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Found 39 results

  1. Dannylonglegs

    [O-H04] Stranger Things

    Tags: Civil Structure, Science (finally, amiright?) Planet: deep within the bowels of Crofter's Ridge "Emily, I've been thinking." "Late at night, I know." "I just wanted to let you know that I think I've thought it over, and concluded that I did what had to be done, and that the results, while not ideal, yielded more good than bad, in the long run." "Glad to hear it." "What I mean to say is... I've washed my hands of this senseless self-pity. I do what I do, not for my own sake, but for the greater good of our company. I blaze a trail through the mud so that others may walk on pavement. I do what needs to be done. I did my duty." "Couldn't have said it better myself. So, what are we doing in this cavernous mega-lab hidden miles beneath the ground?" "We're lighting a torch in the darkness." "This lab structure is the kindergarten of Suburban Station... and this, is project 'Suburban Soccer Mom.' I initiated this program to investigate 'psychic' phenomena. Long the subject of speculation and fiction, I've come to discover that psychic powers can be very real... however we do not yet fully understand them. Most notably, it is suspected that our very own CEO may have reality warping powers of this nature. I've been tasked with investigating this and coming up with a way to test for this, and harness it. I personally believe that reality warping powers may be the secret to unlocking true permanent gravity anomaly generation... and once we can prove this to be true, and investigate the mode of action.... we can mechanize it. "Cool." "Yes. Very cool. It is my personal ambition to ensure that Octan remains at the for-front of gate travel technology.. and the way I see it... The corporation best capable of manipulating the fabrics of time and space, will be the corporation that dominates them all. I see before us, Emily, a future of peace.... Because when Octan develops the power to generate and manipulate Gates at will, to travel to any corner of the universe in an instant.... There will be no war." "That sounds like a beautiful dream." "Dr. Bernier. I've heard great things..." "Ms. Long..." "My mother's name was Ms. Long. Please, call me Dr. Long." "Oh, of course." "Lets get started, shall we? I've read your reports on your child, Subject Eleven. You've done wonderful work with her. You've made me a believer that such things are even possible... And that's saying a lot. I am a stickler on proper procedure and scientific methodology. As such my visit here today will not be more than a demonstration. I want to observe what this child can do firsthand, and assess the needs of this project. have you prepared the equipment?" "yes. It's all ready..." "Then let us begin." "So.... How's life?" Background Officer: "Well I still ain't got my hand back. Other than that, can't complain." "Eleven, darling... I'm here." "Mama!" "I want to introduce you to someone...." "This is Dr. Danielle Long. She's your mommy's boss." "Hello, child." "I've seen you in my dreams!" "Fascinating. So, today we'll be performing a series of tests... to look into... your 'special gifts.'" "Do you know what this is?" "No." "Can you activate it?" "Yes." "By the stars. It is true. Now deactivate it please." "Ok." "Bring in the projector." "Ok, Eleven. This next task will consist of several parts. I will think of a word in my head, and associate the word with an image or two. I want you to tell us what word I'm thinking of, and use this machine before me to project the images from my head. Can you do this?" "I think." "First word." "Beauty" "Correct. Second word." "Mystery" "perfect. Now we will conduct the final test. Guard, bring in... The device..." "No... you said you wouldn't..." "I want you to concentrate, eleven. Channel your power into this device... I want you to create a fissure in time and space." "Ok." "I can't." "That's because the machine does not work. This was only a test... but despite that, you got very far. Admirable attempt. Thank you for showing me this. I'm very pleased with your progress, Eleven." "Please you've got to kill her. You promised you'd help." "And we will help, but we will not be killing her. She is very useful to us." "You said you'd help. We had a family... She had a father... but she removed him from existence in a temper tantrum! No one remembers him but me! ..." "In your contract it explicitly states that if she dies, you are out of a job. And need I remind you who is paying to operate on your numerous brain tumours?" "But it's abominable. It's strange." "I've seen stranger things." "It's unnatural. It's not right." "We will be the judge of what is right and what is wrong." "I can't keep living like this. I I can't. I cant." "Oh, I assure you, Octan can keep you alive for a very long time." "It's time for Dr. Brennier to get some rest. Guards, make sure she takes her pills and eats her dinner. I won't have another food-strike interrupting her work." "You have no idea what you're tampering with!" "Excellent. Everything is going according to plan. Now, I hear that Pombe's aid, Eschey has been acting strangely. I think it's time for her to have another psych evaluation. Inform her she has an appointment... with the Doctor." Cue the music! ~Insectoid Aristocrat
  2. Dannylonglegs

    Andromeda's Gates Non-Lego Art Thread

    Why hello there, Fellow AG players, and random strangers who will likely view this topic at some point. I've had some freetime (sans-Lego) and did a few sketches of Dr. Long. Bob (or other moderator), I'm not sure this belongs in this subforum, since It's not a Lego creation. It's audience is here, but it may be better placed somewhere else? Not sure. I'll let you be the judge. Anyways, here's a few drawings I made of Dr. Long. May make more if I have more freetime/the impetus strikes me. I decided on a silhouette format, since I'm not an amazing artist by any stretch of imagination, and up until recently hadn't really connected Dr. Long's face to an actual person's making it difficult to draw. Dr. Long Silhouettes by Danny-Longlegs, on Flickr These scenes are all (at least loosely) based on scenes from builds I've made... save for one, which is from a build I will make a long time from now, but will be forshadowed within my next few builds, so I don't feel like it's a spoiler... One more: Dr. Long silhouette by Danny-Longlegs, on Flickr And a rather mediocre picture of what I imagine she'd actually look like in human form. Not the most flattering image, due to my lack of talent, and lack of a model that looks like her. As Goatman pointed out on Flickr, she does look older than I envision her. Dr. Long humanized by Danny-Longlegs, on Flickr That's it for now, but I may draw more eventually, updating this thread as I do. ~Insectoid Aristocrat
  3. VK-318

    [K - A06] Refurbishment

    Previously: Introducing Viktor Kramer Back in Business An Opportune Moment Special Orders Package Retrieved We Pillage, We Plunder, We Rifle and Loot ... Package Delivered An Unfortunate Oversight Season Unending To Love and Protect To the Pain Electrified Rosenhaus Assimilated Stardate 3816.5.6 Stardate 3816.12.6 Streitkeule Location: A06 Guinevere Tags: Civil Spaceship, Piracy ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Captain's Log, Stardate 3816.14.8 Approaching Guinevere, picked up an drifting ship by passive infrared scans. In answer to hails, the captain claimed to be awaiting landing clearance. Story not confirmed by port authorities. Ship did not answer further hails, so we moved to board. Some damage was sustained in the course of disabling the target ship's defenses. The #2 port shield generator suffered catastrophic damage, and two hull breaches formed - one in the port shield generator compartment, and one in the engine room. Additional damage was sustained by the starboard radiator plane. Aft hull breach and radiator damage will be repaired by the local company yards, while replacement of the shield generator will be managed at next fleet rendezvous - hull breach in that compartment will be allowed to remain until that time to facilitate generator replacement. Ship was found to contain a cargo of control chips for cybernetic slave collars, along with the associated signal processing hardware and control computers. In accordance with fleet policy, cargo was documented and re-sealed, and the hull was flagged for pick-up by a company shuttle. Crew will be delivered to port authorities for prosecution. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ "Captain, I have an incoming message." "Who is it?" "Caller identifies as Solomon Greene, sir." "I'll take the call." "Viktor! It's been a long time! How are you doing?" "Good to see you, Solomon. I'm doing well, thank you. To what do I owe the pleasure?" "Heard you signed up with the Kawashita Group?" "I have. I presume you're looking for a berth?" "Right you are. Got room for a former crewmate?" "Get passage to Orinshi and I'll stop by next chance I get. There's some hoops involved, but there should be no trouble. Say, what do you think of the uniform?" "Not bad, not bad! Looks a bit formal for you, though." "Notice anything different?" "No - wait, is that - what happened to your leg? You don't have a peg anymore!" "Bingo!" "Why'd you replace it?" "Two reasons. One, Kawashita paid for it, so that helps. And I'm going to be competing in the Andromeda Olympic Games, so I need a regular leg. It's within 5% capability of my other leg, so it's legal." "What will you be competing in?" "A few things. As far as the uniform goes, it's a dress uniform. Silvia and I are attending a ball celebrating the event. We've got a little work to do there." "Where's Silvia?" "Getting ready. Ah, here she is." "Good to see ya, Silvia!" "Solomon? How've you been?" "Not as well as you, seemingly!" "Well! Thank you, Solomon." "I hear you two have somewhere to be, so I'll be going. Best of luck, see you soon." "See you soon." The holoprojector was put down on the desk, and RT3-KU went about his business again. "Are you ready for this, my love?" The walking stick's tapping echoed on the tiles. "I think so. How do I look?" "Never better. Shall we be on our way?" "Why not?"
  4. VK-318

    [K-F09] Streitkeule

    Location: F09 Arium Minor Tags: Military, Spaceship ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ From: Agent Maeda To: Internal Affairs c/o Task Force Greengrocer Subject: Streitkeule - suspicious activities lead? ------------------------- Honorable Overseers: I have followed up the first shipyard contract, located within the Andromeda Galaxy. Results are likely positive. The shipyard in question has recently begun deliveries of a new model of starfighter. Full schematics are attached; a summary is here provided. The fighter design, named "Streitkeule," is a one-man heavy fighter. Its design is not Kawashita standard: aside from a few superficial similarities to existing designs, namely the two sets of four pylons, which seem to exist purely due to engineering necessities, it carries little of the Kawashita design philosophy. According to my research, the design name means "mace" in an archaik language called "German," and refers to the heavy, blunt, unbalanced weapon designed to penetrate armor. Whether the name is based upon some aesthetic similarity or a harmony of purpose is unclear. The cockpit is located at the extreme nose of the fighter. The ship is intended to dock in a position vertically aligned with the local gravitational field, meaning that any force not absorbed by the ship's acceleration dampeners will be in a direction that will least disorient the pilot. Control is via helmet-linked HUD - controls are projected onto the helmet's eyepiece lenses, and the movement of the pilot's hands to interact with their perceived location is tracked by the helmet and relayed to the ship's computer. In this way, all controls can be encrypted so that, should a vessel fall into the hands of hostile forces, interface with the computer will be difficult at best. Each Streitkeule is heavily armed. The four center pylons each bear a standardized weapon hardpoint, allowing a customizable loadout for different missions or task forces. The standard design shown here is equipped with two plasma cannons on the lower hardpoints, a missile launcher on the viewer's upper right, and a smaller-caliber rotary plasma cannon on the viewer's upper left. The nose of the fighter mounts an additional weapon: a small point-defense plasma turret with limited utility against enemy craft. The Streitkeule uses a tachyon thruster as its propulsion system - the four fin-like pylons surrounding the thruster mouth contain the electromagnets necessary to control the tachyon stream. This propulsion system was developed by multiple entities some time ago because of its usefulness as a FTL warp-style drive system, but was abandoned upon discovery of the GATE network as obsolete, being considerably slower at FTL than a GATE jump, and prone to catastrophic explosion should its drive system experience certain categories of malfunction. Note that standard combat damage almost never triggers this category of malfunction. Technical details can be provided if necessary. Twenty fighters have been delivered at the time of writing, and production is expected to accelerate. The full order is for two hundred. The source of funding for a project of this magnitude has been difficult to find. In addition to standard confidentiality regulations which had to be bypassed, the payments were made by a dummy holding which I have so far been unable to trace. The fighters are being delivered by employees of the purchaser. Upon the completion of a batch of ships, a group of trained pilots arrive and take custody of the ships for deliver. Each pilot appears to be of early middle age, and though they are equipped with what appears to be Kawashita-type flight suits, I suspect that they are not Kawashita-trained. They were not forthcoming with the location to which the fighters were to be delivered; however, a check of local flight plan registration showed their listed destination as "Rosenhaus." Pending further orders, I will continue my investigation with the next shipyard lead. With respect, Agent Maeda
  5. VK-318

    [K - G10] Stardate 3816.12.6

    Location: G10 Onix Tags: None ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Captain's Log Prisoners still in custody - dispatched to Onix in response to reports of pirate activity. Fleet intelligence advises suspected connection to band eliminated prior to formal hiring. Jump made in good time - traffic at Onix GATE continues to be low. Fleet intelligence indicates only known Octan traffic composed of weekly mail courier, one science ship departing, and some activity in low orbit en route to former pirate base. Assess as likely transit lockdown following earlier Kawashita activity in this sector - Octan fleet is far away and unable to provide significant support or escort, and most armed ships likely drawn to provide logistics for Octan-M.A.N.T.I.S. conflict elsewhere. Captain's Log, Supplemental I strongly doubt that FI is correct. Some visual footage of suspected pirate ships was provided, and the hull configuration does not match that of any vessels we encountered previously in the Onix sector. Of more interest is why pirates are raiding Kawashita shipping in Onix. There are several other sectors that are equally vulnerable, given the current disposition of the fleet, and almost none with less traffic than Onix. Certainly they would be more likely to be detected in other systems, but as a rule, in the sweet trade the important part is to get away, and being spotted in the process is unimportant. I do not care to speculate, therefore, concerning what might be these presumed pirates' motive for raiding in Onix. Diary of Silvia Kramer Viktor is worried about the word from the fleet. He's sure the fleet is wrong. I told him I was sure he had finished with the pirates before, and the fleet must be wrong. But he said he hoped it would turn out to be the same pirates. I wasn't sure what he meant, but I didn't get a chance to ask. The corporal came in with some questions for Viktor, and I had to let it go. I've been thinking, though, and I think I get it. Pirates from the base we visited would still be operating there while they try to recover and get re-organized. But new pirates in that system aren't looking for loot - they're looking for ships. That's why they haven't stopped the Octan mail courier - they want a Kawashita hull, and a merchant one, too. But why? The freighters that run those routes are tubs that only mount one turret! Captain's Log Encountered hostile activity in Onix system. Weapons fire was spotted over Onix's moon, concealed from the planet surface by the moon. Upon approach, conflict was identified as a battle between a Kawashita freighter and an unknown hostile craft. An attempt was made to hail both craft. Neither responded. We moved to approach, but before we arrived, contact with the freighter was lost. Thermal contact dropped off, followed a fraction of a second later by loss of radar and visual contact. Fate of freighter unknown at this time - fluctuations in local gravity commonly associated with GATE anomaly/drive failure not detected. Boarding party sent aboard hostile craft. Assessed as non-Human design and construction. No life signs detected during approach, and none found during thorough search. Assessment is difficult. Lacking evidence for clear-cut evaluation, hostile craft has been flagged as category-red quarantine zone. Transponder attached - reporting directly to Variga. Will inform fleet once more complete assessment of situation and threat posed by unknown craft are more complete. Have issued security ID cards to crew, and instituted automated checkpoints throughout vessel until further notice. Corporal Nodachi concurring. Captain's Log, Supplemental The corporal may not be useless. He agrees with my assessment. Someone or something far more advanced than ourselves has taken control of one of our freighters, and intends to use it for unknown purposes. Diary of Silvia Kramer I'm afraid, and so is Viktor. We're pirates, not soldiers, and this isn't our kind of mission. But I don't think we should tell the fleet. Then we might loose a line cruiser, or even a dreadnought. This way, if something does go really, horribly wrong, the Kawashita Group is only down one corvette, five people, and a couple of robots. Andromeda isn't quite our galaxy yet, and we don't know who or what is really out there, in the hundreds of systems not connected to the GATE network. May God help us all. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ So, I bought a game called "Stellaris" a week or so ago. It's a sci-fi, 4X, grand strategy game that is devouring my life. This doesn't have anything to do with my build, or the plot arc I'm starting, except that I spent so much time playing that I never got around to building anything new for this week. So, I dug through my drawers of Legos and found some old ships that I build a few years ago and never shared here before. The green one is inspired by the Dragon Pod, from the X-Pod series of a decade or so back, and the Kawashita freighter is inspired by a Highlighter market and by General Grievous' flagship in Revenge of the Sith. C&C welcome.
  6. VK-318

    [K - A08] Assimilated

    Location: A08 Crentium Tags: Civil Building ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ "According to the doctors, the wound healing went well. Your wife should be scar-free, in spite of her recent encounter with advanced torture methods." "Agent Raven." With difficulty, I tore myself away from the ledge. "It's an unexpected honor. What bring you here?" "Fifty-eight pirates killed and goods recovered valued into seven figures." "Is that how many I shot? I lost count." "You lost count." Her icicle expression didn't change - it never did. But I thought I heard a touch of surprise. "In any case," she continued, "this mission was not authorized. Indeed, your vessel was found absent from the battle line during an engagement with an enemy fleet. Upon inquiry, I discovered that you had deliberately gone AWOL to pursue your unauthorized rescue mission. This is grounds for dismissal, and charges of desertion." "I'm afraid you're wrong, Agent," I said politely. "Only employees can be charged with desertion, and if you will examine our contract, Silvia and I, along with the Variga, are independent contractors, and not subject to most disciplinary actions." "Correct." Ragen lapsed into silence. I watched. She had plainly known that we were not punishable before she came, else she would have argued the point - and backed up her argument with troops. So why was the CEO of all of the Kawashita Group's Andromeda activities here, aboard a hospital ship in orbit over a no-account world on the galactic fringe? "The toxin the torturer used," Raven said, interrupting my musings. "It's a very new design. M.A.N.T.I.S. only developed it a few months ago, a by-product of something else. They still haven't properly finished testing it, and obviously that filthy traitor Laszlowe didn't bother giving the pirates the safety information anyway. According to the doctors, the toxin appears to interact heavily with many varieties of stimulants." "Which means?" I had heard the mock casual tone Raven was using many times before, from all manner of people. It was the voice of someone who was carrying bad news, and liked it. "The stimulant used in the torture process appears have to interacted with the torture-enhancing toxin, leading to permanent neural scarring. In short, the effect is permanent." "I beg your pardon? Does the Kawashita Group not have the technology to repair neural damage? Is it not, in fact, the selfsame device in which my wife is currently being recuperated?" My voice was tightly controlled, and I spoke through almost-clenched teeth. "So it does, so it does. But that level of therapy is reserved for employees only." I boiled over. "What?!" I reached for a gun, then remembered that I had been disarmed before being admitted. "You know exactly what I've already done to bring Silvia this far. And now you tell me that nothing will be done to help her? Do you really think that's wise?" I hissed. Agent Raven fixed me with an icy glare. "Don't threaten me, ever, pirate. This once, I'll overlook it." She stepped away from the window. "As a matter of fact, something can be done." "The other corporations no longer pose an existential threat to the Kawashita Group," Raven said briskly. "Octan and M.A.N.T.I.S. are too involved in their own troubles to hinder us; we have all grown to the point where the damage of war would take another year to repair. The battlefield has changed. "We must now confront the forces of organized crime. Slavery, that most vile of all crimes, plagues our neighbors, and it is only a matter of time until its creeping touch is felt on our own worlds. Piracy leeches at the trade routes so newly established, and cuts our profits nearly by half in some systems. Corruption threatens to topple corporations from within, and gang violence is already acting to destabilize the civilian populations so newly planted in this galaxy." "A grand speech," I said acidly. "What do you suggest I do about it?" "The fleet of this company is strongly oriented toward conventional action - occupation, invasion, and large-scale interfleet engagement. Our commanders are trained for this, and our warships are designed with this mission in mind. We lack an effective pirate-hunting force. "For this, a unique skillset is needed. One must have personal experience with organized crime - preferably from the inside, the better to root it out. One must command a team experienced in shipboard and close-quarters fighting, in order to detain and recapture as much as possible and effectively rescue prisoners. And one must have access to a small vessel, capable of intercepting enemy craft, disabling fight-or-flight mechanisms, and moving to board." "What does this have to do with Silvia?" I asked tightly. "I want to you lead an anti-piracy task force. It's mission will be to eliminate and discourage acts of organized crime, acting either in support of the fleet or alone as needed." "But..." There was going to be a catch. "You will sign a revised contract. From now on, your are an employee, assigned to the first branch of the Andromeda Division of the Kawashita Group. You will take orders from the First Branch Executive and myself, and you have a zanpolit aboard to ensure that you do. In exchange, I will personally authorized full neural recovery treatment for Silvia Kramer." I pondered for a moment. Piracy must truly be eating at the company's bottom line if the most famous pirate hunter in the Kawashita Group, known even back in the Milky Way for her infiltration and elimination of the Dust Demons less than a year ago, was coming to me to solve the problem. As far as the contract was concerned, there was no question. I would have sold my sold my soul to Lord Business himself if that was what it took to help Silvia. "Done." I signed the contract and handed it back. Raven left without a word. So, we were employees now. It was worth it, I knew, but what had we given up? ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ So, yeah. I probably should have checked a couple of weeks ago to see if I had any of the parts required to build Agent Raven. Nope. I hope this simple imitation will suffice. Finally back from finals! Hooray!
  7. AG_Rosenhaus_01 Located in a clearing in the Orinshi jungles, few people know of the existence of this building. AG_Rosenhaus_02 Built in the shape of a cross or a T, the owner of the property is listed in documents only as, "K." AG_Rosenhaus_03 It is large enough to house an entire military base, but appears from the outside to be a civilian residence - a mansion of tremendous size. AG_Rosenhaus_04 The architects were sourced from the Milky Way, as Kawashita architects have little experience with rotundas and other such distinctly Western architectural styles. AG_Rosenhaus_05 There is, in fact, a front door, a very large one indeed on the ground level of the rotunda. However, at present it merely leads out onto grass - there is not another building or a road for hundreds of miles in any direction. AG_Rosenhaus_06 The building, listed in legal documents as "Rosenhaus," appears to be undefended - there are even trees and a fountain under the crystal dome that tops off the rotunda. The two layers of the rotunda below are composed mostly of balconies, including an open-air dining room and a running track that circles the rotunda on the third level. AG_Rosenhaus_07 Orbital imagery suggests that there may be military hardware concealed under the irregular surface of the larger dome. AG_Rosenhaus_08 The east wing of the mansion has a roof garden, which is in fact more like a grove of trees, around a square with a fountain. AG_Rosenhaus_09 On the other side, the west wing of the Rosenhaus boasts an outdoor pool. AG_Rosenhaus_10 The north wing is more mysterious. It is by far the largest portion of Rosenhaus, but is fitted with only one row of large windows. Orbital analysis indicates that the northern wall conceals a massive door, but it has never been seen to open. Whether some weapon or vehicle is contained within, or whether this is merely some sort of gigantic warehouse, is unknown. AG_Rosenhaus_11 The roof is used as a landing pad for ship identified as the Variga, suggesting that "K" stands for Kramer. A large elevator provides passage from the roof directly into the north wing, or there is a main entrance on the north side of the rotunda. AG_Rosenhaus_12 Efforts have been made by multiple parties to infiltrate or break into the Rosenhaus, so far without success. The difficulties involved are compounded by the use of a highly automated staff, making the use of a mole essentially impossible.
  8. VK-318

    [K - G10] Electrified

    Location: G10 Onix Tags: Civil Building Note: All parts of this build except the parts shown in the spoiler are re-used - that is, the main room, torture rack and restraints (but not the larger frame around it), and the two small implement-holders are all re-used, and therefore should not be judged. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ "AAAAAAAAAAAAUGH!" "AAAAAAAAGHNOOOOOOO!" Clunk. "What was that?" "What the ..." Crack! Thud. Crack! Crash. "Silvia!" "That's far enough, Viktor." "Girault. You're going to pay for this." "I don't think so." "I don't know how you managed to get this far into my base without raising any alarms. For that matter, I don't know how you even managed to enter the system. But I really don't care. Torture is so much more effective when you it's somebody else suffering, and your wife has been most uncooperative." "No.. Please, no ..." "It's under control, Silvia." I fixed Girault with an icy gaze. "It won't take but a minute. In fact ..." If you want to break a standoff, do it in the middle of a sentence. In fact, do it in the middle of a conversation, if you have the option. It delays your opponent's reaction time by a critical fraction of a second. I snatched a hammer from the wall and threw it as hard as I could. He fired, of course, but his aim was off and I was already out of the way. Then the hammer struck him in the head and he collapsed limply. Not dead - just out cold. "... It's already taken care of," I finished. "Let me get you out of that thing, Silvia." "I can't move," she said weakly. "He's stuffed me full of drugs." "I know," I said. "T1-N1 had a chat with their computers while I was on my way. I'm so sorry, dearest. I came as fast as I could." "I'm just glad you made it," she said, sighing with relief as I loosed the restraints. I wrapped her in a cloak and cradled her in my arms. "Just one more thing to do, and then we can be going." With one arm already full, it was not easy to remove Girault's shirt, or to drag him up onto the torture rack, but I did it. He had loaded Silvia with stims to keep her conscious through the torture session, and the syringe he had been using was almost empty. I injected what was left of them into him, then waited for him to wake up. It only took a few seconds. "I'm sorry I don't have the time to properly thank you for everything you've done for my wife," I said, "but I hope you'll accept this parting gift. As soon as I'm gone, the Variga will destroy this base, and I don't plan on waiting around, so you probably won't have time to pass out from the pain, but you should be well entertained until you die. Goodbye, Girault." I pulled the lever, and the machine came to life. With Girault's screams echoing off the metal walls, I carried Silvia out and down the corridor. "Are there any more pirates here?" she asked. "I don't think so. T1-N1 sealed off most of the base, and I've lost count of how many people I've killed. My bolter's power clip must be about drained." She sighed. "I'm so tired. Can I rest now?" "Yes, dearest." I smiled. "Once we get back to the Variga, we're going to rendezvous with the fleet. They'll patch you up. You're safe now. You can rest all you like." "Thank you, love. I think I will." And she did. This week, I did two new builds that expand on something I did previously. I had more story to tell in this particular location than I could tell in one week, so I came up with some expansions that can stand as a build in their own right. They're in the spoiler. C&C welcome!
  9. VK-318

    [K - G10] To the Pain

    Location: G10 Onix Tags: Civil Building ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ "Boss? She's here." "You sure took long enough. Bring her in." "Silvia Kramer. Allow me to welcome you to my home, or at least, one small part of it. I hope you will enjoy your stay." "Save the pleasantries, Girault. You know my husband will be coming for you." "We'd better get down to business, then. Jason, would you do the honors?" "With pleasure, boss." "Now, now, Silvia. You shouldn't struggle like that - you've gone and gotten yourself a nasty bruise. This way, please." "Please make yourself comfortable, ma'am. We've got a lot to discuss." "Girault, you know Viktor. He's not going to let you get away with this." "I'm afraid he'll have no choice. Just this last week, we completed the installation of a new sensor relay station. If any ship comes out of the Gate, I'll know right away. Besides, no luxury cutter has the firepower to breach our defenses. "Humans have been in the business of inflicting pain on each other for such a very long time, but when the victim struggles, it can make a torturer's work so much harder. Awesomnium has provided us with an invaluable aid to this process. "This syringe contains an awesomnium-based solution that I think you'll find most interesting. We bought the original from a fellow called Laszlowe, from M.A.N.T.I.S. It was supposed to serve as a long-lasting sedative, a hibernation drug. But it didn't work quite as planned." "I - I - I can't move. I can't move!" "But you can still feel, can't you? That's the beauty of it. Your sensory receptors are still firing, but your brain can't send anything back but critical body functions. It's the perfect torturer's tool." "Don't do this, Girault." "I'm afraid I don't have much choice. I need the passcodes for the Kawashita Group's private Gates, and I don't have time to convince you to give it to me. This is quicker. "Also much more entertaining." "No - no, please - no - AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH!!! ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ "Kramer to Variga, good work. I'm through the breach." ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Yep, we're still pretty dark over here. I promise I'll lighten up in a few more builds. The name is a reference to The Princess Bride.
  10. Location: G10 Onix Tags: Civil Building (Spaceship Interior) ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Silenia, Zakec and I were waiting in the hold. The young man from the restaurant had been brought aboard, along with the remaining speeder. "Ugh," he groaned. "Where am I?" "You are aboard the ship Variga, and I am Captain Viktor Kramer," I said coldly. "You're just in time for your trial. Get up." "Trial? What? But - you're not a judge!" "This vessel is in the employ of the Kawashita Group, or did you not know that when you attacked me earlier? As the commanding officer of a military vessel, I am authorized to conduct rials and deliver sentences in a military tribunal." "The charges are assault and kidnapping. As the evidence is overwhelming, the verdict is, guilty. You are hereby sentenced to death by beheading." "But - but - death? I thought that was outlawed!" I whirled around. "You think that I care? You kidnapped my wife, you son of a Kre-O brick! And I'll do the same to every one of your filthy friends. Silenia here is a hypnotist - we already know everything you could tell us. I could lay a hundred more charges as bad as those two if I chose, but I don't really care. You're done. On your knees." "Zakec, clean that up." "Aye, aye, cap'n. Any preference what I do with it?" "Space it if you like." "You can eat it, for all I care, so long as I never see it again." ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ We were making a long, and fairly complex, series of GATE jumps, and taking the slow way in on our target to avoid detection. The ship was on auto-pilot, with the robots watching and ready to wake us if anything went wrong. We would need to be well rested if we were to have a chance at surviving our next mission. I, however, was not in a mood for sleep. I was standing at the bay window to the master bedroom, on the port bow of the Variga, when RT3-KU entered. "Sir, I have an urgent message from Kawashita HQ." "Who is it?" "Executive Ender's office, sir." I sighed. "Bring it up." "Greetings, Captain Kramer." It was the Executive himself, I noted with surprise. I wondered what could be so important. "Greetings, Executive. You must excuse my appearance - I was on my way to bed." I took the holocom from RT3 and signed for him to return to his post. "What can I do for you, sir?" "I have an assignment for you, but your ship has not reported back from leave." "Apologies, sir. I'm afraid the Variga is otherwise occupied." "Otherwise occupied?" "Have you received my report of the recent incident on Greater Direstan?" "It's been a busy day. Something involving an assault?" "Assault and kidnapping, sir." "..." "The victim was my wife, Executive." "I see." "We have interrogated the captured assailant, and determined that the location to which she is being taken is on Onix. That is where the Variga is headed at this moment." "I assume you know that this is tantamount to desertion? You swore an oath -" "Sir, before I accepted the deal Kawashita offered, I swore another oath. 'To love and protect?' With all due respect, I know exactly what I'm doing." There was a moment's silence. "We have intel on a pirate base on Onix," Ender said. "You and your crew don't have a chance." "Sir, as long as my wife is in the hands of those pirates and I have the means to rescue her, my duty is clear, 'as long as we both shall live.' I will report back as soon as my mission is complete. You may then, of course, take whatever disciplinary measures you see fit to impose. Should you not hear from me within the next two months, you may conclude that I live no longer, and can offer no further services to the Kawashita Group." "Understood. The decision, and consequences, are yours. But I wish you good luck. Good night, Captain Kramer." "Good night, Executive." ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Going pretty dark again. Getting to see the other side of Viktor's personality. Two scenes for this one - I just had too much story to tell this week for one build to work. I hope that my use of Ender is accurate to his character - I did my best. All those tools are Lego original - they come from the same set as the Octan blazer in "Package Retrieved." I located this build on Onix because they are in the GATE system for the duration, and so not really "on" any world - Onix is their destination. If this is not acceptable, I will select A08 Crentium as the location. Comments and criticisms welcome, of course. Apologies for the image-heavy post - so much story to tell!
  11. VK-318

    [K-B08] Season Unending

    Location: B08 Greater Direstan Tags: Land Vehicle, Civil Building ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Although the Kawashita Group, and, to a lesser extent, M.A.N.T.I.S., has a strong presence on Greater Direstan, much of the colonization effort here has not been overtly affiliated with one megacorp or another. The Golden Rocket is an excellent example of this. Built a only a few short years ago, this establishment offers drinks, music, and relaxed dining, offering fresh-backed New York Style pizza - a delicacy among spacefarers, since the ingredients are too bulky to carry aboard warships, even ones such as the Variga, during extended cruises. Silvia and I were here for dinner. It was the last evening of our three weeks' leave, a special thank-you gift from branch executive Ender for the letter-perfect execution of our part in Operation Star-Lord. The details of what it entailed were above the pay grade of a crew of freelancers such as ourselves, but we must have pleased somebody back in the fleet, because leave time can be hard to find for special forces. It had been quite some time since Silvia and I had had a chance to sit down together for dinner. With the crew of the Variga being so small, we often had to cover different watches. That routine can take a toll on relationships, and I was glad of a chance to enjoy my beautiful wife's company and have a good time. Perhaps I was enjoying myself too much. I never heard the door open, and before I knew what was happening, I heard the low throb of a stun ray, and Silvia fell forward onto the table. My combat-trained reflexes kicked in, and I just avoided the second shot. There were four of them - two men, and two things that appeared to be robots. Even when on vacation, I am always armed. I rolled out of the booth and whipped out my concealed pistol. My first shot caught the younger man in the thigh, and he went down with a high-pitched cry. The two robots went down with a shot each, and I turned my attention to the remaining man. To my horror, he had dropped his own weapon and hauled Silvia out of the seat. He was on his way out the door, dragging her behind him. I struggled past the robots and the moaning form of the young man and burst out the door - just in time to see my dearest's unconscious form stuffed unceremoniously into the front of one of a pair of brightly-colored speeders, followed a moment later by the mustachioed man. The engines were already running, and before I could stumble down the steps and catch hold of the speeder, it was gone. I fired after it, but in vain. My small pistol had no accuracy at range, and the speeder was gone in seconds. I touched the communicator at my belt. "Variga, two and a speeder to pick up at these coordinates. This is a code red." "As of this moment, we are at war." ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ My biggest minifig-scale build yet - also my biggest and most detailed interior yet. I planned on building a flower garden between the foundation and the pavement, but I ran out of time and energy. The speeders are my first minifig-scale vehicle in years. I build the micro version (kinda blurry, will have to get a decent picture of it up tomorrow), and then decided I would need minifig-scale version or two. I'm pretty pleased with how it turned out, considering that's not exactly my area of expertise. There have been so many great versions of Viktor Kramer's face over time - I'm really enjoying being able to tinker with his expressions now. "Season Unending" is a reference to The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim.
  12. Actor Builder

    [A - A07] 102.Q FM - Bazug's First Hit

    Location: Lesser Direstan Tags: Civil, Building, Vehicle Objective: Make a dramatic entry to Andromeda's Gates. This is 102.Q FM Kawashitan Broadcasting: This is the inside where all the stuff goes on: And this is Bobby Bricks, Radio Personality: "Hey everybody, Bobby Bricks here on 102.Q FM: The Sushi. Today we'll play some nice tunes and then we'll have a special guest for a new segment you'll love: How-To-Haiku." But most interestingly, this is one of Bazug DeBug's fun contraptions- The Mobile Ladder Unit: "My art takes a lot of different forms. I'm an innovative guy. Today's project is simple. Make some sense of this ridiculous Broadcasting Station." Quickly and suddenly, Shockingly and outrageously, The Mobile Ladder Unit takes a new formation! Bazug wastes no time in getting to work. "Just a few modifications and this'll be perfect. Oh yeah, that looks real nice." "Hold up all you listeners. I heard a crazy noise outside the studio. Im'a go check it out. Listen to this junk while I'm gone." When Bobby gets there, Bazug is already long gone. His artistry, however, remains. Here's a nice link to a full gallery, including a deleted scene, if you love it just that much. Comments and Criticisms, Puns and Witticisms welcome!
  13. Location: Arium Minor (F09) Tags: Building, Piracy, Civil -------------- Have you ever tried to walk silently with a peg leg? It's not easy, especially on metal flooring. But, in my business, you take whatever chance offers itself, whether easy or not. The Kawashita fleet had rendezvoused with an alien fleet, ostensibly for diplomatic purposes. Honestly, I didn't know much about why they were really meeting, nor did I care. All that mattered to me was the opportunity it presented. If we were planning on engaging in serious piracy, we needed a bigger crew - and I had a couple of people in mind. All I had to do was break them out of prison. "What've you got there?" "Prisoner transfer from the fleet," the arriving guard said. "Orders said the place is gettin' crowded, so these two'll be sharing a cell." "Hear that, lady?" the insectoid guard said. "An old friend's here to visit." "Well, well. Finally caught you, did they?" This was taking a long time. I needed one of the guards to come a little closer to me. "Step away from the door, witch!" the insectoid said. I heard his footsteps on the floot. Now. I choked up my grip on my staff and, as I stepped out, I swung it as hard as I could. My aim was good. The insectoid fell without a sound - dead or unconscious, I didn't know, nor did it matter. The prisoner dropped forward, out of the line of fire. The green-skinned female was rattled. Her one shot went wild - then I drilled her. She fell with a hiss. Definitely dead. I helped the bug out of his handcuffs, and we quickly moved the bodies out of the way. "Viktor Kramer! Can't say I expected to see you here," he growled. "Why did you come all the way out here? I doubt it was just for fun," the woman in the cell purred. "I've got a little proposition for you," I said. "Open this door, and let's discuss it." "I want you two to join my crew." "Piracy?" the bug said, twitching his mouthparts into what I guessed was a grin. "Privateering. We're working for the Kawashita Group, and I could use a few hands for the Variga." The woman shrugged. "What are we waiting for?" -------------- P.S. Not completely sure about the Piracy tag. Do rescued prisoners count as being "stolen"?
  14. This post is intended to introduce my character in "Andromeda's Gates," and also to briefly introduce his companions. It is not intended to be counted or scored for the contest itself! AG_Intro_crew_01 by David Hansen, on Flickr At age 25, Viktor Kramer has had a rather full life. When he was sixteen, he was pressed into service in a pirate crew. He took to it well, and rose from a lowly technician to being the crew's quartermaster in five short years. At age twenty-one, he lost his leg in a boarding action, and had it replaced with a peg. It is made of a titanium alloy, covered in a hard, matte synth-wood coating to make it quieter and less reflective. A year later, he retired from pirating with a pardon, and used his share of the bountiful plunder to have a ship of his own constructed: the Variga. It was completed just months ago - the same day that an old friend from his pirating days got in touch with him. Now an agent of the Kawashita Group, his friend offered him a bargain. In these days of thinly-veiled war between the great corporations, privateering can be a profitable enterprise indeed, and with his newly-wedded wife Silvia, Kramer prowls the Andromeda Galaxy, wielding his customized F-11D plasma bolter in search of plunder once again. AG_Intro_crew_02 by David Hansen, on Flickr Far from being just another pretty face, Silvia Kramer has been flying since she was tall enough to reach the controls of a hovercar. Thanks to the advanced automation provided by Kawashita Group, the Variga needs only two human crewmen, and while Viktor operates the guns, Silvia pilots the ship with an expert hand and a pirate's flair. She, too, was once a pirate - she was pilot for a year aboard Viktor's ship, while Viktor was an engineer. When they retired from piracy, she invested with him to make the Variga a possibility. Now twenty-four years old, she wields her pistol with lethal accuracy in the service of Kawashita Group. AG_Intro_crew_03 by David Hansen, on Flickr A venerable but efficient product of the Kawashita Group, RT3-KU is a factotum robot, designed with a human-like shape so as to easily perform tasks originally intended for humans. Not everything can be retro-fitted with automation, so factotums like RT3-KU are used to fill in the gaps. With strength greater than that of most humans, he wields a massive laser rifle in combat to aid Kawashita Group in achieving its goals. AG_Intro_crew_04 by David Hansen, on Flickr T1-N1 is a robot technician so old that, although its logic systems remained functional, its body was entirely obsolete when Viktor joined his first pirate crew. The enterprising technician found ways to improve the old chassis, and now it follows him everywhere. Within its oddly-shaped body are a myriad tools, from cutting torches and welding gear to basic medical gear and even an AED. It serves its master dutifully in the struggle against M.A.N.T.I.S. and the Octan Corporation. AG_Intro_variga_01 by David Hansen, on Flickr The Variga. Originally to be painted all black, she now wears the colors of the Kawashita Group. AG_Intro_variga_06 by David Hansen, on Flickr Originally designed to transport a few wealthy passengers in luxury, the Variga is somewhat larger than many vessels of her type, but this is of little concern to her captain. She is approximately to scale with the microfigure in this picture. Within her armored hull, however, she holds luxurious cabins, a well-appointed kitchen, a small library, and even a swimming pool. But she is also equipped with an advanced sickbay and a small garden and poultry farm tended by robots, allowing her to remain comfortably in space for weeks or months at a time if need be. AG_Intro_variga_04 by David Hansen, on Flickr She is well armed, too, carrying two plasma turrets and a forward missile turret, granting her firepower not often found on ships of this size - a reflection of the piratical origins of her owners. AG_Intro_variga_03 by David Hansen, on Flickr Only a fool operates in hostile territory without shields, and the shield generators on the Variga are the finest generally available. She is also equipped with several different types of communications antennas - it's a lot easier to find your next target if you can pick up its transmissions. AG_Intro_variga_05 by David Hansen, on Flickr The Variga's three massive thruster pods were some of the most expensive components included in her design. Although she certainly can't compete with cutters or small fighters and bombers, the Variga can generally show her heels to anything she can't take head-on. P.S. The Variga's design is derived from that of Eurobricks member Anio's UCS Republic Cruiser model. If you're interested, it's well worth checking out the album on Flickr: He has made instructions available for a very moderate price. P.S.S. I am returning to Eurobricks after a long absence due to college and other real-life responsibilities. I am trying to adhere to the rules of Andromeda's Gates, but it is quite possible that I have overlooked something. If so, please let me know and I will correct it at my first opportunity. Thanks!
  15. rodiziorobs

    [M - E03] Interrogation, finally

    Location: E03 (Ertauq) Tags: Spying After scouting for the secret Octan base on Jurin II, Scorpio made a rendezvous with the MANTIS fleet in the neighboring planet's sector, Ertauq. He was finally going to close the chapter on that mysterious prisoner from months before. **************** It's about time Starstriker. Come on, let's go. We'll use the secure interrogation room. Since she managed to completely disarm one of our own agents, we have classified her as dangerous. Dangerous? I thought it turned out that the operative she took down was actually a Kawashita spy, something none of our own agents had discovered! That is immaterial, Starstriker. She is a threat and we must treat her accordingly. If I recall, your report stated that you thought she seemed familiar to you. She did seem familiar, but in a very distant way. I am not sure I have ever actually seen her before. I have tried since then to figure out where I might know her from, but I don't know. Well, have you thought that maybe you are familiar to her as well? Perhaps she has a grudge against you, and only wanted you here to try and find a way to kill you! As happy as that would make me, we can't have that kind of situation on our hands. Ah, here we are. **************** Prisoner No. 108457, in exchange for your cooperation in this interrogation, we have complied with your request and brought your original captor, S. Starstriker, to be present here today. Finally. Let's get on with your stupid interrogation. Urm, uh, right then. We will begin. What was your position at Octan? I never worked for Octan. I was on a long-term assignment from Kawashita to infiltrate Octan. Kawashita? So that's how you recognized and apprehended the spy in our midst. What was the nature of your mission there at Octan? My job was to go undercover and try and learn the secrets of Octan's high security coffee machine production. I broke into the Octan facility on Ertauq... ...swiped a key card... ...stole an operative's identity... ...and attempted to get myself promoted to upper-level permissions. However, I wasn't able to gain sufficient clearance for the coffee machine project, so Kawashita assigned me to infiltrate the missile defense and WMD research programs instead. ... ... What? Uh nothing. We'll follow up on the specifics of your mission later. The Kawashita spy you exposed here at MANTIS? I assume you had to stop her before she killed you, Kawashita didn't want you divulging any secrets? Yeah, Agent Sega was afraid I was going to spill my guts. Glory and honor and all that nonsense. She and I had trained under Agent Raven. Sega always bought into that kind of crap more than I did. For her, Kawashita was a way of life. And you? For me it was a paycheck. I have seen enough dishonor that it's hard for me to believe in any of it any more. Your boy Scorpio could probably tell you more about that, though. Huh? You still can't tell who I am? Figures. You always were dumb like that. You must have got that from dad, he was a moron, too. What the..? Arsenica? **************** Arsenica is a character I had been meaning to properly introduce since way back before I even officially joined AG, but for one reason or another it just never happened until now. Sorry for the lack of balance between story and build this week--lots to read, less to see. Sometimes that's just how it goes.
  16. Location: H08 - Sinden's Run Tags: Vehicle, Spaceship / Airplane / Submarine Log #??? – 30 Desembrinali 3815 As happy as I'm always to serve the awesome Octan Corporation™, I have been signed to do a cool awesomnium transport mission in the asteroid field of Sinden's Run©. And boy, is It a lot of fun to do! Octan's Astro Octan Mini™ is mine to command and gee oh whizz, what an awesome little space ship carrier It izz!! It's armed with a suction grip to get a hold on to anything. And when I say anything, I mean anything! So awesome!!1 I can't wait to do my next assignment when this one's done! Have I already said how awesome Octan Corporation™ really is? Let me sing It: ♬Everything is awesome! Everything is awesome when you're part of a team!♬ I'm sorry to say I could'nt make the base like I did with my original entry. I hope you Octan's like this rendition of the Astro Octo Mini! Original entry:
  17. Location: F03 - Forring Tags: Vehicle, Land Vehicle, spying {MANTIS IntelLOG Entry XX-9946} {Encryption: High} {Priority: Urgent} [begin Log entry] Directive XX-9946 has us on back on Forring to check out any OCTAN facilities we can find and determine any apparent weaknesses. We've just hiked out of a dense forest in the tropical belt..... "Verdi, hand me the MANTIS™ RangeGlasses©...." "Ok....I see it....." Ved: "We're way too close.....We need to get to cover...." Verdi: *Crackling and scratching sounds....* Ved: "Well, I'm NOT made of leaves....I NEED to hide.....let's get back to the lander and use the MANTIS™ SVX-55 ReconBot....." Hrmmm, this isn't exactly the best view.... Let's deploy the W-3 Arial Drone.... Heading to the platform.... That's better, I can see one of those OCTAN labor droids loading something into a ship.... That pilot doesn't look OCTAN....he's yelling something at the technician.... What kind of what is he anyway...never seen one like that...... moving around for a better angle.... Wait.....what is that......adjusting.....damn these controls.... Moving in for a closer look..... Verdi....I'm not sure we were supposed to see this.....Yep, it's her alright..... Meeting with an OCTAN guy....and one of those Zoins...Zoids...Zoils...whatever....His antennae make me feel hungry.... Recall the drone and the SVX-55....we need to get out of here and report in....I've got a bad feeling about this..... ============================================ Thanks for visiting!
  18. Location: Jarin II (E02) Tags: spying It seemed like weeks--no, months--since Scorpio had last had a chance to do some real science. He was a scientist, after all, but M.A.N.T.I.S. and the Man Upstairs kept sending him on these spying missions. Even over Laszlowe's protests, here he was on Jarin II, conducting yet another spy job. He was sure all this spying would be the death of him. He was cruising low over Jarin's surface, skimming near some swampy islands. The Waterbug he was driving was not as fast as it looked, meaning he didn't stir up the water much as he went across it. This was good, because he was trying to listen hard for signs of a secret Octan base in the vicinity. Satellite imagery had caught traces of ships coming and going, but could not detect any signs on the ground. Suddenly he heard something over the scanner: "You want a cookie?" a man asked. "No way, man, I am so sick of cookies." another replied. "Suit youseff." came the response, through a mouthful of what was evidently cookie. Scorpio brought the engine down low and kept listening. "You know what else I am sick of? You sitting on your butt while I'm doing all the work here. Give me a hand with these lights, will ya? We were supposed to have them down 2 days ago" "Mmmf mm hmm hmm." The scanners had locked on to the direction of the conversation, and Scorpio began to move in slowly, coming over the edge of a grassy island until he could see the men in question. He secured the channel to the local M.A.N.T.I.S. HQ and called the incident in. "H.Q. this is Starstriker,I've found the location of our mystery base." "You can see the base? You have visual confirmation?" "Negative on the base; however I have visual on two Octan personnel with no transport in site. Looks like they must have walked here, and my scanners are picking up some indistinct signatures in the area. The base may be underground." "Excellent work, Starstriker. Have the Octans spotted you? What are they doing?" "Looks like they are taking down their Christmas decorations." "What? Ha! We put ours away two days ago! Ok, Starstriker, stay hidden and maintain surveillance. See if you can follow their moves back to their hidden base. We'll mark the location and put together a special ops team to infiltrate. Any thing else to add to the report for now?" "Just one thing, H.Q." "What's that?" "Happy New Year." AG New Year by rodiziorobs, on Flickr
  19. rodiziorobs

    [M - C06] Around Hyreal in <80 days

    Location: C06, Hyreal Tags: Spying As he embarked upon what was to be his latest adventure, M. Scorpio Starstriker, esq. reflected on the completion of his most recent expedition. Which is to say, he reflected on that part which he knew about. Mme. DuBois--although she preferred the more colloquial appellation "JEX"--had recounted to him the strange creature they had encountered, and how the beast had resuscitated Scorpio after his fall. However, the beast's premonition about his impending demise was still unknown to Scorpio; Jex had not found the courage to tell him. Blissfully unaware, Scorpio marched across the field to where he was to rendezvous with Scroggins, the mechanic charged with preparing his flying machine. Blissfully, of course, until he heard behind him a familiar voice: the nasally squeaky voice of M. Laszlowe, Head of Supervisory Accountancy at MANTIS & Co. "M. Starstriker, I must protest this mission! You have yet to complete your papers for the last disaster you caused a fortnight ago! Not to mention the development we have had with the prisoner in cellblock B!" Scorpio ignored Laszlowe's outbursts until mention of the prisoner. He turned abruptly and asked, "What development?" "She has said she is willing to talk, but only to you. And but two days ago we caught her outside her cell, somehow armed and assaulting one of our own guards. She did not attack any other of our personnel, insisting that the guard in question was actually a Kawa operative." "Where is the prisoner now? And the guard?" "The guard is still under investigation. The prisoner has been transferred to maximum security." "Ah. Well then, M. Laszlowe, it can wait until after this mission." "No, It cannot, M. Starstr..." But Laszlowe was cut short as Scorpio began walking again toward his destination. "I was to arrive at five to noon, and you have already detained me too long," called Scorpio over his shoulder. "Get back here right now!" But Scorpio kept walking, with Laszlowe struggling to keep up. "Is she ready, Scroggins?" "Aye, M. Starstriker. Lit the igniter about two hours ago, and now the envelope is filled." "Right on time, Scroggins, as usual." Laszlowe chimed in again, "M. Starstriker, I am putting my foot down!" "Then go put it down somewhere else! I have my instructions straight from the CEO and Mr. Cor himself, that all spying operatives are to commence a mission at once on this globe." "And what is the nature of this mission, M. Starstriker?" This was said not by Laszlowe, who had stormed off, but by none other than Mme. DuBois--Jex. "I cannot say too much, my dear, but it would appear that one of the Kawa operatives that MANTIS has been tracking has suddenly gone missing, and they want airborne surveillance to try and track him. I am to do my best to spy him out from the heavens, but that is all I can say." "Oh, but do say you'll take me with you!" This time Scroggins had the answer: "I'm sorry, Miss, but the envelope is calibrated to only carry a certain amount of weight, otherwise the flying machine will never make it off the ground. Begging your pardon of course, Miss. You can certainly watch." "Hmpf. They won't let me near the tools, and they won't even let me go up in one! Do they think I don't know how to pilot this flying machine?!" "Well, Jex, you did crash the last contraption they gave you. Maybe it's something personal," chided Scorpio. "You tease. Fine. I will wait for you on the ground then." "Don't forget your MANTIS™ spyglass©, M. Starstriker, " reminded Scroggins. “Darling,”Jex began. “Are you quite sure you are feeling all right? Remember that just a day ago you were on the verge of death!” “Dearest I feel more alive than ever. My body is rejuvenated, my mind—why I can recall things I haven’t in ages! Why, that reminds me of something about the prisoner that I must tell that horrible M. Laszlowe when I return!” “What is it, Scorpio?” “Oh, it’s far too good to spoil here. Remind me to tell you later after I chat with our dear accountant. Ta ta!” And with that, he shut the gate on the basket and commenced lift-off of the flying machine. "Good luck, we'll see you at the end!" Jex called out. "Be careful!" She wanted desperately to tell him about his future that must shortly come to pass, but could not bear it. Surely it would not be today? No, he would be safe at least for this mission. "Why must you stand so far away, Miss? The flying machine is perfectly safe," Scroggins assured her. "It is not the machine I fear for, dear Scroggins, but the operator." **************** More pics below the spoiler: C&C Welcome!
  20. Orange Leader

    [K - E11] A contradictory message

    Location: E11 - Fascini Cluster Tags: Spying Log #005 - 30 Novembrinali 3815 After attending our new CEO's board meeting, I went to communications on asteroid PK534 to gather new information that might help me out planning my next planet to target. Down in the server chamber of communications, I asked around about the utmost interesting and strange messages that have been intercepted for the past three months. What I got was a very precarious message that came from F08 Raduon. One of our communication beacons have been hijacked by a transceiver sponsored by Octan Corp. But wait a minute. Since when do we have access to F08? This is very unusual to my understanding and could be a propaganda like diversion, which I will report. Looking for other subjects then Octan Corp. eavesdropping on us, I gathered some intelligence from a planet I will certainly have interest in… Complete view:
  21. Location: B08 (Greater Direstan) Tags: N/A (Previously) Jex and Scorpio had driven their jeep over a cliff. Scorpio was knocked out cold, and Jex had no radio to call for help. Then she heard the sound of footsteps running toward her and, in horror, an eye staring straight at her through the grass… Then the creature emerged from the grass. He wasn’t frightening at all; if anything, he was kinda cute. “Hey there. Easy now, I’m not going to hurt you. What’s your name, little fella? Huh? Easy, good boy…” Suddenly a giant hand grabbed Jex and lifted her off the ground! “Who are you!? a terrible voice boomed. Jex turned and saw herself face to face with a horrifying monster. Jex screamed in terror. “Don’t eat me!” she cried. “Ha! I am not going to eat you. I know what you are; I have had your kind before and it gave me terrible indigestion.” Although still panicked, Jex’ terror subsided slightly. She turned her head in his hand to see him more clearly. It continued speaking. “I sense that you are not afraid of me. That is good. Foolish, but good.” Pausing, he turned his head to the side and looked at her again. “You are much the same as the others like you. You”—and at this, he slid one of his long bony fingers along the side of her head—“are more interested in your own good. You neglect others for your own benefit. You…want your friend there to still be alive…not because you care for him, but because you fear what your superiors will say if he dies from your carelessness.” Jex’ mouth dropped open. Embarrassed, she found herself unable to say anything. Her terror began to grow again. “Of course, Jessica—yes, I know your name. I now know much about you. Even more so, perhaps, than you do.” At this, he set her down and leaned himself against a tree in the river bend. “Of course, as a healer, I am honor-bound to do what I can.” At this, Jex was surprised to hear her own voice again. “Who are you?” She asked. The shaggy brown monster sat up and replied, “I am Curupa, shaman of the great Tupiga. I am a practitioner of magical healing and the sworn protector of this land.” Standing up, he continued, “Your species has been a scourge upon me since your arrival here. Although brothers, you war with each other for the right to rob from me and this land. You are all the same, seeking only your own. It sickens me, and every night I hear the trees and the hills sighing the sighs of death that they feel closing in on them. Even at its most barren, the earth is not safe from your pestilence, and you swarm like earwigs upon it.” Jex was rooted to the spot. A part of her felt guilty, the guilt that she knew Curupa was right. Once again, she was embarrassed. “You, however, while much the same…I feel a slight difference. I do not care for your species, especially when you care not even for yourselves. But perhaps there is still hope. I feel this same sentiment in you now. But alas, here I am yammering on when there is a soul in the balance. Come, let us see what we can do for your friend.” “You mean, even though you hate us humans, you will help bring Scorpio back?” Jex asked, mystified, as Curupa scooped her and Scorpio up in his hands. “It is my duty,” he answered. “But, I will make a condition. I do not demand payment normally, but if I have a chance to save more life by doing so, I will. After I heal him, you must take your people and go. Leave this world forever, and never turn back. I have done my duty to protect this land so far, but if I see another of your kind they will know my wrath and my revenge. Do you understand?” “I do,” Jex replied. “Besides, I think most of my kind is already gone from here and has been for weeks.” He stood up to his full height, while the curious green monster from before continued to sniff at Scorpio. “Down, Ophel,” Curupa called. ********** They soon arrived at a small clearing that looked a little more beaten down and lived in than the rest of the forest. Soon Curupa had built a small fire—small even by Jex’ standards, which surprised her given the monster-healer’s enormous size—and was brewing an awful-smelling green potion. “It seems your friend is somewhat accident prone?” Curupa asked. “Yes, he has had a few other mishaps,” Jex replied. “I can tell. Yet there is something else…I have never known anything like it. It is almost as if his soul is fractured. Like there is a part of him that is not a part of him, or has broken off. Perhaps it is floating out there in the void, or perhaps it was stolen from him, but he seems incomplete. On top of that, I feel that although I will save his life now, there is an omen upon him; he will not live much longer anyway. Death has put its claim on him, and it will come soon. It is the same as with the life here before the arrival of your kind; death is not here yet, but it approaches. Ophel, come.” Jex shuddered at Curupa's last words. Could it be so? Curupa leaned Scorpio’s body up against the creature’s long green trunk. “Take this, and spoon a little into his mouth and hair. I will have Ophel carry you back to your people before you go. He will revive consciousness within the next day or so.” “Why his hair?” Jex asked. “Because you probably won’t be able to get enough inside of him to do the whole trick, but the smell should get to him eventually and wake him the rest of the way up.” ********* MEANWHILE… Somewhere in Kawashita space, Commander Konami sat at his console. Suddenly, a message flashed on his screen and he accepted it. “Code secure, Agent Sega. What has happened? You had orders for strict radio silence until your scheduled report. Is your cover blown?” “No sir, but I have urgent news that requires immediate attention. Target Atari may be compromised, sir. I have received confirmation from M.A.N.T.I.S. accountancy personnel that suggests this.” “What do you mean, compromised? Her identity as a Kawa agent surely has not been revealed? I understood M.A.N.T.I.S. was still under the assumption she was an Octan agent? Especially when our own troops did not recognize her?” “Her identity is secure, however, she has agreed to talk. Security clearance SCORPIO, by the sounds of it. At least, that must be the code name.” “After all this time, M.A.N.T.I.S. intelligence still manages to perplex us. Well, if she is going to talk, we don’t know what she might say.” “What are your orders, sir?” “I will send an extraction team immediately. Find a way to release her, and we will rendezvous with you both in 14 hours. Use any force necessary, but only as a last resort. “What if extraction of Atari is impossible sir?” “Then terminate her and we’ll get you out. Better dead than dishonored. Understood?” “Understood, sir.” ********** “Agent Atari, step aside. I’m going to get you out of there.” “What?” “Kawashita extraction team will be here in less than 30 minutes, and we’re going to be on it. You’ve spent enough time in this M.A.N.T.I.S. cell already, and Fleet control is anxious to hear your report of both Octan and M.A.N.T.I.S. intelligence operations. Your honorable resilience under pressure will bring you rewards of glory in the halls of Orinishi. Come.” “I can’t. I can’t tell you why, but I must stay here.” “I understand you feel duty-bound to complete your mission, but it is over now. Konami himself has authorized your extraction, and with my cover blown now the time to act is this minute.” Agent Sega blasted the glass, turned to leave, and beckoned for Agent Atari to follow. “I said, I can’t.” “Then I have been given orders to not allow you to dishonor yourself by revealing your secrets to the enemy.” Sega aimed her weapon to fire, but Atari was too fast. She spun through the air and wrestled Sega to the ground, wrenching the weapon from her. “Relax, Sega. I do not want to kill you, but if you think you are going to terminate me then you can rest easy knowing your death will come honorably at the hand of your enemy…” TO BE CONTINUED… Builder’s notes: Judges! The only new build this week (besides Commander Konami’s console) is the monster-healer Curupa; all other builds are recycled and should not be counted for this week’s score! More notes under the spoiler:
  22. rodiziorobs

    [M - E11] Mine-ing asteroids

    *Title should be [M - E11] Location: E11 Tags: Science, Vehicle (Land Vehicle) Once again, Scorpio was summoned to Supervising Accountant Laszlowe’s office. This wasn’t going to be pleasant. (*I have used this scenario before but hadn’t finished building it, so although Scorpio has been here before this is the first we are seeing of it*) “Please, come in Mr. Starstriker. I have some pleasant news for you…” “Yeah, right,” Scorpio thought. “First, we are willing to overlook your brief unauthorized science excursion a few weeks ago, given that it was at the request of CEO Sal. Also, because we took some small satisfaction in his comment about your work...” “Which was?” Scorpio inquired. “Disappointing. He added that he almost made you walk home, but was too busy with yet another mishap to worry much about it.” Scorpio sighed. “The good news is that it appears that you have worked away your debt to M.A.N.T.I.S. at an alarming rate. At this point you would be off probation and back on to your regular duties, including Science and Spying.” “But…what’s the catch?” asked Scorpio. An evil smirk came over Supervising Accountant Laszlowe’s face. “You managed to log hours in so fast that we at Accounting find it hard to believe.” “You think I have been stealing hours?” Suddenly Supervising Accountant Laszlowe was standing on his desk. “YES! And we’re going to catch you you sneaky little thief! You were not even stealthy with that Spying Outfit we bought you! How did you expect to get away with this??!!!!” “Ahem,” he continued. “To ensure the accuracy of all M.A.N.T.I.S. records we are assigning you a Drone Of Really Irritating Supervision.” “You’re giving me a D.O.R.I.S.? Are you kidding me?!” “This D.O.R.I.S. will accompany you at all times to ensure your integrity. If it can affirm that you are indeed working as you say you are, then it will dismissed. Speaking of dismissed, it is time for you to leave.” “But…” Scorpio began. “NOW!” ************** Well, at least (once again) Scorpio was allowed to resume Science-ing duties. For the time being, at least. M.A.N.T.I.S. had pushed to the outer limit of Kawashita territory, and was about to enter Octan gate-space. A memo had been sent out to all personnel to engage in border protection as they began to fortify the southern M.A.N.T.I.S-Octan line. Scorpio was assigned to the Fascini Cluster in sector E11, a tight nexus of asteroids which Octan would have to pass through in order to enter M.A.N.T.I.S.-occupied space. In his lab aboard the Sal-class Science vessel, Scorpio designed a kind of mine that would communicate with approaching vessels. If they did not return the communication, it would trigger the mine and detonate the ship. This meant that any ship not returning M.A.N.T.I.S. communications would be targeted. Since Scorpio knew Octan had a fear of scorpions, he designed it with that shape in mind. Just then, his pilot Jex came in. Scorpio had worked with her previously, during the initial threat from the alien fleets at the center of Andromeda. “Scorpio, you ready? I hear we’re headed down to work on some asteroids.” “Yes,” Scorpio responded. “I have just finished the last of the Scorpio bombs, and…” “Scorpio bombs? How egocentric are you?” Jex interrupted. “Well, I see, they are shaped like scorpions…” “Yeah, yeah, whatever. Let’s just get them loaded up. Is that D.O.R.I.S. yours? Oh man, that’s too funny! We’ll take the Panther, if that’s okay.” “Doesn’t that only have room for one?” Scorpio asked. “Yup.” Scorpio sighed. ************** Planting the mines went off without a hitch…except that because there was only room for one, Scorpio had to be tethered to the Panther, with his D.O.R.I.S. in tow. The Panther had four omni-directional thrusters for maximum maneuverability, but even in zero-G they only supplied just enough power to hop from one asteroid to the next. In order to keep a close-but-not-too close proximity to the asteroid surface, it was equipped with the same adjustable-gravity technology Scorpio had used in spy training. “That’s the last of them, Jex, let’s head back home. Any chance I could ride in the cargo area?” But Jex had already positioned the thrusters to set a slow burn back to the science vessel. He wondered if having him towed home from an asteroid had been Sal’s idea… A few more pictures of the lab and ‘scorpio bombs’ under the spoiler. C&C welcome!
  23. rodiziorobs

    [M - A08] Ice Planet M.A.N.T.I.S.

    Location: A08 (Crentium) Tags: Science, Land Vehicle ***This entry takes place after Scorpio was rescued by SpacerSteve from Aeristus*** Back story for this week in the spoiler: Scorpio’s mission was not going to be fun, although considering he had just awoken from a month-long coma after being held prisoner by Octan, it didn’t really matter. Maybe some positive effect would come from it. He was being sent to Crentium, a relatively young planet. That was the problem, though; M.A.N.T.I.S. didn’t know how young. The more temperate regions of the planet were fairly stable, but the poles were extraordinarily volatile, being both bitter cold and occasionally volcanic. Scorpio was tired of volcanoes. But when he got to the south pole of the planet, there was not a volcano to be seen. In fact, there was nothing to be seen except a vast expanse of solid white. He was sent out to collect ice core samples, to help determine the age of the planet in its current state, and climate. Ah, good old science. Of course, he was also to keep an eye out to see if anything valuable could be found. The cold was so bitter that he was given special protective gear with thermal reactor, but of course his suit had a short in it, so it ranged from inoperative to blazing hot. Luckily the vehicle was more reliable, and chugged along the tundra at a respectable pace. He came to a place where some of the snow had melted somewhat, indicative of some underground volcanic activity. Here and there sinister looking trees popped out of a semi-solid ice floe. Scorpio had no idea how anything could survive out here, the cold was so intense. But, given the uniqueness of the locale, he should probably take another sample here, too. He climbed out of the vehicle, ambled over the back and down the ladder to operate the core drill, and soon had managed to extract a few samples. One of them seemed purplish in hue, could there be some trace amounts of awesomnium in the ice? More photos, including the landscape by itself This was a lot of fun to build. I really wanted to stray from the typical M.A.N.T.I.S. color scheme, and I think the polar look came out really well. I have been trying to get back to building Scorpio’s story up in order (the past couple weeks have been all jumbled), but finally had the chance today. Also, both car and trailer have working suspension on the skis. Here is a look at the mechanism inside: Thanks for looking, C&C always welcome!
  24. Quack, quack, quack! Galaxy takeover has commenced. Approaching G09 Greater Drigo. Quack-24, signing out. Quack! Without the ducks: Ha, ha, ha! Jed had it coming to him! The SDA (yes, accidentally posted it before it had the D in it!) stands for Space-Duck Attacker. Here's my entry to cat C of the challenge, based off the interior of the Nindroid's spaceship in Ninjago (I've always wanted to build that, so here was a good chance! ). And it's an alien ship, it case that wasn't already evident. C&C welcome as always, enjoy!
  25. Challenge 2 Category C **(This scene is not chronological with the rest of the story involving Scorpio, but actually happens much later)** Since initial probes had discovered some anomalous signals emanating from the center of Andromeda, M.A.N.T.I.S. had commissioned several new starfighters and other craft. Building these new ships meant lots of new parts to be inventoried and managed. Having been dismissed from both Spying and Science duties for the time being, Scorpio was stationed on one of M.A.N.T.I.S.' orbiting hangars where these ships were being finished and outfitted. He was put in charge of assigning micro-reactors and the refined awesomnium rods that would M.A.N.T.I.S. engineers had developed to power these new fleets. Scorpio didn't mind the task at all, since the micro-reactors had been designed around the 'isotopic mushroom goo he had discovered on Barnius a few months earlier. Andromeda's Gates Challenge 2 (Cat C) by rodiziorobs, on Flickr A few more photos, of more angles, without the' figs, and the armored exterior of the corridor (even though Cat C is just to show off the interior)