Note: This quest is connected/influenced by the corresponding mission, Mission: The Gilded Throne.
OK, guys, the quest got pulled. It doesn't really matter as the mission team finished first anyway. Let's just say the three defeated the automaton, but were unable to recover the throne. The Desecrators (what's left of them) have made their exit, but are not eliminated.
Prophesies are for wimps! Or maybe not. The point is, there isn't one.
This helipad is on the ground level... in Manhattan? The owners must be rich. It's in an enclosed area, but the only thing in the way is a chain link fence.
demigod holding lab
The lab has a few desks with chairs and notes scattered about. The walls are lined with cabinets and a computer in the corner is displaying what appear to be DNA patterns. There are two separate cells. The cells are tiled on all sides except one. The other sides are large windows with small slits for air on the top and a door on the side. In one corner of the lab, several tools lie about.
More locations will be added as they are reached to preserve the surprise.
The questors have arranged to meet for the first time at the helipad. This is where it begins.
James: James paces back and forth uncomfortably, waiting for the others to arrive.
Automaton: marches to James and bow to him Good morning James. Why are you troubled?
James: Looks up. Hmm? Oh, I'm just a bit on-edge. This the first quest I've ever been on and I'm technically the leader. It's really beyond anything I've ever tried to do before.
Zayden: Nah, it'll be easy.. I guess. Anyways, I'm Zayden, son of Apate.
James: Oh, how long have you been standing there? Well anyway, I'm James, son of Boreas, and this is... Gestures for Automaton to introduce himself.
Automaton: bows to them I am Automaton 135, a creation of Hephaestus
Zayden: gestures to the helipad Can we start going now? We can talk more later anyways
James: Absolutely. James looks around to make sure no one is watching before gathering his wind power and vaulting over the fence.
Zayden: simply climbs the fence with ease as he has done these before
James: I hate to ask, but who was Apate again? He sounds like a tropical fruit, but that seems unlikely.
Zayden: he makes it across and heads for the ride Goddess of Deceit, trickery, lies. For short, I can fool and hack and manipulate. No biggie. Also, it s a she.
James: Wow, the god of deceit is a goddess? I bet the feminist groups just love that. There should be a secret passage down here somewhere.
Automaton: Follows them closely from behind
James: Hey Auto, do you have a scanner or something that might help us out here?
Automaton That depends, what do you wish for me to scan for?
James: Well, supposedly the people who stole the throne took it underground from here. That's when Boreas lost track of them. We need to follow them, but first we need to find out how they got underground. James is poking around in the shrubbery. So if you could scan for a trap door or something, that would be great.
Automaton: nods and scans around making a small beeping sound before stopping and pointing over to a tree On the otherside of that tree appears to be a hatch of some kind, maybe check there.
Zayden: Try it, James.
James: Nods and walks around to the other side of the tree. Aha! Yes, this reeks of secrecy... and unnecessarily high building budgets. James yanks open a door hidden in the tree. Well, it goes straight down, and has one of those obnoxious, completely vertical ladders. Who wants to o first?
Automaton: walks into the hatch and falls 30 feet before hitting the ground, causing a little tremor It is safe. he calls up
James: Fantastic, I didn't want to be stealthy anyway. James leaps into the hole and slowly descends on an updraft, landing safely in a long hallway. The hall is lit by dim, flickering lights. I guess they blew their electronics budget on secret tree-doors. Zayden! he calls back up, You're up next!
Zayden: simply follows them and brushes off the dirt
James: Well, this tunnel seems pretty straightforward. The party moves to the end of the tunnel, where they find a heavy, metal door. I don't suppose they left the door unlocked. He tries the door. Nope, but it was worth a shot. Any ideas.
Zayden: his maces appear We could try
Automaton: Stand back. pulls his arm back and punches the door
The door now has a large dent in it. A siren begins to blare.
James: Auto, let's talk subtlety for a moment. You see, when entering an enemy base-- coughs When entering an enemy base, it's generally best to-- coughs several times. What is this? Do you smell it? It's... wha...?
Gas fills the hall, knocking out both demigods. The door opens and a strange man in a gas mask with several tools hanging from his belt pokes his head out.
Strange Man: Agh! You're a 'ton! The man scrambles for something in his back pocket. He pulls out a metal sphere with strange markings on it and tosses it at Automaton #135. A field of energy engulfs him and he goes temporarily offline.
The party wakes up in a strange laboratory. The lab has a few desks with chairs and notes scattered about. The walls are lined with cabinets and a computer in the corner is displaying what appear to be DNA patterns. Both demigods are in separate cells. The cells are tiled on all sides except one. The other sides are large windows with small slits for air on the top and a door on the side. The automaton is belted down to a table with several cables. In that corner of the lab a few tools lie about.
Zayden: wakes up from unconsciousness Wh-where... his eyes widen gods... he immediately examines the cell
The only thing in the cell is a cot. The door appears to be locked from the other side with a very heavy padlock, but it's hard to tell.
James: Zayden? Is that you? The cells are next to each other so the demigods cannot see each other. They can see Automaton 135's table though.
Zayden: Yea. They shut him down, we have to get out...somehow
James: I've already tried smashing the window. It seems to be really thick.
Zayden: Were or are there any guards outside the room?
James: I haven't seen any since I woke up. I wonder why we're being kept here and not killed or something.
Zayden: They need something from us or were bait which is exactly the same
James: Well, it's not exactly the same, but I can see why--
Suddenly, a man walks into the room. He is wearing a lab coat, carrying a clipboard, and has unusually long, brown hair.
Charles: Ah! You are awake already! Very good! He says in a cheerful demeanor. My name is Charles. It's so very good of you to drop by. We usually have to go to great length to find fine people like yourselves.
Automaton: He reboots and his blue eyes flash on the monitors. He tried to speak but his voice comes out like he as been breathing helium James? Zayden? Oh no my voice box must have been damaged.
James: We're here. It seems we're prisoners. Can you think of a more stellar way to begin my first quest? His voice resonates with depressed irony.
Charles: He seems to notice the automaton for the first time. He seems annoyed and pulls a radio out his deep pockets. Art, I told you to keep your toys out of my laboratory. He says into the radio, pronouncing every syllable of "laboratory." After a pause he continues, I don't care, get it out of here. He hangs up. Then cheerfully continues, Sorry, friends. Some of my colleagues lack ambition.
Automaton: In the name of Hephaestus I order you to let us go. Or else. Why do you have us here?
Charles: Irritated. Why does Art need to have keep such noisy things around? I do not fear the machine's creator. Nonetheless, the machine's question is valid. Trying to be cheerful again. All you need to know is that you are all here to be studied; that is all. I've taken the liberty of taking a small blood sample from the two of you. I hope you don't mind.
Zayden: stays quiet as he observes the room and cell and brainstorms
James: Yes, I do mind. Why are you studying us anyway?
Charles: I'm sorry; I'm afraid the answer to that is rather complicated. Let's move on--
James: We have time. Explain it.
Charles: Laughs. You don't seem to understand. I'm studying you, not the other way around. Here's what I've learned so far. Number one, you two are demigods; judging by that orange shirt, you are from the camp. Number two, you came down here in a group, so it probably wasn't an accident; you're probably on a quest of some kind. Number three, judging by the fact that your normal body temperature is a few degrees lower than normal, that your hand usage implies that you are ambidextrous, and that you chose to wear only a light jacket in February, I'd guess that you are a child of Boreas. He turns to Zayden. You, on the other hand, are much harder to determine. Now is this correct?
Zayden: I take pride in that he smirks
Automaton: This still dose not answer how you know about demigods.
Zayden: looks at Unit 135 for him to continue and try to irritate Charles
Charles: Grits his teeth. Machine, do you have no manners? Fine. I know of the demigods because I'm not blind. Now shut up.
Zayden: Oh really? A simple assumption won't do you any good. It's quite a shame he plots to outsmart then trick Charles with an illusion later on
Charles: I try to make my questionings a comfortable and relaxing experience. You are making that very difficult for me. Now, I have some simple questions for you. Let's start with you name, age, the age when your powers appeared, and the nature of the process as far as you understand it, and remember, this is for prosperity so please be honest.
Zayden: Easy then. Zayden. Lost count after 500. Forgot.
James: Bartholomew Cubbins. 6 years in the future. I was bit by a radioactive snowflake.
Charles: Raises an eyebrow. Your sarcasm is not very helpful to my studies. Now, Zayden. Did you say 500? Forgive me if I'm a bit skeptical...
Zayden: Yea, over 500. A spirit or a demigod. A ghost or a satyr. A mortal or a priest. Well, you have a lot of options there, my good man.
Charles: Interesting, He writes something on his clipboard. but I am well aware that you are a demigod. I am merely not sure who you parents are. Would you care to elaborate?
Zayden: Really now? Would a demigod be able to... Can I have a glass of water?
OOC:What will happen? :3
Charles: Zayden, I respect your intelligence, please respect mine. I have been studying demigods for years; I know how to identify them. And yes, you may have a glass of water.
At that moment another man walks into the room. He is wearing greasy clothes, like he's been working in an auto shop. He is the man who was wearing the gas mask.
Charles: Briefly distracted, Art, it's good to see you. Get your metal trash out of my laboratory, please.
Art: Listen, there just ain't any room left in my hanger.
Charles: Then make room! Throw something out!
Art: angry. Oh, yeah. I'll go do that: throw out the materials for the only area of our study that's making any dang progress!
Charles: Very upset. I am making progress! Your project will never have the same potential as mine!
Art: That the way you see it? Fine then! You just keep on doing what you're doing, but you can do it with a 'ton in your office. I'll pick it up later! He storms out, but more words echo from the other side of the door. You'll never figure it out, Charles! Divine power can't be duplicated!
Charles: Art! Get back here and take this scrapheap! Mumbles under his breath, idiot...
The whole exchange took only seconds.
Charles: Charles regains some composure, but his face is a bit red. I'll get your water, Zayden. Please wait a moment. He leave the room.
OOC: I should have mentioned this before, but it slipped my mind. James's swords have been taken away and are on one of the desks. Zayden still has his maces because they are disguised. Also, that post thing you're using leaves unnatural gaps in between posts.
Automaton: Who was that? And I am not a scrapheap!
James: I guess that was Art. Looks like he doesn't get along with Lab Coat very well.
Zayden: Since you know us, it would only be fair if we know you as well.
James: Who are you talking to? Labby left the room.
Charles: But I heard, nonetheless. He returns with a glass of water, and walks over to Zayden's cell. That is fair, but I will only answer one, maybe two questions. Then you must answer mine. Please step away from the door so I can insert this water.
Zayden: follows instructions and moves to the side. Once he got the water, he smells for poison then drinks a half of the glass, leaving half for later James, you ask.
James: James thinks carefully for a moment. What exactly is this... establishment? What is the purpose of these studies?
Charles: Aha, going for the big questions. Unfortunately, I can't answer those in too much detail right now. To answer your first question, our organization calls itself the "Desecrators," although I would prefer to call ourselves, the "Refiners." We consist of a few, remarkable individuals. The five of us are gifted with true vision; the mist, as you call it, does not obscure our vision. We have a fairly large budget, with which to hire normal mortals to do our bidding. As for the purpose of our studies... Charles pauses uncomfortably. We only wish to learn as much as possible about the divine. He may be hiding something.
Zayden: I'm guessing we're not going to be out for a while, right James?
James: I don't know. Demigods or not, I'm fairly certain it's illegal to detain American citizens this way.
James: Sooo, once you do let us go, you're probably going to get in a lot of trouble.
Charles: Yes... once I let you go. I'm aware.
Zayden: face palms as he mutters in Greek Never tell your captor you're going to tell the police once you're out. He'll never let you go.
James: Hey! I've never done this before!
Zayden: breathes in and out to realize his fury XDWell Mister, how about I give you information about myself, as much as you like in exchange for freedom?
Charles: How reasonable. Let's start with your god parent. Who is he or she? He prepares to take notes.
Zayden: shrugs I knew you'd say that. You see that glass of water there? It was for a purpose, makes an illusion that's he's water bending and places the water back in the glass once he's done. He drinks and finishes the water Son of Poseidon. Not a happy dad you'd pick to mess with his kid.
Charles: He seems unperturbed and notes some things on his clipboard. Fascinating. So then, you posses mainly hydrokinesis, am I correct? Are there any other powers included?
Zayden: Mainly that and minor control over horses. Yea, just horses.
Charles: I see... Notes more down. OK then, this next question may be difficult-- He is cut off by a ringing noise. He reaches down and pulls out his radio again. I'm busy right now... well can't it wait?... The radio is mostly too quite to be heard, but one word is clear: "demigods." I... see... Of course, right away. He hangs up. I'm sorry, but something has come to my attention. I must go, but I'll be back in a few minutes or so. Goodbye! He leaves, looking flustered and somewhat... greedy? all at the same time.
James: Well, does anyone have any ideas that might get us out of here? I'm not sure he'll let you go when he's done, Zayden. Think about it, it seems like he's done this before, but we've never heard about it from anyone.
Zayden: Chuckles Who says I believed that pile of trash? talks in greek so only he, auto, and james can understand Let's put up a show shall we? A great act. A son of Poseidon disappears, causing the idiot professor to check out his cell, opening it and falling into a trap. Smack him, lock him up in my cell, and get the keys, free you, get our stuff on the table and make a run for it by using illusions and icy offense. Auto stays at the middle and gives us tactics that we might miss. It'll drain us, but sounds good?
Automaton 135: He nods and still talks in his shrill voice Then I must fix my voice microchip because this voice is much too annoying.
James: That sounds like a plan. I we don't know when he'll be back, so you'd better get on that.
Zayden: Talks in GreekGuys, do me a favor. Talk in Greek. Also, tell him I escaped through whatever water travel. Once the door opens, I'll be gone, you'll see, not really
James: Haltingly in Greek. I have only been at camp a few months. My Greek is not good. He might speak Greek. (The awkward phrasing is intentional here.)
Charles: He returns, grumbling. We finally get visitors, and our cells are already full; must build more... He notices Zayden is missing and runs to the cell. What in the blazes is happening!? Where is Zayden!?
James: Hmm? Is he gone? Check under his cot; maybe he used that glass you gave him to dig his way to freedom.
Charles: Glares at James. We've talked about your sarcasm, correct? He fumbles with his keys and yanks open the door to Zayden's cell.
Zayden: Smacks him with the end of his maces, making Charles unconscious. Before locking the door, he dragged and tosses his body to the back of the cell after getting the keys. He immediately sets free James and helps Auto; once he's done, he grabs his backpack.I don't like staying here 'any further', do you?
Automaton: He nods and speaks in his usual voice I agree.
James: Well, there are only two doors in this room. If you would do the honors... He gestures towards the locked door opposite the frozen one.
Escape and Discovery
The party leaves the room and finds themselves in maze of corridors. After walking a short while they find a strange locked door, different from the others.
James: This one's different. Maybe it leads to an exit.
Zayden: In case we'll be captured again, someone has to open the door while some readies to fire an attack
James: Righto. James raises his and a chilled breeze begins to slowly swirl around him. Auto, could you please get the door?
Automaton: He nods and punches the door, ready for an attack on the otherside
The door buckles and falls in. Nothing attacks. A long hallway is ahead. It is dark, dank, and there seem to be jail cells off to the sides. Real ones, with metal bars instead of fancy glass.
Zayden: Immediately goes in and checks it out
As Zayden passes one of the cells, a bizarre creature jumps on the bars and snarls at him. Several other creatures in other cells take notice and also jump at the bars. The cells contain about ten draconae and telkhines.
Zayden: Someone's going through a monster breeding center he looks around making sure they're securely tight
Unfortunately, the bars aren't exactly... holding up that well.
James: What the taco is going on here?
The monsters all groan, screech and hiss a similar message. Demigods! Food! Finally! The monsters are battering the bars, which seem to be giving.
Automaton: Run! runs towards the other side of the room
He is too late, the first of the cells breaks open and a pair of Draconae block the hero's path. Cells continue to break until the party is surrounded.
James: Well, this is maybe the worst thing that has ever happened to me. James says, drawing his swords. I guess I haven't lived that long, huh?
Zayden: Not the worst---yet. James, try your best to freeze them first. Auto, well, fight moving towards the exit. Let's go. His maces appear as he swings it around to a telekene
The telkhine is knocked backward, but more take its place.
James: He freezes a dracanae, but before he can follow it up he is attacked by a telkhine and force to go on the defensive.
Zayden: Makes an illusion where James, Zayden, and Auto flew away in a cold breeze by James to where they entered. He makes James and Auto see through his illusion as he signals them to move to the other exit
At first it appears to work. The monsters cry out in hunger and run towards where the party entered. However, after only a few seconds the Telkhines' keen noses pick up on the deception.
A Telkhine: It's a trick! Their sent it over there!
The monsters screech to a halt and run back toward the party.
Zayden: CrudAs the monsters turns away, he already started to head for the exit. Now they came back, he tries to open the door to the other room
The door is locked with a padlock. It seems old though.
James: Creates a powerful wind to hold the monsters back, but only slows them. What's taking so long with that door? Is it stuck?
Zayden: hacks the padlock like crazy hard
The lock breaks and the door swings open.
James: The monsters have reached him at this point. He is trying to fend them off with his swords. Get through the door!
Zayden: Makes a temporary illusion, enough to fool these monsters for 10 seconds, of a group of dracnae grabbing James and pointing to Auto who is already pushed by Zayden to the other room secretly, but in this illusion was heading outside the other door with Zayden. The dracnaes say:"He's ours, it's not enough, take the restsssss!' Meanwhile, the "dracnaes" who had a leader who took James was actually Zayden and he pulls James to the other room and locks the door immediately.'
James: That was close, nice save. James leans on the door. There is no way that lock is going to hold though, especially because you just broke it.
The party finds themselves in a room with a computer and some filing cabinets. A few files are strewn about, with sketches of monsters clearly visible. There is a door on the far side of the room.
James: Trying to hold the door closed as the monsters begin to pound on it. I don't suppose anyone brought any water with them?
Automaton: He pulls out camel bladder with 5L of water inside Will this do?
James: Perfect. He quickly grabs the camel bladder and pours it on the door, freezing the water as he does so. Before long the door is sealed with ice. He hands the bladder back. Problem solved. Thanks, Auto.
Automaton: Your Welcome. He takes the bladder and stuffs it into a hidden box in his wrist
Zayden: Breathes as he slides to the ground. He takes a cube of ambrosia from his bag and pops it in his mouth What the hell is is place.. sees the computer and starts hacking the system for information
Zayden uncovers an archive of monster related files. The is information on their capabilities, strategies for capture, and, disturbingly, the amount of human resources that you can expect to lose when capturing them. There is more information, but it requires an administrator password.
Zayden: Being a more than 500 years old son of Apate, the password does not bother him
The roaming locations of various monsters are listed, as are the records of capture. No one ever said the hidden information was interesting. Unfortunately, this computer is an isolated system. The other computers cannot be hacked from here.
James: looking over Zayden's shoulder. I wonder what all this data is for.
Zayden: A part of me says its by curiosity, a part of me says they're Guinea pigs for a bigger curious man.
Suddenly, an intercom is heard.
Intercom: Maintain an alert status. There are three intruders within the headquarters.
James: I guess that'd be us then.
Intercom: Keep a look out for three teenagers, one male and two female. They are armed with throwing daggers, and a crossbow and are very dangerous.
James: Or not.
At that point another voice comes on the intercom, Charles.
Intercom (Charles): I would like to report another emergency. Our captives escaped... He proceeds to describe the party.
James: Ah, there we are.
Zayden: he smiles knowing there are more of them nowPerfect
James: How is that perfect?
Zayden: More of us.
James: Does camp generally send backup for quests?
Zayden: I don't think so. Though the fact that they want to get out and we want to get out seems like a good truce
The ice on the door begins to crack.
James: We should move on.
Automaton: He nods Shouldn't we still save this data? His pinkie finger turns into a flash drive
James: Well... The ice on the door is almost completely shattered. Do we really have time?
Automaton: He plays a sigh clip and shakes his head No. Where do we go now James?
Zayden: Anywhere but here, he notices another pathway to the next roomThere!
Down the Hole
The party heads into the next room and finds themselves in a large, circular room, more than 50 meters across. The floor is wooden, and clearly some kind of scaffold. The ceiling is high above and is composed of a large, sturdy grid (like a portcullis). Through the ceiling, the sky can be seen, but the light keeps shifting as though through water. The walls of the room have many tapestries and decorations, although some are torn and burnt. Greek style swords are mounted on the walls, glistening in the shifting light. The room has several doors. A pair of double doors is positioned at the far end of the room, while six other doors line the edge of the room. Finally, there is an incredibly large, heavily barred door that reaches almost to the ceiling. Monster dust is scattered around the room, and there is a large mound of it in the center. The floor seem damaged, and creaks under the heroes weight.
Zayden: Coughs Something's off here
Suddenly there is a loud snapping sound; the floor falls about a foot, then with an even bigger snap, falls again, this time it shatters to planks after striking the remains of the broken central column that was holding the floor up. 30 meters (or about 90 feet) below them there is water, but that is still to far to fall, even into water.
James: Whoa! James manages to create an updraft to keep himself afloat. He swoops to grab Zayden, but their combined weight is too much. They spiral down toward the water, albeit at a safe speed.
Zayden: Sometimes, being a son of Poseidon can really help. He looks around the room to search something to grab on to help James'
There is nothing close to grab onto, but James has slowed their fall enough for them to land safely in the water.
OOC: I'm assuming that Automaton 135 is fine, because he fell a long distance onto concrete earlier.
Zayden: Looks at the water around himJames, how deep do you think this is?
James: No idea. He hauls himself on to a piece of the floor that is floating nearby.
The room is just as large as the one above, and the water is dark and deep. On one end of the room there is a tunnel, but it is half-way under the water.
Zayden: Alright James, you're leader. Pick a destinationhe looks around
James: ironically, Well thanks, Zayden. Gee, it's going to be hard to pick from all one of these side passages.
Without warning, a tentacle erupts from the water and drags James under.
Zayden: What the heck! he pulls James' arm and tries not to let him get, well, swallowed
James: Manages to draw his sword and slash the tentacle, allowing Zayden to pull him up.
Zayden: Once he pulls up James, he looks down to see if its a kraken or a giant squid
Deep under the water three eyes gleam. It is hard to see through the dark water, but it is clear the monster is at least there meters wide. A tentacle shoots out of the water towards the heroes, attempting to grab them.
Zayden': He whacks the tentacle with his maces, attempting to pierce with the spikes
The monster quickly withdraws its tentacle and rumbles with displeasure.
James: What is that?
Automaton 135: pulls out two swords from his legs and slices at the tentacle I do not know. But it doesn't seem friendly.
James: Rolls eyes. That's good. I was seriously worried that this thing wanted a hug.
The monster dives deeper and disappears.
James: Now, I wonder--
The monster erupts from the water behind them. It is surprisingly humanoid, with a mane of tentacles and two large webbed claws on the ends of its arms. Only its body above the waist is above water, but it still looms 5 meters tall.
Zayden: We need to get out of it's territory, I mean NOW
Automaton: Where do we run?! gets into a defensive stance and readies for the monsters next attack
James: We could try for the tunnel back there, but this guy's blocking our path.
Zayden: I could confuse it for a short while
James: Alright, I have an idea. I can fly, so—Whoa!
The beast lunges forward, swinging its arm at the party.
James: Barely dodges.
Automaton: slices at it's tenticles
The beast loses some tentacles and lets out a screech so shrill and grating that it can inflict headaches.
James: Drops his swords and holds his head as he staggers back.
Automaton: his head make some sparks
The beast swipes at James, knocking him into the water, then turns and swipes at Automaton 135.
Automaton: ducks the swipe then gives the beast a round house kick, but while in mid air he says in an Arnold Schwarzenegger voice Hasta Avista Baby! then strikes
The beast recoils a bit, but recovers quickly enough to snatch Automaton 135 out of the air with one of his clawed hands. He begins to squeeze.
Zayden: Gives a -~-* face seeing Auto squeezed as he creates an illusion for a the monster, that they are hovering on air and trying to slice the tentacle holding Auto which in his hope, might cause panic to the monster and drop auto'
It is partially successful. The beast violently hurls Auto across the room.
Zayden: Above the water, he looks below for any signs for the monster's sensitive parts. Once he has located the eyes that glisten under the waters. He dives and pokes it with his mace. Unfortunately, he isnt sure it is his eyes since Zayden had closed his eyes on diving and simply used calculations and estimations
Zayden's mace touches something solid. The glow from the eyes disappears and the beast rumbles. It grabs at Zayden with its tentacles.
Zayden: He is pulled down by the tentecles and tries not to move too much, as he cannot afford to lose his breath under water.'
The three orbs of light that are the beast's eyes reappear, then seem to rush towards Zayden, as the beast draws him in to eat him.
Zayden: From darkness, he sees the light that is obvious even if his eyes are closed. He goes for it as he tries to shoot the CB spikes from his two maces directly at what he turns to as lights.
The spikes strike the monster's eyes. The beast shrieks and hurls Zayden out of the water violently.
James: Crawls out of the water. Hey, does this mean we win?
Zayden: He feels pain Y-yea
James: Sweet. That went better than I... uh...
A burbling sound comes from the water.
James: On moment. James ices over the water. There we go. Problem solved.
Automaton: Maybe... Where to next?
James: Well, I don't think I can fly you guys out of here, so I guess we'd better see where that tunnel leads. James gestures toward the half-submerged tunnel.
Zayden: Simply nods and follows, but is still in pain'''
The party continues over the frozen water and into the tunnel. After a few twists and turns they find themselves once again at the bottom of a cylindrical shaft. Water comes in from pipes on the side and from above in small streams. A series of iron rungs protrudes from the wall, making a ladder. Up above there is a grid.
James: Hmm, I wonder if we can cut through that grid and get out of here.
Zayden: He is unsure whether to answer yes and something goes wrong or no and miss that opportunity
James: Flies up the grate and slashes at it. His weapon bounces off uselessly. He tries a few more times, then shrugs, and floats down. I'm not strong enough to do it.
Zayden: Mind giving it a harsh temperature to break down in before doing that?
James: Well, freezing it might make it more brittle if it wasn't already ridged, but it is, so I don't think that will help.
Zayden: Alright then, James. If you want to pound the door till it breaks, I'm with you. He smiles
James: Auto might be able to do it, but he'd have to climb the ladder.
Zayden: He turns to Auto for his reply
Automaton: I am at your command. punches the door multiple times
Auto successfully punches a hole in the grate large enough for a person to fit through.
Zayden: He smiles at auto for his new found respect for him'
James: Flies up through the hole.
Automaton: climbs through the hole, making it slightly larger at the same time
Zayden: He climbs the hole seeing there is no other choice'
The Mad Mythologist
The heroes find themselves in what appears to be a large janitor's closet. Cleaning supplies hang from the walls and piping runs throughout the room. There is one door and a bare light-bulb shines dimly.
James: Seriously? Even if this is out-of-the-way, they could at least get a 60-watt bulb.
Zayden: ShrugsThis place has crazy written all over it
James: It's complicated, too. We need to find directions to wherever it is the throne is being kept.
Automaton: I agree. lifts his fist Do I punch again?
James: Punch what?
Automaton: The wall?
James: There is a door.
James: So, any ideas for how to navigate this place or get a map?
Automaton: No ideas, sorry.
Zayden: The walls are never wrong
James: Care to elaborate?
Zayden: Since we dont know whats been through these walls, we run our weapons through the wall and take a move around the place, following them. When there is no wall to continue, we move towards another we can find.
James: So, you're saying we should leave a gash in the wall and follow the wall until we either find the throne, or reach the gash again, in which case we start again with a different wall?
Zayden: Guess so. Not a great plan with us getting tired from walking, but always works. Shrugs For me. You guys have any better idea?
James: Well, it's systematic I suppose. The issue is that we could still check every other room in the complex before we got the right one, but I don't have any better ideas. Also, we should make sure not to cut the gash to deep; it could get ugly if we hit a power line.
Automaton: I absorb electric shocks.
James: Well, I guess that settles it. We'll go with Zayden's plan and Auto can slice the wall.
With the plan in mind, the heroes left the janitorial closet and began following the right wall. After several twists and turns (not to mention setting off a few alarms and dealing with a few guards) the party finds themselves in a laboratory. Complicated apparatuses are spread across the many counter tops, mixes of tubing, Bunsen burners, glass and other instruments. The shelves are lined with containers full of various chemicals, acids on one side of the room, bases on the other. Some of the jars contain a shimmery orange powder, suspiciously similar to monster dust.
James: Looks like another dead end.
Zayden: He shrugs The feeling that we aren't alone is bothering me
Charles: That's because you're not.
James: Whirls around to see Charles standing in the doorway.
Zayden: He shrus as his lips distance and eyes narrow to indicate he's not in the mood to see him
Charles: Charles' previously cheery demeanor is gone. I'm not exactly happy to see you still breathing either.
Zayden: His maces appear You don't have to---soon.
James: Hold on, Zayden. James builds up a wind and uses it to launch himself over and behind Charles. This guy knows where the throne is.
Zayden: let the torture begin then. By torture, he means interrogation with pain if he's not cooperating and after he cooperates
James: Makes a face. You're not serious.
Automaton: How about good cop, bad cop and the robot?
Zayden: He facepalms at Auto and looks at James then turns to Charles
James: Better idea: this is Charles lab, right? Some of those cabinets are locked. They must be important; check what's in them. I'll block Charles' retreat.
Charles: Now, hold on...
Zayden: He nods as he does what he is told, moving from cabinet to cabinet to find things interesting. So far, he has found empty and full testtubes, beakers, racks, typical things to be found in a lab.
One of the cabinets contains a rack full of 30 or more test tubes, all containing a suspiciously read looking substance.
Charles: Shifts uneasily. Careful...
Zayden: He carefully reaches for the testtube holder and pulls one up This looks interesting---and precious to you
Charles: Listen, put that back! Carefully! It his highly volatile! He lies. Sweat drips down his neck.
Zayden: He shrugs as he still holds the testtube with care Who do you think I am to fall for a horrible lie?
Charles: I-I'm serious! One wrong move and we're all dead! It's the truth! It's not.
James: I'm rather dubious.
Automaton: guards Charles and reads his heart rate which also tell him that he is lying
James: Yeah, I don't think anyone's buying that. How about you tell us the real story, and we refrain from pouring all those down the drain.
Charles: Glances around, then gives up. They're... they're just blood samples... from, uh... demigods. He says sheepishly.
Zayden: Coming from you, I'm not surprised. So, do we have an exchange deal? The throne for your precious blood
Charles: I... drat. Very well. The throne is in the meeting room. You can find it by...he gives them directions, not lying. Now please, the tray.
Zayden: He shrugs as he places it back and turns to James for his signal
James: Now hold on, I think some questions are in order. For instance, why exactly do you have a cabinet full of demigod blood?
Charles: It's... It's for my experiments. You see, I'm one of the few people on Earth gifted with The Sight. I can see through the mist, even better than you can. I spent years searching for other people who could see the things I see, and I found only 4 others. Together, we formed a group with a simple purpose: to discover the true nature of what these things are. It wasn't long before we realized the truth about the Greek gods, about mythology, and now we have a new purpose. He pushes past Zayden and grasps the tray of test tubes, admiring it. Never taking his eyes off the tubes, he continues to speak. We are going to obtain the power of the gods! There is only one way to do that, and that is to find out what it is about this demigod blood that makes it special! If we can figure it out, we can replicate it, and the power of the gods will be at our fingertips! He has a gleam in his eye that indicates he probably shouldn't be trusted with such power, but he tells the truth.
Zayden: Hate to burst your dreams, but before you will ever do that, you'd be hunted down by the gods andyour creations will be destroyed. Everything will be forgotten like nothing has ever happened. Do you think you want to spend a whole life time dreaming for something that will never be obtained?
Charles: Heh... heh... no, no, and that is why I will succeed! In all my years of research I have never seen a god. They will not interfere directly. The worst they will do is send people like you to us, unwittingly fueling my experiments! You want to think it's impossible? Fine. Let's see how far that gets you when our plan is complete! Hahaha!
James: Um, did you just go mad scientist on a room of people who could beat 5 of you in a fight without a problem? It doesn't sound smart...
Zayden: He nods at James Directly interfering? He laughs Zeus could toss a lightning bolt to destroy the whole area, that isn't interfering as long as we see storm. Ischor can freely take the blood as well, without even being here.
Charles: If they were going to, they would have long ago. As for you... He grabs the tray and quickly retreats to the far end of the room. I can't have you running back and telling your demigod friends all this, can I? No, I've given you the location of the throne, but I never said you'd live to take it. He draws a small vial from his pocket. Do you know what this is? It is another kind of blood, gorgon blood, and believe me, much human blood was shed to get a hold of it. Do you know what it does?
Automaton: It is a poison.
Zayden: Or a healing potion.
Charles: A smile spreads across his face. Both right and both sadly missing the point. That is but one of its uses. It has strange effects on many things. For instance, I believe you met a strange beast in our sewage system...
James: That was a sewage system? It didn't smell like it.
Charles: Yes, well, our underlings sometimes forget to turn the tap off when they wash their hands, as a result the sewage is very diluted. Anyway, that monster was the result of an experiment involving gorgon blood and monster dust, but I don't need monster dust to make a frightening beast. Charles takes a another vial out of his jacket and smashes on the ground; sand spills out. Behold its effect on mere sand! With that, Charles pours the blood on the sand.
The upon mixing, the substances begin to hiss and smoke. Soon the cloud is too dense to see through.
Charles: Beware the twice venomous Amphisbaena!
A hiss emanates from within the cloud, this one different from before. A huge serpent's head emerges from the cloud and glowers at the heroes, flicking its tongue
Automaton: Pulls out a celestial bronze sword from his back and throws it at the monster
Zayden: He points jis mace at the monster as Auto throws his sword. His mace start to shoot spikes directly at it, surrounding Auto's sword for a more sure kill
The spikes and sword embed themselves in the Amphisbaena and its head falls to the ground.
James: Well, that was anticlimactic.
Suddenly, a second head, attached to the other end of the body, whips out of cloud and lashes out to bite Zayden.
Zayden: Not wanting Charles to know his real godly parent, he makes an illusion. This illusion can be seen by only Charles and the monster, making him lose less energy. The illusion composes of him disintergrating into water then water traveling to the back, but in reality, while the illusion was on-going to distract them, Zayden speeds for the back.
After missing Zayden, the Amphisbaena strikes at James.
James: Ducks to the side and slashes its second and last head off; the Amphisbaena disintegrates. Hmm, over all I'd give that monster a 4/10. It makes a good entrance, but ultimately fails to live up to the hype.
3 more Amphisbaena slither out of the cloud.
Automaton: punches the monster and releases a powerful electrical pulse into it
The head of the monster Automaton punched goes limp, but its other head whips around and bites Automaton's shoulder, breaking its fangs.
Zayden: Meanwhile, being at the back, he tries to couch down and breath for a while.
The second Amphisbaena lunges at Zayden.
Zayden: He gives about two steps to the left then turns to face the serpent's back then crushes it with his two maces pressed together on the front and back of its belly
The Amphisbaena lets out a moaning hiss and dissolves. The last one lashes out, quickly wrapping around James.
James: Freezes the snake with an arctic wind and rams into the wall, shattering it. Even in a team, these aren't very threatening. Now let's see... Notices that while they were fighting, Charles sneaked away.
Zayden: He looks around for Charles.. ... ...
James: Well, we got what we needed anyway. We know where the throne is. Let's go
Zayden: He nods as he makes haste for the throne room as instructed
It is a massive room with a carved oak table running down the center and a high ceiling. The walls are wood paneled and covered with more carvings of gods and monsters. There is no obvious other entrance. At one end of the room there is a massive horse automaton, somewhat destroyed. Its head has broken part of the wall, as if it crashed into it. The room is filled with battle damage.
James: Wow, something went down in here. Where's the throne?
Zayden: He wanders around the room
An ominous banging sound comes from the horse...
Zayden: He turns towards the soundSomething's up...
Suddenly a hatch on the side of the horse bursts open. Half a dozen automaton soldiers crawl out.
Zayden: He steps backwards cautiously
James: Wow, soldiers out of a horse? Has there really been that little innovation after all these years?
Zayden: He nodsAnd there's the proof
The first of the automatons steps forward and draws its sword.
Zayden: He looks at James' in case he would volunteer to use his powers
James: Steps forward. Hang on, I've got an idea. James summons a focused blast of icy wind, freezing one of the automatons in place. Problem solved.
The heat from the automaton's circuits melts the ice almost immediately.
James: Or not...
Zayden: He makes his maces disappear before grabbing a nearby one-handed sword. The sword resembles a Celestial Bronze one by its shiny broze glow. Seeing years of practice with different weapons, he is also at ease with this. He charges at the automaton after making them see there are two other copies of himself.
The automaton jabs at one of the illusions.
Zayden: The illusion dodges the automaton quite easily, being unreal. Zayden then goes to hack one of them across the neck area, trying to behead it.'
He is successful; the automaton's head clatters to the ground, followed by the body.
Zayden: He turns to find Auto in this situation, maybe he would be able to send some kind of transmission that would twist the control. While quarter of his attention is there, he aims for another automaton with the same technique, making his copy go first then go for the beheading
The next automaton fires two darts from slots in his arms, one at Zayden, and one at an illusion.
Zayden: The real Zayden gets scrapped at the left arm while the fake one disappears. He shifts his attention towards James to see how is he doing
James: Dodges an attack from an automaton and stabs it through a chink in its armor. The automaton sparks and tumbles to the ground. Only four left...
Zayden: Once he has gotten distance from a few automatons, he takes a time to breathe in and out, panting tiredly. He faces the automatons trying to move closer towards him, two automatons. He then conives a plan to make them hit each other. He runs towards them. Once he has gotten close enough, he crouches down and slides in between the two automatons, trying to cut their "legs."
One of the automatons is knocked over, but the other one sidesteps and quickly catches a hold of the back of Zayden's shirt, lifting him up.
Zayden: As the automaton lifts him up, he makes no hesitation to actually walk on the torse of the automaton while so. Knowing he is being suspended, he sticks his feet towards it torso. He then hugs the automaton's head. After he has gotten on top, he goes for a stab in the automaton's torso, trying to disfunction it asap.
The stab hits home, but the automaton throws Zayden away.
Zayden: After being thrown away, he makes sure he is not heavily damaged by it. He lands on his feet after a flip in mid-air. He actually looks curious of how many automatons James and him have slayed already
James: Quickly slashes at the automaton on the ground and the one that threw Zayden, finishing them off. Only 2 to go...
Zayden: He breathes rather breathlessly, seeing so many monsters at once. He takes out a piece of ambrosia hiden within his attire and pops it into his mouth before going. With the sword at hand, he dashes towards the last automaton before taking a step to his side at the nich of time and trying to stab it.
The automaton collapses.
James: Finishes off the last one. Well, these are pretty shoddy workmanship. Normally automatons are made much better than that.
Zayden: He nods before shifting his eyes towards different parts of the room, seeking for an exit. He stops to look at James. Agreed. Well, some automatons.He pants as he gestures to the last automaton Do you also have the feeling this was made by a mortal?
James: Maybe what's-his-name made them. The guy who was arguing with Charles back when we were imprisoned.
Zayden: Then we have no choice but to get to the throne immediately, right?
James: Right, lets get to the throne. He glances around the room. Now, there is another group of demigods here, right? We heard about them on the intercom system. I'll bet they trashed this horse, and it looks like... He examines the hole in the wall next to the horse's head. they went through here...
Zayden: Powerful ones, more or less. Cautiously, Zayden walks across the trashed automatons, may it be limbs or such. He takes a step across the wall to examine the next room.
The heroes find themselves in a long, twisting, upwards passageway.
Zayden: He leans on the wall, quite tired. Today, he had his enough share of power usage and walking. After a minute, he continues walking
The party reaches a large, dome shaped room. There are clamps on the walls, but there is nothing in them. There is an exit on the far side.
James: What's up with this place, do you think? Their is something weird about the atmosphere.
Zayden: He nods while breathing breathlessly. Nevertheless, we must reach the end. '"He turns his tired eyes around the room to find the design.What are these scientists up to by trying such failed contraptions and designs...
James: I don't know... It looks like the room was lined with something, and the clamps held them in place.
Voice: It was the throne... a man in armor is lying in the doorway with a deep wound in his stomach. We... we broke it apart and covered the walls with it... to stop the others from using their powers so that we could defeat them... it almost... worked...
Zayden: He looks a bit surprised by the voice, but keeps calm. He listens to the sentence until it finishes. He stops at looks around to the direction where it had origined. He immediately runs towards the bleeding man in armour. He turns to James Ice! Can you pressurize his wounds with ice?
James: Not unless you want him to get frostbite on top of bleeding out.
Man: Shakes his head slowly. I... I had a feeling this would happen to me eventually... the powers of the gods... I suppose we were never meant to have them... His eyes are drifting shut. Give up on the throne... you're too late... Art... Art is powering up his machine... If you don't leave before it's done charging he'll kill you... His eyes close. The throne is already gone... just save yourselves... Fiona... How did we get mixed up in this business?... He slumps farther.
Zayden: Seeing a man die in front of him, he can't help but to feel worthless. Despite this, he follows his intruction and turns to James. Let's go. He stares at the man again, after standing up. May you rest in peace, sir.
The party quickly makes their way out of the through another tunnel that turns upwards. They exit through a secret trapdoor and find themselves in Central Park, next to the reservoir. Art is pacing back and forth, cursing.
Zayden: He follows the trail to find Art in the end. The cursing and attitude gives Zayden the idea his plan has already fail. He smirks as he cautiously makes his way towards him
Art: His words become clearer as the party approaches. --Charles and his ridiculous plans! Now we're out thousands and have nothing to show for it! He notices the heroes. Oh, it's you lot again! Everything's gone wrong since you showed up! Half our monsters are dead, the automatons I built are in shambles, Drake is probably dead by now, and Jack was supposed to report in over 2 hours ago! On top of that, some blasted demigods made off with the throne we spent far too much money and resources retrieving in the first place! This could have all been prevented, of course, if Charles had the sense to tell me what was going on earlier. As it is, my creations only just finished charging, and now it's too late!
Zayden: Each point of his whinning doesn't interest him at least a bit. When he hears the throne being taken away, he is alerted. WHich demi-god group?
Art: I don't know! The one with the 2 girls and the guy! If they're not with you, maybe they're with the Broken Covenant. They're long gone at this point! We'll never get the throne back...
Zayden: With a face of composure, he nods to give his words. Alright then; guess there is nothing we can do about your horrible security system, almost any demi-god can get in and out of the place casually already.
The Ultimate Automaton
Art: Oh, you're not out yet! I'm sick of you getting in the way! Charles thinks demigods are the key to ultimate power? Well, we'll see if he thinks so after I flatten you with my masterpiece! My only regret is that it didn't finish powering up sooner; it could have smashed those other demigods as well!
Suddenly a loud sound like gigantic clockwork is heard, and a huge bronze form slowly rises from the reservoir, creeping up onto the dry land. The 4 stories tall automaton is hunched over, like a gorilla. It walks on four spider-like legs, and is equipped with some kind of launcher on its back. Its enormous hands carry a spear, and a green glow leaks through the chinks in its plate armor.
Art: Behold Ultimatum, the most powerful automaton ever built! It's an amalgamation of other automatons I've found, plus a few additions of my own! It took years to make the separate parts compatible, but now I have made the ultimate weapon!
Automaton: Being an Automaton he feels no fear and steps towards Ultimatum. You maybe larger in size, but size dose not mean you are stronger. He reaches in a compartment in his back and pulls out what look to be bronze tent poles, but he put them togeather forming a spear 1 and a half times talled than himself. I will defeat you.
Art: Sneers. Ultimatum! Crumple him like tin-foil!
Ultimatum: A deep voice echoes through the automaton. Mission confirmed. Enemy destruction underway. Ultimatum is faster than he looks, and lashes out, meaning to smash Auto into the ground with an open hand.
Automaton: Automaton cauclates where the metal hand will land and moves out of the way just before it slams into the ground. He then jumps in the air and stabs his spear into the hand.
Ultimatum: The spear pierces Ultimatums hand, but Ultimatum draws back quickly, meaning to yank the spear out of Auto's hand.
Automaton: He nods and runs behind Ultimatum then stabs it's legs with two daggers.
Ultimatum: Kicks at him.
Zayden: He desires for Auto to prove his worth and not interfere, for now. He watches their battle, getting ready to slide in once things get rough. He finds the monstrosity a good match for Auto.