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Vragi Odd

A dangerously curious dwarf

0 · 240 views · located in The Edge

a character in “The Imagiverse”, as played by DragonDunc

Description

Name: Vragi Odd

Age: 213

Race: Dwarf

Gender: Male

Appearance: Vragi’s squat stature, at about 4ft, is covered almost entirely by an enormous bushy silver beard. Above it his conical nose points out from his ruddy face. His grey eyes are normally covered by a pair of heavy protective goggles, and his eyebrows perched above these stick out of his head.

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Equipment and Abilities: Vragi is a runesmith, a smith who can etch magic runes into metal to give it special properties. He has two main tools that he has infused with runes, which he always carries on his back. Knuse is a war-axe that, when used to cut something, lets you ‘undo’ the damage afterwards, as if it had never been cut. Brudd is a pickaxe that will never break against rock or metal, but only in the dark. He also has a length of rope, a notebook, a lantern, spare oil, matches, and a small knife. Being considerably small he can also fit through quite small gaps, and has excellent vision in the dark.

History:
Vragi learned his runesmithing skills in his home-city of Nidvell, in Nidavellir, which is guarded by a Nidhogg-like creature called Njall (they couldn’t find another name beginning with ‘nid’). Dwarves are renowned for their craftsmanship and love rare and interesting materials. This curiosity led Vragi to leave his homeland in search of the most strange and remarkable crafting materials a dwarf could hop to discover.

Vragi is loud, often irresponsible, and impulsive. Thirsting for knowledge as much as material gain, his experiments and expeditions can get him anything from a face full of soot to a near-death experience.

So begins...

Vragi Odd's Story

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Skitters Character Portrait: Sir Betelgeuse Grimms Character Portrait: Vragi Odd

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A short spiky shape scurried through the city streets, hopping ever so slightly in excitement. Two large metal tools jostling on its back, it resembled a sort of disjointed porcupine. It certainly turned a few heads on its way, still being alive and all.

The dwarf soon slid to a halt in front of a large domed building. He looked around while he caught his breath, taking more time to the stock of the city. Peering up at the gleaming roof and adjusting the heavy goggles around his helmet, he grinned before darting to the entrance.

The sergeant of the two guarding the door would hear quick apprehensive footsteps, followed by a slightly more conspicuous clanging of metal and wood, and a “Hrmmm…”. If he were to look down to his side a couple of feet below his eye level he would see a very old, wizened dwarf not much taller than his own white beard, peering very intently at the Skeletorian’s mechanical ear through his dark glass goggles. He’d probably be prodding or prying at it with callipers of he was tall enough to reach

“Fascinating.” Came a low croaking voice “In all my life I’ve never seen such a thing. Does it help your hearing or is it cosmetic? Ah, or is it some sort of novelty cigar holder? Or-” he began to ramble on, bombarding the poor guard with irrelevant questions about his ear which, if he wasn’t stopped, would eventually digress to myriad other subjects that no-one here was likely to care for.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Skitters Character Portrait: Sir Betelgeuse Grimms Character Portrait: Vragi Odd

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The sergeant would glance at Crispin, who was too busy staring at the dwarf with horrified fascination. He would clear his throat and interrupt the rambling newcomer. "Well, back when I was flesh, I always tucked my smoke behind my ear, so I went down to a local tinkerer to get a brass ear for old time's sakes. You here for the advert?" he would then add. "The Governor would certainly welcome another tinkerer to his ship. Funnily enough, this one flies, ain't that right Crispin?" He would address the corporal, who was opening the door again. "Whatever'll they think of next, eh?"
"If they decide to work on flying pigs, I'll eat my 'elmet," muttered the corporal. The door will open again, and the dwarf will be let in. After a few awkward seconds of silence, the sergeant, a 48-cum-152 year old Hales, would turn back to Crispin. "Funny people we're getting as volunteers, ain't they?"
"Person'lly, I wouldn't mind not seein' their faces again, if they make it to the Edge," grumbled the corporal.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Skitters Character Portrait: Sir Betelgeuse Grimms Character Portrait: Vragi Odd

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"Thank you, good sirs," the fiery-eyed titan said, and with a bow of his head, he patted the corporal on the back, trying to restrain his strength, slipping a business card into his hand. On it was something about... Grimms Scientia Obscurum... information broker. "Keep up the good work." He walked through the door, unconcerned of the little hitchhiker he had picked up along the way. It was worse for a man his size, to squeeze through such a tight stairway, but his eyes actually helped to illuminate the way down. At the end he found himself facing another door.

"I see their security is not taken lightly, or... there was a sale on sliding doors," he muses to himself as Skitters grumbles to herself, squeezing past the titan's body and pushing the buzzer on the wall. Sliding open a little slot on the door that'd reveal two scrutinizing eyes. "Greetings, I am Sir Betelgeuse Grimms... entrepreneur... and to-be explorer. Off to rekindle my spirit of youth an-"

"What's with the fat squirrel?" the guard interrupts, looking over at Skitters.

"F...fat!? Squirrel!? Excuse you, ya rude git!" Skitters responds, face reddening from the sheer nerve! "First off, this is mostly fluff, secondly, I am of the order Procyon Supremus, not some stinkin' rodentia cur!"

"Ah, looks are deceiving, it seems! I believe this spirited young lady is a volunteer as well." Grimms says, rubbing his chin. "Perhaps a good match for my son..."

"Y-young... l-l... w-what was that about...?" she stumbles, becoming increasingly flustered, only amusing Grimms more. "Anyways, yes, YES, I am here as a volunteer as well! Skit- er... no, I mean, I am esteemed lady, the Duchess Basalah." She says, her voice gaining a pompous tone as she tilts her nose to the air and closing her eyes, fanning herself to try to look as (self) important as possible.

"Yeah, okay," the guard says, clearly becoming exhausted from this exchange. With another buzz, the door slides open, letting the two enter.

As Grimms walked through, he took a moment to straighten his suit and dust it off. He scrutinized the area with his blazing eyes. It wasn't exactly like a stylish resort, to say the least. He took a moment to test the amount of dust on one of the couches with one of his gloved hands, and, after looking at his finger, decided... it was best to remain standing.

"Quite the veritable genius's fortress," Grimms comments.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Skitters Character Portrait: Sir Betelgeuse Grimms Character Portrait: Vragi Odd

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As the tall, devil-like figure scrutinised the furniture, the guard would approach Giles, who was standing only a few feet away. "Here are the volunteers, Mr Mackle; a Sir Grimms and er..." he would look back at the short creature that followed before continuing stoically, "... A Duchess Basalah."
Giles would glare at the soldier for a moment, whilst the soldier met his glare halfway. After a few seconds, the skeletal dwarf would nod and the soldier would salute, smartly making his way back to his post. Giles would waddle towards the volunteers, his hands gripping his suspender in a business-like manner. "Welcome to the Teslatorium, folks. Name of Giles Mackle, Head Engineer of Old Albion and the supervisor of this facility. If you could follow me, please, though I doubt you 'ave much choice in that regard." He would turn by means of leaning on a boot and using it as a pivot, before the guard would hurry back. "There's another one, sir. A dwarf."
Giles would mutter something under his breath before replying. "Let 'im in, then." When the guard had let in the dwarf, he would then lead the group into the heart of the Teslatorium.

As they made their way, climbing down floors which overlooked the S.S Victoria on ground level, the newcomers would note the tables scattered across the floors, supporting machinery that looked alien to this steam-powered city. Apprentices and technicians would examine eldritch devices, occasionally prodding them, jotting down notes on the strange noises they emitted when a button was pressed or a dial turned, and occasionally ducking when the occasional device emitted a loud, green beam which melted a patch of the wall opposite. It would be evident that this wasn't just a home for Skeletorian technology; it is also a research facility for foreign machinery, a by-product of the Governor's insatiable thirst for knowledge, mundane or otherwise, tucked away from the rest of the city.
At last, they made it to the main attraction, the spacecraft that will traverse the Edge and, hopefully, return in one piece, or two. On the stern-side of the ship, oddly-bent pipes trickled oddly-coloured smoke, which contorted strangely as it caught in the errant breeze of the workshop. Serious thought, and possibly the consumption of something illegal, had gone into the design of the ship, where the odd gear set in the hull turned sluggishly, the occasional pressure valve puffed the same bizarre vapour as the exhausts, and even weirder machinery whirred and clunked within the hull.
"Y'know, John designed most of this space-bullet 'imself," Giles stated casually. "Especially the engine that runs the whole fin'. He reckoned that usin' enough Innovatium - that's a special substance we use in most of our technology to you - would provide enough power for in'erstellar travel. Mind you, I've always found it best to ignore wotever strange fancies 'e spouts, but I reckon 'e's on ter a winner 'ere." As he climbed the ladder to the entrance hatch, he continued. "Though I'd 'ave ter warn you, Innovatium can distort reality in odd ways, if there's enough in one place. Wiv the amount John put in the engine, that'll be evident wen yer go in. It'll seem bigger on the inside than on the outside, but don't fret, that's my advice ter yer." He would open up the hatch and motion the volunteers inside.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Skitters Character Portrait: Sir Betelgeuse Grimms Character Portrait: Vragi Odd

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“Thank you very much and a very good day to you!” Vragi told the guards, tipping his helmet as he entered the hall to meet the other volunteers and head engineer. The dwarf hurried through as fast as his short legs could carry him, and when he reached the others he was slightly out of breath from having hurried through the city to get here.

Vragi had never met a dwarf that was not still alive before, however he guessed from the last reaction he’d had that asking too many personal questions might just seem a bit rude, so he settled for “Sorry I’m late! Vragi Odd, at your service!”

Vragi’s eyes were glued to the experiments as he scuttled along the floors. The myriad alien technologies and their equally varied behaviours had him engrossed and he very nearly fell over, what with the tools on his back. Better stay focused, he thought, chuckling to himself. As they made their way toward the ship, he took the time to observe the two volunteers he was accompanying. One of them was only just shorter than himself, whereas the other towered over them both. A talking raccoon was something he hadn't seen either, but he'd have plenty of time to get to know these people once they were on-board and oriented. Soon enough they reached the vessel. The dwarf’s eyes lit up as he looked the huge construct up and down.

“Astounding!” he exclaimed at the engineer's explanation, without even having seen for himself, “I must give you all my utmost respect for such a technical marvel!” He nodded politely to the engineer as he was shown the way in, and stepped eagerly through the entrance.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Skitters Character Portrait: Sir Betelgeuse Grimms Character Portrait: Vragi Odd

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Skitters stared at the strange eldritch machines in their possession as they passed by, a plotting glimmer in her eyes as she thought of the various possibilities. Grimms simply took to following, politely listening to Giles's riveting explanation, taking mental notes of his own as they proceeded towards the opening hatch of the vessel.

"They say madness and genius often run hand-in-hand," the fire-eyed giant commented, puffing out a plume of smoke. He chuckles lightly afterwards, taking out his cigar for a moment. "Seems I will be in good company."

"Ey, I dunno what yer' talkin' about, but I ain't got no bloomin' bats in my belfry," Skitters responds with a huff. Grimms simply chuckles again in response.

"Thank you kindly, monsieur Giles, you are certainly a boon to this establishment," Grimms says politely, bowing to the skeletal dwarf, before proceeding into the entrance of the vessel, Skitters still clung to his side.

Geez, what a ham, Skitters thinks to herself. She then looks back seeing another dwarf running up behind them, this one actually still has his skin on. "Ey, what's up?"

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Adam Skelecoot ((Roleplay Creator)) Character Portrait: John Skelecoot Character Portrait: Max the Robloxian Character Portrait: Jack "The Ducky Boy" Quackers Character Portrait: Fancy Pants Character Portrait: Skitters Character Portrait: Sir Betelgeuse Grimms Character Portrait: Vragi Odd

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Giles would merely sniff at Grimm's first comment. "Yer know, John often sez the same fing, and 'e might be right. But 'e's still a madman, whatever 'e says," he would add severely as the giant climbed down the hatch into the spaceship. He would motion the other two wordlessly in, closing the hatch behind them as they enter.

The interior of the S.S Victoria had also been aesthetically considered in design, though pipes running along the ceiling and under the occasional grating underfoot also suggest that functionality was also a key point. The main corridor, lit by periodic gas lanterns, seemed to stretch a whole mile, from one end of the ship to the other. Giles was right; although it seemed big enough on the outside, it was like stepping through a portal into a cruiser. No doubt this brought the benefit of fitting in whatever specialised rooms were needed for an interstellar voyage, but the evident distortion of physical law was disconcerting.
As the volunteers made their way down the corridor, they would hear distant voices, not exactly raised in argument, but suggesting that this was an option. They would make their way in that direction as the voices argued.
"You didn't have to join, you know," snapped one voice, a higher-class English tone that could easily shift several social rungs down to Estuary when provoked. "When I put the advert up, I didn't necessarily put your names on it! Wise up, Max, the only thing that brought you here was your understandable thirst for something challenging, something more dangerous than the average local demon. And that goes to the rest of you!"
"Oh, come on John," complained another voice, still English but even further down the social ladder to Cockney. "I'd join yer even wivout the advert. Yor me bruvver, after all."
"Well yes, Adam," responded the first voice stonily. "I wouldn't expect you not to join. I'm referring to the others." Here, the tone changed, as if returning it attention to the 'others'. "You came aboard this spaceship because you knew that, for the first time in years, you could challenge yourself. Out there, where no-one except those who treasure their existence very little would dare venture, was the ultimate test of your abilities. So shut up about having to go, because you didn't."
"John, I hear footsteps," said another voice blankly. A few seconds of silence passed in what the group could make out to be an open, brightly-lit room, as if the voices had stopped to listen.
"Ah," the first voice spoke cheerfully. "That'll be the volunteers. Excuse me."
A skeletal head, dressed only in a purple bandana but with the expression of deep suspicion, would poke out of the doorway, looking one way before looking in their direction. His expression would then melt into a welcoming grin, although the effect was spoiled by his uneven teeth, as the rest of him poked out. He was easily seven foot, dressed in steel-capped boots, maroon trousers, brown trenchcoat over a purple waistcoat, and maroon gloves. The overall attire suggested a man who liked travelling in style. The dapper skeleton would straighten up, hands behind his back in an authoritative manner. "Ah, I take it you've come for the Edge voyage? Welcome to the S.S Victoria, volunteers. I am Jonathan C. Skelecoot, Governor of Old Albion and the captain of this vessel, but you can just call me John. Come with me to the Cafetorium to meet the others." He would beckon the others into the room, the Cafetorium as he refers to it.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Adam Skelecoot ((Roleplay Creator)) Character Portrait: John Skelecoot Character Portrait: Max the Robloxian Character Portrait: Jack "The Ducky Boy" Quackers Character Portrait: Fancy Pants Character Portrait: Skitters Character Portrait: Sir Betelgeuse Grimms Character Portrait: Vragi Odd

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Vragi bowed enthusiastically to skitters as she acknowledged him, introducing himself.

“Moths, I think.” he replied in a serious tone, after some thought. He suddenly realised he hadn’t properly greeted Mr. Grimms, and did so promptly.

Rather than discomfort, Vragi was buzzing with excitement as he took his first steps through the seemingly endless corridor before him, trying not to trip over his beard as he spun round, glancing here and there at each pipe, observing the reflections, the structures, and all the various pieces of machinery that were left visible. Occasionally one would hear him murmur “fascinating…” under his breath.

The dwarf slowed down as they reached a door from behind which they could hear voices. Although there was some tension in the conversation coming from the nearby room, this was lost on him and as far as he knew he could be listening to a casual afternoon chat.

When the door opened for them to be greeted by a skull staring them down, followed by the rest of the skeleton, and introduced himself as the Ship’s designer they’d just been told about, Vragi bowed so fast and so low that his beard (which was surprisingly springy) rebounded him back up, almost toppling him over backwards.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Adam Skelecoot ((Roleplay Creator)) Character Portrait: John Skelecoot Character Portrait: Max the Robloxian Character Portrait: Jack "The Ducky Boy" Quackers Character Portrait: Fancy Pants Character Portrait: Skitters Character Portrait: Sir Betelgeuse Grimms Character Portrait: Vragi Odd

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Cordial as always, the firey-eyed giant bowed to the presumed captain of this vessel. "Indeed. I am Sir Betelgeuse Grimms, but Mr. Grimms, or just Grimms will suffice... just don't confuse me with a certain crass and mischievous specter. There is absolutely no relation, I assure you," he says, chuckling slightly as he stands back up straight. "Either way, monsieur John, I must say, I find the prospects of this vessel of yours to be... rather intriguing, whatever made you think of such?"

Skitters narrowed her eyes at the Chosen Few and faked a cough... and when that didn't work, she coughed a bit louder. Rolling her eyes, she cranked up the volume on her communication box.

"AH-HEM!" She then proceeded to point at herself with one of her claws, raising her head and fanning herself. "Ey, ya blokes! Didja maybe forget 'bout something?"

Grimms ponders for a moment rubbing his chin, looking between Skitters and the chosen few.

"Oh? Have you already met before?"

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Adam Skelecoot ((Roleplay Creator)) Character Portrait: John Skelecoot Character Portrait: Max the Robloxian Character Portrait: Jack "The Ducky Boy" Quackers Character Portrait: Fancy Pants Character Portrait: Skitters Character Portrait: Sir Betelgeuse Grimms Character Portrait: Vragi Odd

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The Chosen Few, who were busy eating their second course from the Cornucopia, would stare at Skitters with a rather troubled expression. Even Max, who was often the stoic of the group, looked rather concerned.
"Did we see that before?" pondered Adam.
"Nah, not in our life," said Max. "I don't remember comin' across an oversized rodent with a voice box."
"Funny fing," said Jack. "Cauth I get the feeling we've theen it before, back in Grand Gaia..."
"A spot of continuity deja vu, that's likely it," dismissed John. "I wouldn't be surprised if the engine was already affecting us from this distance. We're possibly remembering it from another timeline. But not to worry, if we did see it, it definitely didn't talk then." He would chuckle at this, and turn to Grimms. "On the prospects of this vessel, Grimms, I think the main reason I designed this ship, other than the potential ease of travel between other worlds, is for research. For a long time, the Edge has been no man's land, an uncharted, or rather unchartable, area of the Imagiverse that very few people have ventured into and returned from. I want to be the first man to complete a successful voyage into the Edge, to learn what I can from it. You may or may not have heard of the legends of the Imagiverse's beginning, but I believe that the Edge, being a much older part of the Imagiverse, could hold answers relating to said legends.
"For this purpose, I have designed this ship to be capable of withstanding any external threats and pressures that might occur during our voyage, as well as travel at sufficient speeds should we come across any turbulence. I know Giles disagrees with me on the engine, but Innovatium has such potential as a power source - I mean, look at what we have built around it! - why not use it to power a spacecraft?"
"Hold on, hold on," interrupted Max, standing up. "I remember you telling us something about- oh yeah. Because it's unpredictable, possibly sentient and distorts reality if there's enough of it around?"
John would glare at Max for a moment. "Yes, Max," he would snap. "That is the basis of our understanding, which is why heavy training is required to even handle the stuff. It seems to resonate with people's thoughts, if they're thought hard enough, so you have to be able to keep a rein on your thinking when dealing with it. However, I don't see why I, the man who brought Innovatium into the scientific field, shouldn't know how to use it."
His tone would soften, as his gaze unfocused, seeming instead to focus on somewhere beyond the window overlooking the Teslatorium, which he approached casually. "I've always wondered what had occurred, back when the Imagiverse was young, and the being known only as the Maker roamed this universe. It was the Maker that brought the Imagiverse to existence, but not many people know what had occurred back then, or even know he exists. All we have is old legends of his grand castle, where he first weaved the basic Ideas which brought order to the Imagiverse. They say he had one day had a nightmare which eventually became the Maelstrom, which terrorised his creations and sent him into a coma, but where's the evidence? Perhaps it's out there, where even the Creators wouldn't go."
An embarrassed silence passed between the others, who looked to the volunteers as if John was an old relative who had a tendency to drift away. As is often the case, Max would clear his throat, and John would wake up from his reverie, spinning back around to the newcomers, an anticipating grin on his skull.
"Well, it's a good thing you're here to learn then, eh? Together, we can piece together the puzzle concerning the Maker, and find out, once and for all, what had really happened to him. Now," he would turn to Skitters and Vragi. "I apologise for not asking for your names beforehand, although you (he'd direct this to Skitters) seem to think we know you already. What were your names again?"

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Adam Skelecoot ((Roleplay Creator)) Character Portrait: John Skelecoot Character Portrait: Max the Robloxian Character Portrait: Jack "The Ducky Boy" Quackers Character Portrait: Fancy Pants Character Portrait: Skitters Character Portrait: Sir Betelgeuse Grimms Character Portrait: Vragi Odd

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Vragi looked between the crew members and Skitters in befuddlement. He wondered if some sort of joke was going over his head. The explanation that perhaps this innovatium material was interfering with their memories grabbed his attention though. Hearing that a material could even be sentient fascinated him, as he’d never encountered anything like it before. If that was the norm here, he could only imagine what mysteries might lie on their journey.

As John was explaining the nature and purpose of the oncoming voyage, he remembered he still had his helmet on. Thinking it more polite, he removed it, allowing a small but spiky shock of white hair to spring out. After some explanation, the mayor addressed the two who hadn’t introduced themselves to him yet.

“Vragi of Nidvell, at you service Mr. Skelecoot!” A pleasure to meet you all.” Said the dwarf courteously, “I must say, these legends make the edge sound a most intriguing place. It’s a real privilege to be allowed to join this expedition.”

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Adam Skelecoot ((Roleplay Creator)) Character Portrait: John Skelecoot Character Portrait: Max the Robloxian Character Portrait: Jack "The Ducky Boy" Quackers Character Portrait: Fancy Pants Character Portrait: Skitters Character Portrait: Sir Betelgeuse Grimms Character Portrait: Vragi Odd

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Skitters's body tightened up, her four paws tighten into knuckles, she wrinkled her nose, and her face turned a light shade of red the very moment Max dropped the "R" word.

"Ehhh~! Rodent!? I'm not a damn rodent! I'm... Eh... ahem..." she coughed and regained her composure. She then crossed her arms and rubs her chin with one of her paws.

"Actually, technically I never gave my name... I-I couldn't... but, while my vessel is named Skitters, I fancy the name Basalah... it means bravery," she answers, looking rather proud. She then lifted her head and pecked the device on her neck with her nails. "As for this, I built it myself from scraps. Pretty spiffy, roight? Though the only bloomin' adult female voice modulator I could find has some weird bleedin' mock accent," she continued, her tone growing slightly irate. She sighed and rubbed her forehead, her face turning slightly red again. "As for why I'm here... well... look at me, I'm brilliant! But I'm also... stuck like... this. Unless I do something big, I'm just going to be some trash panda, or... r-rodent..."

Mr. Grimms stands by, rubbing his own chin with his massive hands.

"As for me, well, I must say, my business senses told me that opportunity was knocking," he says with a rumbling chuckle, clouds of steam billowing out from the teeth of his mask. "I used to be a bit of an adventurer in my younger days... plus, my little girl is getting tired of me skulking in my office all day, and has forcibly made me take a centuries overdue vacation."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Adam Skelecoot ((Roleplay Creator)) Character Portrait: John Skelecoot Character Portrait: Max the Robloxian Character Portrait: Jack "The Ducky Boy" Quackers Character Portrait: Fancy Pants Character Portrait: Skitters Character Portrait: Sir Betelgeuse Grimms Character Portrait: Vragi Odd

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John would nod as the two introduced themselves; a dwarf from somewhere called Nidvell, and a sentient... mammal with a female Cockney voice box. Well, at least they have another tinkerer on the ship, as well as a ship's mascot.
"Indeed," John would respond to Vragi. "You could call this a once-in-a-lifetime event." He would then turn to Skitters and listen to her introduction, his expression worryingly calculating, as if weighing her up. "Well, Skitters," John would say finally with a smirk. "Chances are, you'll probably get a free ascension while we're out there. But that's just fanciful thinking on my part."
He would turn to listen to Grimms' incentive. A presumably centuries-old businessman taking a vacation on the leave of his daughter. Well, he's definitely better-behaved than the other sorts of demons he had to deal with as the de facto leader of the Chosen Few.
"Well, if I've been working long enough for cities to crumble, I wouldn't mind a vacation myself," John joked. "Then again, with Old Albion, being the keg powder it is, I've technically been working all my afterlife. I suppose the usual gig with this lot (he would gesture to the Chosen Few, who had finished their supper) is a sort-of holiday. Certainly gets me away from all the paperwork, at least." He would clear his throat, or at least make the effort of doing so, and address the group. "Well, lads? What did I tell yer? There's always an adventurer looking for fun when you look. Now, if you all could follow me, I'll give you a vague tour of the vessel."
All oddities of the vessel were soon apparent as John led the group. As the length between the bridge and the engine was almost certainly half a mile, John would take the group through several doors, leading to another half-mile corridor which seemed to pass through all the other rooms on that wall. He would explain that he had discovered these "shortcuts" whilst wandering the ship, doors which lead to different points of the corridor, and had scratched some sort of code to each of the shortcuts. As the ship hadn't been fully mapped yet, this sufficed as the only means of figuring out where you are, apart from the main rooms - the Cafetorium, the Munitions quarters, the operations room where one could compile a map of whatever world they might stumble upon and generally keep an eye on whatever else that might be lurking in the Edge, the sickbay and others - which were properly signed. No forest was as unchartered as the S.S Victoria.
Eventually, he would lead the group to a set of doors, on the eastern corridor where the main one broke off into a four-way crossroad. Opening the doors revealed regular cabins, enough of which to accommodate a crew of fifty. Each cabin was of medium size, with two bunker beds, a bathroom branching off the eastern wall, regardless of the cabin adjacent, and several chests where one could put their belongings.
"If any of you have anything you don't mind keeping here, feel free to stick 'em in the chests there," John announced, and turned to the volunteers. "The passengers can have this room, and the band can have the room opposite."
"John," Max said finally. "You have enough room ta fit a cruiser crew. Isn't there anyone else on this ship besides us? I mean, whose maintaining the ship?"
"Oh, I have other crewmen on the ship," said John. "In fact... Oh bollocks!" John would scold to himself. "All that traversin', I forgot the engine room! Of course, it's not the sort of room fit for tourists, but err..." He would fall silent for a moment before finally deciding. "Alright, drop your belongings in the chests there, I'll take you to the engine. Just to warn you, most of this weirdness is being caused by the engine, so it might get... wyrd."
"Wyrd?" questioned Fancy.
"Oh you know, more than just normally weird," John explained. "If you could follow me, everyone."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Adam Skelecoot ((Roleplay Creator)) Character Portrait: John Skelecoot Character Portrait: Max the Robloxian Character Portrait: Jack "The Ducky Boy" Quackers Character Portrait: Fancy Pants Character Portrait: Skitters Character Portrait: Sir Betelgeuse Grimms Character Portrait: Vragi Odd

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Vragi gave an impressed nod as Skitters explained her speaking device. Having never seen a raccoon before, he thought the apparent duchess was some sort of weasel or badger, but seeing her reaction to having her species mistaken decided to keep his mouth shut. After the raccoon and Mr. Grimms had both introduced themselves, he followed the others through the ship.

Between gawping like a fish at the construction of the ship and the peculiar shortcuts they took while traversing it, he thought he should make conversation.

“So you built that yourself? From scraps no less!” he asked the raccoon as he scurried to keep up with the group. “Never seen anything like it before. Does it use that invisible lightning magic that everyone seems to be using?”

As skilled as Vragi might be, the poor fellow didn’t quite understand the idea of electricity. It was a new concept to him, and so shortly after setting off from home he’d quickly assumed that he had stumbled on some new type of magic he’d never seen before.

Once they’d been shown the cabins, he nodded to John in appreciation, depositing his equipment save his pickaxe (‘A dwarf should never be without an axe’, he’d always say), before they were ushered toward the engine room.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Adam Skelecoot ((Roleplay Creator)) Character Portrait: John Skelecoot Character Portrait: Max the Robloxian Character Portrait: Jack "The Ducky Boy" Quackers Character Portrait: Fancy Pants Character Portrait: Skitters Character Portrait: Sir Betelgeuse Grimms Character Portrait: Vragi Odd

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Skitters swelled a bit with pride when commented on her handiwork, eyes lighting up. "Uh-huh!" her voice squeaks, almost child-like in its delivery. "I converted it to use self-restoring power cells! So uh, it is like advanced lightning magic... contained in small cylinders!" She seemed to grin under her handkerchief mask.

As they were given the cabin tour, both Grimms and Skitter took note of the nature of the space within the vessel, noting how time and space seem not only expanded but... folded? It was clear that there was no underestimation on how space in here was warped! The thought it could get weirder gave Skitters some pause, her eyes darting over to John.

"Wouldn't this stuff be psycho-reactive?" she asks, with a look of wonder swelling in her eyes. "I wanna see!"

"Hah!" Grimms laughed. "She sounds a bit like my daughter! But yes, don't worry, weird is part of the business, so please, lead the way. You know, before the little one explodes from anticipation."

Skitters would huff from being called a little one.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Adam Skelecoot ((Roleplay Creator)) Character Portrait: John Skelecoot Character Portrait: Max the Robloxian Character Portrait: Jack "The Ducky Boy" Quackers Character Portrait: Fancy Pants Character Portrait: Skitters Character Portrait: Sir Betelgeuse Grimms Character Portrait: Vragi Odd

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Before long, after taking several shortcuts, the group will be escorted to the engine room. As they progressed, from about fifty yards from the engine, their surroundings became increasingly peculiar; The walls seemed to shift and shimmer, like stage curtains, with the doors swaying to a different rhythm; faint, otherworldly sounds could begin to be heard, like faint, cosmic bells that had been struck a while ago, and their vibrations were now bouncing off the shifting surfaces of space-time; near-transparent shapes curled in the air, smoky and vague, but with the odd impression of life hinted from their movements. Among all this, John would pass by, skimming past the shapes as if completely accustomed to their existence. The Chosen Few, however, were less so. What attracted their wary attention the most were the walls. And the doors. They knew, from years of traversing the unreal realms of the Imagiverse, that reality was thinning in the presence of Innovatium.
There were no doors to the engine room, only a doorway, even if it was in the danger of melting from intense vibration. It would be assumed that, with the disconcerting effects of Innovatium, the engine didn't need much more security.
The first thing to note was the engine itself. It was a gigantic, brass sphere set into the back of the room, pipes riddled on it's surface, coiling towards the walls like snakes (and even undulated in the same fashion). In the middle of the sphere, a fast-locked porthole window allowed view of the contents, an ethereal swirl of multiple colours, the main colour being a deep-sea blue, that gave out the most peculiar light, in that the technicoloured shafts curled away and mingled in the air, like ghostly serpents.
The second thing was everything else. All five senses were being given a buffet of sensations, except that the dishes had been mixed up, so that the group could smell greenish-purple, hear the taste of tin, see the sound of beating stars, and so on. The walls seemed only slightly more solid than the ghostly shafts, providing a view that forced the others to avert their gaze.
All this, however, didn't seem to affect John, who simply called out, "8-Bit? Come out, I've brought some visitors for ya!"
Somewhere, from the depths of the engine's machinery, slowly crawled out a shape. It was perhaps six foot tall and vaguely humanoid, though this first impression was lessened somewhat from the other details, like the two glowing orbs in place of it's eyes, set in a spherical metal head. As it got closer, the others could make out finer details, such as exhaust pipes extruding from the back of its ribcage, and wires. It wore suspenders and a buttoned-on shirt, it's pockets laden with tools that didn't otherwise fit in the construct's belt. When it finally spoke, it was in a peculiar series of beeps, nearly inaudible of the shifting humming of the engine, ".... . .-.. .-.. --- / .-- --- .-. .-.. -..?"
"Yes, it's me, 8-Bit," replied John. "We've got a few volunteers in, so we'll be departing shortly. How's the engine?"
The machine would shrug. ". -. --. .. -. . / -. --- -- .. -. .- .-.. .-.-.- / ... -.-. .... . -.. ..- .-.. . -.. / -- . -. - .- .-.. / .-. . --. ..- .-.. .- - .. --- -. / .--. .-. --- - --- -.-. --- .-.. / .. -. / - . -. / -- .. -. ..- - . ... .-.-.-"
"Capital." John would pause for a moment before turning to the group. "Oh yes. Lady and gentlemen, this is 8-Bit, our head engine-er, hah. His job is to make sure the engine is running smoothly and that it doesn't implode during our voyage. Any other questions you want to ask me or 8-Bit before we head off?"

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Adam Skelecoot ((Roleplay Creator)) Character Portrait: John Skelecoot Character Portrait: Max the Robloxian Character Portrait: Jack "The Ducky Boy" Quackers Character Portrait: Fancy Pants Character Portrait: Skitters Character Portrait: Sir Betelgeuse Grimms Character Portrait: Vragi Odd

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“Haha! Brilliant.” Vragi chuckled in reply to Skitters as they continued toward the engine room. He seemed increasingly excited as the ship began to behave in strange ways, as he knew they must be getting nearer. The hair of his beard and on (well around the edge of) his head seemed to stand on end. Finally he took a deep breath as they entered into the actual room.

The dwarf was ecstatic at the sight of it, and couldn’t help but laugh. However it wasn’t long before the bewilderment seeping through his mind took hold. Vragi had to remove his helmet to scratch at his head. This was an old habit of his that showed not just curiosity but also fear. The other people on the ship might not recognize this, but they could see it in his eyes nonetheless. The childlike grin had vanished from his face and his brow was furrowed.

Vragi had so many questions that if he tried to ask them all he’d spend the entire voyage in the engine room instead of actually helping, so he restrained himself and made ready to head back with the others.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Adam Skelecoot ((Roleplay Creator)) Character Portrait: John Skelecoot Character Portrait: Max the Robloxian Character Portrait: Jack "The Ducky Boy" Quackers Character Portrait: Fancy Pants Character Portrait: Skitters Character Portrait: Sir Betelgeuse Grimms Character Portrait: Vragi Odd

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Grimms stood quietly as they were introduced to a strange mechanical being. He rubbed his chin, observing the area as best he could, apparent that nausea wasn't one thing he was susceptible to. Skitters on the other hand, well, she wasn't fairing near as well, as she swayed left and right on her tiny feet, feeling a bit motion sick from it all.

After hearing this being speaj, named 8-bit by John, the giant finally let out a guffaw. Raising his hand he pecked on the nearest wall with his index finger, making a metallic clank each time, pecking a bit heavier at times to give a longer sound. "-- --- .-. ... . / -.-. --- -.. . ..--.. / .... --- .-- / -. --- ... - .- .-.. --. .. -.-. -.-.--"

Skitters centered herself some, propping herself against a wall, only to find it feeling wobbly as everything else. "This body is so... ugh... feeble perception... constitution... making me look like a bleedin' lightweight," she mutters. She then looked around to everyone. "So um, this level of exposure, it is safe, right?"

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Adam Skelecoot ((Roleplay Creator)) Character Portrait: John Skelecoot Character Portrait: Max the Robloxian Character Portrait: Jack "The Ducky Boy" Quackers Character Portrait: Fancy Pants Character Portrait: Skitters Character Portrait: Sir Betelgeuse Grimms Character Portrait: Vragi Odd

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8-Bit appeared to understand the message that Grimms had tapped onto the wall, responding in a longer series of beeps.
After a minute of the automaton speaking, John would translate. "8-Bit's one of those customised mechanic droids dotted around Old Albion. I suppose his creator wanted a helper who wouldn't natter at him during work-hours, so he built 8-Bit to only speak in morse code. Of course, he soon realised that he couldn't speak morse code himself, so he sold him to the Teslatorium's staff, where he was transferred to my supervision."
"How come you can understand what he's saying, then?" retorted Max. "I can't tell which sound's a dot or a dash from the speed he's talkin'."
"We've had several wars down in this cavern that is our world," John returned. "When your only means of communicating with distant soldiers is encrypted in beeps, you soon pick up the lingo." He would turn to Skitters, who was having considerable difficulty coping with Innovatium radiation. "I find it best to remember that nothing that you are currently seeing is real," John would advise, while Jack was leaning on the wall behind them, throwing up whatever Toons ate. "It may seem that the large amounts of Innovatium is distorting the physical dimensions of this room, but it's entirely in your mind."
"What about the ship?" asked Adam. "Are you saying those shortcut doors were a figment of our imagination?"
"Technically, yes," said John, a little uncertainly. "Innovatium responds strongly to one's imagination or thoughts, as well as distorts reality in order to accommodate those fantasies. Granted, this has side-effects, such as what you are currently experiencing, but it has its uses, apart from the, er, folds in space-time. I've heard there are artists and writers in Old Albion who use small amounts of Innovatium as psychedelics, likely to string whatever inspiration they can out of their physical hallucinations, even if it leaves them uncertain on what is and what... isn't.
"So no questions?" He would finish, looking to the newcomers.
"Why'th there a lady in the engine?"
As one body, the band's gaze dart to the Innovatium engine. It showed no signs of inhabiting a woman inside- wait, hold on, what's that in there? Is it... It sort of looks like...
Their eyes begin to water. The images within the window kept changing, but every so often there's a glimpse, not explicitly feminine, but somehow suggesting the idea. They would soon tear their eyes away from the engine; you can get a migraine in this room. John was the last person to avert his gaze, strangely attracted to whatever was inhabiting the power-source of the ship. Awkwardly, they would make their way outside, on their way to the X-junction of the ship.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Adam Skelecoot ((Roleplay Creator)) Character Portrait: John Skelecoot Character Portrait: Max the Robloxian Character Portrait: Jack "The Ducky Boy" Quackers Character Portrait: Fancy Pants Character Portrait: Skitters Character Portrait: Sir Betelgeuse Grimms Character Portrait: Vragi Odd

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The dwarf rubbed his head, which was beginning to schedule. Despite his enthusiasm, the effects of the radiation were beginning to take their toll.

“Now I’m feeling dizzy too.” He responded to Skitters, “Well, I imagine we’ll be putting ourselves in rather a lot of danger either way.”

As John offered his explanation, Vragi found it quite fascinating to think that all of these effects they were experiencing were entirely within their own minds, if a little confusing. It all seemed perfectly real to him, and the weirdness did nothing to change that.

Although you didn’t actually say exactly whether it was safe thought the dwarf, but he kept this to himself. It was more exciting, not knowing for sure. He looked ever so slightly maniacal as he grinned on the way out.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Adam Skelecoot ((Roleplay Creator)) Character Portrait: John Skelecoot Character Portrait: Max the Robloxian Character Portrait: Jack "The Ducky Boy" Quackers Character Portrait: Fancy Pants Character Portrait: Skitters Character Portrait: Sir Betelgeuse Grimms Character Portrait: Vragi Odd

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"You... you say what is and is not real, but manifestations of psychokinetic phenomena are as good as real within this space, best not to underestimate them," Skitters would say as she regained her footing... somewhat. She would cast another glance at the engine before following the others. Oddly this time she spoke, it lacked the funny accent altogether, it was clear, not even an electronic crackle, but actually eloquent. It came to her own surprise, now that she was far enough away to really process things clearly. She'd rub her chin with one of her paws. "Cor!"

The giant looks amused, if such emotions could be read from his eyes alone. He then cast an odd stare at those suffering from nausea from the Innovatium. He was feeling perfectly fine, as much as normal in any case. He followed along quietly, puffing out some small plumes of steam from his mask. "But it is a form of radiation... I suppose for one as I, it makes sense to not feel its effects so readily... but who is the most receptive is another matter altogether."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Adam Skelecoot ((Roleplay Creator)) Character Portrait: John Skelecoot Character Portrait: Max the Robloxian Character Portrait: Jack "The Ducky Boy" Quackers Character Portrait: Fancy Pants Character Portrait: Skitters Character Portrait: Sir Betelgeuse Grimms Character Portrait: Vragi Odd

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Jonathan would lead the group through a similarly winding route as the one to the engine, going through doorways that weren't in any way immaterial - strange as they were - and eventually reaching the cabins. When he next spoke, it was in the same tone as when he was explaining Innovatium's effects; the group would suspect that he was making up the explanation as he went along.
"Oh, I didn't mean that what you're seeing isn't..." John would hesitate, having realised he had talked himself into a corner. He would start again. "If you think about it, the Imagiverse isn't a particularly real world, if you could excuse the existential crisis of that statement. It has always been subject to change from powerful minds; just look at the Creators. It's just that Innovatium sort of... gives you the partial ability of the Creators, allowing you to achieve accomplishments deemed impossible by mundane science." Having found some easy ground, he'd continue more confidently, "That's part of Skeletorian technology, in fact! We're able to make machines that can produce foodstuffs out of nothing, like the Cornucopia in the Cafetorium; We've built airships that could travel the globe sixty times; we've even made musical robots that can generate a tune you can really hum. Of course, I don't believe that's the full extent of Innovatium; even after over a hundred years in studying it, we've only just scratched the surface of what is capable with it."
A moment of silence amongst the Chosen Few would pass.
"... So... Is any of what we saw at the engine real?" asked Adam.
"I think it's safe to say," John replied a touch sharply, "that the answer would be yes and no."
"Is it dangerous?" interrogated Max, asking the question John was attempting to wriggle away from.
"Potentially. When reality is being put through the wringer, all sorts of things can happen, not just the good things. There might be an invasion of things from the Dungeon Dimensions, but I've designed the engine to slim those chances to as close to null as possible. We'll just have to carry on and pray if needs be.
"Anyways, I'd love to stay and chat, but I need to start up the engines and begin our voyage. Make yourselves comfy; I've positioned the two groups so that your cabin is opposite the other, so if you want to cross to the other and mingle, feel free, although Max might object."
"Hey, I like talkin' as much as anyone else," objected Max, "As long as it isn't while I'm sleepin'."
"Right. Cheerio, then," John would make his way down to the helm as he called out. "I'll let you know through the gramo-com when we're about to take off!" He'd then take a door to his left, only to immediately come out a door further away, if anyone can see far enough.
"I've seen the gramo-com," Adam said absentmindedly. "It's like those intercoms up on the surface, but with pipes and stuff. Dunno how it can travel that far, though."
"Right." Max would open the door to their cabin, similarly decadent, similarly dimensionally warped. "Might as well make ourselves comfy. I take the bed by the left-side of the window." He would then be followed by the others, who briefly fight for their beds before closing the door behind them. The others would be left alone to enter their cabin.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Adam Skelecoot ((Roleplay Creator)) Character Portrait: John Skelecoot Character Portrait: Max the Robloxian Character Portrait: Jack "The Ducky Boy" Quackers Character Portrait: Fancy Pants Character Portrait: Skitters Character Portrait: Sir Betelgeuse Grimms Character Portrait: Vragi Odd

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“Yes and no, eh?” Vragi mused, “That’s an answer I can get behind.”

The dwarf bustled along the he corridor as they made their way back. He appeared quite content with John’s explanation, even if it seemed suspicious. On the other hand, the sheer length of the corridor was taking its toll on him. He was used to scrambling in the dark dank of mines and beating the anvil for extended periods of time, but not so much running.

As they reached the cabins, he caught up, wheezing slightly and whistled at seeing the interior, before seating himself on one of the bunks (he wouldn’t be picky).

“Well, this is rather exciting!” He said with a dangerous glint in his eye.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Adam Skelecoot ((Roleplay Creator)) Character Portrait: John Skelecoot Character Portrait: Max the Robloxian Character Portrait: Jack "The Ducky Boy" Quackers Character Portrait: Fancy Pants Character Portrait: Skitters Character Portrait: Sir Betelgeuse Grimms Character Portrait: Vragi Odd

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Skitters's wobbliness had finally subsided now that she was far enough away from the "ground zero" of Innovatium radiation. It still bothered her... that it bothered her that much. It might make keeping up this charade... if it could be called that. She watched the others enter their cabins, fighting like children over who gets which bed. Look at them, fighting over simple beds. She let out a mocking snort as she turned to the cabins assigned to them and stepped in. She looked it over and then jumped the one in the furthest corner of the room, taking the covers and sheets, swirling it around herself into a makeshift structure.

"Mine!" she yelled, holding a pillow over her head, glaring at the others, before plopping it down over her head to finish her mini-fort.

Grimms just walked in and chuckled to himself. "This should prove to be very interesting," he muttered, as he seated himself in a corner of the cabin, slipping out a book from one of his large coat pockets and began to just quietly read.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Adam Skelecoot ((Roleplay Creator)) Character Portrait: John Skelecoot Character Portrait: Max the Robloxian Character Portrait: Jack "The Ducky Boy" Quackers Character Portrait: Fancy Pants Character Portrait: Skitters Character Portrait: Sir Betelgeuse Grimms Character Portrait: Vragi Odd

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Innovatium's discovery is often rumoured to have occurred at the precise time that Peter Walter I discovered Blue Matter, theorised to be the glue that holds reality together. This is interesting to note, as Innovatium is said to do the opposite; acting upon the mutability of reality to provoke hyper-fantasy, a term used to describe phenomenon that is more unreal than what is usual in the Imagiverse. Hyper-fantasy occurrences include near-physical hallucinations, the bending of physical laws and the supposed communication with a distant being, first reported by Jonathan C. Skelecoot, then recently deceased, in 1899, when an accident during the early studies of Innovatium reportedly drove him insane, running out of his laboratory and informing his co-workers, in a loud voice, that their world, along with the countless others they had yet to discover, wasn't real, that it was merely the imaginings of an omnipotent being that wasn't God. The concerned scientists called for the police, and Jonathan, who had calmed down considerably, was escorted to New Bedlam, as it was later named, where he had plenty of time to ascertain what he had seen in the explosion.
When Adam visited John in the asylum, straitjacketed despite his apparent civility, he was the first to hear John's story.

Jonathan, when he was still a young and breathing man, had the ambition of becoming a politician, as any youth who believes he has a few bright ideas on how to better govern the world would. When he died, in a rather tragic family incident involving his other brother Nicholas and every other direct relative including John and Adam, John momentarily put his political aspirations on hold - as there was a period of parliamentary confusion as the deceased statesmen awoke from their lifelong delusions - to partake in some part-time research regarding the latest scientific discovery; a bizarre substance similar to the similarly recent Blue Matter, but much more unstable in it's effects. Jonathan wasn't the only person to have been sadly influenced by this strange material, and it was likely he wasn't going to be the last.
The accident occurred on his first day. The substance in question was sealed in a brass sphere fitted with a window - a container that would much later act as the prototype of commonplace Innovatium power cores - that did not entirely fulfil it's purpose to safely contain the technicoloured substance, as was evident when John peered into the window...
What followed next could not be ordered, as the sudden visions lasted the duration of a second. In that rather crowded second, John saw distant worlds that did not correlate with reasonable science, the beating minds of beings that might as well had been stars in humanoid form, and the terrifying revelation about his own existence, that he was merely a figment of Their imagination that could be as easy to render non-existent as a child's drawing against a pencil eraser.
In the midst of this revelation, he was almost sure there was something else, watching him from the furthest point in space, beckoning him to step off the planetary body and embrace the stars. At least, that was his first impression. Later on, he was almost certain it was a cry for help.