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Author Topic: Virtually Irresistible - [Hackers Win!]  (Read 12384 times)

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Offline Saffron

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Re: Virtually Irresistible - [RL Phase 4]
« Reply #125 on: November 13, 2012, 02:36:55 PM »
Votes
Niferbelle - 6
Kythia - 6
Peripherie - 3
Starlequin - 2
KingBear - 1
Persephone - 1
Remiel - 1

Yet to Vote
Gavlois, Kokaine, Sex Bobomb

It's been over 48 hours since the round began, so I imagine we will be moving forward soon. Last call for changes or votes.
« Last Edit: November 13, 2012, 03:53:12 PM by Saffron »

Offline Kythia

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Re: Virtually Irresistible - [RL Phase 4]
« Reply #126 on: November 13, 2012, 02:46:33 PM »
In the very early days of the project there had been a problem in Kythiopolis where NPC emotions had occasionally become tangible.  It was a good thing that didn't happen in the real world as the entire project team would have been crushed to death under the all encompassing cloud of passive-aggresion Kythia generate as she cleared her desk and grinned at Peripherie.

With that done, and employing her usual "half brick in a sock" levels of subtlety, Kythia had started looking for a new job.  There were companies in Europe that were doing things with a PENIS that US regulators would weep over.  One dutch company - Animatronic Neuro-Interfacing Mechanisms And Lifestyle Synchonisation was doing incredible things.  Her willingness and skill to work with the Analgoue Network and Loading Interface would stand her well, most professionals didn't like working with ANIMALS in that way.  Plus of course there was the untapped Thai market, they were world leaders in disguising the comical looking switch into something more attractive.

Eventually though the conversation sunk in and she frowned, remembering something.  She pulled up her email client and scrolled through ads for viagra and generic alternatives and nigerian royalty until she found what she was looking for.

"Hmmmm.  People's warnings about Niferbelle are starting to ring true" she said over her shoulder.

Online Peripherie

Re: Virtually Irresistible - [RL Phase 4]
« Reply #127 on: November 13, 2012, 02:56:44 PM »
There was a lot on her mind during what seemed to be a long work day of going through the same training and troubleshooting guide over and over again. She had barely been able to get through one full screen scroll without having to start over. There was something nagging at her about her recent hastily put words. There was so many unanswered questions and speculation. And nothing that had been gossiped about before had come true. More than one collegue had been ousted for what turned out to be nothing more than rumor. But still, something about Niferbelle gnawed at her. Maybe it was time to change her mind.

Offline persephone325

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Re: Virtually Irresistible - [RL Phase 4]
« Reply #128 on: November 13, 2012, 03:24:55 PM »
Persephone cringed inwardly as BeMi suspected her. But she couldn't blame her. After all, their ranks were diminishing and nobody really seemed trustworthy anymore.

The votes were stacked high against Kythia and Niferbelle. Deciding not to go against the flow this time, Sephie had her suspicions against Kythia.

Offline James Moriarty

Re: Virtually Irresistible - [RL Phase 4]
« Reply #129 on: November 13, 2012, 03:51:11 PM »
Every time James neared sleep, or a Jump -- he could hardly tell the difference anymore -- he found himself more and more isolated from everyone in the group except for one person.  He was tethered to their situation, but by a seemingly narrower and narrower thread.  The city seemed far off -- had he jumped in his car and sped out of town, or was he merely in the VR now?  It was wet and cold.  He could feel the city growing and swelling until it surrounded him, overwhelmed him.

The aftertaste of vodka was in his mouth and the city had sprouted tall, impossibly towering buildings all around him.  He felt the touch of a hand on his, but when he looked down, and then around him, there was no one in sight.  Trying to bring up his HUD to see where the others were, he found it damaged -- wide cracks and red glowing splotches scattered over its surface.  He frowned -- this should not be possible.  Someone was interfering with the core programming now.  It wasn't safe to be in here any longer.  He had to warn the others -- had to try to put an end to this experiment.




Suddenly he was sitting in the confines of his pod again.  The System Restore had not made it.  His earlier thoughts were driven from his mind, propelled by an even more immediate reaction.  James felt his human irritation rising to the surface, making things clearer at least for a short span, the knife's edge of anger bringing a quick moment of clarity.  "Well I voted this way last time, and Peripherie voted for Yugi who was completely innocent -- so what do you have to say for yourself now?"  So many others were accusing Niferbelle, and though in truth he did not know her that well, he did wonder what she might have done to inspire such pointed feelings.

Offline James Moriarty

Re: Virtually Irresistible - [RL Phase 4]
« Reply #130 on: November 13, 2012, 04:08:12 PM »

James suddenly sits bolt upright in his chair.  His eyes are flitting back and forth quickly, scanning something -- the room?  an unseen readout? -- and then he begins to speak.

Hello.  Here is your Fifth Challenge.  Potentially, someone could achieve LEVEL 5.



CHALLENGE 4
Aside from image steganography, a secret message can be deposited in many places.  Normally such a message is hiding in plain sight, and often in a context that would be ignored as a matter of course by any sensible person.  What lies beneath the surface of the flood of data you encounter every day?  An important numeric message has already crossed your paths.  Name the Italian who is responsible for that message.

HINT 4
Spam email, a costly and often dangerous problem, is responsible for millions of hours of wasted time every year, and is also one of the primary vectors for the spreading of computer viruses.





Offline Kokaine

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Re: Virtually Irresistible - [RL Phase 4]
« Reply #131 on: November 13, 2012, 04:59:10 PM »
This time around when Kokaine woke she took a second to breathe a sigh of relief, Of course, upon hearing that yet another had not come out of the program and relief she felt was swamped over by worry and outright distrust. Someone was toying with them.

Wasting no time she set about doing a bit of research, trying to back her decision with some sort of fact. However, even she was not fully immune to the gossip and paranoia sweeping through the others. All she kept thinking was that it could be her that might not wake up next time. So with a final shudder she made her decision... "There is an awful lot of concern about Niferbelle it seems. Could be there's some truth to it..."

Offline Breathless Intent

Re: Virtually Irresistible - [RL Phase 4]
« Reply #132 on: November 13, 2012, 05:02:00 PM »
The constant back and forth between suspects was giving her a headache. Stepping away from the bickering team members, she disappeared into the small kitchen and made herself a cup of tea. Clinging to the comfort of her warm mug, she reluctantly started back toward the group. But, as she was strolling by Niferbelle's desk, she noticed a few odd scribbles in her notes. Things that did not seem to line up with the work that she was supposed to have been doing. With a frown, she rejoined the group. Her suspicious stare shifted away from Kythia and settled firmly on Niferbelle.

Offline Saffron

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Re: Virtually Irresistible - [RL Phase 4]
« Reply #133 on: November 13, 2012, 05:15:07 PM »
Votes
Niferbelle - 10
Kythia - 5
Peripherie - 2
Starlequin - 2
KingBear - 1
Persephone - 1
Remiel - 1

Yet to Vote
Gavlois
« Last Edit: November 13, 2012, 08:16:00 PM by Saffron »

Offline Trieste

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Re: Virtually Irresistible - [RL Phase 4]
« Reply #134 on: November 13, 2012, 05:16:48 PM »
Niferbelle.

Offline Sex Bobomb

Re: Virtually Irresistible - [RL Phase 4]
« Reply #135 on: November 13, 2012, 07:57:32 PM »
Niferbelle.

I apologize for lack of flavor text, my being on the road has kept me busy and I wanted to make sure I participated.

Offline Gavlois

Re: Virtually Irresistible - [RL Phase 4]
« Reply #136 on: November 13, 2012, 09:29:18 PM »
As Gav awoke from his pod again, he noticed quite the commotion again. Another member of their team had been trapped in their pod again. His eyes passed suspiciously though emotionless until he spotted Bear reaching for his duct tape.

"Hey, Bear, don't you dare! I don't know what the hell you're doing with that duct tape, but you'd better not be going near anyone's pod with that!"

Offline Saffron

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Re: Virtually Irresistible - [RL Phase 4]
« Reply #137 on: November 13, 2012, 09:33:10 PM »
Votes
Niferbelle - 10
Kythia - 5
KingBear - 2
Peripherie - 2
Starlequin - 2
Persephone - 1
Remiel - 1

Anybody else want to switch?

Offline ThatRPGuyTopic starter

Re: Virtually Irresistible - [RL Phase 4]
« Reply #138 on: November 14, 2012, 02:22:44 AM »
Votes
Niferbelle - 10
Kythia - 5
KingBear - 2
Peripherie - 2
Starlequin - 2
Persephone - 1
Remiel - 1

The engineers weren't going to make the same mistake twice, this time they'd check their facts before calling the authorities. As everyone plugged in, a few stayed behind to go over Niferbelle's terminal. They had suspected her, sure, but they hadn't been expecting this much. In addition to a wealth of information on pod schematics and how the PENIS works, they found dozens of bank statements, massive amounts of money to and from various accounts, bribery emails, blackmails, even a virus program for the neural interfaces. Worst of all, an illegally downloaded copy of The Matrix II and III!!! The horror!

They hadn't just found a hacker, they had discovered The Worm! The frenzied engineers reacted swiftly; they didn't call the police. Not this time. There was only one punishment suitable the the ringleader of the hackers. Before they logged in to join the others, the straggling engineers pulled the plug on Niferbelle, trapping her in the VR world, just as she had done to their friends.

VR Phase roles please PM us whether you do or do not wish to use your ability tonight.

Offline Saffron

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Re: Virtually Irresistible - [RL Phase 4]
« Reply #139 on: November 14, 2012, 05:10:08 PM »
As they come out of their VR phase it is a very unfortunate situation when they find Remiel is the next to be disabled in his pod and unable to resurface to the real world. Even worse, upon investigating his main station they find that they have lost a very important part of their team, the Firewall with seven or eight security programs beyond what one might call paranoia. Alas, there was nothing they could do for him now aside from catching another one of those manipulative, greedy hackers and hopefully getting rid of them all so they could start working on finding a way to get their friends out of their pods. Though, they might just leave Niferbelle in hers.



Players
Aadreal
Beguile's Mistress
Breathless Intent
Gavlois
James Moriarty
KingBear
Kyrsa
Kythia
Kokaine
Luna
Mcsc
Peripherie
persephone325
Ryven
Sarena
Sasha
Sex Bobomb
Starlequin
SunshineSparkle
Trieste
Valerian

Roles
Engineers x11-13
IP Tracer
White Hat
Nostalgic
NPC
AI
Hackers x1-3
Neuro-System Specialist
The Girl

Offline Trieste

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Re: Virtually Irresistible - [RL Phase 5]
« Reply #140 on: November 15, 2012, 11:12:00 AM »
Might as well get this show on the road. I'll post some flavor text later, but for now it's Beguile's Mistress.

Offline James Moriarty

Re: Virtually Irresistible - [RL Phase 5]
« Reply #141 on: November 15, 2012, 02:52:58 PM »
For a brief moment, James thought he would be able to finally reach another teammate inside the Reality Construct.  Though still hung over and with no sleep from the night before -- his out of office journeys now at least as exciting and important to him as those taking place within these walls -- he had been certain he'd figured out how to use the AI's programming against itself to allow him to trace and then meet up with the Firewall.  The day before, he had installed a NIC card with modified firmware -- it was permanently set to promiscuous capture mode and logged encrypted entries directly to James' SkyDrive account -- in one of the pods.  And during his last Jump, he had gained access to a terminal that he had modified to allow him write access to the running code himself.  Though he would be modifying the program on the fly in memory, he was certain his efforts would pay off.

And in part, they had -- he had found the Firewall.  But by the time he reached him, it was too late.  He was frozen, motionless, eyes shielded behind his shades, mind already trapped somewhere as of yet inaccessible to James.  He pounded his hand on the table in frustration.  He had already saved this engineer once, but this time he was too slow.  He wasn't going to be able to save even the ones that mattered most.  Frustration giving way to sadness, he extended his hand flat and a black, square card with the Firewall's namesake appeared.  He placed the card on the arm of the Firewall's chair, muttering, "I'm going to get you back -- somehow.  Sit tight."

The city was now many times the size it was during his last visit.  And he couldn't shake the feeling that he had been here before -- the room he was in seemed somehow familiar in a most jarring way.  He looked out a window, down at the street below.  Across the road there was a little Indian restaurant with a bright red, lonely "Open" sign hanging on a nondescript door.  A series of fleeting images passed through his mind -- the touch of a woman's hand on his neck, the smell of beer and curry.  Shaking his head as if to dispel the memories, he saw the clock out of the corner of his eye.  Damnit, he thought, I'm late to the next Jump.  He hurried to put on his leather jacket and paused at the doorway with his hand on the knob.

Wait a minute.  This was a Jump -- he was in the Virtual world now.  Right?  He stood there, confused, starting to shake.




He sat bolt upright in his pod and scrambled out, panicked.  Putting his hands on the cold plastic exterior, feeling the solid, smooth, comforting sensation of real stuff, he got control of his breathing.  Many of the other engineers had already finished their Jumps and were standing around in little clusters, talking quietly and occasionally gesturing at Remiel's pod.  He had no idea who could be behind this anymore -- the events of the last days and nights had made him too unsure and he doubted himself -- doubted his ability to make the human call rather than the call that the AI that inhabited his brain would make.  "persephone325 -- you voted for me a while back, and you were awfully quiet when it came to Niferbelle -- could you be behind this?"  He desperately wanted to be proved wrong -- evidence was thin to none, and everyone was operating from fear alone.  Most especially he himself.

Offline persephone325

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Re: Virtually Irresistible - [RL Phase 5]
« Reply #142 on: November 15, 2012, 05:22:44 PM »
Persephone knew that would come back to bite her. From now on, she decided to keep her suspicions to herself. Unless a situation arose in which she would need to defend herself. She was just getting votes out of spite now.

She looked at James and shook her head, not knowing what else to say that could convince him. Even if she could think of something to say, everyone was so suspicious of one another, that she probably wouldn't have been believed.

Looking around at the others, Kokaine had been extremely quiet throughout this whole ordeal. Sephie couldn't help but wonder why...

Offline Kythia

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Re: Virtually Irresistible - [RL Phase 5]
« Reply #143 on: November 15, 2012, 07:02:14 PM »
Sobbing Kythia threw herself onto Remiel's pod. 

"Why couldn't it be me!" she wailed and turned to look at the others, mascara smeared down her face "why couldn't it be me?"  He'd been their protector, their guardian, their defender.  Their Firewall.  Ironic then that the only thing he couldn't protect was, she sank to her knees and pressed her cheek against the cold metal of his pod, was her heart.  With him gone what chance did they have for survival?  With him gone, what reason did they have for survival?  She let herself slide down the curved aluminium into a sobbing heap on the floor and pounded her fists against the tiles in anguish.  "He was the best of us"; each word punctuated by a thump of her small fist.


Reaching out gently she placed her hand onto the glass shield on the pod and muttered "Crudelius est quam mori semper timere mortem  I hope you're in peace now Remiel.  Firewall on, little firewall."  She patted the glass as her voice cracked "Firewall on."  She patted again, harder, then once again - this time smashing her palm into the reinforced glass as the terrible sorrow was slowly replaced with rage.  Rising to her knees she spread her arms wide and cursed the uncaring God who could allow such a man to be taken -  but it was man not God that had done this.  Shakily she rose to her feet and glared at the assembled project team, hatred and anger all but masking the sorrow in her eyes.  "One of you did this" the word 'you' infused with all the emotion she could muster "and I will not rest or sleep, I will not diverrt from my task, Nay! I shall not smile until I have found you and made YOU PAY.  If every last one of you remains trapped there then so be it.  You" she waved her arm randomly towards the crowd "You first".

Reviewing the CCTV footage made it look like her finger had been pointing at Trieste but immediately afterwards she had fled to the women's toilets and locked herself in, preventing anyone being absolutely certain.



Edit to correct markup tags with GM permission
« Last Edit: November 15, 2012, 07:08:36 PM by Kythia »

Offline Sasha

Re: Virtually Irresistible - [RL Phase 5]
« Reply #144 on: November 15, 2012, 09:26:34 PM »

 Sasha stepped out of the pod ...as she seemed rather dazed. For some reason she had gone in thinking of one thing in her mind . Those damn challenges ....too much fun to ignore it seemed . Though this riddle seemed to have a pleasure that spoke to her inner soul . The Mona Lisa ...said to have a series of codes hidden inside of her painted by the mathematician himself ..Leonardo di ser Piero da Vinci. 

When she stepped into the virtual world she was standing before the painting ...the walls of the room peeled back and there he was painting . The walls they crumbled ...and fell inward onto each other . Breaking down into particles that was replaced by the images she was creating inside of her mind . Testing the protocals ...then he was there painting. Who knew if the image she was looking upon was truly him . The man had been programmed and uplifted into the system .

" I need you to do something for me ...." ...pausing as the man turned around and looked at her . Then the image faded and she was standing inside a black cube of space . " Protect my friends trapped in here . "  she spoke into the nothing .

The time had ended ..it must of taken longer to create the space once inside ....that was unfortunate . As the pod opened ...Sasha moved across the room and wrote down the series of numbers and letters contained in the painting ..LV  CE 149 .  Not a hundred percent sure she had them correctly . Would need to be verified somehow ... sending in the request for a cross link of all known information . She created a sub-link and put into motion a criteria pattern . That was more when she looked up and noticed that one of them had not returned .

She had heard that though as ....the woman bite her lip . Oh lord ..someone let the drama queen out of the cubical . Yes indeed , why not send her packing . There was not enough Tylenol to tame the headaches that one seemed to give out at times .  " Seriously ...if your going to have a mental breakdown .... Khythia have it elsewhere .....this does not help anything .  "  Rolling her eyes ...get a room . 

Looking over at Trieste ....hopefully the woman would at least speak up for herself as that finger did seem to roll over that way . If she was going to be a leader or whatnot ....with two very valuable counterparts trapped in the virtual world .  No Firewall ...no System Restore ....entering that pod was going to be quite dangerous now . Massaging her head as that mild headache was moving into the migraine stage . Somehow ...." Does anyone have any idea ...how to get them out of there ....in one piece ?"  maybe they should hault operations till some fail safe measures could be restored .  Fat chance of that happening .

This nightmare was only magnified as she looked over the data ....the Wurm had compiled . IT would take ...more time than she had to figure this one out . Looking up every so often to see what the others had to say .

Offline Aadreal

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Re: Virtually Irresistible - [RL Phase 5]
« Reply #145 on: November 16, 2012, 12:45:59 AM »
Aadie wasn't in the mood for more testing.  What started out as a brilliant dream had turned into a nightmare.  But they were contractually obligated to continue.  Settling into the pod once more she waited for the rush of falling into the virtual world.  There were things she should be doing.  Tests she should be running.  But it all felt so...pointless. 

There was a little store that she and Analise had collaborated on.  It would never survive in the real world.  But here....opening the door she took in a deep breath, imagining she could feel the presence of the Engineer now trapped in the system.  The soft chords of the dulcimer played in the background, incense giving the small room a tranquil feel.  It was devoted fans of the Firefly television series. 

She spent the test watching the show with NPCs, all dressed in proper Firefly fashion.  Aadie dressed in one of her favorite outfits that Inara wore.  The other fans were typical.  Some simply dressing funny, others acting in character.  But all in all as they interacted and the show played on the big screen she finally began to feel a little better.  It was with renewed spirits that she left VR.  They would find a way to get Analise and the others out. 

Rubbing her eyes she sat up, once more noticing a gathering crowd.  Her heart began to pound when she heard Kythia's lament. It....it was Remiel.  It was not too long ago she'd suggested he'd be able to figure out who the hackers were.  And now he was....

Seeing Kythia in such anguish broke her heart, her own tears wetting her cheeks.  At least one person was responsible for this.  Looking around the room for anyone suspicious her eyes fell to Sasha.  The hackers would indeed pay.

Offline Ryven

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Re: Virtually Irresistible - [RL Phase 5]
« Reply #146 on: November 16, 2012, 05:44:49 AM »
Kythia

Offline Saffron

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Re: Virtually Irresistible - [RL Phase 5]
« Reply #147 on: November 16, 2012, 02:03:33 PM »
Votes
Kythia - 3
BeMi - 1
Kokaine - 1
Persephone - 1
Sasha - 1
Trieste - 1

Yet To Vote
Beguile's Mistress, Breathless Intent, Gavlois, KingBear, Kyrsa, Kokaine, Luna, Mcsc, Peripherie, Sarena, Sex Bobomb, Starlequin, Valerian
« Last Edit: November 17, 2012, 03:38:37 PM by Saffron »

Offline Starlequin

Re: Virtually Irresistible - [RL Phase 5]
« Reply #148 on: November 17, 2012, 01:04:18 AM »
Starlequin stood silent on the roof, gazing out over the cityscape, one hand cupping a half-finished Pall Mall, its dwindling flame shielded from the evening rain. He paid the weather almost no attention, save for grimly noting how it mirrored his feelings. How many of them were gone, now? Biggles. Standing. Analise. Yugi. Niferbelle ('No great loss there,' he thought darkly). And now Remiel. He couldn't believe what he was thinking, and if anyone ever asked he'd deny it to his dying day...but this project was becoming more trouble than it was worth. And after what they'd done to Nifer, he was definitely not looking forward to spending any more time in VR for a while. 'Yeah, there was a great idea; let's take one of the most dangerous hackers we've ever encountered and lock her in a giant virtual universe we have to work in every friggin' day! What could possibly go wrong with that?'

The patter of rain drops against the metal roof door brought him back out of himself. Star dropped the cig, crushed it under his boot and headed back downstairs. He walked slow, giving his clothes time to dry in the cool stairwell, and re-entered the testing office just as James voiced his suspicion against persephone325, something Starlequin felt was not entirely unreasonable. But she seemed so...mousy. 'Yeah, and Nifer was so obvious,' he thought, rolling his eyes at his own stupidity. Maybe it wouldn't hurt to take a little peek at her terminal the next time he got a chance. 'Hell...maybe a few terminals...'

His train of thought derailed, however, when Kythia broke into hysterics so canned they belonged in a FEMA shelter. One eyebrow rose in bemused disbelief as Star watched the performance, wishing for a bag of popcorn to more fully enjoy the moment. Still, he couldn't help flinching a little as her accusing finger waved over them all; he'd already been on the receiving end of one deluded hellbitch's psychoses, and he was still paying alimony.

"Chill out, Cleopatra; Remi ain't dead. He's just...stuck...in a...vast, everchanging digital universe, and...possibly cognitively disintegrated," Starlequin said, trailing off as he realized the picture he was painting wasn't exactly a Rembrandt of reassurance. Still, he was certain it would be possible to get them all back, and he had made such progress already. He suspected a few of the others had started working on a retrieval plan as well. Well, as many minds as it took; they only had to solve the problem once, after all.

A sigh escaped him as Sasha began to berate Kythia, who raced out of the room to who knew where. 'Kids,' Star thought without a trace of irony, despite being far from the oldest guy in the room. Then again...he ran a quick head count of the engineers on the project and felt a little queasy; holy shit, he probably was the oldest guy on the team. He slipped around the others toward Rem's desk and scrounged in one of the bottom drawers for the bottle of rum he'd once spied hidden away.

"Ah, good old Remiel," he muttered as his fingers clasped around the long neck, "hope you don't mind, mate, but I think my crisis just got worse than yours at the moment." Starlequin moved back to his own terminal and fell back into his chair, stealing a swig from the bottle and once again staring out at the rest of the team. There were a few more he could check off his suspect list; thankfully, the emails he'd sent out had put him in touch with people that felt trustworthy. But there was a big difference in knowing who to trust and who to distrust, one that still left him looking out on a sizable pool of unfriendlies. He'd already picked wrong three times, now. And this was too important to leave to a few simple RNG algorithms. Starlequin leaned one elbow on his desk and watched patiently, deciding to wait a little longer and see where the others' loyalties lay.

Offline SunshineSparkle

Re: Virtually Irresistible - [RL Phase 5]
« Reply #149 on: November 17, 2012, 03:37:40 PM »
Sunshine gazed at Remiel's pod,silently mourning the loss of their firewall ... Things were getting shaky at DrallTech and tension was at its peak lately,she suspected that Kythia worked with those responsible of their numerous troubles