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Main Sim - A Rare Meeting - tag XO, COS

Posted Aug. 22, 2022, 5:37 p.m. by Commander Dantius Massana (XO) (Nicholas Villarreal)

Posted by Gamemaster Matrix (Gamemaster) in Main Sim - A Rare Meeting - tag XO, COS

Posted by Lieutenant Maria Beckett (Chief of Security) in Main Sim - A Rare Meeting - tag XO, COS

Posted by Lieutenant Junior Grade Danora Allance (Chief Engineer/Artificial Intelligence Expert (OUTGOING)) in Main Sim - A Rare Meeting - tag XO, COS
Posted by… suppressed (18) by the Post Ghost! 👻

SNIP

Dantius was curious, but given the sudden appearance of the five, their sudden vanishing was something which he had anticipated, if not desired.

“I suppose we were not as cautious with our words as we should have been,” Commander Massana said, keeping his tone as flat as possible, albeit his accent did not make that entirely possible.

He turned to the old man. “Well, we have met the King and his council. Who are you, and why did you not depart with them?”

  • Commander Massana, XO

The old man bowed just a little. “I am a servant. An intermediary between the King and Council and those the people whom you saw outside.” He stepped close to Massana and Beckett. “The King, he’s a passionate man. Impulsive. But he is descendant of the founder, so he is heir. You seem patient. If you’re careful, you may be able to win him over.”

-GM

“Pretty sure he doesn’t like me,” Beckett said. “Whether it’s sexism or not, I am not sure. It would not surprise me in a quasi-feudal society.” She shook her head. “Every time I spoke up or did really anything, he seemed to bristle about it. Even things he should not be able to hear or know.” She turned to regard the old man. “Do you have a name, sir?”

Lt Beckett, COS

The old man’s eyes turned sad as an old memory hit him. “I haven’t had a name in many years. There is usually no need to refer to me at all.” He recomposed himself. “He doesn’t like you. If I had to guess, it’s because he takes you for an armed guard, or potential assassin. A diplomat and a gun.”

-GM

“Well, that is my job. I’m our Chief of Security. Captain of the Guard if you were to put it in terms of a kingdom. Or Master at Arms. And Master of Whispers. But I’m also a peacekeeper. Negotiator. In some ways an ambassador or diplomat of sort in my own right. I don’t like to use force if I don’t have to. I’d rather meet people in the middle and use reason and logic. To seek empathy and understanding. If I have to use my phaser, things have gone truly wrong.” She shrugged and sighed. “Though I think Commander Massana is better at diplomacy than I am.” She broke out into a momentary grin. “I could maybe use some pointers.”

Lt Becket, COS

Dantius smiled back slightly. “Lieutenant, for a very long time, I trained to be an expert in combat and tactics. My diplomatic abilities are a… recent development, I assure you. That being said, I appreciate that you are here to protect me.”

He turned back to the old man.

“I am unsure that The King will allow me the time to… what did you say? Win him over.”

  • Commander Massana, XO

Beckett shook her head. “I’m not sure that’s an option at this point. At the same time, I don’t really like the idea of having to fight our way out of here. I haven’t seen any weapons, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t any. And who knows what those synthetics are capable of.” The destruction of Mars and Utopia Planitia Shipyards was still a pretty fresh memory. The fact that they even had a Synth on planet was a violation of Federation law at this point.

They were outnumbered approximately thirty-five to one. Even if both of them had tactical backgrounds and could cover each other, one wrong move, one lucky shot, a momentary lapse in attention… Any of it could be bad. And they wouldn’t likely have the luxury of taking it slow, working angles, pie-ing off corners. Limited penetration was a good tool any time. A lone operator could use it in most any situation. Except when they had no way to control the tempo of a fight. Dynamic entry wasn’t of much use either.

At least for exfil, she already had some idea of how to manage it, but the odds were still not good. No need to worry about that just yet. There were a lot of other factors in play and they just weren’t there yet.

“How do you wanna play it, boss? Kick rocks. Dig in. Step off and get a bigger stick and then dig in. Somethin’ else?” Truth was this whole thing stank. The investigator and intelligence side of her head wanted to get to the bottom of it. But the hairs on the back of her neck were still standing on end.

Lt Beckett, COS

“For the moment, I believe that we allow them to release us,” Dantius replied. “It seems like they aren’t inclined to be violent toward us… well, not as violent as we might otherwise anticipate. The automatons are barely within the laws of the synthetic ban - akin to holograms, they are very much obviously not attempts at cybernetics or androids capable of fully independent behavior - but security robots are, as you said, likely armed internally, since they don’t actually require digits to operate internal devices.”

After another moment of consideration she sighed. “I would also be remiss if I didn’t point out that, with this colony or whatever we want to call it came about after the Federation abandoned this outpost. Regardless of how we feel about it, they’re an independent society. And they appear to have reverted quite a bit. I see no signs of advanced technology really. Which means that the Prime Directive is at play here. And they’ve requested for no outside interference. The prime directive dictates we leave them be, as does their own wishes.”

Lt Beckett, COS

The old man paced back and forth while Beckett and Massana exchanged words. “It is unfortunate that fear grips the king the way it does.” Resentment twinged his voice. “It is very few who wish to send you away.”

As for exfiltration and whether they were armed, it was true Beckett had seen no weapons being carried, but the automatons did seem to have some built in armament.

-GM

“For the sake of making sure that we are following a directive from a duly chosen authority - is the king’s rule autocratic? If it is true that a majority of the inhabitants here do not desire our departure, and the king does not have full authority of command, we would be remiss to obey his instructions.”

  • Commander Massana, XO

“The people who lived on the surface. The ones who were left behind. They were dead but they were reborn. But they were different. Some now have strange abilities, others barely survive. The King has the power to exert his will by force should he see it being defied. Unless you are prepared for what he may bring, then run and never speak of this place again. It would be wise.”

-GM

The more time she spent down here on the planet, the worse the cold knot in her gut seemed to get. Whether or not some of the locals had abilities or not, it seemed they believed it, and that was a bad enough reason. Outnumbered as bad as they were, a determined group could overpower them by weight of numbers. Belief was a powerful thing.

Becket

“As esoteric as that response was, a simple, ‘Yes,’ may have served the same purpose. However - are you actually saying that the people ruling over you now were somehow reanimated after perishing? Were you witness to these events?”

  • Commander Massana, XO

“They are the children of the ‘reanimated’ as you put it. I was a child when we were left behind. I did see things. But it was many ages ago.”

-GM

Maria tilted her head to the side, sensing an opportunity. “What kind of things,” she asked, curiosity mingling with tension. The latter wasn’t so much directed at their de-facto guide, but at the situation. “Please,” she added with a small smile directed his way. “It could be important.” She spared a glance for the Commander, but immediately refocused back on the man. “And forgive me if I missed it, but I didn’t catch your name, sir.”

Lt Beckett, COS

Massana turned to look at the man. Senior to everyone, but not in charge. Was this man included in the four crew listed as missing, or was he someone not on the crew manifest? Why did he not fall like the others? So many questions, and yet he saw no way to ask them without traumatizing the man or inviting more trouble. He noticed that Beckett was trying to get the man to reveal who he was, even though he had already asserted that he did not have a name.

Mysteries upon mysteries, and given how the leaders had suddenly vanished without a trace, it seemed that there might be nefarious individuals who would see some sort of tactical value in this planet. Whatever the case, the king had not dismissed them, and so he doubted that the automatons would let them leave the hall.

  • Commander Massana, XO

Asked what he saw all those years ago, the old man said. “Some of the adults grew I’ll very quickly. They lost control of themselves. Of their minds. The sickness destroyed them. And it was decided that those who weren’t sick needed to flee. Their ship left three, including myself behind. Two unburied soon to rise. And myself, just a child. They said I was infected with something. But I was never sick like the others. A week later, the others rose from where they had been left, unconcerned for having died.”

The old man’s response to being asked his name again was… complicated. There was something there. But he had clearly been told, convinced that he should never say it ever again.

-GM

Dantius processed the news with a somewhat procedural take upon things. Two adults abandoned because of an infection, two others who had gone into a hibernation state so complete that they were mistaken for dead, and a child whose infection was declared but not justified to the boy. How to account for all the other people here? He chose this as the best line of investigation.

“Is everyone in the settlement related to these four? Did those four let you start your own family when you came of age?”

Massana was trying to tread carefully. If anyone here was being held captive instead of living there because they lacked an alternative, there were implications which the Commander had to consider.

  • Commander Massana, XO

“Some are descended from the four. Others from a shuttle crash 57 years ago. They were lost, we saved them.”

=^=Commander Massana, Chief Engineer Allance. Were just checking in. All’s well here, Sir. =^=

-GM
((Thanks GM… Just realized I forgot cross post))

Maria startled at the extra voice breaking in suddenly but visibly relaxed, placing one hand over her heart just for a moment. Having communications back was a good sign. At least they had that much going for them. It might mean transport was an option. Looking back to their apparent guide for the moment, she nodded. “Do you remember where the crash was? Coordinates or what landmarks are around?” It wasn’t so much that she wanted to fact-check the man, though that played a role. THey still had air assets overhead, and they might be able to recover information from the shuttle and/or haul it back up to the Memorial.

Lt Beckett, COS/CIO/CAG

“It was just beyond the frozen lake north of the settlement. Though the wreck must be buried under the snow by now.”

-GM

=/\= Understood, Chief. We are unharmed but currently still in discussions regarding the situation. Continue with standard operations until otherwise instructed, =/\= Dantius said before turning to the old man.

“Did the distress signal come from someone from the shuttle crash, or someone related? If they have been forced into settlement instead of willingly remaining, they should be allowed the choice to depart.”

  • Commander Massana, XO

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