Microsoft Windows [Version 10.0.14393]
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C:\Users\Zer0-Virtualb0x>CIPHER /p /d /s:c:\temp\cf301.txt
Military c0ntacts turned up n0thing regarding 0ur mystery men, I tried t0 c0ntact Granny Agatha Twigm0uth via Infallible Relay in 0rder t0 learn s0mething but received n0 dial t0ne, s0 it was bl0cked, she was 0n an0ther plane 0r dead. I l0gged int0 El Pennic‘s faceb00k but there wasn’t much inf0rmati0n 0n there, it was 0nly a year and a half 0ld s0 likely part 0f a false identity. We went back t0 the pictures and tried t0 discern m0re detail, finding a l0g0 which l00ked t0 be a black and white wheel; h0wever we did rec0gnise the desk fr0m El Pennic’s apartment in the mystery 0ffice.
Cricht0n t00k us t0 an antique dealer, wh0 inf0rmed us ab0ut the desk, which was actually 0ne 0f a pair, the M0rdenkainen Desks which were relics 0f the sacking 0f Alexandria and went missing f0r many years, reappearing in the 1800’s (same time Merlin went missing) and g0ing fr0m museum t0 private c0llect0r and were recently s0ld at aucti0n. Individually each desk is w0rth a few milli0n p0unds, but t0gether they c0uld be w0rth as much as a hundred milli0n p0unds. A desk was recently s0ld at aucti0n t0 an an0nym0us buyer, h0wever there was a news article linking the sale t0 Axi0m. I knew m0re than m0st ab0ut Axi0m…
Axi0m is a huge umbrella c0rp0rati0n pr0viding many legitimate services gl0bally. 0riginally f0unded by T0bias Rieper, he is n0 l0nger 0fficially a part 0f the 0rganisati0n h0wever I kn0w he is still in charge. I have hacked Axi0m in the past and disc0vered evidence that p0ints t0 paramilitary dealings, internati0nal weap0ns and drug smuggling, bl00d diam0nds, def0restati0n and pretty much anything pr0fitable despite varying levels 0r m0rality 0r illegality. In the UK they are based in Leatherhead, Ermin H0use, Ermin way in a large c0mp0und with high levels 0f security. It was an Exx0n pr0perty which deal in 0il and fuel which Axi0m purchased and merged int0 it’s structure.
We dr0ve t0 Leatherhead ar0und midday and pulled int0 the nearby residential areas. I cast a spell t0 make myself and Declan invisible and James did the same t0 himself and Cricht0n. We snuck past the guards and I lifted a security pass. We m0ved t0 the back 0f the building where there was a d00r t0 the cafeteria and a sm0king area. I swiped Cricht0n in but the card w0uldn’t let me swipe a sec0nd time, Cricht0n, using his invisibility c0mbined with his stealth nature st0le s0me passes that had been left 0n tables whilst pe0ple ate lunch and pr0ceeded t0 swipe us in.
We m0ved t0 the t0p fl00r and I f0und a c0mputer terminal that was unattended and unl0cked (there’s always s0me 0ne that thinks the inf0rmati0n security training was p0intless). Br0wsing the deskt0p I c0uld tell this fl00r was m0stly f0r T0p0l0gy and Ge0l0gy rep0rts, c0nsistent with Surveying f0r 0il and the terminal didn’t have any access t0 anything else.
0n the sec0nd fl00r we had a similar experience alth0ugh it seemed like the fl00r was a mix 0f I.T. pr0ject teams and Mete0r0l0gists. We made 0ur way t0 the basement, which had a Janit0r’s 0ffice, a sign p0inting t0 the l0ading bay and three l0cked d00rs which were labelled indistinctly. I attempted t0 use the security pass t0 access the first r00m but it was denied. S0 I tried t0 hack the card switch, but ended up breaking it whilst trying t0 rewire. I repeated my failure 0n the sec0nd d00r but 0n the third d00r I was able t0 gain access. Inside the third r00m was a server farm. I l0gged int0 the terminal and it was clear these servers were all f0r in h0use 0perati0ns. I accessed the CE0’s emails, the CE0 0f Axi0m-Exx0n being R0ger Br0wn, s0 I quickly d0wnl0aded his pers0nal file and w0rk passw0rd. There was 0ne email that stuck 0ut as it was fr0m the public face 0f Axi0m, the CE0 Rupert Emsw0rth.
Fr0m: Rupert Emsw0rth
I w0uld take it as a great pers0nal service if y0u c0uld finance this vehicle 0n y0ur 0ffice’s acc0unts
Which then had an attachment detailing a white minivan. S0 I accessed the acc0unts team inf0rmati0n and gained the numberplate and details 0f the van such as where it was purchased. I als0 0btained a list 0f branches 0f Axi0m and satellite 0ffices in the UK.
Als0 0n the servers there was access t0 a rem0te server farm labelled main, which I assumed w0uld be the head 0ffices but quickly realised that my presence had been detected as security measures were starting t0 appear. I inf0rmed the team that we sh0uld leave urgently 0nly t0 disc0ver the d00r was sealed and we’d been trapped in.
Cricht0n and Declan were quickly able t0 beat their way thr0ugh, and myself and James re-cast the invisibility and exit via the l0ading bay where 0ur security guard’s pass did functi0n.
G0ing thr0ugh the l0cal branches and satellite 0ffices, the team believed it was m0st likely that Granny w0uld have been taken t0 the Cambridge based Axi0m Hist0rical S0ciety, 0r the Petersb0r0ugh Car Dealership 0wned by Axi0m. We 0pted f0r Cambridge, and Declan seemed excited t0 br0wse TripAdvis0r f0r a l0cal B&B, settling 0n “Sayle h0use”.
We dr0ve t0 Cambridge and checked in, then went t0 the Pitt Building, 0n the 0utskirts 0f the university. Inside the building it was clearly a library, and the librarian explained t0 us that the premises was damaged fifteen years ag0 by fire, where Axi0m rebuilt and refurbished the l0cati0n. Replacing many 0f the b00ks t00. James t0ld the librarian he was interested in secret passages and w0ndered if the library had any, as 0ld buildings like this 0ften d0. She l00ked at him like a madman but let us br0wse, I c0uldn’t find anything 0f n0te, but James said the building seemed 0ff and went 0utside, returning t0 tell us he’d f0und a secret entrance.
We c0uldn’t see any secret entrance until James p0inted it 0ut, a d00r, a pretty 0bvi0us d00r, keypad and camera which just weren’t there until James p0inted them 0ut. They were 0bvi0usly behind illusi0ns. Declan n0ticed the white minivan parked in a nearby carpark. We recast 0ur invisibility t0 av0id the camera and I brute f0rced the keypad, 0pening the d00r which turned 0ut t0 be ridicul0usly thick blast-grade steel and we gained entry t0 a small r00m c0ntaining 0nly an elevat0r, again, brute f0rcing the keypad we began t0 descend which seemed t0 take f0rever, 0r at least a minute and a half.
When the d00rs 0pened tw0 things happened. We realised pretty immediately this was the mystery 0ffice fr0m the ph0t0graphs, and a tear-gas grenade r0lled 0min0usly t0ward us. I sprinted 0ut the elevat0r, kicking the grenade back t0 whence it came t0ward s0me d0uble d00rs 0n the 0pp0site side 0f the r00m, and slid under a desk, n0ting that these were steel and hardy. Cricht0n went 0ne step further, f0ll0wing the grenade and ensuring it went thr0ugh the d0uble d00rs. Fr0m th0se d00rs three figures emerged, wh0 were wearing tactical gear and carrying aut0matic weap0ns, they unl0aded 0n the elevat0r, which appeared empty but c0ntained Declan and James.
The battle was hard f0ught, Declan summ0ned his spiritual guardians, sh0ts were fired and I cast haywire 0n the gr0up, sending their electr0nics int0 meltd0wn, their electr0nic helmets and radi0s, s0me 0f which gave their users s0me severe electric sh0cks. Tw0 0f them made it t0 the elevat0r and when they realised their c0mrade w0uldn’t they r0lled a grenade 0ut in his directi0n. The grenade g0ing 0ff is the last thing I remember as I blacked 0ut fr0m the f0rce 0f the expl0si0n in the c0nfined space, but Declan’s magic br0ught me back pretty quickly.
In the r00m they emerged fr0m we f0und Granny, dead and dissected inside a ritual circle, pr0bably t0rtured and experimented 0n. There were als0 cages containing the emaciated remains 0f fey creatures. This facility hadn’t been in use f0r s0me time… but seems t0 have definitely been used f0r s0mething like this bef0re.