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Author Topic: A Sickness (Ngoverse/FGC'62-91 tie-in)  (Read 19162 times)

Cannonshop

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Re: A Sickness (Ngoverse/FGC'62-91 tie-in)
« Reply #30 on: 02 March 2012, 06:49:23 »
Dinh Diep Valley, 0700 Hours Local...

The march from the LZ had been...informative.  The Keshik had passed empty house after empty house, on paved roads from the (equally) empty Spaceport at Da Nang.  There were plenty of signs of civilians to be seen-mowed yards, tilled fields, but no livestock in the corrals, no dogs, and no people.

"Where are they?" a Warrior asked over the common channel.

"They are here." Stanislav assured him.  The read from his scanners showed heat-trace from vehicles, the tracks of animals hours old could not be concealed from an active probe.  "They are watching us."

"What are they watching for, then?"  Warrior Kelli asked. 

"They are observing us.  Not hiding-not exactly hiding.  I find the areas of 'blank' on my sweeps quite revealing.  I expect there are emplaced weapons and fighting positions on the ridge to the East, and West of us, probably some buried or hidden artillery as well, and I would not be surprised to find the road itself has been mined extensively." He told them, adding, "We have nothing to fear, however-we are Invited, if not welcome here."

the column reached a narrow place, where the ridges sort of 'come together', and beyond it, the carefully tended green stopped, and twisted scrubland began.  The probe showed iron, ferro crete, glass, and stunted vegetation.  It also showed elevated background radiation.  The gate at the road was unmanned and open, a signboard said, in three languages, "Warning: Excavation is hazardous, dust masks are recommended.  Radiological Hazard area." and "Dinh Diep Monument Valley"

Stan grimmaced, "Welcome to the Capital of Kowloon." it was the last sign on the post, and the most recently tended.

Even three hundered years after the event, (Or, maybe because of that passage of time) there were twisted reminders that a city HAD existed here-the reaching fingers of radioactive steel beams thrust out of the grave of some long-gone skyscraper, hidden except for the extreme resolution of advanced scanning systems. 

"Three million people died here." N'Buta commented, "When Star League troops...our ancestors, forgot what they were doing, and made a mistake.  The natives did not choose this place by accident.  we are walking on a mass grave, step with care-the ground here is riddled with hollows and the dirt has fine bits of radioactive waste mixed into it, including plutonium dust and Strontium Ninety."

They reached the appointed place, and from the other side, deeper into the wasted valley, came a single figure, leading a mule with a burden on it.  Both the walker, and the animal wore dust masks, though, as they grew closer, Stan wondered how much of that face (the woman's face) was mask...

"I brought him." she announced,   Stanislav sealed his 'mechwarrior suit, and stepped out of his Warhawk.

"Kevin Conroy, Leutenant General, LAAF, former Military Governor to Kowloon." She said, gesturing at the nude man strapped over the beast's back.  "He is not sick, he is not dead, of course that could change if the wind picks up from the wrong direction...." she took the mask off, and N'Buta felt a surge of horror and disgust.

Founder! SAvashri, what happened to her FACE?? it was, quite likely, the worst medical reconstruction he had ever laid eyes on-barely functional, twisted and skinned down like something out of a mortician's nightmares, made worse by the flow of black hair spilling down over graceful shoulders.  In the back of his mind, the Intel brief on "Colonel" Mosovich, captured information he had reviewed days earlier, reminded him that she had been maimed during the early years of Operation Revival-a small laser, through the vision blocks of her tank.  the file holos do not give the full impact of such...incompetent medicine!

"And the Flag?" Stanislav asked, carefully forcing himself to look into those...cameras.  of course, the burst must have boiled her eyes...

"Used it for a saddle blanket." she said, "after all, no reason to abuse the mule."

She reached into a satchel, "Evidence-the Rim Worlds is trying to make a comeback, Khan." she told him, "We do not like that...we like less how they have been about it.  Subverting troops, corrupting officials, bribery and blackmail, we purged most of it here, we do not need your asssistance dealing with it...here." she added, "Now, if you want to deal with it elsewhere, nobody HERE has a problem with that-at least, nobody who has means to make a fuss.    I would recommend you look for them further rimward, the resources Rowe McClaren is using, are a lot bigger than they should be."

"You...could join us." He offered.

"Not my call, but we tried that route before, and Aleksandr tried to shop us back to the Rimjobs when the work was done." she stated, "We can do it our way this time, and save everyone heartburn later, but if Her Grace fails in her mission to Tharkad, that option might reopen."


Nha Tranh, 250 KM Northeast of Dinh Diep...

Alpha Galaxy's assigned coordinates brought them right to the building marked "Government House", and a scene that Star Colonel Dante Truscott would carry with him for a long time.

Two hundered and fifty people were waiting-not warriors looking for battle, for Warriors would not be bond on the ground, in a kneeling pose, with the word "Collaborator" hanging around their necks on wooden placards.

The only man unbound, was a one-armed, scarred cripple in an old FedCom issue dress uniform with markings of a senior NCO.  The man's remaining arm held a release-detonator.

"These people are Rimjob collabos." the man said it without preamble, "You can take 'em, do what you want with 'em, or we can hang them up."  the one-armed man said, gesturing at a fence of crosses along each side of the public green in front of the building, "Your choice.  They were party to a plot to overthrow the Duchess, the Assembly, renege on the Treaty we made with the Lyrans, and formulate  the revival of the Rim Worlds Republic...you wanted all 'rim worlds taint' purged, here they are."

"You would...crucify them?" Truscott asked, disbelieving.

"That's the sentence for Pirates, Star Colonel Dante Truscott." the man said, and the face suddenly clicked in Truscott's memory-the intelligence brief...

"but...Crucifiction?" Truscott pressed.

"Rimjobs.  Not like they are people." Charles Vanh replied, "Not like their co-conspirators had nothing to do with setting up a double-massacre to weaken the Lyran Alliance...not like these fine folks were planning to trigger a massive civil war in the middle of an invasion."

"What is the detonator for?" Truscott asked.

"This? I have been in the hands of Clanners before, I was captured in '49 by the Jade Falcons, I was too stupid to understand then, just how right the stories were." Vanh told him, "I will never be a slave again-and if I release this, well...I guess you will get a really, really good idea of just how good your armor is, or how fast you can get out of the blast area of an advanced fuel-air explosive the size of a three story office block two hundered meters to a side."

In Truscott's mind, something clicked.  He does not want to do this...he wants us to take them...  "YOU would not do that to them."  He probed.

Vanh frowned, "NOt my choice, Star Colonel.  I favour justice over vengeance...but I am one man among billions." The message Truscott got, was Take them, or I can't stop what will happen next... it was a sideways appeal to the Warrior's humanity.

"They will face...Justice." Truscott said, understanding.

The Star Adder column recorded enough evidence entering the city of prepared ambushes, weapons and concealed forces.  A battle here would have been bloody-one sided in terms of raw slaughter, but a coin-flip in terms of whether or not Alpha Galaxy would survive, and worse, whether the warriors of Alpha would be able to endure the memories of the aftermath of a 'victory'.

AS the Clan warriors loaded themselves, and their prisoners, the worst part of the entire event, was the frankly pathetic gratitude of the prisoners-they KNEW what the mobs would do to them, would have done, had the Clan NOT intervened here...

« Last Edit: 02 March 2012, 07:21:22 by Cannonshop »
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Cannonshop

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Re: A Sickness (Ngoverse/FGC'62-91 tie-in)
« Reply #31 on: 02 March 2012, 07:39:16 »
CSAS Cedric Murphy, burning out of the Kowloon system...

"...place made my skin crawl.  There is an insanity there..." Dante Truscott said over the evening meal, "I am Thankful to the Founder and the Father we did NOT stay-they painted the town red for us! with banners and signs!"

"your prisoners were happy enough to leave." N'Buta observed, "Whereas the former LAAF governor... the Watch Commander tells me the man is spilling as fast as he can..."  He laid his fork down on the dish, "Seems that 'Kevin' had the job of trying to seduce their Duchess, con her into weakening her stance, make her malleable to Rowe's influence, while at the same time, working to undercut the planetary defenses and fill the void with Rim Worlds partisans... they caught him three weeks ago, when their 'coast guard' turned some of his lower level operatives and uncovered the network."  He lifted a cup, "Do you know what their Duchess would have done, had we not come?"

"Vanh talked about crucifiction..." Truscott said.

"only for the leadership." N'Buta said, "she has that much control of herself-she does not let others do that task for her-she would have crucified her own lover-she would have driven the spikes herself."

"How do you know that?" Truscott asked.

"I know, because my prisoner, Kevin, told me that is what she would do." N'Buta told him, "He thought she might weep while doing it, but she would have done it-she had already passed sentence, it is only by sheer luck she was called away before she could carry it out... he also told me something else."

"Oh?"  the other High-Ranking Trueborn in the officer's mess were all paying attention.

"She will die soon-her medications...Duchess Elizabeth Ngo, in addition to her renown as a sadistic butcher, is dying of Cholmann's Syndrome, she is in early stage two, and Kevin's hand was tipped because her medications had been tampered with."  N'Buta announced, "In five to ten years, they will no longer have a leader on Kowloon-which means they might be more vulnerable to a more...nuanced...effort.  We would do well to assure that the nuance does not come from some combination of the Not-Named hiding among the Terrans, and the reanimators of the Rim Worlds Republic."  He smiled grimly, "this is not a public fact, it is one of their closely guarded secrets...but it is a secret with a rather shorter shelf-life than we can really use."
The core rules for interacting with me:

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Cannonshop

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Re: A Sickness (Ngoverse/FGC'62-91 tie-in)
« Reply #32 on: 02 March 2012, 07:44:47 »
[more dry stuff...]

Cholmann's Syndrome:

noun Inherited Genetic disorder first noted in the early 22nd century among the decendents of recombinant DNA therapies first developed in the Hanoi International Clinic in the People's Republic of Vietnam in the mid 21st century. These therapies re-wrote damaged and defective genes related to several inheritable, or genetic, degenerative conditions including Huntington's Disease, Parkinson's, Multiple sclerosis, Epilepsy, as well as heritable vulnerability to depression and psychosis. The treatments were not approved by Western Alliance medical standards, and provided a fairly large cash-cow for the economically strapped PRVN government.

In spite of generating a ban on similar recombinant DNA projects when it was discovered, and in spite of centuries of possible evolution away from the disease, the lingering effects remain, perhaps in part due to the pattern of expansion  of humanity into the stars.

 Cholmann's patients tend to be asymptomatic until late puberty/early adulthood, when the recessive damaged genome first asserts itself. Upon onset, the disease is typically described as having three basic stages.

Stage One: the patient begins to have occasional bouts of minor pain, these increase in duration and severity during stage one, as well as manifesting periodic states of both depressive apathy, and manic activity-which also increase in severity. Insomnia is noted as a frequent problem with patients in stage one, often blamed on 'aches' and, as the disease progresses, bouts of vertigo and nausea. Stage one patients can be treated by the application of normal pain-suppressant medications and antidepressents, however the progress of the disease requires a steady increase in dosage and potency.

Stage Two: Seizures, typically similar to those experienced by epilepsy patients, along with a massive increase in bouts of pain-ranging from dull ache, to near blinding pain, Stage Two patients also suffer typically from depression or manic states-either often unable to muster the will to get up, or being unable to sit still. Neurotransmitter receptors at this point begin dying in large clusters, preventing the absorption of Endorphines, including endorphins that reset sensory nerves-'ghost sensations' from ordinary contact with objects tend to linger for longer and longer periods, and tactile sensations become pronounced. Stage Two patients are generally put on a regime of Narcotics, and as in the prior stage, the strength and dosage of the Narcotics require nearly constant monitoring as they lose effectiveness. Neural blocker medications are ineffective late in stage two, which sets the round for the terminal phase of the disease.


Stage Three: The pain becomes unmanageable in stage three, the patient is unable even to go into shock, leaving a conscious mind trapped in a decaying, burning pit of agony. Most stage three patients scream until their throats give out, unable to move, unable to act, conscious and in unmentionable agony. The typical treatment for this is termination of the patient's life, as multiple organ failures will shortly follow. The record of survival (if it can be called that) was set by Truk Van Ngo undergoing experimental therapy attempts at the New Avalon Institute of Science in 3035. He lived eighteen months before internal haemorrages caused him to bleed out.


There is no cure for Cholmann's syndrome, luckily, it is extremely rare-less than 1 out of 500 million people have the gene, and both parents have to have the gene for it to manifest, as it is a recessive, and only manifests in an "unlucky" pairing one out of fifty times.

Notable Sufferers of Cholmann's Syndrome:

Claudius Steiner (Archon, Lyran Commonwealth) 2812-2849 (four year Reign)

Elizabeth Ngo, Duchess, Kowloon (3035 to 3068)

Tranh Truk Ngo, (2750 to 2788)

Truk Van Ngo, (3015 to 3035)

Olivia Epps, (entertainer, Skye) 3005 to 3031

The Ngo family seems to have a peculiar variant running through it, in that occurrances are fairly frequent, breaking the statistical order with hits in close generational proximity.  Scientist Caste speculate that the 150 year "Isolation" of Kowloon may have mutated the genes from a distant recessive to a more prominent form, due to the relatively small original colonial genome and the Kowloonese tendency toward insular cultural norms.
« Last Edit: 02 March 2012, 08:40:40 by Cannonshop »
The core rules for interacting with me:

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2) If you don't like something I've said, refer to rule 1.  If you do, god help you poor soul, you're screwed up.

Swords of Fire

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Re: A Sickness (Ngoverse/FGC'62-91 tie-in)
« Reply #33 on: 02 March 2012, 08:21:49 »

"Ever play pool, Kommandant?" Li asked,  "We wrap some rocks in carbon-fibre blankets, an' slingshot them when they're in a stable orbit with mass-drivers from the belt...asssuming that is, they actually intend to stay."

Black ball, Pocket Battleship?
Sometimes I think that Australia was the inspiration for the Periphery, simply because they both look really good from a long way away, but up close, everything is trying to kill you.

Cannonshop

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Re: A Sickness (Ngoverse/FGC'62-91 tie-in)
« Reply #34 on: 02 March 2012, 08:44:44 »
[oos] Yeah, I know, everyone was hoping for that "playing pinball with asteroids" scene.  Unfortunately, events are controlled by two things: imagination, and Game Rules, and to date, nobody's managed equitable game-rules in a version of the FGC for slinging relativistic Rocks around...as such, the lack of "Opportunity" in the face of much in-character logic prevents some things from happening in the name of 'balance'.

As it was, the Kowloonese 'convincing' the Star Adders to leave them alone (and take the trash with them when they left) is the first REALLY lucky break in the region.  Mind that the Flu's in its mid-crisis stage on Arluna, and outbreaks are about to start rolling through the region...and the Star Adders are about to make the Arluna Flu's acquaintance.

[/oos]
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Cannonshop

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Re: A Sickness (Ngoverse/FGC'62-91 tie-in)
« Reply #35 on: 03 March 2012, 04:23:55 »
[oos] The improbable events at Kowloon fed into the NEXT improbable event.  Well, slightly MORE probable event...[/oos]

Coast Guard Medical Ship __________, Intermunicipal Spaceport, Arluna, 10 June, 3067...

Dr. Sam Kiet carefully studied the print-scans and hacked into a biohazard receptacle.  He knew his time was short-The relief expedition had been on Arluna just over two weeks, and everyone but one NCO, a Coast Guard Marine named Pol Nguyen, was sick-and, he knew from what they'd seen in those weeks, that likely the entire expedition was going to die.

"Keep relaying the information-they need to know what happened here."  Sam ordered Nguyen, who was working outside his MOS keeping the datalink to the HPG site going.  The Word of Blake staff AT the site, well...their last man died last night, but there was a two-way link to Kowloon established before that.

"Doc? You want to lay down?" Nguyen asked, looking worried.

"Can't. too much data to collate."  Kiet insisted, "Corporal, could you load the results from the Amino Acid Sequencer on patient #14321436?"

"Aye aye Doc."  Nguyen was, in Kiet's estimation, a good kid.  Attentive, bright...and at this point, for whatever reason, the only member of the team who isn't going to die choking on their own snot.  "Nguyen, I know it must stink like hell out there, hell, it probably stinks like hell in here, but when...when it's over, you need to get somewhere you can find food, maybe find survivors."  Kiet told him, "The real danger is septic-all those dead bodies are going to be breeding ground for disease, so when we're done here...when I can't work anymore? You have got to get up into the highlands, the back-country, at least for a couple months."

"Worry about that if it happens." Nguyen said, "You might turn around..."

Kiet coughed again, and bloody phlegm dripped onto his lab-coat.  "No...I'm done.  We send the data, and hope the next team can figure it out."

2030 Hours...

Dr. Kiet was delirious, prone, and hacking vomit while his bowels ran.  Pol wanted to try and help him...but Pol Nguyen was a Marine first-and sending the data was more important-this plague had, as he'd watched, killed millions...Doctor said maybe billions... he reminded himself.  The last raw datatape finished, and Pol switched the rig to monitoring the lab itself.  "umm...twenty thirty hours, local time, Corporal Pol Nguyen here...Doctor Kiet's in bad shape, Doctors Cohen, Goldberg, Shapiro, and Duvet died-I think Duvet went around seventeen hundered hours.   I've got the doc on a monitor,  and a...drip of Thirteen Delta, which has not helped him.  He's pretty bad, hallucinations, I had to restrain him.  things are worse outside-a riot started at the gate about an hour ago, the ship's been hit with heavy weapons fire, probably that Locust in Militia colours...." A ping from the board and he turned to look.  "There goes the land-line to the HPG.  We're recording this for the next team now.  Everyone from the relief team's dead except me.  Come  sunrise, if the riot's died down, I'll be making for the hills with a beacon, per the Doctor's last orders.  What we know is, this is NOT normal flu, it's way too contagious for that, and standard antiviral medicines aren't touching it.  I have my own suspicions-welll really they're Doc Goldberg's suspicions, this was made by some really sick ******, sick in the head, evil sons of bitches.  Before I leave, I'll set the Ship's transmitters to sending out a biohazard warning level Zero, it might not be loud enough since we're grounded, but I can't fly and the flight crew're all dead too..." he sighed, "This zone HAS to be made a no-travel zone, this damn disease, if it gets loose... Doctor Cohn thinks it might be as high as ninety percent lethality, it's a ****** world ender."
« Last Edit: 04 March 2012, 05:15:18 by Cannonshop »
The core rules for interacting with me:

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2) If you don't like something I've said, refer to rule 1.  If you do, god help you poor soul, you're screwed up.

Cannonshop

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Re: A Sickness (Ngoverse/FGC'62-91 tie-in)
« Reply #36 on: 03 March 2012, 04:51:48 »
KN Synagogue, Research department, Kowloon...

Doctor Mai Huyn watched the transmission cut out from the team on Arluna, then muttered a prayer for the souls of them all.  "Get me a connection to the Alliance Medical Corps on Tharkad, NOW." she said over the link to the Kowloon HPG station outside Nha Tranh, "Priority Zero.  We have a full blown Level Zero hot-zone on Arluna."

"We saw the data." the Adept on the other end replied, "Linking now."

The core rules for interacting with me:

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Cannonshop

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Re: A Sickness (Ngoverse/FGC'62-91 tie-in)
« Reply #37 on: 03 March 2012, 06:06:26 »
CSAS Ares' Might, Aegis Class, Arluna System, 13 June, 3067...

"...no response to our Batchall, but intercepts indicate some sort of civil disturbance."  Galaxy Commander Hutchinson nodded, "Play it." he said.

after ten minutes of hearing confusion, despair, and fear from the planet, "Shut it off, if this is real it is a genuine threat, if it is NOT real, we still need to know, but if these reports are the truth, the Warriors sent to claim this world will probably be stuck here, and isolated, until the Clan can come up with a cure, or a treatment, or a vaccine, or they die."  He turned to his Cluster Commanders.  "Who wants it?" he asked.

Zachariah Truscott was the first to speak, "Little of value, a poor world, but with a rich life-zone and untapped resources, in the middle of a Plague-if the reports are true and not disinformation.  high risk, and probably not much reward at all... The Forty Second Adder Cavaliers are the best choice for this mission-I will lead this expedition personally, and I think I will require Ten scientists, in case this disease is for real."

"The whole cluster?" Star Colonel Mako Guidice spat, "Surely-"

"I require it. " Truscott insisted, "if the Plague is real, then a greater number of warriors gives a better chance of some surviving long enough for the Clan to find a cure, also the necessities of finding food, securing areas...and dealing with any surviving locals-for that matter, finding surviving locals.  My cluster has the better portion of Epsilon Galaxy's ground recon capable units, we are good at finding...things, and we have the most experience dealing with Spheroid populations under stress conditions and isolation...and our experience at capturing facilities will stand in well with securing a zone for the Scientists to work."

Star Colonel Kira snorted, "I hate when you do that-using Logic in your bids, instead of Glory, I have to concur that any landing force is going to require a large scientific contingent, and several doctors, along with other lower-caste in support... but I have to expose the flaw here-we can not risk Bloodnamed in a cauldron of bioweapons release.  The 212th Cluster has the fewest Bloodnamed warriors of any cluster in Epsilon Galaxy, and I am prepared to bid away all five of mine."

Nicholas Hallick snorted, "Chalcas...The one-seventy-third has conventional assets, I bid away two Trinaries of 'mechwarriors, including Bloodnamed, experienced warriors from my own Command Trinary-The savages will HAVE to see a Bloodnamed face, Star Colonel Kira, they need to know who their new beneficiaries are."

And so the bidding and planning went on...
The core rules for interacting with me:

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Crunch

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Re: A Sickness (Ngoverse/FGC'62-91 tie-in)
« Reply #38 on: 03 March 2012, 06:21:34 »
The Arluna plague RP was seriously the only part of the FGC that made me smile at all during that period Cannon. Thanks for reminding me of it.
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Cannonshop

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Re: A Sickness (Ngoverse/FGC'62-91 tie-in)
« Reply #39 on: 03 March 2012, 06:23:32 »
45 KM northeast of Grantsville, in the foothills along Highway 19...

Pol watched a knife of fire descending in the early dusk, as he cold-camped  on a rock overlooking the choked, silent highway.  Up here, the stench of death wasn't as bad...or maybe I'm getting used to it. he corrected himself.  The filters on his gas-mask were choked and useless after he left the spaceport.

He hadn't seen a living soul in almost a week.  Down on the roadway, he could see a pack of dogs moving.  Ferals are going to get worse.  He'd seen another pack of the animals feasting on a recently kill in the suburbs-he'd been too late to save the woman, probably several minutes from the time he'd heard the screams.  He'd still burned through two magazines-the dogs had no fear of men, and made their displeasure at being interrupted rather plain.

He contemplated the beacon...and remembered the last transmission the ship recieved before he bugged out.  could be Clan.

The idea of being taken 'bondsman' was repugnant, and one man with a rifle and a few grenades would be hard up against powersuited Elementals.

He left the beacon off, instead, using his red-filtered light, he plotted another course-away from the mining town, toward Braunton, further west, but north by a good margin.  There would be farms between his new starting point, and what he hoped would be a better chance of resupply...five days and I'm already thinking like a survivalist...
The core rules for interacting with me:

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Cannonshop

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Re: A Sickness (Ngoverse/FGC'62-91 tie-in)
« Reply #40 on: 03 March 2012, 06:36:31 »
Arluna spaceport...

Star Colonel Truscott retched when he opened his 'mech's cockpit-the stench here was that bad.  "Everyone best stay sealed up." he transmitted, "Elementals, take a look in that dropship-it seems to still have power, maybe there is information or survivors we can examine."

The news that came back, an hour later,  made him want to...he closed his eyes, and keyed the channel with the orbiting warship.  "We are stuck here." he informed them, "Do not send additional forces, or they too will be trapped here."

"How bad is it?" Galaxy Commander Hutchinson asked, "Your words indicate it is truly terrible..."

"I am standing in a sea of dead bodies, and the data from the Medical Relief ship indicates this virus is...highly resistant to normal measures, and has a very, very, very, high lethality and contagion rating.  The warning is not a lie, I think we need a full biowarfare team with isolation structures to even contemplate dealing with it, Over."

"Transmit the data to the ship, I am ordering a full containment structure dropped to your location.  You will be able to hold out, quiaff?"

"I believe we can...aff, but for how long? I do not know."  Truscott replied, "I am rather glad I bid down from my initial bid, Epsilon will retain MOST of my Cluster's forces for the strike on Inarcs...as long as they do not attempt to land Here."

"Databook indicates Arluna has a population of Two point One Billion..."

"That book is now incorrect.  If the Plague has hit as hard elsewhere on this rock as it did here, and the signs indicate this to be so..."  Truscott tried to imagine what he was about to say...to grasp it...  "I am standing on a dead world, Galaxy Commander, we can not stage from this system, and we will NEED to establish some kind of blockade to keep others from landing here and leaving again..."





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Cannonshop

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Re: A Sickness (Ngoverse/FGC'62-91 tie-in)
« Reply #41 on: 03 March 2012, 06:39:04 »
The Arluna plague RP was seriously the only part of the FGC that made me smile at all during that period Cannon. Thanks for reminding me of it.

Yah, probably some of the best I'd done.  It's a pity that almost the entire thing is lost now, I could really USE the original posts to reference for this.  You're one of the people I missed, incidentally.  Esp. considering what's happened to the FGC Lyrans since...
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Re: A Sickness (Ngoverse/FGC'62-91 tie-in)
« Reply #42 on: 03 March 2012, 08:01:13 »
Ferguson's Farm, Arluna...

Most of the kids were dead, leaving only Deb, and the Ferguson's youngest, six year old Anthony.  "...ashes to ashes, dust to dust."  Tony intoned, as she finished the last of the graves.

There were a dozen others now, mostly kids who'd been in town, some of them wouldn't speak, some couldn't. 
[out of story-I'm going to knock back on the "dialect'' with Debbie, mostly because it's a hassle to write in, but also because it's a hassle to read...just imagine a heavy Ozark accent, say, rural West Virginia modified by deep-appalachian Tennessee.)

"Load up, kids." Debbie said, "It won't take that gang long to figure out where we're headed."  The gang in question was the other knot of survivors she'd seen-human predators, armed with weapons looted from the Militia, yesterday she'd seen them taking down the Goerman ranch... "We want to have weapons when they find us."

It only took a couple of minutes to get the kids loaded, it took longer for her to hook up the Fergusons' diesel tank (thank god it was trailer mounted!) to the truck.

the ammunition from Big John's stash fit neatly in the glove box, and it was compatible with the Federated Long rifle she'd 'procured' at the deserted checkpoint into the Iron Hills canton (county).

Ten minutes later, they were stopped again.  Debbie had helped her dad blow stumps before, she'd paid attention, so the Blastex wasn't completely out of her experience.  The only real difference was that it was a malleable clay-like explosive, instead of the normal powdered blasting powder you could get at the Farm and Ranch store.  she packed it generously on the one-lane bridge across Plum Creek.

"I got a book can help you." David Roos was fourteen, and most of the time he didn't talk now.  When he did, Debbie usually found he had something clever to say.

"Show me."

He reached into his backpack, and brought it out.  "The Guide to Anarchy and Social Change".  Debbie recognized it-it was on the Blacklist.  he showed her the page, which was an illustrated guide to rigging a booby-trapped bridge for stopping armoured columns.

Putting the contact wires in with a tangle of branches across the road, so that something passing over would set it off looked simple enough-and it would let them re-use the bridge if the gang didn't come up the road after all, there was the chance they'd turn West...

She rigged it up, laid the branches to look like blow-down-too small to threaten a tyre, but dense enough to hide the speaker-wires.  The battery went into the culvert.

That done, they got back in the truck, and rolled on.


An hour later, the boom was loud enough that she could hear it over the truck's engine.  "They're comin." she muttered.  "Davy, Ah need to borrow your book when we get to the house..."
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Cannonshop

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Re: A Sickness (Ngoverse/FGC'62-91 tie-in)
« Reply #43 on: 03 March 2012, 08:15:26 »
Los Diegos, Arluna, 145KM south-southeast of Grantsville...

"Normally, War precedes a plague." Star Colonel Truscott growled.  The signs of a war were plainly evident in the former capital city.  The stink was still here, penetrating into the cool, filtered air of his Warhawk's cockpit.  "They gutted themselves...savashri, they gutted themselves..."  The 'mechs had no problem moving right up the choked streets-other than the occasional issue of having to kick-off crumpled cars.  Audio pickups heard more shooting, about two kilometers east.  well, something to fight, at least... He brought his 'mech up to a jog, and rounded the corner at the end of the block.

What greeted his disbelieving eyes, was a scene from a badly told joke.  There were no guns firing-at least, none now.  There were bodies, however.

"Murder suicide, what...a waste."  Keri, his Point-Five, commented.

"We know there ARE survivors of the plague, at least." He replied, "We also know they are armed, albeit without skill-I think this was an accidental shooting."

"We need to get above this." Keri observed, "Searching at ground level takes too long."

"Aff...have one of the flight-crew find a viable aircraft at the drop-port, preferably a VTOL or something with long fuel range, it may even bring out survivors." Truscott said.

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Re: A Sickness (Ngoverse/FGC'62-91 tie-in)
« Reply #44 on: 03 March 2012, 08:29:30 »
In the Hills, 15KM south of MacAulliffe Farm, 10KM west...

Pol watched them first from the tree-line.  There were a couple of men in Militia kit, maybe two more in civilian clothing, and a collection of women.  He watched them hook the wrecker to the prime-mover sitting nose-down on the blown bridge, watched them extract it, watched as they laid a field-ready bridging unit across the stream.

What stopped him from revealing his presence, was a feeling...something about them he could not put a finger on, something told him these were NOT the people he was looking for.

Through the scope, he placed it-every one of them had the sniffles, and the way they were interacting...It made him think of the burned out ranch-house he'd seen the day before, with the bodies inside.

I think I found who burned them out.

Before he could decide what he wanted to do about that, the group boarded their remaining vehicles-a half-tracked personnel carrier and two armed "Weapons carrier" type Jeeps, and rolled across the bridge, stopping to take it up after them.

They're after someone.  Maybe I should follow them?  It seemed a solid idea.

He imagined the map, and checked his compass.  they're stuck to roads with those jeeps-at least in this country.  I'll cut across through the treelines...

There was a knob about fifteen Kliks north, it looked defensible.  If someone was home, maybe he could rest there-assuming it wasnt' the objective the raiders were heading for.  If so, maybe the folks up there would like some help?

Running is a form of training Marines do a lot of-particularly cross-country running.  He picked his way across the streambed, up the steep sides (using the remains of the bridge-in the process, he noted the battery and the wires, a good sign that someone had rigged the bridge...) and took off at an angle to the roadway doing an easy cross-country double-time.

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Re: A Sickness (Ngoverse/FGC'62-91 tie-in)
« Reply #45 on: 03 March 2012, 13:44:51 »
Yah, probably some of the best I'd done.  It's a pity that almost the entire thing is lost now, I could really USE the original posts to reference for this.  You're one of the people I missed, incidentally.  Esp. considering what's happened to the FGC Lyrans since...

I hesitate to even ask. Given the situation we were in I'm sort of surprised that there are still FGC Lyrans at all.
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Re: A Sickness (Ngoverse/FGC'62-91 tie-in)
« Reply #46 on: 03 March 2012, 14:46:01 »
Will be waiting eagerly for more details on Addergrad!  :)

Hey Cannonshop! Do you have a website where all your Kowloon fics are? Even the stuff you haven't rewritten or are planning to rewrite? Maybe you should invest in a fanfiction.net account. This Btech forum dies way too much.  :P

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Re: A Sickness (Ngoverse/FGC'62-91 tie-in)
« Reply #47 on: 04 March 2012, 05:46:37 »
Grounded Dropship, Arluna Spaceport...

Eric "Frankenstein" was scientist-caste, and considered something of an authority on bioweapons and weaponisable viruses in Clan Scientific Circles.  "This is not written in a language I understand." he said. 

"I found a text-translator in the ship's database." Jeri "Coburn", a computer scientist and cryptographer announced.

"Mundane data."  James Minoto, a man taken as a bondsman years ago who'd tested not into the Warrior Caste, but into the Scientist caste, cracked, "See here? Personnel files on the team, their security detachment...huh....we seem to be missing a Corporal."

Jeri found the commands to link the vid record of the last transmissions, and did a facial comparison to the 'mystery' man who'd left the ship locked and slaved to transmit a plague-beacon.

"Corporal Pol Nguyen...asymptomatic right to the end.  We need to find this man." Eric said, having sifted and digested the information quite quickly now that it had been translated. 

"Why?" Jeri asked.

"because he was not sick, did not get sick, even with a lot of direct contact with infected persons.  We need him-or someone LIKE him, someone who can fight the disease off, find out why he could."  Eric elaborated.

"There is verbal...Absalom, is he speaking Arabic here?" Minoto asked.

"I am surprised-no, strike that, dismayed.  The corporal there is a good jewish boy.  He is praying for the soul of the doctor on the table-the dead doctor."  Absalom informed them, "The rest of what they are saying is in a language I do NOT speak...but given the Khan's trip to Kowloon, I can wager that it is Vietnamese-the local dialect there."  The Senior Virologist spoke as if he were instructing a class.  "I have to agree, though-We need Corporal Nguyen, or someone LIKE him, someone whom has either fought off the virus, or simply blocked it somehow."

The three Scientists looked to one another, "We need to ask the Warriors to find us some survivors."
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Re: A Sickness (Ngoverse/FGC'62-91 tie-in)
« Reply #48 on: 04 March 2012, 06:20:22 »
Spaceport Office, 2200 hours...

"...need to find live survivors, it is critical if we are ever going to leave this world alive."  Scientist Eric reported.

Star Colonel Truscott frowned, "I do wish it were so easy.  The locals, if they are alive, have heard of the Clans...we are Clan.  The reaction is predictable-they will run, or hide, and I assume live subjects are superior to recently killed ones, quiaff?"

"Aff...I think we know of one that may not run."  Eric said, handing the offprint copies of Corporal Nguyen's translated personnel file.  "Unfortunately, He is...unlikely to submit to capture-but we might find a..."

"OvKhan, there is a transmission from the Ares Might, a Lyran vessel from Kowloon has entered the system, and is demanding to be allowed to land...humanitarian aid and medical personnel on the planet?"

Truscott looked at the Scientist.  "You expected this?" He asked.

"Absalom and James expected it." Eric stated, "This team was the initial team, they planned a larger expedition when it became clear this was a pandemic-that expedition would have already been here, if not for the Khan's visit to Kowloon."

"Insanity...they land they will be trapped here!" Truscott insisted.

"The Galaxy Commander has left the decision to you, sir."  Star Captain Jorge, the now-former flight lead for the dropship, said.

"Let me talk to our Galaxy Commander."


five minutes later, aboard the Star Adder Dropship 'Legion'...

"...know it's quarantined? Star Colonel, we have been trying to get a Level Zero Biohazard announced on this system, Hell, we can leave the fighter wing on board the Bianh Vu Lo to play watch-me, plus we have long-duration patrol shuttles ready-on-deck to enforce quarantine patrols in the stable pirate points in the system.  I have five hundered volunteers, search and rescue guys, medics, doctors, and their gear waiting for assurance that you will not blow them out of the air coming down, and there are another thousand doing prep back on Kowloon for their ticket in-we're all volunteers-we either lick this virus, or we do not go home."

Truscott looked away from the holotank for a moment, consulting with his staff, "You think they are serious?" he asked.

"I...do not know, I do know from what we have translated that the regular Lyran Authorities seem to be deliberately down-playing the severity of the outbreak, pretending nothing is wrong, and insisting that they lack transport capacity to send relief..."

"Are you working on behalf of the Lyrans?" Truscott asked the image of the Kowloonese jumpship captain.

"NO...Star Colonel, the Lyrans rarely give scrap of crap for the people out here.  We take care of things like this ourselves most of the time-because we always seem like we HAVE to-now, are you going to let my people save some lives down there, or NOT?"

"If I say 'no'??" Truscott asked.

"Then we will pirate in, punch through whatever fighter screens you have, crash the droppers, and get our people and whatever survives the trip down there and into action immediately-time, Star Colonel. Every minute, a hundered thousand people are dead that might've been saved, unless you can bring in the manpower to do the job yourselves...unless your CLAN is willing to do it, we are the best hope those people have."

"You will work with us." Truscott said, "Cooperate. Coordinate."

"Duh! Our tech is fifty to three hundered YEARS behind yours-all we have as far as an advantage, is recent experience dealing with Plagues-of course we will work with you-if we do not work together, my people's odds of getting home drop considerably, because we will not bring this bug back to our homeland, period...besides, we need your help getting the HPG running.  the Blakists died down there, and none of their adepts HERE had the stones to volunteer."

"Make your landing, I recommend the airport at Grantsville, a few hundered K north and east of my position-we need your assistance in search-and-rescue, given the conditions of the large cities, I suspect most of the survivors are fleeing to the rural areas."

"Fits with prior experience." the Kowloonese skipper nodded, "Sideband sixteen for team communications, you can arrange with Major Ezekiel Gittel and Doctor Shara Cham for data and search zones, I have to stay here until I get a relief, someone has to watch the back-door, Over?"

"Bargained well and done.  Good luck to you." Truscott said.

"I do not need it.  I wish the blessings of God to you and your people, because you DO need it, Lu San Cu'ong out."

The holostage blinked out.

"Insane." Truscott said, "Brave to the point of stupid-they know what is down here-that link they ran contained all the same information we have-savashri, THEY gathered most of the information we have...and they are coming here anyway."

Eric cleared his throat, "I think they overestimated our technological strength..." he said, "The equipment on that first dropship was old, but it is similar to most of the systems I trained on, and some of it...not better, but the solutions to what they lack were very...elegant."

"You have looked  at the first team's work in detail?" Truscott asked his scientist.

"Aff.  They started tracking the virus in the Relief crew when they realized standard antivirals were insufficient, but they theorized that they needed a bigger sample..."

"you do not mean to say-" Truscott felt a glimmer of discomfort.

"I do, They said 'volunteers', Star Colonel.   They lack the kind of sophisticated modeling systems we have in the Homeworlds, and they spoke of this as a one-way trip...the best way to model the progression of a virus in a human host, is to use a human host when you lack the systems to do so in a virtual environment."

"Do we have those computers?" Truscott asked, hopefully.

"Neg. The nearest one is in the Clan's Temple on Strana Mechty."  Eric said,  "We are going to NEED 'volunteers'..."

"Savashri..."  Star Colonel Zachariah Truscott suddenly wished he could find an epithet strong enough to describe the feeling that washed over him...
« Last Edit: 04 March 2012, 06:31:20 by Cannonshop »
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Re: A Sickness (Ngoverse/FGC'62-91 tie-in)
« Reply #49 on: 04 March 2012, 06:55:08 »
Kowloonese Landing Zone, Grantsville city Wharf and Grantsville Municipal Park, July 3, 3067...

"...suggest you stay sealed, Star Colonel-part of my mission profile is to deliberately expose myself to the virus."  The Kowloonese Coast-Guardsman at the gate stood his ground at the feet of the Warhawk of Zachariah Truscott, "You want to stay sealed until you clear decon at the isolation structures, after that, I would recommend you stay in your suit with the filters for your meet with the C.O., we are trying to keep the control group isolated from the rest-briefing says this one is a fast mutator."

Truscott could see mass graves being dug with heavy machinery at the far end of the Landing Zone, and they were burn pits.   "I think I will stay in my 'mech for now...you brought none with you, Quineg?"

"No 'mechs, too bulky, too valuable, not replaceable, besides, we can always hotwire the rides of the late Militia."  The guardsman responded, jogging alongside the Warhawk's left foot, "We DID bring choppers and boats, though-those are useful for Search-and-Rescue work, patrols, the whole zone is lousy with rivers and deep streams, and those are just NOT choked with wrecked cars-lets us operate deeper in than we would be able to if we relied on dirt-units."

"Who are the graves for?" Truscott asked.

"We have been clearing the town-when we have enough cleared, we will probably dig some for ourselves." the...'Sailor'? answered.  "This one is nasty, and we are working from a pretty shallow base on how to handle it, so...you know, prepare for the worst."

Truscott parked his 'mech at the side of the Isolation shelter, settled it down and climbed out of the cockpit, assuring his suit was properly sealed.

"you people, you are insane to do this in this manner, you know that, quiaff?"  He told the man when he got out.

"Aye-aye." the Ranks on the man's light-cotton shirt were unfamiliar.  "What rank are you, um...'sailor'?"

"Commander, Star Colonel." the man saluted without any irony at all, "Welcome to Coast Guard Station Arluna, I am sorry we can not give you a warmer welcome."

"Perhaps another day." Truscott answered.

"maybe.  So far, nobody is symptomatic, that does not mean they are not infected." the Commander said, "Just that it works the way Doc Huyn back in Ia Drang theorized, low to no symptoms early on, then a rush-we are working on how long it takes to be transmissible."

"Nobody is symptomatic...you mean?" Truscott asked.

"I mean, as of Oh-Four in the morning, local time, my blood test showed the virus in my body.  We are trying a modified formulation thirteen Echo, does not even seem to touch it...but for the time being, I feel just fine."

"SO, Eric was right about 'volunteers'..." Truscott said softly.

"I take it 'eric' is one of your eggheads?" the Commander asked.

"Aff...so many genes will be eliminated..." Truscott commented.

"not so-I have four daughters and three sons, back home, every man here-and every woman here, has family-no singletons, no sole survivors, nobody who has not produced at least two healthy offspring were allowed in."  The Commander said, "We end up short some good people that way, but it was decided by Admiral Li that anyone willing to go, had better make sure their kids are born first.  Kind of puts your skin in the game that way-family men won't break and run, try to get out, try to get home, knowing how nasty this thing is-not without a cure, anyway."

a question nagged at Truscott for a moment, and he finally clawed it to him... "Why?" he asked, "Why volunteer at all?"

The Kowloonese looked at him, "because someone must." He said, "It must be done, consider it a test of one's moral worth, or maybe it's just accepting that a task-especially a hard, hopeless one, has to be done."

"What is your name, Commander?" Truscott asked.

"Truk Lanh, Star Colonel, my folks come from New Saigon, on the North Coast, near the tropics."
« Last Edit: 04 March 2012, 07:14:06 by Cannonshop »
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Re: A Sickness (Ngoverse/FGC'62-91 tie-in)
« Reply #50 on: 04 March 2012, 07:29:41 »
Pol Nguyen...

The congestion started yesterday, after he passed an empty corral and started across the corn field.  This morning, he coughed up most of the raw corn he'd eaten the night before.

Occasionally, in spite of a nose blocked solid with snot, he could smell the sea.

Freezing chills...oh, yeah...I am sick.  Pol stumbled into an orchard.  real sick.  I think I lost my way...  He'd had to bypass the Farm where that group of survivors had ambushed the Gang, he'd followed their trail over the ridge into another valley.  He'd felt the sweating when he got in rifle range, and knew, that if those kids were to have a chance, then Corporal Pol Nguyen couldn't be there-not sick, not with the Flu.

Not delirious.  But delerium or not, he'd seen the second jeep haul ass back to the road-and those people needed to be shot.

An hour ago, he found the Jeep.  The driver was dead at the wheel, but it was parked, and the other two left tracks when they jumped out.  a quick check showed him why-the fuel tank was half-full, but the radiator was punched with more holes than store-bought Motzah.

He wiped his eyes with a rag, and forced his feet to carry him, his hands to carry the rifle, and his mind to focus on the trail they left.

The spacing between their footprints, between the patches of broken grass, showed they were running.  They knew they were being hunted.

He coughed again, wracking, harsh coughs.  Sputum and blood came up in yellow-brown strings.

He spat, and kept going, slowing a moment to force water through his sore, raw throat.

At the edge of the orchard, he found them-the last two.  She was holding the other one's head up, while he vomited.

Pol held the rifle at a casual angle.  "Tell me." he said in english, "Tell me about the farmhouse you burned-were there people inside?"

The woman looked up at him, her eyes 'blacked' by burst vessels in her face, face swollen, neck stretched slightly.

"Yes."

"He will not make it." Pol said, gesturing at the former-militiaman dying in the woman's arms, "you could still run."

"What would be the point?" she asked.

"yeah...no point at all." Pol raised his rifle, sighted on the dying man, and fired.  "Run, if you think you can live." he said.

She stared at him, defiant.

"Suit yourself."

His shot went between her eyes.

After that, he sat down against a tree, and waited for the Fever to take him... "May god forgive you both." he muttered.

Later...

Pol woke up, a terrible smell in his senses, and sneezed agian.  it was dark, and he could feel his shit squishing in his pants, the wetness of urine and vomit all over his body, and the cold.

He undressed in darkness, and stumble-walked to a stream he'd crossed sometime earlier-a drainage ditch, swollen with meltwater.

The cold was heaven, as fires burned in his head.  He washed the foulness off his body, walked back to where his pack lay, and dressed himself.  Lucid periods...I better find some diapers or something. he laughed at the idea-the only reason to do that would be an expectation of survival.

He could see what the fever had denied him earlier-there was a small farmhouse ahead.  Empty, no sound from it, a starved-to-death dog chained to the porch.

He went inside, and found the family that had lived there in the living room.  "Suicide is a sin..." he muttered.  A quick search and he found a towel that would work...at least if I soil myself again, it'll be controlled...  There was still running water, and he found soap, as well.

And the lights still worked.

"I could find worse places to die." he told the corpses in the living room, "You don't mind, do you?"
« Last Edit: 04 March 2012, 07:38:16 by Cannonshop »
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Re: A Sickness (Ngoverse/FGC'62-91 tie-in)
« Reply #51 on: 04 March 2012, 08:46:53 »
June 29th, 3067, MacAulliffe Farm, 2100 Hours local...

Sara Malloy heard the engines coming up the drive, and she let Debra know.  "Get the little ones into the cellar, an' don't open it up." Deb told her.

It was expected.  The Gang had passed the house at six-she'd heard them then, too.  The Farm was in a kind of 'pocket holler' on the ridge, hard to spot without the roadway's lights shining, and the drive was at a kinked angle.  It had bought them time-time she made good use of.

"Boys, you know where to set up." she told her 'army'-four boys, aged eleven to fourteen.  They had guns-not big stuff, but guns. 

The gangsters crashed through the cattle gate across the driveway with their half-track.

"EYES!!!" she shouted, and pushed the button on her brother Horace's model-rocket controller.  Out in the driveway, the mines her father had planted to 'meet' a raid by the Desotos went off.

The half-track, a thirty tonne vehicle, lifted and tilted barely 200 yards from the house, to come down on its side, spilling gang members out onto the gravel-and the barbed wire fence.

The Jeep behind it, swerved into the yard.  DEbbie saw the machine-gun, and that was what SHE shot at first, while the boys shot at the dismounts.

The gunner on the jeep tumbled out, screaming from an open belly-wound.

Debbie shot at the driver when he slowed.

The rifle kicked and bucked with every shot, and she worked the bolt each time.

Screams from the parlor, and whizzing bee-sounds told her that the gang's fire was still coming in.

She shifted her point of aim at the half-overturned armored carrier.  Three of the Gang were covering, and two were operating a machine-gun.

She aimed at the gunner, and hit the ammo-can, splitting the belt and knocking the tin over.

she corrected her aim, mechanically, her mind was in the blank place daddy taught her to go when it hurt.  She worked the bolt, chambered a round, and fired, and the gunner fell in a spray of something wet.

The hunting rifle was empty, she reached down, and picked up the control for the sprayers-used for putting pesticide down, the sprayers were 'configurable', and she'd configured them to point out, instead of down.  The Pesticide hopper was full of diesel.

it sprayed the entire door-yard just to about fifty feet of the front porch.

A couple of them were getting up to run-through the spray.

She pressed the power button on her stereo-which was  not in the house, it was set up out THERE.

Instead of a poppy dance-tune, the circuit closed on the electric igniter for an Acetylene tank-partially bent by the earlier blast.

The Acetylene tank caught and ruptured-igniting the fuel.

A wall of fire-a ball of fire, a wave-front of fire erupted across the entire area, and she felt the pressure change-out, then...the windows shattered and the glass flew into the yard-area.

The last jeep, seeing the fireball, peeled out and fled.

Two of the boys were dead, and Carlos was wounded.  Anthony Ferguson wasn't hurt, but he wouldn't move, either...he just stared out the broken windows...

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Re: A Sickness (Ngoverse/FGC'62-91 tie-in)
« Reply #52 on: 04 March 2012, 09:09:30 »
3 July, 3067...

Star Commander Joanne saw the driveway out of sheer luck, and rapped (gently) on the cab of the prime-mover that was, for the time being, transport for her Point of Elementals.

What drew her attention, was the two half-charred bodies and the sign that said, "Stay Out."

The Warriors dismounted, and spread into a skirmish-line.  she selected the riot-loads for her Elemental Suit's machine-guns, and motioned for Patrick and Czerny to feed pacifier gas through their arm-mount flamers. 

[recent corpses, and a stay out sign means someone in there is alive, or was very, very recently...[/i]

"Should we call it in to the Coast Guard quineg?" Leonard was the 'bottom man' in the Point, and compared to the others, still fairly inexperienced in the Inner Sphere.

"Maybe." she said, "Depends on whether they rabbit or not. If they do not run, and they do not fight too effectively, we can take them relatively intact...the Scientists need to study someone whom is still alive, remember?"

"Aff, Understood."  She heard him changing his cassette from bullets to tranq rounds.

The five battlesuits moved out.

The first barrier was undergrowth and barbed wire.  Her suit's sensors showed detectors were spread throughout, as well as what looked to be basic antipersonnel mines.  The fading meant either the mines were very old, or had been here a very long time.

Trained warriors, the Point made short work of creating a path through the first barrier.

The second was...more barbed wire, laced through the trees.  some of it was electrified.  Still no challenge to warriors in power-armour, but she knew it would have presented a significant barrier to unarmoured infantry, while the dense trees would present a slightly-less-formidable barrier against 'mechs...and the uneven ground was practically textbook rubbling against most combat vehicles.

They reached the dooryard of a house, with scorched ground, a half-overturned Militia grade half-track, and signs of a protracted firefight, including plywood over broken windows.

A bullet flattened against her faceplate.  She barely felt the hit.  Magnification showed a woman, with a rifle, under the front porch.  The rifle was probably a common hunting piece, the suit estimated a 7.5mm bore size.  well, well, you ARE alive!

Joanne Tongued her suit's PA system.

"We come in peace, we mean you no harm."  she read it from the display script, and found the words distasteful...but magnification told her the girl was feverish, early symptomatic, and young-possibly as old as sixteen at the oldest.  a child...  the thought, unbidden, was humourous in a way...

"Come out, we will not harm you." she promised, "We have come to help you."  at least, that part is true-mostly.

the front door opened, and a little boy came out, curious, the girl worked the hunting rifle's bolt.  "You can not defeat our battlesuits with that, girl,  do not-" the bullet spanged off of Joanne's visor-very close to the same place.  exellent marksmanship, poor judgement, but a good shot!

The little boy came down the stairs, then, and ran up to the point.   The girl shouted something unintelligible, and came out from her hiding place, running arms open to try and claw the younger child back from what she likely percieved as a threat...

they both went down from the stun-gas, and more gas was lobbed at the building.

"Captured in battle?" Leonard asked ironically.

"Neg. Battle is for warriors. These are scared civilians, we are HELPING them...whether they realize it or not." Joanne corrected.

Later...

"...one female, her ident card shows she is a minor-sixteen years old, the others are children from the surrounding area.  There are several graves in the back yard, probably the family in the pictures within the home.  Two boys, one eleven, wounded, and VERY sick, a girl of eleven, one of nine, and three infants.  All but the nine year old boy who ran up to me are very ill-the oldest girl, the sixteen year old, is named Deborah MacAulliffe, some letters in the house indicate she has been rejected for Inner Sphere military schooling...which is probably a good break for us, since she was HERE for the other children to gravitate to."  Joanne reported. 

Zachariah Truscott walked the grounds.  "What happened here?" he asked.

"Apparently the girl, and the older boys, fought off a gang of scavengers." Joanne said, "two of the boys did not make it-they are the freshest graves, according to Anthony here..." she pointed at the young boy who was shadowing her, "This is fairly recent.  She 'took sick', according to the ones we did NOT have to gas, shortly after the fight."

"Well, I guess you got here just in time, quiaff?"

"Aff." Joanne said firmly, "this place was fortified-and has been for a while.  I was curious, so I checked some of the periodicals...apparently, before the Plague, Miss MacAulliffe's family was involved in some political activity that the Duke of Arluna disliked...intensely."

"Really?" Truscott cocked an eyebrow, visible through the faceplate of his combat-suit.

"Indeed.  'Tax Protester'." she told him, "I think the term more appropriate is 'political prisoner'-the man is a veteran of the first battle of Tamar."

"Warrior lineage." Truscott said with a grim sense of satisfaction.

In the background, three Scientist caste, ten Technicians, and twenty laborers were setting up.  "You did not take her as a bondsman." he said.

"The girl was armed...if you can call it that, with a hunting rifle, light caliber, bolt action, hunting rifle.  They tried to set up the Machine gun in a nest, and did a halfway decent job for amatuers...but it was still very amatuer, and based on the amount of ammunition left, it would not have done more than annoy the Astech assigned to paint and coating maintenance."

"What took out the half-track?" Truscott asked.

"My best guess is an improvised explosive device, planted in the driveway." She said without hesitation, "probably made of scavenged or home-made material, like the perimeter minefield is-this place was fortified against a lightly armed militia, but hardly an obstacle to true Warriors."

"The word you are looking for, is 'Police', Joanne." Truscott told her, "They were fortified against an attack by Police, probably in service to this 'duke'."

"Of course." Joanne said.

"Where is the girl-the leader?" he asked.

"She is already being treated in an isolation tent-or, rather, to be proper, the course of her illness is being monitored while the Scientists try to figure out HOW to treat her." Joanne's tone was disapproving.

"Very well, establish a guard rotation with your Star-Mates, and return to base, Star Commander." Truscott told her.

"Star Commander? will not Jeffery be...upset?" she asked.

"Jeffrey is in an isolation tent. His blood work came back positive." Truscott told her, "He is sick, you are not, therefore, you are in command of your Infantry star, and he is on patient status."
« Last Edit: 04 March 2012, 09:31:32 by Cannonshop »
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qc mech3

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Re: A Sickness (Ngoverse/FGC'62-91 tie-in)
« Reply #53 on: 04 March 2012, 11:32:14 »
If I was Truscott, I would make sure to record all the volunteers names and have them put in the clan remembrance. It's the least they can do to recognize courage.  O0

And then, make sure the clan won't try anything stupid with Kowloon.  ^-^

Cannonshop

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Re: A Sickness (Ngoverse/FGC'62-91 tie-in)
« Reply #54 on: 04 March 2012, 17:36:01 »
Pol Nguyen

Pol checked his chronometer.  it's been over a week?  and got up from the couch.  He dimly remembered at some point, burying the Smith family in the front yard, including their dog, which had starved to death before he'd reached the house.

(must have been a couple days ago?)  he wondered.  The washing-machine finished its drying cycle, and he pulled out...

when did I do laundry?  there they were, though- six pairs of socks, four pair of boxers, two BDU sets (Trousers and blouse) and a field jacket.

He folded them, took a towel, and took a shower.

The soap was still scummy from a previous shower he didn't remember.

Still wet from the shower, he stopped to shave, and looked at the face in the mirror.  The dark purpling at his neck and around his eyes was fading, and he realized something.  I'm not congested, I'm not nauseated... 

The plastic thermometer was set up, and he took his own temperature.

It was normal.

"well, son of a bitch, I survived." he marvelled.

In the kitchen, he didn't find tea, but he found some god-awful herbal concoction, and a five kilo tin of roasted coffee beans.  The grinder took a little work to locate, but there was a NashCorp Home Model coffee maker on the counter, and a box of filters.  Pol made himself some coffee.  In the icebox side of the fridge, were several packages of meat marked in german.   He found a roast that his bayonet made short work of turning into steaks, then, with one of those cooking on the timer, he went out back.

The chickens were wandering out in the yard, a check of the coop showed eggs in several nests.

The root-cellar had Yams.

Damn little spicing though... he sighed and made himself a Nha Tranh style breakfast.  Steak, eggs, and sliced-and-fried Yams with creme butter.

It felt good to eat without raw pain in his throat.

a little later, he went out to the orchard, and buried the two gangers he'd killed a week ago.

The smell was horrible, but bearable-you can get used to anything. he noted.

He switched on his comms-box, and listened.

There was chatter-Kowloonese voices in rapid-fire Viet, the signal strength said they were close-maybe within 200 Kilometers.

Pol activated the beacon, and waited.
« Last Edit: 04 March 2012, 17:40:10 by Cannonshop »
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Re: A Sickness (Ngoverse/FGC'62-91 tie-in)
« Reply #55 on: 05 March 2012, 05:56:06 »
Star Adder recovery zone, Arluna...

Scientist Eric watched her through the isolation glass, while the Sequencer ran through the structure of the viral again.  five days...she's been stable like this for almost a week.

Debbie Mac was straining at the restraints, the orderlies on-loan from the Coast Guard group at Grantsville changed her IV feeding tubes.  She screamed obscenities and threats.  Strain guages showed 'hysterical strength' pulses-adrenaline fueled rage each time.  The Restraints were found necessary when she broke Technician Albert's arm and tore Tech Richard's iso-glove suit open with her teeth.  It had taken an Elemental in armour to restrain her.

Her fever was severe, and spittle and snot flew around the iso-chamber.  This was a new symptom-or an old one.  The reports had mentioned extremely violent riots, assaults...

She snapped her teeth at one of the orderlies, and thrashed against her bonds again, when something seemed to change...

her heart-rate dropped, and she fell back on the bed, wheezing shallowly and bubble-coughing.  The phlegm was brown streaked at first, but then settled into a clearer, whitish 'normal' snot colour.

"Temp is dropping, Doc."  the lead Orderly-a Corpsman-Chief named Huang reported.  Eric checked his own instruments.

Her temperature was plummeting back down to normal.

"First time we have seen that."  Eric observed out loud, "what is she on?"

"Um...saline.  she rashed out on test batch fourteen last Tuesday, and the new series was not ready yet."  Huang answered.

"Recheck Fourteen, specifically the batch she had the reaction to!"

The girl's temperature was normal!

"Get me a white-cell count while you are in there." Eric added.  could it be fourteen? or was that just a coincidence?  "Tell me, has this happened with your test group in Grantsville yet?"

"Aye sir.  fifteen so far-sometimes they just get violent-usually when the Fever goes too high.  Most of the time, when they go violent like that, they burn up, and just kind of...well, die."  Huang answered, "She did not die, neither did Leutenant Cu'ong,..OUR docs think it might be connected-maybe the violent ones are more likely to survive, but we still don' know...the other theory is that the virus shifts its attack pattern, so not all symptoms are universal."

The replacement shift arrived, both were Clan personnel, in full isosuits.  The unsuited Kowloonese left the chamber by the external airlock, to avoid contaminating the base.

By midnight, the girl was quietly mumbling for water, and food, in an accent so thick it was nearly impossible to understand.

The core rules for interacting with me:

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Re: A Sickness (Ngoverse/FGC'62-91 tie-in)
« Reply #56 on: 05 March 2012, 07:41:41 »
Overview: Late July/August, 3067...

Elizabeth Ngo, having been recruited to replace Ambassador Rowe as the token Lyran Rep at the Star League conference on (I forget), collapses during her address, going into grand-mal Cholmann's seizures-her disease is made public knowledge by the event, and she is relieved of the duty shortly thereafter.  On her return trip, she visits Terra for the first time, and meets Jaime Wolf, for the first time since Alpin's attempted Coup cut short her contracted-for training on Outreach in 3055.  Wolf, in his eighties, single, and feeling his age in spite of a commission in the Terran Hegemony armed forces, hits things off with her.  Both are close to the end of their "Natural" lifespan-he due to age, she due to an incurable condition that will leave her a raw screaming nerve at the end.  An unlikely affair did transpire, and Liz continued on from Kowloon with 'Passengers' as a result.  (I don't have a copy of the original RP, or most of my old notes from the game, so I won't even TRY to resurrect those scenes.  Just bear with me-Liz and The Wolf got it on like a couple of minks on Terra.  Please control your disgust at the idea...)

On Inarcs, the Flu is barely hitting its stride-but unlike Arluna, where things just weren't working correctly, the Lyran government actually activated most of the in-place civil defense plans for dealing with a dangerous outbreak, including withdrawing all the front-line forces from the planet, and declaring a quarantine zone.  Just in time for the Star Adders to show up (most of Epsilon AND Alpha Galaxies, with attending warships).  LAAF forces fled the system, leaving it to Militia to try and deal with the invaders whilst simultaneously dealing with a deadly outbreak that would, by the end of July, have killed ten million people in Paradiso alone.  (There WILL be story entries on this one). 

On Australia, Howick, and several other worlds (Kwangchowwang) the virus will begin killing job-lots of people.  Shipping in the area is degraded, as vessels fall prey, some during mid-transit.  Jessenice is hit mildly, but Winter is crushed.  By early August, five billion Lyrans will die, spread across nearly a dozen worlds.  Kowloon gets its' taste of the Flu in July as well-paradoxically a milder taste than many more important worlds.

Arluna gets the first "official" relief group from the newly-reformed Star League-a contingent of NIOPS personnel seconded to the SLDF were diverted from the active war front.  (There will be entries addressing this as well, in some detail, I do hope Giovanniblasini's going to be available, since it involves one of his characters, and he co-wrote several key posts in the original game!) Debbie Mac, conscious, local, "Neutral" and the nearest thing anyone has found so far to a "Leader" for the survivors, becomes the touch-point for Clan, NIOPS, and Kowloonese teams.  Simply put, she's the only person everyone can talk to who doesn't have an outside interest.  effectively, a sixteen year old girl with an accent so thick most of them have to listen twice, becomes the "Ombudsman" for Native Arlunan survivors, and an emissary to survivor concentrations located by the relief groups. (there will be posting on THIS as well)

Damage from the outbreak, at this point, has slowed the Star Adder offensive, as world after world turns up sick, and Clan scientists repeatedly fail to deliver an effective treatment in a timely manner.  Clan Ghost Bear historical researchers uncover the virus' actual origins, and the SLDF's intended 'blocker molecule' treatment...which fails to do more than reduce lethality by a few percent.

In Mid August, the entire Lyran Alliance goes into quarantine lockdown, creating economic chaos and disrupting commerce through the rest of that month as Alliance Medical Corps and Star League personnel try to contain the infection.

Mind that the Flu ran rampant up to late November in the FGC timeline, with a cooldown that lasted until January of 3068.  August was a bleak time indeed for this corner of the Inner Sphere...

Flu Casualties thus Far:

Arluna Death Count as of August, 3067: 1.92x108 dead. 
Kowloon Death Count, August 3067: 2.1x106
Australia Death Toll: 5.7x105
Inarcs Death Toll: 3.214x106
Miquelon Death Toll: 4.7x104
Anembo Death Toll: 9.67x103
Melissia Death Toll: 1.45x107
Jerangle Death Toll: 5.7x104
Jessenice Death Toll: 4.32x105
Kwangchowwang Death Toll: 2.71x107
Hood IV Death Toll: 4.1x104
« Last Edit: 05 March 2012, 07:55:02 by Cannonshop »
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Re: A Sickness (Ngoverse/FGC'62-91 tie-in)
« Reply #57 on: 05 March 2012, 12:20:06 »
Overview: Late July/August, 3067...
Flu Casualties thus Far:

Arluna Death Count as of August, 3067: 1.92x108 dead. 
Kowloon Death Count, August 3067: 2.1x106
Australia Death Toll: 5.7x105
Inarcs Death Toll: 3.214x106
Miquelon Death Toll: 4.7x104
Anembo Death Toll: 9.67x103
Melissia Death Toll: 1.45x107
Jerangle Death Toll: 5.7x104
Jessenice Death Toll: 4.32x105
Kwangchowwang Death Toll: 2.71x107
Hood IV Death Toll: 4.1x104

Any chance you could add the % death of the total planetary pop?
Why does everyone "Fire at Will"? Is he really that bad of a person? And what did he do to make everyone want to shoot him?

If a group of necrophiliacs met a group of zombies, who would do the chasing?

Bacon is Life! Even vegaterians eat bacon.

Cannonshop

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Re: A Sickness (Ngoverse/FGC'62-91 tie-in)
« Reply #58 on: 06 March 2012, 03:52:22 »
Any chance you could add the % death of the total planetary pop?

By August...

Arluna's lost roughly 50% of its planetary population since March of 3067.
Kowloon has lost just shy of 10%

Australia's at 5.5% (estimated)

Inarcs has lost 570,000 out of 3 billion, figure 3% (thank you, Duke Arturo DeSoto!)

Miquelon has lost 47,000 out of 351 Million, still a pretty small percentage at this point.

Anembo, with the outbreak REAL fresh (it went symptomatic in July) has only lost a few thousand, also in great shape.

Melissia...under Fire Mandrill control since May, the plague has not been dealt with effectively at all.  Death Toll is sitting at 14,500,000 out of 3 billion.

Jerangle has lost est. 57,000 so far, out of a population of 542 Million.

Jessenice has lost 432,000 out of a pre-plague 1,562,000,000

Kwangchowwang, 27,100,000 out of  a pre-plague population of 2,100,000,000

Hood IV: 41,000 out of a pre-plague 17 Million


Hardest-hit worlds were worlds with extensive public transit and dense urban development in the "Secondary outbreak" phase.  Arluna's outbreak actually started in February of 3067, several months before infected carriers reached more urbanized or densely packed population centres. 
« Last Edit: 07 March 2012, 04:06:24 by Cannonshop »
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Re: A Sickness (Ngoverse/FGC'62-91 tie-in)
« Reply #59 on: 06 March 2012, 05:09:45 »
Coast Guard Base Spider Moon...

[Note: the following conversation was conducted in Vietnamese, for the convenience of readers, it has been translated into Standard Star League English...]


"...outbreaks in Xiao Loc, Khon Tum and Nha Tranh, so far we've got them contained, but testing shows this virus has an unusually long asymptomatic period before it goes active, so we can expect things are going to get a lot worse.  How's Earth?"  Alicia Li asked the screen.

Elizabeth Ngo's image held for a moment, then shrugged, "Not bad.  crowded,  I guess I missed the gene that makes it all seem majestic."  the Duchess said, "I'm starting home at the end of the week-the doctors here really don't have any more clue than our people do regarding MY problem, and precious little useful regarding OUR problem, though I have been getting some help from a NIOPS doctor working on the Cholmann's, a radical treatment, this problem, though, trumps that.  He's offered to come with-apparently I'm an interesting patient-keep the local quarantines up, and don't let anyone passing through land, or leave, unless you're SURE they're clean.  I'll be home in three, maybe four months."

"The Star Adders have pretty much taken most of the neighbourhood, Duchess, that might make it difficult." Li said, "I don't know how open the Tharkad government has been about this, but..."

"I've been briefed.  I'll be doing a layover at Alarion, picking up some friends, we'll get through on time." Liz said, "Bobby Steiner's even named one of the ships LCS Kowloon, we'll make it home, just make sure I've got a 'home' to come home to, Commodore."

"Bobby? You mean Duke Robert Kelswa Steiner, the Free Skye guy?" Li asked.

"The very same.  He's acting General of the Armies, while Ceasar Steiner's playing Regent and Peter..." she looked aside, "They're saying his condition's stable, but MY sources say he's in a coma-seems Daphne's friends weren't comfortable with just manipulating him and making him a prisoner-they almost killed him before Yvonne's people got him out."

"What are you going to do about Daphne Rowe?" Li asked suspiciously.

"Nothing." Liz told her, "First, nothing I Can do-not while that flu's loose and we don't have a good way to stop it, but past that, there's the simple fact that Daffy might be a self-absorbed bitch, possibly a traitor, and definitely playing with some serious black-hats, but she's not a complete and total moron, and she's got Adam Steiner hanging off her arm like a trophy-I don't have that kind of pull, and if I did, I sure as hell wouldn't advertise it.  Keep things upright back home, I'm on my way, Out."

The image blinked out, and Li leaned back.  "Get me Charles Vanh in VDL, I need to consult with my Civil Counterpart...and get Dr. Huyn on the horn, maybe she's made some kind of progress on detecting this thing that's killing our people."

The core rules for interacting with me:

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