It’s been a long time since I have had the chance to enter anything here but recent events indicate that keeping a log is not only wise but necessary. Luigi gave us our marching orders, so to speak and clues as to why some of us are harder to trace. The tattoos the original members of our group woke up with in the beginning, keep us “unstrung from fate”. We are on our way to Oerth/Grayhawke by way of the Hive both for information and cyberware upgrades. Anything to boost our resistance to the Illithids or make us harder to find, harder to kill.
We were still in the sphere’s when I heard the call that 3 strange ships were coming up behind us and closing fast. Being outnumbered we chose to flee and I had the opportunity to see/feel Penumbra move. Oh is it beautiful, and amazing, I have never flown so fast before. We leapt ahead of our pursuers and before I knew it we were at the border of the Phlogiston. As the three ships crossed the boundary there was a huge explosion as their combustion engines caught in the Phlo and set off a chain reaction. (Obviously not from around here or they would have known better.)
We kept the quick pace for a while longer just in case but I did inquire to the ship how long this was possible. With relief, she replied 24 hours at top speed before it started compromising systems. I took the speed down to something more reasonable which was still fast compared to many ships. Our trip through the Phlo was thankfully uneventful. As we approached Realmspace we encountered no ships. We skirted around the less desirable planets of Glyth and H’Catha. I chose to navigate through a relatively new (15 years old or so) asteroid field – The Boneyard. I felt confident I could navigate it and it saved us two days versus going the long way around.
Of course the asteroid field wasn’t an asteroid field…it was a haunt. A very powerful one. First a Drow warrior appears on the deck, when Etsuriko attempts a slight bow, she walks right through her and the bulkhead. We see the flashback scenes of the battle, of ships resembling metal elven ships with unbelievably destructive weapons. We see ships and rocks twisted together and glimpses of bodies strewn about the wreckage. The palpable feeling of relief as the metal ships are sailing away and the absolute terror as they sent their final destructive volley behind them that ended the ships whose wreckage we sailed through and whose collective anguish and suffering created the haunt. We and our living ship triggered it. I was able to navigate the remaining field with a mental note to research a way to somehow put these poor souls to rest.
We were nearly to the hive when our ship was rocked in the sonic blast of another explosion, this time from directly in front of us at the hive! Then I became aware of an odd thrumming, pulsing wave. I was coming from behind us, I turned to see what it was only to catch sight of another ship screaming into view, I barely had time to nip the Penumbra out of its way. This odd metal pronged ship slammed on the brakes, and drifted sideways and only just managed to avoid crashing into the Hive. Someone was very lucky, I wouldn’t want to face Taj after crashing into the Hive, much less after it had already blown up first.
Naturally, since it’s a ship I hear “DIBS”. There’s someone flying it I thought, they’ll probably object to your “dibs” but have at it Fen. KenariKenari Sanura, Etsuriko and Ef decide to step on over to the other ship and politely inquire “WTF?” (Knowing Kenari) I message Taj and identify our ship as belonging to us and remind her of who we are. Unbeknownst to me her mate in full battle gear already appeared on the other ship called the Artful Driftdodger. Realizing who was there with Etsuriko, he seemed disappointed he didn’t get to kill anyone and blipped over to our ship. Once again, he recognized someone, in this case Fen, seemed disappointed he wasn’t able to crack any heads, barked orders that we were to dock immediately but that we were confined to the two ships and disappeared.
The other ship and the Penumbra dock at the Hive and the Commodore, Fen, Melchior and myself go over to the other ship to join our companions. The exterior is metal, all metal and design is unlike the ships I am familiar with. With two long arms extending in front and the body of the ship in the rear, it doesn’t resemble a ship of the sea or a n insect or sea creature as I am accustomed to. The interior is sleek, metallic, shiny, different. It doesn’t feel like a ship that I’m used to, nothing like the Penumbra of course which is a living entity in its own right. I’m used to ships’ helms having a palpable feel to them, I don’t have to be near it, just being on board is enough. I don’t feel this ones, which is strange.
The operator of this strange craft appears with our companions and I had to struggle to school my expression. It was very like looking in a mirror in some respects. She introduced herself as Milesande, an Aasimar like myself with elven ancestry. She’s taller than I am but thinner with black hair where mine in white but the eyes and facial resemblance is unmistakable. The commodore elbows me, “See, see I told you in one of the timelines you had a kid, I told you! Strong genes!”
What she didn’t know, doesn’t know, what none of my companions know is that Aladan and I have a daughter. When I was on one of my extended missions with the EIN, I was covering diplomatic relations, I was also covering my pregnancy and her birth. I stayed with her as long as I could but duty called. Very few know of her existence and she is being raised in secret for her protection. Only from the sanctity of a powerful temple do I dare scry to check on her, and so my contact is few and far between. Seeing Melisande was a shock, but it gave me hope of my daughter’s survival and success. The group were talking but truthfully I was distracted. She asked if I would mind some kind of testing to see how closely related, how many generations separate us and I agreed. Suddenly, Melisande’s face sharpened and her focus shot to the window “Squidfaces, 5 o’clock!” she yelled
Scrambling we flew up, out, around to greet our unwelcome guest. The Commodore attempted a mind thrust but couldn’t beat their spell resistance, bastards. How the hell did an Illithid and a Ulitharid get in the Hive, much less undetected? The Illithid was floating 30 feet in the air at upper deck level and the Ulitharid was on the dock. Etsuriko appeared on the dock behind the Ulitharid and I could see she used her hand. There seemed to be a delay between the strike and when he crumpled as if every bone had been broken simultaneously. Blood fist strikes again. We all rained damage onto the Illithid until finally Melisande used a Polar Vortex to turn him into, well, calamari slush.
We dragged the remains into her ship, to the “Med bay” for her computer to study. Turns out she and her computer can do better upgrades to us faster than the bugs can. With the use of Nan nites?
Oh, I forgot, shortly after we docked Fen realized he was allowed to leave the ships and went to the bar, he reappeared, inebriated, after the fighting was done of course.
Going to close this for now. Will continue tomorrow after we hear from Taj and know the whereabouts of our other ships and crew. I should have my upgrades selected and implanted within a week or so. Exciting but slightly scary to have something poking around in your brain case making upgrades like you were a ship.