The team wake up separately in a resleeving facility on Aarhus. Immediately the quartet are contacted by Professor Magnus Quio-sen Ming, notifying them to meet him in his office at 18:00 hours. Their bodies feel familiar despite waking up in the facility.
His office is in a garden habitat on the shores of the methane sea. He lets the team know that Firewall wants them to find Tara Yu or recover her cortical stack. Tara Yu was researching the location of military hardware recovered from a station in Earth orbit that was destroyed during the Fall. She’s been missing for a month now. Not normally noteworthy with her work, but she missed her scheduled check in. She was last seen on Locus. Professor Magnus Quio-sen Ming also congratulates them on missions well done that he will not describe and that the team does not recall. He also casually mentions the current disruptions in the lake.
With this in mind, the team sets on to track down leads. RT40PX “Artie” performs some quick mesh research to discover Tara Yu kept her life very private, leaving little information publicly viewable. She kept her personal life and work life very separate. Attempts to speak to TAU coworkers reveal that they merely thought she was on sabbatical.
Carson Keller immediately begins to make overtures using his autonomist reputation to discover information about Tara Yu, after the group has attempted to contact the networks multiple times. But with a favor Carson manages to find that Tara Yu recieved two large favors from Mason wang and Morteza Bey.
Artie performs some basic research into each. Discovering that Wang is heavily involved with AI work at Tau, working on projects with Locus research pods. He is a part of Blue Pod. They discover Bey is young, an eco-activist, who runs a gardening blog. He was recently killed at Xiu’s Gardenhouse by unknown assailants. With a favor Carson manages to contact Antoin Saul, Bey’s ex-boyfriend. He lets them know about Bey’s recent death experience, while revealing that they have split to different feelings about reclaimer issues. He knew of Tara Yu hiring Bey, but not what for. With many failed attempts at persuasion Ilder Liar eventually intimidates into providing information on how to contact Bey, while severing the communication ties by igniting his fear and hatred of uplifts.
Armed with this information, Sigma secures a simulspace meeting with Bey due to their pulled autonomist reputation. He asks many direct questions of the group, and Carson accidentally spills some information about their secret organization and work. He shares that Yu convinced him via pitching the invasion of the White Khan ship to find the myrmidon tech as a reclaimer effort to figure out means to save earth, which he did since he knew Saul would appreciate it. He also informs Sigma that he sent a beta version of himself with Yu, but he knows little about that due to his death. He wants to avoid further involvement due to possible further deaths. He reveals that Yu boarded the White Khanh‘s ship Song Cai Flower since she believed they had the technology. He also shared two video clips he recovered from his beta fork. One showing the White Khanh’s second in command Dextor Vo consuming oddly red noodles, and another showing an only vaguely humaonid male walking through the room while Tara Yu hides.
Through a criminal research via Artie, they discover a lot of information about White Khanh gang and the ship. Due to the group’s lack of subtlety Patrona Vasquez contacts them asking what they are up to, extracting a promise for complete details, possibly violating Firewall’s operating procedures. She in exchange tells of the White Khanh’s descent into a cult and the recall of member’s to the base.
The group then pulls a favor to question Wang via simulspace. Broken up and full of guilt at believing to have caused the death of his occasional lover, he shares that he built Yu two AI’s one that rides a taller standard bot, Achilles and Tortoise which is full of advanced infosec technology. He helped her plan her break into the ship, but she did not return. The secret QR communicator sent him data, but it turned out to be infected by the glory virus, corrupting the fork that he had to completely delete. He could not share anything about the ship in detail or the myrmidon hardware.
After considering blackmail for more information, the checks with criminal networks turn up little on either Bey or Saul, and discard that avenue for acquiring how Bey is holding out.
Contacting Bey one last time, Sigma discovers that Yu and Bey contacted a former gang member, Zheng, and set out to contact her.
At first she sets very high demands of credits and transport, and does not bat an eye at the group’s attempts at intimidation. But when she discovers that Sigma is heading to the ship, she agrees to give them information if they recover her father’s dog tags on the ship, a precious memento from before the fall. With that, she shares schematics to the ship, and information about the virtual security systems. She emphasizes that the dog tags are in a duffel bag in the crew quarters. Strongly emphasizes. She tells the group that there are 8 people on the ship about. She rendezvousing with the Flower while it was en route, confirming that the station is not armed.
With that Sigma egocasts to Casa Arturo to secure transport to the Flower.