Jade Sea

Ark R&D

Need a hand, Sugar?

Session Date: July 5, 2009

Characters: Valentine, R’Bel, Rithban, MEA

A handful of adventurers who don’t know each other is about to be thrust in together by a common goal none knew was there.

Valentine, dressed in pink and white, arrives at a ruined amphitheater with a strange cat statue in the middle of it. The statue seems to draw her in and fascinate her so much that she doesn’t notice the mage Rithban standing in an opening in the wall to the right.

After walking to the opening, Rithban hides behind a crumbling wall with Biscuit, his dog.

The last of our party to show up is R’bel, who approaches from the south part of the shard and, seeing the statue, walks right up to it and begins to examine it. Valentine, miffed at his lack of acknowledgement of her presence, starts a conversation with him. Not long after Valentine and R’bel start to talk, R’bel and Rithban notice some rocks falling from the rubble at the back of the area. Valentine, alerted by R’bel’s change in gaze, also looks. When R’bel and Valentine look to see what knocked down the rocks, they see a large rusty gargoyle sitting on the wall. As they look, two more land next to it.

Valentine, fast on the draw, throws a sphere of magic energy at the middle gargoyle and knocks it off the wall, shutting it down. Rithban casts a spell making Valentine and himself invisible. This leaves R’bel apparently abandoned and outnumbered. Not knowing what happened to Valentine, R’bel ducks behind a pillar and sneaks up to one of the gargoyles with catlike grace. As the two groups fight, R’bel sees four more flying in from the north.

Unfortunately, while neither of the other humans noticed Rithban, one of the gargoyles does. It promptly swoops in and lifts the mage into the air. Rithban escapes the gargoyle’s clutches by turning himself into a vaporous version of himself.

One of the gargoyles lands on a pillar and topples it as it dives off to attack R’Bel, who has had an Imp summoned on his back to help him fight thanks to Rithban. As the pillar falls, its capstone hits the ground, breaking though to an underground complex. Seeing that they are outnumbered, and hearing more gargoyles on the way, the group of unlikely comrades jumps down the hole to escape the creatures.

Once inside, they start to explore the ruins. As they enter the first room, they hear a voice coming from inside the darkness.

“You are not authorized to be here!”

After some searching, they find that the voice is coming from a small white cat whom they later find out is MEA (a magically engineered assistant, henceafter called Mea). After Rithban’s dog scares her, Mea jumps up onto R’bel’s shoulders, knocking him over onto the desk she was hiding under. To avoid falling, she takes to the air on wings of light. After everyone calms down, they chat with Mea about what this place is. Mea tells them that this is an R&D lab where androids are made, and that she was made as an assistant and to help socialize the androids. Mea also tells them that there is no way out since her pass code doesn’t work anymore.

Rithban decides to go check the exit door to see if he can get it working again. As he does this, R’bel shows Mea the hole in the roof that could be another way out. Having had no luck with the exit door, Rithban returns to find the group looking in through the large window at the lab. He overhears Mea talking about her bell that is sitting on a table close to the window. Rithban, seeing that the bell is important to her and wanting to get a look at the lab himself, teleports himself inside. After grabbing the bell, he tries to port back out, but finds he can’t. He thinks back and remembers an old barrier spell his master used. Thinking this was similar, he tries to shut it down. He fails, but it does short the energy field, giving the num pad for the door a hint of power.

Mea flies over to the door and tries her passcode. It works! The door opens just enough for Mea and Valentine to fit under. R’bel, however, is too big and is left on the other side. Seeing that the door can be moved, R’bel grabs the bottom of the door and tries to lift it. With a little help from the mages, he opens the door. Mea takes the bell from Rithban’s hand and puts it on her collar.

The group sets about searching the room for all manner of things. They find five nonworking devices. R’bel, not knowing what any of these things are, goes over to the other window and sees two blue orbs dash behind a corner. He calls the others over, but Rithban thinks he is just seeing a reflection of their magelights. Then R’Bel and Valentine see a set of blue and a set of green lights do it again. Mea warns them about the defense androids, but Rithban wants to see for himself. So they move back to the center room, where rubble blocks their way to the other room. As the group debates whether to move the rocks and explore the compound more, a blast of energy blows away the rocks. As the dust clears, they see two sets of eyes in the darkness and hear a robotic voice saying, “Seize the intruders.” The eyes turn out to be attached to two security androids who power up their restraints and shoot them at the group, binding both R’bel and Rithban’s forearms together.

Valentine unloads a three-volley attack on the droids but is ineffective. Mea yells at the droids and one of them responds to her and shuts down. The other R’bel bends like a can, using his plant control on some roots in the wall. After the fight, Rithban puts both of them in his magepocket.

The area beyond the droids still has minimal power and some of the keypads still work. They try out one keypad at the end of the hall, which they find leads to the lead researcher’s office. There, they find an interactive recording of the head of the lab. The professor tells them about SAM, a prototype android, and comforts Mea about her efforts in the lab over the past 10,000 years. He also says that Sam has other parts scattered among different labs and that Sam needs those parts so he can be completed. These are Mea’s new orders: Get those parts. The professor gives the coordinates of those other labs, but of course those coordinates won’t be very useful since the world has changed so greatly since then.

The adventurers grab Sam’s cloak, which R’bel had earlier investigated, only to get zapped, and head to the room Sam is in. They move fast because the professor told them that Sam would be waking up soon and that he may damage himself if not tended to when that happened. As they open the door to Sam’s chamber, they see him panicking and trying to break out. Mea moves quickly to deactivate the tank that is holding him. Sam passes out and falls to the floor. R’Bel tries to wrap him in his cloak, but as he does, the cloak takes control and morphs into clothes for Sam.

Mea, having her new orders, and the others, wanting to work with her, set off to leave the lab, but as they near the center room where they had originally entered the complex, they hear laughing and chatting from outside the hole. As they enter the room, a beautiful yet scary woman in a black top hat looks in the hole, tosses down a rope, and says to Valentine, “Need a hand, Sugar?”

Valentine, knowing this woman from long ago as Captain Blackheart, quietly tells the others to seal off all areas so Blackheart can’t get to them. Then the members of the group makes their escape out the front door of the complex, but not before Valentine shouts to Blackheart, “Not on your life, Victoria!” as Mea closes the last door to the room.

Once outside, Valentine invites everyone to be guests on her ship, since she knows that if Blackheart finds any of them, they are done for. Everyone agrees to fly with her and that is where we end for now.

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