Characters in this post
View character profile for: Cassandra Jones
View character profile for: White Wolf
View character profile for: Jay Chrysler
View character profile for: Candice Kane
View character profile for: Dr Jade Black
View character profile for: Jamie Eastlick
The three were untied and dumped into a large constructed cage. A lid closed over the top of them and they were left alone. It was possible to see the guards, pointy jabbing sticks and all milling about the entrance as well as the bloodied steps of the pyramid in the centre. It was shady and dark, the cage built into one of the hillsides near the great central pyramid. Jay rubbed at his ribs.
"What now." Jade said, looking about there were several others in the shadows. "We aren't alone..." She added quieter.
"They want to kill us to bring back their God." Cass grumbled.
"Didn't you... urm.. program Holly? Can't you get him to... Urm... Fix this?" Jade asked. "Maybe if we show them that we are emisaries of their God then... I dunno... They'll either kill us sooner or let us go?" Jade suggested, not really sure of the history between Cass, Holly and the Huzzards. She hoped that she'd hit upon an idea though, as it might just be their only ticket out of there alive...
Cass and Jay regarded her in silence for a moment
"That might j-" they both began in unison before Cass broke off with an embarrassed shake of her head "That might just work" Jay finished
"We'll need something to prove our divine status" Cass peered up out of the cage at the dimly lit Arboretum outside "If we can somehow shut the emergency lighting off in this sector or control the weather or something..."
The sounds of someone's terrified screams briefly interrupted her before they abruptly ceased and a great cheer rose up from the Huzards crowding the plaza at the base of the pyramid
"What just happened?" Jay asked, frowning as he moved forward to look out of the cage
"They're killing us you idiot!" a woman's voice snapped from near the back of the cage, making him start and turn to regard their fellow captives, while a corpse bounced limply down the pyramid's blood besmirched and torchlit steps
"Shit" Cass croaked, quickly looking away from the scene of the Huzards crowding the shadowy plaza below, falling on the body and tearing it apart.
Flanked on either side by a couple of hulking but badly damaged cyborgs, a woman limped out into the gloomy half-light. She had short blonde hair and was of middling height but painfully thin, the pale skin of her neck and upper torso, pierced by a multitude of cables and tubes.
"They're killing us one by one and then throwing our bodies down those steps" the she continued angrily "They're doing it because they hope their God will listen to their prayers and bring back the daylight" she paused to shake her head, her features twisting with revulsion "These creatures grow fat on the flesh of hundreds of our dead"
"I told you we should have organised a pogrom" Cass grated, making Jay turn to glare at her
"Not helping" he snapped
"What is this place?" the woman demanded "Why are we here? What has happened?"
"We're aboard the Blue Dwarf" Jay soothed "This is the arboretum - It's a... sort of a garden deck" he explained, seeing the woman frown at the unfamiliar word
"You were bought aboard by Plisken" Cass interjected "Those creatures are Huzards and we're here to stop them"
The woman's expression darkened "I've seen this Plisken," she growled "but I've never spoken to him. Where is he now? He's got a lot to answer for"
"We think he's dead" Cass shrugged, ignoring Jay and Jade's glances - it was easier this way
"For bringing us here to this hell," rumbled one of the hulking brutes flanking the woman "I would desecrate his corpse"
"Life wasn't all so wonderful before" the woman snapped, glancing sharply up at him.
"No," he retorted angrily "but at least we weren't about to be murdered and eaten by savages!"
"Phteven" the other massive brute lisped as he laid a heavy cybernetic hand on his companion's shoulder "Don't do this..."
"We need to get out of here" the woman turned back towards the Dwarfers "We need to stop this - Can you help us?"
Another cyborg, a man this time, was hauled out from one of the cages adjacent to theirs amidst much shouting and wailing to be dragged, screaming in terror, towards the pyramid steps.
"Christ - We have to stop this" Jay was aghast "Cass? - Can you access the emergency lighting or do anything to help?"
Wordlessly unclipping her terminal from its housing on her nanosuit, Cass flicked it on and squinted down at the screen; the holographic display dully illuminating the cage around her.
"Be quick" Jay insisted "I don't want that screen to attract attention"
"There's nothing I can do to help that guy" Cass murmured after a moment, her fingers dancing across the display while the others looked on in silence "So many of our systems are still down..."
"Can you do anything!?" Jade asked.
"Anything at all?" the female cyborg echoed.
"No but Jamie and White Wolf can" Cass tapped away at her terminal "It'll take about thirty minutes"
"That's way too long" Jay muttered darkly.
"To me" Jamie gasped, pulling hard on the grav-sled, trying to manoeuvre it around the corner in the corridor.
The atmospheric scrubber might well have been rendered weightless by the sled, but it still had inertia and it was proving to be a bugger to move anywhere.
"To you" White Wolf responded, his paws clamped tight on the sleds handles as he in turn tried to slide the rear end of it around and towards Jamie.
"No, no - You're doing it wrong!" Candice scolded "It needs to come to you first Wolfie and then to Jamie"
"Yes - To you"
"To you?" Jamie called from the other side of the scrubber
They puffed and panted and strained for another few minutes before White Wolf's right cheek suddenly quivered involuntarily.
"Oh, thank heavens for that" the massive hamster grumbled, temporarily ceasing his exertions while he dragged his A-Temp pad out from his cheek pouch and wiped the flecks of spittle off it with one paw.
Bzzzt. It vibrated again.
"That's an incoming call" Candice said helpfully as Jamie squeezed back around the sled to join them.
"I know what it is" White Wolf glared at her "What I'm more concerned about is: who and how?"
"You'd better answer it and find out"
White Wolf gave the woman a stern stare before doing as she had suggested and answering the call.
"Miss Jones" he said a moment later, his voice tinged with weary resignation "Why does it not surprise me that you're somehow able to compromise the security of this pad and make calls to it?"
"Brittany maintains a very keen interest in the Roo" Cass said smoothly "It's not beyond reason that she might have cracked your encryption
"Now," she continued "We need your help; hundreds of these cyborgs have been already killed by the Huzards and it's starting to look like it'll be our turn soon"
"We're human" someone nearby to Cass insisted "Not just 'cyborg'!"
"I'm transmitting a power routing schematic" Cass pressed on, ignoring whoever it was that had just spoken "This is really quick and dirty, so Jamie should be able to dramatically improve on it.
"I want power routed form a Starbug or anything with a functioning reactor, down to the Arboretum so we can reset the emergency lighting and plunge the place into darkness - I want the Huzards to feel like Holly's displeased with them and I want us to seem like we're the emissaries of God so we can get them on our side for once!
"Do you think you can manage that?"
White Wolf shrugged and glanced questioningly at Jamie "Think you can do that?"
"Yeah, I reckon so" Jamie nodded appraisively at the data schematic as it scrolled down the screen "It might take an hour or two"
"Thirty minutes" Cass insisted "Much quicker if you can - If you don't manage it, we are really in the shit!"
"We'd better step to it" White Wolf and ended the call before stuffing the pad back inside his cheek.
Twenty minutes ticked slowly by; during which time, more and more cyborgs were dragged from the cages and away into the fire-lit gloom to be sacrificed atop the great pyramid-temple.
"This is intolerable" Jay snapped, ceasing his pacing of the floor for just a moment "What's taking them? - Can you call them again Cass?"
"They'll be three minutes further on from where they were, the last time we called - " she was about to say something else but a large Huzard, heading a squad of braves, hauled the cage door open to admit another couple of its similarly burly cohorts, each armed with spears
"Who's first?" they snarled
White Wolf / Jamie - the very bare bones of a plan there - Can you improve on it? What problems do you encounter? Do you succeed in time or do the Huzards or any of the other more dangerous denizens of the ship attack while you're on?
Jade / Jay - Who's first? What happens?
Phil / Artemis / Boyd / Jackie / Jox - No need to be shy guys - feel free to write yourself in or get in touch if you need any suggestions :)