Session 4 15

Zinda Tegram steps out of the cargo bay she was manning the phero-cannon from, drenched and exhausted.
Zinda Tegram: "Uuuugh…"
Four down, one to go. But a long moment of preparation first. Many of the fighters were damaged during that last fight.
[OOC] Abraham: Are shads and I playing our characters, or random doctors?
[OOC] Ingenue: My character is a random doctor. Just…not a biological one.
[OOC] WC GM: Your characters. Feel free to push around NPCs as you wish for this session, though.
[OOC] Abraham: You there! Get me a danish. You two! Fight to the death.
Zinda Tegram: "The god damn showers better be open…"
Zinda Tegram: "Ugh, I smell like rotten grapes."
Ingenue: "Zinda…are you not well?"
Zinda Tegram: "Muh? Oh, uh, hey Metis. I'm just…"
Zinda Tegram pauses for a second and glances sideways.
Zinda Tegram: "I mean, I-I'm fine."
Zinda Tegram: "I was just going to wash the pheromone juice off."
Abraham emerges from the repair bay. "Oh good. I was hoping to find you two. Let's take advantage of this lull and have a little chat to get to know the new Zinda. I think that room isn't being used at the moment…"
Ingenue: "She does not want to smell like rotten grapes."
Abraham pauses, "That…is understandable. Then say in half an hour?"
Zinda Tegram: "Y-yeah, should be fine…"
[OOC] Abraham: She doesn't want to smell like wine?
Zinda Tegram: "Thanks, hun."
[OOC] Zinda Tegram: Basically.
[OOC] Zinda Tegram: Really, really pungent
Abraham: "Excellent, then I'll see you both then."
[OOC] Ingenue: Fermentation smells better than decomposition.
[OOC] Zinda Tegram: That too.
[OOC] WC GM: Fast forward to after the shower, then?
[OOC] Zinda Tegram: Yeah.
[OOC] Abraham: Unless you feel we desperately need a shower scene. This is filler after all.
[OOC] Zinda Tegram: It would just be Zinda death-glaring people who make faces on the way to the shower.
[OOC] Zinda Tegram: Showers and lots of deodorizing body spray scenes aren't that eventful.
One cleansing of Zinda later…
Zinda Tegram arrives on the bridge, gives Nikolai a "You gonna die" look, and then addresses the admiral.
Zinda Tegram: "Abraham."
Nikolai has been trying to appear small and unnoticeable, when he must appear outside the labs at all.
Ingenue notices him.
Abraham: "Well then, Zinda, Metis, shall we?"
Zinda Tegram: "Yeah, sure."
Ingenue: "Yes."
Abraham leads the way to an unused conference room and has a seat, indicating that the other two should as well.
Abraham: "Very well then. We'll start with the pedantic and blisteringly obvious, 'How do you feel Zinda?'"
Zinda Tegram takes a seat, cricks her neck, and then slouches back in her chair.
Zinda Tegram: "Kinda…"
Zinda Tegram: "Cramped, I guess? I can feel the…slithers is such a crap name. I can feel the ones I've crammed in the cargo bay though."
Zinda Tegram: "I'm tempted to just off them to make myself fit, but we need them."
Zinda Tegram: "Could always save a few to rebuild the rest later. Or something."
Zinda Tegram: "Anything else or you just wanna poke me to see how human I am?"
Abraham: "You're humanity, or lack there of is not the question. You've been through a life-altering experience and we need to see if you are enough the old Zinda that we can rely on you."
Zinda Tegram: "It's more or less what I imagined going borg'd be like, I guess."
Abraham makes a note to talk to the doctor about that later.
Zinda Tegram: "Easier to hide, I guess, since it's a bio-mod."
Zinda Tegram: "If you're wondering who you're talking to though, I can say this: Zinda's agenda seems a lot more important to me than the clans."
Zinda Tegram locks eyes with Abraham.
Zinda Tegram: "And I can still fight."
Spyboy steps into the conference room.
Abraham reaches into a folder and pulls out a list of question for an EZ Psych evaluation, useful in case an officer needs an evaluation and doesn't have a doctor around.
Spyboy: "Was that ever in question?"
Zinda Tegram: "Hmmph."
Spyboy: "Sorry to butt in, I just finished loading a new set of algorithms for cracking pheromones, but they're…compiling."
Abraham: "Since much of her neurology has been replaced with a hormonal based system, I was concerned about that at first. But as Zinda said, she is largely unaffected in that regard at least."
Abraham: "Your piloting skills seem to be intact, or close enough that I can't discern a difference, and that's to the good."
Zinda Tegram: "Biologically, I don't know what the hell I am. But I…remember I had a lot more to say in that friggin' seed pod to them than they did to me."
Zinda Tegram: "I think I talked them into…emulating a brain I guess?"
Abraham: "Yes the…lets call them original plants…seem to be less chatty than we are."
Zinda Tegram: "There's not too much of an ego, as far as I could tell."
Zinda Tegram: "At least in the small ones."
Zinda Tegram: "They're not stupid, they just…don't consider things until they're in front of them."
Abraham: "That backs up my observations."
Abraham looks down at the list he pulled out previously. First question: "If you were a tree, what kind of tree would you be?" He sighs and tears the paper in half. "So much for official procedure."
Zinda Tegram: "I think…"
Zinda Tegram: "Willow, I guess? It means earth trees right?"
Spyboy: "I think his point is right now you'd be a tree with a fusion reactor."
Abraham waves it off, "It's a stupid question, even without considering your…circumstances."
Abraham thinks for a moment. "Zinda, describe your twelfth birthday to me, please."
Zinda Tegram shrugs. "I, uh…Well my dad gave me an extra ration of agar before we went out on patrol as part of our training?"
Abraham: "And how did that make you feel?"
Zinda Tegram: "Umm…well, I really like agar, so good, I guess?"
Abraham makes another note: 'try agar sometime'.
Abraham: "What did your training consist of that day? Anything different or out of the ordinary?"
Zinda Tegram: "Well, usually we'd just do patrols and when we were relieved maybe a wargame with the knight leading the patrol. I think that day…Uh, well we engaged some scouts from the republic but they got away…and once we were back on station we had to run a simulated boarding op?"
Zinda Tegram: "I remember I ate the agar on the way back, and almost got caught by the flight leader."
Zinda Tegram: "Man she was nuts…"
Zinda Tegram: "Uh, you going anywhere with this?"
Zinda Tegram: "Oh! We weren't supposed to eat on patrol, because uh…we weren't supposed to eat on patrol."
Zinda Tegram: "A lot of us did anyways thought, because meal times weren't ever really long enough to finish our rations unless you barely ate anything."
Abraham: "You're not supposed to eat on patrol because anything you find on patrol might have been poisoned by who ever you are patrolling for. Things you bring along are normally fine. At least that what I was taught at the academy."
Spyboy: "Yeah, but that really wouldn't apply in a space patrol, Admiral."
Abraham: "Space is, generally speaking, toxic enough."
Spyboy: "You're not supposed to eat on patrol cuz while you're eating it distracts you, and while you're digesting it slows you down."
Zinda Tegram: "Yeah, well, so does hunger."
Abraham: "A well fed soldier is one that can concentrate."
Zinda Tegram: "Besides we won the engagement anyways."
Abraham: "Well, there goes my next question."
Zinda Tegram: "I mean, this disengaged. Even if it's unicorn squadron…Oh, that's our trainee squadron. Anyways, it's just not smart to fight two against five."
Zinda Tegram: "I mean, not unless you're really good."
Zinda Tegram looks smug.
Ingenue takes a note: being outnumbered is fine if you're really good.
Abraham: "Next question. Do you remember what class of ship you were doing the bording sim against?"
Zinda Tegram: "Uh…well, in Oldziey there aren't really any capital ships, so we only ever trained in station boarding ops."
Zinda Tegram: "Most of the stations are really basically unique in system, too, and they all get reconfigured, so…"
Abraham nods.
Zinda Tegram: "We usually did one on our own station right after reconfigurations, before we knew the new layout."
Zinda Tegram: "So, what else did you wanna know?"
Ingenue: "If you did not know the layout, how could you effectively commandeer the station?"
Zinda Tegram: "You can tell the shape at least somewhat from the visuals on approach."
Zinda Tegram: "There are only so much configurations which make sense."
Abraham: "It is also is a test of your ability to figure out the layout of a new place quickly."
Abraham: "Next question: It's later on. Describe how you felt when you got your first non-training assignment. And if it's not classified, what was it?"
Zinda Tegram: "Uh…well, it felt like training honestly, since we'd already done a lot of live-fire engagements in training."
Abraham: "So you felt well prepared then?"
Zinda Tegram: "I guess so?"
Zinda Tegram: "It didn't really feel like a prepared or unprepared thing."
Zinda Tegram: "I just…fought."
Abraham: "What was the assignment, if it's not classified?"
Zinda Tegram: "Uh, well we were to engage a group trying to work out our asteroid-cannon placements."
Zinda Tegram: "They didn't know where our guns were, so we just tricked them into flying into range and wiped them out."
Abraham: "And how well do you feel that assignment went?"
Zinda Tegram: "Well, I mean it worked I guess, so I suppose it went well."
Abraham: "What happened when you returned. Were you rewarded? Praised? Criticized?"
Zinda Tegram: "Umm…well, we kinda just docked and then everyone went to eat."
Zinda Tegram: "I guess I got a commendation a month later that it factored into though."
Abraham nods. "Let's move on. You've just been promoted. To what rank have you been promoted? And, of course, how did it make you feel? Were you happy? Satisfied? Angry that it didn't come sooner?"
Zinda Tegram: "Uh…I guess they promoted to Royal guard later. I felt proud. I was following what my father did."
Abraham: "How did your father react when he learned?"
Zinda Tegram: "I think he was proud too. You could never quite tell with him, but…"
Zinda Tegram: "It looked like he relaxed a bit."
Abraham: "He was worried you won't be promoted?"
Zinda Tegram: "I think he was worried I'd sign up for the station garrison, actually."
Zinda Tegram: "Not, y'know, set my sights higher."
Abraham: "Was there any sort of ceremony for your promotion?"
Zinda Tegram: "Uh, yeah."
Abraham: "Describe it please."
Zinda Tegram: "Royal guardsmen get to have their own ship awarding ceremony. We stand by the new ship we're getting and are given the codes to it. Then we all extend our previous fealty oath we swore when we became knights with some new language."
Abraham: "Was this ship the Stern Lance?"
Zinda Tegram: "No, that was my father's. My ship is…"
Zinda Tegram: "It's still back there, somewhere."
Abraham: "Do you miss that ship? Your Royal Guard ship?"
Zinda Tegram: "Yes? I mean, someone else probably flies her now."
Zinda Tegram: "So I'm not really sure I can her mine."
Zinda Tegram: "Still, I would like her back…"
Abraham: "How do you feel about someone else piloting your ship?"
Zinda Tegram: "It's…kinda frustrating."
Zinda Tegram: "I'll get her back though. Eventually."
Zinda Tegram exhales.
Zinda Tegram: "I will definitely…"
Ingenue notes that particular thought.
Abraham: "You were promoted when others were not. How did your squad handle your promotion?"
Zinda Tegram: "Her name was, uh, the Hel Schwert."
Zinda Tegram: "Umm, they were happy for me. The squad was splitting up as part of some reorganization, a recent operation had gone poorly and they needed to shore up the garrison."
Abraham: "One final twist and turn along memory lane then. The last time you saw your father. When was this and what was going on? Did you exchange words, say anything to each other?
Zinda Tegram: "He was being ritually executed by the new monarch. I had to, uh, be one of the royal guardsmen in attendance."
Zinda Tegram clenches her fists and exhales.
Zinda Tegram: "I wasn't permitted to…acknowledge anything."
Abraham: "Why was he being executed?"
Zinda Tegram: "Man, like you haven't read my file."
Zinda Tegram: "He was accused of treason, dipshit."
Abraham arches an eyebrow at that, "This has less to do with the answer than in how the answer is given. But, naturally, you already knew that."
Abraham: "What was the means of execution?"
Zinda Tegram frowns.
Zinda Tegram: "He was gutted. With a torch."
Abraham: "And did you take revenge for your father's execution? Even in minor ways?"
Zinda Tegram looks at Abraham.
Zinda Tegram: "I'm going to kill him, Abraham."
Zinda Tegram: "You're going to help, remember?"
Abraham smiles. "I do indeed." He rises, " I think that will be everything. I am convinced you are indeed Zinda and not a leafy impostor. I am also relatively certain you are not Wenser. Relatively."
[OOC] Spyboy: Oh, she's definitely Wenser.
Zinda Tegram: "I'm not that leafy."
Zinda Tegram frowns.
[OOC] Ingenue: We are all Wenser.
[OOC] WC GM: Somewhere, far away from this planet, at this very moment, Wenser is in fact Wenser.
[OOC] Ingenue: No proof!
[OOC] WC GM: Word of GM. :P
[OOC] WC GM: I swear, honest, Wenser is Wenser.
[OOC] Abraham: Somewhere, far away from this planet, at this very moment, the Wenser who is Wenser, sneezes.
[OOC] WC GM: Whether or not Wenser is sneezing is another thing.
Zinda Tegram inhales, then exhales.
Zinda Tegram: "You quite done?"
Abraham: "I think we are. Naturally I'll have the doc go over the recording and make and make an official evaluation, but yes we are most certainly done for now at least."
Spyboy: "Looks like minimal emotional feedback down the slitherers."
Zinda Tegram clenches her fists, and one slither guts another with it's torch.
Zinda Tegram: "I will definitely…"
Zinda Tegram: "Make him pay."
Spyboy: "Which makes me wonder if that particular display of emotional feedback was deliberate."
ExecutiveOfficer: "Admiral to the bridge! You're going to want to see this."
Abraham: "As interesting as that will be, I'm needed elsewhere and not needed here. Good day."
Abraham heads to the bridge because apparently he's going to want to see this.
Zinda Tegram follows.
Spyboy does so as well.
"This" is immediately obvious. Looming ahead is the fifth and final volcano…and a decided lack of battling at its base. Instead, the legions move in formation, spread out to guard ground and sky. This is a unified army, no question.
ExecutiveOfficer: "There's no way we can punch through this many."
Zinda Tegram: "Hmmph."
Zinda Tegram: "They've still seen only a fraction what we can bring to bear."
Zinda Tegram: "If worst comes to worst we can use nuclear weapons…"
Abraham eyes the numbers and does some math. "No. No we can not. Well, there are other ways."
Spyboy: "Would it be at all possible for us to get reinforcements?"
ExecutiveOfficer: "Yeah. I was thi-WHOA!" He flinches from a bright flash off to the side. Half a minute later, thunder accompanies the large explosion that just happened over there.
Zinda Tegram: "Oh?"
Geoffrey chimes in via radio. "$Zinda, did you call in backup?$"
Zinda Tegram: "$Negative. They're probably copying our fighter designs.$"
Zinda Tegram: "$We might need some though.$"
Abraham: "It would seem we have seen only a fraction what they can bring to bear as well."
From four directions come the cavalry - units produced apparently by the four other volcano clans. Slitherers, fliers, tanks, even a few flying tanks crudely reminiscent of fighters.
Zinda Tegram: "$Ah, one of those armies is mine, though.$"
Abraham: "Even so…"
Zinda Tegram radios one of her army slithers to broadcast:
Zinda Tegram: "^You're surrounded.^"
A half-kilometer-long bolt of magma erupts upward, arcing toward the Roland, which jolts to the side barely evading the artillery.
Zinda Tegram: "^Cute.^"
Zinda Tegram: "What's the temperature reading on that magma?"
Abraham: "It's nice to be so highly regarded."
ExecutiveOfficer: "Hot enough to melt our ship in one shot."
Zinda Tegram: "Hmm. Raises the question of how they got it that hot."
Zinda Tegram: "Do they have any anti-orbital artillery?"
Zinda Tegram: "I mean they probably do, but we haven't engaged them from orbit yet…"
Zinda Tegram shrugs.
Just as Zinda mentions it, a contrail can be seen of a shot-down ship, in the distance.
Zinda Tegram: "^You realize that you don't have to fight, right? Just cooperate and return the planet to its original orbit by eating asteroids.^"
ExecutiveOfficer: "…NOW they hail us. Sir! Reinforcements attempting to break through from orbit!"
Ingenue: "Steel melts at 1370°C, and becomes unusably weak at much lower temperatures. Magma could be 1600°C…or more. The geological survey of this planet is inadequate."
Zinda Tegram: ^ "You have very little to gain, and much to lose.^"
Zinda Tegram: "Abraham, I have an idea."
ExecutiveOfficer: "…uuuh. Siiir? Those aren't Confed fighters."
Zinda Tegram: "I, ah, recently acquired a force field with a heat rejector that I'm told can function at 3000 Celsius."
Abraham: "Oh? How large and is it mobile?"
ExecutiveOfficer: "Well…technically they are." He looks up - at Abraham, then at Spyboy and Heggy. "It's the lagos."
Zinda Tegram glances at Spyboy.
Spyboy: "Odd that they haven't sent any messages on - but they may not know."
Zinda Tegram: "It's mobile, should be enough for a team to deliver explosives to the internals of the reactor."
ExecutiveOfficer: "They just got here."
Spyboy: "[Hello?]"
Zinda Tegram: "We move in through the lava tubes and beat them from within. Literally."
Zinda Tegram: "Hmm…"
Abraham nods at Zinda. "Let's call that 'Plan B'. I would still like to resolve this situation peacefully. But make no mistake, this situation will be resolved."
Zinda Tegram closes her eyes.
Zinda Tegram: "Of course."
Ingenue: "[Of course.]"
[OOC] Abraham: Of course not.
Rab: "[Ah. There you are. Okay, relaying coordinates…]"
Zinda Tegram readies a suicide slither to try and listen to the volcano fortresses internal pherocomms, to try and evaluate mood, motivation, and attention.
LotsOfLagosAtOnce: "[HIIIIIII~!]"
Zinda Tegram mutes her radio.
Zinda Tegram rolled up 4dF: 0 + 0 + (Base: 4 Total: 6) (alertness to assess on the volcano fort.)
[OOC] WC GM: Hold on that. We'll do actual rolls next time.
[OOC] Zinda Tegram: Awww OK.
[OOC] WC GM: That said, I think this is a good point to stop, so…

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