Introduction: Butmir Airport, Sarajevo

Operation Dark Margin: a Delta Green game using the Dunwich Sanction frame for Night's Black Agents.

"If the abyss gazes into you, put a round between its eyes."

1993: The Cold War is newly laid to rest, and someone from the other side of the Curtain is reopening old channels to ask for help. DG personnel with access to Yugoslavia should acknowledge and stand by for briefing.

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Introduction: Butmir Airport, Sarajevo

Postby thumbprince » Tue May 21, 2013 8:27 pm

It's hard to believe that the city you arrive in hosted the Olympics less than a decade ago. Your memories of watching them on television clash soundly with the reality of this war. Flying in, you notice the Zetra venue - where Scott Hamilton and Katarina Witt skated to gold medals - now largely reduced to rubble in last year's fighting.

The airport at Butmir has been controlled by the UN for almost a year, and at the present only allows its own or humanitarian aircraft to land there. NATO planes enforcing the no-fly zone streak across the skies every few minutes. Canadian forces administer the airport, and you hear much conversation in French, English and Serbo-Croatian. There appears to be a fair amount of signage in Cyrillic, as well as Russian personnel manning passport control. Everyone looks to be in a hurry, so you each hope the scrutiny of your covers are perfunctory. The last communication from Cell A assumed that someone working for SABLE SHAMAN would be nearby, and any time spent without local guidance might mean a longer trail to Bardysh....
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Re: Introduction: Butmir Airport, Sarajevo

Postby tutunaku » Wed May 22, 2013 2:52 am

The young American makes a show of checking his watch languidly while waiting in the queue. He slowly digs through carry-on bag and produces a crumpled pack of cigarettes and places one in his mouth, humming softly.
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Re: Introduction: Butmir Airport, Sarajevo

Postby Mr. Handy » Wed May 22, 2013 4:52 am

Image

Dr. Olivia Carpenter gets her cover identity's passport ready as she waits in line. The excitement of her first mission is still fresh, and she recalls her grandfather's story of his first action in Norway in 1940 and her grandmother's account of her first assignment for the French Resistance later that same year. She looks around, taking in the airport and the people passing through it, trying to figure out who their contact might be.
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Re: Introduction: Butmir Airport, Sarajevo

Postby tormsen » Wed May 22, 2013 5:26 am

As far as the Butmir airport customs are concerned, Luka Horvat is Olaf Janssen, a Swedish humanitarian worker. With his hair dyed blonde, blue contact lenses (expensive and irritating, but a worthwhile investment), and a feigned lack of expertise in the Serbo-Croatian language (communicating with the Canadians in French, though listening in to their English conversations), he acts the part to get through without much scrutiny as a foolish do-gooder from a non-NATO neutral. As he passes into arrivals, he keeps his eye open for his cell members and their local contact.
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Re: Introduction: Butmir Airport, Sarajevo

Postby thumbprince » Wed May 22, 2013 4:07 pm

Within five minutes of your arrival, the three of you are separately asked to wait in an office room apart from other arrivals. After taking the time for you all to confirm your affiliation with Delta Green, an older Russian officer enters the room with an angry look on your face. The ID badge on his lapel reads "Dolinin V" in Cyrillic and English. Without a greeting he slams a stack of papers onto the desk before you, and you see that it contains dossiers on your current covers.

"How in the world can you be traveling under these names? I must express my disappointment that your tradecraft is so shoddy - I half-expected you to arrive on the same flight. The Cold war may indeed be over, but I assure you there are still people watching the comings and goings of Westerners with interest."
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Re: Introduction: Butmir Airport, Sarajevo

Postby tutunaku » Wed May 22, 2013 10:37 pm

Austin gives a particularly Gallic shrug.
"I'll have you know Aurelien Castets is a well regarded freelance journalist."

He flicks ash on the ancient steel table, annoyed. He knows it'd be easier if he could just have his uncle John sort it out. But that is out of the question.
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Re: Introduction: Butmir Airport, Sarajevo

Postby Mr. Handy » Thu May 23, 2013 5:19 am

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"I'm sorry," says Olivia. "This is my first assignment, and I haven't had much training yet. What exactly is wrong with Dr. Rachel Spenser? I didn't even pick the name, it was given to me. If it's that I look too young to be a doctor, thank you, but I assure you that I am one - and I'm also a couple of months younger than it says here."
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Re: Introduction: Butmir Airport, Sarajevo

Postby tormsen » Thu May 23, 2013 4:46 pm

Luka smiles. "You didn't seem to pay much attention when I was an East German border guard for three months, comrade, he says drily in Russia, and then switches to English, "And to think I spent all that money on these contact lenses."

Spoiler:
Can I spend a point of Cover and/or Preparedness to have a second shell cover separating the Russians from my actual identity? Like a Matryoshka doll of covers within covers.
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Re: Introduction: Butmir Airport, Sarajevo

Postby thumbprince » Sat May 25, 2013 12:18 pm

"Perhaps I should apologize then, for the fault is likely that of your superiors. If I was able to tell whom your agency had sent, then others might also have done so."

He shows crooked teeth in a smile with little warmth. "I am Vsevelod Dolinin. Polkovnik - colonel - in the Russian Army, and GRU. Decades ago our organizational ancestors worked with each other, and we must do so again."

Spoiler:
tormsen, just note the cover ID and how many points you are allocating from your Cover rating in the Character Information thread please
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Re: Introduction: Butmir Airport, Sarajevo

Postby tutunaku » Sat May 25, 2013 6:51 pm

Austin leaned back in his chair awaiting what else the Russian was going to say.
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Re: Introduction: Butmir Airport, Sarajevo

Postby Mr. Handy » Sat May 25, 2013 7:36 pm

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Olivia smiles back. "Well met, Colonel Dolinin," she says. "I'm glad we can be on the same side again. When our organizations' forebears worked together before, was this during the Great Patriotic War?" she asks, using the Russian name for World War Two. It was the only time that the United States and the Soviet Union had been allies, so it would make sense.
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Re: Introduction: Butmir Airport, Sarajevo

Postby thumbprince » Sun May 26, 2013 12:44 pm

"Your group was instrumental in helping us eliminate fascists during the war," his smile turns predatory, "as well as certain rivals who would truck with what the Nazi pigs would have unleashed. Meeting in Germany, members of both our agencies were gratified to know that there was someone with a similar disposition to such horrors and the men who dealt with them in both armies. At that time, we devised a method to contact each other that could penetrate both Iron Curtain and Berlin Wall.

It has never been used, not even in 1952 when members of your organization visited Siberia to deal with a scientist that had disappeared into Smersh's maw during the war.

But things have changed, and where once people courted the darkness in the name of patriotism, the motive is greed. A priceless object of Russian patrimony has been stolen from the state and brought here, for ultimate sale in the West."
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Re: Introduction: Butmir Airport, Sarajevo

Postby Mr. Handy » Sun May 26, 2013 4:45 pm

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Olivia nods, glad to have picked up this piece of intelligence. "What was stolen, and do you know who has done it?" she asks, getting down to business.
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Re: Introduction: Butmir Airport, Sarajevo

Postby thumbprince » Mon May 27, 2013 12:10 pm

"You may or may not know that our unit guards several partial or full copies of the Necronomicon. Many were acquired by Red Army Trophy Brigades at the end of the war, while others date from the library of Ivan the Terrible himself. We had hoped that their existence had been forgotten in the chaos following the end of the Soviet Union. But a European buyer contacted a GRU general earlier in the year, offering an obscene sum for one of the lesser-known copies, in an extinct language. Before we could prevent his removal of the book, it was brought here by military air transport - about the only way to get something unnoticed from Russia into the west. While the thief has been dealt with, we have not been able to move against Bardysh. This is either because his presence is tacitly accepted by many in the Russian Army, or because the thief has paid off certain officers to ensure that the transaction occurs."
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Re: Introduction: Butmir Airport, Sarajevo

Postby tormsen » Mon May 27, 2013 6:27 pm

Luka furrows his brow, ""The Necronomi-what?"
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Re: Introduction: Butmir Airport, Sarajevo

Postby Mr. Handy » Mon May 27, 2013 9:47 pm

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"I've never heard of the book either," says Olivia. "Did the thief talk? Do you know how the thief made contact with Bardysh to arrange the sale?"
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Re: Introduction: Butmir Airport, Sarajevo

Postby tutunaku » Tue May 28, 2013 2:16 pm

Surely, if this book is as important as you say, you would be throwing military assets as well.

Austin lights another cigarette, but lets it smolder before taking a drag.
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Re: Introduction: Butmir Airport, Sarajevo

Postby thumbprince » Tue May 28, 2013 3:31 pm

"Even though the instigator of the theft is in our custody, there are too many payoffs for Bardysh to simply cut and run. Incidentally, some of these include Russian officers here in Bosnia - hence my reluctance to treat this as an internal matter.

Therefore I think he will carry out the sale, unless he has some way out that no one has noticed. But this would mean turning his back on a lucrative career."
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Re: Introduction: Butmir Airport, Sarajevo

Postby Mr. Handy » Wed May 29, 2013 3:39 am

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"Do you know from interrogation of the thief how the seller was planning to contact Bardysh?" asks Olivia. "That could help us get to him. With enough knowledge and a decent forgery, we might even be able to pose as the sellers to get close to him."
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Re: Introduction: Butmir Airport, Sarajevo

Postby tormsen » Wed May 29, 2013 9:51 am

"If I can get some information on the buyer, I can pose as anyone." Luka says confidently, "Alternatively, we could pose as rival buyers with a better offer. We could catch Bardysh by manipulating his greed, and then when the buyers come gunning for us, we get them too."
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