Leaving an Agent to the Wolves Discussion

Compiled into Leaving an Agent to the Wolves.

Original post by Tony Toon

2007-12-28, subject "Leaving an Agent to the wolves"

I just wanted to get some feedback and see if everybody agrees with me on this little course of action I'm taking as Keeper..

So Cell R is on their first op (I'm running "This Fire Shall Kill" from The Stars Are Right, but there's no spoilers in here) and they're in their third hotel of the mission. They notice that there's two cultists staking them out in a car outside the hotel.

They need to go meet a contact who has vital information, so one of them leaves the hotel and walks down the street to get a sandwich. The cultists follow him, leaving another agent safe to grab the party's car and take off to meet the contact. So far so good.

The agent goes into the sandwich shop to get a sandwich. The cultists wait outside for him, not really hiding their presence any longer. The agent decides to invite them in and have a chat all civilized like.

After a short discussion on how nosy out-of-towners should leave town, the cultists decide they're not convincing him and say they should just forget it and off him as a sacrifice to their god. He responds by blowing a hole in one of them with his .357. The other one leaps behind a table for cover, so he calmly walks around and puts a matching hole in the second cultist. Then he makes sure to tell me that he finishes them both off with his second handgun to ensure that they're dead. Finally, he waves his FBI badge around to tell the sandwich shop staff that everything's okay, everything is fine, how are you? Oh hey, you pushed the alarm button at the first gunshot?

He gives Cell A a ring on his cell phone, and they tell him to not under any circumstances resist or cause a scene with the police who are on their way. They'll "see what they can do" on their end.

That's where he's been left.. My plan? The police arrest him, call up his superiors, find out he's supposed to be on bereavement leave for his dead great-aunt and that killing two unarmed people without apparent provocation in front of sandwich shop staff was not official FBI business. His cell phone no longer works. He goes to jail and never gets out. If he tries to blab about Delta Green previously overlooked DNA evidence links him to some heinous crime, the kind that inmates will kill other inmates over.

I see it this way. If an agent causes this kind of problem on his first op, DG sees him as a liability, and has no desire to pull the kind of strings and call in the kind of favors it would take to cover this up.

Do you folks agree?

Reply by The Thug Whisperer


I don't even think he would be allowed to remain that much of a loose end. I think Delta Green would arrange for him to be shot while attempting to escape, escape only to vanish without a trace, or to be found dead in his cell, having committed suicide. Dead men tell no tales.

Or wear plaid.

Reply by Russell Rayburn


Gotta say I do. Cock-ups as I see them:

1) Dipshit was carrying his day job id? WTF?

2) Dipshit stuck around after the gun play? Given the unreliability of witness testimony, he stands a good chance of there being no accurate description of him. Also, most cameras in restaurants are pointed towards the cash register, so he might not even be on camera.

"Shot trying to escape" seems a good end; although if DG could intercept the check on the Agent's ID, the FBI denies the credentials are real.

Then, since the Agent is obviously bonkers, send in a psychiatrist to do an evaluation and provide some "medication". If the right drugs were used, "excited delerium" might be the cause of death.

Different post, a little later

You wanna kill two cultists in a room full of witnesses? Ok, fine. I get that. But you need a cover, even for something that whacked out.

Scream "THIS IS FUCKING SUGAR" first, then open fire and run out. Cops will be thinking drug deal gone bad.

Even better, get outside. If the cultists try to stop you, THEN open fire. Depends on the city, but that might even be legal, given castle doctrine laws and if the cultists were armed ( even with knives ).

Better still, lead the cultists some place where you have the advantage. Dark alley, junkyard… some place where no one cares about the loud noises. The Agent leads the cultists to the kill zone, and the other Agents open fire from cover. Done right, it's a blood bath. Soak the mess in gasoline and chuck in a road flare.

Reply by Marshall Gatten


I think Alphonse would call a friendly on the local police force and arrange to have that friendly help the agent "escape" from custody along with an unloaded sidearm to wave around. And then, when the escaping DG agent raises the gun, the friendly will get all kinds of kudos when he shoots the escapee to death.

Reply by duran goodyear


Chuck a flash bang in the far end of the diner, pop a smoke grenade. Then you run out the back door, and make a bee line for the rally point.

… Cause, your smart agents have a safe spot they designated on map before they even entered town for just the kind of deal where going back to the hotel room is a bad idea, right?…

You ever see the movie History of Violence? If not, go see it just for the news coverage that descends on the small back water town when a freak gun fight happens… in a diner.

And seriously? which agent eats or drinks the local food/water anymore?

Most of that is supposed to be silly.
Don't let your agents get away with such heavy handed action, hell, I'm surprised one of the locals at the counter in the diner just enjoying his coffee didn't pull out some pistol also… back water towns being what they are….

Assuming its a back water town.

Reply by Rob


Firstly, Cell A would contact the remaining cell R members and advise them of their predicament. Cell A would be asking "how much can we trust that the genius agent can keep his mouth shut?"

If the answer is "he's going to blab everything", then Cell A would instruct those who know the subject best and can tie up loose ends to dispose of him (the other cell members). This also adds the benefit of deniability. It seals all of this off at the cell itself, without involving anyone else in the conspiracy.

If the agent is (otherwise) discreet, Cell A doesn't have a lot of agents to be wasting. Let the courts take their course. Justifiable Homicide and Self Defense are good defenses. If the agent says he saw a gun, witnesses might back his story up, who knows?

Even if the agent is convicted (unlikely, any Law Enforcement agent can bargain away their badge in a plea deal unless bereaved relatives show up) he will just sit in jail on lockdown until his time is up. He can continue his usefulness by checking out to see if the Aryan Brotherhood has been infiltrated by Hypergeometrical Beings or something. But Cell A wouldn't leave him in jail indefinitely without support. If he feels he's been burned, he will blab his story to anyone who will listen. Cell A knows this, so there are two options: death or continue working for the conspiracy any way you can.

On the subject of the agent being on leave, that's an FBI bureaucratic thing. Being "on leave" has no bearing on your role, duties or powers as a law enforcement officer. If you have a gun and a badge, you're still a cop. He could say he saw the place being robbed or that the cultist guys threatened to kidnap him or someone else. The whole "supposed to be on vacation" subject is between him and his superiors at FBI HQ.

I had a similar problem when I ran "This Fire." One of my agents decided to round up the cultists "1930's cops rousting the vagrants" style, with a SWAT team and a paddy wagon. The lead cultist pretty much looked him in the eye in the interrogation room and said "Now what, smart guy? What am I in for, the wrong aftershave?" The agent decided to play hardball and started talking about the Patriot Act and search and arrest powers. He had a search warrant for the cultist's place of business and home (No Spoilers!). I was forced for the cultist to threaten to "release the hounds" on the police station and make it look like a level of Halo 3 within a few minutes. This gave the player pause, but he was willing to go to the mat to keep this guy.

Eventually, community pressure got the cultist released, but it still brings up the question: don't a "Bad Idea" and "Taking Decisive Action" look a lot alike sometimes? Don't be too hard on this trigger-happy agent. If he can weasel his way out using police powers, the Patriot Act, or outright lying.let him go for it.

Remeber, trainees. The chainsaw is not for combat. It is for body disposal!

Russell Rayburn again


Another solution:

Stand up and ask for everyone's attention. Announce that the two men seated with you just said they want to kill you, and could everyone please keep an eye on them?

If the cultists care at all about blending in, they'll likely look around and laugh it off as some sort of joke. This is where the Agent walks out.

Don't forget that smoke grenades displace oxygen. Asphyxiation in an enclosed space is a real possibility.

[quote on A History of Violence omitted]

More interesting was the "common, unarmed man fights off two robbers" angle. Yes, media coverage happens, but not as often as you'd think. There has to be an angle.

Guy I know got shot in an attempted carjacking after dropping off a friend from a church meeting. He drove himself to the hospital and damn near died of blood loss before getting there. Spent a few days in intensive care learning how to breathe again, but is ok now.

Never a word in any local media.

Reply by Adam Scott Glancy


I agree 110%! Delta Green membership is NOT a license to kill and your agents are NOT 007.

Did you try to explain that to them before they started? If so, fuck 'im. It'll learn him a lesson for his next character. If not? Well, then you should have and you might want to consider some options for getting him out of this via the legal system. Lost evidence. Conflicting witnesses. He loses his badge but keeps his freedom. But he's sure as heck out of the scenario during the legal wrangling.

Personally I love the idea that DG shuts off all contact with him and then warns him to keep his mouth shut about DG and just do his time like a good boy. The moment he starts blabbing about DG: he either gets commited as dangerously delusional, DG aranges to have him shanked (but only if he knows very damaging information), or Majestic-12 swoops in and tells him that they want to help him out. Shooting people in broad daylight in a crowded restaurant is just the kind of crazy they look for at Majestic. They can sell him a story about how they are the real governement agency and DG is a bunch of lame part time amatuers. Next thing you know, your player is turning up working for the opposition and loving all the power he has to hurt and bully people.

If he goes over to Majestic to save his own sorry ass, then DG will pull out the stops to kill him, but if he disappears into Majestic's world of hidden bases and restricted facilities, they may never find him.

Of course, DG could keep him in prison and just keep transfering him from prison to prison (due to overcrowding) to investigate Mythos problems on the inside.

Reply by Mark McFadden


I'd be tempted to do a quick scenario starring your rogue agent as a passaround bitch for the Aryan Nation at a hard time penitentiary - y'know, to reinforce the learning experience.

But, DG has a need for some infrastructure supporting the ops. So, no way is this guy an agent ever ever again, but if DG helps him remain free (through layers of cut-outs and false fronts) give that character something to do and write him off. With a change of identity and location, he might make a fine custodian - you know, driving all over the country renting storage space for Green Boxes or setting up safe houses or purchasing weapons on the black market or any of that stuff that needs doing but no one wants to do during a scenario.

He's retired with a modest stipend and being useful.

The intellectual property known as Delta Green is ™ and © the Delta Green Partnership. The contents of this document are © their respective authors, excepting those elements that are components of the Delta Green intellectual property.