Curse computer problems, but the show must go on!Twitter: https://twitter.com/BurningGrayArchive: http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/qstarchive.html?tags=XCOM%20Trooper%20QuestSquad Info: https://pastebin.com/4KJN5HKK---Alien Containment, XCOM HQ, North America“...And you just had that thing in digging around in your head multiple times without telling anyone!?”Central Officer Bradford is completely at his wits end as you finish explaining the mental episodes you’ve been having for the last few months since inducted into XCOM, finally culminating in that powerful dream you had finally beat the thing out of your head and locked the door on the way out. Most importantly detailing the prying nature of the mysterious Intruder, someone with much more powerful psionically than you. Everything’s still fresh in your mind, you can still feel that release when you had tapped into that rage that was always within you and then awakened into your true potential…The Gift.You shudder at the thought again, remembering the overwhelming power you felt. That moment of clarity when everything just made sense. Now that you aren’t feeling that power anymore the world has become noticeably duller, less vibrant. A part of you thinks that your anger and the gift are different but compliment one another... maybe. You’re not absolutely sure, it’s more of a hunch than anything else, you’d need more time to verify it, to grow accustomed to your new aptitude.Right now, dealing with your exhaustion and the understandably irate Bradford is a bit of a distraction to your thoughts. The other Command staff is present as well, mulling over this with mixed reactions. Shen and Vahlen quietly discussing the implications of the Gift and the Commander continues to silently mull over this information. Zhang looks tense. She gives you a reassuring smile to both you and your Gunner, seeming to understand you’ve both been placed in the hot seat.“The Intruder is not going to try and get in my head again any time soon. I barred it or anything else from entering my head.” You press to Bradford. “I made sure of it.”Bradford lets out a frustrated grunt. He doesn’t sound like he believes you one bit. The Commander seems to, and that’s enough for you.“I suppose then it’s a good thing only a handful of people in the entirety of XCOM knows where the base is located.” Shen says, in an effort to try and calm Bradford down.“That’s beside the point, Dozer has basically been compromised since we picked him up in Arizona. The aliens could have taken a peek at what we’ve been doing at any time… just watching us!” Bradford fumes.“It doesn’t care about that.” You say again shaking your head. “It was looking for something else, it’s always been looking and interested something else.”You.(Part 1 / 2)
“This… Gift as you called it.” Vahlen says, her eyes alight with curiosity. “It’s clearly psionics. You are capable of using it, do you all know what that means?”You… nod slowly, recalling the purple rift you had created and how you were glowing purple. You can use psionic powers, like the sectoids. How are you even supposed to react to that? But you know it’s true, after all you have the Gift.“It could change everything, just as much as Genetic Modification or the MEC program. Perhaps even more so. There is many many questions. Is Trooper Dozer the only one? Or is it innate within all humans? If so how do we unlock that potential to others? What’s the secret?” Vahlen is already speaking and thinking a mile a minute, turning to the Commander with conviction. “...Commander while we are making excellent progress on researching Gauss weaponry, I believe that we should switch to researching more about psionics instead.”Gauss weaponry? That sounds really nice, whatever that is. Soldiers always have their ear out for better stuff to improve fighting out in the field.“It depends on how viable it is… what do you think Dozer?” The Commander says, turning to face you.“...Me?” You blink, caught off guard once again in this long night.“Yes.” The Commander nods. “You are, by all accounts, likely the first human being gifted with psionic powers. That makes you the expert of the topic, even if you yourself still don’t fully understand it. Gauss technology is the next step after beam weapons for XCOM, and both Raymond and Moira agree Gauss is much more powerful. But, as Moria said, psionics could be a game changer. What are your thoughts?”“Why should he help decide something that important?” Bradford cocks his head.“He’s been nothing but helpful to my team. I’d listen to Dozer’s advice.” Shen says.“Mine as well.” Vahlen adds.Bradford facepalms, at a complete loss for words.The Commander’s warm and reassuring smile helps mitigate the sudden responsibility placed before you all of the sudden. If you weren’t already a pale you’d be now. Come to think of it however, it does make sense Command staff recommendations aside, who better to ask the topic than a soldier. You honestly have no idea how to deal with this constant rise of responsibility… and choices. You’re just a soldier trying to do his job. You’d almost not wish to ask for this, but learning about your aptitude to the Gift has definitely made it worth it. Mostly. The Command staff and Zhang watch you. Zhang in particular is looking at you closely with those steely grey eyes of his.>Research Psionics. You know how powerful it is, the aliens would be at humanity’s mercy. It’s worth the head start.>Keep researching Gauss Weapons. It will take time to understand the Gift, better guns is an immediate benefit.>You don’t know. You’d need more time to consider it or you’re just not qualified really.>Other
>>2616350>>Keep researching Gauss Weapons. It will take time to understand the Gift, better guns is an immediate benefit.>Meanwhile, Look for candidates who seemingly do impossible things from sheer dumb luck. I am almost entirely certain that what I did to the aliens during my first contact with them prior to recruitment and the Seeker is tied to my psionic potential.
>>2616350>>>Keep researching Gauss Weapons. It will take time to understand the Gift, better guns is an immediate benefit.
>>2616350>>Keep researching Gauss Weapons. It will take time to understand the Gift, better guns is an immediate benefit.It's usually the smaller inventions that win wars compared to super weapons
>>2616350>>Research Psionics. You know how powerful it is, the aliens would be at humanity’s mercy. It’s worth the head start.While I know Gauss is the safe bet you don't get access to Psionics this early and I'm curious to see where it goes.
Just to add again, I'll be taking things slow going forward this thread given the off time of running and everyone has a decent chance to vote!
>>2616365This. Going for the big enchilada during a war is usually a recipe for disaster. That being said we should definitely be keeping an eye out for potentials so that when the time comes, we have a stock of people already available.
>>2616350>>Keep researching Gauss Weapons. It will take time to understand the Gift, better guns is an immediate benefit.We're at best a lucky anomaly since it's just come out of the blue. At least there's some form of research on the Gauss Weaponry being done.
>>2616350>Keep researching Gauss Weapons. It will take time to understand the Gift, better guns is an immediate benefit.
>>2616350>>Keep researching Gauss Weapons. It will take time to understand the Gift, better guns is an immediate benefit.Psionics is a game changer, no doubt., especially when it's the ability that finally lets humans fight back on even footing vs alien psionics with human psionic defenses, offense, and utility. But in the end humanity is being killed right now world wide, and that war to fight an alien invasion needs the effort of many soldiers, not a few specialists. While the long term strategic benefit of Psionics are great, humanity needs to survive the short term in the first place to be able to have the spare time to research psionics. Besides, guns kill aliens just fine even without psionics.Still, with aliens being able to wipe out humanity if they wanted to, I can't help but think that having more gun will only force the alien to use more gun in turn in order to keep the pressure on, all to ensure humanity researches psionics anyways.
>>2616350>>OtherApparently we've had "good progress" with these gauss weapons, why not see see how the prototypes, if any, are looking before we make a hard decision?
>>2616345>>Keep researching Gauss Weapons. It will take time to understand the Gift, better guns is an immediate benefit.
Wait, didn't we tell the commander after the first ufo mission what we saw in the dream?so technically at that point she knew as much as the mc about what happened. oh and >Keep researching Gauss Weapons. It will take time to understand the Gift, better guns is an immediate benefit.gauss will be good for everyone, without meta-gaming we don't have a clue if psionics research will be helpfull
>>2616345>Keep researching Gauss Weapons. It will take time to understand the Gift, better guns is an immediate benefit.
>>2616350>>Keep researching Gauss Weapons. It will take time to understand the Gift, better guns is an immediate benefit.
>>2616350>>2616365Supporting>>2616841Yeah we did
>>2616350>>OtherGauss weapons first and ask if you can field test one as soon as a prototype is available.
We need to give Vahlen the idea of harvesting sectoids for Rift-in-a-can grenades
>>2616350>>Research Psionics. You know how powerful it is, the aliens would be at humanity’s mercy. It’s worth the head start.Pissing against the tide. Psionics are damn fantastic.
>>2616350>>2616365I'll support this.
Gauss first since we are already on that.Also, didnt we mention the weird dream or what not? Shouldnt we be bringing that up?
>>2616350>Keep researching Gauss Weapons. It will take time to understand the Gift, better guns is an immediate benefit."We don't yet know the potential of psionics, hell, we didn't know about human psionics till this morning.""Keep on with gauss weaponry, in the meantime I need to figure out how this "Gift" works."" I would also assume it's hard to research an entire new science with only one specimen, we gotta more people with potential like me before we can even start seriously experimenting.""We need to look for people with weird accidents and impossible feats, basically the bases urban legends."
Calling it here!
>>2617925>inb4 Dozer has to become a teacher and taken off most missions
Now that I think about it, was Project MKUltra the government's attempt at getting Psionics before the AYY invasion?
>>2618217>classes involve huffing thin man acid and sitting on hot stoves to unlock 'Fortress' psionic ability
>>2618235That or staring at Billy the Goat long enough and concentrating on making him fall asleep via psionics.
>>2618253That's a good way to get a psionic goat.What if Billy is going to become The Volunteer
i btw hope we're going to find out what happened with bradfords sweater, and how the mc ended up in the commanders bed
“If I had to choose between the two, I’d stick with Gauss weapons. That’s an immediate edge for our forces. While that’s going on, I can start looking for other potential candidates that are just as impossibly lucky as I’ve been. I’m pretty certain the episodes i’ve had Arizona and with those Seekers are were linked to my potential.” You say after a moment of consideration.“Fair enough. I was going to task you with investigating things further but you volunteered yourself. I appreciate the initiative.” The Commander muses.“Just doing my best to help the war effort, ma’am.” You answer back. “Speaking of which, is there any chance to field test any of the prototype gauss weapons?”“...I had guessed you were going to ask that.” Shen smirks. “I’m certainly open to letting you test some of the prototypes we have in a controlled environment but I don’t think I’d be comfortable with field testing the weapons until Dr. Vahlen’s team resolves a massive design flaw we’ve been trying to work around around.” Shen explains.Vahlen looks away at that.“...What’s that?” You ask, carefully.“Well, ahem, There’s a risk of a gauss weapon… detonating in the users hands.” Vahlen coughs, looking a bit embarrassed.“Oh.” Yeah, that’s a problem.“I assure you our team will solve that error before production.” Vahlen adds quickly.You nod at that as there’s a lull in the conversation for a moment as the Command staff discuss things quietly among themselves. Zhang remains at attention beside you and you can tell the man is coming to grips with the gravity of the situation as best as he can. And by that you have no idea how, he and Burnout share the same excellent poker faces. A thought comes to mind and you turn to the Commander, adjusting your slumped posture on the chair to something a bit less… pathetic. You’re about to ask the Commander something as the group finish discussing things and turn to the both of you.“What happened tonight will be kept on a need to know basis. As you had suggested, whenever you are free to do so finding out of if there are potential psionic candidates in XCOM will help our efforts until Dr. Vahlen can devote her team to further research. If you can’t, at the very least taking time to explore your new abilities is better than nothing.” The Commander says. “You’re also free to visit Engineering to assist with weapons testing.” Shen adds.“Sounds good.” You say.With that sorted most of the Command staff turn to leave. Bradford in particular frowning at the whole conversation and for once it clearly looks like the guy wants a drink. The Commander remains.(Part 1 / 2)
“Zhang, I’d like to have a word with Dozer here for a moment before you take him back.” The Commander says.Zhang salutes and steps away. As he does so the Commander takes up another chair nearby, places it in front of you and sits down. She places her hands on her lap as she regards you. The revolver holstered on her hip begins to point at you. It's not intentional of course but you do feel a bit uneasy with the barrel of the gun aimed at you, holstered or not.It's just like the Commander really, kind and welcoming but if you piss her off...“Is there anything you want to ask or add in particular, Dozer? Just between us.” She asks you, snapping you out of your head.“Ma’am… I...” You say, at a loss for words until you “Do you remember I brought the intruder up before in the beginning?”“Yes. Admittedly I didn’t put much merit to it at first, sectoids have that tendency to do that on people. For all we knew, a sectoid had just mind frayed you in Arizona and you… well, had an interesting reaction to that. Everything does make a lot of sense now of course.” “Right…”“I’ll admit, it’s nice to know my hunch on you was correct.” The Commander says with a small smile.“Hunch?”“That you had quite the potential. It was an extremely rocky start for you, but it seems I was right in more ways than one.” She smooths her skirt.The Commander waits to see if there’s anything else you wish to ask or add. Do you have anything else that comes to mind?>Is there any way to have Sweet contact his family? If anyone in XCOM deserves to have contact with the outside world, it’s him.>Why did she let you out of alien containment so easily? There had to have been more than just a hunch from her.>...Attempt to traverse the deadly minefield that is finding out how you got in the Commander’s bed. God help you.>Other.
>>2618401>...Attempt to traverse the deadly minefield that is finding out how you got in the Commander’s bed. God help you.
>>2618401>>Is there any way to have Sweet contact his family? If anyone in XCOM deserves to have contact with the outside world, it’s him.It's what we should at least try to do for our teammate.As for the minefield; ha ha ha, NO!
>>2618401>>Why did she let you out of alien containment so easily? There had to have been more than just a hunch from her.then>Is there any way to have Sweet contact his family? If anyone in XCOM deserves to have contact with the outside world, it’s him.
>>2618385>Is there any way to have Sweet contact his family? If anyone in XCOM deserves to have contact with the outside world, it’s him.
>>2618401>...Attempt to traverse the deadly minefield that is finding out how you got in the Commander’s bed. God help you.#yolo
>>2618401>Is there any way to have Sweet contact his family? If anyone in XCOM deserves to have contact with the outside world, it’s him.>Why did she let you out of alien containment so easily? There had to have been more than just a hunch from her.Just wait until we can read minds to find out about the bed anons.
>>2618401>>Is there any way to have Sweet contact his family? If anyone in XCOM deserves to have contact with the outside world, it’s him.>...Attempt to traverse the deadly minefield that is finding out how you got in the Commander’s bed. God help you.
>>2618401>Is there any way to have Sweet contact his family? If anyone in XCOM deserves to have contact with the outside world, it’s him.
>>2618401>>Is there any way to have Sweet contact his family? If anyone in XCOM deserves to have contact with the outside world, it’s him.
>>2618401>Is there any way to have Sweet contact his family? If anyone in XCOM deserves to have contact with the outside world, it’s him.>...Attempt to traverse the deadly minefield that is finding out how you got in the Commander’s bed. God help you.
>>2618401>Other."How do you think we are doing? Humanity and XCOM I mean."
>>2618401>>Is there any way to have Sweet contact his family? If anyone in XCOM deserves to have contact with the outside world, it’s him.>Why did she let you out of alien containment so easily? There had to have been more than just a hunch from her.
>>2618401>>Why did she let you out of alien containment so easily? There had to have been more than just a hunch from her.I think because Shen is almost finished making the shock/explosive collar for us.
>>2618401>Is there any way to have Sweet contact his family? If anyone in XCOM deserves to have contact with the outside world, it’s him.>>...Attempt to traverse the deadly minefield that is finding out how you got in the Commander’s bed. God help you.WE ARE GOING TO FIND OUT HOW WE GOT IN THAT DAMN BED SO HELP US!
Calling it here, writing!
Your mind is a bit of a jumble as you look at The Commander and try and formulate a response. It’s not that you can’t say anything, it’s that you can’t actually decide what to say to her. Three questions bounce around in your head, but what’s more important? You begin to weigh the pros and cons hastily in your head, looking down at the ground. It’s then that you are interrupted by The Commander leaning forward and…You feel two fingers touch your chin as The Commander grabs it and tilts your head upwards. Her soft and delicate and you can feel a feminine warmth to her touch. However, her grip is strong and tight and she raises your head up with a very steady hand. It’s a soldier’s hand through and through. You’re head is raised and you look at The Commander eye to eye once again.“Are you alright, dear?” The Commander asks you with concern, letting go of your chin and leaning back. “It’s alright. You can tell me.”“...I can’t decide what to say.” You admit. “I don’t want to overstep my boundaries here but, I’d like to know if you could let Sweet speak with his family, as well if you could tell me why you let me out of containment and… well…”You trail off the words skidding to a halt at the tip of your tongue. The Commander, as perceptive as ever says the last part for you.“It’s about waking up in my bed, isn’t it?” The Commander says.You freeze. Oh fuck. Oh shit. Oh god--“I’ll take that as a yes.” The Commander chuckles softly, thinking for a moment. “How about this, Dozer. I’ll give you two points!”“Um.” You blink as she holds up two fingers.“Mhm, two whole points. I’ll give you why I let you out for free. That’s one point. The other point would be deciding between Sweet and your curiosity. If you choose Sweet, I’ll let him have his call with his family and I’ll bat away Bradford, no strings attached. Or, I can tell you about the first part that happened during that night that led you to my bed.”Wait, first part...? The Commander emphasizes that. H-huh. It seems The Commander is tossing you two bones here and had read you like a book. The question is which one do you grab for. She sits back, smiling softly at you, waiting patiently.>Get Sweet his call.>Find out about the first part of that night.(Pick 1!)
>>2620271>>Get Sweet his call.
>>2620271>Get Sweet his call.
>>2620271>>Get Sweet his call.Nope, I don't even want to know.
>>2620271>>Get Sweet his call.The other choice would be quite dickish on our part.
>>2620271>Get Sweet his call
>>2620271>Get Sweet his call.You drive a hard bargain Pixel. Next time you give us this type of choice I will start throwing people under the train.
>>2620271>Get Sweet his call'i will find out what happened, i don't know how yet, but i will find out what drunk me did'
>>2620271>Get Sweet his call.Our men have priority.
>>2620462I will laugh my ass off, if at the end we mind probing ourselves just to see what drunk us did that night and it ended up being a simple situation that drunk us ended up in with no strings attached.
>>2620475maybe we helped we helped bradfords sweater to go missing; en we hid from him afterwards, and the commander took pity on our drunk ass
>>2620482>bradfords sweater to go missingOh fuck, that's not even something the aliens are willing to do.Mission to rescue Bradford's Sweater when?
>>2620271>Get Sweet his callTo do otherwise would be dickish, especially for his commanding officer.
>>2620271>Get Sweet his call.Not even a contest.
>>2620482Maybe we were wearing Bradford's sweater and the Commander intervened before Bradford could see and go postal.
Well this vote is unanimous, calling it here!
>>2620618 yeah i like that idea, however doesn't really explain she just wouldn't tell us
>>2620698The Commander is a tease, that's why. Nothing else explains her leading us on to walk through the barracks with her.
>>2620271>>Get Sweet his call.Fixing potential problems>>>curiosityAlso we probably just passed out and commander brought us in, chance of anything else is minimal
>>2620971>9 months later
I have a strong feeling that the commander herself has the Gift
>>2621785It is strongly hinted through out the games that the commander is either a descendant of an Ethereal or Had one boost them.
>>2621812>descendant of an EtherealGod I hope that. That would be awful
>>2621785She certainly has a pair of gifts.
>>2622068Upper and lower gifts.
>>2622317I want to hold her hand.
>>2622317Why is the Commander so perfect?On an unrelated topic, who else do you think has psionic potential? My vote goes to Burnout.
“Get Sweet his phone call.” You answer without any hesitation. “He kept repeating his family’s names under his breath the entire trip back to base. He’ll need it when he’s awake.”“He certainly cares.” The Commander agrees. “He’ll get that call then. There might be some particulars with the call itself with Bradford, but he’ll get it either way.”You let out a relieved sigh. He’ll definitely be happy about that when he comes around from surgery. You can’t help but be a bit disappointed that that night eludes you, but perhaps that’s for the best that you don’t know how you got in that bed. The Commander is happy with your decision, it seems she preferred your decision.“Now to hold onto my end of the bargain. While admittedly I did have a good hunch about letting you out there was a bit more to it. And that’s entirely been based on your performance and attitude.” The Commander says.You pay attention as you find yourself having a distinct feeling of deja vu as The Commander continues, your thoughts going back to the reprimands and review of your leadership during the Las Vegas mission. This time around however, things are more subdued and you don’t feel the pressure on your back. "I pay attention to my soldiers, especially my squad leaders. Ever since Vegas and our talk you've done everything I asked and more. Rallying multiple squads in Gangplank, helping Shen and Vahlen with their work and improving yourself along the way. Your last mission? You brought back all of your squad, the primary and secondary objectives. I couldn't reasonably ask for more. You've done very well Dozer and I've noticed." Her eyes meet yours directly and in that split second you feel both the weight of her praise and know how much it means that she said those words at all. The Commander merely chuckles again…You are silent for a moment.“..Erm, t-thank you ma’am.” You mumble, waiting for the other shoe to drop. It doesn’t. It seems this is the truth. Wow.“You’re welcome. Keep doing what you’re doing and… well. I’ll be happy.” The Commander smiles at you again. Oddly, you feel like there’s a bit more to that particular smile, but you just can’t place it. You’ll just take it as a good thing. “I won’t keep you awake any longer. You have a good night’s rest, hopefully without any tossing and turning.”The Commander stands up and you give a limp salute to her. She nods back and then motions for Zhang. As she turns to leave she pauses.“It must be nice having The Gift, I’m rather envious in fact. But who knows, maybe I have it also?” The Commander muses to herself before chuckling again and taking her leave. What an utterly terrifying thought… for the aliens. (Part 1 / 2)
Thankfully, the rest of the evening and the next few days were indeed intruder free and just the break you had needed to recuperate from your fatigue. Strike-1’s not going to be on deck for missions some time with other teams slotting in your place. This gives you and the rest of the squad time to get back into the swing of things or simply just unwind. There’s the obvious practice and training you’ve been putting yourself and the squad through, but there are other things tugging at your interest.Peppermint and Sweet are decidedly not going to be in the next mission or two given their injuries and Sweet still remains unconscious, but he’ll have something nice to wake up to. Peppermint however is awake and particularly annoyed that she’s stuck in medbay for the forseeable future. And by annoyed, she’s been rather hostile to the medical staff the longer she stays in medical. She’ll live and will ultimately get better, but she might appreciate some company or to get her to apologize. The medical staff would appreciate it.Naru continues to make her presence scarce. Not as bad as Rook whose is still being dealt with a shrink, but it’s getting to the point that Burnout’s been looking for her. Perhaps getting to the bottom of it should be something to address, you don’t want another drunken goat situation. Billy may be protected by a bunch of very territorial troopers but that was still too close for comfort. You feel like Naru’s been up to something, but the question is what…?Finally, there’s the psionic question. You had volunteered yourself to investigate other possibly potential psions or at the very least to improve your own capabilities. You’re treading on completely new waters all by yourself, and you can’t help but admit that it’s really exciting. You are in perhaps a new frontier for humanity and learning more about psionics can only be beneficial to everyone. Life continues to be busy for an XCOM trooper, it seems.>Check on Peppermint. See how she’s been holding up since the mission.>Find out where Naru’s been. You have a bad feeling about her absence.>Focus on Psionics. The Gift calls out to you.>Other
>>2622477>>Find out where Naru’s been. You have a bad feeling about her absence.
>>2622477>Find out where Naru’s been. You have a bad feeling about her absence.
>>2622477>Focus on Psionics. The Gift calls out to you.
>>2622477>Find out where Naru’s been. You have a bad feeling about her absence.The Gift isn't going anywhere, and neither is Peppermint.
>>2622477>>Find out where Naru’s been. You have a bad feeling about her absence.As much as I want to focus on Psionics as the only Psi-soldier, I fear what Naru may be cooking up.
>>2622477>>Check on Peppermint. See how she’s been holding up since the mission.
>>2622461Rachel and Babbler.
>>2622477>Naru>>2622716Can MEC's become psi troopers?
>>2622477>Find out where Naru’s been. You have a bad feeling about her absence.>>2622720If we go by the games then no.
>>2622720IMO, I'd think the MELD treatment that turns people into MECs would hamper Psionic potential/power considering that Melding with Machinery would presumably alter the brain to be more logical. Compare that to Dozer's rage, and I think it's a balance between logic and emotion.It would be cool to see if a MEC could become a Psi Trooper. Just imagine the HUGE shoulder mounted Psi-Amp Cannon!
>>2622477>>Find out where Naru’s been. You have a bad feeling about her absence. And see if you can put a good word in as Squad leader to whovere is assessing her.
>>2621812How dat? Because of commander's talent at commanding?
>>2623031That and at the end of The Bureau the Etherial that the player was really using to control the Main character mentions something about it sticking around until it's needed again, implying that the commander from EU/W is another host for that same Ethereal.
>>2621785Would be suprised if she had the in-game powers but her being a empath or weak psychic is likely.
>>2623033And then there was the ethereal who was helping out at the end of xcom2.
Much to your concern, you still haven’t seen much of Naru lately. And after once again seeing zero sight of her during lunch in the cafeteria you decide it’s time to do something about it. Talking to Loki, her roommate, confirms that she does see Naru but it's only when slips back in late in the evening to crash in her bunk before disappearing in the morning. She hasn't gotten much from her. There’s a nagging feeling tugging in the back of your head that she’s up to or caught up in… something. You know she’s been visiting Dr. Vahlen on occasion from Harita so that raises questions, but you don’t have anything concrete just yet. As you finish your admittedly pretty satisfying lunch (XCOM hasn’t skimped on keeping their staff well fed) it’s time to get to to the bottom of this. You don’t have to look hard for help as you aren’t the only one who has been wondering of the whereabouts of the Rocketeer. As you set your food tray away you make your way over to Burnout who is caught in a one-sided conversation with one of the female scientists. The woman is all bashful and blushing, playing with her ponytail as she very clearly swoons over Burnout. As you approach, Burnout makes an excuse and makes his way over to you, much to the dismay of the scientist who reluctantly takes her leave.“Hope I’m not interrupting anything.” You smirk before shuddering when you remember the wrath of the nurse you had to deal with after walking in on her and Burnout...“No.” Burnout answers. “You really need to turn that French charm of yours down a few notches before it bites you in the ass, y’know.” You shake your head, regarding the disappointed looking scientist. “I was hoping she would have some information for me. She did, but I was having difficulty ending the conversation gently until you had intervened.” “No problem. You were looking for info on Naru, right?” “...Yes.” Burnout nods, looking a bit bemused at the prospect even despite. “Someone must make sure she isn’t causing too much trouble.”“I agree. I’ll help you out.” Burnout nods again, and motions for you to follow him. You do so. The both of you take your leave from the cafeteria. As soon as you are both in the hallway, Burnout is already lighting up another cigarette for himself. The scout is understanding enough to not smoke in the middle of the cafeteria out of courtesy for the others, but in the hallway it’s free game to him. He offers you a smoke along the way which you decline. Where the hell does he get an endless supply of the stuff anyways...?(Part 1 / 2)
“I believe she’s been spending time in the Research Labs, for what I have yet to determine. She had said before repeatedly that she was never fond of the place due to various reasons, some involving Dr. Vahlen, and usually preferred the Engineering department instead.” Burnout offers you a smoke which you decline. “She doesn’t stay long however, and when did visit it would be in odd hours. However after speaking with that researchers, she believes she’s seen her head towards some of the still unbuilt caverns slotted for future facilities.”“Huh, any idea what she’d be doing there?” You frown.“No.” Burnout shakes his head, also frowning. “Let’s find out then. Hopefully we’ll catch her there or along the way.” You say.Burnout is in agreement with that as the both of you continue towards your destination. The both of you walk in silence through the hallways of the Anthill. The number of other XCOM staff going about their business steadily becoming less frequent. You have an opportunity to chat with Burnout a bit.>Ask for any more info on Naru. You really don’t know as much as you’d like of the Rocketeer.>Determine how Burnout and Naru had developed such an interesting… relationship. The snippets of what you’ve caught of the pair are curious.>Check on how Burnout’s been holding up. You still want to find out about that look you saw he had during Gangplank.>Other.
>>2623733>>Determine how Burnout and Naru had developed such an interesting… relationship. The snippets of what you’ve caught of the pair are curious.
>>2623733>>Check on how Burnout’s been holding up. You still want to find out about that look you saw he had during Gangplank.
>>2623733>Check on how Burnout’s been holding up. You still want to find out about that look you saw he had during Gangplank.
>>2622476>“You’re welcome. Keep doing what you’re doing and… well. I’ll be happy.”Commander route unlocked?
>>2623733>Check on how Burnout’s been holding up. You still want to find out about that look you saw he had during Gangplank.And then>Determine how Burnout and Naru had developed such an interesting… relationship. The snippets of what you’ve caught of the pair are curious.I wonder how many times he's still going to offer us a smoke. Maybe that's a sign of how worried he is.
>>2623733>How's Pip been holding up
>>2623765I think the commander route was unlocked when we got in her bed and she didn't kill us. Now it's just there to see if we want it.
>>2623845It's real close between Mommander and Rachel for me.
>>2623849I'm on the Mommander route. This psychic stuff is another great in.
>>2623845>Implying the Mommander route does not have a bad end.
>>2623889It's Commander or Peppermint for me. I guess I really like pale blondes.
>>2623849Those two and Peppermint for me, but right now I am really feeling Commander.
>>2623733>>Other.>>Smack your XO (Loki) on the head for not keeping a better eye on Naru.
>>2623903>Implying implications. >>2623904I like the pale blondness but part of me is just curious about the great commandy one.
>>2623733>>Check on how Burnout’s been holding up. You still want to find out about that look you saw he had during Gangplank.Peppermint is my favorite. But the Commander and Rachel are pretty great too
>nobody liking Loki or NaruSad
>>2623978I prefer Rachel to all comers.
peppermint best girl
>>2623983Go drunk arty you're home
>>2623989>not wanting to break down her emotional walls>not aiding in her quest for perfection in herself>not valuing someone who can stand by themselves and also work as part of a unitno anon, it is you who is drunkcommander close second
>>2623978I liked Loki at the start cause I like those sultry, slightly flirty women and the red hair/green eyes helped too. But then she transformed into Miss (I literally can't speak without being coy or vague) Enigma and the attraction went away.
>>2624001>not aiding in her quest for perfection in herself>implying perfection is anything more than an abstract idealShe would be a pretty great cuddlebuddy tho
>>2623733>Determine how Burnout and Naru had developed such an interesting… relationship. The snippets of what you’ve caught of the pair are curious.
>>2623733>Ask for any more info on Naru. You really don’t know as much as you’d like of the Rocketeer.Rachel is best and this is a fact.
>>2623733>>Ask for any more info on Naru. You really don’t know as much as you’d like of the Rocketeer.>>interesting… relationship.Huh.. this has gone over my head
>>2624002>sultryEvery woman in Strike-1 'xept Harita seems more sultry to me. Heck, even Loco.
>>2624869Then you have a real broad definition of sultry.
So we know what happens when we RAGE, but I’m wondering what some sort of profound sadness, a deep...sorrow could do...
>>2624880https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pRvmh7Mqb2kAny excuse to post this video is one I'll take gladly.
>>2624880A even deeper rage ofc.
As you stroll through the hallways, you decide now is the time to get to bottom of things with Burnout. This moment is as good of an opportunity as any to speak and get to know your squad’s Scout better.“So, how have you been holding up?” You ask.“Better than the others. It’s a shame that Peppermint and Burnout are in the infirmary.” Burnout answers with a bit of dissatisfaction.“While I agree, but that’s not what I meant. I want to know what’s going on in your head. You and some of the others in the squad are tough to read, and honestly I’d rather just ask instead of trying to figure it out and just get a headache.”“I am calm, collected, and ready for anything.” Burnout stops walking, taking the opportunity to toss a spent cigarette in an ashtray. The man’s already lighting up another cigarette, smoothly palming out his lighter from his pocket.“Well, I know you are but what I mean is--.”“You don’t understand. I am ready for anything.” Burnout says turning to look at you in the eyes. It’s then you see that same flash in his eyes that you saw in Gangplank, when things got really bad. That same look of.. calmness and serenity. He doesn’t fear death at all. Does he want to die? Alarm bells ring in your head again.“Burnout…”“Please understand it’s not what you think. Far from it. I want to stress that I am not actively seeking to kill myself unnecessarily. However, if you ever needed to choose between myself or anyone else, pick me without a moment’s hesitation. I have come to terms with my mortality for some time now.” You can’t believe what you’re hearing from Burnout. Is this just a… Scout thing? No, you don’t think so, sure some of the Scouts in the roster seem to be adrenaline junkies and all of them will run that overwatch at a drop of a hat, but this situation with Burnout is different. There has to be more going on to explain this mindset. He takes note of your reaction to this, removing the cigarette from his lips to tap way excess ash.“...You share the same dissatisfaction like Naru has.” Burnout frowns.“Well for a damn good reason!” You snap back. You feel your frustration bubble up towards the surface but you’re quick to stamp that out, the last thing you need is to get mad at your own teammates even if it’s justifiably so.“The odds continue to be stacked against us. That is fact. I will simply take the fall if it means everyone else can survive. That’s all. I know you of all people would understand.” “That’s-- you’re not dying on my watch.” You find difficulty coming up with a good answer back. Burnout smirks, appreciative of the concern but standing rather firm on the topic. There’s definitely more to it.“Just like Naru.” Burnout notes to himself.You groan.(Part 1 / 2)
“Speaking of Naru, since we’re looking for her and all I’ve been curious. How’d you two get so ‘chummy’ with each other?” You say, deciding to just change the subject.Chummy is not the best word you’d use to describe the pair’s relationship off the top of your head but it works well enough. Naru has always been rather irritable over Burnout’s smoking and other little things like that. Rachel has even joked that if you were to look at the two a certain way… there might even be something more.“Someone has to keep an eye on her before she gets into too much trouble and in return she attempts to keep me from doing anything ‘suicidal’, which as I said before I am not actively trying to do.” Burnout shrugs. “Right…” Suspicious.The conversation dies off again as you both continue walking. You’re getting close to the end of the constructed part of the base when Burnout chimes in agin.“Marc.” “Mark? Mark what?”“My name is Marc Nicollier, M-A-R-C. Though I am still fine with being called Burnout.” Burnout says casually.You stop and do a double take. Did you just hear that right. Burnout gives you that same laid back look of his as he smokes away. He just told you his actual name. In any other situation that wouldn’t mean much at all, but in XCOM it’s a fairly big deal. The turnover rate for soldiers is high, and some prefer to keep their identities private to not get too attached to one another. Burnout doesn’t stop walking to add more to it. What changed?>Thank him. It’s a legitimate sign of trust.>Remind him that’s not going to stop you from making sure he doesn’t decide to willingly jump onto a plasma grenade. It’s not happening on your watch.>Comment that he seemed like a Pierre to you. Though you admit that Marc fits him.>Other.
>>2626639>>Thank him. It’s a legitimate sign of trust.
>>2626639>Thank him. It’s a legitimate sign of trust.
>>2626639>>Thank him. It’s a legitimate sign of trust.No need to be a stereotypical American.
>>2626635>“Better than the others. It’s a shame that Peppermint and Burnout are in the infirmary.” Burnout answers with a bit of dissatisfaction.Hmm
>>2626639>>Thank him. It’s a legitimate sign of trust.>>Comment that he seemed like a Pierre to you. Though you admit that Marc fits him.
>>2626639>Thank him. It’s a legitimate sign of trust.>Tell him our real name as well (what was it? Anon Anonsson?)
>>2626639>>Other (Thank him, but also option B).
“Thanks for telling me.” You say. You did something right with Burnout and you’re not going to try and ruin that with any impulsive American comments. Burnout just nods. You’ll take it. There’s no need for anything more elaborate than that.You and Burnout enter the recently excavated cavern proper. The construction teams assigned to building facilities in XCOM’s base work really god damn fast, clearing out the majority of a chunk of the rock for setting up whatever high tech facility XCOM will need in the future. They’re proactive too, as there’s already floodlights and other equipment still in the room for immediate construction when the room’s been chosen for new facility. You look about and don’t see any sign of Naru besides the floodlights being on, which isn’t too suspicions and could just mean some engineers were here earlier.“...Are you sure that scientist said that Naru would be here?” You ask, your voice echoing in the chamber.“She was very sure.” Burnout says, flicking a spent cigarette into the cavern in nowhere in particular as he reaches for a pair of spare hardhats.You take one of the hardhats, setting your own ballcap on a nearby table. It would be really disappointing to die by rocks falling on your head. Burnout opts to check one part of the room while you examine another. The bright white floodlights illuminating the room also cast long dark shadows along the bits of rock and rubble, making it actually rather easy to stay hidden. You look about the excavated room for a moment and you perk up when you hear the sound of gravel being moved nearby.“Naru? Is that you?” You call out, walking towards the source of the noise. You approach and see something green poking out underneath a pile of rocks. The pile is indistinguishable from anything else in the room and if wasn’t for the noise you caught you’d have walked past it. You get closer and kneel down to brush off the top of the pile, revealing a green military crate underneath, stamped with XCOM’s logo. Before you can investigate further someone jumps right in front of you from behind a dark corner. (Part 1 / 2)
It’s Naru, rocket launcher (training variant) still slung on her back. You take a step back as she jumps right in your personally space.“H-Heya boss! What are you doing here?” Naru says a bit frantically and clearly nervously, deftly moving between you and the crate.“I was just about to ask that question. We were looking for you.” You say“We?” Naru’s eye widens.“Yeah? Me and Burnout. You’ve been hard to find lately, we were getting concerned of your whereabouts.” You say carefully, trying to gauge what the hell has gotten Naru so jumpy. She immediately relaxes, as if dodging a bullet. “Oh! Oh yeah, right. Sorry, uh, haha -- I’ve just been wanting some alone time y’know? Away from the hustle and bustle of the base and stuff. It’s busy as hell y’know?” Naru explains, casually elbowing you and grinning a bit to hard as she tries to act casual. “...What’s in that box?” You say glancing at the crate behind her. She’s clearly trying to block it from you.“Pfft! Fuck if I know!” Naru waves her hand dismissively. “How about we just head back, yeah? It’s probably nothing!”“You’re a terrible liar.”“W-why would I be lying?! Let’s just go before rocks fall on us or something!” Naru insists quickly opting to try and lead you back, grabbing you by the arm. You attempt to let go off her but she has a damn strong grip.“Hey! Let go!” You say, getting more annoyed by Naru’s flightiness and blatant suspicious attitude. She’s definitely up for something. “What the hell is wrong with you!?”“I-- C’mon Dozer, j-just let it go man! Don’t worry about it! really don’t want to drag you into my mess!” Naru lets go of you and is back in front of you again holding her hands together, pleading. She looks desperate, which sets off alarm bells in your head. “Naru.” You say taking a steady breath. “You have five seconds to explain before I get mad. I really don’t want to get mad.”“It’s --”She’s cut off as you hear the sound of the chest being opened. You look over and Naru spins around nearly hitting you with the rocket launcher on her back as you see Burnout has slipped around the both of you and has opened the chest himself. He tilts his head as he regards the contents within. Naru yelps and attempts to dive for the chest but you manage to get a good look at it before she slams it shut by closing it shut with her body. Inside the chest is Central Officer Bradford’s sweater.Well, she was right. You really didn’t want to know what was inside that box. And now you do.Fuck.
>>2628858>Inside the chest is Central Officer Bradford’s sweater.THE SACRED HOLY RELIC OF BRADFORD!WE MUST RETURN IT FOR A MIGHTY BOON!
>...And with that I'm going to call it here! Mostly because it's Thursday and mostly because if there was any point to stop it'd be here. So until next thread...Thanks for playing!
>>2628858What did you do Naru.You fool!You've doomed us all!
>>2628858>Inside the chest is Central Officer Bradford’s sweater.Our only option is to tell the commander about this in private and hope she agrees to distract Bradford while we return the sweater.
>>2628998Seems roundabout, just give the sweater tp the Commander and say you didnt do it.
>>2629501If we're going that route we should just give it to Billy.
>>2628865Thanks for running QM
Next thread soon!
>>2632591Next thread is up!