Under the direction of Peaches, the team drive their van through the passageway underneath the auto shop. They pass a bar of all things early on, which Peaches explains is ‘Five by Five’, a smuggler den where she does business sometimes – if they’re ever looking to get contraband across the border, that’s the place to go. Beyond this is another lift, this time an industrial cargo lift large enough to drive into. Peaches gets out once they’re on it, draws the rusted steel grating and pulls a lever to descend, which turns out to be a slow descent of about 12 floors.
When they reach the bottom they find the lift opens on to an old ruined subway platform, which has had ramps added to it so you can drive down on to the (now inert) tracks. The whole place is crumbling, and Peaches explains that the whole place was destroyed by earthquakes when Ghostwalker attacked this sector when Aztlan controlled it. Her father and some smuggling associates had slowly dug it out over the years after for their own purposes. She directs them to drive down the tunnel to the left.
It’s all rather uneventful, they pass a number of similarly ruined stations before coming to a section where the tunnel is come rely caved in, but off to the right the tunnel wall has broken through and a rough rubble track lined with pallets has been constructed. Peaches says this is where the routes switches over to some old military tunnels, and that Faceman should don his tin foil hat now due to the background radiation (he has unshielded cranial cyberware). Tor leaves his come link on an open channel to listen for interference and both he and Lightning keep an eye on their bio monitors just in case.
The military tunnel is smaller, and also has a set of rails but they’re smaller gauge as if built for something specific like a shuttle platform. As thy drive along, they pass doors in the side of the tunnel with a basic platform and railing set up. Indications are that radiation levels are higher than normal here, but not dangerous so long as the exposure is not for extended periods. Eventually they follow a gentle curve in the tunnel and Peaches warns that there’s a patched section ahead that they should slow down for.
When the patched section comes into view, Peaches draws a breath. The tunnel suddenly slopes downwards, and then back up again, and in the middle is a gap where a section has collapsed. The far side is still attached, and so sloped sharply down into the chasm while the near side is detached, meaning a sharp drop. Peaches says that there should be a bridge here though, and was last week. The team can just make out that on the opposite side of the gap is a pickup truck, with it’s winch extending a chain down the sharp slope – so the truck must have got across, but maybe something following it broke the bridge and fell in, and they’d been trying to winch it out. However neither Mouse nor Tor can see any life signs in astral space on the other side; Lightning’s cyber eyes do pick out a pair of legs sticking out from underneath the truck though.
Everyone except Peaches gets out of the van and starts taking a look around. Faceman is considering trying to jump, but it’s a bit far and on looking downwards, there’s a faint greenish glow at the bottom of the chasm, 30m down, and Lightning’s biomonitor starts making a loud warning sign just leaning over the edge – looks like a toxic dump of some sort.
Tor sets up Joe on the roof of the van, pointing backwards to cover their rear. Whiskey gets out a grapple line thrower and sets up a rope crossing diagonally across the gap. Mouse enters astral again and scouts out the area below – it appears to be a separate sub-tunnel underneath which this tunnel has collapsed into, but underneath she sees 5 figures – ghouls – one troll sized, the others human sized, and all dual-natured. The things hiss when they see her (they can obviously see the astral plane), and Mouse quickly returns to her body to warn everyone.
Lightning drops a flash pack down into the gap which starts strobing, and everyone backs off. Tor turns around on the van to face the edge, and both he, Lightning and Whiskey take aim. Faceman jumps on top of the rope and starts walking across, using his hands on the ceiling of the tunnel to steady himself, planning to get across before the creatures reach the lip, but he only makes a bit of progress initially. He’s still wearing his tin foil hat and the strobing light makes him look like some kind of dancer/circus act wearing a disco ball on his head!
Just afterwards the troll ghoul pulls himself over the lip, holding the flash pack which starts to affect the team too (although Lightning has flare compensation which helps a bit). Whiskey shoots it out with his pistol which destroys it – which Lightning isn’t too happy with since they’re rechargeable! But still, that stops the flashing. Lightning shoots and kills the orc ghoul which has pulled himself up the other side. Peaches is frantically locking the van doors and shouting at them not to let the ghouls touch them, because they’re infectious. The troll ghoul charges toward Whiskey, but catches the rope that Faceman is walking along at the same time. Faceman jumps off, dodging and rolling and avoiding the nasty horns, but the rope is broken. The Troll ghoul takes a couple of swipes at Whiskey but misses – Whiskey draws his katana at this point. Mouse (who has retreated to the van with a terrified Peaches) tries to hit the troll ghoul with a Bugs spell, but it isn’t affected. Lightning hits it with a couple of shots but it stays standing, and Tor eventually dispatches it with burst fire from Joe, and Whiskey manages to duck out of the way of the gore fountain.
Two more ghouls pull themselves up over the lip, one of which is dispatched by Lightning and the other is engaged in Melee by Whiskey and Faceman. However from behind, two more human ghouls slam into the back of the van, and climb over to try to make a meal of Tor, who spins around to face them. They claw at him but he manages to keep away from them while spraying bullets at them from Joe. Lightning turns to assist, and Mouse enters astral again to engage them in astral combat. One of them goes down under this barrage, while the other is badly wounded. Meanwhile Whiskey and Faceman keep at the one remaining ghoul they’re facing, but manage to avoid hitting it.
So far, no-one has been scratched by any ghouls, which is a very good thing.