Ascriber's Tales: No. 1

Am I sufficiently Kawaii, mistah?"

"No. That's - that won't do."

Dr. Rascher

"That's way too on-the-nose

"Yeah, you think 'Comrade Tito' is going to give us a discount for an ingredient we don't sell?"

Parker darkly chuckled, imagining the ambiguously Balkan human trafficker. "You kidding me? He'd charge his own mother to die in his house. Fair price, market price, but no discount for family."

"Oh, plenty of people would do that," Dr. Rascher shook his head, "but he'd sell his daughter if the price was right. To us."

"No way. He hasn't, for starters."

"What? Now you're kidding me. He
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Improved PCAAO Overview:

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UNAAC Overview: The United Nations Anomalous Activities Committee, or UNAAC, is the international regulatory body for anomalous agencies and security worldwide. Member States within this regulatory body are referred as the World Security Council, and contain one of the most powerful political nations to ensure that the rule of law of anomalies are not disrupted.

Established under the Deceleration of the International Anomalous Accords, in 1945, the UNAAC has since been operating under the World Security Council to ensure that the IAA regulatory international laws are enforced and followed to prevent groups and national governments from obtaining anomalous artifacts as an advantage to their cause or agenda.

Improved Overview: The United Nations Anomalous Activities Committee (UNAAC) is a global regulatory body for "official" anomalous agencies, usually those operating with the backing of a national government (PCAAO, MI13, etc). Established in 1945 with the signing of the International Anomalous Accords, UNAAC's charter directs it to restrict and police the actions of anomalous agencies; actual enforcement of the Accords is weak and mostly left to the collective pressure of UNAAC member organizations during particularly outrageous rule breaking, such as national governments using the anomalous in wartime.

In practical terms, UNAAC is a negotiating table where the Authority carries the most weight. Relatively impotent by itself, UNAAC is valuable as a forum to redress grievances and smooth over competing interests between anomalous agencies in an established, diplomatic setting; conflict between these agencies amounts to fratricide, only benefiting the extreme groups that lurk below. To that end, as well, UNAAC facilitates the coordination of agencies and governments against dangerous anomalous GOIs.

In the field, UNAAC maintains a small (low thousands) armed force - the United Nations International Security Anomalous Assistance Force (UNISAAF), commonly referred to as the ISA. Though powerless to physically enforce the Accords on UNAAC members, the ISA serves a valuable and often overlooked role in the forgotten, miserable corners of the globe; operating openly in the guise of regular UN peacekeepers, the ISA suppresses anomalous trafficking and nasty operations by Malthus and others in conflict-prone regions. Notably, these operations often occur in remote areas where Authority presence is light or nonexistent. Often, ISA peacekeepers are the only forces capable of fighting anomalous experiments, massacres, or worse on remote and vulnerable populations; Authority agents are expected to liaise with UNAAC peacekeepers when applicable, and the ASF has provided support for UNAAC operations on certain, desperate occasions. Dangerous anomalies that fall into UNAAC's hands during these operations are sent to the Authority due to our resources, expertise, and clout.

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"Yeah? Look me in the eyes, and tell me that all these people are going to live full lives. That their crushing poverty will disappear, rule of law will appear, and

"I think…" he finally said, trailing off again. "I still think it's right. I can't imagine living any other way."

"That's fine, in a way," the Malthus fighter shrugged, wincing as she gestured with her wounded arm. "We're both kind of selfish, aren't we? Everybody is. Whatever holds your head up high."

"Whatever lets you sleep at night," the peacekeeper grimaced. "Your - your thinking, your perspective, I think I can see the elements now. Some of them. I just can't piece them together into something I'd ever believe, enough to hold an AK for."

"And I won't understand how you make the jump, every day, into thinking your actually 'making a difference' or some shit," the Malthusian smirked, "you really think you're some kind of blue-helmeted hero, huh?"

"Hell of a drug, living with yourself," he blithely offered, drawing a chuckle from the Malthus fighter. "No. Not a hero. Maybe some words on my gravestone, if I get one. Cherished life, especially the forgotten. Or, Loved humanity. Maybe, Died for a Good Cause. Something sappy, but with an outline of my rifle etched into the stone, so the dumb kids know I was goddamn serious about it, you know?"

"No, but we're still coins, you know."

The peacekeeper gave her a weary look, half-smiling. "That's real stupid. There's the Malthus idiocy I've been waiting for this whole time. Coins? What's that even mean?"

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"You think

"No, probably not," she shook her head, pursing her lips. "They can't just agree to disagree, you know?"

"And they can't give up, either.

"I hope they don't end the negotiations by drawing their sidearms," the peacekeeper said, squinting at the negotiators again.

"Uhuh. You don't know Dr. Cobbler, if we threw him into the camp the starving kids would tear him apart. He's got spindly little legs under that suit, and no gun. Something about his beliefs.

"Beliefs? Sounds pretty stupid," the peacekeeper chuckled. "That's going in my report, you know. If we don't end up shooting each other."

"Like I care. He showed up in a Learjet last Monday, he hasn't bled with us. Smooth talker, though."

"Alright," the peacekeeper said, revising his vision, "so Lieutenant Milliard shoots Dr. Cobbler in the chest, and gets a dozen slugs in his chest for the trouble. Everybody down the hill starts shooting."

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"Family's gone, remember? Amazing. A good part of my memory, you know, as a person, would be in the head of some UNAAC puke," the Malthusian groaned good-naturedly.

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