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The Scarecrow's Dance

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    (but, a "summer/creative break" is of course acceptable )


      The Scarecrow's Dance
      Part 2
      Week 5
      Day 1 (loooong)

      Good morning sunshine,
      The Earth says hello.
      It's an old song I found, basically it means, get up already. The cart is about to leave.
      What do you mean the cart is about to leave, we, are driving the cart.
      Why do have to argue with everything. I want to get there before sundown and the ride takes hours.
      You and Adanech start walking to the headquarters. I have to say, you tell her, It's much nicer in the city. I can't believe I actually lived here.
      Yeah, it doesn't seem like a big deal at first but getting out of basic training was a whole new world.
      You go in and get to the office where you will be given your assignment. Dave* is waiting for you. I didn't think you'll get here so soon he says. I thought you would want to get there after dark.
      You give Dan a look.
      Without looking back at you she says "We've learned that arriving during the day is safer. They don't have a regular army of any kind and they don't keep watch. The Organization have people around for Intel but they hardly know what they're doing. Whenever we get there at night we usually spot a surveillance team. Also, our own Security Crews tend to be more alert at night and they are definitely being watched and makes it harder for us to… "
      Okay, okay… I know I'm new to this department but you don't have to bombard me with information sergeant Ada.
      It's Adanech actually but everyone calls ma Dan…
      She stops when she catches the look on his face.
      Of course sir, sorry.
      He stared at her for a bit which was unsettling unless you were Dan but then continued.
      This is a simple one and you would already know what to do but given that this is your first assignment outside the city, he stopped again to stare at you this time, I feel that going over the security protocol wouldn't be a bad idea.

      You got out after an hour and caught a cable car to the lower ring. Dan then leads you through a door and further down into an underground train station.
      What's this place you ask? I've been outside plenty of times but I was never here.
      We keep the automatic carts here. So that we don't have to waste energy getting there.
      And why didn't you use it when you picked me up from there?
      We weren’t sure where you will be and these are easier to track, now could you please just get in. I have a book I want to finish and you can take guard duty – on that monitor there. She points to a computer at the front of the cart.
      And why…
      I woke up ages ago and need to rest, besides, I outrank you.
      You sit next to the monitor and start the ride. A few hours in and everything is fine.

      You are already at the in-between and the cart goes underground. Okay, Dan says I'll find a place to stop and you can get some rest.

      About a day goes by and everything is fine other than the fact there's nothing to do except watch the monitor and download the data from the sensors up above.
      Suddenly you hear a loud noise and get knocked over. Oh come on not again, you think to yourself. You find yourself unable to move. Like the cart caved in on you. Dan! Dan where are you?
      I'm here, you hear a faint voice. But I can't move.
      What was that?
      That, was us. You hear another voice. Loud and clear this time. We're going to let you out now and I need you to promise not to try anything stupid otherwise my friends here will have to shoot you. And it won't be with stunners this time either.
      The flames take you out of the strange coffin they fired at you and put handcuffs on you. You see about thirty of them standing around with guns. Dan is beside you
      The guy standing in front of you takes a good look and says, yeah it's him all right. You think it's the guy from that day at the office at Selunerini. Someone else fires a stunner at Dan and the other guy punches you in the stomach. Get them in the cart.

      After a few hours you find yourself on a moving cart with two guards and no Dan. You're still handcuffed but that doesn't mean you can't do anything… you pretend to still be asleep while the guards play on their tablets and seem pretty distracted. You take your time to relax and remember what you've learned about them. Those who work for the organization are divided to those who actually care about bringing the city system down to those who are there for the money. Those two don't seem to be bothered. But the guy who went after you, he's probably around. The handcuffs are some sort of tape and would probably come off with a bit of oiling, or sweat. Oh well, it's not like you wanted to see where they were taking you. I'll better take care of these two and then see how things go.
      You slither to the nearest one and jump, you then knee him in the face again and again. The other one comes along and you aim at him as well. The cart stops and the guy who captured you and the driver walk in but the handcuffs are off now…
      In the struggle you manage to get out. After running for a bit you realize that there is no other cart. You can't tell where Dan is. All you can do is follow the security protocol and find your way to a safe house, knowing that they're still after you and you're not sure where you are. Everything is dark but you have to keep going.

      *Dave was in the room with the mayor. He is on the Security Committee and commands your department - Intelligence Gathering and Analysis Unit 4-19.


        That's really nice of you to accept the request..
        and Thank You..

        This one is long.. but thanks again this way I am sure I'll be doing atleast one workout per day for sure..


          Part 2
          Week 1
          Day 2

          You found out where you are. A little old lady helped you hide but now you must run again. Adanech is close by but you told her, from the old woman's house over an old piece of machinery, to advance and that you will catch up with her. It's too dangerous to stay in one place for too long.
          The road is rough. Full of thorny bushes, rocks that are neither fixed enough to land on nor small enough to ignore. You run but the Flames have tracked you down and are chasing you. There should be a rescue force up ahead but for now you have to manage on your own.

          You catch up with the rescue unit and see they already have Adanech. They take care of your pursuers.


            Part 2
            Week 1
            Day 3

            Why didn't they get one of the automatic carts, you ask Dan. She looks at you with a skewed expression.

            There aren't that many automatic carts. And now there's one less… with too much information on it… and they have it. She looks depressed and scared which you didn't think was possible with Dan.
            There will be trouble she says.

            You stare at her for a while and she stares back. You want to tell her what the old woman who helped you said but at that moment you hear the rescue commander calling you.

            "We still have a way to go and we rode this thing all the way to get you two. . Given that you are in relatively good shape, we would appreciate it if you could help out". The commander sees the looks on your faces and the state you're in and adds: you could do it together so it's less of an effort.

            You stare at each other and then both of you take positions on different parts of the operating machine.


            You make it back and are immediately taken to the hospital wing of the intelligence gathering unit. There, you see not only doctors and nurses but the official internal security officers.

            Your guys know Slarick.

            Your guy allowed himself to get caught, and in a gathering vehicle nonetheless, Miro.

            That's not the point right now. Miro looked beside himself with anger. How did they even know where to look and when?

            John Slarick seemed to cower down a bit. I will find out Miro, don't worry…

            Not to worry… this was after our visit to Farm 4. Someone knows something that we don't know John, or worse. Someone knows something that I don't know but you do.

            Oh come on Miro. I want to bring The Organization down as much as you do, possibly even more.

            Then get to your boss and find out what's going on.

            Slarick made his way in the tube lift back to his office and tried to calm down before returning to his job, the job that was originally his primary function but since has become his mask. Wait a minute. What if. This was crazy but, what if… what if Miro was the leak, the double agent? I would have to be very careful, that is if I'm not already exposed, John Slarick thought to himself.


              Day 4: rest

              The interview with Internal Security was long and exhausting. Beside ask every possible question about a million times on who did you talk to before the mission, what happened when they caught you and every other aspect of your miserable adventure, they also scanned your chips. They are supposed to be disabled but to make sure they performed a little surgery to pull them out and get them back in again. You waited for Dan outside her hospital confinement room. They really took their time with her and when she came back out she looked like someone else and was escorted by two security officers. All four of you made your way back to the department. This isn't over yet.

              Dave stares at you when you walk into his office. He dismisses the security officers and offers you to sit on the big couch near the wall.
              "I watched the interrogations" he lets you know. "I didn't honestly think that a breach came from your side but you know, protocol. On the other hand, you failed to protect a highly valuable intelligence gathering vehicle from falling into enemy hands". He stares again. You turn your head to look at Dan and sees that she's staring at the rug on the floor. "We have therefore, he continues, decided to reassign both of you from combat gathering and give you new desk jobs. You will be given your new assignment tomorrow". You want to protest but Dave immediately goes on to say "we value your input and analysis skills greatly but it seems you are, at the moment at least, less suitable for more dangerous situations". You look at Dan again when Dave says "you may leave now". You want to say something but Dan races out of the room so you follow her.

              When you reach the outside court Dan finally stops and looks at you. This could have been worse she says.

              What? This is bad, Dan, really bad.

              Yes it is, but I thought we were going down as traitors for sure. We're lucky actually.

              Listen, you get closer to her and whisper, I need to tell you something but not here. Do you know a safe place?

              Maybe, but what for?

              I learned something at the In-Between. It could change everything.

              Dan starts saying something but you quickly walk away and trying to sound cheerful shout 'see you later".


                Day 5

                Don't let him relax. I want him shaken and uncertain.

                Of course sir.

                I still can't believe they both got away. I will have to do something about our helpers at the in-betweens or just have them all killed. Completely unreliable.

                We do train our soldiers well sir.

                Yes, but you would think that being vastly outnumbered would help. In any case, at least we have the cart. It's a shame he can't be out and about again but I suppose putting him where he at least can't do harm is 'something'.

                I tried to avoid it sir but we really can't send them out again after what happened.

                Very reasonable. Just make sure he doesn't know his left from his right by the time we'll try again, or you'll have to do it yourself.

                Of course sir, I will sir.

                After yesterday's commotion, today was spent in a tiny office by a desk where Dan or Slav were nowhere to be seen. This is starting to feel like my job at Selunerini, you think to yourself.
                You get to the department's gym but one of the rooks, on security duty stops you from entering. "Sorry sir, I have instructions not to let you in"

                What? Why?

                Don't know sir, I just have this on the computer not to let you in.

                You turn around and use one of the street's info ports to send a message to Dave asking if anything went wrong with the security revalidation. You wait there for about two minutes and then head back to your apartment. There's no point trying to ask any of your friends what's going on. Best keep calm right now.

                No matter, you think to yourself. You start an intense indoors yoga session instead



                  Day 6

                  As you walk to the office you try to think why on earth they wouldn't let you in the gym. There was no reply from Dave this morning and asking too many questions on the web now would not look good if they are still watching.

                  Two hours by the desk go by, just comparing maps to data gathered and then you send Slav and Dan a message. "Want to meet up for lunch?" That looks perfectly an everyday sort of message you think to yourself. And you really do just want to see them. After an hour Dan sends you a message back saying that she was called for a general training day for office workers… That's strange? All of them, just some departments, why is she allowed to train and you're not? Something isn't right.

                  You use the staff's cafeteria and try to make contact with the few people who are there. Nobody seems like they want to socialize. The rest of the day goes by and there's still no reply from Dave. As you walk back that afternoon you see Dave with some two other guys walking towards you.

                  Where have you been? You were summoned for the general training hours ago?

                  What? I didn't get any message?

                  No matter, just come in now and sign in, that's all they really care about.

                  You start following Dave, the two guys are walking behind you and he looks busy on his tablet. You get to the gym and everyone seem to be packing up bags of sparring equipment.
                  Looks like it's all over, you tell Dave. He looks around and says "not over yet, they are getting ready for the last event, sparring. Just get to that port at the far end and sign in, I'll fix the times later". And he walks away to talk to some other General. You get to the port and sign in. it says "09:00 AM, Sign In". That's strange. The next thing you know is that your name is being called to start the rounds with a bunch of other people. So you go to where the others have started walking to, 4 circular markings on the gym floor.

                  "Okay so you here, some old guy in a track suit tells you, will be sparing with Josh". You look around and see a fairly young looking and fit man about twice your size coming to meet you.

                  Hi, I'm Josh, I haven't noticed you here all day. I expect there are too many people

                  Oh, I've been here and there… wait, you work at a desk?

                  Well I do now. I got injured and my mom runs the resource department so she made sure I would be some place safe to recover… I hate every minute of it but at least I get to train a few hours a day. Still, I miss the raids.

                  You were in the raids squat?

                  Yep, and it looks like I would be back soon. I turned up here today for the fun.

                  The loudspeaker announces that anyone not in the first round of sparring has five minutes to get to the outside ring.

                  Well good luck, I'll see you in a bit. Josh waves you goodbye.

                  Great! You think to yourself. Someone must have planned this.

                  Okay so I have 5 minutes to warm up and then I have to face that raiding monster over there, known as Josh.
                  (Warm up everything)


                  If you completed 3 or less sets:
                  Okay says the old guy in the track suit. I think we should stop this here before you'll get hurt.
                  Hey man, I hope you're okay. Josh says – I sometimes forget myself.

                  If you completed 5 or less sets:
                  The spar is over. Josh looks at you somewhat impressed. Good spar man. Nice knowing ya.

                  If you completed 7 sets:
                  Josh looks like he had a tough warm up done and comes to talk to you after drinking some weird smelling shake that doesn't remind you of Just's tea at all.
                  That was a good round man. I didn't think I'll have to go so hard. Great knowing you. And he shakes your hand and walks away.

                  Something is definitely going on.
                  I need to find Dan…


                    Week 5
                    Day 7: Rest

                    You finally caught up with Slav. He found you and took you through a side door to one of the top gardens.

                    I'm going to get Adanech so just wait here. They probably got your chip to work so they can track you so if you get a message from anyone, answer it and say you are out with friends. If they'll think you're with us maybe they'll think twice.

                    Slav, what's going on?

                    I'll explain later. I need to go.

                    Why leave me here in this garden.

                    It's at a tracking devices cross-road so it'll give us time. Whatever you do, don't act suspicious. If anyone comes along just pretend to enjoy the night's air. If you are getting taken, play along and act dumb.

                    And he leaves. Play dumb. That wouldn't be so hard.


                      Week 6
                      Day 1

                      (If you did 3 sets or less of War song – )

                      As you sit in the dark and wonder yet again, how did you end up in this mess you hear two distant voices approaching:
                      According to his signal it's another 2 kilometers straight ahead.

                      What are we supposed to do with him when we'll find him?

                      Just restrain him and get him back to headquarters for Dave to question.

                      I knew they shouldn't have trusted an outsider…

                      You decide not try and listen to rest of the conversation. Good thing Slav's choice of location threw them off. You start skulking away, keeping low.


                      This place seems safe enough. You send Slav a message and wait for him to pick you up.


                      (If you did 5 sets or more of war song )

                      As you sit in the dark and wonder yet again, how did you end up in this mess you hear two distant voices approaching but you can't really make up what they're saying. You decide to move in closer to hear better:
                      According to his signal it's another 2 kilometers straight ahead but this place is known as a cross signals junction so keep your eyes open, he could be anywhere within those 2 kilometers.

                      What are we supposed to do with him when we'll find him?

                      Just restrain him and get him back to headquarters for Dave to question.

                      I knew they shouldn't have trusted an outsider.

                      I don't know he seemed to be doing okay and to honest, things have been off lately. But orders are orders, anyway they made clear they want him alive and well so put that gun back.

                      You text Slav from your hideout in the garden above them. Slav texts back that he is on his way. You keep low but the two guys are still searching around. You get another text from Slav saying he and Dan are at the lower level and can't get to you because there are too many eyes around. You'll have to come to them.

                      You start skulking away, keeping low.

                      (Do 1 set of: )

                      Did you hear that?

                      Yes he's over there…

                      They already saw you acting suspicious, there's no point in playing dumb now. Time to get all in:


                      Get in…

                      You see Slav in a strange looking vehicle and you jump in.

                      Time to hit the road. We're getting out of here.


                        Week 6
                        Day 2: rest

                        You travelled through the city and out through the secret tunnels where the automatic carts are kept. You kept going throughout the night. Now that the sun is coming up you ask where are you all heading to?
                        Further north is all Slav says. The air is getting colder and your surrounding greener.
                        You get out near a little stone house in the mountains. This looks like the mountains near Selunarini, you tell Dan and Slav.

                        Maybe but we're further away from Selunarini now.

                        Let's get inside and get settled.

                        After you all set up comfortable places to sleep in, Slav pulls out some rations and started a fire outside in the yard. You all gather around the fire and wait for the meal to get cooked.

                        Okay, it's time to catch up on information Slav says. I found out, when I got back from a mission that someone, I don't know who, wants to turn you into the hands of the "Organization". I guess they think it'll give them some rest from all the cross "in-between" raids we've been having lately. I just had to get you out and Dan as well since you worked together as a team. Your turn.

                        The woman who helped me at the "in-between" after our escape said that Dave was born there and left when he was fourteen. Only he wasn't called Dave back then. I think she said he's name was Toribus or Troy or something… I managed to forget. She said one day he disappeared but she recognized him in one of the raids the city was doing, a few years later. She was younger then and didn't want the raids to continue so she contacted one of the farms and got to be a source of intel and a safe house. In return they made sure she and her family always had enough food. Along the years she found out more and more and she is certain that Dave is that Troy or whatever guy.

                        Do you think it was Dave all along? Dan asked.

                        All I know is that someone from an "in-between" found his way to the top of Darndin-Quer's intelligence command. That looks weird.

                        Okay. Now that we may have a lead here. I'll contact Farm 2 with this information. They are the only ones we can trust right now.


                          Week 6
                          Day 3

                          You wake up before the other two and check the computer terminal for messages. Calev sent a file with coordinates and a date and no explanations. You wait for Slav and Dan to wake up and boil some water for coffee out at the fire pit.

                          Why didn’t you wake me straight away?

                          I thought you could use the rest. Besides, if those coordinates are where I think they are, we can't use that thing (you point out to the weird 4 wheeled vehicle parked outside) to get there. So we'll need all the rest we can get.

                          Oh just drink your coffee while we can enjoy a bit of rest Slav Dan says while making her way to the fire with her tin mug.

                          Fine, but next time just wake me up.

                          You go over the maps with your morning coffee.

                          There are two main routes we can take Slav says. One of them is shorter and relatively safer but, it's through the dense forest. It's not really a route but was made by animals so a lot of obstacles.
                          The second option is through a road that was used in old times and it's longer and easier but, others know about it

                          Option 1 (level 4 workout)


                          Option 2 (level 3 workout)
                 (Minimum of 5 sets)

                          You make it to the rendezvous but no one else is there yet. So now what?

                          I guess we set up camp and wait. If they're not here within half a day we should head out to another safe spot.


                            Week 6
                            Day 4

                            You just wait around for a while when suddenly you see Ket, Keturah running at you, shouting: Help they are fighting them, it's only me and Brigid and Beard, help them.

                            Okay, stay here and hide you tell her. And you rush with the others in the direction Ket came from.

                            After a short run you see Brigid and Beard engaged in a fight with 6 other people. You're not sure what's going on but you rush in to help


                            It was an easy enough fight. Two of whoever attacked ran away when they saw you and you were able to beat down and capture the other four.

                            Well this a welcoming fit for a city dweller. Beard beams at you and even Brigid seems happy to see you.

                            You go back to get Keturah while the others are starting to question the captives.


                              Week 6
                              Day 5: Rest

                              You learn that the villagers were tipped off as to your location and were told you would have tradable chips. Beard and Brigid take over the questioning and learn some details about the people who came to the village at the top of the mountain. You then release the captives back to their village since there's no more information you can get out of them. One of them, in thanks, tells you about a cave you can rest in.

                              Why didn't you bring your guns? Brigid asks as soon as you get into the cave.

                              We were on the run. Why didn't you?

                              We are Farmers we're not supposed to carry them outside the farm sweetheart.

                              But you're Protection Crew.

                              It doesn't matter, Beard intervenes. Anyway, we have information to swap don't we.

                              You tell them about Dave and they tell you about the hidden chips. "Keturah found out about them".

                              Yeah, apparently you were in a hospital back in Selunerini…

                              I know that.

                              Do you mind?

                              Sorry, go ahead.

                              That doctor is with the organization and she thought it would be a good idea to hide them on you, someone totally not important and use the accident as an excuse. I'm guessing she was getting desperate and needed to hide them. That's why they're after you.

                              Beard jumps in the conversation again. We thought it had something to do with your work and that threw our search off.

                              What's on them? You continue.

                              We don't know, Miro only found out a few days ago.

                              How did he find out?

                              Look sweetheart, we don't have all the details.

                              Beard got up at that point to calm you down. "But with what you told us about that Dave person, a clearer picture can be put together".

                              Miro just gave me a list of names he came across, Keturah continues, and me and Calev checked them. Her past wasn't put together properly so we relayed it back to Miro and he talked to her or arrested her or whatever and she told him about the chips, eventually.

                              How was it not found out in all the extensive medical testings I had?

                              Well they're not very active. They have all this information on them and other than that we think they signal out not very often but in regular intervals.

                              And another thing, that was Brigid. We're gonna need to get them out.


                                Week 6
                                Day 6

                                I am heading back with Ket. Beard will go with you. You will meet Miro at the hospital and if the information on your chips is good, we might be able to sort you all out. Get you back to Selunerini, Slav and Adanech back to Dardin- Quer. Get rid of the organization.

                                It's almost too good to be true.

                                You're not there yet, so don't get comfortable.

                                Keturah comes to wish you a good journey but Brigid is acting restless so your goodbyes are short.

                                Beard introduces two optional routes

                                The first one is above ground and goes through the mountains


                                Or the other route. Through the tunnels