Nico smiled up at Max with her very best innocent pleading look, and he knew that she had something that would violate dozens of sentient beings’ rights treaties in mind.
“Why don’t we split up? If we all interrogate different targets, we can compile information much faster and hopefully get the drop on these troublemakers before they can do anything else?” She suggested with that innocent smile on her face.
Max could already sense that the Station Boss had fallen for her helpful act, and it would only hurt his credibility to call her out on her nonsense right now, so Max shrugged and went along with it.
“We all have interrogation skills, so I will take the one that is most likely to know something since he tried to inject himself to avoid detection, and you two can take the others.” Max offered.
“That will be a wonderful time-saving technique. Do either of you require any specialized tools?” The Boss asked.
“I’ve got everything with me,” Nico replied, indicating her Tech Adept Harness.
The bodyguards shuddered at the implication since the tentacles had a variety of clamps, snips, torches and tools available that could be used in any number of nefarious ways.
“Sure, the lunch room is right there. Someone grab Subcommander Nico a block of butter.” The Valkia agreed without questioning what she needed it for.
Max knew. Oil on the skin transferred heat very well. So oiling the bottom of their feet and placing a torch near them would let you cook them until the bones fell out without killing the subject through dozens of hours of intense agony.
It probably wouldn’t come to that. With all of the other ideas in her head, the burning feet would be the least of her subject’s worries, and they would certainly give up their secrets in a reasonable timeframe.
“Oh, I have something that can be helpful.” Annabelle giggled, then pulled a headband out of her flat space.
“And what might that be?” The Valkia asked.
“It’s a VR headband, but instead of pulling you into a simulation, it broadcasts the signals it picks up from your brain onto a screen. It’s like a remote camera that uses the eyes as its lens. But if you use it on dreaming people, you get all sorts of funky stuff. My mom was working on it a few weeks ago before she ran into the dream glitch.” The girl explained.
Max gave her a direct look, wondering why she had it if her mom was the one working on it, and the little Innu went into immediate lockdown mode, singing along with a cartoon theme song in her head so he couldn’t see her thoughts.
Not that he really needed to. He knew that she had stolen it from her mom’s room. He would just add it to the list of transgressions that she would have to apologize for when she returned.
It wouldn’t do Max any good, but it would be great for the Boss and his teams. He took it from her with a gentle pat to her head and passed the device off to one of his subordinates who would be holding an interrogation, then nodded to his Innu assistant, who stepped forward to escort Annabelle away.
“This sort of thing isn’t for children or researchers. Nico is a special case since she’s also a Mecha Pilot, but we should go have some Coffee. You can make it from your ship’s replicator without one of them to unlock the code, right?” The technician asked hopefully.
“Of course. Commander Keres doesn’t lock the replicator. He just bullies you and makes you do homework so much that you don’t have time to sneak snacks outside of designated times.” Annabelle replied.
The technician giggled at her pouting expression but let the little Innu lead her back to Santa Maria and the promise of Raspberry Lattes.
“You’re not going to stop her from drinking stimulants in the middle of the day.” The Boss asked.
“I’m also not going to ask you to send anyone with them. I’m not sure that any other species is truly prepared for what is about to happen inside that ship.” Max laughed.
“I will send a few more Innu with more even temperaments to accompany them so that they don’t get out of hand and make a mess of your ship.” he agreed with a smirk.
The bodyguards led the way out of the room toward the holding cells where their prisoners were being kept, and Max focused on listening to the thoughts inside the cells as much as he could. Chances are they thought their minds were secure since the Illithid didn’t have the numbers to be everywhere, and there were none recorded as being on board this station.
Max’s target was the first in line, while Nico’s was supposed to be second. He saw her stop just outside the door and tweak her morphable features to look more childish and innocent before she grabbed the medical cart that they had prepared for the interrogation and stepped inside the room.
Max ignored the fate of that unfortunate soul for the moment and turned his thoughts to the unconscious man in the room he had picked. Waking him up would be easy enough, but for the moment, Max stood outside and listened in on the man’s dreams. It was all nonsense, so Max entered the room to wake him up and get this process started.
The prisoner came to just after Max entered. He struggled against his bonds for a moment and worked his jaw, attempting to crush a hidden poison capsule. Fortunately, the team who took him in had put a ring gag in his mouth, forcing it open for just that reason, and Max had plenty of time to find a set of curved forceps and practice his skills as an amateur dentist.
“Now that we understand each other, how about we start with what you know about the company that has been importing Klem into the Alliance.”