[Taocow PBEM] Book 3 - Chapter III

Aaron Clausen mightymartianca at gmail.com
Thu Nov 25 00:11:51 GMT 2010

> > > > [Osiris]
> > > > Not knowing what else to do, Osiris nods and flicks the switch.  A familiar
> > > > "dot-dot-dot dash-dash-dash dot-dot-dot" can be heard.
> > > >
> > > > He then turns to his companions.  "I don't think anyone needs to stay
> > > > behind." he says.  "According to this, we're in seventy feet of water, and
> > > > we've handled worse.  Not to be self-serving, but I'm no swimmer with these
> > > > bum legs.  I suggest that I, the Elf Arsendel and those two unconscious fellows
> > > > go inside the escape craft Owen discovered, and whoever else there isn't
> > > > room for tether themselves to it."
> > > > [/Osiris]

> > > [Ted]
> > > "Have we checked outside lately?" Ted asks. "Is it safe to send a distress call?"
> > > [/Ted]

> > [Etta]
> > "That is procedure." she says crisply.  "At the very least, the main
> > ship may see the beacon, and if they can successfully enter the atmosphere,
> > they can recover the sub and begin the search for us."
> > [/Etta]

> [Alex]
> "I think the main concern is about those already search for us. I don't think we
> want to be captured by them, whomever they are," the ex Coalition scout states.
> "Can we tight beam the signal?"
> [/Alex]

"I'm putting it on a delay." Osiris says.  "If this sub is still
intact in a couple of hours, it will begin broadcasting.  Other than
that, you're right, Alex."

Etta looks angrily at Osiris, but says nothing, continuing towards the
emergency craft.

> [Owen]
> "I don't think we have enough time to make two trips.  We just need to get out,
> hold our breath, and make for a very quick ascent to the surface.  Lets get
> the injured and unconscious on board, and do what Osiris suggests, and hope
> we make the surface."
> [/Owen]

In short order everyone is gathered in the small chamber where the
mini-submersible is.  The two unconscious crew-members, plus Osiris
and Arsendel are packed inside the sub.  Etta pulls out small oxygen
bottles and masks from a locker and hands them to anyone who doesn't
have full environmental armor.  She then hops inside the minisub and
shouts "Good luck!" before closing the hatch.

Moments later the bottom airlock slides open, revealing the landscape
of the ocean floor below it.  It is a haunting scene.  Streets and
buildings are still visible beneath a layer of sediment, lit by the
ghostly glow of the ley lines and rift.  Here and there can be seen
shapes that must be the remains vehicles.  A fair-sized town must have
been located here before the coming of the Rifts, and now a submerged
ghost town remains.

The building that the sub is caught on is plainly visible, a tower
almost a hundred feet tall that looks like it might have been part of
some temple.  Fracture lines in the ancient superstructure can be
seen, and they seem to be widening as the current drives the sub back
and forth.

The support struts lower the mini-sub into the water and it bobs
violently at first, demonstrating the strong current.  The running
lights turn on and the mini-subs small engine starts to whine.

And then there is a loud screech.  Visible below the tower the sub is
caught on can be seen breaking apart.  Metal can be heard twisting and
the deck is shuddering as the sub is slowly dragged towards the bottom
with the top part of the tower.  Suddenly the whole sub pitches
violently.  The mini-sub, instead of getting into the water, is
smashed against the side of the airlock, ending up on its side as
water rushes in.  The party find themselves falling to the forward end
of the sub.  There are sparks as electrical equipment is doused in
seawater, and then there is nothing but near-darkness (save for the
distant glow of the ley lines, the roar of seawater, and the
frightening deep baritone of the sub's superstructure crumpling.

Aaron Clausen
mightymartianca at gmail.com

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