Pax Artificium - Second Half - Saturday 03

Thanks to Oz for this detailed transcript.

Session start: Sunday, January 1, 2034 – 0200 PST

Matt falls to the floor on Sitruc's former castle in Russia relieved the teleport worked correctly. He takes a moment to recover, gets a beer, and unsuccessfully tries to contact the group. While relaxing and reading a book, he senses an increased capacity for magic within himself and attempts to magically enhance his ability to respond to situations.

Matt is very jittery making it hard to sleep. After some time he just falls to sleep when a two-foot man in ragged clothing prods Matt awake. "Who are you? What are you doing here? What are you? How did you get in here? Stand back!" Matt blurts out in rapid succession.

The little man says, "Milo says the bad men have your friends. Milo wants to save the bird."

"Who took my friends? The dwarves? The elves? gnomes? Your one of those gnomes, aren't you? You took my friends, didn't you? How many points are you getting for this? You're Milo, aren't you?" Matt speaks rapidly.

Milo stands back a couple feet, freaked out by Matt's reaction. "Milo is not a gnome," with quiet disdain and disgust, "Milo is a halfling. You are mad at Milo? Milo just wants to save the bird." Milo goes on to explain that his friends caused the communications outage and that his friends are not so nice. Matt eventually accepts what Milo is saying and gathers his things together.

The SWAT team consists of thirteen people who in a blur surround the group with weapons trained. Jack quickly slips the cloaking device on himself and fades from view. Everyone else puts his or her hands up surrendering. Shannon moves next to Liam showing confusion and fear in her eyes.

One SWAT team member charges through the crowd, weapon firing somewhere near where Jack was. A dart hits something and fades from view. Liam asks what is going on. The person that shot Jack tells the group, "If you surrender peacefully, none of you will be harmed," as she reaches and takes the cloaking device from Jack, making his slumping body visible.

Jack faking that he has passed out unsuccessfully, tries to grapple the woman. She glares at Jack briefly as he winces in agony, his mind exploding with hot searing pain. The woman's voice speaks in his head: "You are outmatched—give up." A she turns her back and walks to the pair of operatives our group captured, Jack tries to grab her again, but some invisible force is holding his arms back. The woman, completely ignoring Jack's attempt, shoots and kills the prisoners saying, "Let this be a lesson to any who would try and fail."

The woman takes off her mask, showing her long, auburn hair, orange eyes, and pale skin (not freakishly white). Everyone allows themselves to be handcuffed (even the unconscious bird) and are placing in vans. Bubbles, Toothy, Half-Pint, Winston, and Shannon are put together in one van. The bird in put in a van by itself. The rest are put in the van where the woman gets in the passenger seat.

"Take me to them," Matt tells Milo. Milo looks confused, saying he can't do that. Matt glares at Milo and wants to know where his friends are. Milo says he doesn't know and can't help. Matt begins to grill Milo, when Milo says, "Milo is about to be found, Milo has to go," and he fades out.

Liam, using Libra, tries to contact Zuul with no luck. Liam then checks to see whether Libra can mess with the vehicle. Nothing seems to work with the communications outage. Raphael is gloomy as the van drives through Pax's north gate. Lee starts talking boring mundane drivel, trying to get a rise out of the driver through the security glass, saying things like, "I need to get back to Pax. My car is there. I can make you pizza."

The driver speaks through a speaker, "Will the prisoner please refrain from talking." The woman gives the driver a glare.

The vans turn off the dessert road leading to an airstrip with a military transport plane on the runway. Five more men come out of the hangar. The van doors open and the SWAT folks tell everyone to get out of the van.

"Holy Shit! Agent Grey, come over quick," says the member that opens the other van where the Fabulous Four and Shannon were held captive. Gordon hears in the distance that the others are gone. Disgruntled, Agent Grey gets the remaining prisoners on the plane.

Matt, realizing there is nothing else he can do until morning, sets his alarm clock and gets to sleep.

Lee notices a little black "X" logo on all the uniforms, which are nearly impossible to notice unless you are looking for them. Lee points it out to the rest of the group. After an hour of flying, the guard suddenly fires at Agent Grey, but misses. He then blasts Liam in the chest. (The guard seems as surprised to be taking these actions as everyone around him is.)

Grey yells, "What are you doing? The prisoners are not to be harmed! Put down your weapon." She looks over to everyone, "I don't know which one of you did that."

"He did it." Lee looks over to the guard.

Agent Grey: "He was well trained." Pointing to Raphael, "You did it, didn't you?"

Raphael: "Maybe," sarcastically. Agent Grey seems irritated. A medic comes in to treat the party. The rest of the flight is uneventful as the plane lands. They are escorted out into some sort of valley with mountains in the distance at a larger military compound consisting of several buildings. Before anyone can get a clear layout they are rushing into a nearby building.

Jack, Liam, Gordon, and Lee are put into one cell with a sliding glass door. Agent Grey tells Father Raphael he is to be questioned first and is lead somewhere else.

Jack notices an area in the cell where the air is distorted. Milo appears telling the group Milo informed their blonde haired friend about their blight. The group wants Milo to help them get out, but Milo can't do that.

"Milo says the bird is not from here. It is from far, far away. Milo's friends brought it here. They want to hurt people. They would hurt Milo if they knew Milo was here. Milo's friends couldn't control the bird. The bird will go home is ordered to do so."

"Milo's friends don't like humans. Humans hurt Gaia. Milo knows that isn't humans' fault. Gaia is just sick and she needs time to heal and feel better. Friends blames the humans."

Liam says, "Humans aren't to blame. Maybe it was the elves, dwarves, or something else?"

Milo whispers to Liam, "Milo doesn't think it is the humans either, they just want someone to blame."

"How about the gnomes? Maybe it was the gnomes," responds Liam.

"Not the gnomes," says Milo sheepishly.

"Where are you from?" asks Liam

"Town no longer exists. All the people disappeared and then the village was abandoned. Oh no, Milo has been found. Aaaaahhhh," Milo begins to choke and then fades away.

"Who the hell was that?" asks the guard.

"Milo," retorts Lee.

"Shut up, smart ass," the guard rolls his eyes and goes back to his post.

Matt's alarm clock goes off. Getting up and his things together, he zips to Seattle. Gets some coffee from Starbucks.

Agent Grey returns to the cell with Father Raphael. He's sporting a busted lip, a black eye, and various bruises. Agent Grey's expressions show signs of being shaken. He is thrown in the cell. Agent Grey points to Gordon and Lee saying they are next. The two get up and go with Agent Grey.

Father Raphael tells Jack and Liam, "She tried to use her witchery, but God protects me. She has some sort of mental abilities, but they are pathetic and weak. She was frustrated and resorted to physical violence. They asked questions that clearly show they have no idea what is going on."

Jack and Liam tell him about Milo's visit and all he told them. Father Raphael informs us, "All that demon spoke were lies. He was probably was punished for some failure in their plans of deception."

Liam asks whether the church has other priests like him. Father Raphael responds, "There are no other priests like me." He goes on to speak of the demons, saying, "The bird is one of them. It is their spawn. I know it. I feel it."

In a white room with a single table, Gordon and Lee are seated across from Agent Grey. Agent Grey wants information on the bird and their involvement with the others.

Gordon tells her that they think that it is the source of the communications outage. The bird is cold, not like a normal bird. Gordon tells folks that he met the others in a bar last night.

Lee says he delivered pizza and was just curious so he went along.

Agent Grey nods accepting what Gordon and Lee are telling her. She points some device at each of them saying, "Just like I thought. You are both anomalies. This is usually associated with strange events and occurrences."

Lee then starts in on all sorts of weird things that have happened since he met with this lot at the bar. Milo, dogs that disappear and reappear, people turning into dust, invisible people, and all sorts of unbelievable things. Gordon fills in with some other events that are have no good explanations.

Agent Grey nods and tells Gordon and Lee that she sees that they are being honest and apologies for the necessity of the situation. She tells them the individuals they ran into are not to be trusted. Findings show that they are involved the events six months ago. It is known they were directly in control of monsters—the same ones that were attacking cities.

She calls a guard to lead them to the mess hall for some hot meals. The guard is wearing a military outfit with U.S. flag. Gordon asks for some new clothes.

Liam accepts God's protection from Father Raphael. Father Raphael puts his hand on Liam's head and begins chanting, followed by a prayer for God's strength on protection from the evils of this world. Throughout the prayer Liam feels what seems like raw mystic backlash wash over his body. Liam is leery internally searching for some horrible effect, but nothing happens.

A little while later, Agent Grey comes back telling Jack and Liam that the general wants to speak to them. They follow Agent Grey to an office, where 60-year-old man in a military uniform is smoking a cigar. He quotes off some demographics on Liam and Jack, using their names and recapping some of their recent activities. Slamming down some torn bits of paper he states, "I've been following your escapades for some time now. Tell me about these."

Liam looks at the scraps of paper stating it looks like a torn up treasure map. The map has some landmasses he has never seen before. He has no idea what they are and has never seen these before. The general looks over to Jack and asks what he knows. Jack seems distracted, distant, staring off into space. The general asks again and Jack takes notice, saying he doesn't know what the papers are.

Liam chimes in, "You could have talked with the two you sent after us if they weren't killed."

The general responds, "Their knowledge was of no use. Damned failures. Couldn't do a simple mission of watching you guys."

The general has Jack carefully examine the torn papers. Jack then says the monsters were saved in the paper and when they tore it they were released.

The general quickly asks, "How can you store monsters in a piece of paper?"

Liam and Jack shrug saying they have no idea. Agent Grey thinks in her head, "Special Origami techniques."

The general is upset and doesn't believe it. Agent Grey acknowledges they are telling the truth and he may have misjudged them. The general is mad yelling out "I doubt it. I know they are bad apples." He takes a device out and points at the torn pieces of paper showing the display to Jack and Liam, "See? Look! The readings are off the scale!" Agent Grey is startled that he is displaying it to Jack and Liam.

Liam is very interested and asks what the device does. The general says it measures anomalous activity (Oz keeps getting images of the thing from Ghostbusters). Liam starts talking about ideas and theories of how this might work and states he's very interested and offers the general his technical expertise. Jack continues to not pay attention and clearly his thoughts are somewhere else.

The general then has Liam and Jack tell him about how the others escaped from the other van. Jack and Liam state they have no idea and Agent Grey gives a confirming nod.

The general thinks about it and decides perhaps he was being hasty in his judgment. He orders Agent Grey to take Liam to work with the scientists. Agent Grey is about to protest and the general tells her, "Do it."

As Matt walks into the Starbucks bathroom Milo is standing there with bruises on his face. "Milo says your friends need help." Matt tells him it can wait a minute or two and attempts to treat Milo's injuries with mystic magic. Milo leaps back and howls in bad, "Bad magic. It hurts. Human magic bad. That's why Milo's friends blame humans for Gaia's pain."

Matt looks at Milo with a confused look. Snapping out of it, he asks Milo where his friends are.

"Milo will go find out where they are," says Milo as he fades away.

Gordon is given a black uniform that fits much better. It appears to Lee that Gordon has visibly grown in the last few hours.

Jack indicates he's not hungry and just wants to get some sleep. He is led back to the cell. The priest is already sleeping, so Jack just goes to sleep as well.

Liam is led to another building with lots of equipment. Along the way, Liam asks whether Agent Grey is an anomaly. She says that their scientists have unlocked the genetic secrets of the monsters, and that she has been genetically engineered with their abilities. She says it was an honor to become among the elite.

A scientist comes up asking what the hell is going on. She tells him she was ordered to bring Liam to help out. He shrugs and extends his hand out to Liam, "My name is Agent Draz. I am the head of the research into the creatures." Liam notes that his hand feels sandy and is scaly.

"A fellow researcher has identified two types of anomalies. Type As are chemically different, having high levels of midichlorians (really some other chemical compound, but still the same lame Star Wars premise). Type Bs are genetically different from humans. Some type Bs have high levels of midichlorians, which are type AB."

"Pax seems to have the most number of these anomalies. We know of fifteen in Pax. There aren't that many in New York and L.A. combined."

Liam is more concerned with type Bs than type As. Agent Draz agrees and doesn't trust Gordon, despite how sentient he seems now. He could develop into a monster.

Agent Draz goes on to tell Liam he is imbued with shocker lizards DNA. While Agent Grey's abilities is from a unique creature whose procedure is nearly impossible to duplicate. Her eyes are a side effect of the procedure.

Agent Grey nods saying her vision has changed. All the colors she sees have changed.

Liam tells them that he has seen similar experiments at StratCo. He witnessed genetic experiments on creatures being done there. Agent Draz and Liam drone on about details.

Lee and Gordon enter the mess hall in another building for some food. Lee gets the roast beef with Yorkshire pudding, while Gordon gets tagliolini with smoked salmon. [GM's note: Yeah, riiight...]

Milo climbing up the bunk wakes up Jack. Milo says, "Shhhh, there's a mad man down there," gesturing to the priest, "Do you know where this is?"

Jack doesn't have any idea. Milo is frustrated, but says he'll go figure it out. He jumps down and runs through transparent door.

A door then opens. Liam, Agent Grey, and Agent Draz look, but no one is there. Then they notice Milo walking towards them. Agent Grey glares at him. Agent Draz is concerned. Liam reassures them he is not dangerous. They scan him, but no one is there. Milo wants to know where they are, but is told it is classified. Liam says, "Sorry, I can't help." Milo squeals in frustration.

Agent Grey asks why he is so insistent. Milo says, "Milo wants to help his friends," pointing to Liam. Agent Grey tells Milo his friends can't come here and goes to take a hold of Milo.

Milo then contorts as the air shimmers around him. His body contorts and stretches into an impish monster, leaping at Agent Grey. Agent Grey dodges out of the way and pulls out her gun and shoots Milo. The bullet and Milo disappear. Liam suggests they check for residual anomalous activity.

Gordon and Lee are brought back to the cells. Gordon is now wearing one of those uniforms. They both lie down and get some rest.

Matt sits around Starbucks until noon and then teleports to Pax. Asking the guards in Cid's mansion reveals that no one knows where Zuul, Dr. Arthur, or any of his companions are. Matt goes to Magitech headquarters and checks the surveilance logs. Zuul just disappears in the control room from one frame to the next. Looking at it again, it seems the sensor logs were altered. Concentrating on the room, Matt sees the room swirl and then sees Zuul being clubbed from behind by a Magitech guard, who then works with the computer and alters it to globally delete ten minutes from all cameras. Matt catches the name Robert Patrick on his security badge.

Jack gets up not being able to sleep after Milo's appearance and then running off. He sees Lee and Gordon are here resting. Lee then falls off the bed and isn't moving. Jack checks Lee who is alive, but is unresponsive.

"No residual anomalous activity showing," says Draz. Liam, disappointed, decides they should go investigate the bird instead. They walk over to another lab. Agent Draz tells Liam that this creature is emitting strong anomalous readings and various energy waves. It is quite likely this bird is causing the wireless outage and that it is strong enough to affect the entire world.

Lee suddenly awakes, seeing Jack, Father Raphael, and Gordon staring at him. Startled, Lee exclaims, "Baa Dweam." His voice sounds funny as his tongue is swollen and somehow seems less competent. Father Raphael tells Lee that it was no dream and that he needs to be careful with his abilities. Lee is doubtful, but recounts his dream:

I wuz in de aah duck. Doh may no sens. I hud some boices un walt down to thumb voom and daw dis ode tough big guy smocking a cigar tawkin to anudder big guy. 'Damn it Baxter, ged to da point,' he said.

'Soddy Denral Carter, I wanted to ged do details. Fedison too dem cative. Day essayed somehow. Fweenix fund dem. Nut chir I can tust dem,' said de guy on the tceen.

'Why dunt you high pokes you cin tust? Dumb Canadins,' the denral tud.

Den Baxter thowed a bunt of people on de tceen: Erica Banyon, Fank Fuyo, Behe Boun, and Dannel Milleh.

Baxter thay Behe heh tum jewel thirkit, stolen fom L.A. museehum. Den I feld lick I was snapped back indo me boadie. Den I saw you guys staying at me.

Matt continues to search the security logs from indications of where any of his companions might be. William Moss was at Magitech headquarters at 2215 hours and then appeared to use his mystic ability to teleport away. Daniel was walking on the streets and stumbled and fell asleep in some bushes. After a few hours he got up and went inside an apartment building to a flat registered to one Erica Banyon, who answers the door. Inside there is a man in a business suit and carrying a briefcase. After much discussion, the three of them take a car and leave the city.

Matt then reviews the capture of his friends again and notices Lefty in the shadows watching the entire SWAT debacle, until the vans exit through the north gate. She then skates around the edge of the city, seemingly aimlessly. She then sees Gerald, who is getting off a bus. They meet up and Lefty tells Gerald all that she saw and that she was outnumbered and couldn't do anything. She needs to find her friends so that they can help her mom, who is sick and might be going crazy. Gerald says his friends are in L.A. right now. She says she can take the two of them to L.A. She skates fifty feet back and zooms at Gerald. As she runs into him going very fast, they both disappear in a whirl of colors.

Researching the bird, Liam determines it is something intrinsic about the bird that causes the interference. It is type B, with some sort of mystic enhancement cast on it. When the bird wakes up occasionally, Liam can sense the bird is intelligent. Agent Grey agrees, but says its mind is alien and doesn't make any sense.

Everyone in the cell goes back to resting. Lee decides that he wants to try leaving his body again. After an hour of concentrating, he feels his body back in the air duct.

Thud! Gordon sees Lee's body fall off the bed again. Lee seems to be barely alive. Gordon convinces the guard to send a medic to examine Lee, although the guard is extremely paranoid it is a bad ploy to escape.

Lee is in the air duct again. Looking at his body, it is ghost like. Gliding through the ducts, he comes across Liam doing research on the bird. Further down, he sees a couple of guards playing cards. Lee floats through the air duct. A guard looks up directly at him and starts to yell some expletive, but he is then drawn back to his body.

Matt decides to head to L.A.. He initially wants to take the Pelican, but it is under repairs. A bodyguard, Private Burby, is assigned to him and Matt takes some sort of official Pax vehicle that can handle dessert conditions and still maintain over a hundred miles per hour on the road. Dressed in military garb, the two speed out toward L.A.

The medic begins examining Lee when he gasps and sits up. His face is all scrunched up and his voice is sort of shrill with his tongue has swelled to the point where Lee can barely keep his mouth closed. The priest warns Lee again that he needs to be careful, then puts out his hand. Blackness gets sucked out of Lee and heals the priest's wounds. The medic is freaked out and leaves, saying he has to report this.

Lee reports what he saw. Everyone goes back to sleep.

Jack is the first to get up and asks for some food. He is led to the mess hall. On the way, he surveys the security details. While waiting in line for food, Jack overhears a conversation:

"Doug, how long have you been living in Colorado?"

"Shut up, you know we're not supposed to talk about anything personal."

The two look anxiously at Jack, who is acting oblivious to what is going on. The two shrug and continue talking about something else. After eating, Jack is told he is being brought to the lab.

On the way there, outside between buildings, Jack makes a break for it running towards some vehicles in the distance. Jack is shot at multiple times by varies guards. A couple strike him, but he gets to the jeep and is able to get it started using a screwdriver he finds in the glove compartment.

Jack runs over one of the guards and is struck by another bullet from altitude, presumably snipers on the rooftops. Jack drives into the cover of building and then crashes through a fence onto the open road.

Racing down the highway at 120 mph, Matt zips past a vehicle. In it is Sara, Josef, Gerald, John Bishop, Lefty, and some unknown person driving towards him.

XP: 5000