Mutant Year: CW (or I *Heart* the Apocalypse)

Episode 13: Mother's Day

Still in the Mimir facility, suspected to be Eden. the team continued to explore the circular chamber. Riddle soon began to suspect that they could be in some kind of silo, from things she had read in the past. As they explored the facility, they found massive living chambers, suitable for hundreds of individuals. It was when they came to the command center that events became more confusing.

A command center, with numerous monitors and consoles were set up, with many individuals dead, all wearing the Mimir logo. The person in the chair that oversaw the command was dead with a self inflicted gun shot wound. It was evident they had all been dead for at least twenty years.

At the main monitor, words came up, threatening them to leave. Roz attempted to reach out, mentally, to see if someone was there, but whomever was sending the messages must have been further away. When it was apparent they were not going to leave Eden, they were again attacked by some of the cybernetic mutants. During the fight, Spike was injured badly, but Dex and Tasty managed to patch him up, after his rage beats powers set in.

At this point they were determined to solve the mystery of Eden once and for all.

They descended into the lower level, which was smaller than the ring they had just vacated. They found that whereas the above was for living quarters, the level below was science. They discovered a cryo changer where Mimir employees were left sleeping, as well as numerous traps left behind. Then they found the genetics labs which answered many more questions.

The genetics labs were designed with cages and inside were beds, small enough for children. They even found old records on hundreds of subjects, including themselves, other members of the Ark as well as members of other arks they had encountered. They then found documents, written by Dr. Reitzius, perhaps the leader of the facility, who detailed the plans they had. The children, the individuals in the wasteland, were experiments, designed by someone else, likely off the planet, who wanted them to colonize and cleanse the earth for repopulation. However, due to the unstable nature of the experiments, there was discussion of destroying them and starting again with more loyal subjects. However, a faction of scientists, including Dr Nixon (Nix) decided to spirit the children away and hide them in different facilities, making sure that the mother of the experiments, Dr. Reitzius, could not get her hands on them.

Whereas Eden was not a lie, it was different than expected and less than hoped. But now they were on the verge of having answers.

Further searching of the facility found more traps Riddle was able to switch off, a nuclear reactor as well as a corridor to a missile silo with a rocket inside. It was prepped and ready for launch. But they left that alone for the time being. After a violent altercation with three of the mutants, they pressed on.

They entered the main console room with Dr. Reitzius behind a closed door with glass walls. She had two of her mutant creatures with her and gestured towards a large door that read ‘Titan.’ She explained that they were her children of sorts, they all were, as the experiments of Dr. Atwood would have to live on. Dr. Atwood, she explained was the brainchild behind all of this and the savior for the human race. They, the explorers, played a very small part in that and what little part they played was to come to an end as she had to exterminate them.

The explorers would have none of that and Tasty used his fire creation to set her on fire inside the room. The mutants attacked and as the others unleashed their mutants powers (which Dr. Reitzius seemed to forget about), she was blinded and confused but managed to hit the button releasing the door that read ‘Titan.’

A spectacular battle ensued, with Titan emerging from the closure. A massive, writing, tentacled mess of a creature, once human, came forth to destroy them, smashing everything in its path. The hero, as per usual, was Spike, who managed kill it, with aid from Dex. Once everything was calm, they healed their wounds and investigated the rocket behind Dr. Reitzius’ chamber.

They managed to figure how it worked and donned the protective gear and launched it, allowing it to take them behind the stars to the predetermined coordinates. They learned of the powerful civilization in space that was monitoring the progress. Leaving behind the wasteland they were to embark on a new journey that would now show them the advancements of humanity and what role the Mimir Corporation could provide.

It was the dawn of a new era for them all.

Episode 12: Was That You as a Puppy?

The explorers spent a day recuperating before they decided to continue to investigate the hidden room underneath the facility of The Monarchs. They managed to make their way down through the tunnel and first found living quarters where they were able to scrounge some bullets and food. Then the shower system they discovered, allowed them to refill some of their water.

Continuing through the other direction, they encountered more of the mysterious moving lights, but it was quickly discovered that these were actually small bugs, using their bio-lights to communicate with each other. When Roz tried to scan for intelligence, she discovered that the creatures were, indeed, highly intelligent as well as highly aggressive.

Carefully avoiding the bugs and discovering that they were pained by strong light, the explorers found a sealed door that they determined they needed to access. Spike used his force and strength to begin tearing the door down which allowed the others to begin to access the sealed room.

The room contained materials that indicated it was Mimir-backed, an clearly was some kind of facility. It had clearly been abandoned some time ago but as they went through the compound, they found some very important clues. They found documents they were able to read that talked about revolts and angry individuals that had to be shot. The most interesting clue, however, was the video and the machine to play it. The video showed a man escorting children out of a facility that read ‘Eden.’ The man was clearly a much younger Nix, and his uniform read ‘Dr. Nixon.’ The child in his hands looked very much like a young Spike. This meant that Eden was, indeed, a real place. But not what they expected. Tasty made as much of it as he could but the final clue was a photograph of a research team, that included a young Nix as well as someone named ‘Dr. Reitzius,’ which was a name they had heard before.

Tasty noticed that the video, in the background, showed The Fallen Lady. They could find Eden by getting to The Fallen Lady.

The group found an exit from the facility that dropped them outside of The Monarch’s facility. The team decided to make their way across the Wasteland to the Fallen Lady.

They avoided several hazards and dangers, getting though the swamp water and fending off attacks from aggressive creatures. They camped at the Fallen Lady and then Riddle and Dex figured out which direction they needed to go from there. They found the exact location, using their boat to get to the hidden facility known as Eden.

Eventually they came to the facility and used a key card to gain access. The facility was dark, massive and was clearly still in use by someone. It was here that they found some of the metal men they had previously seen in the distance. Shortly after coming in, they were attacked by some kind of mutant, in the service of whomever or whatever was in control of the facility.

Episode 11: Welcome to the Hell Collective

Waiting to negotiate with Madame Monarch showed that the entire ark of The Monarchs was a tense living arrangement with Madame Monarch and her loyalists keeping a tight grip on the people. When they finally got to speak with her at length, she proved to have a fair stance on trade. Roz was able to negotiate the exact terms that Vyolet wanted. But during the discussions there was a shaking of the building with the power temporarily going out. It was after that that the question then turned to the source of the tremor which led Madame Monarch to a new proposal. She offered bullets in exchange for a modified weapon from Riddle, as well as getting them to explore a door they had found underneath their headquarters. Dex was intrigued by the offer and Tasty wanted the opportunity to perform in front of her people.

As the team went to the basement they found a crumbled wall where The Monarchs were studying a hidden room beyond. It seems their attention was towards a massive metal door that they could not open, despite the explosives that they were using. Riddle agreed to look at the door and after several hours was able to crack the mechanical lock that was preventing access. Madame Monarch provided them the bullets, as promised, and the team went in. Spike led the way and they were accompanied by several of Madame Monarch’s workers. The deal was that they would split an even distribution of what was discovered inside.

The facility inside was some kind of bunker that clearly once held numerous individuals, perhaps to hide from the catastrophe that had consumed the old world. They found some useful items early on but were soon set upon by Zone Zombies, the reanimated corpses of those who once lived here. From the mouths of the Zombies flew strange lights that seemed to scatter, perhaps with a life of their own.

Defeating the Zombies was not difficult but there were mental attacks that came from an unknown source that managed to create setbacks.

After defeating the Zombies, they explored the rooms and found living quarters as well as an area that once contained some monitors. The monitors came to life and words scrawled across the monitors telling them they were in the ‘Hell Collective’ and they were unwelcome. The individual controlling the monitors then showed a display of power: turning off the lights and flashing more lights around the facility.

The group pressed on, finding more areas of the hidden chamber, finding sleeping areas, common areas and a dining/kitchen facility. However, the kitchen contained metal warriors that seemed to echo the threats of the Hell Collective, but they were dispatched, however, with some difficulty.

It was after the altercation with the metal warriors that they decided it was best to retreat and move out of the area, in order to rest and regain their strength. They loaded up on scrap from the metal men and found food in the kitchen and made their way out, back to the Monarchs. They divided up their spoils of war and were taken to rooms to rest.

That night they were approached by a mysterious figure, Kest. Kest did not wish to be seen by others as he explained he was a member of the group that opposed Madame Monarch’s rule. He wished for the team to shut down the trade route they had proposed, stating that these supplies would empower The Monarch’s rule. The group said they would consider other options but the trade was good for their people, as well. But Roz was able to read his mind and determine that his motive was to have the group tank the deal or he would be forced to destroy the oil refinery that Madame Monarch was using as her base of power. At least Roz now knew where the refinery was, a mile or so from the Monarchs.

The most interesting thing Kest revealed was that he had access to an Eden artifact he was willing to provide to the group if he and his group were installed as the new leaders of the Monarchs. This provided a new twist to the deal Kest had offered.

Meanwhile the group needed to go back under the theater to continue their expedition to the so-called Hell Collective.

Episode 10: Rot Goat Roundup

Vyolet summed the explorers to her inner chamber where the entire Dawn Vault Committee were gathered, including Regal of the Toadies. They were disappointed at the lack of artifacts the group were returning and suggested that they double their efforts. On the upside, however, they promoted Dex to the number two stalker of the group, right behind the cocky Bojangle. After a disagreement between Roz and Vyolet, Roz excused herself. The Dawn Vault Committee asked that Dex and the rest of the group make an expedition towards The Monarchs, in an effort to set up a trade route – booze for fuel.

After the meeting Garrick tried to smooth things over with Roz and Spike was approached by Regal. Spike and Regal had a meeting where Regal said he was impressed with Spike and may have a use for him in the Toadies. As a way of helping Spike think it over, Regal offered a case of some of their finest booze.

Riddle went to speak with Soot, Ender and Ogre, seeing if Soot needed any tools or equipment from the outside world. During their discussion, a pair of traders arrived named Odin and Pain. They claimed to be looking for items to trade as well as looking for helpers in a treasure hunting salvage expedition. Dex and Spike looked over their goods and a member of the Ark, Marsha, approached as well, seemingly interested in going with them.

The group was intrigued by the beast of burden that they used to pull their car-cart. This rot goat seemed like it would be the perfect creature to add to the stables if they could find more. Odin said the creatures could be found to the east. When Roz arrived, she instantly recognized the two men from her vision as the rapists and murderers from whom they had rescued Cooke. As soon as she brought Cooke to see if she was certain, the group instantly turned on them, killing them and taking their loot, not to mention the rot goat.

The group set out the following day towards The Monarchs. They traveled through some new areas, spotting an unusual metallic beast they best decided to avoid. They came to the rot goat fields and saw there were plenty to be captured but would likely do that on the way back. Later, when approaching a crashed airplane, they suspected there could be lots of useful items in the wreckage but were beset upon by ruthless and savage morlocks. The morlock mutant leader was enormous and almost caused grave injury to the explorers, but in the end, they were victorious.

The explorers rested, bound their wounds and made their way towards where they felt The Monarchs made their base of operations, not knowing what to expect. As they got closer and closer, however, they found that the landscape was not nearly as disastrous as they were used to. But there were abandoned cars placed in a maze format, preventing easy access through the roads, and pushing them through narrow streets with plenty of buildings. As they cautiously made their way down the street, a voice called out.

The lookout introduced himself as Umber and wanted to know their business. After explaining they were here to trade booze for fuel, be brought them along, mentioning their protection was to keep out The Fallen. He also explained that things were complicated with his settlement now as there was discussion of revolution against their leader, Madame Monarch.

The expedition saw an example of Madame Monarch’s management style as she shot those workers who were threatening to quit, force her out or ask for better rations. She made it clear that her utopia was hers and hers alone.

Umber led them into the building which said ‘Monarch’ which Tasty and Lambda said was once a theater where people in the old world would watch moving pictures and watch a story unfold. To their shock ,the theater was in working order and the group waited, watching a movie as Umber went to explain to Madame Monarch what they wanted, namely, a trade route.

Upon getting an audience with Madame Monarch, she and her slave assistant, Zombi, listened to them. Madame Monarch proved to be an eccentric and erratic negotiator. She did not agree to the trade route immediately, but invited them to stay for a day while she pondered their offer.

But what did she have as a counter proposal?

Episode 9: The Sad Music Dictates We Burn Him

The explorers watched as Rice and Jek packed up their kill.  As the two were preparing to leave, they mentioned that the others would be best suited to move along as there was a nasty storm coming.  As they moved away in their vehicle, they mentioned that the explorers should visit The Monarchs at some point for trading.

Dex noticed the change in the air and decided they were close enough to the underground bunker where they had found Cooke, that they could make it back if they moved quickly enough.  So the packed up their own equipment and left.  On the way back, Dex stumbled across a vehicle that contained an unusual tool that could also be used as a weapon.  Tasty referred to it as a 'chainsaw' and handed it over to Riddle, thinking she could make the best use of it.  Then, luckily they were able to make it to the bunker before they were beset upon by the ash storm.

They immediately noticed that the bunker doors had already been breached, indicating someone or something had arrived before them.  They were even more cautious when it appeared that the mushroom fields that they had previously encountered had now been picked clean.  As they went further into the bunker, they came across what seemed like a half digested human, somehow still alive but unable to speak.  This was a bad sign of what was surely to come.

They eventually encountered an Abomination, a horrific creature that was made up of human body parts, trying to add more to its grotesque collection, using hands, mouths and intestines to grapple and digest the victims.  During the altercation, Python was instantly killed, when the creature spit out a mouth full of bile, liquidating his skull.  Eventually the behemoth was brought down but not before several others were hurt. 

It was decided Python's body would be burned, to preserve his memory.

They waited out the ash storm, took what they could from Python and moved on, trying to find what happened to Fetch's expedition.

En route to the location, they did meet up with Crazy Carla, made some trades and asked if she had seen anything.  The most useful information she provided was that the Monarchs were a good group to trade with if they were looking for fuel for the chainsaw. 

Moving on, the explorers found their way to a massive wall constructed entirely of vehicles, stacked upon one another.  Riddle had the idea of trying to get fuel from the tanks of the vehicles, convincing the others to spend the day trying to do so.  However, they were mostly out of fuel and only the smallest amount was found.  However, at the top of the wall, hiding inside one of the vehicles, was Spike, a member of Fetch's expedition team.  When he came down, he explained, he had gotten sick, they left him there and had not seen them in over a week.  The group added him to the team and camped for the night.

They gathered around the fire and read form the journal they had uncovered, finally learning enough about the written word to decipher what it said.  It seemed that it was written by someone who had fled an Ark, and was trying to return to Eden.  But his key had been stolen.  Of most interest was on the journal's paper, there was a symbol they had seen before – the symbol on the blockade equipment they had seen at the Fallen Lady.

They pressed on, still trying to find Fetch.

They were attacked by but fought off, Killer Vegetation, vines and roots that had taken on human form.  Beyond that, through the mist, they came across a large structure on the water.  Upon entering, they encountered Hader, a member of Fetch's team, and it was clear he was like Star, and likely had been taken over by the plantlife.  It was not long before he, and several others from the expedition attacked but were destroyed in the altercation.

They then came to what was once a drained pool was a massive, sentinet Killer Tree residing.  They found that the tree was calling to them via some mental link and knew they would have to destroy the tree.  Kiss Kiss and Fetch were bound by roots nearby and begged to be released.  As they attacked the tree, Roz found herself slowly approaching, unable to do much else, other than walk into the roots and maw of the evil creature.  But it was Riddle who powered up her chainsaw that saved the day.  She cut into the terrible creature and eventually tore it limb from limb.

Upon freeing Kiss Kiss and Fetch, they screamed that the whole Ark was in danger as replicated versions of themselves had been released into the wild and were making their way back where they could take over the bodies of anyone who they came into contact with.  They had to get back and put a stop to it immediately. 

As the expedition sifted through the remains of the Killer Tree's victims, they found grub, water and bullets.  But they also found a card that seemed to be like nothing they had seen before. Tasty determined it had value.  He suggested they keep it.  Roz found a room with a boat with a motor.  It would need fuel but they determined they would stash it here and then come back for it. 

Upon cautiously returning to the Ark, Fetch immediately wanted to hunt down what the vegetable creature had done but there were no obvious signs as life at the Ark had moved on as normal.  But Riddle went out of her way to deface the statue dedicated to Hue, hoping there would be no repercussions. 

Of course, now there were bigger problems.

Episode 8: Nightmare Flowers

The group learns that Star, who had been behaving strangely before, had somehow met a terrible fate.  Called to Dr. Booke's medical area by Poet, the explorers saw what had happened – a tree like creature had grown from her, erupting from her body from within.  They carted her body out and burned it, drawing as little attention to themselves as possible.  Dex and the others decided that this needed an investigation and would soon set out to see what had happened to her as well as the other members of the exploration party.  But they would not go to the quary, where Star had told them to go, but instead to the direction the bullet Farmer told them to go.

Roz was approached by Geer, a member of Nemo's faction and offered information about Nemo, for either food or sex.  She turned him down and instead she and Python went directly to Nemo.  Since Geer had something good to tell, Roz figured she could get it directly from him since they had a rapport.  In talking to him, he revealed very little other than the fact the recent pale visitors, The Others, had finally revealed information and he had deciphered some of what they had to say and he was sponsoring a mission to find artifacts based on what they had learned from them. Out of spite she told Nemo that Geer tried to betray him and Nemo said it would be dealt with.  When Roz told Dex, Python, Tasty and Riddle, there was some discussion of following the expedition but Dex stated it was more important to find the missing expedition from earlier.

Dex tried to get sponsorship from Vyolet but there was not much left to give.  After bringing Roz into the discussion, the best she could provide was some trades fof the items they had found at the Fallen Lady as well as the promise that she would give them an oil lamp in exchange for an artifact they might find in the wastes. 

After Dex made several comments undermining faith in Nemo's selection, Skrap, Nemo paid Dex a visit, warning him to keep such thoughts to himself.

The team left the next day, bringing Lambda along with them.  They headed north, to the place the Bullet Farmer thought he had seen their expedition. 

Heading out, Dex thought they were being followed but could determine what it was or where it was coming from.  They would have to be cautious.  But Dex was confident in his ability to navigate through the wasteland.

Eventually they came to an area Dex had not yet found.  It was a large, mostly sound structure in the middle of what seemed like healthy greenery.  They manuvered through the area and in the vegetation, they found bones from corpses.  As Python made his way to the building, he went past beds of colorful flowers.  Python went inside and the others began to follow.  Python saw what seemed to be fancy artwork on the walls but before he could even say anything, other members of the group began to collapse as something in the flowers began to release chemicals that impacted their nervous systems. 

The group came close to panic and they pulled themselves out of the flowers.  But Roz and Dex were hurt as the vines and thorns began to rip through the flesh of their victims.  Dex was in very rough shape, having lost a great deal of blood.  But they pulled him away and began patching him up when a large, tusked creature came over the horizon, the creature that had been stalking them.

The fight was quick as Python slammed into the creature with his axe and Tasty burned it with all his inner flame strength.  The fight was over as quickly as it had begun.

They decided to not deal with the house, moving on towards the last known location of Fetch's expedition.  But they found themselves back in the same area with the hidden underground tunnels where they had found Cooke.  Now, however, they saw two men in a vehicle, circling a dangerous beast.  Once they had brought it down, Roz, Lambda and Tasty approached with Python going into camouflage mode and Dex remaining behind with a rifle trained on them.

Surprisingly, the men seemed somewhat friendly even though they had not seen Fetch or the expedition.  They mentioned they with a small group called The Monarchs. 

Would they be able to provide useful information or was their seeming kindness a facade?



Episode 7: Fetching

The explorers will still on the trail of Fetch and the other members of the missing exploration that was sighted to the north.  Nip had some very probing questions to ask about the Ark which made the explorers somewhat nervous, as if Nip was planning a raid.  Leaving Nip and the Underdwellers, the explorers continued, but with caution.

A few days out, they discovered swarms of bugs that were best left untouched.  While spending time avoiding the swarms, they discovered a secret tunnel behind rusted machinery that lead to an underground dwelling, with food and supplies.  There were also corpses of prisoners left behind.  All women.  All having been sexually assaulted.  Only one was still clinging to life, named Cooke.  The explorers brought her back to health using abilities and supplies and asked her what had happened.  She stated she was from The Authority and with a failed scouting mission.  The two men that owned the underground dwelling found her and took her prisoner.  She had difficulty describing them but Roz probed her mind to see what they looked like.

Taking Cooke with them and plundering all the supplies they could (including a guitar from the old world), they moved on.  Through the swamps they were attacked by a multi-headed dangerous beast that they managed to get some lucky shots on allowing Python and Tasty to deliver most of the damage, killing it.  As they rested, they found Star, a member of the missing scouting team, come out of the mists.  She seemed disoriented and confused, speaking very little.  They did what they could to heal her mind which brought her back to being coherent but she was still weak.  She explained that the rest of the scouting party had been killed.  When asked where, she did not want to take them but agreed to do so.  When Roz tried to probe her mind or sense her emotions, Star seemed to have none, which was extremely unusual.

Dex encouraged the team to press on, taking them through dangerous rot fields, trying to avoid the worst of it until they made their way to the large Pit that Star had described.  She explained that the massive pit, which seemed to have been some kind of construction site or other work area in the old days, was where the creatures ambushed Fetch and the rest of the scouting party.  Fetch had wanted pieces from the equipment that sat nearby.  Finally seeing the dangerous conditions for themselves, the team decided to make their way back to the Ark, thinking that Doctor Booke could help Star and maybe get her back to normal.

Traveling through rot infested sectors, they came across a trader, Bullet Farmer, who had equipment and bullets to trade, but the item of most interest was a small boat – a canoe.  They pondered trading for it (or attacking him for it) but thought better of it.  They declined the canoe and continued on.

Returning to the Ark, they sent Star to Doctor Booke and got permission to let Cooke stay, though it was likely she would want to return to her own people at some point.  Tasty turned over the guitar to the Dawn Vault Committee, which greatly increased their understanding of their own culture.  The rest of the team spent time working towards projects and helped complete the Tay-Vern.

Episode 6: Tay-Vern Politics

Settling back into the Ark after a harrowing adventure into the Waste, Roz, Tasty, Riddle, Python and Dex found that Lambda, the slave woman they had found in the was getting along well with other individuals in the Ark.  However, they kept her past as a slave a secret. 

The expedition that was led by Fetch, Kiss Kiss and Hader had not yet returned and whereas some members are the Ark community were concerned, it was nothing to yet panic over.  There was fait the expedition would return.  Instead, the community turned to a different project, a Tay-Ven, a place were the community could come together and socialize while eating and drinking was the next structure the people wanted to build.  And while construction was under way, one of the more profit-minded members of the Ark, Tricky, positioned herself to take control and administration of the soon-to-be built building. 

After most of the construction was complete, Vyolet and her council asked to speak with Tasty, Riddle, Python and Roz, explaining to them that they had an unfortunate choice.  Gronk and the Toadies were going to have to take over the Tay-Vern or Vyolet would likely have to have it dismantled.  Gronk and his underlings would likely not tolerate anything that in any way competed with their trade. 

The group met with Gronk and his second, Regal, and together, they formed a plan.  They would allow Gronk and the Toadies to take over in return for a slice of their alcoholic product.  They would be able to secretly use those items to trade with some of the communities outside the Ark, helping bolster the power and strength of their own position.  This would make Vyolet extremely happy and strengthen her control over the Ark, especially if they were able to bring in much needed supplies and resources.

The other problem to deal with was Tricky's plan to turn part of the Tay-Vern into a brothel.  Of course, there were those that liked the idea and those who wanted nothing to do with it.  But the sticking point for some seemed to be the idea put forth that they would raid other communities for slave labor to work in the brothel.  To say it was controversial would be an understatement.

Roz wasted no time in getting over to Nemo and explained to him everthing that that was discussed with Vyolet and her side and Gronk and his side.  Nemo appreciated the idea that knowledge was power.

A few days later, the Ark was abuzz with word of visitors.  Ender sounded the alarm that there were people coming towards the Ark.  She was unsure if they were dangerous or if they were friendly.  There were over 20 in total, perhaps even as high as 30.  But everyone was interested and everyone had some concern as visitors were rarely good. 

As they came closer, Roz, Riddle, Tasty and Python tried to communicate with these strange people.  A leader emerged, Sylum, who attempted to communicate with the Ark's representatives.  He spoke very few common words with the members of the Ark.  He and his people, The Others, were pale, but well built.  But they seemed to display no abilities or mutant powers.  However, Riddle and Roz managed to gather that The Others may have come from an Ark of their own and may have had their own Elder.  But it was unknown where they came from exactly.  One thing was clear – they wanted a place to stay and seemed willing to work.

Shortly after getting the first supply of booze from Gronk and his men, the team set off on a secret mission to meet up with Nip and the Underdwellers.  They were beset upon by a tenaticled wolf that sprung from the swampy mire but were able to fend it off, easier than expected.  Nip set up a water route that the Ark would make use of. 

Finally, Nip provided them with rumors of what sounded like a lead on their missing expedition members, Fetch, Kiss Kiss, and the others.  She said her scouts saw something that appeared to be people that fit their description.  Towards the north east of their map is where they were sighted a few days ago.  Now, the question was whether or not the team decided to chae down such a lead.  Were Fetch and the others worth it?

Episode 5: Give Me Your Tired . . .

The explorers left the island with the strange water cultists and Raid went his own way, back to his people.

Arriving at the Fallen Lady through the muck and drudge, the explorers found some remnants of a civilization and broken parts of flying vehicles used by the Ancient Ones.  There were strange symbols which may have been the religious or political symbols used by the Ancients, adoring the walls, gear and the destroyed vehicles.  Riddle did her best to understand this equipment but could merely determine the basic purpose.

The moaning and cries for help the group heard from the side of the island ended up belonging to a horrific creature – a Tyrant Siren, a grotesque creature with multiple heads that could mimic voices.  The fight was fast and the explorers were lucky.  Some well placed shots took the creature down much faster than they anticipated, which was fortunate, as the creature was extremely dangerous.  Python added the most to the fight, bashing it with chains but, in the processes, suffering a surge of power, increasing his mutant abilities.

Upon destroying the horror, they returned to the Fallen Lady, discovering there were doors that led inside, adorned with the same strange symbol on some of the equipment.  Riddle discovered some kind of device that was powered, like an electronic lock.  This gained access.  They found an area that had items such as clothes, hats, jackets and other small statues that resembled the Fallen Lady.  They found a room with equipment and maps, one map in particular was curious as it was a map of the whole area with certain locations marked, including the Ark they belonged to.  Dex found a curious item that he had never seen before.  It was some kind of hand held device that had buttons but no obvious value.  Lambda suggested it may have been some kind of entertainment device.  Riddle stated it needed more power before it could be used.  On the way out into the hallway they again checked the little room with all the items, gathering as many as they could to take back to turn in to the Dawn Vault Committee as well as sell others.  Roz found a card that had an ancient map of the area, before everything was destroyed. 

Riddle found a power source and turned it on, which put lights inside but a recorded voice boomed out across the land, 'Give me your tired, your poor, your huddles masses . . .'  This, combined with the light that came from her torch was a beacon for every dangerous individual in the land.  They had very little time before they needed to get out and head back to the Ark.

They did check the upper floor of the Fallen Lady and found a passage through her arm but it had been detonated and destroyed, preventing access.  They decided that they should come back another time when it was safer.  They left, locked the building up and moved along on their rafts, using Dex's knowledge of the area to get them back to the Ark, safely.

The Ark was not in the dire straights they had intended.  There had been some deaths but tat was to be expected.  The food reserves were decent but they had been minor pockets of violence, some of which over the Children of Eden deciding to change the statue of Nix into a statue of Hue.  But a new idea was forming – perhaps make the statue that of the Fallen Lady.

The group put themselves to work on some of the projects and introduced Lambda, hiding her background as a slave.  They met with Vyolet to explain there could be trading partners in the wasteland and explained that the people at the Water Treatment Facility were dangerous but they had access to infinite clean water.  Perhaps they could ally with Lambda's people, The Authority, and overthrow the strange cultists at the Water Treatment Facility.  They could rule jointly.  Syren would be an excellent choice as their governor if they were successful.  She knew water and it would get her out of Riddle's life.

They mentioned not a word to anyone about the Underdwellers.

They turned some of the valuables over to the Dawn Vault Committee, sold some secretly and gave some to friends.  When Roz gave her gifts to Garrick, he again mentioned wanting to leave the Ark for somewhere more stable.

It was at that point that Ender sounded an alarm.  It seemed that The Fallen were returning, and with more muscle, and were likely going to want payment.  Vyolet asked the team what to do as she needed their advice.  Eventually they decided to negotiate with the The Fallen and then try to form an alliance with The Authority to fight them off.  But fighting was not today. 

Roz negotiated and when she tried to push it with her mutant abilities, she, too, felt a surge and gained a new ability, further eroding her humanity.  But the deal was struck.  The Fallen would provide 'protection' in return for food and water – food and water the Ark could provide but would leave them hungry.

The Fallen, under Rave, left with food and the resulting loss of nutrition did leave the Ark depealeted resulting in more deaths. Unfortunately a casualty was Syren, their choice for a governor of the Water Treatment Facility.

Episode 4: Water, Water Everywhere

Confronting the figure that was on the beach, the encounter quickly turned deadly as the loner attacked the expedition, muttering 'Get Out' as he attacked.  He displayed a mutant ability with an elongated arm but was quickly killed.  Riddle found clean, pure water on his body after setting him on fire.

Dex scouted ahead and found a massive complex of concrete and metal and what appeared to be tanks and tanks of water.  In one area, he noticed what seemed like an altercation with figures moving in the dark and engaged in a fire fight.  He returned to the team, explained what he saw and a smaller group of Dex, Roz and Python began to investigate.

Shots from the area rang out, narrowly missing Roz.  The group panicked, with Python and Roz heading down the hill to the facility and Dex went back to the larger group.  Python and Roz noticed bodies everywhere, some in strange dirty jumpsuits and others in cobbled together attire, much like the clothes worn by she and her friends.  They entered the first building they could find and encountered more of the same.   Tasty determined this was once a place where they turned bad water into good, pure water.  This could be an oasis if the expedition could somehow either harnass the technology or oust the people living here.

Dex managed to get the others to come down the hill and shots again rang out with Redt panicking and falling down the hill.  Eventually the group got together and realized the shots were coming from a room above them.  Roz noticed that a larger group outside were forming, brandishing torches and small weapons, hoisting some kind of leader above them, all chanting 'Get Out.'

The group pushed deeper into the facility in hopes of striking a deal with one of the two factions they had encountered.  Both, however, seemed violent.  Pushing towards the top of the building, they encountered survivors from the expedition, Nelmo, Grit and a slave, Lambda.  A violent altercation broke out, leading to the deaths of Nelmo and Grit and the team capturing Lambda.  But then the owners of the facility arrived.

Encountered Lutrell and his followers who demanded the group to leave.  They had to leave their weapons but could take as much clean water as possible.  The Ark dwellers considered attacking as they did not want to give up their weapons.  But Roz came up with a better deal.  The Water Treatment Plant denizens struck a deal to take care of a pair of problems Lutrell had – kill the Trash Hawk that nested nearby and kill the Deep Worm that his people worshipped.

The team dispatched both of these creatures but discovered that Raid, one of the Underdwellers had followed them (for some unknown reason) and been captured by Lutrell's followers.  They demanded payment for his release or he would be killed.  Roz brokered the deal.

After killing the Trash Hawk, they climbed the post to the creature's next and discovered an interesting set of papers that was written in old enough code that Tasty could not decipher it.  The Ark would have to advance further in their culture for him to understand more. 

With that, they were off to Man-Hat-An to search for more clues, including the Fallen Lady.


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