Kheldian Story ArcShadow Science

Summary

Mission Index

  1. Rescue Joshua Lucietto (Hydra,Vahzilok,Council)
  2. Rescue the captives
  3. Search base for information
  4. Raid Council Base
  5. Defeat all foes in tunnels
  6. Defeat Archon Douglas & his men

Find the Council escapee

Shadowstar

The Council has begun a large-scale excursive north of the city along the Hapatak river. They appear to be conducting a manhunt, and this matches with reports from our sources on Striga Island that a prisoner escaped from a Council lab, and may have escaped the island. If this man has escaped from the Council, it is important that we find him before they can recapture him. I would like to ask you to take charge of locating him before the Council can take him back to Striga Island.

Our sources say that this man may be one joshua Lucietto, an insurance adjuster thought lost after the Rikti war when he went to examine a ruined building, and may have run into an exposed Council base. If he's been in the Council's hands sice then, I cannot imagine what he's had to endure. I trust that you'll be able to find him and bring him back safely.

Part 1: Rescue Joshua Lucietto (Find Joshua Lucietto)
Instanced Outdoor [Forest] @ Hapatak River (Hydra,Vahzilok,Council)

The Hapatak river is a tributary of Lake Salamanca, North of Paragon City. Ufortunately the Council's troops probably aren't here for the excellent fishing.

Mission Complete: You rescued Joshua Lucietto from the Council.

Clue'You can force the horrors out...'

After you rescued Joshua Lucietto, he told you his harrowing tale:

'I was there for years. Not just me, there were others. They used us in experiments. There were these creatures, living shadows. they called them Nictus. The things would try to bind with you, you could feel them in your mind. They'd take you over, but you could force them out. They'd whisper in your head, twist your thoughts 'till you didn't want it out, 'till you joined with it willingly. They're very good at that. But I forced it out. If they don't undermine your mind, if you stay determined, you can force the horrors out. Now I'm free. There were others, there still are others. But I'm free.'

Thank you, hero. I'm afraid I don't know your name, but thank you.

Shadowstar

Mr. Lucietto is receiving proper medical care. From his story, it sounds like the Council have been using captives for human experiments with Nictus bonding techniques. normally, as he said, a person who doesn't want to be possessed by a Nictus can force it out. If they are experimenting with new techniques, or other methods, this could be very important. Cosmic Parity, i think it's very important that we follow up on this. Speak with me soon, I have a feeling that this is the start of a longer investigation


Rescue test subjects from the Council

Shadowstar

Joshua Lucietto, the man you rescued, has been able to tell us about a hidden facility in Boomtown where the Council is holding other captives for their human experiments. There is no telling what horrors these people have had to endure, and it is vital that they're freed before the Council can move them. Since you performed so admirably in Mr. Lucietto's rescue, I thought that you'd might like to lead the operation.

Your first priority is to rescue those people. It will also be important to scour the base for files or computers that might help us find another base where they could be conducting these experiments.

Nictus science has been depraved ever since it first transformed a Kheldian into a life-consuming horror. It should be no surprise that they've begun to experiment on sentient beings, but I am sickened just the same.

Part 2: Rescue the captives (2 clues to find, 4 captives to free)
Council base @ 'Boomtown'

The wreckage of this abandoned office hides an entrance to a hidden Council facility.

Objective: You found something

ClueOrder for Transfer

You found this series of transfer orders among some Council files. According to them, they've been rotating captivs in and out of this for years. From the notes on the orders, it seems like they were keeping people here on low rations, trying to keep them weak, but alive. The only transfers out of the base are to an experimental facility. The rest are marked with the ominous phrase 'Will subverted. Integration successful'.

Objective: You found some important files

ClueA report to Arakhn

This is a report from the lead guard at the base to someone called 'Arakhn'. Part of it reads:

'It is not mine to question your judgement, My Lady, but why are we still performing these tests? Even weakened, captives resist being host to a Nictus, often to the bitter end. I know that the Nictus we work with are weakened from their long journey, but surely thee is already enough experimental data. I know that there are many volunteers within the ranks waiting for the opportunity that's being wasted on these wretches. I appologize if I'm out of line, but I feel it must be said.'

'Also, in response to your concern, we have had no contact with any of Requiem's toadies. We will alert you immediately if that should change.'

Mission Complete: You rescued the captives, and discovered some disturbing information.

Shadowstar

What you found in that place sickens me, Cosmic Parity. Nictus can't force a permanent possession on someone, and no Kheldian can survive forever outside a host. but to keep people captive and weakened so that Nictus can forcibly possess them long enough to recover their strength? It's depraved. We can just hope that what you found will help us fre some of the other people who've been held by these monsters.


Investigate the old lab and search it for information

Shadowstar

The captives you rescued and the documents you recovered have allowed us to find the locaiton of an old research lab. It used to belong to Requiem's old organization, but from the records you found it seems that Arakhn forced him to let her use it for a time even before the change over. It hasn't been used for yeas, but there could still be valuable information at the lab that could tell us more about what the Council has been working on. I'd like you to investigate the lab, and search it for information.

We don't know what you'll find down there, but the important thing is to look for some information about what the Council has been experimenting with. The first Nictus were created by unethical experiments. Who knows what Arakhn's been working on with the scientific resource of the Council under her control.

Part 3: Search base for information (3 clues to find, 2 keys to find)
Laboratory @ 'Boomtown'

Something about this place makes your skin crawl.

Objective: You found the first pass-card.

ClueAn ooze-covered pass-card

You recovered this pass-card from a slime monster. It's covered in a sticky gelatinous ooze.

Objective: You found the second pass-card.

ClueA splattered pass-card

You found this pass-card on a Vahzilok. You really don't want to know what it's aplattered with.

Objective: You found some important files.

ClueNictus Decay Salvage: A Report

You found this computer report on a dis-used mainframe. Skimming over it, you see:

'A Nictus that has been starved of life energy for long enough or that has sustained enough damage in it's natural form will begin to decay. It will grow weaker and weker until it can no longer maintain a cohesive negative-energy form, and will begin to dissipate. Usually, it will no longer have the strength to possess all but the most weak-willed host, and thus will begin a downward spiral leading to it's final dissipation. '

'We have discovered that it is also possible to force a dissipating Nictus to break apart multiple smaller pieces, forming Nictus Fragments. These can be sustained with a controlled flow of energy. We are now researching the effects of implanting these fragments into human test subjects. You will also note that our early research indicates that it may be possible to harvest fragments from a healthy Nictus without permanent harm. We hope to soon have a technology that can match Requiem's or even surpass it.'

The dates of this report are already several years old. There's no telling how much farther the Council's come since then.

Objective: You found a letter on one of the defeated soldiers, detailing his orders.

ClueOrders from Requiem

These orders have been type-written on Requiem's personal letterhead.

'Search this place from top to bottom for any remaining traces of Arakhn's research. We must know how she is creating her Galaxy troops. Brook no interference in your task. Remember that this was our base before the Center forced us to lend it to Arakhn. It was tunneled by Vandal's machines, stocked to Nosferatu's orders, and protected by our brave soldiers.'

'Still, exercise caution. Arakhn has the Center's ear, and unlike me, she is Nictus first and Council a distant second. no doubt the Center has been influenced by her charms over the years, and now he lets her do whatever she wants.'

Objective: You found some interesting records.

ClueOld Transfer orders

These yellowing forms detail movement of something called 'N-Fragments' to another research facility. The forms are dated several years ago, but they could still be vital information.

Mission Complete: You found some important information in the base, especially that Requiem is also investigating Arakhn's experiments.

Shadowstar

The more I find out about these depraved experiments, the worse I feel to be a Kheldian. These Nictus Fragments are monstrous, but I'm afraid we may know what they were able to create with them. Arakhn has lost her mind. It seems that even Requiem thinks so, but I doubt he'd do anything we'd like if he got the same technology. I'll wee what we can gleam from the information you found. It might help lead us to more captives, and deeper into Arakhn's research.


Strike the Council research base

Shadowstar

All of the information you gathered at the abandoned lab along with the information from the captives you've rescued has revealed the location of what we think is a current research base. They will become aware of their vulnerability soon, so we must take this moment to strike. I naturally thought you might want to take this base out, considering your involvement in the case.

If the information we have is right, there will be plenty for you to do. First off, we believe that there may be one or more captives being held there you must rescue. There will also no doubt be much useful information to find. In addition, the base commander and his staff must be dealt with, or he'll be able to raise an alarm. And finally, there may be actual Nictus Fragments at this facility. You must take them out of the Council's hands.

Part 4: Raid Council Base (Find info, N-Fragments, 3 captives, Defeat Tanner)
Laboratory

The facade and records may seem legitimate, but this place is crawling with Council troops.

Objective: You found something horrible in this crate

ClueNictus Fragments

This crate is filled with clear glass tubes, capped with energy generators. Inside each tube a shadowy sphere hangs suspended in some kind of fluid. The sphere seems to bend light around it, and occasionally snakes out an inky tendril that touches the glass with increasing hungered ferocity the closer your hand comes.

Each tube is labelled 'N-Fragment', along with a number, the name of the Nictus it was made from.

Perhaps more importantly, it has a shipping manifest, revealing where it was going to be sent.

Objective: You have defeated Archon Tanner and his men

Objective: You found some memos from Arakhn

ClueA memo

The memo is written on Council letterhead. It warns:

'To: Archon Tanner
RE: Requiem'

'Tanner,
Keep an eye out for infiltrators from requiem. he's been trying to pry into all the secrets of our Galaxy troops, and has stepped up efforts to gain full control of the Void Hunter mercenaries. You were right, Tanner. He may have agreed to share control of the Void Hunters with me in front of the Center, but he will never accept it. He still resents losing his little kingdom.'

'- Arakhn'

Mission Complete: You have finished the raid on the research base.

Shadowstar

Taking out that research facility will definitely strike their plans a grievous blow, and those people you rescued will be thankng you for the rest of their lives. I'll get our people working on the information you found at the lab. The shipping record for those N-Fragments could lead us to another facility. The fragments themselves, we're going to turn over th SERAPH. They'll be eager to study them.


Capture Council research in Troll Tunnels

Shadowstar

Your recent successes have forced the Council's hand. They have begun to clean out any bases or labs attached to their Nictus work that remain in the City, and are moving the assets from them off-shore. This gives us a great opportunity, but little time to work on it. Fortunately, some Trolls captured in a raid by other heroes revealed that the Council is moving some equipment through their tunnels. This is the perfect chance to capture the Council's research, and I though you might like to spearhead the operation.

While the main part of this operation is to capture more Council research data before they can take it off-shore, you will also have to make sure that no enemies escape capture so that they cannot warn their allies that we know their plans. You will have to be thorough, but I know you can handle it.

Part 5: Defeat all foes in tunnels (4 pieces of information to find)
@ 'The Hollows'

The natural beauty of these caverns has been trampled by the current villainous inhabitants.

Objective: You found an interesting report

ClueBasic N-Fragment utilization

This report gives a brief overview of how normal Nictus Fragments can be used. According to the report, a 'Galaxy' soldier can be created by implanting a sufficient number of Nictus fragments in a willing human host and subjecting that host to careful training. These Galaxy soldiers are capable of using Nictus-like powers, but are not true Nictus themselves.

The report is maddeningly short on details, offering only the faintest hints of how the implantation process actually works.

Objective: You found an interesting report

ClueAltered N-Fragment Uses

This report gives a brief over of how Nictus Fragments can be altered using Quantum energy techniques. By implanting these altered fragments into a willign host, subjecting that host to specific training regimen, and equiping the implanted soldier with th eproper equipment, the Council can create a Void Hunter. The report is short on specific details about how the fragments are altered, the implantation process, and the training regimen, but it does spend several interesting pages expressing the scientist's concerns. They worry about the long term effects, and mention that they have no idea what would happen is something called a 'Total Integration' were to occur to a Void Hunter.

Objective: You found reams of paperwork

ClueCouncil lab paperwork

Reams of paper and dozens of spindles of back-up disks hold the mundane records of the bases that Arakhn was running even before Requiem's old organisation was re-absorbed into the Council. A lot of important information could be gleaned from this.

Objective: You found an interesting report

ClueHypothetical N-Fragment Uses

This report outlines several uses for N-Fragments that the researchers would like to explore. Skimming over it, you see:

'We believe that we are on the verge of several breakthroughs. We may have even run across the method that Requiem is using to create Warwolves. We understand that Arakhn has clearly stated no interest in reverse-engineering Requiem's Warwolves, but we think that the benefits of this research could lead us to a whole new era of N-Fragment technology.'

Mission Complete: You captured the Council's data before they could take it off-shore

Shadowstar

The information you recovered will be invaluable. This was probably our last chance to capture the Council's data before they got it off-shore, and you really came through. SERAPH will be pouring through this for months. There may still be one last operation left to wrap this up. Talk to me soon.


Rescue the final group of the Council's captive human test subjects

Shadowstar

It seems that there's one last element of the Council's Nictus experimentation that they haven't yet gotten off-shore. The Council has not yet been able to smuggle out the last captives it used for human experimentation. If it weren't for the documents you found, we never would have found out about it before it was too late. Now those people may have a chance, if you are willing to rescue them from the Council.

These people are in desperate danger, Xamot Der. If the Council thinks that they cannot smuggle them out, they will probably terminate them to keep them quiet. You could be their last chance at freedom. And in order to keep their identities safe afterwards, you must also defeat the base's commander, and make certain that their records are destroyed.

Part 6: Defeat Archon Douglas & his men (Erase Records, 4 captives to free)
Council base @ 'The Hollows'

This sprawling Council controlled complex houses the last of the captive human test subjects on the mainland.

Objective: You erased the records, and also found something

ClueAn e-mailed warning

As you were erasing the records of the captives from the Council's computers, you noticed that someone has left the e-mail program open. One message had been composed and was ready to gom but the author was probably called away before he could hit the 'Send' button. It reads:

'Arakhn:
Ma'am, I have been going through our recent set-backs, and while looking through the records of the Void Hunter program, I think I found something unrelated, but important. The candidates for the Void Hunter process we've received from Requiem are almost always old loyalists from his old arganization. I think he may be seeding the ranks of the Void Hunters with men who will follow him should push com to shove. I will continue my research into this.
Archon Douglas.'

Objective: You have defeated the base's leader

Mission Complete: You rescued the last people being held by the Council for experimentation

Shadowstar

The last of the captives are safe, the Council's experiments have been drvier out of the city, and now we know in theory at least how the Galaxy, Void Hunters, and Warwolves are made. Joshua Lucietto's escape opened the door, but you were the one brave enough to face what was on the other side. For all of your fellow Kheldians, Peacebringer and Warsahde; and for all the people of the city, let me offer you my thanks, Xamot Der.

We now know that Arakhn, the leaders of the Nictus within the Council, has been conducting experiments on people, and that she created the Galaxy and Void Hunters of the Council. That still leaves us with many leads and questions, which you may not be powerful enough to follow up. Speak to me again when you're at least Stature Level 20. We should be able to pick up the investigation then.


Souvenir: An inert N-Fragment

This strange souvenir was once part of a Nictus. but has been rendered inert while being studied by SERAPH. You keep it as a reminder of the lengths the Nictus will go to. and how one brave man's escape uncovered the secrets of the Council's.

Shadow Science

It began when you were told that the Council was conducting a manhunt near the Hapatak river. You went to investigate and found Joshua Lucietto. a man who'd been held prisoner by the Council and used in sick human experiments with Nictus bond-forming techniques. Lucietto had forced a Nictus possessor out. and made a run for freedom.

Joshua Lucietto's harrowing tale of human experimentation led you to a hidden facility where other people were being kept in a weakened state so that damaged or partially dissipated Nictus could possess them without fear of being forced out. You freed the captives. ending their long nightmare.

The stories of the captives and the documents you recovered led you to an abandoned Council base that had once belonged to Requiem's old organization. but had been used by Arakhn for Nictus experiments. You found old documents that showed just how far Arakhn had progressed with her research into using pieces of a decayed Nictus. called 'N-Fragments'. years ago.

The information you recovered led you to another base; where you freed more captives and captured several N-Fragments.

You pressed the attack as the Council began to move the last of it's N-Fragment research out of the city. You learned about a series of tunnels where the Trolls were helping the Council move their research out of the City. You struck during this window of vulnerability. capturing documents that spoke of how N-Fragments were being used to make Galaxy troops. Void Hunters. and possibly even the Warwolves.

The documents you found led to one final location: the last of the people held captive by the Council for human experimentation. You stormed the Council base. and liberated the last of the captives. The Council's research had been driving off-shore and you had incovered much about where the Council's Galaxy troops and Void Hunter mercenaries had come from. The real victory. though. was rescuing all of the people who had once been victims of the Council's Shadow Science.

Still. there is much yet to learn about the Nictus and the Council. You were asked to come back around Stature Level 20. so that you'd be powerful enough to survive the investigation.


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