|Winifred "Acid" Dietersmann|
|Other||Bionic left arm|
|Other||Dataslate, Vox, HUD with noospheric interface, magnoculars and infrascope|
Winifred "Acid" Dietersmann, is a diminutive machine code prodigy. Elevated from her life within the criminal underhive of Hive Sejanus, she now serves Inquisitor Michael as his data manipulator and savant. Her chosen name, Acid, refers to her self-proclaimed ability to burn through any data walls given enough time.
Origins and Recruitment
In the aftermath of Purging the Tethytheria, Michael went looking for someone more proficient in Machine Code than Fabricator Acetae, who was primarily an engineer. As soon as he started looking he discovered one had been trying to get his attention for some time.
Winifred Dietersmann was born in the underhive of Hive Sejanus to simple labourers. A genius intellect, she taught herself mechanics and electronics to help her parents. Soon she progressed to interfacing (illegally) with the datasphere where her talents quickly began to shine. Unfortunately at the age of 14 her skills were noticed by a local gang, the Spikers. Her parents were killed and she was taken into slavery to maintain the weapons and machinery of the gang.
She spent several years gaining their trust before she was finally able to get un-monitored access to the datasphere. She immediately reported the crimes against her to the local enforcers. Fortunately for her, she had reported them anonymously under her datasphere pseudonym "Acid", so when the enforcers informed the Manufactorum owner who ran the gang and was bribing the enforcers, she did not suffer direct repercussions. She laid low for sometime, before trying again. This time she researched potential rescuers more carefully, and uncovered a wealth of corruption within the law enforcement of Hive Sejanus, resulting in her sending report after report to the Inquisition.
Not catastrophic enough to warrant attention of the overtaxed Inquisition, they went unnoticed until Michael happened upon them when looking for a code expert. He led a mission, wiped out the Spikers, and rescued Acid. Her reports were handed off to Inquisitor Kovach.
In her own words
Extract from Clubbed to Death:
+++TO: Ashar Lear; Amon Carlin; Max Drent; Sister Airi; Rosa Richter; Siveter Lund; Hannat Rekord; Sarge; Nadiya Zelenko; Mira Kellerman;
+++SUBJECT: The Spikers
After last night, I just want to set the record straight and get everyone on the same page. I've talked about this with various people at various times so I feel like most of you already know some of this, but I think most of those times involved alcohol and/or loud music, so not exactly the best time for stories.
Basically this is in my past, I've dealt with it, this isn't a plea for attention or anything, just setting the fact clear. I don't talk about it a lot because it doesn't exactly come up in common conversation, but it's not a secret and I have talked about it occasionally.
So, yeah, I was born in the underhive. Crap genes and all that, hence my size, number of limbs and a few other issues that aren't important. My parents were scavengers. Not particularly bright, nit very strong, just keeping their heads down and trying to avoid, you know, giant rats, toxic exposure, gang violence, famine. The usual.
I wasn't specifically wanted, just an illustration of the lack of sex education in the underhive. I was lucky because I didn't get abandoned and my parents actually cared for me, even if I wasn't intentional. As I said, my parents weren't smart, but I am, at least with stuff, not so much with people. I was always good with tech.
So by the time I was 10 my parents ran a little repair business. Dad dealt with customers, I fixed stuff and Mum scavenged for broken parts to use for repair. One day a local gang called the Spikers turned up. Dad wasn't stupid, offered them free repairs on anything, anytime. Free repairs for life wasn't enough it seems.
They killed my parents and took me. I was mostly locked in a workshop. I had tools so I broke out a few times but they never left me unattended so, you know, they'd beat me up and make me fix whatever I'd broken to get out and put me back. I learn fast so I stopped trying.
So for a few years that was my life, fixing their weapons, and then other tech they found and wanted fixed so they could sell, and then they started basically the same business as my parents, people would pay them to have me fix stuff.
I was valuable to them, so they only hurt me if I disobeyed them, and they didn't let me starve. Other people they took occasionally didn't fare so well.
Anyway, the shed was in an old manufactorum and it had a dataport. I managed to combine the bits of a few broken datapads. Spent what time I could learning the datasphere. Acetae says I have a gift for it.
I reported the gang to the Maj. The Spikers hideout was in the underhive but they did a lot of crime up in the lower hive where people had more money. What I didn't know was that they actually worked for a lower hive Manufactorum owner who was paying off the local Maj.
I might have died then, but the report came from Acid and the Spikers only knew me as Winnifred and generally called me Weasel. They did come check though and it was a close thing. I had to smash up my datapad before they found it. Took me nearly a year to get the parts to build a new one.
Anyway, eventually I got back online, was more circumspect, learned a few more hard truths, found evidence of Magistratum corruption and links to potential Arbites corruption and eventually had to report it to the Inquisition.
When Michael came for me he brought the Thoratis Veterans with him. By the time they hit the Spikers they'd already purged the Maj. I was in my shed, but I remember hearing all the gunfire. Lots of hellguns. Not a lot of anything else.
Michael broke open the door with his power sword and carried me out. Last I saw of the Spikers were a lot of bodies with a bunch of dudes in black carapace walking around checking for survivors.
We talked about it later. Michael had some of the soldiers watching the hideout for a few days whilst he dealt with the Maj. Then he let a lot of booze fall into the Spikers' hands and spied on their camp until everyone they had seen for the last few days had gathered and were celebrating.
I knew of 17 people in the gang and there were 17 bodies so we thought them all dead. I dunno if someone else died in Auger's place or maybe with those bionics he just wasn't quite as dead as he should have been.
Anyway. That's the story. That's who Auger is and why he cared about me. And I guess that's who I am and why I'm here. Like I said, I've basically dealt with this, as much as one can. It's not a cry for help, it's just getting everyone on the same page. I felt those of you at Tenebrae last night deserved a full and complete story and whilst I'm at it might as well clue everyone else in too.
Acid's genetics are pretty poor. It is unclear how much of this is inherited naturally from the poor gene-stock and how much of it is due to possible toxic exposure during pregnancy; both very common issues in the underhive. This has been expressed in several congenital disorders:
- Amelia. Acid was born without a left forarm, her left arm ending in a stump just below her elbow.
- Orofacial cleft. Now surgically repaired, until she joined the Inquisition Acid had a cleft lip.
- Laron-type dwarfism. Whilst not generally classified as having dwarfism as she is 4'11", Acid has a mild insensitivity to somatotropin (growth hormone).
Healthcare in the Obelisk is first class, and her health issues are all completely managed, however it's possible that if in the future she were to be considered for rejuvenat treatment her poor genetics could cause problems.
Whilst not originally hired to be a field agent, Acid has slowly shifted from being rear echelon support, to supporting active field teams. This suffered a setback in the mission Kuunyesu Marooned when she had to vent 27 hostile pirates and one allied tech priest with whom she had become friends into space in order to save the crew. This caused her significant psychological trauma and she was taken off the active agent roster for some time. She is attending ongoing therapy with Gaius Umberto.
Acid (or A(|D) is pretty much Winifred's main identity. She is sometimes refereed to as Winifred Dietersmann in formal documentation, and Michael (and only Michael) calls her Winnie, but for the most part she is known as Acid.
In the wake of Dancing with Drukhari Acid bought up the club Tenebrae under the identity Zer0. She does not have time to run it herself and merely acts as the mysterious owner and director. None of the staff know what Zer0 looks like, even her gender. She enjoys hearing rumours about Zer0 when she visits the club anonymously, and has spread a few herself.
Primarily a non-combatant, Michael has issues Acid with flak armour and a laspistol for personal protection. Her primary tools are her advance dataslate and heads up display, both heavily customised. Her left arm ends in a stump just below her elbow. When she was younger she built a basic prosthetic, but with the advanced workshops of the Obelisk and help of Fabricator Acetae she has replaced it with a very advanced version.
In the wake of Never saw the Eversor Acid has begun combat training and switched out her laspistol for a hellpistol and adopted a mono-knife. Inquisitor Drake has promised her a power knife from his personal collection if she can become worthy of it.
The Pigtown Flaying has led to further enhancements. Helping Sister Airi don and doff her power armour has resulted in her and Fabricator Acetae developing Salty, a powered exo-suit. The floating auto-butchers also inspired her to start building a collection of specialised Servo-Skulls she has dubbed the Skull Swarm.
Acid's prosthetic arm is wired into a nerve interface for mental control, but it is removable and simply sits on top of the stump she was born with. It is deliberately made of steel and not covered in synthetic flesh. She has a dataport in her neck that is mainly intended to help her control Salty, but can also allow her to jack into other data systems. She also has a mechadendrite emerging from the bottom of her spine. It has a data connector in the end and a three-fingered manipulator. The design is such that utility modules could be created that interface with the data connector and are held in place on the end of the mechadendrite by the fingers. As per Michael's requirements when she got it, the mechadendrite can be detached if necessary e.g. to go undercover, without medical or mechanical intervention, however the process is tricky and generally requires assistance.
Fabricator Acetae does not have the facilitates and resources necessary to create a suit of power armour. However when asked about it by Acid he did suggest that less advanced Xenos Tau use Battlesuits in place of power armour, and given how small Acid is, he would be able to produce something similar. Michael approved the project on the condition that it is not called a Crisis Suit or uses any other Tau terminology, that is does not end up looking anything like a Tau suit, and that it does not use any of the Xenos technology recovered from On the Trail of T’ractors.
A necessary part of this suit was Acid having a spinal nerve shunt surgically implanted at the base of her skull. This was a serious and moderately risk procedure that Acid was somewhat uncertain about, but eventually went ahead with given the other possible benefits she could gain from it.
Acid has dubbed the suit "Salty" and it is currently armed with a flamer and a stub carbine. It has not yet seen combat, although she was using it during The Rosa Effect. She mounts the suit from above where the armour can slide open to reveal a cramp compartment between the reactor and the shoulder motivators. There is a small controller on the rear of the suit that can be used to issue the suit basic commands, mostly used to open and close the suit from the outside.
Having seen the efficacy of a swarm of scalpel armed drones, Acid has been collecting and modifying Servo-Skulls to form what she called the Skull Swarm. Many of the skulls were destroyed during The Rosa Effect but have since been rebuilt. So far the swarm consists of:
- Esme - Telepresence, good optics, speaker, screen.
- Konni - Data connection, high bandwidth transmitter.
- Audrey - Auspex
- Inara - Infrascope
- Penny - Plasma Cutter
- Sue 2 - Plasma Grenade (destroys skull on use)
- Debbie - Web Pistol
- Larry - Laspistol
- Simon - Silenced Stub Pistol