Comic 543 - Check on Caius and Dr. Finch

Posted on 30th Oct 2017, 5:13 PM in Doors
Check on Caius and Dr. Finch

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Author Notes:

Morgenstern 30th Oct 2017, 5:13 PM edit delete
You check on Caius and Dr. Finch.

They're in Bunker B, but... neither quite looks like they know what to do with themselves. The two early model Juries are working enthusiastically, using the new tools and supplies they've been provided to piece together what they have of a third Jury. It seems that this was what they were wanting to do from the beginning, and they have it well in hand--their short list of supplies likely included everything they needed.

You call Caius and Dr. Finch back to Bunker A. You, Fuse, and Michelle head that way as well. You update each other on events, and Dr. Finch confirms that the Juries seem to know what they're doing. You give Dr. Finch the plant blood. While he takes a look at it, Fuse steps out to start making phone calls about the mushroom dealer. Fuse returns by the time Dr. Finch gets done analyzing the blood.

Dr. Finch takes a deep breath. "Well... hmm. The blood contained in that plant is bioprinted Mars blood, like that contained in Save the Queen. However..."

Dr. Finch adjusts his glasses. "It doesn't fold correctly."

There's a brief pause before Caius speaks up. "Tha hell does that mean?"

Dr. Finch himself looks as though he's still collecting his thoughts on the matter. "What we saw in Bunker D must have been one of the first instances of a completed, fully functioning bio printer... for human materials. That in itself was a technological marvel at the time, and no doubt took years upon years of secret research and development to assemble. The blood found on Mars is distinctly not human, and bioprinting it may have taken... erm, additional time to perfect."

"So the blood in the plant..." Michelle starts, trying to get it all straight, "is like... messed up Mars blood?"

Dr. Finch nods. "Basically, yes. It looks like a precursor or prototype version of bioprinted Mars blood. That plant may have been contained in a sort of... isolation lab, though whether or not it being contaminated with beta test bioprinted blood was intentional is is is... is another question entirely.

I feel that this also feeds into a new theory about Bunker B. Those frozen men may have been infected with an earlier, less controllable version of the bio printed blood. If Queen contains the final product and the plant contains the beta version, Bunker B's trapped subjects may contain the alpha equivalent."

"If it's bio printed Mars blood..." Fuse starts to ask, "does that mean Thale can control it? Is that plant gonna try to kill us?"

Dr. Finch starts to answer... but stops himself. His face contorts a little. "I am... unsure at this time, unfortunately. The 'faulty' nature of the blood leaves me with too many unanswered questions. It may well be 'close enough' for Thale to manipulate... or, or or or the beta bioprinted blood could be too distant chemically from what Thale possesses to be affected. Speaking of distance, there is... yet another factor regarding Thale's control."

Dr. Finch motions toward you. "While your blood seems to maintain its effects vis a vis those that carry it over vast distances--from the Earth to Mars, even--there is no evidence one way or the other, from what I can gauge, that any of the artificial derivatives have the same strength. The connection between Thale and his slaves may well break over a great enough distance... but what that distance is, or if my hypothesis is even correct, I cannot say. That possibility further muddies any conclusions we could reach regarding the plant in Bunker D, however--even if the plant is not under Thale's control, it may be because the plant is on Mars, not because its blood is too dissimilar to Thale's own."

A brief silence sweeps the room as all that sets in. Fuse finally speaks up again.

"I found out where our mushroom guy is operating out of, but you're not gonna like it. Turns out he's been holding up in an old power station deep in the lower tiers. It shouldn't be, like, crazy radioactive or anything if the guy's living there, but..."

"It's still way off past enemy lines," Michelle states. "And, even if it's been cleaned out, there's still prob'ly some weird stuff down there."

You also ask Fuse about possibly hacking into Southern Pass's systems. He grins, but reels it in quickly. "I mean, I could try, but don't get too pumped about it yet. Getting into a modern military corporation's data is way different than getting into some druggie's personal computer, or hacking a century old lock."


lil Joshu 30th Oct 2017, 6:06 PM edit delete reply
lil Joshu
I see no reason not to, and multiple reason to... to either blood or burn those plants.
Nayru9572 30th Oct 2017, 6:13 PM edit delete reply
Burning could lead to some huge collateral damage in bunker D, and we have no idea how badly the plant will react to being injected with our blood.
The fake-blood's control will probably be overwritten by ours, but we've no idea exactly how large that plant is and how much blood it might contain, which could complicate matters.

So I'd propose we play it safe and have Finch research the alpha fake blood before we try anything with blooding the plant.
lil Joshu 30th Oct 2017, 6:21 PM edit delete reply
lil Joshu
I'm not keen on Thale having a potential in on our activities. Our strength at present mainly comes from our obscurity. There's also the risk that it's controlled by the adversary. Which if the main body is frozen, the most active blood is the plant, making it dominant and out to kill us.

Then again, if the plant is dominant at the moment, could be why the adversary isn't... so maybe cultivate the plant to keep it in control over the adversary as plants are notoriously worse at planning than people (let alone hyper-intelligent blood aliens)?
Blue_Elite 30th Oct 2017, 11:23 PM edit delete reply
As has been mentioned, plants are limited to a very limited form of sight (is there light? yes/no) and sense of touch. Even if Thale or Lasker/Mars Monster had control over the plants, they'd be virtually blind and clueless unless we start doing some major gardening.
Essentially leaving the plants alone is the best way to stay undetected.
AlphaDragon 31st Oct 2017, 10:42 AM edit delete reply
I think you catch is that Thale doesn't know we are on Mars, and we don't know if his blood good reach that far. -
Blue_Fox 31st Oct 2017, 3:37 PM edit delete reply
I think I read something about Jane's blood meeting another alien's blood not having very good consequences. Even if it is fabricated.
Blue_Fox 31st Oct 2017, 3:37 PM edit delete reply
I think I read something about Jane's blood meeting another alien's blood not having very good consequences. Even if it is fabricated.
Akasha 30th Oct 2017, 6:28 PM edit delete reply
Ah, wonderful! I'm glad to see that the two -inities are already in the middle of piecing together a third. That's nice to see.

In any case, the implications about the proto-blood... My best guess would be, that considering all instances of greater blood are naturally inclined to seek each-other's destruction, along with the fact that the original Mars blood simply only considered the bio-printed knockoff blood an 'other' to be erased... I honestly wouldn't be surprised if the prototype knockoff blood would be considered too different from the perfected version and just be summarily torn asunder or whatever. Mind you... This is all conjecture, and I feel like this would all be easier to have answers for if we had more samples of Queen to help in analysis for comparison's sake.

And putting the super-serious blood talk aside...~ Fuse! What the hell d'ya need for this round of fun hacking bullshit to work? Or is it less a hardware thing and more... footwork-y?
PurpleKetchup 30th Oct 2017, 7:33 PM edit delete reply
I especially appreciate their enthusiasm. I hope they'll have enough to rebuild their entire family.
PurpleKetchup 30th Oct 2017, 7:31 PM edit delete reply
Well, this ended up better than expected. If the popsicles in bunker D are not controlled by the Mars red, Jane should be able to help them get rid of the shitty alpha/beta-Queen prototype as they thaw out.

Of course, thawing a bunch of guinea pigs involves knowing who the hell they are - inmates on death row who signed their bodies to science ? Political dissidents ? Random foreign prisoners ? That dude from section 7 who made the worst coffee in the world ?
We kinda need to know what kind of people we'd be bringing back before doing anything on that front.
What was the world's geopolitical status 100 years ago ? So many questions.
rufiangel 30th Oct 2017, 7:39 PM edit delete reply
I'm glad to know the Inities have the third PJ well at hand :D it'll be cool to meet the third later!

So there are three things I guess on our immediate plate: checking the blood jungle for any more wire abnormalities and fixing it if necessary, checking out the "fun guy" power station and looking into the Southern Pass network hack. All three require Fuse, dangit XD;;

I would like to suggest we continue to prioritise fixing Bunker D. Given what Dr Finch told us, I think we can go ahead into the blood jungle and fix any wiring in there that may need it, if it's possible. We still should have Michelle with a machete or something similar at hand around if possible though. At the same time, maybe we could scout the power station with a raven? See what the perimeter is like? Like Akasha said, footwork may be required to try and infiltrate the S.Pass network, so maybe we could be doing that while he's fixing the wiring. Dr. Finch may want to figure out more about PTSD/life extension/Bunker D food units/plant blood XD (he's got a ton on his research plate lolol). Maybe?
Akasha 30th Oct 2017, 8:48 PM edit delete reply
Truly, Dr. Finch's greatest weakness is that there's only one of him. Though, if we're focusing on bunker D at the moment, then maybe we should suggest that he focus more on the plant blood and food units for the moment? Seems like it'd be a good point to start from, in any case.
Blue_Elite 30th Oct 2017, 11:44 PM edit delete reply
Don't forgot the biohazard/space suit(s). Getting at least one refurbished might play well into the radioactive lower-levels situation (and double as a disguise, even if it looks conspicuous).

But ya, I'm liking the idea of continuing to explore Bunker D as we may yet get more useful tools out of it. The mushroom man-hunt is pretty much just going to be us putting our life on the line for some questionably good info. As an added bonus this gives more time for Jury to get back with us (and hopefully be able to give us some support).
rufiangel 30th Oct 2017, 8:55 PM edit delete reply
As a side-note, I love that Fuse grinned and then reeled it back in. XD He's actually the pessimist of our group but after his skin grafts and his hug with Jane, there have been moments where it's clear that he's become remarkably brighter. And now, grinning in response to the idea of hacking a modern military network, instead of his usual poker face or frown? XD Fuse, you precious boo. You're comin' outta your shell <3
Auron 30th Oct 2017, 9:51 PM edit delete reply
shouldn't be too extremely dangerous to blood the plant.
rufiangel 30th Oct 2017, 10:30 PM edit delete reply
We could always test it in a petri-dish in the sample we just took, I suppose?
Blue_Elite 30th Oct 2017, 11:32 PM edit delete reply
I actually second testing with the blood sample. We gotta take risks at some point and if we have just as much control over the plant-blood as Queen, there's another level of safety in exploring the blood-plant room.
Twyll 31st Oct 2017, 12:14 PM edit delete reply
I third this idea, testing in a petri dish should be as safe as we can manage.
Steve 30th Oct 2017, 10:36 PM edit delete reply
Ask Finch how many ways there are to kill plants. There has to be a safe way to neutralize that thing, for when we want to.
Morgenstern 30th Oct 2017, 10:37 PM edit delete reply
I didn't think we were going to today 'cuz today has been busy as heeell but Broomie and I are about to stream some more Mario.
Morgenstern 31st Oct 2017, 12:37 AM edit delete reply