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Dave stared across at RED's sniper deck through his scope, and grumbled to himself.  This round was not going well.  RED were winning by 2 intel captures to 0.  Granted they had a 4-to-3 player advantage because John hadn't showed up yet, but even so, the three of them were playing like a bunch of noobs fresh out of noob academy.  Although clearly it wasn't his fault.  He was pretty evenly matched against the enemy Sniper.  It was Rose and Jade, yeah, they weren't doing their bit.

ectoBiologist has joined team BLU

"Hi guys, sorry I'm late!" came John's voice over the chat.
"Jeez, Egbert, do you ever show up for anything on time?"
"This thing took forever to load.  Must be all those custom sound thingies..."

Dodging behind cover so he could check what class John had picked, Dave groaned.  Medic.  John always picked Medic.  Okay, it was a vital class and he was pretty good at it, but probably not the best choice right now.  Medics were no good without combat classes to heal.

"John, can't you go Soldier or something?  I mean look at the rest of the team.  I'm Sniper, Rose is Spy, Jade's Engy.  Medic's a step in the right direction but it's not going to achieve much on its own."
"Well, I dunno, Dave, I'm not very good at Soldier.  I guess I could go Pyro, but I'd probably just end up spy-checking..."
"You know, Strider, you could always go Soldier, and have John as your pocket medic," called Rose.
"Hey, I'm doing a very important job here.  Someone's got to keep their Sniper in check.  You go Soldier."
"I'm the only person who's picked up their intel so far!"
"Yeah, but you couldn't get out with it, could you?"
"I guess I could go Soldier..." piped up Jade, "... but I think my sentry's the only thing stopping them getting that third capture..."

Dave groaned, and headed towards Resupply. "All right, all right, I'll go Soldier.  Rose, try and backstab their sniper so we've got a clear path.  John, once I switch I'm going to start self-damaging to help you build up uber, so be ready.  Jade... uh, keep swinging that wrench, I guess.  We've got to turn over a 2-0 defecit, let's make this count..."

Rose sidled into position behind the enemy sniper and decloaked just as Dave and John were emerging from the BLU base.  The sniper hesitated for the tiniest fraction of a second, wondering whether to shoot the soldier or the medic first.  It was all she needed.

tentacleTherapist [backstabbed] gallowsCalibrator

Always shoot the medic first, thought Rose. "Sniper down," she said coolly. "And careful you two, there's a sentry covering their courtyard, in the corner by resupply.  I'll try and get it sapped, but now they know I'm nearby it probably won't work..."

*    *    *

"Ugh, stupid human software not catering for the sensorially-different," moaned Terezi as she waited in the respawn queue. "Why can't it let me smell spies coming in from behind me?  I'd be able to if this were real."
"Anyone else spotted the irony of Terezi playing Sniper yet?" asked Karkat.
"Hey, I can taste those blueberry bubblegum uniforms a mile off - when they're in front of me.  Why weren't you watching my back, Mr. Pyro?"
"I'm trying to lead Tavros on an assault on their intel room because, in case you hadn't noticed, we're 2-0 up and we should be pushing for victory.  Can't get into the intel room, though - they've got a sentry in there."
"Oh, fine.  I'll go back to Demoman when I respawn.  I was only doing this to keep their Sniper in check, and he's changed classes now.  Anyway, yeah, spy on the battlements, incoming soldier-medic pair.  Get ready for some hurt, Sollux."
"Okay, thankth for the headth up..."

The pyro heading towards Sollux carried the name carcinoGeneticist, but Karkat had just told him that he was currently attacking BLU's base...

twinArmageddons [shotgunned] tentacleTherapist

"Thpy down!"

But the spy had distracted him just long enough for the soldier-medic pair to round the corner, uber ready.

turntechGodhead + ectoBiologist [rocketed] Sentry (twinArmageddons)
turntechGodhead + ectoBiologist [rocketed] twinArmageddons
turntechGodhead + ectoBiologist [rocketed] Dispenser (twinArmageddons)
turntechGodhead + ectoBiologist [rocketed] Teleporter (twinArmageddons)

"Thit.  Thorry, guyth."
"And I thought we had enough problems already," said Karkat. "Speaking of which, Tavros, why did you decide to be a scout?"
"Ummmm, well, scouts are good at carrying the intel, yes?"
"Yeah, but they're fucking terrible at dealing with sentries.  And pyros aren't great at it, either..."
"So, umm, why are you playing as pyro then?"
"Because, idiot, someone had to stop their spy creating havoc.  And someone had to organise an assault to take the last intel.  And wouldn't you know it, once Terezi switched to sniper those two someones ended up being the same person."
"I, uhhh, I wish I'd done that achievement farming now... this might, uhh, have been a good time to use that, uhh, canned drink that makes you invincible..."
"Yeah, well, it's too late now..."

*    *    *

It was kind of lonely down in the intel room, thought Jade as she heard the chatter from her friends over her headphones.  But everyone had an important job to do, and she was used to being on her own.  Besides, she had her nice sentry and dispenser friends for company.  But a pyro and a scout were hanging around outside, and she was locked in something of a stalemate with them.  If they came in here, they'd be easy prey for her sentry.  But she wouldn't stand a chance if she left the room.  Something was bound to tip the balance one way or the other eventually, though.  She sure hoped it was her way.

"Rose, when you respawn... d'you think you could help me out down here?  I'd like to get rid of the pyro and scout..."
"Okay, I'll go... yes, why not.  I'll go Heavy.  As improbable as it sounds."
"Just as long as you don't get into character," chirped Dave.

ectoBiologist has picked up the INTELLIGENCE!

"Oh, sorry Dave, do you want it?"
"Nah, it's cool, you're faster than me anyway."
"Saying that, I'd still better go first up these stairs..."

But Dave had reached the top of the stairs when John noticed the trap. "STICKIES!" he yelled, a second too late.  Miraculously, Dave survived with 1 hit point left. Thank goodness for overhealing, thought John.

"Run!" Dave yelled back at him. "I'll hold them off"

Healing Dave up as much as he could before the beam broke, John darted forwards.  Dave grimaced at the screen.  In a fair fight, Soldier should beat Demoman.  But he only had 75HP now...

gallowsCalibrator [pipebombed] turntechGodhead

"Ka-BEWM! I'm a grey Alternian noclops!" laughed Terezi as the soldier exploded in front of her.  But she didn't smell the medic running off with the intel until it was too late.  She had to admit, that was one advantage of light over chemicals: it did travel faster.  She sent a few half-hearted sticky bombs after the medic, but he was too fast and too far away by now.

Still, it wasn't over yet. "Karkat!  Tavros!  Incoming medic with our intel!"
"On it," replied Karkat.  Medics were easy pickings, at least...

*    *    *

John arrived in the safety of his base.  Or at least, it should have been safe.  He was worried about what Jade had said about the pyro and scout... he could try attacking them with the Blutsauger, but he didn't fancy his chances...

But he was in luck: Rose had just emerged from Resupply and, as promised, she was now playing Heavy.

"Whoa, whoa, slow down there John.  Let's get you over the finish line."

John gratefully followed Rose down the spiral stairs to the intel.

* * *

Karkat lay in wait, watching the intelligence on the radar get closer... closer... NOW!

tentacleTherapist + ectoBiologist [minigunned] carcinoGeneticist
tentacleTherapist got REVENGE on carcinoGeneticist

"Finally.  That guy's spy-checking was a pain in the structurally superfluous new behind."

Tavros heard the minigun whir, saw his teammate go flying backwards out of the stairwell.  Advance or Abscond?  Silly question.  He was Tavros Nitram.  Abscond.

But sometimes it pays to check the direction you're absconding in...

gardenGnostic + tentacleTherapist [sentried] adiosToreador
ectoBiologist has captured the INTELLIGENCE!

"YES!" yelled John.
"Well, now we're only 2-1 down," said Dave, once he'd recovered from having his ears bawled out. "Okay, good work guys.  But there's a long way to go... and now they know what they're up against..."