4063/A Gem's First Job

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A Gem's First Job
Date of Scene: 01 May 2016
Location: Alberichstadt <P:WTWM>
Synopsis: Peridot needs some of this 'currency' stuff. Janine has some, and a school system she needs hacked. Funny how things work out, isn't it?
Cast of Characters: 836, Janine Liberi

Janine Liberi has posed:
    The night sky is wide here in Alberichstadt, the stars stark pinpricks in the endless void. For many, it's a wondrous sight to behold. For Peridot, it's probably a fearful one. Each light might actually be the Homeworld Gems hunting for her, after all.

    Thankfully, the town is a mix of old-world clutter and modern steel. Plenty of places to hide, she may note on her way to the meeting point. It's an old-fashioned square, like straight out of a storybook. An iron lamppost dominates the central garden, protected by matching wrought fences. Sitting on one of the benches surrounding it is a girl.

    She's quite bundled up, and it looks like she only has one arm, based on the empty sleeve on her fur-lined jacket. But up close, the lump around the stomach indicates that she just pulled it on over an injured arm. She seems especially pale, but her skin has pink splotches that indicate still-healing burns.

    The moment Peridot chooses to approach, her gaze snaps to her, saying nothing but staring intently.

Peridot (836) has posed:
Peridot may have exaggerated her capacity for blending in. But given her limited options, she was trying her best. She wore a large green cloak that wrapped around her body. Her visor, normally tinted translucent green was now an opaque black. She wore gloves and kept the collar of her cloak raised high so it obscured everything up to her nose. Only the top of her green cheeks were visible.

    Of course, she didn't approach Janine right away. First she scoped out escape vectors. Her diminutive size allowed for great options, but it meant she had to have clear paths to reach them. Once that was done, she then approached the girl.

    Even give her disguise she stuck out like a sore thumb was she left the shadow of her hiding spot. Her large diamond shaped hair was an unusual style by human standards. She walks up to Janine and then pulls the tip of her collar down some, her visor become translucent again.

    "Are you the one I was supposed to meet?" She ask plainly, looking her over warily. Her body half turned, seemingly ready to bolt at the first sign of trouble.

Janine Liberi has posed:
    Someone that short immediately draws eyes, if there was anyone around at this hour to be looking. Thankfully, there is not, so the green that is showing goes unnoticed by all except Janine, who looks close when she approaches. "Yeah, guess I am. Probably should have done a code phrase huh?" she says, her Italian accent marred by a slight raspiness indicative of throat damage.

    "All right spanarchist, walk with me," she says suddenly, standing up and moving to exit the square. "The place I need to get into is within walking distance. Probably wouldn't hurt to get a view of it yourself, yeah?" She doesn't wait for an answer, she just keeps walking.

Peridot (836) has posed:
Peridot walked along side of her cautiously. Underneath her cloak, her hand was resting on the remains of her old limb enhancer, now a modified pistol. Not that she was expecting trouble from Janine.

    "It's.. Peridot." She starts, walking in double time to keep up.

    "Can you brief me once more on the objective and desired outcome?" She ask looking around once more at her surroundings as they exited the square. Her other arm was tucked tightly against her body. Her cloak was a projection of her gem and it did it's job of keeping her warm, yet still Peridot could feel a chill running through her.

Janine Liberi has posed:
    "Peridot. Like the gem, huh? Not exactly an alien name. I was expecting Rhyxxt or something, but..." She's rambling a little as they stride alongside the cobblestone roads, heading slightly uphill.

    "Right, sure sure. It's kind of a long story, but I'll try and keep it brief." She takes a moment to spit on the ground like the no good kid she is before launching into it. "So. I was online, and kids from my school are talking about weird noises coming from it when it's late. Moans, smashing noises... now. It might just be shitty kids like me. But... I have cause to believe it might be something worse. So I need to check it out."

    They soon come to a stop outside a large section of fenced-off acres, a grand structure visible beyond. Multiple buildings arranged into a campus. "Drachenblatt Academy. I need to get in here when it's late. Preferably without leaving any traces. There are cameras, electronic locking systems... probably the best this world has to offer, but kiddy toys compared to what you likely have."

    She looks down at Peridot, an intense look in her eyes. "Can you do something for me?"

Peridot (836) has posed:
Peridot blinked some at the recognition of her name and she nods. "Yes, I am a gem. How unusually perceptive."

    At seeing her spit onto the ground, Peridot grimaces slightly, and squints. This girl was beginning to remind her of her primary human liaison, Toph. Though Peridot was beginning to suspect that all humans were like this.

    She looks back to Janine with a patient expression as she launches into her explanation. The creatures she was describing sounded very similar to another sort of monster she had a lot of experience working with.

    "A correct assumption." She starts, putting her hands into the pockets of her cloak. She always felt a little more confident when the subject of tech came into play. "I have yet to come across any human technology that sufficiently meets the standards put forth by gem tech. However the significantly different method of interface may cause complications, given enough time I can get by any system."

    At the intense look, Peridot looks uneasy. "Uh.. you mean.. besides hacking the system?"

Janine Liberi has posed:
    Janine is a cultured girl (not that she acts like one), of course she knows what a gem is. However, the insinuation that her insight is 'unusual' seems raise her heckles a little. Whatever bile that was to come with it though, she swallows it. At the very least, she knows to play nice with people whose help she needs. Now, anyway.

    Noticing how uncomfortable Peridot looks, she backs off a little, looking away. "I only need that from you," she says, coughing harshly into a fist. "Yeah, I guess that would be a pain in the ass, huh? Would having the names of the system and hardware help? I can probably look it up real quick." Well, at least she's not dumping EVERYTHING on the gem.

Peridot (836) has posed:
"It may actually. I have been steadily peicing together the somewhat linear progression of human tech as it varies from world to world. There are typically common themes that connect them all together so knowing the system will let me make an educated guess in some regards."

    "And most importantly I need to know what kind of ports are in play. Shouldn't be an issue as I have a chain of multi-tier adapters, or better yet-- just let me know if it supports wireless entry." She goes on rattling off some technical information. "If it's a least thousand years behind crystalline gel, my personal favorite when it comes to neural interfaces." She goes on somewhat amused.

    "And we haven't talked yet about pay." She steeples her fingers together. "What is... the usual amount for this sort of work?"

Janine Liberi has posed:
    Janine has a look on her face like she's tuning out everything Peridot is saying, but at least she has the good graces to nod along as the gem talks. "Wireless for sure. Look, I'm using it right now." And indeed, she produces a smartphone from her jacket pocket and starts using it to look up the school's systems.

    "The cameras are made by... Hawkeye Systems, the automatic door locks are by... Eisen Wand? If you can just crack those, that would be great, we can just turn the cameras and locks off. But what would be really great is getting into the system and like. Feeding the cameras a loop and erasing any logs that the doors were even opened. I don't know what system they use though. Maybe you can check right now. If not, I'll figure it out and let you know."

    And then, the matter of pay. Janine actually laughs, a series of slightly horse rasps. "Okay, Peridot? Some free advice. In situations like these, never admit you don't know what you're doing. That's just giving the other person free reign to screw you over. Luckily, you're talking to someone who has already gotten screwed by the Multiverse, so I'm feeling downright charitable."

    From that jacket, she extracts two bundles of Euros, bound with rubber bands. One of them she offers to the Gem right away. "1000 Euros here in total. 500 to hire your services and pay for anything you need to get in. The other half you get when you deliver. Sound fair to you?"

Peridot (836) has posed:
"To be honest.. the concept of payment is completely foreign to me." She admits as she rubs her chin. "In the past, I asked what for what I needed and my superiors either provided it to me, or denied my request. Then it would fall to me to either do without, or..." She looks down. "Take it from our enemies."

    As the money is produced Peridot looks it over. Her eyes go a bit starry for a moment as she clenches her fist. She had never been paid for services rendered before. She takes the euros and holds it up front of her. "Wow!"

    She then looks to Janine, still amazed but completely clueless about what was just handed to her. "Is this a lot??"

Janine Liberi has posed:
    "Shit, you come from a post-economic society? That's actually really cool. I can't really imagine a world without these slips of paper dictating what you can and can't do." While Peridot examines the bills with an excited expression, Janine is regarding them with slight distaste, her lips curling.

    The fact is, while 1000 Euros is a fair sum of money if you're just trying to get by, it's probably not the right amount to hire an experienced engineer for illicit activities. Sure, Peridot probably won't rat them out, but you always pay extra to be sure. Janine knows all this, Peridot doesn't. She could easily lie... but a part of her wants to be better than that.

    "It's... probably less than what you deserve. But I'm limited in the amount I can get without raising eyebrows. Kinda shitty for me to say this, but it sounds like you can't afford to turn me down anyway. Another thing you should keep a clamp on in future. But..." The Italian girl kneels down a little, her eyes having that intense glint to them again. "You do good, there might be more work for you in future. Work where I won't give a shit about the limits."

Peridot (836) has posed:
"I've survived this long in a world full of super beings, maniacs and despots and everything in between." Peridot says putting the bills into her cloak pocket. "I may be of little use in a physical altercation, but the quality of my work I specialize in is beyond reproach." She answers with a tone of arrogance that was seemingly inherent to her species. Even the nice ones.
    "As to methodology." She takes her arm-pistol from under her cloak and begins tapping a few buttons on the side. The barrel of the gun, switches form into something more akin to a screen. "Modifying this to access human tech wirelessly was the first thing I did after being stranded here."

Janine Liberi has posed:
    "Heh. I hear ya on the maniacs," Janine growls, looking off into the distance, towards one of the brighter towers on the Alberichstadt skyline. The arrogance she doesn't mind though. She can be pretty arrogant herself.

    When Peridot pulls out the gun, Janine's heart skips a beat. A part of her thought that Peridot would try and mug her for the other 500 here and now. But, evidentially not as the gun turns into a console. "Hah. That's what I like to hear."

    Peridot would immediately find access points in the form of nearby cameras (which they are out of range of, thankfully). From there, she can start leapfrogging into the school's security system. Much of her more advanced methods may prove to be needless. Once again, many of the passwords are things like 'password1' or '12345.' Humans are so lax about digital security.

Peridot (836) has posed:
"I was a little faster at this back when I had my limb enhancers." She says idily, bypassing security measures and giving herself admin status on the system to make some password checks not even spring up. She was taking care to minimize the invasive nature of her hacking so there would be little to no foot print, or evidence of her tampering. "Until they got destroyed."

    She taps the holoscreen a few more times. "And this thing used to be networked to an expansive database of knowledge accumulated by a star-spanning multi planetary empire. And I could bring up for reference anywhere anytime." She goes on wistfully.

    She begins poking around the interior security cameras, trying to get a peak at what exactly what going on inside the building. "But I've been making due in the meantime."

Janine Liberi has posed:
    "Very impressive," Janine says, that blank expression making a comeback. "So, this is the same empire that's gunning for you now?" Again, much more insightful than you would expect her to be. "Shit, what did you do to piss them off anyway?"

    The school appears to be totally empty, according to the cameras. It's a rather posh-looking place, with big classrooms packing digital whiteboards, a well-stocked library, packed trophy cases, art and busts lining the hallways... but no one that might be making those sounds.

Peridot (836) has posed:
"I kind of called my supreme leader a clod." She admits, studying the camera read outs carefully and continuing to tap at the screen and moving the displays around. Peridot grimaces lightly as she thinks and then begins to input more commands. Hacking the base system had been easy enough, but it wasn't quite the work of someone who was going out of their way to keep a secret. It seemed to be more like the work of automated drones. Beings who perhaps served a similar function as she once did. A mere cog in a machine.

    "That alone is a galactic level crime." She goes on as she starts inputting a search algorithm for things that might have better security. Files that stand out as being extra tough to crack.

    "But I also poofed my bodyguard. A Jasper. Though she was my escort, she technically out ranked me. She protected me, while also making sure I did my job."

Janine Liberi has posed:
    "A clod," Janine says, deadpan... before breaking out into that raspy laughter again. "A clod?! Damn girl, if you were going to get them that riled up at you over an insult, you couldn't have made it a stronger one?! Piss-for-brains or something?!"

    Her laughter eventually fades into a fit of giggles and snorts. "Oh damn, I haven't laughed like that in a while..." But, she remembers how she got in the hospital. "... sorry. I know how it feels, having assholes gunning for you over insults." Her good hand comes up to touch a patch of pink skin on her cheek self-consciously.

    As Peridot runs her search, she accidentally cracks the school's grade system, as well as stumbles across some locked incident reports concerning students from important families doing things they shouldn't have. But, nothing that would explain any strange noises, all things that might go over her head.

    "And so you had to deal with her because you weren't doing your job? Well shit, good job for taking out the asshole bigger than you." It sounds like she really means it.

Peridot (836) has posed:
Peridot's brows knit some. "I'll have you know, clod is a huge insult to gems." She says indignantly. Granted, Peridot actually did know about this particular cultural difference. Humans after all were born from other humans. "Gems are born in the ground, therefore clod carries a much stronger connotation to us."

    "Also it has such a great hit to it." She adds with a bit of a grin. "Clawd." She pronounces it slowly.

    If Peridot knew what school was she'd probably offer to change some grades around. But as it is, she has little understanding of them. She goes on, this time checking medical records for anything sounding like what Janine was describing.

    "I cheated a little. I evaporated her physical form with a gem destablizer when her attention wasn't on me. Though I regret it somewhat... my Jasper wasn't doing anything I wouldn't have done had I not befriended a human. I still hold out hope that I can change her, one day."

Janine Liberi has posed:
    Janine tilts her head as Peridot explains why she used that word specifically. "Ooohhh, like a clod of dirt... yeah, I can see why that might be real damning for you." She snickers as the Gem draws it out some. "I guess it does roll off the tongue better than 'piss-for-brains.'"

    Peeking around more, there's no evidence of some awful experiments being conducted at the academy. There are incidences of colds, flu, stomach aches, vomiting... also some records of injuries caused by physical bullying, and some simply using the nurse's office as an escape. Such are usually labelled as cases of 'homesickness,' or 'academic stress.'

    In addition, Janine herself has quite a file for herself here. It describes an incident where she was absent from school for almost an entire year due to an illness with a very long name, one that she is still apparently receiving treatment for. It also mentions that she has been out for several weeks recently due to being a victim of 'a potential act of terrorism,' which landed her in hospital.

    "Hah. Good luck with that," Janine says, her tone a mix of dismissive and genuine. "From my experience? People like that might seem like they changed... but the fact you got one over on them will gnaw at them forever, ultimately driving them to get back at you."

Peridot (836) has posed:
"I changed." Peridot says after a moment. "Exposure to beings outside of our kind seems to have a beneficial affect on our disposition. It's no wonder it's banned. If I hadn't have been in an emergency situation and stranded on earth, I never would have broken free of my indoctrination."

    "I hope I can do that for her so she can experience this too."

    Peridot grimaces again. "Well, the good news is that I'm in complete command of their entire system. The bad news is that I can find no digital evidence of the things you described. Though I am glad to see you appear to have made a fully recovery from our recent incident."

    "Do you have any more suggestions as to where system I might find something in?"

Janine Liberi has posed:
    "Ah, right. I guess your empire existed in a vacuum for so long, ideas stagnated. It became a total echo chamber." Again, a surprising flash of insight from the rude young woman. "Back on the radio, that cop - Mel - said you should read up on human philosophy. Not a bad idea really. Europe here was root to a thing called the Enlightenment. Sounds like it would be right up your alley. Lots of ideas there."

    When Peridot mentions Janine's recovery, the girl stammers. "Whoa, what? You're in their files? That's way above what I wanted! I just wanted the cameras and locks under control!" She seems... actually mad. At least until she takes a deep breath and sighs. "I mean... good for you for going above and beyond. But it's kind of rude to go prying like that, okay? That shit was... I don't like talking about it." She bites her lower lip and looks away to collect herself.

    "The thing I was talking about? It's... well, it might be magic stuff. Creatures seeping in from another dimension, shit like that. If I'm right, you won't find it in their files. They won't know about it." She takes out her phone and taps at it again, until she has an email address displayed on it. She shows the screen to the Gem. "You must have made an account to look at all this stuff, right? Could you send the login details to this address? I'll need it to do what I need to do."

    She manages a weak grin. "You did everything I need you to. Once I've got the details, the rest of the money is yours."

Peridot (836) has posed:
Peridot blinks some as she is chastised for prying into the medical files. Another strange aspect of humanity she didn't quite understand. Gems had very quick recovery times from injuries that didn't poof them. However she responds more to being accused of going above and beyond. "Oh... I appear to have misunderstood my mission parameters."

    Peridot looks at the address and taps the screen a few times forwarding all the pertinent information. "I took control of their system almost as immediately as I began. I am more accustomed to demanding task. So I mistakenly believed you also wanted me to find evidence of these creatures."

    "So long as you are careful, you should be able to maintain that account in secret as I have installed a few redundant security measures. Nothing short of simply removing the old hardware and replacing it with sterilized equipment will fully be able to keep you out."

Janine Liberi has posed:
    "Wow, really? Right away?" Janine is almost worried to ask what else Peridot dug up. But from the way she's been speaking, Janine honestly feels like deceit isn't in the Gem's nature. If she had found anything pertaining to her, she would have brought it up before.

    "Hah, sorry I had such boring work for you. But you did great, really." She confirms that the details have been sent, before extracting that second bundle of bills from her jacket. "If you need someone to vouch for you, gimmie a call," she adds. Hey, providing a good reference is the least she can do, right?

    "Anyway, thanks a lot Peridot. We're done here. I'm going home before I freeze my ass off." Unless the Gem has anything more to ask or say, Janine sets off for home.