(last updated: 12/28/17)
Sector Seven, also known as The Seventh Agency, is a collection of dozens of secret laboratories hidden all around the world. Unsanctioned by major world governments, S7 scientists and their employees toil in anonymity to research and expand the knowledge concerning the intersection of magic and science. Fairly or unfairly, S7 has been branded a terrorist organization by the NOL and some government agencies, forcing the organization to maintain its high degree of secrecy for the safety of its personnel.
Nearly every research project conducted by S7 labs seeks to answer the question of how magic can be controlled through the power of science or how magic can be entirely removed from the equation by erradicating it from the world.
A Committee of wealthy investors makes the major decisions for S7, such as how much funding the individual laboratories should receive or when successful research projects are ready to be sold off to public corporations and manufacturers. The Committee also tends to have some influence over what types of research individual labs are conducting, but each lab director has a fair amount of autonomy and the only real control the board has over its operations is whether or not to increase or decrease financing for a site.
While the locations and personnel of S7 are secret, the existence of S7 is not. Sector Seven as an organization is something that an informed individual is likely to at least heard of before. People within the scientific community, especially, are aware of S7's existence. As working for S7 is illegal, charging another researcher of belonging to S7 is a serious accusation. If enough evidence is found to link a scientist to S7, the individual's legitimate career will likely be ruined and they could even suffer legal repercussions.
Though S7 is not a militaristic organization, its labs do employ security details, often hired from trusted para-military outfits with proven track records. In addition, projects researched by S7 often have some kind of weapons or defense applications. This means a direct assault on a lab could be risky without making sure to first determine what kind of magitech inventions might be housed there.
OCs can be apped in as belonging to S7, including running their own S7 laboratory if desired. The most famous S7 lab is the one directed by Kokonoe, known for being difficult to control but also for having some of the most miraculous successes in controlling magic through science, but if OCs want to belong to a competing S7 lab, that's also fine.
Nearly every research project conducted by S7 labs seeks to answer one of two questions:
- How can science control magic to keep it from being an empowering tool exclusive to monsters, so-called gods, and tyrannical organizations like the NOL?
- If science can't control magic, how can it eradicate it entirely?
"We'll pull the gods down to our level." is a popular mantra within the underground laboratories of S7.
As the world becomes more aware of the existence of magic and the supernatural, there are more opportunities to profit financially by investing ways to control or counter those magic elements. It is to that end that the Committee, a board of extremely wealthy individuals around the world, organizes, finances, and maintains S7.
In pursuit of their research, S7 often dispatches teams or individuals to track down and secure magical artifacts in hopes that with each new acquisition, their understanding of how arcane concepts and scientific knowledge can support one another. As NOL is also dedicated to the collection and securing of magical artifacts, this often puts S7 and NOL at odds, with both organizations always actively trying to discover the next artifact to uncover or the next magical being to capture and study. It is not unusual for NOL soldiers and S7 mercenaries to get to new discoveries at the same time, and the track record for violence at these confrontations is no short list.
S7 is also always trying to recruit brilliant minds to its organization. Considering its reputation and unsanctioned status, this is not always an easy sell. However, scientists and personnel working for S7 are highly paid to compensate for the life of secrecy must live. In addition, if a researcher's invention goes on to be sold to military or commercial manufacturing, they stand to be rewarded with a significant cut of the profits their discoveries create for the Committee members.
Finally, S7 is not above corporate espionage. Though the Committee never officially endorses subterfuge as a means to progress, they do nothing to discourage it either, leaving such risks to the independent lab directors to weigh. Corporate and shadow organization knowledge banks are prime targets for S7, whether by hacking, infiltration, or other forms of deception.
This tendency to steal from others has left S7 without any real allies in the world. While many factions largely overlook them, the competition S7 has with NOL over securing magical discoveries first has made the two organizations bitter enemies. With NOL's growing endorsement from world governments and the reputation S7 has for being a terrorist organization, NOL definitely has the upper hand in this conflict.
Like the NOL, Sector Seven was organized not long after the Cold War. Just as the Duodecim that organized the NOL recognized the potential for amassing power by securing magic around the world, the wealthy individuals that organized the Committee over S7 recognized the potential for massive profits.
Before S7 formed, individual laboratories were already founded in pursuit of knowing how to control magic through scientific application. However, as magic research was not something the major public took seriously, getting financing was a challenge. With a mind toward a very profitable future, several extremely wealthy entrepreneurs, investors, and prestigious individuals in the scientific community came together to found Sector Seven. Funding starved laboratories signed aboard, some eagerly, others with reservations, and the organization has existed ever since.
Throughout their history, the run-ins with NOL, militaries, and law enforcement agencies have been numerous, only serving to support the the NOL-fed propaganda that Sector Seven is in fact a terrorist organization and not, as it claims, a scientific conglomerate.
The most catastrophic encounter between S7 and NOL happened at a small village in Japan Naobi a few years ago. NOL reconnaissance discovered evidence that a powerful weapon known as Deus Machina: Nirvana was buried in a massive cave system beneath the mountain village. S7 plants within NOL leaked the reports back to directors within S7 and a plan was put into motion to steal Nirvana from the NOL excavation team by deploying a team of extremely proven mercenaries.
For reasons still unclear within both NOL and S7 to this day, when the mercenaries moved in to claim Nirvana for S7, they encountered the individual known only as the Mad Dog Azrael. An unstoppable monster, he proceeded to kill nearly all NOL and S7 operatives at the site, establishing himself as a danger both to S7 and NOL. This massacre came to be known as the Event Weapon Dispossession Operation, and was responsible for kicking off a secret joint operation between Kokonoe and Colonel Kagura of the NOL. Unbeknownst to the organizations they belong to, they were able to stage a massive manhunt to bring in Azrael, which was effective in sealing way the monster within an Absolute Zero chamber deep in a S7 lab.
The organization of S7 is straightforward. At the top, there is The Committee, a board of the most influential investors, businessmen, and premier scientists. Each Lab Director also has a seat on the Committee.
Beneath the committee are the Lab Directors themselves. How they chose to organize and lead their lab staffs is left to their discretion, and exact hierarchies vary from lab to lab.
While The Committee has the power to control how much funding goes to individual labs, its only other primary authority is to interface with military and commercial corporations that might be interested in the inventions coming out of S7 labs. Negotiations over price and profits are also managed at this level.
Lab Directors are largely autonomous leaders of their individual sites. While they do have to deal with the pressures from The Committee to turn a profit one way or another, how they go about delivering on that burden is left pretty much up to them.
As each S7 lab is competing for financing from the board, there is a lot of competition and backbiting between the individual labs. It is not unheard of for one lab to sabotage another lab's efforts given the chance, and it is suspected this may explain how Azrael ended up at Naobi to cause a massacre.
These politics also extend up to the Committee. Since each Lab Director has a seat on the committee, the tendency for stalemating or interfering with other labs is a common secret agenda item at the frequent Committee meetings.
As a result of these issues, each S7 laboratory tends to keep as much of its internal affairs secret from every other S7 lab, including who is employed at it and where the lab itself is located.
This said, many of the people working for S7 do so because they believe in its cause. Perhaps they are concerned about the risk magic places into the world, where some individuals wield the power to shape reality and the rest are subjected to their whims. Others may be driven to find the perfect blend between magic and technology to create a better world for humanity.
There are all kinds of people working for S7. Brilliant yet amoral thinkers that want to work in an environment free of the normal restrictions more 'legitimate' scientists have to work under, optimists that feel they are on the verge of curing a pernicious disease, or even explorers dying with curiosity about what exists beyond the Material Plane of Earth itself.
While S7 as an organization is largely fiscally motivated, the individuals that work for S7 laboratories come from all alignments and backgrounds and cannot be generalized.