This is a starcraft 1 based quest. I generally try to follow lore and game, but I'm not an encyclopedia and haven't read any of the books. For weaponry and powers I’m not always going to strictly follow canon. This gives me greater freedom to allow character customisation and diversity.>Pastebin: http://pastebin.com/fFXJsf2p>Archive: http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/archive.html?tags=Freelance%20Ghost%20Quest>Twitter: @QuestSuperVisorI use D20, best of first three rolls, 1 and 20 are crits and cancel each other out. Skills will adjust DC, not give bonuses, for simplicity's sake. Health is narrative based on the game.The options are a guideline, not an absolute, which is why I will always include a Write in option. Some options I list are good, some are bad, most won’t be really awesome. I leave it up to you to find ways to do that.
>Last time on Freelance Ghost Quest: You checked out the alien bridge and made a terminal explode, explored the rest of the section and resisted the urge to push the button. You went back with the High Templar, and sparred against a young and overconfident Zealot.You still have plenty of time today, so you decide to put a theory to the test. You head to the front of the Nexus, where a few dozen probes are busy mining the nearby mineral deposits. A few of them also enter a building emitting green gas every now and then. You suppose it’s the protoss equivalent of a Vespene refinery.Your attention falls to the probe closest to you. It’s floating right before a mineral patch, waiting for the probe in front of it to finish mining so it can start working on the crystal formation itself.As you approach it, you start thinking how to tackle this. It might just ignore you if you try talking to it. You doubt it’ll attack you, but perhaps blocking it’s path might make it more inclined to listen. That might get you the ire of some protoss though.>1. Just talk to the probe.>2. Block its path to the minerals, talk to it.>3. Try to climb onto it.>4. Write in.>If talking, write-ins are encouraged!>My apologies about yesterday, I seem to have a lot of trouble of setting up a bit of a working schedule and then keeping myself to it.
>>34509199>1"Good day, Might I make a few inquiries of you? Firstly, are you capable of communication?"If we get nothing, we can try something else on the next one...
You’ll keep it simple and see where it goes. “Good day, Might I make a few inquiries of you? Firstly, are you capable of communication?"What you presume to be the probe’s eyes, cameras, optical sensors, whatever, turn toward you.“GWOAAAW”The eye swivels back to the probe in front of it, which is almost finished mining. Well, at least it reacted. You’re not really sure what to make of its reaction, but it’s a start.“Can you understand me?” No harm trying a bit more talking, you presume. The two green glowing orbs are turned to you again. This time, there is a short pause before it ‘speaks’.“WIEEEUW”That still brings you nothing closer to your goal, and the probe in front of it is starting to move.>1. Block it’s path to the minerals. Keep talking.>2. Keep talking while it’s harvesting the minerals.>3. Climb on top. RIDE THE PROBE!>4. Write in.
>>34509614>2let us not be a dick. It has a job to do, and becoming our personal chauffeur is not it..."Could you make the first sound for yes, and the second sound for no; Do you understand me?"If it is capable of understanding us, we can start to ask it some yes/no questions...Idea; could we link our Adjutant to it?
>>34509716>Idea; could we link our Adjutant to it?Yeaaah... probably not gonna work, sorry. Pic related.
>>34509716Writing.Slow day, it seems.
>>34509799eh, nothing ventured...is there a scrap pile or some place where they send broken drones?We might need to get our Adjutant to study their design to help come up with a kind of translator device for them....
"Could you make the first sound for yes, and the second sound for no; Do you understand me?"The probe in front of it is finished, and your ‘companion’ moves along to the mineral patch. For a moment it seems like it’s ignoring your question, but right before it starts mining it turns back to you and lets out another sound.“PIIEUUWOINS”You’re not sure how it manages, but it seems to sound very sarcastic. It starts mining, but you don’t give up just yet. “Could you please make the first sound for yes, and the second sound for no? I’m just trying to be friendly.”By now it’s started mining, but it manages to let out a sound that seems oddly like a sigh.“GWOAAAW”It sounds a bit different from the first time, a bit more of a bored tone coming through, but it seems to have understood you. You hope.>1. So, you work here in the mineral line? Ever fancy switching out to the vespene gas?>2. You’re sentient then?>3. Wait, did you actually use sarcasm on me there?>4. Write in.
>>34509962>forgot the image I've been wanting to attach for the past few posts AGAIN.
>>34509962>2. You’re sentient then?>3. Wait, did you actually use sarcasm on me there?could it be that there is a room filled with Protoss operating the probes controls?
“Wait, did you actually use sarcasm on me there?”“GWOAAAW” It sounds bored again.“You’re sentient then?” It seems to hesitate a moment before it replies. “GWOAAAW”After a short pause, it adds:“WIEEEUW”“GWOAAAW”It sounds a bit uncertain. It seems to gravitate towards yes, but not entirely. You guess it’s at least mostly sentient from the interaction you’ve had with it. You might have to ask a protoss engineer about it to get the specifics though. There might be a control room with a Protoss guiding them, or they might just be sentient with a few core rules built into them. Like their work. You doubt there’s anything interesting about harvesting minerals all day and night.>Anything else you want to ask it?>If not I’ll finish up the day and go to a training session for the next day.
>>34510239Do you enjoy this job? Do they treat you well when you harvest some extra minerals or something, like giving you extra polish?
>>34509799>Alien mothership is 100% MS Windows compatible. Would you like to Plug and Pray?
>>34510365Except he was using a mac.
>>34510393Well duh. Mac was the system he used to remotely install Windows.
>>34510450Suggestion for ending the chat:"Well, it was nice talking with you. Keep up the good work, we're all counting on you!"
“Do you enjoy this job?” You feel like you’re making progress. It takes a while again, but it finally replies with its ‘no’ bleep. It’s a sad thing to not be able to enjoy one’s work. Especially if that work is literally everything you were made to do.“Do they treat you well when you harvest some extra minerals or something, like giving you extra polish?”The ‘no’ answer comes quickly this time. What a sad, sad life it is to be a probe.“What do you get for working then? Wait, that’s not a yes/no question. Erm. Do you get paid in any way, shape or form?”Again, no. It sounds a bit sad now. It’s just finished cutting out a rather large piece of minerals though. It hovers slightly in front of it, caught in a green-ish glow emanating from one of the tubes at the front of the probe. As it turns around and starts heading back to the nexus, you see a small number on its side. 06839. Its serial number you guess?"Well, it was nice talking with you. Keep up the good work, we're all counting on you!" It seemed a bit upset after your last few questions, so you hope that might make it feel a bit better. You head to the nexus yourself, but enter through the main gate and not the small hole on the side the probe disappeared into, and go to bed after a quick bite.
-----“Now, you’ve done it before, but that was on what you described as an empty shell of a human, if I recall correctly. This time, I want you to possess my student here who was foolish enough to volunteer.”You’re in the Templar Archives again, in the private room in the back which you spend most of your time nowadays, aside from yesterday’s trip. Ur’athan is floating next to you, and in front of you sits another protoss dressed in the robes declaring him one of the High Templar’s apprentices. You’re holding a small focus crystal, which has served you well the past week. It’s meant as a way to help students guide their energy, and once the technique is mastered it’s a useless piece of glass. You’ve still got quite a bit before you get to that point though.”Remember, I do expect you to respect her inner mind’s privacy.”>Roll me dem d20’s
Rolled 17 (1d20)>>34510706
Rolled 15 (1d20)>>34510706
>>34510824>>34510920One more. Don't mind some samefag rolling.
Rolled 11 (1d20)>>34510706
>>34510824>>34510920>>34510939Ok, success, writing.
>>34510706Well well well, even beyond the final frontier, Artemis gets alien girls aching to get a piece of him in them.
You push out your mind from your body, focussing the energy you release through the crystal you’re holding. It’s already a lot easier than when you first came here. It still feels weird, being a disembodied spirit, and sadly you can’t see anything in this form you wouldn’t be able to see from your own body, but that’s not the point of it.The protoss in front of you glows in your sight. She’s pretty powerful. Less so than Ur’athan, but not by much. You’re next to her in the blink of an eye, and you push yourself forward. You found that bypassing people’s mental defences is a lot easier in this form. Ur’athan explained that it was because your mind was directly pressing against that of your target, instead of simply pushing psionic energy towards them. There is a much higher degree of control you can practice, and while the acolyte’s mental barrier is solid, you slip by without too much effort.You were noticed though, as you suddenly feel a surge of energy around you. Her mind is trying to fight back, but you manage to push it into a corner as you connect yourself to her body instead.You open your eyes. You see yourself sitting there, eyes open, staring at you. They seem a bit empty. Next to your body, Ur’athan floats, looking at your current body in approval. You try to speak, but notice you seem to be missing some muscles, and more importantly, a mouth and vocal cords. You have only three fingers. It’s a strange feeling.“Very well, release her, please.” The High Templar’s voice resonates in your mind, and you obey. You blink, and suddenly you see the protoss sitting in front of you again. She jumps up with a look of shock on her face. She’s one of the few female protoss you’ve seen so far, and now you’ve gotten to know several of them, you can spot the differences a lot more easily.“Congratulations, you managed. How do you feel?”
>1. That felt weird. The protoss body was very different from my own.>2. I’m ok. Went better than expected.>3. Wait, a second. Are you okay, miss?>4. Write in.
>>34511155>I seem to be okay. What about you, miss?
“I seem to be okay. What about you, miss?”She looks at you in disgust, then turns to the High Templar. You get the feeling there’s a little private conversation going on between them before she suddenly turns around and walks away. Well, that probably couldn’t have gone much worse, you figure.“Don’t take her anger too personally. I’m sure she will be much more careful before volunteering for my tests in the future. At least she might inform herself of the nature of the test first.”“Wait, she didn’t know what she volunteered for?”“She’s been a little too eager to help me lately. I do not have the time for such matters. This saves me a lot of effort.”That’s… unexpected. Well, seems like protoss get to deal with matters like that too.“Shall we continue?” The High Templar asks.>1. Wait, wait, you used me to get a lovestruck apprentice to back off?>2. Very well.>3. Write in.
>>34511458>1. Wait, wait, you used me to get a lovestruck apprentice to back off?
>>34511498(Followed by a shrug and >Very well, also make a mental note to apologise to the apprentice next time we see her.)(No need to make it a priority. On the other hand I'd like to try and check how the doctor and the bros are doing on the battlecruiser.Does that battlecruiser of ours have a name, anyway?
>>34511540It's mostly just called the Omega. And about interstellar communications, you'll get right to that when we continue the lessons.
>>34511498>>34511540Writing.I thought we had a few more people for a moment there, but it seems they either just lurk or left again.
>>34511707Yup, seems like the two(?) other regulars are absent.And I'm going on internet-less vacation for few weeks so I'll be absent then. Thanks for the story though, OP! Enjoying it immensely.
“Wait, wait, you used me to get a lovestruck apprentice to back off?”The High Templar hesitates. “I would not say it in those terms, but I suppose the gist of it is correct.”“You know, I’d rather not be used as a scarecrow against admirers. But what’s done is done I guess.” You mentally note down to apologise to her if you come across her again.Your next lesson is back to a topic you’ve previously been working on, but haven’t had much success with so far. Ur’athan’s planet is too remote to have Terran FTL communications working, so you’ve been pushing your mental communications. The High Templar has allowed you to use his mental plane for communications, but so far you’ve been unable to get anyone else in, though you know the theory.“Ready to try again? You’ve got the technique down for this, no need for the crystal. It’s the other end of the line that’s still causing you trouble. If I’m not mistaken it should be very late at night on their planet now, so they should be sleeping.>Who do you try to contact?>1. Lisa. It’ll be good to talk to her, but she’s the weaker psionic, so it might be harder.>2. Quartus. He’s fairly strong psionically, so it should work.>3. Sextus. Same as with Quartus, but it might be harder to communicate with him.>4. Write in.
>>34511900Let's start with easymode - Quartus.
>>34511769One of the regulars I know of is an IRL friend, and he had something else tonight.Hope you have fun on your holiday, and thanks. I think I've grown a bit more comfortable with my own writing skills. I've still got bumps in the road but I do think I've improved since the start. All in all it was a writing experiment for me and I think it's been pretty successful so far. I'm glad I'm providing some entertainment to other people along the way.
>>34511936Alright, here's me hoping the lurkers will join us now, because it's rolling time.You know the drill, give me some d20's/
Rolled 10 (1d20)>>34512074Rolan
Rolled 15 (1d20)>>34512074Let's see what we've got.
>>34512101>>34512133Well, one more if you please.
Rolled 18 (1d20)>>34512209Roll
>>34512222>>34512133>>34512101That's another success. Writing.
You enter the blue mental plane. It takes a while to manage if no one is already there, since you have to more or less create it again. The framework is already there so it’s not as hard as literally making a new one. It still takes you the better part of fifteen minutes.After that, you do as you were taught. You visualise the person you wish to contact, and try to home in on his psionic signature. This is as far as you’ve gotten before. You’ve managed to track down Quartus to the Omega battlecruiser, and now you have to try and pull him into the plane.You confirm that he’s asleep, and gently tug on his mind. It takes a moment before there is any reaction, but you don’t give up. After a while, you slowly feel his mind loosening from its physical anchor. One last mental pull and he’s inside the blue plane with you. It seems the High Templar is there too now, but he’s keeping himself out of view, merely observing your actions, not your communication.“Hello Quartus.”“Ugh, Secundus. Erm, Artemis. Why are we in a blue void? Wait. There’s no such thing. Am I dreaming?”“More or less. It’s a way of communicating with you that I’ve been taught by the protoss. It’s basically a sort of mental plane of existence that’s not bound by physical proximity, only knowledge of each other and the plane itself.”“Huh, really? That sounds farfetched. I think the dreaming angle might be more realistic.”You sigh. “I don’t think you have the imagination to even have your dreams come up with that.”“Ouch, that hurt, Artemis.” He makes a fake sad face at you.“You deserved it.” You shoot him a wolfish grin.>Anything specific you want to talk to him about?>If not I’ll let him go, have a bit more talking with the High Templar then have some more time-skip.
Rolled 8 (1d20)>>34512442"Guess I might be able to teach you a few things like this next time, talking like this across absurdly huge differences seems to have it's appeal in our line of work."
>>34512442How's the things on the ship? How's he and sextus doing?How's Lisa doing, and whata bout the ship's crew?Is Weisdammer giving them or our friends planetside any grief?
>>34512522>our line of work'retired' ghosts? I'd rather not bring the 'good old times' unless necessary.
>>34512522>>34512537>>34512566Very well, writing.
“I guess I might be able to teach you when I get back. It might come in handy.”Quartus nods. He seems to be realising he’s having a real conversation and has sobered up considerably. At least he won’t be too random, but you admit you rather liked the more light-hearted version.“Anyway, how’s things on the ship? You and Sextus allright? How about Lisa?”“We’re all pretty much fine. Ship can go for a few years without refuelling the way it’s parked here, and the crew make sure everything runs fine. Sextus is opening up a bit I think. I mean, It’s not like he’s been miraculously cured, but I get the idea he’s getting a bit more expressive in his movements, if you know what I mean?”You nod, and Quartus takes it as a cue to continue. “And your girlfriend’s fine.”“She’s not my girlfriend.”“Sure. Anyway, I’ve been picking her up every few days to let her work on the crew. Sometimes she can spare a day, other times just a few hours. I don’t really think she’s made much progress yet, but she seems enthusiastic about it nonetheless.”“And Weissdammer? Is he giving anyone any grief?”“Was just about to get to him. He’s been calm. Spent a few days planetside, met back up with his marines. Not sure how well that went for them, but a few days later a shuttle appeared and picked them up. Haven’t heard anything from them since, but Lisa said she’d been keeping track of his company a bit lately, and he seems to have backed off from Lahan II for a bit. I heard they’re getting a bit more autonomy et cetera.”“That’s honestly better than I was expecting.” You reply. “I was ready to fly back and assassinate the bastard. I guess the cost-effectiveness talk got to him.” You’re not sure how it happened, but you suddenly notice you’re both sitting on a bench, talking sideways to each other comfortably.“Heh, talk to ‘em in a language they understand eh?”>Anything you want to talk about?
>>34512871>The previous post's ending still stands of course. If there's nothing else I'll just continue with the Templar and time-skip a bit.
Evening folks>>34512871No point in stretching it to long but we might want to explain what we've been doing here.
>>34512871>It's been nice seeing you again, bro. Take care and give my regards to Lisa. Maybe I'll try the same trick with her.For future we should probably figure out to make our own private meeting place in psion-space so we don't intrude on templar's one.
>>34512973That was on my "to do in timeskip" list.
You tell him about what you’ve been doing with the High Templar, and he seems both curious and cautious about the Xel’naga worldship. “Be careful with that. You’ve already been experimented on once by those things, better not make it twice.”You have a short chat before you say goodbye. “It's been nice seeing you again. Take care and give my regards to Lisa. I think I'll try the same thing with her later. I don’t know, in a couple of days or so.”You evict Quartus from the plane, and return to your body. It seems the High Templar had already returned a bit earlier, as he’s moved to floating in front of you. You’re not sure why he does the floating thing, but you’ve been hesitant to ask.“Impressive. Two breakthroughs in a row. There are some more things which won’t be as easy though.”The rest of the day you focus on creating and holding up your psionic shields the same way protoss do, and while you’re naturally talented for a Terran in that area, it will take a long time before you’re anywhere near as good with it as any protoss soldier.
-----The next few days are an endless string of mental exercise. You possess the bodies of a few other protoss, though these seem to have been informed before they volunteered and are ok with you messing around in their body for a short while. You even start to get used to moving with it, though you still have trouble with the weirdly jointed knees. You even try to take over the High Templar, but his mental discipline makes short work of your attempts.The shielding training continues unabatedly too, though it’s a lot more straining on your psionic energy reserve, and the mental communication is going so well that you’ve asked the High Templar’s guidance to create your own plane. It takes almost an entire day but in the end you manage, though you’re so exhausted Ur’athan has to give up on doing anything else for the remainder of the day.What little time you have you mostly spend in the training ring with the psi blades. You’re becoming a force to be reckoned with, and soon you don’t have to rely on trickery anymore to defeat the weaker zealots. The hot-headed youth tried getting his revenge, but even when bound to their rules of honour, you beat him in a flawless match.After two weeks, Ur’athan calls you to meet at the spaceport again one morning. When you arrive, he’s there with his personal guard while a whole team of protoss scientists are packing things and carrying them around. The whole place is a busy mess, and it seems the shuttles aren’t there yet.“So, we’re going back to the Worldship?”“Indeed. We believe we’ve mapped out most of the first section, though we’ve given up hope of ever recovering anything from the second to the fourth. The fifth might be able to return to semi-operational, and the sixth can probably be salvaged for repairs to the first and fifth but is too damaged to try and use ourselves.”>Crap, spaced out badly, 3 posts it is...
>>34513483>1. So have you decided on what to do with the crystal? Do I reactivate it?>2. How long is the whole thing going to take?>3. So is the first section mostly repaired then?>4. Write in.
>>34513511>1You're going to make that ship operational again?
>>34513511>2. How long is the whole thing going to take?>3. So is the first section mostly repaired then?>1. So have you decided on what to do with the crystal? Do I reactivate it?
“How long is the whole thing going to take?”“Oh, months. Years perhaps even. With things as they are, I doubt I’ll manage before I get recalled to Aiur or am called upon to do battle myself. I can only try to do as much as I can before that time comes.”“So, I take it the first section is mostly repaired then?”“Oh not at all. We do have a fairly good idea of what could go wrong where if the crystal is reactivated though. We’ve done some repairs in that regard, but that would just be the start.”“I reactivate it then?”“Yes, that was the plan. I don’t think I’ve got much more time before the Executor makes her move. Pre-occupied with the zerg as she is, she is still a threat to you. I have an idea on how to tackle that, but it is too early to tell. Anyway, I wanted to make use of your unique… Talent, before you were forced to leave.”You briefly consider what he’s told you so far. “You’re going to make the ship operational gain?”“As much as I can. I hold no illusion that it will ever be able to fly again, but there is so much knowledge to be had here…” His voice trails away in thought.Not much later, the shuttles arrive, and everyone starts loading things into the spacecrafts, assisted by a few probes. You notice your old friend 06839 and slip into the shuttle it’s placed. You pat it on the… Top side a few times, and it slowly curves its eyes upwards, blinking a few times when it sees you.“MOOUUIN”“Hello buddy.”“Hey, excuse me!” Someone taps you on your shoulder. You turn around to find a protoss engineer looking at you. “Would you mind not disturbing that probe? I just found a few errors in its AI core and was about to fix it.”
>1. Errors? What errors?>2. Well he did seem a bit depressed earlier…>3. So, are they fully sentient? What’s the deal here?>4. Write in.>I’m gonna call it quits here people. Good night, thanks for sticking around, it means a lot to me.>Next thread will be Wednesday, bar any unexpected tomfoolery.
>>34513988>2I know the engineer will probably take offense because we talked to his probe, but it still feels as the natural thing to say.'night OP, thanks for the thread
>>34513988>3. So, are they fully sentient? What’s the deal here?
>>34513968>Errors?>Well, he did seem a bit depressed earlier...>Will fixing the 'error' hurt him?number 5 is alive!Thanks for the thread OP