Numenera

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Introduction
PC Beginnings

Today you woke to the sounds of the city.
The big city. Qi, THE biggest city of the Steadfast.

The sounds that woke you today were the same sounds to wake you every day of your entire existence.

Today, though, was different.
Today your life would change.
You would change it.
It was time to end the routine.
Time to end the monotony.
Time to end the just getting by.
Time for you to drive your life in a new and exciting direction!

Your contemplation broken by the shadow of a patrolling Zhev passing by your window, you took stock of your belongings.

A handful of Shins.
A pack of adventuring supplies.
A weapon or two.
A rudimentary suit of armor.
A couple minor bits of numenera.
All of it hard won during the months of planning and scrounging leading up to today.
It would have to be enough.

You quickly ate the last meal you’d have in the hovel you’ve called a home.
Equipped your gear.
Left your keys on the table for the landlord or the next tenant to find. Time to go.

Perhaps you set out alone, or perhaps with a friend or acquaintance.

First, you plan to explore the few areas of the city you haven’t yet seen.

Then, it would be off to wherever the road took you, in search of the unknown.

Exploration and adventure await!

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Book of the Dead
1

I am in the city of QI, what a strange place. I find myself in the bar “Finnagins” with my childhood friend Drugah Voss. It has been a long time since I have seen him, is it luck? Fate? Who knows. I feel that something will happen. When? “No I don’t know where your family is” Damn the voices of the dead. Sometimes I can not control when I hear them.

There are others here with us, Hugo Hall, The Hammer, and Luselm. We seem to be here to get a job, things have gone fast since I left the school.

Two people walk in, one who can not seem to make a coherent sentence and another who seems to have a lot of clockwork items.

Next thing you know the cities Peace Keeper are going crazy, killing people. After the initial combat we head to find the source. Luselm is able to lead us to the network hub that is the reason for all of the chaos.

Some strange little boy is doing it, I wonder if he will give in to the energies I control. The short answer is no.

We are able to stop the boy, and save some lives. I still cant see what my cousins Vexor Mallus and Jake Denon enjoy about being a hero.

The priests thank us for the help. Just like most of the people they show up afterword and take the credit. Oh well time to rest and let myself heal. Tomorrow will be a better day.

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Hugo research log
Part 1

Two day ago, I answered an ad for “brave adventurer”, I thought it would be a good chance to field test my modification to my HUD and interface feeds. At Finnegan’s tavern, I met a couple of other researchers from the University, one was an Eerie Medic student called Dameris and her friend Drugah a physicist who seems to move object with a localized gravity. Also at the table was a Brute called Johnah who seems favor bashing thing with large hammer or shooting people with a heavy crossbow. The last member at the table was Luselm, I specialist in the black market, that I have used in the past for “special materials”. As we sit waiting for our employer, who no one had ever met, we were approached by large red haired Brute with a lisp (I believe that a minor therapy would fix that) and a small man with a Clockwork Canary that runs on little gear but seem to release an oil substance when touched. After a few moment of small talk, we were alerted to a disturbance outside. I was about to have the bartender contact the Peace Keeper. When one of them burst through the door began fire on the bar.

Johnah fired his crossbow at it and Drugah sent a mug of beer hurling at it. Both attacks were ineffective as it defensive ring of blades were active. Luselm managed to sneak up on it and slip a dagger in to its core processor and Johnah put a crossbow bolt in it skull which incapable it and allow me to investigate the malfunction machine. I turned on my wireless interceptor and was able to directly interface with core feed from the local hub—it appeared be infected a recursive neo-arch double crypt worm code. Just as I finish my analysis, a patron burst through the door yelling that another one of the Peace Keeper were attacking people outside. The “brave adventurers “charged out and managed to disable the rabid Peace Keeper. I also analyze it and it had the worm code running in it. I surmised that the core feed from the local hub was being corrupted by something. I asked Luselm if she knew a quick way to the local hub. Luselm lead the group through several back alleys and up and down stair and service lift until even with my full recall, I was lost. When I confront her about being lost, she pulled a switch and there was the hub and 3 more rabid Peace Keeper. One of the local merchant that Dameris had saved volunteered to distract the 3 Peace Keepers so I could get to the hub and analyzed it. When I round the corner, I noticed an Aeon Priest attempting the shut the hub down, but as I watch it appeared that the Aeon Priest was being also infected with the worm, so I attempted to reset his connection. Infected Aeon Priest attacked the group and we had to forcefully cut his connection, unfortunately this caused him serious brain damage and it was decide that he could not live in this state. Once the Aeon Priest was unhooked, I was able to trigger the anti-worm problem that cleaned the system reset all of the Peace Keepers. The Order of Truth was so happy with us. We receive some shin and a cipher. Mine was spray-on nano armor, so I went back to the lab and began studies the cipher and compile the information the rogue peace keepers and a corrupt Aeon Priest.

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Return to Qi

I was back in the large city of Qi. Dirigibles filled the skies. I’d heard the mayor of Qi lived in a dirigible filled with naked boys. The language here was called The Truth, and technopriests in the city belonged to The Order of the Truth. Major buildings in Qi included the Cathedral for the Amber Pope, infallible leader of the technopriests, and the University of Kee.

I met up with some comrades. We were all drinking at Finnegan’s pub and eating Cornish hen, a purplish bird with a grayish sauce that tasted of chicken, apples and happy memories. The other people in the pub were factory workers, still dirty from their labor.

Two unusual characters insisted we move from their table. We learned the short guy with clockwork was Roger Smith and the big guy with armor, a tophat, and red hair was Ian DeHaynus. Soon our new acquaintances were dead, though.

Outside, three of the zhevs – the robots that stunned folks when they tried to climb up to the higher levels of Qi – were outside attacking guy. It was unusual for them to come down to this low a level, and rare for them to use lethal force. But here they were, stabbing and shooting people, following “termination protocol.”

Hugo said the zhevs were being controlled from a central command center. When he described it, I knew right where it was. I took the shortest route – over some rooftops, through some basements – to lead Hugo and my other comrades there. Drugah Voss followed us on his floating disc.

In the central command center, we found a young man, dressed as an Aeon priest, who had plugged himself into the command system. We managed to disconnect him. He begged us to end his life, and we did.

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Session One
Johnah Hammer

Johnah Hammer wondered anew what he was doing in Finnegan’s. The tavern was loud. Even for a tavern in Qi, one of the largest if not the largest cities of the Steadfast. The celebration was not one he expected to fall into. All about him people in green tinted clothing often decorated with a four leaf clover.
It was madness.
Johnah idly wondered if perhaps he should have worn his armor after all but such worthless musings were worthless. He knew as did most others that in the city of Qi, it was… discouraged form wearing anything over say a leather jerkin. Something about looking to invite trouble.
Thankfully those thoughts did not transfer over to his weapons. Indeed, without his great maul and heavy crossbow, the ‘Hammer’ would have felt naked.
Johnah slowly sipped his beer. It was a heavy dark dry stout that resembled oil more than a good beer. Still, in his early years training in the monastery, he learned to not waste and so nursed it.
More disturbing to Johnah were those he sat with. He could not recall how they had all gathered at this particular tavern in Qi, at this particular table at Finnegan’s, but there they were.
To his right sat Dameris ‘the Immortal’. She was a pale white beauty but there was something rotten about that beauty. Despite her appearance, no one asked that ivory statuette to dance. Something about her manner unnerved even the most resolute individuals.
Next to her say Drugah Voss. He remained fairly ‘normal’ in terms of some of the things the Hammer had seen. Johnah knew that such apperances could be deceiving though.
Across from him sat Hugo Hall. Johnah shuddered. The man was more machine than meat. The eyes always searching out new pieces of Numenera either to visually fuck or to dreamily lust after. The unnaturalness about it brought a shudder to the Hammer who had to control himself from downing his dark stout.
Next to Hall sat Luselm. She moreso than Drugah was unremarkable in the loudness of Finnegan’s.
A thick mustached man with red hair pointed to us across the room. His face as red as his beard.
Next to eh man was a smaller one.
“You’re at our table. Leave!”
Johnah looked to the ivory one. “I didn’t understand him.”
“Nor I. Perhaps if he spoke normally?”
The red haired one introduced himself as Angus and demanded we leave.
The Hammer looked Angus dead in the eyes rolling his huge shoulders. “We need no anus at this table.”
The little one smirked but Angus swelled like a balloon being blown up. “What? What?”
“No anus here friend. It’s not needed.”
The little one stepped in. “What my friend means is that we would like to join you. I be Smith, Roger Smith.”
The Hammer nodded to the two who pulled up some seats and wondered again at what he was doing here. Some second hand information brought him here to seek out new work. Things had been different for the Hammer since his time at the Monastery.
Roger pulled forth a clockwork bird and began winding it up. It was gold and brass and its movements were fluid.
Hugo’s eyes glossed over and his hand reached out towards the bird. The bird lifted a leg and emitted some dark based liquid, darker than the stout Hammer drank.
Hugo stuck one finger into the vicious liquid and tasted it.
The Hammer laughed. “The bird craps and you would taste of it? This is why I often think people of the city are dirty.”
Hugo didn’t smile but the others at the table did. Hugo didn’t seem insulted by such words. Indeed, the look on Hugo’s face was almost one of scanty as if he looked past the physical nature of the waste and was determining what it was on a larger scale of things.
The tavern increased in tempo. A bard played with Numenera white gloves that left notes visible in the air that the bard then played with the white gloves as if the music were a physical entity.
The commotion became louder still. Then panic. People ran into the room screaming that “It’s Happening again!” Robots had gone mad for some reason. These security droids designed to keep the peace gone mad. Wires twisted all around a metal skeleton.
“Are you going to put that in your mouth next?” The Hammer sneered at Hugo.
“No. We should be leaving.” Hugo replied in a matter of fact manner.
Drugah disagreed. “We need to take this thing out!”
Hammer wasted no further time on talk and with Roger, the two flipped the table over to act as cover. While it looked like mere wood, the material was far stronger. People drunkenly brawled had cracked bone with the steins which shared the wood look, but also shared the far stronger durability.
Having taken shelter behind the flipped over table, The Hammer smiled. This reminded him of the many caravan trips he had made since leaving the Monastery. His skills had proven invaluable on many of this trips, saving lives and exploring the wilds.
The pulled out the heavy crossbow and fired a shot but was over.
The white one did something, but it appeared to have no effect. No, that wasn’t quite true. Something flicked around the metal skeleton and the barbed wire slashed it to pieces.
Drugah looked at one of the tables and it rose and flew towards the metal menace. The table flew into different directions.
Luselm seemed possessed of madness running towards it with a dagger. She evaded the razor wire around it and struck the creature, but it was no deer to be skinned with a mere dagger. She rolled back and avoided the thing’s wires again.
Hugo threw a mug at the creature. The mug was hit so many times by the barbed wire that it ceased to exist.
The thing looked at our group. It raised a rod with red glowing light that aimed at Roger. Angus stepped in front of the blast and smirked.
The rest of the group looked on in horror. What Angus didn’t realize at first was that a hole had formed in his chest large enough for even the barrel chested Hammer to put his arm through.
Angus twitched and fell.
This time, the Hammer paused for a moment as he aimed. The heavy bolt struck true this time into the creature’s skull. The barbed wire danced about the creature cutting those foolish enough to be near in two save for Luselm who easily dodge the wires.
“Another is coming!” A person yelled.
The Hammer wasted no time on pondering and instead loaded his heavy crossbow with another bolt.
Luselm began looking over the metal corpse. The rod it used to kill Angus shattered into powdered metallic glass that dissipated into the floor.
Dameris, the white beauty stood over Angus. She placed hand on neck and the Hammer wondered, “What the hell was she doing?” Clearly Angus was dead. Past all hope.
Drugah looked over the creature with Luselm. His intention seemed more investigative. His eyes more interested in what was happening behind the scenes. “Perhaps they have been hacked? This would seem to be a mode designed to repel intruders.” He said what many of us though.
Hugo examined the fallen creature as well. Was he seeking to incorporate it into his own man machine frame?
Hugo unlike the other two investigators, became one with the machine. The Hammer could see numbers and data actually flashing over Hugo’s eyes. It was a terrifying change of man from machine.
The screams became more audible. Another of the metallic skeletons were approaching. Hugo went to one side of the door and Luselm to the other.
Before it entered though, Drugah’s pop’s a pill. His face took on a look of effort and outside, one of the poles housing a glow globe smashed down upon the metal enforcer.
Dameris walked outside ignoring the hysteria of the ‘common’ people. She straddled one of the corpses outside and injected it in the neck with a needle while kissing the dead forehead.
The thing that was once dead screamed. A final breath shot out of its lungs. It began to rise, picking up a piece of debris as a club. It then moved onto the machine.
The Hammer took a moment to aim and smiled. Be a shame if he hit the newly created zombie but firing into combat was a risk he was willing to take. Undead and machines? Either one would make a good target.
But his aim was true. The bolt smashed through the skull casing again.
The Hammer went outside. It was chaos.
The machines fought each other. Those that were in ‘red’ mode were easily defeating those in ‘blue’ mode. People were losing limbs and others were exploding.
The Hammer pondered the end of Qi.
Hugo looked at us. “We need to find a hub. At this hub, there is something infecting these creatures.”
Luselm has a look of confidence on her face. “I know exactly where we can find this local hub.”
The people in Finnegan’s barricade up. They failed to appreciate that one had come in through the roof. The sounds of their slaughter is not pleasing but there is no time to waste.
Luselm’s mastery of Qi is unprecedented as she leads the group through the city. Through alleys and under spires. Through quick underground passages and abandoned buildings. Most of the group walked like mere mortals but Drugah? He rides a disk of mental energy his arms folded across his chest.
After a few moments, all of us are lost. Hugo cries out, “You’re lost aren’t you. You’ve doomed us!”
Luselm’s smile reveals that we are not lost as she leads us into an elevator shaft. “We’re here.” The elevator leads us down and ahead we know that there are guards.
Dameris sends the undead thing forward and the guards obligingly follow it.
Drugah summons a extra hand that grabs a baton from the walkway.
And the cause of all this madness?
A preteen wearing a uniform of the Aeon Priests. His mad laughter is directed towards a holographic series of images ahead of him. Plugs and jacks go from his shaved skull into a variety of machines under him. He doesn’t sit but rather floats above the chair.
Hugo pays these things no mind and instead tries to seize the boy’s head and electricity crackles from his hand. The two engage in something not quite a battle of wills but neither moves for a brief few seconds which stretch into eternity but it does reveal that the child is surrounded by something. Some sort of barrier.
“You would stop the Doom Ladden? Prepared to taste pain!” The voice that comes from the child? It’s not child’s voice. It is one of cold and metal. Worse still, when it speaks, red lights spill forth from its mouth.
Luselm moves so stealthily that even as the others watch the scene in front of them, she disappears for a moment and then appears again and brings down her dagger into the seeming child. It does not take the stabbing as the field that protected it from Hugo’s hand of death, easily deflects the dagger.
Drugah commands his extra hand wielding the truncheon to smash the youth and with his own power, pulls forth a piece of stone. Both attacks seek to smash the youth. Some of the ports and cables are knocked loose from the child’s skull but it does not fall.
The Immortal smiles and looks deeply into the youth’s eyes. “How dare you!” The child cries out. “You think to best me?!?” And the Immortal’s perfect smile cracks and blood seeps from her nose.
Johnah tries to avoid shooting his comrades and gets the right angle, the right position and the right time. The heavy crossbow fires true but the thing grabs the bolt from the air and flicks it away.
Between Hugo and the child, the air weavers. Hugo cries out “No!” and apparently isn’t consumed by whatever the child was doing. Hugo pauses for a second, catching his breath. And without warning, reaches forward, ignoring the child for a second, and pulls at something behind the child, a cord leading into it’s back.
Then the field surrounding the child, the wavering energy flux, fades.
Luselm’s smile is not friendly as she realizes that the child’s defenses are gone and she doesn’t hesitate as the knife comes down.
Drugah continues to focus his dual efforts, the truncheon and the sheer force of his will, against the child. The concrete slab smashes against the child knocking more wiring lose and almost crushing the child’s skull.
The child falls from the air unto the floor. Metal plating revealed under the torn skin. One eye looking to the right seeing nothing.
But it still lived.
The Immortal sneered at the child seeing it weakened. She raises a hand and energy crackles at the tip of her finger.
The child laughs and Dameris’ finger explodes in blood.
The Hammer walks forward past the white one.
The child looks up. It’s one good eye focusing on the heavy crossbow.
“Free me!” It begs and for the first time, it’s in a human voice.
The Hammer does.

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Session Two
Introducing Vexar

For Johnah Hammer, one of the few benefits of being in the grand city of Qi was the opportunity to visit family. His mother and father were older now and the children gone, but those who visited the city were always welcome to stay.
Not for long though. It was after all, due to a shortage of resources that his parents had sent him to the Monastery to start with. He did not hold it against them. It had turned out well for everyone in the end. The skills that they taught Johnah allowed him to make a small living as a wilderness guide.
The Hammer pondered exploring the city. It was a city built upon city built upon city. The further one could descend down, the more ancient and archaic the city became.
His stay was not long though. A summons to temple by an Acolyte arrives. Summoned to a Clave where he would learn The Truth had been issued.
Johnah smirked. The Aeon Priests and their summons. Still, with the last caravan he had been a part of destroyed without him… Self sufficiency in the wilds did not transfer to the city so easily.
The temple would be enough to make even the non-believer give pause. He walked through long halls. Each step in front lit but ever step leaving darkness behind. The hall went on forever until they didn’t.
And when Johnah walked through the door, he was no longer alone.
Rather several of those he had recently worked with were entering the room from different entrances. If the Hammer was a suspicious man he’d have paused for a moment but given the size and scope of the priesthood, he doubted there was anything they wanted from him.
The Hammer looked at the chair. They were transparent and cool. When he sat, the chair began to turn to a faint red. As the others sat, theirs did too. Except for one… the man machine.
He sat alongside Dameris the White, the immortal Lady. Across from him was the man machine, Hugo Hall. The Hammer narrowed his eyes and examined Hugo closely. Was that monstrosity more machine now than before? Next to Hugo sat Drugah Voss. Drugah seemed both intrigued and repelled by Dameris. Their powers did not often mix well when the duo were in close proximity to one another.
An Aeon priests enters the room. “May the truth show you the light to all.” He intones. While they are not a popular group, they have brought up ‘the Truth’, the language that we all speak. A wise move, insuring that communication at least is nearly universal.
“The incident you recently resolved. It did not originate in this area.” He moves his hand and the wall behind him changes. It shows the youth uncorrupted. Until cables from the Hub emerge and inject into the lad. All of us here know what happened after that.
“We tracked the source. It comes from the undercity. The undercity is home to the machine people.”
The Hammer looks at Hugo.
“I am not one of the machine people!”
“indeed, Hugo is not a full automation.” The priest shows us his arm. Pistons and gears whirl and click. “Be at ease guide, not all who are of our nature are machine people.”
To be honest, I wasn’t worried. Members of this priesthood were known for only spreading “The Truth”. There were not interested in taking over the world or taking over minds and hearts. Rather spreading a universal language and a universal math. Theirs was a religion of tolerance.
Except for the abuse of Numenera. That they had no patience for.
“We will take you below and then…”
“Hold priest, what do you expect of us? You get ahead of yourself.”
Hugo laughs.
The priest shows us videos of the undercity through a camera mounted on a flying platform; some type of drone. The bots are numerous and without any regular variety. The bots rip apart other bots, and use those components to enhance a massive hub. They seek to make the hub reach all the way to the city of Qi directly. From hub to tower, from tower to Qi? A port under Qi.
The drones make short work of the ports, but the creatures continue to make their hub reach further.
“We seek your assistance in destroying this hub.”
“My hammer is powerful, but I doubt it could destroy this.”
The priest smiles and pulls out a round acrylic chip.
A few of my comrades look at the chip. Hugo and Drugah in particular are fascinated by it. Drugah recognizes it from the gleam in his eyes.
“This chip must be inserted physically. It cannot be used wirelessly.”
The priest looks at Hugo. “You are the one who will need to insert the chip. You will have to have that program.”
“And if we fail?” The Hammer asks.
“It does not bode well. Our glorious Mayor” and the priest’s eyes actually roll, “Will set off explosive devices under the city. The support beams will collapse. Those in the dirigibles… they will remain unaffected.
“Well, my parents live in this city so I shall strive to take care of this issue for you.” The Hammer nods. The others agree.
“The bots are the most honest of us all. They have no use for politics. No use for deception. They are those who will make any sacrifice. We see you are a group somewhat similar, in terms of dedication to a cause.”
“And what of you Immortal?” The Hammer asks. “Will you be of use against these automations?”
“I am always useful.” She smiles.
“Not in that way. In a useful way.” The immortal frowns at Hammer’s words.
Another enters. The Immortal apparently has a cousin, well-groomed with white hair and a wooden katana. “Evening cousin. I have been sent by your mother to insure that you are taken care of. My name is Vexar. It’s an honor to be traveling with you.”
The name is known. He is a wandering swordsmaster who serves a blind swordsman who is out in the world making his mark. Only after years of training with his wooden blade will he upgrade to a more dangerous weapon.
The Hammer and Vexar trade war stories in terms of melee and distance attacks. When the Hammer extends a big beefy hand to Vexar, the Hammer is surprised by the strength in the grip.

The Immortal and Vexar trade some barbs about their various origins. The males, on Vexar side, are mainly glaives. Those on the Immortal, are from female to female and are often nano’s or jacks.
The Aeon Priest, finally decides to introduce himself as Timerius. “Any questions?”
The Hammer pipes up. “How do we get there.’
Timerius shows us a massive drone. “This will take you down, and return you to the surface.”
“Uh… which of us flies this?”
Timerius smiles. “Professionals. Not one of your people. You will have two days. Failure will result in bombing.
“Now there is also a secondary objective. If you wish to perform it, this is up to you.”
Drugah speaks up. “This objective will provide us with some funds? Some extras?”
The priest speaks again, ignoring the TK specialist. “Not too far from where we’ll be dropping you off, is a ‘meatbag’ area where humans life. We wish to make contact with them. They are masters of bio-modification with machinery and Numenera. They have mastered it beyond what knowledge is up here. We have tried to send emissaries before but they have no returned.”
The discussion of the ‘meatbag city’ reveals that it is a city on the move. One that doesn’t necessarily stay in one place all the time.
The group takes something called the Lifter down. Objects built as copies of how the machine people use them.
The Hammer speaks about the different roles that each will take. The Immortal avoids the subject for the most part, making references to having some healing ability and a razor ring that she uses to defend herself. No wonder Vexar has been sent to watch over her.
The group follows the Aeon priest. With each step, the light illuminates us. For everyone in the group save Hugo, it’s a red light. For Hugo, it’s a blue light. When The Immortal and Vexar touch the floor though, the panels become a bright red, almost to the point of yellow, and unlike when we leave, the panels remain glowing for several minutes.
The group gets into chairs. Bands surround the chairs keeping us from moving. The globe moves through ha series of tubes. Numerous globes containing other Aeon priests with other adventurers move through these areas.

It ends at a landing pad with the ship that we were shown earlier. Around us are various sized dirigibles. From them depart nobles. They have an immense satisfaction of not caring about them. Their outfits and uniforms are not suitable for the wilderness. One of them looks to have a hat that stands some odd ten feet tall with globes dancing around it.
Vexar fits in. His own uniform being a high-tech device despite its appearance.
Dirigibles come and go and the group continues to move through the crowds.
The lifter the group is brought to is heavily armored and pock marked with numerous different types of injuries. Even as we approach, it is being worked on.
Timerius assures us, “While your pilot is very experienced, he requests silence. He is a little touched from the numerous individuals he has sent down that have not returned. This is a dangerous mission, but we feel we have chosen well here.”
Much like the globe, we are strapped in. The pilot and co-pilot come in from another entrance. They are safe and secured behind additional armor plating.
Timerius smiles. “Good luck and may the Truth be with you.”
Things grow dark. Air is pumped into the chamber. The vehicle is sealed from the outside world. Vexar smiles. “I’m claustrophobic.” He reveals.
And then the pressure of take off hits. It’s like being smashed by hundreds of fists evenly across the body. But at the same time, its exhilarating.
Flight halts. Red lights blare. Rattling shakes the entire ship.
Hugo looks about. Something in the man-machine’s eyes indicates that he knows something is wrong. He looks at a HUD “Nano-Cloud detected.”
The metal, the heavily armored plane? It begins to disintegrate. The group hears from the front, “Williams! Williams!” And at that point, know that the front has broken off.
The group can see numerous buildings through the holes in the ship. The Hammer looks at Hugo. “Well man-machine? Can you control this heap?”
Hugo doesn’t reply but instead jacks into the ship and begins the effort of controlling the ship. He has some success. He can’t stop the ship. He can’t cease our descent. But he can angle it. He can control the direction we move in.
Drugagh uses his own power, that of his TK mastery, to bounce the ship. This takes some of the fall and impact that we might otherwise have taken all at once.
The heroes leapt from the ship. The Hammer, long used to such physical activity, uses his body and the knowledge gained long ago in the monastery, ignores the effect. The others have various degrees of success.
The Immortal and Hugo don’t land that well comparatively. Hugo smashes through a few floors while the Immortal smashes firmly into a wall and leaves quite a bit of blood stains.
The Hammer extends his own hand down to Hugo. While the naturalist isn’t a fan of the man-machine, he finds himself admiring the willingness of Hugo to put himself into danger over and over again.
Vexar makes the rest of the group look foolish in terms of how quickly skillfully he lands.
Looking down, the group realizes that they are still some odd twenty stories into the air. The stairs are in various stages of degeneration but enough remains that descending doesn’t provide that troubling.
Vexar and the Immortal make more banter. The Immortal is not impressed by Vexar’s ability to take care of her.
The Hammer activates his own Numenera, the Sheen. The Hammer’s skin becomes coated in liquid metal. The metal is cool to the touch. “One encounters many a thing when travelling between the cities.” The Hammer smirks.
On the bottom level, there is a rain of greenish black oil. Clouds of it. The air is so tainted that everyone save for Hugo begins coughing. The Sheen surrounding the Hammer minimizes the coughing.
All around the sound of machinery pounds.
The ground is slick and covered.
Eventually the oil and cloud and noise die down.
“Hugo, can you determine where we’re at as opposed to where we need to be?”
“Roughly five hours. Two hours to the town.”
The group begins moving towards the town. Vexar and the Hammer take to the streets walking directly while the Immortal brings up the back and the Hugo and Drugah take to the sides in order to stay out of the way of what else is out here.
Who knows what the machines have sent out here? Who knows if there are drones or hunters.
There is a sudden realization on the Hammer’s side that his ride has been destroyed. The others assure the Hammer that there are more ships that can be sent.
The Hammer pauses. All about him, he senses eyes. Shadowy things that are hunters. The Hammer signals them. Perhaps the allies he was sent to find in the ‘meat city’?
No. They pull forth steel and approach.
Combat is joined! Vexar proves his mettle as does the Hammer. These metal creatures, when injured, prove to have human components to them. This reveals them as the former agents sent down. The meat on these creatures long dead.
After the initial attack, more of the machine men take to the streets, but these are armed with some sort of lasers and are heavily armored. They too prove no match for the group.
After the battle, the Immortal speaks to one of the skulls. It’s weeping is piteous. It reveals that it is indeed another agent of the priesthood and that it doesn’t understand what happened to it until it starts shrieking at which point the Immortal lets it rest.
The travels take us to the city where we are warmly greeted. Cleaning off is a priority. The dwellers of the city are appreciative of not only our presence, but the offered exchange of knowledge with those above.
Even better, they have need of our talents. They wish to be away from the Hub least it activate and do more damage to them.
Like the priests above though, they have lost many soldiers. We agree to scout out the region in order to provide a cleaning.
This will allow their city, which has folding components and is able to move through some type of hoover technology, to safety navigate.
We are given a guide. He is old and knows his way about. He shows the group the under city ecology of how the different bits of machinery react to the different intrusions about it. During the scouting, the group comes under attack by yet more automations. The guide wisely chooses to hide and allow the professionals to do what they’re best at.
In thanks the group is given jet backs. The chip Hugo has is not going to be kind to the Hub and to make a hasty escape the jet packs are a vital necessity. Would have been nice if the Aeon priest have provided such but…
More important than the jet packs however, is knowledge of how to get into the machine city without being spotted. This proves more useful as it allows the group to converse their powers.
In the main fight, a robed full-fledged machine, one that is apparently self aware enough to call itself “Legate Terrminus”, with a red flaring cloak sends out two mechanical lions and two giant man-machines to duel the group.
Drugah gains the enmity of the red robed robot who launches a bolt of energy from its sword and severs his arm.
Hugo manages to move into the red-robed machine man’s path and insert the chip. The two lock horns over it for several seconds. Hugo somehow loses a mechanical leg in the melee.
One of the man-machines shorts out the Hammer’s back pack.
Somewhere in it all, the Immortal uses her unique powers to take some of the other dead servants sent down by the surface, who aren’t completely decayed, into fighting the mechanical lions.
As the machine ruler goes down, Vexar gives Drugah something that sprouts him a new blue arm. In exchange, Drugah works on the Hammer’s destroyed back pack.
They use these back packs to escape from the city. The Hammer’s backpack lasts most of the way and when it gives out, he’s not surprised, only surprised to survive the fall itself thanks to his Sheen.
The machines however, have not given up the chase and follow. Taking a last stand, the group fights back to back until exhaustion threatens to overwhelm them. Armor and clothes stripped and ripped. Bolts and energy expended. Chain armor torn.
And then the sound of the pick up ship unleashing new levels of death that the machines can only retreat from.
Safety at last.

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Hugo research log part 2
Part 2

Today as I was working in my lab at the University, an acolyte of the Aeon Priesthood arrived and requested that I come to the Amber Church. I was lead into a room where I met my new companions who had also been summoned. The Amber Church has a lot of strange machines – chairs that conform and adjust to make us comfortable, lighting that follows us, lifts and tube that transport us at rapid speeds. We met with Aeon Priest named Timerius, who showed us a feed of the undercity where machines were building a cable to the upper city. Timerius seems to think that these machines are the cause the worm-code that infected the Aeon Priest that we stopped a couple of days ago. Timerius want us to go down to the undercity and destroy the computer that is controlling the all of the machines and also contact a group of enhanced humans who have compound in the undercity. If we fail the Mayor want to bomb the undercity, which may cause the city above to collapse killing everyone that isn’t floating in the balloon above. I can’t allow this happen because Melissa’s store will be destroyed.

The Aeon Priest introduced us to a cousin of Dameris called Vexor who wield a wooden sword lead us to down to a platform where we were surrounded by a bubble and whisk away to the landing platform for a large flying craft that will take us down to the undercity. After being security in by a lap belt, we lifted off and headed toward the undercity. During the flight to the undercity the pilot flew through an Iron Wind that dissolves the front of the craft with the pilots. I was focus to interface and guide the plane down, unfortunately the wind also had started to eat the engines and tail, so Drugah suggested we shutdown the engine and glide near a building and jump off. We all jump off and allowed the craft to crash into a nearby building, my superior structure allow me to take cosmetic damage. We descended the stair and began head toward the enhanced human compound, when we were attack by robot with swords and energy weapons. Vexor and Johnah dispatched the sword wielding robots while Dameris, Drugah and I destroyed the energy weapon robots. We finally made it to the compound where realized that the compound is movable because it is on anti-gravity unit (building, wall, everything) and also have embraced the use of science to enhance their body (everyone has numerera embedded in them, it is so great to be around people who are not afraid of enhancements). In exchange for help us, providing jet packs and agreeing to the link between the Aeon Priest, we must scout out 10 mile west so they can move their compound. The compound leader provide me with a spider bot that aids in repairing me, I took detailed photo of the spider bot so I can reproduce it. We teamed up with their head scout “scout master”, he was so anti-numerera I wonder why he keeps working with the compound and doesn’t just go off and die in a hole. On the way west we stumbled upon two heavy machines scaverage for materials, we were able to defeat them and finished scouting. We returned to the compound and gave them the news and were able to get a little rest before setting out to take out the computer.

We followed the map updated by leader of the compound and easily stealth into the main complex. We ran a crossed a few guard but quickly dispatched them. When we arrived at the correct level, the door open to room that I would expect to see in the aerial city above Qi, the room was layout a banquet hall with robot servant preparing and serving food (it was rotten because robot don’t eat). The head robot was dressed in light sheet of bedding with scandal and carried a one hand electric powered sword. His guards were two large robot cats and two electrified bodyguard. Johnah generated force hammer and attacked one of the robot and Vexor attacked the other robot bodyguards with easy. Johnah crushed his foe but managed to damage his jet pack in the fight. While Vexor dismembered his foe but lost his sword. Drugah attacked the one of the cats with use anti-gravity and broken columns. Dameris managed to get the two serving robots to attack the cat on him with trays and bowls (I must be caution around her as her power of persuasion seem to work equally well on human and robots). During the first few minutes of the battle, I scanned the room using my HUD for an access port to upload the shutdown code into the hub. My scan lead me to realize that head robot was wireless connect to the hub, I would need to upload the code using his connection. I told the party that I need to get close to head robot so they need to distract him, Drugah chucked a heavy column at him and was reward by being hit by a laser blast from the sword ripped his left arm clean off (when we get by to the university I will start working on a compound to regenerate that limb). I took this opportunity to leap on his shoulders and try to load the shutdown code into his arm. I shorted the leap and his blade field managed to cut through synth-skin and complete removed my right leg at the knee, but I did start the upload of the code. The head robot try to slow the upload but found it hard to “fight a war on two fronts” as spend the next several minute rewire his circuits. Once the upload was complete, the head robot lost control of the other robots and Johnah crush him with his force hammer. I work have like to have take the robot head back to the lab for study but was afraid that the worm code spread to upper city if I connect the head to anything in the lab. Drugah managed to fix Johnah jet pack and I grab my leg and flew from the window of the tower. Over the next day, we made our stand at the extract point and manage to hold out until the Aeon Priest craft arrived and took to the temple.

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The adventure continues

We met with the Aeon priest since he had summoned each of us individually, but we all got to him at the same time. He informed us that they found out that the source of the virus was coming from a point in the undercut. He informed us that the mayor’s plan was to just blow the undercut up and get rid of the problem. Unfortunately that would take out the rest of Qi except for those that live in the dirigibles, since the city is built upon the undercut. The plan is to go down there and destroy the access point using a disk that the Aeon priest gave us. He also asks us to locate this town to set up some form of diplomatic relations as well while we’re down there. The priest informs us that the undercut is mostly going to be out to get us and that they’ve sent multiple teams down there and none have returned.

We head down there with Vexor, who’s Dameris’s cousin. We hop in to a flying craft of some sort and on the way down, the ship is almost destroyed by a nano cloud. Thanks to some quick thinking by myself and the assistance of Hug, we’re able to save ourselves from being killed by the nano cloud. Unfortunately, the crash veered us way off track, but the town is now closer to us than the access point. We had planned on going to the town first and speak with them to also see if we can get assistance from them. On the way to the town, we’re attacked by a bunch of automatons. I had guessed, unfortunately correctly, that they used parts of the various teams that had been sent down previously.

We eventually make it to the town and we speak with the mayor. I inform him of what we’re doing down there and that we were seeking him as well. I let him know that if we fail the mission, the mayor will blow up the whole area, but that it was the Aeon priest who was keeping him at bay. The mayor decides to help us if we can scout ahead for them and find an area where they can move the town to.

We head out and try to sneak up on a pair of automatons, but some members of our group make too much noise and are attacked. We destroy the automatons and discover a vast area of destroyed equipment. I can only imagine what numenera might be in there!!! Unfortunately there’s no time to search since we have only 2 days to complete the mission. The lead scout informs us that we’re good to go and that we should head back to the town. We head back and the mayor gives each of us a jet pack as well as a disk with information for the Aeon priest to communicate with them.

We get to the access point and fight 2 warrior type automatons and 2 that have nano type powers. We eventually destroy them and hop an elevator that brings us up to the top. We come upon something so utterly bizarre! There’s more automatons and some of them fleshy. The head automation wields a large sword and a battle ensues. I ask Hugo to try and find where to put the disk in to shut down the access point. He eventually finds out that it’s inside of the sword. I try and smack the sword out of its hand with a large piece of stone but no luck. It then blasts me and blows my arm clean off. Hugo loads the disk in to the automaton’s arm and now it’s a race against the clock to shut it down before it self destructs. We succeed in stopping it from self destructing and escape and get to the rendezvous point where we are picked up and brought up.

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2-Book of the Dead

Oh happy day I get a summons from the conclave. I wonder if they know I brought that man back from the dead. If they do I might have to leave the city very quickly.

I see that everyone has been called. That means only one thing. They need something. What is he doing here? Vexor Mallus. This day keeps getting better. Damn hero’s.

The Aeon Priest Timerius says the boy from last night was a victim. Sure he was little bastard hurt me. He deserved everything he got.

Our Mission:
1. Stop the manchines from completing a connection to a higher level in the undercity. The mayor wants to blow it up but it seems that would kill lots of people.
2. Find a manchine village and make diplomatic relations with whomever runs the town. Hugo Hall will love this. He has to much metal, not enough useful parts.

We take some sort of flying machine well truth be told it was a falling machine down to the undercity. On the way down we hit a nanoswarm. I thought these pilots were supposed to be good. We all land, to understate it. My ward protects me a little but not enough.

After walking down many stairs we head off in the direction we think the town is in. Some sort of robotic creatures jump from the shadows and attack. Damn more metal. I am able to talk to one of the things, it is very confused but I am able to find out that the Hub re-purposed them. They were part of the teams sent down before us. After a small combat we head on.

We arrive at the city after about an hour of walking. Some type of scan happens and the mayor himself comes to talk to us. Once inside I see that the buildings are hovering and the place is clean. No wonder the priests cant locate the city, it moves. The mayor will help us if we do something for him. Yep more hero stuff. Seems two squads of his scouts have went missing and he wants us to scout another escape route.

The scout master leads us west, did i mention how much I hate this place. All metal, not enough meat. We find the way blocked by Automatons. The hammer makes to much noise after Hugo leaks on him. I say we remove the metal from him. It will fix the problem. Anyway a combat ensues.

Once back at the town we rest for the night, then head off to find the Hub. Once there we see that there are way to many for us to handle but the mayor has sent along a gift. A back way in. I wonder how he got the info? We get in through a acid pipe. Once inside we encounter some resistance but overcome it.

We reach the main room. Some metal machine calling itself Legate Terminus along with his backup decide to attack. I see that a few of the servants are recently past and a re still useful, I go and ask that they do my bidding.

Sometime during the combat Drugah Voss loses an arm and the Hammer loses his escape. Hugo figures out what he has to do to stop the machines. My new items are useful in stoping me from being attacked by some sort of golden Lion. Once all is said and done we leave through the window on or flying packs. The hammer falls at the last moment but we were close to the ground and he lives. Too bad I could use him.

Shit we are surrounded by metal, looks like Vex and I will be putting our names to the test. I cant really help but I do what I can. As the flying plane takes us out of the metal mess, I ponder what will happen next. As sleep take me I hear the voices of the dead. Sometimes they can be very beautiful.

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