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Author Topic: ...hold me tighter, I think I'm sinking down...  (Read 3985 times)

Cannonshop

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...hold me tighter, I think I'm sinking down...
« on: 26 September 2020, 20:14:37 »
The man on the green couch shuddered and sweated, groaning pitifully.

Carmelita watched and waited as he writhed in apparent agony.

She watched, and sipped bitter water, wiping a driplet off her lips with one filthy sleeve, as he shuddered into stillness and his breathing regularized.

she spoke no word, waiting patiently for his eyes to open with awareness.

eventually, they did.

"FOUNDER...what-"

"Shh." she shushed the 'mechwarrior,   "Have some water."  she handed him the flask, he took a sip, and spat it out "Gahh! foul!!"

"yeah." she grinned maliciously.  "It is.  Star colonel, you have been exposed to the contraband narcotic Bliss for the last eight hours, your body now requires it to live.  when you enter withdrawal-and you will, it will come with cramps, and a craving that you will never find something to fill, you will lose the ability to experience pleasure, and then, you will lose the ability to sleep...and then, you will go insane, and you will die, and do you know why this will happen?"

He painfully sat up.  "What?"

"This will happen, because you don't know where to get more-and you will want more, I assure you...and nobody will help you.  This is what I do for my family, Star Colonel-every man in your unit, will experience what you will experience, and you will all die like dogs...after losing your honor and your dignity and everything that separates you from animals."

she stood up, "You'll regain your strength soon, your sidearm is in the desk, over there." she gestured at a half destroyed piece of furniture.  "I left you one bullet.  your choice in how you'll use it.  Your next dose will be needed in seven hours, thirty one minutes. have a nice day."

she walked out of the half-destroyed slum-house, into the ruined streets of the village.

one down, fifteen to go.
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.

mikecj

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Re: ...hold me tighter, I think I'm sinking down...
« Reply #1 on: 26 September 2020, 20:16:22 »
nice!
There are no fish in my pond.
"First, one brief announcement. I just want to mention, for those who have asked, that absolutely nothing what so ever happened today in sector 83x9x12. I repeat, nothing happened. Please remain calm." Susan Ivanova
"Solve a man's problems with violence, help him for a day. Teach a man to solve his problems with violence, help him for a lifetime." - Belkar Bitterleaf
Romo Lampkin could have gotten Stefan Amaris off with a warning.

Euphonium

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Re: ...hold me tighter, I think I'm sinking down...
« Reply #2 on: 26 September 2020, 20:30:27 »
I look forward to seeing where tis one goes
>>>>[You're only jealous because the voices don't talk to you]<<<<

Cannonshop

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Re: ...hold me tighter, I think I'm sinking down...
« Reply #3 on: 26 September 2020, 20:52:15 »
They are almost invisible in the grand sweep of things, the displaced and truly dispossessed, not "Dispossessed" like a 'mechwarrior without a ride, but truly dispossessed, the orphans and the widows, the homeless made that way by the sledge of war unending and the demands of the would-be conquerors, generals, Khans and Kings and whatever other grand titles accrue to those who order the murder of civilization and manage the ending of communities.

it's always done in the name of grand visions, 'the proletariat', 'Manifest Destiny', 'restoring the star league'.

Carmelita handed the credit chit over to the merchant in the stall, and accepted her ration.  "Thank you." she said.  She always said it, to each of them, the ones who would lose everything, or be traded like a deck of cards in a fixed duel.

They never see it coming.  She'd learned it well.  she walked away from the merchant's stall, clutching her meagre purchase of rations, avoiding eye contact with passerby.

Her target was close.  He'd risen far in the ranks since his trinary destroyed her home, just as the Star Colonel had.

but they always do.

"Identicard."

she stopped, looking at the feet of the Clan Police, she pulled the ident card from her rough shawl, and presented it without a word with shaking hands.

He checked it, then lifted her chin with a finger.  Her meek, frightened, beaten-down stare met his visor.

the reader flashed green three times, and he handed it back.  "Be safe miss." he told her, "Be on your way, Glory to the Clan."

"Glory to the Clan." she answered him, mirroring what he expected to hear.

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: ...hold me tighter, I think I'm sinking down...
« Reply #4 on: 26 September 2020, 22:10:15 »
They are invisible to the rulers, except when they are unsightly.    She dipped a mop in the bucket, and spread the solution on the corridor.  Her target works late, perhaps an attempt to make up for what he'd participated back then.

tonight, he was going over another Training exercise conducted by his subordinates, working alone, an aide just nearby enough.

she spread the mop solution along the floor, working the scuffs and the dirt out from the day's operations in the command center.

Labor is invisible, techs are more visible, but Carmelita had been a worker her whole life-before that life had been ended with the destruction of their wars for pride, for 'ideals'.

She was beneath their notice.  The guards did not even look at her, one or two pointedly looked away as she continued in her menial task, because in the Clan labor system, tasks like this were so menial they were not worth automating, and given only to the lowest and least capable of the laborer caste, the ones considered borderline unfit to even be allowed to breed.

Beneath them, not a threat.

she reached the offices, and slid her card in the slot.  The door unlatched, and she went inside.

the floor above was where he was, for efficiency, the air system was centralized, and the rooms shared ducting, because who would spy on a Clan Headquarters this far into Clan controlled space? where would such a spy report?

She stepped up onto the case of toilet paper, and undid the fasteners for the filter housing.

she changed the filter, and replaced the grating.  In a few minutes, the security system would sweep the area for devices.

it would find nothing, for there was nothing to find.

She placed the dirty filter into a reclamation bin for the weekly collection, and left the store room.

continuing on her task.

Beneath them.  a face they become used to looking through.  studying them, their habits, their unique needs and desires, the unconscious patterns of routine.

become part of the routine.

she finished the level, and took the mop-solvent to a reprocessing station, pouring it, her nightly task complete.

She walked out of the headquarters with a bare acknowledgement of her existence and a security sweeping of her body, done by the least of the Warriors assigned here as punishment, they made her strip, and used latex gloves to search her for anything that might be stolen, or contraband, any indicator of a spying device, or transmitter, before they let her dress in her clothes again, and leave the compound.

Invisible, and patient.  This one would make it thirteen, when he went to the machine for coffee, two sugars, cream, his paycode would tell the machine to fill his order, and it would tell something else, to add a little treat.

it wasn't perfect, or seamless, but she walked with the drudged gait and poor nourishment of the lowest of the castes, but without obvious signs of guilt.

The core rules for interacting with me:

1.) I am not a moderator, game developer, member of Cryptic staff, relative of any members of cryptic staff, not close friends with anyone involved with the game, not a distributor of product, not an employee, employer, professional reviewer, or member of any powerful conspiracies.  What I think is my own and has no impact on the Battletech franchise in any way, shape, or form.

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.

Ttw1

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Re: ...hold me tighter, I think I'm sinking down...
« Reply #5 on: 26 September 2020, 22:30:19 »
TAGed
The Mother Doctrine was good. Change My Mind.

Cannonshop

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Re: ...hold me tighter, I think I'm sinking down...
« Reply #6 on: 26 September 2020, 23:41:12 »
at first, the Watch didn't see a pattern.  a couple of warriors, one disgracing himself with addictive narcotics, not wholly unexpected but still offensive, then killing himself.  A distinguished Star Commander found dead in his office of, well...

'he died'.

No pattern emerged or was even suggested until the third casualty-a mechwarrior recently sent to Solahma duty after failing to retain his position, screaming about ghosts and cutting his way through half a dozen of his new comrades before he could be put down.

This time, there was something to find that truly shouldn't be there.

"Dimethyl Sulfoxide and...Phencyclidine concentrate in the nervous system and blood, the amount is well above dangerous levels."

this stimulated a more careful examination of the body, and possessions.

the materials were found in his undergarments, applied with a temperature and moisture sensitive laquer to his sidearm's grips, and in his neurohelmet's liner.

The dosage was suitable to trigger acute anxiety and even psychotic violent outbursts.

Computers placed in the Clan's care after conquest made the initial common connection-all three had been members of a specific trinary several years ago.

It was laughed off as a coincidence when the fourth victim occurred.  Death by overdose by a chemical that stimulated the release of aggression hormones while lowering inhibition, heart attack and pulmonary failure while engaging in 'coupling' with a junior warrior who claimed the recreational activity was non-consensual and had the bruises and injuries to prove it.

"There is a killer, these were certainly not accidents..."
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: ...hold me tighter, I think I'm sinking down...
« Reply #7 on: 27 September 2020, 00:44:36 »
October 2, 3062, edge of the periphery...

The Clan had been here for over a decade now.  Long enough that veterans of the first wave of Operation:Revival were rotating to the PGC covering this part of space as they tested down from the front line warrior formations in favor of younger warriors fresh from their trials of position.

Point Commander Arlene has been assigned here almost since arrival, a garrison specialist brought in under Khan Ulric's orders, she had managed to keep a low profile, and she cared about her duties here, enough to resist the call to follow the Wardens into exile, enough that as political winds shifted, she simply changed flag and uniform as needed.

There is little call for conventional infantry leaders with the best of the Touman, and she had been a PGC soldier practically since barely making it into the Warrior Caste back in 3048.  She wasn't trueborn, she was a freebirth, and that gave her a certain...perspective in dealing with occupation duty, and that certain 'feel' for the currents of sentiment among the lower castes meant that she handled things a little differently.

There were fifteen files on her desktop.  four were marked 'Deceased', one was listed as lost to the Jade Falcons, but still alive, and that left her with ten warriors and a gut feeling that someone really wanted those ten warriors dead.  that ten, specifically.

"you turning in tonight, Deputy?"  her nickname had become 'Deputy' because of her unorthodox methods of crime control.  Instead of rounding up suspects for interrogation in groups, she invested time and effort into each case, seeking not to find someone to punish for order's sake, but instead, seeking to find the specific guilty party.

Star Captain Robert was new to this garrison...he was also on her list.

"No. Not yet."  she answered him, "I still have details to apply to the latest report."

He laughed.  "You should get out more, when was the last time  you took recreation?"

"I don't." she told him.  "I am well past my prime, and getting old.  If I am to keep making a difference, I have to maintain proficiency while performing effectively."

"Why? this is a dead-end assignment with no glory."

"An assignment that still must be done." she countered.

"You will accompany me, and the rest of the Headquarter Star, for drinks."

"Is that an order?"

"Aff."

she sighed, and closed out the desktop.  "Fine..."

***

"...your attention to duties is laudable, and you have a great deal of experience to pass on."

"I am not prepared to step down yet." she told him as they walked down the mostly-empty streets to the canteen.  "Let me get it out of the way-my chances of promotion are nil, I am too old for even a second-line position in most of the Touman..." she watched warily anyway, and a civil worker, a laborer waiting at the transit stop tripped something...an instinct.  she slid her walk slightly askew from the normal disciplined subordinate march, moving slightly ahead of her new CO.  "...I am unlikely to earn promotion higher than my current rank, but I occupy a position that is undesirable, on a backwater.  There is no chance I will ever be included in the breeding programme...so, that is all out of the way."

the worker turned and started toward them.

something is not right.

Arlene paused in reciting her defects.

definitely not right.

"You! Identification!"

The woman stopped, and fumbled for an identicard.

too submissive.

She reached out, and took the woman's hand.

it was ice cold, more like dead meat than living flesh.  "This identicard is incorrect."  she said, "you will co-"

and then something remarkable happened, and it happened in front of them both.

Arlene was holding nothing, except a slip of duraplast, because the woman was gone.

not running away gone, not slipped the grip and ducked into an alleyway gone.

gone.

just gone.

"And this is why I don't step down."

she glanced at Robert, and his face was as white as the vanished woman's, only it was fear white.

"Star Captain, I think I need to ask you some questions about a case."
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.

ThePW

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Re: ...hold me tighter, I think I'm sinking down...
« Reply #8 on: 27 September 2020, 01:26:30 »
One. Ping. Only.

Cannonshop

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Re: ...hold me tighter, I think I'm sinking down...
« Reply #9 on: 27 September 2020, 01:57:16 »
"...we sanitized a lot of early actions during Operation:Revival."  Robert sat across from her in the interrogation room.  "Speed, it was critical, staying ahead of the others, and my trinary, we were mostly sympathetic to the Crusader cause, except for Star Commander Jonah, which is pretty ironic, in a sick way." he sighed, and Arlene poured a cup half full of the local distilled spirits from a hand-blown glass bottle.  He took the offered up, and downed it with a wince.  "The place was a little two-village colony, They barely had running water and primitive power from a dam...but they wanted to fight."

"I've seen duty stations like that." Arlene sympathized.  "little hell-hole full of people who would not be a threat, if only left alone...go on."

"We spent three weeks there, some of the data said there was a Star League facility left behind, some kind of research project or something, but you would not be able to tell from how those people were barely alive..." He sighed, "We had orders, there was still the possibility, especially after the Smoke Jaguars started testing for taint-Osis wanted everyone to run samples, remember that?"

"I oversaw a few of those, mostly finishing the details so we could set up medical centers." she agreed.

"heh, 'medical centers'...aff...that was the official term, but our unit's medical support had copies of the charting for not-named DNA...and at first, it looked like a waste of time...and after, it was, but during?"  he held out the cup, and she refilled it.

"During?"

"There was a false positive.  One of the families living outside the second village." He said, "Little girl, carmen or..some damned name...and suddenly our openly Warden Star Commander...got very interested in aggressively pursuing the matter.  to the point that he convinced the rest of us that we'd found a secret pocket of the Not Named.  Fanatical about it.  so...we did our duty, we killed them."

"How many?":

"all of them." he said, "even the ones that did not register false positives...only we had a medtech going over the bodies.  The gene profiles...did not match the initial readings, it turns out there was a fault in the reader."

"HOW MANY?"

"It took us eleven days, Arlene.  two villages, eleven days before the error was discovered...around four thousand civilians, men, women...children...and after, Jonah kept it up, to be sure to be...certain there would be no witnesses to turn insurgent later.  It is all a wash now."

"What do you mean?"

"My sins have caught up to me." He told her, "How do you apologize for that?  what possible surkai can anyone..ever offer for that?  I saw her tonight.  The girl, the false positive, right there on the street! in front of us! as clearly as I see you sitting there in front of me, right now!"

"I saw her too.  this is not your guilt driving you insane, Robert.  This is real, and she is a real witness who can truly testify to what you did...you are under arrest for war crimes."

He finished his drink, "It will not matter." he said, "I will repeat with details in front of a recorder, and maybe the judgement of the Clan will kill me first, or maybe...maybe she will finish it for you...but I have disgraced the Clan, and the uniform."

"Yes, yes you have."

« Last Edit: 27 September 2020, 01:58:49 by Cannonshop »
The core rules for interacting with me:

1.) I am not a moderator, game developer, member of Cryptic staff, relative of any members of cryptic staff, not close friends with anyone involved with the game, not a distributor of product, not an employee, employer, professional reviewer, or member of any powerful conspiracies.  What I think is my own and has no impact on the Battletech franchise in any way, shape, or form.

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: ...hold me tighter, I think I'm sinking down...
« Reply #10 on: 27 September 2020, 02:12:07 »
so close! The building she woke up in had been a commercial building at some point, repurposed for housing farm labor under Wolf's watch to better deliver supplies and keep things regulated.

she pulled her shawl close around thin shoulders, though it wasn't particularly cold in here, and stepped out of the bunk cubicle.  Immediately, she sought out the floor officer.

"I have lost my identicard!" she told him, "what am I going to DO??"

The Merchant administrator acting as floor officer took her name.

"Carmelita Rosen."

He typed the name in, "Ident number? oh, wait, here it is...  You are a good worker according to your file."

She smiled at him.  "Thank you, I was raised to work hard." she tells him.

a new identicard began printing.  "Try not to lose this one, Carmelita, with your clearances your identicard and ration cards are valuable to the bandit caste, even here on a safe world."

"Yes sir.  I will do my best."

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.

Artifex

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Re: ...hold me tighter, I think I'm sinking down...
« Reply #11 on: 27 September 2020, 02:23:46 »
TAGged.

I guess this'll turn out to be the classic race between the perpetrator and the investigator for the remaining 10. :thumbsup:

Giovanni Blasini

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Re: ...hold me tighter, I think I'm sinking down...
« Reply #12 on: 27 September 2020, 03:19:24 »
There is also something off about Carmelita.  Star League research facility. The cold hands...
"“Eternity is a long time, especially towards the end.” -- Stephen Hawking

XaosGorilla

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Re: ...hold me tighter, I think I'm sinking down...
« Reply #13 on: 27 September 2020, 04:10:20 »
Also, did she age?

Cannonshop

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Re: ...hold me tighter, I think I'm sinking down...
« Reply #14 on: 27 September 2020, 04:40:59 »
The planet didn't even merit having a name. just a stellar catalog number and a set of jump coordinates, coordinates that, according to records, corresponded to an SLDF Naval laboratory that the initial trinary sent to find it, had not found.

According to Robert, a Trueborn from the line of Connors, they had butchered the population instead, and then abandoned the search for strategic reasons.

'Strategic Reasons' such as hiding their mistake.  Fifteen files sat on Vladimir Ward's desk, and a freebirth from arguably the lowest rung of the Warrior Caste, aging clear on her face, stood at parade rest on the holostage.

"Four of those warriors are presently deceased.  One, is in the hands of Clan Jade Falcon, taken bondsman and retained after your successful refusal to submit to an illegal absorption.  That leaves ten warriors that need to be apprehended, interviewed, tried, and sentenced, OvKhan, for war crimes every bit as bad except in scale, as those committed by the traitor lords.  I have one in custody, and without either a clear refutation, or corroborating evidence supporting his registered confession..."

politically, a public trial of this nature could seriously damage Clan Wolf's position among the Clans, and would be propoganda gold for the Inner Sphere.

the nature, and impact, of the charges, the crimes alleged committed even against filthy barbarians, could do damage.  Vlad knew this.

He also knew in his bones, that it may already be too late to quietly settle this.

"Star Captain Arlene, you are now detailed to conduct this investigation as a war crimes investigation, on my order as Khan, you  are to receive whatever support is not directly committed to continuing the war effort to establish the veracity or lack thereof, of the charges, Establish if this crime did, in fact happen, and then establish whether or not the suspects are, in fact guilty.  I want this handled within the next four months.  An Explorer class Jumpship will be detailed for your travel requirements and the suspects will be transferred into your AOR from whatever units they happen to presently be assigned.  I want The Truth."

"Seyla, My Khan.  It shall be done."

He had considered keeping the Explorer class ship captured over Tamar during the invasion as a VIP transport or diplomatic courier, a role that his predecessor, Ulric, had actually also considered long enough that it had not been sent to the breakers for the miniscule amount of Germanium in its core.

sending it out to the back end of beyond for an internal investigation seemed convenient enough, and would make the vessel useful-at least, for a while.



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: ...hold me tighter, I think I'm sinking down...
« Reply #15 on: 27 September 2020, 04:51:21 »
"No rest for you, Robert Connor."  the cell was chilly after lights-out, and aside from the speaker grill and an armored camera, he should have been in isolated silence.

Star Captain Robert...well, former and maybe future star captain, peeked through half-closed eyes.  "No rest for you, murderer"

freezing hands caressed his cheeks and for a moment, he saw her face over his.

"The verdict is guilty."

and then...he woke up, screaming, soaked in sweat, and alone.
The core rules for interacting with me:

1.) I am not a moderator, game developer, member of Cryptic staff, relative of any members of cryptic staff, not close friends with anyone involved with the game, not a distributor of product, not an employee, employer, professional reviewer, or member of any powerful conspiracies.  What I think is my own and has no impact on the Battletech franchise in any way, shape, or form.

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: ...hold me tighter, I think I'm sinking down...
« Reply #16 on: 27 September 2020, 06:42:47 »
She doesn't sleep.  no, that's not right...she sleeps. she dreams.

Her dreams are filled with fear, and screams, and the hiss-crack of human beings blown apart as lasers tuned to antipersonnel frequencies transmute human blood into pinkish steam, of her people begging, pleading...

and dying.

This is all that Carmelita knows when she closes her eyes, over and over, over and over, and over and over again.

pain, fear, loss, and a frantic burning desire for revenge.

Carmelita doesn't sleep well, and she doesn't sleep often.

Information seeps into her consciousness, knowledge of a series of orders, orders connected to names.

She has fifteen names, fifteen faces.

  • Jonah Ward
  • Carlos (House Fetladral)
  • Stephen (House Kerensky)
  • Jerome Sender
  • Robert (House Connors)
  • Katya (House Carns)
  • Dmitry (House Kerensky)
  • Masha (House Nygren)
  • Yuri (House Kerensky A)
  • Timothy (House Mehta)
  • Samuel (House Moran)
  • Deanna (House Winson Jen)
  • Nikolai (House Taylor)

the list is not alphabetical, it is not even by current rank.  The only order that it is, is 'who dies first'-and the order has shifted.

One of the murderers must have broken, must have spoken. 

They are bringing them to me whether they know it or not.  This can end.
The core rules for interacting with me:

1.) I am not a moderator, game developer, member of Cryptic staff, relative of any members of cryptic staff, not close friends with anyone involved with the game, not a distributor of product, not an employee, employer, professional reviewer, or member of any powerful conspiracies.  What I think is my own and has no impact on the Battletech franchise in any way, shape, or form.

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.

jonen c

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Re: ...hold me tighter, I think I'm sinking down...
« Reply #17 on: 27 September 2020, 06:51:47 »
Hm... Banshee?

Tegyrius

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Re: ...hold me tighter, I think I'm sinking down...
« Reply #18 on: 27 September 2020, 08:43:32 »
The title brought me here expecting heroin addiction and I was pleasantly surprised to find one of Roland's proteges hard at work evening up the score while time stands still.
Some places remain unknown because no one has gone there.  Others remain unknown because no one has come back.

Cannonshop

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Re: ...hold me tighter, I think I'm sinking down...
« Reply #19 on: 27 September 2020, 16:31:00 »
It was time to change methods.  Before, the Wolf Clan authorities didn't know.  She'd worked fairly hard to keep from doing the same things twice, and they shouldn't have known.

But they know.  It compresses time a little when your prey knows they are being hunted, and have protection.

Carmelita rinsed her face in the communal bathing area, and wiped steam from the steel mirrors of the labor shelter. 

on the face of the stainless steel, a slightly distorted image of a young woman looked back at her, the face of someone like her mother, but different.

Unseen to the others, was the shadow behind her.  We have to move more aggressively.

she nodded in agreement.

she finished her washing, and dressed for another day of work assignments.

as she pulled on her shoes, her mirror self watched for a moment, before disappearing.
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Cannonshop

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Re: ...hold me tighter, I think I'm sinking down...
« Reply #20 on: 27 September 2020, 17:03:46 »
Carmelita reached the location on her work order, and slid her identicard into the reader.

"Carmelita Rozen?"  a voice interrupted her focus, and she turned.

Two Wolf Clan Police were looking at her.

"Yes?"

"You will come with us."

"Of course."  she lifted her work-bag.

"Your gear?"

she handed it over meekly, and obeyed instructions.

To Daryl, the laborer woman's behaviour was almost tragic.  She did not even ask where she was being taken, or why she had been singled out.

She just obeyed like a flesh-and-blood robot.

it was disturbing. even in the Homeworlds, a laborer from Clan Wolf would wish to know why their day had been interrupted, or what the problem was, or where they were being taken.

she asked none of those questions.

***

"Sit in the chair, miss Rozen."

She sat.

"Do you know why you are here?"

"I was told to follow directions, I was brought here by two officers of the Clan Police, who brought me to this room." she replied.

"I meant, the reason why you were brought here."

"I do not understand the question."  her tone was almost mechanically lacking in inflection.  The words were clear, but there was no understanding in her eyes.
***
Behind the one-way mirror, Arlene folded her arms.  The laborer who'd disappeared from her hand had looked almost exactly like the young woman whose medical records showed a mild mental impairment in the interrogation room, and a projected intelligence quotient of around 85-barely capable of function, but still capable of being used in trained, menial, simple tasks.

officially, Carmelita Rosen was 25 years old...which would make her 11 at the time of the massacre.

Medtechs examined the young laborer with military grade diagnostic tools, and imagery showed up in the monitoring room.

bone scarring to the cranium, a piece of inert shrapnel too deeply lodged to be safely removed in her pre-frontal cortex, abnormal, reduced development in several sections of the girl's brain-likely adaptations to the trauma that damaged it.

but she looked just like the woman who so expertly 'ghosted' Arlene on an empty street.

except for the skin tone.

***

"I am a hard worker, everybody tells me I am, I do good work.  Do you need someone to clean here?" Carmelita asked.

this made the Watch officer hesitate.  In the mirror behind them, Carmelita could see her reflection studying the room.  then, she watched her reflection get out of the chair, and walk out the door.

They didn't see it.

"Have you done anything...wrong or bad?"  The Clan policeman asked

"I..I had to get a replacement because I lost my card and I can't find it.  am I in trouble?  I didn't meantoloseitIforgetstuffsometimesandI'mreallysorry!!"

her sudden hysterical outburst and weeping held their attention on her.
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: ...hold me tighter, I think I'm sinking down...
« Reply #21 on: 27 September 2020, 17:38:41 »
The cell had gone cold enough Robert could see his breath, like in the nightmares, only it is daylight outside.

the screen mount in the corner of the cell, a leftover from when this was a Periphery World with strange customs, lit up for the first time since the conquest (aside from a brief time where it was tested for use in delivering pro-Clan information and entertainment under the previous governor).

It showed the surveillance image of his cell.

only in the image, he was not alone.

"I knew you would come." he said.

ice cold fingers wrapped around his throat, and there was nothing to push back against, no physical foe to fight.

There was pounding at the door to the cell, as Robert strangled.  The men on suicide watch were trying to get in, trying to render assistance, trying to do their duty.

as his vision darkened, he saw her face, twisted in pain and rage, and the last sound he heard as the world went dark, was the sound of the chime in his cockpit, telling him that his 'mech was out of machine-gun ammunition.

he didn't feel it when his throat was torn open, to leave a message...

***

Point Four Irena had been here only a month, her demotion from service in a Provisional Garrison Cluster had come as bad news, but not unexpected.  her Elemental physique made short work of forcing the door-once whatever had been holding it closed was gone.

"Savashri!!"

The disgrace Robert lay dead on the floor, his face purple, neck broken, and something had torn part of his throat out...


and on the wall, scrawled in the man's blood.

"Only the Guilty should pay"

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Euphonium

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Re: ...hold me tighter, I think I'm sinking down...
« Reply #22 on: 27 September 2020, 17:43:45 »
Bean Shidhe!

(I'm enjoying this)
>>>>[You're only jealous because the voices don't talk to you]<<<<

Cannonshop

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Re: ...hold me tighter, I think I'm sinking down...
« Reply #23 on: 27 September 2020, 17:49:54 »
The girl Carmelita Rosen flopped in her restraints, the sedatives taking effect late, but with an almost supernatural effectiveness.

"What just happened?"

alarms sounded, and Arlene didn't have time to wonder. 

Her prisoner was dead, inside isolation holding, with no means to bondsref or even harm himself, he was dead.

and his killer, for the first time, left a message.

"Only the Guilty should pay."

somehow, an assassin had gotten inside the base once again.  somehow, that assassin had managed to strangle a fit forty year old man, snap his neck, and cut...no, she knelt, looking at the wound...tear his throat open to reveal and sever his carotid artery, had time, in less than five minutes, to write a message in blood on the wall...and had escaped detection leaving the cell.

"I want every surveillance recording from this level, every maintenance sensor, even airflow and seismic! and I want this killer found!" she ordered.  "They can't have gone far.  Take the...remains to the Autopsy, and I want him fully gone over, leave no molecule undisturbed!"
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: ...hold me tighter, I think I'm sinking down...
« Reply #24 on: 27 September 2020, 17:56:42 »
in Interrogation room 1, unconscious, brain-damaged and mentally handicapped Carmelita Rosen's snores were interrupted as the alarms distracted everyone.

"dim ond y euog ddylai dalu am eu troseddau"
The core rules for interacting with me:

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JA Baker

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Re: ...hold me tighter, I think I'm sinking down...
« Reply #25 on: 27 September 2020, 17:57:39 »
So, either a Fury or a Wraith.
"That's the thing about invading the Capellan Confederation: half a decade later, you want to invade it again"
-Attributed to First-Prince Hanse Davion, 3030


Cannonshop

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Re: ...hold me tighter, I think I'm sinking down...
« Reply #26 on: 27 September 2020, 18:08:02 »
When Carmelita woke, the Police and the nurses let her out of the chair, gave her a note and her possessions, and led her through the police administration building to the exit.

The man who asked her questions gave her a candy and told her she had been a very good girl.  This made her smile in an achingly pretty way as she thanked him.

if she wasn't so thoroughly damaged, it would have been more than pretty or cute...as it was, Interrogation Technician Lyle felt only a kind of sick horror as he fought down urges that made him instantly ashamed.

Carmelita carefully made her way down familiar paths, to the public transit, and from there, to her laborer barracks.

she had no way to know she was being followed discretely.

The core rules for interacting with me:

1.) I am not a moderator, game developer, member of Cryptic staff, relative of any members of cryptic staff, not close friends with anyone involved with the game, not a distributor of product, not an employee, employer, professional reviewer, or member of any powerful conspiracies.  What I think is my own and has no impact on the Battletech franchise in any way, shape, or form.

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.

Elmoth

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Re: ...hold me tighter, I think I'm sinking down...
« Reply #27 on: 27 September 2020, 18:13:35 »
Fury is my guess

Cannonshop

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Re: ...hold me tighter, I think I'm sinking down...
« Reply #28 on: 27 September 2020, 18:23:51 »
Arlene studied the surveillance video.

At the specific time that laborer Carmelita, a bottom-tier employed laborer, was hysterically apologizing for losing her identicard, the cameras in Robert's cell glitched.

the image that followed was strange, Robert's hands, flailing as he fell back and landed on the floor, clear signs of physical distress...

"This is where we tried to open the cell, Star Captain."  Point Four Irena stated.  "the door was jammed shut, and the lock was non-responsive."

she watched him slump limp, and then, his head twisted bending in a way that would snap the top five vertebrae and sever the spinal cord.

then his throat seemed to rip itself open, and blood spattered out in a spray.

"THERE! freeze frame!"

the surveillance tech froze the image.

"leave the artifacts in the image, but enhance it....here."

small hands covered in blood...the hands of a child, or small woman.

"Advance frames one hundredth speed."

the hands dipped into the growing pool of blood, then wrote their message on the wall...

and then, the door opened.  No interuption, just a pair of splashes.

"that has to be the most impressive stealth tech I have ever seen." the surveillance tech opined without being told.

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.

Euphonium

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Re: ...hold me tighter, I think I'm sinking down...
« Reply #29 on: 27 September 2020, 18:32:57 »
"dim ond y euog ddylai dalu am eu troseddau"

That looks suspiciously like Welsh.

[edit]
At least, more p-celtic than q-celtic.

I wonder if the Clans can translate what's probably a very obscure language in the 31st century?
« Last Edit: 27 September 2020, 18:37:45 by Euphonium »
>>>>[You're only jealous because the voices don't talk to you]<<<<

 

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