Session 7 2

The Nephilim - currently cloaked, though apparently hovering around the White jump point judging by the neu-comm - seem to be a bit put out.
Spyboy: "Admiral, did you get that message?"
The jump point pulses; it will take a couple more cycles to establish its timing.
[OOC] Spyboy: 'sokay. It'll take a couple more cycles for us to get there.
[OOC] Spyboy: …especially at this rate.
Metis runs through the usual scans. What kind of readings are coming from the jump points?
Abraham: "What message?"
Spyboy: "That'll be a no, then. I'll transcribe to radio and send it over."
Spyboy plays back the memory over the radio.
By normal scans, the White and Chandley jump points look like regular triggered jump points…except for never quite ceasing to flare; they appear like dim stars even at minimum, as opposed to the standard optical invisibility which was why they took so long to be discovered back when humanity only inhabited Sol.
Zinda Tegram: "[We're not the ones who did this, or at least not intentionally.]"
Nephilim: "[Of course the servants of the Abrahim are not responsible. Only the Abrahim could accomplish such feats.]"
Spyboy: "[You mean like the things that you do?]"
[OOC] Abraham: That's right Nephilim, obey your Abraham. Now DANCE! DANCE FOR MY AMUSEMENT!
Nephilim: "[Superior to what we have accomplished. Even possibly-]" "[No. Do not dare to dream that.]" "[Disagreement. We must dare to dream if it there is to be any chance.]"
[OOC] Abraham: You DARE to question THE ABRAHAM!
Zinda Tegram: "[You should probably fill us in on what's going on.]"
Nephilim: "[It is impossible. To dream is to be disappointed. To hope is to hurt.]" "[And yet the Abrahim has accomplished…]"
Nephilim: "[You are new, you would lack the historical context. And even to you, the servant, the impossible seems possible. Identification…are you the one with many bodies, who lords over an entire planet from systems away?]"
[OOC] Spyboy: The answer to this question is a trap. It's a clear, obvious yes, since every member of the party is actually Wenser. But…they don't respond well to that name.
Zinda Tegram: "[I am. What of it?]"
[OOC] Spyboy: Out of curiosity, are they talking in Kilrathi? And if so, can Spyboy leverage Metis for a translation? Otherwise he'll just be a bridge and send it straight to the radio so Abraham can hear it.
Zinda Tegram: "[Also, to call me a servant of Abraham's is a mischaracterization of our relationship.]"
Nephilim: "[Then you might understand the context of the Wenser.]"
Zinda Tegram: "[…I am listening.]"
[OOC] WC GM: They are speaking in Terran. They started in Kilrathi, but shifted a while ago.
[OOC] Spyboy: Sweet.
[OOC] Metis: Back. Metis will translate when necessary, but apparently isn't right now.
[OOC] Abraham: And Spyboy is broadcasting the entire conversation over the radio?
[OOC] WC GM: Note the lack of #s.
[OOC] Spyboy: Yes. Encrypted so that the people on the planet can't hear it, but.
Nephilim: "[The Wenser is heresy. The Wenser is misery. The Wenser is an experiment.]"
Abraham perks up at 'experiment'. "Ask them what the Wenser heresy was suppose to test, please."
Nephilim: "[You are aware of the Kilrathi, our attempt to exceed ourselves. You are aware because you have defeated, and somewhat absorbed, them.]"
Zinda Tegram: "[OK, uh, go on.]"
Nephilim: "[You were not aware that this one remembers the sparking of the Kilrathi.]"
Nephilim: "[Of the frightening and terrorizing with our capabilities and understanding, visited upon their then-primitive conditions.]"
[OOC] Zinda Tegram: Zinda had kind of inferred this actually
[OOC] WC GM: They underestimate most humans.
[OOC] Zinda Tegram: They're very advanced, but they're not very bright.
[OOC] Abraham: Let's be absolutely fair here, humans underestimate humans.
Nephilim: "[As intended, this spurred them to grow and mature, to discover the means to lift themselves from their gravity well, and to utilize the natural piercings between stellar neighborhoods.]"
[OOC] Abraham: Stagnant is probably the better word. Calcified even better
[OOC] WC GM: Indeed.
Zinda Tegram leans back and continues listening. Patiently.
Nephilim: "[For longer than we know your words for, we have attempted to become more than we are. Again and again we ran into frustration, and progress seemed impossible…for us. So we turned to aliens, in the hopes that they might find a way around what we could not conceive of.]"
Nephilim: "[And then we accelerated our worlds, our entire civilization, to skim past their long ascension and hopefully partake of their answer.]"
Nephilim: "[But when we arrived, they had failed. They had been conquered.]"
[OOC] Spyboy: So there was a timeskip involved. Interesting.
Nephilim: "[By you.]"
Nephilim: "[The first to discover this were inconsolable. They wished revenge on the interlopers. And you destroyed them.]"
Nephilim: "[Then the Wenser heresy formed. To infiltrate the conquerors, to discover their secrets, to make them our own.]"
[OOC] Spyboy: Huh. Interesting question. Did Wenser make his David facility only so that Kali could steal his secrets?
[OOC] Metis: Well, that's slight evidence of treason by Wenser against ConFed. Should get him pulled from active duty/authority for a bit, if we want.
Nephilim: "[Indeed it seemed promising - you had already exceeded our limits in some ways. But to become you is a lie. Instead, we seek the natural progress: await one of you who would become us. And now here we are.]"
Nephilim: "[Conversing with the servants of the Abrahim.]"
Abraham: "It's not a popular opinion, but our victory over The Kilrathi was at least as much pure dumb luck as it was 'human ingenuity' or 'human spirit' or any of the other self-congratulatory reasons most texts espouse."
[OOC] WC GM: Yeah, at this point you're a bit beyond "active duty/authority".
Zinda Tegram: "[Are you finished?]"
Nephilim: "[We are not expired.]"
Zinda Tegram: "[I meant, are you finished explaining.]"
Nephilim: "[There is more, but you interrupt for a reason. Have you addenda?]"
Zinda Tegram: "[…No, just…I'd rather wait to hear the whole story. Please continue.]"
Zinda Tegram sighs audibly. "Idiots treating you like an idiot…"
Nephilim: "[…a curious phrase. You have pieces of the story we do not, such as the perceived success of the Wenser on the Terran side.]"
Zinda Tegram: "[Well, to be quite frank, we had already inferred most of this information. The only really new information was details of the doctrinal dispute between you and the Wenser faction.]"
Nephilim: "[We come to judge the heresy, and to promote the natural destiny. Although our plans to convince the Abrahim of being an Abrahim have been interrupted. Are you certain the gravitational anomalies are not the work of the Abrahim?]"
Zinda Tegram: "[…It wasn't us.]"
Spyboy: "[We believed it was you, or your devices.]"
Nephilim: "[It is not this group. There has been previous activity in two neighboring systems.]"
Spyboy: "[We believe the source to be on the other side of the discontinuity near you. Are we incorrect?]"
Nephilim: "[Both of which were attempts to bridge from these stars to our home stars.]"
Zinda Tegram: "[…You're not very bright, are you?]"
Nephilim: "[We are not certain which of the systems is the source.]"
[OOC] Spyboy: DO NOT TAUNT THE HAPPY FUN BALL, ZINDA.
Nephilim: "[These units are not naturally bioluminescent.]"
Nephilim: "[We are uncertain of the relevance?]"
Spyboy sends a message to the group, excluding the Nephilim.
Spyboy: "[Keep in mind these are Nephilim - pilots and foot soldiers. We're not talking to the brains. Which…I will grant…shows.]"
Spyboy: "[However, please try not to alienate them, Zinda; we could use them.]"
Zinda Tegram: "[Yeah I…figured. It's a metaphor, uh…it's unimportant. I am merely frustrated.]"
Spyboy removes the send filter.
Zinda Tegram radios back "Yeah, yeah, ok.."
[OOC] Spyboy: NOTHING goes over my head. My reflexes are too fast.
Zinda Tegram: "[Just, you possess some crippling misunderstandings of our social structures.]"
Zinda Tegram: "[They are, uh, how to put it…irritating.]"
Nephilim: "[…indeed. How does the irritation compare to the Grand Hopelessness?]"
Zinda Tegram: "[I lack the context to say. For now though, let's discuss the immediate problem of the living jump points.]"
Nephilim: "[Of knowing, from as early as you can know, that your life is meaningless and can accomplish nothing that was not already accomplished before you existed?]"
Nephilim: "[…as you say.]"
Zinda Tegram: "Wow, passive aggressive…."
Zinda Tegram shakes her head.
[OOC] Abraham: BRB
Zinda Tegram: "[Could you please inform us which systems are, uh…alive?]"
Zinda Tegram: "[We may be able to infer the source.]"
Nephilim: "[To our knowledge, it is just this one and the two neighbors you did not arrive from.]"
Nephilim: "[We have not investigated the one that links further, to see if the infestation has spread in that direction.]"
Nephilim: "[Can you confirm that it has yet to spread to the system you arrived from?]"
Spyboy: "[It has not. Yet.]"
Zinda Tegram: "[…Do you have ships that can survive in Chandley?]"
Zinda Tegram: "[It is unlikely that it is sourced from this system, but White has the wormhole generator that may have gone awry and Chandley is…anomalous. Thanks to you.]"
Nephilim: "[We are uncertain. The Roseblood was a test of adaptations. How well did the Roseblood survive without the protection of the asteroids?]"
Spyboy: "I'm really, really hoping it's not Chandley. Cuz if it's Chandley, and it's not them, there's really nothing we can do about it."
Spyboy: "But if Dakka broke the wormhole generator in White…that could be doing all this."
Abraham: "As them if it's possible that he wormholes were brought alive by another…heresy. Another faction within the Nephilim."
[OOC] Abraham: Also, back.
Zinda Tegram: "I agree."
Spyboy: "[Could the Wenser have done this? Or another heresy?]"
Zinda Tegram: "Spyboy try not to feed into their…delusions."
Nephilim: "[The Wenser is unlikely to have done this. Another heresy…disturbing. Possible.]"
Zinda Tegram: "Frankly they cause more problems than the Wenser do."
Nephilim: "[…if recontact was attempted from the far side…]"
Zinda Tegram: "[We have seen concerted military efforts to construct wormhole generators to Nephilim home systems.]"
Spyboy: "I'm sorry, Zinda. You're an ally. But the Admiral is in fact my direct superior. If he tells me to do something, chances are I'll do it."
Zinda Tegram: "[Is that you, the Wenser, or neither?]"
Zinda Tegram: "Yeah, yeah….alright."
Nephilim: "[The attempts were ours. The Wenser was still infiltrating, and opposed us.]"
Zinda Tegram: "[…Ask permission next time.]"
Nephilim: "[But those were on our terms, to introduce the Abrahim, not…to meaninglessly leap.]"
Spyboy: "[If you do not want to integrate, if you want to wait for us to develop, why are you trying to connect our worlds to yours?]"
Nephilim: "[We do not seek to integrate, merely to reveal.]"
Nephilim: "[Mere observation by those capable may yet suffice.]"
Zinda Tegram: "[OK, whatever. Listen, in case the source of the anomaly is Chandley we lack the capacity to act in that system.]"
Zinda Tegram: "[Are you able to operate in Chandley?]"
Nephilim: "[We ask again: how survivable was the Roseblood against that star without the protection of the asteroids?]"
Abraham: "Zinda was near by, so not very."
Metis: "[There was insufficient data to form a conclusion.]"
Metis: "[If you transmit your plans, we recreate the model.]"
Nephilim: "[…as you say. Tune your shields like so.]" A concentrated burst of modulations - Metis can easily decode it; it will take some effort for Zinda, Spyboy, and Heggy. "[It will take more power, but if exposed to stars such as Oldziey, Chandley, and Mu Cephei in close proximity, it may generate that power while so exposed.]"
Metis sets to work decoding the information for the others.
Nephilim: "[We hesitate to test with non-disposable units. The Roseblood was viewed as sufficiently disposable.]"
[OOC] Metis: We have the Queen of Leaves and her deadly grasses. They're slightly disposable.
[OOC] Abraham: Does The Queen of Leaves live in The House of Leaves?
Zinda Tegram: "[I can supply disposable units.]"
[OOC] Spyboy: I would never call her fighter that.
[OOC] Zinda Tegram: T-the queen will not deign to answer that!
[OOC] Spyboy: Though…given that the Roland now has an outer vegetative coating…
Metis studies the transmitted information. How long would it take to implement this setup, and are there enough resources on the Roland?
[OOC] Metis: Hold that thought there, Spyboy. We don't want that coating mutating on us. It would be tricky.
[OOC] Spyboy: Not a problem. Roland's stuck in Armstrong for now.
[OOC] Spyboy: This is all up to fighters.
The setup, once decoded, turns out to be a programming change, implementable on the fighters without getting out of the cockpits.
Spyboy runs a few models, and assuming it looks safe and easily reversible, implements it in all three fighters…along with a kill switch, just in case.
Spyboy blinks.
It would overload the shields within minutes without an external power source - but if the Nephilim are correct, the blocked radiation would itself serve as a sufficient power source.
Spyboy: "Hey, Admiral, Zinda, do you want the patch uploaded to your fighters? It seems reliable…although I don't know how effective it'll be, and it won't work here."
[OOC] Spyboy: Yes, the uploading and then asking for permission and data channels in that order was entirely deliberate.
Zinda Tegram: "That should be fine."
[OOC] WC GM: Easier to ask forgiveness and all that?
Spyboy: "Alright, I'll send it over a data channel as soon as you open it."
Spyboy lies with the ease of long practice.
[OOC] Metis: More like the answer was presumed and the question a formality.
Abraham: "If Zinda volunteers her fighter, then I have no problems. But I would like to see it in action before we upload it to our own. The power requirements worry me…"
[OOC] Spyboy: Nah, it's definitely the forgiveness one. If he'd asked Zinda might have answered 'no.' Also he keeps forgetting that he 'doesn't have her passwords.'
Zinda Tegram: "You nuts? Use one of the expendables and throw a slither into it."
Nephilim: "[We understand if it will take days simply to decode the information. We can wait.]"
Abraham: "Which is one of /your/ people and only subject to my command while on The Roland."
Metis: "….they act like I am a quad-core. I feel insulted."
[OOC] Abraham: No, they think you're a console.
Spyboy: "Not a problem of that - I wrapped it in a sandbox and kill switch…the only worry would be that if it doesn't draw sufficient power from a rad star, it'll collapse, but I've got a safe shutdown implemented, so we'll at least have minimal shielding…"
Spyboy: "I may tweak it for automatics. We have a long flight ahead of us. Though come to think of it…"
Spyboy remotes into the drone that's headed for Chandley, uploads the patch, sets it on a thirty-second timer, and fires it off.
The drone waits for Chandley's jump point to pulse, then enters.
[OOC] Spyboy: Sorry, I meant triggering the shield.
[OOC] Spyboy: Subtle take-that at the Nephs.
Zinda Tegram: "Hun, don't take it personally. They're just…a little full of themselves."
The drone does not return.
[OOC] Metis: Bad drone!
Zinda Tegram: "Not enough power, maybe?"
[OOC] Spyboy: No idea as to that, since I didn't even have a chance to see if the shield patch had any effect.
Nephilim: "[…you are testing it already.]"
Nephilim: "[HOW?!?]"
[OOC] Spyboy: So could be anything from 'shield made the drone blow up, don't use it,' which was why I wanted to test it here…to 'jump point pulse is too short for transition' to 'power levels are insufficient,' or 'Chandley's black hole has become sentient and hates machines, destroying them on sight.'
Abraham: "Tell them some of the crew are good at math."
Spyboy: "[Out of curiosity, how did you know that?]"
Metis: "[Math.]"
Nephilim: "[We observed what you sent. What other purpose could you have had?]"
Nephilim: "[…'math'?]"
[OOC] Metis: Always lean towards 'sentient and hates'. Always.
[OOC] Spyboy: ….Chandley == Chessa!?
[OOC] Metis: /campaign.
[OOC] WC GM: I promise, Chandley is not a dodecahedral god. At this time.
[OOC] WC GM: Chandley is more spherical-with-ring shaped.
Spyboy: "[We also wanted to see if there was a discernible source to the phenomenon there. Unfortunately, our device did not survive the transition…even as much as a drone without it would have.]"
Spyboy: "[I do not know if this is due to the upgrades, or if it is due to changes in Chandley from the phenomenon.]"
Nephilim: "[Yes, but how have you decoded the effect so fast?]"
Spyboy: "[Please don't insult us.]"
Spyboy: "[Anyway, I will freely concede that the increased gravitational effects noticed here - especially between the star and the jump point…]"
Nephilim: "[…we were not aware this was a natural capability of yours. Our observations suggested otherwise.]"
Spyboy: "[Well, if that is extrapolated even linearly from the mass of a star to the mass of a black hole, that would be…]"
Spyboy: "[I am very glad we sent a drone and not a person.]"
[OOC] Abraham: Oh look, they're trying to apply the normal potential of humanity to this group. That's adorable. A sign of mental illness, but adorable.
[OOC] Spyboy: Far from the first.
Zinda Tegram: "[Also, calling me Abraham's servant is insulting. Please stop doing so.]"
[OOC] Spyboy: Also, it's been a while since we played, so. If any of you have any idea that Spyboy has any intention of answering their question? Yyyyyeah, that's not happening.
Zinda Tegram: "[…As long as we're discussing the topic of unintentional insults.]"
At length, there is a ping from the probe. Something on that frequency, anyway, although there is no other sign of the probe and the signal is too weak to detect useful information, other than that it exists.
Heggy: "[We are not all human, after all.]"
[OOC] Spyboy: Damnit.
Spyboy: "That….is very…very weird."
Spyboy: "Heggy, why did I never put a neutrino transmitter on the drones?"
Nephilim: "[We are aware that the Terrans employ other species, and consider them equal. That is irrelevant: you are not the Abrahim, and the Abrahim is the Abrahim, but you are working with the Abrahim.]"
Heggy: "Because you're not very bright?"
Metis: "I agree, you only emit infrared light."
[OOC] WC GM: XD
Spyboy leans his helmet against his seat rest and closes his eyes. Too bad it doesn't do much good when the people teasing him have a direct line to his consciousness.
[OOC] Abraham: DO NOT DOUBT THE SERVANTS OF THE ABRAHIM!!
Zinda Tegram: "[What possible causal connection could exist between someone's name and some kind of divinity? Abraham is an associate of mine, but I am in no way beholden to follow his orders.]"
Abraham: "This is true, Zinda barely even follows her own orders, and even then only when it's convenient."
Nephilim: "[…name?]"
Zinda Tegram: "[Oh my god you have no idea]"
Zinda Tegram: "OK, in our culture each individual is given a name to refer to them by. They are not unique."
Nephilim: "[Are not 'Admiral' and 'Abrahim' the twin stations? Is the Abrahim not defined by rank?]"
[OOC] WC GM: Was that in []?
Abraham: "Oh dear, I really hope we're not expected to explain the concept of names to them. Tell them to ask Wenser."
[OOC] Zinda Tegram: Yes
Zinda Tegram: "[Abraham is not even a particularly rare name.]"
Nephilim: "[…then…A-bra-HAM…is not an accent?]"
Abraham mutters softly, "Just a slightly pretentious one."
Zinda Tegram: "[He is also an admiral, a station of rank in a particular social institution, but that institution does not govern all humans nor even is it the highest one in his culture.]"
[OOC] Metis: Wait, Zinda, you are about to commit the fundamental error! When someone asks if you are a god, you say….
[OOC] Spyboy: Zinda hates Bill Murray and refuses to watch any of his movies.
[OOC] Zinda Tegram: Yep.
Abraham smirks at the ConFed Navy being called a social institution rather than a military one.
An alien species. A mostly verbal mode of communication, and even that only the closest approximation of a novel communications method. It seems the concept of 'facepalm' is nearly universal, as that is the strong impression now being transmitted by the Nephilim.
[OOC] Zinda Tegram: They probably wouldn't get the distinction.
[OOC] Abraham: Zinda, when someone asks you if you're a fan of Bill Murray, you say YES!
[OOC] Metis: You're right, it should be a cultural institution.
Zinda Tegram: "[Did you not know this?]"
Nephilim: "[But…the deeds…the glory…the impossible odds…are you SURE the Abraham is not also Abrahim?!?]"
Spyboy: "[100%? No. However, we are not entirely sure what the Abrahim is. We are also not sure that you understand what the Abrahim is.]"
Spyboy: "[Also for a group that speaks entirely in 'we' and never in 'I' you seem to…please stand by.]"
Zinda Tegram: "[We have no notion that directly corresponds with what you call the Abrahim. Abraham *is* an exemplary individual, and is in many respects heroic, but honestly there is nothing metaphysically special about him that I am aware of.]"
Spyboy: "Hey. Does anybody know if maybe they have a hive mind?"
Metis: "That would be indicative of a society that utilizes integration for multiple generations."
[OOC] Metis: Just look at what social media is doing to humanity.
Nephilim: "[…let us start with the simplest. Is the Abraham able to solve the Great Hopelessness? Does the Abraham have any understanding of translating minds to artificial mediums, to outlive failing biological housings?]"
[OOC] Abraham: There are lies, damned lies, and statistics. What Zinda just said was a statistic. She knows full well I have Fate Points.
Spyboy: "To an extent, yes. But there's a difference between what we have, and what the Integrated have…and between a total group-mind with no individual ideas or will."
Zinda Tegram: "[…Are you OK?]"
Spyboy: "[Please stand by.]"
Spyboy: "I'm sorry, but did they just ask if Alfred the bunny is possible?"
Nephilim: "[We are suffering extreme ideological confusion and existential worry. We do not believe this corresponds to a status of 'OK'.]"
Spyboy: "Cuz, if so…that answer is definitely yes. Although I categorically refuse to admit it."
Zinda Tegram: "[We have examined those problems in the context of our culture. Uh…your great hopelessness seems to us to be a problem of perspective primarily. It is a problem members of our species have engaged with, and their solutions are…diverse and usually highly personal.]"
Zinda Tegram: "[If there was not an immediate crisis to solve, I would ask if you would like to read examine our body of scholarship on the subject.]"
Nephilim: "[…you have solutions.]"
Zinda Tegram: "[Well, what counts as a solution for a problem like this is highly subjective.]"
Nephilim: "[As in multiple. Solutions.]"
Zinda Tegram: "[They may not work for you. Still, you are welcome to examine them.]"
Nephilim: "[…are…are you ALL ABRAHIM?!?]"
[OOC] Metis: Zinda, that is a mighty fine hole you're digging there.
Abraham: "We have /individual/ solutions. We have not yet found a solution that applies to the entirety of even the Terran race, let alone all the races Terra has come in contact with."
Metis: "…I seem to be fine."
[OOC] Zinda Tegram: Digging is fun~ La la la la~
Spyboy: "But you are not an answer to their 'great hopelessness,' as you started as a thinking machine, not as a person."
[OOC] Spyboy: I KNEW there were similarities between Zinda and Elles! =p
Zinda Tegram: "[That is…your concept of abrahim will probably not match up terribly well and is uh…]"
[OOC] Abraham: Of course you're fine, Metis, you're an Abrahim.
Metis: "That implies a distinction between organic and silicon processors that I have not yet identified."
Spyboy: "Alfred, on the other hand, started as a person, became an uploaded intelligence, and then came to inhabit a body like yours…which is exactly the problem they asked about."
Spyboy: "The difference, Metis, is that I will not live forever. Heggy will not live forever. And Zinda will not live forever. Not without…extensive modification."
Zinda Tegram: "[If I am to be quite blunt, you probably need to attempt to examine your problem from other perspectives.]"
Spyboy: "And if I'm right, they have shed the ability to examine things from other perspectives."
Nephilim: "[Agreed. From your perspectives.]"
Zinda Tegram: "[Not only from ours.]"
Nephilim: "[The exposure theory is correct. Merely having you speak with the homeworlds should suffice.]"
Zinda Tegram: "[Uh…]"
Nephilim: "[…the Wenser heresy may have been correct too.]"
Zinda Tegram: "[Please don't jump to conclusions prematurely.]"
[OOC] Metis: We can probably talk them into committing suicide.
[OOC] Metis: Religion is one of the methods of solving the Great Hopelessness….
[OOC] Metis: brb
Nephilim: "[Indeed. We merely concede the possibility at this time, pending further examination.]"
Zinda Tegram: "[I would like to propose that uh, it is also possible that philosophical underpinnings of your entire project may be ill founded also.]"
[OOC] Metis: back
Spyboy: "Admiral, we're gonna have to deviate from course to get a good read on what we can. We'll catch up soon."
Spyboy: "Heggy, point us at the drone. I need to get the big dish on it."
Abraham: "As always, log everything."
Spyboy: "Of course."
Zinda Tegram: "[For instance, you seem very invested in the existence of an abrahim. What if there are no perfect matches to that concept?]"
Spyboy starts pulling in every scan reading he can get, including interferometry using Zinda and Abraham's fighters. Not that he's admitting to either.
It takes a bit to get close enough to get a good picture - but even from beyond visible range, it soon becomes apparent that the transmission is from a very small piece of the probe - specifically, the antenna, removed from within the probe and with just enough power to transmit something. This is inconsistent with being fried or crushed.
…if Spyboy had not just been in Oldziey the thought might not have occurred, but it is entirely consistent with a minefield on the far side of the jump point.
[OOC] Spyboy: How distant is it? How long would it take to fly there?
[OOC] WC GM: Call it an hour to get that much data.
Nephilim: "[If there are no Abrahim to be found, then we have wasted our efforts as all of our efforts have been wasted.]"
Metis: "[The acquisition of data is a pure motive, and the disproving of a theory contributes to total knowledge. Both are admirable.]"
Spyboy grimaces and fires off the other drone on his fighter. It can get close enough to retransmit what the other drone is trying to send, while he can catch up with Abraham and Zinda.
Spyboy: "Alert. The drone seems to have suffered battle damage."
Metis: "That is inconsistent with the records on Chandley."
Spyboy: "It looks like a mine hit managed to get a chunk of the drone back through the jump point."
Nephilim: "[…what is 'pure motive'?]"
Metis: "That would imply that something was able to persist through the jump point long enough to mine said jump point, which further implies that it may be possible for a sufficiently resilient object to survive."
Metis: "[A motive that does not have a component of personal gain or benefit.]"
Zinda Tegram: "Metis…please try to uh, offer them particular philosophies after they have grasped the possibility of there being multiple philosophies."
The second probe can not get further data from the first probe's transmission, but it does readily confirm the wreckage is burnt and has jagged edges, consistent with being blown clear of an exploding probe. It seems to have slipped through the jump point as part of the constant mass exchange.
Metis: "I wanted them to know that their existential quest for personal meaning was not entirely pointless. They seem depressed. "
Spyboy: "I'm really hoping that the White jump point is not mined as well."
Nephilim: "[Why would any entity engage in an activity of no benefit, even deferred or delayed?]"
Spyboy: "And yeah, I'm wondering how, as well as why, Chandley could have mines."
Spyboy: "….unless it's not as radioactive as it used to be."
Metis: "[Of no personal benefit. The benefit is to the collective of knowledge, the expansion of understanding.]"
Spyboy sends a message to the planet asking for the surviving computer networks to give him their logs of jump point traffic. Not asking the people, mind, because they could say no, or worse, they could say yes and mean no.
Metis: "Could mines hold up under that degree of radiation and gravitic pressure?"
[OOC] WC GM: Which jump points?
[OOC] Spyboy: Mostly Chandley, if the filters can do that, but also White and Armstrong. Armstrong I'd expect to be full enough of traffic as to be useless.
Nephilim: "[…but is not such a benefit to the collective also of personal benefit?]"
Spyboy: "I would have said no."
Spyboy: "Besides, mining a jump point is normally an exercise in futility."
Spyboy: "They orbit the primary; the jump point exists as a locus between the primary and the linked primary…which means it does not."
Spyboy: "So jump stations and mines and jump forts are useful for a few days to a few weeks at most."
Metis: "[That is for you to decide. The only entity that can define what is or is not 'good' or a 'benefit' is yourself. …and Zinda.]"
[OOC] Spyboy: pfft
Zinda Tegram: "[If I may, uh, interrupt my daughter's exchange there are extensive records of arguments about the subject you two are discussing. It may be more productive for you to examine them And…oh, geez.]"
Chandley has had very little traffic since the battle, all experiments to traverse the system: traffic goes in, nothing comes out. White has had a small amount of traffic, all academics and supplies - until it suddenly shut off not long ago. Armstrong's traffic likewise follows expected patterns and amounts until shutting down.
Nephilim: "[Zinda is the Abrahim?]"
Metis: "[Zinda is the Zinda.]"
Nephilim: "[Zinda is the Zinda.]"
[OOC] Spyboy: Zinda is Groot.
[OOC] Metis: We are all Zinda?
[OOC] Spyboy: Stands to reason. Zinda is Wenser, after all.
[OOC] WC GM: Only inductively, if we are all Wenser.
Zinda Tegram: "[…Oh geez…]"
[OOC] Metis: QED
Metis: "They should be fine now."
[OOC] Metis: Metis; starting religious wars since whatever-year-this-campaign-started
[OOC] Zinda Tegram: Hahaha oh god
[OOC] Zinda Tegram: We're in grissom right?
[OOC] Spyboy: Yes.
Nephilim: "[The Zinda's daughter…is the Zinda's daughter a metal unit?]"
Zinda Tegram checks to see if she's still in range of the university.
[OOC] WC GM: Yes.
Communications with the university are possible from just about anywhere in the system.
Zinda Tegram radios the university. "Hey, listen, are your archives still working?"
Zinda Tegram: "I need, uh, pretty much all of your philosophy papers. From as far back as you can go."
Edward: "They are."
Edward: "We can transmit an archive. Why do you need them?"
Zinda Tegram: "Uh…I'm probably not at liberty to say. The short answer is that I'm talking to something and it's…not very well educated."
[OOC] Spyboy: "We need to complete the Voice of Planet before the Morganites do."
Zinda Tegram: "Culturally, I mean."
[OOC] Zinda Tegram: "Yep."
Heggy: "Spyboy. Keep your mouth closed. I know what you're going to say, and don't."
Spyboy: "But-"
Metis: "[My frame is mostly metallic, but I am not my frame.]"
Edward: "…a new student? Well - if you need them, you shall have them! It will take a while to transmit, but you'll have at least our complete index within 30 minutes."
Heggy: "You will be sleeping on the couch tonight."
Zinda Tegram: "Thanks. I'll see if I can set a redirect up."
Spyboy: "Please. We both know I will be sleeping in my seat tonight…"
Zinda Tegram: "[Hey you should probably read this.]"
Nephilim: "[We thought we detected a puppet. Are you a full entity within-]"
Nephilim: "[We stand ready to read.]"
Zinda Tegram proceeds to set the aforementioned redirect to send.
The feed comes in moments after Zinda is set up.
At the very least, it shuts the Nephilim up for a while.
Metis: "…a puppet. How rude."
Zinda Tegram: "Extremely."
Spyboy: "So what we've established is that Abraham is not the Abrahim."
Spyboy: "Elles is."
Zinda Tegram: "…No."
Metis: "I do not think we have a useful definition of what an Abrahim would be. It is early to start assigning designations."
[OOC] Zinda Tegram: Hopefully said archive contains ethics papers on paperclip AI.
[OOC] Metis: Meanwhile, Zinda is /always/ Zinda.
[OOC] Metis: And sometimes a plant.
[OOC] Zinda Tegram: …gao gao.
Spyboy: "Right now? An Abrahim is a being capable of doing things that fall in a category that the Nephilim consider to be impossible."
Metis: "Then they are correct that we are all Abrahims, and so are they. This definition does not provide useful discrimination."
Spyboy: "The least likely but most possible explanation is that Abrahim was the name of the Neph's scientist caste, which for some reason they lost and have learned to think is…I dunno."
Metis: "Access to their historical records would prove useful."

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