Switch Case Chronicles

Captain's Log, 3
In which the Seskii Caravan meets its fate in a box in the sky.

We have decided that the Illthir of Veleran are posing a very real problem to the populace, and so with the help of the Protectorate and the non-corrupt Illthir, we have decided to overthrow their reign and restore the status quo to the people of Veleran and the surrounding areas.

We met Illthir Margaret. She pretends to be a bit ditzy, but I don’t think she’s nearly as ditzy as she appears. She made a rendezvous with us at the side of the Devestation of Deneira – a crater where once a protest fought, long since reduced to particles in the air through a laser cannon shot from the crystal above Veleran. Margaret and Teryn Greyhand (the leader of the Protectorate) there met us, and there we agreed on a plan. It is as follows:
Margaret has led us to a supply box – that is where we are now. This supply box is currently floating up to the crystal. Once we’re in, we are going to sabotage it and turn it to our use. We will deactivate the laser, but also try to harness its power while taking care of the Deneira who are up there. Hopefully we can resolve this peacefully, but I doubt it.
We shall find our way down from the crystal (supply boxes must be returned, after all). When we are down, the spectacle shall begin. Margaret will convince the Illthir to allow the public to see this display of Le’Hasherabe’s submission to the Illthir. As there is the public eye, Teryn Greyhand will convince the Illthir to allow his men to act as guards – it is a ceremonial roll they fulfil anyway. The Seskii Caravan will enter, and we shall fall to our knees, as though ready to submit. But then we shall, just before agreeing to give half our resources, our children, and our support, we will ask them about their hypocrisy. When they fall apart, our sabotage of the crystal will fall into place – H3X will place a timer to cause some effect to occur when we are ready. The people’s faith in the Illthir will be broken, and revolution will come.

It will be a tough line to toe – we want to keep the non-corrupt Illthir safe, and perhaps maintain their roles in the community, but we will oust this corruption and save the people we can. After all – we’re here to increase Le’Hasherabe’s influence in the Ba’Adenu forest. I’d say that this falls into such a category quite nicely.

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Amber's Medical Log #1

Today I attended to a patient with an unusual illness that I was quite stumped by. An older woman who has been quite frail and ill seemed to have a spell of insanity. Her granddaughter sought help from me but the woman was speaking gibberish. She convulsed and then suddenly she was fine again. While she seemed in good health when I left I am left wondering if there is some underlying brain illness that I simply could do nothing about, and that perhaps I have left her for dead. It makes me realise that there is still so much I have to learn about the field of medicine and the world, and that in the end, I can only do so much for my patients and must just endeavour to seek more knowledge so that I may help them more in the future.

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Riding the Lighting
The Powers of the Heavens open up the one of the heroes

Konrad had spent the afternoon talking to Old Pete and hearing his tales of the creatures that live in the mountains. Old Pete thought these men were the true gods unlike the men that lived in the crystal high above his town. Konard was not so sure that either one of the groups were truly gods. Any one could harness the powers of the elements if there knew were to look. Even knowing this the tales of snow warriors who could move through the storms with ease interested him. Konard noticed these storm warriors would merge into the the snow and then appear somewhere else to blast their opponents with sleet and hail. Konard thought that if he could use his power of the lighting he might be able to do the same.

Walking down a small alley Konard spent a few hours practising sending out bolts of lighting which he could then pull himself into if he so wished. the feeling of raw power the lighting give him was addictive causing Konard to gain almost a permit electric spark in his eyes now and always gives a static shock to those that touch him. Konard grinned as he left the alley now let those kids try and steal from him again.

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Mechanic's Log Book
Repair diagnostics amd material requisitions and general notes on operations

We have made good time to Veleran arriving in 10 days.

Maitenance on Quirn was minimal apart from an incident early in the trip where the Rock known as Carin nearly fell out and in making sure he didnt fall, he did extensive damage to the seat he had been sitting in. It required many hours and parts to fix and is now back into prime condition ready for the next stage of our journey.

There was an altercation at a ‘bridge’ (shoddy construction needs to be redone) involving an older human and a younger one where the younger one was barring the way for the older one unless he paid him a toll. It was a trap which we dealt with and there should be no more trouble at the ‘bridge’ (still of shoddy construction).

Upon arriving in Veleran i was tasked with doing extensive repairs to the Quirn which they desperately needed there were many injuries and other issues i needed to fix up; Broken servos, joint clogs, more final repairs on Carin’s broken seat and several fuses adjustments and power distribution issues. We will need more spare parts to fix up the Quirn in the future i must speak to Conrad about acquisition. M3CHIS has been a great help and is learning fast, he is able to assist with most basic tasks and i cannot fault his work.

Next log in a few days.

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Captain's Log, 2
In which the Seskii Caravan meets the people of Veleran

Veleran is a strange place. Most of the city – even the city’s guardians – starve and suffer malnutrition as they give half of everything to their gods, beings existing withing a great crystal which floats above the vagrant city like the sun. Directly below the crystal is the conclave of Illthir, the priests of this crystal. There, the walls are lined with carpets and decadence shows upon everything.

There is much subtle irony in Veleran. We first met these priests as they controlled a great riot, sweeping through the city and letting their people take offerings as they saw fit. But the people themselves resent this, despite their drive and fury. It is a misdirected fury, one inflamed by the bellows of the priests, controlled by their opressors as it were.
It is not yet our place to change this, but it sets my teeth on edge – it truly does.

All being said and done, we have so far managed to do well with the caravan. Konrad netted us a very nice profit, and everyone else has been doing a remarkable job of keeping their end afloat. The Seskii Caravan is blessed with a rigorous crew.

We met Daniel of the Forest here. He is a nice fellow and I’m discussing with him the opening of an embassy for Le’Hasherabe in Veleran. We also met the High Commander, who is happy to open a ‘protection’ deal with us, in exchange for ‘half of everything’. You can already see how this city operates. He seemed excited and almost hopeful by our presence. Perhaps he does not like the priests any more than the rest of us.

I do believe that the people of this city do not want to be treated the way they are, but until we understand what is happening, we cannot step in with good faith. What resides up in that crystal? One man, “Old Pete” as I’ve heard him referred to, claims that there are mortals, equivalent to us, up there. Perhaps it is about time we paid them a visit.

Over and out.

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Captain's Log, 1
In which the Seskii is named and we arrive at Veleran.

We named the caravan. She’s ‘the Seskii’. Seskii are loyal animals; they stay true to their ideals and fight for what’s right. That’s what we embody, after all.
The night before we left Le’Hasherabe, I talked to the leader of the Scarlet Caravan. I convinced him to get to the Nook’Nooks in 60 days rather than 30, so we’ve got enough time to visit Veleran and another city in the Ba-Adenu forest first. After the Nook’Nooks, we’re going to Ephremon and then Morkhal before returning to Le’Hasherabe. It will take 4 months. The Survey Corps is okay with this, but they warned me that there may be ‘something’ coming to the Forest. I’m going to try and find out what it is.
I tagged everyone on my Lens so if they get lost I can find them. Everyone, that is, except CARIN, who opted not to be tagged. I warned him that it meant we were under no obligation to go to him if he needed help. He accepted this.
We’re just about in Veleran – the folk are resting up before we head in. It’s a beautiful city. We have seen many beautiful things on our way through, though I’ve been pushing them to go as fast as they can so that we can make it to Veleran ASAP, so we haven’t had much of an opportunity to check things out. Perhaps the most interesting thing that happened on our journey – aside from CARIN falling out of his seat and us needing to make him/her a harness – was an ambush we came across when we tried to cross a bridge. A group of bandits were fleecing an old man for a toll to cross. We, with the help of the old man, taught them a lesson. They surrendered to us their weapons and we let them go on their way. They should not hurt people again.
And on to Veleran! This is only a quick stop as we should make our way in soon. I shall write another update when I am able.
Over and out.

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Captain's Log, 0
The Caravan is assembled!

It started with a dream. Corny, I know, but it started with a dream nonetheless, though for me it was more of a nightmare.
I’d had this dream before, I’d lived it before, back when we passed through the teleporter from Somewhere Else to here, the Ninth World. Back when the Dead War was starting. None of us knew what to expect. I suppose nothing could have prepared us for the monstrosities we saw.
This time, however, the dream was different. There were other people in my dream, dreamers from today looking back into my yesterday. I don’t think it was intentional. I think it was some kind of stray Numenera.
Anyway. The dream. We fought outside that great big ziggurat against a monster made of monsters. It twirled logs and threw people into the air, laying death and destruction in its wake. Although we got close to killing it, it exploded in a massive blast. I barely escaped with my life.

The rest of the day went as normal. I woke H3X up and sent him off to work, and went to work myself, helping in the reconstruction of Le’Hasherabe. The only thing out of place was when Eristen popped ‘round and told me that the Council wanted me in three hours – then corrected it to fifteen minutes out of remorse. That girl needs to watch her step. Eri was in my dream, too, as was H3X. They’d fought that monster with me.
Within the council chamber, I met CARIN, a rock-person and caught up with Amber, a doctor with whom I’d served in the war. We were all paired up by Jaime and Emeryn to create a caravan, one to visit several nearby tribes and create diplomatic treaties between them and us. Emeryn also explained to us that we were to try and restore the situation with the Nook-Nook tribe, with whom we have sworn ourselves as unconditional vassals.
All of these others who were joining my caravan – they were the ones with whom I’d dreamed last night. What does it mean?

We set about making the caravan and collecting supplies. Unfortunately, the Council had seen fit to let the Scarlet caravan know ahead of us that they were going on a diplomatic treatise of their own – with enough time for them to have picked out the best equipment and resources of the lot. Jim, Noland, Ellie, Mr. Barrow, and Dr. McFarlane. They were the crew against whom it’s almost as if we’re competing. If I recall correctly, it was Ellie who was involved in making our current vassalship with the Nook-Nook tribe legal in the first place. I managed to wrestle a few better supplies out of the caravan in the name of fairness, and the rest my crew did well in and of themselves.

Tomorrow we leave Le’Hasherabe and travel deeper into the Ba-Adenu forest. IN three weeks we’ll be at the doorstep of the Nook-Nook tribe, and by then we’ll hopefully have befriended as many of the other tribes as we can.

Over and out.

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The reality of a Ninth World
Is that me, but not?

All he could hear out in the forest was the pounding of his heart. Badum Badum Badum. He was certain it was beating too fast, but he didn’t care. All he could see was the look on Harriens face. He ran on, through the large crowded street, around brush and tree. After a while he slowed. That’s when he heard something other than his heartbeat. A crashing noise behind him. He turned, and saw the brutish corpse bounding along behind him. Where he had ducked and weaved, the creature simply cut the obstacles from its path. Trees and rocks were thrown about. Ron ran harder.

“How in all the hells is it able to lift things like that. It’s a human isn’t it??” Rondeith didn’t know why he spoke. Somewhere in the back of his mind he thought it would slow him down. He didn’t care, he thought this was probably the end for him anyway and at least the last words he ever heard now were not two people he vaguely disliked bickering. That train of thought brought back the images of Harrien. So Rondeith ran, as much to escape the guilt of running as it was to escape the horror rushing along behind him. Eventually, he decided to try and lose the thing in one of the buildings off to the side. He picked one with a small door, and ran as hard as he could towards it. He hoped it was unlocked, an as he got to it reached his hand out. The door visibly fell apart as he smashed into it and tumbled inside. Quickly, he scrabbled off into the dark, trying to turn off his companion light even as he looked for a good hiding spot. He managed to duck under a table and kill the light even as the monstrosity bounded up to the open door. He cowered and hoped the thing didn’t see him. To his horror he watched it crouch down and turn its cold staring eyes towards him. He couldn’t look away. Its jaw stretched open by the muscles bulging from its body. The bestial thing was some bizarre hybrid of corpse and machine. Its torso was roped by thick black cables and strands of muscle. Its flesh bulged and contracted with every movement. Even its leg’s were changed. Massive hulking things laced with struts and pieces of muscle, hydraulics working as it crouched down. Again, Rondeith stared into its eyes. He could see the strange orbs it was using as eyes glowing a strange pale green. The eyes whirred and rolled in the skull, looking the building over.

“WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR YOU FREAK, GET IT OVER WITH!!” Rondeith couldn’t handle it. The beast simply looked about, not moving. It tilted its head up, looked at something, and then turned and loped off. Rondeith was confused. It knew he was there. Even if it had bluffed him, he’d shouted at it. It had followed him all this way, only to turn around and leave when it had him. As he thought this, he crawled out from under the table and looked about. He started to notice the cracks in the walls and ceiling. The building was two or three storey’s tall, and it was falling apart. It was a miracle it hadn’t collapsed just from Rondeith barrelling through the door. As rondieth turned to look about the building, he heard the soft click of a door closing. He turned and stared into the dark, in the direction of the noise. Even as he looked he felt a strange sensation, as if he was staring momentarily into a mirror. He was looking at a closet door though. Even as the absurdity of the feeling occured to him, he realised his mistake. With a staggering amount of noise, the horror burst through the wall behind Rondeith. He barely had time to turn as he felt the stinging of sharp metal entering his torso. He felt it pierce him through. Felt it as the monstrosity sliced into him with its other arm, rending the very flesh from his chest. These were the last feelings of Rondeith. Or at least, those were the last thoughts he had as he starred at the horror from the dark hidden behind the closet door. As he watched it tear his body apart, and drag it out of the collapsing building. As the reality of the scene he had just witnessed sank in, Rondeith collapsed, catatonic, in the closet.

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The Letter
I wonder what the boys have to say today...

Dear Councilman Emeryn.

I hope you get this. I write this in a small village named Whitespell, and hope it gets to you safe. You told me to write regularly and to tell of our adventures, but in truth i write this letter not with tales of grand adventure, but because i fear the worst. Rendeith is growing beyond my control. He keeps doing things im unaware of and acting out. I fear what will happen should he be left alone with one of The Missing and considering how this trip is going, that is becoming more and more likely. I will do all i can to contain him, but i think you should send someone to come and collect us sooner rather than later. He is unpredictable at best, and downright dangerous when provoked and i am very worried.

best wishes, Rondeith

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Darkness tinged with Death
Every gaping maw comes with tinge of foreboding...

Rondeith approached the hovel with caution. It wasn’t that the place looked especially scary, it just reminded him of something he’d seen when he was little. It happened in one of the tunnels just beyond The Community, during one of those games that kids play. He saw a random automoton of Somewhere Else latch onto another. It just sorted of crouched over it for a moment. The one below didn’t react. It didn’t beep or whirr or move in anyway. It just remained still, crouched to the ground with the large four legged creature squatted over it. An then, almost imperceptibly, the little device moved. Barely, an BAM the four legged automaton above it had snatched it up and scurried off down the hall. It wasn’t a particularly sinister scene, but to Rondeith it looked as if the little one hadn’t moved because it already knew what was coming. Like it had stepped in the wrong spot, and thought if it stayed still it might put off the inevitable for just a moment longer. When Rondeith looked at the hovel, he felt the same way. There was nothing truly ominous about this broken down old house. At least, No more ominous than anywhere else in Sparrowtown. An yet, when he looked at it, he felt the same way he imagined that little squat automaton felt. He wanted to be still. To hold onto this moment a bit longer.

As quick as the impulse came on, it was gone. Hermione moved ahead, looked through the window of the hovel, and moved inside. Harrien beckoned Rondeith forward, and the pair followed Hermione into the dark old house. Even as the light dimmed, their own companion lights switched on, throwing illumination about the room in thick bright beams. Every step in that place sent clouds of dust billowing into the air, as if the moisture of the forest just couldn’t penetrate the ages of desiccation this home had gone through. In truth, the hovel had help up relatively well. The walls were built of synth and some form of stone and had held their shape well considering the environment. Inside, the hovel was a mess. The remains of furniture littered the room, and at least two armed men had died here in times past. There skeletons still collapsed onto the floor where they’d fallen in their final moments.

“Gees, I didn’t know folk for Sparrowtown were so into biomedical augmentation. Look at this guy’s skeleton, he has muscle mods, and bone density mods. An here in his skull, these look like nanite pods… why would they put them in the skull??” Hermione couldn’t keep her voice from rising in a question to the others. A medical apprentice to Councilman Jaime, Rondeith knew she was really into biomods. He was pretty sure at least some of that muscle of hers came from modification, but for the life of him he couldn’t work out why she thought she needed it.

“Stop playing with the corpses Hermione, were here to look for supplies an then get home. That was literally what you just said to us outside. Plus, it’s unfathomably creepy when you get excited by bones and dead people”, Harrien looked more unnerved inside the hovel than he had outside. His hands were shaking, and his eyes were wild. Rondeith honestly thought if he touched the guy, he’d smack him in the head.

“You need to relax Harry, it’s just a house. There’s no one here. Nothing that can hurt you”, Rondieth wasn’t sure he’d managed to hide his own misgivings, but he wasn’t about to let the guy run off into the forest without saying something first. “Don’t call me Harry. How many times do I have to tell people that. Gah!”, With that outburst, Harrien kicked a rotting stool. It flew across the room and burst into pieces against the wall. “frick, sorry. This place just has me on edge. Can we just do this an go”, he looked a little calmer now at least.

The three began rummaging through the remains of the house. They opted to split up, and yell if they saw anything. The adventurer’s had been very specific. In their words, “I’m serious, if you see anything even the remotest bit worrying, you run back here as fast as you can”. Honestly, Rondeith figured if they were that worried about the forest they probably shouldn’t have sent three inexperienced and kind of hapless folk off into the forest on their own. Hell, even the adventurer’s had taken four of the Expedition with them. Well, in retrospect it was kind of complimentary. Obviously the Old Man, Esther and Dave thought they could do it. Well, Fletcher probably did too, but how could you tell with them, they were always covered in damnable shadows like a badly fitting cloak.

Rondeith opted to move upstairs while Harrien and Hermione searched downstairs. Truth be told, Rondeith was happy to get away from them for a moment. They stressed him out with all their bickering. He’d been upstairs for about ten minutes before he noticed something odd. The bickering had stopped. It had been going on for ages, so it took him a moment to realise it had stopped. In that time, he noticed something else strange. He was in a bedroom. From the painting on the walls, he thought that maybe it was once a kids room. Now, it was home to a very big, very gross body. It looked like a man but with too much muscle. An it stank. Like a bad cross of rotten eggs and old motor oil. It smelt so bad he’d just tossed a cloth over it an ignored it. An that’s when he realised what was different. Apart from the lack of bickering, the cloth was now in the air. Still wrapped around the corpse, it seemed to have stood up. As Rondeith realised this, he started to back slowly out of the room, his yes locked on the moving body. Standing up with a cloth over it, some other oddities started to rear up out of the dark. It didn’t have hands, but big grasping claws. They were splayed out and grasping slowly. The body wasn’t breathing, but twitching. Slowly, it turned towards Rondeith. He backed up so quick he hit the barrister with an audible bump, and looked down. In the room below the two skeletons that had interested Hermione had also stood up. Harrien was standing in front of one with a look of abject horror. His eyes wide and staring, his mouth opened in a silent scream. Rondeith noticed at that point that Harrien had a sword rammed through his chest. As he watched, Hermione howled from the other room. A bloody, guttural noise. As she howled another skeleton was thrown bodily into the room downstairs. The noise it made as it thunked against the wall snapped Rondeith out of his shock just in time, and he ducked out of the doorway as the horror launched itself at him. He heard it scrabbling about, and then the crash as it fell over the banister to the floor below. Rondeith didn’t have time to think, he just ran. As he left the Hovel he saw Hermione ducking out the back door, Limping with a sword stuck in her leg. The skull of one of these skeletal monstrosities rolled out of the kitchen. Rondeith ran.

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