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Adam stepped into the cockpit of All Nerves, others had already brought their NCs online despite his brisk pace. He looked down to the floor of his NC's bay, the black case resting on the ground, ready to be picked up. He turned to the darkness of his NC's cockpit and wordlessly entered, the internal lights responding to his arrival by casting their light over the spartan cockpit. There was no doubt what this NC would demand. He sat in the cramped seat as the cockpit re-sealed with the hiss of pressurization and reached back, wrapping his hands around a single thick cable. He took a deep breath and exhaled slowly.

Adam pressed the Link to the contact at the base of his skull and felt the connection. He closed his eyes and cleared his mind. In the silence of his cockpit he relaxed, his limbs going slack even as the pilot harness closed around him.

NEURAL COMBATANT PILOT INTERFACE v1.7.36

Pre-Sortie Check:

Physical Link:
Neural Link:
CONFIRMED CONFIRMED

Sync Rate: Structural Integrity: Reactor Output:
100% 100% 100%

NavSat Link: Location Data
LOST Map File Found

Connecting...


Adam barely noticed the change in his senses, his body denied it's natural connection to his brain as All Nerves took control of everything it touched. It was like ice in his head, an unnatural calm and clarity infusing him. He felt memories bubble to the surface, only to be whisked away. He opened his eyes, and saw the catwalk finish retracting. He reached down and felt his hands touch the floor, the case. He felt along the package for the handles and, grasping his cargo, stood in his bay.

"NC All Nerves, leaving the hangar."
Before his voice even finished echoing through the hangar, the NC was marching out of it's bay and down the line painted on the floor. All Nerves's footsteps beat a war-drum's steady rhythm upon the floor of the hangar, a machine of war calling it's brothers and sisters to their purpose.
Adam watched the enemy commander gloat like a child with someone else's toy, playing with Alexander and taunting all of Haven. A weak play at best, and a catastrophic mistake at worst. Adam looked around the room, his subordinates staring in shock or disgust at the counterfeit-human's sadistic display. The man wearing a suit of combat armor, Cody, had turned to look at Terra, his helmet's field of view limited. His gaze turned towards Commander Theodore, shocked into inaction through his personal connection. Theodore would be unable to capitalize on this. Things fell into place in Adam's mind and he reached for his belt, lifting an antiquated radio to his mouth.

Both a boost to Haven's morale, and a massive blow to Red Star, all thanks to one cocky self-centered psychopath.

"Companion Adam to Team Exile, rebroadcast this on open frequency, wideband. I want all of Red Star to hear this. Over."
"This is Exile, we copy. Rebroadcasting on open channel, ETA seven seconds."

Adam's stare locked onto the hologram image of the enemy commander, playing in realtime. His radio crackled twice, a signal from his people. The predatory look in his eyes was plainly visible to everyone in the room, but he only had eyes for his target.

"This is Haven International Volunteer Battalion Field-Commander Adam Philips broadcasting on an open frequency. This message is addressed to Osamu Akiyama. No one in the last thousand years has made the mistake of negotiating during a hostage situation. You have provided Haven with no reason to trust you, and the fact that you are falling back on such tactics reveals your desperation and incompetence. Red Star, if the best commander you can put forward is a sadist that reveals troop strength deficiencies and wastes time with theatrics like this? You are unarguably pathetic. Over and out."

Without skipping a beat, Adam's finger released the button on the radio and he was addressing his team. "We have been afforded a massive opportunity thanks to our enemy's mistake. Primary objective is to repel the invading enemy force. Secondary objectives are as follows: Recover the Hostages, Recover captured allied asset Alexander, and capture or terminate enemy asset Osamu." His sharp gaze turned to Terra "Squad Leader Terra Laedo, you and your team are assigned to recover the Hostages. It appears the enemy commander forgot that vehicles can be physically disabled. Make sure your team brings a wide-band radio jammer to prevent a remote detonation. Take the center path, the other squads will cover your flanks and provide supporting fire."

Adam turned to the rest of the team, his voice carrying force and energy restrained by discipline. "Those of you not in Terra's squad, you will form two teams. Cody, Anna, Marianne and TABRIS will be the first team, and will take the North. Cody will take the role of squad leader. Advance carefully and do not overextend." Adam took a deep breath, his plan cemented in his mind. "Maria, EncarnaciĆ³n, Seamus. You are with me on the South route."

As he spoke, Adam pointed out starting positions and general paths the squads would be taking. "Each team is more than capable of handling an enemy NC attack, but the squads should be in close enough proximity for our pilots with long-range weaponry to provide fire-support. If the enemy tries to concentrate their NCs to attack a single squad, all squads will converge. If Osamu successfully takes control of an allied NC, you are to disable or restrain it immediately."
A noise broke through the growing din of conversation in the briefing room. Adam was knocking a knuckle against the open door behind him, still looking out into the small gathering of pilots. "It seems many of you are eager to talk to each other, or introduce yourselves. Good. You are all dismissed. Those of you who have been to the coffee shop previously, please guide our newcomers. I have many things to discuss with Commander Theodore, so please do not linger." Adam's expression was stony and cold, only subtly different from before. His eyes scanned through the group before him meticulously and intensely evaluating everyone.

He waited by the door for the group to file out before closing it quietly. He walked over to the holotable in the middle of the room, finger hovering over the key to disconnect both Terra and Kxeyun. "The both of you can make your own choices on how or if you want to interact with the others, but I need this room." Without waiting for a response he pressed the disconnect and turned to Theodore, fists clenched and eyes doing their best to burn a hole through his skull.

"When were you planning on informing me I was being placed in command of turncoats and traitors? How many others are turncoats? Above all else, how many from Red fucking Star?" The mask was fully gone now, Adam's expression was filled with anger and his words full of acid. He pointed an accusatory finger at Theodore. "You just rolled over and allowed a massive security risk to take command of an NC squad in a battle that will determine the future of our collective peoples. A squad that I will remind you is comprised entirely of other associated, hand-selected, security risks. Has it not crossed your mind that your entire insider plan may have been compromised from the start?"

Adam turned from Theodore, hands planted firmly on the holotable. his eyes inspecting the battle lines snaking across the land. "I expect the dossiers of the entirety of this squad provided to my personnel immediately. No redactions, no omissions. You have already undermined my authority by making a rash decision without so much as speaking to me, and I refuse to walk into this situation you have created blind. I am not a sheep to be thrown to the wolves, and you can be damn sure I'm not going to die for your mindlessness." He shoots one last glare at Theodore. "You've already had one pilot turn traitor, so pray to whatever god you worship it doesn't happen again Commander."
Adam entered and was promptly cut off by one of the squad leaving the room. As the silence began to grow, he decided to break it on his own. His voice was eerily calm, despite the disrespect he had just been shown. "To any and all of you that dislike decorum, feel free to leave now. I know the general composition of this group, and mercenaries are not often known for adhering to formality. If you do not wish to hear what I have to say and your business with Commander Theodore is concluded, make your way out now instead of interrupting me. I will not hold it against you."

Adam waited, hands clasped behind his back. Never one to pass up an opportunity, Adam began his assessment of the team's behavior. Distraction was in short supply, supplanted by the unspoken stresses of combat. Two people stuck out, as they were paying attention. One, the man in a full suit of combat armor, was clearly focused, though on what Adam could not tell. The blonde-haired girl was less focused, but paying close attention where she could. The consistent glances indicated an overabundance of questions he would inevitably have to answer.

His assessment was over in the blink of an eye, masked behind the safe assumption that he was waiting for any pilots to accept his offer and leave as the man stinking of alcohol had. With his voice filled with calm and intensity in equal measure, he addressed the team. "With that out of the way, I will say what I think you all need to hear." He made a point to look each person in the eye before continuing. "The previous battle went poorly due to a lack of squad cohesion and leadership. For now, just know that you will all be assigned to squads of at least three, and you will be expected to cooperate closely with your allies. Squad composition will be based on NC combat roles. Make an effort to understand your fellow pilots today."

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Reposting my old sheet, NC Equipment under potential revision.


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Dang, NCQuest got off the ground and I didn't get so much as a Discord ping. That's cold, @Letter Bee.

Tongue-in-cheek sarcasm aside, glad to see your thread finally take off. Since you seem to have all your bases covered, I'll settle for watching the IC.
Interesting, but it sounds like it's going to be a hyperlethal setting heavy on RNG and dicerolls.
@Slypheed

At this point, it's probably a safe assumption that it's first-come first-served. That or anything older than a week is ignorable.
@Letter Bee

I mean, there's been like three additional people popping in to show interest.

The issue is getting anyone to actually post sheets, as opposed to just fantasize about the setting, get bored and forget about/bail on the RP.
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