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Avenger Assembled

Just Like Fire (IC, open)

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"I don't know," Danica admitted to Mr. Archer, frowning down at her phone. "Is the system supposed to be purged regularly? Will it start malfunctioning without it?" The idea made sense, purging the system did sound a lot like a higher tech version of blowing on the disk or letting Windows run its little disk defragment program that made all the scattered bits of information line up nicely again. She'd always liked watching the defragmenter run. "If we need to do that, how do we do it from outside the room?" 

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"You can do that from the master control room on the floor just above it." He gave them directions, then admitted, "I don't know the password - and I wouldn't be one I can guess, not after-" He blinked, just once, then concentrated on the emergency. "It's just a standard security door. Anyone with the ability to do enough damage should be able to get it open. Accessing the system will be a whole new problem, especially if it's gotten, er, overcomplicated." 

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Artificer

 

Heroditus had learned much of Surfacer technology, but still had much, much more to learn.  Computers were one area in which he had a particular ignorance, as Atlantis had few things comparable to those (and those they did have were room-sized monstrosities, roughly comparable to Surface computers of the early 1950s).

 

"<I cannot believe it, but I actually wish OctoBen were here,>" Heroditus muttered to himself in the click- and pop-accented language of Atlantis.  Then, in English, "reluctant as I am to admit it, I must confess I may not be of much use against the Doom Room's elektronic systems, though I should be able to help get us to them.  Are any of you particularly skilled with computers?," he asked, looking around.  "As for getting there, I would suggest taking the stairs, as the Doom Room should not be able to influence anything there.  And if it did somehow send any... agents there, they should not be as powerful as those within the Doom Room itself." 

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The stairs took them down to the second-to-last lowest level under the building, where they found themselves confronted with - nothing at all? The security door to the control room was open, not the state it should have been in. But otherwise he Doom Room control center appeared to be in sleep mode (as it should have been for the party) but something was up after just a moment's inspection. The clear panes of transparent steel that overlooked the 'arena' were completely obscured, giving them nothing but a blank wall to look at. Tapping a few buttons brought the computers back online, but the gibberish of ones and zeroes that was playing out for them, faster than they could clearly distinguish, was definitely not a normal computer function. Something was happening in there... 

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Grabbing the paper from the printer Leon stepped back out into the hall in time to followed the others down the stairs.

"Things could be worse." He says as he hands the paper to Professor al-Salaf. "It says machines have gone nutso, but no one's hurt. Also says to bring energy other then electricity."

Leon looks around for a door, then taps on the opaque glass. "Is it in here?" He asks, not having actually been in the Doom Room yet himself.

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It took Danica a long time to catch up with the group after abandoning her Segway to follow them down the stairs. She grimaced as she looked at the mess of ones and zeroes. "I don't think this is anything that's going to be solved by turning it off and turning it on again," she observed wryly. "I don't know where we'd even start turning it off." She started looking around the walls for the window controls, hoping they'd be nice and obvious. Or a clearly labeled big red STOP button. "I kind of feel like anybody who'd even build something like the Doom Room didn't watch enough Star Trek when they were a kid." 

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Leon glanced back at Danica as she joined them in the control room. He looks over at the screen and watches the binary code scroll by. He couldn't fully comprehend it as it, but he moved over to the console.

"Anyone smart enough to build this, should have been smart enough to build a e-stop." Leon beings searching the console for any indication of an off switch. "Look around for some kind of fuse box or something." He looks over at the Professor. "Is there any kind of maintenance access? Look for anything that might be an access hatch." He says, turning to Heroditus. "As fancy as it is, its still just a machine. If we can find the power feeds we should be able to kill it, or at least parts of it in theory."

Turning back to the computer he starts trying some of the key command shortcuts and prompts his foster brother taught him in an effort to gain some kind of access, even if its just back to the main menu.

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Artificer

 

Heroditus nodded at Leon's suggestion, and began searching for the things he had suggested.  "My understanding is that power -- electricity -- flows along conduits, like many other forms of energy.  Some of those channels are rugged, to withstand the great forces channeled through them," he felt along the floor, "while others are very intricate, delicate, and easy to disrupt.  And that water -- particularly saltwater -- does a very good job at disrupting such devices."  He checked along the sides of the machines, casting a curious look Leon's way, "so if you cannot stop this by working within its operating parameters, I believe we can easily bring forth some more destructive means of stopping this.  Which would take longer to repair, but," something caught his eye, and he moved towards it, "our classmates are in danger, so we must do what we can to help."

 

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Artificer's well-placed blast cut through the power box for the control room, powering down whatever systems were holding the room in lockdown automatically and rolling the windows up. The Atlantean had cut right to the heart of the matter, sparing them the time it would have taken to override the existing security systems or even pry the windows themselves open. The team found themselves facing a bizarre scene down below; the Doom Room's holographic systems in lockdown and a gigantic holographic version of Sun Dragon locked in combat with their classmates - and a version of Chelone watching the whole struggle. Both of the projections were obviously fake - oversized and twice the height of the originals, with eyes the color of the Doom Room's projections. 

 

Suddenly, the room's speaker's crackled to life in a familiar voice: 


"Professor al-Salaaf, Chelone, Artificer, Paper - can you hear me?" It was the unmistakable, slightly fuzzy, voice of Eira Katastroff, who was vaguely visible in the melee below, her arm buried in the system's interface. 

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Leon is scanning the console when the screens sudden goes blank. He glances around and sees Heroditus stand near the severed power lines. “Good job.” He says begrudgingly an turns to watch the shudders open to reveal the interior of the room. “What in the…?” Leon looks down with some visible confusion.

18 hours ago, Avenger Assembled said:

Suddenly, the room's speaker's crackled to life in a familiar voice: 


"Professor al-Salaaf, Chelone, Artificer, Paper - can you hear me?" It was the unmistakable, slightly fuzzy, voice of Eira Katastroff, who was vaguely visible in the melee below, her arm buried in the system's interface. 

 

At the sound of the voice from the room’s speakers Leon half turns his head, his gaze still glancing around the chaos below. “We can hear you.” He says out loud, assuming there was some kind of mic pick-up in the control room. “New student, who dis?” Leon asks as he pulls his eyes away from the fight to judge the reactions of the others inthe room to the voice.

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"Hey, that's me!" Danica exclaimed, pressing her palms to the window. "But I'm huge and I can teleport! What's up with that?" She looked up towards the speaker that the voice came through. "Hi, Eira, we can hear you!" she called back, mashing down the microphone button on the main console. "This is Danica, we're all up in the control room! What do you need us to do? Mr. Archer says maybe rebooting the system would help, should we do that, or would it hurt you?" 

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"Someone finally asked!" said Eira, her particularly synthesized voice sharp in acknowledgement of Danica's question. "Here is what you must do.

 

She sketched out a plan for the heroes in the control room that, boiled down, required them to reboot the system via keystrokes and power-downs at exactly the right time, in exactly the right way. "Otherwise the main power will reactivate and we will be in the same situation all over again." Down below was a wild melee of duplicates and holograms, as if their classmates were trapped in an actual malfunction of some kind. Eira was sounding fatigued on the comm, her voice breaking up into static and Swedish from time to time. 

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Leon listened careful as Eira went over then instructions, directing Heroditus to another terminal with a list of some of the commands. Some of what she was asking them to do would require two people imputing commands. Once the Atlantean assured him he understood Leon turned to the others. He had Danica, Benny and the professor stand by several switches across a handful of computer banks along the walls that would need to be manually restarted in proper order. With a quick glance around he took a deep breath. "Richard, hope I don't let you down."

Leon's fingers quickly moved through the sequence as Eira had laid it out. Without looking up he calls over to Heroditus to start his chain of commands. "Now!"

A few tense seconds follow, the sound of keys tapping punctuated the hum and crackle that drifted around the control room. Leon finished his command prompts and looked to Heroditus, watching as the other typed in the last command on his list and signaled Leon he was done.

Snapping around he pointed to Professor al-Salaf and started counting off. "1. 2." Indicating breakers on the banks to be reset. "3. 4." He said pointing to Benny in turn, then finally to Danica. "5." Leon turned back to the monitor and watch as each bank began to cycle, all except the last one. "I said 5!' He called again looking back at Danica trying not to sound paniced. He saw the girl struggling with the last switch which had stuck in the off postion. Even as Leon started to move, Benny beat him to it. In two easy steps Benny crossed to Danica's side, and with his help, wrestled the breaker switch back on. Leon quickly turned back to the screens, hoping they were still in time. As the first banks indicated clean starts he watched the last one.

...56%...61%...73%...80%...89%...

Leon positioned to give the final set of commands, fingers tensed.

...94%

...96%

...98%

...99%

...RESTART COMPLETE

Leon punched in the last commands and stepped back as the Doom Room's systems began to cycle and reboot.

 

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There was a great flash of light outside as the giant Danica seemed to wrap her arms around the giant Leroy, the two of them flashing together as they were suddenly illuminated from within - and then the reset was complete. The room went dark for just a second, then lit back up to its normal illumination. As the windows to the control room retracted and communication systems came back on, the group was free to jump down and join their friends (even as the doors opened) or to simply call for help the conventional way. Professor al-Salaaf did exactly that as they watched, the teacher's accented voice cool and professional as they fired up the room's intercom system to issue a quick distress signal to the Headmistress. 

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It felt good helping others, though he wasn't about to admit it to anyone. Leon smiled to himself thinking how Richard would have been proud of him, his brother was always better at computers. Elizabeth would have called him an idiot for getting involved and punched him in the arm. It was just how his sister would have showed approval. Leon smiled a little more, but sadly now. He missed them both everyday.

Leon realized he was smiling and quickly stopped, looking around to see if anyone was looking at him.

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"Wow, I went to the dance even though I didn't go to the dance! Weird," Danica decided as she examined the now normal-looking computer screens. "And efficient, I guess. Though that dress..." She grimaced. "Woof. If I ever do go to the prom, it'll be in something less..." She waved a hand in the air, "everything. I'm sure everybody noticed right away that it wasn't me." She caught Leon grinning and shot him a quick wink, then began making her way to the door at her usual leisurely pace. "You think there are any snacks down there that didn't get fried or crushed or zapped?"

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Leon scowls at Danica's back, then glances at the others. "Well, if it'll keep me from having to go back to the boring video call." He shrugs. "Guess it can't be any more boring down there now. Besides, gotta let the seniors know it was a couple of underclassmen that saved there hides." Leon smirked as he hurried past Danica.

He paused after a moment looking back at her. "Jeez, you're slow." Turning away, Leon started walking again and waved his hand. The sound of rustling paper started and Leon's jacket sheds into sheets of paper, the color and texture fading as they do. Seemingly caught in some nonexistent breeze they carry over to Danica and swirl around her. Then suddenly the surge together under her and the turtle girl finds herself astride a paper wolf. With a beckoning motion the quickly follows after Leon, carrying Danica easily.

"I'm not being nice." He says without prompting, in a seemingly bored tone. "I just need to someone to back me up when I tell the big boys the deal."

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Danica yelped as she was hoisted into the air and grabbed fistfuls of paper mane to hold on. "God, warn a girl, would you?" she snapped at Leon. "I may get treated like luggage, but I'm actually a real person." She debated sliding off the wolf as a matter of principle, but allowed it to carry her down the hallway to the stairs. "Anyway, Eira and the weird giant me had it mostly taken care of already. We just came in for the last-minute assist." 

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Artificer

 

Heroditus had been leaning back in his chair, trying various breathing exercises to slow the shaking of his hands.  The exercise would be going a bit better if he could manage to stop grinning like a fool.  “That was incredible!  To think, these machines, these computers, not only helped to create those foteinous beings, but had also bound them!”  He clasped his hands together and peered closer at the terminal he’d been working at, “we have somewhat similar devices in Atlantis, to help with calculations for certain technomagical formulae, and they are approximately as large as these,” he unclasped his hands and made a sweeping gesture to indicate the entire room, “but nothing so potent!  Would you-”

 

 

He had turned to address Leon, but stopped when he saw everyone heading out (and caught the last bit of Danica’s protestations).  “Oh, ah,” he sprang to his feet and followed, “I take it we are done here?”

 

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