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Avenger Assembled

Team Science! (IC)

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Date: August 5th, 2009

Darian Cale was in the middle of an important scientific activity (eating lunch) when his communicator rang. He was a little surprised to hear the voice of his science teacher, Ms. Harcourt, and to hear the urgency in her voice. "Darian, this is Ms. Harcourt. I need you to come meet me in the cafeteria as quickly as possible. We have a science emergency here and you're the only one of my special students I can find. Bring your equipment with you."

Across town at about the same time. Dr. Archeville's computer received an emergency message from one of his contacts in the scientific community: "Dr. Archeville, this is Stephanie Harcourt at Claremont Academy. We have a scientific emergency here and most of my usual colleagues and students are away for summer vacation. Your assistance here would be very much appreciated. Bring any equipment you feel will be necessary, and I'll see that we provide the rest."

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Doktor Archeville, Genius of Science!, was hunched over a metal table, once pristine but now spattered in assorted fluids. In his left hand he held a gleaming 20 cm-long blade, and carefully sliced into the biecps femoris muscle from the haunch of a Sus scrofa scrofa.

Bah! Who dares disturb us in the middle of our great work?!

'Great work'? We are making a ham sandwich.

The greatest ham sandwich the world has ever seen!

There is certainly a lot of ham here, yes....

"I understand, Ms. Harcourt," he replied, as the integrated house-wide sound system picked up and transmitted his voice back to Stephanie. He dropped what he was doing (allowing one of the house-'bots to clear the kitchen) and took off for his workshop, "vhat is de nature of de emergency? Biological? Chemical? Nuclear? Extraterrestrial? Ultradimensional"

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"There seems to have been an accident with a dimensionally linked teleporter. I haven't been able to find the culprit, but several of our students are missing." Her voice was tight, the concern in her voice very obvious. "I've done what I can to verify that the machine itself isn't dangerous and won't go off again without further tampering, but I'm an engineer, not a hard scientist. I need your help in figuring out exactly what happened, where my students are, and how we can bring them back." Left unspoken was the worrisome possibility that the natural result of a teleporter accident might have taken place.

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Dimensional teleporter? Why is there one of those in a high school?

Well, wen we get there, we can ask, but first we-

It should be here, with us, not in the hands of some meddling kids!

As long as we do not have to wear a rubber mask....

"Dimensional teleporter?" he repeated as he reached his workshop and began collecting his gear. "Haff you tried contacting Doktor Atom? Or Darian Cale? He is good mit dat sort of ding... unless he's de von who started it? Oh, is he von of de students missing?"

First he retrieved his Gravimetric Belt from the station at which he'd been working on it; with it on he could zip around the massive workshop and collect his remaining gear in a snap. Next was his wondrously useful Elektromagnetischer Schraubenzieher, and last but not least his armored lab coat.

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"Dr. Atom's family is currently visiting the Microverse," said Ms. Harcourt tightly. "Mr. Cale is one of my honor students, I've made sure to call him in on this situation as well. Estelle de Havilland recently joined our faculty, I'm going to see if she's available when you and I are finished. As for the dimensional teleporter, it's currently located on the roof of our cafeteria. And so am I, for that matter," she admitted with the faintest of chuckles.

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Estelle? Mmmmm....

Stop it.

Got it bad, got it bad, got it-

SHUT UP!

Now fully geared up, Archeville flew towards the door out of his house, and out of the warped space that made his home so much bigger on the inside than the outer dimensions would allow. "I understand. I should be dere..."

He opened the door, took a step outside, and then vanished in a vortex of blue-grey light, reappearing at Claremont's main entrance.

"... very soon. Apologies for de momentary radio static."

The Doktor levitated up on anti- and contragravity waves, and scanned the roofs of the buildings; he did not know which building was the cafeteria, but Ms. Harcourt and the transporter should not be too hard to find.

And they weren't.

"Guten tag, Ms. Harcourt," he cheerily said as he landed next to her. "So, tell me, just vhat happened?"

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"A half-hour ago," said Ms. Harcourt, clinging nimbly to the roof by means of the magnetic suction gloves on her shoes, "I monitored an explosion of trans-dimensional energy from my laboratory. I was very concerned, as you might imagine, given the ever-present risk of invasion from the Terminus, but this was more the leakage from an event happening in this dimension." She pointed to the large, ragged hole in the cafeteria roof, as well as the nearby large disc that looked like a Star Trek transporter pulled off a set and secured to a tiled roof. "My current theory is that it was annular confinement leakage from the beam that transported roughly thirty pounds of inanimate material and nine of my students to...somewhere else."

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Man, would you look at that? If I'd had access to half those components when I was a high school senior...

... you would have made something to rival the World Trade Center Bombing.

"Let us hope dat is not vhat happened," the doktor exclaimed, "for if so, ve may never be able to reconstitute dem!"

"Now, let me see...." he said as he brought out his E.S. and began to examine it.

[[ To the OOC Thread! ]]

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Oh crap!

Oh yeah!

"Vell," the doktor finally said, after several moments of intense study and mumbling and murmuring, "I haff okay news, good news, bad news, und really bad news."

"De okay news," he starts, "is dat dis vas not built by von of your students. It came from another dimension, a parallel von not too different from our own."

"Und it vas activated by somevon on de other side, intentionally. Vhich is de good news: it did not activate by accident, dere vas a purpose to it, und dat means your students are alive, because if whoever did dis vanted dem dead dere are far simpler vays."

"Vhich bring me to de bad und really bad news," he said, biting his lip. "According to mein scans of de residual pandimensional resonances, de dimension in qvestion is known as Erde, a parallel in vhich de Axis forces von Vorld Var II, und remain in power. Dat's de bad news. De really bad news is dat some of de components in dis teleporter are of Grue origin... meaning your students may be in de hands of Nazi Grue from Another Dimension!"

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A 5'x5'x5' cube of what looks like quicksilver appears next to the doctor and the teacher. It quickly dissipates downwards revealing Darian and a giant toolbox full of gizmos and tools. "Forgive my tardiness, Ms. Harcourt," he says with a nervous smile, "I was trying to decide what to bring. I could not decide, so I brought a little bit of everything." He looks over to Dr. Archeville, nodding he speaks in German, "

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Oh, great, it's the kid.

Now, now, I am sure he can help us. And we are going to need any help we can get on this!

"Ah, Herr Cale, good to see you!" the doktor said warmly (but in heavily-accented English).

"Dis appears to be a dimensional transporter, dough it vas not built by any student here, at least not completely. Dere are Grue components in dere, but vhat is more disturbing is dat mein readings," he floated over and showed Quark the readings on his E.S., "indicate dat de machine vas activated not from here, but from another dimension -- specifically, from Erde, an Axis-conquered parallel!"

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While the two super-brains talked, Ms. Harcourt excused herself. "If you two gentlemen will pardon me for just a moment, I'm going to see if I can get in touch with Ms. de Haviland so she can join our brainstorming session." She suction-cupped herself a foot or two away, then took out her super-advanced cell phone to dial Claremont's newest and loveliest science teacher.

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There are many wonderful things about Estelle de Havilland's amazing hair, but it also leads to several challenges; for instance, showering in a conventional shower is a something of a nightmare, and wastes a tremendous amount of water, but some problems are more subtle. One of them is that it makes certain kinds of activities too easy, which leads to inevitable abuse.

"Hmm, maybe the sofa would look better over here..."

Estelle has been arranging and rearranging the furniture in her new apartment for the better part of a week, and she's still not satisfied; she effortlessly holds a leather sofa, glass-topped coffee table and two chairs up with strands of her golden locks, placing them first here then there like checkers on a board. Thankfully this pointless fussing about is interrupted by a call from Ms. Harcourt on her cellphone, and she just lowers the pieces down more or less at random.

"Hello, Stephanie, how are you? Your timing couldn't be better!"

She curls up on the sofa, her hair draping over it majestically.

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"Estelle, we have a situation here." Gossamer could easily hear the deep concern in Stephanie Harcourt's voice, the wild talent engineer obviously on edge. "We've had an incident with the students. It looks we're looking at an interdimensional attack, possibly alien in nature. I need your expertise. I've already secured Viktor Archeville and Darian Cale as part of the rescue effort." She let out a breath. "How soon can you get here?"

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"How soon can you get here?"

Though her face is as white as a sheet, Estelle doesn't hesitate for a moment.

"Give me five minutes."

Six minutes later, two thick tentacles of golden hair loop gracefully up onto the roof, pulling Gossamer up behind them as she lands in an easy crouch; she's wearing her form-fitting blue and white jumpsuit from the FAR boys at ASTRO Labs, and it leaves little to the imagination :shock:

"Sorry for the delay, Stephanie, this outfit is absolute murder to get into!"

She notes Dr. Archeville's presence and smiles; her hair seems to move a bit more sinuously once her eyes land on him.

"Viktor! So nice to see you again!"

Finally she turns to the young man present.

"And you must be young Mr Cale; I've heard good things about you, very good things."

She offers a firm, crisp handshake before resting her hands on her hips as she approaches the sinister apparatus.

"Well, well, here we have the...device in question; mind you, chemistry and biology are my strong points, but obviously I will help in anyway possible."

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Okay, now the kid really needs to go.

What? Why?

He cramps my style, and I wanna be my best for Estelle when-

Oh, good grief.

"Good to see you, too, Doctor de Havilland!," Archeville replied, at first flat and coolly but quickly warming. "It is good to see you again, dough I hope our meting dis time does not go as disastrously as our last von!"

"Also, do not be so qvick to downplay your potential contributions. Dis device," he kneeled next to it and pointed to one section which had had its panels removed, "is partly or wholly of Grue origin, so dere is going to be some organic technology in here, vhich I am certain you can help mit."

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"Also, do not be so qvick to downplay your potential contributions. Dis device," he kneeled next to it and pointed to one section which had had its panels removed, "is partly or wholly of Grue origin, so dere is going to be some organic technology in here, vhich I am certain you can help mit."

At the very mention of the word 'Grue', Gossamer's eyes go wide, she takes a step backward, and her hair arches forward like an angry cobra's hood.

"The Grue? Though legally I'm not allowed to say why, the Grue are of particular interest to me."

She drops down to a crouch to better examine the device; her hair forms into a pair of workman-like braids that loop out of the way under her arms like straps, except for a few tendrils that remain loose, to fetch a number of vials, tweezers and sample bags out of a case hanging from her side.

"Do we have reason to think the Grue directly played a part in this misadventure, or do we merely suspect their technology was involved?"

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'Legally not allowed to say'? What?

Umm... yeah, I have got nothing.

Archeville gave her Estelle a very quizzical look (one that perhaps lingered a bit too long), but eventually shook himself free of his mental lock. "Dat, I do not know, but I do know dat it vas activated by somevon in de other dimension vhere de Claremont students are now trapped. Unfortunately, dat other dimension is de von known as Erde, a parallel reality vhere de Axis powers von Vorld Var II und took over de United States of America. Vhich could mean de Nazis dere haff used Grue tech from some crashed saucer... or dat de Nazis dere haff actually allied mit de Grue somehow."

"Given a choice, I vould greatly prefer de former; I vould rather not face a group of shapeshifters mit Nazi sympathies!"

The Doktor began pacing around the device, occasionally floating up and over it to get views from different angles.

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"Unfortunately our school expert on Erde is among the missing," said Ms. Harcourt unhappily. "However, Agent H has been very forthcoming about conditions in her home reality. From what Hope has told us about her world, the Nazis are unlikely to have made an alliance with the Grue. Erde has been as much a target of the sternjuden, as the Nazis call them, as has Earth-Prime. But that doesn't tell us how this kind of technology was brought to bear on our own world." Estelle will remember Hope Rogers very well; she's one of the kids on the watchlist in chem lab. Apparently there was an abortive incident last year with some sort of improvised rocket and explosive. "I recognize some of this as the work of one of my students, one who's not quite as clever as he thinks he is..."

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"Given a choice, I vould greatly prefer de former; I vould rather not face a group of shapeshifters mit Nazi sympathies!"

Gossamer shivers at the thought as she takes a few samples for later study; as disturbing as this all is, it's not often she has something this interesting to analyze!

"I recognize some of this as the work of one of my students, one who's not quite as clever as he thinks he is..."

The beautiful scientist frowns as she stands and brushes off her knees.

"Wait, I'm confused; do you think this the work of your student, or an Erde version of him? I thought we'd determined that it came from their world."

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I'd like to Grue her.

... what does that even mean? Wait, no, I do not want to know!

"It vas made by a student here," Archeville explains, "but activated by a Grue signal from Erde."

"Und just because your agent says it is unlikely dat dey vould vork together," he said to Ms. Harcourt, "does not mean ve should rule it out. It could be some splinter group of Grue vorking mit dem... or it could simply be dat de Nazis dere haff acquired Grue technology from a crashed ship und are using it to try und breach dimensions." He paused a moment, "ja, dat is probably de most likely scenario, dough ve should not rule out de others."

"I dink," he continued as he peered closer at the device while hovering a few inches above it, "de first ding ve should do is attempt to backtrack de signal, und see if ve can pull de students back. If dey haff not traveled far from de transporter, it should be possible. If not, if dey haff moved too far avay... vell, let us to recall dem first!"

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