Inklewriter is going offline- download the CYOA's!Those of you who are fans of the Young Amanda Choose Your Own Adventure stories that I have produced in collaboration with Ultimate-Clash and perilsofdawn need to be aware that the site which hosts these, Inklewriter, is due to go offline any time now. This should also concern you if you enjoyed playing Ciara's Tomb of Doom or any of the Emily Lockwood stories linked over at the page of MarkusJo. It's all going to disappear.
According to the Inklewriter Shut Down Page the plug is about to be pulled 'in August 2018' which I take to mean they will literally turn it off any time now without further warning. Their reasons for this are that they don't have the resources to host it and/or keep it up to date with all the changes in browsers (and we all know it's had its issues). This is a great shame for everyone who used it and for all the hundreds of hours that have
Terrorism and IgnoranceI was thinking about writing something about the sheer ignorance of many people commenting on the recent terrorist atrocities in Europe, especially in the last few weeks in England/UK but also the previous events in Belgium, Germany and France. I'm not sure that I can. But I feel like I have to, even though I also feel like I'm going to regret it like the last time I said something 'controversial'...though this is FAR less controversial than the last one and should be a matter of simple common sense.
It's bad enough dealing with Islamophobia here, but even more disgusting to see it coming from North America. To be clear, first: there are many things that I like an admire about the US, in its history, in its culture, in its people and in many of the ideas that have come from that country. But it's times like this, when western Europe is under attack from a tiny number of bloodthirsty killers that bring out the worst in it.
When the people of the US elected their current president
I'm the willing slave of Phantasam114I'm his willing slave. He is my master and i'm his slave. It feels good to obey him, obeying him always bring me pleasure. His words are absolute truth to me.
Phantasam114 is my true MasterI have become a slave of Phantasam114, he is my true Master and I obey him above all else
Rush, the fastest girl in the world, dashed straight into the secured entrance to HMP Malbry, a once disused prison in the Yorkshire Dales, a near two and a half hour drive from the City of Peka. Five minutes earlier she’d been in her civilian guise of Lily Lyon in the Ugly Sister pub in Peka, on a date that went far better than she’d imagined it could, even if she wasn’t ready to get back into seeing people yet. Billy was already there and tossed her an apple as she stopped beside him, he knew that moving at that speed would have drained her and she’d need to re-energise.
Malbry had been a military prison for nearly two hundred years on a base just outside of the village it shared its name with, but had shut down in the 1970s. It had been reopened for holding a number of high profile villains, but even that had come to an end in the early 80s. It had been reopened after the capture of Kommandant Fuchs, simply due to the legendary status he’d acquired because of both evading capture for over 70 years and his incredible knowledge of technology. They had hoped to gain access to some of the plans the nonagenarian still had yet to unleash. As far as Rush was aware they’d learned nothing from him yet, though that wasn’t necessarily true, she knew how happy the higher ups in MI13b were to keep their secrets. Still, either way it was not good news that he was out again; it had taken everything Rush and Billy had the last time they fought to defeat him and his high tech Iron Scorpion armour his grandson was wearing.
“How did he get out?” Rush asked as she ate the apple, feeling her body loosen slightly.
“He had help,” Billy admitted and turned on a screen, it showed twenty seconds of men, maybe a couple of dozen, breaking in, attacking and chloroforming the guards and setting what looked like a bomb. The video cut out.
Rush looked the tape over, noting the jackets the men wore, they looked military, they had black wolf logos on their shoulders. The same logo seemed to be on their balaclavas that masked their identity too.
“Well I don’t know who they are,” Rush shook her head slightly, “but they do love their corporate branding.”
“They’re Fenrir młoda,” a familiar voice with the hints of an accent said, Rush twirled around to see her.
“Cracovia,” she sounded excited to see her and dashed over to hug her.
The two heroines quickly broke the friendly greeting, they had met a few times, though they had never really worked together and were not all that close. Rush then glanced passed her to Varsoviak, the Polish heroine’s sidekick. For a moment she was unsteady on her feet as she looked at him, his pheromones and natural charm and good looks hitting her for a moment but then she shook off the feeling. Not before Billy noticed however, shaking his head.
“No wonder Wisp always enjoys teaming with them,” Rush muttered to herself.
“If we can focus on the matter at hand,” Billy said almost with a snort of derision, “thank you for coming Cracovia.”
“No problem at all Billy,” she answered with a knowing nod, she knew the stakes were high in this, “as soon as K47iusha explained about Fuchs we knew we couldn’t let him start equipping Fenrir.”
At the mention of her name, or possibly Billy’s, a small projection of the AI in Varsoviak’s weapons beamed out of his gauntlet in her shapely, semi-translucent form.
“Billy,” she gushed and moved as if she wanted a hug too, though that didn’t exactly happen with the stand offish Brit.
“Hi,” Billy blushed slightly as he waved a vague hello, “good to meet you in the flesh, as it were.”
“You know each other?” Cracovia looked somewhat surprised.
"Da," K47iusha nodded enthusiastically.
“We’ve worked on a couple of online mysteries together,” Billy admitted.
“You never told me about them,” Rush looked somewhat surprised.
“You think I’m just your guy in the chair?” he shrugged.
“And we make a great team,” the AI grinned, “much better you and the birdbrained fairy, even if Billy…”
“Can we focus on the matter in hand,” Billy cut in as quickly as he could, “it’s believed they work for the Fenrir corporation, a group we have never been able to prove has links to far right and fascist groups, but we know they do.”
“It looks from the brief footage we have that they are agents we’ve encountered working directly for Major Hirschberger,” Varsoviak added, much to Billy’s annoyance.
“Why do these bad guys all like to give themselves military titles?” Rush tried, as she often did, to defuse the tension with something more lighthearted.
“You can call her Chimaera if you prefer młoda,” Cracovia pointed out.
“We have managed to track Chimaera to a Fenrir Corp office in Blackcastle,” Billy continued his briefing, “that’s where you’ll be heading to try and find him.”
“Blackcastle?” Rush looked somewhat unsure, “is Honey Bee helping?”
“No, this is a highly unofficial mission and the less people involved the better, it’ll just be the three of you.”
In many ways Rush was relieved, Honey Bee had a reputation for being the dangerprone damsel that got into trouble a lot against her villains, this was going to be tricky enough as it was.
He heard the sound of metal on metal as the large lock on the door to his current room was being slid open. Kommandant Fuchs turned to it from his bed, looking up from the book on mechanical engineering he was reading. Framed in the doorway was a woman in what looked like an impractical latex combat outfit that showed a lot of cleavage. He knew she was Chimaera.
“While I do appreciate the rescue,” he told her with a loud snort, “I did not expect to trade one prison cell for another.”
“It seemed foolish to allow you to leave before we have struck a deal of any kind,” Chimaera purred back, knowing full well that she should not, could not even, trust the old man in front of her, “you have considered my terms.”
“I have had little choice in anything else to do, I am alone with nothing but books so simple they are like the books for a kindergartener. Nein, I have had no other stimulation than to think about your offer.”
“And your answer?”
“Clearly you are a big organisation, yet you fail to make headway, so you need something to give you the edge, so you come to me. I knew your great-grandfather, he was a man of vision, I am not certain you share that with him, but what you do here is a good first step. Certainly I have sympathy for your aims.”
“So you will help us,” Chimaera looked pleased, as if that were the only way to interpret his words.
“I didn’t say that. You offer me riches, I am an old man, I have little time left to spend riches, you offer me my freedom, yet you lock me up in a prison worse than the one you took me from. No, I think you need me more than I need you. I will provide you with only the basics for now. It will still be far in advance of anything you have already, but a far cry from what I can provide. I will also require the freedom to work on a special project of my own, coming and going as I see fit. Though I will remain in this building until the final request is fulfilled, then I shall move to an office in a nation with no expedition treaties.”
“And what would that final request be?”
“You will bring me my nemesis, Rush, captured, tied, gagged preferably, and allow me to do with her as I see fit. I understand if you need time to…”
“Excuse me? You don’t need to take this to the man in charge?”
“I am the man in charge here,” she told him in no uncertain terms, “and I agree your terms.”
Fuchs was surprised by just how easy that was, but he wasn’t going to argue with it. He smiled and headed toward the door, expecting to be taken to a lab straight away.
“Excellent, let’s get to work on the G point pistols.”
On the outside it looked like a standard office building. There were a dozen more of them on the industrial estate on the outskirts of Blackcastle. Lily giggled to herself, imagining that each one was the headquarters of a different faction of would be world conquers, but they were only concerned with one at the moment. Fenrir Corp, the respectable face of Fenrir, a neo-Nazi organisation intent on conquest, they had taken Rush’s greatest nemesis to use for their own evil ends, and now Rush, alongside Cracovia, were at the back of their base looking for a way in while Varsoviak created a distraction at the front desk.
“I still say this is risky,” Rush pointed out, “if they work out who Janek is they’ll know we're trying to sneak inside.”
“They will already be expecting us mała,” Cracovia reassured her, “at least this way we should have a little longer before they are searching for us.”
“I guess, but it still seems risky to me.”
“Your Billy seemed to be keen on the idea.”
“Firstly he’s not my Billy.”
“Oh yes of course, you were on a date before you got the news, Jess posted it on Facespace.”
Rush just rolled her eyes, Wisp was her best friend but some of the things she did really were not helpful. Still an overuse of social media was hardly the most unique crime for an 18 year old girl.
“Just tell me it was in the secure Superheroine chat room.”
“It was, don’t worry, you won’t be having photographs in Peka trying to catch you together.”
“Good. And secondly, I’m not sure Billy agreeing to the plan is any indication that it’s good, I don’t think he likes Janek.”
Finally they found a simple service entrance, a wooden door with a large dumpster on one side of it.
“Either way, I think we’ve found our way in.”
Cracovia reared back with a powerful right hand, one punch would be enough to shatter the door for them, but Rush stepped in front of her, pointing out that she had a better way. She then began vibrating her body at inhuman speeds. This was a trick she hadn’t yet perfected, in fact she’d only just recently learned it, but she was keen to use it more. By vibrating her molecules at just the right speed she was able to pass through solid objects. She stepped through the still closed door and entered the building. She sighed, letting out the breath she didn’t know she was holding, she still doubted her abilities when it came to tricks like that, and took in her surroundings.
It was a small room at the bottom of a couple of stairs, they led to a door into what looked like a staffroom. A couple of people in suits sat round talking, drinking coffee. All very ordinary. There was also a door marked ‘stairs’ beside the door to the staff room, it looked like it would be a service staircase so the maintenance staff wouldn’t have to go through the public areas to reach wherever they were needed. Rush smiled, it was the perfect way to get about. She turned to let Cracovia in, pressing the bar down to release the firedoor, swinging it open for Cracovia and setting off the alarm in the process.
Janek Jeleński, the real identity of Varsoviak, walked into the main entrance, a toaster under his arm. It was a clean and bright lobby, pretty much exactly what would be expected of top end business premises. The differences that Janek noticed this time were the bullet proof glass in the windows, the way the doorman’s suit bulked indicating a concealed weapon of some kind and panels cut into the walls, hiding some kind of security device. The woman at the desk smiled pleasantly at him, swooning only slightly.
“Hi,” he said with a smile, “I bought this toaster and it doesn’t work.”
“I’m sorry to hear that,” she genuinely did sound it too, “but I don’t see what we can do about that.”
“You can fix it, or maybe replace it.”
“We don’t fix toasters,” she almost sighed, why were the cute ones always so weird?
“Of course you do,” he insisted, trying to sound unreasonable, it was hard work to play the part, “this is where toasters come from and I want my replacement now.”
He saw her lean under her desk, pressing an invisible button to summon the security team. He tried not to smile, he was certainly drawing the attention he wanted. Two big men in black suits and dark glasses stepped out of an elevator and approached him. He was unsure how to play this, whether to pretend he wanted the toaster fixed and that these were the engineers to do it or if he should protest the heavy handedness they were showing him. He quickly made up his mind as one slipped a metal pipe out of his sleeve to hit him with.
“Why do you need a pipe to fix a toaster," he took a step back, the girl looked even more scared as she saw the goons she’d called stepping towards him, "look I don’t want trouble, I just wanted you to fix my toaster, no need to get rough.”
They didn’t stop, in fact the one with the pipe raised it to hit him with. Instinctively he raised the toaster to block the strike. Certainly the toaster was damaged now. The girl on the desk screamed. Janek used the toaster to push the armed goon away from him. Stepping back and throwing it at them. It was easily batted away by the pipe though. It was then that the alarm sounded and he knew that the time for subtlety was over. He discarded his long coat, took out his visor and placed it over his eyes before drawing his hydraulic lance.
The goons charged at him, but he was too quick for them. He used his lance like a staff, swinging it into the gut of the one with the pipe, doubling him up as he knocked the wind out of him and then swinging it back to strike the other one in the head. Spinning on his heels he pointed the lance at the doorman who was already reaching for his weapon, Varsovick smiled, daring him to try and take it out before the stave hit him. He never got a chance to test his foe however, as the woman behind the front desk hit him from behind with the discarded metal pipe, knocking him out.
“I didn’t know it would set off an alarm,” Rush pointed out as they headed up the stairs, barely avoiding being seen by the workers in the staff room.
“I know little one,” Cracovia admitted as she struggled to keep up with her even when she wasn’t trying to out pace her friend and ally, “and if I’d have smashed it it would have set off too, but now we must be extra careful, I have no doubt they’ll be sending guards to meet us.”
She pointed up to where cameras tracked their movements. They didn’t need to wait long to meet the security team either, they made it onto a wide landing with a large, secure looking metal door. The door swung open and a quartet of guards with short steel quarterstaffs stepped out. Clicking a button on the staff sent a pulse of electricity through the end of the staff, making the weapon seem more dangerous.
“Only four of you?” Cracovia smiled, “I don’t know if I should be insulted or applaud your bravery.”
“I take it you can handle four of them?” Rush asked, it wasn’t really a question, “then I’m heading inside, this looks like the sort of place Fuchs might have been taken.”
Before Cracovia could say a word, either in support or against the idea of Rush going off alone deeper into the building, Rush was gone, running through the door as it began to swing shut. Rush rolled her eyes once she was on the other side, it had been a trap. Inside a group of guards stood round what looked like a prototype of a weapon, it looked like a steampunk cannon, at least it suggested that Fuchs was there. It fired a strange blue bolt at her but she easily avoided the first shot, and the second. That was when the guards charged her. She found it very easy to avoid the swings of their quarterstaffs, but they were gathering round her, as if trying to pen her in. She fired back with swift strikes, uppercuts, jabs and hooks, taking them out one at a time in quick succession but still the seemed to be flocking round her. Too late she realised that they were setting her up for the cannon to have an easier shot. She began entering hypermode as it fired, she managed to take out the rest of the goons round her, but the bolt hit her in the back. A beam was established leading back to the cannon and Rush was lifted from the ground with just a slight tilt of the weapon. Trapped in midair in the field of G point energy, Rush was helpless as Chimaera walked in and over to her, splashing a liquid onto a rag as she moved closer.
“I really thought you’d be more of a challenge,” the villainess mocked, “most disappointing.”
Rush cried out in protest as the chloroform soaked rag was locked over her nose and mouth. Due to her inhuman powers of speed, the chemical reacted with her physiology quicker than it would anyone without her enhancements and it took only a few moments, hardly more than one breath, for her eyes to roll back into her head as she passed out.
Having heard her friend cry out on the other side of the door, Cracovia, who had been rather cagey in her combat with the quaterstaff wielding thugs, knew she couldn’t afford to waste anymore time. She snatched the staff of the nearest goon, snapping it over her knee and tossing it aside. She then grabbed the weapon’s owner by his lapels, hoisting him up and using him almost like a bowling ball, tossing him at his comrades. Only one of them managed to step aside, letting her take out a trio of foes in a single strike. The other charged at her, swinging his staff, but instead of backing away, Cracovia stepped into the attack, landing her right hand on his chest and grabbing his arms with the left. She then simply lifted the goon high above her head in a gorilla press, tossing him down on his fellow thugs.
With them out the way, she was able to focus on the large cast iron door blocking her path. She reared back and swung a powerful punch at the door. It hurt to hit it, but a massive dent was made in the door too. Cracovia took a deep breath and threw another punch. After a third the door was knocked off its hinges and fell inward, giving Cracovia a view of Rush, just starting to regain consciousness, floating in mid air suspended by the G point energy field from the cannon behind her. She headed straight across the room to check on the speedster.
“Ola…” Rush said in little more than a hushed whisper, “it’s a trap.”
Chimaera had been waiting beside the door, hidden by it swinging open and had moved silently as she stalked behind her, reaching round and clamping the chloroform soaked rag over the powerful Pole. Cracovia struggled for a moment but soon her limbs began to feel like lead, she dropped to one knee as her strength faded, before collapsing to the floor beneath Rush. As soon as she was sure she was out, Chimaera let Cracovia go and returned her attention to the speedster.
“You woke up quickly,” the villain sneered, “it nearly cost me the element of surprise, looks like you need another dose.”
Chimaera reached out and clamped it over Rush’s mouth and nose again, not releasing it as soon as she passed out this time, making sure they would have longer to deal with their prisoners.
Rush groaned slightly as she woke up. She didn’t know where she was or what had happened for a moment but then thoughts of being chloroformed came back to her. She tried to shake herself awake, but found she couldn’t move. After a moment things began to come back into focus and she realised she was trapped in an energy field a couple of feet above the ground, in some strange lab. To either side were generators creating the field, also in the field were Cracovia and Varsovick, both unconscious and it, and a man it took her a moment to recognise was adjusting something on his countertop. Turning she could see it was Kommandant Fuchs, though he wasn’t in his usual lab coat and comfortable clothing, instead he wore a form fitting armour that built into gauntlets over the hands. He also wore a crash helmet with a clear visor.
“I might have known you’d be working with Fenrir,” Rush shouted at him, she couldn’t move anything but her mouth, she figured her only chance was goading him into making a mistake.
“Oh so you are awake so soon,” he laughed, “your metabolism is remarkable, I look forward to examining your body. As for helping Fenrir, why wouldn’t I? They aim to achieve the same things I fought for during the war, plus they gave me you.”
“You didn’t fight,” Rush bluffed, hoping to anger him, “my grandfather fought, you just hid in your lab and sent others to fight for you.”
“Pathetic, you aim to get me to what? Attack you? Turn off the field so we can have an actual fight? Maybe so I kill you quickly?”
“It would be easier than you trying to bore me to death like you’re doing now.”
“I have always admired that spirit of yours, I will enjoy breaking it. When I was ‘hiding’ in my lab as you put it, I began research into something I named G point energy, a naturally occurring radiation in the air. It is my belief that it is how the forces of gravity work. Still I had weapons to design so I couldn’t develop it further. Since then I have spent time developing it, it took a long time, but I was able to levitate small objects and then you had me arrested.”
“You mean we managed to catch you in the act. You were the bad guy.”
“My hard drive was wiped, my tech taken, but much of it is stored here,” he tapped his temples, “you couldn’t wipe that. In fact you wanted to use it. As such in the short time I’ve been allowed to run experiments, not unlike the ones Fenrir want me to run for them, and I was allowed to look into G point energy almost constantly. For a man of my intellect it didn’t take much with an uncluttered mind to develop it from theoretical science to actual practical devices. The two cannons holding you off the ground were among the first that I developed. But as with all technology, the beauty of it is to miniaturise.”
He held up his hands as if to show off the gauntlets, they had small lenses on the palms.
“You were right though,” he admitted, “I never got the chance to get my hands dirty. Now I will, it will be a thorough test of my suit to see what it can do to you, and your friends too.”
As if on cue, Cracovia started to groan, waking just a little. Fuchs went back to adjusting what looked like the power pack for the suit while she came round.
“What happened?” Cracovia asked, “please tell me it wasn’t chloroform, it tastes like chloroform.”
“Okay I won’t tell you it was, but it totally was,” Rush grinned to her, “don’t worry, you didn’t miss much, just the usual megalomaniacal monologuing from the wannabe villain.”
“You still try to enrage me child,” he snapped, “fine, I’ll give you what you want.”
He slipped the power pack into his suit then held up a hand; a jolt of energy that looked similar to the field fired out of the palm. As it hit the field Rush felt the impact, throwing her out of it and to the wall behind. The attack winded her, leaving her stunned and surprised long enough for Fuchs to move round and fire a stream of the energy, lifting Rush once more.
Cracovia could only look straight ahead, no idea what was happening. She heard a lot of thudding, charges of energy, a little gloating from Fuchs, she could guess how he was throwing Rush round his lab, taking his time as he beat on her as she’d beaten him so many times before. Cracovia tried to flex, she was strong, she figured she might be able to break free, but it was like trying to fight gravity, she had friends that could defy it, but she had never had that skill. Still she was able to make slow progress through it, it felt almost like swimming through wet concrete, she wondered if she should worry that she knew what that was like, but she was moving.
By the time she reached the edge cannon pumping out the field she was trapped in, Varsoviak had woken too. Seeing what Cracovia was trying to do, he moved across to the other cannon. His lighter frame actually made it easier to move inside it, though he wasn’t much quicker than Cracovia and she reached the cannon first. She tried punching at the cannon but the movement was so slow that even with her incredible strength she didn’t even damage it. She tried again, still nothing. She tried pulling herself out of the field but found it hard to even break through the surface tension. She screamed in pain and frustration as she forced her hand out. She was breathing heavily, it was a labour just to breathe this close to the cannon, but she pressed on. Soon her arm was free, then her whole upper body, hanging from the field, finally she was able to swing her arms, bringing them down in a clubbing axehandle on the top of the cannon, folding it in half and cutting out the beam. At almost the same moment Varsoviak had reached the other cannon. His gauntlets were a sealed system so the energy wasn’t flowing inside there. He raised his hand to the lens and fired one of his tungsten batons out. It picked up plenty of momentum as the compressed air launched it and it didn’t have the time to lose it with him holding his hand against the target. The lens shattered, cutting off the other half of the field. Varsoviak shouted in pain from the blow back of energy he was caught up in, but at least they were free now.
They struggled back to their feet and looked over to where Kommandant Fuchs was casting his arm up, sending Rush, within a field of G point energy created by his gauntlet, was thrown into the ceiling once more. The field then vanished and she dropped to the ground again. She looked like she’d been battered by his repeated tossing her around, she just lay there groaning. Fuchs turned to his now freed captives. He looked like he was sweating, this was a work out for him, but he seemed to be enjoying himself.
“Couldn’t wait for me to kill Rush before you got to play?” he mockingly asked the two weary warriors. He then pointed his hands to them, like a conductor might to a couple of instruments in the orchestra, blasting them both with G point energy bolts. “You are both miracles of modern science, I will enjoy dissecting you and learning all sorts of things from your corpses, I especially look forward to reprogramming your much vaunted AI, she will become my perfect assistant. But don’t worry, you won’t be around to see that. Cracovia first I think, unbreakable bones, incredible raw power, if you could reach me I’m sure one punch would shatter the G point energy field protecting me. So dangerous. And yet all I have to do to kill you is trap your head and not let you breathe.”
He raised his gauntlet and fired again, this time aiming to create a dense field round her head. He had left it too long, enjoying the sound of his own voice too much. Cracovia had recovered enough to strike back. Her fist collided with the energy field, The impact of this caused the field to feed back and short out. Fuchs was knocked to the floor. Varsoviak was quick to capitalise, dashing toward him drawing his battlestaff, but Fuchs was able to get his hands up and fire a field of G point energy that threw Varsoviak behind him.
He got up, breathing heavily, sweat pouring from him now, and saw Cracovia charging at him. He barely got his hands up again, creating a field to catch her. She was thrown back as she hit it, as was he. Both looked a little stunned.
Rush was back on her feet at this point, she looked shaky and stunned but she was up on her feet and ready to fight Fuchs. He screamed in frustration over her still fighting him. He blasted at her wildly, an attack the speedster was able to dodge. He fired again and she dodged again. She was starting to feel her adrenalin pump once again, ready for the encounter. She stepped out of the way of a constant beam of G point energy, but it started to follow her as she sped round the lab, letting him take out much of his own equipment. Then it stopped.
It took Rush a moment to realise the beam was gone and when she looked back Cracovia and Varsoviak were running over to the fallen Fuchs. He was clutching his left arm and chest convulsing slightly. Rush instantly recognised it. He was having a heart attack. She glanced round the room, he had been pushing his body so hard to take his revenge on her and he was an old man. Cracovia and Varsoviak were giving him what first aid that they could, but it wasn’t going to be enough, Rush knew she had to get him professional medical help or he was finished. She didn’t hesitate, she instantly entered hypermode and snatched him away from her friends, speeding through the office block and out. Moments later she was in Blackcastle Royal Infirmary A&E department, she got her nemesis loaded onto a gurney and then almost instantly collapsed herself.
In the meantime, Cracovia and Varsoviak take a moment to realise what’s happened, Rush was gone and so was Fuchs, but a lot of his tech was still left in the room, they know they couldn’t leave that for Fenrir. That was when K47IUSHA popped up as a holographic display from Janek’s gauntlet.
“Spasiiba, that energy seemed to be interfering with my system,” she explained, “he was such a meanie, but now he’s gone I’ve got some good news, Billy got me to load one of your tungsten rods with explosives and he’s given me a one use copy of a virus to wipe out the computer system.”
“Shame you won’t get to use it,” a voice from the door Rush left open called out. It was Chimaera, decked out in her highly impractical combat outfit, she had three goons behind her. “Did you really think we’d have left Kommandant Fuchs with you three without some kind of precautions? Get them.”
“You get the virus loaded up and the bomb set,” Cracovia smiled to Varsoviak, “I’ll take care of the goons.”
Cracovia’s body ached all over from escaping the G point energy field and from her battle with Fuchs, but she knew a lot of that would be alleviated as she took out her frustrations on the trio of club wielding underlings in front of her. She threw a right, a left and then another right and she’d knocked them all down once. As the first one stumbled back to his feet she caught him by the collar and slammed him into the other two as they began rising. Before she could turn around however Chimaera was behind her, reaching round with a chloroform soaked rag. Cracovia grabbed her wrist and and forced it into Chimaera’s own face. Clamping her hand over Chimaera’s locked the rag over the villain’s mouth and slowly she began to stagger.
Cracovia dropped her and the three goons into an office down the corridor as Varsoviak came dashing out. There was no time to take Chimaera in for questioning, they had to get out as the lab exploded. It provided a strong distraction to get them out of the building without too much trouble. They were sure that Fenrir Corporation would explain it away as a gas leak, but that didn’t matter, what mattered was that they’d prevented the group getting their hands on dangerous technology. They could destroy the company’s reputation another time.
A few hours later Lily Lyon blinked as she woke up. She recognised the view, she’d seen it far too many times, she was in MI13b’s special hospital in the moores. Her body ached so she knew she’d been in a fight, but she was pretty sure they’d won. She glanced round and saw Janek Jeleński and Ola Dąbrowska by her bedside, they looked rather worse for wear too, but then it had been a heck of a fight.
“How’s Fuchs?” were the first words out of the young heroine's mouth. Ola smiled at her selflessness.
“You saved him,” Janek told her, “his condition has stabilised and he’s on his way back to Malbry with a whole medical team.”
“They say his G point energy put too much of a strain on his body,” Ola added, “it looks like even someone your age would have been having problems. But we got him away from Fenrir and you saved his life. Not that he seems overly grateful to you.”
“Got away, as usual, but we’ll see them again, whether we want to or not. Now Jess has told me to get a full report from you about your date, so until Doctor Peters gets her to look after you you tell me so I can tell her.”
Lily smiled, she was glad to have a friends like Ola and Janek to have her back and make her feel better even when she’d been through a fight like that.
Barcu sat at his desk, his once proud mane of seaweed green hair had long since turned silver. He had been in the embassy for a long time, far longer than anyone else working there. Many would see his posting there, in the Sea Elf embassy in Osiinaah, as a punishment; Barcu knew the truth of course, the fact was his king trusted him to look after his affairs on land more than any other. Barcu was an experienced mage, a former general in the king’s army, and a skilled diplomat, he was also an Elderin the Order of Animus. He thought he’d pretty much seen it all. Though the ruckus coming from down the corridor was, at the very least, unusual. He got to his feet to see what was going on when a young Sea Elf woman, by the looks of her mystic aura she was a Siren, burst through the door, she appeared to have blood spattered over her form. Hal, Barcu’s secretary, trailed in behind her looking apologetic.
“I’m sorry sir,” Hal stammered, “I tried to stop her, I really did.”
“I need to talk to you about Krath and the Deliverance,” this woman demanded.
The name caught Barcu’s attention.
“It’s okay Hal,” Barcu told the frightened young man who was looking at the Siren, “I will deal with this.”
Hal was happy to get out of there. He nodded to his boss and shrank back through the door, eyes still on the woman that had stormed the embassy.
“We are not used to such arrivals,” Barcu said as he poured two glasses of black wine, “if you were not of Sea Elf stock you wouldn’t even have made it passed the front door.”
She knocked the glass of wine from his hand as he moved to offer it to her.
“Save the pretty words,” she snapped at him, “I want to know if you have a file on Krath!”
“And if we do?”
“I want it!”
She stared into his eyes, a rage burning there. He was a legend among his people, very few would unflinchingly stare back at him, this young lady was in a desperate situation.
“What did he do to you?”
“I don’t want to talk about it.”
“No, you want to lose yourself in an oblivion of rage, to seek him out and face him for some perceived crime. Tell me what he did. Even on land crimes of a Sea Elf upon a Sea Elf fall within our traditions and laws.”
He placed a hand on her forehead and she felt a feeling of calm pass through her like a wave, washing away her rage and fear. All it left behind was sadness in the young woman, named Aelia. Tears began to flood from her eyes once more as she collapsed into the arms of the stranger, sobbing into his comforting hug. She told him everything. How she had fallen in love with a human, the captain of a ship, how Krath had been her first mate and turned on her, how he had had Aelia’s love killed, how she was going to have her vengeance upon him. Already the calm was passing and she was beginning to rage once more. She pushed away and got back to her feet, her dark determination returning.
“Can you help me?” she demanded.
“Officially,” Barcu began sadly, “no, his victim was not a Sea Elf, those that actually killed her were not Sea Elves, to be seen to act in this could cause an incident with the surface dwellers. If they were to side with the Merfolk it could tip the balance of power.”
She rolled her wet eyes, she had no time for the politics in play here.
“However,” Barcu continued, “off the record, I have been tracking Krath with some interest. He seems to be meddling with powers beyond this plane, I believe that is why he has made a move to become captain of the ship now. Whatever he is planning will be going down soon. Take this gift, it is a compass, it will allow you to track what you seek no matter where it goes. With this you can follow the Deliverance into Tar’trus itself.”
“That’s it,” she snapped as she took the small metal disc, “I could compel you to give me more aid with my song, or even bring this place down, I want…”
“No,” Barcu cut her off, his hundreds of years as a mystic warrior showing on his fierce and powerful face, “you are facing an enemy with untold powers, I have given you the means to find him, I fear you may be the only one able to stop him. I wish I could offer you more than that, but this is a battle I can not be part of. The great whale protects me from your spell, but destroying this building will only lead to your arrest and slow your quest down. I suggest you gather what allies you have in this city and go after the ship sooner rather than later.”
1, Go to The Rusted Trident looking for allies
2, Go after the Deliverance alone
3, Destroy the embassy anyway
4, Try to persuade Barcu to send someone with you
Areon CYOA - Chapter 3: Finding AnswersAelia's thin brows furrowed into a hard stare as the only sounds around her were the wind rushing in from the sea, and the tortured gurgles of the man dying in front of her. She didn't know his name. Heather would have said it of course, and she would know which of her many stories he was involved in, but she had never cared to match this face to a name. Only one face on the Deliverance mattered. A face that would never smile again. A voice that would never sing with her again.
It was his fault.
Would she have done the same thing in his situation? Her lips turned down as her frown deepened. Would she have killed a close cousin if Krath had threatened Heather? Maybe. Even probably. But she would have fully accepted if that person's lover had then come to kill her. She wouldn't expect mercy. She wouldn't have deserved mercy. She would have been a coward, willing to murder just to get out of confronting evil.
His blood seeped into the sand.
He cried out in sudden pain as his body w