The characters are on the planet Cuto, a lonely backwater hive world like millions of others planets of the Imperium of man, toiling away in service to the God Emperor. Cuto lies off the shipping lanes in the Helican Subsector, a short distance from Thracian Primarus. It is a dark industrial world, with hive cities dotting its rocky continents.
The characters dwell within the choking air of one of the massive industrial hives. They are mercenaries of a sort, operating as freelancers and serving the highest bidder. They wander through the seedy parts of the city, investigating, uncovering plots and covens and generally poking their noses where they shouldn’t. The characters routinely do the work of enforcers and investigators, for any who might hire them, working on contract or hired to find threats of interest to Imperium authorities or to private individuals.
Recently there has been a series of contracts the characters have take, as individuals or as a group, issued from a high placed Imperial official or office. This is not uncommon as the Imperium authorities have found it useful to often contract out bothersome or dangerous tasks. This way, valuable imperial servant are not placed at risk.
Over time the characters have come to realize that some of the people paying their bills work for the Imperium investigative bureau, the Inquisition. This fills the characters with not just comfort that the job is generally well paying, but the Inquisition has a reputation for casting aside, or eliminating “workers” it finds no longer…useful. Still a person needs to live, and the money that is paid by their benefactor allows the characters some freedom of action and movement denied to most of those that live in the Hive city.
Most of the work that has been done by the characters has not been particularly dangerous. There have been encounters with the denizens which object to their discovery by Imperial officials. For the most part the characters are experienced in dealing with the situations and nothing has been encountered that has proven to be overly difficult. In general the “heavy lifting” (fighting) in these situations have been done by local law enforcement, Arbite Special Ops groups, the Adeptus Ministorum, more commonly known as the Ecclesiarchy forces or the Planetary Defense Force (PDF). The characters have done the initial investigations and provided intelligence support.
The characters are currently in the lower areas of the hive, where life is not particularly dangerous or expensive. The characters are conducting their normal activities of sniffing around and sorting through heard innuendoes and clues. They keep their eyes open for gangers and killers looking to settle some long held grudge.
Nothing has arisen recently that would be of interest to the inquisition and imperial authorities and you have take instead, to shuttling secure messages from low level Imperial functionaries and their superiors living higher in the hive and from the higher spires to innocuous people in the worn out sections of the city. Though being a messenger is not particularly “swashbuckling” or exciting, it pays the bills, and provides your character’s friends and colleagues with some humor.
The most recent contract is decidedly urbane and common. For the established fee, which will keep you out of debt, and not hungry, you have undertaken to secure a package of documentations from a former Imperial Guard trooper living a normal and unimpressive life in the lower hive. You are to bring the papers to an Imperial office in the central part of the upper city. You have performed such duties in the past and there is nothing unusual about the task.
The man holding the document is named is “Norman” and he will meet you at a designated time and place in a small neighborhood bar, called “The Boiling Point.”
The nondescript establishment sits huddled among massive refrigeration units used by local industries for a variety of purpose. The region is known for its chilly temperature and lies in a lower portion of the region. It is always shuttered in a deep cold fog. The people who work in the area wear thick coats and carry powerful lanterns to guide them through the dark cold haze.
The Boiling Point specializes in hot beverages popular throughout the Imperium and also has varieties favored locally. Common and specialized teas can be had and “Belle” the propitiator has several caffeinate she has selected personally.
The Boiling Point is a rare “bright spot” in a rather gloomy part of the city. Ruffians and gangers are known to frequent the area and more dangerous creatures are rumored to prowl in the darkened crevices. It is not uncommon for individuals or small groups to simply disappear or come under attack. This is simply the life one leads in the communities of the Imperium. Very little in life is safe.
Most people living in the central and lower areas of the hive carry weapons upon their persons, whatever they can afford. A sharp piece of metal or stout club, a manufactured blade, perhaps is what is commonly carried. Some have been able to procure a hand sized slug thrower such as a stub pistol, Autopistol or a sawed off shotgun. Others have found economic favor and carry small submachine guns called “Subbers” or a perhaps a shotgun or autogun. The advanced military gear seen in the Imperial Guard is not seen upon the persons working in the hab blocks. To have one is to make oneself a target as much as providing protection.
The “Boiling Point” has glass windows full of light which cast their glow into the street like a lonely lighthouse. It isn’t crowded, nor is it empty but has a smattering of locals and some visitors trying to find warmth from the bone sucking cold of the streets.
Sitting at the bar is a grizzled man in a mended fatigue shirt, wearing a tattered Imperial Guard campaign cap. He holds a cup of steaming liquid in his right crippled hand and his left arm, closest the characters is a bionic replacement, a common sight on retired or released imperial guardsmen. The mechanical claw of his prosthesis rests upon a small package on the bar wrapped in brown paper.
The characters get the sense this is their contact and he does respond with a gravelly voice if asked if he is Norman.
As the characters gather round him he eyes them with the suspicion natural to a former guardsman. Down the bar is a pretty woman approximately 3o yrs of age attending to machines and kettles that serve the liquid refreshments of the “Boiling Point”