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Rogue Trader - Exodus
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Montresor
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 20, 2010 11:10 am    Post subject: Rogue Trader - Exodus Reply with quote

The Great Commons of the Asteroid in which the Invictus is moored covers an unnatural cavern kilometres wide and deep. The walls of the cavern are dotted with numerous tunnels and dilapidated metal structures, some of which stand on impossibly thin supports and lean against one another. Numerous buildings fill the interior of the great basin, and shanty dwellings cling out of sight where pollutants gather. Crowds press, shove, and heave at one another in congested walkways which spear through the interior at askew angles.

Bars, arms dealers, skin-shops, waste converters, and dens proliferate in this, the last permanently habitable level of the asteroid. Somewhere above, spires and mini-hives gather where those of more means do.

The commons are awash with filth, degenerates, ratings on leave, soldiers, pirates, and beggars. There is no respite from the unceasing noise. Decrepit machines whirr and sputter while their machine spirits groan in tortuous pain; hawkers almost hurl abuse in people’s faces to gain their attention; whores yell uncouth and lascivious blasphemies; and gangers curse amongst themselves and squander their poverty over games of dice and cards.

Coolant from the barely glimpsed ceiling occasionally falls like rain, dropping through the thick smog which hangs in the air far above.

Malachi and Zarkov stand somewhere amongst this hub of the desperate and the depraved, attempting to get their bearings and plan a course of action. Few pay them much attention, so common are armed or augmented men down here. A procession of filth-smacked missionaries wanders past, reeking of the incense they cloak about themselves in great braziers. They mutter in High Gothic, screeching like birds disturbed from their sleep.

[Malachi and Zarkov know that they need to traverse this asteroid and another beyond to reach Delta-X-7. Currently, landing craft is forbidden on Delta-X-7, as so many small vessels are in the process of shipping refugees from the asteroid. Of course, there may be a way to gain entry to a transport ship going to the asteroid.

You also know that there is supposed to be a rail network from this asteroid to others closer to Delta-X-7, though you do not know exactly where this is. Nor do you know the exact situation at your destination
]
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Last edited by Montresor on Tue Apr 20, 2010 2:15 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 20, 2010 2:07 pm    Post subject: Re: Exodus Reply with quote

Zarkov pushed through a throng of hawkers, keeping them at distance from the Explorator. He sneered at the rabble seething around him. The oppresive smell of the place permeated through his rebreather seals. He looked around for any sign of egress to Delta X-7, though the crowds were so thick he had to look for the obvious.

[OOC]Zarkov is wearing his full armour including helmet, with rebreather set to half-filter to save air. His bolt pistol is holstered at his left hip while his mono-sword is at his right. The 3 (4?) spare magazines for the bolt pistol are held in tactical pouches on the front of his armour, alongside his smoke and frag grenades. The Las-carbine he holds almost nonchalantly in front of his body. He has his large naval cloak over his shoulders, and has given the other cloak to Malachi in a probably futile effort to conceal the Tech-priest's mechadendrites.[/OOC]
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Last edited by Lt. Commander Zarkov on Tue Apr 20, 2010 2:39 pm; edited 2 times in total
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 20, 2010 2:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Malachi moves from one stall to the next, inquiring about Mechanicus presence somewhere in The Great Commons.
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 20, 2010 2:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

[I rolled a series of Inquiry tests (not Malachi's strong-suit), with a slight bonus based off the assumption that Zarkov would also help out. Following your direction, I only rolled Inquiry tests on the issue of the Mechanicus. The end product was four failures before a success]

Stall owners and trinket vendors turn the exlporator away again and again. As soon as they realise the men are not interested in their wares - baubles, oil-stained clothes, supplies lifted from ship's stores, and off-smelling meat - the hawkers refuse to answer any questions. Further frustrating their search, Malachi and Zarkov are repeatedly asked by the people of the Commons for food - especially grain. Hunger seems to be the persistent desire of this fetid slum.

After more than two and a half hours questioning, Malachi finally comes across a man willing to help. Old and infirm, this ragged old hawker is peddling a series of pamphlets on all manner of social issues. By the appearance of some, many of these flyers are hopelessly out of date, and deal with issues concerning far-away Calixis. 'Friend,' he answers in an aged and scratched voice. 'Praise the Machine Spirits, blessing of the Omnissiah, I will always help one of the Mechanicus'. He holds up a claw-like mechanical hand as if to make his point. The augmentation is partly rusted and appears too heavy for him now. 'The servants of the Omnissiah, few that there are, dwell in the central core, regulating power to the asteroid. You may find an old access way on the far side of the Commons,' he motions behind himself. 'Bless the Mechanicus . . . may they never give in to the lures of this wicked place'.

He watches you leave, sad and alone, and soon obscured by the pressing multitude.
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 20, 2010 2:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Zarkov stuck to Malachi like glue, scanning the markets for any sign of hostile presence. He unconsciously thumbed the safety catch on the Las-carbine from "Safe" to "Fire".

He nodded his thanks to the old man as they left. At least there are some amongst the horde with faith, he thought.
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 20, 2010 5:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Malachi eyes the old man's bionics.

"Thank you for your help. It's the one thing that seems to be in short supply around here."

Malachi grabs a flyer and tucks it away inside his robe before heading to the far side of the Commons.

"Let's keep moving, Zarkov."
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 21, 2010 5:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

"Yes, brother. Gladly."

Zarkov fell in step with the explorator, positioning himself behind and to Malachi's right. He found himself wondering how the Mechanicus on this asteroid would receive them. The anticipation on meeting more loyal servants of the Machine God drove him through the stinking crowd.
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 21, 2010 5:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

An old beggar, tatooed with a regimental marking of the Imperial Guard on his shirtless body, sucks at rock covered in a sickly blue algae. Other beggars huddle near him, and he eyes these men suspiciously. Elsewhere, a brawl breaks out between two gangers, which is restrained just as quickly as it begins. Heavy green rain pours down in sheets from above.

The far side of the Commons takes at least forty minutes to reach. Here, the blue algae seen in the clutches of the old beggar, grows thickly on the rockface of the vast cavern. A group of armed men watch over blind beggars and children who are busy scraping clumps of the stuff into rope baskets. A queue of half-starved looking Commons-dwellers wait impatiently to buy the algae. Food stocks are evidently dwindling, and people are being driven to desperation to feed themselves and their families. Yet Zarkov and Malachi noted that some gangers appeared well-fed and nourished.

Ten minutes of heaving through small crowds and scanning the face of the rock lead to the discovery of what may be the entrance to the Mechanicus sanctuary. Numerous tunnels, shanty dwellings, and holes are cut into the rock face. There are also what appear to be sewer outlets, which trickle reprocessed waste from far above into small ponds of filth and rubbish. Children play near these and explore the detritus which has accumulated here over the years. At the edge of one of these garbage ponds is a wide sewer drain, adorned on its rim with symbols of the Machine Cult. There is nothing but darkness beyond.

[Although your search is still Basic Untrained, the fact that two players were conducting the search, and were aided by the Servo-Skull slightly increased your odds. After a short search you have found something noteworthy . . . whether it's what you're after or not remains to be seen]
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 21, 2010 6:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Malachi wordlessly commands his servo-skull to activate its auspex and lead the way into the sewer drain.
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 21, 2010 9:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

[Let me know the distance you are keeping from your servo-skull, and whether you let it fly out of sight or not]

The interior of the great drain swims with filth and darkness. The flow of water and waste is audible - dripping, trickling, and lapping at the main channel. The central channel is flanked by two stone paths on either side, sufficiently raised so that the tunnel can be traversed without stepping into the filth.

Depth markings have long since faded, along with any other indications of where off-shoot channels may disperse to. The air in here is stale, gaseous in pockets, and constantly dripping with toxins. The deeper the tunnel progresses, the more toxic the flow. The detritus heaped near the opening is largely dissolving in where it once gathered elsewhere.

Malachi's servo-skull darts ahead in the darkness, where no light penetrates. Smaller tunnels separate from the main channel, some of which look barely capable of accepting human traffic. Vermin skitter over the slime encrusted stone, and toxins bubble in the channel.

Roughly two hundred metres into the drain, numerous lumen cages are built into the walls. The iron bars covering them appear rusted and seldom used, though there are also filth-caked plug in points for power cells beside each lumen cage.

[Whether you continue along the main channel or try one of the other tunnels is up to you. Let me know your 'Order of Battle'. Each path astride the main channel can accomodate one person. If two use the path, they will need to be in single file. Both paths can be used, though over-bridges are infrequent, and jumping the channel would be difficult]
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 21, 2010 1:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Zarkov watched the servo skull move into the tunnel with silent awe. He knew the skull must have its own machine spirit, separate from that which inhabited Malachi's mantle. It was a strange concept. He wondered how the arcane mechanism interfaced with its master.

He found himself following the skull into the tunnel, taking the left channel. He looked back over his shoulder to see if Malachi was there. Beckoning for him to follow, he pushed forward. Time was of the essence, he knew. If they were to reach Delta X-7 before the invasion was to begin, they must seize the initiative. Zarkov had been at the helm of enough engagements to know that plans were often pushed forward at the last minute...
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Last edited by Lt. Commander Zarkov on Wed Apr 21, 2010 2:36 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 21, 2010 2:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Malachi wordlessly commands the servo-skull to make its way down the main tunnel.

"Zarkov, my familiar has no problems with the lighting situation. We do, however, so I'm going to try something."

The sound of the servo-skull fades in the blackness.

"I'm going to try and have the servo-skull disconnect a couple of the lumen globes on the wall, and bring them back to us. I'll connect one to the servo-skull to help guide the both of us, and another I'll connect to my shoulder mount."

As he says this, Malachi heads back towards the light and disconnects his boltgun from his MIU connector, checks the chamber to make sure it's loaded, and waits for the skull to return.
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 21, 2010 2:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Zarkov stopped at Malachi's voice. "Yes, brother. Holding position." The tech-priest was right. Even a few meters into the tunnel the darkness was making progress difficult. He stood waiting for the Explorator at a crossing point. The viscous slime on the walls stank of fetid decay.
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 21, 2010 2:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

[The servo-skull has little difficulty cutting through the rusted cages and retrieving a lumen globe for Malachi. However, the decrepit wiring and sockets of the globe require significant cleaning before Malachi can successfully attach the globe and get it to work. One failed Tech Use test before a success]

The sewer channel is bathed in a dim blue light. The fetid green of the channel appears less wholesome in the glow, a phlegmatic creep of sludge slowly flowing to its exit.

The two men continue along the channel, led by the servo-skull dangling the globe like a holy censor. Ten minutes of wandering along the tunnel sees the main channel meet with a central chamber into which three other channels languidly pour. Just at the entrance to this chamber is a vault-like door resembling a cog, etched with intricate symbols of the Machine Cult. The skull of a human is set into the wall beside the vault, it's eyes glow a faint green from their mechanical ports. There appears to be no means of opening the door from the outside, though it is possible the skull is some kind of interface or monitoring device.
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 21, 2010 11:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Malachi steps closer.

"I think this is it. Hold on."

Common Lore Machine Cult and Forbidden Lore Adeptus Mechanicus to see if I know what this is and what to do here.
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 22, 2010 10:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Malachi wrote:

Common Lore Machine Cult and Forbidden Lore Adeptus Mechanicus to see if I know what this is and what to do here.


[Success on both tests, though unspectularly on the Common Lore roll]

Malachi examines the skull inset. running his fingers over the device he knows undoubtedly that the skull is genuine, and was most likely once a servitor. He remembers one Templum he visited in Calixis which used similar skulls extensively. In most cases, they were simple monitoring devices, behind which pict-recorders were often concealed. However, in rare instances, they also acted as interface points for security systems.

[After examining the device some more, Malachi feels a plug in point under the maxilla, where he may be able to interface. The only issue is, if this is a security device, Malachi knows that access codes and passes vary. He also knows that security isn't his strong suit]
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 22, 2010 2:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Malachi drew his MIU connector and connected it into the concealed port, and began to transmit a signal.

It's a simple binary message. Refer to the PM.
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 23, 2010 10:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

[A three-step success on a Tech Use test. Under the circumstances, I also rolled for Binary, as the method of communication was comparatively unorthodox for Malachi in this context. With a bonus from the Tech success, he just passed]

Malachi interfaces with the node via his MIU. He is certain that the machinery is functioning correctly, and that he has transmitted his message with success. A minute passes before he receives a reply.

The skull's eyes flare with green light, and a mechanical clicking keeps whirring over from within. No more than another minute passes and the great Cog door turns, retracts, and slides into the wall. Beyond, an elevator is revealed, meticulously clean and bright.
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 23, 2010 1:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

"Sorry Zarkov. I'm afraid you'll have to remain here. I'll leave my familiar with you so you can contact me if anything happens."

With that, Malachi enters the elevator.
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 23, 2010 2:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Zarkov watches the Explorator enter the lift shaft. The cog spins into action and closes behind him, dulling any sound of the machine spirits inside. The Lieutenant Commander is left alone, standing on a ledge, listening to the pouring of waste in the chamber beyond. The servo-skull hovers, dangling the light source. At the edge of the lumen's glow, there is nothing but darkness.

.... .... .... ....

Malachi feels the lift stop, having descended for minutes into the depths of the asteroid. Despite ventillators, and temperature-mod units, the heat from the drives below is discomforting.

At the base, the lift door opens, revealing a vast chamber filled with holy and mysterious machines, humming eternally to keep the plasma generators working. Two kill-servitors watch from the other side of the lift, one is equipped with a heavy flamer built into its side, and the other with a heavy bolter and saw-tipped arm.

A hunched tech-priest in dark red-robes watches, leaning upon a power axe. His augmentations are covered in his priestly garments, though his eyes glow red from within his dark cowl. Silhouettes of enginseers and servitors can be seen moving in the smoky darkness.

'I am Logis Ezekial. Explain yourself'.
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