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Mass Effect: Labyrinth


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Tweet of the Day: Reframing and Punching Down

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“Left, right, then up and left again,” said Iblis’Siphs.

He spoke aloud as he went, just like all the Miracle Men did in Triptych station. They were a cadre of systems engineers, software specialist and handymen that kept the two thousand year old station running. The volus built it during their exploration phase. Back then their pressure suit technology was not reliable, so they built space stations with environmental systems tailored to their biology. That meant massive mass effect field generator to simulate Irune’s heavy gravity and high pressure atmosphere. After a couple of hundred years they decommissioned the station which made the perfect base for Krogan pirates after the rebellions. The krogan used the generators to power kinetic barrier projectors. That did not stop the turians from kicking them out. They in turn used Triptych as a patrol base in the Kepler Verge. After they left, all manner of slavers, pirates and raiders took over. But through out the station’s long history only the Miracle Men could keep it from falling apart. No one else knew their way around the maze of systems graphed into each other over the centuries.

“No, wait, left and then down,” said Iblis.

He pushed through a jungle of dangling wires. Panels jutted out of the corridor walls at sharp angles. He darted from one patch of light to the next that came from the back of the odd holo advertising station. Temperatures  varied wildly. One moment he walked through a dense cloud of hot fog, the next he tiptoed through a ice rimmed catwalk. Every few steps he stopped, held his breath and stared at the shadows behind him.

“One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine…and…ten.”

He had a good reason to be paranoid. It came with his side job as an information broker. Access to the stations systems allowed him to watch everyone and everything that happened on board. He then sold the information to whoever was willing to pay. He never met his clients face to face, of course. He used his, “little birds” a collection of contacts throughout the station, most of them were prostitutes working in the dozen or so brothels and sex clubs on Triptych. He would send an information packet to his little bird, they would read it and then whisper it in the target’s ear. Iblis stashed the credits away waiting for the day he could retire as far away from the station as possible. Yet even he knew his limits. He had a no blab list filled with people who he tracked but never sold information about them lest it come back to hunt them. At the top of that list was  one Mr. Aten.

Mr. Aten, the Drell assassin.

Mr. Aten, who was asking about him through his contacts.

Mr. Aten, who suddenly had dropped out of sight, yet as far as Iblis knew had not left the station.

Iblis tripped and fell down face first. He turned on his back and stared at a dark turquoise face that blended with the shadow.

That Mr. Aten.

“I..I..oh gods…I never, please don’t…”sputtered Iblis.

“Mr. Iblis’Siphs Si’inn, if my employers wanted you terminated I would be inspecting your corpse right now,” said Mr. Aten in a raspy baritone.

“Right, so anything I can do you for you. You want some info, yes? Cheap?” said Iblis.

“That is exactly exactly what I’m looking for, Mr. Si’inn. Do you know the location of the Leynaya?”

“The…ooooh right, the Leynaya,” said Iblis.

“Yes, and before you ask, I am authorized to terminate you if the information proves to be inaccurate,” said Mr. Aten.

The Leynaya, the reason why Iblis was so good at his job. A testbed for cobbled up stolen alien tech, from cyclonic barrier generators to super-sized eezo cores. Called a “battlecruiser” by the batarian Central Command. A ship with the firepower of a dreadnought but the cost, maneuverability and speed of a cruiser. When the Reapers came the project leader ordered her abandoned and swore all her crew to absolute secrecy. He had left her behind and never looked back. Now she stared back at him through Mr. Aten’s cold dark green eyes.

Iblis got up, “I know where she is.”

“Good. Please come with me Mr. Si’inn. We have much to talk about .”

——–

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