Fatum Tyrannus

Experience 10/14/2012

Surviving the Clockwork Red Cages: 600xp

Group Influence: 21

Character: XP Available (change)

  • Titus: 6700 (+600)
  • Cortez: 6650 (+600)
  • Gallus: 6600 (+600)
  • Dorn: 6600 (+600)
  • Scythia: 6600 (+600)
  • Wollsey: 6600 (+600)
The Hospital Pod

The scene greeting Wollsey in the Hospital Pod is a dim red twilight of bloody horror, where a place of healing has been turned into a shrine of pain and mutilation. Every surface is splattered in the blood and gore of countless victims, human, xenos, and bestial. Surgical equipment, chemicals, specimen jars, trophies, bizarre bone sculptures, flayed skins, and tanned hides clutter the room. Strange machines throb and pulse with power while pict viewers replay static shrouded images of the chamber’s past work.

The gore is too much for Dorn, who leaves and empties his stomach of the water he had just drank. Wollsey continues cautiously into the deepest pard of the pod, discovering the remains of a once powerful man in a dire state. Both of his legs have been amputated below the knee and his right arm is missing. An Inquisitorial Rosette has been crudely pinned to his chest and the left side of his face has been flensed down to the glistening bone.

Shockingly, the man somehow remains amongst the living and is resaonably lucid.

“I am Inquisitor Nazauth Karkalla!”, he says in a clear commanding voice, “stand forth and show yourselves! Who are you, and what are you doing here?”

Titus, following Wollsey into the macabre scene, asks the Inquisitor if he recognizes them, for they have met twice previously.

“Yes, yes I do … now. Is all your cell here? Bring them here, bring them in here now!”, Karkalla demands.

Once they are all present, Karkalla describes what happened to him.

Karkalla: “I came here following Vulpa, Marcus Vulpa, The Eagle Mask, one of their slaver chiefs, deluded fool. I followed him here from Sophano Prime, hoping to find his customers … beasts, beasts for the great entertainment… blood for the carnival … found worse … Death is my sentence on him. Purge the unclean!.”

Titus: “But what about the Lion Mask? The Heron Mask? The Bull Mask?”, Titus excitedly asks, “Why are we here, why were we brought here…?”

Karkalla: “Lion Mask is dead, you should know this. You blundering fools killed him on Sophano Prime when you almost ruined my operation there.”

Titus: “There is a new one, Stanton Minita is the Lion Mask now.”

Karkalla: “You lie… Minita is my man… loyal servant… not the Lion.”

Titus: “He is the Lion Mask, he brought us here!”

Karkalla: “No… enough… enough of this… no more slander… too much to tell…”

Wollsey: “Where are we?”

Karkalla: “Quaddis, infamous Quaddis, pleasure planet, false paradise, noble’s plaything, hidden world. During the Festival of Tattered Fates, a great and sinful folly of the powerful.”

Cortez: “And who is in the Heron Mask?”

Karkalla: “He is a liar, a liar! Do not trust hi. The warp shines in his black soul. Did this to me… for sport, for pleasure, and to use me as bait for someone, something else, but he thought he had driven me mad, ha ha… his mistake. Fear him, stop him!”

Titus: “Why did he bring us here?”

Karkalla: “Dark omens, dark prophecy, a gathering of dark souls, the time of the Great Conjunction, an ancient evil, lurking secrets best left buried. The Heron has some cancerous plan, some malign plot he would not reveal; he needed the old blood, I think, to lure it out. Brought you all, brought the others, dush and ash, I cannot see. Blood, it always comes back to tat for them. Sophano, the old monsters, knew too much, their world then, now, and forever, whatever lies the nobles prattle. Do not forget that.”

Scythia: “What of the Worms that walk, do you know anything about them?”

Karkalla: “No… nothing… they aren’t real, nothing but the mad ramblings of Van Vuygens and his mad chases. Now … you are all mine, my cell, my Acolytes. Take my Rosette off my chest…”

Titus: “But … that might kill you.”

Karkalla: “That will happen either way, now do as I commanded.”

Titus removes the Rosette from the Inquisitor’s chest.

Karkalla: “Now swear an Oath to the God Emperor of Mankind that you will see the Heron Masks plan thwarted. Swear it upon my Rosette, swear it now!”

Each of the six, starting with Gallus, swear their oath in their own words.

Karkalla: “Go … get to the surface, the city. Seek out the White Scholar, one of al’Subaai’s, wasn’t there when the attack happened, survived I think. He will help you… ask him… ask him what can be found in the ninth stack on Prol. He will answer, ‘emptiness’ if it is he… Stop the Heron Mask, stop him or this world dies, and with it how many others? how far will the rot spread? Stop it before it is too late. Burn my body, unsafe otherwise… May the Emperor make you a vessel of his wrath…”

And with that, Nazauth Karkalla dies.

The Eagle and the Hereteks

The armored door of the hospital pod is flung open and the brutal figure of the Eagle Masked man stalks forth, followed by two cowering figures draped in bloodstained plastek robes and harnesses of surgical tools. The Eagle Mask turns angrily on them, and they flinch in fear.

“Damn your warp-roted hides, and damn him to hell’s eye! What game does he paly here? He brings an Inquisitor here, to my domain, to mutilate and pry? And you did not see fit to inform me?” The Eagle Mask shouts.

“B-B-But master, you asked us to offer him every asistance-” The cowering Heretek pleads but is silenced as crackling metal coils lash out from Eagle Mask’s band and ensnare him. The Heretek judders screaming for a few moments before slumping to the ground no more than a sack of burnt meat.

“I am no stalking prey to be staked out to lure the beast in, no matter what the Heron beleives! Find out what that mangled thing told him or you will suffer your comrade’s fate!” the Eagle snarls at the remaining Heretek before, flanked by two heavily armed men in pig-faced iron masks, mounts the elevator platform and it begins its slow and rambling ascent upwards.

The Red Cages
  • You awaken in a pit, roughly 10 meters square and 6 meters deep, with rusting metal sides, surrounded by spikes and concertina wire on top.
  • There are 14 people in the pit, Gallus, Dorn, Titus and Cortez from the primary Acolyte Cell, Wollsey, Scythia, and 8 other NPCs, 4 female and 4 male.
  • A howling comes from one of the 7 or 8 grated entrances surrounding the pit. One of the grates opens halfway and gets stuck.
  • Dorn attempts to forcibly close the grate, but instead manages to unstick it a bit and it opens a dozen centimeters or so.
  • A man in a stylized Heron Mask appears at the edge of the pit, watching in silence.
  • Spindle Maws come out from the doorway, slowly at first, but in increasing numbers as they fight for a chance to feast on those within the pit.
  • In the ensuing fight, Wollsey panics and is helped by a male captive who eventually dies screaming his name.
  • Dorn pushes one Male into the jaws of a waiting Spindle Maw before helping a female up the ladder.
  • Eventually all the named characters escape, along with 2 female NPCs, one of which responds to Gallus’ introduction by saying that her name is “Gallia Mordicort”
  • With Gallus at the leader, the group makes its way to a long metal bridge where Razorwings Attack, one of the Female escapees, Lady Brittney, is killed while being carried on Dorn’s back.
  • The group then finds itself hopelessly lost in catacombs of stone and steel where they fight a mutated human who is used to living in darkness.
  • With Dorn as the leader, the group finds its way to a crude Savage Idol where Wollsey is almost possessed by an evil spirit, before Cortez destroys the shine.
  • Scythia takes up leading the group, and they find their way to some broken machinery. Dorn is ambushed by a Gloomhaunt and almost killed before he manages to free himself from its headlock.
  • The survivors move past some Ferocious Creatures while climbing some collapsed stairs
  • After moving through an area where the superstructure is reconfiguring itself like a large piece of clockwork, the group finds an old deserted mansion in one of the vaults. A large deformed skeleton sits at a table where a feast has gone to dust centuries before. A tapestry contains a house heraldry similar but different to House Sophano in significant ways, perhaps like a copy. Gallus takes a medallion off the skeleton and the group dresses itself in old moth eaten finery instead of their prisoner rags.
  • The group arrives at a large open doorway titled, VAULT 13
Awakening In The Slaughter Pit

The nothingness of unconsciousness surrounds you and you do not know where you are. You do not know what has happened to your comrades or where they are. You do not know how much time has passed or how long you have been in this state. Slowly, your senses begin delivering bits of information. There is a gentle breeze that you feel on exposed skin, places that should be covered.

“… Whump … Whump … Whump … Whump … Whump … Whump …”

A slow rhythmic thrumming of heavy machinery can be heard nearby. Cold wet grains of sand are underneath, and your nostrils tell a story of ordure, blood, and sweet decay so strong you can taste it. Or maybe you can taste it because of the bits of sand and … other things in your mouth.

Finally, you open your eyes to find yourselves in a wide, high-sided, roughly square pit, over a dozen meters across, along with some other fellow captives. The ground is covered with moist, reeking sand and is littered with broken bones and other detritus. Set into the rusted metal walls at irregular intervals are spiked and studded iron grates of varying shapes and sizes and flickering lumen globes recessed behind heavy mesh. Some six meters above you the walls of the pit are topped with sabre-like, inward curving rusted blades and loose coils of corroded razor-wire. Beyond that is darkness from which the sounds of heavy machinery must have come from.

The Data Parchment

I cannot trust you. I can trust No One and nor should you, least of all this poor lost servant.

Your Master is betrayed as Mine was, and there are worse things waiting for us all.

Kill or Be killed – that is the way of it, there is no other truth, whether it be in these dark cages, the riotous carnival above or the jaded palaces of the wicked.

If the Widower has his way, we will all drown in the black light of hells uncounted when the hour strikes at last.

May the God-Emperor Save You or the Warp Damn You. Each as you – as we all – deserve.

Experience 2/9/2012

Boarding Party: Surviving Worse for Wear: 100xp

Group Influence: 21 (+1)

Character: XP Available (change)

  • Titus: 6100 (+100)
  • Cortez: 6050 (+100)
  • Gallus: 6000 (+100)
  • Dorn: 6000 (+100)
  • (New Characters – 6000)
  • Augstinius: 6000 (+100)
  • Bones: 6200 (+100) Retired
Fade to Black

Darkness has taken you, leaving you endlessly falling into an empty oblivion devoid of sight or sound. Moments flash briefly into being and fade again: a cold iron table and bright light above you, the mocking voice of Minita, the reeking stench of beasts and raw meat. Weightlessness, the hammering of great machinery, and finally, fetid black water oozing beneath you and chill winds stirring foul air.

You wake slowly to find yourself paralyzed in cold darkness, your voice silent and your body as limp and useless as a rag doll. You are helpless to act or speak, or even hold your thoughts together, but you can hear the ragged breathing of others in the dark telling you that you are not alone in your fate and feel the bone-deep ache in your limbs confirming that you yet live.

Sickly-green lamps flicker on in the walls, illuminating what might be your cell members in the moment before a dozen figures appear, wading shin-deep through rank waters towards the cold platform on which you and the other tangled forms hang. They wear ragged cloacks over dark body armor, and their faces are covered by grotesque animal masks fashioned from glittering metal and stitched skin. Each mask is different, one a hound, one a serpent, another a squid, a swine, and so on, while the leader wears the gilded visage of an Eagle with crimson feathers around its crest.

Walking beside the leader is a man covering his face with the image of a Lion, identical to the one torn from Count Sophano’s face at the Umbraer’s Hope deep bore mine.
A quick flick of Lion Mask’s runic sword severs chains and you are dumped into the ice-cold filth of the water with the others, all equally helpless, heaped up like in a mass grave for the living. Each of you is swiftly and purposefully examined by the masked men like livestock in a market. The Eagle Mask barks an angry order, and he and the others back away swiftly into the darkness.

Frost creeps across the walls, and the waters beneath you grow cold as the grave, as from the darkness a human-shaped, spike-studded metal cabinet comes into view, pushed along by two stunted and misshapen figures. Another shadowed form, tall and lean, hangs back on the edge of sight behind them.

Horror is heaped upon horror as the iron cabinet opens to reveal the severed head and mutilated torso of a young woman floating within in a column of unearthly light. The woman’s eyes snap open and cruel white light floods out. You feel the stabbing claws of a vile force invade your mind with its polluting touch as you and your fellow captives finally find voice enough to scream.

The force withdraws suddenly as the iron cabinet snaps shut. A silver-clawed hand rises from the darkness and indicates three captives in turn. The misshapen figures lunge forth and drag them screaming into the darkness where they are abruptly silenced.

Mercifully you are not among them.

The light fades and oblivion takes you again.

Mistress Lall's Rant

I have worked out a backstory for Mistress Captain Odelia Lall that does not impose one bit on the players’ ability to customize and tailor the Sabre to their liking. This was one of my objectives with her as an NPC, actually, to make her available and have her be a character while at the same time.

It is actually more appropriate for this backstory that you take items that would be advantageous to Ordo Xenos operations both within, at the edge of, and beyond Imperial space.

Mistress Odelia Lall is very businesslike in her demeanor. She and her crew command the Sabre effectively and efficiently, taking the vessel from port to port where directed to by al-Subaai. She makes it perfectly clear that her crew and personnel are not resources for you to dispose of at will or whim. She’s not rude or hostile about it, she’s just very obviously not willing to risk resources or personnel on your behalf, and it not obligated to do so. She takes her driving orders from al-Subaai, or, if he transfers his authority to you, from you.

To shed a little bit of light on the arrangement, let’s inject one slight slip in her professional discourse when Attilus suggests that she send personnel with Dorn and him to Port Wander due to the Sabre potentially being in danger.

“Listen, Attilus, you might think you’re a big shot, parading around with that lesser Rosette, but you had better listen up and listen good. Unless you want every criminal, crook and heretic to flee and run to ground the minute word gets out that the Sabre is in system you’d better keep your involvement with this vessel top secret. Understand? This vessel might be Van Vuygens’ now, but it’s going to be mine someday, and I’m not going to have you mess that up by stumbling around announcing yourself and this ship as Inquisitorial to everyone this side of the Maw. This frigate is worth more to the Inquisition, and myself, than you or your whole team, and I have sworn to keep it and it’s secret safe. I have orders from Van Vuygens, at my discretion, to abandon any acolyte cell that can’t keep their Emperor forsaken grox hole shut. If I ever hear that you’ve let it slip again, I will use that discretion to protect this Inquisitorial asset. And that goes for all of you. Is that perfectly clear?”

339.817.M41, Port Wander
The Docking Bay Incident

Error Failure to Read From Imperial Archives


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