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IE Journal 2

Page history last edited by Michael 10 years ago

back to the Index or Journal entry 1

 

The Gate Ripper Hall within the Fire Pagoda - Hell, Chamber of Flames

 

Burns came through the gate ripper ready to cause trouble, but was quickly overwhelmed by demons! The masonry room was lit by burning gouts of flame from holes in the walls; a large opening in the barrel-vaulted ceiling revealed a bright, daylight sky. Gnarled marauders, snake men and women, manglers, humans in a variety of clothing, and several just freaky alien beings (or demons) were present; the gate ripper itself was being tended by some of the humans. Four TSG employees, the security guard, Hadrian Black, and the delivery guy all laid relatively neatly and unconsciously on the floor; O'Reilly and MacClellan had just been dumped more roughly beside the gate ripper.

 

The humans and aliens spoke (accented) English, and some other language (maybe Sanskrit or Hindi); the demons spoke Mandarin. One of the gnarled marauders was acting as a translator. There was some dispute over which of the captives belonged to the demons, and which belonged to the humans and aliens; the aliens seemed to win the dispute, and began applying a wicked-looking device to the backs of the heads of the captives. The device (a field hull tool) seemed to be injecting an organism about the size of an earthworm into the victims' skulls!

 

The first persons "hulled" were some of the TSG employees; and to Burns' horror, they soon recovered consciousness, and began speaking with the humans and aliens in a natural tone of voice -- in whatever odd language they were using! The mingled, unguarded, with the humans.

 

Fortunately, just before the aliens began injecting worms into the skulls of any player-characters, the Kerrn attacked! A hole was blasted in one wall, and clouds of noxious gas rolled across the floor! Massive Kerrn warriors came in through the hole, and more jumped down -- a 15 meter drop -- from the opening in the roof. They hacked with huge swords and sprayed gunfire at the aliens, demons, and other strange creatures; fortunately, tied-up people seemed to not qualify as targets. In a few moments, the demons and unfriendly aliens were dispatched; the Kerrn immediately got to work destroying the heads of the dead humans and the aliens - ugh! In one case, some small dark snake-like thing seemed to have been seen sliding across the floor - the Kerrn shouted and quickly stomped it.

 

Burns, the only conscious victim, realized the Kerrn were speaking oddly-accented English, and spoke up. The warriors waved some sort of sensor device at his head (and the heads of the other persons still restrained) and a seemingly-in-command Kerrn (named Vong, with the rank of eltee) declared, "Good, you don't goht vorrrm in you." Burns and the other PCs - the only surviving humans in the chamber - were removed from their restraints by the Kerrn.

 

Other Kerrn, meanwhile, where doing technical thing around the gate ripper; a couple of them jumped through the portal, guns at the ready, with packs of explosives. A few Kerrn casualties, and the unconscious humans, were tended by a Kerrn medic. "Ve haff to go quickly," Vong said, "more vorms and many bad tings comink." Knotted lines (rather like fastropes) and two baskets resembling stokes litters were lowered through the opening in the roof, suspended from hoving assault sleds. The unconscious humans, Burns, and some pieces of captured equipment were put into the baskets. The Kerrn who had gone through the portal returned and told Vong, "Nozzing to blow up zere." Vong nodded, and rapped out a few quick commands; the Kerrn warriors swarmed up the ropes, and the baskets were quickly winched up to the assault sleds. 

 

As the baskets cleared the roof of the masonry structure, Burns saw the area round about:

 

The Fire Pagoda is a huge palace, with many domes and windows; it and the city around it look very like something from a movie about Sinbad or Aladdin - something from medieval Persia or Palestine, but on a larger scale. The largest, central dome has much smoke coming from openings around the top; other areas of soot and smoke were caused by Kerrn air strikes. The landscape beyond the city is generally "Middle Eastern desert", with smoky clouds in the sky and more small volcanoes than most peoples' conception of the Middle East.

 

A few more assault sleds and other grav craft were darting around; when the team from the Gate Ripper Hall boarded their sleds, all of the Kerrn vehicles took off at great speed across the countryside, away from the city. 

 

The other characters recovered entirely from unconsciousness; but the experience of waking up on the floor of an Assault Shuttle, with ten-foot-tall green reptile commandoes sitting on jump seats on either side, was a bit of a mental trauma. Vong and his "men" were intent on watching small display screens on the overhead:  these screens showed the city, receding rapidly. Some event (bombs destroying the gate ripper) caused the Kerrn to shout with glee and generally do a semi-seated "touchdown dance" -- much to the dismay of the humans lying on the floor! The Kerrn were quickly apologetic about scaring their human guests, and offered water, kindly advice, etc.

 

The small formation of Assault Shuttles approached a semi-destroyed research base in the burning wilderness, and entered a ragged dome. One of the shuttles stopped to pick up a few Kerrn warriors, and then the whole group sped through another portal!

 

Britilthin - a Vaylen world

 

The Kerrn shuttles roared out of the portal beside yet another gate ripper, and headed nearly straight up into the sky. Behind them, a large explosion destroyed the gate ripper and the research center it was standing in. Contrails, smoke from destroyed craft, and other signs of hi-tech aerospace warfare were visible outside. The climb to space took about ten minutes; there was a sense of urgency among the Kerrn - "Vorms vill be verry ot ahfterrr us, ve gotta haul azz hout uff zis zystem." The Assault Shuttles docked with three Kerrn spacecraft, and the spacecraft immediately began accelerating away from Britilthin.

  

The humans were taken to a compartment by Vong, and left in the care of ofisah Trebel, a member of the ship's crew. He arranged for them to clean up, get medical checkups, found some smocks (resembling gray surgical scrubs), and answered their questions as best he could. The three Kerrn warships -- Spirit of Retribution (with the characters aboard), Spirit of Victory, and Spirit of Hope -- were bound for Omship (the Kerrn homeworld, apparently) with information they had just stolen from the Vaylen. The ships didn't have enough fuel to make the trip non-stop; they planned on making a fuelling stop at a world in the Karsan League - Burano, fief of Count Abnaya. The voyage to Burano would take 6 weeks; it would be another 10 weeks to Omship from there. 

 

Within Vaylen Space

 

After a few hours of travel, with the Vaylen in fruitless pursuit, the Kerrn fleet engaged its distortion drive and began travelling faster-than-light (16 light-years per week, or 832 C). Most of the Kerrn, except for a few shipkeeping crew, were already placed in suspended animation in cryo berths by then. Black decided he'd like to spend some time catching up on history and local computing methods; the captain of the Spirit of Retribution (kerrn-ammah Krant) agreed to allow this, though he pointed out the only foodstuffs they had for humans were pretty basic military rations.

 

The date they came aboard was 25 Rising 597 HE ... or, to use the old dating system of Terra Insula:   20 March 12,505 AD.

 

On to Journal entry 3 

 

 

 

 

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