The Seas and Wastes of Errid Kaloum.   Posted by Failed GM.Group: archive 0
Failed GM
 GM, 30 posts
 A struggling GM who
 Turns Coffee into Story
Tue 14 Apr 2015
at 02:14
The Seas and Wastes of Errid Kaloum
class Traveler(object):
    def walkThrough(self):
        exposition = """The walk towards Errid Kaloum between Clock and Marica is a long one, and the rivers that cross it make for hard choices, even when they run with water. Thrush, Samor, Calos, some of the names come to the forefront of Fin's memory, holding little meaning. Was it this one, or that one? No matter. The walk is long, and fraught with... Actually Fin does not really know what it is fraught with apart from the first hundred square kilometres around the Weal: she only has a general suggestion to "avoid" or "hunt", preferably the former.

With only a general knowledge that allies to the Weal and known people lie to the west, the first choice beckons: to follow the southern coast line, or to turn north and enjoy the relative protection and loneliness of the wall of Kala until a river runs in the right direction? The documents Fin was given mention that "Laurico" and "Thummos" are both places in which people that know the Weal can be found. They're also both more or less 600 kilometres away. Legends of other places in between abound, especially after crossing the great river Thrush.

The walls behind her closed, the only evidence of the Weal being some pockmarks left by the slugspitters, a few rusted nails and screws and scraps of cloth and bone, for those who can read between those lines. The morning is a bitter one, a clear sky above, the last stars still fading, and the scent and roll of the sweet-water sea."""
        print exposition

    def extr"∑%"∑$%"∑$%&"∑$%"∑$%

This message was last edited by the GM at 00:43, Thu 16 Apr 2015.

Final Command
 player, 26 posts
 Bazian Jack who
 Battles Automatons
Thu 16 Apr 2015
at 08:04
Re: The Seas and Wastes of Errid Kaloum
Fin was warned to avoid the coast, and the idea of encountering many other places was a good one.  The more places she encountered, the greater likelihood of finding allies.  According to her recorded advice then...  North, along the Clock, and to the river.  Perhaps querying other individuals as it went, if they were not hostile.  It had to make contact, and soon.

It had to.

Fit turned itself to the north and strode off at the fastest sustainable pace it could.  There was no time to waste.

It had to have something to come back to.
Failed GM
 GM, 31 posts
 A struggling GM who
 Turns Coffee into Story
Fri 17 Apr 2015
at 23:16
Re: The Seas and Wastes of Errid Kaloum
Fin passes hill after rolling hill, stream and pond and lake, always choosing the paths marked on her maps as safest, always due North, then West. The Clock of Kallak, as it is known in the Weal, is always there to point out the general orientation, until it eventually it has grown too big: it encompasses practically half of Fin's horizon. Still, the sun and the stars let her get her bearings somewhat. The scenery is fantastic even to one who has always lived in the area: the mountain range glitters in a rainbow of minerals, the ponds and streams ripple in blue, green and silver, the synth trees glow red in the sun. From her maps, there should be a settled village or hamlet somewhere, 10 kilometres or so from where she has stopped for a brief sip.

To simulate the journey, please roll a d100 to see what you find on your path, and how well your travel goes. Tell me if you apply effort or if you have any applicable assets, and I'll add it to my calculations.
Final Command
 player, 27 posts
 Bazian Jack who
 Battles Automatons
Sat 18 Apr 2015
at 13:17
Re: The Seas and Wastes of Errid Kaloum
For Fin's form, there was little accommodation in the Weal, so long ago it had learned to take its recharging shut-downs in any sheltered area it could, and to take in whatever fuel it could find that would not impair it.  The Wastes bother it little as it pressed onward along the towering mountains of the Clock.

Whenever it finds itself uncertain, it opens its awareness to the greater datasphere, letting information trickle in where it would.  The datasphere could only be crudely manipulated, and was not well understood, but if one was patient, it had great utility.

There were resources out in these remote lands that most would discount as too difficult to get to, and Fin's eyes are always moving, seeking out the glint of metal and glass that might mark a place of numenera it could examine to help it in its quest.

The action, the planning, the necessities of survival they helped.  They helped it dwell on the present, and not the immediate past.


[Private to GM: 07:47, Today: Final Command rolled 80 using 1d100. Journey.

Things that may aid in the journeying:

Austere: You are used to surviving without creature comforts. You can create a makeshift bed out of simple surroundings and scrape together food where others cannot. You give a sense of comfort to your companions, often accidentally. As a result, everyone in your group (except you, because these things donít seem to affect you much) gains +1 on all recovery rolls that take one hour or longer.

Connected: You understand the datasphere better than most (which still
isnít very much), and once a day, you can tap into it and get the answer to a
single question.  - I figure this will be good if I'm stuck for a direction or for finding a hidden enclave or getting food or even avoiding trouble.

And hey, if there are any bits or bobs of ruins or structure that look cypher-worthy, Fin will take a small detour to pillage something useful.  It's specialized in the Numenera.

08:08, Today: Final Command rolled 16 using 1d20. Numenera (S).
]
Failed GM
 GM, 33 posts
 A struggling GM who
 Turns Coffee into Story
Sat 18 Apr 2015
at 19:39
Re: The Seas and Wastes of Errid Kaloum
As the path finally turns west, Fin finds a series of bridges. Perfectly normal bridges, solid-looking, built of stone and synth, all alike, over nothing that would need a bridge. The terrain below is mostly flat, and sometimes they even go over a hillock that mimics the shape of their arc. There isn't a river or chasm here, and there hasn't been one either in the latest millennia at the very least, unless it has learned how to hide from strangers.

In the middle of one of the structures, curiosity being what it is, Fin finds the remains of a creature. It looks vaguely like what we would call a limpet, if limpets had a diameter of roughly 1 metre and little metallic flagpoles on their shells. Said carapace is of solid copper, and shines blinding under the noon sun, but feels cold to the touch. A big hole on its tip blows a thick aromatic smoke. Something like rosemary. Perhaps that's what has kept vermin away. There's no evident cause of death.

Pushing it over with the help of her tools she finds that the innards of the animal contained a haphazard bunch of mechanical and electrical parts, included an amberstone in the very centre, so the walker takes everything it can, bundling it tight inside its explorer's pack. Its hands and arms will smell of seafood for days, but, Fin being Fin, it doesn't feel uncomfortable.
Final Command
 player, 29 posts
 Bazian Jack who
 Battles Automatons
Tue 21 Apr 2015
at 04:57
Re: The Seas and Wastes of Errid Kaloum
Fin's mouth makes a motion behind its mask that it sometimes spontaneously makes when it feels pleased at an accomplishment.  It was part of the reason it had started wearing a mask as soon as it was old enough to build one - more than one denizen of the Weal had been alarmed at its ever-changing face, sometimes not recognizing it when its features moved.  But still, facial motions or not, it had a bundle full of things to contemplate, to build with, and even to trade if it must.  Now it had additional resources, for even allies of the Weal might need more than just a request for help to risk themselves seeking the sources of the Weal's woes.

When it must rest, Fin will take some time to see if it can identify the bits she had found in the creature and see if she can make anything useful from them.

The next day, it continues its journey, determined to press on for maximum distance each day.  It must find allies.  It must find help!

[Private to GM: OOC:  23:56, Today: Final Command rolled 18 using 1d20. Numenera (S).  Fin also has light tools to tinker with all the bits.]
Failed GM
 GM, 40 posts
 A struggling GM who
 Turns Coffee into Story
Thu 23 Apr 2015
at 01:51
Re: The Seas and Wastes of Errid Kaloum
After a meager supper, Fin cleans up a workspace as best it can. It will have to do. After a fruitful hour, It sees that the bounty is indeed fruitful. More than that. Fin has found a veritable cornucopia of riches. The Bazian manages to build two cyphers in the short time, and with all the stuff it could do at least three, probably four more. Fin first concocts the juice from the limpet's glands, then mixes the goop with the particular drit of the region, then shakes. She is left with a cherry red lotion pot that will help much against fires.

But the second? The second leaves Fin oddly proud. From thick carapace bits and limpet flagpoles, Fin manages to put together a very, very dangerous little thing. Its shape is classically Bazian, and her teachers would probably congratulate her about the crenellations, even if they were completely accidental. Basically, Fin would point this at the enemy, and then it would go vrrrrrrrrr. And there would be pain.

As a dessert, Fin carves the amberstone in the egg-like manner of her people's Quux period sculptures, and finds the result very odd. It tastes like sweet syrup when licked, and the outside seems to flow at the touch. It's like touching a cold stream.

Alas, the lost sleep is not that fruitful. The next day goes on in a blur of nothing in particular, save for a headache, and a noon punctuated by passage next to a valley that glows in a pulsating mauve and emanates a terribly pungent odor that even Fin finds hard to stomach. It looks like even the carrion birds are keeping away.

Please roll another 1d100 to see what the next step of the journey brings, and/or tell me if you want to visit the valley.

Here are the cyphers. You do indeed have 4 more that you can build right with this batch of materials:

*Fireproofing Lotion
Level: 6
Usable: lotion canister
Effect: A nonliving object sprayed by this cypher has Armor against fire damage equal to the cypherís level for 28 hours.

*Magnetic Attack Drill
Level: 8
Usable: Small sphere with a thick screw protrusion
Effect: The user throws this cypher at a target within short range, and it drills into the target for one round, inflicting damage equal to the cypher level. If the target is made of metal or wearing metal (such as armor), the difficulty of the attack is decreased by one step.

Final Command
 player, 31 posts
 Bazian Jack who
 Battles Automatons
Thu 23 Apr 2015
at 11:51
Re: The Seas and Wastes of Errid Kaloum
Fin is terribly pleased by the cyphers it had made though it well knows the dangers of making too many.  Still, it has the materials at hand when it had used the others.  Now it could walk with more confidence, with such things at its side.

The smell from the valley was very strong, though Fin did not tend to classify scents as "good" or "bad."  The sense of smell was used to evaluate the environment, just as the other senses were employed.  However, a strong enough scent could overwhelm a being, just as excessive light pulses could disable some automatons' visual receptors.  This was a similar sensation, an overwhelming of the senses.

Though the carrion-eaters were avoiding the pulsing light of the valley, that did not necessarily mean anything.  Carrion-eaters avoided automatons as well; Fin had only learned of such creatures from watching holos in the Weal.

All things must be investigated - how terrible it would be to realize it had walked right past the source of trouble to the Weal because of a strong smell!  Warily, nose covered, Fin headed towards the valley...


[Private to GM: 06:48, Today: Final Command rolled 78 using 1d100. Journey.]

This message was last edited by the player at 20:21, Thu 23 Apr 2015.

Failed GM
 GM, 43 posts
 A struggling GM who
 Turns Coffee into Story
Thu 23 Apr 2015
at 17:18
Re: The Seas and Wastes of Errid Kaloum
The smell grows stronger as the walker climbs into the valley. It hardly seems possible after a while. It's a mix of rot, organic waste and smoke, wholly unknown to Fin. After a few curves, it sees. First, a weird purple corpse propped against a rock, then another, then Fin arrives at a wider opening of the wadi. This valley has just been violently transformed into an open-air mortuary. Scores of dead people lie all around, as far as Fin can see, some of their crests still rigid, their bulging eyes open, they all suffered. Most of the ones close by have a square hole in their chest or abdomen.

[Private to Final Command: If Fin knows about Varjellen, that's what these dead are.]
Final Command
 player, 32 posts
 Bazian Jack who
 Battles Automatons
Fri 24 Apr 2015
at 13:20
Re: The Seas and Wastes of Errid Kaloum
Fin's education had included basic recognition of major organic species, and she remembers varjellans as sentient organic visitants.  Self-aware.  And all of them, so many, as far as Fin could see, dead.  Slaughtered like food animals, their cores destroyed deliberately.  This was no natural disaster, but some conscious act of wanton cruelty.  All of them laid low...

Like the dead and dying in the wake of the attack on the Weal.

The comparison makes Fin's throat tight, its visual receptors hot.  Slowly it paces forward, attempting to find some epicenter to the disaster, some evidence of what had happened.  Could this tragedy be part of some greater campaign of destruction?  Was the Weal only the first of many?  Attempting to keep its morning meal in its stomach instead of regurgitating at the strong smell, Fin began to examine the dead and move about the valley, trying to find some author of this tragedy.
Failed GM
 GM, 46 posts
 A struggling GM who
 Turns Coffee into Story
Fri 24 Apr 2015
at 21:09
Re: The Seas and Wastes of Errid Kaloum
Hiking is both difficult and disgusting. The only saving grace, if one can even think of it that way, is the absolute absence of flies and other critters that would normally have appeared in a place like this. The smell must be produced by the visitants own organisms. Fin files that datum for later examination.

Some of the varjellen seem to have tried to respond to whatever happened to them, facing consistently towards a common point: a hillock strewn with corpses.

Other visitants seem to have died running, some even bear marks of trampling. Many have only their tattered garments, but some also carried weapons, walking helps or backpacks.

The silence is almost total. Only Fin's steps and the whistle of a soft breeze interrupt it. And... Perhaps something else.
Final Command
 player, 33 posts
 Bazian Jack who
 Battles Automatons
Sun 26 Apr 2015
at 11:32
Re: The Seas and Wastes of Errid Kaloum
Fin slowly picks its way to the hillock, visual receptors panning the scene constantly for new data.  Would there be some evidence of the manner of death?  Some track of a central device or perpetrator?  It examined the ground and area of the hillock, albeit more slowly than normal.  The death all around it was a more disturbing thing than it had seen since the destruction in the Weal, and that image was disruptive on many levels.  It examined the area listlessly, looking for something, anything...


[Private to GM: 06:31, Today: Final Command rolled 7 using 1d20. Perception.]
Failed GM
 GM, 47 posts
 A struggling GM who
 Turns Coffee into Story
Mon 27 Apr 2015
at 01:24
Re: The Seas and Wastes of Errid Kaloum
As Fin gets closer, it feels the mound as an actual presence. Perhaps it's the sheer amount of dead people. Perhaps it's the stench.

No. From up close, Final Command notices something new. The ground vibrates, at the same rate at which the color of the earth pulsates, a tick every few seconds.

Suddenly, the top seems to erupt. Varjellen are swept aside or forcibly thrown, and something appears, something that Fin will later notice as a small, dull dodecahedron filled with luminous filigree. But the first thing it sees is a green-over-black display pop up onto its datasphere interface. A local connection sets up, asking
State nature of transaction %$∑%$ prepare for decommission. State nature of transaction or 32%"%∑%"∑%

This message was last edited by the GM at 01:32, Mon 27 Apr 2015.

Final Command
 player, 34 posts
 Bazian Jack who
 Battles Automatons
Mon 27 Apr 2015
at 21:22
Re: The Seas and Wastes of Errid Kaloum
Oddly enough, Fin feels relieved.  This, it understands, not the senseless death of hundreds of unwary.

"Transaction is information for repair.  I will repair you, you will give me information," Fin states with typical Bazian directness.
Failed GM
 GM, 49 posts
 A struggling GM who
 Turns Coffee into Story
Tue 28 Apr 2015
at 23:20
Re: The Seas and Wastes of Errid Kaloum
$"%)&(formation for transaction... Need to ascertain uniqueness and∑$"%2234234240
shines onto the glimmering display. The dodecahedron suddenly glows, tumbling towards Fin. A small pincer comes out of one of its faces, a delicate metallic spike from another. It stabs the Bazian in its left leg. It's incredibly painful at first. Then it makes Fin throw up. Then it subsides. The screen fills again.
U34ern of uniqueness ascertained but competence doubtful. 2"$&her testing necessarious.

You will need to succeed at a Level 4 Int task if you want to interact successfully with the geometric volume.
Final Command
 player, 35 posts
 Bazian Jack who
 Battles Automatons
Thu 30 Apr 2015
at 14:57
Re: The Seas and Wastes of Errid Kaloum
Fin holds still for the stabbing and testing.  In the Weal it had been tested often, particularly in the early stages of its development, so they could track its nutritional and physical requirements.  It does not trust Fin's skills; it has never seen something like Fin before.  Fin has had to prove itself to each new automaton in the Weal.  It can prove itself to this one.  Fin recites its lessons in code and technique, listing repairs accomplished, showing off its tools and the fine and precise condition thereof.  It keeps its tools pristine, tending to their cleaning and maintenance before its own.  A good set of tools was considered a very desirable quality in the Weal.


[Private to GM: 09:52, Today: Final Command rolled 16 using 1d20. Communicate with the geometry lesson.  Fin is trained in communication and repair and creation of automatons.  And perhaps gain an asset for showing it has the tools and learning to do repairs?]
Failed GM
 GM, 53 posts
 A struggling GM who
 Turns Coffee into Story
Sat 2 May 2015
at 02:09
Re: The Seas and Wastes of Errid Kaloum
Fin's rendition of the trivium and quadrivium are impressive, but it's the toolbox that grabs the dodecahedron. It starts rolling and buzzing around each tool, prodding them with pointy bits and projecting blue beams over some. Suddenly, Fin's display module flares up again. "∑% necessity of repairs and idoneitiousness of toolhandler makes transaction amenable. Pleese proceed with repair2"$"information you seeked?
The dodecahedron rolls at Fin's feet, and opens up like folded paper. Purple blood and bits of flesh fill every available space left by the ducts and boards inside it. One of its spikes extends, trying to connect with Fin's information output module.
Final Command
 player, 36 posts
 Bazian Jack who
 Battles Automatons
Sat 2 May 2015
at 12:59
Re: The Seas and Wastes of Errid Kaloum
Information spike aside, Fin had just received information, in the form of the purple flesh stuffing its insides.  The chunks seemed to serve no purpose.  Why destroy so many varjellan for no gain?

"This unit requires visual or verbal information transfer.  This unit has inquiries.  However, this unit may be able to facilitate a more efficient data transfer by utilizing other items if visual/verbal communication is not sufficient."  Fin starts to poke around inside the automaton, first trying to determine if the purple flesh is connected in any way, or just stuffed inside the cavity.  Then trying to determine which parts are damaged, so it can fix them.

"For what reason did you remove vital organic components from these now-deceased sentients?" Fin asks as it begins its work.


[Private to GM: 07:57, Today: Final Command rolled 14 using 1d20. Repairing automaton (T) .
Also, if the dodecahedron wants a "more efficient data transfer," could Fin use its numenera training to take some of those spare parts she picked up earlier and knock together like a VR helmet or something it could download some data into?
]
Failed GM
 GM, 54 posts
 A struggling GM who
 Turns Coffee into Story
Sat 2 May 2015
at 18:54
Re: The Seas and Wastes of Errid Kaloum
The automaton burbles happily at Fin's apt touch. The Bazian soon finds that the problems in the machine's communication module aren't due to the gore, which would have made it malfunction completely if they had made any damage, but are the result of shoddy programming. This device wasn't supposed to communicate as it is doing, and only its emergent qualities can perhaps explain what Fin experiences. The flesh and blood seem to be integrating into it, though, modifying its functions.

This bit understood, Fin grabs her backpack. A liberal application of that most conductive limpet grease, a couple flagpoles here, a bit of shell there... Presto! A quaint communication/storage module that works reliably with dodecahedrons, and perhaps even other geometrical volumes, if they exist. The device works when it is fit over the eyes and pointed at the communicator. It glows in a red coppery sheen. This is what Fin hears:

Me was made to extract cores, encode them and transmit them to my overseer prime.
Me deduces what hu-mans would call "greattt pleasure" when extracting.
Dost thou have cores? Posso estrarre il tuo cuore? ...

A well-applied percussive maintenance brings the drone back to speaking Truth. On the obvious next question it replies

Me cannot say who oversees me.
Me afraid not encoded to do that/not encoded with that information.
Me work is done here in any case, unless new cores somehow missing from my encodement.
Do you bring new cores?...

A quick review of the memory modules does find an interesting file. Fin starts downloading it when the automaton closes, suddenly focusing on something that is not the Bazian.
Thanksfulness. You do bring new core to me. Overseer prime needs cores.
Final Command
 player, 37 posts
 Bazian Jack who
 Battles Automatons
Sun 3 May 2015
at 13:52
Re: The Seas and Wastes of Errid Kaloum
Just a few days ago Fin doubts it would care about the automaton fulfilling its function, even if organic beings were dying.  Or... it may have tried to warn them, but it wouldn't have put itself at any great risk to spare them.

But a few days ago, Fin had seen the fallen in the Weal, and it could see them still during mental playback, the inert chassis after chassis like the fallen varjellan.

Also, the dodecaheron was wrong.  Whatever its overseer was, it had programmed it with faulty information.

"Your information is incorrect!  Core extraction causes permanent vital disruption and irrevocable shutdown, leading to utter termination.  There is no pleasure, only severe pain/damage!" Fin says.  It looks where the dodecahedron is looking.  There must be one varjellan still living, or someone else had decided to investigate the valley.

Fin raises its voice to carry.  "Retreat immediately; it will extract your core if you do not remove yourself!"

There is a possibility the dodecahdron will listen to it.  Fin does not consider the possibility likely.  Its programming is likely out of date or operating on a different set of assumptions.  If it will not cease, Fin knows it must be disabled temporarily until it can assemble sense and awareness of the current world into its data centers.  Also, Fin needs the information it carries...
Failed GM
 GM, 57 posts
 A struggling GM who
 Turns Coffee into Story
Tue 5 May 2015
at 17:58
Re: The Seas and Wastes of Errid Kaloum
The dodecahedron stops for a second at Fin's first remark, showing self-doubt.
You assert the screams weren't pleasure. This contradicts my prior information. I should test this.
 After this, the filigree on its body goes dark as it starts stumbling and rolling towards the valley's exit.

Let's continue this in the "Valley" thread.