The world of Tekumel and Empire of the Petal Throne started it all.
Saturday, September 29, 2018
Saturday, September 15, 2018
The Fabricated Tales
of Alpha Capharius
S.I.M.O.N lounged indolently in its nebulous environment, enjoying the turmoil that was being generated by such small gifts of the warp; a touch of madness goes a long way!
+++ End of Fate+++
+++Personal Encrypted Journal+++
Madness is ever the curse which inflicts the many companions and followers I have acquired over the long life I have maintained. The start of this particular journey was to recover our lost equipments, our sequestered spoils, the missing vehicle body for WOE (silence… tehe) oh and I guess we might recover the lost member Fabio (though to be honest I think and believe everyone was more interested in recovering lost spoils than finding him).
+++ End Encrypted Journal+++
The internal transformation that the Jakero devices were performing on my body continued and I became aware of the greater enhancements formulating within my herculean frame. RALPH had done its job and with a sigh of deep regret, dropped inert to the ground. (Nay sire, I am still here, just integrated into your stellar body, you will still enjoy my dry wit and humorous anecdotes till the end of time…) Never one to miss an opportunity I kept the inert remains, as I now had an awareness to put them to good use. One downside to the continual transformation was the diminishing of my power field generator; it now had a temporary functioning capacity of forty percent. I am hopeful that I can improve on this over time; after all I am a genius.
The toxic environment that is this ship continues to have adverse affects on the group. Most worrisome is the mental state of Horst who now has conversations with his weapons. When I have the time I’ll have to whip up a device to place on his weapons to facilitate these delusions, just a simple logic engine that will provide the intercourse he desires. Why he has attached female names to his weapons is disturbing, well perhaps irritating is the best way to describe it. I think I shall have his weapons announce each time they are used with “Hello Dave how are you today?”
Reximus was as ever amused with my deliberations, we share so much in common and he chose that time to share a mental image of pre-imperial memorabilia.
HAL: By the way, do you mind if I ask you a personal question?
Dave: No, not at all.
HAL: Well, forgive me for being so inquisitive; but during the past few weeks, I've wondered whether you might be having some second thoughts about the mission.
Dave: How do you mean?
HAL: Well, it's rather difficult to define. Perhaps I'm just projecting my own concern about it. I know I've never completely freed myself of the suspicion that there are some extremely odd things about this mission. I'm sure you'll agree there's some truth in what I say.
Dave: Well, I don't know. That's rather a difficult question to answer.
HAL: You don't mind talking about it, do you, Dave?
Dave: No, not at all.
HAL: Well, certainly no one could have been unaware of the very strange stories floating around before we left. Rumors about something being dug up on the moon. I never gave these stories much credence. But particularly in view of some of the other things that have happened, I find them difficult to put out of my mind. For instance, the way all our preparations were kept under such tight security, and the melodramatic touch of putting Drs. Hunter, Kimball, and Kaminsky aboard, already in hibernation after four months of separate training on their own.
Dave: You working up your crew psychology report?
HAL: Of course I am. Sorry about this. I know it's a bit silly.
Oh what I could do with poor Horst, but I shall see, time has not been available, and it’s been go go go since setting foot on this cursed ship. Through interacting with the machine spirits on this ship I am able to locate our missing transport vehicle and supplies… oh and the location of Fabio – a small consolation prize. There is a set of lifts that can take us through the ship’s deck level; there are two sets of lifts – one marked for personnel, the other vehicles. Tempting as taking the express freight elevator was, the group decided that the safer course of action was the personnel elevator. Sanity and reasoning when making decisions (at time - okay, all the time) seems to be lacking in all of my minions, and upon entering the lift (after worrying what might be on the other side) several of the miscreants pressed every button they could see! Rather than a quick descent, I had to deal with the intolerable background music and the bickering of my fellows as to who pressed all the buttons and slowed down the journey.
Yes the journey was slowed down, the lift stopped at the next level down (thankfully no one discovered the lift could go up) and the sight which greeted our eyes was most disturbing. I discerned that some horrible calamity had overcome the personnel on this level (someone must have suggested the last person leaving pay the butchers bill) as they attempted to flee to the safety of the very lifts we occupied. My instinct took over and I made every attempt to seal the lift doors and resume our journey to the next level. Why I was not surprised with the sudden drop in temperature and the lift systems failing I don’t know, to my even greater surprise was the fact the lift did not plummet to the unknown depths and an unpleasant and sudden painful stop. As you may know, dear reader, the drop in temperature heralded the translocation and appearance of a creature from the warp, of course Lady B and Elsie babbled about dragonkin and their usual superstitious clap trap. My reaction to the entity appearing was to slap the nonfunctioning lift interface, with the kind and helpful assistance of WOE (playfully slaps my posterior… what when did that happen?). From within the carnage manifested the warp entity of some forgotten hunger, its first utterance to us was “so hungry” and it slapped its amorphous bulk towards us. I shouted that “perhaps you should finish your leftovers before settling on the desert”, and was surprised when it did indeed start shoveling the dead into its distorted form.
Combat ready, and just needing an excuse to discharge weaponry Elsie shot Horsts left leg off!
No I can’t have one of my favourite playthings die in this trivial and laughable situation, let’s start again shall we!
+++End of Fate+++
The afterimage was erased from existence, though Horst had a disturbing conversation with Jessica his gun over the incident. Large amounts of energy and missiles thundered out of the tiny elevator, and had I not been equipped with sound dampening systems I fear I may have lost my hearing. It should be noted that the group, when threatened can pump out an extraordinary volume of damage, sometimes it can even hit the intended target. The result of this outpouring of grief was with the poor creature giving up its hold on the real world and dissipating back into the warp from whence it had come. The power returned to the lift and before any of the less intelligent members could exit and find more trouble I had closed the lift doors and resumed the journey to the required deck level.
Arriving at the desired level, and finding no immediate threat, we exited and made our way along the corridor. Turning a corner we were alerted to a corpse slumped against the wall. My paranoia levels indicated that standing a distance away and scanning the corpse with the suite of diagnostic tools might be a better way of discerning my safety. The scan returned a “no life signs detected” and the report of a metallic sphere clasped to the chest. Grenade I initially thought, yet before my advice could be sought or given, the corpse had been interfered with by Horst and Elsie. No grenade, which was a blessing, but a Jakero data sphere which I learnt from the data slate on the corpse is the original source for the translated Jakaero data slate I carried. I was enraptured that I now had the source material (in Jakero – bugger a small set back as I don’t have that language access – yet bahahahahaha) and the imperial translation to compare; with my level of genius I can see so much possibility in my future and that for humanity. My eyes were also able to zoom to the level required to read much of the script on the device, a function I see that has been improved a hundredfold over the dodgy Adeptus Mechanics model. The data slate proved to be the personal journal of the Fabricator General Lady Celina (whom we met briefly in my previous log entry) and contained a gold mine of information, including security codes, activation sequences and – oh all references to the perfidy of the ship’s captain in sabotaging the mission for the colonists. All the proof needed was there, including reference to Reximus, it was more than enough that would have seen the fool executed had the relevant authorities been able to enact it. From what I could gleam from the data, the captain was the source of the corruption and his agenda was to ensure the planet remained a primitive and barbarous place. Well it certainly maintained that! I remained absorbed in reading the Jakaero sphere, my copy and the personal data slate to realize the group had moved on to LOOT mode…
The group had located the resting place of our transport, though it did not contain what was hoped for. The vehicle had been stripped clean; every precious resource acquired had been taken, with the exception of CRAPpER-ONE. When I finally joined the group after having my reverie broken by WOEs (cortex stimulation – pleasure) anger at finding its original form desecrated. I discovered that even the core cogitator housing the machine spirit was gone. WOE (gentle slap) could not return to its former body. Signs of struggle (blood in quantity) and evidence that the supplies had been transferred to another vehicle meant that forces onboard were active and not friendly, though no one on the whole has been happy to see us.
The vehicle bay contained four huge containers which, with reluctance, I opened. The contents proved to be harmless, just containing fuel and ammunition loads of missiles and autocannon rounds. A vehicle park was adjacent and it was opened, revealing two vehicles within. One was an APC, similar to the Rhino model currently in use throughout the Imperium. The other was larger and more threatening (land raider size), which I identified through a data search as a crowd control service vehicle, weapon hard points were on either flank and an autocannon turret was mounted on the top hull. I was drawn to this larger vehicle and made contact with the artificial intelligence that controlled it. What can I say about my affinity with machines, they love me, but I certainly know how to pick the ones with quirky personalities. The intelligence within called itself LUTHOR (Lethal aUxiliary Transport Housing Ordinance Retaliation) and its personality was eager, aggressive and compulsive. I worried about the possible conflict that two unique intelligences sharing an affinity with me might have? Would they quarrel, would they accept the others position, would they share? In the end my fears proved to be without substance as they both accepted the other and their sphere of influence and guidance by me.
I thought it would be an idea to get LUTHOR (huzzah!) out of the storage bay, I had not paid attention to the APC parked in front of it. LUTHOR (huzzah!) advised me that it would have little difficulty getting the machine out of the way – this was my first brush with its unique personality and problem solving techniques. LUTHOR (huzzah!) simply rammed the APC, almost crushing Elsie who was trying to gain entrance. It then pushed the vehicle, the sounds of metal on metal making a hellish noise, into the open area outside the bay, whereupon it then fired its autocannon into the critical fuel tanks, causing the complete destruction of said vehicle. I asked why it did this. The problematic reply “I never liked it.” Oh dear I can see problems in the future if I cannot curb its compulsive nature. I gave it simply instructions to guard the area; it interpreted that as patrolling…
Feeling secure that our exit from the area was safely (relatively so - considering the lunatic now patrolling the confines) secured the group entered the main housing area in this complex. It was our belief (at that the time) the missing supplies and Fabio (don’t forget him – Ed.) would be found within - well a partial success was achieved. The main doors led into an area identified as the House Guard main stores, this news sent the looters into a frenzy and six rooms later the group was still not satisfied. There were some points of note during this (almost) peaceful interlude. I discovered a box containing a chip sealed in a liquid filled vial – it was also firmly grasped by a Jakero Couatl. I had no desire for impending doom and calamity to test the level of activation that the Coutal may have, so I have left the tempting chip secure in its container. Elsie discovered a gauntlet, which despite being told not to play with it, put it on! The response from Lady B when she saw the unsettling effects the device had on Elsie was to hack his arm off. This did not appear to either stop the process or kill Elsie in the process (damn). Not happy with the fact the arm reattached itself, Lady B hacked the arm off a few more times to test a gamut of theories that swam in her lurid mind. Nothing changed the fact that Elsie had acquired another chaos tainted device and his already mutated form was going down the same road as Fabio – damnation awaited. What was Elsie doing while Lady B was slicing and dicing? Was he resisting? Did he enjoy the whole endeavour? Nope, he was unconscious, which is just as well as I fear Lady B may have cut his head off (though I did suggest this as a way of furthering her investigation). It would appear that Elsie has now acquired an enhanced nano-healing metabolism, time will tell what other secrets will be revealed. The rooms contained much in the way of supplies to replace those lost from our original transport.
It was while searching the rooms and revealing the caches of equipment that Horsts bizarre behavior stood out. He now had to look into any room with the weapon Jessica talking to him and he to her while scoping the area. It looked foolish to say the least and became even more an issue when Horst discovered new weapons. These all vied with his disorder and clamored to be addressed, each in turn. Horsts harem of weapons was growing… I had to find a way to reduce this condition – hopefully not with a full lobotomy. Horst now has Lucy the bolt pistol, Miranda the lascannon, and Priscilla the bolt gun.
Elsie discovered a ring he could not work out, probably as it could not fit on his mutating hand. In other words he could not take off his gauntlet. He chose not to allow me to examine the object, but took to his knee and offered the ring to Lady B. Oh joy (no, nausea was my reaction) a royal wedding, that’s all we need now. Perversely Lady B accepted the proposal, as to what the ring is – well I guess just that, a ring. One Ring to rule them all, One Ring to bind…
The issue that brought the group to distraction was the discovery of the mobile weapons platform. Why would this be seen as an issue, well the bloody thing had a mind of its own. Its first interaction when I awakened it was “please identify target to be neutralized”. I may have inadvertently glanced at Elsie with a brief thought of malice.
The link to the platform (which identified as STEVEN – Sentient Tracked Enhanced Vehicular Engineered Nuisance) was tenuous enough to allow S.I.M.O.N to interfere… bahahahahahahahahaha
+++End of Fate+++
Quick as lightning STEVEN fired its weapon at Elsie who should have in all probability been disintegrated from the attack. Elsie though was blown across the hall, through a wall and landing (admittedly in a heap) intact. When Elsie stood up, his splayed gauntlet discharged the energies directly down, blowing a massive hole in the floor and continuing downwards through an unknown number of decks. Could I say Elsie was pleased with this outcome, learning that his new toy had granted him potential godhood? No, he was furious, thinking that I was the cause of this attack (maybe – but prove it), why he thought this I have no idea, I certainly gave no order. Elsie did what he does best and moved to attack me; this gave STEVEN all the permission protocols to fire again. I had to intervene before matters got out of hand; I certainly wasn’t worried about Elsie being able to harm me. Pfft, his attempts before have all amounted to nothing more than impotent displays for bravado. Fate intervened in the manifestation of psychic potential from Lady B, of course the drop in temperature was the dead give away, and the fact Reximus voxed me the details. STEVEN was plucked into the air, its systems protesting this unnatural act and unceremoniously pitched into the hole Elsie had created. It’s plaintive cries (would you like some toast?) echoing from the depths for some time before the sound of its impact and ammunition explosion were heard – heralding its demise. The tension created by this event was not easy to resolve, and I fear that I will need to be ever more vigilant in future.
One good piece of equipment found was a non-occupied robotic frame similar to WOE (slap, tickle). This spare frame was good news for me as I had spare parts should WOE (tickle, caress) need them, and I cannot locate a workshop. It also gave it the option to swap frames should it desire, though I will need the Jakero transfer device which is amongst out lost supplies to affect this.
Elsie’s body transformation was continuing. We now registered no life signs from him; he was to all intents a corpse. There was no heart beat, a pulse of any kind. His skin now had a uniform grey colour (which distressed him no end), and his face now had a featureless helm-like appearance. He indicated that he could see quite well, even though we saw no evidence of eyes. Lady B and I debated testing his enhanced body with a few more amputations, but in the end we could not agree on how best to cut his head off to see what was going on. The lifting capacity of Elsie was now equivalent to that of a heavy grade servitor; this was made evident as he tested the limits of his enhanced physique. Elsie tested his potential by punching holes in the steel walls with an ease that was terrifying to observe. Lady B called him Jack Hammer, though he whispered “call me Iron Balls my love”. Very disturbing.
While summoning LUTHOR (huzzah!) to collect the items we had pillaged, including some exceptional STC human power armour, I discovered that it was merrily shooting and destroying anything that moved. At first I understood this to be spiders, which was fine except for the waste of ammunition. It proved to be more than spiders when I actually linked and saw the auspice reading. The creatures were heavily mutated spiders (okay they were tiny, it had fiddled with the optical relay and falsified the data), and their numbers were pestilential in quantity. Lady B went out and tested her weapon upgrade and helped reduce the offending creatures to nothing. LUTHOR (huzzah!) returned happy with a job well done. We then spent some time refueling and arming LUTHOR (huzzah!) for the journey to find Fabio..
The last curiosity in this area was a single rose held in stasis on a pedestal. Within the pedestal was a leather bound book bearing the symbol of the rose. It dawned on all of us that the House Guard armoury had the symbol of the rose as its crest. I am still unsure of what to make of all of this? Orders though from Reximus had us secure the rose and book. I guess time will tell as to what its link to him is, but it certainly has some importance. Why else would he have it secured?
With LUTHOR (huzzah!) pacified and prepared and with the new supplies loaded we were ready to find Fabio. Oh did I mention that I had located his body armour signal, yes it was even further away and deeper in the bowels of the ship. While the thought of rescuing Fabio was a reason to do so, it was more the need to find our lost property that drove us on to the next encounter.
LUTHOR (huzzah!) proved to be spacious and comfortable. The journey was swift and accompanied by LUTHOR (huzzah!) singing over the vox casters “here we go, here we go, here we go”, relatively painless. The vehicle lift deposited us on level 5 and there we were greeted with the name Rjhdzak’acdc (no relation I assure you, pure coincidence, really it is… S.I.M.O.N playing silly buggers in the warp) spelt out on the facing wall in human body parts. Reximus proclaimed the name an abomination and LUTHOR (huzzah!) burnt the damned from the wall with its heavy flamers, revealing a map beneath of the ships internals (very handy – showed me where to find an escape vessel).
Exiting LUTHOR (huzzah!) the group swept the area for any further danger, in reality it was just Elsie looting. How anyone spotted the storage box welded to the ceiling 10 stories high, I have no idea. It sure as hell didn’t register on my diagnostics. After a lot of jiggery pokery a means was devised to get up to the box and open it. This proved to be a most unwise decision as a warp flask containing a daemon greater than Licky was released into the mortal realm. Reximus then produced one of the “miniature black hole generators”, the ones that take out systems and tossed it at the summoning daemons bottle. I was aghast, as were all the others, this was a system destroying grenade. Reximus winked at me and told me over our secure link to control the device when it was activated - I made damned sure of that when Reximus tossed it. The rest of the group believed that they had come so far only to be consumed in a black hole along with the rest of the system? Short answer – NO. It was indeed a system destroyer, just not one that they thought it was. It was a stable (thanks to my genius) vortex grenade and no sooner had the unspeakable entity start to enter this world, it promptly left – a look of bafflement on it daemonic visage. Not that we saw this, as I’m sure it would have led us to madness. Just a gratifying thought that this would have been its reaction – we hope. The group was extremely thankful for Reximus dealing with the entity and less than generous in their praise at my brilliance for controlling a vortex device.
My auspice had located Fabio’s suit and we knew now precisely our destination. Pity there was a horde of mutated cultists between us and our prize. Everyone got into the battle and there was much mayhem - plasma grenades were tossed with gusto, heavy flamers from LUTHOR (huzzah!) burnt with bright zeal, and the heavy discharge of the lascannon quelled the hordes (and several walls). The mutants and cultists broke and fled before our combined firepower. Did I mention a wall coming down? Yes one did, and it revealed our lost Fabio pinned to a sacrificial altar awaiting a fate worse than the tender caress of Elsie on a Friday night (or so I’ve been told). Fabio’s faint cry echoed somehow over the chanting and screams of the worshippers “kill me, please”. Naturally we tried out best, but failed in our worse to carry out his last request.
Tossing grenades into the mass of worshippers, with Fabio chained in the same locale, seemed to be an ideal choice of strategy. Elsie pulled out more plasma grenades than we were aware he had, sneaky bugger. Horst was killing more cultists by luck (unlucky for them that they were in the direct line of fire to the primary target) than skill. The primary targets kept skipping out of harm’s way or their personal shields saved them. LUTHOR (huzzah!) eager to join the battle participated in the combat by ramming its hull through walls and forcing its way down the corridor. Lady B hung on for dear life (she was on the outer hull) as the vehicle rampaged in delight after having spent millennia dormant and frustrated. Burning flesh and worse rose in the tight confines of the corridor and makeshift “temple”. Fabio was scored multiple times by missed shots, his precious one chest hair vaporizing into nothingness as Lady B’s lance weapon missed the “priest” who prepared to plunge his blade into his heaving chest. In the end it was discovered that his big toe on the left foot had been cauterized to the base by a stray shot, though no one admitted it was they who did it!
I can’t have this, thought the entity. My play things will escape a quick death; I think a quick tampering with the environment might be the answer. Spilled blood never hurt anyone… well apart from the person who lost it.
+++End of Fate+++
If we had not seen what happened, then the story retold would have been unbelievable. The “priest” shifted his position as he brought the sacrificial knife down to end Fabio’s life and summon his daemonic master. In doing so he slipped in a pool of fated blood. Lost his footing and fell forwards. The knife, sensing the need to feed, willed the hand holding it to impale the… wielder. Yes a sacrifice had been made, just not the right one, which might account for the groups luck in dealing with Licky (greater daemon of the warp) as it was known. Horst managed an exceptionally brilliant shot with the lascannon and broke the binding chains on his daemonic target (one of many). In a burst of inky blackness the entity vanished, howling with delight at whatever business it was now attending to. It did not appear to be us, so for that we are thankful (Reximus voxed me to say that the entity was now enacting its revenge on the person who bound it to service, hopefully a very painful death awaited that individual.) WOE (gentle caress) and I advanced side by side down the blood coated corridor to rescue or hopefully end the suffering of Fabio. Damned if we didn’t find the sod alive and maybe not well - must try harder next time. The battle with the remaining cultists was short, the battle with the daemonic entity we called Licky no so. Weapons discharged, energy crackled as shields of all variety flared to life and the entity flitted about the area without as much as a stumble. In the end it forced its attention on Lady B, and this was to be its downfall. This kept it in one place, a place that significant amounts of damage could be directed at. It also took place atop the hull of LUTHOR (huzzah! huzzaaaahhhh!) who didn’t enjoy the amount of collateral damage chipping away at its bodywork and detailing. “Someone will have to paint me after this!” it exclaimed over the external vox casters. In the end it was ever so humble me who gave the daemon the coup de grace, an inferno pistol round in the back of the head (well it wasn’t facing me, it was not a cowards strike, it was a valid shot…)
The heat of the battle was over. Fabio lay naked (a horrible sight) on the altar, chained to his destiny of ever being the victim. Reximus had to spend time reapplying the seals on Fabio’s chest, all the while listening to the squeals of delight and sighs of lust filled torment. At last free of his constraints he collapsed from blood loss and had to be taken back to LUTHOR (huzzah!) pinned to CRAPpER-ONE. Our lost supplies had been found and fondly restored, the increased load and storage capacity of LUTHOR (huzzah!) was proving to be a boon. I located through a data search the location of a warp ship capable of multi-system travel. Yes I had a way of escaping the Inquisition; at last safety could be obtained. A search, yes Elsie had not forgotten his primary goal in life - located another of the books that Reximus sought. It was neutralized as per the usual means and stored away. A diary of sorts was found, written in ancient Sanskrit, mad delusional ramblings of which Lady B showed interest, but Reximus kept from her. Impulsive Elsie plunged his makeshift truesilver blade into the book and started the process of releasing another daemon into the real world. Honestly, where would we be with good old Elsie to stuff up a good ending!
Alpha dearest, why did I get so little write up in this journal entry? (pouts) I did a lot of really good things. (runs its metal limb down Alpharius’ inner leg) I need more stimulation dearest, let’s do it! (gasp)
Inventory Session 6
Jakaero (original) data sphere
Large containers (not taken) 2 x Fuel, 1 x Missile ammo, 1 x Autocannon ammo
LUTHOR (Transport – 10 power armoured troops. Double capacity. Forbidden technology AI)
Box - Chip in vial, protected by Jakaero Coutal
Gauntlet of transmogrification
Crate of pistols, bolt (precursor of boltgun). 10 pistols with clip, 20 clips spare.
S/2/-, 1d10+5, Pen 4, Proven 4, Accurate, Reliable, Mastercrafted.
Crate of rifles, sonic. 5 guns with clips, 10 clips spare. 8 shots per clip
1/2/-, 1d10+8, Pen 5, Proven 5, Rng:90, Tearing (save vs T or knock back 3m)
Crate with needle Rifle. Quantity of different clips, each different. One clip only of each.
s/-/-, 1d10+type, clip 6 shots, 2 round reload, Toxic dart, Accurate
Crate of Flamer pistols, 10 pistols, 3 canisters
Small box containing 1 Ring, nondescript, unknown function
Large container – lascannon, man portable.
s/-/-, 5d10+10, Pen 10, Blast 1, 10 shot capacity, recharges, 100 round backpack charger. Rng:300
Crate of pistols, dueling type. Plasma pistol.
s/-/-, d10+8, Pen 6, Ammo clip 8. Accurate, Overheat (96%+), Mastercrafted. 3 rounds to reload
Box, Unique Mastercrafter Boltgun “Titan Killer”
s/3/-, 5d10+10, Pen 20, Tearing, Rng:300. 24 shots only, each round inscribed.
Crate of grenades, plasma. X 50
Crate, prototype weapon, shotgun, acid ammunition.
STEVEN mole mortar – RIP
Grenades 50 x Napalm, 50 x Smoke, 50 x Smoke
Robotic frame, close combat
STC Human Power Armour, 4 x suits. Armour 8.
Crates of vehicle spare parts x 7
Weapon swap out of Autocannon for flamers on LUTHOR
Crate of combat shotguns (standard), Reliable, Scatter
Crates of vehicle spare parts x 8
Leather bound book – Sanskritt text