Abella is a freelance flash journalist*. She was once a well respected journalist who won a number of prestigious awards for her reporting. However she was caught up in a manufactured story scandal (Referees insert an infamous scandal from your campaign here. Anything from fake product testing on the latest grav car to planting a false story about a contender in a political contest.).
Next she found herself caught up in a scandal regarding some rather “intimate” recordings, flash journalist style, she made of the famous Tri-Vid star Stronham Harper. Now she finds herself reduced to working for information outlets like “The Casual Observer” an electronic version of a supermarket tabloid.
When the players encounter her she is recruiting for an expedition into an uncharted jungle on Kutadis (Foreven 2937). She is very tight-lipped about what exactly the story is she is working on.
The story is one on precursor artifacts. She has information on just such an artifact, an ancient stone monolith in the jungle. She needs the players to help her reach her goal. Hazards could include hostile jungle plants, animals and primitive natives.
1. Everything is as presented above. When the expedition finally finds the monolith it is unclear if it is actually an ancient precursor artifact. Dating of the stones materials and analysis of the hieroglyphs on it are inconclusive. That doesn’t stop The Casual Observer from trumpeting the find as historic and a groundbreaking step in our understanding of the precursors.
2) As #1 but throw in a competing expedition of yellow journalists who will stop at nothing to get the exclusive.
3. As #1 but upon discovering the stone monolith it is clear that it is a cheesy fake. With some good photography it might fool the tabloid consuming public. Which is exactly what Abella sets about doing.
Referee’s note: If the players go along with this they might become infamous later when it is discovered the story was a fake. It they instead blow the whistle on the story they will have made an enemy of a powerful yellow journalism outlet.
4. After traipsing through the jungle for several weeks the expedition finds nothing. The players get stiffed on the back-end of their compensation payments. If they make waves they’ll have made an enemy as in #3 above.
5. The Monolith is the real deal. The players become famous for having been on the expedition and can make quite a fair bit of profit guiding tourists to see the thing.
6. The Monolith turns out to be more than expected. It is a psionic artifact that affects people’s minds, driving some to madness and the whole expedition devolves into a fight for survival.
* Flash Journalism is a method of recording an event in first person usually via a holo recorder the lens for which is implanted in the journalist’s retina. The visual as well as other senses (sound, smell and even touch) are recorded on the users wafer jack and then can be broadcast either in real-time, as a recording or both. The quality of the playback depends on the capabilities of the consumers equipment and can range from visual only to the whole suite of senses recorded.