What's The Event?

October 17, 2015:

Jemma calls in May and Aspect and Sam arrives with a gift

The Triskelian

Characters

NPCs: None.

Mentions:

Plot:

Mood Music: None.


Fade In…

Jemma now has a lovely collection of Psyborgs in her lab… something she's very happy about. Don't judge… she's a scientist.

A notice had been passed to May with the information she and Jericho had gleaned the other day - that the Pysborgs brains were on a timer … that is counting down towards something… at the end of the month, focussed in the Diplomatic Sector of New York. Very, very, concerning.

After speaking with Clint, Jemma's renewed her efforts to get into the Psyborgs brains to discover more… which is what she's currently doing, watching her screens as she tries to tap in.

Of course, she's been expecting a visit from May after that report went out and she's requested additional support, anyone with bio-medical knowledge may be able to help her with this. She really misses Fitz, sometimes.


"Knock knock," a voice calls from the doorway. Sam Wilson backs in carefully, towing a wheeled platform on which rests a device larger than a refrigerator. He glances over his shoulder, grins at Simmons, and says, "I brought you a present." After some more careful maneuvering, he finds enough space to park his cargo and backs away, dusting his hands off. "The Stark Industries prototype RRI device: repulsor resonance imaging. Like an MRI without the magnets. Perfect for high-res scans of bodies with metal implants, small enough to fit on an ambulance, still so damned expensive that there are only about three medical facilities on the planet that could possibly afford one."

He smirks and leans back against a countertop, folding his arms across his chest. "Luckily, you know a guy."


Melinda May arrives fairly promptly despite the other duties she still has to contend with on a daily basis. She nods to Simmons and moves to stand out of the way of the fancy doodad that Wilson just wheeled in. She knows a guy too. She just gets the impression that Stark is more willing to loan expensive devices to peple like Wilson than to people like Fury.


Jericho heard Sam before he saw him. And that makes him think impish, impish thoughts. The SHIELD contractor clutches at his arm and stagers up to the doorframe and says in his best tired voice: "Hey Doc. Got a minute. I might have caught some lead again." He is absolutely not hurt.

Well okay, that's a lie. He's burnt from feedback from his recent battle in Limbo, but other than that he's not hurt.


"Hello Sam…" Jemma starts as he enters and then beams … more technology for her to play with. Well, tech is really Fitz's thing but this… will help immensely. "Guess it is lucky that I know a guy…" the fact that she's surrounded by men who smirk, doesn't seem to bother her. "Agent May, I was expecting you…" then there's Jericho and Jemma's not privvy to the joke between the two. "I suppose you won't go down to medical?" she sighs - the joke might just be on her "Again? I haven't had to dig bullets out of you in … " she can't remember the last time. "You better come in. I could use your assistance, whilst your here."

"Sam, there's a regular Psyborg on the bed there, want to show us how that thing works? And I can give you all an update on what I've found…" or not found as the case may be. "Agent May, I replenished my stash the other day."


"Wow, Trent, you're almost as good at acting as you are at taking cover," Sam quips back lazily. "You should… wait…" The flier pauses mid-snark to peer at the hacker closely, especially his neck. "Did you grill yourself again? You need to get that rig of yours a decent heat sink." He pats his pockets, but he's in his civvies, without the medical kit that lives in his flight harness. Jericho will have to make do with whatever burn treatments SHIELD has for him.

Sam smiles friendly greetings at each agent in turn, then answers Jemma, "Be happy to." He wheels the indicated Psyborg over to the RRI and taps a switch. Reactors hum to life all over the thing, and moving scanners begin to spin; it's definitely an experimental prototype, all exposed machinery and no smooth surface. The whole thing is shaped like a thick, extended archway, and Sam slowly wheels the stretcher into the passage, leaving it under the device.

Then he moves around the side to a roughly hewn terminal, all exposed cables and circuit boards surrounding a bright screen. "It's starting from the feet up. There's also a slot for USB data upload — you'll be wanting to save what you see, but make sure you've got a lot of storage free."


Melinda May nods to Simmons and steps over to the small counter space that has been converted over to a makeshift break area and begins to fix tea. Trent gets an unimpressed look and then a standard SHIELD first aid kit tossed at him from across the room. What? She knows that Simmons keeps one there by the coffee and tea makers. Speaking of, now that the tea is brewing, she makes a concession for the heathens. "Coffee, Wilson? Trent?"


Jericho smirks a bit and then sighs as Sam spots the burns. Damn his eyes. "Feedback, Sam. Kind of just a fact of life now." Which isn't to say it doesn't hurt like hell. It does. And it's not something one gets 'used' to either. Still, better than getting an arm chopped off.

"I'd love coffee May. So, what is it we've got here. I was dropping by to see if there was any fresh news on the Psyborg front."


Jemma sighs as she realises that Jericho was pulling her leg… and glances at the burns "There's burn cream in there, Mr Trent." Seems Jemma is familiar with this particular Aspect of Jericho…

Watching as Sam demonstrates the unit, Simmons cants her head and takes a USB stick from a drawer in her desk which hands over. "That ones empty." The results… will appear soon.

"Updates, right… I'm sorry, Sam, you're playing catch up." Simmons gives him a really quick rundown on what the've found. "I'm sending you a briefing document with more detail." Poor Sam… it's a comprehensive document, even if she's summarised it. He … might want to ask questions as they go.

"I've advised Agent May about the timer, Mr Trent, and the fact we believe that it is foreshadowing something for the end of the month. What I don't know yet… is what or how." Gesturing to the Psyborg on the gurney that Sam is scanning "I've been trying to pick it's brain… I could really use some assistance. Fitz is off on mission again." beat "And yesterday, we discovered someone trying to put another device in place, I believe it was to replace the first one you removed. We've got that person in custody." PERSON, not Psyborg.

As they're talking, the RRI starts to display results.


Jericho's explanation just gets a sigh — Sam doesn't want any part of a world where badly designed tech is 'just a fact of life.'

"Yeah, is there coffee?" Sam asks May, leaning left to peer around the RRI and see. This is Jemma's lab, and he suspects that the English girl favors tea, but there might be some American techs around who prefer the bean to the leaf.

He settles back and listens attentively to Simmons' rundown of the Psyborg situation. He's keeping up well, but near the end something finally hits him, too distracting to let pass. "Wait, what you're calling them — is that pee ess aye borg? Have you all been making a pun?" He casts his doubtful gaze around the room, and mutters, "I can't believe you've all been making a pun without me."

He's interrupted by a ping from the machine as it finishes its initial diagnostic scan. "Yeesh," he says. "Simmons, get a look at this." He points to the screen, his index finger circling the lower trunk. "It looks like his entire digestive tract has been replaced. He's an incinerator. As for this up here…" He taps the head area and squints at it. "I don't even know what to make of it."


Of course there are heathens in here regularly (and Coulson), and Jemma maintains a coffee stash for them. "I'm making some now," is May's reply to Wilson, and sure enough, the delicate aroma of the tea is very quickly stomped on by the unmistakeable smell of coffee. Smells like decently good quality coffee, too. Not something that's more chicory than coffee or — heaven forbid — that over-burnt Starbucks junk.

While the coffee is brewing in a french press, May carries the first mug of tea over to Simmons. This is the bichemist's domain, and May respects that as much as she expects others to respect her doman when she's flying a quinjet or the Bus.


Jericho accepts the coffee and takes a sip. He can tell that Sam is sighing about his lamentable physical health and that just kind of makes his eyes glimmer in mind amusement. Literally.

"They're fairly advanced from what I've seen fighting them. Linked to some kind of network and equipped with technology that replicates psychic powers. It's a potent combination. They're utterly loyal to whatever made them and what's worse they seem to have portable tech that can be used to influence entire populations. We have reason to believe that they're going to do something near the end of the month… any luck on just what Jemma?"


The english woman does prefer tea, without a doubt and she prefers the tea that May stashes in the upstairs breakroom. So much so, she refills the stash here, from that. "Thank you, Agent May." she takes a sip as she joins Sam to look at the results and her eyes widen "That's… kind of cool." Remembering her guests, she looks between May and Jericho "Sams referring to is the interface between the brain and the machine parts of the Psyborg. We'd have to look further but it's really Sci-Fi like." beat "And the stomach, as Sam says, it's a biofuel plant."

Distracted by Jericho's question, she'll leave Sam to explain the rest… "That's what I've been trying to do, Mr Trent but given you're here, I could use the assistance … the coding is a little beyond me." On the holoscreen over the small conference table in the lab, the results of her 'probing' appears. "I've opened a connection for you."


Sam scoots out of the way, letting Simmons get a closer look at the scan results, and saving May a trip by getting his own coffee. He forgoes cream but does drop some sugar into the cup.

"Yeah, the pun-bots definitely pack a punch," he agrees with Jericho, wincing in recollection of his recent dustup with one of the Psyborgs. He gives Simmons a grateful glance for her invaluable and discreet medical assistance afterward. "As for loyalty, anything with that much titanium crammed in its brain pan has probably been hotwired — which means there might be a hardware solution." He parks himself at the screen again. "Although considering how closely it's connected to the brain, and how heavily armored the whole thing is…" He frowns. "We don't have one of those machine-psychics around, do we?"


Melinda May scoffs faintly. "I wish." She finally has her own mug of tea, but it doesn't make her any more able to contribute. It's all pretty much over her head, but the moment they have something they can act on, she wants to be here so the official go-ahead doesn't waste time.


Jericho smirks a bit and he's watching Jemma's tests and results as the connection opens. "Wait a minute… Jemma. Look at the infiltration on the frontal lobe… hang on a sec." The other cyborg opens starts to code and images start to flash up on the screen. They're disjointed and jumpy, like badly shot video, but it's clearly a simulation of some kind. The UN building is… burning. There's people fighting. Delegates. Civillians have stormed the grounds. The police are using lethal force. It appears that several square blocks of the city have just gone… insane. 'Casualty projections, 95 fatalities. Optimal scenario.'


"Agent May, I'll be filing a report today about yesterdays operation." Simmons looks to the other Agent "Agent Carter will be questioning a human we bought in. The one that was replacing the device in the network. There were eight Psyborgs protecting them." And yes, Simmons is positive they were human. May might want to speak to them with Carter.

Totally distracted from the results of the Psyborg, she watches the badly shot video "It doesn't surprise me, that the UN building is the target." she frowns "If what… Ronin … says is true, this event is supposed to 'incite' something… " she falls silent as she watches and thinks.

Remembering Sam, she casts a small apologetic smile his way. What they've got there is fascinating… and she will totally be reviewing those results.


Sam cocks his head to the side and peers at the imagery Jericho has uncovered. "Incite something? Looks like a regular Fox News station ID to me," he comments blithely.

After a glance at the somber faces around him, he gives a sheepish shrug. "Too topical?"

He shakes his head and gives the video some serious consideration. "Well, you said these guys were networked together. If you can find videos in his head, couldn't you write a virus or something? There's got to be a way to disrupt the programming." He taps at the monitor on the RRI. "These guys started out as people. There's got to be a way to help them."


Melinda May nods to Simmons and makes a mental note to touch base with Carter. The woman's tactics are … old school and thus sometimes rather a refreshing change. Still, she'd very much liek to be there when the human is questioned. Maybe Carter won't be opposed to a bit of 'good agent bad agent'.


Jericho frowns a bit. "We know that they've been spreading discontent, literally, and that they're counting down to something involving the UN…" Another, deeper frown. "Okay, let's say half the delegates die in some kind of riot. Tensions rise all over the world. And if they've been doing similar things elsewhere we could be looking at anything from the Cuban Missile Crisis to World War Three…" He shakes his head now.

"Maybe, Sam. But I don't know if we have the tech. You'd have to tell me."


"If they've been doing similar things elsewhere…" Simmons frowns at that and looks to Jericho "These devices are all connected, we might be able to detect if there are other networks." This is the type of thing Fitz would be all over.

Sams idea gets a considering look. "Maybe. But we've only just been able to 'hack in', as it is."

As usual, Jemma now has more questions than when she started.


Sam grunts and uses a set of knobs to manipulate the image on the RRI. Yes, knobs: the tech is new enough that they haven't had time to integrate a proper interface yet. He's looking closely at the head and neck, fading resonance frequencies in and out to see past the heavy armor plating.

"Well, the brain itself is basically whole, but the brain stem is full of implants," he says. "That means they're probably controlling them by overriding neural signals — these people are probably conscious and have access to their senses, but can't control their bodies." He makes a grimace of disgust. "Pretty sick stuff. And it makes it really easy to build in a kill switch. Brain stem is where stuff like breathing and the heartbeat is controlled. If you're the kind of monster who does this to people, I guess you'd need something like that to keep them from turning on you."

He steps back, folds his right arm across his chest, and puts the knuckles of his left hand to his mouth, thinking. "If you wanted to free one of these guys, you'd have to override the implant's programming. Turn it into a life support machine, but let brain signals flow freely. Then you'd want to cut it off from whatever it's networked into, so the changes couldn't be remotely reversed."


Melinda May is actually paying attention even if it might not seem like it at a glance. "How soon can that be done, Wilson?" She knows very well that people like this one are likely their only sources of reliable intel on where they're coming from if not why. "Guesstimate is fine, but probably before November, hm?"


"That's assuming they're not volunteers in which case you'd only be unhooking them from their implants." Awful as it sounds Jericho has entertained the possibility of that being the case. People actually signing on for this. May's question gets a glance to Sam. "Well he does work with Stark and the JL:A. So…" So Sam has 'Contacts' and 'Resources.'

The scenes on the holoscreen get another look. "We'll have to accellerate taking down their network. If there's a chance to prevent this or make them go to Plan B…" And he's sure they have a plan B.


"And Miss Potts is aware that War Machine has been assisting us…" Simmons adds, hopefully helpfully. She'll shelve her suggestion again till later, maybe she could collar Fitz in between missions and they could work out if there are other networks around the world.

"We've several Psyborgs we could test on." She hates making that suggestion, they were once human she knows that. "It's a good suggestion, Sam." even if they were volunteers.


"Thanks, Jemma. Let's hope it doesn't come to that," Sam says with a tight smile, arms still folded. "I'll talk to my team at Stark. I'm not a neuroscientist, but I can call one in. Theoretically, if Trent can get us into its programming, we should be able to rewrite it to act like a pacemaker for the nervous system instead of a remote control."

Considering the worst case scenario, he gives a little shrug. "If they really do hate us and aren't just being used, hey: speaking as a guy who gets superpowers from a machine, if you cut off my ability to control the machine, it would just be dead weight. I don't think these guys will be nearly as much of a threat without their implants."

He pauses for another moment, then nods decisively. "You're right, though, May. No time to waste. Good seeing you all, but I have some calls to make." He smiles at them each in turn, more fully this time, and then heads for the door.

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