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Tiffany Amed'dali

"Once I was as sure as the stones beneath us all, but now I can trust nothing, not even myself."

0 · 281 views · located in Sol: Deep Space

a character in “The Multiverse”, as played by Fishbucket

Description

Tiffany was a geomancer who lived in Wing city. Her life was one of relative simplicity, as simple as it could be, being one of those capable of altering the very earth at their feet on a whim. Life went on as it was meant to, untill her entire world was shattered, and she was the hammer that shattered it.

Due to an incident brought on by a single mans crime, Tiffany was subjected to the drug Elysium, and as is always the case, she lost control over her powers. Overloaded and out of control, her magic brought ruin to the city, setting off a massive earthquake, shattering the city, raising a super volcano, and killing billions.

And then when she tried to hold back, to restrain her power, it turned on her, killing her in a bloody and horrifying display.

And yet, she was saved by the act of Gaia, goddess of the world.

But the damage is done...

So begins...

Tiffany Amed'dali's Story

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Gaia: Mother of Creation Character Portrait: Kinara Character Portrait: Akio the Wanderer Character Portrait: Jinhai Character Portrait: Wen Myrkul Character Portrait: Commisar Ciaphas Cain Character Portrait: Ean Falcor Character Portrait: Veronica Perlo Character Portrait: Micheal "Captain Runemold" Garig Character Portrait: Dwyn Ingraham Character Portrait: Feidlimid Constans Character Portrait: Jack Walters (CoC: Dark Corners of the Earth) Character Portrait: Icy Peak (Super Volcano) Character Portrait: Tiffany Amed'dali

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The Cobalt Glaive
At first there was only silence throughout the ship, as the crew were effected by Gaia. But when it passed, a noiser beehive you would never find. Dozens of landing craft, somewhat shaped like whales with their large, long bodies, short wings, and tails, were launched and sent to the ground, each one carrying fifty troops, and another dozen medical personnel. The troops, with their combat armor augmenting their strength, worked together to clear the rubble and find anyone who might have been buried yet still alive, while the medical personnel were there save those that they could, and ease the passing of those that couldn't.

More troops were situated on floating platforms that hovered over the city. Here were those people they saved gathered, and there they awaited the drop ships and transports from the Jedi and Imperium. Each platform held about fifty to seventy five people, and there were dozens of them floating about. Clouds they were called, and so they were, clouds on which the disheveled and battered citizens waited in anxious peace.

All the while, Emily at the bridge of the Cobalt Glaive kept a careful eye on the volcano and the fiery wrath it unleashed. Time was not on their side, and there was little that the Glaive could do to subvert such a primal force of power.


Where The Girl Lived

Ean strode to where Tiffany knelt on the ground, not even remotely interested in Gaia. He stepped before the child and dropped to one knee, grasping her by the shoulders and looking her in the eye. The girl was dazed, and hadn't yet realized she was alive again.

Only after assuring himself that she was alive would Ean Acknowledge the Goddess. And when he did so, he charged her in a terrible voice "What you have done will have consequences, and not just for yourself. I hope that, when you realize just how grave a mistake you have made, you accept the responsibility. For the sake of those you love so much, you would let them shatter your own body."

He turned then and looked off in a seemingly random direction. Standing up, keeping himself in front of the girl, and a hand on his pistol.

He muttered then to himself. "Come on then, get it over with."


...And yet I lived.
Tiffany would blink, trying futily to clear her vision. She could not stop shaking, and her eyes were filled with tears. She was not in pain, at least she didn't think she was, but then so much had happened, she couldn't yet make sense of it.

A man knelt before her and grasped her shoulders, she tried to speak, to shy away, but her mouth was numb, and her muscles would not obey her mind. She knelt there, gripped by terror and horror and despair, and waited for doom to fall upon her.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Gaia: Mother of Creation Character Portrait: Kinara Character Portrait: Akio the Wanderer Character Portrait: Jinhai Character Portrait: Rogal Dorn Character Portrait: Wen Myrkul Character Portrait: Commisar Ciaphas Cain Character Portrait: Ean Falcor Character Portrait: Veronica Perlo Character Portrait: Micheal "Captain Runemold" Garig Character Portrait: Dwyn Ingraham Character Portrait: Feidlimid Constans Character Portrait: Jack Walters (CoC: Dark Corners of the Earth) Character Portrait: Icy Peak (Super Volcano) Character Portrait: Tiffany Amed'dali

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A miracle...

A Blessing....

A sort of foolish gesture from some damned deity...

The many Imperials, soldiers and many civilians converted to the Imperial Cult scoffed at the 'deities' proclamation. How dare she even speak a word of what they do, they attack the innocent? Hardly correct, the 'innocent' was the cause of most of this destruction. Another damned deity doing as they damned well please, for the Imperials her 'blessing' was a sign of dishonor and playing god. She revived the many young, however the number of Imperial soldiers lay dead, many above the age of 18. The soldiers were thankfully spared the dishonor of being revived after their faithful duty in the defense of the city. Only the Emperor had the right to do what he wanted with them, no foreign 'deity' could dare touch them.

However, with the many young now alive they accounted the many fathers and mothers that were dead. For such a 'blessing' the 'diety' decided to make many of these children homeless and parentless, another damnable error such a deity overlooked. If a soldier could have shot at a God, they would have shot. However the 'diety' vanished without a trace caring not for their words or retaliation.

As good as this seemed, this was hardly over. "Attention...If anyone is receiving this vox transition then the young have come back to the living. Anyone seeing this as well?"

"Squad 17 here, we are seeing this as well. We lost over 75% of our team here, but we will do our best to escort them before additional shockwaves kills them...again..."

"Damnable false deities, always playing with power like children. They revive the young and dead, leave their fathers and mothers dead who probably shielded them with their lives, Emperor damn it...Squad 12 will get to work here as well."

"Underground sections are secure, nothing minor to account for. Enough supplies to last for a month at least. We will hold out well until rescue arrives...The Emperor protects..."

The Imperial soldiers began to resume communication and those inside still standing bunkers, began to assist in children saving efforts...although they did their best to ignore the many corpses of the hundreds that lay dead just a few feet from safety...This was disheartening, some shed tears unable to control their emotions, however this was drilled into their head...to prevent a disaster like this from happening again. To prevent such sadness from happening to anyone else in the future. To this the Imperium swore it.

Dorn

For the Imperial Fists Primarch, as soon as the blast passed he and his remaining marines stood back up and gathered their items. However before leaving they heard the chatter of Imperial units. The dead coming back alive? And not as undead hell spawn but rather flesh and blood humans to live another life? All caused by an unknown deity...

However instead of ruminating on spewing hundreds of insults like the Imperial Guardsman, his mind focused on one thing...If the dead came back...then the one who started the earthquake and caused much of this disaster was back alive...

"Mighty Space Marines, it seems our work here has not finished yet. You have heard the vox casts and you know that the one who caused all of this lives once again. We make haste to the epicenter of the quake, if she lives then her crimes have still been unanswered." Dorn spoke as he raised Storm's Teeth and ran of, disappearing in a blur. His fellow soldiers running after him with startling speed for heavily armored individuals.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Gaia: Mother of Creation Character Portrait: Kinara Character Portrait: Akio the Wanderer Character Portrait: Jinhai Character Portrait: Rogal Dorn Character Portrait: Wen Myrkul Character Portrait: Commisar Ciaphas Cain Character Portrait: Ean Falcor Character Portrait: Veronica Perlo Character Portrait: Micheal "Captain Runemold" Garig Character Portrait: Dwyn Ingraham Character Portrait: Feidlimid Constans Character Portrait: Jack Walters (CoC: Dark Corners of the Earth) Character Portrait: Icy Peak (Super Volcano) Character Portrait: Tiffany Amed'dali

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A massive shift in the Force knocked Kinara from her Meditative state. The Presence of Gaia, the Goddess, and he actions, changed the will of the Force. Those people were meant to die, but they lived. Kinara's eyes snapped open, her body drenched in sweat from her concentration on stopping the vortex of energies. However, it seemed that it had subsided enough to no longer be a threat.

The evacuations of those able to walk were still well under way, her dropships bringing the survivors to the hangar of the Silver Eagle, where tents and other amenities were being set up to tend to the wounded. Upon finding a bunker filled with Guardsmen and civilians, Kinara's dropships would broadcast a signal, requesting for any who could walk to be let outside to be evacuated to a safer area. She hoped to the Force that the native defenders of Imperium would listen to her, and cooperate.

She quickly moved to a bathroom and showered herself, rinsing off the sweat accumulated from her meditation and strain, before changing into a fresh set of Jedi Robes, her lightsabers on her hip and small of her back accordingly.

Moving to the Hangar, she surveyed the area, the Force told her that it was going to be alright for now. She smiled, these people had endured so much in the past few years. Invasion after invasion, occupation, attacks, terrorism, disease, and now this....she pitied them, but only to the point of offering what aid she could. She couldn't keep these people on her ship; she lacked the resources to do so for longer than a week at most.

She came to a realization; she needed troops of her own. An army to use for peace-keeping, for helping, for war. It'd be a source of income, as well, as currently she had none. She could delve down into the under worlds and do more sleazy things for cash; she'd done it before during the Jedi Purge, but she'd prefer not to. A mercenary army, however, and fleet, for that matter, could be useful to anyone. Save the Sith, perhaps.

She returned to the bridge, and quickly found the nearest planet with cloning facilities powerful enough for what she had in mind. Ariel was the name of said planet, and quickly she sent a message that Terra was in dire need of help, as a crisis had arisen in the form of a massive Super-volcanic eruption. She also added that she would soon be placing an order for a Legion of Clones to be made; upon being asked if she had a DNA Template, she said that she would upon arrival. Secretly she sent an order to her medical droids to collect DNA samples from strong civilians, though her purpose was benign, merely to see what could be used for cloning. She'd offer her own DNA as well, if needed.

She cleared her throat and patched herself into the Comm-Network of the Imperium of Man. "Imperium, this is Jedi Knight Kinara of the Obsidian Eagle. My transports currently lie in wait outside of your protective bunkers ready to assist in evacuations of civilians and guardsmen alike, I ask that you let free those who can walk first, that they may be transported to safety.

"Also, I thank you for allowing me to place my fleet in such low-orbit over the city in order to assist, I've heard that you are quite protective of this planet and its people, and I feared you may not let my starships close due to their size and bristling weaponry." she paused as the message was played out over the comms leading to the highest ranking officer in the area, which by her guess was Dorn.

"I must stress however, that my ship only has enough resources enough to help the civilians for a week at best, after which I will have to relocate the civilians back under your care, I can send down builder-Droids from my ships to help you construct camps and other essential buildings in order to get things back up and running. I wish you luck, and May the Force be with you."

With that she cut her end of the communication and moved to sit in her Captain's chair, a mobile thing allowing her to slide around the bridge and survey and give orders at her leisure. She smiled, she felt what she was doing was right, and that her old Masters would be smiling on her. She missed them, the Masters of old, but they were one with the Force now, all she could do was carry on their teachings.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Gaia: Mother of Creation Character Portrait: Kinara Character Portrait: Akio the Wanderer Character Portrait: Jinhai Character Portrait: Rogal Dorn Character Portrait: Commisar Ciaphas Cain Character Portrait: Ean Falcor Character Portrait: Veronica Perlo Character Portrait: Micheal "Captain Runemold" Garig Character Portrait: Dwyn Ingraham Character Portrait: Jack Walters (CoC: Dark Corners of the Earth) Character Portrait: Icy Peak (Super Volcano) Character Portrait: Tiffany Amed'dali Character Portrait: Otto Hannig Character Portrait: Dietrich Eisenstein

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Go forth, for the Emperor!

Distant in a boarded up building on main street that seems to stretch forever Dietrich, an Imperial Fist of the Emperor stood checking his modified armor's internal systems. He'd woken up removed from his armor surrounded by the strange abhumans professing their loyalty to the Emperor. No longer divided by an explosion expertly reconstructed like the best Apothecary his legs moved without complaint the dense body of a space marine retethered and rekindled. The creatures did explain what they'd done though it was not of Dietrich's liking. They'd rekindled his body, they said, though he'd failed to be one suitable for true rekindling under the Living Emperor. The Doom Eagle Gunnac Umbercaller, however, was indeed a true rekindled. A doom eagle deprived of death an ironic thing that made him laugh at the hell the enemies of the Imperium would experience for such a thing.

This place was too quiet for his liking though there were other imperial guard here there was another Imperial Guard that had taken a True Rekindling, as the abhumans called it, and it seemed like such a waste to Dietrich. Nevertheless he stood and could feel the ammo count push across his mind as the weapon loaded ammo into itself. Not quite the same as a mind impulse unit, Gunnac explained, but it allowed his weapon's machine spirit to communicate with Dietrich directly.

Dietrich made a feral grin imagining the bloody litanies they would sing to honor the empeor's name. The machine spirit seemed pleased. The force of his predatory will disturbed a imperial Guard as Dietrich looked at them, "We must go. The Emperor and battle calls us forth once more! This day is not yet done; there so much bleeding yet to do."

He stood and walked what felt like downhill through the building that was far too large for its confines. "Gunnac, I trust you will monitor the Abhumans. I must go to the front", Dietrich said in a terse statement to the silver clad Techmarine with ruffling crimson cloak. The sound of shredding paper came from the energetic locus of psychic power as it moved the black robed abhumans about or even the imperial guard.

Gunnac nodded as Dietrich could see the tearing cloak fold out tools to inspect his weapons one last time, "The Jinhai will psychoport you to Dorn. Bring glory to the Emperor's name and Mankind, brother marine."

The world deconstructed into patterns and letters around Dietrich's hidden smile as Jinhai leveraged the Way hub to move Dietrich to the front.

Can't I just die with honor?

Among the hundreds of bodies a small point of light beacons like a firefly seeking something upon which to alight. It moves upward then through the area as a psychoport locus flits to an open area among the bodies. With the sound of tearing paper black humanoid forms known to the guard as Jinhai poured themselves into reality. They'd said multiple times to many guard that they couldn't evacuate humans with such a thing. Yet somehow at the center was a disaffected Imperial guard with repaired armor. Jinhai began inspecting the broken bodies, apothecaries of last resort, for signs of intact thrones of Mankind. As well as other useful pieces of broken civilian charnel with which to rebuild them.

Otto just shivered at the Jinhai moving through bodies heading instead toward his living counterparts. As Otto approached Small eddies of black mist whirl over the ferroplasm autoshotgun in his hands two drums of ammunition tethered to his back. Despite the Heavy look of his weapon it didn't seem to move like something with weight. It jerked toward targets on its own periodically and Otto gave it a light smack.

"You. Stay on focus. By the Emperor, I have to train your part of my head like a fresh guardsman, don't I.", He admonished it. He could feel the machine spirit animating it inside as it lived on using his own mind. A damned thing using an extra piece of his mind inserted by Jinahi to enable the machine spirit but it served obediently. Still, the weapon unleashed one hell of a punishment for being something that ought not to be portable or firable by imperial guard.

Otto sighed the death was done for now and he needed his hands to help. Otto tossed the weapon aside as if discarding it but the bolts bent and the eddies returned in force. The black metal shifted and bent as it collapsed inward to a snake-like form. When it hit ground the head and pincers were visible as well as the muzzle centered on its mouth. The psitech construct slithered beside him with a wide swath.

He found the nearest sergeant or lieutenant to report for duty, "Corporal Otto Hannig reporting for duty, Sir! There's a dozen more reconstructed guard moving this way down main street, Sir!"[/b]

If they bothered to check the IFF for his suit, or if they knew him personally, they'd most definitely find that either memory marks Otto as quite deceased.

What new strangeness is this?

As Kinara's medical droids went about the civilian population they'd rapidly discover an odd thing about some of the strong. That some are composed of parts while somehow cleared of immunological antigens nonetheless not the ones they were born with. More so than donor organs sheets of skin or individual sections of bone without apparent surgical evidence. DNA analysis would show the whole of some belonging to dozens of donors. The results of the Jinhai rekindling civilians from the depths of death.

The bloodied fist

Much like Otto that same firefly desperately tried to trail the hustling space marines but couldn't quite propagate at such speed. It elected instead with a hollow bang to pound Dietrich into existence. The yellow fisted shield held high Dietrich doubletimed to catch up with his brothers. Able and willing to fight and more than enthused about doing so.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Gaia: Mother of Creation Character Portrait: Kinara Character Portrait: Akio the Wanderer Character Portrait: Jinhai Character Portrait: Rogal Dorn Character Portrait: Commisar Ciaphas Cain Character Portrait: Ean Falcor Character Portrait: Veronica Perlo Character Portrait: Micheal "Captain Runemold" Garig Character Portrait: Dwyn Ingraham Character Portrait: Jack Walters (CoC: Dark Corners of the Earth) Character Portrait: Icy Peak (Super Volcano) Character Portrait: Tiffany Amed'dali Character Portrait: Otto Hannig Character Portrait: Dietrich Eisenstein

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Aboard the Glaive
Emily continued to coordinate affairs and efforts by the IMPs to excavate and evacuate the city, including the deployment of over three hundred medical personnel.

She also ordered the deployment of Alexander, calling Feidy to pilot and help excavate the larger pieces of rubble to reach any trapped citizens within.

Awaiting the Space Marines.
As he stood amid the dust and broken rubble, positioned between the girl and the approaching soldiers, Ean radioed to the Glaive. "Emily, I need you to prep three bunker teams to drop on my position. And get the shock rod ready for deployment as well."

Emily paused in her own activities, the first time the young woman ever seemed to hesitate in her almost non stop action. "B-but... That's not been tested, it-"

"Might not work and might punch a hole in the planet yeah I know, get it ready. I'm hoping we won't need it but if we do, I want it launched on my command." Ean gave his orders with finality, cutting off the connection and pulling his pistol from it's holster. He also held a small spherical device in his left hand, which he rotated and fidgeted with without cease.

In his own mind he was anxious. He knew what was coming and how it would go, but that still meant he had to go through it. "The waiting is the worst part, damn." He muttered to himself as he watched the dust and waited for the conflict that approached.

Behind him, Tiff just swayed, still too dazed and stunned to do anything.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Gaia: Mother of Creation Character Portrait: Kinara Character Portrait: Akio the Wanderer Character Portrait: Jinhai Character Portrait: Rogal Dorn Character Portrait: Commisar Ciaphas Cain Character Portrait: Ean Falcor Character Portrait: Veronica Perlo Character Portrait: Micheal "Captain Runemold" Garig Character Portrait: Dwyn Ingraham Character Portrait: Jack Walters (CoC: Dark Corners of the Earth) Character Portrait: Icy Peak (Super Volcano) Character Portrait: Tiffany Amed'dali Character Portrait: Otto Hannig Character Portrait: Dietrich Eisenstein

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In his name, we fight

"Targets spotted, enemy in optimum range. Brothers, we shall energetic the enemy in multiple direction. Lord Dorn shall strike through the center, we will provide flanking support. Our targets are the witch and the one who guards her. We strike without mercy brothers! In the name of the Emperor let us finish this!" The marines soon scattered in multiple directions. Bolters armed and ready.

Dorn himself rushed through the dust, his massive armored form now visible and his foot sells thundered across the area like lighting. A hum of a chainsword was mixed in the cacophony of noise coming from the massive Primarch. As soon as he had vision of Ean, Dorn did not hesitate to aim 'The Voice Of Terra' his prized Tacical Bolter at Ean and fired off rocket propelled rounds in his direction. A massive weapon that had recoil to even cause a space marine to flinch slightly, this man used such a thing with one hand, and it was modified to pack a greater punch than a standard bolter. Instead of the normal .75 caliber the gun echoed loudly, almost as if the ammunition was perhaps 1.00 caliber or even higher. He knew that the man in front of him was the enemy, to save a witch that caused this destruction. It was unforgivable.

Back to the living

The commanding officer in charge of the Imperial Guard forces turned to face Otto. "Corporal? Oh yeah, we received reports that the dead have returned. So more men are on the way, great work. We have to get these civilians to safety before anything else happens, we get them to the evacuation Teliporter Homers and we save the life. There are only children and young adults, such a world when a kid lives without his parents...damned Dieties...but enough talk, let's move out!" The Guard commander soon began to motion at a squad escorting a group of children to one of the still standing structures marked with the Imperial Eagle.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Gaia: Mother of Creation Character Portrait: Kinara Character Portrait: Akio the Wanderer Character Portrait: Jinhai Character Portrait: Rogal Dorn Character Portrait: Legion of Shadows Character Portrait: Commisar Ciaphas Cain Character Portrait: Ean Falcor Character Portrait: Veronica Perlo Character Portrait: Micheal "Captain Runemold" Garig Character Portrait: Dwyn Ingraham Character Portrait: Jack Walters (CoC: Dark Corners of the Earth) Character Portrait: Icy Peak (Super Volcano) Character Portrait: Tiffany Amed'dali Character Portrait: Otto Hannig Character Portrait: Dietrich Eisenstein

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"Did you think the act of a mere God would keep you safe from your conscription?"

Four mighty voices rang out within the heads of those previously Taken by the Legion of Shadows, as well as in the air of the Bunkers of the Imperium, meant to keep the people safe, but only trapping them for the slaughter. However, with this massive hit to the Legion, and their efforts also focused somewhere else in another realm, the ship filled with refugees led by Kinara the Jedi would be left untouched.

For now.

A terrifying, gut-wrenching screech rang out in each of the safety-bunkers provided by the Forces Imperium for approximately five seconds the shadows within turned into a sort of sludge, melting from their places and bubbling like magma. Great chunks of this molten Shadow would proceed to fling itself around at the sources of light in the Bunkers until a zone of darkness was available. Once created, if at all, the Legion would pour through. Hounds of all shapes and sizes went first, snarling and screaming as loud as possible, followed by the Bashers, in their now-commonplace Roman-Cohort Armor and weapons, hacking and slashing at any foolish enough to stand too close or oppose them. Each body felled would be dragged into the abyss, alive or not, by tendrils of black mass.

Kinara's eyes closed half way as she sensed the Darkness spreading within the bunkers, however unless they opened their doors, her gunships were of no use, and could not fire upon the Shadows, nor evacuate civilians. She grit her teeth, and her throat tightened, hurting from the decision she was about to make. Reluctantly, she pulled back her gunships and transports to the Obsidian Eagle, letting them land to be refueled by the worker droids waiting for their jobs to be given to them.

However, she also sensed, something else. She couldn't put her finger on it, but something else was about to happen. "Pull the ship up to join the Venators....stay in Geo-Sync orbit, something is coming." She said to her pilot droids.

"Roger Roger." they responded, and with a subtle rocking, the Obsidian Eagle and her four small Tartan Patrol Cruisers lifted themselves from their position a few hundred meters above the earth, and joined her forces in low atmospheric orbit.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Gaia: Mother of Creation Character Portrait: Kinara Character Portrait: Akio the Wanderer Character Portrait: Jinhai Character Portrait: Rogal Dorn Character Portrait: Legion of Shadows Character Portrait: Commisar Ciaphas Cain Character Portrait: Ean Falcor Character Portrait: Veronica Perlo Character Portrait: Micheal "Captain Runemold" Garig Character Portrait: Dwyn Ingraham Character Portrait: Feidlimid Constans Character Portrait: Jack Walters (CoC: Dark Corners of the Earth) Character Portrait: Icy Peak (Super Volcano) Character Portrait: Tiffany Amed'dali Character Portrait: Otto Hannig Character Portrait: Dietrich Eisenstein

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Birth of Adeptus Interitus

The thoughts of what he learned in that plane of Genesis weighed heavy on him like chains. He felt it important to clarify for his superiors though he said more than he intended. While his eyes showed someone strong his voice sounded much like one that wasn't sure of the score, "Sir, While they do return able bodied there's an... issue. The Jinhai said I survived some more intensive version, 'True Rekindling'. I report first-hand that I am no longer capable of dying with honor. Or retiring. The first incident while weapons training resulted in a time-gap until manifestation of 92 minutes."

There's that moment when you understand how and when things just went FUBAR and just hope you survive. It lasts a damn long time. When he yelled at his new shotgun in training and it turned to look at him at attention he could see every bolt shifting as it curved backward to point the barrel at him. The pain when the hammer struck only lasted a split second as the round pounded his head and helmet apart. Then 92 minutes later, determined later according to his uninterrupted wrist clock, he smashed helmet-first into the center of the floor. He hadn't expected to be around let alone barely conscious when Myrkul's Vein manifested his essence back into a painful new reality. He made an oath right then and there to never use his last round. The special punishment of having to let his brothers fight on while he waited to starve to death trapped in the blackness under rubble came to the forefront of his mind.

Will of four dozen

Jinhai were the first to notice the aching flux in proximity to the raw Way core gate. The raucous activity of the shadow injecting itself into reality led to an inescapable conclusion from what they'd already experienced. Each turns from the duties of searching flesh to bolt toward each other full-run. On impact the noises came of wet-silt craters in the growing orb of black dust. A psychic beacon proclaimed alarm with an impression of the broken surface around them to all that could hear it, "UMBRALKIND. The bunker is tainted."

Then limbs began to pour outward as Jinhai divided into four bodies the size of space marines a burning constellation of a dozen grey eyes each to them. Defining volume of that shout however blasts Otto from stable footing while remaining at attention so close to the beacon. Two came forward toward him to pick up a combative true rekindled to his feet. Otto fobbed them off as a snake-like weapon crawled into his hands from the ground, "I'm fine! By the Emperor, There's those shadow things inside?"

The two Jinhai nodded and one spoke, "Two will advance. Two will hold the gate."

Metal in the air

Feidy could finally land without sinking up to his knees in moving tarmac as such was already waiting for the go ahead to launch. Then the Captain called him down to move rubble. There was something that blasted across the psychic ECM systems as he'd turned them up quite a bit to focus and didn't catch the signal in time. Hmm. He hunkered down, adjusted the consoles one last time so his own psychic powers could hear anything and pressed the launch button. Centered near Ean's location the Mech launched from the bottom of Ean's ship with retro-thrusters ablaze to slow his descent. Feidlimid landed the titanic mech Alexander with only a soft bump if scorching pavement. The ring of swords and the pull of chains at his armor pushed at his precognition as Feidy turned to where Alexander's sensors said there were targets.

"Boss, don't those guys guard the city? Everything is so very unclean. What have you been up to down here?", said Feidy's voice over comms in his normally childlike high-pitched voice. Despite the threats fidey, the obsessively clean sort, couldn't help the urge to start sweeping debris in spite of the threats.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Gaia: Mother of Creation Character Portrait: Kinara Character Portrait: Akio the Wanderer Character Portrait: Jinhai Character Portrait: Rogal Dorn Character Portrait: Legion of Shadows Character Portrait: Commisar Ciaphas Cain Character Portrait: Ean Falcor Character Portrait: Veronica Perlo Character Portrait: Micheal "Captain Runemold" Garig Character Portrait: Dwyn Ingraham Character Portrait: Feidlimid Constans Character Portrait: Jack Walters (CoC: Dark Corners of the Earth) Character Portrait: Icy Peak (Super Volcano) Character Portrait: Tiffany Amed'dali Character Portrait: Otto Hannig Character Portrait: Dietrich Eisenstein

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Unwilling Combatant

Ean turned and tossed the sphere he had in his left hand straight at the ground the moment the Marines had showed up. He had been hoping to talk to them and maybe stall for time, but that plan went right out the window.

When the sphere impacted the ground, it clicked and expanded to the size of a bus in the span of a second, enveloping Ean and Tiff in a barrier of swirling electrical energy. It lasted just long enough for Alexander to land in the location.

Ean turned and called out to Feidy "Give us some cover big guy, been a bit of a misunderstanding. I'll explain later!"

Battalion Launch

From the belly of the Cobalt Glaive, two cover plates opened and revealed a trio of extending towers. From each of these came a low buzz, followed by a loud thump, as they launched three house sized pods that streaked towards the ground, a holographic field surrounding them.

Each of these three pods would impact the ground, about fifteen feet apart, with Ean and Tiff at the center of their landing space. The moment they landed, each pod began to shift and reconfigure into a bunker, really nothing more than a metal box with waist high walls about thirty feet from wall to wall. In the middle of each unfolding bunker was a column of metal, normally adorned with communications equipment, supplies, spare weapons and ammo, the works. These however had been stripped of all that, to be replaced with extra sockets for soldiers to strap into. Normally each bunker could only seat four imps, these had been retrofitted to seat six, though it was tight and uncomfortable. Nevertheless it worked, as eighteen soldiers leaped towards the bunker walls and opened suppressing fire on the approaching marines, their charge rifles set to a slightly higher setting than normal, these were space marines after all.

For about twenty or twenty two seconds after landing, the bunkers were little more than fancy implanted cover positions, until the column in the center of each of them fully charged up, and produced a phase emission barrier around itself. At that point, the barrier grapped solid projectiles that came near it and swung them into an orbit near it's highest point, amassing a collection of ammunition for a later purpose. The imps used energy weapons, and firing them out of the phase emission barrier pulled a small amount of energy from the barrier to follow the shot, giving each "bullet" fired by the imps more impact, like upgrading from automatic rifles to .50 cal machine guns that fired armor melting plasma.

Thankfully firing into the barrier didn't produce the same effect, energy weapons coming into the barrier were dispersed across it's surface with a rather colorful display of electrical arcing.

It was the imps go to tactic for defense and delaying. The barriers gave them about a minute of combat advantage where they could fire on enemies with impunity, usually long enough for a pod storm to come down behind them and reinforce. In this case, Ean didn't intend to reinforce, but retreat. "Emily! Launch the Rod now! On my position.

The girl didn't respond over the comms, but a loud cracking sound came from above as the rod was fired from a launch bay. It impaled the ground in the midst of the three bunkers, looking like a totem pole but with loose wiring and exposed circuitry instead of animal faces. No sooner had it landed than it began humming and charging up, though for what was yet to be seen.

Ean took that moment to call out to a nearby imp, who tossed him one of the spare charge rifles. The bunkers would provide them plenty of cover, but he knew that the leader of those marines would be there to face him soon enough.

"Come on then you thick headed brute of a bastard, come and try me!" He muttered to himself.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Gaia: Mother of Creation Character Portrait: Kinara Character Portrait: Akio the Wanderer Character Portrait: Carnaelgaar Cysius Character Portrait: Jinhai Character Portrait: Rogal Dorn Character Portrait: Legion of Shadows Character Portrait: Commisar Ciaphas Cain Character Portrait: Ean Falcor Character Portrait: Veronica Perlo Character Portrait: Micheal "Captain Runemold" Garig Character Portrait: Dwyn Ingraham Character Portrait: Feidlimid Constans Character Portrait: Jack Walters (CoC: Dark Corners of the Earth) Character Portrait: Icy Peak (Super Volcano) Character Portrait: Tiffany Amed'dali Character Portrait: Otto Hannig Character Portrait: Dietrich Eisenstein

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"Hostile reinforcments! Enemy forces have provided adequate cover and are opening fire on Lord Dorn! Plasma weaponry, do not get caught out brothers." A Tactical marine voxed to the other marines as they kept to cover to get around the sides.

One of the Tacticals un-shouldered a Helios Pattern Rocket launcher and aimed at the ship in the air. "Target locked, Emperor guide my missile through. Let it strike true..." He recited a prayer of aim as he came around one of the building and aimed at the aircraft.

For Rogal Dorn himself, as the plasma bullets sailed his way, he slammed a foot into the ground sending a massive chuck of stone from the eart hto give him cover, however while taking fire she shot back and noticed the strange barrier trapping the bolt round. "The barrier seems to be trapping our rounds, but it seems that energy weaponry can pass through safely...we cant get close enough unless...Imperial command come in. Fire an earthshaker rounds at coordinates 191.24.N and 66.431.N..." Dorn voxed as he remained behind his makeshift cover as it was being slowly torn apart.

"Affirmitive my Lord...Basilisk artillery coordinates plotted and underway. Stay clear my Lord." A voice replied. Miles away from the battlefield two Basilisk field guns emerged from sturdy Imperial Guard depots and aimed two different rounds a few yards away from the barrier as to not hit it directly. If they could not damage the structures directly, then causing the ground under the defenses to collapse. "Earthshaker rounds loaded in...Praise be unto the Emperor...May he guide our strike true...Let our weapons bellow his faith and destroy his enemies...Fire!" After the Guardsman finished their prayers, the gun fired shaking the ground. And sending two rounds directed at the battle in the front.

Inside one of the bunkers, as the Shadow Legion advanced. A certain Space Marine Librarian had appeared using the Gate Of Infinity and spew fourth a wave of psychic lightning which seemed to be much improved. "Horrid abominations...you should all die just because of how ugly you filth are..." The man as Carnaelgaar muttered. Making sure to keep his gifts secret.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Kinara Character Portrait: Akio the Wanderer Character Portrait: Carnaelgaar Cysius Character Portrait: Jinhai Character Portrait: Rogal Dorn Character Portrait: Legion of Shadows Character Portrait: Commisar Ciaphas Cain Character Portrait: Ean Falcor Character Portrait: Tiffany Amed'dali Character Portrait: Rayia Icceni

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The Earthshakker rounds shattered the earth beneath the bunkers, which was unfortunate because they were anchored into that earth. Without anything to anchor to, the vibrations caused the bunkers to shift and toss, sending the troops in them over the sides and into the dirt.
This also had the unfortuate effect of shorting out the generator powering the shields, which then proceeded to launch all the projectiles they had collected in an outward burst at about three hundred feet per second. If you weren't behind cover, you were shredded, armor or no.

But the biggest event in the short time before the rod could complete it's charge, was the missile heading to the cobalt Glaive. Captain Ean Falcor lost his patience at that point. "Oh HELL NO!" He shouted, glaring at the missile, which then proceeded to freeze in mid air, before exploding. Even the explosion was contained, creating a beautifully destructive bubble of fire and shrapnel which burned itself out in the air.

"I'm absolutely done with this." He said, turning his glare on the soldiers assaulting his men. A sudden and excrutiating pain, like that of nails on a chalkboard in their minds, would fill every part of every soldier of the imperium. Their commander got a different treatment however. For him it would feel as though the ground had dropped away, and when he looked up, it would be as though the stars had reshaped themselves into a giant humanoid form, which then proceeded to slam it's palms together, with Rogal Dorn in between them.

Ean smirked at that moment as the Rod finished charging. He wrapped himself over Tiffany, then called out to his troops. In a single, synchronized and explosive movement they dove towards the rod, and away from the imperial soldiers.

A moment later, and an explosion of sound and light occured, like that of a lightningbolt, only slightly quieter. Where once Ean and Tiffany and all the IMP's stood, there was now only burned and scorched patches of earth and stone, and a smell like burning hair and skin.

Aboard the Glaive


Ean stood, then grimaced and cried out in pain as the nerves in his body kicked in and started protesting about the burned patches of exposed skin all over his body. Thankfully Medics were on site to receive him and his charge. "Emily... you really do think of everything." The Captain said, insisting that the Medics take Tiffany to the infirmary before himself. He had one more thing to do before he could take a nap.

A conversation.

The Imperium commander on the ground would be recieving a comm signal at that time, and should he choose to accept it, these were the words he would hear. "Very close boys, very close. Almost had us, Unfortunately for you though Almost doesn't count except in horse shoes and hand grenades." Ean's voice, jovial in spite of his pain, grated through the earpiece. "Do yourselves a favor and don't take this too personal, alright? It's not the first time I've given you guys the slip, and it certainly won't be the last. Also... Do me a favor and tell your leader, the uh... god emperor, i guess, That he oughta be a bit more gentle with the people he rules over. I mean yeah sure, Duty to your country and all that is nice but... well... to be blunt, punishing a victim who tried to save others at the cost of their own life... Not exactly a great PR act. The girl you guys were so intent on killing was the victim here.. if you need more proof, look up Elysium, and the guy who made it. That should put you in the right track."

"Until next time, and uh, by the way... Heh.. Your Aim Sucks."

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Kinara Character Portrait: Akio the Wanderer Character Portrait: Carnaelgaar Cysius Character Portrait: Jinhai Character Portrait: Rogal Dorn Character Portrait: Legion of Shadows Character Portrait: Commisar Ciaphas Cain Character Portrait: Ean Falcor Character Portrait: Tiffany Amed'dali Character Portrait: Rayia Icceni

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Most if not all the marines had hid behind a piece of cover as generator launched its projectiles around. They were not foolish enough to stand outside of cover for any long amount of time.

However soon the Space Marines fell to their hands and knees caused by a horrid feeling. "Psychic...witchcraft..." One marine muttered as they did their best to hold on. Their entire being was in pain, but as the Imperial Fist space marines, they endured excruciating pain daily.

For Royal Dorn However, he felt as if he was falling. As he did she stared down a humanoid being made of stars. He was not scared, not even slightly. He had endured the horrid depths of the warp, he had seen horrors beyond horrors. He remained with a calm expression as the being slammed its palms together.

In the next moment he was back in reality, along with a parting message. He did not need to reply, nor did he felt anything from his words. Let him vent out his insults, it did not matter to him in the least.

The massive marine soon stood up as Imperial Guard reinforcements arrived on sight. "The situation is now over, the enemy has retreated. Begin repairs on the entire area, including the gate that fell." Dorn ordered and the Guardsman went right to work.

Another day, another mess that needed to be fixed. "My Lord, I have news that Commisar Ciaphas Cain has found the man responsible for the drug that plagued the city...however he has vanished...Emperor watch over him while he is in danger, but I wanted to let you my lord to know." A Guardsman gave the news to Dorn while down on one knee. With a quick nod the Guardsman stood up, saluted and went to go fix the city.

With his job done, it was time to return to base.

The setting changes from wing-city-main-entrance to Sol: Deep Space

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Akio the Wanderer Character Portrait: Ean Falcor Character Portrait: Mada 'Plinth' Myrkul Character Portrait: Tiffany Amed'dali

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In the medical bay, a young woman woke from a nightmare in which the whole of the world was collapsing... and it was all her fault.

"NO!" she screamed, leaping up from the bed and scaring the bejesus out of the nurse who had been attending her.

"oh dear lord!" The nurse jumped and grasped his heart. "Don't.... don't do that please, Man that got me."

The woman was still frantic, her eyes jumping around as she tried to make sense of where she was. She thought to climb out of bed but the orderly saw the idea cross her face. He leaped forward and gently, but firmly, pushed her back down onto the pillows "Whoa whoa, easy there, calm down now. Your safe, everything is okay, you don't have to worry."

Still frantic and terrified, Tiffany Amed'dali allowed herself to be pushed back, as her body was still weak. She plied the nurse with questions however. "The, the city. The arch and those people. Is... did I.."

"None of that now, your safe and that's what matters right now okay. So just calm down and relax." The orderly said, grasping her shoulder with gentle reassurance. "everything is going to be okay, just relax."

The setting changes from sol-deep-space to Langara

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Jordan Duram Character Portrait: Imperial Defense Force Character Portrait: Éclaire Hanley Character Portrait: Ean Falcor Character Portrait: Tiffany Amed'dali Character Portrait: E.V.E.

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Admirals room, Esteem

Ean sat down in the chair, leaning back and groaning like an old arthritic man, rubbing one of his shoulders with a grimace as he said "Your intelligence right." This was accompanied by a nod at the bald man, special agent Duram. "I know you guys like to be efficient, so with that in mind first I gotta ask if you boys have heard any news about an attack on another of your planets... Moley I think it is?"

"Molecay, Captain" Emily said from behind him, her hands crossed behind her back.

"Right, Molecay. If you guys have already gotten the news about that then that means we can jump right into it. If you haven't, well then that means we gotta go with the long version."

Engineering, Cobalt Glaive

"Oh for fucks sake, Marco get that valve sealed, we're losing the pressure differential. Sam get your ass in gear and finish that patch, and Margaret get out of that slot before you-" A red headed woman, standing barely more than five feet tall, was shouting orders near the core of the ship, where both it's engines and reactor were located. Unfortunately she was cut off when one of the pipes to the reactor exploded, incinerating a young black haired woman. The smell of charred flesh was barely noticeable in the chaos of the reactor room.

Medbay, Glaive

A handful of carts with wounded were being rolled out to make way to the Aschen vessel's infirmary, but several cases were still being treated in Intensive care. One such case was a blue furred creature that looked like a cross between a satyr and a slug, with no mouth, and solid black eyes, four total, two in the normal position, and two more atop prehensile stalks. Unfortunately the creature's wounds were severe, one of it's stalks had been sheared off, along with an arm and the lower part of one of his legs. Doctor Amed'dali was working to save him with a handful of nurses, attempting to cauterize and stop the bleeding.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Jordan Duram Character Portrait: Imperial Defense Force Character Portrait: Éclaire Hanley Character Portrait: Ean Falcor Character Portrait: Tiffany Amed'dali Character Portrait: E.V.E.

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Inside the ready room, both Claire, and Duram gave Ean an annoyed look. They looked to each-other, and Duram shrugged.

"We received word that an attack has transpired, yes." Claire replied.

"The Military has gone onto high alert, and we're making preparations for possible future attacks." The Admiral said with a nod, as she pulled up something on her screen.

She brought her gaze back to Ean, and began to jot down some notations. "That's why you're here. You're going to tell us everything you know, including how your ship was able to circumvent our defenses." The Admiral said. "In exchange for treating your wounded, and repairing your ship."

Duram simply nodded, and began to type some more.

"Now." Claire said. "Go ahead, and jump right in."

Inside the Medbay, those that were the must humanlike were moved first, Aschen medical personnel moving them in special pods, where they could be treated. Those with minor injuries were taken to the infirmary via stretcher, while those with more severe injuries were sedated, and placed in these pods, which were filled with a special amniotic liquid that was designed to rapidly speed up the healing factor.

The single strange creature was the subject of curiosity by Aschen medical personnel. No one knew how to treat it, so it was left in the medbay, with the occasional curious, or disgusted look.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Jordan Duram Character Portrait: Imperial Defense Force Character Portrait: Éclaire Hanley Character Portrait: Ean Falcor Character Portrait: Tiffany Amed'dali Character Portrait: E.V.E.

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Ean rubbed his neck, took a deep breath, and went right into it as he was asked.

"About eight months ago or so, we were hired by this group of people that approached us on our way through Andromeda. They had a come in out of nowhere in a similar manner to how we did on you. They asked us to help them develop a few things."

"The first thing they wanted was to refine their version of what I call the Shockpoint drive, that's how we came in here. Now your uh, your plank thingies, they stop people from being able to warp into your space. That's the fun part about the Shockpoint drive. It doesn't warp or teleport or open a portal or none of that. It just makes us and the surrounding space go really fast. A lensing field protects us from Time Dilation effects from exceeding the speed of light. Think of it as taking an egg, suspending it in jelly inside of a jar, and then launching that jar from a slingshot."

"They hired us to revise and fine tune their system, guess they copied us, or maybe they came up with their own version. Gotta say the one they used has a helluva lot more magic in it then ours. Anyway, they paid us a lot of money so it wasn't a job I was gonna turn down, gotta feed this lot somehow." He jerked a thumb at Emily, who rolled her eyes.

After that however, he starts to get a more serious look to his face. "They had us refine and fix their system, and as we were doing that, I took a gander at what else they had. I noticed something troubling. They were taking everything I fixed, and using it to make things I'd never thought of. But the main difference was that most of what they were developing looked to be invasionary devices. I make it a rule to never get on any one groups bad side, but something about how these lot were acting had me suspicious."

"I had Emily do some digging then." He said, gesturing for her to continue.

The smallish girl piped up and continued the narrative. "They're called Asylians. And while we're not sure where they originate from, they clearly have a great deal of ability at their command. During our stay with the ship that asked us to help them, we encountered no less than seventy five other vessels, and from the recon team that I had snooping around their vessel, we discovered that number consists of less than five percent of their primary fleet. Everything was pointing to an invasion of some sort. That in and of itself would have been fine, not our concern. But after determining exactly what they were planning, the captain made a decision with his conscious rather than his brain."

Ean Winced at her harsh tone and shrugged. "We found out that the reason they wanted help refining the Shockpoint is to scale down the system, for use in a gravity based ground assault device. But the reason they wanted something like that isn't for occupation reasons. They intend, from what we discovered, to 'wipe clean the ash plate'." Ean shook his head at that. "I'm a lot of things, but I can't stand by when someones talking about genocide. Now I figure you lot don't want or need our help, especially since I'm sure you're aware that some of my crew ain't exactly human, and even the some of the ones that are human ain't exactly normal. I've got both aliens and magic users in my crew, I've even got some alien magic users. My problem is I'm a big softie, and I tend to pick up strays and orphans. Killing isn't my nature, but letting others die when there's something I could or should have done is also not my nature."

"So to make a long and exciting story short, We tried to leave, and the Asylians tried to stop us. Almost succeeded too. About half my crew is dead or injured, ships barely functional, and our jump was way off. But at least now you know who hit your planet, and what they want." He smiled easily at them, head tilted to one side.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Jordan Duram Character Portrait: Imperial Defense Force Character Portrait: Éclaire Hanley Character Portrait: Ean Falcor Character Portrait: Tiffany Amed'dali Character Portrait: E.V.E.

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Hanley listened to the words with deep consideration, while Duram typed with a hurried, and frantic pace. This intelligence was all very good, it led to motive, and made for good propaganda to galvanize the population. Both Aschen officers considered the statements being given carefully.

There was a long pause as Hanley considered the gravity of the situation.

"If what you say is true, then you have done the Empire a great service in warning us so that we may prepare adequately for the coming invasion." Hanley said, before she turned her attention to Duram, whom paused from typing so that he could briefly look up to Hanley.

"You'll need to inform the Emperor, and possibly our allies." He said with a slight nod.

"I know the Taiyou will want to get involved, thankfully Emperor Prince has made overtures to strengthen our existing alliances with the Continuum, too." Hanley replied. She steepled her fingers on her desk, before she decided to make a decision then, and there. Even if the Emperor could possibly object.

"Our scientists will want to understand this Shockpoint drive, and access to everything you know from your time working with the Asylians." Hanley said as she leaned forward.

"I intend to honor my portion of the bargain, by repairing your ship, and towing you outside our borders, but I want to offer something more. We want to understand the inner workings of this technology, you will be compensated generously in whatever forms of payment you desire." The Admiral said, looking to Duram, and then back to Ean.

"Unfortunately, I would ask that your people remain quartered aboard this ship while you do so, They will be treated with dignity, and given access to our facilities, which can be quite accommodating." Hanley explained.

"If these Asylians intend to wipe us out, I fear they will be disappointed. The Aschen people are forged in the fires of hardship. Through the crucible of one hundred and fifty thousand years of war." Hanley said, bringing up her screen, keying a communication interface, she was typing up a sort of Instant message while they were speaking, her hands dancing across the keyboard.

The Computer chimed in response.

Hanley then turned to Ean.

"Begs to question though, and perhaps it's our paranoia. We're not exactly known around the galaxy for being the friendly sort." The Admiral said calmly. "Many would see us exterminated, so why help us? You risked everything coming here."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Jordan Duram Character Portrait: Imperial Defense Force Character Portrait: Éclaire Hanley Character Portrait: Ean Falcor Character Portrait: Tiffany Amed'dali Character Portrait: E.V.E.

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Admirals office, Esteem

Ean shrugged at the Admirals question. "Already told you I was a soldier once. I've killed on orders, put down a hundred men who I'm sure were as scared shitless as I was. But I killed them for the same reason hey tried to kill me, orders."

Ean leaned forward, clasping his hands together and sighed deeply, his hat covering over his face. "When I got those orders there was always a reason for it. It wasn't always a good reason, but there was a reason. Sometimes it was revenge, sometimes it was for profit, sometimes it was for pride, honor, or some other silly thing."

"But these Asylian guys, they're not doing this for any reason other than because they feel they can. Their bullies, plain and simple, and they clearly got no qualms about slaughtering civilians and innocents. For gods sake they plan to kill children, and for no other damn reason but to quote prevent future infestations"

Emily's face was a set of hard lines, and Ean shook his head at the very thought of it. After a moment he leaned back and took a long draught from his flask. Once the cap was back on he got started again.

"As for the tech I helped develop, it's pretty straightforward. It wraps a ship in a lensing field, basically a strong magnetic sheath holding photons in stasis. That forms the shell of your "egg". After that, a gravitational manipulator generates a black hole and anchors it to the front of the ship. That's where the acceleration comes from, the black hole pulls the ship forward, while the anchor keeps it positioned in front, like a carrot on a stick I guess. They've done something similar with a few adaptations, they took an idea from another of my ships systems, our Thunder gun. Basically they have sort of missile that they launch towards a planet, it doesn't show up on any sensors as anything other than a hunk of metal, in a fight you'd probably mistake it for debris from ship damage. Problem is that once it actually gets to a planet, or to another ship for that matter. They're able to tether it to their ship, allowing them to nearly instantly move forces from one to the other. Only way I can think of to counter it is with a hard barrier between the ship and the anchor"

Ean rubs his neck again and then continues "Other than that, you might wanna look out for their gravity sling. It's essentially the same as the shockpoint drive, but it works for short distances, allowing them to reposition almost instantly. I haven't figured out how they got that one to work, but I imagine it's similar to their troop transport method where they're just using something in the area as an anchor to relocate to, maybe a drone or something."

The captain looked back at Emily and nodded at her "I forgetting anything hun?"

Emily spoke up with slight agitation "There's a couple things. One of the weapons they hit us with was biochemical in nature, several of our men just turned to ash. We don't know how or why, it seemed magical in nature but none of our sensors or sorcerers were able to detect or determine what happened. I'd be on the look out for that, you guys have more comprehensive anti-magic defenses, but even so."

"Other than that, I feel you should also know, we were fighting them for about two hours trying to get our Shockpoint drive charged, and kick their forces off our ship. At first the fight was going in our favor, we had surprised them and managed to get some distance. However after only fifteen minutes they started to predict our movements, almost like they knew what we were thinking. I've checked and double checked almost twenty times now, but the only conclusion I can come to is that they somehow studied us as they fought us, and learned how to counteract all our tactics. Your empire may have more than a hundred years of experience in warefare, but I wouldn't say that's a good thing. The longer a battle draws out with these guys, or a war, the more they're going to learn and adapt to counteract you. You might need more than just Allies to beat them."

Emily shrugged then and crossed her arms, turning off to one side as though she'd stopped caring as she said while walking off to one corner of the office. "But that's just my opinion, take it as you will Aschen."

Ean grimaced and waved her off, whispering. "Please don't take that personally, She's had it rougher than most of us. She's our helmswoman and our tactical officer, and she doesn't take well to losing, or authority. After what we've been through, well... We're all on edge I guess."

He sighed again and leaned back in the chair, pulling his foot up and resting it on his knee. "As for your offer, If you lot don't mind having a gaggle of mangy strays and wastrels that nobody else wants around hanging out with ya, I've got no problem sharing everything I've heard and learned about em with ya." He tapped his nose then and said something particular interesting "matter of fact, I don't know it for sure, but I might be able to give you a general heading as to their home sector. You can take and use that how you will."

Med bay, Glaive

It took almost two hours before the operation could be called complete. Doctor Amed'dali sighed and stepped out of surgery, exhausted and sore from being so tense for so long. She eyed the Aschen soldiers and personal standing about the area, their curiosity and disgust evident to her. Well if they wanted to complain they'd have to take it up with their betters, she thought, They're the ones who invited us.

Engineering, Glaive

Where Doctor Amed'dali had just finished up her battle in surgery, Ean's chief of engineering Sasha Gourndy was still fighting to keep the ship from exploding. She'd managed to bring the temperature of the core down to a level she was comfortable in saying wouldn't result in everyone in the sector dying anytime soon, but she still wasn't happy with the output. The Reactor was so far gone at this point, she put the rough estimate of the ship being sail worthy again between two to three weeks. "Captain ain't gonna like that." She muttered to herself, eyeing the Aschen personnel she'd yelled at to 'fuck off my shop' until they decided to patiently wait outside of wrench throwing range. She growled at them with all the disgust the short woman had in her body, She sure as hell wasn't going to let anyone else touch her darling in such a state, no matter how high and mighty they thought themselves.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Jordan Duram Character Portrait: Imperial Defense Force Character Portrait: Éclaire Hanley Character Portrait: Ean Falcor Character Portrait: Tiffany Amed'dali Character Portrait: E.V.E.

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"Turns to ash..." Hanley commented to herself, as Agent Duram peered up from his data slate. "It sounds to me like Thalaron radiation, we've been working on an experiemental shield defense to remedy the shortcomings of thalaron weapons employed on some of our prototype strike craft. It may come in handy when faced off with whatever they're using to turn people to ash." Duram said off handedly, while Hanley nodded.

"We'll either need the shockpoint drive from your ship to study it, or we will need the blueprints to construct our own." Duram said, tapping a few more notations.

"Ideally I would like to get a crew to study your ship's technology, disassemble it completely, get a complete schematic of all essential systems, and then reassemble it, but we will also accept unrestricted access. You will of course be compensated for your efforts."

"Let's start small, Special Agent." Hanley rebuked. "Our engineers can learn a great deal just by doing repairs, we will also have to fabricate parts for them, Let's start small." The Admiral suggested, while Duram nodded.

Listening to Ean's explanation, Hanley was already starting to formulate an understanding of what they were going to be up against. So their technology was gravitic in nature, she presumed this would be confirmed by EVE's spectral analysis of the battle of Molecay. Not only would they have to stay one step ahead, but end battles decisively to prevent their own tactics from being dissected, and used against them.

Of course, EVE would also analyze everything being said in this room.

Once the pair were finished explaining the situation, Hanley stood up from her seat and inclined her head, gesturing to the adjutant standing in the far side of the room.

"Ambrosia, please." Hanley instructed, and the adjutant turned to leave.

Slowly, she sat back down.

"We will have to arm ourselves, and mobilize our armed forces. When, and where do you anticipate another attack?" The Admiral asked.

Glaive, Medbay

The Aschen medics stood largely silent, talking amongst themselves, but otherwise staying out of the way. Many of them weren't trained in Xenobiology, and were unqualified to operate on aliens.

Glaive, Engineering

Most of the Aschen engineers opted to stay out of wrench throwing range except one, who curiously watched the woman work on the reactor. His name was Peter Laird, and she was the Deck Chief of the Esteem, an accomplished Aerospace engineer, and one of the lead engineers who designed, and oversaw the construction of the Reverence II.

"If you slave the ship's cooling system to the Esteems, you should be able to bring the temperatures down far enough to take the reactor offline." Laird said.

"And then, swap in one of our fusion reactors. They run off of water, which is abundant.." Then he took a look around.

"And you won't take out half a star system with you, if this thing goes critical."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Jordan Duram Character Portrait: Imperial Defense Force Character Portrait: Éclaire Hanley Character Portrait: Ean Falcor Character Portrait: Tiffany Amed'dali Character Portrait: E.V.E.

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Esteem, Admirals quarters

Ean had nothing to say regarding their talk of thalaron shielding or whatever, had no idea what it was. Hell he had no idea how the Asylians had turned his men to ash so whatever it was, the Aschen were welcome to try whatever they wanted.

Course when the agent mentioned tearing the ship apart Ean started laughing like a man tickled pink. "You thank your stars your not in range of Sasha for her to hear that, she'd come pluck your head clean off." He said between bouts of laughter.

"As far as the blueprints and the like, I'm willing to show you everything except the private quarters of my crew. That's their own personal space and homes, most of them live on the ship and have been for years. You wanna search em, you'll have to get their permission, and if they say no, that's the end of it." He took a hard tone here and leaned forward. "And to make my point clear, you try and force your way on any of mine, You can consider it the end of all our negotiations. My crew has trusted me into the darkest hells like you've never known, And I won't betray that to anyone no matter what's at stake, clear?"

With that said he leaned back in the chair and shrugged his shoulder, as if shifting some weight off. "Fixing the ship is something you'll have to take up with Sasha, she's not going to want any of you touching it, it's her baby. I'll talk to her and make her understand, but You'll probably have to deal with her grumbling."

"As for their next attack, That's where things get a bit more complicated. They have a map of all your systems, and from what we gathered on their plans, they don't intend to make any large moves. They want to attack at different sorts of locations and in different ways, specifically to watch how you react and respond. With what I told you earlier, You can see why yeah? They want to analyze and study how you fight, so they can find the best way to defeat you." He says, taking another sip from his flask. "Now, they hit Molecay already, according to you. What I can tell you is they'll likely hit another fringe world, and then try to hit molecay again, maybe to see how you've changed tacts. After that however I can't tell anything, they'll probably make adjustments and changes, or maybe completely change their strategy."

Emily nodded to affirm this. "We can guess and give you our impressions based on our meeting with them, but other than that there's nothing we can really say for sure."

Glaive, Engineering

Sasha Grunted at Peter. "Aye, that'd work. But we'll need direct lines, we don't have any access points for coolant outside of this room. Have ya boys pull some pipes and hoses, we'll get it sorted and bring her down. Bout time to let the old boiler go anyhow."

The Quantum reactor that was Sasha's pride and joy had powered the Cobalt glaive since it's inception. It provided power equal to a an entire planets worth of fusion reactors. Unfortunately it had always been like a giant diesel engine compared to other star ships, requiring massive amounts of fuel, and it's current state, the damage it had sustained, was certainly enough to cause a system wide wipeout.

Sasha ground her teeth, making a sound loud enough to be audible even over the reactors struggle to function, which was quite impressive. "Better make it a whole bank of fusion reactors, we'll have to pull everything here apart and rearrange some things, but I'm not gonna short the captain on power. We'll make some adjustments, come up with something later. It's what we do."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Jordan Duram Character Portrait: Imperial Defense Force Character Portrait: Éclaire Hanley Character Portrait: Ean Falcor Character Portrait: Tiffany Amed'dali Character Portrait: E.V.E.

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Both Duram, and Hanley sat quietly digesting what Ean was telling them, but they also knew that EVE was listening in, and comparing his description to what she already observed concerning their tactics. The objective would be to keep the Asylians from gaining any form of tactical advantage.

Hanley contemplated in silence, before her face lit up with a realization. So they would be trying to analyze their tactics, find a weakness.

“Wild weasel.” Hanley said aloud, and Duram nodded, looking up. “Wild Weasel?”

“Wild weasel tactics, and asymmetrical warfare. We could force them in a prolonged war of attrition, defense in depth.” Hanley said, while Duram nodded.

She turned her attention back to Ean, and nodded. “We won’t breach the trust of your crew mates, if we can have sufficiently complete schematics, we can fabricate a ship of our own to study, and prototype.” The Admiral said, standing from her seat.

“You have done a great service to the Empire, and if your intelligence pans out, you will be generously compensated.” The Admiral said, extending her hand. “You, and your people will have free access around this ship, so long as they do not attempt to enter a restricted area. I also ask they travel with an escort beyond their designated sector.”

“I will try to arrange accommodations planetside, where you, and your people can be more easily protected if you so desire.”


——

Engineering, Cobalt Glaive

Peter reacted quickly to the acknowledgement that the Glaive’s reactor needed additional coolant systems, so he grabbed his radio and brought it quickly to his ear.

“Emergency cooling pipes, make it happen!” He called out, and no more than ten minutes later, about a dozen deckhands were running into the room with several different sizes of conduit, ready to pump a supercooled slurry of ethylene glycol and liquid helium through the Glaive’s reactor to bring it down to temperature.

“We can have a fusion reactor installed with a pinch fusion module, and run with a purified deuterium fuel, it should provide the power output this ship needs, they’re also incredibly efficient. I’ll try to see if i can get you some quantum plasmid regulators to give you that extra oomph if you need it.” Peter added, pouring over the machinery before him.

“How is the power distributed? Do you use physical copper wiring, or do you use some sort of superconductor?”

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Jordan Duram Character Portrait: Imperial Defense Force Character Portrait: Éclaire Hanley Character Portrait: Ean Falcor Character Portrait: Tiffany Amed'dali Character Portrait: E.V.E.

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Ean nodded and tipped his at to the admiral. "Just give us a bunk somewhere we can be out of the way while we wait for the glaive to get back in working order, that'll be fine. My people have only one home, and that's the glaive. We won't make ourselves anymore a nuisance to you than absolutely necessary, we'd prefer it that way if it were turned around, you follow me."

"As for blueprints and scale models, I actually have a scale model in my personal quarters, sort of birthday present from Sasha. It won't be enough for the details, but it'll be good for giving you dimensions to scale up from. Blueprints and all I've got here." He said pulling out a floppy disc. "heh... It might be difficult to get something to read this, I like to keep the most important stuff on the oldest possible format, just to make it annoying. If you can get it up and running on something I can decrypt it for you, fraid the key don't exist nowhere but in my own head."

"Other than that, I've got one request. When you start to fight these guys, please don't let them push you back to being all alone alright... I can promise you that in this universe, people like this are the exception, not the rule."

--

Engineering, Cobalt Glaive.

Sasha, alongside peter, directed the workers carrying pipes to various locations in the reactors core, where they'd fine ports sealed with standard lock caps blocking access to the coolant network.

To Peter himself she said "All that sounds fine and dandy, but let's keep it one thing at a time here. First we bring her down, then we pull her out, then we can talk about replacing her. Powers distributed using a liquid silver compound that's pumped through a set insulated copper pipes. Captain basically built a mechanical heart, the energy flow is matched to the flow of the liquid silver compound, and in a pinch she can pump it fast enough to bring efficiency to just about 100%."

She grumbles. "Your gonna need to know all this anyway I figure, captain said I'd have to let you look at everything in the ship, just don't fucking touch nothing I don't tell you to, or I'll bite your damn fingers off, got it?"

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Jordan Duram Character Portrait: Imperial Defense Force Character Portrait: Éclaire Hanley Character Portrait: Ean Falcor Character Portrait: Tiffany Amed'dali Character Portrait: E.V.E.

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"We're going to put them down like a rabid animal. After that I can't make any promises, but with people like you offering help, and our allies coming forward. This could make people look more favorably on others." Claire replied, as Duram cleared his throat. "One more thing." He said, as he turned his tablet so Ean could see it. A picture of Admiral Thauce from her transmission in the battle of Molecay.

"Admiral Illia Thauce, do you know anything about this particular Asylian?" Duram asked, holding up the tablet so Ean could get a good look at it. "This is the officer that carried out the attack against Molecay." Duram didn't elaborate on any further Aschen machinations regarding the Admiral. Even Duram hadn't been briefed, as he just received the transmission from command to inquire on this particular woman.

While Duram was talking, Hanley took the disk, she would have to find an old magnetic drive somewhere, or have one fabricated.

---

Peter raised his eyebrow, watching as the technicians began to interface the pipes with the coolant ports on the reactor, letting the supercooled liquid flow through the coolant network.

"We use a superconducting gel matrix, in a flexible, but durable conduit. It's a zero-resistance medium capable of handling immense bursts of power, with zero energy loss." Peter explained. "It makes electrical work nearly trivial. We could probably upgrade the ship with this power distribution technology, and drastically increase your ship's performance."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Jordan Duram Character Portrait: Imperial Defense Force Character Portrait: Éclaire Hanley Character Portrait: Ean Falcor Character Portrait: Tiffany Amed'dali Character Portrait: E.V.E.

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Ean took one look at the picture and shuddered. "Oh yeah... that ones trouble, knew it the moment I first saw her. She wasn't around much longer than it took for them to outfit her ship with a shockpoint system, but the little bit of time I spent with her made it clear to me she was in charge. She's smart, fast, and ruthless. She's the sort that'd open a way to the warp and allow demons to spill out over your worlds, if only to distract you while she sees to her own ends."

"To make it clear, I'm not one to condone killing in cold blood, or assassination. Always prefer to be respectable about it, and face someone ya don't like while they got the gun in their hand. But this woman... If you get the chance, don't hesitate, cuz the longer she's chewing at ya, the worse it'll get."

Emily was silent but nodded in affirmation. Ean waved the picture away and said little more "She's a tight one too, doesn't like when things don't go her way... Might make use of that, put her on the back foot enough, and maybe she'll lose focus. Might help, might not, dunno."

Emily spoke up then "And just to be clear, if your facing her make absolutely sure that any weaknesses in your defense she uncovers and exploits, you seal up right away, because she will NOT hesitate to hit them. She's not above Biological, psychological, or chemical warfare, and she WILL use daemons if she thinks it'll help."

---

Sasha blinked a few times, then chuckled. "Well... Shove a stick up me arse and call me a lolly, cuz that sounds sweet as can be. What else ya got for me there." She says, coming closer to look over the technicians work. Once she verified that the Aschen technicians weren't incompetent at all, she finally relaxed a little, eying the reactor as it began cooling towards shut down.

"Aye, upgrades for this old boat'd be very welcome indeed. Have to take some of it up with the captain, but knowing him he'd just leave it all to me." She smiled then with a fiendish grin. "So with that in mind, let's really make up something special. Refit the entire weapons system, and then later Imma take you over to the foundry, show you what we're working with there, and see if you boys got anything that can make THAT sing a little sweeter."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Jordan Duram Character Portrait: Imperial Defense Force Character Portrait: Éclaire Hanley Character Portrait: Ean Falcor Character Portrait: Tiffany Amed'dali Character Portrait: E.V.E.

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Hanley cast a glance over to Duram, and then she nodded, before bringing her attention back to Ean. This was all valuable intelligence, and one that the Aschen would make use of.

"You've done well, I believe we can handle it from here." She said, bringing her gaze back down to a message from EVE.

"Special Agent, Captain. If you'll excuse me, I have a few other things to attend to." Claire added, as she moved out of the ready room. Hanley was going to head down to Astrometrics, where she could get a deep space message out to someone that could provide some assistance.

Duram slowly stood up.

"I'll show you to your quarters."

---


Taking his datapad, Peter made sure to record everything, there were several ways this vessel could be upgraded, and if the intelligence panned out, the Aschen would make the Cobalt Glaive the pride of their technological prowess.

"Light-Mass fabrication, a more efficient navigation system, energy miniaturization, refit the weapons systems with our disruptor technology? A bit dated, but very powerful." Peter said, listing off a few of the upgrades they could bestow on the ship. Resigning himself to let Sasha lead the way.