Coriolis IC: PROLOGUE: THE OLD WOMAN

Zenith heralded the dawn of a new era – and the Horizon blossomed once again. Three dozen star systems, linked by fate and by the will of the Icons, wandered together towards a brighter future. But as the Emissaries arrived, the happy days drew to a close, and the Dark between the Stars slowly came creeping back.
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silverfoxdmt73
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Coriolis IC: PROLOGUE: THE OLD WOMAN

Post by silverfoxdmt73 » Tue Aug 02, 2022 7:32 am

Sounds, light and movement are all around you.

Wherever you turn, the bustle and commotion of the Ozone Plaza surround you. Loud vendors, babbling monkeys and chanting preachers compete for your attention. Overhead, old neon signs advertise products long since forgotten. A hovertaxi makes a rude landing at the edge of the plaza and is welcomed with curses and some rotten fruit. The air is heavy with the smell of burning plastic and adana barbeque. A lingering arrash mist shrouds the alley you are standing in.

Coriolis! Most would call it the heart of the Horizon, but the scene around you could just as well be from a bazaar on Algol or Dabaran. The arched hull high above is the only thing giving away that you are actually onboard a space station.

”You there!” An old woman with a raspy voice appears before you, bent over a cane and wrapped in many-colored shawls. Dark eyes deep in the wrinkled face meet yours. ”You carry the mark,” she hisses. ”Beware – she has returned. Death and darkness follow where she goes”. The hands clenching the cane suddenly start to tremble and she adds, ”May the Icons have mercy on you. You will need all the help you can get!”

She turns around and is immediately lost in the crowd. Before you have time to think about her words of warning, you are interrupted by a signal from your tabulas. You have all received a message.


Could it have been a dream, a vision appearing in the plaza or a real old woman with a warning? You decide. But the message is real.

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Bohemond
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Re: Coriolis IC: PROLOGUE: THE OLD WOMAN

Post by Bohemond » Tue Aug 02, 2022 7:16 pm

Fayz stops in his tracks, surprised by the old woman and her warning. He briefly looks around to see if anyone else in the crowd hears what the woman is saying, but when his gaze returns to her, she is already gone, as if she just vanished. The Firstcomer is briefly bewildered, not knowing if the woman was real, a vision, or maybe his brain telling him to lay off the Arrash for a while.

What mark? Fayz wonders. He briefly checks himself over, to see if there is anything visible on him. Instinctively, he pulls back the loose sleeves of his kaftan. On the inside of his right forearm is a tattoo of a jambiya with a flowing ribbon with the words "FIRST CUT FIRST BLOOD" on it. On his left forearm is another tattoo, a card hand consisting of a 10 and a 2.

When his tabula pings, he takes it out to read the message. After what he may or may not have seen, he could use something a little more grounded.

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Re: Coriolis IC: PROLOGUE: THE OLD WOMAN

Post by Muskrat » Tue Aug 02, 2022 7:48 pm

Image

Zaynab stares into the crowd where the old woman disappeared to. She is flummoxed, unsure what to make of the whole thing. She suddenly begins checking everything on her person, one part of her mind worried that was serving as a distraction for pickpockets. The other part of her mind is praying to the Icons to avert misfortune.

Zaynab's prayers are interrupted by the ringing of her tabula. She reaches for it--that, at least, is still there--and answers it. "Hello?" She know her voice is coming across as disoriented--not a good thing. She quickly pulls herself together and adds more smoothly, "How may I help you?"

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Re: Coriolis IC: PROLOGUE: THE OLD WOMAN

Post by RorytheRomulan » Wed Aug 03, 2022 4:16 am

Basil is broke and busy, but the warning plants his feet and makes him turn and listen to the doomsayer. The burly working man is about to open his mouth to retort on the topic of the Icons and mercy, when his tabula beeps. He jams a hand under his kurta to take it out and then looks back up, but the old woman is gone.

"Where... Tch. Crazy old bat. Missed my car." As he waits for the next one, he reads the message.

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ManWithDoor
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Re: Coriolis IC: PROLOGUE: THE OLD WOMAN

Post by ManWithDoor » Thu Aug 04, 2022 4:36 pm

Amir is, as always, dressed impeccably. His beard was freshly trimmed and shaped this morning, and his clothes look like they have just come from being professionally laundered. His tablet is not a consumer-grade model from the bazaar, but a professional security model with all sorts of nifty programs and safeguards. Some might see him as just a paranoid socialite worried about his wife intercepting messages from his mistress, but he has much more professional uses for it. He pulls up the message immediately.
Rule Number 12: "A soft answer turneth away wrath. Once wrath is looking the other way, shoot it in the head."

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silverfoxdmt73
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Re: Coriolis IC: PROLOGUE: THE OLD WOMAN

Post by silverfoxdmt73 » Mon Aug 08, 2022 6:34 am

Walking through the Ozone Plaza, Iskander weaves his way around the bazar, feeling just as at home as in the Conglomerate, the sounds and smells just the same as back on Kua. He is just about to cut through an alley to get to his destination when an old lady draped in brightly coloured shawls shouts at him, ranting about some mark and darkness.

"What are you...?" He begins, but by the time he recovers his wits, she is gone, the crowds swallowing her up, apparently oblivious to her outburst. He is about to tug on the shirt of one of those closest to him to find out who she was when the tabula in one of his pockets chimes and vibrates. Confused, he shakes his head and fishes out the small device, a red light flashing on one corner. He thumbs the screen and the message appears.



Image

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RorytheRomulan
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Re: Coriolis IC: PROLOGUE: THE OLD WOMAN

Post by RorytheRomulan » Mon Aug 08, 2022 8:31 am

"Well, well," Basil hums. "Death and darkness, eh." He savors the irony, then makes a mental note to be at the meeting place specified in the message, and starts outlining a pitch in his head for his agent on the Narzalus as he waits for the next car.

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Re: Coriolis IC: PROLOGUE: THE OLD WOMAN

Post by Muskrat » Wed Aug 10, 2022 7:52 pm

Zaynab reads the message, a little skeptical about an unknown person reaching out to them for an important mission. Still, it couldn't hurt to meet them and hear them out. And if there was really a crew in danger, she wanted to help them if she could.

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Re: Coriolis IC: PROLOGUE: THE OLD WOMAN

Post by ManWithDoor » Thu Aug 11, 2022 8:44 pm

Upon reading the message, he looks around to find Fayz in the bustling crowd. Finding him he heads over, tablet in hand. "My good Fayz, did you get a message as well? Appears that there's a hauler in trouble, and we're being contracted for a little rescue mission. Well, at least a professional tow, but hopefully the crew is intact and just radio-silent. Much more pleasant that way."
Rule Number 12: "A soft answer turneth away wrath. Once wrath is looking the other way, shoot it in the head."

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Re: Coriolis IC: PROLOGUE: THE OLD WOMAN

Post by Bohemond » Fri Aug 12, 2022 3:24 am

Fayz finishes reading the message as his colleague approaches. "From your lips to the Icons' ears, Amir," Fayz says, his hand reflexively touching the talisman hanging around his neck. "Not quite the artifact hunt we're accustomed to, but maybe the ice is very old. How much time do we have before third watch?" The ex-soldier walks alongside his shipmate as they travel through the bazaar.

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