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Spy vs Spy?


Tahsir
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OOC: This is about Mael's worldwide spread of spies, that are currently going to the 50 nearest nations to tasmania. I happen to be one of them.

:: Port Dranagg, seasonal port on the Ross Ice Shelf::

The fishing boat was a common sight. Especially one marked as Terrastian Empire. After a quick check of ID and cargo, obviously fish, harbour boats guided it in past the flows and bergs to the summer ice port of Dranagg.

The port was basically made up of corraled ice bergs pressed into duty as floats for the docks. A ship would be pushed into a cut dock on a berg, which had anchors attached to prevent rolling, and then be hauled to the large ramp leading up to the top of the ice shelf. There cargo would be offloaded and brought up onto the ice shelf, and stored in the small town of wood and fabric huts and lodges that made up the port community. It was easily dismantled during winter, and could house several hundred drunken fishermen and longshoremen.

There was one problem that the port was always in danger from, Calving. Calving of the ice shelf in the area had been reduced by the drilling of holes on a diagnal through the ice, and filling them back up with water to make long solid ice bonds. The steam from the heater truck that was constantly drilling new support holes was active 24 hours. The extreme length of daylight this time of year meaning that shifts were long and boring.

Most of the ships passing in and out of the harbour were fishing vessels and harbour guides. Occasionally big transports would simply dock right next to the ice shelf, and have a mobile crane take the cargo out on a man made platform of ice added to the ice shelf, and several hundred meters into the more solid areas like a fan. For extremely heavy equipment and cargo the ramp was closed off, and a second ice ramp was made from the ship to the ice shelf. Bonding the ship to the ice shelf. This was always a careful operation, and could only be done twice a day when the tides were just right.

However, for the fishing boat, this was not one of the times. Tide was in flux, and smaller vessels were using the ramp to bring in their catches. Palettes of fish, simply left open, since they froze almost instantly, were dragged up the ramp by small tractors with chain tires, and empty palettes were brought back down in stacks.

For the crew of the boat, almost all of the unloading was done by Dranaggans. Part of using the port ment free cargo transfers. However, transport up the ramp was by foot only if it wasnt cargo, and so anyone leaving the boat had to hoof it up a 250 meter long ramp that brought them 50 meters up.

Edited by Tahsir Re
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The Crew would park the boats and under the guise of Terrastian Fisherman, they quietly disembarked their boat after the captain radioed the harbor master that he was setting his crew ashore for some well needed rest after suffering through an ice-storm at sea. He noted their planned stay at one to two weeks. They picked up their belongings, all Terrastian in origin, and quietly made their way ashore, they would go through any customs as normal, presenting their very professionally prepared falsified documents that only might be discovered to be fake in a lab under the proper chemical treatments.

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Security was rather lax at the docks itself. The very reasonable sense of security that no one could walk anywhere from important from the port being the main reason. The Dranaggan guards waved the group through half ignoring what they were saying, one of them mindlessly writing down their intentions out of force of habit. There were quite a few of them there though.

On would think 2 maybe 3, at most, were needed for this kind of port, but there was at least a platoon. In fact the one writing had sergeant stripes on his gray uniform. The port town itself looked quite like a military base.

The obvious wooden lodge taverns, and fabric living tents are obvious. They make up a town of only about 3 streets and a few alleys. A area filled with cargo set on the left side of the town with everything covered in tied down tarps, and surrounded by walls of cut ice. On the right side was a local motor pool. Various hauling tractors, 2 extra cranes, and a few covered flat bed trucks that must be for the winter time migration off the exposed ice shelf. However it was the numerous large military tents that made up an area as big as from one end of the cargo area to the end of the Motor pool. A division of gray uniformed troopers wandered around the town, and two companies of transports, trucks, and the light Dranaggan tanks. Most of these patrolling around the ice shelf.

A lot of the troopers seemed to be enjoying the numerous bars that the port provided, and had packed them all.

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OOC: What nations are these going to?

OOC: These in particular are going to Dranagg. However, I think you're far enough away that you don't have to worry about it. I'm actually more of a viable target than you, and that's saying something, considering my nation is a friend of his.

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The fishermen, for that was what they considered themselves to be.. their roles first, their jobs second, made their way into the port town and picked out various hotels and places to stay. They split up like any normal good crew would based on personal preferences and poisons. Some stayed near bars.. some picked nicer apartments. The guards didn't deter them in the slightest. They were trained to obey local law and that's what they did. They began to take observations.. a pair of them filed for naturalization in the Dranagg office, noting intents to stay in the area with their occupations. They began their observations.. and they began to communicate in the form of letters with their home office via residential addresses in the Terrastian empire that were then relayed to residential addresses in Tasmania.. and then finally, sent to home office where they were reviewed and the normal looking love and pen-pal letters were decoded for their actual meaning.

Every weekend, they would go out and lay traps for lobster and fish.. and every weekend they'd come home to their various bunks.. fulfilling the role of citizen and spy.

Edited by Maelstrom Vortex
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It was like any number of the large taverns of the port town. Made of wood, and only two stores tall, the long, thin building was packed full of booze, food, and drunks. All sorts of drunks. Sailors, longshoremen, soldiers on R&R stints, and one of the spies. No one knew he was one, but what happened next didn't really care who he was.

As is a rather frequent occurance in a port with little to do, someone made someone else angry, and a third party, who was with the angered party, threw the first punch. It was all that was needed to start and almighty bar fight. People joined in just to do it. Punching, kicking, throwing tables, on the occasion of Ed "Big arm" McGregory, and not caring who they went after. It broke the dull days, and more than a few bones of those involved.

Fortunately the infirmary was never far away...

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The iceberg docks really were a great piece of ingenuity and old fashioned "can do" attitude at work. The unfortunate part is that if one of the anchors worked lose the boat, and everything else, would slid off into the frigid Ross Sea. It if floated, it could be saved, if it was alive, well, at least they had something to send home. Usually the boats were just set adrift since the docks were cut without any overhangs to snag them, but the rare boat slides in to steep and sinks.

It also happened to every dock at least once....

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At the Naturalization office a tired man sat at a desk filing papers, signing forms, and logging cargo. A thankless job that no one wanted, but he got for trying to take someone's snow shoes back at the capital. He really could care less about this place, but it was either do this, or the expedition. He shuddered.

The first naturalization slip passed over his desk without a single appraising glance. Signed, filed, and added to the mail to be delievered to the ministry of internal affairs, or was it the trade ministry? Had they gotten to replacing old Taarel yet? Bah don't think about it, just finish and then you can go on break...

He never noticed that he had placed the second one into the mail going to the ministry of war.....

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A common problem amoung foreigners arriving in Dranagg, is that almost anywhere on the planet it is incredibly warmer than the current temprature. Even at a coastal area like Port Dranagg was. With an average temp of -30 F it was certainly an acquired resistance that caused a lot of frostbite cases in those not prepared for just how bad that could be. The Dranaggans dressed like it was a cold fall day for most nations. Only covering exposed skin in comparably thin wind resistance fabrics in few layers. It was summer for them, but foreigners were often dressed in thick bundles of layers for warmth. This was by no means an assurance of protection from cold related injuries as the infirmary records list 1 in 10 non-antarctican visitors to Dranagg suffer from mild to severe frost-bite in their first month.

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Most of the crew went apparently relatively unnoticed in their current jobs. They were accustomed to the cold.. it wasn't long ago their nation, like Dranagg, was stranded on the god forsaken continent of Antarctica. Things went normal, tick-tock procedure..

Then agent Clemmons didn't sign in. One of the eleven remaining men said they'd walked by his house one day on a jog, noticing police busting down his door. He must have been compromised.. although they're not sure how. (He was the one who had his naturalization papers end up at the ministry of war :-P). The man bit his cyanide capsule and had been drug out of the place dead.

The naturalized "shadows" moved deeper in land and started to try to find jobs in basic civil duties.. law enforcement, another applied to law school.

The other 8 kept fishing.. they would probably stay there.. doing their work along the coast. It was a good spot to watch the military from because they'd know when ships and people would move.

Edited by Maelstrom Vortex
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The police chief never knew why people signed up for the foreign legion, and then didn't want to go. Though most didn't go so far as suicide like this one. Damn pecuilar that.

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Life at the port went on. A large surplus of Fish was begining to build up on in the cargo areas, and the army showed signs of activity in their camp. Troopers were seen less and less in the bars and taverns, and more and more moving around the streets on business.

A few notable shipments arrived.

One was a shipment of PETN, which the 5th Mechanized Company had surrounded the crane dock, and only allowed a few experienced and trusted Longshoremen to unload the explosive cargo.

Another was a small container ship loaded down with drilling equipment. Not unusual with the publically known tunnel system in Dranagg, but it was all locally made parts and machines.

The last interesting cargo for a while was a lost ship that docked at the port. The captain, in an effort to get repairs to a seized engine, unloaded 5 crates of cigars if the port engineers would fix his ship. They had, of course, obliged.

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In the time it took from the application for naturalization, and the cigar ship, the approval had finally arrived for temporary naturalization. A visa good until June was issued. Permanant naturalization could only occur for those already at the capital. The real problem, with getting to the capital from the port, was 1000 kilometers of dangerous ice shelf.

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The information on the odd shipments was sent back to high command via the usual route. Instructions came back by pen-letter to try to get on duty as a longshoreman. The man with official naturalization papers and the temporary visa did just that, applied to be a longshoremen for the industrial docks with the group that was handling the PETN.

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