Holy Moly! Sector 7 Map by Kanon and Jean

The Trees Reports: Heists Across Uptown Sector Seven

In this patch of Matrix, someone has planted

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{–An independent news and entertainment organization broadcast from the streets of Sector Seven–}

As the title and intro fades, a video appears within the turning star, zooms towards the viewer, and plays. On it, a smiling young woman, shot from the waist up; her skin is a sallow kind of tanned, her hair dark black and flowing in an unbroken curtain down her back, her smile broad and earnest, her eyes unnervingly wide. She’s wearing a stylishly smart button-up shirt, appearing to be made of genuine silk, hued a gentle gold. She’s sat behind a beat-up faux-wooden desk before a plain, neutrally grey background, the star emblem of the site letterboxed above and to the left of her shoulder. She leans towards the camera eye and beams.

“Eeeeeya, any and all viewers, and thank you much for viewing! This is The Trees, an independent an’ un-syndicated news and entertainment platform. You may notice you ain’t bein’ inundated with auto-generated ads like a helluva lotta other spaces on the Matrix,” she states, gesturing to the left and right of the viewer, indicating the empty space, “An’ thas ’cause we don’t got ads! We survive entirely on donation, personalized sponsorship, ‘n prayer. So if you wanna see more actual investigatin’ journalism goin’ on, feel free to drop a coin in the bucket.” She leans back and wipes at her brow, as if relieved. “That bitta shilling outta the way, the actual story you here to hear. First one onna site, but it’s a helluva one. So!”

She leans back off of the desk as the letterboxed star fades- showing pictures of relevant locations as she speaks. She props booted feet onto the surface, leaned back in her chair. “Not too long ago, Earth Sector Seven experienced one of the biggest little crime waves in one night that we have on record. All total, fourteen individual homes were robbed, all by one individual.” And here she counts on her fingers, shaking the hand as she rattles off each name. “Independent homes in the Dregs, The Bayview, Perdito and Strand apartment complex, and even as high as the towers of Dollanganger. This man busted in, cleared the places out of his target materials, and moved on to the next door down- but nobody was able to catch sight. He since had his gains confiscated and been locked up.” She smirks, and sits back up, facing the viewer.

“Thas’ where usual news ends. Happy story, basic reporting, the end. We don’ do that here. We deepdive. So: lets begin with where I first knew of the perp.” The letterbox changes once again- displaying a blacked-over face, with a question mark across it. She gestures up at it with an open hand. “This man’s real name has evaded both me and CSec. Introduces himself as Tom. Tom here met me in a bar… about a week before his spree. Not exactly charming, obviously criminal type, but we shared some stories, traded phone numbers, and went our separate ways. About a week later, I get a text- he says he has something for me. I’m young and impressionable,” she says, pressing a hand to her chest, “So I head to the address he dropped me and he welcomes me in with a gun.”

Despite the somewhat dire circumstance she describes, the woman’s tone remains casual, almost jovial- and perhaps the letterbox holds the answer as to why, as it shifts from the blacked-out face to a pair of lacy pink panties. “I’m enticed to enter at gunpoint, and guided into his home. Wonderful place. Four walls and a broken window and a crusty couch. But what is heaped upon the couch is the most absolutely bafflin’ sight. It’s panties. Panties, lace, brassieres- women’s undergarments and nightclothes, along with at least a half dozen… silicone intimates. It’s an absolute dragon’s hoard of women’s underwear. He tells me to sit on the couch, and just gestures at it, ‘tadah!’” She does some little shaky hands for emphasis, snickering at the memory. “This is what he raided a dozen homes across Uptown Sec-Seven for. Panties, to get me to wear some for him. If he didn’t have a gun in his hand, I probably would’ve been flattered. Now-” She leans into the camera.

“I am about to put praise of CorpSec to video. If this upsets you, mute for about a minute or two.” She leans back, and the letterbox has switched to the golden eagle of CorpSec’s logo. “One of the first questions out of my mouth to Tom here is what his plan is to not be arrested for countless thefts. And in a spot of Csec’s best-ever timing, not even five minutes later do they roll in. Just two men; a Syndicate bounty hunter for backup, and a man who asked me to drop his name; a CSec officer by the name of Jacques. They bust in, put Tom down, cuff ’em and clean it all up, perfectly professional style. Rescue little damsel-in-distress me, really. I owe the guy a favor- which I am now repayin’, Jac.” Her expression goes stern, and she emphasizes this with a point at the viewer, before settling back to her seat.

“This is where the CSec praise ends. If you’re Csec, and easily offended- mute now.” She grins, steepling her fingers on the desk. “Now, your first and obvious question: who robs half the city in one night, only to steal exclusively women’s undergarments? The answer- you don’t. CSec seems content to have called this one case closed; I have it on good authority the pile of previously-owned intimates is currently moldering in evidence storage, with CSec having made no efforts to identify the stolen from or return the property. I expect a number of officers will surprise their wives with unexpected gifts soon enough, after a thorough washing.” The letterbox swaps images yet again, displaying the stellar logo of The Trees. “Meanwhile, I focused my efforts on tracking the thefts, and those heisted from. Finding who had been robbed was fairly easy; asking neighbors, examining damage to doors and locks, doing some hands-eye forensics. All of this confirmed that CSec hasn’t done any of the groundwork for identifying the victims- which I understand is rather their habit. Speaking with said victims were far more difficult, but I’ve managed to say a few words. These victims- who have asked to be unnamed- have confirmed that it was not only clothing that was stolen from their homes. Included in the tally are several matching collections of jewelry, made of gold, silver, gems, and real, organic pearls- valued at several thousand, all together. CorpSec didn’t gather this with the rest of the evidence. Which means it were either hidden from the official collection sheets, stored away where they couldn’t see it in the hideout, or passed off to a second party before mine and their arrival to said thief’s hideout.”

Her expression has grown more severe and her tones more dire as she speaks, addressing the audience entirely. “Additionally, at time of recording? Pieces matching the stolen jewelry have been appearing and disappearing from anonymous online markets, filtering out into the general population for resale, evidence slowly disappearing. This isn’t even on CSec’s radar! And all the victims can do is watch their property disappear down a hole in the Matrix, one by one. And these are the people we’re supposed to entrust with public safety, especially now, with the collapse of the Terran Initiative? They can’t handle basic criminality on a micro level, let alone a macro. Until we seen some harsher crackdown, if you live in Sector Seven, lock your doors at night, and install a bar. If someone gets in, chances are, whatever you’ll be missing is as good as gone.”

The woman, and the ramshackle set, both fade away, replaced by a pair of stars flanking either side of the organization’s logo. The woman speaks from nowhere. “That’s all for this first installment of The Trees, and we all sincerely thank you for watching. The star on the left is a link to our donation pool, if you’d like to pay our rent and keep us growing. On the right is our content archive, to view past topics. Have a good night, viewer.”

Armed robbery of the Venusian Gardens

Venusian Gardens Restaurant

This restaurant has spared little to ensure that the service and environment of the room allows one to feel, see, smell, hear, and eventually taste what luxury truly is. The walls are pale cream in color, set with glass sconces that provide indirect, soft lighting to the entire room. Around most of the outside of the room are comfortable four-person horseshoe-shaped booths with tall walls between them. The booth benches are natural woven cotton, stuffed with a soft, supportive material, caressing every curve one could ever have. Against the easternmost wall is a long, curved bar, with comfortable seating, and a plethora of fine wines and liquors. The center piece of the room is a raised platform sporting a large, real wood table and chairs, bedecked with the finest of flatware and crystal, reserved for only the highest members of the peerage. The platform features its own bar and dedicated waitstaff.

A sleek looking silver flashbang is being lobbed from the south.

After the detonation of a sleek looking silver flashbang, REDACTED strolls in through the faint mist that forms, one hand casually in the deep pockets of a hooded trench coat with a holographic flaming skull on it, the other on a generic bullpup assault rifle, with burnished steel stock which is resting casually on his shoulder. It is obvious that he’s not expecting a fight in here. A masked and armed girl follows him inside.
“Konichiwa.” His loud, commanding voice echoes through the room. “We are here to collect a food donation and the credits you have missed to pay.”

The guests of the restaurants maintain complete silence, most of them even on the floor, as they definitely do not want to get involved in this kind of business.
A single man, probably one of the managers, stares at the two with big eyes, completely frightened.

REDACTED-2 holds both hands along the grip of her semi-automatic and remains silent as she holds up the weapon, aiming it down at the man. She releases the safety and then gestures with the weapon for him to move.

REDACTED nods over at the single manager too. “The Yakuza does not tolerate disobedience, Gwiha. We want all the cash, as well as packaged food and drinks as an apology.” As the man tries to answer, REDACTED cuts him off, without a word, but by starting to aim a generic bullpup assault rifle, with burnished steel stock at the poor guy too, just like the girl next to him. “I didn’t ask for your opinion, hurry up or I’ll fill your body with my ammunition.”

Four young Yakuza enter the room, and after a nod from REDACTED, they incline their heads and quickly run into the storage room, where they start collecting packed supplies, bringing them outside.

After these threats, and even more Yakuza entering the restaurant, the manager decides it would be best to keep silent and heads towards the cash register, putting all the credits on a counter in front of him.

REDACTED gestures the masked girl close to him to get the credits with a simple nod of his head, his eyes never leaving the poor manager at all. Even though his hood is pulled deep into the face, a light purple glow might be noticable from underneath.

REDACTED-2 takes careful side-steps and keeps her weapon on the manager as she moves to the register. The eyes, barely visible beneath the mask, flick over to REDACTED as she reaches for the register. She gathers the stash of credits, stack by stack, and fits them in her shoulder bag. Ever silent, she moves back to REDACTED, raising her weapon again at the manager.

REDACTED nods at the girl softly as she strolls back to him, glancing over the patrons from time to time. “I appreciate your donation, Gwiha.”, he remarks in a stern and commanding voice, raising the a generic bullpup assault rifle, with burnished steel stock to rest it casually on his shoulder again.

REDACTED-2 keeps her arms rigid, obviously following the lead of REDACTED in her ever-present silence. With her finger still on the trigger, she only briefly lifts her gaze to him before looking back to the staff. She dips her head to the exit.

Another nod of REDACTED and the young Yakuza head out again, moving the supplies away to some other location. “Next time we expect your donations in time.”
And without waiting for an answer, he turns around – the large, holographic flaming skull on his back flickers and burns every now and then as he leaves.

REDACTED-2 moves with single, backward steps after REDACTED moves, her eyes flicking from one terrorized patron to the next, until she slips out.

Chaos Accelerant

Initiative soldiers stand among erected barricades around the spaceport, fending off rioters.

REDACTED mutely pulls a generic bullpup assault rifle, with burnished steel stock and starts aiming at an initiative soldier, through the crowds of people. He tilts his head a little, before starting to spray at the lone soldier.

REDACTED raises the generic assult rifle with an austere red dot sight and pulls the trigger. Bullets zipping through the air as REDACTED aims for the soldiers head.

An initiative soldier unfastens its axe.

An initiative soldier sidesteps to the left, thrusting upward at REDACTED!

REDACTED pulls the trigger, several shots burst through the crowds of rioting people, with only one objective: hitting the skull of a soldier.

An initiative soldier circles, waiting for an opening.

REDACTED aims at the legs, pulling the trigger of a generic bullpup assault rifle, with burnished steel stock. Grey steel leading the way as the shots crack through the crowds.

An initiative soldier is seriously impaired by its injuries.
An initiative soldier is unconscious and might slowly die, if not aided.
REDACTED slams the butt of their weapon into an initiative soldier’s head, knocking him senseless!

With one smooth, cruel strike, REDACTED geeks an initiative soldier.

<An urgent news bulletin starts beeping loudly over communicators across Terra and the surrounding planetary sectors: URGENT NEWS: This is a report from CorpSec Emergency Response Unit. Residents be advised, cautionary measures traveling to and from Sector 7 should be observed for your safety. Armed conflict between rioters and Initiative invasion forces have been reported.>

[Transmission 000.000] a feminine tone with an Irish lilt: “Thinkin’ tha’ ain’ good. If anyone needs medical aid, just call the medevac an’ will do our best ta get someone to you. Stay safe out there.”

[Transmission 000.000]: REDACTED says, “I have an announcement to make.”

[Transmission 000.000]: REDACTED says, “Rescue the planet and break the chains that tyrants have imposed on it. Anyone who decides to side with the Initiative shall perish to my .50 cal ammunation.”

[Transmission 000.000]: REDACTED says, “Take the dead soldiers as a last warning.”

[Transmission 000.000] an alto, Saturni brogue: “Gonna be alive one today, it seems.”

[Transmission 000.000] a commanding British voice: “==This is an urgent CorpSec Announcement.== Citizens are advised to avoid the streets and do not engage with the rioters. Further advisement, rioters and all combatants will be prosecuted to the full extended of the law. The law still applies. Stay at home, and be safe as CorpSec rectifies the situation. Those citizens wishing to aid efforts may contact the Director personally.”

Updated Sector 7 Map by Pharaoh

Venus Dome Map by Pharaoh