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Avenger Assembled, July 5, 2011 in Archives
Gimmie some Notice checks
Heh, you guys are all high enough to notice this. Harrier is too busy gazing at the stars!
The Saha crater is about sixty miles across as you approach, one big disk with a single depression in its middle with a larger satellite crater at the 10'clock mark on the crater's face. The crater is old and pitted, like most of those on the lunar far side, which almost completely lacks the great 'seas' of the near side of the moon.
However, as you approach the crater: there's something very suspicious there: there's a _new_ crater in the side of the cliff face edges of the big crater wall, so small it wasn't visible from orbit or to the small robotic probe. It's hard to see clearly in starlight, but the jagged walls look very new, with no meteorite abrasion. It's also a plain fact that there is something metallic glinting in the heart of it, much larger than an Omegadrone...
A moment to clarify: while the ship is big enough for Dark Star to lift with his Move Object, it's in the rock wall too delicately. Pulling it out will likely cause an avalanche, crushing the ship and destroying all within.
Dragonfly does an auto-25 notice check, looking around as best she can from where she's standing trying to make sure nothing untoward happens to Miss A's body. Infravision, analytical vision, the works; she's looking for anything she might have missed that she could turn to their advantage, and more information on what exactly went down here.
Really, that should probably be two checks, but she can do them as a free action, so.
As long as she's surveying, she also takes the time to size up the area and the drones. Assuming she ends up having enough time to finish doing so and process the information:
Master Plan Check (1d20 + 7=10)
Well, that's not the most awesome roll ever (really need to get her some more Int, or cough up the points for actual tactics) it'd be better than nothing. Sometimes all you need is that tiny extra nudge.
Dragonfly can see the assimilation chambers the drones are talking about, and they look like fearsome things: ovals about the size and shape of a old-fashioned telephone booth, a glance inside reveals a nightmarish array of blades, probes, and glittering black instruments still sparking with the remains of cosmic power. There's a juuust visible humanoid outline in each where the occupant used to be, and it's easy to tell how deeply the assimilation process violates their flesh: the dead Farsider, with his body warped and penetrated by Terminus steel and high technology, is proof of that too. On closer inspection, all the chambers have been sliced open by something with a sharp blade and high-energy charge, enough to actually melt as well as cut the Terminus steel that sliced them open. On closer inspection, Dragonfly can see something particularly odd about the chambers: none of the drones nearby are particularly tall, in fact, the tallest (the leader) is actually only about her height. The interior of the chambers is even more confined; the armor must give a couple of inches and dozens of pounds at least.
Terminus technology is no easy feat to grapple with, even for a computer scientist as formidable as Gina Evans. But even without knowing the fine details, she can tell this ship is badly damaged. What happened after the crash is impossible to determine with any precision: the central computer seems to have been physically attacked, not just cybernetically, and the relevant parts and memory physically destroyed. But going back to the first available records, she is able to find something useful at first:
It's an internal monitoring feed, showing the interior of the transport in the minutes after the crash. Alarms are blaring everywhere and those dead and blasted electronics are alive, the assimilation chambers completely intact. Suddenly, Gina hears screaming: no, not screaming, weeping and cursing all at once, and suddenly a figure lurches into the camera's view: it's an Omegadrone, a big, bulky one like Harrier, not like these sleeker, gracile drones running around the ship. The voice inside is male, clearly enough, and he's crying for mercy in what sounds like Latin as he approaches each chamber in turn. "Demeter, forgive me! Demeter, forgive me!" He strikes each chamber in turn, the electronics inside flaring to life and bursting into flames, leaving behind much of the damage she already saw aboard the craft. Finally, the drone turns his pike against the camera, and the feed cuts out.
But there are more records than that, buried deeper in the system...
Gina delved deeper into the system, uncovering earlier records of the transport's history. The story seemed to play backwards for her, as if she was watching a tape in reverse. She saw its flight as it careened into the lunar surface before the crash; the screams and curses of the pilot not withstanding all that. Before that came a great flash, and a start of all the screaming, as the the ship came careening through a dimensional vortex and headed for the far of the Moon.
This ship had left a dying world behind it. Gina could see only glimpses through what was left of the exterior cameras, but she could see crowds of Omegadrones and a few pitiful, weeping humans: a black sky with all blotted out by rising Terminus towers. But something was strange, very strange: the ground was shaking and the Omegadrones moving with an uncommon urgency, the weeping humans in the crowd singing triumphantly amid their tears. She saw the faces of children, no more, a half-dozen small bodies between perhaps 10 and 15, loaded aboard the craft with pale, silent faces by the big drone she recognized from the older tapes.
And then the transport was taking off, fast, so fast that the people around it were casually incinerated by plasma fire. She could see other ships around it, rising higher and higher into space, all of them desperately avoiding something...something big, something impossibly big that dwarfed the ship, dwarfed the dying city it had left behind, loomed larger than New Jersey, large as a continent: the Terminus vessel paused for a moment and Gina distinctly saw the face of what looked for all the world like a Terran serpent cast large as the East Coast of the United States...before suddenly it struck the planet beneath, fast, hard as an asteroid strike that kicked up layer upon layer of debris. There were more, much more, a whole forest of continent-sized snakes tearing the planet beneath to shreds. And then transport staggered as it fled the world being torn to pieces behind it. And then, something peculiar happened: a single flash of light came from the central mass of the snake forest, blasting through the ship and making circuits explode everywhere.
And just then, just as the ship went into dimensional warp, she heard the first screaming from the cockpit...
Dragonfly'll go ahead and take 10 on Craft (Mechanical) and/or Craft (Electronic), for a nice solid check of 30. Her focus, of course, is on salvage and not repairs; she's not inclined to let these kids have a working ship! But she is kinda interested in how they build things in the Terminus....
Dragonfly's not so sure about leaving an omega ship just sitting around on the moon! What if the toast king found it? That'd be terrible. Consulted AA: the ship would need 200tons of storage and a DC20 power check to safely pocket. She can't do that on her own, of course, but she just so happens to have these shiny new parts and ideas....
With AA's permission, the plan:
Extra-effort stunt the following:
Dimensional Pocket 10 (Flaws: Action 1 [standard/Full], Feats: Progression 3 [1,000,000lbs / 500tons]) (13/20pp)
Ought to be enough to hold the ship, and then some. Dragonfly currently has 2-3 HP, so that's at least one to waive the fatigue, and at least one to ensure she can't fail the power check, if necessary.
EDIT: Got the go-ahead.
Power Check, DC20 (Dimensional Pocket) (1d20 + 10=14)
HP Reroll, which I won't bother putting up because she can't possibly fail. Dragonfly's down to 0 or 1 HP (depending on whether or not her most recent edits count for this thread).
DS can assist if you want/need (it'd never occur to him to salvage the vessel)