The team immediately goes to work to find what happened to Lisa. After finding that her apartment was torched, the next best guess was to actually trace the whereabouts of her boyfriend, one Michael Girabaldi. His work as a security officer led Shu there, and he asked around with the people that he had a good rapport with. Girabaldi is a rather quiet guy, they tell him – someone who keeps work separate from his home life. He hasn’t been around for a few days, and there was nothing unusual about him before he disappeared either. One thing they do know is that he is a fitness nut and is rather bulky for someone who spends their life in Mars’ gravity.
This information led Drew and Danny to sniff out information for Girabaldi in the underground where he lives. They stumble upon a shabby looking boxing gym near his house and start meeting with the clientele – the story being that Danny is a young boxer interested in a new gym, while the “soft” looking guy with him is his manager, because Drew is better with money. After demonstrating some decent moves in the ring, they managed to get chummy enough with the rest of the boxers to get some answers.
The two were surprised to find out that boxers are a gossipy bunch. Girabaldi is apparently a crazy man in the ring, tenacious and is extremely hard to take down. The man talks often about his “smoking hot” girlfriend, who he values more than anything. They heard through the grapevine that she had gone missing and that Girabaldi’s been on the search for her ever since, looking for any clues to her disappearance.
Inspector Cluseau makes an appearance, recognizing Drew and making an immediate beeline for him. In his thick French accent, he asks Drew what they’re doing here, and Drew asks the same for him. Cluseau cheerfully tells him that he’s on the trail of Thomas Crown’s murder, and his instincts brought him to this gym.
One of the boxers comes up to Drew and asks if Cluseau is bothering him, and if so, if Drew would like him to “escort” Cluseau out. Cluseau tells him that he’s with the law, he’s a master of martial arts, and can take three guys at once if he wanted to. Quite a few of the clientele were surprised to find out that he was an officer of the law, and immediately became agitated. Drew and Danny tell them that they don’t want any trouble and it’d be better for everyone if Cluseau is just shown the door.
Once Cluseau left, the rest of the boxers became very interested in hearing how the two of them know a cop. Some fast talking convinced them that they knew Cluseau from some time in jail, and they don’t want to be sent back as the reason why it’d be smart to leave Cluseau alone.
After the tension settled down a bit, they were surprised to hear that Girabaldi hasn’t been missing like he has at work. True to his schedule, he was at the gym the previous Tuesday, letting off some steam for his anger management issues. They predict that he’s likely to come back on Tuesday, and if they’re looking to challenge Girabaldi, that’d be the best time to catch him.
Danny and Drew bid the rest of the boxers farewell, and exit the building to find Cluseau in the middle of a fight with three other boxers. Through a series of hijinks involving missed punches, an unloaded gun and a banana peel, all three men were down for the count, and Cluseau was able to safely get his wallet and gun back from them. Stunned at the events that folded before them, the other two asked if Cluseau had some time to talk about the case, though preferred if they went to a separate location.
Once they arrive at Space Starbucks, Cluseau orders an extremely sweet coffee monstrosity from the barista, setting their coffee machine on the fritz. As the employees scramble to fix the machine and try not to stumble onto themselves, Cluseau made himself comfy in a booth with Drew and Danny to discuss his findings so far. He told them that he was at the gym for the same reason that they were – to look for any sign of Lisa Edgars. She is especially linked to the Thomas Crown case in a strange way – apparently all of the prostitutes that Crown had hired during his stay had the same look and size that Lisa did, and that all of the girls ended up in the hospital afterwards due to Crown’s violent nature.
As Danny and Cluseau continued to talk, Drew noticed a short man in the shadows with a murderous intent in his eye. The man started to make his move towards Cluseau but accidentally slipped through the liquid mess that the baristas were trying to clean up, flew past Cluseau into the kitchen and right into the dishwasher. Drew ended up in the wash as well as he tried to chase him.
Cluseau seemed to know the man, when Danny asked about him. Cato, as he is known, is an assassin hired by Cluseau to protect him. When Danny found that weird, seeing that Cato just tried to kill him, Cluseau laughed it off, saying that Cato was simply trying to keep Cluseau on his toes.
Three men suddenly busted into the establishment and started firing bullets in Cluseau’s direction. Danny took cover and shot one of them, but wasn’t able to take any of them down in the first round. Cluseau on the other hand, had the shots go around him in almost a supernatural-like manner. Before taking his next shot, Danny was surprised to see Cato bust out of kitchen wielding a mop and running after the men with the guns, shouting that “he’s mine!!” as he chases them out.
Cluseau chastises Danny for having a pistol on him, which the latter replied that he’s a licensed bodyguard and can technically have one. Cluseau points in Cato’s direction saying that he was able to take out those men with no firearms at all, so he just needs to get better. The two of them then agree to stay in touch in regards to the case. The team finds out later after looking into the deep web that Cluseau actually has a hit list on him for an impressive sum of money, and that several people have died trying to claim that bounty – they concluded that must have been the reason for the attacks at the coffee place.
Shu then turns his attention to hacking into Edgar’s computer systems, specifically targeting the Security Department. After successfully making his way through, he found that the Security team had actually gone to Lisa Edgars’ apartment to look for her, question her and to bring her back to the company safely. Once they arrived however, a firebomb went off in the door which prevented them from looking into any evidence that was in the apartment. The notes also mention that the Security team barely managed to cover up the incident, though were ultimately successful in making it look like an accident.
Shu then went to talk to Baker over a secure channel, feeling hesitant to have anyone meet with him directly. Once they exchanged pleasantries, Shu went directly to the point – he knows about Lisa Edgars, what she had been up to, that she is missing, and wants to know Baker’s involvement. Baker admits that he hasn’t been fully honest about his intentions with his involvement in Edgars Corporation – he wanted to find a way to damage the company in such a way that he would be able to take it over for himself. While he has heard about Lisa and Abel going missing, he has nothing to do with it and it wasn’t part of the “damage” that he wanted inflicted on the company. He simply wanted to find blackmail on the head of directors, so that he can force the man into retirement and rise up in his place.
When the topic of Thomas Crown came up, Baker mentioned that he was recently in a board meeting with one James Morden – the man seemed to suggest that Edgars Corporation was keeping the hand of Thomas Crown somewhere, and he demanded that they give it to him. Baker asks Shu that he needs information on what Edgars Corporation is doing and why – he suspects that the company is at fault for killing Thomas Crown in order to protect him from Lisa Edgars.
Shu tells Baker that while he doesn’t trust him enough to help him take over the company, he would like to look into the top people from Edgars to see if there’s anything important that he can find. Baker tells him that the three to look into are the head of directors, the secretary and the treasurer. Before Shu signs off, Baker tells him one more thing – he received a strange message from someone, with a dead end on the email. Not only did it use a very old SJG encryption code, it had the strangest message: Evil Stevie is alive, and he’s watching you.
After the call ended, Shu hacks into Edgars Corp’s system to get calendars for the three main members and finds an open event for the secretary at an evening soiree. Seeing that, he sent Drew to get suited up and ready to go to the party. Before leaving, Shu hands Drew an address to a website and tells him that sometime that night, Drew needs to get access to this woman’s phone and plug in the code so that they can get easier access to Edgar Corporation’s files.
Once Drew arrived at the party, it didn’t take much for the secretary to fall head over heels for him – he was exactly her type. She at first asks him to come back to her place, shushing the guard telling her that her husband is out of town. However, as the night goes on, she starts to become a little paranoid so asks Drew, if he’s willing to come home with her, that he stays in a separate room. Drew agrees to accompany her back to her delight, and eventually retires to his room.
Not long after, Drew tries to sneak upstairs to get access to the secretary’s phone. As he opens his bedroom door to look around, he hears the sound of glass breaking. Alarms start to go off, though nobody seems to be responding to it. Out of the corner of his eye, Drew sees something shimmering as it inserts itself through the window, and also sees something following after it. Then, he hears the pitter patter of feet scuttling towards his direction. In a panic, he shuts the door in time as the large creature slams against it.
Drew hurriedly makes his way out of the window and climbs up some stucco on the wall outside to the next floor. Finding the door locked, he quickly takes out a bobby pin and was able to successfully pick the lock and made his way inside as the bug started to make its way up. The lamp on the table seemed heavy enough according to his estimates, so he picked it up and hurled it at the shape below, seeing a flash of a spider creature as it lost its footing and descended to the ground.
As police sirens starts to wail in the background, Drew hears screams of the woman in another room. While he initially started to run towards her, instinct stopped him in his tracks right before he gets too close to her door. Drew focuses and hears the voice of Morden saying “That’s just the taste of what we can do.” When the secretary replies that she doesn’t know where “it” is, Morden snaps at her, saying “You will find it, and you will find who took it, and you will call us.” He then takes his leave, missing Drew as he looks around before making his exit through a window.
Drew then goes to check on the woman. He sees a mark on her neck fading as she rubs it. The woman looks up to him with a worried look and asks him to keep what just happened a secret – her life depends on it staying a secret. As she looks away in distress, Drew was able to get access to her phone and insert the hack into it.
The chief of police comes in, using a toy gun lighter that Cluseau gave him to light his cigar. He asked what happened, and she told him that it must have been a cat burglar. The chief says that he’s surprised a regular cat burglar was able to take down the high tech sensory systems that she has installed, and she tells him that they must have been lucky. He then looks at Drew and tells him that while he looks familiar, he is unable to place where he has seen him before. The chief then mentions that the security team in the building was hit by a strange gas, knocking them unconscious, and they’re just starting to rouse from it. After he takes down their information for further investigation, Drew turns to the woman and bids her farewell, sliding a business card in her hand and kisses it before heading back.
The woman went to work a few hours later and used her phone to connect to the network. Shu was able to access the company files via the phone and immediately looks into the treasurer and president. From there, he dug deep and found files related to their prototype assassin program. The program describes the company taking an unregistered psychic that was captured at the moment of death, flash frozen, and brought back to life. They then installed a metal hand with a push dagger embedded into it onto the prototype as a weapon to use. The notes also mention that the experience of reliving the death over and over again makes the prototype more controllable and open to suggestion.
The prototype was sent to assassinate Thomas Crown, though strangely enough, Crown’s hand wouldn’t let go of the cyber hand after the two shook, even after his death, so it was cut off and taken back to the company. They wonder what Crown was up to and believe that his hand must have some sort of strange property that was the key to unlocking something. It appears that the assassin was sent out on a following mission to assassinate someone associated with the SJG, though apparently the assassin has slipped their reach and is on the run with no known whereabouts.
Shu also finds out that the guy that got them the psychic and enabled them to perform a lot of the research is Abel. Shu looks even deeper into his background and finds out that the man is not only a criminal, but that Shu actually has hacked him long ago in his early days. Edgars Corporation doesn’t seem to have anything to do with his disappearance, and they are wondering what happened to him.
Danny and Drew return to the boxing gym to see if they can find any sign of Girabaldi. After they exchange pleasantries with some of the regulars, they see a man in a corner violently raging against a punching bag. Danny hails him, and got straight to the point – they’re from the SJG, they heard what happened to Lisa and they’re here to help.
Girabaldi was stunned but relieved – he never thought that this would actually happen. He felt that they could be trusted, so he tells them that Lisa has actually only been missing for a couple days. Girabaldi knew that Lisa was getting involved with increasingly dangerous things, so he took her and hid her in a tunnel in the city in order to protect her. She became stir crazy recently, which led to the two of them having an argument and her storming out. Lisa never returned, so he has spent the last couple days on the hunt for her, worrying that someone or something got a hold of her under his nose.
After her disappearance, Girabaldi tells them that he received a strange email with a link that led to some sort of weird video game, though he never looked into it past that. Danny tells him that they’ve got some world class hackers and with his permission, they can send the email to someone who can look into it. He agrees, and the link was forwarded to Shu.
Once Shu receives the email, he finds that the link leads to one of the oldest sections of the dark net. Besides the location – Earth Orbit – he was unable to find out anything further about it. As he sat and pondered, a type of black ice that he has never seen before came at his way and Shu does a last minute maneuver to dodge and wrangle it into his control. The program then tells him that its here to take him into the “world”, and Shu allows it to do so.
Once he opens his eyes, Shu finds himself in a different area of the videogame world that he was in previously – only this time a little more detailed than before. He walks into a bar and asks the first NPC that he finds if he’s ever seen a kraken. The NPC tells him that while he hasn’t, the evil wizard in the tower probably has.
A couple quests later, Shu finds himself at the wizard’s tower, equipped with a pointy wizard hat for a roof. The guard at the door asks him to state his business and the password. Shu says his business is with the wizard, and “release the kraken” is the password. Upon saying those three words, Shu finds himself immediately teleported to a hospital room, where an old man is hooked up to a bunch of machines. Shu confirms with him that he is actually Evil Stevie – a friend hooked up his consciousness to the satellite without his permission, and he wouldn’t recommend his current state to anyone.
Stevie also confirms that he was the one that sent out the “Betrayal” message to everyone – he is able to see that someone on the Mars network has a world class team trying to compromise the Mars internet and in doing so, discovering all of the secrets of the SJG. Stevie is unable to tell who it is for sure, especially going through all of the files of those in the upper rings of management, but can definitely tell that it’s internal. He laments the loss of Whiskey and Tango, members of his original team, beliving that they would have been able to figure this out pretty quick.
Stevie asks Shu to put a stop to the person that is putting the SJG in jeopardy and gives him an address. The address and following information can only be used in a time of life and death – contacting it will let Stevie know that the Kraken needs to be released.
Shu suddenly finds himself in the ship hospital, being looked over by Tawny – he has apparently been dead for over 40 minutes due to cardiac arrest. Tawny tells him that he was lucky that Kit was searching for candy in his room and so happened to find Shu in that state. Shu immediately goes on Amazon and orders a pallet of her favorite type – Kit Kats.
Drew and Danny continue to talk to Girabaldi, discussing plans to go back to the tunnel where Lisa was staying and start to do a search from there. A man stumbles into the gym and suddenly Drew finds himself in a starfighter pit. Something hits the windshield, cracking it open and exposing him to the elements outside. Drew finds his hand trying to reach for the controls, but started to struggle due to the exposure and can feel himself dying.
Danny comes to from the vision first and finds Drew on the ground next to him, thrashing on the ground, dying. He began CPR and initially was unable to revive him, though Drew heard Kit’s voice in the light telling him that someone needs to take care of her, so he struggled to snap awake to Danny’s relief.
The two of them look around and find three additional men on the ground, completely dead. There wasn’t blood anywhere, so they put two and two together and figured that they were just hit with a psychic attack. They look over to where Girabaldi was, and found him to be completely missing – only fluff remaining. Danny assumed it was from the gloves that Girabaldi was wearing and he must have been using the gloves to parry a weapon from the man that had stumbled in, though neither of them were no longer in sight. The two of them noticed that the door was open, and started to head towards it, in anticipation for what could be waiting for them out there.