The Maiden Katrina is the fourth episode of Aztec Gold. It marks the first introduction of Lady Retweet. The episode takes its name from the 45-person passenger dirigible that The Crew borrow from Doc.
After spending the night at Doc's mansion, the crew wakes up and tries to figure out what kind of man he is. Cybersloth notices a picture of a much younger Doc, pre cybernetic implants, next to a young dwarf woman. The Edgelord notices a tattoo on Doc's neck of an old Ares logo. After making some racist comments about elves, Doc earns the ire of Mothra, who tries unsuccessfully to convince the others not to trust him.
Doc insists that he has no racist intentions, just predispositions based on fact.While explaining this, Doc uses a racial term for orks when describing Burnout. He explains the tattoo by saying that he's a retired runner, and Ares is the only big 10 corp he's ever made a run on. Doc also implied that the run went south thanks to an elf mage who got distracted in the heat of battle, causing the deaths of most of Doc's gang. He explains the graveyard (mostly full of dead runners) by saying that they are people he's run with that no one else would bother giving a good burial to. The Edgelord isn't convinced that Doc doesn't just kill runners for entertainment, but holds his tongue.
Doc confronts The Crew with their wanted posters, saying that even in the remote boondocks of Skykomish the Matrix still works. The wnated poster for Cybersloth shows an elf rather than a human, and Doc comments that eithe she got lucky or some chummer fed their enemies some bad intel. As he is showing this off, they notice a press conference by Sora Kobiyashi, their Mr. Hanaka from the second run, in his role as chief engineering lead at Ares Macrotechnology. In the conference he is unveiling a new technology, a chip that plugs into any standard data port to make it operate in a self-contained network, a sort of PAN that is immune to being hacked as it exists outside the matrix.
They tell Doc about their plans to head to the South American jungle, and he tells them that they'll need a language soft and that he knows a gal. The crew agrees to meet with Lady Retweet at the base of Mt. Howard, buying an offline dictionary that can translate written text in several languages, and some other miscellaneous equipment. Doc tells them they can take his ship, the Maiden Katrina, as long as they bring back some goods for him. The goods turn out to be BTLs, which Doc consumes as soon as he gets them.
After gearing up with Lady Retweet, Doc provides another warning to the crew, saying there are three things they need to know about Aztechnology. First, that it's a highly secretive organization with "cartel rule" over all of Aztlan. Doc indicates that he's heard rumors of their plans to push into Amazonia as well. Second, doc warns about the prominent use of blood magic, saying "They don't condone blood magic. They'll tell you that, even was you watch their blood mages pull out their vials and knives. It's not technically illegal in Aztlan, and that technically is an important distinguisher".
The third thing, he adds: they don't like deckers, and tend not to have a lot of matrix security. Doc also warns that getting into Aztlan is easy, but getting out is hard. He recommends buying a one way ticket to save on nuyen. "Blood magic may be legal, but leaving the employ of Aztechnology? That's the worst crime there is. Death penalty, no questions asked."
Finally, Doc adds one last stipulation: that everyone be wired in, either through stimsim or cameras so he can experience the action of running one last time. The group balks, and Doc insists that they'll have to start trusting each other sooner or later. Mothra threatens to steal the Maiden Katrina without wiring up, and Doc mentions that the ship is filled with explosives that he would detonate at the slightest provocation. This remark causes Burnout to draw his gun, but he stands down when he realizes that there are several turrets hidden in the walls around the mansion.
Begrudgingly, the crew boards the Maiden Katrina for their week-long trip to the heart of the Amazon Rainforest.
TriviaEditThe Maiden Katrina and Welcome to the Jungle were recorded as a single episode, but split into two for length, and to better isolate episode notes and images on the website.
At about 23 minutes in, Lady Retweet indicates her software can read Mandarin. As Mandarin is a spoken language, she should have said Chinese.