• If you were supposed to get an email from the forum but didn't (e.g. to verify your account for registration), email Wes at [email protected] or talk to me on Discord for help. Sometimes the server hits our limit of emails we can send per hour.
  • Get in our Discord chat! Discord.gg/stararmy
  • 📅 May and June 2024 are YE 46.4 in the RP.

RP [S.E.A.R.C.H. Initiative] Ch.1: Hanya Secrets

"Did anyone else notice that? I swear, something moved on those stones. Like a chameleon."

Seidreainne's gun whipped to where she thought she saw something move. It couldn't have been paranoia; as tense as she was she never wasn't in control. That's how she stayed alive for this long, by not jumping at or entertaining the darker coners of the mind. Was this some sort of trick? Some kind of illusion of rock dwelling mold or some organism she hadn't seen?

"If we can all listen to the little one and not stuff our hands where they aren't needed, I need to know if anyone else has seen any odd movements. I'm not the superstitious kind but somehing is very unusual about these rocks."
The moment that Gunny picked up the jewelry things began to shake as Igia looked at her "Drop that!" She orders but her orders were gone in the void as it didn't matter any longer as the side stones started to pop open from the statues in the wall as sand started to pour into the room on a rather fast rate "For damn sake don't pick anything up is not that difficult of an order..."Igia shrugs as she looked around "The room will be filled in less than 15 minutes..."She looked back at the exit as it closed just off with a large block of the door that was not going to move an inch "Of course..." She looked around "Find a way out of here now!" But there was not much to go on, the open sealing was a way too high, the wall painting was not giving many clues, yet those mirrors were standing out and doing not much value to the given surrounding.

The door had three crystals on it, top-level and the sun on top was shining bright. The jewelry in Gunny's hand changed when she would look at it to an old metal junk that was worth nothing. How this tricky was possible is yet to be discovered, the smell of home was gone and yet the enemy was crawling around on top as Sedreainne would see figures in the top but unable to identify what it was. Time was running out.
"Covering the top, everyone else find a way out!" Seidreianne felt fear creep into her lungs and up her spine. They were now rats trapped in a cage with what could possibly well be the metaphorical vipers. Were they the ones who initiated the traps?

She slung both of her submachine guns and the hefty rifle of hers was swung over her shoulder, taking aim at the shrouded figures. Loudspeaker active, she blared to them.

"If you're responsible for this, you're very much being buried in this room." With the authoritative booming of her speakers, her intent was clear and with targeting modules and a hunter's instinct, she zeroed in on their movements, beginning to scan the surface to see if maybe there were some hidden mechanisms up there.

"I can leap up there; powered legs, but I don't suppose anyone has any rope? May be a last solution but we may need to climb."
In'anna emitted a low whimper as she saw just what was happening. The small Daur began dry washing her hands while her tail quivering. She'd said not to touch anything! It would have been a miffed moment for her had their lives not be put on the line. Bottom lip quivering, In'anna looked too and fro, the panicked young woman taking stock of what was in the room. A painting along one wall, a hole in the ceiling. Mirrors and crystals. Her tail went rigged with terror as she began trying to put two and two together.

The poor little fox had thought her first dig would've been a grand, but relatively safe venture. But, it seemed as if that was right out the door. In'anna, looking with fear in her eyes shambled over to the mirrors, then the ceiling, and then to those crystals. What the heck was she missing?
Last edited:
Gunny blinked at the necklace as it changed back into old junk. Whatever strange allure it had held was fading, leaving her with a faint sense of longing that she found discomforting.

She shook her head to clear it, taking in the room. "I've got some rope," she said, getting back into action. She pulled it out of a pack that sat on her lower back and tossed it to the weapons expert. "Do what you need to do."

As for her - she was in no position to stop the sand. She readied her rifle instead, scanning the room and trying to get a good look at whatever these shadows were. "Everyone, let's form up. Try not to trip and get stuck in the sand - it's gonna keep getting harder to pull you out. Horus, use that big body of yours to keep our small friends here safe. Seidreainne, if you can get up there, go for it. Maybe there's a key to shutting off this sand."

Gunny looked around, thoughtful. "If it looks like there isn't some magic save our butts button up there, we may need to go through the door or walls. Igia, In'anna, any ideas about what we could blow up and not bring the place down around us?"
Horus had been relatively quiet, finding every sign of encroaching danger to put him on edge, even as he was asked to fruitlessly look for items of interest in the previous chambers. The large man was a learner, and a warrior, but this trip had been a decent of a reminder of just how alien these worlds were to his kind. But that thought mattered little as he made his way with the group, unable to stop what had triggered this trap, looking for threats without and not within.

As the sand poured in, the tallest of the bunch arguably, he had a higher sight line which could prove helpful in the situation. Silver eyes scanning the interior of the hall, even as his rifle was trained up with his extra set of arms, searching for any target who popped their head over the edge above. His other arms were not idle as the Tsumi scooped the little daur up to the raised safety of his shoulder, the free hand scanning the beam of his flashlight over the walls. As it passed over the gems on the door, Horus heard an audible click as it did. But a depress click was heard as the beam left it, and he thought. "The gems, they're reacting to the light, like switches. In'anna, can you shine your light on them as well? I'll keep you covered."
A general panic was present in the room now being filled slowly by sand. Igia rather stayed calm and was looking around for any finds that could help them at their escape. Her eyes refocused on the gems at the door above that Horus had mentioned "Good work big boy" She managed to jump up and stay on top of the sand that was getting higher every second that they didn't take any action. She grabbed her side flashlight and turns it quickly on aiming at the door "Come on ..." She heard the same clicking sound that came when Horus did it "It is the trick! I need two more flashlights on those gems!"

Meanwhile, something was crawling upwards on top of the outside, a vague shadow figure moved over the edge as cracking sound was heard now from above. Without solid warning, a large rock came tumbling down, taking some of the mirrors with it as Igia quickly jumped out of the way to safety. Igia quickly aimed her flashlight again as the click was heard again.
"Oh you bastard spawn have done it now!" Seidreainne called out, dodging to the side as fragments of stone, some as large as couches, slammed near her. Her weapon tracked the shadows, enhanced imaging seeing through stone and noticing that the area around the ceiling was partialy hollowed.

Perfect; that meant the accelerated slugs would have an easier time finding the flesh of whoever was dropping the rocks.

The weapon finally spoke not with a crack or a roar but a metallic shriek. A throat of reactive metal filled with a current of alien energy, willing a metal slug forth faster than the eye could see and with more force than old stone could withstand, pulverizing an entire chunk of the ceiling into tiny fragments in a blink. Dust rained down before another shriek and crash, another portion of the ceiling smashed into atoms by a hyper-acclerated round.

Slinging the weapon over her shoulder, her spring-loaded legs bent and kicked off and she soared into the hollowed out skeleton of the room, feet scraping on dusty stone as her submachine gun swept about for possible threats. It seemed the unseen shadows had backed off for now.

A rope soon fell over the ledge, secured against some of the sturdier rocks she found.

"I'd start climbing if I were you!" She called down.
In'anna, the poor little fox had been in a mad panic as shots were fired, her dig mates yelled, and the room was filling up. At the sound of the gunfire, her ears almost flattened themselves against her head even as her eyes closed. She positively quivered in a state of panic before the sonorous voice of the four-armed, alien Horus and the steady chattering of Seidreainne's weapon finally stopped. The pitiful Daur, still shaking opened one eye to a slit, then the other. Her ears slowly inched upward as her little heart pounded madly in her small torso. She looked up, hands held together just under her chin.

Her flashlight? In'anna unclasped her hands long enough to fumble on her belt for the implement. The reassuring heavy-duty plastic body of the device hanging from a clasp on her belt found a hand suddenly wrapped around it. She undid the clasp, shaking still, the timid creature pressed the rubber button and the added illumination of her flashlight at one of the shiny crystals with a shaking hand.
Last edited:
Gunny considered the rope, then Igia and Horus' words. There was still enough time to try the mission leader's plan.

If it all started to go to shit, she could always grab one or two of the tiny fox-people and make for the rope.

"Seidreianne, keep us covered. We're going to give the puzzle box thing a shot. Be careful up there," she said, her gruff voice coming across as more confident than she felt. The notion that some ancient civilization would have set up a trap of this scale and then set a bunch of flashlights as the key was...

Well, it didn't bode well for the rest of their time in the temple, either way.

With a click the light on her rifle lit up and she beamed it at the last of the four gems. She hoped that Igia was right- and that whatever this was supposed to trigger, it didn't make things worse.
Horus gave a slightly annoyed grunt at the rope before him, sure it would most likely even hold up to his 8ft bulk of muscle and armor. Still, all the more reason to hope that this was indeed the key, and that the door would open, he didn't see himself getting out any other way then scaling the walls. Sure, such a feet would be arduous and rough, but damn was he lucky to be born with four arms. The warrior , held the fox on his shoulder protectively, a separate arm raised to shield her from the rock fragments.
Inner Temple

The sand was coming from everywhere, the rumble that came down was supposed to finish the job. Yet it didn't and the flashlights hit the gems. Clicking sounds were heard, now even louder than normal. The room made sounds all around as certain art pictures changed, their form, their standing as If it was a story to be told. The sand stopped and even slowly started to disappear through the cracks of the floor as they hit the floor. Igia took a deep breath as she looked at the door that clicked open, slowly falling downwards to the ground revealing a new passage "Lets....not touch anything anymore please" She suggested as Igia got up to her feet and dust herself up.

Getting her own pistol out as she aims to the ground and knew that the loose 'stones' were not force of habit in this temple. Moving into the hallway hopefully followed by her security team. The temple beyond here was untouched, no footprints, no traps triggered as Igia would notice the dust under her feet "Be careful there might trap here and there" She pointed out, Igia moved towards a new opening slowly checking the walls as lowers her pistol looking over what seems like a balcony that looked down into a large cave. A waterfall was on the right side. In front of it was a large circular area with some symbols on it, some relics here and there and people....in black and they looked Nep "We got company..." As they could see some working away some boxes into boats that leads outside.
The pure panic of being in a room slowly being turned into a suffocating trap diminished and immediately Seidreainne began undoing the rope. That had been a few shots wasted for nothing. They hadn't even gotten a glimpse of whoever it was that was following them through these ruins. Whatever mechanism had opened this door made no sense to her. Light activated ancient ruins? She had seen wonders of past civilizations before but light seemed a little... unusual to use as a source of input.

"I sure hope nobody shines on those crystals again," She commented as she hopped down. "Last thing we need is our exit route being cut off from us."

Taking the lead with both compact firearms, a newfound vigilance surpassing her prior eagle-eyed intensity lead the way. Going deeper into the temple only meant further itno the playground of whomever was treating this as little more than a spectator sport.

The temple however had more secrets; first was the balcony and then there was the fact that it had an entire underground waterfall now. Was this a temple or was it a luxury resort now?

It seemed that they weren't here first either.

"Everyone get down, we don't know if they're friendly or not."

Crouching she holstered her smaller weapons and pulled out the rifle, zooming in on them to see if she could get an idea of what they were doing.
Gunny gave Seidreainne a nod as they adjusted to the emptying chamber. The worry that the doors might slam behind them as they left or that sand might begin to flow once more was.. difficult to shake. Nothing about the way they'd 'solved' the room made her feel like they would remain safe.

When they had left, well before they'd been able to secure the room and guarantee an exit strategy, Gunny could only look at the chamber in a resigned fashion. She was preparing to bring the matter up with Igia before they came across the black-clad men.

A mixture of adrenaline and relief washed over her at the sight. It was good to know that not all of the things they'd found were related to ghosts and insane architects. She knew how to handle flesh and blood. You could shoot living opponents.

"The good news is that these guys are not supposed to be here," she said, crouching against a nearby wall and checking her rifle. "The law gives us a lot of ... leeway ... with how we want to deal with them."

She looked to Seidreainne, curious as to what she might have found. "What I'm trying to say is, whether they're armed or not, we've got the rights to kill them and take back what they've been collecting."

"Or," she continued, looking to Igia, "we could leave them be and avoid the gun show. At least, until they find us in here. A nice, quiet engagement would be my recommendation, so that we don't bring the rest of them down on our heads before we're ready."
In'anna felt the pitter-pattering drumming of her heart ease just a little. They weren't going to be buried alive! For now at least. It was enough for her to breathe a sigh of relief and overlook the fact the massive Tsumi had lifted her to his shoulders without consent. Normally she'd have been paralyzed in fear or stunned shock. But now that was behind her. Seeing all of the sand reminded her of the beaches off Kyousou on planet Yamatai for some strange reason. Those beaches had been no less life-threatening. One minute she had been enjoying sunning herself, sleeping peacefully the next she awoke only to be buried almost alive (save for her head) in sand by a small gang of naughty kids. It was enough to send a shudder through her. No more beaches. Or sand. She could do without the sand as well.

Pulling her goggles back down, the beating rays of the sun overhead had begun to cause her sensitive nocturnal eyes to ache.
It was Seidreainne who spotted the figure staring at them first, not just because the alien wasn't pre-programmed to look for humanoids, but also because their internal eye could spot the electrical impulses building up in their mechanised limbs. There was what looked like a random assortment of robotic parts, sitting in a small makeshift nest somewhat further down the natural ramp of the cave wall, but much closer than the rest of the suited men moving supplies down below. Even through the constant thunder of the waterfall, they could all hear the sudden squeak and compress of unnatural limbs. In'anna could smell a sudden spike of hydraulic fluid, under the mildew of the vines.

A ragged little scarecrow-thing, mostly obscured from the waist up by a mane of fluffy white hair, stood up and gazed at them for several paces. It was holding a liberated stone mechanism in it's left pincer-hand, and popped out a keyboard from their waist satchel in order to manually jab some commands into a small portable terminal.

Whatever information this data said about the group, it caused them to turn and run. Making clumsy, fumbling steps down the incline...

Well, it certainly didn't move like something that was natural to this planet.
Horus was probably the hardest to hide with his 8ft stature, therefore left to go prone on the balcony to conceal his bulk. He could still leap down within a few seconds if things did get perilous, or so he was thinking until watching the strangers run in a panic. "Whoever they are, the machine is of more concern, armed men do not run unless for good reason. Caution is well advised with this being, but if it does not move from our path, we may have to deal with them. As I see, we can either wait them out, or one person approach to interact, preferably me, or Landak.", the tsumi said quietly.
Inner Temple

The black-clothed men were loading and offloading boxes that came from within deeper of the temple below. The boat engine was echoing throughout the temple chamber as two guards stood at the dock looking around as if they expecting something to be happening. The other folks were lower in rank it seemed, pushed around and cursing against the heavy load of work. The man in charge was standing there and looked at the mechanical being "Yo freak, get in there and fix the bloody traps. The boss wants the artifact and quick...you got hired for the job, now use that thin can of yours" He taps on his head and shook his head looking at the others "Load up the drugs...we need to stay productive"

Meanwhile, up at the other path, Igia looked carefully down and saw the whole operation going at the moment "Fuck..." She curses herself now and looked at her Chiefs "The situation is quite difficult, In'anna and I are not well enough trained for full out combat. Plus I suspect that we got people down there getting paid and boss around without realizing what they are in" Looking back down below "But the word drugs means we got some thug operation going...they seem to be stuck to go further into the temple, which means we are stuck also. We require to find a different route" Taking a deep breath as she looked back down and nods to herself "Gunny, Seidreainne you two go down there and take out as many as you can...that got a gun" She said "Disable the boat and do it quietly....If you get caught... we can't help you" Looing at Horus and In'anna "We are going to take the high road, Horus can crack open that collapse path and hopefully we are just above the original tunnel. I believe the tunnel is made for workers in the old days...if we use that we should be fine"

Giving them all a nod, she reloads her pistol and sighs as she moved towards the upper pathway with the others following her. Hopefully, Gunny knew what she was going to do, there were a lot of people down there, but they could cause a fuss for them in further operations and plausible escape out of there.

There are the following folks down below
1 Leader/Lieutenant
7 Guards with rifles
3 Guards with pistols overseeing transport
1 Shipmaster
12 lower thugs, unknown if armed.

There is a boat, various generators and a drug lab. I leave it to Whisper to decide how to approach this. Polygon is automatic with Whisper team when they make contact I leave it up to the interaction how that goes ;) Enjoy!
The small metallic thing tensed up, gripping the ancient mechanism tightly, obviously quite frightened over the concept of getting beaten up over this. They thought about reporting the strangers they had sighted up on the ledge... Then reserved themselves to just staying silent, doing exactly as ordered and nothing else.

Trudging through the vine-strewn floor on the way back to the corridor that lead deeper into the temple, they examined the liberated component a bit more carefully, trying to judge if the traps here were powered mechanically, electrically, or by something else altogether... At least until their cracked glasses fogged up, going from the sunlit cave into what was basically a humid stone oven.

They really, really hated this place.

Focus. They needed to focus. Examine the surroundings.

If they could just get through this corridor ahead without setting off something sinister, maybe they could sneak away whilst that weird snake-thing and the big goat man killed off the people forcing them to be here?
"Everyone, wonderful as the idea of staining the ruins of ancient civilizations with the viscera of uppity city slickers sounds, did anyone else see that?"

Seidreainne had risen ever so slightly with her weapon partially raised but she wasn't aiming down the sights. Her hand wasn't fully raised either but her wiggling fingers would hopefully catch her team's attention in her somewhat subtle attempt to point at the jittery looking mess of robotic parts that clearly knew where they were.

"Look I'm sure we can all murder these suckers with ease but something tells me this fellow isn't with them. He's also probably terrified of us. We have no idea what he can do and if he's alone but as he hasn't raised hell, maybe we should reach out to him to let him know we're... on official business."

She then looked over to Igia.

"At the very least, that thing is a civilian and we should at the least get them out of a potential crossfire. It's probably been watching these chumps and might know a thing or two we don't. We should see if we can solve this discretely."
Last edited: