Tuesday, August 12, 2014

The Signs Are Right ep01 : Cthulhutech


The Signs Are Right
Episode One
"Beneath Human Skin"


Che plays Professor Carrie Raine, an Arcanotechnician for the New Earth Government (NEG).   Urim plays Terry Russel, who had once been an Intelligence officer of the NEG.   Rocky plays Mohinder Inderpal, a Media New Personality for EDGE, a tabloid sensationalist network.    The three had been abducted by an unknown group and subject to various experimentation, including what they have finally learned to have been the Rite of Sacred Union.  The three, however, were able to fight back against their captors and kill them and escape.  They are now Tagers, but unaffiliated with the Eldritch Society which typically has sway over such beings and are trying to return to their normal lives.

Like that was ever going to happen.

Carrie is told to handle a crash site where a Migou had fallen.  Arriving there, she discovers that Ashcroft Foundation had sent their own Arcanotechnician there so she tries to investigate the fallen thing before they get their hands on it.  MK5 Crusaders are in the area, securing it when she arrives.  She realizes the fallen Locust had crashed upon two buildings.  She will have to go upstairs to check it better.  The Ashcroft Public Affairs Representative is there, and uses her multiple drone cameras to document the scene.  But worries strike when she notices the Ashcroft people with devices that supposedly detect Orgone levels.  She worries if her new state as a Tager would reveal itself on their machines.

Terry was interrogated upon his return, with the NEG being worried that his disappearance was him having been tortured or pressured for information.  Answering their questions convincingly, he is reassigned to work with a team to handle a doomsday cult operating in the city.  While in the mission with the team, however, he senses the presence of something... like himself.  And discovers that the senses are a mutual situation!  The Dohanoid attacks, tearing through the elevator he and his team mate, Operative Bates, are hiding atop, to grab him.  Seeing the thing terrifies Terry, but thanks to his Military training, he stays in focus.   Knowing Bates cannot see him, Terry shifts to his Tager form and launches two shots of his photon blasts!  The blasts miss the creature, and the cultists break into a run.  Bates hears the firepower but the rest of his team tell him to withdraw.  Terry feels his wounds healing as he maneuvers away from the thing and unleashes his Limit: Multiplicity.  Six illusions emerge, all identical to Terry's Tager form. With the Dohanoid confused, Terry blasts at it with two more shots, tearing off its arm with the first, then punching through its stomach with the second.    Terry stabs the thing a few more times into its stomach with his tentacles.  The Dohanoid dies, and its completely hairless body strikes the ground.

"Mother of God..."

Terry turns around and sees Bates staring at him, with the dead "human" now in his tentacles.

Mohinder is staring at a desiccated corpse on the bed.  His wings are spread out, making things very cramped in his room.  He woke up to find himself at home, with vague memories of what had just happened.   An incoming call timbres and Mohinder shifts back to his human form before answering. It is his editor and she reminds him to watch over her grand daughter, Alicia, who is working as his intern.    Mohinder worries at first that she is the dead body, but then learns she is alive and well and outside his apartment when she rings his doorbell.  He heads down to talk to her and discovers how meticulous and attentive to detail the woman is.  She asks if his guest is still in the room and Mohinder tries to have the discussion focus instead on the work. Turns out, he challenged her to figure out who she was.  "Street name: HoneyBell.  Real name: Hannah Bree.  She's a street walker."  As they both ride the car, Felicia continues to nag Mohinder about how he keeps testing her.  She does chide him for being nothing now but a mouth for the network.  They go to EDGE and Mohinder receives a call from Carrie Raine who tells him about the situation downtown.  She warns him that there are new orgone detecting machines out there they should stay away from.  Before they can have a longer conversation, however, his editor arrives forcing Mohinder to cut the call.  Donna, his secretary, keeps Felicia outside.  Amusingly, she is the only one who gets to boss Mohinder around (because he likes it).  The editor talks to him about news of a Migou in the city and how the NNC news outlet already has footage of the crash.  They talk about Ashcroft having an inside scoop on the events.  And how people in Ashcroft go crazy quite often.   They map out plans.

Raine argues with the Ashcroft people in the site who seem to be getting in her way.  Raine calculates the trajectory of the Migou's entry but the numbers don't seem to make sense.  She fails to realize that the public relations agent, Koryea, is watching her.  The woman scans Raine secretly, then gives an excuse to leave the scene.  A nazzadi appears and he identifies himself as an Ashcroft Clinic Doctor who addresses Raine and admits he is familiar with her papers and her interests.  He asks her to explain the fluctuating orgone levels in the area given they are usually caused by living Migou, sorcerers or technology..  He asks if she is a licensed sorceress and she responds by throwing the scan back to him and tells him it is broken, but he admits he would know if it was.  He directly confronts her and asks for her cooperation given the situation, he has the irrevocable right to study the orgone emissions and Raine herself seems to be the source.  She insists he needs clearance from her boss to get her cooperation and submit formal requests.  Raine makes a quick research peek on who the man is and learns he is Dr. Akida who has public records showing he is a brilliant Astroclinical psychologist and has made great motions into studying orgone related studies.  Raine wants to hack into his device to mess up the information he gathered of her, but she realizes she does not know how.  Suddenly, one of the men in power armor snatches Raine off her feet to avoid the crashing debris from the collapsed ceiling! The Migou is still alive!  As the Migou launches into the hair to fly away, Raine calls for someone to shoot it down.  The shots from the men in power armor punch into the Dragonfly, but it continues to rise higher and higher.  As the man in power armor fires a few shots, the Dragonfly retaliates with a cannon blats, and the attack launches Raine over the edge of the building.  Another blast and the Dragonfly drops.  Raine screams for someone to pull her up as the two sides begin opening fire at one another.  The Koryea reaches for her arm and Raine frustratedly has to accept her help.

Bates emerges, pointing a weapon at Terry to not move.  Terry slaps a tentacle at him to knock him out.  Shifting back, Terry fires some wild shots as well as Bates' own around the area to represent an all-out fight.  He throws around Bates' flash grenades as well and starts calling out to Bates and makes sure the others hear him talking about the "Monsters having left."   He hopes his police training is enough to fake the fight.  They are impressed that he has not a scratch given he was pulled through the elevator ceiling and he shares it was his lucky day.  They head off, boarding the van, and Terry finds himself wondering what that thing was.  There is an internal investigation later at the headquarters on what happened and Terry shares with Internal Affairs about the monster he confronted.  Terry inwardly worries that Bates might not give a story that matches his.  Terry is asked back inside, and he learns that the reason they are speaking to him is because they are considering him for a new position: They need his help given a "citizenship issue".  They reveal that he has been drafted to become an Engel Pilot.

Mohinder heads home, leaving Alicia at work and while he enjoys their continuing back and forth of insults, he knows he has to call Terry for help.  This leaves Alicia wondering why Mohinder would need to hire a hooker.  He tries to get a semblance of normality by doing the dishes.    He calls Terry for help and he suggests how to get rid of the body.  Mohinder moves the body to the kitchen and as he moves it he notices something fall from the corpse.  It is an Ashcroft foundation ID.  Suddenly he's worried she may not have been a hooker.  The door rings and Alicia is outside, insistent to meet with him and knows who the woman is.  "She wasn't a hooker!"  Terry gathers the ashes and places it in the kitchen and Mohinder tells her to wait outside.  Terry answers his phone which rings that moment from Raine's call.  He cuts the call.    Mohinder pulls Alicia from the door and heads straight to the car.  He tells her to remain quiet given the cameras present.

In the car, Mohinder admits it is not his camera he is worried about.  He starts the car and the two move from the house as Alicia confronts him about videotaping his trysts.  He calls them his conquests.  She tells him the visitor was an Ashcroft Foundation Scout who posed as a hooker hoping to find some good news feedback worth the ratings.

Terry breaks the gas pipes and throws a lighter to ignite the flames.

A muffled explosion.  Mohinder and Alicia hear the muffled explosion and they turn the corner to see his residence in flames.  Terry is flung to the ground from the explosion, which he knows he will easily recover from once in his Tager form.

Mohinder calls the Ashcroft media personality while Alicia calls emergency services.  He reminds her to focus on the story and stop panicking.  Terry's Tager form runs away, with Mohinder intentionally catching his escape on his dashcam and shunting it to the data feed.  Alicia screams upon seeing the Tager and Mohinder slaps her to focus.  Mohinder's call to Koryea connects and he tells her they are getting sloppy.  She claims to not know who is calling and Mohinder drops the real name of the Ashcroft scout.

The newsfeeds start coming in.  Raine watches as a massive monster runs from a burning building, though humanoid form, its unmistakable with its tentacles.  Raine starts thinking of finding a way to design a machine that would jam orgone signals.  Security arrives with NEG and the Ashcroft Foundation.  "That's her," they point at Raine and approach her with stun batons.  Raine runs for the nearest window and tumbles into the bushes.  The men try to rush after her.  She looks down and sees there is a dart on her thigh.  She pulls it out but its already empty.  Raine remembers two blocks away there is a red light district with an empty basement.  She has conducted there some secret experiments and testing in the past and knows they probably won't be able to find her there.  She avoids her pursuers and slips in to hide.

Mohinder accuses Ashcroft that their "hooker" had set his house on fire, unless it was that armored thing that ran out.  Ashcroft places them on hold.  As Alicia mutters in fear about what she thought she saw, Mohinder reminds her he pushed the video to her phone and that she should write the news article now.  As she writes it up, Mohinder sees a man knock on his window.  The man shows the image of the "hooker" and explains his concern of his encounter with her given she is currently known to be a "Dohanoid."  Mohinder reminds Alicia to tap into the security cameras in the area as a safety precaution with the man outside the car.  Alicia demands to have the bylines.  Mohinder takes Alicia's phone, steps out of the car, and confronts the man as he addresses the man.


The man admits the woman was under their investigation and they tell Mohinder that they would like their participation in learning more about the Dohanoids.  Mohinder tells them that he was "investigating" them for having possible agents in the sex slave industry.   Alicia happily films it all for release.  She steps out and joins Mohinder.

The man pulls away.  Alicia grins as the two head back into the car.


Back in Ashcroft, Koryea is talking with someone in the shadows.  They had decided to talk to Mohinder about the Dohanoids, but also have noticed that the video they had captured from the dashboard show a different entity altogether.  "We may have found one of the stragglers."

"And the two others?  There were three bodies not accounted for."

"If we find one, we will find the others.  That's how Tagers work.  They can't help but feel each other's presence. "

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