Conference With Minos

Minos comes into the room, and once he gets there he redirects the food here. When the delivery guys have left, he makes an intercom call to Magical Security, and shortly thereafter an astral mage shows up and wards the room. "You should be safe, Mr. Michaels," says the astrally manifested mage before departing. He then flicks on the best white noise generator the company has, after locking the door.

Samuel quirks an eyebrow, nodding to Minos as the door behind him closes. "Whats the sitrep?" He asks, leaning with one butt-cheek on the conference table.

Minos picks up a slice of pizza, but his heart really isn't in eating it. "Do you have any idea where Jude, Sanura, or Jaguar are these days?"

"Jaguar, yes. Sanura… I've seen her around occasionally. Jude… not so much."

Minos says "Where is Jaguar?"

Samuel raises an eyebrow. "Somewhere in Barsaive, running with a tribe of orks?" He gently prods Minos on this, as that was Jaguars choice… he never came out of the great machine.

Minos says "In the time I've been gone, have you had anyone at all who's seen anything resembling the Scourge?"

Samuel shakes his head. "I've dropped some hints to some of the prospects, but nothing firm. Unless they are in the immortals, or perhaps on the bleeding, leading edge of magical research, I don't think anyone outside this room knows."
"Unless you mean scourge-sign, such as the Insect Spirits. in which case… too much information, not enough power to sift it. Hum-Int is lagging."

Minos lets out a long, slow breath. "I was afraid of that," he says. "No. I mean the Scourge. I have a possible incident that may well be Scourge-related, but the only people I can imagine would be able to positively identify it in our information-loop are either Jude or Sanura, and even then they've only got what the Great Machine's Dunkelzahn told or showed them. I've no desire to involve the Immortals, and DIMR doesn't have any specialists that've seen anything like it, and I don't want to get Hestaby involved in this, either, so that leaves us pretty well fucked. We're going to have to enter the Machine again."

Samuel grunts, thinking that over. "Not exactly something I look forward too." He says simply, but without any whining, remorse or annoyance. "Whats the incident?" he asks then.

Minos says "Do you know an ork named Weeko?"

Samuel shakes his head. "Seen her once or twice. She tries to downplay her orkish heratage, yes?"

Minos says "Far as I know. She's got a problem. Let me see if I can summarize it adequately."
Samuel listens, giving Minos his full attention.

Minos says "She was raised in an orphanage on the outskirts of Denver, a shitty little place. Far as I can tell, and I haven't done too strenuous a matrix investigation—going to want to pay Katral for that, for reasons that will become obvious later. When she was there as a child, apparently, the Director thereof was engaged in repetitive and prolonged sexual abuse of the children and had been so for many years."

Samuel quirks an eyebrow. "That fits the bill for the actions of either a serial pedophile with a god complex or a midlevel Horror, yes…"

Minos says "Recently, Weekoafter becoming pregnant by Katraldeveloped an odd black spot on her aura. She turned to Janiehence my rapid agreement earlierfor assistance. Through a variety of off-the-record means, they investigated and determined that the orphanage was sort-of "guarded" by a gang that they tracked back to a person they believe was a toxic shaman." He pauses. "Bearding the shaman in his den, they confronted him and defeated him, but he was spirited away, quite literally, by a large, toxic free spirit. When they examined the shaman's office, they found a set of diaries, some children's bloody bones, and evidence of human sacrifices which are signs of strong blood magic. The background count in the office was…huge, apparently. Investigating the children themselves, via assensing, they discovered that the children had similar black spots on their auras."

Samuel raises an eyebrow. "I see." He says simply, thinking that over. "I don't know the significance of the black spot on the aura, but I can understand that it is quite bad. Has this building been leveled yet, or is it still open to investigation?"

Minos says "I don't know. This was a very late night meeting last night, and I wanted to get the diaries into the hands of DIMR as rapidly as possible, so I haven't yet done that much in the way of detailed investigation at this point, and frankly I don't remember all the details of what the three told me. The one thing that does bother me probably more than anything else is that she did not have this black spot on her aura, until she got pregnant."

"But the remaining children do have the black spot? Possibly something like… a fleshform in the making?" Asks Samuel.

Minos shakes his head. "I have no idea. I couldn't assense her, obviously, and the reasonf or my earlier question is that I don't know of anyone who is capable of assensing her and giving us a better idea of what, exactly, the black spot is…that isn't in the Machine. If it's some weird Sixth World combo of toxic and blood magic, well, we know how to deal with that, not that it's a good thing. If it's something else…we need to know, and we need to know fast, and the only source I can think of who's capable of doing such a thing that we can trust is Dunkelzahn.

Samuel nods to minos, agreeing. "If dunk however, is stumped, I vote for scorched earth. If that becomes the issue, I'll handle that side of the equasion." And thats just the way labors divided.

Minos says "Well, I've no real desire to slaughter orphans who're likely innocent victims, but if that's how it is…" he pauses. He continues, "However, I do imagine that the big D will recognize horror-taint given his role in the world. This is just another proof of why people should've just fucking listened to him instead of trying so hard not to 'scare' people by revealing the truth. Fucking immortals."

Samuel nods slowly. "I know, Alex. I don't relish the idea of those things either, but we cauterize wounds for a reason." he reaches for his coffee. "YOu're hell on my conscience. As to the immortals… No. I really don't think we're ready for it yet, as a people, as a species. Once the immortals are known, they'll be under constant attack. it's better that they remain in seclusion and speculation."

Minos says "No, but consider for a moment that there's no way on God's green earth that anyone *but* you or I would recognize this for what it might be."

Samuel nods, sipping his coffee. "I don't deny that. Trust me… I lose sleep over it. You're probably the only person who understands the unique issues our perspective allows." He moves to sit down in a chair, letting his shoulders slouch. "I informed David that his services are no longer required. He never got to learn anything in the first place, so its all well and good."

Minos says "Fair enough; after what you told me regarding him and Benedicte, it's a bit of a relief." He pauses. "We're going to have to draft Weeko, Janie, and Katral, one way or another, and get them to shut up about it to others. The only other people who I think are aware are, in the periphery, someone named Danthrall? I forget his actual name, it was late."

Samuel shakes his head. "Never heard of him. But there's an Otaku, ah…" A pause as he sets his coffee down. "Hisako. We need matrix jones, and I'm just not that good and getting ahold of Chameleon on short notice can be problematic."

Minos says "Well, Katral'll do. Weeko's a physical adept; did you meet her as Johan that night in the gym with Lilith?"

Samuel shakes his head. "I was too busy hitting on the satyr."

Minos says "Well, I haven't assessed her capabilities, mind, but who knows."

Samuel nods. "I'm putting together a recruitment siminar. How much information do you think I should put in it?"

Minos says "Well, don't talk about this, obviously. As far as the new probationary people are concerned, I would hold the meeting off Draco property, focus on the idea that we're doing stuff regarding the Will, maybe mention Assets, Inc, etcetera."

Samuel nods. "Benedicte doesn't yet know the full scope."

Minos says "That's fine…what she doesn't know can't kill her."

"We are going to need an inner circle who do though, Alex. We, for all our our skill and bad-assery, are still quite vunerable to dying unexpectedly."

Minos says "Yes. I agree with you. We will likely bring Janie, Weeko, and Katral in mostly because I can't think of any way to separate them safely in the Machine, and Janie and Weeko are essential."

Samuel nods. "I'm concerned about bringing -more- crazy pregnant people in to the organization. Is there no way to handle this without en-masse recruitment?"

"Also, hypocritical as it is, 'couples' bother me. To many entanglements to work properly."

Minos says "Well, we could always FREELANCE them into the most secret artifact in the possession of the Draco Foundation, if you think that's wise."

Minos smirks.

Samuel chuckles, nodding his head and conceeding the point.

Minos says "Ultimately, Samuel, while I'm your conscience in most things, I've no problem whatsoever killing anyone, including myself, you, your wife, pregnant women, babies, children, and even my cat if it's necessary to protect humanity from the Scourge."

Samuel nods to Minos. "I'm glad we're on the same page. For me, as callous as it is, it's simple -math-."

"I want Viv to have a world to look forward too. I want to see grandchildren. Great grandchildren, if I'm not shot before then. But in the end, everything I am, and have ever been, has been built and directed with the goal of preserving what we have against what comes. This is as true now, as it was when I was in the Company. Only now, the stakes are more than just a nation."

Minos says "Here's what we're going to need off the bat. I want thorough background checks done on Weeko (although ultimately that's not likely), the orphanage, the Director, anyone who owned it, who put it up, etcetera. Set a decker to work on that when you get the chance, someone hot, maybe Katral as a probationary measure…well, actually not Katral, I don't want him holding back information because he doesn't want to embarrass his girlfriend."

Samuel nods. "I'll reach out to that Otaku, or do it myself as required. I'm competent, but not spectacular in a deck."

Minos nods. "I can't exactly think of anything else at the moment. I want Aladriel and Benedicte to do what they can to analyze her aura and get more data, and I want to bring the remaining orphans into Foundation custody, but I need to find out more data on that before we go in."

Samuel nods, thinking that over. "Ms. Cindel will be released soon. I will bring her in for a consultation on the matter. Benedicte… needs to hit the books and start putting theory to her practice. SHe's still focused on the switch and the light, and not the interplay between the two."

Minos says "Released from where?"

HE exhales. "Denver General's Psyche ward. She… flipped out after giving birth to her own baby. PErhaps I'm being kind. SHe went psychotic and carved her own child from her womb with a knife, then came gibbering at me and Mrs. DeWinter about blood magi chasing her and she needed our help. Pregnancy related psychosis. It left -quite- the impression on Mrs. DeWinter. When you visited the other day, at the F-S-Restarunt, we were having the meal we had rescheduled as interrupted by that incident."

Minos looks at Samuel. "Holy shit. Is she stable now?"

Samuel nods. "As stable as she can be. I've been checking in on her. it's not uncommon for massive hormonal swings in pregnant women, and its thought to be heightened in the Awakened. That said… I'm vastly unhappy with the turn of events. I had spent the last few weeks trying to build confidence that she wasn't the flighty girl I had known 7 years ago."

Minos says "So you had a PMS attack from a hugely powerful mage that resulted in a self-c-section. Great."
Samuel smirks, reaching for a cigarette. "Exactly so. It gives me GREAT hope for the future of the human race…"

Minos says "Well, I need to get over to DIMR. Do you think I need to talk to Aladriel?"

Samuel glances to Minos. "Perhaps speaking to someone else on the team would give her some more perspective. My general warning for her is; She's magical, she thinks its her right and everyone should just accept it. She sends spirits in to peoples homes to deliver apologies and doesn't think twice about the issues inherant in that."

Minos says "All right. I need to go; I'll be back later."

Samuel offers a nod to Alex. "Stay safe."
Minos goes home.
Minos has left.

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