo, but he does lift a compact battle rifle up to a nearly ready position when they approach the outer door.
Cookie double-checks the launcher under her rifle barrel and then slings it into a carry position, making sure the extra padding against the cold doesn't interfere with access. She takes an extra stretchy earmuff band and settles it over the goggles straps and radio, the better to secure them if things get hectic, then pulls up her hood and steps out.
The viewscreens flicker as they adjust to the brightness, almost immediately there's a flicker of alteration as the interior of the greenhouse gets redigitized from whatever it is, to something completely benign.
A bright colorful meadow with very large dancing flowers and branching paths on a multicolored brown path. Little flying ladybugs have a literal smile on their face as they zip back and forth, occasionally dipping or diving in ways that most insects would not be capable of doing. Off in the distance, a series of stuffed four legged horsies raise their heads towards the noise and start running (in a way that's more feline than equine), as they start to rush the crew.
Norris reports from his side, "It...takes some getting used....Three o clock!" A large friendly caterpillar wriggles up out of the ground, a smile on its face that'd make a Disney cartoon jealous, and behind it? A big ole teddy bear off in the distance, trudging along, belly first towards the team.
Wet Down takes a moment to adjust to the altered perceptions through the goggles. The decidedly hostile actions of the 'horses' triggers reflexes honed over many years and causes him to bring the rifle up to his cheek as he pulls the trigger and let's loose with a hail of bullets towards the head of the lead.... creature.
GAME: Wet Down PASSES a DEXTERITY roll of Very High difficulty.
Cookie mutters to herself about "invading Whimsyshire" and stays on Wet Down's flank. She doesn't even try to match SEAL accuracy, instead opting to shoot some discouraging bullets at the caterpillar. "How much does this stuff correspond?" she asks. "Are we just assuming that everything in here that moves is a threat?"
GAME: Cookie FAILS a FIREPOWER roll of Average difficulty.
Lt. Norris Blake responds to Cookie, "All the agents who were a part of this op are keyed into the system, and should not be censored by the VR system. If its covered, we destroy it."
Behind her googles, Salvo's dark eyes widen. "Holy kefe," she swears. "What am I seeing? Are those hostiles? This can't really be better than whatever's actually there..." When Wet Down opens fire, however, Salvo gets her head in the game.
"That's a good question," she replies to Cookie, but nods at Blake's explanation. Sidestepping the other Joes so they don't get caught in her fire, Salvo brings up one of her rifles. "I can't believe I'm about to mow down Twilight Sparkle," she mutters, muffled through the mask. "My tuafafine's going to kill me." Salvo squeezes off a series of careful shots, saving her heavier ammo for what lies ahead.
GAME: Salvo PASSES a DEXTERITY roll of High difficulty.
General Hawk crouches down to get more accuracy and brings up his M16, flipping it to full auto and takes aim at the caterpillar. "And I'm shooting down the caterpillar from Alice in Wonderland." Hawk snorts, squeezing the trigger to send a spread of bullets at the target.
GAME: General Hawk PASSES a DEXTERITY roll of Very High difficulty.
Wet Down wisely targets the lead horsie...thing, and manages some precise shots on it, sending the thing staggering, before it tumbles to the ground, its legs bending in an unusual manner. The other two however, leap over its fallen form, moving in an almost two-legged leap.
Cookie goes for the spray and pray method, several of her shots hitting the caterpillar in the head, but perhaps that's not a notable weak spot for whatever this thing really is. The stuffed horses come in hot towards the group, fortunately, Salvo's got Wet Down's back. From a marginally flanked position, she chooses the same instinctive move as Wet Down, accurate shots, slow the target. Accuracy was a must. The second stuffed animal falls, the third stumbling in its pursuit.
General Hawk splits his fire with Cookie, unloading on the big yellow Caterpillar...
Gunfire goes off in the greenhouse, Cummings and Mitchell advance forward slowly as the caterpillar is riddled with rounds from Cookie and Hawk. The two soldiers follow suit, moving to avoid line of fire incidents. Norris surveys from behind the two, then shifts target to capitalize on the downed stuffed horses on the other flank. The Caterpillar starts to wither and slump, it actually being cut in two by the weapons fire. The top half of the pillar writhes and convulses as the two Corporals pass it by. Norris moves forward behind them, when suddenly the half-a-pillar writhes again and starts to turn towards one of the Corporals' back. Norris fires into it, spraying some sort of barely-censored ochre from it. Mitchell looks back at it at the wrong time, and is suddenly encompassed by the teddy bear's hug.
A scream comes over the audio systems, one that glitches and fades out moments after starting. Mitchell tries to push away, his legs flailing. The teddy bear's smile gets even bigger, and then Mitchell is released, his head tilting strangely. His helmet buckles and gives the impression of starting to come off. There's a strange noise, Mitchell's face is censored, an animated lollipop face covering whatever lies beneath.
"Shoot the teddy bear!!! SHOOT IT!" Norris yells as he fires at the pair.
The SEAL spins to face the pair of assailants. His thumb finds the selector switch on his weapon and flips it to full auto as well. He pulls the trigger on the FN SCAR, sending hot lead towards the former Ell Tee.
GAME: Wet Down PASSES a FIREPOWER roll of Very High difficulty.
Cookie falls back a bit, letting the people who've seen more firefights focus on taking down threats. Instead, she stifles her frustrations with the interface and works around it, scanning not just for additional threats, but also for the non-filtered targets of this operation.
GAME: Cookie FAILS an INTELLIGENCE roll of Very High difficulty.
GAME: Cookie FAILS an INTELLIGENCE roll of Very High difficulty.
Salvo pauses in her fire as the audio glitches just long enough to let through Mitchell's fading screams. The graphics and situation start to freak Salvo out a bit, but she closes her eyes just a moment and gets it together before moving forward. This may be some new, weird kind of hell, but Salvo's not going to let it keep Lalovaea's finest out of the action. Hefting an even bigger gun, she opens her eyes and surges forward. Yelling "Yo Joe!" she opens fire on the Teddy Bear, putting herself in danger, if necessary, to keep her follow Joes safe.
GAME: Salvo PASSES a COURAGE roll of Very High difficulty.
General Hawk looks over to Cookie, "Keep a cool head, and try to focus as best you can." he says, before turning back to to the teddy bear. As Salvo unloads on it, he decides to be more safe than sorry and pulls one of his TOW missiles from his pack, crouches, and takes aim. "This baby is literally loaded for bear..." as he squeezes the trigger.
GAME: General Hawk FAILS a FIREPOWER roll of Very High difficulty.
Wet Down targets the.....'turned?' Cpl. Mitchell and executes him on the spot, riddling his form with weapons fire. The figure reels from it, nearly fully bending over backwards. If there was an audible snap, it was muted by the gunfire. Flowers bloom from the puncture wounds, and start to grow up and out before the figure finally collapses atop itself.
Cookie focuses on the objective, looking for that suitcase computer, but meets some resistance from the area's odd radiation signatures. The team was going to need to push deeper into this Akira-esque mess to find it!
The Teddy Bear convulses as its belly starts to twitch and squirm. Its mouth shifts to a pleased surprised look, as if say...a pie was about done. Its stomach quivers again as weapons fire rains down on it from Salvo, but its just not enough to stop it from....spawning?. It keeps convulsing further, as puffs of dandelions start to gently waft (or possibly terrifyingly rip) from its belly, and flood the area, skittering forward towards the legs of the GI Joe crew!
From over the top of one of the makeshift garden walls, a large pink paw appears, and the enormous cat's head, about the size of athe length of a car draws up from over the other side. Its cat-eyes shift back and forth at the group, its mouth opening wide. Little hearts dance upon its maw. It lets out a bellow that shakes the very air, loud enough that the filtering system can't fully mute it, some strange elephantine shriek that causes the VR systems to flicker again, it actually has enough force to throw off Hawk's TOW missile, scrambling its guidance. The missile veers off and explodes in the distance, bringing down part of the ceiling in that area. Norris' panic is evident over comms, "We've got to be close! Spread out. Find it and haul ass so we can burn this place down!"
The normally very restrained Lt. Cmd. Blake has collectively lost his shit.
Seeing his target fall as the magazine clicks empty Wet Down drops the rifle to his side. He charges forward, pulling a flashbang from his harness. "Let's see how they handle this!" He exclaims even as he gets dangerously close to the dandelions, teddy bear, and cheesire cat appears. At the last moment possible he pulls the pin and throws the grenade.
GAME: Wet Down FAILS a COURAGE roll of Extreme difficulty.
GAME: Wet Down FAILS a COURAGE roll of Extreme difficulty.
Cookie grits her teeth and honestly wishes she didn't have the fancy filter. Adrenaline might actually help kick in instincts. As it is.. well, flowers sprouting from the dead body suggest growths. Seeds in the air are probably a propagation system of some kind.
Aaaaannnnd her crazy SEAL superior just ran in way too close to all those things. -Now- she moves, firing the grenade launcher on the run as she aims herself for Wet Down to move them both out of the threat range before things get much worse.
GAME: Cookie PASSES a COURAGE roll of Very High difficulty.
"Woah," Salvo mutters from beneath the muffle of her mask. "That's a big kitty." Blake's yell over comms, however, puts her generous ass in gear. "I've got Shere Khan!" she bellows, sidestepping the dandelion puffs and rushing the giant cat. As she moves, she activates the full-auto on her main gun, and then draws a second gun to supplement her main gun. Pulling both triggers, she unloads a simply ridiculous amount of firepower at her opponent.
GAME: Salvo FAILS a FIREPOWER roll of Extreme difficulty.
GAME: Salvo FAILS a FIREPOWER roll of Extreme difficulty.
General Hawk pulls another LAW out of his pack and takes aim at the cat. "This practically IS Wonderland." he says, shaking his head as he lines up a shot and takes aim, squeezing the trigger to try his luck on the cat since it appears to be the greatest threat at this point.
GAME: General Hawk PASSES a FIREPOWER roll of Very High difficulty.
There's deafening flash that is suppressed by the system and a muted boom as Wet Down throws himself forward boldly. The Cheshire Cat raises its head up and turns towards him, even as the little dandelion spawnlings sort of flit away, whether stunned by the concussion or possibly destroyed, one cannot be sure.
Fortunately Cookie is well trained in the near-Wrecker levels of foolhardiness that the SEALs can muster, and sends a launched grenade up into the Cat's face, sending shrapnel flying, and the Cat reeling backwards. The ground shakes as it tumbles down, though one paw still stays on the wall.
Salvo's weapons fire tears into the grass wall, with terrible power, ripping holes into it as she rock and rolls, but whether she managed the kill shot on the damn thing is unknown.
It raises its head again moments later, the wall groaning as it pushes against it. The rending of metal moans through the area as the wall starts to collapse forward onto Wet Down, when Hawk's second missile strikes it. The giant cat's head tumbles backwards, and for a few moments parts of its long snakeline form are visible. Not even the censure goggles could fix that!
Norris swaps to his handgun as he fires at the small dandelions nearby, and the assault rifle of Cummings clicks dry as the Teddy Bear sort of sags and deflates, a content look on its face.
Moving forward at a hustle, there's a ping of the computer system nearby. Rounding a corner, the team can see a group of...well, you might think they're spiders at first, but then there's this human element, so you might think.....driders? The VR system has no idea what to make of this, and replaces it all with gingerbread men.
The gingerbread men turn to regard the outsiders, and move to attack. Some of them climb up on the walls and scrable forward, while another spits...icing? and the other two seem to just grow some sort of long tendril spear things that aren't blocked by the goggles, as they move to pounce!
[G.I. Joe] Salvo says, "Do we have eyes on the prize?"
With Cookie's intervention and Hawk's judicious use of explosives Wet Down manages to get clear of the (self-inflicted) danger he was in; onlt to turn and face an entirely new form of threat. He doesn't pull a bigger weapon, instead he charges forward again towards one of the Gingerbread men with the tendrils. He reaches out in an attempt to take hold and wrap the thing up with it's own weapon.
GAME: Wet Down PASSES a STRENGTH roll of Very High difficulty.
Cookie feels like cheering. A ping! They can find their package and get out before somebody else gets cartoonified. She trusts that Wet Down won't try to creatively kill himself in the next minute or so and makes another attempt to locate the target. This time, the equipment is supposed to be helping!
GAME: Cookie PASSES a TECHNICAL roll of Very High difficulty.
Salvo empties her two main guns, and frowns at the ambivalent results. She then hears the ping of the target, however, and sees Cookie striving to locate it. "I'll make a path!" she yells, and takes a play from Wet Down's book. Crossing her empty guns in front of her face, she simply charges her enemies bodily, using her bulk to knock them back so Cookie can grab the case and run.
GAME: Salvo PASSES an ENDURANCE roll of Average difficulty.
General Hawk draws his M9 Beretta and his M-1911A1 Colt and goes full John Woo on the rest of the gingerbread men. "You guys are usually saying 'You can't catch me, I'm the gingerbread man!' Well, I've got a long reach." he says, unloading both clips into the mass of crusading cookies.
GAME: General Hawk PASSES a DEXTERITY roll of High difficulty.
Wet Down's heavy winter gear prevents him from actually touching the creature, and the gas mask prevents any particular scent, but he feels it wrap partially about him as he moves into melee. The creature's tensile strength is impressive, but Wet Down uses his own strength and balance in concert, pulling it forward, then twisting it together, disorienting the gingerbread man for a few precious moments, while the others start firing towards the walls as the creatures scamper forward.
Cookie finds the exact location of the system, laying by itself behind the drider creatures, and notes also that she doesn't detect any of the signals that the previous crew was giving off. Chances were quite good they were all dead at this point.
Salvo uses her bulk to bowl into the creatures. Spindly spider legs are great for motion, but not as good for stabilizing against superior weight. She scatters the two before her, clearing a path.
Norris follows the linebacker in as Hawk shatters the three up on the wall, sending them into pieces and awashing Cummings in ichor and pieces of critter.
Norris actually manages a baseball slide, snagging the system as he moves past it, then promptly turns and gets up into a runner's stance. "Good enough! Lets get the bloody hell out of here!"
With the creatures inside, either obliterated or at least disoriented for vital moments, the crew can pull out without any further problems...
[G.I. Joe] Cookie says, "That's everything. Let's get out."
Lt. Norris Blake takes off his visor and gas mask as soon as he's cleared by the armed guards. Cummings does the same. The Brit looks haggard and out of breath as he props himself up against a wall. His eyes wide, he just shakes his matted hair. The guy's usually something of a charmer. not today! Even as he recovers, medical crews start ushering him and the others to the decontamination procedures.
[G.I. Joe] SPC Salvo says, "Yo Joe!"
Cookie shucks off her gear in the bins and lets herself be herded to the decontamination area, shaking her head. "Look, if you really want to rush heedlessly into danger, Wet Down, I could always make Mongolian Stir Fry with the good chili oil."
Cummings vomits on cue after Cookie's words.
As the team regroups to head out, the roar of fighter jets fly by in the distance, at the greenhouse in the distance, as multiple bombs and missiles blow the damn place to hell...
Salvo pulls off her mask as soon as she gets the chance, shivering at the thought of what she must have been facing if THAT was better. David told her there'd be missions like this, but boy, was she not ready...
Wet Down pulls off his mask before making sure his guns are set safe. "I could do with some heat after all this cold. Tell you what, let's see about putting together something to lift morale once we get stateside. It's been rough on us for a while."
Cookie nods and steps into a booth for the rinse part. "Shit, that was weird. Doesn't seem half real with all the Disney crap all over everything."
Wet Down shrugs, "Real enough for them to call in the professionals." He too takes the chance to clean off from the short, and violent, confrontation.
Log session ending at 21:34:33 on Wednesday, 20 February 2019.