Seven Hells Carolyn Notes

The thumb drive you were given had three videos on it. Each of them feature a human woman named Carolyn who, as Echo would put, has a very "Punk" atmosphere about her. She has styled, died hair, and wears a lot of black, and she seems to like skulls. These videos appear to be recorded in her office, and serve basically as a diary.


Carolyn is nervously puffing on a smoking stick - it emits bright pink smoke though…so you don't think its tobacco. "Hello, whoever is watching this - I am Carolyn Ji Yun, and am serving as this mission's medic and psychiatrist. My personal studies on this mission have reached a point where I feel it would be foolish of me not to prepare for the worst case scenario, and I am unsure I can trust Minerva with these logs. I have purposely divided my research logs onto multiple devices, and have entrusted them with one of Morrigan's synthetic lifeforms - the Djinns. Their unique levels of individuality and agency - a mistake on Morrigan's part - made them unruly servitors for the Five Stars, but they are obedient enough if you can win their trust. That, and the fact they can survive while inert for an unprecedented amount of time - which WAS by design - makes them ideal for this task. I imagine one of them even handed you this device! I apologize for making this a pain in the butt, but if you are viewing this…then it was probably the right move for me to make. The Djinn will help you find the other records, and sorry for the mess we left behind…"

01 & 02 - Erica McDaniel: Intro and Analysis

Erica is sitting in an office chair, swiveling back and forth and twirling a strand of her hair. She’s dressed pretty darn casually - a big poofy green sweater, and what might be considered pajama bottoms. “Ummm, hello everyone - my name is Erica McDaniel - I was a double major in school, with a Comp Sci and Psychology degree. I also got a Masters in Non-Human Psychology from the University of Osaka. I started out as just Psych, cause I figured, might as well learn to use my gift to the best of its ability…but I eventually realized I find how the code behind the things we create was just more interesting than how humans tick. Other species though…well those are a different story.”

She laughs nervously, like that was supposed to be a joke. Cough cough, “During this experiment, I’ll be…pushing the limit on what conventional science would consider ethical. And if things go well…I’ll be playing God, I guess. Carolyn said I shouldn’t dwell on that too much though - she’s still pissed about the whole vocaloid thing.”

It’s back to Carolyn now, but you can see Erica in the background - reading a book without holding it. It’s just floating in front of her while she eats some sort of chip looking thing from a bag, and the pages seem to turn themselves.

“I can’t say with confidence that Erica is the most powerful living pscion in the human race…but certainly top 5 percent. I’d certainly claim she’s the most powerful empath though - by the time she was an 8th grader, she was able to communicate with…practically anything that bleeds. She is also an interesting case, where despite the genetic lottery’s attempts to make the perfect, evolved being…the brain says otherwise. While her kind is still a new development in humanity, and many of them are unstable, or use their powers for their own end…she’s a bit too socially awkward and caught up in her hobbies to ever be of serious threat. Which is fortunate for us, because we’ve stumbled upon something amazing.”

03 & 04 - The Spirit Zoo

You witness a scene where Erica is being watched and evaluated in some sort of aptitude test. She is by the waterside here, pulling trees up - roots and all - with her mind alone. It’s hard to tell what other humans are there by voices alone, because you really only hear them when they start to scream and freak out! Ephemeral critters - just wee little baby ones, skitter out from the woods and the ocean. A canine and feline, a little turtle, a little orca, a babby owl and bear, and a….very, very big ghastly spider. It’s soon very clear everyone’s freaking out primarily about the spider - except Erica. She runs up to it to say hello! “Hey guys, you can stop screaming, she’s friendly!”

It’s back to Carolyn, only this time there’s Erica AND a big spider in the background! Seems like the spider has…shrank a bit, probably by its own will. It’s now the side of a dog. It and Erica appear to be playing a game - one that takes place on a colorful board, and uses cards and little wooden blocks (it’s Catan).

“Ever since psions began to appear amongst mankind, we’ve began to encounter more and more life forms - ones that might have…always been there, but we weren’t looking for them right. Or, we weren’t interesting enough for them to show themselves. Here, we have a prime example of that. These…spiritual animals, I have no better name for them, are drawn to Erica like a beacon. The younger ones seem to have imprinted on her, relying on her like a mother for their nurturing - a metaphysical one, as we believe proximity to her strengthens them. This one though…Yxodsi, she calls herself…

“She’s older, wiser, and doesn't seem to quite trust us yet. However, as you can see here…she’s curious, and constantly learning about us, as we are her. The nature of what these entities are, how they come to be, and what they are capable of…we’re not sure yet, but Erica drew them out, and now it’s up to her to help us find out.”

05 & 06 - Five Stars Record - Quirks and Quriks Cont.

Carolyn is writing + drawing on a white board to help illustrate what she speaks about in this video. "Artificial Intelligence isn't really a subject I'm well versed in, but it's one I've had to learn a good deal about since this mission began. Because…," She clicks her tongue, "Erica thought she was being sooo funny when she gave The Five Stars human avatars, but the action nearly gave Keith - our mission's head software architect, and the creator of the Five Stars - a heart attack. Here's a little crash course in why:"

I'll spare you lots of dialogue for this. She explains that Five Stars were always intended to be a singular system that was split into five, but they were intentionally not supposed to have a sense of self, or think of themselves as human. A AI on this scale and intelligence was an unheard of thing prior to this mission, and Keith was more than a little cautious about how sentient they would be. He wished to handicap their smarts a bit by making them not self aware or give them enough identity to let their thoughts drift to more…human emotions. These AI would be intended for very integral operations of the city's health, and letting their minds wander too far from that task - and god forbid deciding they don't WANT to perform the tasks any more - would be unacceptable.

"When Erica stepped in and gave them avatars in the flavour of one of her Japanese pet interests, this…complicated things. She intrinsically made them more human than Keith ever intended. Rather than reverse the change, he decided to go with another approach instead. He gave the five of them quirks - obsessions that would consume the attention of their personalities and not distract from their tasks."

Part 2 has her go over the five.
Aina - She views all citizens of her city as her own children. The ultimate doting mother, she wants the best for her kids. Carolyn's take on it: "Another aspect of this, is she hates to see her children fight amongst one another - she will do her best to split up fights before they can happen. But she can't prevent death, and we are unsure how she will respond to it. I can't help but wonder if this obsessive love will drive her mad…if disaster struck the city, what would she do? Or will her emotional love push her to also seek out a means of expressing it physically as well? Keith and I plan to work together to see if this will truly be enough - she will be my first AI patient."

Brigit - Brigit was made to envy the mobility of the living - she wants a body, the ability to move, see the world. To help cope with this a little bit, Keith provided her a doll that she can rest her conciousness in. Carolyn adds "This served another purpose - it made her have to think about accessibility in the buildings she would create. It's one thing to give an AI that mandate as a hard rule they must conduct, but as Keith puts it, actually being forced to think through how they can get around in a wheelchair bound frame gives their designs a more empathy driven design, than a utilitarian one. We feel very confident in her quirk, for now. We're not sure how long it will be until she starts to think of designs for a frame that suits her needs…if we amp up her sense of sentimental value to the doll, though…"
Danu - "I can't say with confidence I actually understand fully what Keith is thinking with Danu's quirk…but I do know she's his personal fave. From what I have observed, he's made her a chuunibyou." She pauses and explains what this term implies. "Or she could simply believe that she is in a constantly running live action role playing game, it's hard to say."

Minerva - She is every smart assed, ice princess secretary stereotype brought to life. She views knowledge as something she only needs to share with those she deems worthy, and hoards it from those she does not. "Personally, I dig the boss bitch attitude he gave her, but it DOES make her a pain in the ass to work with…if she doesn't like you. It's an extra level of security given what she deals with, to boot."

Morrigan - "We….are unsure what to do about Morrigan. The only thing we know for certain is her role requires a degree of apathy, and we need a way to reintroduce that to her. For the short term, at least, I think she's found her own anchor…call it a woman's intuition, for now."

07-11 Biological Engineering: The Spirits, and the Five Stars


Carolyn is walking through a well lit, high tech looking facility. Spotless white walls and floor, and well lit. You recognize it as one of the facilities that monsters are made at. She’s narrating as a camera follows her. “One of the most unique facets of the Five Stars is their biological engineering capabilities. All of them are capable of state of the art production of biosynthetic lifeforms, which has allowed us to do things such as modest as quickly repopulating the Lincoln Park zoo,” The camera pans to some red pandas playing in a closed, glass walled room - “To the production of entirely new species.” The camera pans again, this time toward a Wampus. “This technological marvel partially thanks to the spirits, who helped us identify ideal locations to construct these biosynthesis facilities. Each of them resides upon a font of power.” The camera pans to a pretty familiar looking pool of water, same looking room as the one you bound Echo to a Curator frame in. “The nature of these fonts has yet to be determined. We’re leaving that in Erica’s hands to learn from her spirit animal buddies.”


This is back in Carolyn’s office. A holographic avatar of Minerva can be seen playing a board game with Yxodsi, the spider spirit. A mechanical servitor is standing close by, helping them move the physical pieces around. This makes for a funny backdrop, but the primary focus is on Carolyn.

“I’m sure the fact we equipped the Five Stars with the power to create - and design- life is going to raise a lot of eyebrows. There are certainly ethical concerns, but given the nature of this project, we’re deemed it an acceptable risk. The rate at which the Stars, especially Morrigan, are able to iterate on the creation of new living entities has allowed us to make leaps and bounds in the fields of biological engineering, chemistry and pharmaceuticals. The number of problems this could solve - from food supply, to completely eliminating several diseases and disorders from the human genome - are worth the risk we’re taking.”

“We are sure that eventually, Morrigan will go a bit far, and will need to be reproached for her actions. But when the time comes for that, we will act on it. She has the mental maturity of a child, but also the creativity of one. This has been a huge boon for us, and I’m very certain that if William scolded her for misbehaving, she’d take it to heart. It’d be a far more powerful lesson for her than to simply hard code limitations into her system.”


This one starts in media res, and is filmed from over William’s shoulder. He’s escorting two individuals - a Troll and a Curator from the looks of it - at gunpoint through a building. “Current time is 8 AM. Erica arrived from one of her field trips with her animal buddies this morning, and brought two unidentified beings back with her. One resembles a Servitor, but sure as hell ain’t one of ours, and the other…well…I think its a bear?”

“Scared the hell out of Morrigan when they showed up - she almost blasted a whole block - thinking that we were under attack from off planet visitors. Erica threw herself in front of em’ with a big fuckin’ hero routine. She says the spirits created them. Her damn animal cracker buddies, created life. Well, the brass ain’t gonna like the sound of this, but it’s above my pay grade to think too much on. Can’t wait for Carolyn and Keith to freak out over this - doesn’t take a PH.D. in Smart Shit to put together that the spirit critters got this idea from The Five Stars.”


These ones an interview between Carolyn and the Troll and Curator. For brevity’s sake, I’ll just bullet point the major points from the interview part

  • The Curator introduces itself with a line like “This one’s designation is Warden 00” (as in double zero).” The troll doesn’t seem to have been given a name, so Carolyn gives him one to him - Kuma. She seems to find this name amusing, but doesn't explain why.
  • To their knowledge, both of them think they are the first of their kinds. They seem quite aware of what they are, and how they came to be - their creators brought them to life with a mix of their innate capabilities, and mixing it with what they had learned from Erica and the various AI in the city.
  • When asked about how they view their creators, both don’t have great answers for it - they possess free will, and have bonds to their respective deities that allow them to commune with them, but neither Bjosondoff or * * * Hlífrún had established themselves as anything other than their creators. The two end up flipping the table, and ask Carolyn about HER creator. This leads them into an extended discussion about human religion and creationism myths, and the Curator and Troll eventually decide that their creators must clearly be Gods, and that they should learn from human example how to honor them.
  • When asked to describe their birth place, they both make it very clear that they are fairly high tech, fancy facilities. Ones pretty far from here. A lot of what made it possible for them to be born was the flow of the lifestream, and Yxodsi’s guidance on how to make it work…Carolyn asks them to elaborate on that, and the video ends.


This is a retrospective solo entry with just Carolyn. She’s puffing on the electric cigarette thing (from 0) and looks nervous. “We didn’t foresee something like this happening. It is clear to us that we underestimated what these spiritual beings are, simply because their avatars of choice were animals. Erica’s presence has empowered these beings a large degree, far larger than we could have anticipated. And because we underestimated them, we allowed them to see a … lot of our facilities. Enough that Hlífrún was able to create something mimicking an automation by mixing technology and magic - yes, the Warden called it magic, not I. And enough that Bjosondoff was able to completely recreate one of Amazon’s pieces of hardware. Amusingly, he has no idea how it works, but he could perfectly recreate it.

“The part that alarms me personally the most…is I have learned that Yxodsi - the spider spirit you’ve seen in my videos, she seems quite fond of me for some reason - is far older, smarter, and powerful than the others. So much more than we could have guessed. The two new sapients made it sound like she had a…metaphysical function in this world? If this is true …I will need to have a stern discussion with her…”

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