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Unread postPosted: Tue Sep 01, 2020 4:04 pm

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Yeah, The Publisher Guy

Joined: Mon Apr 26, 2004 5:18 pm
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Here is another excerpt from the opening of Rifts CS Manhunters.

By the way, Rifts CS Manhunters has nothing to do with the old Rifts Manhunter RPG produced under license in the 1990s. In fact, I forgot all about that book when I named and started advertising the entire new and unrelated Rifts CS Manhunters sourcebook. No it is too late to change the title. Enjoy. This has not undergone a final edit.

We are Manhunters

© Copyright 2020 Palladium Books -- written by Kevin Siembieda

“We are Coalition Manhunters. We are incorruptible, can’t be bought, and we do what’s gotta be done. No questions asked.
“We are Top Secret, because the CS needs ghosts like us operating out of Psi-Battalion.
“Be proud, recruits. Only the bravest and best are chosen for Manhunters. That includes you Psi-Hounds and Kill Hounds. The best of the best who aren’t afraid to get your hands dirty.
“Our job is simple and vital. We track down traitors and threats to CS security. Threats that the Brass can’t trust to anyone else and we end them. That includes renegade soldiers who have gone AWOL from the military or law enforcement and consort with the enemy. It don’t matter whether they are ISS agents, Psi-Ops boys gone rotten in the head, Dog Boys gone feral, spies and double-agents. Politicians and the business elite too if the Top Brass or the Emperor tells us too. Nobody is off-limits or immune to the reach of Coalition Manhunters. We keep the CS pure and on the right track. It’s sad, but even the best of us can go bad. It is our job to deal with such traitors.
“We also hunt the worst of the worst. The most dangerous smugglers, criminals, and monsters who put the CS in jeopardy. Targets that are too much for the army boys and even the ISS or regular Psi-Division, or who need to be eliminated on enemy soil without an obvious CS intervention. Or whose existence is too sensitive to be dealt with through official channels, but need to disappear.
“You got that? That is how damn important and trusted you are! So live up to the name and oath of loyalty. We are the Coalition Elite. Entrusted with the fate of our nation.
“Manhunters don’t get public glory, because we don’t need it. We are the invisible and the incorruptible. The stalwarts who stand at the forefront of CS security and liberty. We are the glue that keeps the Coalition States safe from betrayers and those of us who go bad. We keep our boys on the straight and narrow. Nobody is beyond our jurisdiction when they turn traitor or threaten the sanctity of these Coalition States or our visionary leader, Emperor Karl Prosek. Nobody!
“When our superiors tell us about the crimes committed by these dirt bags, they do so to help prepare us for the level of desperation and savagery we may be facing. Because we don’t need to know their crimes, do we? No. It is enough to be given a name or a face, and our orders: Terminate or apprehend.
“We are not judge or jury. We are CS facilitators of justice and protectors of the people. When we are called in, the decision has already been made for us. We know our target is a traitor or liability that needs killin’.
“We take that info, locate the threat to our great nation, and eliminate them without question – without hesitation – knowing we are doing good.
“The body is vaporized, leaving no trace, and no chance for cybernetic or bio-system reconstruction let alone any voodoo to raise the dead. We want this filth wiped from the face of the Earth. If our orders are capture, the target is to be apprehended alive and dragged back mostly in one piece, for interrogation. After that, the dirt bag is dropped into a hole somewhere, never to be seen again.
“It does not get any simpler than that. Am I right, recruits!? Damn straight I’m right!
“We don’t need to know nothing beyond kill or capture. We don’t ask questions. We don’t secondguess our superiors. We don’t ask ourselves if what we are doing is right or wrong. It is right or the target would not be our objective. We don’t need any reason more than he’s our designated target for elimination.
“We show our targets no quarter. No mercy. No compassion. Why? Because they don’t deserve none! They are the scum of the Earth or we wouldn’t be lookin’ for ‘em. We facilitate our orders and come home.
“I should not need to remind you, never let the target get into your head. Especially psychics and mages. No interaction and never start thinking of your target as a person with feelings, because they’re not people. They are traitors. Enemies of humanity. Dangerous animals to be hunted down and killed like a mad dog. Period.
“You start thinking of your target as a person, you just made your whole team vulnerable.
“It makes no difference if that target is a monster or human. This person’s life, family, hopes, and dreams came to an end when they turned against the Coalition States. They’re your target for a reason that is above your pay scale to know. You make a positive I.D. and do the job.
“Kill or capture. That’s your job. A fast, confirmed kill. No muss, no fuss. Or a quick snatch and grab as quiet as a ghost.
“There will be no revenge torture under my command. We get in, get out, and make the kill or grab and bag the perp. We shove a gag in his mouth and a bag over his head, and get his ass to the designated drop point as quick as possible without further interaction or incident.
“Anyone gets in our way, they pay the price. Lethal force is always advised on these manhunts.
“You are standing before me because you have been hand selected to be a CS Manhunter. It means someone thinks you are the best of the best. Relentless. Trustworthy. Loyal beyond reproach. Deadly as Hell.
“Nobody escapes the Coalition Manhunters. Not ever. Don’t matter who it is. If the target is your own mother you kiss her goodbye and pull the trigger.
“Whoever finds themselves with a Manhunter squad on their tail, might as well give up or take their own life, because we never stop until we accomplish our mission, or we get sent to our graves first. And we don’t die easy, do we, Manhunters?! Hell no. And when it comes to a firefight, the filth had better kill us all, because as long as one of us is left breathing, justice shall be ours.
“Say it with me, Boys, justice is ours!”

– A pep talk by Captain “Killer” Kalvin Kowalski to new recruits assigned to his platoon of CS Manhunters.

The CS Manhunters are Psi-Battalion’s elite hit squad. Some of the Coalition’s most powerful and dangerous psychics. Psychotic in their loyalty to the CS, Coalition Manhunters are members of a Special Forces Division within Psi-Battalion.
Thanks to Erin Tarn’s various exposes, everyone knows CS citizens who exhibit psychic abilities must register with the Psychic Registration Program (PRP) and are “tagged and chipped” with an Identification Code (IC). Identification Coding requires a bar code to be tattooed on the back of the neck and a simple implant placed under the skin that identifies them as psychics. A sort of high-tech brand.
Wherever a citizen living or working inside a Coalition Fortress City, military compound, or any secure CS facility or habitat, the chip is automatically scanned as the psychic passes through doorways and other locations with concealed IC readers, which are everywhere. They function as silent alarms and notification systems that automatically engage to instantly alert security to the presence of a psychic. The data displayed includes photographic I.D. and a complete profile of the citizen, including his or her age and other personal data, including job, employer, security clearance, home address, and known psionic abilities. Remember, only powerful Major and Master Psychics must participate in the PRP and get an IC (Identification Chip). Minor Psychics are on a list, but are not tagged and chipped.
Erin Tarn and most outsiders see this as an infringement of privacy and personal rights. They also erroneously assume all psychics are feared and scrutinized by the CS authorities and treated as second-class citizens. They are wrong.
People possessing psychic abilities are a matter of concern mainly in regard to outsiders and those psychics who willfully disregard the law and avoid the Psychic Registration Program (PRP). Both are feared and seen as a threat. (“Why are you trying to conceal your abilities? Why haven’t you registered?”)
However, PRP compliant psychic citizens of the Coalition States are held in high regard and given opportunities and privileges the average citizen never knows: Better State education, higher status and position within CS society, superior living accommodations on the upper levels of fortress cities and skyscrapers, and once proven loyal and trustworthy, they are awarded higher paying jobs within the government, the military, and the authorities. Similar special consideration and privileges are also extended to their immediate family, especially children who are also likely to be psychics. The bottom-line, psychics who toe the line are among the “unofficial elite” citizenry of the Coalition States, and have been for generations.
Before a psychic is tagged and chipped, they are tested, evaluated and those with the greatest potential psychic abilities are recruited, often from a young age, to work within the Coalition States’ Military and Intelligence communities. Such recruits receive a superior education, stronger and more focused indoctrination, and are placed in special training programs to develop and hone their psychic abilities while at the same time turning them into super-patriots. These secret programs have been fine tuned and in place for nearly 100 years to create psychic operatives with psionic abilities with much more nuance and range than the average psychic outside these programs. Thus, many Coalition psychics possess additional powers that have been developed from the more common psionic powers. Telekinetic Intuitive Combat, for example, is a further developed combat ability that combines elements of Telekinesis with sensory perception.
Like the use of magic and spell casting, psionic abilities are summoned and controlled by the mind and require practice and focus. The more an ability is used, the more adept the psychic becomes in using it. With proper training and practice, that familiar power can be used in ways others have not considered, or with an expanded range of effects or influence. Most psychics learn to channel their Inner Strength through raw instinct, natural aptitude, emotion, and willpower. Even natural psychics will tell you that it was only through desire, trial and error, and practice that they learned or developed certain abilities. However, the scientists of the Coalition States working with psychics and the military for generations, have developed training programs and skills that improve the level of control to expand the range of psionic abilities and to create new applications from basic abilities such as Telekinesis and various psionic sensory capabilities. Under the tutelage of an experienced, trained CS psychic who can show the young, inexperienced psychic different uses of, say Telekinesis, do the young psychics even know to try using their innate abilities in a specific or different way.
As with magic and sports, seeing is believing. Throughout history certain levels of physical, mental, and scientific achievements were thought to be impossible until someone proved otherwise. With that revelation, suddenly the impossible becomes the attainable, and not just by the truly gifted, but by those who follow a specific training regimen and orientation. Focus, motivation, and discipline are key, and go hand in hand with someone who can illustrate and guide the young psychic by showing them what is possible when they apply themselves properly. The most focused, motivated and disciplined students and soldiers can accomplish amazing things. That is a truism for all walks of life, and the origin of the old saying, “Where there is a will, there is a way.” But it is especially true in the mastery of psychic abilities (and magic).

More to follow ...

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