40 – White Flag

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(Okay; I’ve already updated the character sheets to reflect your rest and new levels. But Cobb wants to check on something that was back in the arena, so I’m going to ‘rewind’ just a bit and let him check on Sogor’s body before moving on. There might be some retro-active editing of the last post if Cobb doesn’t make it back…)

(By the way, I’ve rolled up mutations for ‘the Free’ (the six ex-captives that survived) but haven’t posted them online yet. Most are pretty mundane, except for one poor sod with ‘Lightning Touch’ and ‘Tumourization’. I’ll try to get stat blocks done for them eventually.)

Cobb’s Foray

Stadium Map

Prior to his going on watch, Cobb discusses the swag he pilfered from Sogor’s body with the others, particularly Vash. He reminds the party of the strange aura of force that surrounded Sogor when he challenged your party – and the fact that he didn’t seem worried about getting injured. Cobb grabbed the device on Sogor’s belt, but didn’t have time to strip off the strange ‘vest’ that was connected via cable to the beltpack. The beltpack itself seems unable to produce the ‘force field’ that protected Sogor…

Cobb asks his allies to provide cover fire for him so that he can attempt to sneak in and recover the missing piece of the puzzle – Sogor’s vest. He seems pretty determined – willing to go it alone, if necessary – and most of you are too beat up to argue with him at this point.

(So this foray takes place after Soggul and Jumrak return with the boat and you’ve torched the mongo civilians. It’s nearly an hour since your party first reached the mongoliant dock and began your assault, but before you have a chance to level up and heal…)

The torches have nearly burned down in the arena. A few still glow feebly, but the stadium itself is almost pitch black. Lights burn from within the citadel (Map Area #11), particularly from the watch towers (labelled ‘C’), but you can’t make out any activity from your current location. The livestock in their pen (Map Area #4) have begun to cry and bleat – it must be past their feeding time. (You shudder to think what the mongoliants must feed these poor beasts.)

Vash and Kronic take positions at each of the arena entrances, ready to support Cobb with ranged attacks (Vash shares the last of his ammo and black powder with Kronic), and Soggul agrees to follow Cobb in if necessary for a rescue – Cobb somehow manages to convince him that it’s a good idea (Soggul’s ‘Pack Mentality’ flaw).

Cobb takes advantage of his natural stealth and his ability to ‘sense’ his immediate surroundings without sight (‘Blindsight’ perk). He creeps cautiously into the arena, crawling from corpse to corpse in the arena for cover. He ignores the bodies (and their potential loot) for now, focusing instead on his final target – Sogor’s decapitated corpse.

(Okay; here’s your chance Cobb. There are two mongoliant snipers in the guard towers of the citadel; you’ll have to make an Agility check, opposed by Perception checks from the mongos. Cobb’s roll is 10 +10 = 20; mongos roll 19 +1 = 20 and 11 +1 = 12. Hmm; a tie, and spending a Luck Point might be dangerous if Cobb rolls below 10. I’m going to have fun with this one…)

Cobb manages to crawl right in front of the citadel gates; Sogor’s body lies where it fell during your previous battle. Looking up, Cobb sees mongoliant snipers stationed atop the guard towers. They’re awfully close… he’ll have to work fast.

With the swift hands of a true wasteland scavenger, Cobb works the buckles on the harness. It’s made of Ancient materials with the flexibility of fabric but the strength of steel and covered with odd metallic protrusions. With extreme stealth, he manages to undo all the buckles and releases the final clasp…

[BEEP!! (Followed a few spoken words in Ancient.)] The device betray’s Cobb’s location!

“Sh*t.” mutters Cobb, under his breath. Well, at least he has the vest now (clutching the device to his chest to muffle the noise).

With a loud ‘click!’, a heavy spotlight activates atop one of the watch towers and begins sweeping the ground in front of the citadel. Cobb is caught within a circle of bright illumination. “Away, ghoul!” shouts the mongoliant (in Gutterspeak), and the sniper on the other tower aims his weapon at Cobb…

In the distance, Vash and Kronic fire simultaneously at the bright light.

(The spotlight has a Defense of 10 +4 (for cover) = 14. You’ll get a -1 on attack rolls due to range. Vash rolls a 3 +3 -1 = 5; a miss. Kronic gets 12 +6 -1 = 17; a hit! I’m giving Kronic 25 XP for the shot.)

(The sniper gets a single shot at Cobb before the lights go out. His roll is 6 -2 = 4; a miss. Just for fun, let’s roll to see what the damage would have been if it hit: 17 hit points. Lucky scav…)

Momentarily blinded by the bright spotlight, Cobb holds his breath and prepares to die. Suddenly, there are the sounds of shots from behind him and the light flashes out! Cobb starts to breathe again, and then is illuminated once more by the bright line of a laser blast! It doesn’t hit, but Cobb is shocked into action again and begins running at full speed out of the stadium… (It’s too dark at this point for Soggul to rush in to save Cobb.)

There are few random shots of laser fire as he races towards the exit, but nothing comes close to hitting. Gasping as he reaches his allies, he dodges behind the stadium wall for cover.

“That was a foolish plan.” comments Kronic, who is calmly cleaning the grime out of his black powder rifle with one of his claws. “I’m glad it worked.” he adds.

(Okay, so Cobb’s little foray worked out for him. 100 XP for the attempt. During your upcoming rest, you have a chance to examine the artifact. Cobb rolls 19 +12 -2 = 29; very nice. I’ll add the stats for the device to Cobb’s PC sheet.)

Cobb figures out how to adjust the straps and properly wear the vest. As the final clasp clicks shut, the device beeps again and says something in Ancient. Sikich translates: “Insert power source, it said.” Cobb plugs the beltpack into a jack on the harness, and it beeps once more and speaks. “Activated.” translates Sikich. But there doesn’t seem to be any effect… Cobb tries one of the buttons on the beltpack, and suddenly his hair stands on end. There is a low hum, and a visible disturbance a few inches from Cobb’s body!

With a little more experimentation, Cobb manages to find something that Sikich translates as ‘manners mode’, and the damned artifact stops talking. Familiar with Ancient devices, Vash warns Cobb not to overuse the artifact as it likely draws power from the beltpack and has only limited charges…

White Flag

Many hours pass uneventfully. You sleep in shifts to recover and heal. You train with your newfound weapons and experiment with the relics you have discovered.

Vash examines the rifle, looking it over. He doesn’t notice that the trigger is slowly moving.. “Okay, this looks like it could be a..*BLAM!* OW! Sonnaofa…GOD that hurts!!” He hops away to his medical kit. Very angry.

After tending to his self induced, Vash hobbles around their small camp, trying to help those who might need tending, including their new additions. They need help and care too.

(Ha! 25 XP to Vash for that. Okay, back to where we left off in the previous post…)

Many hours later, Cobb is on watch when there is some activity at the citadel… The doors have opened a crack and it looks like there are large figures entering the arena. There is a click and the low hum of his force field, and he motions to the others, who are luckily all awake at this point, and the group quickly gathers behind the crude barriers that Soggul arranged.

Soggul attempts to whisper to Sikich, but it comes off as a normal conversation volume because of the three-armed mutant’s poor hearing. “Movement going into the arena. We should investigate. Perhaps it is the slavers that the others have spoke of.” The scarred man readies his shield and pike. Go alert the liberators and choose a course of action… quickly. I will ready the freed men for a possible battle.” Soggul ducks low and moves to do as he stated to his former cellmate.

“Not slavers, I believe.” says Cobb. “Nobody else has entered the arena since the battle. Mongo scouts, most likely.”

Sikich nods to Soggul and moves over to Vash. “Weee haaave coompaaneee,” he whispers hoarsely. “Ssspreaaad the wooord. “Theee tiiime haaaas coooome to fiiight.”

Hearing Sikich’s call that someone is coming out, Vash hobbles to the Gauss cannon. With the help of the Free, he should be able to fire the thing.

Sikich then turns and jogs over to the broken entrance to the arena (below area 4 on the map). There, he keeps himself pressed low against the wall for cover and looks around the edge toward the doors on the other side to see if he can identify who their probably attackers are.

Sikich stays low and checks the load on his pistol. “Cooome aaaand git soooome,” he says under his breath.

A pair of mongoliants begin to walk across the arena towards your location. One is carrying a heavy flashlight of some sort, illuminating the path in front of them. The other carries a large white flag, waving it above his head.

The flashlight-bearer brings a megaphone to his mouth. “We come in peace!” he shouts. “Lord Mraag wishes to parlay!”

Lord Mraag?” asks Soggul. “I thought it was Colonel Mraag.”

“Hhhee didn’t wait llllong affffter Ssssogor’s deathhh.” comments Sikich.

The mongoliants continue marching openly in your direction. What are your actions?

You have time to fire upon them, if you wish. If I don’t hear back from you then I’ll assume that you take them out.

What are your actions?

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~ by K-Slacker on 11-Nov-07.

14 Responses to “40 – White Flag”

  1. Cobb turns off the force field, trying to remember to be aware of the finite amount of energy available for it. He’ll have to keep an eye out for some sort of recharger….

    “Stand where you are. Don’t come any closer. Give us a minute.” calls Cobb to the mongos. “What do you guys think? What could he want from us and what could we get from him?”

  2. Soggul grits his teeth. “The fools want one of two things. They want an… alliance or they are setting us up for a trap. Knowing them, they have men with far-reaching weapons waiting for us to get in that light.” He wanted his revenge, but his liberators deserved to make the choice. His life was theirs now.

  3. (Okay Cobb; we’ll assume that you didn’t actually turn on your force field when you spotted the mongoliants. Also, you’re right about recharging; Vash’s recharger won’t work on your beltpack, only on e-clips.)

  4. (No no, that’s fine. He probably would have fiddled with it anyway.)

  5. Vash keeps the heavy gauss cannon aimed at the two Mongo’s. He frowns from behind the reticle. “You didn’t seem to interested in parlaying before!” He shouts out. “Why should we trust you! Especially with what you did to these people!” He yells out. He still believe that there is strength in numbers, but you can’t invite those who will no sooner stab you in the back.

  6. (Vash won’t be able to get a clean shot at them with the gauss cannon until they exit the arena itself. Do you want to let them get that close before ordering them to stop?)

  7. (Hmmm, good point.)

    Vash yells out his accusation before leaving the Gauss Rifle in the hands of two of the Freed. He climbs down to the barricades to use his laser rifle. He sees any funny movement, someone is getting a shot.

  8. “Fellows! This may be an opportunity 🙂 We could parlay with this Lord Mraag and get some idea as to where we are, and a better lay of the land! We still hardly know anything about this city or its inhabitants, and the only ones we have found so far we have killed or made enemies of. It may be time to figure out where we are and what we can do about it, this Maarg may have some of that information. I’d also like to get back at those other slavers and perhaps we can get this Maarg in on that deal. A bunch of Mongo’s helping us attack would be nice to thin the numbers of both gangs… It’ll be up to you talkers though, I’m only good to get people hurt (flexes his claws)”

    All that being said, Kronic reloads his rifle and flexes his claws. besides if all else fails it possibly gets us into that citadel and into range of some more swag…

  9. Thrak shrugs his shoulders in his new (to him) studded leather armour and likes the feel of added protection. He’s still feeling quite beat up from the action of the past while and, more than anything else, craves rest and healing. But since that doesn’t seem to be in the cards yet, he wants to ensure that at least a show of full strength is put forth.

    He cradles his AKM in both hands with the muzzle pointed at the flashlight-wielding interloper. That being Thrak’s only real indication of the location of the new ‘guests’, that’s what he’s aiming at. He sniffs heavily – instinctually – to assist in verifying the location of the two mongos under the white flag. Unfortunately, the creep-laden pall from the fire of the burning mongos still hangs slightly in the air, and the tang is so sharp in his nose that he physically reels in disgust before refocusing his attention.

    If one of the two mongos actually *is* the alleged Lord Mraag, then Thrak thinks he should be “eliminated” as soon as possible. He shares this thought as quietly as he can with his companions nearest him. If neither of the two mongos are the new Lord, then we should make them stop at the gate entrance and demand that we will parlay only with Lord Mraag in person.

    Any sudden or threatening movements will be met with a burst of gunfire from Thrak’s handy new AKM.

  10. After the mongos make their offer and the others begin debating it, Sikich leaves his position and walks over to the others. Drawing his cloak around him, he leans on his energy pike as he stands.

    “Weeee caaan taaaaake whaateveeer weee neeeed from theeem,” he argues. “Theere iiis noo neeed tooo neegootiate. Theeey are weeeeak, aaand theeey wiiill kiiill uuus laaater iiif weee doo nooot kiiil theeem noow.” He grins toothily.

    “Iiif weee waaant, weee caaan taaake priisoners aaand inteerroogaaate theeem tooo get theee iiinfoormaatioon wee waaant.”

  11. Soggul just keeps his eyes on the Mongoliants in the distance. “Bring them close and I’ll make sure that Mraag does not draw another breath.” The scarred warrior grits his teeth, suppressing his anger.

  12. “I can smell that this is a trap. If this guy has just taken over as ‘Lord,’ he’s going to want to assert his dominance and authority as soon as possible as to ensure that anyone who might challenge him for leadership will have to back down. I’ve seen this before in battle with the Futhok tribe (…godless scum…). We would be best not to reveal our position, although firing from that thing (points in general direction of Gauss cannon) might scare them out of their plan…” I look around to see if I can spot any movement from behind us, although with my cursed vision I may be out of luck. “There has got to be more of them sneaking up on us from somewhere.” I grip my axe, ready to fight.

  13. Hearing Jumrak’s words, Soggul scans the flanks and rear with the trained eyes of a Scavenger looking for possible attackers.

  14. “Gooood thiiinkiiing,” Sikich replies. “Iii’ll cheeck thee sooouth. Leet’s kiiil theem quiiickleee.”

    He sets off slowly, but still in his awkward angular gate, back toward the river. He will look there for anyone who may be trying to approach. If he sees no one, he will return to the opening in the wall below area 4 to repel any attack that might come from the arena.

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