The Spooks get down to business. Ronan inquires about a box of cigars and also mentions they are here for the job. Brewster nods politely with a smile. Lahz mentions closing down the shop for their meeting. Brewster seems to have the same idea. Once everyone is inside, the sound of something metal moving can be heard. Brewster flips a sign on the inside of the door, which says, "Out for Lunch". As he steps away, metal shutters on the inside lower down.
Anyone who is monitoring radio traffic notices that suddenly all transmissions cease. Lahz looks for the invisible but nothing leaps out. There is a wooden Indian in a corner that looks quite aged. Vheld however can see that it and several walls are considerably magical.
That aside, the quiet that settles on the shop is inviting rather than oppressive.
Brewster goes to his shelves, swinging out a small section to reveal a hidden portion of the humidor and retrieves a box and two extra cigars and takes it to Ronan and Vheld. "If you are wanting to impress this woman..." he says with a smile that implies a question of Ronan's romantic intentions with the woman. "Then I happen to have these." Ronan can smell something both sweet and bold. It's invigorating. "Hesperides. This tobacco is grown in Atlantis. They say it has a mystic nature, embuing even the most mundane people with visions of the future or the ability to see spirits. It is prized by the wealthy there. The box itself carries a magic that maintains the the flavor and experience of Hesperides. Fifteen thousand credits for the box and the 20 cigars within. For two it is 1,600 credits. But come, let us speak of the job first." he says, handing the box to Ronan and the two extra cigars to Vheld.
Brewster offers a box of wooden matches to Vheld. The aroma of the Hesperides drifts through the room. Vheld's mind relaxes as old but mildly pleasant memories that he had forgotten, return to his mind. ((gain 3 temporary P.P.E.))
Drawing everyone to the smoking lounge, they find rich, plush leather arms chairs and asks them to take a seat.
"I'm glad to see you came. I am Brewster Brolock, which I'm sure you all already discovered. I have contacted you on behalf of an anonymous party. I will tell you everything I know. First, the client had originally contacted another merc group here in town. But they apparently have disappeared from the city. Their job was to infiltrate Chi Town. Don't ask me how, I don't know. But that was the plan. There is a bio lab within the city where a parasite was being cultivated that could kill a large amount of the beings in North America. It was discovered in or around the Devil's Gate. While that seemed to have been the goal to find something lethal to D-Bees, it also had a mortality rate of 10 to 20 percent among native humans. Apparently the brass considered it too big of a loss of human life and ordered the project terminated. However it continued in secret. The other mercenary group was supposedly going to destroy the lab and all records of it.
What the client didn't know was how close to being discovered, the renegade research was. The ineptitude of the force the Coalition sent it allowed the researchers to escape to the burbs with a significant colony of the parasite. Dog boys tracked them down, but not before a smuggler had been hired under false pretenses to take the package to Lazlo. The courier has no idea what he, she or it is carrying. Unfortunately the researcher who delivered the parasites to the courier took his own life to prevent it from being taken from his mind.
The parasites are supernatural in nature, able to endure mundane fire, cold and a variety of other conditions. It's supposedly airborne, but it's lifespan is short, less than a week. The reproduce by dividing every hour they have magic energy available. They either kill the host or die from a lack of nutrition. Humans survive it mostly by lacking magic energy, generally. Apparently it feeds off that energy, which is why it's so lethal to supernatural creatures. It's microscopic and enters the blood stream. More alarmingly, it seems to have the ability to bore through EBA on a microscopic level. Cryogenically freezing them will suspend their activity, but also suspends their mortality, keeping them lethal until thawed. There is some mechanism that will release the parasites once it is in Lazlo. Whether it's a time release canister or a sealed box of some type, I don't know. Those in the know in the CS have switched tactics now that the trail has went cold, destroying all evidence, in anticipation of the worst, to save their own careers. Two of the researchers were captured alive, tortured and their minds delved for any information. I have told you that information. The client at the time contact me to find another mercenary company to track this package down, secure the parasites and destroy them. I had given up on trying to contract this job because there wasn't anything to go on. No merc was going to take such an open ended job. I talked to many steeped in magic and psionics, keeping the details to myself. But they seemed to feel it was too little to go on. I could only pray it wasn't as bad as the client was suggesting.
Then, just yesterday a mystic here at the college had a strong vision of death descending upon the continent. Her visions were so strong that she had to be sedated. It was of an invisible enemy that doubles itself and eats everyone from the inside, out. She knew it would start in Manistique on 131. I happened to learn that from a regular customer here. All at the college viewed this as a semi distant future event. Either January 31st or 131 PA. But that news bothered me, so I did some digging. What would say if I told you that in two weeks there is a hover train that is leaving from Manistique, bound for Lazlo? What if I say the number of the hovertrain is 131? No one in Merctown knows of what I've just told you, aside from us in this room. The pay is real. I had considered having the whole train destroyed once it leaves Manistique, but if the parasites are as tough as they suggest, it might not be enough to wipe it out. The lakes are filled with creatures magic as well as mundane. I think it would be all too likely that these parasites would escape an explosion, short of a strategic nuke, and might simply be spread more quickly by such an explosion. I personally feel that getting the package, whatever it might be, is the way it has to be done. I don't know who the courier is or what the package looks like. I will provide a cryo cooler and tickets to take the hovertrain from Manistique to Lazlo. The trip takes 12 hours usually and maintains a water route for the Trek, making a few stops along the way. Your must find the package before it reaches Lazlo. I don't know how the package was intended to release or unseal once it reaches Lazlo. It's possible the smuggler was given instructions to open the container or package once they reach there or perhaps there is something else to this. That's what I know. Do you have an questions before making a decision?"