Bear's Elemental Mayhem

Party Assemble!
Atleast it pays the bills.

Your eComm lets out a low pitched hum that only you can hear, and you sub-vocalize to pull up the holographic display. The image of a formal letter, encrypted for your eyes only, floats in the air before you with the following message:

Dear Sir,

Your presence has been requested for a job on the 8th of Terva. It has come to our attention that you possess certain skills which we feel would be beneficial to a scouting sortie we are organizing. This mission should take no more than three days, two of which will be travel. Of course, all expenses will be paid for the entire duration of your contract. Please let us know if you are interested in taking on our proposal. Upon your consent, we will furnish you with the time and location of the debriefing.

We thank you for your time and consideration.

Sincerely,

Cid Lufaine
Chief of Engineering and Aviation
ChryoTech Industry
Dept. of Research & Development
eComm: 01-9500-8028-2148

You accept the mission and a secondary note pulls up giving you the time and place of your meeting.

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Terrorists in the Teleporter
Totally should have disarmed that bomb....

Cid Lufaine:
“Gentlemen, glad you could make it. The task which you were all summoned for, while not particularly perilous, is a matter of much worth to ChryoTech Industry and the Northern and Southern Cameria governments. I was asked to put together a team for the purpose of going into Ground Zero, Balmorhea. Any rumors you may have heard about it being plagued by berserk security bots and mutated monstrosities are absolutely true, and much worse in reality. Now, the reason we invited you men here is to enter into the heart of what was once Balmorhea and attempt to retreive as much data about the experiments they were conducting there as is possible. Our very own Dr. Henry Jekyll will be leading this campaign into the unknown and you are to report directly to him once in the field. We’ll also be sending about a dozen scientists of various backgrounds who will be in charge all information extraction. You gentlemen are to be the muscle to their brains. A shield, if you will. You keep my boys safe and sound and you’ll receive a heroes welcome when you come back. Any questions?”

The party stares wide-eyed at the man who just offhandedly announced that he would be sending them into the post-apocalyptic lion’s den.

Cid Lufaine:
“Didn’t think so. Great! I’d like for everyone to introduce themselves. You’re a team now and the more you act like one, the more likely you are to return with all of your extremities.”

One by one, the strangers make their introductions. Henry Jeckyll leads things off, as the appointed party head should. Paxton Romanis gives his name and proudly announces that he shoots things until they stop moving. Next a man who only goes by Rache gives his credentials, which Pax finds laughable. Unamused, the enigmatic illusionist proceeds to make Pax believe that Cid’s desk has just morphed into a giant snake.

Cid Lufaine:
“Pax, is there some reason you feel compelled to threaten my desk that costs more than you do?”

Rache releases the illusion and Pax is now staring at a normal desk and an irritated Cid.

Paxton Romanis:
“I… uh… the snake? Nevermind.”

The gunslinger holsters his weapons and the remaining introductions are settled. Aves Gearhand lets the party know that he’ll be handling all of the technical side of things for this mission. And lastly, Ervill Wexling gives the bare minimum of an introduction to conclude matters.

Cid Lufaine:
“The Southern Military has sent several expeditions into Balmorhea All were failures and only one operative has ever come back from that place. He’d bitten off his tongue and was extremely malnourished when the Ground Zero border patrol found him. The survivor, if you can call him that, recovered physically, but his mind was never able to recoup after what he saw there. When he isn’t sedated, he draws these. Not sure what it is, but I imagine that anything that can destroy numerous military scouting parties and obliterate a man’s mind can’t be pleasant.”

Cid passes around crayon pictures of the most macabre nature. Each one picturing some being composed completely of black tearing little stick figures apart.

“Well, gentlemen, that concludes our meeting for today. You’ll meet up with a Southie military man named Davis once you come out of the Tele in Zeru. He’s our in with the Southern Cameria government and the one spearheading this venture, so do as he says and you’ll be able to explore a post-apocalyptic hell hole. Good Luck.”

Cid hands Jekyll a photo of Davis and dismisses the group.

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Top Headlines from Around the World (1)

1) Lightning Strikes: There is another name to ascribe to the great list of those slain by the embodiment of nature’s wrath. Little Timmy Wrothburg succumbed to his wounds late last night. For those not following the story, Timmy was one of 53 people who were harmed during the Lightning Elemental’s assault on Falaran last Tuesday. Phone pictures sent in from the event can be found on our website (NSFW: gore, violence, dude-becomes-tree).

2) Girls Gone Home: Seven young ladies were rescued from a kidnapping ring based out of the Old Town section of Falaran late Wednesday evening. A member of a Mage Guild Hunter Squad followed a hunch that ended with the kind of heroics we have come to expect and love from our Hunters. The leader of the elite four man team, Dr. Henry Jeckyll, told reporters “I’m just glad that we were able to put a stop to things before anyone was hurt. Y’know, aside from the kidnappers.”

3) A Moment of Silence: The Minister of the Mage Guild gave a touching ceremony and ordered a moment of silence to honor those who perished in the terrorist attack against the Embassy in Gor’Rahm. The Minister assured the grieving that their loved ones would never be forgotten and that Jacob Harmon would be brought to justice. The Embassy is expected to reopen in six months with a new wing dedicated to the deceased. FYI, the exterior of the new Embassy will not be made entirely from glass.

4) Glacier Ahoy: As spring returns to the southern hemisphere and fall to the north, the world braces itself to see which path the Ice Elemental will take this year in it’s bi-annual trek for a new winter home. For those of you who failed geography, the Ice Elemental relocates to whichever pole is soon to be experiencing winter by riding a giant glacier straight through anything in its path. All commercial fishers and boat enthusiasts will need to keep track of the frozen behemoth’s whereabouts in order to ensure their safety.

5) Come Fly the Friendly Skies: ChryoTech has announced that the Air Elemental is no longer a threat, thanks to their newly patented airplane designs. Cid Lufiane, Chief of Engineering, claims that their planes are the only ones in the world that are able to slip through the airstream undetected. The company is as tight-lipped as ever about their secrets, but we can tell you that not a single one of the planes at the ChryoTech Air Show was harmed in any way. Airports from around the world are dusting off their counters in anticipation for next months official Sky Launch.

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Top Headlines from Around the World (2)

1. ChryoTanked: Stock shares plummet for the “heroes of the skies”. Rodney & Flecks have accused CT of spreading misinformation and false advertising with regards to Cid Lufaine’s claims of Air Elemental proof planes. R&F states that they know for a fact that the Air Elemental is not being fooled, but is actually deceased. To back up its claims, R&F will be hosting an aerial ballet using planes which were grounded two years ago. The event is scheduled two weeks from today, so get ready to see which monopoly is being honest, and which one stands to go down in flames! (Shares dropped from $169 a piece to $137)

2. O.F.F. is back ON: The chart topping band, Our Freudian Friendship, has announced an end to their hiatus. They plan on kicking things off with a tour starting in their hometown of Zeru and sweeping across the globe. All capital cities are on the hit list, so keep and eye out for ticket sales in your area. The band denies all claims that they’ve been working on a new album in secret, but they did have a new single for all the disk jockeys. The new song is titled “Head Crab vs. Face Hugger” is already headed for the stars.

3. A.I. gone M.I.A.: Our Lady of the Web has been absconded with! Or so claims a handful of nutters from the blacker depths of the innerspace. Techies, geeks and cyber-savants are all up in arms over the sudden absence of their mistress, but there is not once shred of evidence to their claims. When asked about the matter, the spokesmen at Goskorporatsiya would only smile and say that stealing a program that has strong-armed itself into demi-godhood would be akin to eating a mountain. The man also vaguely hinted at the possibility that even the great Anastasia was past due for a replacement. Anastasia 2.0?

4. Dude, where’s my scientist: Dr. Daedalus Mayer has been missing after his lab was bombed by squirrel zombie-slaves. I kid you not. Three scientists were under the effects of a squirrel mind control device that backfired, causing for them to become the unwilling slaves to their new overlord. They were under the influence for roughly 4 days before their master, Stormaggedon, Dark Lord of All, forced them to assault the neighboring lab with squirrely wrath! The Formians of Yggdrasil put the rebellion down in short order, and once freed the scientists turned on their former master. So if you see Dr. Mayer, please send him home to his wife. She is “way sad and stuff” at his “not cool” decision to skip dinner last night.

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Top Headlines from Around the World (3)

1. Aerial Showdown: ChryoTech refuses to back down from its claims that only they can fly without worry for of incurring elemental wrath. Rodney & Flecks continues to claim that the CT guys are full of hot air, and that anyone with the means can now fly. Last week we reported that R&F was going to be putting on Aerial Ballet to launch their full reopening of the airways. Well, things have now escalated, with CT now joining in the airshow. Cid Lufaine stated “Our planes will be painted red, in order to match the R&F ones after they catch fire.” Regardless of who comes out on top, this is going to be an event you don’t want to miss.

2. Poor Mixer: David Wong, of child teleportation infamy, has been relocated to solitary confinement. It would seem the inmates at Folsom Prison don’t take too kindly to pervy perps responsible for sending an untold number of youngsters off to truly harrowing lives. The Warden, Ronnie Cash, hopes that this maneuver will help Mr. Wong live to see his court date in four months. Mr. Wong is accused of being an accessory to 7 counts of kidnapping and the illegal construction of a teleportation device which resulted in 312 patent violations.

3. Leaving No Survivors: The Federal States of Telpin’s reigning champions, the Gor’Rahm Reavers, have ended this years crushball season with a flawless record of 37-0-0. Such a feat has not been seen in the history of the sport, which originated 238 years ago when a drunken rugby team met an equally inebriated soccer team on a basketball court. The visceral nature of the sport has only helped to enhance its fame, and enormous crowds turn out to support their favorite teams. Also, in keeping with tradition, all players must be drunk prior to the starting of each match. Liver failure and head trauma are the leading reasons why few players of the sport reach “retirement age”.

4. Snow Place Like Home: The Ice Elemental seems to have chosen this years path to the North (please see map on page E4). All occupants of the Jurai Isles are urged to temporarily vacate their homes until the danger has passed. It also wouldn’t be a bad idea to empty your pipes and turn off your water lines. At its current rate of speed, the Ice Elemental should reach its new winter home in roughly 7 weeks. The citizens of Los Wegas are also urged to make preparations should the behemoth decide to make landfall in your region. We’ll keep you posted of any new developments.

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Top Headlines from Around the World (4)

1. Flight Of The Jailbirds: Riots and mayhem erupted at Folsom Prison yesterday when a computer error caused for all of the doors in Cell Block 2A to come open during what was supposed to be a lock down. Warden Ronnie Cash and two of his guards, Jeremy Martin and Ghu Xi Lao, were overcome by the inmates and perished trying to restore order. All told, 49 men died that day: the Warden, 7 guards, and all 41 inmates of Cell Block 2A. Folsom prison has a No Tolerance policy when it comes to escape attempts. So if you ever find yourself enjoying the hospitality of sweet Folsom Prison and decide to cut you stay short just remember: It doesn’t matter if you escape or get caught, either way your sentence is finished.

2. T Minus 3 And Counting: With just a few days left till the Aerial Ballet, things are really taking off at the Grand Marsh Airfield. The runways not being utilized for the show are now packed with stadium seating, bazaars and funnel cake factories. It seems to me that regardless of which Corp. is telling the truth, the spectators are going to come out on top. Also, In order to keep things family friendly (even in the case of Elemental carnage), only robots will be flying the planes to insure that no one gets hurt. That is not to say that the robots aren’t capable of being harmed (which would be totally robophobic and insensitive), just that our shiny friends are many times more durable and repairable that us fleshbags.

3. Internet Diva 2.0: The rumors have been confirmed that Goskorporatsiya has indeed decided that after 194 years, Anastasia is going to retire. The outdated A.I. will be replaced with a sleeker, sexier model named Karenina. Whereas Anastasia more or less had to program herself from the ground up, Karenina has been crafted by people who actually know what they’re doing and are making full use of nearly 200 years worth of technological advances. For those of you old enough to remember the first Hologram Films, you know what I’m talking about when I say that yesteryear’s “State of the Art” is today’s garbage. Karenina goes live later this month, and I, for one, welcome our new internet overlord.

4. That Which Does Not Kill You: Will still put you in the hospital for a very long time. Mahiir Nacik was lucky enough to only need a full body cast after his latest death-defying feat. What was supposed to be a new world record Jetcycle jump ended in shrapnel and shattered dreams/bones for the daredevil. His attempt to soar through 3 flaming rings over a 150ft long trench filled with manticores ended in catastrophe, when the propulsion system crapped out halfway through the jump. The second flaming ring caught Mahiir in a loving, fiery embrace, holding him just long enough to be considered “well done” before snapping and sending our hero into the pit of hell beasts. Mahiir claims his lucky toothpick saved his life, and that manticores aren’t so bad once they stop chewing on you.

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Airshow Ads
Poster Propaganda!

Rodney & Flecks
The Air Elemental is a LIE
The skies belong to humanity once again
ChyroTechless
Aerial stunts performed by robots
Our planes are green w/ white stripes
Bring the whole family
R&F guarantees your safety

ChryoTech
The Air Elemental is REAL
Plane-shaped fireworks supplied by R&F aeronautics
Watch the sky devil swat R&F out of the air
To match R&F, our planes are red w/ fire decals
Witness our engineering triumph
Our pilots are people
CT guarantees your safety

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Top Headlines from Around the World (5)

1) ChryoTakeover: For any of you now aware of the outcome of the Aerial Ballet, the Rodney & Flecks planes all went down in flames and ChryoTech soared like a dream. The Air Elemental made for a very flashy dispatching of anything airborne and lacking whatever voodoo CT is packing under the hood. Despite the chaos, authorities were able to keep panic to a minimum and only two people died as a result of the Elemental’s outburst.

2) Fight Fire with Fire: Another shard of delectable information shared with the world at the Aerial Ballet, was ChryoTech’s heroic Outsider. This super hero and his larger than life brute squad single handedly harried the enraged Elemental from the airshow. This paragon of science and magic harnesses the powers of his defeated Elemental foes and uses their strength to protect humanity. According to the company’s spokesman, Cid Lufaine, the Outsider has but four foes left to conquer, being the elements of Air, Water, Lightning and Ice. Cid has declared that the Ice Elemental will never reach its winter home at the North Pole, and that this will be the last time anyone need fear the shifting of seasons.

3) How It Works: On this segment of How It Works, we will be discussing why the CT planes were overlooked and the R&F planes were swatted out of the sky. It’s all thanks to turbulence. While CT was not willing to explain the actual mechanics, the theory behind their Elemental avoidance technology is based on the principal that the Air Elemental has only ever attacked flying objects which do not occur naturally. Jetbikes and flying cars are safe to fly, but only if you stay close to cities and other large structures, in the same way that bees buzz around their hive. Likewise, no birds have ever been targeted by the Elemental. With this in mind, CT developed a means of dispersing the air disturbance created by a plane in flight from a large one to a lot of little ones. The Air Elemental no longer senses the windy wake of a flying 747, but rather sees a sizable flock of birds. The dispersements are made at fairly random intervals ranging from 10 to 1000 yards away from the plane. It would be like taking all the pieces of a puzzle, scattering them across a crushball field, and then trying to see what the picture was supposed to be.

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Top Headlines from Around the World (6)

1. BBQ Mayhem – Tragedy struck in the Mayfield district of Falaran yesterday afternoon when a suburban family’s attempt at fried turkey turned into a bonfire. The grease fire quickly grew out of control and within a matter of minutes the home was a raging inferno. The young couple who live at the now ashen estate managed to escape along with their son, but not all of their party guests were as fortunate. Neither were the neighboring homes, the asthmatic kid from down the street or the herd of alpaca formerly thriving under the watchful eye of Ms. Farroday. All in all, unless you enjoy charcoal or smokey alpaca fur, it was kind of a rough day.

2. Status Quo? – Three weeks till President Eamon Horadric’s state of the union address for the Mage Guild and things are not looking good. The Guild’s embassy in Muldaine is still being pieced back together from the terrorist assault that ravaged it two months ago. Public enemy No. 1, that’s Jacob Harmon for those of you who live under a stone, has been gallivanting around the globe wreaking havoc for over half a year without impediment. Incidents of Mage Hunters abusing their status is at an all time high. Worst of all, the man can’t dress himself. Pointed shoes. Really? In this day and age….

3. Capt. Cold Snap – The Jurai Isles are starting to thaw after last week’s brush with frozen ferocity. All of you poor souls who had to evacuate should be able to return to your homes before the weekend.The abominable snow beast is at the equator and his glacial gondola is showing no signs of stopping. At this rate, it shouldn’t be but about another week or so before Icey skims the Los Wegas peninsula. For those of you struggling with gambling addictions, now would be a great time to buy a coat or five. That is, unless Mr. Romanis steps in first. We’re all waiting Pax.

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The Spire (Act 1)
Rache has no friends.

Rache received the following letter:
Mr. Mavernia, we have not forgotten our allegience to your family’s house. We were scattered when the Parris family massacred your kin in the great fire so many years ago. We were lost, but not idle. Rache, as the last of your house, we implore you to meet with us, that we may once again be able to serve. Our forefathers owe everything to your house, and we desire to make good on our old debts. We humbly request an audience with you and your mage hunting companions. The Parris family is powerful, but you and your entourage combined with our armaments and information will be more than a match for them. Forever in your service, The Spire.

Now, as much as Rache would like to believe that he has friends somewhere in the world, the odds are better that this is a trap. After discussing the matter with Pax and Ervill, Rache determines to meet this trap head-on and offers to pay his companions for their time and company. The trio then head over to the Mage Guild to pick up their new acquaintance, Vestus Drawl, and go scope out the meeting location designated in the letter.

The local is an abandoned warehouse in Vyseria, and more or less confirms the notion that this will be a trap. After scoping out the area, Rache convinces a couple of hobos to hang around the place and report back should they see anyone enter the building. The party gets some rest, attends to personal matters, and waits for the appointed time to arrive.

About an hour before the scheduled meeting time, the hobos report that a rather strange trio has entered the building, but are not able to really give more intel than that. Feeling like they have done everything they could to prepare, the party portals their way into a secluded corner of the warehouse and sends in some illusion clones of themselves to meet “The Spire”. As they had guessed, this was indeed a trap, and talk runs quickly into violence.

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