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Padraki Death Bumblers from Space

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Padraki Death Bumblers from Space
Summary: A routine salvage expedition by the crew of a small New Luna Militia scout ship quickly gets out of hand as they board a ship with strange power readings and a faint distress signal somewhere in the Shinaran Drift ...
Cast: Urfkgar, Karlan, Taeren M'nammrann
Air Date: 2006.05.16

Urfkgar palms his knife, more of a battle dagger really, as he moves through the airlocks between the ships. His head swivels back and forth as he tries to keep a three hundred and sixty degree view of things with a single eye. He keeps his body low. Low for a giant lizard, anyway. His purple, forked tongue flicks out a few times. He glances back, pointing at his eye. Then, he points towards the aft hatch. He moves towards forward hatch.

Karlan strides warily out of the hatch, peering around corners and keeping his hand close to his holster. He lets out a soft sigh.

Taeren's gun is in hand, charging with a muted whine as he leaves the hatch at a low and quiet walk with his back against the wall. He gives Urf a puzzled look, then the same look to Karlan. It takes a moment for the gesture to register, and he nods towards the aft hatch with impatient eyes on the other Timonae. His pistol's nose twitches towards the aft hatch, coming to rest aimed at the floor there.

In either direction, the ship is as quiet and uncaring of their presence as it was a moment before.

The lizard continues towards the forward hatch with his tongue flicking out every so often, not paying attention to what's going on behind him anymore.

Karlan nods and moves to stand with his back to the bulkhead, next to the aft hatch, taking his weapon from its holster and charging it quietly. He nods again after watching the Zangali go through.

Taeren gives Karlan a somewhat irritated look, but nonetheless stalks to - and then through - the aft hatch, gun at the ready in one hand and field kit clutched white-knuckled in the other.

The hatch slides to the left, allowing passage into the wardroom.

Urfkgar punches in a keypad code and enters the ship's forward compartment.

Urfkgar has left.


Bridge <IND Noir>

The hatchway opens up to a small metal platform, which overlooks a compact command center. Light filters out from hidden coves, providing an even illumination across the bridge consoles. A rainbow of telltales and monitors add a touch of color, breathing life into the functional and utilitarian space. A few steps down, the bridge workstations are arranged in a rough semicircle, following the shark nosed form of the ship's bow. Two stations face forward and are centered beneath the main canopy. The other two workstations face the port and starboard, one on each side of the bridge. The space is tight, with arely enough room to move when all the stations are occupied.

The bridge is empty - at least, so it appears initially. Red emergency lighting flickers overhead at intermittent intervals. Behind each console is a long shadow.

Urfkgar inches out onto the platform overlooking the command center. He takes a look around, and since he doesn't see anyone moving, he goes down and snoops around the consoles before he returns through the hatchway.

Just as the Zangali is about to leave the bridge, a sound: A muffled groan, followed by a limp thud as of a limb hitting deckplate.

Urfkgar turns back around with his tongue flicking out a few times. He simply repeats the previous search pattern; although, he adds a 'quiet' question, "Stupid stuff hear Urf?"

"Unnnnhhh ..."

Could it be coming from near the helm?

Urfkgar grinds to a stop as he passes by the helm. He pops a squat so he can check under it, keeping the knife visible to anything that might be lurking there.

Biped. Wait ... humanoid. Human. Chest rising and falling ever so gently as frightened eyes turn up to Urf. The human wears dark slacks and a light-colored shirt, but what color exactly is lost in the dim red light. Over the shirt is a bomber jacket, most lightly brown. There's a stain at the man's ribs ... his torso doesn't look like it's exactly in the right shape. Darkness colors his chin, a pale glint at his open mouth. The metallic taste on Urf's tongue as the human exhales - blood, unmistakably so.

Above the man is the helm console. It is dented rather mightily, with several wires jutting out here and there.

He groans again, eyelids flickering.

Urfkgar grunts sourly, "No move. Urf no kill. Urf fix" He uses his free hand, which happens to be short a few fingers, to conduct a cursory medical examination/weapons check, patting the man lightly down. He uses his other hand to slice the man's clothing away from the obvious wound, checking it briefly but not bothering to try to fix it just now. Then, he counts the man's breathing, checks the pulse, and stares the guy in the eye a moment. Still checking for other injuries, he asks, "Morerer stupid softskins here?"

"Y ... ye ..." The man's breath comes in wheezes and starts, accompanied by a cough. His ribs and sternum have been undoubtedly crushed by something roughly the size of a bowling ball, or maybe the size of Urf's head. He has most likely gone more than twelve hours in this condition. He appears concussed and exhausted - pupils rapidly dilating and contracting. The man's wounds are entirely internal, and from the sound of things, he may even have a pierced or damaged lung.

Urfkgar bellows, "Stupid softskin here. Sayeded morerer stupid softskins here. Stuff basheded stupid softskin morerer gooderer. Stupid softskins see stuff. Kill stuff."

Meanwhile, elsewhere on the ship ...


Crew Quarters <IND Lorelei>

The narrow passage opens up into a small wardroom. The space is ingeniously outfitted, the furniture and surfaces configured to serve either under nominal local gravity conditions, or that provided by the freighter's own acceleration. Flanking the wardroom are a set of personal sleeping niches, with each empty bunk module containing a bed with built in cabinetry and storage lockers. Forward, a fresher unit is located portside, while to the starboard is a simple kitchenette. The room is softly illuminated, gentle light flowating down from coves recessed into the dorsal and side wall framing. The deckplates are sturdy and and diamond gridded, providing a sturdy utilitarian finish to the space.

Karlan enters from the ship's airlock.

Karlan has arrived.

It's dark in here; the only lighting is an intermittent red from the emergency bulbs built into the overhead. Rows of bunks appear empty, but lived in; tousled sheets here, there an open magazine. An odor from the kitchenette - peanut butter? Shadowy objects on the countertop, inanimate.

Taeren steps swiftly into the room, then presses his back against the bulkhead next to the hatch through which he just entered; the field kit slaps lightly against the bulkhead as his gun pans across the room, expression intent in the flickering light.

Karlan glances across the room silently, looking around it carefully and advancing towards the aft hatch, holding his gun up as he prepares to open it.

"Wait," Tay whispers. Rustling as his gun trains towards the kitchenette.

"What was that?" Slowly, he walks towards one of the bunks; his shoulders heave up and down, sweat beading on his forehead. Gently the field kit is leaned against the bunk and his other hand comes up, shaking, to steady itself - and its twin - around the grip of the BKMS pulse pistol.

Karlan raises an eyebrow and follows Taeren. "What's the matter, Tay?" He asks, moving to look at what he's seeing.

Above the man is the helm console. It is dented rather mightily, with several wires jutting out here and there.

He groans again, eyelids flickering." to Urfkgar.

Taeren pants. "I heard something." He adjusts his grip on his gun, jerking it towards the kitchen counter's left side. "There." He jerks it quickly to the right with a sharply exhaled breath. "No. There. See it?" Hands again adjust on the gun.

Chirpsqueak. Rustlerustle. Squeak. Skitterskatter. A low-riding dark blob on lighter deckplate greets Karlan's eyes as it sways, fat, out from behind the counter. Some movement alerts it to the presence of others, and it moves jerkily. Two luminescent little beads stare at Karlan as the creature rears up onto hind legs, long tail swinging, then lowers again and scampers behind the counter again. Clatter.

Rockrat, no doubt about it.

"Rockrats? Just what we needed. Don't panic, they're not all that threatening. I think." Karlan says, eyeing the things with a mix of disgust and surprise.

Taeren lowers his gun with a nervous laugh, struggling to regain his breath. "Heh ... ha ... ha... Rockrat." His eyes glow in the light too as he looks at Karlan, his free hand grasping sightlessly for his field kit and then bringing it up to his side almost as an object of comfort. "Let's," he swallows. "Let's see what else is here." His pistol gestures towards the aft hatch.

Karlan nods, walking towards the aft hatch and holding his gun up warily. "Take care... don't panic... and don't worry," he mutters, opening the hatch and stepping through, pointing the gun in.

Karlan punches in a keypad code and enters the aft compartment. Karlan has left.

The hatch slides to the left, allowing passage into the spinal corridor.


Spinal Corridor <IND Lorelei>

A long, narrow space, crafted of gray metal bulkheads and reinforced framing, the freighter's slender spine connects the forward command sections to the aft engineering and power systems. The structural backbone of the little starship, this corridor is almost clastrophobic, a rugged industrial space fitted out with thick conduit runs and racks of back-up and secondary ship systems. A double stripe of soft red lighting tape borders both the narrow walkway and ceiling panels, casting the passage in a quiet glow.
Heavy girders which run the entire length of the spine. Massive servos and actuators accompany the hullsteel beams, the interior components of the cargo container's docking latches. Near the center of the spine, two reinforced hatchways face each other, on opposite sides of the passage. Black and yellow warning striping marked each exit, and a pair of amber beacons used to indicate the status beyond the hatchway. The port hatchways are labeled CARGO HOLD C1 and CARGO HOLD C2.

More flickering, red light. More empty hallway.

And more silence.

Karlan sighs in relaxation as he looks into the hallway, lowering his weapon. "Nothing here. Good. Let's go to her aft end before we check the cargo holds, which are probably ridden with more rockrats anyway."

Taeren nods, quickly regaining his breath. "Good idea," he agrees in a whisper, and starts towards the next hatch aft.

Urfkgar's voice from the distance. "Stupid softskin here. Sayeded morerer stupid softskins here. Stuff basheded stupid softskin morerer gooderer. Stupid softskins see stuff. Kill stuff."

Echoes of the Zangali's voice fade, then there's an odd set of sounds: thudthudthud-thudthudthud. Thudthudthud-thudthudthud. Thudthudthud-thudthudthud. Something about four feet tall and two feet wide skids around the corner from the port cargo hatch and lumbers aft, letting out a panicked sound: "MROOOOO!"

Karlan looks at the running thing, wide-eyed. "What is that thi- Later! Urf found our survivor, let's get to them," he says, turning around.

Taeren is a mite stunned by all this. He looks from the forward hatch at Urf's bellow, to aftwards at the weird sound, then forward again at Karlan's urging. He merely nods, and lopes after Karlan.

The creature's hooves - they look and sound like hooves - scrape against deckplating as it lets out another squeal and disappears into the aftmost hatch in the corridor.

Back on the bridge ...

Urfkgar considers the man's punctured lung, shrugging. Then, he has an idea. He pulls one of his straws out of his pocket and moves two ribs down from the collar bone on the bad side. He holds the straw against the tip of his knife, gently inserting it over the top of rib number two, hoping that'll release some of the air pressure built up on the punctured lung.

A pained and alarmed hiss turns into a wheezing sigh of relief as the man's chest lowers more than it had previously. He draws in a breath and lets it out again, sounding significantly better, before he starts to cough. Fluid from his mouth flecks the Zangali's scaly shoulder.

Urfkgar stares at the guy for a bit before he shrugs once more, having run out of ideas. He doesn't bother checking for any debris lodged in his throat. Instead, he lumbers slowly back towards the aft hatch, saying, "Urf no know. Urf no fix morerer. Urf kill stuff. Go place. Fix. Stupid softskin want talk. Stupid softskin talk now."

"Tha -" Interrupted by coughing. He rolls on his side, and the coughing turns into a hack-WHEEEZE-hack-spit. "Hel - more ... plea... dead ..."

In the distance, echoing up from aftwards: A panicked animal sound, as from a young ... something. "MROOO!"

Urfkgar's attention is shifted towards the 'mroo' noise coming from the aft part of the shift, ignoring the injured man completely as he picks up speed.

The trio meet again ...


Crew Quarters <IND Lorelei>

The narrow passage opens up into a small wardroom. The space is ingeniously outfitted, the furniture and surfaces configured to serve either under nominal local gravity conditions, or that provided by the freighter's own acceleration. Flanking the wardroom are a set of personal sleeping niches, with each empty bunk module containing a bed with built in cabinetry and storage lockers. Forward, a fresher unit is located portside, while to the starboard is a simple kitchenette. The room is softly illuminated, gentle light flowating down from coves recessed into the dorsal and side wall framing. The deckplates are sturdy and and diamond gridded, providing a sturdy utilitarian finish to the space.

Karlan enters from the ship's spinal corridor.

Karlan has arrived.

Red emergency lighting flickers overhead. The crew quarters are otherwise quiet, except for the sound of approaching bipedal footsteps steadily increasing in volume. Three sets: one, very large, from forward. Two smaller ones from aft. The racket upsets three rockrats, one atop the kitchen counter, one under a bunk, and one apparently sleeping atop a second bunk. As a unit they turn and scurry towards the shadows of the kitchenette as the sentients approach.

The Zangali doesn't seem to notice the rockrats as he lopes down the corridor with his knife out.

Karlan steps warily into the crew quarters, peering around and glancing at the rockrats, pistol thrumming softly in his hand.

Taeren follows shortly after Karlan, skidding to a halt on his bootheels as he spots Urf lumbering the opposite direction. He looks left and right, pistol in one hand and field kit in the other, as if that would help him find that clue he needs to get. Breath coming quick, he asks Urf, "Where's the survivor? That life sign we picked up?" A nervous glance over his shoulder at the corridor.

The single pair of rockrat eyes gleaming from beside the counter offer no explanation. The silence, after all the commotion just moments ago, hangs like a bad omen.

"Stupid softskin flierer place," replies the Zangali, looking over Taeren and down the corridor. "What stuff Urf heareded?"

"He did what?" Karlan asks, blinking and heading further aft. "Where is he?"

Taeren shakes his head. "I don't know," Tay replies, breathless. His eyes fix on a point behind the Zangali and to the left of his hulking shoulder. The Timonae just points. "I ... think he found us."

Sure enough. Leaning heavily against the hatch is a slim human in dark slacks, a light shirt, and a bomber jacket. Dark, oily somethings stain his shirt and his chin; shortly after his arrival, the smell of blood tinges the place. His chest is caved unnaturally as if crushed by something large and hard. Wide, panicked eyes look from face to face in the flickering red light, and a limp finger shakily rises to mimic Tay's. This one points to the aft hatch, and he whispers only one word:

"Run."

Very faintly, but rapidly increasing in volume, from behind Karlan - that odd sound, the six-step thumpings of the lumbering beast he saw earlier? Only this time there are two of them, and one of the creatures is heavier than the other.

Much, much heavier.

thudthudthud-thudthudthud. Thudthudthud-Thudthudthud.

"Go..." the lizard pauses, and, in a momentary lapse into curiosity, he looks over his shoulder. Urfkgar tells the bloody guy, "Urf no fixeded. Stupid basheded softskin no go places. Stupid basheded softskin no move. Stupid basheded softskin move morerer. Stupid basheded softskin stupid killeded softskin." He turns his head back towards Tay and the aft hatch, asking, "What stuff Urf heareded?"

Karlan sighs and clenches a fist around his weapon. "Run forward. I'm right behind you two." He mutters something to himself in Timonese and narrows his eyes, staring at the aft hatch.

Taeren sidles away from the aft hatch, looking steadily more and more uneasy. "I like that plan," he says, nodding. "I like that plan a lot." He stumbles towards the forward hatch.

"Had ... to warn ..." The man in the hatchway wheezes. His explanation is cut short by a painful-sounding cough, after which he licks his lips. He finally adds, "Bumbler." And then he slides down the bulkhead until he's slumped over, dark liquid dropping from his lips to the floor, shoulders rising and falling with slow wheezes.

MRRRROOOOOOOO!

This bellow makes the one from earlier seem cutesy in comparison. And its owner quickly emerges into view: Six-legged, dark-furred, six feet tall by three feet wide. Hiding behind its legs is a smaller version of the same species. Both creatures have bloodshot eyes; shadows are visible periodically along their matted flanks - the craters of emaciated stomachs. Their ribcages are showing.

Spinning towards Tay and Karlan is an object the larger of the two kicked ahead of it: it's long and cylindrical, with several wires poking out of it. For the moment, chests heaving, the pair of beasts simply eye the three sentients: the smaller with curiosity and fear, the larger with foaming-mouthed anger. It stomps its foremost left hoof.

It doesn't take any time or real thought for Karlan or Tay to identify the part. It's sort of universal, because it's really important. It's the primary coolant regulator for the ship's reactor. People are generally unsure about this, because it never happens, but after the coolant regulator is removed, most engineers figure there's probably about five minutes before the reactor explodes.

Urfkgar spares Karlan a brief, disparaging look. Then, he looks at starving critters. Seeming a bit irritated as he eyeballs them, he growls something loud in Zantra, inflating what's left of his crest. The nictating eye membrane closes on his good eye. He lumbers in their direction, ignoring the stuff being kicked about.

In Timonese: Karlan ignores the two creatures as he looks down at the piece, abject horror starting to course through his features." Maza's bleeding... ," he exclaims loudly before looking up and pointing at the adult one, firing wildly with his pistol as he backs away from it towards the fore hatch. "RUN!" he yells.

The pulse blasts go *barely* wide, singing the fur of the adult. The noise and light makes the younger bumbler squeal in fright.

Taeren looks from the hunger-crazed Padraki Desert Bumblers, to the irate Zangali challenging the larger of the two, to the Timonae who just shot at the Bumblers, to the dying man in the hatchway. "Oh, this isn't good," the Timonae breathes. "This isn't good at all. This ship is going to explode in less than four minutes and the Chief is about to get in a wrestling match with a bovine." He gestures to Karlan. "Get the survivor aboard the Comeback. Urfkgar, we've got to go. Now."

As if anything was ever that simple. Startled and angered by a combination of pulse blasts and angry yelling lizards, protectively sheltering its young with its body as it makes whimpering chuffs of air out its nose, the larger Desert Bumbler paws the decking again. Then, with a mighty bellow to match the Zangali's, it charges straight at Urf.

Urfkgar grunts at the charging bumbler, (very) briefly considering his options. He opts to stand his ground, or try anyway, in the narrow passageway.

Thudthudthud-thudthudthud. THUDTHUDTHUD-THUDTHUDTHUD.

CRACK!

Padraki Desert Bumbler skull meets Zangali skull with a resounding strike. The blow causes such force that the entire room shakes and both titans stagger backwards. With a groaning whimper, the Bumbler looks mournfully back at its young with unfocused eyes before falling to the deck, unconscious.

Karlan drops his jaw at the demonstration of brute force, but shakes the surprise off as he runs fore, grabbing the wounded survivor's arm and opening the hatch, passing through it quickly. "Come on," he yells, jumping through the hatch nimbly.

"Maza's bleeding twat," Tay exclaims, tucking his pistol into his belt and turning. "Urf, let's push particles. Means leave NOW."

Karlan punches in a keypad code and enters the ship's airlock. Karlan has left.

The befuddled and half-dead survivor is a limp, staggering noodle behind Karlan. He wheezes and whinges in pain as he follows the Timonae out the hatch.

This leaves Urf alone with his thoughts and a young Padraki Desert Bumbler, which lumbers forward to nudge the side of its unconscious mother. It does so twice, letting out querulous mewling moos, before levelling a baleful and accusatory stare up at Urfkgar.

You paged Karlan with 'The befuddled and half-dead survivor is a limp, staggering noodle behind Karlan. He wheezes and whinges in pain as he follows the Timonae out the hatch.'.

Cracking his neck, the Zangali turns his back on both bumblers and lopes towards the forward hatch. No ZETA members here.

Skitterskatter. Footsteps follow.

The hatch slides to the left, allowing passage into the ship's airlock.


Airlock <IND Lorelei>

An amber warning light washes the simple airlock, chasing dull shadows across the gray hullsteel walls. The airlock is sized for approximately five crew, with ample space for their gear and equipment. Sturdy access panels and equpment lockers frame the room, providing a sparse atmosphere of simple utility. Along one wall there is a rack for five EVA suits, along with ports for keeping the suit systems charged and online. Forward a sturdy hatchway leads into the freighter's command section while a second identical hatchway leads aft..

Urfkgar enters from the ship's wardroom.

Urfkgar has arrived.

Footsteps follow Karlan and the near-dead survivor of the IND Noir as they race for the Comeback's open airlock door: not two, but three sets. Red emergency lighting is replaced with amber warning lights of the airlock corridor, and the footsteps are joined with panting breaths and pained wheezes from the surviving member of the Noir's crew.

Urfkgar's are one of the sets of footsteps following Karlan.

Karlan runs through the airlock and opens the hatch out of the ship hurriedly, dragging the limp survivor along.

Taeren dives through the airlock after the survivor of the Noir, skidding to a halt against the Comeback's inner airlock door.

Taeren boards the IND Snappy Comeback.


Airlock <IND Snappy Comeback>

Crimson worklights wash the gray bulkheads and grid textured wall panels tints and jagged patterns of red. Stern pragmatics govern the airlock space, from its sturdy steel equipment racks to recessed lockers which take advantage of every square inch of the cramped space. Five EVA suits are racked against the wall, two portside, two starboard.
A circular hatch set the ceiling provides access to the docking collar, while heavy pressure doors in the floor allow the lowering of the ship's boarding ramp. A second reinforced hatch leads into the ship.

Taeren boards through the ship's airlock.

Urfkgar has arrived.

Urfkgar boards through the ship's airlock.

Karlan has arrived.

Karlan boards through the ship's airlock.

Taeren literally smacks against the inner airlock door, he's in such a rush. "Gotta go," he chants. "Gotta go gotta go gottago ..." When the outer door hisses closed and the inner one hisses open, he sprints for the cockpit. "I'm getting us out of here," he yells. "Hang tight!"

The Zangali seems a bit more relaxed about the situation than Taeren; although, he lopes fairly quickly towards the cockpit himself, putting his knife away.

Karlan pulls the survivor carefully into the main deck, muttering softly to himself in Timonese. There's another survivor running in: the young Bumbler. It headbutts fairly harmlessly against the back of Urfkgar's calf, backs up a step, and mroos balefully up at the Lizard.

The hatch slides aside, allowing you passage into the wardroom.


Main Deck <IND Snappy Comeback>

This area functions as the main living and recreation area for this ship. Towards the fore, two sets of bunks line the walls, each with a pair of lockers, and a small computer screen for each crewmember. Behind this a small microwave, thermal inductio and deep freeze unit provides the crew with a warm, if slightly bland food supply. Set between this and the final area is a single airlock, and finally behind this is a seating area.

Urfkgar enters from the airlock.

Urfkgar has arrived.

Karlan enters from the airlock.

Karlan has arrived.

Taeren disappears through the forward hatch, a pensive yelp on his lips. The Zangali twists around when he gets a bumbler head in the back of his leg. He takes a bit of time out of his running to the bridge schedule to sends a casual backhand in the bovine's direction.

Karlan sighs and takes the limping survivor along to the fore, following Taeren. The Bumbler whimpers as the Zangali's backhand sends it end over end back towards the airlock. It curls up in a six-legged ball of hurt and mournful agony and sets to wailing for its lost mother and its inability to exact revenge.

You head into Bridge <IND Snappy Comeback>.


Bridge <IND Snappy Comeback>

The bridge before you is cramped, with no natural view of space what so ever. Three consoles are spaced in a triangle, two towards the holographic viewscreen to the fore, and one command console set further behind. However, despite this lack of space, this ship is clearly a military vessel, with clean polished lines, and a look of precision to everything.

Urfkgar arrives from Main Deck <IND Snappy Comeback>.

Urfkgar has arrived.

Karlan arrives from Main Deck <IND Snappy Comeback>.

Karlan has arrived.

Taeren practically dives for the pilot's controls, hitting the throttle hastily and jerking the joystick to steer the Comeback away from the doomed freighter.

Urfkgar plops himself down on the deck with his back against the bulkhead.

Karlan drags the man and abandons him as he sits behind the communications console. "Good going, Tay, get us out, she's gonna blow. And that guy is toast, man, we're minutes away from medical attention."

"I'll deal with that in a -" Tay's words are cut short.

Outside, too close for comfort, IND Noir's midships hull plating belts and buckles. Seams emerge, limned in oranges and reds. The buckling continues forward and aft until the entire ship seems a bubbling mass, and then, finally, hullsteel and debris is pushed in all directions by a violently-hued explosion. The Snappy Comeback rocks and shakes with the force of the blast. Urfkgar braces himself as best he can, being seated on the deck instead of strapped in.

Karlan golds on to the console warily, looking out at the explosion. "Ugh... not fast enough. Damn bumblers."

Taeren's head is slammed forward against the console. He comes up bleeding from a respectable cut on his forehead, which he touches gingerly. "Aw, shit," he moans, then looks at the debris flying past on the viewscreen. "Aw, shit! My paintjob!" The Timonae grips the controls again and steers the ship on an exit vector from Avernus Cluster at top speed.

The Zangali's still breathing; he stands and goes to see if that's the case with the survivor.

The forward view becomes a wash of shimmering cobalt planes unfolding as the ship slices through the fabric of normal space to skip between the stars ...

>> Outside the Ship: Its array of jump crystals shimmering a bloody crimson, the IND Snappy Comeback slices through the fabric of normal space in a blaze of shimmering cobalt planes, to skip between the stars ...

>> Outside the Ship: Transition Space <Moebius Drive>

>> Outside the Ship:


A whorl of reds and blues doppler shift in a taught and twisting tunnel, their motion a chaotic blurring. Every now and then a streaked starburst slams past, bands of light arcing out in silvery waves. Occassionally a shadow too shimmers by, ripples of sable like wavs of night.

The survivor was tossed to the side by the blast, rolled onto his belly with his arm underneath him. A stream of dark fluids creeps from his mouth, forming a pool around his lips. He is dead, and with him any hope of explaining the IND Noir and its Space Padraki Desert Bumblers of Doom.

Taeren exhales only once the ship escapes into transition space, leaning back and wiping the blood from his forehead with the collar of his shirt. "How is he, Urf?" the Timonae manages, struggling to catch his breath.

Karlan looks at the ex-survivor, sighing and shaking his head. "Take us back to base, full speed ahead," he says sourly.

"Killeded," says the Zangali after rolling the guy over onto his back. He takes up his position on the floor once more.

Taeren nods. "We're going," He says to Karlan, wearily. "We're going." He leans back, then stands and staggers aft - ostensibly to clean his new wound.

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