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Xeraph Phantoms

"Quick and quiet."

0 · 136 views · located in Isirian Space

a character in “The Multiverse”, originally authored by The Afterman, as played by RolePlayGateway

Description

Description

For when the situation calls for finesse and silence, the Phantoms are sent in. Mostly covert agents, the Phantoms also act as the personal elite guard to the Council. Armed with stealth and cunning, as well as their trademark Mana-powered blades, Phantoms are lethal killers that work best in the shadows.

Image

Equipment

Phantom Armor: Light armor that owes its roots to the Siqari. Employed by the Phantom soldiers of the Union, this suit is equipped with an apparatus that can refract light, rendering the wearer invisible to the naked eye. While simpler than the powered armor suits donned by the Knights, these outfits nevertheless prove useful for covert ops and other campaigns.

Omisace Pulse Pistol: Utilizing the same mechanical principals as the pulse rifle, this pistol is a dependable semi-automatic sidearm used by all Xeraph military personnel.

Omisace Mana-Powered Blade: A katana-like blade inspired by Siqari weaponry, utilized by the Phantoms. Distributes a field of mana energy that bestows upon the blade the ability to slice through even the hardest of materials like butter. An effective weapon for assassinations and stealthy kills.

So begins...

Xeraph Phantoms's Story

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Xeraph Knights Character Portrait: Xeraph Phantoms
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Far above, the gigantic Warhorse-class vessel loomed over the infamous prison. The Union had decided to send in some extra reinforcement to Castle Tartarus to help maintain its already brutal security. The Warhorse ejected several dropships, landing miles away from the prison complex.

After some time, they came barreling toward the prison in their deployed Stallions; large armored assault vehicles armed with mana turrets. Five stallions, carrying fifteen Knights and ten Phantoms altogether, headed to reinforce the perimeter. When they arrived, they stopped, and all but the gunners filed out of the large hunks of armor.

One of the Knights stepped forward, addressing the security on duty. "Union soldiers, ready for duty," he said plainly, resting his pulse rifle on his shoulder. The battle-scarred mana-powered armor the Knights wore distinguished them from the rest of the crew, while the Phantoms were identified by their dark-colored light armor pieces and the blades they carried upon their backs.

"Just show us where to go and who to kill, and we'll get it done."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Jenza Krayze Character Portrait: Xeraph Knights Character Portrait: Xeraph Phantoms
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#, as written by Saarai
The collective security force for the prison watched the new arrivals approach, some a little on edge. They didn't know them, they didn't know if they would cut and run when the going got tough or if they could handle themselves in a fight.

The mercenaries and soldiers ignored the Union soldiers for the most part, a few of the older men and women offering them welcoming nods and glances to make up for the rudeness of their younger counterparts.

"You're the new guys?" Jenza asked from a fortified tower looming over the prison. It was one of many surrounding the prison, they served as lookout and sniper nest.

Jenza gestured around, building and tents set up all around. The ruined roads beneath the sand and the multitude of constructed buildings gave off the appearance that there use to be a town near the prison some years ago.

"Pick a place, set up your beds, get your nightlights and pajamas." Jenza called out, "Be ready for anything and everything all the time. We have no room for fuck ups" The mercenary told the new arrivals, "There's a town not far from here, Siren, you can head there for supplies." He informed the Union soldiers.

"There's also Fort Promo, you can get supplies from there too if you need any. Or just ask around here." Jenza added.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Jenza Krayze Character Portrait: Xeraph Knights Character Portrait: Xeraph Phantoms
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The welcome wasn't exactly warm, but they didn't expect it to be. This place was a desolate hellhole located in the ass crack of nowhere space; and the Union soldiers couldn't feel more at home.

"Yeah, we're the reinforcement the Union promised," the lieutenant Knight called out to the guard. They looked around for a place to set up camp. The lieutenant signaled for the gunners to take the helm of the Stallions and to drive them into an area off to the right, where the Union soldiers would set up their tents.

"Thanks for havin' us," the Knight called out, walking away to tend to his men. He'd get formal introductions out of the way later, if possible. For now, they had to get settled in.

The setting changes from castle-tartarus to Xeraph Grand Palace

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Xeraph Knights Character Portrait: Xeraph Phantoms Character Portrait: Bastille Klaven Character Portrait: Naluma Saree
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The Knight regarded the blades upon the three guards. "It is of no consequence. Come, let us speak to the council." The doors opened, swinging wide their towering height. The entourage stepped over the threshold, making their way to the inner chamber where the council often convened. Out of sight, there was stationed a group of Phantoms, looking out on the crowd just in case they needed to intervene.

As the entered, there sat upon a line of chairs the council of five: Bastille Klaven, the human; Vorsa Dek, the vresk; Somme Jama, the cathurian; Kishkin An'uui, the f'dellan; and Elestas vin Agra, the siqari. All of them appeared distraught, save for Bastille, as his visage was hidden by his helmet. They sat, attentive to the incoming party.

"Councilors, I bring you Lady Naluma Saree of Misrana, and her party," the Knight said before being dismissed. The council eyed this woman and her guards, Vorsa looking rather displeased as a vresk such as he would. It was not unexpected; his innate warrior spirit was rarely impressed by others outside of his kind. He sat back and crossed his massive arms across his chest.

Bastille spoke, "So, you are the guests we have been expecting." His voice was kind, slightly dampened by the helmet he wore to conceal the horrendous marring his face had suffered. "We've come to understand that you are in need of support in the campaign to liberate your planet from your oppressors. Please, tell us more." He sat up straight, eager to listen, giving her a gesture with his hand to proceed to take the floor.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Xeraph Knights Character Portrait: Xeraph Phantoms Character Portrait: Bastille Klaven Character Portrait: Naluma Saree
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Naluma smiled at them very beautifully, holding her hands up to them as she bent her knees in a Misranan greeting specific to high society Nahatsan ladies.

"That I shall be doing. First I must thank you extensively for seeing us. We have had trouble gathering help around the galaxy thus far. For many centuries the Calidonan Supremacy, at the hand of the Triumvirate, have seized rule over Misrana. The planet was cloaked and extensive defense systems were put up to keep us locked away from the rest of the universe, as to keep the universe locked away from getting to us.

"Though people appealed again and again to the Supremacy to let us connect with those outside once more, but were denied. The Nazuan Rebellion rose from this. That is who I come to represent today. We are finished being brainwashed and kept in the dark. We yearn for our independent countries and for discovery of planets outside our own. We reach out to you, the Xeraph, to aid us. In return, we shall share an alliance and lend aid when you call for it."

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Xeraph Knights Character Portrait: Xeraph Phantoms Character Portrait: Bastille Klaven Character Portrait: Naluma Saree
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Bastille nodded, the face under his helmet unchanging and neutral. He listened to this woman's plight and understood her desire to seek aid. He was all for assisting her in ridding her home of the tyrants that plagued it. He sat back, turning his head to his fellow councilors. As expected, it was Vorsa who offered the voice of blatant concern.

Sitting forward, he addressed the woman. "And what can your 'rebellion' do for us in return if we are to help you?" he asked. Bastille whipped his head towards his fellow councilor.
"Vorsa!" he said. The brutish vresk turned in kind.
"We cannot jump into a conflict without knowing what we stand to gain from doing so! Or have you forgotten, Klaven, that our resources are stretched thin as it is, fighting off the demons on a regular basis!"

Bastille was silent. "Regardless," Kishkin, the f'dellan councilor began, "We cannot ignore the plight of a people suffering under the heel of tyranny. Or have you forgotten about your compassion, Vorsa Dek?" Vorsa sneered at this.
"Compassion. It wasn't compassion that forged the vresk name in the annals as mighty warriors, nor was it compassion that staved off the hostile entities that would have claimed our homeworld! I am rightly justified in knowing why I should throw our warriors into the fray with these 'Misranans' and their ilk!"

The room was silent. "We cannot ignore them, Vorsa," Bastille said.
With a grunt, the vresk replied, "I'm not suggesting we ignore them, I'm suggesting they tell us why we should help, or we should send them along their way. Quid pro quo, as you humans say." Their attention turned to Naluma now, put in the difficult and awkward situation of explaining herself to the hard-headed vresk.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Xeraph Knights Character Portrait: Xeraph Phantoms Character Portrait: Bastille Klaven Character Portrait: Naluma Saree
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Naluma was not easily deterred. Even as the harsh arguments reached her ears, the woman only found her smile widening. Her hands clasped at her waist and she waited, with a wondrous, glorious patience, for the council to finish. Once they did, she rose her chin and looked directly into the vresk's eyes.

"Not once did we expect charity, Councilor Vorsa Dek. We intend to repay the Zorocratic Union in full and begin a healthy relationship, if possible. Misrana is very bountiful in its resources. If you are starved, allow us, of the Nazuan Rebellion, to aid you in supplying what you need. If you need soldiers, we will supply soldiers. Should you need weapons, we will bring weapons. If it is food, I can only hope our cuisine is not too foreign. Only say the word and arrangements can easily be made." Her hands spread out before her, appealing to the council alongside her words.

"It is fully understandable, that you might be hesitant. I will answer any further concerns or questions you might have."

Fearlessly, she stood before them, a kitten grinning to a bear.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Xeraph Knights Character Portrait: Xeraph Phantoms Character Portrait: Bastille Klaven Character Portrait: Naluma Saree
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The vresk fell silent. For a moment. "We have soldiers and food enough to last us for eons to come, thank you very much, miss Saree. No, what I am interested in, and what my fellow councilors are too polite to say they are interested in, is the technology your people possess." He sat forward, furrowing his brow. "It has come to our attention that you Misranans are in possession of technology similar to our own. What we would like, is cooperation in further developing our understanding of the magicks. This would include partnerships in research and development, open trading, and unconditional exchange of each others' findings."

The room was silent once more, all sideways glances burning into Vorsa's person. Bastille sighed a heavy sigh. "As crude as councilor Vorsa has phrased our interests, he is right. We are immensely interested in your culture and technology. We would require full cooperation in working together to further the interests of our respective civilizations. I hope this isn't too much to ask?"

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Xeraph Knights Character Portrait: Xeraph Phantoms Character Portrait: Bastille Klaven Character Portrait: Naluma Saree
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Naluma raised an eyebrow. "That would not be difficult at all," she stated, as though it were a trivial matter. Before she continued, she met eyes with every councilor member, stopping at Vorsa once more. "However, there is a problem. The Supremacy owns a startling bulk of magitech research. They are able to purify the energy into a very fine and dangerous result. Though we rebels have done our best to replicate this process, we are having trouble doing so. Until we defeat the Supremacy, we will not be able to present you with the best Misranan research has to offer. Despite this, we will share what we have found on our own. Is this fair?"

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Xeraph Knights Character Portrait: Xeraph Phantoms Character Portrait: Bastille Klaven Character Portrait: Naluma Saree
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Her words fell upon their ears, and they were silent, looking around at each other as if in some sort of telepathic ruling. "It will suffice. Hopefully our own scientists and Sorcerers will be able to provide further assistance in aiding your people," Bastille said finally.

A calm air pervaded over the chamber. "All that is left now is for you to provide us the location of your planet," Kishkin said. "With that business concluded, we will be able to send our forces to assist you in overthrowing this 'Supremacy' that threatens you so." With that the f'dellan councilor smiled. "Is this suitable, Vorsa, or do you require further convincing?"

The vresk was contemplative for a moment, a grunt and a gentle inhalation of air emanating from him. "Fine. As long as we have your cooperation. Just know this: our warriors do not die for useless causes. Do not make us regret this decision." With that, he was finished speaking, sitting back in his seat and eying the Misranans carefully.

"I suppose that concludes this meeting," Bastille said. "We shall send troops to assist your people as soon as possible. We thank you for your cooperation and your..." he trailed off, casting a sideways glance to his fellow vresk councilor from beneath his helmet. "...patience," he said finally.

The meeting was adjourned. Now all that remained were the final pleasantries.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Xeraph Knights Character Portrait: Xeraph Phantoms Character Portrait: Bastille Klaven Character Portrait: Naluma Saree
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"Duly noted, Councilor Vorsa," replied Naleema one last time before giving the whole council a final, graceful bow with her hands raised toward them. "The Nazuan Rebellion thanks the Zorocratic Union. Myself especially."

As she turned, her frock flourished and danced around her lithe frame. She wore her smile on the way out, as she had on the way inside, and her guards silently followed.

Like puppets on a string.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Alexander Steele Character Portrait: Xeraph Knights Character Portrait: Xeraph Phantoms Character Portrait: Bastille Klaven Character Portrait: Naluma Saree
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As she turned to walk away, Vorsa leaned in closer to Bastille. "If these rebels don't turn out to be who they say they are, I hope you're prepared to face the repercussions, Klaven." With that, the vresk rose from his seat, along with the rest of the council, and left the chamber. Bastille remained, sitting in his chair, contemplating, holding his head in his hand.

'Aeons help me,' he thought gravely.

________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Outside the chamber, the devilishly handsome Master Lancer of the Dragoons approached the Misranan group. "Lady Saree, I presume. It is a pleasure to meet you. I am Master Lancer Alexander Steele. I'll be leading the fleet in the campaign against your planet's oppressors."

The Dragoon took a bow, placing his right arm across his chest and craning deeply. He stood back up, looking to the woman and her party. "I'm here to inform you that we will be making our course to your planet soon. We'll be taking a route through the Manasphere, and should arrive at Misrana's doorstep in no time at all," he stated plainly with a smile.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Alexander Steele Character Portrait: Xeraph Knights Character Portrait: Xeraph Phantoms Character Portrait: Bastille Klaven Character Portrait: Naluma Saree
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Naluma stopped in front of the rather strapping man, but due to her sudden movement, her frock kept moving forward until it nearly consumed the man before her. Once the cloth settled, the woman bowed her head, and not at the waist, because he was lower than the councilors. "The pleasure is all mine, Master Steele. Especially since you all have been so generous as to help our cause. Could you describe to me what this Manasphere is?"

The setting changes from xeraph-grand-palace to The Onyx Galaxy

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Alexander Steele Character Portrait: Xeraph Knights Character Portrait: Xeraph Phantoms Character Portrait: Xeraph Sorcerers Character Portrait: Xeraph Dragoons Character Portrait: Naluma Saree
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They arrived, traveling through the mystical energies of the Manasphere. Exiting in a flash of blue light in the Onyx Galaxy, Alexander stood on the bridge of his Warhorse-class vessel; the ITV Stalwart Valor, Naluma standing near him. "And that, Miss Saree, was the Manasphere. It is a dimension from which we derive our magicks and energies. It provides a limitless supply of energy, allowing us to further our cause." He looked out upon the starry expanse, a smile on his face.

"We've developed a way to extract its energies utilizing our technology, which works in tandem with the magicks provided to accomplish, well, just about anything we set out to do, and much cheaper than utilizing traditional energy sources." Turning to her, he grinned once more. "Well, we've arrived. I hope this journey has been largely educational."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Alexander Steele Character Portrait: Xeraph Knights Character Portrait: Xeraph Phantoms Character Portrait: Xeraph Sorcerers Character Portrait: Xeraph Dragoons Character Portrait: Naluma Saree
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"How familiar. The origin from which the magic energy on Celestria is much different than that on Misrana, however the use is the same," said Naluma, musing over the grand ship, much different than the cyborg ships she was used to, where one could feel the ground thumping gently as the beast's massive heart beat below them. This ship did not beat, and the floor was not as soft on her feet, but it had its own charms that Naluma took to immediately.

Once they arrived in the Onyx Galaxy, the woman could not conceal the amused smile. "How very useful. We were so very, very far apart. Two weeks at least from Terra, and farther still from the Aurora. It's been a little while since I've seen Misrana."

Indeed, the very colorful planet floated before them, locked in a slow pull around the blue giant, Zola. Around the planet there were various large satellites.

"There might be a problem. I can't introduce you as a friend of the rebellion or you might not get admitted by the Nahatsuan military. Those platforms- there's about forty in all- will hold you back. The reason we haven't been taken over yet is because of them. The Aschen tried to attack us once. We held our own until they flew off."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Alexander Steele Character Portrait: Xeraph Knights Character Portrait: Xeraph Phantoms Character Portrait: Xeraph Sorcerers Character Portrait: Xeraph Dragoons Character Portrait: Naluma Saree
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"Indeed," Alexander began, "There is much about the Manasphere we do not yet understand, but that is all a matter of time. What we do know is that it is a source of unlimited energy, or seems to be, and that it is a very versatile dimension. It is, however, quite a dangerous place as well..." he trailed off, thinking to himself. Eventually, he snapped his attention back to Naluma, a smile spread across his face. "But now we need to focus on landing."

Naluma seemed concerned. "There might be a problem. I can't introduce you as a friend of the rebellion or you might not get admitted by the Nahatsuan military. Those platforms- there's about forty in all- will hold you back. The reason we haven't been taken over yet is because of them. The Aschen tried to attack us once. We held our own until they flew off."

Alexander pondered for a moment, then smiled as he faced her. "Then who shall you introduce us as?" he asked with a laugh. "Don't worry, Lady Naluma; if there's one things we are good at, it is getting to where we need to go. We could always simply send a group of Bison to the surface. THey would easily slip past any security measures," he looked out in the distance through the window on the bridge. "Unless of course, you have an idea of your own."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Alexander Steele Character Portrait: Xeraph Knights Character Portrait: Xeraph Phantoms Character Portrait: Xeraph Sorcerers Character Portrait: Xeraph Dragoons Character Portrait: Naluma Saree
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"I will let you know if it comes to that, Master Lancer. For now, let me convince the Nahatsuan army that you aren't here for the purposes that we've actually brought you for. Would you allow me to hail them?" asked Naluma, clasping her fingers at her waist. "I do not expect this to be a huge challenge. Perhaps not even tricky. I have my ways with the Nahatsans."

As her own ship came into view, she waited for Alexander to either link her to the ODPs, or for them to hail the ship she was currently in.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Alexander Steele Character Portrait: Xeraph Knights Character Portrait: Xeraph Phantoms Character Portrait: Xeraph Sorcerers Character Portrait: Xeraph Dragoons Character Portrait: Naluma Saree
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Alexander fired up the comms, directing Naluma toward them. "Do whatever you feel is necessary. Whatever helps us advance," he said. Looking out at the beautiful planet, he got a sense of unease. He'd fought in several campaigns, and never felt such hesitation. Something about their being here seemed improper; out of place. He couldn't quite put his finger on it, but Alexander had the strange feeling that they were making a mistake coming here...

However, he shook the feeling off. 'Maybe I'm just getting more cautious these days,' he thought.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Alexander Steele Character Portrait: Xeraph Knights Character Portrait: Xeraph Phantoms Character Portrait: Xeraph Sorcerers Character Portrait: Xeraph Dragoons Character Portrait: Naluma Saree
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Naluma made her way to the comms, waiting for a prompt.

Once it came, the woman seemed cheerful to learn that an ustelan diplomat by the name of "Magannamus," was on the other line. That would be the extent of the conversation that everyone in the ship would likely be able to understand, for Naluma and Magannamus began to rapidly chat in Misranae to one another. There was a short pause in which Naluma threw back her head in laughter, then began the conversation again. Somewhere, her voice seemed to become more commanding, more conservative, and soon Magannamus cut off connections.

Naluma beamed up brightly to the Master Lancer.

"If you all would- we've been allowed access to the Zanzarian port! The ship I arrived on Rorian Grand will lead us there."

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Alexander Steele Character Portrait: Xeraph Knights Character Portrait: Xeraph Phantoms Character Portrait: Xeraph Sorcerers Character Portrait: Xeraph Dragoons Character Portrait: Naluma Saree
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To his relief and utter cheeriness, Alexander nodded in response to Naluma's guidance. "Full sail ahead, men!" he called. The Stalwart Valor eased forward, following the path laid out by the strange ship Naluma had arrived on Rorian Grand in.

The Master Lancer stood, hands folded behind him, as the mysterious and marvelous world came closer and closer. Misrana was more lustrous than he could have thought it. Beautiful architecture, landforms and sea waters painted the planet's face, affording it a glamorous appearance that mere words could not accurately portray.

In short, Alexander was quite bewitched by the sights he was taking in. His mouth was agape in awe, as if he were bearing witness to the birth of the world itself; the construct of angels that lay just beyond hi reach, and he would soon have his feet planted above those marvelous landmasses. They came into orbit, and the Xeraph could merely wait further instruction.

Alexander was growing increasingly impatient.

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Xeraph Phantoms Character Portrait: Lorn Berek Character Portrait: Miratta sil Nimoc
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In an alleyway across the street, a duo of Xeraph Phantoms were looking out at the disheveled Lorn Berek. Given who he was and what his family history contained, he was of special interest to the government. The Phantoms were given "special orders" to monitor Lorn's movements.

Given that his father was a known Manasphere demon worshiper, the Union could never be too sure the son wouldn't take up the same legacy. They watched, stone-faced as he collided with the siqari woman and her matango companion. They exchanged apologies, numerous times, and went about their own businesses.

As Lorn made his way down the road, the Phantoms followed, invisible to all those wandering the streets...

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Xeraph Phantoms Character Portrait: Lorn Berek Character Portrait: Miratta sil Nimoc
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#, as written by Marcus
Lorn made another turn and stopped for a quick moment as his eye was drawn to a few posters outside of a small shop. He made a quick mental note and continued to rush off towards his apartment were he would make a few copies of his papers while simultaneously checking his dark leather bound book to make sure it did not loose any pages. Within were his ideas and theories about the Manasphere and what it can and could not do. He was determined to make an impression and wanted research materials to prove not just to himself but to others that he was correct.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Dylan Ryder Character Portrait: Whisper (Jacquelyn Rose) Character Portrait: Malcolm Barrett Character Portrait: UCON Character Portrait: Raphael E. McGregor Character Portrait: Echo Alpha Character Portrait: Elisha Whitcomb Character Portrait: LDA Agent Character Portrait: Aschen Second Fleet of Homogenous Clarity Character Portrait: Killian Io Character Portrait: Xeraph Knights Character Portrait: Xeraph Phantoms Character Portrait: Xeraph Sorcerers Character Portrait: Xeraph Dragoons Character Portrait: Morieghan Greysaw Character Portrait: Shipmaster Liam Ian Greers Character Portrait: Siith Dugal Connors
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The fleet of the Dawnscar Ascension was treading the blackened expanse of Auroran space. Patrolling the Aurora for dangers was never a bad move if a nation valued their security. Admiral Kerta Fex, a vresk if ever there was one, helmed the Warhorse-class vessel as its fleet scoured the void for hostile activity.

That is, until the scanners picked up hostile activity.

"Sir, detecting multiple energy signals not five light-years away. How shall we proceed?" The admiral contemplated for a moment before opening his mouth to speak. However, he was cut off by his ranking officer; the Paladin Killian Io.
"Investigate. I want to know who is causing commotion in this sector and I want to know why."
Kerta, unnerved by the Paladin's interjection, retorted. "Sir, I don't think that is in the best interest of our cause."
Killian turned to the admiral, a snarl forming on his upper lip. "May I remind you, admiral, that the Ascension is my ship. You just have the utmost privilege of steering it."
The vresk looked down at the comparatively small human. Had it been anyone else, they'd have been wrangled in the admirals massive hands and broken over his knee like a twig. However, the admiral knew of Killian Io's exploits; his lengthy and hellish campaign as a Knight of the Union; He knew better than to trifle with the man.
"Yes, sir," he finally resided.
"We'll go in alone, lieutenant, leave the fleet behind just in case."
The navigator acknowledged the order, bringing the ship to full speed as to meet the source of the activity.

What they found was more than expected...

It was a battleground alright, with many players in the game. However, one particular group of vessels stood out to the crew: Avaeon Republic ships. Up until now, the Union had only heard of these people. Now it seemed they were in a full scale assault. Who initiated the attack the was anyone's guess.

It would take some more observation before Killian could decide what to do.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Dylan Ryder Character Portrait: Whisper (Jacquelyn Rose) Character Portrait: Malcolm Barrett Character Portrait: UCON Character Portrait: Raphael E. McGregor Character Portrait: Echo Alpha Character Portrait: Elisha Whitcomb Character Portrait: LDA Agent Character Portrait: Coalition Military Apparatus Character Portrait: Aschen Second Fleet of Homogenous Clarity Character Portrait: Killian Io Character Portrait: Xeraph Knights Character Portrait: Xeraph Phantoms Character Portrait: Xeraph Sorcerers Character Portrait: Xeraph Dragoons Character Portrait: Morieghan Greysaw Character Portrait: Shipmaster Liam Ian Greers Character Portrait: Siith Dugal Connors
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Task Force Viking,
9-8.49 Stellar Combat Squadron
CNS Malmo, Legionnaire class Heavy Cruiser


“Commander.”

Amritha’s soft voice stirred James out of his thoughts for a moment, the dim bedside lamp making long phantoms across the spartan room. The Savage rubbed at a few excess days of stubble around his chin and jaw as the capsuleer powered up the tiny pad-clock on the metal nightstand beside him. Days had passed by and he found himself tucked away into the captain’s hole now, outside though the ship continued bustling along; six hundred odd souls grinding away across the bowels of the vessel. Five hundred and ninety nine if you were the kind that didn’t consider capsuleers human.

“I’m up.” Savage finally brought himself out of the bed and into the pants at the side of the mattress, watching a holographic display jump in front of him. Amritha, rigged into the digipsionic pod somewhere in the bowels of the Malmo, might have been however far away but gave the Commander plenty of evidence that the ship and her crew were waiting on him. A screen rolled by from a surveillance camera on one of the cruiser's gundeck; olive-robed sailors checked the mechanism on a dual-purpose railgun, segue to the galley crew making a thousand pounds of icecream and Savage waved the holograms apart.

"When you're ready I need the logs for the last few hours, I'm opening the enigma package." Savage idly threw a shirt on and took one glance at the matte-black ruggedized laptop. The device had sat unmoved, as per orders, since the vessel departed in formation with the rest of Task Force Viking over Arik. With the Colonial Sphere behind them the Malmo had dropped off with the rest of Task Force Viking completely; where now a tentative carrier group seemed to inch towards the battlefield on the long range sensors, the Malmo had let its FTL drive cool dark making a chill across the hull of the vessel in the surrounding cosmos.

“The Imperial military has prepared for a large deployment in the area, and the Malmo received a broadcast piggying off of Viking’s comms. The situation in the Isirian sector seems to have developed." The woman's voice trailed into a mechanic din when she was spread all throughout the ship. Stuffed away in deep in the hull she still peered over his shoulder like a prying child as he stood in front of the desk.

"Curious, Ams?" Savage's boyish charm seemed to only draw a laugh for himself as the woman occupied the tiny holoprompter nested against the wall.

"Only to see what sort of trouble you'll get into this time." Amritha was a smart, competent woman from the Inner Empire; once or twice during pillow talk she had spoken about the IE briefly. She wasn't one of the 'fortunate' ones, like the boy who'd grown up as a Savage. "Or finally get yourself killed."

"Funny how capsuleers appreciate our mortality moreso than the ones with it." Despite his incredulous tone he knew she pulled back a bit at that, didn't stop him from letting the short chuckle come after she spoke.

"Those comms exchanges are ready, commander." It was only a certain silence that ever convinced Savage he was alone; mentally he felt the woman huff in remark and then occupy herself with something. The room remained dim as Savage undid the two latches holding the enigma machine closed.

He made a quick mental note to apologize to the capsuleer, but if he truly decided it he hardly thought of what to say as the ruggedized slowly pulled open. A floating image greeted him, the infamous dagger and eye, Counter-Balance.

THANK YOU FOR FOLLOWING ORDERS, COMMANDER ...

Initiating cypher enigma ...
Collecting free packets ...
Compiling protocols ....

... Opened the enigma yet, Commander Savage?


The IM app made cute little keyboard noises as James watched whoever was at the other end type, and his eyes narrowed at the prospect that he might have crossed half the galaxy for nothing but a spook run.

Welcome to the Aurora, don't expect to go sight seeing any time soon.

"Who is this?" Savage began typing his thoughts as he spoke, and a split second later the other user replied curtly. Not important.

You're officially removed from Task Force Viking's roster; as of this communication, your objective is the defusal of this situation. Are you aware of the incident taking place in Isiria?

Savages reeled back from the desk for a moment, the other hand fumbling to the remote control and pointing it at the blank wall to activate the large-screen. The ships’ menu faded out after he scrolled the volume down and came back to the ruggedized.

A few hours ago the Empire declared war, Commander.

As if on que, after the enigma pulsed a short signal somewhere in the ship, the capsuleer returned to the room at the holoprompter carrying a handheld screen. “Commander Savage, we’ve received a broadcast on the civilian-comms.”

The airscreen coalesced into an image of the Empyrean heartland, two suns (though they almost appeared as one) brightly hung in the sky overhead a suited man. The calming grey color was a difference in with the greenery, modern architecture and a waiting crowd of reporters and bystanders. Prime Minister Dauch stood before the waiting cameras like an aging obelisk, and while the wrinkles at either eye furled.

“Ladies and gentlemen, men and women of the domestic and foreign press, I only have a short time and I shall be brief with this. Today my administration received confirmation from the executive of the Aschen Empire that it has initiated hostilities against another sovereign state in its nominal territory, a region called the Aurora.”

Following Dauch’s accent was a cold, crawling realization that Viking had not left “on a routine patrol”. Savage and Amritha stood side by side in front of the flickering television screen, Dauch almost talking directly to them despite being thousands of lightyears away.

“Today, frail and battlescarred nations teeter on the brink of dissolution and the graveyard of history and today, the Federal government stands once again for Aschen perseverance through war. The Aschen are ready to face any adversity that will afflict it in these upcoming tribulations -- they overcame even their own adversity. They have earned their right to exist.”

The image cut to a voice recording as Savage turned back to the ruggedized, the app closed remotely and a blank loading screen sat for him.

“Minister Narek will explain in full detail the groundwork the Federal government has suggested for a united front in support of the Aschen Empire, for a quick and stable establishment of peace as soon as possible -- with multi-lateral decisions and agreements for all belligerents. Fellow citizens of the great Coalition, pray for your Aschen brethren. Pray for their fighting men -- and most importantly, pray for our unfortunate enemies.”

Pulling intel document …
Found! <<<

Project >NOTXTRCL<

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Dylan Ryder Character Portrait: Whisper (Jacquelyn Rose) Character Portrait: Malcolm Barrett Character Portrait: UCON Character Portrait: Raphael E. McGregor Character Portrait: Echo Alpha Character Portrait: Elisha Whitcomb Character Portrait: LDA Agent Character Portrait: Coalition Military Apparatus Character Portrait: Aschen Second Fleet of Homogenous Clarity Character Portrait: Killian Io Character Portrait: Xeraph Knights Character Portrait: Xeraph Phantoms Character Portrait: Xeraph Sorcerers Character Portrait: Xeraph Dragoons Character Portrait: Morieghan Greysaw Character Portrait: Shipmaster Liam Ian Greers Character Portrait: Siith Dugal Connors
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#, as written by Tiko
Whisper swept into the CIC of the Nighthawk as her form regained its corporeal state. Word had already reached the technicians as to her arrival, and they were preparing to jack her into the Reverence. After the Avaeon had effectively shut down a military vessel only a few weeks prior, they weren't taking any chances. It would be far more difficult for the Avaeon's to override the ship's systems with Whisper jacked in. Viruses were designed to corrupt program, and AI's. They weren't designed to contend with a human mind behind the ship's systems.

She sat down in a chair that was being wired into one of the control consoles. The Nighthawk wasn't specifically outfitted for her like the Blackbird, but they were making quick work of it.

As she sat down a technician lay the chair back.

"Are you ready?" he asked.

Whisper nodded.

As before the searing pain of the jack being jammed into the back of her neck drew a jerk and a gasp from her lips before her consciousness was seamlessly separated from her physical body. Unlike before though, her consciousness wasn't contained inside of a virtual box, but rather she had full run of the ships systems. Its weapons, its sensors, its life support systems, its comm systems, everything was at her disposal.

A woman's voice filled the CIC from the loudspeakers.

"Blackbird, online. The aliens have engaged with the Harbinger of Piety. Our FTL drives are spooling up. We'll be clear of the combat zone in five seconds. Four. Three. Two -"