Trinsic Tales:Ships Ahoy!/Chapter 20
Chapter Twenty: Yet Another Bunch of Lunatic Cultists
<Capn_Ascii> "As we join our heroes, we find them mentally drawing a map of their current surroundings, trying to get a proper handle on the situation..."
Marilyn tries to open the storage closet door very carefully
<Capn_Ascii> You reach out to touch the door...and as you do, it noiselessly slides open to one side! Wow, that's some neat magic at work.
Marilyn looks carefully around the storage closet, checking for traps
<Capn_Ascii> Marilyn: The instant you open the door and poke your head in, you're conked on the head by a falling metal bucket. It lands squarely atop your noggin, leaving you blinded!
Marilyn resists the urge to scream in pain.
Vathgani resists the urge to laugh
<Capn_Ascii> You fumble around a bit ans extricate yourself from your predicament soon enough. As you do, you can see that this is, in fact, a janitor's closet. It contains shelves, which in turn are stocked with all the essentials - mops, brooms, and assorted cleaning chemicals. There are a few WET FLOOR signs tucked away in the far corner, along with a couple more buckets.
<Capn_Ascii> In retrospect, it appears the bucket 'trap' was probably set intentionally - possibly by a sanitation engineer wary of being caught off-guard in here by his boss?
Marilyn looks at the chemicals and other supplies, wondering if there's anything she can make a crude sort of splash weapon with
Vathgani joins in the scrounging
Ashling does as well
<Capn_Ascii> Marilyn: Every time you look at the contents of this room, the word 'bucket' springs to mind. The resulting barely-contained frothing RAGE makes it impossible to focus.
<Marilyn> Raaaaaaaaaaaaaaage! Brooklyn Rage! Wait, no, that's not right. Belcadar Rage! That's it! RAAAAAAAAAAGE!
<Capn_Ascii> Ashling: Honestly, there doesn't seem to be much in here...hmm? Hey, wait, what's this? The WET FLOOR signs are tipped up against a rather large vent cover in the rear wall of the closet...
Ashling points that out
Marilyn gets over her raaaaaaaage and takes a look, checking to make sure that the vent is large enough for everyone.
<Capn_Ascii> Looks like it. It's closed at the moment, but the cover looks flimsy enough.
Marilyn gives the cover a tap, indicating for someone which more strength than her to attempt to remove it
Vathgani reaches over and attempts to pull off the cover without making too much noise
<Capn_Ascii> Vath flexes his MIGHTY (quiet) muscles, and pulls the cover off as effortlessly as Batman.
Marilyn quickly winnows herself into the hole, crawling along, looking for traps as she goes
<Capn_Ascii> You crawl into the vent and make you way along the northward-running crawlspace. It seems to go on for quite a ways...
Marilyn keeps crawling
<Capn_Ascii> After what seems like a while, the lot of you come up against another vent cover. Beyond it, you can hear murmurer voices.
<Capn_Ascii> You peek through, and see...a desk. One of those big, solid wood ones that reaches all the way down to the floor - an executive desk, most likely.
Marilyn listens in
<Capn_Ascii> Marilyn: You tune in your unbucketed ears and listen closely. You can make out a single man talking rather loudly, along with some fainter voices that seem to be filtering in from somewhere far away.
<Capn_Ascii> "What do you mean, you've lost half your men? We *have* to hold those docks! We can't let them escape with those ships; the kraken can't stop them all at once!"
<Capn_Ascii> A pause. "Put more men in front of the control booth and activate the interior ballistas. If any ships try to move, sink them."
<Capn_Ascii> Another pause. "Wait, what? ...what do you mean, 'he's loose'?"
<Capn_Ascii> You suddenly hear a horrible, pained scream coming from the muffled voice...followed by a familiar, tarrasque-sounding roar. "...oh. That's what you meant. Well, f*ck."
<Capn_Ascii> You hear what sounds like typing.
Marilyn looks for a way to remove the vent cover without being obvious about it
<Capn_Ascii> Marilyn: The cover isn't designs to be removed from the *inside*. The bolts are out there. You'd need a tool and some good dexterity to pull it off.
<Marilyn> Doesn't seem to be much more difficult than a lock, Marilyn thought to herself as she pulled out the appropriate tools. She got to work on the vent.
<Capn_Ascii> Holding a teeny tiny Allen wrench in your fingertips, you slip your fingers through the vent openings and start twisting. It takes a while, but eventually you manage to get them all off, silently pushing the cover to one side.
Marilyn grins and steps out into the room, still invisible. She arms herself and looks around for a threat assesment.
<Capn_Ascii> Threat assessed - one. As in, one guy. He's a big fellow, standing almost seven feet tall...grey skin, and a totally bald head, likely shaven. He's wearing the same robes as the other guys you've seen, though his hood is currently down.
<Capn_Ascii> He's currently engrossed in another of those viewing crystal screens, this one showing the goings-on at the docks. It's...not a pretty picture. There are dead bodies scattered all over the dock platforms and the decks of ships, and now Klonk the tarrasque has somehow gotten inside the dock area and is rampaging through what remains of the cultists. The prisoners, meanwhile, look like they're preparing to launch their ships.
<Capn_Ascii> The three of you quietly climb out of the vent and start to circle around the desk, ready to attack.
Marilyn feels for Ashling, grabs her, and hisses in her ear "glass blocking the way, break it with a hammer or pole, preferably when you're not right next to it, and silence it if you can"
Ashling quietly casts silence on the glass.
<Capn_Ascii> Ashling: You quietly whisper the words and make the gestures of the Silence spell; the air around the panel shimmers as the spell takes hold. Now maybe it won't be such a pane in your glass.
Ashling hits it with a pole.
<Capn_Ascii> Ash: After a bit of consideration, you decide that striking the glass with a blunt object would be more effective than using, say, your fist. The glass shatters into thousands of pieces, which tumble downward in a beautiful sparkley shower of property damage.
<Capn_Ascii> The robed man doesn't even hear it (naturally). He does, however, seem to realize that he can no longer hear his fingers click-clacking across the keyboard. He's starting to raise his head back up...
Marilyn quickly gets into attack position and prepares a strike!
Marilyn goes for the KEEL!
<Capn_Ascii> Well, it's not *quite* a keel--er, kill, but it's close. Marilyn's blades chop into the poor guy mercilessly, gouging out large chunks of flesh and leaving lots of unsightly blood stains around the newly-tailored holes in his robe.
<Capn_Ascii> He cries out in pain as he collapses to his hands and knees, bleeding profusely.
<Capn_Ascii> He glances up and back as his now-visible attacker. "The *fuck*, man!?"
<Marilyn> "I would have tried to place you under arrest for piracy, illegal imprisonment, and acts of war against the Kingdom of Belcadar, but I didn't think you'd go quietly," Marilyn sneered.
<Capn_Ascii> He proceeds to yell quite a few unflattering things about Marilyn and/or her close geneaological relations before realizing that he can't hear his own words. Marilyn gets through most of her own cocky little speech before she too realizes it was all wasted.
Marilyn narrows her eyes at him, the command clear: Surrender!
<Capn_Ascii> He narrows his own eyes right back at her, the wording clear: Screw off. He's slowly trying to haul himself back up to his feet.
Vathgani latches onto the man, trying not to get too much blood on himself while doing so
<Capn_Ascii> BEAR HUG!
<Capn_Ascii> Vath clamps his mighty bear...er, bare arms around the man, and hauls him up, while simultaniously pinning his arms to his sides. Unfortunately, he's unable to prevent himself from getting a nice new coat of blood paint in the process.
<Capn_Ascii> The man screams bloody murder, which goes unheard.
Marilyn makes a motion to clear her throat significantly, glancing around the room
<Capn_Ascii> Ash takes the hint, and dismisses the silence spell. "--WITH AN IRON STICK!!!"
<Vathgani> "Needs anger management."
<Marilyn> "I'm sorry, I missed most of that. It sounded like a lot of idle threats when you're pinned like that. Now, you can either tell us what you're planning here, or we can start inflicting more... damage," Marilyn purrs dangerously.
<Capn_Ascii> "I'm managing my anger perfectly well. I'm directing it all at you."
<Marilyn> "What were you planning to do with the prisoners?"
<Capn_Ascii> "Put them up at the Motel 6 for a few nights." The sarcasm is palpable.
Marilyn places her blade at her enemy's neck. "Did you know that in order to be able to feel one's limbs, one needs their neck intact?" She then shuffles the blade to a hand. "But then, maybe I'd rather you felt the pain of losing a hand..." she lets the blade drag slowly to hovering above where the heart should be. "Or I can make it quick. But that's so... easy."
<Capn_Ascii> ".........we'replanningtocreateoutownarmadasowecan..." Wow, that didn't take much. He's babbling too fast for you to understand him, though.
<Marilyn> "Slower. Repeat," Marilyn orders coldly, blade back at his neck.
<Capn_Ascii> He inhales sharply. "We're planning to create our own armada, so we can take our message to the mainlands by force. Gain new converts, establish a power base in an existing nation or two. We're collecting the ships, and performing mind-control experiments on the crews to try and make them into our mindless shock troopers."
<Marilyn> "What nations, and what message?"
<Vathgani> "Mind control not ethical."
<Marilyn> "Commentary obvious and unnecessary, Vathgani." Marilyn retorts at him, while gesturing for the enemy to continue talking.
<Vathgani> "Mimicking speech patterns unnecessary and hurt feelings..." Vathgani mutters
Marilyn rolls her eyes at Vathgani. "Just do your job."
<Capn_Ascii> He shrugs. "Haven't decided yet. We're still trying to build our forces here. As for the message? That's the same as it's always been." He suddenly goes bolt-stiff in Vath's arms, looking up into the air as if in a minor trance. "ALL HAIL THE GREAT HECTAPUS!"
<Marilyn> "Alright, how do I control the kraken, and prevent it from harming any ships?"
<Capn_Ascii> He laughs cruelly. "Fool! *I* control the Kraken! It bows to my will, and mine alone, by favor of the Great Hectapus himself!"
<Vathgani> "Vathgani not marine biologist, but is supposed to be octopus?"
Marilyn gets a smirk on her face. "So you're saying that if you don't give it commands... it does nothing?"
<Capn_Ascii> He frowns. "...no, of course I'm not saying that."
<Marilyn> "Elaborate, then. I want to know everything you do about how the kraken operates, and how you handle it."
<Capn_Ascii> He then shoots Vath a death glare. "NO! It is NOT the same as an octopus, you HERETIC!"
<Vathgani> "Vathgani does not know word 'heretic'."
<Capn_Ascii> He begins struggling. "The Great Hectapus exists outside of time and space as we know it! It is no mere sea creature, it is a direct descendant of the Eldritch Gods themselves!" He looks thoughtful. "Well...maybe more like third cousin twice removed. But still pretty godly."
<Capn_Ascii> Marilyn: You sense that he's probably lying. Given the nature of what you asked him, you're fairly certain now that that's *exactly* what would happen."
Marilyn nods knowingly. "Most importantly... where is the kraken right now?"
<Capn_Ascii> He rolls his eyes. "Uh...out there in the ocean? Duh?"
Marilyn presses her blade a bit further into his neck and gives him her best royal look of contempt for the inferior standing before her.
<Capn_Ascii> He shrinks back a bit. "...seriously, I don't know. It's out there in the ocean somewhere nearby. All I have to do is call for it and it'll come running. ...er, swimming."
<Marilyn> "Can you do so from here?"
<Marilyn> "Do it."
<Capn_Ascii> "Alright. I need to use the console."
Marilyn nods slowly. "Give him access to the console, but we will watch him very carefully," she orders Vathgani, then turns to the enemy. "If you do anything but what I command with that console, your death will be slow and painful."
Marilyn examines the console herself, to determine if there's a way she can tell what he's doing with it.
Vathgani lets the man go to the console and stays close
<Capn_Ascii> Marilyn: The keyboard is covered with buttons, but they all have markings in some strange alphabet. The letters seem...*wrong* somehow, like they somehow offend your senses just by being looked at.
<Capn_Ascii> The man types out some stuff on the keyboard, then presses a button - a microphone-like crystal emerges from nearby on a bendable stand. He grabs it and lowers it down near his mouth.
Marilyn places her blade back at his throat, ready to cut him off if she thinks he's going to say something wrong
Ashling glances at the panel to see if she can read anything on it.
<Capn_Ascii> Ash: It does look like Abyssal, or at least, a weird, twisted version of it. You can recognize many of the letters, at least. Each one has its own seperate key; apparantly, the user strings together key presses to form entire words! What amazing technology!
<Capn_Ascii> There are a few properly labeled buttons, though. The one he just pushed is labeled "OCEAN MIC".
<Capn_Ascii> He leans forward and begins speaking into the mic - but his words are horrible, thick, twisted, distorted sounds, like someone playing a record backwards and scratching it DJ-style at the same time.
<Capn_Ascii> Ashling: You, of course, are able to understand him clearly: "Kraken! Servant of Hector the Almighty, descendant of T'Chulu the Significantly More Almighty! By order of myself, Grand Master Vizroy of the Sacred Order of the Hectapus, I order you to...um, report to the docks. For, uh, cleanup. That is all."
<Marilyn> "Now... there are two ways this can go," Marilyn smiled. "But first, let's get you away from the console."
Marilyn nods at Vathgani
Vathgani resumes the hugging and pulls the man away from the console.
<Capn_Ascii> "Graaah..." *bleed*
<Marilyn> "Now, I can either arrest you for piracy, illegal imprisonment, committing acts of war against the Kingdom of Belcadar, and conspiracy to committ acts of war against several nations, including the Kingdom of Belcadar, and take you aboard my ship for detainment and eventual trial... or I can kill you where you stand."
<Capn_Ascii> Before Vizroy has a chance to respond, you suddenly hear a terrible cacaophany over the intercom - the same one he was listening to earlier when you were eavesdropping on him. "AAAAAHHH!" People are screaming at the top of their lungs, and...whoa. Even *Klonk* is screaming - there's nothing quite so distinctive as the pained yowling of a tarrasque.
Marilyn frowns, wondering what on earth could hurt a *tarrasque* like that.
<Capn_Ascii> Vizroy, seeing the look on your face, grins evilly. "Heh...cleanup."
<Capn_Ascii> ---END SESSION---