The Alexandrian

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Eclipse Phase: Psi-Chosis - Water Treatment Facility

The Nova York water treatment facility is nicknamed the “coconuts” because the water reserves are held in huge spherical chambers. Some of these chambers have been built far back into the skin of Metis (feeding water through channels in the skin to distant parts of the city), but the oldest and primary water treatment facility takes the form of a patch of stone “dimples” which emerge from one side of the central chamber.

CORIOLIS GRAV-FEEDS:

  • Four massive, rotating structures are suspended above the dimples. Huge, flexible pipes descend from the structures and can be “dipped” into the dimples below.
  • These roving platforms spin to create the gravity necessary to create water pressure throughout Nova York.
  • Two of the platforms process waste water (filtering it back into the dimples below); the other two platforms suction water out of the dimples and into the NoYo water system.
  • At any given time, generally only one platform of each type is actively spinning. (The other platform moves into position over the next dimple and activates at “changeover” when a dimple has either been emptied or filled.)

SECURITY

  • Neuralite controls security for the facility, but this has mostly been sub-leased.
  • Security guards and water treatment plant workers have no idea what’s going on.

Eclipse Phase: Psi-Chosis - Water Storage Chamber

NEURALITE GRAV-FEED:

  • Neuralite has used their authority to install “security equipment” in one of the outflow grav-feed platforms.
  • This equipment is releasing the epsilon primer and has also been recently loaded with the epsilon psike-out.

NEURALITE TEAM – ON THE GRAV-FEED:

  • Lysander Vangelis, Lead Researcher (see pg. 17)
  • Conway Feren, Chief Security Specialist (see page 18)
  • Neuralite Security Team (x8 – NPC File 1, pg. 15)

DEACTIVATING THE EPSILON FEED:

  • The equipment is located inside the grav-feed; meaning it’s underwater inside the outer ring. If the outer ring is spinning, characters will experience 1.4g of force. (Their actions will be taken under the equivalent of 2 wounds; -20 penalty to tests, -2 penalty to initiative.)
  • The grav-feed itself can only be shut down from the central control station. (This will also have the result of temporarily crippling Nova York’s water supply.)

RUNNING THE NODE:

  • The Neuralite team is likely getting ready to release the epsilon psike-out when the PCs arrive. (Either because that was the original schedule or because they know the PCs are closing in.) The only thing they’re waiting for is the next changeover when this platform will go live.
  • Vangelis will activate the platform if at all possible. Once that happens, there will be very little time before the psike-out contaminated water flows into Nova York.

Go to Proactive Nodes

Go to Part 1

Eclipse Phase: Psi-Chosis - Neuralite Office

On paper, Neuralite is a small freelance neo-genetic research farm. Anyone digging into the company’s background will quickly figure out that they’re actually just a cut-out corporation for Cognite, allowing the hypercorp to perform black book research projects with greater deniability. (Actually proving that would be a completely different ball of wax, of course.)

RESEARCH (-20): Research into Neuralite may also turn up the fact that six months ago, through a dummy subsidiary, they obtained a contract to provide security for the Nova York Water Treatment Facility. (This is odd because it’s way out of their area of expertise.)

NEURALITE OFFICE: The Neuralite facility is a large sphere hanging from one of the “bauble spindles” in Nova York. (A spindle-scraper with a multitude of spheres hanging from it.)

PERSONNEL:

  • Eric Radom, CEO (pg. 16)
  • Laura Panna, COO (pg. 16)
  • Lysander Vangelis, Lead Researcher (pg. 17)
  • 8 Research Scientists (NPC File 1, pg. 13)
  • 6 Tech Support (NPC File 1, pg. 16)

Lysander Vangelis may already be onsite at the Water Treatment Plant (see Node 5).

SECURITY:

  • 2 Security Troopers on guard in the Lobby. (NPC File 1, pg. 15)
  • Security AI
  • Guardian Angel

NEURALITE SECURITY AI: Aptitudes: 10, INT 20. Skills: Beam Weapons 40, Hardware: Electronics 30, Infosec 40, Interface 40, Professional: Security Systems 80, Programming 40, Research 20, Perception 40.


GUARDIAN ANGEL: Movement 8/40, Max Velocity 80, Armor 14/12, DUR 40, WT 8, Rotor

+5 REF, 360-Degree Vision, Access Jacks, Chameleon Skin, Eelware, Enhanced Hearing, Enhanced Smell, Enhanced Vision, LIDAR, Light Combat Armor, Neurachem, T-Ray Emitter

Laser Pulser: DV 2d10, SA. (Stun Mode: DV 1d10, SS, biomorphs make SOM x 2 and synthmorphs make SOM x 3 test. On failure, lose next action. Critical failure paralyzed for 1 turn per 10 points of MoF.)


MODYA SURVEILLANCE: Neuralite has been monitoring Modya since the incident at Black Light. Modya herself is covered in taggants from a hive which has been hidden in her apartment. (See Node 2.)

  • One workstation in the Work Farm is dedicated to the surveillance work.
  • The tech assigned to the surveillance (and the fork of his muse actively monitoring it) could answer questions about it.
  • Accumulated footage is also stored on Neuralite’s servers.

LAB A: Lab A was where the epsilon primer and epsilon psike-out was developed. The lab has recently been cleared out and sterilized. (The chemicals were moved to Node 5 for dispersal and Neuralite is beginning to position themselves for plausible deniability.)

LAB B – CELL CULTURES: Lab B is analyzing the epsilon primer and epsilon psike-out in active cell cultures and also from samples taken from test subjects (both null results and active results).

  • These cell cultures can confirm that Neuralite is behind all of the recent incidents. They can also be used for medical analysis (see Node 3).

THE PLAN: The full report of Neuralite’s plans, the time they plan to release the epsilon psike-out, and the fact that they already have installed the mechanisms necessary at the Water Treatment Planet (Node 5).

  • Full plan available from Neuralite’s servers.
  • Questioning Eric Radom or Lysander Vangelis (they know everything).
  • Researchers won’t want to violate their NDAs (severe consequences), but can confirm all the scientific data about psi-epsilon operner. Each researcher also has a 50% chance of knowing one detail of the plan.
  • Each tech support member has a 25% chance of knowing one detail of the plan.

Go to Node 5: Water Treatment Plant

Go to Part 1

Eclipse Phase - Mobile ScientistGiven the nature of the investigation, there’s a lot of evidence that can be subjected to medical examination. In general, there are three broad results to be obtained (although they can be obtained from a variety of sources):

  • MODYA DNA: The DNA from Modya’s morph (which can be easily traced to identify her, leading to Node 2).
  • EPSILON PRIMER: Once isolated, the fact that the epsilon primer is a binary compound is easy to identify.
  • EPSILON PSIKE-OUT: Like the primer, the fact that the epsilon psike-out is a binary compound is easy to identify. In addition, the psike-out possesses a unique set of artificial polymitotic cells. A Research (+20) test will identify these cells as having been originally developed by Cognite. Cognite then transferred the patent rights for these cells to Neuralite five years ago (leading to Node 4).

For each additional sample of a given type available for analysis, provide a +10 modifier to the test.

Further analysis of either the epsilon primer or psike-out can be performed as a task action (1 day), with a success indicating that the character has identified the general principles of what the chemical’s function is. Halve the required time if a character has access to both compounds.

MODYA’S BLOOD/TISSUE: Blood or tissue samples taken from Modya contain both the epsilon primer and the epsilon psike-out. (It also contains Modya’s morph DNA, but if they’re taking tissue samples from her the PCs have probably found her already.)

PROTOPLASMIC VOMIT: The protoplasmic vomit contains Modya’s DNA and epsilon psike-out.

FABBER CHEMICAL RESIDUE: The chemical residue in the drink fabber is epsilon psike-out.

CELL CULTURES FROM NEURALITE LAB: These contain both the epsilon primer and the epsilon psike-out.

WATER SAMPLES: Samples of water taken anywhere on Nova York will contain epsilon primer.

Go to Node 4: Neuralite Office

Caverns of ThraAsh McAllan sent me a tweet: “Hey @hexcrawl I keep referring people to [Jaquaying the Dungeon]… but noticed you’re using Jaquays’ deadname? Needs updating.”

(For those unaware, the author of The Caverns of Thracia transitioned in, if I recall correctly, 2012.)

This is something I’ve actually given quite a bit of thought to, both generally and in the specific instance of Jaquaying the Dungeon. And my philosophy is that name changes generally progress forward through time.

First: If Jennell had been Jennell when I wrote the essay, I’d have used Jennell. But what I wrote is what I wrote when I wrote it. Similarly, I don’t think we need to edit this video and dub in Caitlyn Jenner’s name.

I don’t think it’s either practical or necessary for us to revise extant works in order to match people’s changing identities. For example, what if I was dead? Who’d have the authority to decide what needed to be rewritten in my work? And what if I’d written a poem and rhymed a word with the name “Paul”? You can’t just search-and-replace names and necessarily arrive at something true.

Second: For similar reasons, I think it’s accurate to say that Cassius Clay won the Clay-Liston fight. (Because that was his name when it happened.) I also think it can be accurate to write that Muhammad Ali won that fight. It would not, however, be accurate to say that Cassius Clay won the Rumble in the Jungle (because that is not a thing which ever happened).

So, in the future, I may refer to “The Caverns of Thracia by Paul Jaquays”. Because that was her name when she wrote it.

There are archival issues here (i.e., you can’t reasonably track down every extant copy of The Caverns of Thracia and scratch out the author’s name on them; and even if you could, there would be some really significant ethical issues with rewriting cultural history like that). There are also issues of historical accuracy (which can be demonstrated with sentences like “Muhammad Ali then changed his name to Muhammad Ali” — which makes no sense if you’ve succeeded in your hypothetical mission to strike all references to the name Cassius Clay from the historical record).

Important proviso here: All of the above is discussing public figures and publicly known events. Very different standards apply to non-public events and private individuals, many of whom may be living stealth. Even if we ignore the ethical right for someone to control their own identity and privacy (although I can’t honestly think of any reason why we would want to do that), there are very real dangers in outing someone. Arguing that someone should say “that was back when HE graduated from college” because that happened before Jane transitioned is to inherently say that Jane should be outed any time events from her life before transitioning are mentioned.

(Some of you may be thinking that there shouldn’t be a distinction here. Consider a hypothetical scenario where Jennell was living stealth. Therefore, I should refer to past events in her life using only her current name and pronoun, right? Except if I say, “Jennell wrote The Caverns of Thracia.” that combines poorly with the public knowledge that the name “Paul” appears on all those extant copies of the book. I would have just functionally outed Jennell. Private and public information work in fundamentally different ways, and trying to treat them in the same way doesn’t work.)

In my ideal world, the changing of identity for a transexual or transgender person would be no more notable than any other change in name and identity. And we’d be able to treat them all openly and without any significant comment because, honestly, it’s just not that big a deal. Unfortunately, that’s just not the world we live in. In this world it is a big deal — it can literally be a life or death deal. And that needs to be respected.

Go to Part 1

Eclipse Phase: Psi-Chosis - Modya

Modya can be found either at work (a small suite of BdNY offices in the center of Tower Babylon) or at home (a single-room coffin+ apartment buried in the skin of Metis).

  • A taggant thumb hive was secreted into the cushions of her couch by Neuralite agents; she herself has several taggants on her.

DESCRIPTION: A mousy-featured flat with a bob cut of dark brown hair.

ROLEPLAYING:

  • Russian accent.
  • Scared, traumatized, frightened, and confused.
  • Constantly thirsty. She will repeatedly offer to get the PCs drinks and will frequently fetch herself another glass of water.

BACKGROUND:

  • Modya was an infugee until eight months ago when BdNY pulled her out of cold storage for her actuarial skills.
  • Hasn’t been socializing much. Her coworker Tanya finally convinced her to come out to the Black Light. Tanya never showed up. (This is a dead end: Tanya got invited to an arthouse orgy and ditched Modya without even the courtesy of a mesh ping.)
  • Modya has been spending most of her spare time and credits trying to figure out what happened to her husband’s ego; they’d been transmitted off Earth at the same time, but her file had been shuffled around so much that she has no idea where he might have ended up.

NOTES:

  • Blood or tissue samples from Modya can be subjected to medical analysis (see Node 3).
  • Modya is constantly thirsty because she has subconsciously manifested the High Pain Threshold psi-chi sleight (Eclipse Phase, pg. 224) due to the psi-epsilon primer. She has to keep drinking the water because otherwise the primer wears off and her body, having acclimated to the psi-chi, interprets the result as severe pain.
  • Two days ago, Modya was questioned by employees of Neuralite. They claimed to have been hired as a freelance investigation team following up on the Black Light incident. Modya told them she left before the incident and they seemed to accept that.

Go to Node 3: Medical Analysis

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