So you want to be a Mary-Sue

Mary-Sue Session 19

Throw away jokes can make big changes

Session 19
Date & Time: 01/01/2017 6pm to 11pm
Location: Stephen’s Place
GM: Stephen Justice
Players: Jim, Ben, Ian, Kane

Joining Archer and the gang

After logging into the PC Ian asks if they should put themselves into the database. After discussing it, they decide to put in Jim to start with just to see how it goes. The operating system is quite strange, but Ian is eventually able to figure it out and navigate to the correct area, putting in Jim as a Operations Support Specialist. After putting in Jim they decide to focus more on how to try and get out of the room. Taking a look at the doors they see that it requires both a key code and a voice print.

Ian pulls out his multitool and decides to see if he can find a way to bypass the panel. Taking it off the wall he starts looking into the wiring. Kane jumps onto the database, and starts trying to find other things, while Ben starts looking for another way out. Kane flicks through the camera system, and is able to see some of what’s going on, but nothing of use. Especially as most of the cameras are in the bathrooms.
Ian manages to figure out enough of the wiring to bypass the keypad part of the doorlock, but he can’t find a way past the voice input. Ben tries to impersonate Cyril’s voice, but he fails horribly. Then while Ian and Kane start looking into the idea of wiring up the panel to the computer, and seeing if they can get the computer to send the right signal as a sound file, Ben decides he should see if they can just leave via the air vents.
He pinches the computer chair, and using his multitool he’s able to open up the vent. Then with a bit of effort he pulls himself up into the vent. He’s very quickly put off when he finds a canister of gas up there attached to an explosive. He lets the others know, and they start discussing what they’re going to do about it.

Before they get too far the door opens up and Cyril is standing there. He stares at them all in shock, before calling for Lana. Lana comes running over, and upon seeing them all there, she pulls a gun on them all. She then demands to know who they all are, and what they’re doing there.
They try to insist that they’re a maintenance crew that was called in to fix the door, before they designate Jim as the one in charge. After some antics pretending to speak only Spanish and a few other things, they can tell Lana is getting more and more annoyed with them. She demands Ben comes down from the vents and uses that as a reason to say that their story is bullshit.

Eventually they switch stories, claiming to be penetration testers for security systems, and were hired to do so. Lana really doesn’t believe them, and drags them into Malory Archer’s office. Archer sees the commotion going on and joins them. In the office they try to explain to Malory that they’re penetration testers, and they were there to test ISIS systems, that they have a lot of recommendations, and will hand them over after getting paid.
Malory straightly tells them that she never authorised any penetration testing, and asks Cyril if he had. Cyril responds he did, at which point Jim tries to channel the show and starts blaming Cyril for messing things us. Lana, who’s dating Cyril at this point, gets protective of him, and demands that the four of them give any proof, as well as demanding to know how they got into the server room. The four of them start responding with various twisting answers to attempt to lead everyone astray.
Eventually Malory claims she has a headache, and tells Lana to deal with it. Lana leads them to an office she can lock from the outside, and says she’s going to go check various things they’ve claimed, and if they are false than the 4 of them will have a lot of explaining to do. Jim asks for a drink before she goes, and so Lana tells Pam to get the 4 of them drinks before she heads off locking them in the office. Pam eventually turns up with some beers, and they all start drinking with Pam to pass the time.

Lana eventually returns, and she’s pissed at them. Especially Pam who’s managed to get fairly drunk by this point. Lana confronts them with the lack of any evidence of what they’ve claimed, or who they’ve said they worked for. However they continue to spin things that of course people wouldn’t have said anything about having their security breached. They then use their knowledge of the show to start talking about other agencies, like Odin, and the people who work there. They mention enough of the people’s personalities that it starts to disarm Lana’s suspicions about them.

Eventually they convince her to let them present a list of recommendations to Malory, and see about convincing her to pay them. Lana just laughs at the idea of Malory paying them after they give her something for free, but she decides to go along with it to see what they’ll do. Plus Lana is also hoping that a few of the recommendations might be decent and actually taken on-board as she knows how much the security is lacking in ISIS.

Back in the office the four of them start listing down their recommendations while Kane writes it all up. Malory is impressed, but not inclined to pay them. She does however ask if they have any field experience, and the four of them all end up nominating Ben at about the same time. She ends up offering them all a job, at a low pay to start with of course, and the four of them decide to take it on board.
On top of that they finger Krenshaw as a Russian mole, and claim he’s been stealing funds from Archer’s account. They claim the proof is in the computer systems.
Lana swears at that, and goes to get Cyril so they can check it out. She gets Archer in to watch them until she’s confirmed a few things.

Archer takes out his gun, a bit unsure what’s going on, but some banter happens and he becomes quite happy with the 4 of them. Malory just tells him to put the gun away, and to get Pam in to get their papers in order.
Once Pam has sobered up enough they sign onto ISIS. Ben as a field Agent, Kane to assist Cyril and field ops, Jim to help out on the HR and security side, and Ian gets himself assigned to help Krieger in Research.

After a bit more smooth talking, they get themselves assigned one of ISIS’s safe houses until they’ve earned enough money to get their own place.

Assassins in the night

Once they’re set up in the apartment they almost start discussing what they’re plan is, but then Ian points out that the place could be bugged. Over a speaker Krieger tells them that it isn’t, but they don’t believe him. They decide to go out for dinner, and Krieger recommends a local place nearby. They decide to ignore him and go somewhere further away for dinner. Little did they know that Krieger was just trying to be helpful and hadn’t actually bugged the local restaurant.

On the walk over they start to discuss what their plans are. They decide they’re mostly happy with the universe, but Kane is slightly put off by the fact excessive swearing is beeped out. They also decide that they want to see what they can do to fix ISIS, but also to try and help the staff there so the place doesn’t turn to shit like it does in the later seasons of Archer. They realise the biggest problem is Malory Archer, and start coming up with plans to deal with her. This mostly consists of turning her into a figurehead, and taking on most of the duties around the place that would help things run more smoothly.
They realise she’s likely to try and be a bit of a micro-manager, but Jim insists that he’ll be able to handle her.

While they’re focusing on that, Ian’s given the job of learning all of the pseudoscience he can from Krieger while they’re there. Ian is most excited to figure out what sort of power supplies they use for all of the cybernetics, and how to make better AI that he could one day put into any Zords he makes.

Eventually they head back to the safe house and sort out sleeping arrangements. The place only has a double bed, a couch, and floor space. Everyone else turns down the bed, so Jim takes it, with Ian claiming the couch. Ben and Kane use some spare bedding, and set themselves up on the floor as comfortably as they can. Kane manages to sleep better after his experiences of sleeping in a cave for a few months helping train soldiers back in Mistborn.

That night around 2am Kane is woken up by the soft noise of the front door of the apartment opening. Even with all of the lights out he can just make a figure in the doorway raising a pistol towards him. He gets up and dodges to the side, which wakes up Ben. The shots go wide and miss Kane, which surprises him as in any previous universe they lightly would have hit him. Ben is woken to full alertness by the sounds of the pistol fire, even if it is silenced, and seeing the figure runs forward to flip the kitchen table between them so he has some cover. Ian starts to wake up at the sounds of the pistol fire, as does Jim in the bedroom. Kane starts charging around the table and knocked about chairs, trying to make it to the gunman before he’s shot again. Grabbing the door he tries to slam it into the gunman’s face, but ends up slamming it closed as Ben leaps the table and pushes off it to tackle into the gunman back into the hallway, however the gunman was able to squeeze off a shot during Ben’s attack, which goes right through Ben’s shoulder.

While Ben and the gunman are struggling over the gun in the hallway everyone else goes for light switches so they can see better. All of them find that the power has been cut, and no one is able to see anything still. The gunman is able to drive his thumb into Ben’s bullet wound, causing Ben to scream out in pain. Ben lets his training fully kick in, slamming his forehead forward into the gunman’s nose, and then while he’s reeling, he slams the palm of his hand up into the nose again, driving it up into the gunman’s brain and brutally killing him.
The others get the door open to help out, and find Ben over his first kill.

Ben goes into a mild shock at it all, and Jim starts trying to comfort him. Ian runs outside to get the power working, while Kane gets their shower curtain to wrap up the body. Ian turns back on the power and wonders back in. At this point they see it was Krenshaw that had attacked them during the night. They start talking about their various experiences with Ben before they remember the room is bugged. They then pause for a moment, before asking is Krieger is watching. After a few seconds of no response they figure they are in the clear before Krieger’s AI girlfriend responds letting them know that Krieger-San is asleep.
They ask her to call Archer, but she responds that she’s unable to, and instead points them at a nearby phone in their apartment. She also gives them Archer’s number.

They try to call Archer, but only Woodhouse responds. He lets them know that Master Archer is unavailable right now. After a few more frustrating conversations they eventually give up for the night. They put the dead body in the bath tub, and then clean up any signs of the combat. During which they accidentally let slip some more pieces of conversation about who and what they are. They also decide to check Krenshaw’s car outside, and find several packed bags with clothes and thousands and cash in them.

The next morning they’re woken up by Lana calling them to check in with them. They tell her what happened, and she’s pissed at the news. She comes over to check out the scene, and after some basic forensics, she agrees that they were defending themselves.
She calls in a cleaning crew, which happens to also include a police officer. She gives a statement and shows her ISIS credentials. Her authority is accepted, and after the scene is cleaned everyone is free to go.

She then takes them into the office to continue things on from yesterday.

In the office they confirm that Krenshaw was a Russian spy, and help convince everyone that Krenshaw was stealing funds from Archer’s account to explain the loss of funds. The four of them knew the truth was that Archers was embezzling funds, but they decided to cover him anyway.

Helping ISIS back on its feet

Over the next year all of them start to get very involved with their new jobs.

Ben gets some training from Archer, and finds that Archer’s skill level is super human at times. Ben is able to learn a surprising amount from him, and Lana as well. This enhances his mundane skill level, but also gives him access to a minor power for insane secret agent stunts.

Kane and Jim get quite involved around the office. Jim is able to direct Pam more towards becoming an agent, giving him more control over HR. This lets him actually do things to improve things around the office, while also making sure only competent people actually get hired. He also takes on the majority of the responsibility for interacting with Malory Archer and stopping her driving ISIS into the ground.
Kane meanwhile learns quite a lot about accounting from Cyril, and is able to help him turn the budget around. Especially as he’s able to add a more forceful personality to making sure things go well and others don’t abuse company property as much.

Ian meanwhile starts helping Krieger out in the lab a lot. He even agrees to take Danny’s place to when testing some drugs. This ends up resulting in Ian turning over the top stereotypical gay for a while, and having his first gay sexual experience with Krieger. They have a very over the top afternoon/evening in the lab, and Ian is also introduced to fisto-reboto as well, it is a good thing Ian heals so well.

Ian surprises everyone by being quite OK with his first gay experience. He explains to the others that if he could control his sexuality that easily then he would, it would make life easier given how many guys he knows who are attracted to him, but he’s otherwise stuck being attracted to girls only. Jim is quite pleased to hear this and congratulates him on his progressive view.

Despite some distracting times in the lab Ian is learning a fair bit from Krieger. It’s a mix of actual practical science grounded in reality, but also some pseudoscience that shouldn’t work at all. Ian especially focuses on the power supplies that Krieger uses, and is shocked to find out that they’re mini-nuclear reactors that work through some insane applications of science. Despite knowing they shouldn’t actually work, Ian learns how to replicate them, and realises some sort of power is involved that he’s learning off Krieger thanks to the ORB.

As time goes on Ben, Kane, and Jim are finding that to keep ISIS afloat they need to spend more and more time making sure that Archer doesn’t screw up important missions. They find it difficult, and so start doing their best to try and start helping him past quite a number of his personal issues. They lack training in this however, and so Jim starts taking night classes on psychology and counselling. The more time that goes on, the more Jim starts to realise how much of a problem Malory is, and that Archer basically needs to be separated from her so he can start learning to function properly.

A big change from a small discovery

Despite their best efforts, the four of them are finding ISIS difficult to keep from going under due to just how badly Malory has been managing it. This is until one day in the lab Ian is looking through Krieger’s inventions that he’s put on the shelf, and finds a spray labelled “Bullet Proof Spray”. Asking Krieger about it, he’s able to find out it’s a spray you can put onto any cloth and it becomes pretty much impossible to damage with bullets and other such piercing weapons. On top of that it spreads the force of any such hits so evenly over the rest of the wearer that they barely feel it.

Ian is gob smacked to find out the spray exists, and asks Krieger why he never mentioned it before. Krieger tells him it’s because he finished making it, got bored, and moved on to other projects. Ian just shakes his head at Krieger, and asks to know how it’s made. Krieger teaches him, and Ian finds out how to mix the right chemicals, which it turns out are all quite common and easy to procure. The spray takes graphite, and bonds it to clothing to cover them in a flexible carbon lattice that hardens on fast impact. Allowing the clothing to move and be flexible normally, but able to withstand gun shots, and even knife stabs, without it leaving a mark. The person wearing such clothing barely even notices the attack at all.
Ian knows full well that this shouldn’t work in real life, but is more than happy to learn it as a bizarre abuse of pseudoscience that this universe offers.

Ian takes the discovery to the others, who are also all shocked to learn about it. They all understand what it means, but Kane also fully understands that it fully belongs to ISIS due to being discovered in an ISIS lab by someone working there. After several discussions on how to handle it, they decide the best way to use it is to patent the discovery, and then licence manufacturing and how it’s sold around the world, letting them limit it to the military and police at first, while slowly introducing it to the civilian population.
They’re hope is that by doing it the right way, they’ll prevent the current cold war escalating into a proper war between Russia and America.

Over the next 6 months they’re able to get things set up, and soon the money starts rolling into ISIS. Kane uses his legal knowledge, combined with the accounting he learned, to prevent Malory just claiming all of the money, and using a lot of the funds to get ISIS fixed up and people being paid actually decent amounts. Once that’s handled he’s able to make sure that Malory gets paid her appropriate bonuses and have the office refitted to be her dream office.

Things start going extremely well for ISIS, and soon they’re able to rival Odin in terms of the amount of field offices they have, as well as Agents on the ground. Ben gets involved in a lot more missions, but finds that occasionally he has to take Assassination missions. He always makes sure they’re guilty of horrible crimes, but even then every kill ends up being quite a weight upon him. After 27 kills, as sometimes bodyguards got in the way, he’s feeling quite drained from it.

The others do their best to help him through it, and point out that it is making the world a better place, and ISIS is so much better off with his help.

Archer causes another problem

Of course none of this stops Archer finding out that the head of the KBG might be his father, or hi-jacking a mission to drop into Russia to try and find out.

Instead of Malory turning to Barry at Odian however, she instead turns to Ben.
Ben pushes back hard, agreeing to go, but only if he’s put in charge of all field operations at ISIS.
Malory is quite put off by all of this, but when Ben points out that Archer is likely being tortured she eventually relents.
Ben makes her sign legal documentation locking her into the agreement, but only on the condition that he does return with Archer intact.

Ben then consults with the others, and they realise a flaw with Ben’s plan. None of them have bothered how to speak Russian yet, so they can’t easily infiltrate the country.
They decide that Ben and Kane would be the best two to sneak in, and arrange for some quick lessons in Russian from Lana.
They discuss sending Lana, but they realise that sending a Black Woman into Russia would just stand out too much.

So the two of them load up on equipment, including some of the anti-bullet spray, and parachute into Russia as close to Moscow as they can manage.
From there they head out on foot, and are able to secure a lift closer to Moscow.
Once they’re close enough they travel the rest on foot, pushing themselves with their healing factor, but it allows them to bypass security check points.

Once they get into Moscow, they quickly head to the Kremlin building. Ben spends a while assessing the place, trying to look for a way to sneak in without killing anyone. Unfortunately he realises that his only chance to do so is to use Kane as bait to draw everyone else off. Kane readily agrees to this despite Ben’s reservations, and so they set things up.
Kane heads around the front, knocks out a guard across a road, and starts firing. His shots appear wild, but he’s carefully making sure they’ll only hit places where they won’t hurt anyone. Once he’s got the KBG’s attention, he starts a fighting retreat to draw them away.

Knowing he won’t have long until reinforcements arrive, Ben uses the opportunity to climb up the side of the building and onto a balcony. He dodges out of sight of the people inside, and when they’re distracted going to check on what’s going on out the front, he gets inside. He’s quickly able to locate the office of an officer, and dons on a spare uniform. From there Ben heads up to see if he can find Archer. Instead he ends up outside of the office of Nikolai Jakov, and overhears a conversation between him and Malory Archer. Here he finds out that Archer is in the basement. Sighing in frustration, Ben instead heads downstairs.

On the ground floor the place is more crowded, so Ben does his best to look like he’s walking around being quite busy so no one stops him. Unfortunately he finds that every entrance into the basement is guarded. He ends up choosing one of the least well protected entrances, and surprises the solider there. After knocking him out, he drags the Soldier down into the basement, and hides the body in an alcove. It’s likely to still be discovered soon so Ben hurries along.
Ben eventually makes it to the prison sections, and follows the screams to find the cell that Archer is being tortured in. Before the guards can react Ben channels the power he learnt from Archer and knocks them all out quickly.

Ben then frees Archer, who immediately starts complaining about how long it took him to be freed. Ben grits his way through it, and tells Archer to get dressed in one of the guards uniforms. Archer does, and then starts heading upstairs. Ben asks him where he thinks he’s going, and Archer explains that he’s still got to see Nikolai about him potentially being his dad. Ben tries to convince him to stop, but is unable to, so they sneak upstairs together.
Here they overhear Nickolai telling Malory that he’s sent samples of Archer’s to the lab, and if it comes back negative then he’s going to have Archer killed. Archer decides now is a good time to flee as he doesn’t want to risk his life on a 33% chance. Ben agrees, and off they go.

By now their attack in the basement has been discovered and guards have mobilised looking for them. Soon Ben and Archer find themselves being chased through the streets of Moscow by a number of armed soldiers. Ben just watches in amusement as the soldiers miss from mere metres away at times, and can’t believe that him and Archer haven’t been shot yet.

Ben doesn’t realise it, but soon their chase soon starts following the lines of the one that happened in the TV-Show, even as they end up leaping roof tops and running through various apartments. Soon they end up in an elevator ride down, and when it opens find themselves in front of a firing line of Russian Soldiers.
Ben shoves Archer to the side and attempts to shield Archer with his body as the gunfire opens up. Ben is shocked to see that he’s not the one shot, but instead the firing line is gunned down by someone behind them.

Here he sees that it’s Katya Kazanova. Archer and her quickly introduce themselves to each other, and start flirting heavily. Ben is able to pull them away from the scene and get them moving again. Katya leads them to a military air strip, and flies them out of there using her clearances.
From here they head back to the US, via a couple of stops along the way. Ben ends up having to learn how to handle the controls a bit, as Archer and Katya just can’t keep their hands off each other at first.
Eventually they get back, but instead of going to ISIS to debrief, Archer and Katya head back to Archer’s apartment. Ben just sighs and goes back for his own debrief.

Kane meanwhile had managed to make it out of Moscow, and lose his trail in the fields around the city for a while. He was shot several times, but after healing up is able to continue on his way again. With the KBG hot on his trails, Kane begins his long journey over land to escape Russia.

End of session.

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