This is the conversion adventure for SR2 to SR3, providing the convenient excuse for radiation accidents.
The EcoNet group want to hire the runners to capture as many of the TerraFirst! people as possible to see if they can be rehabilitated; the toxic shaman they can capture or kill as they see fit, but rehabilitating those people is beyond the scope of their power. The pay is 500,000¥ plus reasonable logistical support (smuggling them and materials in, obtaining any tools that they cant pick up locally).
The opposition are thirteen TerraFirst! radicals with Boosted Reflexes 3 (+2+2d6), smartlink Is, and cybereyes with low-light, thermographic, flare comp, and electronic magnification 3, B6 I5 security armor with +1B +2I helmets, M22A2 assault rifles (40-round clips, thump guns) from SSC p50. They have plenty of grenades and shaped charges for their terror work. Theyre using an old cabin as a base of operations; the next one over is the toxic lodge full of drums of waste the shaman brought back. They have Land Rover, a Gaz-Willys Nomad, and a Ford-Canada Bison for transport, and have to go pretty far afield to fill up the water tank and filters in order to have anything decent to drink or wash in. Theyre all a little psycho; if they didnt start out that way, hanging around a toxic shaman did it to em.
There are also some toxic critters in the area. The toxic saber-toothed cat has Blindness and Venom powers, the toxic piasma has Noxious Breath and Corrosive Secretions, the toxic new boar has Compulsion (stand there while I wallop you) and Corrosive Saliva, and the toxic harpy has Fear and Dismissal. Cats should be very offended at this discovery; it flies in the face of everything he knows about evolution. They arent coordinated with the terrorists, but theyre trouble wandering around, and if the shaman gets wind of trouble, he can send one to terrorize someone.
The toxic Wolf shaman is a grade 3 initiate but only has magic 7 due to exposure to toxic waste. B4 Q5 S3 I6 C3 W6 M7, spell locks of increase initiative +3d6 and personal combat sense +4 dice. He gets +2 dice on detections and combat spells, and, when wounded, has to roll Willpower vs TN 3 + wound mods, each success subtracting 1 turn from 3 turns of berserking. He has Urban Renewal, Ram, Power Bolt, and Powerball at Force 6, Ignite, Detect Life, and Analyze Chemical at Force 5, Levitate Person at Force 3, and several spells that get bonuses from the background count: Acid Cloud (combat, M acid damage, area, F/2+1D), Acid Missile (combat, M acid damage, F/2+1S), Acid Splash (manip, M acid damage, F/2+1S), Acid Bomb (manip, M acid damage, area, F/2+1D), and Influence Toxic Critter, all at Force 6.
The background count there is usually 4, and its 5 in the toxic lodge. This means +4 to all assensing TNs, +4 to TNs for healing spells, and -4 to TN's for toxic spells.
Note that Toxic Earth Spirits are B F+4, Q F-2 ×2, S F+4, C 1, I F, W F, E FA, R F+3/F+8, attacks (F+1)S with +1 reach plus corrosive secretions, and Toxic Water Spirits are B F+2, Q F ×2, S F, C 1, I F, W F, E FA, R F+6/F+11, Attack (F+2)D stun. Good thing the shaman can only get one each at Force 7. (The background count makes it easy to get lots of services, though.)
The Big Boss is actually a Toxic Free Spirit, Force 7, Spirit Energy 3, which puts its effective Force at 10 for combat and 13 when at the heart of its domain, since it has Aura Masking, Personal Domain, and Possession powers. It may borrow one of the terrorists at some point, or attempt to possess one of the PCs.
Once the TerraFirst! cadre is taken out, several mages (shamans?) from Ireland will arrive to perform a big-time healing ritual that will require killing the Free Spirit whose domain this is; the team will then go into Pauls Lensman quest. The woman who hires the team will arrange a healthy bonus for the astral quest.
Unfortunately, the Irish magicians (followers of the Path of the Steward) dont have much experience working with tectonically active areas; it produces unusual energy flows. The ritual will cause a moderately powerful earthquake, not enough to be disastrous, and a lot of the cleansing/regrowth energy will go wild, creating an area a number of miles across that is completely overgrown. (The radiation accidents for the team will merely be a side effect.) The team will come to consciousness caught up in the branches of trees, in the middles of thickets, or otherwise inconvenienced by the sudden Lush Growth Bomb effect. With the aid of the local nature spirits, Cats Magic Forklift spell, and Barrys Smashing Blow, it should be possible to extricate everyone and get out, but the corps nearby are not going to be happy...
Hopefully, Johnny will have the chance to record everything; later, watching the footage, people can make Perception tests against TN 9 to realize that a bird appeared out of nowhere in full view of the camera.
Dreme will meet Whisper, the old physad who taught dancing and hand-to-hand combat from the Nomad tribe; the context will be a lesson she missed by breaking apart from them (or having the tribe break apart). The teacher will begin talking about dance as a metaphor for larger processes in the universe, from the cosmos to the atom, and how the pulse of life is part of it all. (Work up the spiel.)
He will then lead Dreme and the other students on stepping stones down a small stream, pointing out that they dont need to look at the physical world if they can pick up the rhythm of the universe itself. By dancing along from rock to rock without looking, a new level of awareness will open up, until Dreme can see the astral world, lit by the omnipresent life of the physical plane.
Dan will be contacted by his totem: Teddy Bear, the Urban Bear, the Healer and Comforter. His vision will be that of waking up in the bed after getting shot up in the line of duty for Lone Star, when he realized theyd put cyberware in him; the deviation from memory is the presence of all his teddy bears and theyre talking about him as if hes asleep. If asked, they will maintain theyve always been alive like this, and that he just stopped noticing it. The Sherlock Holmes bear can provide precise diagnoses of his condition, and the Winston Churchill bear will talk about responsibilities. Snuffles (the classic Gund) will be very agitated about how much they hurt Dan, and (after suitable introduction) will start reaching into him its a very peculiar fuzzy sensation and pulling things out. Dan will keep the mnemonic enhancer (1.2BI) and cerebral booster (0.8BI) at the behest of Sherlock; Snuffles will pop out the cybereyes and the vision enhancements he has will become Adept powers. The muscle augmentation (1.2BI) and enhanced articulation (0.6BI) will definitely go, and the bioware eyes (0.5BI) and synaptic accelerator (0.3BI) will be absorbed. Dan will have a choice on the Orientation System (0.5E), the Math SPU-4 (0.25E), the Smartlink II (0.5E), and the omnijack (0.25E).
When all is said and done, Dan will be a biowared and possibly cybered Shamanic Physical Adept following the totem of Teddy Bear. He may end up with anything from 4 points of powers (if he just keeps the neural bioware) to 2 (if he keeps the 1.5E of cyberware); if Im reading the rules on geasa for shamanic physads right, that means you multiply the value by 4/3 to see what he really gets, so if hes got 3 magic points left, hell have 4 points worth of powers. The absolute minimum Adept Powers will be his vision mods and half a magic point sunk into a version of Empathic Sense called Wellness Sense, which will act like Empathic Sense but will help him diagnose injuries and mental traumas. The next one up will be Increased Reflexes level 1, then extra dice on his abilities to replace the missing Enhanced Articulation.
Once everything is taken care of, he gets a hug from the Big Bear and wakes up.
When he wakes up, he will find that his rejected cyberware has slipped out of his body and into his clothing the muscle augmentation is the worst part, since its a lot of fine goretex fibers that have suddenly disassociated from his muscles.
Her vision will be of entering a Taoist/Buddhist type monastery on a high mountaintop, with cold, clear air and clouds shrouding most of the land below. The abbot will greet her and introduce her to some of the monks and nuns that are ready to go out into the world to learn the practical applications of their studies bringing one out, of course, requires donating karma to get them out of the metaplanes.
The big hint about this doppelganger for her uncle will be the fact that before she wakes up, he vanishes swiftly, like a shaft of sunlight when a cloud crosses the sun.
She will become an Information Magnet, somewhat like Weirdness Magnet or Trouble Magnet, but more of an Edge: information relating to her interests will show up improbably often, sparking occasional runs involving human evolution, new humanity-enhancing cyberware, and other such bizarre things. The party will be involved in runs caused by this particular Magnetism Theora wants to be involved in the decision-making process for human evolution, so some of the runs will just happen to go their way...
Johnny is quite attached to his cyberware, though, and is basically uninterested in becoming a Car shaman at that price. Since Car finds him worthy, he will be given a chance to feed some karma to a spirit and bring it out of the Metaplane of Man, Free but not very powerful (yet). He will have an enhanced ability to donate karma to this spirit and this spirit only.
Johnny will be able to summon the spirit to Inhabit a low-rider vehicle a bright-red convertible with tailfins, hydraulic jacks, and an ubermodified engine. The spirit in the car will be able to drive itself (though its a lot faster when it has gas), will give bonuses to vehicle work performed when its present (a reverse Accident power), has the Movement power, and has a version of the Materialize Wealth power that allows it to convert any random stuffers into really tasty take-out food, as long as you eat it in the car. When its controlling the radio, it can use a soundtrack as a limited form of divination.