Log Title: Pirates!
Location: Indian Ocean off the coast of Africa
Date: May 05, 2016
TP: Red Shadows TP
Summary: G.I. Joe attempts to rescue an oil survey ship taken over by pirates!
As logged by Abdi Ali - Thursday, May 05, 2016, 8:56 PM
Bridge - Aden Explorer
Pirate leader Abdi Ali has command on the bridge of the hijacked Aden Explorer. His pirate followers man the various stations on the bridge. Ali himself is wearing a tan jacket over a white shirt, with a red scarf to combat the cold. As rain crashes outside and the ship lurches against the waves, Ali sits with a Russian assault rifle across his lap, engaging with their high-profile hostage, Dr. Adele Burkhart.
"We are on the same side, Dr. Burkhart," Ali insists. "You were protesting the predations of the oil oligarchs in exploiting the resources of my country to the deficit of the Kalingaland people, and I am acting to actually stop that exploitation."
"Burkhart stands, holding onto a console in an attempt to keep her balance on the rolling deck of the ship. The time at sea has been rough on her, but she remains steadfast in the face of nausea and armed captivity. "No, Mr. Ali, we differ entirely," she exclaims, pointing her finger directly at Ali's face. "I am not trying to change things by force of arms. I do not resort to violence to achieve my aims, and I also notice that you are demanding a ransom from the oil company for their ship and crew!"
The Black Major paces back and forth just beyond where Ali and Burkhart are standing, seemingly unfazed by the rough seas. "The means are not important," he states. "Only the ends."
The bridge door opens for a moment allowing the whistling wind and a bit of rain to come in as Crash Dive enters onto the bridge. The door shuts behind him as he steps onto the bridge, the water of the rain dripping off him, but the cold appears to bother him little. Indeed, he only has his Hydroviper wetsuit and gear on. "I hafe placed sabotage charges on zee hull. If anyvon is stupid enough to attempt rescue, zen ve send zem to zee bottom of zee sea." It seems that violence, and death, is a language this hydro viper speaks well.
"The ransom is punitive and prophylactic," Ali replies to Burkhart, remaining calm. "I used minimal force to capture this ship, and no lives were lost. If the situation does not escalate, I will not be forced to play my trump card." He looks meaningfully back at The Black Major, frowning at his words. As Crash Dive makes his entrance, Ali's frown deepens.
Burkhart frowns, looking unconvinced. She looks over at the Black Major and Crash Dive, and says to Ali, "Be careful that your trump card," she hooks a thumb back at the Black Major, "doesn't have a mind of its own, and an altogether different agenda." She looks back defiantly at the Red Shadow leader and the Hydro-Viper, her head up and no fear in her eyes at the treatment she might get from these coldhearted characters should Ali lose command of the situation.
Black Major nods curtly to the Hydro-Viper. "Very good." He turns to Ali. "Efficient use of resources, but to allow yourself to be weighed down by a need to conserve lives is a very exploitable weakness." His emotionless gaze slides briefly to Burkhart, though he makes no comment on her words.
Meanwhile, just out of visual range of the Aden Explorer, Duke is on command of WHALE #7379. He's got earphones on and is speaking into a radio as waves crash into the side of his naval-assault hovercraft.
Ali looks back up at the Black Major. "The point of this entire operation is to shine a light on the exploitive action of Western corporations at the expense of my people. Wasting lives unnecessarily deprives us of the moral high-ground. I need you here to defend us in case the military tries to send in SEALs to take back this ship, but if at all possible I want no one killed - I want them to pay the ransom, provide us with some media coverage, and then we'll surrender the ship and you'll get your money."
"Steady as goes, Shipwreck," orders Cutter, as he looks through binoculars out of the front of the WHALE.
At the piloting station of the WHALE, Shipwreck replies, "Aye-aye, Cutter." On his shoulder, Polly squawks to underscore Shipwreck's acknowledgement.
Prince Ngoto, silent until now, speaks up. "Alas, the fault is mine. I invited her, and now she is in the hands of Abdi Ali, who was once my political opponent before he turned to pillaging on the high seas." Ngoto looks down at the deck of the WHALE, pain evident across the feature of his dark, handsome face.
The Black Major ceases his pacing and folds his arms over his chest, content for now to watch on imperiously.
Crash Dive shifts his weapon in his hand, content to observe as he has done his duty, at least for the moment. His face hidden behind his diving helmet, his expression is a mystery, but no sound comes from within, and for the most part, he is a statue.
Out on deck, one of pirates frowns as he peers through a pair of binoculars, trying to keep watch over the choppy water. "This is useless!" he mutters in Kalingi. "No visibility! Nobody would be crazy enough to - wait! There's something out there! It looks like -" At that moment, a rogue wave crashes over the ship, and the pirate is washed overboard. He screams as he plunges into the ocean.
On the bridge, Ali suddenly stands sharply and points out the window towards the front of the ship. "The forward lookout just got swept overboard!" he exclaims in alarm. "I want all the other lookouts cleared from the decks until the storm abates!" He turns to pass the order down to the pirates below.
The Black Major watches as the forward lookout is washed overboard. "Those men are needed at those posts," he states.
"Your trump card is already asserting himself, Mr. Ali," Burkhart laughs. "The Black Major may have been more than you reckoned for!"
"I'm in command here!" Ali exclaims, turning to the Major and pointing his thumb back at himself. "I'm not jeopardizing my men to appease your paranoia. Nobody is going to try to board us in this weather and this sea!" He turns to look at his pirate crew.
Crash Dive watches with disinterest. "He vas obviously not prepared for zee wonders of zee sea." he says, before looking back to Ali. Ever so slightly, his grip tightens on his weapon. "Zen you are eizer new to zis, or a fool." he says simply. "Zey vill come."
"We shall see," is the flat response given by the Black Major. He gazes out toward the front of the ship.
Outside> Tomahawk #505 continues to hover above in his holding pattern while continuously scanning for the order and opportunity to attack the pirate ship. With plenty of apples!
The door to the bridge suddenly bursts open, and a uniformed Red Shadows trooper rushes in. "Black Major!" he reports. "As you ordered, we Red Shadows did not pull our lookouts, and one of them reports an overturned zodiac boat in our wake!"
On hearing the trooper's report, the Black Major gestures toward Crash Dive. "See to anyone in the water," he commands. To the trooper, he says, "Prepare to repel boarders."
Crash Dive looks to Ali. "Nefer underestimate zee egos of zee 'heroes' of zee vorld." he says scoffingly, looking to Black Major and nodding. "It vill be done." He turns to head out of the bridge.
On deck, Gung-Ho looks over as Chance neatly grabs the seasick pirate. "Nice." Behind him, Stalker climbs up onto the deck. "He's going to be missed soon if he doesn't come back. We'll have to deal with his buddies or we'll lose the element of surprise."
On deck, Chance knocks the sailor out, and moves to drag him to one side, using some zipties to lock his hands to something to keep him from falling off the boat, and then gagging him. "... I just hope he doesn't throw up while gagged." he muttered, nodding at Gung-Ho. "Flash bomb through the door then?" he asks.
On deck, Gung-Ho nods to Chance, and moves to one side of the door while Stalker takes the other. They wait for Chance to move in with the flash bomb.
On deck, Chance stands to the opening side of the door, flash bomb in one side. And then in his usual fashion... He knocks.
And the moment the door was open, he merely flipped the bomb through the gap, at knee-level so as to roll it between anyone's legs who was standing there.
On the bridge, Ali clenches his fists and yells, "I'm still in command here! How dare you countermand my orders!"
In the water, Torpedo pulls Beachhead to the surface, and starts pulling him towards the Aden. "We're going to have to kick hard to catch up to the ship. You up for it, Beachhead?"
"You set the pace, Torpedo," Beachhead replies stoically. "I'll be right with you."
Inside the crew's mess, one of the pirates asks, "What's taking Ahmed so long?" Another replies, "I'll bring him back in. He can use a bucket for all I--" He frowns as there's a knock on the door. "What's Ahmed's problem?" he asks, and opens the door, eyes widening to see Chance... *FLASHOOM!* *AIEE!* The pirates nearest the door are blinded, as captive crewmen crouch in the mess, trying to stay out of the line of fire.
One of the pirates who was shielded from the flashbang stands and aims his rifle at Stalker in the doorway.
"Be silent." The Black Major's emotionless, imperious gaze locks onto Ali. "Or you shall be silenced." "Carry out my orders," he tells the trooper, moving Ali aside on his way to the radio control panel. He opens a channel to the Roboskull patrolling the area. "Red Wolf. We have been boarded. Provide air defense."
On deck, Chance had looked away, and then back once more and used his foot to kick the door the rest of the way open, allowing it to swing out now as far as possible. He doesn't step INTO the doorway just yet though, but looks through at an angle, his own rifle now at the ready for the nearest knee-takeout.
From above the cloud cover descends what can only be described as a large red flying skull with TIE Fighter-like flight planes on either side of the grizzly main cockpit. As it drops from the heavens it makes a beeline for the Aden Explorer, its many weapons whirring to life.
On deck, Stalker raises his silenced pistol and *PHUT* silently kills the last pirate guard standing, while the rest moan in pain from the results of the flashbang. "Resistance taken care of," he says calmly.
The American crew look at these new arrivals in fear.
On deck, Chance nods and moves in with the others, dripping water everywhere, to restrain and ensure no surprises later.
In the crew's mess, the phone rings. "Don't answer that!" Stalker yells.
"Not answering will alert the bad guys jus' the same. No win all-around!"
In the crew's mess, Chance looks at the phone, and then over at stalker, and then at the awake men "Cant' trust them to fake it either. Bridge or look for the hostages?" he asks Stalker.
In the crew's mess, Stalker looks at the American crew that were held at gunpoint by the Kalingi. "OK. I need you all to keep calm and stay here in the mess until we finish what we have to do. Do you know how many other pirates there are? And were they have Dr. Burkhart?"
Overhead, Roboskull swoops down buzzing the Aden Explorer and scanning for targets. Since most of the Joes are either in the mess hall or in the water the Roboskull's pilot sees nothing for now. Still he banks around for another pass.
In the crew's mess, Chance moves to untie any of the crew that need it while Stalker gets information and questions. The phone continues to ring and he looks at it annoyingly.
On the bridge, Ali gestures with his hands. "Red Wolf? Air support? That's blatant overreaction! That's like smashing ants with a sledgehammer!"
Three troopers dressed in red, their faces hidden by helmets adorned with a skull and crossbones, emerge from belowdecks and advance on the Joes. "Blood for the Baron!" they screech in unison, firing their weapons.
While Chance and Stalker see to the crew, Gung-Ho guards the door. He spots the Roboskull flying overhead and announces, "We've got company, and it's weird." He ducks back to remain unseen by the Red Shadow air support, only to nearly sprayed with fire by newly arriving troopers. "Who are these para-militaries?" Gung-Ho yells, firing back. "Cobras?"
"What difference does it make?" Stalker yells, taking a knee and firing back from the doorway.
"You are content to allow the ants to ruin your picnic," states the Black Major, turning toward Ali. "I am not so complacent."
Burkhart turns and looks at Ali. "I'm not saying a word..." she says, as Ali fumes.
Chance is not one to wait around to negotiate... at least, not on some days. He joins Gung-Ho with his rifle, moving to gesture the civilians to take cover. Dropping to a knee, he fires, low and dirty for the Red ones' knees and legs. A blink "... Baron? I thought feudalism was so sixteenth century!"
- >> Chance misses Red Shadows troopers with Rifle <Medium>. <<
As the remaining pirates on deck run for cover and hide, Gung-Ho and Stalker unload on the Red Shadow troopers. "The Baron?" Stalker asks, "I wonder if they work for Baron Ironblood. But he's a European terrorist - what would he be doing mixed up with pirates on the high seas?" Not waiting for answers, Gung-Ho and Stalker crouch in the doorway to the crew's mess and fire short bursts at the Red Shadows from cover.
- >> Stalker strikes Red Shadows troopers with Carbine <Medium>. <<
On the bridge, Ali frowns. He looks at Burkhart and says, "The Black Major doesn't understand that the pirates here used to be fishermen - until modern commercial fishing fleets from Europe and Asia completely fished out the local waters." Ali scowls at the Major, and then looks back at Burkhart, leaning on a panel as the ship bucks another wave. "They turned to piracy to feed their families. They won't risk their lives for somebody else, or the Major's ideology. In fact," he says, smiling as he looks out the front windows of the bridge, "they have taken the opportunity to abscond in two of the lifeboats."
The Black Major gazes out the front windows, watching the pirates take to the lifeboats. "No matter," he intones, "my troopers and Red Wolf will see we keep what is ours."
Ali protests, "This ship isn't yours. You were hired to assist me -- not take over this entire operation! People have been killed! This is spiraling out of control!"
"The first life was taken by the sea," the Black Major states. "Others were lost to the weapons of those who would seize this ship by force. You have made a critical mistake: you have underestimated the enemy." He glances over his shoulder toward the motionless robot standing against the back wall.
Burkhart points out the window at an incoming craft. "That's a G.I. Joe Flying Submarine! Your assets aren't going to help against the Joes - they're the best there is!"
Ali says, "If an elite American special ops is here, that means President Ngoto has a hand in this! It would not be wise to underestimate him as an adversary, since you're so concerned about that sort of thing."
"It does not matter who our foes are," intones the Black Major. "The Red Shadows shall destroy all who oppose us."
Abruptly, there was a loud POP outside the door, and if there was a window, a flash of very bright light, followed by confused, pained cries.
On the bridge, pirate leader Abdi Ali shields his eyes as flashbang grenades take out the guards on the door leading down below decks. Nearby, hostage Adele Burkhart shields her eyes as well, and then looks triumphantly at the Black Major as her warning seems to come through. For a pacifist she seems pretty pleased to see armed rescuers storming the bridge.
The Black Major seems unconcerned at the appearance of enemy soldiers on the bridge. He turns to the motionless robot standing against the wall. "Muton," he intones, pointing at the Joes, "destroy the Americans."
Chance says, "Actually, I'm only HALF American, so you know..."
Gung-Ho says, "Watch it -- he'll just try to destroy half of you!"
Chance can't help but smile the smallest amount
The red robot lurches to life, its head turning this way and that, the odd apparatus on the top of its head rotating in slow circles. It turns toward the Joe operatives, a gun barrel mounted on the side of its head orienting on them.
Gung-Ho looks to see what this 'Muton' is, and his light eyes widen as he spots the massive robot come to life. "What have they been feeding this thing?" he asks, as he swings around his huge rifle and opens fire on red robot. Gung-Ho yells as he opens fire, holding the gun in one hand and firing from the hip as he feeds ammunition into it with his left. Shell casings hit the ground like rain as his weapon thunders in the enclosed space.
>> Gung-Ho strikes Muton with Ballistic <Medium>. <<
Chance reaches into a pocket as he too, stares at Muton as well. He pulls out an Extra Spicy, but allows Gung-Ho to handle it for now. Then he had another idea and put it away, moving sideways towards the hostage, eyes glancing to the other two.
The robot fires its head-mounted gun at the big burly marine.
>> Muton strikes Gung-Ho with Machine-Gun <Low>. <<
As soon as Gung-Ho and the robot engage each other, Ali lunges for a rifle, trying to get one away from the Black Major or one of his unconscious guards. Scooping one up, he aims it at the Black Major. "OK, Major. That's enough. There's been enough bloodshed for one day. Tell your robot to stand down, and give up - you're outclassed and outgunned. Surrender while you still can." He points his rifle at the Black Major, hands shaking.
Chance had lunged at the same time as Ali, but the mans actions were focused more on his friend. With a brisk hand flip, he sent a small, puck-shaped item skittering across the floor, PAST Gung-ho, and past the machine.
It sat there, then a red light blinked on top. There was a click, and then it FLEW, of its' own accord, to cling to the nearest metal part of the robot!
- BEEP* *BANG*
>> Chance strikes Muton with Ied. <<
Gung-Ho yells as he's shot in the upper chest and shoulder by the robot - that's what he gets for not wearing armor or even a freakin' shirt in the cold. Screaming in pain and rage, Gung-Ho keeps firing, unloading his own machine-gun at Muton even as the armored cyborg is engulfed in flame from Chance's fun little toy. "We're takin' out your goon here, and then we're takin' you out, whoever you are - just wait your turn!"
>> Gung-Ho strikes Muton with Ballistic <High>. <<
The Black Major scowls at Ali, the first real emotion he's shown all evening. "Muton, defend me!" he cries, darting for the door leading to the deck. The robot backs up a few paces, placing itself between Ali and the Joes and the Black Major, to cover his retreat.
Black Major sends a radio transmission.
>> Black Major retreats from the area, leaving himself open to Chance, Ali, and Gung-Ho. <<
Ali tracks the Black Major with his rifle, and for a moment has a chance to end it all before Muton steps in the way ... but he can't shoot, and the moment passes as the Black Major gets past him.
Chance grins as the explosive goes off, and he focuses on Black Major now, trying to aim around the robot that still walked somehow, but he just couldn't get a clear chance. "Who's up top to stop them?" he calls to Gung ho.
Gung-Ho frowns. "Beachhead and Torpedo should be up there, if they made it off the zodiac." He frowns and grimaces in pain, hoping that his friends haven't been lost at sea.
Chance then looks at Ali, warily, lifting his rifle in that direction "... and you?"
Ali shrugs as the Muton suddenly stops and just stands there, no longer having a commander to defend. Ali raises his rifle at the ceiling, and shrugs. He looks over at the now-former hostage and says, "Dr. Burkhart -- I don't know what to say..."
Dr. Burkhart says, "Well, it's apparently that none of us has changed our worldview!"
Ali says, "But I think we can agree there's always room to negotiate." He lowers his rifle and surrenders.
Chance lowers his rifle as well, moving to check on Gung Ho as he taps his radio.
Gung-Ho slumps into a seat and holds his hand over his wounds. He gives Chance a smile, though, and a nod that says, "Well done."