A guided tour at G.I.R.L

June 10, 2019:

Nadia Van Dyne gives Spoiler a little tour around the lab at G.I.R.L

Sound Stage A


NPCs: None.



Mood Music: None.

Fade In…

Based out of the main Pym Industries office building in the New York area the HQ for G.I.R.L is a bustling hive of activity and mad science. The building itself seems to be your typical corporate office, albeit with considerably better security than the average law firm, but once you reach the floor with G.I.R.L everything gets a little unusual.

For a start the floor has been opened up to allow a spacious open plan science lab. The middle of the room is taken up by some sort of free standing portal device (currently inactive) and dozens of stations with computers and assorted high tech lab equipment are scattered around, some alone and others in little clusters. There are also glass walled side pods for more hazardous work or just for getting some quiet time to think.

Strangest of all perhaps is the row of what seem to be bedrooms which line one of the walls and a collection of couches which ring a small dance floor with it's own sound system.

"And here we have the main floor. Don't mind the mess, we had a pizza and movie night yesterday and then I had to present something to the board. Unfortunately I haven't had time to tidy up just yet." Nadia gestures around. "I thought you'd want to check things out without too many people around… So most of the members are either working from home today or sleeping in a little late. We've also got access to the office gym, restaurant and a fully stocked library. If there's a journal we don't have then we can get a copy in twenty four hours. All the pods are fully equipped for just about any project you could imagine from genetically engineering plants to the physics labs required to work on instantaneous long distance teleportation."

Walking at Nadia's side, Spoiler takes in the space, using her cowl's optics to record the space for generating a 3D model later. Nothing that's going to get published, but in case Spoiler needed to slip in here later, having a basic layout would be helpful.

"Thank you again for the agreeing to let me have a tour, Ms. Van Dyne," says the batling, her voice distorter giving her tone that telltale digital growl. "Your facility is rather fascinating," is added as she walks, her foot falls near silent.

"Oh please. Call me Nadia," She responds with a laugh. "And everything here is public. To an extent. Details of any members private work is their own personal property, Although with some checks and balances when we're providing materials and funding, and the bedrooms are of course private. Only security have keys and they need to have a very good reason to use them."

Security for G.I.R.L coming in the form of reformed super villains and the finest security consultants Pym Industries could provide. In addition to the already slightly terrifying level of security the main building itself has.

"It's not really /mine/ as such. My sort of foster mom set everything up. She handles a lot of the behind the scenes funding and management stuff. I picked the initial members and do research here, but it's very much a group effort. We're not here to try become rich or famous. The whole purpose of this place is to change the world. Make it better. And if we can make some friends along the way and have fun then all for the better! A happy scientist makes for happy science." She frowns. "Well that's not strictly true but I'm sure you get the sentiment."

She gestures around. "Is there anything you'd like to take a look at first? We've got engineering workshops. I've been using them to dabble with microdrones for my Wasp costume. As well as a few super computers that Pym Industries was decommissioning.. I'm thinking of using at least one to set up a virtual hub for collaborative work. That way we can get members joining world wide all able to share ideas or problems."

"Nadia," Spoiler intones, giving a nod in thanks for the permission. Isn't this the second or third time VanDyne's had to tell Spoiler to call her by first name? The security is studied, the same way Spoiler is studying everything else, and her facial recognition picks up and offers her a wrap sheet on one of the reformed villains. Is this going to be a problem, asks Spoiler's posture of the once-villain, before moving on with the tour.

"The microdrones and virtual hub are, admittedly, the most interesting projects so far," she says.

Security don't seem especially bothered by Spoiler. Operating mostly from a control room elsewhere in the building. The wrap sheets will show they are currently gainfully employed here and actively participating in a metahuman wrestling league.

"Truth be told they're not really very micro yet. I intend on cheating and shrinking them down to the size I need," Nadia explains as she leads Spoiler through the building. "Oops. Someone left the disco ball on…" she notes as she goes. Pausing to hunt for the remote to turn it off. "The servers themselves only just got delivered. So I haven't had time to crack the cases open or wire them up. I'm also having to source brand new drives, because the old ones had to be completely physically destroyed to ensure no-one could access the data on them. I think they might have had some defense contracts at some point…. But I'm not really involved in the day to day business of the company, not yet anyway."

The workshop with the drones in is rather larger than you'd expect for 'micro' drones. The single drone inside is almost as big as Spoilers flying motorcycle. Sleek lines, covered in sensors and with wing mounted VTOL turbines. "It's got sleep darts, net launchers, stun weapons and we're also working on a design that deploys a mist of an acidic compound that'll melt through a main battle tank. But before that particular design gets field tested we've got to make sure the safeguards are in place so it can't be used on a living target. Even if the drone gets hacked."

Why Nadia's seemingly open door policy makes Spoiler feel nervous is beyond the batling for the moment. She doesn't offer to help set up the servers, instead, she looks over the drone, this thing as large as the bike she parked in the building's garage when she arrived.

"Do you have hackers on staff?" Spoiler asks even though she's walking around the piece of equipment, peering at different components with what is actual honest curiosity.

"That depends on how you define a hacker," Nadia replies with a shrug. "Programming isn't my main field, but I write all my own code for the robotics. But we have members who are engineers, biochemists, physicists, biologists… Our network isn't connected to the main buildings computers for security reasons and we have plenty of stand alone workstations that can only be physically accessed within the building for more confidential work."

"As a non-profit we keep everything we do legal and with full accountability. Plus we try keep from making any sentient entities. Either genetically engineering them or creating them virtually." She laughs. "Thankfully that hasn't happened just yet." She offers a shrug. "But if you're asking 'Do we have good computer security' then yes. It's… you know about my history, right? With the Red Room? Anyway we've got the same level of virtual protection that anyone doing major Government defense contracts would have. And because of the companies association with the Avengers the building itself is rated to withstand…" She frowns. "Well lets just say we had zero incursions during the demonic invasion. Except for Cailtin and she had a key."

Spoiler listens to that litany, nodding along.

"I'm glad to hear it. I'd like to help you run a test anyway, perhaps later this week. Just to make sure your security can handle things that aren't going to just try to smash their way in." It sounds like fun, actually. "And yes, I know a bit about your history, but there's still a difference between 'good computer security' and active counter measures. Especially when you get your network set up. No matter how you slice it, that's still going to leave you and your data at risk."

"A lot of what we have isn't worth stealing for the casual thief," Nadia assures earnestly. "And the things which are? Often they get published for free or for peer review. It's like breaking into a bakery which hands out free bread to steal uncooked dough. Why bother? Just let them finish it and give you the bread." She taps at a few buttons and the drone opens up, so Spoiler can peek at the insides. Nothing seems impossibly advanced mechanically, although it's obvious it was made by a very talented team, as the really advanced bit is the shrinking process.

She hrms for a moment then adds "If you'd like to test the computer security I won't say no though. We /are/ set up with covert attacks by spies in mind though. And the main labs are all fitted with privacy features, camera baffles and white noise generators. That sort of thing. So even if someone intrudes they can't just snoop on everything."

"I'm not talking about the casual thief," Spoiler fires back, but since the answer Nadia gave wasn't a direct 'no, do not try to infiltrate GIRL HQ' Spoiler is going with the assumption that she's allowed to give it a try. Unannounced, of course. That will come right along with the computer security test. So, Spoiler nods as she's given more intel on the kinds of things she'll have to defeat to break in successfully.

"Fair enough. I won't give you warning," she says, turning back to the innerds of the drone.

"This is some intricate machinery," says the blonde, the modulator unable to scrub the sound of being impressed from her voice

Nadia tilts her head curiously, then shrugs. "I will let security know you might drop in. They shouldn't mind because of the superhero teams you're on, but I'll get swamped with calls complaining if I don't at least give them /some/ advance notice. Just keep in mind people can work on projects here any time day or night. So try not to startle anyone working late!"

"Everything needs to be very carefully designed so that no complications occur when it's shrunk. Like the airflow for cooling. I'm putting together a command room to let them be controlled from here," Nadia explains considerably more brightly, clearly happy that the work's being appreciated and the discussion of break ins has finished. "The shrinking tech in my suit makes it unsuitable for me to personally control them in the field. But it's good to have a support team to bounce ideas off."

"Hmph," is all Spoiler says to the advanced notice. It was more than she wanted, but she'll take it. As for startling people… if they spot her, she did it wrong. Eyes on the electronics, Spoiler notices that Nadia's happier talking about machines than about B&E. She can't say she blames the tinkerer.

"Unless you have an on-board computer to control them," Spoiler notes, head turning to look at Nadia.

Nadia Van Dyne shakes her head. "I wouldn't trust a dumb electronic system to make life or death decisions. Not when I have people I trust to make them. And making the drones smart enough to be trustworthy? Too much chance the drone will become self aware and then it'd be immoral to use it." She winks. "Besides it's more secure to have a person in the loop if you go up against someone with computer skills, right?"

"Really they are intended for information gathering. Giving me eyes in multiple places, so I can deal with the situation myself in the best informed manner. The non-lethal weapons are really just optional extras we added when it become obvious just how much we hardware we could include if we get creative with the shrinking technology."

"Fair. Though the comms from base camp to drone could get hacked, and traced back to their location, and unless your controller has security or is able to defend themselves, you'll have lost your drone control," Spoiler fires back, playing Devil's Advocate. She's all too familiar with the need to have as much information as possible before going into a situation, so that's not at all her argument.

Nadia Van Dyne giggles. "Oh they can try," she assures. "But we're using a quantum paired communications device. At least once everything is ready and complete we will be. It's still in a trial stage right now, not field test worthy. And the control room is in this building. So the operator has excellent protection should anyone come after them."
Spoiler lifts her gaze to scan the room again, having a much better idea of this building now than she did earlier.

"Hmm," is her comment about the operator having excellent protection. But the quantum paired comm-system sounds really delightful and something that should be looked into. Just to make sure that the upgrade won't put the Batcomputer's systems at risk, and if so, Spoiler would need to find the way to… acquire the tech.

"Let me know when you're gong into field trials?" she asks, because professional courtesy is a thing.

"It'll depend on everyone's personal projects," Nadia points out quickly. "But I'd be happy to invite you, Caitlin or any of the other Titans to check it out. If they work we could possibly use some to supplement the Tower security systems. Not that we don't already have automated systems but these will be insect size when they're shrunk down. At which point they are exceptional for covering vents or pipes."

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