Stargate: 1889

Invading the Mountain
Explore distant worlds, meet new people, and kill them

Stargate: 1889 21 June 2012
w/ Lady Cecile Featheringstonehaugh (“Fanshaw”),Adelaide “Addy” Edison, Capt Edouard “Ed” Roche, “Martha” Mbali (Zulu), Major Alexander Lycoll Marquisse of Waterford (& his Indian batman), Seamus O’Rourke & Emmeline Kelly O’Rourke (& her dog, Rowan)

Seamus O’Rourke has fallen ill and is delirious (player couldn’t make the game)

Mrs. O’Rourke went looking for a cave entrance, accompanied by Rowan. She followed tracks to an outcropping that was hiding an opening in the cliff. The tracks appeared to be both Martian humanoid and bestial. She also found more Martian insects for her collection.

Behind the outcropping, was a collapsed cave entrance. The soldiers began clearing the rubble, Martha heaved the larger ones aside. After a few minutes work, the way was opened.

The entrance was wide enough for three soldiers abreast (10’) but not quite as tall. Major took the lead. I followed him, holding my parasol and chalk. I marked the way, so we would be able to follow the route back. Martha, Capt Ed, and a couple squads stayed behind to guard our retreat route (Martha’s player wasn’t feeling well, so her husband took her home) and the captive High Martians|Martian. Mrs. O’Rourke had the most marvelous device; an electric torch. I must examine it closely. Although, perhaps, not right now.

The cave forked, to a partial cave-in. The tracks went the other way. The Major and a soldier climbed to the top of the cave-in to see what was visible, just past it. He reported another cave, about the same size, that turned sharply to the right.

We continued on and found another branching fork. This one was not collapsed. Mrs. O’Rourke said the tracks went both ways, but more to the right. The dust is also deeper. We went the less traveled route. The sand grew ever deeper, past our ankles, and occasionally even thigh deep. According to the others, it’s quite like the sand of the sandy ocean. Fascinating. It ‘splashes.’

From the back, there was a “Sir? Erk.” Looking back, the man went limp, dropped the rifle and collapsed; revealing a giant scorpion. Oh. Dear.

The Major shot the creature, and appeared to penetrate its carapace. A trio of soldiers fired soon after, another shot careened off its shell. It skittered toward them. Its tail spiked toward the major, ripping his jacket. Mrs. O’Rourke fired at it, but her round ricocheted off. Rowan bit a claw; his teeth scraping off the shell. Another trio of soldiers fired, and one of the bullets penetrated. I put up my parasol and fired a shot, another ricochet. Of the next trio of soldiers, two rounds hit and one left a crack in the shell.

Major shot another round, and ichor flowed from the creature’s shell. The next two shots finished it off.

The soldier was not dead, merely poisoned. I say, merely, but that is serious enough. He was very tired, but capable of walking. The dead creature appeared in all respects to be a normal scorpion, save its size, which was much like that of a bear’s.

Mrs. O’Rourke was doing something to it. She said that she extracted its poison sac, as it may be useful later. We spotted another tunnel to the right, still deep in dust. We retraced our steps to firmer ground and took the branch.

Major Lycoll noticed that one of the tunnels lead to a shaft, one that went up. He looked up it and it was unnaturally straight, although the walls were rough. It could be climbed, with gear.

Meanwhile, Cecile resting in amidst the other ‘slaves,’ thought she heard something like a gunshot. The flying Martians favored throwing weapons, not firearms. Every once in awhile a flying Martian would come into the tunnels, bark orders and then leave. After some thought, she considered the noise might have come from the tunnel the nonflyers warned her against. One whom she had befriended tried to pull her back, and she motioned that she had no plans to go further.

I thought I heard vague noises up the shaft. Mrs. O’Rourke said she definitely heard people, probably Martians, working.

We found a tunnel to the dusty lake that forked off our route. As we continued, we found another shaft up. According to Mrs. O’Rourke, more people were working at the top.

It looks like our only clear route is up one of the shafts. Since it’s closer, the one we are currently under is the route chosen. Major Lycoll said he thought he could climb up and then rig a hoist to pull Mrs. O’Rourke, Rowan and myself.

He went up with a soldier and they tied off a rope ladder. One of them hauled up Rowan, since a dog is not really suited to climbing a ladder.

Capt Ed rejoined us (thanks to Skype). The tunnel above inclined upward. We kept our eyes open for more scorpions, or bat analogs. The tunnel leveled off until it opened up to a huge crevasse. There is a narrow ledge on either side; one that narrows as it proceeded. It was not evenly narrow, but it was never very wide.

The Major eyed the distance, took one end of the rope ladder, gathered himself, ran, and jumped over it. He grabbed the edge with his fingers, gasped a moment and pulled himself up. Rowan started growling, which caught our attention; in time to see a scorpion scuttle away.

I pulled my parasol and let loose a shot, wildly. A trio of soldiers fired and all three hit, although only one of them did anything beyond marking up its carapace. The scorpion skittered over to the Major and grabbed him in one pincer. The Major, held over the crevasse by the creature, pummeled it. A trio of soldiers fired, cracking its carapace. Another trio fired, and one shot hit the Major while the other two shot the arachnid. The shot hit the Major’s shoulder. The next trio fired a round, and all three hit; continuing to crack the shell. Another shot hit the Major from the next trio, but it hit one of his straps. The next shot penetrated the scorpion’s eye, killing it. The Major grabbed the ledge as it let go him.

Meanwhile, Cecile perked up. She heard gunshots, definitely gunshots. As well as English voices. She moved toward the voices, trying to explain to Botto, her newfound friend, that her companions were nearby and she was moving toward safety. She managed to convince him to let her go, but he stayed behind. She kept a wary eye, since she heard gunfire, there must be something to shoot.

Major Lycoll tied the ladder to the scorpion’s corpse. At this end, the soldiers hammered spikes into the stone to which to fasten the other end. After some time, we all crossed. It was not secure footing.

The tunnel got quite steep. It ended at another shaft. Looking up, Major Lycoll spotted Cecile’s face. He inquired if she were in a safe location; if so perhaps there’s time for a spot of tea.

With a bit of assistance from Cecile, Major Lycoll got the rope ladder up and we ascended. Per the English assistance, we stopped for a spot of tea.

We heard something coming around the corner. Cecile instructed us not to shoot the nonwinged Martians; they’re friendly. It was the one she called ‘Botto’ and his wife. They put down their clubs, knelt and then genuflected and started chanting.

What has Cecile been telling them?! Major Lycoll shook their hands. She is able to communicate with them somewhat.

The unwinged Martian barracks have carved ladders, out of the walls themselves. The flyers seem unaware of the extent the unwinged ones have burrowed between levels. There’s only about a dozen ofr them, we should be able to take them with us.

I reloaded my parasol and we fetched Mr. O’Rourke from the upper caverns. We all went. I told Cecile all about the lake of dust we found farther down. We turned a corner and there were a quintet of the winged types, one of which was quite large. Mrs. O’Rourke said, ‘I already have one dead specimen and a living one. I don’t need another one, unless it’s female.’

Captain Ed pulled both pistols fired at the big one, spraying it with bullets. It fell back against the wall, smearing it with blood as it collapsed. The shots from a trio of soldiers took another one out of the combat. The next trio of soldiers killed a pair of them. Another trio of soldiers killed the last one.

I wonder if the other Martians heard that.

2 experience

We Meet Martians

Stargate 1889 7 June 2012
w/ Lady Cecile Featheringstonehaugh (“Fanshaw”), Adelaide “Addy” Edison, Capt Edouard “Ed” Roche, “Martha” Mbali (Zulu), Major Alexander Lycoll Marquisse of Waterford (& his Indian batman), Seamus O’Rourke & Emmeline Kelly O’Rourke (& her dog, Rowan)

The Martians attacked, flying down like flying squirrels, but with halberds in their feet. One blade sliced across the Major‘s jacket but he fended them off. Mrs. O’Rourke‘s horse reared up to fend off the creatures. One of them sliced through her jacket, enough to draw blood and managed to hurt her. Soldiers shot at one of them and brought it down. I managed to avoid two of the beasts, but the third one almost sliced my arm off. Apparently, up on the mooring deck, Martha and Capt Ed were also attacked and also took injuries. Well, Capt Ed did. Apparently Martha was too tough for them. Mr. O’Rourke was by himself and got badly hacked up, as all three of his attackers sliced into him.

More soldiers fired at the pair of Martians still attacking Mrs. O’Rourke, but only two had decent aim. Their aim was excellent though, as they shot another two down.

Soldiers continued to fire at attacking Martians. Mrs. O’Rourke’s horse grabbed one in his teeth and dragged it from the sky. Mrs. O’Rourke pulled her gun and shot another out of the sky. Capt Ed pulled out a pair of pistols and fired off two shots, managing to ground another Martian. Two of them sliced up my jacket, and me. Two Martians still attacking Capt Ed proved their mettle as one of them hacked across his torso. He twisted to avoid the blow, using his pistol to deflect it so it landed on another Martian, cutting it into two. Two of the ones attacking Martha were so demoralized, they completely missed her. The last one landed a blow on her metal arm, making a ringing noise, but not hurting her. Mr. O’Rourke braced himself (spent bennies & made two vigor rolls to survive, and did remarkably well), shaking off the effects of his wounds to shoot down another Martian. The Martian who hit his left arm knocked him and grabbed him to fly away. Maj Lycoll spotted the two Martians around the mooring point and shot one near Martha. Soldiers fired, following his lead, and did the same. Soldiers fired to assist me, trying to drive off the Martians and wounded one. Soldiers on the mooring point shot and killed the last two who had been attacking Martha. The rest of the soldiers in the temple fired, killing another one. Soldiers in the city hall fired at the Martians carrying off Mr. O’Rourke ,{Maj: How can the British save you again? Seamus: Stop! Or I’ll say stop again!} killing one.

Mrs. O’Rourke pulled her rifle and shot the last Martian up at the mooring point. Capt Ed looked out over the edge, looking for more Martians to shoot. Surprisingly, one of the Martians attacked a soldier, who managed to parry the blow. A Martian picked up Mr. O’Rourke and flew off. {GM as soldier: Don’t shoot, you might hit the Irish. Maj: Don’t shoot, you might miss the Irish.} The other Martians flew off. Mrs. O’Rourke stabilized one of the Martians.

I came out of the the temple, and the doctor came to my aid. There’s no sign of Mr. O’Rourke. Mrs. O’Rourke gave me a couple of pills, and I feel much better.

They were flying north, to the mountains. Cecile was noting their route, the mountains appeared to be cut at a 45 degree angle with a wedge taken out of it and balconies carved out of walls. They flew onto one of the balconies and barked at her. She thought it might actually be a language. She saw another one fly in with a bleeding Mr. O’Rourke. They were both shoved into a tunnel. {Maj: ha-ha. They tried to get a breeding pair. Cecile: They’re going to be mightily disappointed, then.} Cecile could not convince them to help her move him, and she was not strong enough to move him herself, without doing him further injury. Their captors barked louder down the tunnel and more Martians, these without the wing flaps, came out. A pair, male and female, picked up Mr. O’Rourke and carried him inside.

Once the guards left, the additional Martians (wingless) inside began to talk. Their language sounded vaguely like Coptic. {GM: When they worship the Norse goddess of the dead, they speak Helacoptic} They treated Mr. O’Rourke’s injuries. Cecile began writing in Coptic, trying to communicate with the Martians; ‘not an animal, greetings, etc {GM: please, there’s a tradition here, ‘take me to your leader.’}

Mr. O’Rourke eventually woke up. He was quite startled by the individual standing above him. Mr. O’Rourke groped his chest, “Oh, please, tell me they didn’t perforate me flask.” Meanwhile, Cecile was managing to communicate, roughly, with the Martians.

They told her, they are in a kragg, belonging to the Haaken. They themselves are barrax; slaves to the winged Martians. The winged ones brought in something that could, laughingly be called food. Cecile theorized it originated as some kind of fungus.

Eventually, one of the winged ones came to investigate the two new, odd, slaves. Cecile was taken out with the other slaves to work. They left Mr. O’Rourke since he was unable to do much in his condition. He spent his time observing the captors and slaves. He discovered hidden stairs to get from level to level, apparently unknown to the fliers. Cecile noticed that the levels go down very far, although the slaves apparently didn’t. She spoke to the slaves about this and they communicated something dangerous being lower down. She did see some animal waste.

Somehow, Mrs. O’Rourke managed to communicate with the one she captured. He indicated that her cousin and Cecile had been taken to the mountains to the north. She ‘convinced’ him to guide us.

We left one squad of soldiers barricaded in a building, along with the wagons and Mrs. O’Rourke’s creatures.

We traveled toward the mountains for hours, and we noticed some figures flying around the mountain’s southern tip. They look much like the ones who kidnapped Cecile and Mr. O’Rourke. Apparently, Mrs. O’Rourke was very convincing. Evening was descending as we approached. It was getting cold and while uncomfortable, it was not fatal.

2 experience

1st day on Mars

Note: Strength considered one die type higher for purposes of carrying.

When last we left our valiant explorers, Capt Ed had been grabbed by a large tentacle and was shaken by the experience. Mrs. O’Rourke and Martha were with him.

The tentacles reached out from under the sand and grabbed Capt Ed. They began pulling him under the ground. Martha jumped in throw her spear into the writhing attacker. Her spear pinned the tentacle to the sand, narrowly missing Captain Ed. Mrs. O’Rourke told Martha, “While that was warranted, something to keep in mind is that I have a chance to calm it down next time.” Then she pulled out her pistol and shot at the tentacle. Rowan ran over to snap at a thrashing tentacle and her horse reared up and kicked out at it. As it tried to pull Capt Ed under the sand, he managed to scramble free. He pulled his own gun and shot at it. Capt Ed gritted his teeth, pulled his pistols and hit it with one of them. The trio of soldiers opened fire, too, spraying the air with lead. A trio of soldiers still by the pyramid shot the tentacles and then Major Lycoll shot it. I heard some screams and shooting from outside. Major Lycoll was saying something inspirational and stirring.

Martha saw some blue stuff coming up out of the sand from where her spear was stuck into it. She pulled her spear out and it was coated with blue. Mrs. O’Rourke took a step back and got a good shot, with her merciful bullet. Rowan snarled and snapped while Mrs. O’Rourke’s horse danced around and landed on it with both front hooves. Mr. O’Rourke pulled out a pistol and took another chunk of flesh off the beast. Capt Ed shot his Colt Peacemaker, whittling away at it. Trio of soldiers, taking heart from Maj Lycoll’s words blasted away at the beast and the tentacles stopped writhing.

Mrs. O’Rourke told us that she would appreciate the chance to calm and capture animals. She took samples and in her professional opinion it’s a solitary, sessile, ambush predator. The biology appears to be copper based.

The others pulled it out of the sand and it was a large, tentacles; about the size of a rhino. It had no eyes, dry skin, internal carapace, and only six tentacles.

The light dimmed fairly early. Mrs. O’Rourke treated Captain Ed’s sucker wounds. While they were busy at that, I realized the pedestal is some kind of device to control the stargate. However, apparently, we’re missing the last symbol needed to return home.

After sunset, the sky turned dark blue. How unexpected, after the pink sky of the day. The temperature got very cold; very desert-like, or so I’ve heard. A tiny moon was visible in the night sky. Mrs. O’Rourke kept busy doing something to the creature’s remains. Surprisingly, the compasses work and the other navigational equipment seem to work as well.

Some of the soldiers were entrenched at the entrance while Cecile and I studied, per our respective specialties. I asked Cecile, during her studies of the symbols on the walls, to keep her eyes open for the missing symbol.

The next day, the sun rose in what we’ll call the east. Maj Lycoll said it was a 12-hour night.

Mrs. O’Rourke estimated the city in the distance was about 60 miles away and would probably take two to three days to reach. She recommended we start early in the morning, to spend as little time as possible in the open at night. There are still no clouds in the sky. The city is northeast, with mountains behind it. To the southeast was a dune sea, that was apparently moving. There’s another mountain range more northerly.

The atmospheric condensers were struggling to produce. Apparently, the air is extremely dry. Fortunately, we did bring extra water.

While Cecile and I were busy studying, the scouting party went out to look around the area. Mrs. O’Rourke went looking for more life forms. Maj Lycoll took his sporting rifle. Martha took her spear. It’s doubtful that she really needs anything else.

We looked for more rooms, but only found that one large room with columns, footed on one end by the stargate. It opened out into the desert.

Mrs. O’Rourke said there was a paucity of plants and anything larger than insects. She did find a couple lizards near the temple, but little else.

Surprisingly, Mr. O’Rourke found a moving hieroglyph. I may have underestimated his intellect. There are circular panels that as they turn form new hieroglyphs. I called Cecile over to see if anything looks familiar. She pointed out the form that would say ‘opening’. When she did so, it moved back and to the side. Inside, a series of lights, soft and apparently electric, along the floor illuminated the way.

A side room was revealed. Cecile grabbed a torch and we entered. There’s a couple statues of some pagan deity (Nefitis) and large stelae filled the rest of the room. Each one had six glyphs. There’s a least a couple dozen of these stelae.

Mr. O’Rourke was saying something behind us. I have no idea what he was mumbling about. Apparently, there’s a mummified body. It’s of no concern, it’s dead after all. Mr. O’Rourke said the body had some oddities, but most notable was the large gaping hole in it. And he found some kind of firearm with it, which he promptly concealed.

The soldiers carrying the body attracted the Mrs. O’Rourke’s attention. She was quite pleased with the discovery. According to her, it’s obviously not human. Its features more elongated and its ears had frills, eyes with second eyelids. However, it’s approximately human-sized and looking at the genitalia compatible with humans. Something hot burned the large hole in its chest. It’s also mammalian and been dead a hundred years.

{O’Rourke: imagine, arming the Americans as they march across Europe, burning Britain.
Maj Lycoll: Poor Yank, he doesn’t realize there’s an ocean in the way}

The strip of lights appear to be orichalc, glowing. Cecile and I want another day to examine the secret room so Mrs. O’Rourke, Capt Ed, Martha, and Maj Lycoll wanted to go look at the ocean of sand. Martha diced with the soldiers while Mrs. O’Rourke looked at the body. She packed it up for storage and transport to take home.

The next morning the scouts left extra early to get to the beach. They theorized it would take them about half a day’s light to get there. Halfway there, one of them spotted a structure, slightly off their route. The structure was the size of a decent-sized merchant ship.

It appeared to be a grounded ship, stuck point first in the sand, except the bottom doesn’t look like it’s suitable for water. It would be very unsteady in the water and had no rudder. A couple outriggers were equipped with propellers. It had the structure of an airship, but no attachments for the balloons or other flotation devices.

They entered through a hatch on the deck. In the middle, they found complex equipment. Capt Ed said it was very sophisticated machinery. They found the controls but there were some kind of missing fuel cells. There was a miniaturized analytical engine affixed to the controls.

They reached the ocean of sand and saw waves of sand washing up against the sandy beach. The moving sand tingled and the compasses were moving erratically.

{Maj Lycoll: obviously, the sand moves the propellers of the ship which powers it and it uses sails to guide it. Obviously.}

They all were picking up static electricity charge the longer they stayed. The sand rolled in waves as far as the eye could see. Mrs. O’Rourke took some samples of the sand. It reacted to motion like water.

Martha had to open her arm to get the dust and sand out of it. They returned to the pyramid.
{comments about Cecile’s dust ionizer, to keep the dust out of her tea, It’s only civilized.
Kelly: I’m Irish, I don’t have to be civilized.
Maj Lycoll nodded agreeably.}

Mrs. O’Rourke handed me the bottle of sand. Fascinating. She also said something about some airship.

Each grain appears to have its own static charge, repelling the other grains. Since, they never touch, they slide like satin and silk.

The next day, we left for the city. Major Lycoll had to convince Cecile it was better for her to pack her things rather than have ‘the lads’ pack it.

On the second day, we say a herd of animals in the distance. They look a bit like very skinny antelopes, with goat horns. They look quite starved, although grazing on some kind of brambles. Mrs. O’Rourke suggested there might be a water seep there. She asked us to wait while she got close enough to capture one. Some of them bounded off as she approached, but she got close enough to get a harness on one. She bribed it with food and it calmed and walked alongside her. Unlike antelopes, they had broad paws with vestigial claws. Like antelopes, they’re herbivores, but oviparous. The poor private made to tend it; the musk from it made quite a stink.

The seep was slow, but enough to restock a little of the water supplies. Mrs. O’Rourke collected samples of the vegetation. The plants stored water in their roots. The roots could be shredded to harvest the water. However, the water had to be well strained, as one private proved by trying to grab phantom butterflies all afternoon.

We reached the city by sunset. It’s in ruins and deserted. It had two spires on two plateaus, separated by a desert-choked canal. It’s been deserted for a couple hundred years. One set of spires were red stone with blue veins while the other were milky quartz with coppery veins. There’s ten feet of sand on the roads.

Cecile said it appeared the people had been gone for a couple hundred years. Mrs. O’Rourke said there’s life, wildlife. There’s a pigeon equivalent. The city is in excellent shape, considering how long it’s been deserted. There’s signs of advanced technology and that canal looked carved, not natural. Capt Ed said he saw mooring posts on some of the towers. He climbed in through a window and climbed up toward the top of a tower with mooring posts, with some soldiers and Martha to keep him company. Martha and Maj Lycoll spotted defensive fortifications and whoever left, left in an orderly fashion. Cecil says the city was a few thousand years old, and in remarkably good shape. She found some writing to copy and take notes. She also found docks near the canal. Maj Lycoll found signs of recent occupation, as in the past few months. He found boot prints, animal prints, and camp sites. He asked Mrs. O’Rourke to take a look at the animal prints to identify them. She said the prints were lizard-like, bipedal and very large; horse-sized. She guessed that they were mounts. Cecile said there appeared to be a temple in the center of the southern plateau (milky quartz buildings), and apparently set out like the temple at Karnak, but with statues of Set.

And the prints seemed to be less than a hundred individuals and headed east out of the city. They may have been following the canal. The desert was less harsh, the closer to the mountains. They also found quadruped prints, corral, bones and broken harness. Some of the quadrupeds might be the antelope-like but others were rhinoceros-sized.

While the Major and Mrs. O’Rourke were looking around, Rowan started growling.

At the top, Capt Ed found mooring ropes, in remarkably good shape. He also found smaller skiffs. They had no power supply and were weathered. They had been in a shelter and each could hold 2-3 people. He figured out most of the controls, even without power.

Rowan looked up and growled. They saw four figures flying/gliding down. They had their arms out and were holding halberds in their feet.

Cecile was grabbed by one and lifted into the air. More landed on the mooring platform with Martha and Capt Ed to attack.

2 experience points

It Begins (May 10, 2012)
1st, meeting

Stargate: 1889 May 10, 2012
w/ Lady Cecile Featheringstonehaugh (“Fanshaw”) (& her secretary, Eleanor ), Content Not Found: adelaide-edison, Captain Edouard “Ed” Roche, “Martha” Mbali (Zulu), Major Alexander Lycoll, Marquisse of Waterford (& his Indian batman), Seamus O’Rourke & Emmeline Kelly O’Rourke (& her dog, Rowan)

At Revelstoke Castle in Shropshire, and some interesting individuals arrive [everyone other than the Major and myself. The Major’s lancers have been drilling in the courtyard. And Cecile, along with [[:Dr. Catherine Langford]] is one of the new arrivals. How lovely.

General Allen Baldwin is the commander of the castle [think Sean Connery in Man Who Would Be King]. Once everyone the General was expecting has arrived, we are gathered in the library meeting room. Major Quinn was the recruiter of the British individuals [balding, almost 40, sideburns to mustache] and Colonel Falconer, recruited the Americans [burly, outspoken ~50 year old Texan]. Maj Geoffrey Boothroyd (the quartermaster) is also present. Maderu is the Generals’ Aide (Evie’s mentor in The Mummy), Major Wyndham, Dr. Clive Trevelyn and Dr. Catherine Langford are another four individuals at the table. Finally my uncle and Nikola joined us. Gregory Mitchell, representing the Vanderbilt family and finally Charles Babbage in his life-chair.

{joke about Capt being a Captain again, ‘so we can shoot him, right?’} {joke about Tesla shooting looks at my character ‘shocking’, ’keep up with current events}

General Baldwin began the briefing, reviewing Littlefeld’s archeological discovery about 20 years ago in the Sinai Peninsula; one that was kept secret. Writing and artifacts were found that indicated extra-terrestrial origin. They had to be excavated and removed to England, due to the French’s construction of the Suez Canal.

Using Uncle‘s kinetoscope, they showed images of the Gate. The British have been studying it ever since. Recently, breakthroughs have been made. It creates an opening through the ether to another similar device. Apparently, some of the individuals are less familiar with science than I expected. They didn’t even know that light travels.

There are 39 separate glyphs and it takes 6 glyphs to activate it. They appear to be related to constellations. Cecile’s research may be the key to unlocking the activation. Major Lycoll objected to sending ladies. Cecile made appreciative noises but made him aware that she is quite prepared, as she has been on expeditions before. Major Quinn told Lycoll his role was to protect the academics.

{Buckaroo Bonzai reference}

We went to the basement to see the Gate. Cecile sent her servant, Eleanor to get her latest notebook. Capt Ed went to look at the Gate; looks like stone, feels like metal, doesn’t scratch.

I am trying to explain the gate and the Tesla coils to Martha and Ed. Surprisingly, they almost understood. Until Ed made a reference to shoveling coal.

Dr. Wyndham began inserting the cards into the Babbage Engine and the Tesla coils powered up and the Gate rings spun. The glyphs activate one by one, until all 6 were lit. And then nothing.

Dr. Langford reported they’ve been trying the glyphs randomly and tried the ones found in Sinai. Cecile brought up a recent find., one made by another archeologist.
Capt Ed brought up trying to use a 7th symbol. Cecile examined the notebook of the previous attempts.

Capt Ed tossed a scrap of charcoal through and, no surprise, nothing happened. Cecile brought out a sketch of an amulet, it has a 7th symbol on the back. It has the same 6 attempted on this date.

We took out a plaque corresponding to the 7th symbol. Capt Ed took it and shoved it into the Babbage Engine. The entire gate lit up and whoosh of light and energy came out of the gate. It hit part of the curtain wall, dropping a stone on Tesla’s foot. The Gate was filled with a shimmering layer of light.

Tesla’s ankle is broken so I’ll be chief scientist on the expedition. Ed stuck a broomstick and pulled it back out. Martha stuck her hand into it. She said it went completely numb and couldn’t feel a thing. I can actually see the etheric fluctuations. How fascinating.

Dr. Medino will be the physician for the expedition. We’ll be leaving day after tomorrow. No one is going through until the expedition is ready. Capt Ed wants to go through now to test it. He’s fishing with a rope and hook, until the hook got stuck. Major Lycoll sent for guards, just in case. Finally, the hook just wouldn’t come back.

When the gate is shut off, the rope was cut; cleanly. Important safety note: be completely through before the gate is shut off.

The next day I had to stop researching long enough to do some packing and preparations. There’s 10 of us, the dog,and 21 troops, and the physician. There’s five wagons to hold everyone’s gear.

The Major and some of his troops lead the way. Mrs. O’Rourke and Capt Ed followed them. The Major and Mrs. O’Rourke rode through. I stumbled and fell when I made it. We’re covered with rime, which melts. The gate is one way, as proved by the hook sitting in front of the gate. Capt Ed tried to toss the grappling hook and it just fell to the other side, but not through the Gate.

We’re in a large stone room and it’s warmer than Castle Revelstoke. There’s an old slanted table with a red dome in the center. The table is covered by glyphs.

Major rode out the door and said there’s a desert with a pink sky outside. We’re in a pyramid; a temple to Set, Lord of the Red Earth and the Egyptian name for Mars.

Mrs. O’Rourke, Rowan, Capt Ed and Martha went outside to take a took, and Major Lycoll sent 3 soldiers with them. Mrs. O’Rourke was collecting lichen and insect samples. Capt Ed smashed an insect and Mrs. O’Rourke yelled at him. He was quite startled and didn’t notice the tentacles, until they attacked him.


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