[Taocow PBEM] Chapter XVI - Into The Southlands

Aaron Clausen mightymartianca at gmail.com
Fri Aug 8 18:47:02 BST 2008

> > [Osiris]
> > The old cyberknight sighs.  "Alas, but Bongo would have found this place
> > most interesting." He hefts one of the daggers.  "The owner of these had
> > a very good eye for weapons, and judging by the lack of rifles or
> > pistols, was more the martial sort."
> > [/Osiris]

> [Sia]
> Sialillion seems pleased with the bow and carries it with her.  "Well
> they're not magical, but they are, as a point of fact, exquisite.  And
> well-made weapons like these will do no one any good locked up in a tomb. 
> I say we divide them up amongst ourselves." It's clear which one she's
> picked out.
> [/Sia]

"It seems like tomb raiding." Osiris observes.  "Still, this whole room
suggests that someone planned on coming back here."

> [Koba]
> With that, Koba goes to the table and examines the vibroknife. He hefts it
> and gives it a flip getting a feel for the balance. He checks the thumb
> switch and gets a satisfying hum as the blade moves at speeds not
> perceptible to the eye. With a nod, he thumbs the switch back to off and
> tucks it in a leg sheath.
> Looking at the tubes and the table, Koba tries to reason how the machine
> worked although the exact function of the machine is still unclear.
> Looking around, he tries to determine if there are any simular tubes that
> could connect the two tables. If nothing is in sight, he will move over to
> the east table and attempt to remove the rods. Maybe the could fit into
> the tubes in the table if the tubes dont connect directly. Maybe our
> technowizard can help out with this device.
> [/Koba]

The tubes seem to be made of an incredibly tough, though slightly pliant
material.  It will take extreme force to break them open.

[Meanwhile, on the boat...]

> [Alex]
> Alex asks, "What are we going to tell them about what happened aboard? I
> don't really like lying to my companions but not sure that telling them
> what happened would help things either. Loyalty seems to be something
> sorely lacking. Go ahead see if we can get closer slowly?"
> While letting the others think, she turns her attention back to the island
> and scans for the others. While doing so, she attempts to contact them via
> her helmet radio "This is Hawk to Island Team, can you give me a sit-rep?"
> [/Alex]

Alister shakes his head.  "We're short a life raft and a crew.  Hard to
explain that away.  But hey, it's not my kingdom.  I'm sure Lady Sialillion
and our new pilot over there..." he looks over at Lady Louissa as she mans
the wheel and nervously engages the engine "...have to report what
happened, but it's no skin off my bones either way.  I'll happily tell
everyone else a dragon ate the crew or a dimensional door popped them off to

> [Talas]
> Being the only one not actually exploring the room, Talas responds to the
> radio call, thankful to have something to do. Though slightly confused be
> what he's hearing "Hawk? Lady Alex is that you? I am sorry, I do not
> understand what you mean buy sit rap. Please restate." Talas then moves
> closer to the entrance of this chamber in the hope of getting a clearer
> signal.
> [/Talas]

The signal is moderately staticy, and seems to be getting worse.

> [Alex]
> "Yes, this is Alex. The Call name I go by is "Hawk" because that is my 
> last name. 'Sit Rep' means 'Situation Report.' Sorry about that," the 
> red haired scout responds.
> [/Alex]

> [Talas]
> "There is no need to apologies Lady Alex. But as for the 'Sit Rep', we
> have the sword that we came for. And are now exploring a lower chamber
> that looks as though it may have been a lab of some sort. And how is the
> situation on the ship? Is our guest behaving her-self?  Talas out."
> [/Talas]

As if to answer Talas's question, the boat lurches forward, creeping towards
the island, a very focused young woman at the helm.

[Meanwhile on the island...]

> [Ted]
> "You might want to invite her down here. She might find some of these
> weapons interesting," Ted suggested to Talas as he walked around.
> [/Ted]

Osiris nods.  "Indeed.  I hope Alister comes as well.  We really do need a

> [Carlos]
> Suddenly Carlos bends over as if in pain. Just as quickly he jolts up and
> says in a raspy voice, "We must go. Grab all the weapons. The Sleeper is
> coming... We must get to the Last Bridge." He then stares off as if in
> thought, trying to make sense of it all.
> [/Carlos]

> [Koba]
> Startled from Carlos' sudden outburst Koba stands upright like a prairie
> dog who just heard someone coming. "Does he do this kind of thing often?
> Because that looked serious."
> [/Koba]

> [Sia]
> Sialillion stares at Carlos.  "Is this something new or has he been doing
> this all along?" she asks the group in general.  "In any case, The
> Sleeper.  That does not sound good.  Ted, Osiris, please gather up the
> rest of the weapons.  We can divide them up later.  In the meantime, we
> should work on getting out of this tomb.  Maybe we don't have time to
> analyze this device after all."
> Assuming that no one immediately objects, Sialillion will climb the ladder
> back to the upper level of the tomb and see if she can climb out.  If not,
> she'll wait for Alex and Alister to come rescue them.
> [/Sia]

As Carlos discovered, part of the ladder was torn off in the earthquake, or
whatever it was.

> [Ted]
> "I would describe it as 'frequent' and 'recurrent'," Ted tells Koba as he
> follows Sia's injunctions to gather up as many of the strange weapons as
> would fit in his pack. "He is either crazy or in contact with some goddess
> with no name."
> [/Ted]

Osiris glances at Carlos with a strange, knowing look.  "Carlos isn't

> [Koba]
> That "person with no name" bit sounds familier to Koba from the inn back
> west. "That sounds like a good idea Sia. Lets get going." With the jetpack
> still attached, Koba will make it up and out of the room. If the others
> are having problems getting up the ladder, Koba will attempt to pull
> people out with any type of rope or cable the party is carying.
> [/Koba]

Osiris quickly rummages through his backpack and pulls out a couple of thick
ropes, tying them together.  He hands them to Koba.  "That should be enough
to get us out of here."

He looks over at the strange table.  "I feel that thing is... important."
He walks with some effort towards the table, stooping down and touching the
broken tubes.

"Irreperable in the time we've got." he says.  He then looks over as the
others busily gather stuff up.  "Forgive me." he says, and then with speed
that belies his age and injuries, Osiris leaps on to the table and lays

For a moment, there's nothing, and then all the glowing tubes begin to
brighten.  Beneath them, the island shakes.

"This may have been a mistake." Osiris says, as he tries to get up.  "Can
someone give me a hand here?"

Before anyone can respond, a bubble of translucent blue energy surrounds
Osiris and the table.  Osiris is forced down by some unseen force, and
tendrils of energy leap from the bubble to his forehead.  Osiris screams
madly in pain, and the quake becomes much worse, making standing difficult. 
In the upper chamber, pieces of the ceiling start to dislodge.

Suddenly the six canisters burst open, the fluid spraying all over the
floor.  The wooden staffs fall out, and for a moment almost flop around like
frightened snakes.  The tubes of energy crack open with frightful
explosions, blackening the wall.  The field around Osiris begins to shudder
visibly, pieces of it blinking in and out as the energy tubes underneath the
table arc with each other.

There's an ear-drum breaking sound of stone splitting, and the lower chamber
literally splits in two, and a stream of lava starts bubbling through the
walls.  There's a deafening noise like a hurricane that just keeps getting

[Meanwhile, on the boat...]

As Alex observes the island, she sees Koba appear at the top of the island
with a rope in his hand.  That view is cut off as Lady Louissa approaches
the island's only landing at the bottom of the cliff.  She drops the anchor
and sets the engine so that the boat will remain relatively still in the

Suddenly Alex catches site of a bolt of bluish energy bursting through some
rock at the top of the island.  It hits maybe three thousand feet of
altitude and then flattens out like a dish, moving in all directions like a
wave.  Much more breathtaking, and frightening, she catches sight of a
distant leyline, maybe twenty miles to the west, start literally bending
towards the island, moving somewhere between fifty and a hundred miles an
hour.  Another leyline, further to the south, is being pulled as well,
though it's much too distant for her to get much sense of its speed of

"Holy shit..." Alister murmurs.

[Meanwhile, on the island...]


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