Difference between revisions of "2018-11-24 Vessel"

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(Created page with "{{Log |logtitle=Vessel |logdate=2018/11/24 |location=Metroplex - Shockwave's Lab |participants=Penchant, Hound, |npcs=Shockwave, |scenegm=Tez, |summary=Hound uses the cover of...")
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"I'm not going to stop and check," Hound says finally, as he starts through the directions of Penchant's mutterings. Most of his attention now is on finding the way out, and on handling Penchant with the proper levels of care, so he can be forgiven for being a little bit distracted.
"I'm not going to stop and check," Hound says finally, as he starts through the directions of Penchant's mutterings. Most of his attention now is on finding the way out, and on handling Penchant with the proper levels of care, so he can be forgiven for being a little bit distracted.
<< "...Well, thanks for coming to... get me, Commander," >> Penchant manages, his cadence clearly off. He'll just assume Soundwave couldn't make it for VERY IMPORTANT REASONS. << "Remind me to... pay you back. I think I still have... Ratbat's gold card," >> he jokes, then promptly zonks out.
By the time Penchant zonks out, they are maybe 3/4 of the way out.
By the time Penchant zonks out, they are maybe 3/4 of the way out.

Latest revision as of 16:36, 25 November 2018

Date 2018/11/24
Location Metroplex - Shockwave's Lab
Participants Penchant, Hound
NPCs Shockwave
Scene GM Tez
Summary Hound uses the cover of the siege on Metroplex to rescue Penchant from Shockwave's lab.

Distantly, Penchant becomes aware that the lights are out. There's a thin glow of emergency lighting. The lights have been off. He's not sure how long it has been dark. Time has a way of ... slipping away from him.

There's a chaos of scents assaulting Hound as he makes his way through Metroplex, trailing Penchant's particular signature. It's faint, so very faint. It's been a long time since he's moved through these halls, but Hound's recently caught on to a relatively fresh trail, perhaps only days old, that leads him down quiet corridors. His enhanced senses give him plenty of warning as others approach: time to find a corner, illuse cover, and wait for the threat to pass. Thus far, he hasn't met any real resistance.

The resistance is outside, and the ground shakes under Hound's feet under the assault of massive siege weaponry. The lights overhead flicker, but remain steady: bright, fully powered.

For Penchant, time passes, and then he realizes: with the loss of power, the magnets that locked him in place have also been disabled. The drones in the room are powered with remote batteries, but with their home hub offline, they are powered down into a sleep mode: no commands coming to stir them to action. Penchant can hear them. He can hear quite a lot, really, and time slips away again as he loses track of the here and the now in the flow of everything that has happened: he tracks the drones memories, reliving them as though they are his own. Fortunately, they have fairly scant memory banks, and while he watches as Shockwave disassembles his own body, he's kicked into the present on the memory of a far-off explosion.

    <FS3> Hound rolls Olfaction: Good Success. (3 4 3 7 5 6 2 2 7 4)

Penchant can't focus on the drones' memories for too long. As worrisome as the tremors are, they're helpful in remaining grounded. He clings to the sound and sensation, and it takes him a while to realize the power is out. So he can move. Maybe. He tries to coax his arms into working, to help him sit upright. And then, carefully, he casts a small psychic net to see if Shockwave is anywhere nearby.

    <FS3> Penchant rolls Telepathy-2: Success. (2 4 5 7 4 5 3 6)

The explosion has Hound pausing in his tracks momentarily. He listens, braces his feet in case there are any more powerful aftershocks, but the brief buzz of the lights is over in moments. A second after that, he's on the move again, covering the ground as quickly as he can on two feet. He picks up the pace this time, loping forward with a lengthened stride. No telling who's got the upper hand out there-- the sooner he can report this mission a success, the better. And that means finding Penchant, at the end of this new trail.

Penchant is unable to coax his arms into working. It soon becomes clear that the reason he is unable to coax his arms into working is because he doesn't have any. Sitting up is a further challenge: it requires a certain degree of leverage, pulling on his lower limbs. They are unresponsive. They provide no feedback. Ah: yes, wait. That's right. They aren't there.

As Penchant casts a wide net, he tangles around those nearby drones, and the recent focus of his thoughts sends him plunging straight into the dark pools of their memory banks, where he relieves his own surgery at their very able hands as they assist Shockwave in stripping Penchant down to parts. Each drone has a slightly different take on this: it looks like this has been done a few times, perhaps in a few different ways, and even at a distance, Penchant can see through the drone's eyes how one of those surgeries was tuned not for science, but for pain, explicit torture under Shockwave's cold eye, as Penchant becomes a simple vessel for communication.

Then Penchant's out again, on the other side of memory, to note Shockwave two rooms distant, trying to get power back online to this section.

As Hound bounds through the halls, the scent grows strong, clear, and energon-sharp. He's passing ... storage bays. Forges? The foundries, where metal is collected, smelted, and reforged. And there's where he comes across Penchant's body in a carefully marked bin: cassette frame, marked with the date of extraction and lab it was taken from.

Penchant attempts to shake away the awful imagery. He didn't need to see different friggin' angles of this. Okay, no arms, no legs. And the threat of torture just rooms away. He tries to think up a plan, a way out, because there's an opportunity, the power is out. But weariness rakes at the edges of his consciousness, tempting him to just savor the seconds without pain, to seek comfort instead. Metroplex. He tilts his mind towards the titan, reaching out blindly. He doesn't notice the scream that wells up from his own voccalizer.

It's like plunging into the ocean: and not the warm, gentle ocean of the Gulf; this is the Arctic in a storm. Penchant is lost in a moment, blown away from himself, and from this moment.

Nerves are a dreadful wormy thing eating their way through Hound's internals the further he moves through Metroplex. The further he goes and the sharper the scent becomes, the worse it gets. This should be cells, should be labs of some kind-- anywhere that Shockwave might keep his prisoners and... experiments. He was there when Soundwave recieved his communication from Shockwave via Penchant, it hasn't been that long. Only, he's beginning to hunt through garbage, and it's making every sense he has prickle.

When he reaches the container, it takes him too long to connect the smell he's taking in with the reality of the image before him. When he does, finally, he hisses out a half-audible curse and reaches out to touch it, forcing himself past a moment of dread to touch the cold, still frame. Indecision has his incisors digging into his bottom lip, before he scoops up the tiny body and turns his attention back toward the trail. It isn't enough to bring back the body, he's already sure of that. Information, or destruction-- One or both of those might be enough to placate Soundwave. So Hound casts about for other smells. Anything more of Penchant, or of Shockwave, to lead him down another trail.

    <FS3> Hound rolls Olfaction: Great Success. (8 7 6 8 7 8 5 1 4 5)

With Penchant's fragile body all but falling to pieces in Hound's hands -- separating along incisions carved, and carved again, carved deep, carved to hurt -- he has absolutely no trouble picking up a scent from it. In fact, he can track the scent of it all the way back to the lab marked on the box without having any idea of where he is, or where he is going. But as the storage bays turn to surgery bays, it's clear that Hound's on the scent.

In the overwhelming shock of data that is Metroplex's mind, Penchant is nothing but a mote -- but he's a mote that, once marked, is caught gently in a current and lifted to clasp, awareness shocked and shivering, on Metroplex's surveillance systems. Penchant can see Hound tracking in his direction ... and he has controls over the doors.

Hound passes from light into dark: this area has had the power knocked out, and only a bare gleam of emergency lighting shines down on him.

    <FS3> Penchant rolls Recon: Good Success. (6 2 5 5 2 3 5 4 4 3 7 7 4 4 5)

As Hound approaches, Penchant sees the door open noiselessly behind Hound too late to give warning as Shockwave emerges.

Penchant mentally stumbles and forgets what he was doing. Where he is. What's happening. Who... Something important. There was something important. Slag slag slag. There's green somewhere, and when Penchant finally understands what he's looking at with Metroplex's help, his relief is almost enough to overpower the rush of returning thought. But he's not quick enough to help. He tries to call for Hound.

Warning lights blip on the walls near Hound.

'Soundwave is going to kill me,' is the one thought that lingers in Hound's helm as he finally steps through the doorway into darkness. 'As soon as he's done with Shockwave.' He starts moving down it, keeping his pace slow and quiet thanks to the dim lighting, wary of stumbling upon one of the occupying Decepticons. So when the lights on the walls blip, Hound reacts instantly, freezing in place and drawing a hologram around himself.

    <FS3> Hound rolls Reaction+reaction: Great Success. (7 5 8 8 7 1)
    <FS3> Hound rolls Holograms: Good Success. (5 2 7 1 4 6 5 7 8 5)

Hound who? There has literally never been a Hound in Metroplex, ever. At any point. Not in four million years; not in ten billion years. In fact, who is Hound?

Shockwave moves past Hound, and directly toward Penchant's room.

Penchant realizes that the little blip was his blip. Oh, okay. Maybe, then...

He clings tightly to whatever keeps him from getting swept away by Metroplex's vast mind, and attempts to locate the correct set of doors to close in Shockwave's face.

    <FS3> Penchant rolls Projection: Good Success. (6 4 5 3 6 3 8 8 4 5 1 3 3 5 2 3)

Hound wants badly to twitch when he hears someone move past him, and even more so when he sees who it is. Being in the same place as Shockwave is bad news. The best thing for him to do would be to leave this place entirely and go away with what he already has, maybe sabotage some other part of the base. It's only the memory of a carved-up frame, limp and lifeless, that has Hound moving forward, following Shockwave to wherever it is he's going.

The doors to the lab open, and a powerful wave of energon-and-fear stink smacks into Hound with almost physical force. If not for the body he carries, he might not be able to identify Penchant's scent in there. There's little enough of him, after all.

As doors part, Hound hears -- something:

It's the sound of a voccalizer that pops and hisses on static crackles, long pushed past its limits and left in disrepair. There's a strange, strained, voiceless hiss, and it isn't until the doors slam shut on Shockwave's, uhm, chest that Hound realizes that it's the sound of a scream forced from a voccalizer no longer able to produce the sound.

Then, there's a great, grinding tear of metal as Shockwave forces the doors from their tracks and steps forward. "Where are you?" Shockwave asks of what remains Penchant's frame: his life cord, spark and processor and transformation cog, strung together beneath the shattered helm.

Penchant takes a few extra seconds to shake the terror that comes with hearing Shockwave's voice again. He searches around for those drones, willing sharp waves of signals into them to rouse them out of their standby modes. In his frantic grasping, he skims through Metroplex's surveillance system, looking for a clear way out for Hound.

    <FS3> Penchant rolls Projection-4: Good Success. (5 1 3 1 3 1 6 2 8 6 8 7)
    <FS3> Penchant rolls Recon-2: Great Success. (7 5 1 5 8 2 4 7 8 8 4 2 6)

The eyes of the drones brighten: they are both now online and responding to Penchant's direction. They run off internal power reserves, and while they aren't quite fully charged, it's near enough.

Impossible as it is to do two things and do them well, Penchant -- manages. He does more than manage. He throws a desperate line that Metroplex lifts with a gentle thread of attention, and weaves the path out as a brightness in Penchant's memory that only he will see: a thin thread of Autobot red to lead them deep into the tunnels, and out.

The sound sends shivers down Hound's spinal struts even before he catches sight of what's producing them. That's enough to send a roiling wave of disgust through him, one that's followed by a rising tide of anger. This is what Shockwave does, without mercy--he deserves something back. So caught up in this is Hound that he doesn't notice the brightening optic on the drone. He's too busy coming forward to slash his clawed hand across the back of Shockwave's neck.

    <FS3> Hound rolls Unarmed: Good Success. (1 2 8 8 3 2 6 6 5 2)

The slash of Hound's claws catches against the cables of Shockwave's neck without doing much more than surface damage. It does, however, thoroughly distract Shockwave from the waking light in the drones eyes as he turns his attention back to Hound. Given his expressionless features, one will have to read the surprise in his voice: "An Autobot?" Not who he expected, then, for Soundwave's cassette.

Shockwave brings his arm back to push Hound back into the wall, and he moves with all the power of a point one percenter.

    <FS3> Opposed Roll -- Hound=unarmed Vs Shockwave=14
    <        Hound: Good Success (4 6 1 4 4 7 6 8 2 8)          Shockwave: Amazing Success (5 4 1 5 1 8 8 7 4 6 7 8 7 1)
    <                Net Result: Shockwave wins - Solid Victory

Penchant wrests control and focuses it on two drones, warming their laser scalpels. He sees with extra clarity through them, and promptly zeroes in for round two, but elects to go for Shockwave's knees this time. He sends twin lances of across the back of each joint.

    <FS3> Penchant rolls Projection-2: Good Success. (6 7 8 5 2 2 4 8 2 5 2 6 3 2)
    <FS3> Opposed Roll -- Drone1=8+3 Vs Shockwave=14
    <        Drone1: Great Success (8 6 7 6 3 5 4 5 8 7 5)          Shockwave: Good Success (4 3 4 5 8 5 4 1 4 5 5 7 1 4)
    <                Net Result: Drone1 wins - Solid Victory
    <FS3> Opposed Roll -- Drone2=8+3 Vs Shockwave=14
    <        Drone2: Great Success (6 7 7 8 4 1 1 1 4 8 8)          Shockwave: Good Success (2 5 1 6 8 5 7 2 6 7 5 4 2 2)
    <                Net Result: Drone2 wins - Solid Victory

The surgical lasers don't quite manage to sever Shockwave's joints, but they do carve through enough to impede his stability, and melt the rest into a locked stiffness. Shockwave twists, caught entirely by surprise by this attack, and drops Hound to shoot at the nearest of the drones.

    <FS3> Opposed Roll -- Drone1=8 Vs Shockwave=14
    <        Drone1: Success (6 1 6 8 2 1 1 6)          Shockwave: Great Success (6 4 8 5 6 8 7 6 6 1 3 4 2 8)
    <                Net Result: Shockwave wins - Solid Victory

The blow has Hound yelping in pain as he's slammed back against the wall, biting painfully on his glossa as his helm impacts with it. He's struggling to put up a defense, anticipating another blow that doesn't come, and is instead left surprised when he's dropped. He has to stagger to catch his balance. Peripherally he's aware of the drones, but what's most important now is that Shockwave is turned away from him. Once again he charges for Shockwave, but this time, he doesn't aim for the neck with his claws, but to knock Shockwave down.

Penchant might've flinched if he could, from the damage endured by the less fortunate drone. Thankfully it doesn't feel pain, at least as Penchant knows it, so he sends it back into battle alongside its buddy. One tries to carve into the barrel of Shockwave's weaponized arm, the other going for that optic again. <<Hound- The slab- Way out...>>

Hound spends 1 luck points on Taking Shockwave out.

    <FS3> Penchant rolls Projection-2: Good Success. (6 3 1 6 5 4 1 1 7 7 1 7 6 6)
    <FS3> Opposed Roll -- Hound=unarmed Vs Shockwave=0
    <        Hound: Good Success (5 1 7 8 4 7 5 4 6 3)          Shockwave: Embarassing Failure (1)
    <                Net Result: Hound wins - Crushing Victory
    <FS3> Opposed Roll -- Drone1=8+3 Vs Shockwave=14
    <        Drone1: Great Success (1 1 7 4 2 4 7 8 6 8 4)          Shockwave: Great Success (5 7 3 2 3 3 5 5 4 8 8 7 6 4)
    <                Net Result: DRAW
    <FS3> Opposed Roll -- Drone2=8+3 Vs Shockwave=14
    <        Drone2: Great Success (1 1 8 4 5 8 8 3 6 8 4)          Shockwave: Great Success (5 3 4 7 2 1 7 2 3 7 3 7 8 5)
    <                Net Result: Shockwave wins - Marginal Victory

Knocked down, Shockwave lands awkwardly: knees locked, tit bruised. Front. That's his front. He can't quite get his hands beneath him fast enough, and he only just manages to twist away from the drone. His gun still takes damage, but it remains functional enough to fire another shot.

    <FS3> Opposed Roll -- Drone1=8 Vs Shockwave=14
    <        Drone1: Success (7 5 3 2 1 3 6 5)          Shockwave: Good Success (8 6 3 4 5 4 2 2 7 3 6 7 1 6)
    <                Net Result: Shockwave wins - Solid Victory

The first drone shatters and slags into waste metal.

It's not as satisfying as having taken him out with the first strike would have been, but Hound still lets out a satisfied rumble of sound when Shockwave hits the ground hard. Now that he's prone, Hound takes the opportunity to strike again, heedless of whether the strike will disable or worse as long as it gets Shockwave to stop moving. << "Just a second," >> he comms back, even as he bares his teeth and strikes the scientist. << "Can you be moved?" >>

Penchant screams when one drone shatters out of existence, a crackling hiss from the table. His remaining drone is "released" as his focus wavers. << "Leave him! I don't know, j-just grab whatever's most in tact!" >>

Shockwave is just bringing his gun to bear again when Hound tears into him, and this time -- he's still as Hound rises bloodied from the purple frame slumped to the floor. The remaining drone goes back into standby.

Hound pulls away from the body, shaking drops of energon off of his claws as soon as he's sure that Shockwave won't be shooting him in the back as soon as he steps away. The growl in the back of his throat dies down as he looks at the collection of Penchant's parts, struggling to hide a grimace as he hesitates. "Sorry," He mutters, finally. "This probably is going to hurt. But we've got help waiting." As gently as he can, Hound starts with connecting the broken little helm, trying not to shudder as he does.

    <FS3> Penchant rolls Recon: Good Success. (2 3 1 3 4 7 2 2 8 6 4 2 3 3 4)
    <FS3> Hound rolls Engineering: Success. (5 3 4 7)

Facing the puzzle of Penchant's frame, Hound quickly realizes this is well beyond his skill. The best he can manage for now is to shield Penchant's spark by enclosing it in the majority of what remains of his chest armor. Hound also manages to disconnect the IV and reconnect Penchant to his main energon tank. He thinks. He's -- pretty sure, anyway. It's awful and uncomfortable for Penchant, but it's not agony -- and it will hold. For now.

"Sorry," Hound mutters again, as he finishes up-- thinks he finishes up. He's wincing as he steps away from the medical equipment and life support. It's a good thing that Penchant already looked up that way out for them, because Hound doesn't want to spend another moment slowly dodging his way out of Metroplex. "Funny thing about that-- it kind of is," he says, in response, as he heads for the slab that Penchant pointed out earlier.

Penchant ends up pretty useless after that round of sensor-stabbing engineering. He tries to direct them to the proper wall panels that hopefully fold away and reveal Metroplex's tunnels, muttering cardinal directions from Hound's grasp. Eventually he gathers enough wherewithal to ask, << "Did you kill him?" >>

    <FS3> Penchant rolls Recon+2: Good Success. (2 4 4 8 2 5 1 1 3 2 2 1 2 4 7 2 4)

Something about that last shuffle back to his body -- or part of it -- leaves Penchant overwhelmed by external stimuli, and too busy listening to the agony of his own frame to make out any more information than what Hound can tell him. And Hound hears -- nothing.

"I'm not going to stop and check," Hound says finally, as he starts through the directions of Penchant's mutterings. Most of his attention now is on finding the way out, and on handling Penchant with the proper levels of care, so he can be forgiven for being a little bit distracted.

<< "...Well, thanks for coming to... get me, Commander," >> Penchant manages, his cadence clearly off. He'll just assume Soundwave couldn't make it for VERY IMPORTANT REASONS. << "Remind me to... pay you back. I think I still have... Ratbat's gold card," >> he jokes, then promptly zonks out.

By the time Penchant zonks out, they are maybe 3/4 of the way out.

Good news: they are out of the fighting.

Bad news: they are hundreds of meters below the surface of Cybertron and Hound doesn't know where he is.

It's fine.

    <FS3> Hound rolls Olfaction+6: Great Success. (6 5 6 4 8 2 3 7 8 6 5 3 4 8 4 7)

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