Assault on Site-64
rating: +40+x

Greetings fellow Insurgents.

As many of you are likely aware, in exactly twenty-four hours, we will begin an assault upon the Foundation facility known as Site-64.


Site-64

Anomalous Materials Lab

As Researcher Jacob Conwell sat at his desk within the Site-64 Anomalous Materials Lab, he looked into the tiny box his colleague, Researcher Roland Ferro, held in front of him. Inside was a gold band topped by a modest diamond. Conwell grinned and shook his head.

"I'm flattered, Roland," he said, "but I don't think Kate's going to approve."

"Ha," Ferro replied. "Think Clarissa will like it?"

"I mean, sure, it’s a nice ring," Conwell shrugged. "But I thought Shaw was dating Dr. Campbell again. Did you two get back together?"

Ferro shook his head.

"Not yet, but if I've learned anything it’s that Clarissa and Lily's relationship is like a match. It burns hot and fast, and eventually burns out." Ferro sighed. "I just… if she gives me another chance, I want to be ready to do what I really should have done a long time ago. You know?"

"Seems like you're taking a pretty big gamble," Conwell frowned. "Just don't do anything stupid."

"It’s far too late for that…"

"Hostiles incoming!"

The two scientists jumped. Through the window on the office door they could see security officers rushing into the room and taking cover behind the work benches, pistols in hand. The sound of shouting and gunfire, blotted out the low hum of the Hoffman Portable Electro-Thaumic Units. Suddenly, all was quiet. Several masked figures in combat gear appeared in the office doorway, assault weapons at the ready. Ferro and Conwell quietly held up their hands.

"On the floor, now!"

The two scientists didn't resist. Within moments of lying down, their hands were zip tied behind their backs.

"You shouldn't be here," Conwell mumbled from the floor.

"Quiet!" One of the intruders barked back.

"You don't understand," Ferro added on. "We don't mean that in a 'you're invading a black-ops facility' way. You guys came in through the portals, right? Those aren't going to be open much longer, we've already started the…"

Another intruder discharged a round from his pistol into the floor. Ferro immediately stopped talking.

The two scientists were hoisted up on their feet and escorted out of the office. As they passed into the adjoining lab, the bodies of three slaughtered Foundation Security Officers sat in pools of blood. One's head had taken a shotgun blast. Another had seen the wrong side of seven or eight rounds from an assault rifle. The final officer's legs had been shot out, with two bullet holes in the back of her head. Conwell cringed and looked away. Ferro swore under his breath.

"This is Alpha Leader," the lead intruder said into a mic on her person. "Charlie and Delta, we've captured PoIs seven and fifteen. En route to primary."


Site-64

Cafeteria

"I fucking hate these things…" MTF Commander Damion Creed whispered to his colleague, MTF Commander Clarissa Shaw. "This whole thing could have just been a fucking email."

The two sat among a crowd of agents within the Site-64 Cafeteria. Near the back of the room was a projector screen displaying the current slide of a presentation entitled "Thaumatologists and You: What to do when you got the 'Blues'".

"This is more to your crew's benefit than mine," Shaw whispered back, her gaze remaining locked on the presenter. "Stop bitching and pay attention. You'll thank yourself when you don't get a rod of lightning shoved up your ass."

"But with high reflex I can take half damage…" Creed mumbled as he sat back in his chair and returned his attention to the speaker. "Seriously though, they're talking about magic, how is this so dry? Couldn't they get Navarro or something?"

Shaw exhaled sharply.

Creed held up his hands and fell quiet resigning himself to his fate.

"They aren't even doing demonstrations…" he said under his breath.

The burst of attention proved short lived, however, as several minutes later the sound of security klaxons then blasted through the facility.

Almost at once the assembled MTF agents stood, and began to sprint towards the cafeteria doors. At that same time, said doors slammed shut with sharp metallic clang, trapping them inside. It didn't take long for the collective intellect of the room to determine the power had been cut.

"For fuck sake…" Shaw said as her and Creed pushed their way to the front of the crowd. "Someone get me a line to Merlo, now!"


The reason for this attack is simple. Following the joint UIU/Foundation raid on Anderson Robotics, a massive supply of AR droids has been stored indefinitely at this facility for long term study and reverse engineering. If acquired and modified, these droids will provide a significant asset to our cause.


Site-64

Administrative Offices

"You're telling me that we can run a laser downstairs twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week, but a mini-fridge shorts us?"

Gabe Merlo stood within his office behind one of the Site-64 maintenance crew members, rubbing the bridge of his nose in frustration, having just had to throw away at least three days of lunches he had packed for himself and his wife. The maintenance crewman, a middle-aged man with tan skin and a name tag that read "Stan", simply chuckled as he continued his work.

"Hey man, don't give me that attitude," Stan replied. "You have absolutely no idea how complex the wiring is in these places. Just let me do my job and you can go ahead and get back to yours. I'll let you know if I need you to do the wiring's taxes or something."

Assistant Director Sasha Merlo stifled a laugh as she sat within Gabe's chair behind his desk. Her husband looked at her with a defeated shrug.

"Guess it's cafeteria today," he mumbled. "Whenever the MTF seminar clears up…"

"Fine by me," Sasha smiled, having regained her composure. "Though, lunch might be cut short then, Holman and I have a conference with some of the Site-77 hobbnobbers later, and I don't want to…"

The sound of alarm klaxons cut her off. The room's three occupants froze as they looked around. Sasha's expression became serious, her hand reaching for her pistol. Gabe looked to the door, slowly backing up to be closer to his wife. Stan's eyes widened with fear as he put down his screwdriver, and watched the other two for a hint of what to do.

Gunshots rang out from somewhere on the floor. Sasha immediately got to her feet, locking the door and shutting down the lights as she drew the blinds on the door shut. Gabe stood behind her. He put a finger to his lips and gestured for Stan to join them. The sound of footsteps became audible in the adjoining hall.

"Containment breach?" Gabe asked under his breath.

Sasha shook her head as she peered through a crack in the blinds. Four figures in combat gear slowly crept down the hallway on alert. The one on point brandished a shot gun. Behind him the two intruders were armed with a pistol and an assault rifle, respectively. The figure taking up the rear was armed with a rifle as well. Each time they came to a room, they entered, and appeared to comb for inhabitants. Sasha relayed this information lowly, under her breath.

"Who are they? Any markings?" Stan whispered.

"Yeah, one's got a big neon sign that says GOC on it…" Sasha replied, shaking her head again. She then pressed a finger to her lips and backed away from the door. One of the intruders tested the knob forcefully, then became quiet.

All three of the room's occupants let out a small sigh of relief.

BANG

The door kicked inward.

Sasha immediately leveled her pistol, her arm recoiling in rapid succession as she repeatedly pulled the trigger. The man fell down as his shotgun clattered to the floor. She then leaned into the door frame, delivering more shots into her enemies, one of the riflemen falling to her assault.

Sasha didn't have time to reload. Something akin to a bus hit her from behind, launching her through the air and across the hallway where she slammed into the opposite wall with a dull thud. Her ears rang as she tried to get her bearings, only to get hit again, and launched down the hallway as if she were a rag doll.

Sasha coughed in pain as she looked up. The two remaining intruders approached, the rifleman keeping his weapon trained on her, while the man with the pistol held out a clenched fist with a faint blue light radiating from his palm.

"This is Charlie Leader," the thaumatologist said into a mic. "We've captured PoI three, preparing…"

A two shotgun blasts rang out in rapid succession, the rifleman slumping against the wall and the thaumatologist falling forward on top of Sasha. Gabe stood several yards away, weapon in hand. He breathed heavily for several moments as he looked between the two men he killed, then became pale and vomited.

"My hero…" Sasha said with a painful laugh as she pushed the body off her, Stan arriving to lend her a hand up.

Gabe nodded in agreement as he whipped his mouth.

"What do we do now?" he asked.

"Well, considering how we're a maintenance crewman, an accountant, and a Level 4 admin, we're going to find a new place to hide, and stay put. We're not exactly Alpha-9," Sasha answered, and reloaded her pistol. "Stan, grab one of those rifles, I'm assuming you've passed the basic training."

"Uh… yes ma'am," Stan nodded, and went to fetch a weapon.

"Where are the MTFs?" Gabe looked around. "Shouldn't Shaw be all over this? Or Creed?"

"You'd think…" Sasha frowned. "Let’s hide first, then we can find out what the hell is going on…"


Clarissa? It's Sasha. What was Jessie's nickname for you?

Aunt Clari. What was my alias during my first operation for Gamma-13?

Ms. Starling. Glad you are okay. What's going on? Where are you and the other MTFs?

Trapped in the cafeteria. Someone cut the power to the doors, and sealed us in. Where are you, are you okay?

Gabe and I are holed up somewhere safe. No worries.

Do you know what's going on?

Some kind of invasion. Armed strike teams. A crew went through the admin level on a personnel grab. I'm guessing CI based on the hallmarks.

Jesus… how'd they get in?

Your guess is as good as mine.
We have one of the maintenance crew with us. Hang tight, we'll see if we can get you guys out. Be ready to rock and roll.

Fuck that noise. Stay put! Last thing we need is them bagging a level four.

See you soon.


The mission will involve five strike teams. Strike Team Alpha will be securing the captured Anderson Drones, and therefore will be the largest team. Strike Team Bravo will be securing a master copy of the AR Operating System within the Foundation Site Archives. Strike Teams Charlie and Delta will capture Persons of Interest from the Site-64 staff. Each team will enter through a different SC-60/106-13/060 portal here within Three Portlands. We have already negotiated safe passage into and out of the pocket dimension on the other side with like-minded inhabitants eager to see this blow dealt to the Foundation. However, these portals are currently under the protection of UIU agents. Strike Team Echo will ensure the portals remain under our control.


Site-64

Medium Security Storage Wing

Researchers Conwell and Ferro reluctantly trudged forward, surrounded by the armed intruders who escorted them forcefully though the lower levels of Site-64. Along the way, they watched their captors gun down security personnel as they came across them, as well as the occasional maintenance crewman, or wayward scientist. Eventually, the entourage stopped at a door both Ferro and Conwell had been through many times during the course of their research.

Robotics Storage

"Open the door," the intruder they had come to know as Alpha Leader ordered.

Conwell and Ferro looked at each other briefly, then both shook their heads.

"We can't," Conwell replied. His eyes shifted to the ground where they remained locked.

"Did that sound like a fucking request? Open the god damn door!"

"We can't," Ferro clarified. "Neither of us have clearance for that area. That's basically an armory, what the hell would we need to do back there that couldn't just be brought to our labs?"

Alpha Leader sighed then snapped her fingers. Conwell and Ferro were immediately slammed into the nearby wall as their ID badges were forcefully yanked off their persons. The door pinged twice as both badges were rejected by the security scanner.

"Peachy," Alpha Leader mumbled. "Twelve?"

"On it!"

One of the intruders with a heavy kit on her person set to work opening the door. Alpha Leader nodded in approval, then turned back to Conwell and Ferro.

"Eight, Six, keep our guests comfortable."

The two researchers were then forced down to the floor, idly watching as their captors attempted to crack their way into the storage room by force. It was several minutes into this that Ferro noticed Conwell blinking in a rhythmic pattern.

Long, Long, Long, Long, Long, Short, Long, Short, Short, Short, Short, Short.

Ferro tilted his head slightly in confusion, and watched as Conwell repeated.

Long, Long, Long, Long, Long, Short, Long, Short, Short, Short, Short, Short.

The pattern seemed familiar, as if he had seen it before.

Long, Long, Long, Long, Long, Short, Long, Short, Short, Short, Short, Short.

It then hit him.

Roland, you fucking idiot. It's Morse code. Ferro thought to himself, and looked at Conwell blink out the message again. His colleague had been repeating the word MORSE over and over.

YES

Ferro blinked back. Conwell let out a short sigh, a brief smile coming to him, then vanishing as he looked at their captors. So far, they seemed none the wiser. Conwell proceeded, stopping occasionally to avoid onlooking gazes.

STILL ADMIN ON BOTS

Ferro gave a shallow nod, pausing as one of the intruders eyed him for several seconds before returning their gaze to the door. Conwell blinked on.

Ferro frowned. He looked at Conwell, then at their captors, then at their guns. He felt the ring box still in his pocket. Eventually he returned his gaze to Conwell, and replied.

GET SHOT

Conwell closed his eyes. Ferro watched as his colleague rubbed the titanium band on his ring finger with his thumb for several seconds. Conwell eventually opened his eyes and replied.

HAVE TO TRY


Site-64

Sub-Level 1 Maintenance Room

Sasha and Gabe Merlo stood guard by the door of the dimly lit maintenance room, Stan whistling as he worked at the nearby kiosk. He then looked up with a frown.

"Figure it out?" Sasha asked.

"Sure did," Stan replied. "Someone must have known your MTFs were having that meeting, 'cause they went in here and literally only powered down those doors. Directly in the system."

"How many people have access to the system?" Gabe inquired. "Could this have been done remotely?"

"Not likely. And as far as I know, the only ones in and out of these rooms are the maintenance crew. Which means you folks probably have a mole on your hands."

"Christ…" Sasha mumbled. "We'll have to deal with that later. Can you get those doors powered back up?"

Stan shrugged.

"I can sure as hell try, no promises."

"Get it open, and I'll personally take you out for steak," Sasha replied.

Stan blinked in shock. He raised a finger then put it down, and looked over at Gabe.

"Hey man," Gabe said with chuckle and shrug, "get that door open and I'll pay for it."


Site-64

Cafeteria

The agents of Gamma-13 and Tau-51 had set themselves up to deploy at the drop of a hat. Trapped where they were, there was little else they could do. Those with sidearms checked and rechecked their magazines. Others discussed potential plans of attack for sweeping the invaders from their home. Shaw and Creed sat to the side, the former's eyes darting from her cell phone to the doors in rapid succession, the latter starring up at the ceiling.

"Any word from Merlo?" Creed eventually asked.

Shaw shook her head.

"Nothing… I really hope nothing happened to her…"

It was then that the phone vibrated, and a new message appeared on its screen.

Knock Knock!

The doors to the cafeteria then opened. A silence fell over the collected agents. Shaw and Creed blinked.

"Looks like your girl came through," Creed said, hopping to his feet as the agents began to mobilize.

"She sure did," Shaw replied, likewise getting up. She picked up speed as she ran towards the door, shouting orders to her agents. "Get to a security station, let's find out where these assholes are!"


Once inside, each strike team will exit back into baseline reality and into the interior of Site-64. Bravo, Charlie, and Delta will emerge within the Site-64 dormitories, while Alpha will be emerging within the AMAT Lab. Our sources have indicated that the Foundation has recently developed tech to close these portals, and will be testing them in 48 hours, so this is our one shot to make this kind of smash-and grab.


Site-64

Medium Security Storage Wing

"Got it!"

Ferro and Conwell let out defeated sighs as the intruder working on the door stood aside, two of her compatriots moving in and forcing the door open. Inside, the lights flicked on, revealing the shiny casings of scores of AR model robots hibernating. Conwell and Ferro were forced back on their feet and marched inside.

Alpha Leader and two of her underlings approached the room's main console, the sound of typing immediately filling the room.

"You're going to need credentials…" Conwell piped up, his gaze on the floor as the eyes of the intruder swarm fell upon him.

"Wanna bet?" Alpha Leader replied, then nodded to her agent who resumed typing. Within several moments the hibernating Aplomado, Merlin, and Peregrine units were fully awake.

"Have them start making their way back to the portal," Alpha Leader patted her agent at the terminal on the shoulder and then turned away to speak into her mic. "This is Alpha Leader, we've accessed our primary target, en route back to-"

"ALL UNITS ACTIVATE FOUNDATION PROTOCOL!" Ferro shouted at the top of his lungs.

The robots let out a horrific shriek, causing all present to cover their ears. One by one the droids fell apart, disintegrating into puddles of black goo. After several moments, the shrieking stopped and the store room fell into silence.

Conwell looked away and closed his eyes, expecting immediate punishment. He rubbed his wedding band tightly and thought of his wife.

Ferro wore a shit-eating grin as he locked eyes with Alpha leader. He raised his arms in a sarcastic shrug.

"Your move, lady."

Alpha Leader raised her pistol, and fired.


Site-64

Sub-Level 1 Security Station

Shaw looked on in silence as she watched the security monitor in front of her. On the screen before her, an enemy agent raised her pistol, and fired off a single shot into Researcher Roland Ferro's torso. Time seemed to slow down as she watched her ex fall to the ground, the enemy agent then ordering her strike team's retreat, and leaving him for dead.

"Shaw?"

She blinked, her mind whirling with disjointed thoughts and ideas.

"Shaw? Orders?"

She blinked again, returning from the riptide of her mind. Creed stood by her, and hand on her shoulder.

"How do you want to do this, Clarissa?"

"Sherman, Johar, Akagi, and get down to the Level 2 Storage Wing immediately. Get Ferro and anyone else you see in need of medical attention to the infirmary," Shaw replied clearly and calmly, making her way to the door. "Creed, clean house up here. It looks like they are making a run for the 3560 portals. Make sure they don't get there. The rest of Gamma-13, with me. We're cutting them off at the AMAT Lab."


Sources have also indicated that during the time of this operation, the on-site Mobile Task Forces will be localized within the site cafeteria for a training seminar. Our agents embedded within the site maintenance staff have ensured us that the task forces will be incapacitated, allowing us to move about the facility largely unhindered. Security personnel encountered may be eliminated with extreme prejudice. Once objectives have been secured, all teams are to immediately evacuate through their assigned portals. Once back in Three Portlands, all strike teams are to evacuate back to baseline reality through their assigned Ways.


Site-64

Anomalous Materials Lab

Strike Team Alpha sprinted through the halls of the facility with Researcher Conwell in tow. With their primary objective botched, their orders were to abort, and secure any additional persons of interest encountered along the way. On the sub-level above, Strike Teams Bravo, Charlie, and Delta were in a similar state of retreat, though their objectives had been largely completed with an order of magnitude more success. Luckily, the halls were mostly cleared giving them an easy route back.

"This is Bravo Leader! Our portal has been closed. I repeat, our portal has been closed! Heading to Delta and Charlie's portal now."

Strike Team Alpha stopped, listening intently as their co-insurgents spoke to them over their radios. The sound of gunfire could be heard in the background.

"This is Delta Leader! Our portal is also closed. Attempting to regroup with Bravo and seek a surface exit. Encountering heavy MTF resistance!"

The insurgents looked to one another, concern in their eyes. It was then Alpha Leader slammed Conwell into a wall, putting a pistol to his head. The researcher breathed heavily as he squirmed in her tight grip.

"What the fuck is going on? What did you do?"

"We told you when you first got here," Conwell replied. "We found out how to close those portals. We started that process a few hours before you arrived. Be as mad as you want but we warned you!"

Alpha Leader let out an enraged yell and punched the wall near Conwell's head.

"You heard him, get moving!" she shouted, grabbing Conwell by his shirt and pushing him forward. "If you try to slow us down I will shoot you in the god damn head."

The hallways once more filled with the thuds of sprinting boots. Within minutes, the Strike Team had arrived at the AMAT lab, the portal still barely open, then flickering out of existence. The insurgents approached where it was in defeat.

"Well, that's great…"

"What do we do now?"

"Think we could make the surface?"

The members of Strike Team Alpha mumbled among themselves as Alpha Leader thought to herself, then spoke into her mic.

"This is Alpha Leader. Our portal is gone too. Rerouting to surface…"

The members of the strike team turned to leave, freezing as they came face to face with MTF Gamma-13, armed to the teeth, with their firearms pointed directly at them. At their head was Agent Clarissa Shaw.

"Oh shit…" Conwell said as he immediately dived for cover, MTF Gamma-13 proceeding to gun down their unwelcome guests.


It took the Foundation nearly a decade of dedicated research, and the help of one of Anderson Robotics’ Founders, to create effective counter measures for the AR line of drones. Needless to say, it will take the Foundation far longer to crack our reverse engineered products.

Good luck and Godspeed.

Dismissed.


Site-64

Infirmary

Researcher Ferro sat in his infirmary bed, drumming on the railing as he idly passed the time. The doctors had told him he was lucky to be alive, though the incredible amounts of pain his surgery was causing him often made him wish he was dead. Finally finding a comfortable position, he closed his eyes and began to nod off.

"Hey Roland…"

His eyes opened to see Agent Clarissa Shaw standing by his side. His mouth hung open briefly before he could find his words.

"Hey Clarissa…"

"I saw what happened. What you did."

Ferro looked down and nodded.

"Thoughts?"

"I can't decide if it was really brave, or incredibly stupid."

"Would it help if I told you it was Conwell's idea?" Ferro smiled.

"Ah, incredibly stupid it is then," Shaw smiled in return.

"I appreciate the visit. Thanks."

"I can't stay long I'm afraid, lots of red tape for us to go through," Shaw sighed. "But, I'm glad to see you're okay."

Ferro nodded, and soon Shaw was making her way towards the door, passing Conwell on her way out. The incoming researcher watched her go, then looked at Ferro with a raised eyebrow.

"Roland, buddy, you didn't…"

"Nah," Ferro sighed. "I'm not a master of romance, but I'm pretty sure proposing, to a woman currently in a relationship, while in an infirmary bed, after getting shot, is pretty stupid idea. And considering how this week's been filled with stupid ideas, I don't need another top of the pile."

Conwell nodded in agreement and took a seat near his friend.

"I brought my iPod, like you wanted, want anything particular to start?" He asked.

"Whatever you think fits the mood best."

Conwell nodded, and quietly set up the device, and pressing play. Ferro frowned as he recognized the tune.

"You can be a real dick, Jake."

"I know."

Wait, they don't love you like I love you
Wait, they don't love you like I love you


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