[The Hulk] The Quarantine - Specialist Veronica Esco

edited January 2011 in Out-Of-Game
The Quarantine

Name: Specialist Esco, Veronica M.

Look: Woman, Ancient Fatigues, Young Face, Lost Eyes, Athletic Body

Veronica "Ronnie" Marie Esco. (I don't know the ethnic mix of population around the Hulk, but I'm imagining her as ethnic Korean or Chinese, but culturally North American. She was adopted, given her name. So she may or may not look distinctive.) She's small, about 5'2" to 5'3" and wears fatigues, boots, body armor. She probably has cold-weather versions of her gear. Black hair, brown eyes. She's about 23 but looks younger.

Her voice is on the high side, emphasising her youth, and gets almost squeaky when she's frightened or upset. She speaks in the dialect of eastern North Carolina/middle Appalachia. This led to freinds and teammates referring to her as either Mouse or Squeaky O'Hara, teasing her about her drawl.

Stats: Cool +2, Hard +1, Hot +1, Sharp: +1, Weird: nil

Disciplined Engagement: when you inflict harm, you can choose to inflict any amount of harm you like, less than or up to your harm as established, including s-harm. Decide at the moment you inflict the harm; you need not tell anyone in advance how much harm you intend to inflict.
Eager to Know:when you go to someone for advice, they must tell you honestly what they think the best course is. If you pursue that course, take +1 to any rolls you make in the pursuit. If you pursue that course but don't accomplish your ends, you mark experience.
Inspiring:when another player's character rolls+Hx to help you, they mark experience.
moonlighting gigs: pursuing luxury (ob), and technical work (medical)
Prepared for the inevitable Angel kit with 2-stock

- Assault Rifle (3-harm, close, loud, autofire)
- a 9mm sidearm (2-harm, close loud)
- military body armor (2-armor valuable hi-tech)

- fatigues and scrounge, but no jingle.

Marco: -2
Marshmallow: -1
Lemma: -2
Pulse: -1
Setter: -2

Experience: X X X X X | X X X X X | X X X X X | X X X X X | X X

1 advances pending


get +1 hard (max hard +2)
get +1 sharp (max sharp +2)
get +1 weird (max weird +2)
unlock a staisis facility psi isolation
unlock a stasis facility
unlock a stasis facility
get followers (detail) and fortunes
get a move from another playbook (prepared for the inevitable)
get a move from another playbook
get a move from another playbook
get +1 to any stat (max stat +3)
retire your character (to safety)
create a second character to play
change your character to a new type
choose 3 basic moves and advance them
advance the other 4 basic moves.


  • Rolling for Weird stat.

  • edited January 2012
    Answers for Memory Questions
    (Session 1)

    What did we try that failed
    You remember the fine, cold dust of the no-man's-lands in Illinois and Indiana, blowing in the air as the containment crews poured tons and tons of concrete over each of the ground-zero blast zones, trying to cap some of the radiation in the ground.

    In America, the Midwest was the first region to be hit by the little seed pods, infecting the landscape with ... something. You don't remember what, or maybe we never figured it out. And when the animals started to die and the vegetation started to twist and rebel, we tried almost everything to kill the infection. But none of that worked.

    So we nuked it, and that at least kind of worked. It burnt out the bugs, at any rate, and for a time the spread seemed to have halted, but we soon found that it was too late, that the infection had already spread in the air and in the water.

    Near the end, you think someone told you even the bomb, maybe, was just a setback for the infection. Something about radiation levels dropping off, like the bugs were gradually eating the shit right up. Give it twenty years, they said, and all sign of the Midwestern United States Tactical Decontamination would be gone. Gone, except for blasted cities and concrete plugs.
    (Session 2)

    What was the worst thing I saw
    Ok. What's the worst thing you saw? That's tough - it's awfully subjective.

    But it would probably be MSG Johnathan Anderson putting out his own eyes. You saw many terrible things in those days, but that was personal. He was your ODA's team sergeant, and his solid determination got you and your squad through more insanity than, well, than you can remember. Losing him like that was a blow to you all ... Tammy sank into some serious depression after that, you think.

    It happened here in the ship, you're sure. Maybe in the facility? But maybe not. You think there was at least one interim base camp before the facility, and you can't remember exactly when or where this happened.

    You know it was before the geeks worked out the principles of the ?-isolation rig, though. That's why it happened - inadequate protection, while the unit was still in the project's experimental stages. Nobody wanted to admit how haphazard the equipment and protocol were at that point ... that would've been like admitting how little a chance you had at success.

    You no longer remember what the mission was. Maybe some kind of exploratory delve. Meaningless, in the face of the casualties. Almost half of your ODA was lost on that delve, but not dead or gone, no. You remember five soldiers, strapped to their beds while the CO waited to hear what he should do with them: raving, or wordlessly screaming, or utterly catatonic.

    The master sergeant got free one night, somehow slipping out of the barracks and disappearing for a short time. You're the one who found him sitting against a wall in the little mess kitchen, gore streaming from ruined eye sockets, blood smeared and spattered all over the metal cabinetry and black glass floor. His red right hand limp in his lap, two eyes resting in the palm.

    He lived, but after that it was like he was gone from his body, catatonic. You don't know if he ever came back.

    Those two bloody eyes keep finding you in your dreams, this past week. A memory that will not let itself be forgotten.
    Why did we go into stasis? Was that part of the project or some emergency measure?
    A little of both. The project didn't move along quickly enough: it wasn't going to be fully implemented in time. Going into stasis allowed at least some of the project's goals to be reached, but it was an imperfect last-ditch plan.
    (Session 3)

    What let some people survive when others couldn't?
    Veronica, you remember the eggheads theorizing. At first it was statistics and projections laid out in briefing rooms in the States and in Greenland. Later, it was just talk to fill the time, speculation given voice in various mess halls and common rooms as the project moved around in its infancy.

    According to them, escaping the nanocaust was basically down to geography. They called it that, the nanocaust, a kind of a buzz word or comfortable label, though you don't know if they ever proved that there was anything "nanological" about it.

    Anyone in the middle latitudes could be largely written off, they said, since the transformation of the land seemed to happen more quickly in warmer temperatures. In fact, you could say as much about the entire southern hemisphere, since it was late October and early November when the seeds started to fall, though some of the theorists thought that some regions might be able to hold out long enough to make it to winter. Mountainous regions and the Antarctic, certainly.

    And of course the no-fly directives kept people from escaping quarantined regions. You yourself spent a month on the USS Gerald R. Ford off the western coast of Panama, while your unit ran exploratory missions and the Ford intercepted refugees.

    Also, the seeds, or nanobodies, or whatever, were said to have trouble with water. Some islands went unaffected, and ships like the Ford never had trouble, not even deep in quarantined regions.

    So cold, and water: those were what made the difference. But who knows if that would have continued, had the ETV not fallen from the sky.
    Did we know whose fault it was?
    Veronica, yes and no. For one, the main responsibility would have to rest on the "visitors", of course. It was their vessel, and presumably it was their strange, world-twisting seeds. On the other hand, none of us ever saw or made contact with the visitors, or if someone did, that was above your clearance. And the hulk offered no answers, in that respect. It has no signs of inhabitation, no clues to the natures of its creators.

    Also, it is unclear how different things would have gone if we hadn't gone nuclear. Did we do more damage than good? Or the opposite? Hard to say.
  • reserved
  • edited January 2011


    Uniforms are off of course, but the look is right. </p.

  • Already sounds like someone Pulse could hang with. Planning on being newly arrived, though? Or any history at all?
  • edited January 2011
    This is kind of tricky. Specialist is an American military rank. If she's Canadian military she would be a corporal. I have no idea of the Greenland military. (Edit: It turns out that Greenland is a territory of Denmark, and thus it's the Royal Danish Army, so the rank would be Korporal) Of course it still could be American, NATO, United Nations, or a joint American/Canadian thing. Hmmm... I suppose she might have been part of the United North American Protectorate military.

    Working out the choices. If we don't actually do something in the Hulk, then the facility (facilities?) would be in the surrounding area somewhere.

    I like the idea of her being relatively new, few days to a few weeks. I don't think as long as a few months. We haven't got to Hx yet, but Pulse could easily be the first person she met.

    I think colleagues, friends and family all could be there, maybe superiors too. For whatever reason I'm thinking of the facility in the X-files movie. This might depend on other choices. I might not remember why, but a parent and sibling could both be there.

    I think the Stasis facility is securely hidden (like under ice if not in the hulk) If in the hulk, it might also have deadly defenses.

    You're right that putting it in the hulk presents some problems with the stasis facility options. Maybe it's best to have it be a human thing. But I can't help but think that the facilities and the reason the hulk crashed where it did are related.

    I'm thinking that when Tammy emerged, the maelstrom inflicted psi damage and I had to kill her in self defense. I'm thinking that she was a friend. It was horrifying. I'm afraid to even try to wake the others until I figure out what's going on.
  • Sounds cool.

    Yeah, having the facility be a last-ditch human endeavor of some sort sounds cool. Maybe the humans there are what finally brought the hulk down? Through some misunderstood brain manipulation, the first pre-apocalypse human interaction with the maelstrom, or perhaps the creation of it. (Throwing out lots of prehaps's)

    You could have been a volunteer for this brain experiment having your unconscious brain a part in an elaborate psychic machine combating the hulk.

    If you're outside the hulk maybe I'll find you, if inside... who knows. All up to our benevolent MC. :-)
  • I think it's kind of a sweet idea that the UN slapped down a facility right next to the ship, right after it crashed -- right as the world started going to hell. Maybe even, like touching the the ship; built onto one face of it. In the fifty years since, the facility has been encased in ice. If that were the scenario, I wonder if you exit the facility through the ice or into the ship.
  • edited January 2011
    Let's see.

    - If you want to localize your military rank to something other than Specialist, I don't think that'd be a problem. Though, there are American military bases pretty much everywhere. Example: the Thule air base in northern Greenland, where Pulse is from.

    - I never saw the X-Files movie, so you'll have to help me if that reference had anything important packed into it.

    - I had been thinking that surviving militaries mounted operations on the ship when it splashed down, and that the colonization on and around the hulk was originally mostly military (quickly supplemented by refugees and by Weird people drawn to the hulk). So, on the same page there. And really, that means that pretty much anywhere could have a hidden stasis facility, if we wanted. Probably not Guntown, though, since it was only founded a decade or two ago.

    - The idea (Scott's) that putting people in stasis is part of some kind of psychic defense initiative is kind of interesting, particularly in its possible interactions with Lemma's somewhat reckless maelstrom experiments. I may pursue that.

    - I wouldn't object to something within the hulk, as it would provide some incentive for exploration. A human facility would be best overall, but it's possible that it is built around a piece of alien stuff. Maybe the psi-isolation rig is alien (a higher-order version of the thing in Lemma's workspace), and it was necessary for the facility to be built around this thing, deeper in the ship.

    So, some possibilities off the top of my head, working from what's already been mentioned in the game.

    - Thule, former American air base, now tainted with radiation and used as a base for the descendants of air base staff, who have turned into raiders. A fairly likely place for a secret facility, if your superiors wanted something a little more distant from the hulk. It's also inhabited by raiders ... not necessarily raiders who would make trouble for you, but I'm not sure how we'd connect you and the rest of the people on the hulk.

    Though, we could murderize the status quo and decide that the Thule raiders want to ally with the People's Republic of the Hulk, now that someone's popped out of the stasis facility. Sealed orders, or something. That could be interesting.

    - Lady Franklin, the last operating oil platform in the area. It's not obviously military in nature, but maybe that's the point. The people there are extremely insular and secretive, which people generally chalk up to paranoia ... but maybe they're hiding something, or worshiping something? Advantage to the fact that Pulse is heading right there, and I could spin it in with some vague ideas I have going.

    - The alien manufactory is actually much, much larger than what Guntown uses. Guntown just uses the nearest end of a long, curving 'hall' some 100 meters in width, and this hall goes off for kilometers to an assembly chamber where a large number of these manufactory halls converge. Possibly, this hub has complex connections to the rest of the ship, and it was an ideal location to build the stasis facility ... you needed to wire into the ship's nervous system, for some reason.

    A guy explored down that way once, but he came back a gibbering wreck. I think a lot of the hulk's defenses may be psychic in nature, so it kind of fits that you wouldn't have any problem with them, on account of being null-psychic. Something like that would make getting there difficult for other people, but not impossible. If nothing else, Lemma could use augury to protect people. Here, you'd probably just come walking out of the dark depths of the manufactory, freaking everyone out.
  • I'm thinking Thule is too far away in the scheme of things. Though there might be something somewhere on their base such that they know or learn of the facility? I mean, the orders thing might still be interesting, if/when they find out people have begun to emerge.

    Lady Franklin would be fine, but I worry a little about the distance to Guntown. I don't even know if the facilities are all in one place or not. Still, it would work out. I can easily imagine a submerged facility that is accessed somehow from the drilling platform.

    Or the deep in the Hulk thing appeals to me too, though I would no doubt meet a different character first. I'm thinking it's been only days since I emerged. I do like the idea of the psi-rig being an alien thing. And the deadly defenses being psi-based.

    So either of those two work for me pretty well, really. If you have stronger creative juice for one than the other, please go for it.

    I don't necessarily recommend the x-files movie but they go to a giant underground facility in Antarctica that is keeping all these people in stasis coffins that are vertical and filled with green goo (the outside of which are apparently made of ice, if I remember) They're arranged in circular tiers around a deep shaft. The whole thing turns out to be a giant alien spacecraft of course, which ends up taking off and flying away.
  • I'm pretty good with all three of those things, so whatever you like.
  • Ah. My attempt to pass the buck fails. :)

    The first one I like the least, so I'll let that one go.

    I like the facility deep in the Manufactory (and the alien psi rig and defenses). That's the one I groove on the most personally, to be honest, though it feels less plausible than the rig location.
  • Yeah I'd like to see that make sense. Why would a secure presumably Human facility be locked in there. Only thing which strikes me as obviously plausible is that you are more prisoners or something in stasis. Not Quarantined for your own purposes, but for alien purposes.
  • Alrighty. You'll probably meet either Marco or Marshmallow first, in that case. We'll see.

    And you mentioned that the stasis facilities might not be all in one place - that's possible. But, at the very least, you woke up inside the ship. How long ago? Days or weeks? And Specialist Jackson proved less resistant to the ship's effects than you, and she went mad ... you had to kill her.

    Have you picked a stasis facility to start out with?

    Probably we will open with you finally finding your way to traces of human civilization, walking into the Guntown manufactory by way of the back door, as it were.
  • Days ago.

    That's a tough call. Medlab I guess.
  • Ok. You're in play. First PC you see, give 'em Hx+2. Everyone else gets Hx+1.
  • Also, obviously nobody knows you yet, so everyone tells you Hx-1 and you give that an additional -1. So you have Hx-2 for everyone, for an admittedly unfortunate start.

    I'll have you highlight Cool, and I guess you can pick anyone you want to highlight your other stat.
  • I never made sure, specifically. Are you in fact American?
  • Yes. I didn't want to write 'eh' all the time. :)
  • You're starting to encounter PCs. You give +1hx to the first person you meet, not necessarily the first person you see, so you go ahead and decide who to give that to according to your intuition, whenever appropriate.
  • edited January 2011
    You give +1hx to the first person you meet, not necessarily the first person you see ...
    I was correcting myself there. The word in the playbook is 'meet'.

    Everyone gives you Hx-1, because of course they haven't met you before, and then you apply another -1 to that because you're a quarantine, so you begin with Hx-2 for everyone.

    Everyone else gets Hx+1 with you (modified as appropriate for their playbooks), except for the first person you meet, who gets HX+2 (modified appropriately). And you're deciding that's Marshmallow, right?
  • You should stage a coup. Reestablish democracy, and all of that. Start by picking up that followers improvement ...
  • What's your blood type and social security number? Marco's about to see your dog tag:
    O POS
    I'm just going out on a limb and assuming the Catholic part.
  • That's a fair assumption.

    What you've got is good.
  • The social security number is just the numbers 1-9, in sequence. But I'll make something up, then.
  • Oh. Duh. My pattern analysis circuit was obviously off.
  • That's the same combination I've got on my luggage!
  • I'm reading your miiiiind!
  • What defenses did you end up picking for the stasis facility?
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