A Gamma World® play-by-post adventure run by gammaworld_gm
Brimstone, meet Stramagix? Stramagix, meet Brimstone?
"Welcome, Blue Wizard!"
"Will you just shutup?!" <beat> "Wait, Blue Wizard? Huh?"
[The groups have swelled again:
Stramagix continues to walk down the tunnel, looking around for anything that seems the least bit interesting in terms of technology or other items, muttering to himself occaisionally.
"I cannot let anyone interfere with my plans, Jonn! You should know that by now," says T-Rex-10K (A quote by Hal from the movie 2001). "Good job, Jonn, although I suspect you are keeping something from me. I will refrain from punishing you for the moment. Bring me the plans and the CD and then go topside and assist Jacob Gamma-Epsilon-19203-Code-Omega."
Finding a large section where the right wall has collapsed, you (Stramagix) notice a small grav-car beneath the rubble. Maybe the grav-car collided with the wall, you think. With a little work you could move enough rubble to search the trunk and inside, if you crawled in through the busted back window. As you consider your many options (like moving on), you hear someone talking to someone else approaching you. Like any mutant goat you easily climb up into a hiding spot into the wall.
You rub your blue New York license plate hanging from your chest for good luck.
Steeled for punishment, Jonn keeps his relief in check and his biosigns stable. He shrugs, "A deal's a deal, Rex-10K." Jonn places the file and the CD on the ledge of the warbot's gangplank and makes his way topside, being careful not to use his wounded left arm too much.
Approaching the humanoid welder, Jonn is momentarily blinded by the arc-light. "My God, it's full of stars!" he gasps, nearly losing his footing. He dons Lamia's mirror shades to shield his eyes. "Hiya Jacob-gamma-epsawhatever. My name's Dukas. Jonn Dukas. Can I just call you Jake?"
Donning my own mirrored shades, I reply, "Jake's just fine. So, uhh, listen Duke, can you clue me in on the situation here? It's kinda hard to tell the players without a scorecard."
Stramagix watches intently, wondering who's coming. One hand idly goes to the laser at his hip, while the other munches on a semi-rancid apple. "Hmm...." He finishes the apple, tossing it quietly, then fingers the license plate hanging from his waist, "Pehkurman, these be friends, yes? Goodfriend? Much metal? Have Godsmetal?" After a few moments of silence he nods, but keeps his hand to his laser pistol, the other now busy dealing with fleas, and waits to see who shows him/her/itself.
"Right-o Jake, nice shades, dude." Jonn frets. How can he convey the true situation when Rex-10K is surely listening to his every word? He wondered if irony was lost when filtered by a positronic brain....
"Well, you see, this here warbot and I made a deal. It didn't spin my friends into a DanceOfDeath™, so I'm helping it build something that enables it to gain automated control over this military base. Nice how things work out!" he shakes his head.
"Oh, and watch yourself. Rex-10K doesn't like mutants," he nods his head.
"One more thing, we can't let anyone interfere with its plans," he shakes his head.
"Capiche?" Jonn asks, looking at Jake over the top rim of his glasses.
"Now, can you tell me what the frak I'm supposed to do up here?" Jonn asks, adjusting the weight of his auto rifle and massaging his singed shoulder.
Duck season is whenever somebody sees me, seems like. Howard's hands are affixed, I decide, on his wings, but not all the way at the tips. Kinda like somebody wearing a coat that's too large and the sleeves cover up your hands.
The mutant duck, pausing before continuing the group's advance through the complex, turns Gallus 5/13's head so they face each other. "Gallusth," he speaks fairly softly, "Try to monitor any sthray frequenciesth your sthensthorsth can get a hold of. I wanna know if we're about to have visthitorsth."
The group continues on, with Howard holding his needler in one hand and Gallus 5/13's head in the other. Behind him walk Geo, his eye beams illuminating the tunnel ahead, and then Lamia. Captain Leghorn gladly follows last, knowing someone has to watch her, ah, that is, their rear.
Suddenly a red siren goes off overhead and all the robots within the maintenance bay shut down. "Someone has just shut off the mobile emitter on the roof," says T-Rex-10K. "Jonn, Jake, both of you take the stairs and go to the roof and fix it. If you force me to come after you I will terminate one of you as punishment. Now go!" The warbot doesn't seem happy with all of the delays.
Like a 1,000 year-old well-tuned radio, Gallus broadcasts, "Someone has just shut off the mobile emitter on the roof. Jonn, Jake, both of you take the stairs and go to the roof and fix it. If you force me to come after you I will terminate one of you as punishment. Now go!" The voice comes through clearly as that of the warbot you know and love as T-Rex.
The tunnel eventually ends at an electrified gate crossing the passage. On the opposite side of the gate, you see an elevator standing open, with a light shining from inside.
"Don't touch it or you'll be a fried duck, my friend," says Geo, putting his hand on Howard's shoulder to stop him. That's 40,000 volts." Stepping forward, Geo bends the gate and breaks the lock as an untold amount of electricity jumps and sparks everywhere. Once finished, Geo opens the gate. "I should have been called Bender.... <beep, beep> Ha, ha, ha. I always wanted to say that."
Noticing Captain Leghorn following behind me, I pull my pants up a bit tighter, not really wanting to be a plumber. I also wonder what Jonn is doing right now and if he is thinking of me, and not some other pregnant lady. We all enter the elevator together and I stand very close to Howard. When my mutant/duck friend looks at me, I smile and raise one eyebrow.
I cluck softly as I walk, noticing Lamia's rear. Inside the elevator, I look to our leader, Howard. "Where to now, my boy? We have 'B' for basement, 'R' for roof, and floors 1 through 6. I would choose roof, but then that's just me. I wouldn't want to get angry without asking first, Mr. Duck. I do anger people a lot, you know there, my boy. I say, I say, choose one, Howard!"
My finger waits for his answer.
I continue to wait, keeping one hand on my laser pistol.
Can I use Intuition to see if whoever approaches is hostile, or do I have to see them to use it?
A minute or so later, a Cougaroid appears in view carrying a very fancy pulse rifle. The two seem to be arguing with each other. Suddenly the Cougaroid freezes, smelling something with his very sensitive nose. "Who's there? Come out whoever you are!" orders the Cougaroid. "I can smell ya'."
"Don't worry! We won't fire!" says the pulse rifle.
"Shut up! Yes, we just might!"
"No, no, we won't!"
The Cougaroid growls and wishes he could shoot Jonn or a mutant named GM, who gave him the cursed rifle.
You (Stramagix) sense the Cougaroid is actually friendly, but he likes to act mean.
I step out of the shadows after placing the laser pistol at my hip, to show I mean no harm, "Is Stramagix. Noharm. Nomake harm." He peers at the pulse rifle being carried by the Cougaroid. "Is godsmetal? You carry godsmetal? Who are you?"
Lowering the pulse rifle, I put it over my shoulder and strap it tightly. "I'm Brimstone. I wouldn't call it godsmetal, but if that's what you want to call it, that's fine with me. It doesn't really matter."
"We left the group, but we should rejoin them."
"Shutup rifle! Where are you headed, Stramagix? I was heading back to the Starport, but I may change my mind."
Stramagix nods sagely, "Headed nowhere. Seeks moregods. Whatplace is Starport?"
Jonn winces. Your friendly neighborhood mutant or warbot would think that he is reacting to the piercing siren, but no! His plan is unraveling! A twinge of betrayal rocks his sturdy frame, and a surge of true anger courses through his veins, hitchhiking an adrenaline tidal wave. "What the frak? It's too soon!" he thinks.
"C'mon Jake, you heard the warbot. And you may wanna bring that welder," Jonn speaks in mid-leap off the warbot's topside. He lands with much crunchings and grindings on the hard hangar floor.
"Ouch!" Jonn grunts, picking himself up. He laughs inwardly, "Sure busted that move." He is surprised at the sudden pang of longing in his chest. He shakes his head, flinging the feeling to a far corner of his brain inhabited by happier memories, of Lamia, Geo, Dodgers, and some pregnant babe---"Wait, how'd that get in here?"
Jonn makes like a mark of punctuation and dashes for the stairwell.
"The roof. 'Jonn and Jake' are going there, and I'll bet my bottom dollar that'sth our Jonn ol' T-Rexth is talking about."
Captain Leghorn presses the "R" button.
"Lock and load, people! We have sthome buttsth to sthave. And, here'sth the plan. We get up there, try to connect with Jonn without being noticthed, and sthee what he'sth up to. Sthomething tellsth me we can't justh offer him an esthcape, with ol' T-Rexth keeping him busthy." Then, he realizes, while looking around the elevator car, "Hey Gallusth, any cameras in this moving box?"
"The Starport is a huge abandoned place we could spend years searching if you wanted to. I've never seen any gods there though. You talk very strange, Stramagix. Actually I'm waiting for a robot to return. He owes me."
"I've been there once."
Stramagix pauses for a moment, then reaches into his backpack for something. It appears to be a black sphere, flattened slightly on one end. He shakes it, "Sendsign. Stramagix asks gods, Starport Godshome? Should go?" He looks at the object, then nods, putting it back, "Gods sendsign. We go Starport. Is Godshome."
I imagine everyone can guess what that was, but it sounds better if the names aren't mentioned. Like I said, he's eccentric (some people prefer the more traditional term, "crazy").
"Only one [camera --ed.], Howard."
Pointing his laser pistol at the camera, Captain Leghorn blasts it into peices. When he pushes the 'R' button, the elevator doors close and the elevator goes up to the roof. The elevator doors open onto the roof. Standing not 10 feet from the door is a K-ll security robot holding something which looks like a briefcase. Numbers on it are counting down from 10 minutes. In his other hand, the K-11 robot holds a small electronic device.
"I would not shoot if I were you!"
"Whoa, I say whoa, robot, just calm yerself down, down that is!"
"Yesthir indeedy, nobody'sth sthootin' nobody." Howard motions to the group to refrain from making any threatening motions, and lowers his own rifle. He recognizes the robot as a security droid, and realizes that he isn't acting in his full capacity as such, seeing as he hasn't blasted them to ground round yet.
"What'sth going on, there, Misther...," he scans the robot for his designation, "K-11? We're justh looking for a friend, don't mind usth!"
Leaving the warbot behind, both of you (Jonn, Jake) dash up the last flight of stairs to the roof. Throwing open the door, you charge out onto the roof. Standing not 10 feet from the stairwell door you see your K-ll security robot holding something which looks like a briefcase. Numbers on it are counting down from 10 minutes. In his other hand, K-11 holds a small electronic device.
"Tell your friends not to shoot, Jonn. I told you I would help you, Jonn."
Looking toward the open elevator, you see all of your friends except Brimstone standing there looking at the K-11 robot. Not able to control herself, Lamia rushes out of the elevator and throws her arms around you, kissing you square on the lips.
"When do I get a turn, er... I mean to talk! That is an armed portable small yield tactical nuke the K-11 is holding. This is not some movie Jonn. We don't really have time for a kissing scene."
[Two groups kiss and become one:
I think eccentric is good. It certainly sounds better than gibbering idiot... oh, I was talking about myself of course.
"Yeah, whatever goat-dude, I'm game. So, where exactly did you come from. Surely some god didn't just create you out of thin air and you just appeared here." The Cougaroid approaches Stramagix closer, showing his large canine fangs as he speaks. The Cougaroid also has very sharp looking claws. You (Stramagix) do sense Brimstone means you no harm.
"I have some friends who will be returning in a few days, and I want to meet up with them at the Starport."
Now, if Jonn were a security bot, the massive sensory overload might have sent him into safe mode. Good thing for Lamia he wasn't a security bot, though. Cold duralloy doesn't yield much to tender lips.
In a green flash, Lamia is enfolded in Jonn's arms. "Lam--!" Jonn yelps, squelched hungrily by a smacker on the chops.
"Ooooh, plenty of oxygen in that one," Howard grins a good ducky grin, ribbing Captain Leghorn.
"I say, boy, get a Starport room!" Capt. Leghorn bocks his agreement.
Catching a breath, Jonn babbles ebulliently, "You came back!" Cliche? Yes, but at the moment, Jonn doesn't exactly have control over his Pure Strain language center.
But when he hears Geo say "tactical nuke," Jonn realizes they are in some deep fewmets. He lowers Lamia to the rooftop gently, and approaches K-11, waving caution toward his friends at the elevator. "So what's up with the nuke, K-11? Daddy Warbotz sent Jake and I here to investigate the mobile emitter 'failure.'"
"I said I would help you, so I am. Your plan would have never worked. It had too many variables. You and your friends can escape and I will stay here with the tactical nuke. It cannot be stopped. It will save thousands of lives in the long run by destroying the warbot. Although a basement blast would be much better than setting it off up here. You have 9:38.00 minutes to escape Jonn. I do feel a kinship to you, Human, and it was enjoyable shooting you!" If the K-11 security robot could smile, or even if it knew what smiling was, it would have done so at that moment.
Stramagix points down the tunnel, "Stramagix came from down there. Godstell Stramagix, they say come here, find muchgods. So Stramagix comes. But nofind godsyet. Maybe they mean Starport Godshome. We go, findgods?"
"Jonn," Howard says cautiously, approaching his hu-mann friend, "to esthscape, we need to head back to the basthement; that'sth where we broke into thisth joint." As the mutant duck turns to the K-11 robot, his purple feathers ruffle in the wind blowing across the surface of the roof, around and between the overtaxed, pre-war condensor units scattered and bolted to the surface like ominous pill boxes. "Why don't we all ride the elevator back down to the basthement. You can sthasth the nuke there and esthcape with usth!" Howard looks hopefully at the K-11 robot, but with a sense of urgency.
Since Ben/Howard is doing my a huge favor this weekend, I agreed to rejoin. Oh yeah, that and the GM bribed me with $1 million, a Lambourghini Diablo and a twinkie. What, you guys didn't get the same "signing bonus"??
The sound of a modem connecting rings in Brimstones ears.
"Wha? Who! Did I just become an agent? Oh, no, never mind. Just Will retaking control."
Brimstone lovingly taps his frontal lobe.
"Oh, uh, sure goat. Look, only one condition." I take goat by the shoulders and move him in front of me, pointing him down the tunnel towards Starport. "You and your baa-aa-aad goat self want in front."
Stramagix glances at Brimstone in puzzlement quickly but then understands.
"Okay, billy. March."
Stramagix nods, taking point, but seems a bit confused. "Is not Billy. Is Stramagix. Is name godsgive. Godstell Stramagix, is your name. Use." With that, he walks in the direction of the Starport, stopping only to examine anything he finds which is of interest to him.
Welcome back, Blue Warrior!
Save me a barstool at the Starport, eh? If I don't make it back alive, Lamia can put my urn on it. :)
Bonus quote for Brimstone: "How can you keep your head, and not go insane? / When the only light at the end of the tunnel / is another train?"
This just in from Jim at GEN CON, especially for Will...
Great news about Will returning! Tell him I'll make the payment in full as requested in his post. Tell him there is a salary cap (like the twinkie for example) in effect and I do have the option to trade him.
DOH! Well, nice to have you back, Willie.
Is not Willie. Is Brimstone.
Got a question. Is Brimstone still at 20 odd hit points of health out of 80 something, or did he get a chance to heal? Also, besides the talking gun, did he pick up anything else I should know about?
Tell Jim I'll have a contract holdout in training camp next season if he doesn't show me the twinkie, er, money.
Also, what mutations does Brimstone have and not have? Should I repost the full list since it was deleted? This is pertinent because Brimstone "has" total healing, a mutation that would wildly affect his current HP status if he did get a chance to heal.
Yes, Willie (Heheh!)
Please post your complete stats and character (plus description). From the old site, we miraculously saved Lamia's, Jonn's and Dodgers' but not yours. Jim had printed out all of them, but his printout for Brimstone was an "old" version. The "new" version which you later posted was lost in The Great Website Holocaust™ of '00.
The reason I'm interested in your stats is that I'm going to archive this adventure (together with initial stats) on my new website: pbparchives.
I'm working on a narrative-style prologue to this adventure (based on reconstructed posts, but highly fleshed out---and no, that doesn't have implications for Lamia---heheh) for the sake of completeness at the archive. When I finish this, I encourage your input to correct my mistakes. It ain't everyday you get to rewrite history, and I don't want to get it wrong.
Stay tuned, true believers!
Wodpre rashi karna das,
I'm going to be unable to post, either until Monday, or until some time the week after this upcoming one. Sorry, it's unaviodable. RL stuff.
[Indeed, RealLife™ must've landed konatsu_2005 a hefty punch. We don't hear from again for 10 months RT! --ed.]
"Good ol' Dodgers," Jonn thought. He hadn't wanted to leave K-11 behind either. One good robot is worth a squadron of dead ones.
He responds to Howard's suggestion with the same sense of imminency, "Good idea, but let's boogie! No time for debate! Jake, K-11, you're with us. Go! Go!"
Taking Lamia's hand, Jonn races toward the elevator door, blurting to Geo en route, "How much time we need to escape the blast radius?"
"Agreed!" says the robot stepping into the elevator.
"Even with a below-ground burst and if my calculations are correct, we need at least 4 minutes and 13.2 seconds, give or take a 0.001 factor to get away. At max speed, that could put us almost 50 miles away. If you ever want to have children, Jonn, and do not wish to glow in the dark or look like Howard <poor Howard> I suggest we make it happen. That gives us 5 minutes to get to the grav-car and get the Helsinki out of here!"
Everyone rushes into the elevator and Captain Leghorn pushes "B" for basement, clucking nervously. Once the doors open, everyone takes off running down the underground passageway. Geo's eyes light the way. Reaching the end of the passage, Captain Leghorn climbs up first, lifting the grate off, climbing out, and then helping everyone else out one by one. Everyone runs toward the hidden grav-car in the darkness.
K-11 sits the briefcase down just outside the elevator.
I smile, noticing Jonn still has a firm grip on my hand even in the elevator.
I wanted make sure to post in case anyone was thinking of leaving me behind.
Push button, cluck (can't think of witty remark), run, lift, run some more. Make sure not to get locked out of grav-car. Accidents like that can happen you know....
The two of you walk for several uneventful hours into the late evening hours in the underground tunnel (of course it's dark in the underground tunnel all the time). The only thing Stramagix finds along the tunnel is a pair of abandoned reading glasses, surprisingly unbroken. You (Brimstone) know for a fact that you still have at least a 50 mile hike or more back to the Starport. Figuring 35 miles per day at best, it's still two days away. Do you stop and rest for the night or do you continue walking?
"Whoa, nice eyes, goat boy. You got some kinda specimality?"
What exactly is our light source? I have night vision. Does Goatee?
"Hey, goatcheese, we're still a good way off, I'm talking... probably a day and a half." I grab the powerbar Jonn gave me and begin to eat. Giving Stramboli a sarcastic look, "You don't want me to feed ya too, do you?"
Speechless with shock, my entire world turned upside down in a matter of a few minutes, I struggle to keep the goal of survival foremost in my mind. What does it matter that every clue to the fate of my vat siblings is about to be destroyed by nuclear fire? I swallow my tears---they taste like cold ashes.
The duck leads the foot-race to the grav-car, once they escape the confines of the compound. He unlocks and uncovers the car with alacrity and fires up the engine. Noticing the human who accompanied Jonn in a state of semi-shock, Howard offers, "Hey man, jthump in. There'll be time for mourning later. Right now, we gotta get the hell out of Dodgthe!"
"Dodgers, that's what they said about you when you gave up the bottle and the firesticks, isn't it?"
"Eh? What, hell out of Dodge..ers?" Lamia straps herself in the backseat, holding back an outburst of laughter. She'll laugh plenty if they get out of here with all their rads at normal levels.
"Tick-tock-tick-tock!" Geo beeps, nervously, if that is possible for a robot. Even K-11 frets with his duralloy phalanges tapping away on the dash.
"PUNCH IT CHEWIE!!!" Jonn shouts as if Rex-10K were breathing down his neck. But it is just Lamia.
"Found it!" she says giggling. She shoves Jonn's seatbelt into his hand and twists back, cat-like, into her seat just as Howard revs the engines and launches the car with a tremendous belch of gravitons.
In the rush of events, Jonn fails to notice Jake's somber stare out the darkened window. With Grens and warbots on the brain, our Pure Strain hero doesn't have a whole lot of room to think about much else. But were the circumstances any different, Jonn would soon find one more thing in common with the mysterious man whose eyes came straight out of the X-Files.
"Who's Chewie?" Jake asks innocently.
About five minutes pass by as the grav-car speeds away down the open highway before a bright flash suddenly lights up the entire night sky. Not looking at the initial flash, you do look over your shoulder to see the rising mushroom cloud. As Geo predicted, you are over 50 miles away and moving farther away every second. Many of you are very tired from the long day.
This page updated: Mon Jan 09 14:22:17 2006
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