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  1. The first thing John Blake was aware of as he awoke was that he was most certainly not in his bed. The metal floor below him was cold and unyielding while the harsh blue light and background buzz of electricity surrounding him wasn't doing anything to relieve his pounding headache. The sight that greeted him as he forced open his eyes wasn't any more comforting. The teenager found himself sitting at the base of a cone of crackling blue energy the projected down from above him, trapping him in a circle of space no more than seven or eight feet across. The room outside his unorthodox cell was dark and details were difficult to make out but he could see that his cone was one of many in a long row stretching out into the distance. The wall behind him curved slightly, giving him the impression of a hull, which would have explained the faint vibration he felt through the drool-damp cheek resting against the deck plating. Getting to his feet John discovered that he was still in the sleep clothes he'd put on the night before and that he was not alone. Standing in the cone to his left was a pile of stones in the rough shape of a humanoid figure, rough edges fitted tougher to form thick limbs and hulking shoulders topped by a squat, lantern-jawed head. For a moment the human mistook it for a statue until it turned its gaze upon him, two wells of burning red where eyes might have been. After a moment the creature raised a hand in affable greeting and said, "Rock."
  2. John find himself currently in human form, wearing whatever pyjamas or other sleepwear you'd like. The force field tingles a bit to the touch but otherwise acts like a solid barrier. Naturally being abducted by aliens warrants a Hero Point! He'll be needing that later.
  3. Early December 2015 Wolf 359 Aquaria didn't know much about space - but she could tell the space-house (or space station, as Ruby called it) orbiting the tiny young star was old and busted. The metal plates that made up the walls and the ceiling were obviously corroded, turning green like copper instead of orange like steel around their dark grey edges and the air had the smell of something alien and old burnt away in the ducts, long ago. The humanoids in the station were exotic and strange, even stranger and more exotic than the Surfacers of Freedom City, their hair, clothes, and skin all strange colors and textures - but at least they ate good food, including a delicious flying insect as big as her fist that both she and Bliss had developed a taste for. She spent most of her time in the station's small garden, taking advantage of the high humidity (and even small pond!) to bask in the comforting wetness without her suit. She earned her keep by tending the plants, a skill she'd learned at the home of Jessie's sister and her mate, and did her best to get Jessie to come by and help her. It was less stressful than being on the ship. There had been some sort of dispute over repairs to the Voidrunner (she hadn't really followed the conversation) - and it was a high-stress time on-board for everyone. We just have to make it home, Aquaria assured herself as she ducked down to the bottom of the pond (which was just deep enough for her to completely immerse herself in), the ever-present hum of machinery reminding her that this was no ordinary body of water. And they will have all the gold the ship can carry! Reaching down, she cut a few fronds of pondweed with a knife - the stuff was vile to her, but some of the local people on the station loved it in their stews. In just a day, or less, she'd been assured, the repairs would be done and they'd all go home - but now, everybody pulled their weight, Luckily, she and Jessie were both very strong indeed. - It had been a tough few weeks for the Horizon crew and their Star Knight companion. They'd tracked the fugitives to a remote swampy world, and even found the ion trail of the vessel that had picked them up there, but they'd found no clues about the identity of the vessel they were chasing. Whoever they were, they were fast and good, sticking to high-traffic lanes to blend in (but not the ones still regularly patrolled by the Lor), running their engines so fast they must be risking needing to scrub out their coils, and not staying in any one place long enough to be positively identified by eyewitnesses. If not for the unique energy emitted by Aquaria Innsmouth's suit, which noticeably warped extradimensional space while in hyperdrive, and if not for the further n-dimensional changes caused by the fact that the other passenger was from some other dimension entirely, they'd have lost the scent long ago. But now they'd caught the scent. Station K-7 was old and tired, a collection of habitat domes welded together centuries earlier, with a mostly transient population in the hundreds. It was widely known to be a den of smugglers making the potentially profitable run to Terra now that Lor border patrols weren't what they used to be - or even there at all, most of the time. As the ship approached the station, their sensors jangled with news - their two fugitives were _on that very station_.
  4. Altinak C The Grand Shipyards are among the most impressive works of Lor civilization - a Dyson shell of solar panels and high-end lasers, surrounding the blue-white star and providing the fantastic energies that drive some of the largest energy-matter converters in Lor space, using material from the star's corona and what remains of its systems to build starships. The converters, massive skeletal spheres that dot the space around the star, each as large as a planet's moon, can't run independently; the Shipyards still need to import certain exotic minerals to build certain instruments of high technology like artificial gravity units and jump drives. But for the most part, the vast shape of the Shipyards, enclosing an entire star in a spidersweb of humanoid-built technology, can build a fleet all on its own. As the Horizon came out of warp in the Altinak system, it was clear a fleet was indeed being built here. Row after row of brand-new starships were in orbit of the system's few small rocky planets, a fleet-in-being as large as anything they'd seen during the war, not to mention the new ships still under construction near the converter complex closer to the vast blue bulk of the star. But the Horizon crew wasn't there for the view - they were there to meet an old friend. "Greetings, Horizon," came the military-sounding voice on the comm channel. Cavalier is waiting for you in the Grand Nauarcus's command center." - Cavalier's translator had given the Grand Nauarchus, the highest-ranking officer in the Lor Star Navy, a Mid-Atlantic accent - something that fit her short puff of bone-white hair and short stature that barely reached five feet. He could immediately see why her nickname was 'Grandmother Frankan.' She watched the holo again, the recording of the murder of a Star Knight, with a steely demeanor that belied her otherwise matronly air. "They put him down like a dog, didn't they? Barbarians," she muttered to herself before looking at Cavalier. "And you're sure these two are from your planet? That one there, with the tongue, doesn't look like any Terran I've ever seen."
  5. Lor Timemark 1329.7 - February 28, 2015 Repiuk System Asteroid Belt When rich ore deposits had been discovered in the asteroid belt of a system with no habitable worlds nearly a hundred and fifty years prior it had drawn in a rush of prospectors, independent fortune seekers and small companies looking to stake a claim that would set them and their families up for generations. As the demands of the galactic economy shifted and the best veins had been tapped out, however, the cost of refinement had risen past the profitability of the belt and one by one facilities had been abandoned, subterranean ghost towns riddling the asteroids with tunnels and shafts. Decades later those abandoned mines would serve as a base of operations for a vicious pirate fleet, their leader cannily realizing that the remaining deposits of heavy metals would play havoc with snooping sensor sweeps. They'd been found out by the Star Knights nevertheless and soundly routed, leaving another layer of abandoned equipment in their wake. It was Sri A'Lan Koor who had remembered those raids and suggested the belt, a remote location of no military significance or appeal to the Communion, as a staging area for the Coalition forces. For the past three months the secret had remained kept, long enough for the leaders of the Coalition to feel secure gathering together in one room as they planned out their last, best chance to drive out the invading menace. Standing at the war table the veteran Star Knight had to wonder if they weren't going to do the Communion's job for it. "You need to pull your head out of whatever orifice you've shapeshifted for defecation purposes," Senator Diena Th'emme told the Grue Arcane across from her flatly, fingertips pressed firmly against the surface of the horizontal display between them. The tall, imperious woman managed to make even the utilitarian grey jumpsuit she was wearing come across as regalia, her honey blonde hair done up in a crisp bun. "We have a precise window of opportunity. What troops we can spare to assault the communication relay will have to be enough." The short, stocky being to her made a fluting growl, waving fur covered hands for emphasis as his translator box did its work in an incongruously light soprano. "You would send them to their deaths and for what?" Minister Ch'rrr had rallied a number of worlds to the Coalition's banner in his home sector but was by nature disinclined toward risk taking. "The slim hope of a possible advantage for a doomed plan? Your ancestors' pardon, Citizen Tulink, but I cannot place so much faith in a single simulacrum. Surely you agree, Praetorian Val-Ren?"
  6. We'll need this soon enough!
  7. 0.5 LY from Stellar Khanate Borders November 2014 (Terran Calendar) Even under the best of circumstances, this was probably the last place most people in galaxy wanted to be. And then, somehow, it had gotten worse. With the knowledge that the Star-Khan had been made the new mouthpiece of the Communion, that raised an obvious question - what had happened to the worlds of the Khanate, that great cluster of wild, despotic states held so tight by Kinan Khan? Nobody knew. All state-run media, which at times could have made the North Korean press corps look like The Daily Show, was down. Traffic in and out of the sector, already sporadic, seemed to be shut down entirely. With half the galaxy on defensive footing, nobody really wanted to spare the resources or manpower to figure out what had happened within the Khanate. But just because nobody wanted to didn't mean that nobody should. Cavalier was blazing through the empty sector, keeping his eye out for surveillance satellites and Khanate drones. Intelligence said that they would be lightly cloaked but still discernible, providing minimal challenge but serving to signal the guys with bigger guns. But as far as he could tell, there was nothing watching this part of space. Which just meant he'd have to deal with the inevitable when it came. After the push at Lor-Van, he'd had... well, he could be charitable and call it "a rough time." Once Seven had managed to drop him off somewhere near Citadel, he'd made it back to the planet for debriefing. The next twelve hours after that were... mixed. There had been screaming. There had been desperate attempts to sleep, the images of broken armor and blinding light seared behind his eyelids. There had been drinking to forget, and then glasses thrown against the wall because the drinking had done nothing. Somewhere after those twelve hours, he'd actually managed to pull himself out of the void and focus. He couldn't just curl into a ball while the galaxy bled. And that was when Mentor had come to him with orders - preceded by more bad news. "What do you mean the intelligence is gone?" "The attack that compromised my systems during the assault of Lor-Van left several prevalent agents within my system. They have been quarantined in order to prevent further damage. Until these agents can be purged, the affected data cannot be accessed - and, in what was likely planned, one of these subsets is all files pertaining to the Communion entity." Cavalier bit his tongue. The very fact that Mentor had been compromised was not a happy thought. He did not want to yell at the intelligence for trying to work around the cybernetic equivalent of an embolism. "So we need intelligence. Where do we gather it?" "What little we have unflagged makes tertiary references to machine gods and cybernetic archaeology - potential resources of note for down the line. As of right now, however, the best possible resource would be beyond Khanate borders. If the Star-Khan has been claimed, odds are several of his worlds have followed." Cavalier shook his head. "This really is the best idea, isn't it?" "I am examined several permutations, and this one yields the best results. Sri Steward. Your background has been extensively catalogued in my banks. I know you have some experience on border runs. With the Knights regrouping, we must make use of unorthodox talents, wherever they may lay." And the worst part was, he knew it was true. All of it. "I'm likely going to need backup. And not the kind trained to knock nicely before entering contested air space..." "We have already isolated potential assets. A meeting has been arranged..." And so, some time later, Cavalier was flying outside of the Horizon, maintaining vigil while the ship soared across the stars. He patched into the ship's comms. "All clear out here so far. How's it looking on your end?"
  8. Fox

    A Simple Job

    Lor Space The Unseen Ocean - interstellar transport vessel All was quiet on The Unseen Ocean - and, really, it had better have been for what people at this end of the massive vessel paid for the trip. The middle-class got the midship and the proles got pods and benches back by the engines, but this section, near the bow, was all high-rollers and corporate contracts. In fact, even the halls outside the multi-room suites were silent and nearly empty - a lone few employees, impeccably dressed, made their way through the smooth metal and plastic archways to keep everything invisibly supplied and anonymously clean. All of which, unfortunately, made the woman who stepped out of one of the corporate suites stand out like a sore thumb. A bellhop stopped cold, fins along the side of his head extending in surprise as he stared - her already unacceptably-dyed hair was disheveled, her would-be faultless uniform torn in places and discolored near the shoulder in what could have been her own blood if she'd had any visible wounds. A slow clicking sound drew his attention downward, to the segmented tail that was slowly curling out from between the door and its frame as she flashed a winning smile and tried to close the door. The door stopped short of its frame, stuck on the arm of someone who - at the sudden sensation of their limb getting hit by a closing aperture - made a disoriented and not-quite-conscious groaning sound. "Ah - no tickets," the woman explained, flashing her smile again and none-too-gently kicking the hand out of the way so that the door would shut. She picked up a heavy, ornate case from where she'd set it down, quickly brushing past the young man on her way aftward. The bellhop reached for his commlink. "I've got the cabin package, Rock, but we're probably blown. We've only got a few minutes before an alarm gets hit and security starts crawling out of the walls." Eclipse tore what was left of the uniform off, exposing a far more practical jumpsuit underneath and putting some extra energy in her stride as, all around her the lights went red and a low klaxon sounded. She reached up to her ear with her free hand to adjust the volume on her communicator. "....maybe less. Please tell me things went cleaner on your end."
  9. RockPower Level: 12/13 (199/211 PP)Trade-Offs: -5 Attack / +5 Damage; -5 Defence / +5 ToughnessUnspent Power Points: 12 Theme: Rock and Roll Band by BostonIn Brief: Rock.Birthplace: Some RockResidence: The HorizonOccupation: Rock for HireAffiliations: Captain Eclipse, Nae-DaeFamily: RocksDescription:Age: Old as RocksGender: RockEthnicity: RockHeight: 8'7" of RockWeight: 1.5 Tons of RockEyes: Molten RockHair: Rocks At first glance Rock appears to be a crude humanoid statue pieced together from ill-fitting stones, a towering stack of grey and brown punctuated by patches of faded green moss and veins of ferrous ore. Two spots of glowing molten rock set in cavernous eye sockets are the first signs of life, followed by an uneven though surprisingly expressive maw similarly lit from within. Although he has little need for clothing Rock does wear a broad sash across his chest which supports a saddlebag, a concession to the practical need to carry various items and woven from green fibers with the texture of reptilian scales. All of his movements are accompanied by the scraping grate of stone against stone, even changes in expression. Power Descriptions: Rock is every bit the pile of stones that he appears. An internal core of molten rock provides him with noticeable body heat and functions similarly to connective tissue. He does not have any internal organs as such, brain included, animated instead by some diffuse intelligence. This allows him to daily reattach severed limbs or even rebuild his entire body provided raw materials. Unbeknownst to Rock himself, he is in fact the juvenile stage of an intelligent living planet with a life cycle billions upon billions of years long. Given enough time he will continue to accrue mass, likely spending millennia as an island then continent on a more mundane world or perhaps as an self-propelled asteroid before reaching maturity. History: Rock doesn't entirely remember from where he came. He doesn't consider himself particularly old on the rare occasions he's inclined to consider the matter. He does know that he's outlived every friend and every enemy he’s ever had, that he's seen great powers have risen and fallen only to be replaced by someone or something else often enough to have stopped counting. In all that time he's never encountered another being like himself. Non-carbon based life, certainly, even symbiotic stone creatures of a sort. They still were not whatever he was, nor he one of them. That uniqueness seemed to bother the occasional scientist or law enforcement agent who took an interest in him more than it did Rock himself but searching for answers was as good a reason as any to continue rolling from world to world. Currency is the axis upon which the galaxy spins, as they say, and while Rock has few material needs the adage still holds true. For the past few decades at least he's been finding work as hired muscle, or whatever passes for sinew in his imposing frame. Some of those jobs have been upstanding, many of them have not been but Rock maintains the same philosophical perspective on legality as most other topics. His dealings with the galaxy's criminal underworld introduced him to many for whom the day to day struggle for survival was a more dire affair. He watched time and time again as those with power took advantage of those without, surprisingly often with the law on their side. Relaxed as he was about his own concerns the fiery temper unleashed by harm done to others coupled with an inability to adequately explain himself earned him a lengthy record and a reputation as less than reliable. Things reached a turning point when Rock was recruited for a job by Talisyn Alar, better known as Captain Eclipse. The stony titan's strength was instrumental in getting past the security of the private art collection Eclipse had been hired to invade. When the crew reached their target, the final piece in a collection of ancient artifacts sought by their employer, a moment of clumsiness on Rock's part accidentally revealed it as a component of an alien weapon capable of creating a black hole. Agreeing that it was too destructive a power for anyone to possess, Rock and Eclipse destroyed the artifact, earning the wrath of their employer and the rest of the crew. Partnering up first out of necessity and then because of how well they found they worked together, the pair adopted a new policy. There was no reason doing the right thing couldn't also be profitable, after all, not when so many of the beings deserving of comeuppance had so much to steal. And if it also felt pretty good, well. Only a fool would accuse the battle-hardened cyborg and the towering pile of rocks of being sentimental. Personality & Motivation: Rock is generally happy to go with the flow, leaving most of the decision making to more vivacious allies such as Eclipse. He is rarely shy about making his opinions known, however, and his calm demeanour belies a fiery temper that is not easily cooled once roused. He feels generally protective of those smaller than him, which is a broad category, and strives to be helpful without expecting much in return. He is far more easily motivated by the mistreatment of others than slights against himself. Powers & Tactics: Rock is well versed in throwing his considerably weight around. In battle he charges into the fray with little regard for his own durable form, grappling or knocking about multiple opponents at once. He tends to target the most physically imposing target first given the choice, glad for the opportunity to let loose without needing to hold back. When fighting alongside allies, however, his priorities shift and Rock uses himself as mobile cover, attempting to place himself between his friends and the worst danger. If things do not appear to be going well he is not too proud to scoop them up bodily and beat a hasty retreat. When suitably enraged, Rock's molten core can erupt through any of his body's surfaces, usually either his mouth or the palms of his hands. The wave of liquid stone is scalding and indiscriminate and takes Rock a moment to recover from as he rebuilds his internal reservoir. Complications: Faulty Hardware: Galactic civilization just isn't designed with giant rock people in mind. From squeezing through doors to trying to use tools intended for smaller, fleshy digits, his difficulties are multitude. Rock tends to leave a lot of shattered monitors and bent chairs in his wake. Geological Record: Not all of Rock's exploits have been strictly legal by local - or universal - standards. He has more outstanding warrants for destruction of property, disturbing the peace and more than he can reasonably keep track of and it's tough to remember where he might not be welcome. Making a Mountain: Rock is generally calm and contemplative by nature but when his ire is raised his temper is literally fiery. Tending to extremes, any perceived threat to his friends or a similar trigger will unleash a juggernaut with the strength and inexorable momentum of an avalanche. Rock and a Hard Place: Rock's willingness to use his body as a living bulwark for his friends often outweighs his awareness of his own limits. While he can take a staggering amount of punishment by most standards, he is not invulnerable and can easily overestimate his own durability. Taken for Granite: Between his appearance and limited vocabulary many beings underestimate Rock's intellect and insight. Apart from his Eclipse and Nae-Dae he has difficulty making others take his opinions seriously or even convincing some that he is a legitimately sentient creature. Abilities: - 10 - 4 - 10 + 4 + 8 + 4 = - 8PP Strength: 44/20/- (+17) Dexterity: 6 (-2) Constitution: - Intelligence: 14 (+2) Wisdom: 18 (+4) Charisma: 14 (+2) Combat: 16 + 16 = 32PP Initiative: -2 Attack: +7 (+8 Base, -1 Growth) Grapple: +32 (+7 Attack, +17 Strength, +2 Density, +4 Growth, +2 Super-Strength) Defense: +7 (+8 Base, -1 Growth), +3 Flat-Footed Knockback: -16 Saving Throws: 0 + 5 + 8 = 13PP Toughness: +17 (+12 Protection, +3 Density, +2 Growth; Impervious 3) Fortitude: - (Immune) Reflex: +3 (-2 Dex, +5) Will: +12 (+4 Wis, +8) Skills: 64R = 16PP Bluff 3 (+5) Computers 3 (+5) Intimidate 11 (+15) Knowledge (Galactic Lore) 8 (+10) Knowledge (Physical Sciences) 3 (+5) Knowledge (Technology) 3 (+5) Language 1 (Galstandard, Phaesti [Native]) Medicine 1 (+5) Notice 6 (+10) Pilot 12 (+10) Sense Motive 11 (+15) Survival 2 (+6) Feats: 33PP Improved Grab Improved Pin Interpose Equipment 2 Sidekick 24 Startle Stunning Attack Takedown Attack 2 Equipment: 10EP = 2PP Binoculars; Super-Senses 4 (Visual; Extended 2 [1000' Range Increment], Infravision, Tracking) [4EP] Ship Communicator; Communications 5 (Radio, 5 miles; Extras: Area, Flaws: Limited [Other Crew Communicators]) + Super-Senses 1 (Communication Link [ship, Radio]) [6EP] Powers: 91 + 25 = 116PP Rock Person Physiology 18 (90PP Container [Passive, Permanent]; Power Feats: Innate) [91PP] Density 6 (+12 Strength, +3 Toughness [impervious], +2 Immovable, +2 Super-Strength, x5 Mass; Extras: Duration [Permanent, +0]) [18PP] Immunity 32 (Critical Hits, Fortitude Effects) [30PP] Immunity 10 (Electricity Damage, Fire/Heat Damage; Flaws: Limited [Half]) [5PP] Growth 4 (Large, +8 Strength, +2 Toughness; Extras: Duration [Permanent, +0]) [12PP] Protection 12 [12PP] Regeneration 10 (Recovery Bonus 5 [+0], Resurrection 1 [1 Week]; Flaws: Source [Rocks], Power Feats: Persistent, Regrowth) [5PP] Super-Strength 2 (Effective Strength 69, Heavy Load ~200 tons; Power Feats: Bracing, Countering Punch) [6PP] Molten Core 12 (24PP Array; Power Feats: Alternate Power 1) [25PP] Base: Enhanced Strength 24 [24PP] AP: Damage 12 (Extras: Area [General, Cone], Secondary Effect, Flaws: Action [Full]) [24PP] (eruption) Drawbacks: -3PP Geologuistics (Can Only Vocalize 'Rock' in Galstandard, DC 15 Sense Motive Check to Discern Meaning; Frequency: Very Common; Intensity: Minor) [-3PP] DC Block ATTACK RANGE SAVE EFFECT Unarmed Touch DC32 Toughness Damage Eruption Area [General, Cone] DC22 Reflex Half Damage DC27 Toughness Damage [Secondary Effect] Totals: Abilities (-8) + Combat (32) + Saving Throws (13) + Skills (16) + Feats (33) + Powers (116) - Drawbacks (3) = 199/212 Power Points
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