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Aria
post Jul 11 2011, 07:31 PM
Post #1


Runner
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Posts: 3,451
Joined: 9-March 10
From: The Citadel
Member No.: 18,267



Well you are here now, things are going to get interesting! Your mind wanders back over your journey to this place...from everything you’d heard about Stillwater you had expected some sort of utopian transhumanist haven on the edge of the squalor of Redmond. The truth is somewhat different...

...As you leave the comparative safety of Touristville and head out beyond the derelict sky scrapers, the proud remnants of the Redmond computer industry, the landscape changes. Union Hill road east towards the Cascades, driving through miles of monotonous abandoned suburban semis. It isn’t possible to imagine this area as thriving once. Burnt out shells litter the streets, the wreckage of so many lives scattered about you. Furtive figures, huddled over fires watch you as you pass, wondering if there are enough of them to strip you of anything of value.

Toxic castles leer at you, pumping fumes into the already thick soup that passes for air around here. The sinister behemoth of the Ares Arms principal weapons plant in the barrens lies ahead. A VTOL thrusts upwards, its turbines churning the smog into lurid forms in the halogen lights blazing from the factory. The Ares corporate logo is not a friendly sight here, the helmet of some ancient titan waiting to call down judgement on any who stray too close to those massive walls. You pass St. James Lake, its waters stained with effluent from the factory, unnatural vapours caressing the stunted plants along the shore.

You move briefly onto Redmond Fall City road, the broad carriageway pitted with decay. On your left is the remains of another major urban centre but only maps recall what its name was, the oldest residents here don’t tend to live long enough to gain very full memories. In front of you, still a long way in the distance are the peaks of Cougar Mountain and Tiger Mountain, pristine when compared with the filth around you.

You are forced to swerve as a vehicle that barely resembles the bus it was cobbled from hurtles out of a side road. It scatters debris as it mounts the pavement and then jolts back onto the road. You expect some of the armour plating strapped to its sides to be left behind in its harebrained race towards wherever it is going.

Somewhere over on your right is Glow City but thankfully you are heading away from it now, directly towards the mountains, the only major obstacle now is the Snoqualmie River. This close to the source in the Cascades the river is cleaner without the oils and toxins that mottle its surface further inside the barrens. The huge packs of distinctive bone white devil rats that plague the Snoqualmie are missing here, only a number of corpses remain, strung up, the skeletons showing the damage caused by rifle fire.

Gang sigils begin to appear on prominent places along the side of the road as you begin to head uphill out of the flat basin that makes up the majority of Redmond. A stylised wolf’s head grins down at you from the remaining vertical walls and twisted lampposts. The buildings around you begin to look more cared for although they are still derelict, you can see signs that they have been shored up to prevent them from collapsing. To your amazement you can see a living tree up ahead, although it is sickening in the poisoned air it is nevertheless fresh green in an otherwise concrete world.

As you rise higher still and leave some of the smog behind you see a child playing in the road, something unheard of in the centre of the barrens. There the children live like animals and don’t have the energy to play apart from the violent games of survival in the gangs. As you cross the 203, the official end of the barrens and the Seattle Metroplex you become aware of motorbikes shadowing you at a careful distance, the Wolf Pack.

The houses now were once the homes of computer execs and their ilk, at the start of the foothills of the Cascades, surrounded by what was once verdant countryside. An effort has been made against the odds and the land is green again, though a far cry from the natural beauty still to be found out of the reaches of the industrial poisons and corporate greed.

The centre of the community was once a large spar complex and the holiday homes that surround the lake. Abandoned by the corps when they would have had to travel through the barrens to reach it, it is now home to a scattering of people guarded by the Wolves and the blind eye of the Salish authorities.

The tower is a forlorn sight...a stark reaching skeleton against the dusk. The unusual greenery is already beginning to entomb it, vines softening the edges of the bombed out structure. The damage is old and the place appears on the surface to be completely abandoned but your sensor feeds detected power sources still in use inside, sizeable ones. For those of you who have been here before the decay of the tower and surrounding buildings seems to have increased with surprising rapidity...it is as if someone is deliberately trying to make it look like this place has been abandoned entirely to the forces of nature...


After your briefing in a dilapidated conference room in the entrance block you are led across the bridge to the island and the remains of the tower. Light filters in on you through a web of structural reinforcement and trailing awakened ivy. Dim phosphoresce from the pools of water suggest something else is alive down here and the astral, for those that can see it, is a weird mix of signals, an oppressive foreboding coupled with a desperate sense of hope.

A helical stair leads downwards into the bowels of the tower. It has clearly been patched after whatever destructive force tore through here. Signs of inhabitation increase as you descend underground. Soft lighting comes from integrated displays that come alive in AR. They display abstract light sculptures that wrap around you, responding to your movements, curling in sinuous forms and seeming to lead you on...

...the room, more of a chamber really, contains a series of comfortable looking beds arranged around medical monitoring hubs descending from the ceiling. Attendant drones are already helping people to make themselves comfortable and prepare for their immersion in the UV reality. It would seem it is time for you to do the same...

A reassuring voice speaks into your mind

~Please remain calm. The nanite trode link is being established...connection in three, two, ooooooooneee...~

...A white flash...and you are standing on the shore of the lake...at first the differences are unclear and you are amazed at the clarity of the simulation...then the smell of smoke and ash catch in the back of your throat and you become aware of the sky above the tree line...It is dark and threatening with scudding clouds and ripples of sheet lightening. The tree tops are thrashing in the gusting winds and the lake is crazed with waves moving in conflicting directions.

Then your eye is drawn to a weird structure further along the lake shore...it is some sort of pylon but the air around it is distorted and it is uncomfortable to look at for long. Three figures stand at its base, seemingly communing with it. Its purpose is unclear but further on you can see a second pylon and in the trees behind you another...you hazard a guess that they surround the Stillwater area...

“Welcome Clerics...that is what you are here, we find the name reminds you of your purpose, to defend the flock... I see you are admiring the Choir? It is their sacrifice that keeps us safe for now. Magic to dull the senses and turn things away, a technological mesh network to defeat other sorts of searchers...all to let the Sleepers have the chance to dream.”

Turning you see that the figure speaking to you is a wizened old black woman hunched over her staff that is carved with arcane and technological iconography

“Come, you have a task to perform...” and beyond her you hear the rumble of engines over the rising wind. A column of mechanised infantry vehicles turns out of the tree line and approaches were you stand. Hanging onto the flanks of the lead vehicle are two heavily armoured Supertroopers with an impressive arsenal strapped to their limbs. A Yellowjacket buzzes overhead, its weapon loadout looking suspiciously like a Firelance laser.

They clearly weren’t kidding when they said this simulation would let you play with the big guns...that even looks like a mobile howitzer towards the back of the column...and it is getting harder to think of this as a simulation when your mind is frantically telling you that this is real!

OoC Thread


This post has been edited by Aria: Jul 15 2011, 12:07 PM
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PoliteMan
post Jul 14 2011, 09:46 PM
Post #2


Moving Target
**

Group: Members
Posts: 400
Joined: 4-August 10
Member No.: 18,889



Mercenary Joey "Raccoon"
Stillwater Compound
It felt nice getting outside the city, quiet and away from the confusing voices inside and outside of his mind. It was nice right until they logged him in.

Most of the time, the AIPS was little more than a distraction, like a Japanese soap commercial playing in Texas: you didn't understand it but you couldn't quite stop listening to it. This time it was a scream, a scream that blocked out everything else and when Joey couldn't hear it anymore he didn't know if it had stopped or if he'd just gone deaf.

He awoke in the node,
Don't vomit! Don't vomit! Not in front of the civies, not on your first decent job in years.
Deep breath,
Ok, crazy lady. She's saying something about clerics and dreaming sleepers and a sacrificial choir. Oh boy! Well, I've worked for weirder.
Looks around,
Okay, look up. Two civies. One looks like she's got some military training but she's not moving like spec-ops, the other's got some magical training, must've learned it in the circus.

Where's the CO for this op?
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PoliteMan
post Jul 21 2011, 02:40 PM
Post #3


Moving Target
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Group: Members
Posts: 400
Joined: 4-August 10
Member No.: 18,889



Mercenary Joey "Raccoon"
Stillwater Compound

Joey looks sadly at his empty hand.
No beer! Drek this!

Hey you! Big guy! Pointing at Sticks. It sounds like you've got some experience with these guys and you're the biggest, so you're in charge until somebody else shows up.

Now I recommend we get out of here before our bosses drive us nuts. I recommend we hold off on approving any specific plan until we've had a chance to check this place out. Those howitzers change everything; we're hitting an airfield and if they don't have VTOL craft, or don't have a lot, we can shell their runway with the howitzers and keep their airforce out of the fight. So I recommend you take a look on the map and find some high ground nearby where we can safely scope this place out for a day or two, check their VTOL craft, get a hang of their routines. I recommend we mount up and go before any more crazy chicks show up. And I recommend we pack some beers before we go.
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PoliteMan
post Jul 21 2011, 03:34 PM
Post #4


Moving Target
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Group: Members
Posts: 400
Joined: 4-August 10
Member No.: 18,889



Mercenary Joey "Raccoon"
Stillwater Compound

That's a bit more like it.

Joey, former Wildcat, wilderness specialist. Went by the codename "Raccoon" back in the day.

I know wilderness, know what lives in it and how to stay hidden in it. I'm also a bloodhound, cyberware, the whole nine yards. I can smell a fart a half mile away and I could track any of you for miles just off your stink.

In combat I do sniping. I use a modified Barret 60 cal, so any hit'll wreck most folks or even light vehicles. Give me time to set up my shot and I can threaten anything short of a tank. Course, I can also mix it up with my axe if need be.

What I ain't good at is this networking thing. I got the AIPS in the Crash and I can't stand wireless. My suits got a Faraday cage set up, so all your signals ain't bugging me, but try to hook me up to a network and all you'll get is a good cussing.
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PoliteMan
post Jul 22 2011, 01:59 AM
Post #5


Moving Target
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Group: Members
Posts: 400
Joined: 4-August 10
Member No.: 18,889



Mercenary Joey "Raccoon"
Stillwater Compound

You can download your maps and static tac info to my suit, that'll work fine.

I can lower the Faraday every now and then to report in. Or you could set me up with a partner if you gotta micromanage me. Rina seems to be a sniper, so might not be a bad match, if she can keep up.

Beyond that, I recommend you get used to not looking over my shoulder, give me a couple broad objectives, and just let me do what I do.

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Posts in this topic
- Aria   Emerging: End of Days IC   Jul 11 2011, 07:31 PM
- - nicktheviking   Rina "Wolf Cub" Yoshida [Time Unknown ...   Jul 12 2011, 09:34 PM
- - Seth   Private Third Class Gash - Magical Supression [Sti...   Jul 14 2011, 11:29 AM
- - nicktheviking   Rina "Wolf Cub" Yoshida [Time Unknown – ...   Jul 14 2011, 03:17 PM
- - Seth   Private Third Class Gash - Magical Supression [Sti...   Jul 14 2011, 09:06 PM
- - PoliteMan   Mercenary Joey "Raccoon" Stillwater Comp...   Jul 14 2011, 09:46 PM
|- - PoliteMan   Joey "Raccoon" Stillwater Compound blah ...   Jul 20 2011, 08:05 AM
|- - PoliteMan   Mercenary Joey "Raccoon" Stillwater Comp...   Jul 21 2011, 02:40 PM
|- - PoliteMan   Mercenary Joey "Raccoon" Stillwater Comp...   Jul 21 2011, 03:34 PM
|- - PoliteMan   Mercenary Joey "Raccoon" Stillwater Comp...   Jul 22 2011, 01:59 AM
|- - PoliteMan   Mercenary Joey "Raccoon" Redmond Barrens...   Jul 25 2011, 02:20 PM
|- - PoliteMan   Mercenary Joey "Raccoon" Redmond Barrens...   Jul 26 2011, 01:37 PM
|- - PoliteMan   Mercenary Joey "Raccoon" Redmond Barrens...   Jul 26 2011, 03:17 PM
|- - PoliteMan   Mercenary Joey "Raccoon" Redmond Barrens...   Jul 28 2011, 11:10 AM
|- - PoliteMan   Mercenary Joey "Raccoon" Redmond Barrens...   Aug 3 2011, 09:05 AM
|- - PoliteMan   Mercenary Joey "Raccoon" Redmond Barrens...   Aug 5 2011, 03:19 AM
|- - PoliteMan   Mercenary Joey "Raccoon" Highway 405, Re...   Aug 9 2011, 05:43 PM
|- - Aria   [Highway 405, Redmond Barrens] The lead biker is ...   Aug 10 2011, 04:32 PM
- - Aria   Gash [Stillwater Astral Space] You slip free of t...   Jul 15 2011, 03:50 PM
- - sabs   Sticks [Stillwater Compound] Sticks eased himself...   Jul 15 2011, 05:25 PM
- - nicktheviking   Rina "Wolf Cub" Yoshida [Stillwater Comp...   Jul 15 2011, 07:55 PM
- - Seth   Private Third Class Gash - Magical Supression [Sti...   Jul 15 2011, 08:45 PM
- - nicktheviking   Rina "Wolf Cub" Yoshida [Stillwater Comp...   Jul 15 2011, 09:51 PM
|- - PoliteMan   Joey "Raccoon" [Stillwater Compound] No...   Jul 16 2011, 01:49 AM
- - Seth   Private Third Class Gash - Magical Supression [Sti...   Jul 16 2011, 05:54 AM
- - Aria   Sticks (& others) [Stillwater Lake Shore] Des...   Jul 18 2011, 12:01 PM
- - Aria   Interlude... [Stillwater UV Matrix Node] Aria st...   Jul 18 2011, 02:33 PM
- - Seth   Private Third Class Gash - Magical Supression [Sti...   Jul 19 2011, 07:00 PM
- - sabs   Sticks [Stillwater Compound] Sticks' Mecha lo...   Jul 19 2011, 07:08 PM
- - nicktheviking   Rina "Wolf Cub" Yoshida [Stillwater Comp...   Jul 19 2011, 09:47 PM
- - Aria   [Stillwater Compound] Aria smiled up at you all ...   Jul 20 2011, 07:37 AM
|- - Aria   [Stillwater Compound] She looked at Gash...almost...   Jul 20 2011, 07:51 AM
- - Seth   Private Third Class Gash - Magical Supression [Sti...   Jul 20 2011, 07:43 AM
|- - Aria   Gash "How about a quick sitrep report Aria. ...   Jul 21 2011, 11:52 AM
- - sabs   [Stillwater Compound] <<Honestly Kitt, I...   Jul 20 2011, 01:08 PM
- - sabs   Sticks [StillWater Compound] Sticks scans the are...   Jul 21 2011, 03:05 PM
- - sabs   Sticks [StillWater Compound] "A Wilderness m...   Jul 21 2011, 03:51 PM
- - Aria   [Stillwater Lakeshore] Kit offered Racoon a purlo...   Jul 22 2011, 02:38 PM
- - Seth   Corporal Gash - Magical Supression [Stillwater Lak...   Jul 22 2011, 07:31 PM
- - Aria   [Stillwater Lake Shore] The hot wind that hurtles...   Jul 25 2011, 12:14 PM
- - sabs   [StillWater Lakeshort] "Corporal Gash. Pull...   Jul 25 2011, 12:49 PM
- - Seth   Corporal Gash - Magical Supression [Stillwater Lak...   Jul 25 2011, 04:19 PM
- - Aria   Gash [Astral Space over Redmond] Free of the limi...   Jul 26 2011, 11:49 AM
- - Seth   Corporal Gash - Magical Supression [Stillwater Lak...   Jul 26 2011, 01:11 PM
- - sabs   Sticks [Column Flank, Mech 1, Redmond] <<Yo...   Jul 26 2011, 01:53 PM
- - Seth   Corporal Gash - Magical Supression [Stillwater Lak...   Jul 26 2011, 02:25 PM
- - Seth   Corporal Gash - Magical Supression [Approaching Sh...   Jul 27 2011, 08:35 PM
- - sabs   Sticks [Column Flank, Mech 1, Redmond] The Mecha ...   Jul 27 2011, 09:00 PM
- - Aria   Sticks <<Rising Thunder acknowledged. Weap...   Jul 28 2011, 10:42 AM
- - Seth   Corporal Gash - Magical Supression [Approaching Sh...   Jul 28 2011, 12:11 PM
- - Aria   Gash [Astral space over Redmond] Your spells lash...   Aug 2 2011, 12:02 PM
- - Seth   Corporal Gash - Magical Supression [Stillwater Lak...   Aug 3 2011, 08:39 AM
- - sabs   Sticks [Redmond Barrens] <<We've got en...   Aug 4 2011, 12:36 PM
- - Aria   The convoy travels at speed through the deserted w...   Aug 4 2011, 04:11 PM
- - Seth   Corporal Gash - Magical Supression [Stillwater Lak...   Aug 4 2011, 09:13 PM
- - Aria   [Highway 405, Redmond Barrens] From the vantage p...   Aug 9 2011, 04:34 PM
- - Seth   Corporal Gash - Magical Supression [Stillwater Lak...   Aug 10 2011, 08:37 AM
- - sabs   [Highway 405, Redmond Barrens] <<if we nuke...   Aug 12 2011, 03:04 PM
|- - Aria   [Highway 405, Redmond Barrens] Feral, with a kin...   Aug 22 2011, 04:33 PM
- - Seth   Corporal Gash - Magical Supression [Stillwater Lak...   Aug 16 2011, 09:21 AM
- - sabs   [Highway 405, Redmond Barrens] Sticks looked arou...   Aug 31 2011, 02:24 PM
- - Seth   Corporal Gash - Magical Supression [Stillwater Lak...   Aug 31 2011, 02:54 PM
- - Aria   The convoy moves on, leaving the burning bodies of...   Sep 1 2011, 04:11 PM
- - Seth   Corporal Gash - Magical Supression [Hall Lane] ...   Sep 2 2011, 04:05 AM
- - Aria   [Highway 405, Hall Lake] The convoy comes to a ha...   Sep 7 2011, 03:26 PM
- - Seth   Corporal Gash - Magical Supression [Stillwater Lak...   Sep 8 2011, 07:25 AM
- - sabs   [Highway 405, Hall Lake] <<Cover? Out here?...   Sep 8 2011, 04:58 PM
|- - Aria   [Highway 405, Hall Lake] Sticks As you approach ...   Sep 9 2011, 12:01 PM
- - Seth   Corporal Gash - Magical Supression [Stillwater Lak...   Sep 13 2011, 07:35 PM
- - sabs   [Highway 405, Hall Lake] Sticks laughs, the digi...   Sep 15 2011, 02:21 PM
|- - Aria   [Highway 405, Hall Lake] The circus freaks and fo...   Sep 22 2011, 04:28 PM
- - sabs   [Highway 405, Hall Lake - Going Off Road] Feral a...   Oct 3 2011, 01:04 PM
- - Seth   Corporal Gash - Magical Supression [Stillwater Lak...   Oct 4 2011, 04:05 PM
- - Friendbot2000   Jax surveyed the burning wreckage of the convoy, n...   Oct 4 2011, 05:18 PM
- - Friendbot2000   Jax put her mecha in full throttle, she had to rea...   Oct 5 2011, 10:41 AM
- - sabs   [Highway 405, Hall Lake - Going Off Road] Faraman...   Oct 5 2011, 03:25 PM
- - Friendbot2000   [Highway 405] Jax wasn't even aware of the fa...   Oct 5 2011, 04:17 PM
- - Aria   @Gash: Free once more of the bindings of the fles...   Oct 5 2011, 04:32 PM
- - Friendbot2000   Edit: Oops this was meant to go in the OOC thread ...   Oct 6 2011, 07:44 PM
- - Seth   Gash [Aztech facility on Fox Island] Well I guess...   Oct 6 2011, 08:08 PM
- - JxJxA   Trismegistus---"Magic Support" [En route...   Oct 8 2011, 08:31 AM
- - JxJxA   Trismegistus---"Magic Support" [With Con...   Oct 9 2011, 04:07 AM
- - sabs   [Prepping for Transport] <<Feral, you'r...   Oct 10 2011, 01:02 PM
- - JxJxA   Trismegistus---"Magic Support" [With Con...   Oct 10 2011, 02:40 PM
- - Friendbot2000   Jax sighed and steeled her resolve; she probably s...   Oct 10 2011, 06:04 PM
- - Aria   @Sticks et al. Kit’s dulcet tones come over the c...   Oct 12 2011, 11:55 AM
- - sabs   [Prepping for Aerial Lift] <<Alright, lets ...   Oct 12 2011, 12:49 PM
- - JxJxA   Trismegistus---"Magic Support" [With Con...   Oct 12 2011, 12:49 PM
- - JxJxA   Trismegistus---"Magic Support" [With Con...   Oct 12 2011, 01:05 PM
- - Friendbot2000   <<Sarge, do we have authorization for an mis...   Oct 12 2011, 01:50 PM
- - sabs   <<Negative, we do not have authorization for...   Oct 12 2011, 03:05 PM
- - Seth   Gash [Aztech facility on Fox Island] Gash flew ar...   Oct 12 2011, 05:33 PM
- - Friendbot2000   <<It will be a tough jump in my heavy Sarge,...   Oct 12 2011, 05:56 PM
- - JxJxA   Trismegistus---"Magic Support" [With Con...   Oct 13 2011, 11:21 AM
- - Friendbot2000   <<Yo Tris, you got any mojo that goes boom? ...   Oct 13 2011, 12:23 PM
- - JxJxA   Trismegistus---"Magic Support" [With Con...   Oct 13 2011, 02:53 PM
- - sabs   [In Flight] <<The plan will depend on their...   Oct 13 2011, 03:36 PM
- - JxJxA   Trismegistus---"Magic Support" [In Fligh...   Oct 13 2011, 04:19 PM
- - Friendbot2000   <<Are these transports dropship capable Sarg...   Oct 13 2011, 09:30 PM
- - JxJxA   Trismegistus---"Magic Support" [In Fligh...   Oct 16 2011, 07:30 AM
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