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iStory:The Private/chapter summaries
|The Private/chapter summaries|
The Private is the second volume of iStory.
|First mentioned:||January 14, 2009|
The following is a list of chapters of the The Private volume of the iStory, with summaries and appearances noted. The summaries below are for each chapter and explain what must happen in order for the reader to complete the mission successfully.
Chapter 301: The Private (released 1/14/2009, 1/16/2009)
|Last summer, Rachel Mills was just another Marine trying to stay cool on the front lines of Iraq. But then a bizarre attack occurs at her unit's checkpoint, and she finds herself fighting for her life. She and the other survivor have only minutes to figure out what happened...|
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Rachel Mills visits the the remnants of Pinehearst Headquarters, which is in ruins due to the explosion that happened there and then leaves the area in a cab. Some time later, she is in an office, interviewing for a civilian job. The interviewer asks her from behind a desk about her time as a U.S. Marine, and why he should even consider employing someone who screwed up their career so badly. Rachel then begins explaining what happened on her last tour of duty in Iraq.
While stationed in Iraq the previous summer, the then Corporal Mills arrives by Humvee to a makeshift outpost that serves as a checkpoint in the town of Ghanaf, Iraq. Rachel's commanding officer, Barton, orders her to search a woman in a stopped car on a blazing, busy street. Rachel hears something beep and recalls how her grandfather used to tell her she had great hearing skills, and that they would save her life one day. Rachel approaches the car and hears someone walking away from the scene. By the time she gets there, the person is gone, and Rachel finds a piece of a local newspaper with a strand of digits written on it:
Suddenly, Rachel hears a bang and goes back to the checkpoint, where Barton and the other Marines have been ambushed and subdued. Thick smoke is hissing out of canisters on the pavement. Rachel hears a shooting start, and makes out the sound of both sides' gunshots. She also sees a group of shooters wearing full-body hazard suits and heading her way. Rachel runs into an alley, pursued, and turns around to face her pursuer, who turns out to be Ammar, the Marines' Iraqi translator. Rachel takes him deeper into the alley before the enemy fighters capture him and kill him as a traitor. She advises him that they need to escape the area, and to run and not look back. Rachel then takes off running and must choose whether to go in an apartment building or head down a side street.
Rachel needs to choose to continue down the side street to outrun her pursuers. Choosing to run down a side street, Rachel hears radios and running feet, and thinks they are still being pursued. Ammar is tired from all the running, despite Rachel being the one carrying 40 pounds of extra weight, and Rachel spots a civilian passing by in his car. She gets the opportunity to steal the car, or push Ammar into a side alley. In this case, Rachel needs to duck into the alley directly to gain more information. She is then able to spot two of the men in hazard suits pass by. One starts to tug off his gas mask, but the other gives him an order and the first man pulls it back on. However, before he does so, Rachel sees that the man isn't Middle Eastern. Rachel also notes to herself that the order sounded very much like English.
Rachel then takes out the piece of paper from before. She tells Ammar about it and mentions the erratic beeping sound she heard before finding it and that she suspects the two things are connected. Ammar tells her that they should be worried about surviving, and Rachel tells him that she has a hunch and to let her study the digits. After looking at the paper again, she says she thinks she knows what it means.
Rachel notes the first six decoded letters as "DFONCO" and explains that the message is in Morse code--that the Xs are the dashes, the Os the dots. She recalls that she learned Morse code from her grandfather, who was also a Marine, then starts to tear off her body armor. When Ammar asks what she is doing, Rachel explains to him that the message translates to "DF on. Come get her.", that DF likely means directional finder, and the "her" has to refer to herself. Ammar replies that he thinks she must be crazy, and asks if she is seeing a psychiatrist.
Rachel then ignores Ammar and, a few seconds later, finds a black disk the size of a silver dollar, stuffed in the lining of her helmet. She drops the disk and stomps on it, noting that someone must have placed it there while she was asleep. Ammar asks who she thinks would do that, and Rachel realizes that it must be Ammar who placed it there. However, when Rachel looks up from the note she sees Ammar pointing a pistol at her.
Ammar forces Rachel out into the street at gunpoint, and some of the men in hazard suits begin to rush over. Rachel gets Ammar to confirm he really does like the Lakers, and is turning Rachel in to the enemy for a monetary reward. Rachel and Ammar are soon surrounded, and the men place a smelly bag over her head.
Chapter 302: The Private (released 1/23/2009, 1/26/2009)
|Kidnapped from the streets of an Iraqi village after a gas attack, Rachel Mills is now the prisoner of a mysterious group. Her confusion deepens after her first interrogation. Who are these people? Why have they taken her? What is the compound behind her prison?|
The situation becomes even more complicated with the arrival of a fellow prisoner with a secret. Is Jim a friend or foe? Does he know more than he is telling? Is it even possible that they are connected in some way?
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|Rachel takes a break from her story when the interviewer leaves temporarily to fetch some coffee. When he returns with his cup and asks Rachel if she wants some, she declines and continues her story when prompted to. Rachel notes that next, her captors dump her in a deep and narrow muddy pit that she cannot climb out. She also realizes her captors had taken some of her blood some time before then, and she waits by herself there for about 12 hours until a rope ladder is lowered to her sometime around sunset and someone says something in Farse. Rachel climbs up the ladder, and upon reaching the surface, observes her surroundings. Rachel sees just a couple of guys and a woman, tribespeople. Behind the three people in front of her is the small village she has been hearing. The village has many low buildings and lots of civilians in jeans and robes walking its dirt streets. Above the roofline, Rachel spots a bunch of boxy, metal buildings outside town.
Rachel is lead to a mess hall where she is interrogated by an Arabic man who introduces himself as Harry. She tells Harry that her people will come for her, and learns from him that she is in Iran and that there is an Iranian army medical facility in the nearby village. When Harry then asks her about her mother, Rachel chooses to just stays silent and learns that she has been under surveillance from an unknown party for some time. She is then taken back to her pit and finds she now has company inside it.
The man sharing Rachel's pit, Jim, and Rachel introduce themselves to each other. Jim asks if they said why they brought her there, and Rachel must decide how to respond. She chooses to comment on Jim's appearance and gets Jim to open up about how he came to be there--that he is a freelance security consultant for a paper company, and his boss, Jeremy Woo, gave him orders to travel somewhere on his own. Jim adds that he was picked up outside Baghdad the same day she was captured, and Rachel asks how he knew when she was captured. He tries to explain that he was just guessing, but Rachel says she doesn't buy it and to tell Harry their plan isn't going to work. However, their conversation is then interrupted by Ammar, who announces his arrival above their pit. Ammar claims that Rachel's captors plan to kill her, and she asks for his help.
Rachel pauses telling the story when the interviewer makes a note, and she asks him what she said that interested him. When the interviewer replies that Rachel seems to have a Type E personality based on her responses, Rachel asks if that is the best type. The interviewer says it is excellent if she has a balanced team, but makes a point of noting to her that she doesn't have the job or a team just yet. Rachel then asks why she gets the feeling that how she tells the story is more important than the story itself. The interviewer doesn't answer Rachel, but instead notes that Ammar has a proposal for Rachel and asks Rachel to continue the story, which she does after wondering aloud how her interviewer knew Ammar had a proposal.
In Rachel's continued recollection, Rachel listens to Ammar's proposal for them to use his motorcycle and make a one to two days drive on a road that the U.S. military is watching to the Iraqi border. She replies that it sounds like his plan is to get them blown up by a Predator drone, but Ammar says that she will signal to her people that they are escaped prisoners when they get close. Rachel then asks Ammar about bringing Jim, but Ammar says that there is no room and he can't be trusted. Jim whispers to Rachel that they will jump him and take his bike.
After Ammar comes back that night and helps them get out, Rachel knocks Ammar out with her fist and whispers to Jim that she thought that would feel more satisfying. Jim replies that Ammar is just a punk, and for them to get rolling. Looking back, Rachel spots their pit in a fenced-off clearing behind them and sees other pits half-dug nearby. Jim and Rachel spot Ammar's motorcycle between two low storage buildings and hop on. Jim starts it and they drive away from the camp. The street quickly turns to dirt and wilderness fast. They drive for a couple minutes, then pull off and climb to the top of a nearby hill to check for pursuit.
Reaching the top of the hill, Jim is breathing hard. Seeing Rachel's grin, he tells her to shut up, saying that he's in good shape but that she's a machine. Rachel replies that she's thirsty and they've got quite a drive ahead of them, noting that it felt like their captors had taken her hundreds of miles. Jim says that maybe they won't have to drive at all, and Rachel turns around to find four men had suddenly materialized behind them. The men appear to be desert fighters, dressed in ragged robes and hoods, and holding assault rifles wrapped in rags to protect them from the dust. Rachel tells them not to shoot in Arabic, raising her hands; but she gets a reply in English from one of them, that they speak Farsi there.
Two hours later, they have been introduced to the Special Forces squad and their lieutenant meets Jim and Rachel where they are resting between two boulders. The lieutenant explains to them that they have been out there a while, mostly watching the facility where Rachel and Jim had been taken. The officer continues that the facility appears to be doing some kind of heavy duty research and development. The lieutenant guesses it is biological warfare, except more experimental stuff, noting that more people seem to come out than go in and that it's not too clear how much of it is official government stuff. The officer adds that they know that almost every major terrorist figure in the region has been through this facility in the last couple months, and that they are lucky to be alive.
Rachel then comments that it is very lucky for them that they were here, especially since the border is quite a hike. However, the lieutenant replies that it's not lucky for Rachel and Jim just yet, cause they just got back their orders and they are supposed to rescue them from the main facility. Jim notes that they've already escaped, but the officer just repeats that now they are going to rescue them. Rachel understands what the officer means, noting that they will do a lot of damage on the way. The lieutenant then confirms Rachel's thoughts, saying that they are their get-out-of-jail-free card for political fallout.
Chapter 303: The Private (released 1/28/2009)
|Rachel and Jim escaped from their strange captors ... but they found a surprise waiting for them outside of town. What happens next will change the young Marine forever. The mysterious "biological warfare" compound opens Rachel's eyes to a whole new world ... and a depth of evil that she could never have imagined. Before the night is over, Rachel will make a decision that defines her for the rest of her life.|
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|Pausing her story of what happened during her last tour of Iraq, Rachel Mills notes that what she is going to say now is not what the official account says. The interviewer responds that they expect the truth, and Rachel says that is what she is telling. He replies that warnings should not be necessary, then, and Rachel says that he should remember he said that.
In Rachel's recollection, Rachel gets to know more about the Special Forces lieutenant. She learns his name is Sam, that he was born in Syria and grew up in Cleveland. His parents were originally from Iran, and he claimed that he was still in high school when he decided his options were either to spend his life getting shaken down at airport checkpoints or to enlist. Sam complains about spending so much time wandering the wildernesses of the Middle East, looking for bad guys, but Rachel can tell he loves his job even if it might kill him.
The contents of the compound Sam and his men are to destroy seem to scare them more than the Iranian army base in the distance. Rachel learns that they had never gotten too close to the facility, though they had stopped a truck once. Sam warns Rachel that he has never seen Iranian forces on this side of town, but expects them to come quickly when their charges go off. Rachel replies that they will be ready to run, and Jim nods in agreement. The squad had decided he was CIA, but Rachel still isn't so sure.
Rachel and Jim watch from a rocky hill as the Special Forces squad sneaks down to the compound. The main building dominates the facility, one set of doors on the front and two sentries sit on rocks nearby. Rachel tells him that they are going to talk when the mission is over, and Jim says that sounds hot. Rachel replies that it will only be hot if he doesn't give her some answers, and they spot a man in a lab coat leaving the building out of a camouflaged door, around the corner from the front entrance. Rachel wonders aloud why a hidden door, and the squad takes out the sentries and reaches the front entrance. Sam's squad doesn't appear to see the hidden door and Rachel says to stop them. However, Jim says it's too late. Sam grabs the handle of the front entrance and then he and the squad disappear in a white flash and chest-rattling boom.
Rachel and Jim immediately take off running, though in different directions. Jim catches up with Rachel near the edge of where the dirt had been blackened by the explosion, and tells Rachel that they are dead. He tells Rachel they need to run, but she just tells him to get away from her. Rachel looks down a Sam's body and Jim grabs Rachel's arm. Rachel responds by tackling Jim to the ground, and planting a knee in his chest.
Rachel then tells Jim either that the mission is incomplete, to shut up, or that someone's going to pay, but in all cases Rachel continues that she is finishing the mission. She instructs Jim to go back to the camp, find a radio, recall codes, something. Jim says that is crazy, and just then the secret door around the corner slams. Rachel spots the guy in the lab coat and runs after him. She finds that the door is just an outline in the building's metal siding, so she pulls it open and steps through it into a small, dark room.
Once inside, Rachel notes the room's rotting odor, that there are rubber seals around the doors, and gas masks lining the floors. She spots the man in the lab coat trying to use the inside door, and takes his pistol from him. The man, who looks possibly Indian to Rachel, screams as something pops in his arm. Rachel must then choose to either take him hostage or knock him out.
In order to find where the files are stored, Rachel needs to take the man hostage. Rachel points the gun to the man's head and asks if he speaks English, daring him to say no. The man then admits to speaking English and says he is just a helper. She asks what the place is, and the man just says that she shouldn't be there. Rachel replies that she couldn't agree more and asks him to show her around, pressing him through the inner door.
Rachel and her hostage head through the inside door, finding the next room also dark, as though the power is out. Even though she is wearing a mask, Rachel smells an overpowering odor of rot and chemicals. She finds a giant metal cylinder with hazard and no-smoking warnings painted on it, and she see pipes running out of it into the walls. Ahead, Rachel sees a glass door into what looks to her like a hospital ward, except that it is built from warped plywood and concrete and metal instruments glitter in black buckets of liquid. Her hostage points to a steel door down the hall and says it is the main office.
Rachel gets him to take her inside the office. She finds the office has a small desk, low ceiling and dozens of filing cabinets. Files are open on the desk, along with piles of photographs, and Rachel studies them to make sense of things. Rachel notes that the images show what used to be people, but all of them had either been been deformed, contorted, enlarged, reduced, or discolored. To Rachel, some of them appear blackened and torn by some kind of internal explosion. Rachel asks what happened, but her hostage just says they had problems. She asks him if there are people alive in the building, and he notes that they are not people. Rachel must then decide to either have her hostage lead her to some of the captives or to find her file.
In order to find out more about the facilities records, Rachel needs to order her hostage to find her file. The man replies that she's not a prisoner. However, Rachel tells him her name and he produces a file folder with her name on it from the last filing cabinet. However, Rachel finds that the folder is empty. The man says she is not a patient, and explains that they grab many women. Rachel replies that they will see about that, and then she feels the rumbling of trucks getting close outside.
Running out of time, Rachel realizes she must make another decision. The player is given the following choices for Rachel to follow, each of which lead into the next chapter:
Chapter 304: The Private (released 2/3/2009)
|Rachel's flashback comes to a close. Faced with a building of unimaginable horrors, Rachel did what she felt was right. Now she faces off the interviewer, who has a strange response to her decision. Rachel catches up with a former acquaintance and learns that not every coincidence is to be believed.|
The interviewer finally communicates the decision of his superiors. Rachel realizes that her future will not be what she expected.
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|Rachel chooses to investigate weird moaning that is coming from the medical ward so that she can rescue a girl that sounds like she is in distress. On a far table, under a dim construction light, Rachel spots her laying in a tangle of wires and tubes. She appears to be about Rachel's age, light-skinned, but Rachel cannot tell her nationality.
As Rachel gets closer, she can see that her "table" is a tray, half-full of a blue-ish chemical that is being pumped in through a tube like a garden hose. Her arms and legs were swollen, bulging, as if full of liquid. The girl has IVs in both arms with her eyes half-open. Rachel notes that she seems unconscious, and then pauses her story to calm herself from the fresh memories.
The interviewer asks Rachel what happened next, and Rachel says that she tried to free her. He asks again what happened and she continues that the girl attacked her. The interviewer notes that her reaction was not what she expected. Rachel responds that she thinks the girl was just afraid, but whatever the facility was doing to her made her powerful. The interviewer notes that Rachel did survive. Rachel replies that the girl would have killed her, but the men outside came into the ward and the girl turned on them. When that happened, Rachel took the opportunity to run away.
After a moment of silence, the interviewer says that is enough for their needs. Rachel questions why they are stopping, noting she hasn't told him how she escaped.
The interviewer then continues Rachel's story for her, thumbing through his notes. He says Rachel found Jim on the hill, and then they made their way toward the border. However, on the way, they were met by a helicopter hired by Jim's employer.
Rachel questions how the interviewer knows that, noting that information wasn't in the official account. The interviewer replies that it certainly wasn't in the account, as officially they crossed the Iraq-Iran border, attacked an Iranian army convoy and were captured. This caused a stir in the local media, and the U.S. government demoted Rachel to Private, punishing her to hush the situation. Rachel responds that the real story is crazy, but they have to believe her, and the interviewer says that they do. Just then, Jim walks through the door and says hello.
As the memories of what happened in Iran come flooding back to Rachel, she asks Jim if he was working for these guys. Jim replies that he wasn't, and that he just started. Jim continues that he told them their story, and they were very interested.
The interviewer says he will let Jim and Rachel catch up and leaves the office, saying he needs to speak with his superiors. Once he leaves, Rachel asks if he isn't still working for Jeremy Woo, noting that Jim had said Jeremy was pretty persuasive. Jim replies that Jeremy is dead, and explains that some terrorists blew up a dam near where they worked and he was killed. Rachel asks if Al-Quaeda was responsible, but Jim responds that it was a different group and that it wasn't in Iraq.
Rachel then asks if the guys responsible were caught, and Jim replies that his company did catch them while staring far away. Rachel says she gets the feeling that his company didn't arrest them. Jim then smiles, saying that they didn't do anything to them--that they just watched.
Rachel asks if Jim said he worked for a paper company and Jim replies that maybe there was a bit more to it than that, but doesn't add anything more. Rachel then recalls the empty file she found in the facility in Iran. She tells Jim that he doesn't have to tell her anything more about himself or them, but she needs to know about the file she found in the facility that was about her. She says she feels like she might have been singled out, and wants to know if he knows anything. Jim approaches Rachel, and points his finger at her. Speaking in a low voice, he tells her not to ever bring up the file again, and especially not to bring it up in this place. Rachel presses him for what he knows, but Jim refuses to tell her and says it is for her own good that she doesn't know. The interviewer then returns carrying a camera and Jim walks out without even looking back.
The interviewer notes to Rachel that she had an unusual experience in the Middle East that may prove valuable in the days ahead. Rachel responds that his comment is very generous, and that most people just call her a liar. Rachel also asks if she got the job, but the interviewer doesn't respond. After finishing setting up a camera facing a blank wall, he asks Rachel how she explains what she encountered in the facility in Iran. Rachel says she can't explain it. The interviewer says that is good, and asks if that bothers her. Rachel replies that she looks back and all she has is questions. He responds that his organization is going to help her, and says they would like her to join their team.
Rachel congratulates herself on making the team, not realizing how much she needed that. The interviewer then notes that training starts in twenty minutes, surprising her. He adds that she needs to make any desired calls now as she will be unreachable until after her first mission. She asks when that mission will begin, and he says in a number of days. He then directs Rachel to stand in front of the camera and repeat after him.
Rachel thinks now that this is when her new war began.
- The first iStory chapter for The Private, Chapter 301, was released on Wednesday, January 14, 2009.
- The above summaries show the optimal cases for chapters of The Private. For complete listings of all options and outcomes for each chapter, see the specified all options summary.
- Most of Chapter 301 was released on January 14, 2009, and the chapter ended with Rachel looking at the coded message and the player was given the opportunity to vote to affect what happened in the next chapter, and choose either "DFONCO" or "GOTOFI" as the first six decoded letters. On January 16, 2009, the polling was set aside and the story continued in the same chapter. Individual users were allowed to choose either "DFONCO" or "GOTOFI" for themselves. However, on January 20, 2009, the "GOTOFI" option was removed and users were left with only the "DFONCO" option.
- Most of Chapter 302 was released on January 23, 2009, and the chapter ended with Ammar proposing a method of rescuing Rachel and Jim whispering that they would jump him and take his bike when they got out. The player was then given the opportunity to vote to affect what happened in the next chapter, and choose either "Ammar's plan" or "Jim's plan". On January 26, 2009, the polling was set aside and the story continued with following "Jim's plan".
- The first animated gif images depicting iStory events were introduced in chapter 3 of The Private.
- Chapters 1-3 were released after Volume Three of Season Three had ended, whereas Chapter 4 was released after Volume Four (also of Season Three) had begun.
- For a summary of the The Private series of iStories as a whole, see The Private.
- For alternatives to chapter 301, see here.
- For alternatives to chapter 302, see here.
- For alternatives to chapter 303, see here.
- For alternatives to chapter 304, see here.
Friend or Foe (Operation Bad Blood, Operation Splinter) • The Private (summaries) • The Agent (summaries) • The Civilian (summaries) • Faction Zero (summaries) • Slow Burn (summaries) • The Puppet Master (summaries) • Purpose (summaries)
|Related iStory Portals: Characters • Locations • Places|