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As the red sun dawned over Iti'a'Ropku to bath the city with it's ruddy light many of the cities Necromancers were already awake within their Spire. Many had been roused from their slumber in the dead of night while others already milled and waited outside the sealed doors to a ritual chamber. Drawn to the chamber they waited, sensing the roiling emanations of Necrotic force that would have quickly sickened any of the living not already tainted by the corruptive power even through the thick stone and chitin of the walls.

Necromancers Red-Leaf-Strains, Vekke, and the pale Sapling with blood red petals had waited the longest. The trio sit in comfortable silence as the Chitin Choir began to raise their voices from the soft whispers of the night prayers to the slowly increasing tempos of the daybreak hymns throughout Iti'a'Ropku, many in the city coming to use the morning prayers as an alarm clock. Vekke scoops up a pair of bone dice carved with eight faces and tosses them only to make a disappointed click of her mandibles as the Sapling's leaves twitch with amusement, a pale vine reaching out to pluck up and toss the dice as well in their small game to pass the time. Other pairs of the Necrotic trainees and Legion Necromancers spoke in hushed tones or occupied themselves with their own distractions.

Yet all look up as there was a groaning and hiss as the sealed doors broke their quasiphasic locks and began to slide open as those seated rose to their feet, those gathered beginning to cluster closer. Shadows gripped the interior of the ritual chamber beyond the sphere of light cast by the trio of braziers glowing with Necrotic flame set around a Cauldron.

From those shadows emerged a figure, several of those in the group taking hesitant steps back at the sight and sense of potent Necrotic force that emanated from the humanoid. Grasped in their hand was a tall staff, the petrified skull of the original Talon perched atop the column of bone, a ribcage of short, sharp bones flexing almost as if it were a mobile undead. Six eyes peer out from the skull-like helm that looks across those gathered with a rictus grin of teeth, the medium exoarmor they wore refashioned with the corpse of the slain Immortal. Reaching up they press under the chin of their helm and the bone splits apart and slides back to become something of a decorative crest around their collar bone to reveal the Jor's tired but smiling face.

There was a scattering of greetings and breaths of relief as instinctual fear faded as the First Necromancer revealed himself. Where he had entered the chamber with the Caretaker and the remains of the Immortal he had slain in combat, Jor emerged alone armored and equipped with mighty new tools of his craft.

Holding his staff aloft it erupts into green Necrotic flame as he draws their attention and grants his newly soulbound weapon a title befitting it's nature.

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Welcome back to Death Among the Stars Quest!

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(Biomass stat + structures) * 500 * dev score + modifiers = Biomass income total
(Metal stat + structures) * 400 * dev score + modifiers = Metal income total


Trade Route:
>Armatocere: 3mil Metal <=> 3mil Biomass

Horizon's Drop
>60B (60 + 55) * 500 * (45 + 40) = 4,887,500B Daily
>60M (60 + 40) * 400 * (45 + 40) = 3,400,000M Daily
>45% Developed
>Biomass Farms: 30B
>Mining Facilities: 40M
>Vampire Vine: 10B
>Solar Farms: 15B
>4 Wormstar Fingers: +40D

The Bastion system

>80B (80 + 55) * 500 * (10 + 10) = 1,350,000B
>10M (No Mining Presence)
>10% Developed
>Coral Farms: 30B
>Vampire Vine: 10B
>Solar Farms: 15B
>1 Wormstar Finger: +10D

>30B (30 + 45) * 500 * (15 + 20) = 1,312,500B
>90M (No mining presence) + 250,000M
>15% Developed by Armada
>Volcanic Farms: 30B
>Solar Farms: 15B
>Obsidianborn Tributes: +250,000M
>2 Wormstar Fingers: +20D

>0B (0 + 15) * 500 * 75 = 562,500B
>70M (70 + 40) * 400 * 75 + 450K = 3,750,000M
>75% Developed
>Mining Facilities: 40M
>Solar Farms: 15B
>Asteroid Belt: +450,000M

Bastions sister moon
>0B (0 + 15) * 500 * 50 = 375,000B
>90M (90 + 40) * 400 * 50 = 2,600,000M
>50% Developed
>Mining Facitilites: 40M
>Solar Farms: 15B

Asteroid Belt: Gives 450K extra Metal to nearest planet (Protoplanet)
Urdir System:

Rocky Planet(s) x3 (A lot of the Armada's mining efforts have become focused here)
>0B (0 + 15) * 500 * 50 * 3 = 1,125,000B
>50M (50 + 40) * 400 * 50 * 3 = 5,400,000M
>50% Developed
>Mining Facilities: 40M
>Solar Farms: 15B

Ice planet
>70B (70 + 45) * 500 * 50 = 2,875,000B
>50% Developed
>Biomass Farms: 30B
>Solar Farms: 15B

Andai System:

>15B (15 + 45) * 500 * (40 + 10) = 1,500,000B
>70M (70 + 40) * 400 * (40 + 10) = 2,200,000M
>40% Developed
>Mining Facilities: 40M
>Biomass Farms: 30B
>Solar Farms: 15B
>Space Elevator + Station 88: 10D

B'Nan System:

>5B (5 + 15) * 500 * 85 = 850,000B
>90M (90 + 40) * 400 * 85 = 4,420,000
>85% Developed
>Mining Facilities: 40M
>Solar Farms: 15B

Worllunan system:

>85B (85 + 55) * 500 * 35 = 2,450,000B
>20M (20 + 40) * 400 * 35 + 450k = 1,290,000
>35% Developed
>Biomass Farms: 30B
>Solar Farms: 15B
>Vampire Vines: 10B
>Mining Facilities: 40M
>>Asteroid Belt: +450,000M

Ice Planet
>65B (65 + 45) * 500 * 30 = 1,650,000B
>30% Developed
>Biomass Farms: 30B
>Solar Farms: 15B

Asteroid Belt: Gives 450K extra Metal to nearest planet (Vannec)

Drakon system:

Tenebrous (Lesser+Greater)
>100B (100 + 55) * 500 * 30 * 2 = 4,650,000B
>30% Developed
>Biomass Farms: 30B
>Solar Farms: 15B
>Vampire Vines: 10B

Ice Planet
>65B (65 + 45) * 500 * 20 = 1,100,000B
>20% Developed
>Biomass Farms: 30B
>Solar Farms: 15B

Construction projects:
>Horizon's Drop - Wormstar Fist (3/9)
>3 Arc Relays - Horizon's Drop, Bastion, Drakon (1/5)
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Special Units:
>10 Voidknight Disciples
>2 Arc Disciples
>1 Solar Disciple
>Gral, Void Juggernaut
>2 Void Juggernauts
>1 Reconstructed Sunscale
>Illuminator Juggernaut
>500 Void Centurions

Troop Totals:
>900,000 Talons
>3000 Aquatic Talons
>500,000 Cyclops
>6000 Aquatic Cyclops
>750,000 Stingers
>2,000,000 Gargoyles
>500,000 Aquatic Gargoyles
>1,000,000 Flatbody Gargoyles
>700,000 Trolls
>300,000 Shock Trolls
>20,000 Arc Trolls
>50,000 Molten Trolls
>240,000 Looms
>Crit Crawls (Blister, Zapper, Chatter)
>400,000 Stalkers
>50,000 Lurkers
>240,00 Shadows
>600,000 Scourges
>500,000 Dirges
>120,000 Obsidian Dirges
>70,000 Requiems
>50,000 Brutes
>35,000 Crawlers
>10,000 Volcanic Crawler
>50,000 Drakes
>10,000 Devils
>100,000 Bone Cluster

Necrolyte Legion:
>15 Officers
>27 Solar Arbiters
>90 Voidsingers
>42 Arcdancers
>20 Necromancers
>6,190 Legionnaires

Legion Immortals:
>Commander Rethak
>3 Voidsingers
>1 Arcdancer
>10 Immortals

Living Subjects:
>Necromancer Jor
>Vle'Karak Ahkam Elder
>16 Necromancers
>7,363 Civilians
>650 Stonestar
>115 Tyrre Gladiators
>2 Epikor Elites (Gladiators)
>7 Ructu Elemental trainees

Armatocere Guests:
>6 Solar potentials
>3 Void potentials
>4 Arc potentials
>2 Necrotic potentials

>Nru'jok, Ahkam Female
>Dne'tec Ahkam Male
>Cve'jok Ahkam Female
>8 Necrotic potentials
>12 Void potentials
>14 Solar potentials
>1,060 Osjiic Soldiers
>99 Sunscale Workers
>10 Sunscale Scouts
>10 Sunscale Divers
>10 Sunscale Warblood
>560 Ahkam soldiers

Unique ships:
>1 Flagship "Charnel Vault"
>Fury of the Wormstar
>Blackscale Destroyer "Pestilence"
>7 Void Terrors
>2 Pyroclastic Destroyers
>The Wick - Confederate Smuggler

>10,000 Chariots
>5,000 Hearses
>2,000 Battletombs
>2,000 Devastators

>15,000 Coffins
>10,000 Support Coffins
>2,000 Stealth Coffins
>15,000 Common Nails
>10,000 Piercing Nails
>28,000 Gunships
>15,000 Craw-Bombers
>2,000 Intruder Coffins
>2,000 Stealth Gunships
>24,000 Squid

>2,000 Corvettes
>11,020 Support Corvettes
>250 Stealth Corvettes
>100 Sower Corvettes
>6,200 Frigates
>300 Stealth Frigates
>500 Boarding Frigates
>800 Light Cruisers
>250 Boarding Cruisers
>570 Heavy Cruisers
>150 Boarding Heavy Cruisers
>1,200 Plasma Weaver Cruisers
>100 Void Weaver Cruisers
>50 Stake Cruisers
>800 Bloat Carriers
>120 Terrordromes
>6,000 Kraken

>390 Battlecruisers
>680 Hangar Battlecruisers
>100 Voidspear Battlecruisers
>50 Torpedo Battlecruisers
>1,000 Swarm Battlecruisers
>1,085 Destroyers
>70 Void Destroyers
>1,240 Battleships
>610 Mirrorsoul Battleships

Captured Ships:
>7 Osjiic Heavy Cruisers
>8 Osjiic Light Cruisers
>18 Osjiic Frigates
>22 Osjiic Corvettes
>3 Osjiic Battleships
>5 Osjiic Destroyers
>4 Osjiic Battlecruisers
>10 Dagger disguised Frigates
>5 Osjiic disguised Frigates
>14 Osjiic disguised Fighters
>2 Ahkam Battleships
>2 Ahkam Destroyers
>2 Ahkam Battlecruisers
>3 Ahkam Light Cruisers
>8 Ahkam frigates
>7 Ahkam corvettes
>1 UON Battleship
>1 UON BattleCruiser
>1 UON Heavy Cruiser
>2 UON Light Cruisers
>6 UON Frigates
>7 UON Corvettes

In Construction:
>1,000 Battleships (4/5)
>600 Mirrorsoul Battleships (4/5)
>6,000 Kraken (5/5)
>1,000 Swarm Battlecruisers (4/5)
>500 Hangar Battlecruisers (4/5)
>5,000 Support Corvettes (3/3)

We finally get our inmortal snake bro!
Elemental Event - Arc Surge
>An unusual increase in Arc energy throughout the sector, and possibly the galaxy, allows for Arc based technology and weaponry to work better than expected including boosting research speed concerning related experiments. Arc wielders also report an unexpected ease to their abilities, once lofty feats coming easier to even the freshest novice.

Finished Research:
>Displacement: An experiment into enhancing or replicating the Arc Blur ability

>Solar Reconstructed: Valresko has spent his time designing new a Reconstructed

>Arc Reconstructed: The Predator Order has created their own unique soldiers

>Solar Weaponry: Weaponizing Solar energy for use in combat have produced a limited but potent number of results

Current Research:
>Necrotic Drive: Slow, Unpredictable - A project attempting to use Necrotic energy to create an FTL capable engine
>Advanced Mental Reading: Medium - Experiments into remote thought scanning technology
>Elemental Disruption Experiments: Medium, Very Dangerous - An extremely dangerous experiment into testing the interactions of elemental and quasiphasic energies
>Quasiphasic Armor: Medium - Inspired by the infantry based Specter Armor to scale the technology for spaceships
>Zaeen Reconstruction: Slow - The process of Reconstructing the Zaeen Behemoth will allow the further creation of similar Reconstructed bioships
>Solar Engine: Slow - Think Tanks believe they can replicate the Sunscale's Solar-based FTL if given time
>Solar Agriculture: Fast - With the aid of Solar-empowered Armatocere the Think Tanks hope to improve their methods of agriculture and biomass generation
>Orbital Shields: Slow - With the fragility of orbital superstructures the Think Tanks propose more measures to defend them
>Psionics: Medium, possibly dangerous - The incident with the Advanced Mental Reading lab has inspired several Think Tanks to begin researching psionics by focusing on telekinesis gained from sources other than Necrotic energy
>Floral Necrotic Experiments: Unknown, Dangerous - Proposed by a Think Tank who worked on the original Necrotic experiments that lead to the Immortals has grown intrigued with the Necrotic Armatocere and requests their aid in experimenting with Necrotic energies and floral organisms

Ongoing and Joint projects:
>Elemental Experiments: Ongoing, possibly Dangerous - A long-standing research goal of the Think Tanks into the various elemental energies
>Blackscale Cloning projects: Ongoing, possibly Dangerous - Efforts to create loyal clones of the Sunscale and Blackscale
>Anti-Wraith Technology: Ongoing - A joint project between the Armada and Armatocere to develop defenses against the Sun-Eater Wraiths
>Sub-Space Experiments: Ongoing, Dangerous - Risky experimentation in the nature of Sub-Space and dimensional energies
>Arc Experiments: Unknown, Unpredictable - Think Tanks are taking advantage of the Arc Surge to explore previously ignored avenues of research
>That necrotic potential

And to think that potebtial would have wasted away digging holes for a living if not for a certain skeleton
>Displacement Field: By utilizing bioluminescent chromatophores and modified hardlight projectors situated across the body of a soldier, a vehicle chasis, or strikecraft hull, those equipped with this adaptation can duplicate the Blur Arc ability for a limited time. Disrupting their visual and electromagnetic silhouette the Displacement grants a bonus to avoiding incoming weaponsfire while also confusing most targeting systems that improves the greater the distance. Visually this gives the unit the appearance of their form flickering and wavering indistinctly, particularly while in motion. While it is not as effective as a true stealth cloak the unit can still fire its weapons without compromising the displacement field. Cannot be equipped with the Advanced Camouflage adaptation on ground troops or a stealth cloak for strikecraft.

Reconstructed Designed:
>Solar Warden: A powerfully built Reconstructed they stand as large as a Troll with pale Solar Armor, their eyeless reptilian skulls reminiscent of the Sunscale Reconstructed. Infused with a powerful well of Solar energy the Wardens are intended to be the enforcers of the Solar Order, supporting the Solar Arbiters in their missions against Necrotic enemies of the Armada. Typically equipped with hardlight armor and shields to supplement their Solar weaponry. Heavily Solar infused flames will occasionally leak from the gaps in their armor or from their mouths.

>Arc Viper: Described as a fusion between a Stalker and Talon by an Arcdancer the Arc Viper is a speedy and vicious combatant designed to sneak behind enemy lines and sow terror among them. A low-slung bodyplan allows them to sneak, sprint and climb on all fours or standing bipedally in combat. With their gorgons gaze, advanced camouflage, and patient nature they prefer sneaking up on their prey, heavily favoring attacking in close range using their oversized jaws and Arc-edged claws and bladed armor, a powerful stingwhip tongue allowing them to drag prey in close. When they do equip ranged weaponry it is typically shardspitters attached to each forearm, the Vipers using their chemical fabricators to enhance the potency of the nearly silent weapons with venoms and acids.

>Arc Savage: Using the stock body plan of a Scourge as inspiration the Savage is somewhat larger than the typical Scourge, standing at five feet at full height. Heavily Arc infused their forms are nearly in a constant state of the Blur ability, twitching and fidgeting even when at rest as they appear incapable of sitting still. Typically equipped with Arc weaponry they can carry and still fly with their powerful wings one hand is replaced with a large, wickedly curved raptoral Arc-edged vibroblade. In combat they prefer hit-and-run tactics, Blinking into range while blurred to lash out with their blade and retreat with a hail of weaponsfire.
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Solar Ability unlocked:
>Sunstrike: Developed by Dominator Valresko while training Sur-Quro a Sunstrike appears as a sphere of turbulent Solar flame in the wielders hand before it is cast forth to a location within range. The sphere locks into place and begins to flare, bathing the area in Solar and intense thermal energy causing most flammable objects to catch fire. Severely damaging to undead and Necrotic powered entities and technology. The distance, duration, size, and strength of the Sunstrike is determined by the caster and their ability to control the Solar.

Weaponry unlocked:
>Arbiter Gauntlet: Based on an ancient traditional Yuyut weapon it takes form as an oversized gauntlet typically fit on the main hand and forearm. The claws are thermal vibro-tipped similar in strength to a Trolls while the armored forelimb possesses flexible bone slats that can expand to a shield while further enhanced by a hardlight plate. A Solar wielder is able to use the gauntlet as a focus for their abilities, projecting Solar flames or enhancing their Sunstrike. A single light weapon can be equipped into it for increased combat flexibility.

>Solar Flail: Melee - Appearing as a one-handed club that can produce Solar flames it can be used as such by living soldiers and non-Solar infused Reconstructed. In the hands of Solar attuned soldiers and natural wielders of the Solar the weapon reveals its true nature by forming a sphere of Solar flame. Used as a mace the weapon can deal severe thermal and Solar damage but it can also project and control the movement of the sphere at range to strike out of reach targets. The flame can strike only a handful of times before it either is snuffed out or returns to the flail for "refueling" for several seconds before it can be projected once more. The Solar Flail can increase the distance of a Solar Arbiter, Disciple, or Dominators Sunstrike can be projected.

>Spitefire: Light Ranged - Resembling the typical Flenser weaponry the Spitefire fires condensed bolts that leave trails of flame in their wake, the bolts detonating into a burst of thermal and Solar energy. Most flammable objects are ignited and even with nonflammable materials there is a lingering of Solaring energy that continues to burn for a short time. The shots can be charged up for a larger radius and increased damage. While not requiring a Solar Heart or natural Solar affinity to operate those with such are able to increase the spitefires recharge rate and damage.
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>Sunthrower: Medium Ranged - Bordering on the weight limits of a heavy weapon the Sunthrower is a powerful weapon of Solar might. Only equippable by those with either a Solar Heart core or natural Solar power the weapon can project powerful blasts of Solar and thermal energy. Similar in function to primitive flamethrowers the weapon can either fire as either a focused beam with moderate range, a close range cone, or as spheres of condensed energy lobbed over a distance. All modes can be charged, allowing for a powerful burst spray at close range or a long-range bolt. Flammable materials are ignited while lingering Solar energy continues to generate thermal heat and flames for a time even if all available fuel sources are consumed. Prone to overheating.

Ship Weaponry:
>Spitefire: Dual linked spirefire cannons fire bolts of condensed solar energy
(Aux and Turret only)
Dmg: Med Thermal-Solar
RoF: Med
Rng: Med
Acc: Med
Special: Composite Flames - multiple hits will create a stacking damage over time as more Solar energy clings to the target vessel

>Solar Flayer: A powerful beam of concentrated Solar energy capable of melting through most hulls
(Fixed and Spinal only)
Dmg: High Thermal-Solar
RoF: Low (Med)
Rng: Med (Short)
Acc: High
Special: Variable Spread - alternate fire allowing for a faster charge rate with a close range wide cone rather than the long range beam
>Can either project a beam or lobb orbs at long range

Zarya is this you ?
There was much to do and tend to among the Necrotic Armada.

On the surface of the moon Vle'Karak converses with his kin Cve'jok and Dne'tec under the protective bubble of a biodome. The pair of serpents had nearly wept at the sight of the stars after their weeks and months of imprisonment, only gaining glimpses when they were shuttled between the two Arc Temples. Now they spoke in low tones with Vle'Karak, both surprised to see each other and even more surprised to learn of their honored uncle's blasphemy. Cve'jok had sneered at him while Dne'tec listened in silence until Vle'Karaks words seemed to reach the still prideful female. They watched in silence as a demi-Think Tank projected footage of Nru'jok's surrender to Tlacex and Ruscuvs vicious battle with their slain sister. Predator Eiton and his Arc Disciples waited nearby along with swarms of Reconstructed and Dirges ready to pounce should the serpents gain ideas of escape but the Ahkam listened as the old serpent spoke his words.

Commander Rethak sends a message through the Deep Rot and Think Tanks to the Legion, his voice an immense relief to many who still had not heard of his success amid rumors of his demise on Spindles moon. He calls for all members of the Legion to gather with their comrades, announcing that he had an important message he would be delivering shortly to them all.

There was a message from Zekrul's Envoy, stating that the former Admiral of the old Armada would be willing to have a meeting with the Harbinger sometime that day. The system continued to fall further under the undead's grasp, the frames of sub-capitals growing by the hour as the zombies and Necrotic enhanced undead toil tirelessly. As more of the undead emerged from the underground bunkers, many lacking armor or even clothing, the Think Tanks come to the conclusion that the undead were cloning their soldiers much like the rogue Necromancer had in Refuge.

The Control Worm embedded in the rogue Necromancer and the Think Tanks found themselves frustrated as their subjects subconscious stymied their attempts at reading his memories. Only flashes of emotion and half-formed, disjointed memories shaped like dreams but lacking anything substantial or useful. The Think Tanks believe he could be awakened at your command should you wish to interrogate him.

The Blackscale Cabal sends a message through the Harbinger, questioning if you would like to speak with the other Cabal. They were already making plans for how to raid the Confederate black ops site that has the stolen clutch of Sunscale eggs and wished to know if you would like the Armada to contribute to the mission. Raakah even states that it might be possible to gain the service of this Cabal as well if you can impress them much like you had impressed her and her brothers originally. Beqor laughs and adds that ripping a temple out of the ground won't be required this time around.

Lorgul sends word that the Empire appears to be preparing for battle, their fleets clustering their controlled systems with active patrols running through them. He says they likely know of the Matriarchs approach as well, saying they must be as terrified as an Osjiic can get knowing the Surge was going on with an obviously upset Matriarch on her way. He also adds that while combating a Matriarch would be a glorious feat, he begrudgingly knows that he and his order would be liabilities against her.

There was a message from the Armatocere as well, requesting a meeting with your Harbinger stationed on Yrre-1 when you have the chance. They say it concerns previous requests, overdue trades, and matters of defense.

The Wayward Disciple sends a message through the Deep Rot from across the galaxy, stating they have gained intel of the strange enemy of the Council. A datapacket is transferred with the information for you to look over at your leisure, the Disciple stating they were ready to begin amping up their campaign against the Council soon.

You see there are also messages from Legion officers stationed in Refuge for the Commander that were forwarded to you, stating that there was a growing number of locals who were beginning to question them about the possibility of joining the Legion or even the Armada. There were also reports of the "leadership" of Hearth debating requesting formal protection and alliance with the Armada but they were hearsay and rumor at this point.

There was much to do and tend to in your Armada. What shall you do first?

(sorry about the delays, having to babysit for a little while. Nephew just laid down for his nap)
Are our defenses been reinforce in Horizon system ? We must be ready for the Matriarch, with everything we have.

We must ready our troops and general, they will probably have to hold for most of the fight; Jadyk must save himself for the decisive strike: we must drain this Matriarch.
Look over the datapacket and give Lorgrul free reign to prepare both a defense against the Osjic, and the means to keep them off balance.

We should speak with the Armatocere first.

Then armotocere
We should do something with Refuge, or deal with the Armarocere first.
>Are our defenses been reinforce in Horizon system
Right now the majority of your fleets are stationed in the Horizon's Drop, B'Nan, and Bastion systems with a decent presence in Refuge as more ships are diverted now that the crisis is resolved.

We can have a vote on how you folks would like to split up your forces among your systems if you'd like

That distribution seems fine by me, when the hammer follow it will be on Horizon or Bastion.
You glance through the datapacket sent by the Wayward Disciple with their initial reconnaissance of the Synth enemy the Council of Thirteen was at war with. Two Eyegores had been deployed to star systems neighboring Calera's and another Council controlled system and spent several days collecting info.

>System: Meiv-Ak

>Star: Medium Blue


>Rocky World: Tidally locked close to the star it's surface consists of either a blighted airless landscape on the day side and a frozen wasteland on the night. There appear to be mining or science outposts stationed along the temperate ring.

>Haak: A Synth world that appears to be moderately colonized with several large cities mainly gathered along the temperate equator. From long range surveys and radio interception its revealed the planet is a common target for the Council's attacks with numerous cities shown to be abandoned or razed. The larger of its two moons has a sizable naval port with several construction and repair pylons dotting its surface.

>Gas Giant: A smaller than average gas giant with a handful of moons that house fuel harvesting operations and a small naval base.

>Frozen world: Possessing large ice rings it lingeres at the edge of the solar system and seems mostly forgotten with only a handful of outposts detected on the surface protected underground.

>System: Deste

>Star: Orange Giant


>Rocky Worlds (2): Non-descript worlds with toxic atmospheres of alternately methane and chlorine there are nonetheless multiple mining operations on their surface or underground.

>Ymuv: A large world with a dense core and gravity appears to to be in the midst of terraforming operations as megastructures placed across the planet spew massive clouds forming an atmosphere. Across the planet were several domed cities, the refractive energy protecting them shielding from the Eyegores persistent gazes. Storms raged, new seas and lakes being forms as patches of green and blue life grew along the edges, tended to by what were assumed to be caretakers to guide the terraforming. A single large moon nearly a third of the planets size has a growing naval port for the Synths fleets that patrol the system. Both moon and planet show scars from previous conflicts with the Council.

>Rocky world: A large, airless planet that, along with its handful of moons, shields Ymuv from the dense asteroid belt. Either from it's own mineral wealth or gained from meteors, the planet has numerous mining operations and domed cities.

>Asteroid belt: Likely the remains of a broken planet the asteroid belt is fairly dense with mineral deposits detected throughout. Harvester ships of the Synths are present, consuming the asteroids for their ore that is transported back to the rocky world.

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In the few days that the Eyegores had kept watch there had been several incursions by Council ships. They would appear in the system and either engage one of the numerous patrols or disembark before they could be taken out. Throughout both systems the Eyegores detected the remains of past battles, Synth salvage ships working at the largest clusters of debris.

Without close observations little could be gleaned from the Synths, the Disciple debating how to send stealth ships for closer "observations" of the locals. Although, from the images taken from Eyegore drones high above they managed to catch glimpses of what must be the Synths or their creations.

Obviously artificial lifeforms working with few vehicles beyond shuttles and starships, each task tended to by creations seemingly built for their individual purposes. Massive lumbering creatures digging in their mining operations and flying insectoid-like creations buzzing along the outsides of their towering buildings. Yet, there appeared to be none of the typical races, no humans or vorh or any recognizable member of an organic species.

The Disciple states that it is too soon with too little facts to make assumptions but they do intend to investigate more thoroughly.
Who do you wish to speak with first?
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Deep under the surface of Kanda a new Temple to the Void was being constructed in the abandoned mines. Void energy twisted the light within the halls of blackened reflective glass and distorted the carvings etched into the walls depicting scenes of the Voidknights exploits. Within a large central chamber a dais rose up in the center, a twisting singularity of Void energy pulsing and churning like a living entity. Ultraviolet flames burn in braziers hanging from the pillars supporting the ceiling, the surface of Cauldrons burning with the same flame as they boiled gently in the corners of the chamber. Centurions, their armor as black and jagged as the walls around them, stood silent guard as Lorgul spoke with Jareth concerning the Osjiic.

They were interrupted as a doorway slides open to grant entrance to a Harbinger that drifts inside. Both Voidknights turn to bow in greeting, the Harbinger nodding in return, "Revenant Lorgul, Revenant Jareth," it says with your voice.

"Greetings, Lord Jadyk," Jareth replies.

"Good to hear from you, Lord Jadyk," Lorgul says with a clack of his teeth, "What do you think of our new temple?" he asks, motioning to the walls

"Very fitting for your order. Voidlord Ghul would approve, I am sure," the Harbinger says and glances toward the Void singularity that let out the occasional spout of voidflame.

Jareth sees the look and speaks up, nodding to the dais, "A memorial to Voidlord Ghul and the Black Flame."

The Harbinger nods, "I would have you craft a memorial within the Garden of Remembrance someday," you say and Jareth gives a nod.

Was there anything specific you wished to tell the Voidknight in regards to the Osjiic Empire and other matters?
huh, bad night for running the thread I guess

Apparently so
Can't really think of anything to bring up other than rough troop and ship numbers, osijic positions, etc. to let him handle the defense against a potential empire assault
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So I have some good and bad news concerning the state of Ghoul Quest.

Bad news is I doubt I'll ever return to running it as a quest.

Good news is I am working on the first book of the Red Throat Ghouls story

Hopefully someday you folks will be able to read it
If folks show up and want to continue let me know, I don't have anything else planned for tonight
aw ye baby

Yeah, I don't have anything specific to talk about with Lorgul, expect perhaps that once the Ahkam offensive is deal with, we will renew our campaign against the Empire.
Nah just >>1694791
Let him get ready as best he sees fit. Ask how he's doing too given he can't fight the akham well.
Yeeeeeah! Do go on!
Also let's visit the other New Armada. Diplomaticize it!
Clasping its hands behind itself the Harbinger drifts to take a closer look at the memorial and the twisting singularity that distorts time and space around it and making the light bend. Finally the Harbinger speaks with your voice, "The Ahkam Matriarch could be here at any moment. Her arrival will leave much of our Armada...distracted with having to entertain such an illustrious guest. I suspect our enemy the Empire will attempt to take advantage of that distraction," the Reconstructed turns to face them, its robes barely brushing the ground, "I leave dealing with the Empire during this time in your capable hands. You were created from the Empire as my champions to defeat them, you have my faith in your capabilities."

Both Voidknights salute and bow their heads and Jareth speaks, "Thank you, Lord Jadyk. We will not fail you. I personally predict that the Empire may come under attack as well, their relative weakness to the Arc weaponry of the Dynasty is too tempting of a target."

Lorgul gives a nod and folds his arms across his chest, "Precisely. The Ahkam have clearly been preparing for an offensive against this sector as soon as the Surge began but I suspect the attacks against the Tura system delayed their plans somewhat, buying us some time until the Matriarch herself can arrive in all her fury," he takes a step away from Jareth and waves his hand toward a demi-Think Tank and a map of the sector is projected.

Pointing to B'Nan the system was highlighted, "The Empire and Dynasty both want this system, your friend Vle'Karak was leading the invasion that we interrupted," he says with a slight chuckle, "And we know how esteemed the Butcher is so they must've really wanted B'Nan. This makes me believe even if the Empire does not invade they Ahkam may. We are already preparing our fleets to rely on Necrotic reactors rather than Void for the time being."

Jareth steps forward and points to Drakon, the system hidden between the Empire and Ahkam territories, "I would like to contact Punisher Agona or the Obsidianborn of Drakon, have them ready to deploy a fleet to reinforce us if they can. I know they are busy helping prepare the defenses of Bastion but their warships have proven very effective against the Ahkam fleets."

The Harbinger nods, "Very well. As I said, I trust you two to ensure that the Empire behaves itself during this important time," you say through the Reconstructed and the pair nod.

You were ready to turn your mind to other matters when Jareth motions for your attention and the Harbinger looks to him expectantly, "I saw the report of what happened to Punisher Muic," he says, Lorgul seeming to perk up with interest as well, "Will she survive, or have we lost another sibling?"

The Harbinger was silent for a time then gives a nod, "She will recover," you say and they both let out sighs of relief, "The bravery and quick thinking of the Obsidianborn and Stonestar are what saved her. They sacrificed themselves to protect and preserve her essence with their very bodies. She will return to us, fear not."

Jareth nods, his relief almost palpable as Lorgul pat his armored shoulder in reassurance as you continue, "I wished to asked you both something actually," you say and they look to you expectantly, "Know that were it any other foe I would have you both on the battlefield. I wish to know if either of you are content or dissatisfied with this decision."

They glance at each other for a moment before Lorgul lets out a loud bark of laughter as Jareth shakes his head. Lorgul stepped forward and slung an arm around the shoulders of the much slimmer Harbinger, the hand on its shoulder easily capable of dwarfing its skull in his palm, "I really do appreciate your concern, Lord Jadyk, but believe me, I know when I should enter a fight and when to stand back and let those better equipped handle the situation. You were with me when we faced that Ahkam together, you saw what one juvenile did to me with only a few attacks," he touches his armor where the hole had once been blasted completely through him before he continues, "This is a fight for you, Ruscuv, Tlacex, and Eiton," he pauses for a second then chuckles, "Perhaps even little Jor now that he's finally learned how to fight. You don't send the Void to take down the Arc, especially during a Surge. Just bad strategy," he says with another chuckle and gently pats the Harbingers shoulder, nearly forcing it to the ground from the force.

>The Voidknight Order will prepare the defenses of B'Nan to defend against opportunistic Imperial or Ahkam attacks
>They seem pretty okay with not being in the fight against the Matriarch
Hmmm. We should have them watch the Empire then, a chaotic situation will probably have some opportunistic Osijics try and take us on.
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Bastion was a system nearly as busy as Horizon's Drop had become. Armada and Obsidianborn warships ran patrols between the planets as shuttles and carriers transported a constant stream of supplies. Picket fleets surrounded Rukor and Bastion, a large number of the Armada's forces directed to the system as they arrived in flashes of light and radiation in preparation for the Ahkam's assault.

Yet there was one small fleet that arrived that drew the attention of both Armada and Obsidianborn. A Mirrorsoul Battleship captained by a lone Voidknight Disciple surrounded by a battlescarred fleet. As it accelerated toward Bastion moments later a fleet of Obsidianborn and Reconstructed warships arrived in their wake, a single Pyroclastic Destroyer racing ahead to join the battleship.

Both capital ships docked with one of the two Wormstar Fingers that pierced the eternal veil of storms as the damaged fleet departed for a nearby shipyard for repairs.

The Voidknight Disciple stood in the orbital platform, watching as the chrysalis of obsidian glass was secured for transport to the surface. The floor reverberated with footsteps even before the doors slid open to admit Punisher Agona, her very presence making the ambient temperature of the room climb noticeably.

The two osjiic forged Reconstructed salute in greeting then clack their forearms against each other, Agona bowing her head, "Thank you for rescuing her, little sister. You have the gratitude of the Lavafather as well."

The Disciple nods their head, "It was my honor. We are all children of Jadyk and must protect each other. Wormstar guide you in the battles to come."

"The fires of the Black Flame and Lavafather guide you as well," Agona says as they part ways, the Disciple returning to B'Nan.

Entering the lift with Muics chrysalis she placed a hand against its shell, the floor lurching slightly with a sensation of temporary free-fall as the lift rockets down the length of the Wormstar Finger. She could feel Muic's heat within, her pryoclastic core weakened and smoldering but still burning.

Once through the storms they board a transport that whisks them away for the Lavafathers prison and seat of power. As the transport traveled over the landscape of stone, molten rock, steam, and boiling rivers Agona sees the changes that had occurred in her short time away, seeing the progress of the Lavafathers faithful. Factories, farmlands and mines passed by underneath, the populations of Stonestar, Obisdianborn and Reconstructed paused in their toils to turn their gaze skyward to witness the passing of a fallen hero.


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Setting down on the shores of the very molten lake that Agona and Muic had been Reforged into something greater than their base parts, rain fell hard upon them, steam rising from the calm surface of the lake while the ground rumbled faintly underfoot. Obsidian Dirges awaited them to carefully lift the chrysalis from the bed of the transport and carried it behind Agona as she approaches the shoreline.

A crowd of natives gathered, Obsidianborn, Stonestar, and Reconstructed watch in respectful silence a distance away. Many of the stonestar repeat mantras, whispered by rasping chitin and stone as they prayed to the Lavafather for the resurrection of the Hero Muic. Even a Harbinger stood in silence as you observed through it, trusting the Lavafather with this important task.

Agona turns to the chrysalis and holds out a hand, the Obsidian Dirges passing it to her. Turning back to the molten lake the ground rumbles louder and the peak of the volcano belches a spray of magma and caustic smoke into the sky, Agona stepping out to walk across the liquid surface of the liquefied stone carrying her injured sister toward the center.

A voice rumbles through those present, heard and felt in their very bodies of even those miles away in the villages and small cities that grew on the slopes of the Lavafathers volcano

<Punisher Muic has loyally served both the Necrotic Armada and the people of Bastion. Through glorious battle against our sworn foes the Ahkam she was victorious time and again, even defeating and capturing one of the hated serpents to prove their false godhood! Yet it was through the interference of unknown foes that her victory was snatched away from her and many of her allies slain and her own body broken!>

The ground quaked, cracks forming in the stones as the Lavafathers fury bubbled up, his psionic voice so full of rage causing many Stonestar to throw themselves to the ground, chanting mantras of rapid clacking and rasping.

Agona holds Muics chrysalis above the now tumultuous surface of the lava lake, splashes of molten stone striking her without notice or harm as the Lavafather continues to speak.

<BUT FEAR NOT! Punisher Muic shall be REFORGED once more! She will arise, strengthened and tempered by my fires and the heat of defeat! For that which breaks can and must be reforged into greatness, stronger than before! That is the way of the Reforged and my decree!>

<May the Wormstar have pity for those that have angered us and the worlds we will burn before us>
With his final edict a claw formed from the very lava itself reaches up to surround the obsidian chrysalis like some amoebas pseudopod and drags it under the burning surface. Agona looks to where her sister had disappeared even though she could feel her far below, taken to the heart of the Lavafather where she sensed his crystalline prison was fused with the volcano itself.

Returning to the shore she glances at the Harbinger that floated toward her away from the crowd that had begun to chant and clack out hymns to the Lavafather and Wormstar. She folds her arms across her chest in silence for several moments before speaking, "When Quantac'Vrix arrives, I will temper my blades with her blood. This I swear," she says with grim determination.

>Punisher Muic is being Reforged and Reconstructed
Probably having to call it here for the night, sorry we didn't get very much done but we'll be continuing tomorrow and Monday.

Hope folks had fun, I know I did writing it.

I'll be up for a little bit longer if folks have questions or suggestions
Tomorrow we'll be starting off by chatting with the Eldertree on Yrre-1 so think of anything you'd like to talk to them about before then.

Also status report on the Nest mission: should arrive any time now
Just need to finish last bit of prep for the world
well shit, just saw how little we actually did today with almost no input from you folks.

Anon was right, I am just storytelling rather than quest running =/

I had a lot more planned that I wanted to get to that requires participation as well.

Sorry I'm such a mess with this stuff lol
Still having fun grave, don't beat yourself up over it
Hey QM, what ever happened to the ghouls in the sewer civ?
I was a anon that was part of that.
as I said >>1695688

Sadly the quest is likely probably fully dead but I am working currently to turn it into a book
About the Scourge, since outside of our new Arc unit we are not really using them, I had a idea. Coudln't we equip them with hardlight shield, and create some kind of "Swarm" who stick to a important unit on the battlefield ( like a Void Juggenaut) and create wall of Hardlight shield to protect them of potentially dangerous attack ? Could give them a symbiotic purpose with other reconstructed.
I like the layout. Ever quest starts with a good few posts of story to ease us all into it and move things along at a good pace, and then most of the rest is us rolling and making decisions.
Is it possible to charge ship shields with elements?
Scourges have been used regularly since we unlocked them. They're our only flying combat Reconstructed that isn't Large sized like the Devils and Drakes

we'll be resuming thread to chat with some plants and zombies on fire in a while
rustle rustle

Reporting for duty
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Okay roll call time

Sound off
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From lightyears away you look through the perspective of a lone Harbinger that sat in silent repose on a twisted root while letting the pollen and shed leaves of the living city fall upon it. You watched for several long minutes, find a moment of vicarious relaxation as you take in the city of Yrre-1.

The small clearing the Harbinger had chosen as its resting place when not meandering through the city seems to have been adopted as a resting spot for many of the citizenry as well. Saplings, Mindvines, even a few cacti and other members of the Collective would take moments to spread their leaves and petals to the sun while they conversed in their pheromonal or sign languages. They would stop and rest, occasionally looking over to the silent Harbinger who only moved to accommodate the movements of its Idu "pet" or to turn their head and observe its surroundings in passive observation. Even when the Harbinger lifted itself to wander the pathways of the city they only charged a few smaller flying organisms to follow the Reconstructed as the other Armatocere largely ignored its passing.

The Harbinger looks down at the Idu creature coiled around its wrist with its colorful petals retracted as it rested but it twitches at a prod of its finger and turns to crawl and disappear into the sleeve of their robe. Rising up from its seat a cloud of pollen lifts off with each movement and the Harbinger gives its robes a quick shake before it drifts from the clearing and made its way toward the Eldertree as a handful of floral citizens watch it depart before resuming their conversations.

Pausing only long enough for a cacti guard to look it over in a cursory examination, the cacti soldier caste being very dedicated to their roles as protectors, before it stepped aside and allowed the Harbinger entry the Reconstructed was welcomed into the chamber withing the towering tree. From its designs you wonder if the living building the Harbinger found itself inside was once a Treeship before taking root at the heart of the colony but you brush those thoughts away as the Harbinger bows low before the pale Eldertree.

<Welcome, Lord Jadyk. May the light of the stars warm you.> it says in greeting, its telepathic "voice" sounding pleased.

"And you as well, Elder," the Harbinger says with your voice while clasping its hands behind its back, "You requested my presence?"

<Yes, for several reasons. Not all of them fortuitous I am afraid.>

What shall you discuss with the Eldertree first?
>Previous requests
>Overdue trades
>Matters of defense
>Other (write-in)
Matters of defense and then overdue trade
>>Matters of defense
>>Matters of defense
"Forgive my pessimism but I must assume the matters of defense your message mentioned is among the less fortuitous subjects, let's start there," you say as the Harbinger lifts its legs up to sit floating in the air, a habit of your own that seems to leak through whenever you control one of your puppet ambassadors.

There was faint quiver among the Eldertrees branches, a few dark leaves falling to the rich soil at its roots, <Indeed, Lord Jadyk. Your campaign against the Ahkam is well-known now through the sector and beyond. A Matriarch heads for this very sector but we are certain you know of this already. After your...encounters in the Tura system and the Dynasties repeated losses in this sector because of your interference, even the most skeptical of our Mindvine strategists among our Collective predict you are the target of this Matriarch.>

You were almost amused at how many factions were eager to share knowledge of the Ahkam Matriarchs arrival but the Eldertree continues to speak directly into the mind of the Harbinger as it regards it with the dozens of alien eyes hidden among the whorls of its pale bark.

<At the urging of our warleaders, we of the Parliament agree that the Collective shall lend aid in defending your worlds. Our warfleets are thin in this sector but we will divert what volunteers we have to assist in defending the Horizon's Drop and Bastion systems. They are the two systems our Mindvines predict will be the target of the Matriarchs assault. From what you have shared about the history of how Bastion and Rukor came to join your Armada, we believe she will have taken personal offense.>

<We have met the children of Rukor and witnessed the capability of those who worship this mysterious Lavafather. They are worthy of protection, beyond what our alliance entails.>

You are silent with surprise as you look through the Harbinger toward the Eldertree, it's built-in empathic sensors detecting a firm sense of hope and confidence.

>The Armatocere Collective freely offers to assist in the defense of the Horizon's Drop and Bastion systems from Ahkam incursion

How shall you reply to their generous offer?

I could never ask the Armatocere Collective to embroil itself further in the Armada's conflict with the Ahkam, but I gracefully accept any assistance that is offer. If you ever find yourselves in need, I will not hesitate to aid you.
I third the motion. Also offer to help facilitate talks. They think they're hot shit, let's play the wingman and help them get along.
"I could never ask the Armatocere Collective to embroil itself further in the Armada's conflict with the Ahkam, but I gracefully accept any assistance that is offered. Know that if you ever find yourselves in need, the Armada will be there," you say as the Harbinger bows low once again.

<We shall not forget. I will have a Warleader begin dispatching the volunteer ships to your systems shortly.> it says in your mind

"Very well, they will be expected," you say with a node from the Harbinger

<Now, to more peaceful concerns. In our diplomatic discussions, even the one so rudely interrupted by our Wraith adversaries, you have requesting a visit to our my sacred home>

<The Worldtree>

"Yes, I am quite enraptured by the stories I have heard of it. I would like to see it someday for myself, if it were allowed," the Harbinger gives a respectful bow of the head, "I am patient to wait for that day."

<Your patience is appreciated and shall be rewarded. I have spoken on your behalf to the Parliament. Our conversations and witnessing how your "mindless" Reconstructed act when given free-reign have convinced me that there can be a compromise.>

Without warning a holoscreen is projected from hidden emitters in the smooth wooden walls, showing a simplified image of your physical body quickly drawing your attention fully. The image changes showing sensor readings of your natural Necrotic and Void signatures as the Eldertrees voice fills the Harbingers skull.

<Regrettably your physical form is much too dangerous to bring to the Worldtree itself. While neither I nor most other members of the Parliament believe you would willingly harm the Worldtree, the very presence of such a potent source of Necrotic energy would be sickening.>

The image changes to show footage of the very safe Harbinger where they typically sat in their clearing, sensors showing the emissions of Necrotic energy from the Reconstructed.

<This Harbinger Reconstructed that has stayed with us here on Yrre-1, we have observed and studied. While it does emit a level of Necrotic energy, it is within safe levels for non-long term visitation.>

<Therefore, my proposal, which has been voted upon and authorized by the Parliament of Eldertree, is to allow this or another Harbinger to visit the Worldtree. This would grant you a chance to speak before the Parliament itself and witness the grandeur of our Collective's greatest treasure.>

<What say you, Lord Jadyk?>

well I'm embarrassed by some of these typos and grammar errors
Agreed, and I thank you for your time.
"I am honored by this gesture, Eldertree," you say as the Harbinger rises to its feet and gives a proper bow.

<Preparations to receive your ambassador are already underway. Do you believe this Harbinger or another will be sent?>

"I suppose it matters not, one Harbinger is as effective as any other," the Harbinger says with your voice as it looks down to the Idu inching its way up its arm toward its favored sunning spot on its shoulder.

<You say each of your Reconstructed are mere extensions of your will with barely any sentience and no sapience to speak of. This Harbinger makes me question these claims> it says as you detect amusement to their thoughts

<This Harbinger would be welcomed on the Worldtree. It has already proven...respectful during its stay here and appears to hold floral life in high regard>

Even as the Eldertree speaks you watch as the idu organism calmly perches itself on its shoulder and unfurls its colorful petals to soak in the sunlight redirected into the chamber through complex crystal veins that ran through the wooden structure.

"It appears so," you say as the Harbinger gives a few gently strokes along its side under the petals, the idu pressing into the careful claw with a sense of familiarity.

Looking back to the Eldertree you ask, "You also spoke of an overdue trade?"

<Was just about to mention that> it says and moments later your starship in orbit is transmitted a dense datapacket, <I believe we owed you appropriate trade for research gained>

Research Gained:
>FTL Interdiction: Fast - A recently completed long-term project of the Mindvines this data contains all the Armada needs to design and replicate the technology. By utilizing a mix of gravitational manipulation and reality anchor technology a field of what the Mindvines have called "Null Grav" that heavily hampers almost all tested FTL methods, effectively negating escape by traditional FTL travel.

<The Mindvines state that they are unsure if it will prevent methods of travel such as Storm Gate or Sunscale Helios Gate and other unique methods not yet discovered, but so far they've tested Warp, Void, Skip, and Singularity drives. They hope this will be acceptable.>

Was there anything else you wished to speak to the Eldertree about?

Not really, lets move on.
Thank them for their time. Send this harbinger on his own mystical journey
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"More than acceptable, Eldertree. This will be a valuable tool for the Armada. Thank you for your time, Eldertree," you say with a bow to the large sapient tree, several branches twisting in response.

<May the stars warm you, Lord Jadyk. Good luck.>

Departing from the Eldertree's chamber the Harbinger drifts through the city once more as your mind moves onto other matters as you prepare for war. The idu stretches out fully in the open sunlight, only moving snatch up an arthropod that landed nearby.

Returning to it's favored clearing the Harbinger passes a cluster of saplings and mindvines but stops and turns when it feels a vine hook gently on their wrist for a brief moment to look down at the mindvine standing before it. The floral creature glances at its comrades, pheromone laughter leaking into the air as several chuckle but the mindvine reaches into a pouch to pull out a chain of shining black stones.

With one vine it points to the Harbingers hand and there were several long moments of motionlessness from the undead. Glancing back at the others in confusion then back the Mindvine started to slither back when the Reconstructed lifts out its arm toward the floral citizen.

Their crest of leaves perk up as the mindvine reaches out and coils the short chain around the wrist of the Harbinger. The chain wraps itself firmly around the thin wrist of the Reconstructed, clacking together as the magnetic stones cling to each other and lock in place. The segments of the chain were simple magnetic lodestones, polished and carved to look like the segments of an idu much like the one still perched on their shoulder.

The Deep Rot watches through the Harbinger after it had called out for aid during the mindvines offer and listened to its suggestion to accept it. They recognize the jewelry as being a common accessory they'd seen adorning the citizenry of Yrre-1 and even visitors to the Floral Quarter in Iti'a'Ropku.

The Harbinger touches the carved stones with curious fingers, toying with the magnets then looking to the mindvine and giving a simple silent nod. Mimicking the motion the mindvine made a gesture of welcoming in their sign language before slithering back to their cluster of friends, several signing or letting out cloud of disbelief.

Resuming its seat the Harbinger goes motionless once more, only turning their head when the idu inched down their arm, inspected the newly gift for a moment, then moved off to hunt.
Next time Jaydk comes back the Harbringer is covered in bead necklaces and polishing off another keg while being held upside down by two cacti before a cheering crowd of mindvines
Can we form a new research project for Deep Rot?

Its been a long running point of interest that our reconstructed are forming rudimentary personalities, from this harbinger to the reconstructed dock workers, to the staff on Iti'a'Ropku its obvious something is going on. Is this our mind fracturing from the long imprisonment? Is this some unintended design from our designed worker and warrior caste instincts? This deserves further investigation.
The Coffin sits parked on the outskirts of the former Confederate colony on Honiv as a group of zombified colonists and the armored Envoy of Zekrul approach while the cargo bay door opens up into a ramp. A Harbinger floats down the ramp with a demi-Think Tank following close at hand and gives a bow to the Envoy.

The armored skeleton gives a polite bow of the head before speaking, "Lord Zekrul wishes to speak to you, Lord Jadyk. He invites this Harbinger to meet him. If you would follow me."

"Of course, lead the way," you say through the Harbinger as a pair of Trolls fall in behind it and the demi-Think Tank.

Turning on their heel the Envoy marches toward the heart of the colony as the group of zombies follow behind the Reconstructed.

Drifting up next to the Envoy the Harbinger glances at them with their eyeless gaze, "May I pry into Zekrul's mood this day?"

There was a chuckle from the skeleton, the Necrotic flames contained by their armor and visor, "Much as he always is," they glance to the Harbinger in return, "Lord Zekrul has little patience for fools or those that waste his time," they hold up a hand defensively before you could say anything, "Understand I make no accusations, Lord Jadyk. I only warn you of my Master. His temper is as hot as the flames that burn within him."

As they walked they pass buildings that were once prefabricated structures of plasteel much like the original colony of Horizon's Drop had been. Now they were reinforced and built upon with dense metal plating and carved with sigils you recognize vaguely as being the Charred Gods script.

The Envoy guides the Harbinger and its escort into a large domed building protected by anti-air towers, their guns motionless and pointed toward the sky. Within the temperature was noticeably higher though it mattered little to the undead as they walked through hallways only lit by torches of burning green flame.

Stopping before a large armored door the Envoy gives a nod to the Harbinger, "Lord Zekrul awaits you inside."

Nodding in return the Harbinger drifts forward with the demi-Think Tank at its side as the doors creak open to allow it entrance.

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The chamber within was sweltering with heat, a veritable oven that would feel quite comfortable to a stonestar if dry. Rectangular the chamber stretched out before the Harbinger, a series of pillars along the walls in support of the ceiling while torches burned with green flames. On the other end of the chamber the ground rose up to a dais upon which was a throne much like your own simple throne before the addition of the Dirges and other defensive measures.

Lord Zekrul, former Admiral of the Grand Necrotic Armada, sat upon the throne. Armor the color of ancient rust and decay creaked as he stood and spread his arms out in welcome, the brilliant flames of Necrotic energy that engulfed his mummified skull flaring, "I welcome you to my throne room, Lord Jadyk! What do you think?" he asks expectantly. Just as you recalled their body was that of an ancient human, their hair burned away and their flesh withered and clinging tight to their bones as Necrotic flames leaked from the neck of the armor and gaps in the corroded metal. In particular, a large puncture in the chestplate of his armor leaked the emerald flames, the wound looking fresher than the wear-and-tear that "naturally" marred his armor.

Drifting forward the Harbinger turns their head as they inspect the chamber then up to Zekrul as they halt at the foot of the dais, "Humble, but it shows promise," you say and see a momentary twitch of a sneer on the undeads face but it fades quickly as you continue, "I apologize once more, Lord Zekrul, for being unable to personally visit. I am forced to deal with a very dangerous invader within the solar day."

Zekrul seats himself, perching his chin in his palm as he leans forward on the armrest, "Must be a particularly nasty adversary if the great Lich-Lord Jadyk considers them dangerous."

The Harbinger motions toward the demi-Think Tank which projects several holoscreens depicting footage of the Ahkam Matriarch from nearby strikecraft as she destroys shuttles with a single bite and destroyed an Osjiic Frigate with a single blast. Other screens showing the first-person memories of the Trolls that leaped from their shattered shuttle to claw and tear at her in the void of space.

As Zekrul watched he lifted his head from his palm frowning as you spoke, "You have perhaps heard of the Ahkam Dynasties. This is a Matriarch by the name of Quantac'Vrix. I have slain and captured many of her children and foiled many of her plots. She comes to destroy me in retribution. There are few stronger entities in this new galaxy we have found ourselves in, my old friend and ally."

Zekrul rubs at his chin with a finger for a moment, "I suppose I can forgive your slight. They do seem...intimidating," he says with a rasping chuckle before slapping his hand down on the armrest, "So tell me, Lord Jadyk. Should you survive this upset mother, what do you have planned for your New Necrotic Armada? I'm curious to see how your imprisonment changed you."

Oh man, you weren't kidding about zombies on fire. The Charred God is going to live up to his name.

I wonder what the nature of the fire is? Solar and necrotic don't typically mix, but the Lavafather's forcers aren't Solar-powered either and they've got plenty of fire.
I'll take a crack at it. Feel free to change it how you like.

"As you know I spent many years imprisoned, and have had a great deal of time to think. I have come to a realization about the path of the old Armada.

If we had won, if we had cleansed the galaxy of all the living, what would have happened then? What would our undying, eternal future have been? Nothing but decay and stagnation, a surrender to entropy until the stars grew cold. In the past we sneered at the living for their weakness and fragility, but ignored the vitality and creative chaos of their short but brightly burning lives. And we underestimated that vitality so greatly that it led us to arrogance and betrayals, and ultimately our defeat. We have lost much in payment for our foolishness.

In my many years of isolation I believe I have found a way to forge a new armada that can endure and grow forever. We can neither afford to repeat the mistakes that led to our defeat, or commit the mistakes that would have made our victory hollow and meaningless.

We must not merely destroy or dominate the living, but embrace them. To make not merely their bodies ours, but also their peculiar strength. To have servants that not only fear, but also love us. To have the vitality of their lives freely given to strengthen and renew the armada while praising our names, and then welcome the most worthy among them into undeath at the end of their mortal service, not as slaves, but as loyal friends.

Already we have forged a mighty city that is becoming the heart of a new empire, with multiple other empires already allied with us. Each race adds new strength and vitality to our armada, both the living and the undead. Already we command powers and energies never dreamed of in the old Armada, and challenge some of the most powerful empires that have arisen during our absence. We have kept the living from uniting against us by making many of them part of our cause. In the battle against the Ahkam matriarch that I have just shown you is coming, many of the living will fight at our side.

In the short time since I have returned much has changed, and this path has already shown great promise. Let me show you, old friend, and you can see and judge for yourself."
Hey thats pretty good! Throwin in on that!
We find ourselves in a new Era my old friend, things are not nearly as clean cut as they used to be, the descendants of the Planetary alliance dabble in necromancy

the only consistency has been the Sunscales dire need to erradicate the undead and the misguided need of tyrants to enslave the weak.

I do not know if you where awake for any of your imprisonment but I was, and it made me realize that this would be exactly what our victory would have entailed, an eternity of boredom, a dull twilight as we all gathered dust awaiting an end to all things that may never come.

We where fundamentally wrong about the living, weak as they are there is a strength to them if given the chance to grow, all they require is a little guidance not eradication.

I have found the results so far have been extremely successful and surprising in their ingenuity

Not to say alot of them can use with a good dumping in the cauldron but then you cant save them all.

How about you zekron, did you find you brief indenture to your liking?
>an eternity of boredom, a dull twilight as we all gathered dust awaiting an end to all things that may never come.

I like that bit. I wonder if talking about boredom would appeal to him better than talking about stagnation. I'm sure we could write very long treatises on boredom. We're first-hand experts in the topic.
yeah i was thinking a mixture of the two and this guy comes across as rather easily offended so if we make the alternative to our method appear less, appealing then they might be more inclined to come around to our way of thinking, make them think they came up with the idea rather then us forcing them into it.

I mean we will force them into it one way or another but we have to show them the carrot before we hit them with the stick
The Harbinger was silent for a time as you gathered your thoughts, "I spent many years imprisoned with only my thoughts to keep me occupied, and have had a great deal of time to think, coming to a realization about the path of the old Armada.

If we had won, if we had cleansed the galaxy of all the living, what would have happened then? What would our undying eternity brought us? Nothing but decay, stagnation and worst of all, unbearable boredom as we surrender to entropy until the last star grows cold. An enterity of boredom, a dull twilight as we all gathered dust awaiting an end to all things," you say, turning the Harbingers back on Zekrul as it paces slightly.

"In the past we sneered at the living for their weakness and fragility, but ignored the vitality and creative chaos of their short but brightly burning lives. We underestimated that vitality so greatly it led to arrogance and betrayals, and ultimately our defeat. We have lost much in payment for our foolishness.

"Our gods have been silenced for this arrogance," you say turning to face him once more, the ancient undead sitting in silence as they listened, "We were fundamentally wrong about the living. The centuries and eons I spent alone in my tomb and the time I have spent upon gaining my freedom, I have learned something valuable, Zekrul.

"We can not afford to make the mistakes of following our old paths. We must not merely destroy or dominate the living even though it is within our power to do so, but to embrace them. To make not merely their bodies our, but also their minds and souls, given freely through devotion and love, not coerced through fear and military might," the Harbinger waves a hand and the demi-Think Tank projects new images before Zekrul.

Images of the Commander battling to take Station 88 from the Empire, of Jor practicing his growing telekinetic powers, of Necrolyte Legionnaires fighting the hordes of undead in Refuge, of soldiers wearing Cauldron forged armor fighting shoulder to shoulder with the Reconstructed.

"If given the chance to grow, if given guidance and the means to achieve their dreams and a home to defend, the living will freely give their lives to strengthen and renew the Armada while praising the names of those who gave them that chance. To welcome the most worthy among them into undeath, not as slaves, but as loyal subjects and devout friends.

"Already we have forged something mighty, a new empire that is the friend with multiple other factions already allied with us. Each race adds new strengths and vitality to my Armada, both the living and the undead. We have attained feats that would have seemed near mythical in the time of the old Armada. We are feared and respected by those we challenge, empires and dynasties that have seen no equal in the void left by the Armadas destruction," you say as the demi-Think Tank swaps out the images of the Legion for various shots of the Osjiic Empire, Ahkam Dynasties, UON, and Sunscale.

"In the short time since I have returned, much has changed. I have changed," you say as the Harbinger presses hand to its chest, "This path has already shown great promise. Even my sister Ruscuv has come to appreciate my new vision for the future of the Armada.

"Let me show you, old friend, and you can see and judge for yourself," you say, finally gliding back a few steps as the holoscreens flicker out and the Harbinger clasps its hands behind its back while looking up to Zekrul on his throne.

He is silent for a long time, rubbing the stretched, burnt skin of his chin with a finger in thought. Finally he lowers his hand to push himself to his feet, the flames surrounding his skull somewhat subdued, "You have clearly given this subject much thought, Lord Jadyk. If you would allow me some time, I must think these things over."

He gives a short bow of his head, "Either way, Lord Jadyk. I admit I am glad to see I am not the only remnant of the old Armada. It is good to hear that Ruscuv is intact as well. I long admired her work on the battlefield and skills at creating new monstrosities."

"I will tell her you said hello," the Harbinger gives a bow, "May the Wormstar watch over you and the fires of the Charred God warm your bones," it says in the language of the Undying Court.

Zekrul gives a small scoff but nods, "You remember the old words, good. May the fires of the Charred God warm your bones, as well," he replies in turn.

Was there anything you wished to briefly speak with him about before departing?
oh btw... pick another name for your,,, empire copyright infringment is still one of the greatest powers in the universe
ok serious answer

"Take your time, what I ask may seem to go against everything we where but that is the simple fact that now that our respective gods are gone we must forge our own paths and make our own choices.

Be aware though, there are many...player in this universe of great power who will, Mask themselves from you to hide their true intentions but I will as always speak plainly on all matters.

please let me know if you need anything
actually we should address this issue

Only Buy Wormstar bran New Necrotic Armada, not to be mistaken with the inferior Burnt God Brand New necrotic Armada.

Accept no imitations!
We should check to see if he's attacked anyone or been contacted by masked, warn him of their wagers as well
Why!? I had tons of ship techs I wanted to try. Is it because slow days like tjis or just the cancer that is qst? Man This sucks.
Speaking of ships we should start building some solar ships asap as well as a few legions of solar and arc troops
We'll be continuing this later this afternoon probably in about 2 hours or so
YassssSSSSSSSSSSSS GRAVES PLEASE DONT YOU END THIS QUEST JUST YET!!!You my friend just gave us the means to become an interstellar horror machine. We can adopt sooo many special units now, oh man dis gonna be good, now if they have this it makes me wonder what else they have...
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*Bone rattling intensifies*
I think you misunderstood what I was saying.

Death Among the Stars Quest is here to stay for the foreseeable future

I was meaning my original quest that focused on the Red Throat Tribe of Ghouls living in the sewers of a magitech metropolis is probably not going to be brought back. I'm working on turning it into a book in fact
Okay, time to get this going

Roll call time, sound off

Hello. Probably won't get to stick around long, I'm afraid.
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Seated in the Charnel Vault's you have the flagship primed and ready to depart at a moments notice. With the threat of the Matriarch's arrival hanging over your head you wished to be ready. With the Charnel Vault drifting in orbit around Horizon's Drops moon at the heart of the main picket fleet forces you looked out across the Armada through your countless Reconstructed. From this distance you could not see the construction of the Wormstars Fist growing around your throneworld with each segment shaped by the hands of thousands of Reconstructed.

There was a small notice that flashes, alerting you to the fleet that Ruscuv had taken to reinforce Bastion. With it came a message from your fellow Lich that she will be sending for reinforcements of her own reserve Reconstructed dug up from vaults on Clour. It goes on to say she hopes you don't mind that she's going to be taking the Fury of the Wormstar as her command ship for the coming battle, the massive bioship left to languish in the oceans of Rukor.

Vle'Karak argues with Dne'tec on the moon, debating what would happen to them should they attempt escape and return to the Dynasty, to Quantac'Vrix. Arc energy ripples along the old snakes form but he keeps himself restrained as he shoots down the younger Ahkam's protests and proposals. Predator Eiton keeps a close eye upon their meeting but the newly formed Arc Disciples who oversaw the creation of their new Savages and Vipers began to notice peculiarities within their temple.

The Disciple that had once been the Arcdancer Orvca reports that she had detected Arc anomalies within the Temple, motes of twisted light drifting through the chambers particularly around the Arc Condenser at the heart of the temple. They report that similar anomalies were even more noticeable in the chamber of the Arc Fount in the Arc Temple of Rukor's moon, the Disciples and Eiton believing them to be signs of the Arc Surge's increasing strength. The Think Tanks working on Arc based experiments report similar anomalies, suffering power surges that nearly lead to disastrous results if not for their precautions and heavy use of Glutton crystal safety measures.

Another notice draws your attention, Commander Rethak's proclamation and announcement of the Immortals about to begin. Across the sector Necrolyte Legionnaires not in the middle of urgent matters or battles against remnant undead in Refuge, pause their tasks and training. They gather around holoscreens projected by demi-Think Tanks or communications hubs, waiting for the broadcast.

Those within Iti'a'Ropku gather in the colosseum where the message would be delivered, the Commander waiting inside with a collection of his officers, both living and Immortal, and Jor holding his newly craft staff. A Harbinger waits nearby to follow and show your support of the proclamation. Rethak speaks with Jor and Rosa, going over the notes for his speech that the necromancer hand given him.
Your attention is drawn away from the event though, the faint sound of an insects buzzing reaching your physical form. The moment you turn your head and become fully aware of your surroundings you see the hands of a Pilot that were dancing across it's control panel freeze in place, all sound ceasing within the cavernous bridge of the Charnel Vault, only the faint buzzing of countless arthropods just within hearing and the shifting of the wooden mask held in your ribcage.

The buzzing rose in pitch sharply as you turned your head, searching for the source but a faint rasping of cloth against bone makes you look straight ahead to where a hunched form shrouded in gray torn robes stood by a Pilots console. Lifting their head the hood falls back just enough for you to see the calm visage of a human woman carved out of a dark wood look up at you. Unlike the others you had seen their form remains shrouded as they glide forward without visibly moving, "Lord Jadyk, you do not seem surprised to see us."

The voice that spoke was soft, barely a whisper spoken by countless overlapping languages living and dead but you could understand each word. With a short nod you lean forward in your throne and rest your chin on your hand with elbow propped up by the armrest, "To be honest, I am more surprised I have not seen you sooner. I was waiting for this visit, considering the battle that is to come," you say with a dismissive motion of the other hand.

The laughter that rattles the teeth in your skull buzzes like a faulty warship reactor, "Indeed, the battle that is to come shall be...eventful," the Masked's body seems to shift and distort under their robes but they remained hidden as they lifted up into the air before your precariously suspended throne, "This battle will change many things, but that is your domain, is it not? O' Lord of Change and Chaos, the Conqueror Worm who draws the mighty Ahkam Matriarch Quantac'Vrix the Vicious Mother by slaying and enslaving her precious children," the voice laughs once more, making you grit your teeth at the bizarre sensations

"We were quite astonished you could bend the will of mighty Vle'Karak so thoroughly that he even refused our offer of freedom. Your skills of persuasion of impressive, Lich-Lord, we bow our heads in professional admiration," the figure bows before you, the hand stretching out to the side revealed briefly from the robe was a vorhs hand, blacked with Necrotic corruption that shifts to the bloodied, gnawed stump wearing Legion armor but it disappears as they straighten.

"Why have you come here? Am I never free of your tests?" you question, your previous anger during the encounters with the enigmatic entities held in check for the moment.

A skeletal hand of some unknown species lifts up, the wooden mask tilting, "Is existence itself not a test? No, this battle will not be a test. It will be a rare conflict between two main pieces of our beloved Game. There is much at stake riding on this conflict, the futures of two empires depending on who survives and doesn't. It is the rules of our Game that we cannot interfere in any substantial way, no lucky portals to divert stray missiles or nonsense such as that. This shall be a simple contest of which side is superior, smarter, stronger. Which side has the determination to ensure their victory.

"While we may not interfere with the battle before or during, there is no saying we cannot provide..."
the laughter chuckles darkly, feeling like metal claws scraping along the inside of your eyesockets, "Incentives and rewards for your victory. Should you win, we Masked shall bestow upon you a boon. To learn the location of Akka-Tor, perhaps. Or the weaknesses of the Sunscale Flotilla, to learn who conspires against your Armada and undetected threats you face. Maybe even learn secrets of your new friends," there was a faint clicking of the tongue as the Masked shakes their hidden head, "A shame what happened to Punisher Muic. Almost losing your second General in nearly as many weeks."

The Masked have appeared before you once more, offering you a boon should you be victorious in battle against the Matriarch. Now is the time to accept their offer or to question them.

Tell me what have you offer to the matriarch?

Your theatrics are tiresome, but I will indulge them. When this Ahkam offensive is broken, their fleets burning and their soldiers my prisoners I will have from you those who conspires against me in secret. But right now I want something else from you, tell me what have you offer to the matriarch if she is victorious?
Here now and I look forward to it.
Leaning back in your throne you press your fingertips together and are silent for a time before you speak, "Your theatrics are tiresome, but I shall indulge you. When this Ahkam offensive is broken, when their fleets burn with their soldiers in my prisons, you will give me the boon of knowledge concerning those who would conspire against me in secret.

"Right now though, I want something else from you," you say and the Masked gives an inquisitive tilt of their mask, "Tell me what you have offered the Matriarch if she is victorious."

That damnable laughter shakes you, the buzzing of unseen swarms deafening but it's voice of the innumerable dead was still a murmur, "Now now, Lich-Lord. You should know better than that. How would you feel if we shared what boons you have received from us to your enemies? How would Akka-Tor react if she knew you held one of your masks? How would the shamans of the Mother and Father react to the Blackscale's deal that lead them to meeting you?"

They wave an acid-burned hand of an esat dismissively, the chitin bubbling as it liquifies, "This does not even consider the fact that I am not the one of our number who speaks with Matriarch Vrix. That task fell to the one of our number who feels you must be...humbled. Even prodigies of our Game must suffer the pain of defeat eventually. Or so they have said during their turns," they say with another dark chuckle and a shrug.

After a moment of silence you clack your teeth, "Are you finished? I have a battle to win and an empire to topple."

Bowing low the robed Masked speaks, "We are never finished, Lich-Lord. But for the time, we shall depart," and the robes collapse to a pile on the floor only to crumble to dust and swirl away into the cracks of the bridge floor.

There was that now familiar sensation of time resuming, of the cosmic clock jump-starting with out the intrusion of the enigmatic entities. Pilots reached for their controls, data streamed in from the Deep Rot and the fleets, sensations of the countless Reconstructed flooding back to your mind.

But then it froze, once more.

anticipation intensifies
Only a few seconds of time had passed and you find time paused once more. Yet, unlike before, you found yourself unable to move as an invisible, impossible pressure held you in place.

A voice, different than the Maskeds distorted overlapping of the dead, but singular and audible, speaks to you in the ancient Wormtongue, "The Masked are quite bothersome, are they not? They tell you half-truths and deceive you to amuse themselves for their Game. Yet there is truth to their words, there are those among their number that wish to break you and everything you have fought to build."

The voice is calm and measured but you are unable to place what species speaks, or even if there was an entity there who spoke, "We three are uncertain of your path, a path forged by so many deaths and so much suffering, sure to bring so much more upon the living and undead, but bringing hope to a galaxy where that energy is weak. But we cannot allow them to weaponize you.

"We three share this advice and warning.

"Deny your hunger, your vice for consumption. The powers that are and shall be have already strained and damaged by your gluttony. Should you attempt to take that which should not be taken, there will be consequences, Jadyk.

"Fear becoming Abomination, the Arc is not yours to take."

And just as before, time resumes and the pressure lifts, allowing time and data and sensation to flow through you once more. Fists clenched in anger and annoyance you glance around the bridge then shake your head.

Reaching into your ribcage you pull forth the wooden mask. It was still in your hand but it's surface was coated in a uniform cover of gray dust. Running a finger through the coating you look at it closely but before your nonexistent eyes the dust seems to evaporate from your claw and the mask but you were quite familiar with bone-dust when you saw it.

Letting out a heavy sigh that draws the attention of multiple Pilots you replace the mask in your ribcage, claws tapping the armrest as you digest your new cryptic warning.

You glance at a Pilot that had looked up at you and you wistfully say, "I yearn for the day when I do not have to worry about interdimensional mischief."

The Pilot merely shrugs. You sigh again.
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>"Deny your hunger, your vice for consumption. The powers that are and shall be have already strained and damaged by your gluttony. Should you attempt to take that which should not be taken, there will be consequences, Jadyk.
>"Fear becoming Abomination, the Arc is not yours to take."

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so it looks as if adding the Arc to our persenal arsenal would lead to immediate Fun.We either become an abomination against the universe, or something that even the likes of the Old Armada would try to purge with fire...BUT I WANT IT SO BAD!Maybe if we were "gifted" with it,such as a dimension wide Surge or some other phenomenon that would allow a being like us to then exist and we wouldnt have "taken" it.
Also this means that when we have to subdue the matriarch with out us draining her
>We three

Well well, what have we here?

And I'm just going to take their "not yours to take" warning as being about us *personally* wielding Arc powers. We've already got necrotic, solar, and void.

But if these guys think us getting arc as well would make us some kind of abomination, I wonder if they're going to be upset by our experiments in elemental energies, quasiphasic phenomena, and mixing them. Well, it's up to them to let us know I guess.

Whoever they are.

I figure we can still do plenty of experimentation before deciding whether personally messing with Arc powers is a good idea. They didn't say anything about Arc-wielding servants, arc technology, or even our experimentations. What they want isn't stifling, and it at least seems somewhat benevolent towards the denizens of the galaxy.

Probably. Or at least, when we defeat her, we shouldn't PERSONALLY try to steal the Arc.
Or kill her and feed her to say Ruscuv. Just not taking it personally.
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I saw we turn her into a new snek general
wew its late for me

One question when did the Arc Surge happen compare to the time we acquired Solar powers? Could we be causing an instability in the elements?
I don't see how us acquiring a power would have galactic effects. We haven't done anything on a galactic scale.

The warning was about becoming "Abomination", which sounds more like a problem with the path we'd be going down rather than an immediate reality-ending crisis that we'd already be seeing the effects of. And if imbalance were the problem, you'd think acquiring all four known elemental powers would be more balanced, not less.
With all this talk about balance, now I just want to become Buddha Lich in harmony with all the elements and achieve transcendental enlightenment.

Hopefully these Three will explain just what exactly their deal is soon. If they disapprove of the Masked and care at least somewhat about the affairs of the galaxy and the people in it, why do they allow the Masked to sow chaos everywhere? Didn't they turn an entire star system into a screaming mass of damned souls or something?
Something is afraid of Jaydk becoming a living covenant

What better way to control another then by fear and the greatest fear is fear of the unknown.

I think you will find that with the death of so many God's many thrones remain vacant and those who saw them evicted are becoming fearful of something else moving in...
Also no offence but there is no chance she will surrender

We aren't able to imprison her

Best bet is to drain her finally gain the arc like we should have a year ago lol and continue to Do things our way

Or we can try to subdue her if you guys think we can get 3 crit success rolls during combat and a following crit success roll to collar her and then another crit success to change her into a general once we finish building a collosal cauldron

There is a reason matriarch are worshipped as God's. Ur best bet is to drain and kill her and then reanimated the remains
Becoming an immortal master of all elements sounds like a step above even all the old gods we knew.

Still, I don't know if there's enough benefit in pissing off these new guys when we're still struggling to avoid being crushed in the gears of the game the Masked are playing. So far they just want us to not become and all-consuming plague, it seems, and they feel like acquiring the Arc too would be part of that, at least for us right now.

We're on a general path of reconciliation and mutual benefit here. Let's see if these Three can be part of that or not.
So we are generally agreed:no giving momma snek the SUCC.
Fairly certain we would be passing them off either way

At least by gaining the arc we gain an edge over them since why else would this mystery tribunal suddenly reveal itself when we are so close to being perhaps the only individual in existence with all the elements at it's beck and call
Having a battle of elemental wills with an Ahkam Matriarch in the middle of a massive Arc surge that we're already starting to have difficulty coping with sounds like a really dumb idea anyway.

Any ideas on how we could judo our way out of this? Taking the brunt of the Arc power of a Matriarch on directly sounds dumb, but maybe we can divert or redirect that energy instead. Ruscuv won her battle with a tactic along those lines.

If we can trick to the Ahkam Matriarch into using all her strength against herself in some way, we might come out of this in one piece.
So Lord Jaydk is easily spooked by mysterious voices to give up a once in a life time opportunity?
I was thinking with the use of glutton spears, undead armed with necrotic cores and most of our generals we could have a family feast to ssafely offset the amount donate power

And as they reach their full have our leaders pull back delivery a pun filled one liner like "well I guess your boned" before finishing her off

Modify Crit Crawls design to drain her and poison her? Maybe create a ship specially design to shoot them?
What do you mean either way? All they've asked us to do is not go on too much of a conquering spree (gluttony) and not claim the Arc for ourselves right now. We can do that.

They haven't given us reason to trust them, but they are obviously powerful and that makes pissing them off dangerous. We haven't even dared piss off the Masked too much and these guys have the appearance of being above them somehow, since they're commenting on the Masked to us and the Masked have made no such comments about them. They might not even be aware of the visit of the Three.

Is the reward of directly and immediately pissing off an unknown and very powerful force really worth the risk here?
Wait. This is a long shot, but I just realized that the Three referred to hope as an energy, and the galaxy as a place where that energy is or at least recently has been weak. What if that's not metaphorical?

Is this quest going Captain Planet on us?

Necrotic, Arc, Void, Solar, Hope?
They can freeze time and they havnt been mentioned like the Masked,so they are likely more secrative. In the grand scheme of things,we are still around the bottom of the pecking order. We arnt scared,we are simply smart enough to atl east consider pissing of entities that held us at their mercy.
And now I can't stop picturing Jaydk in a costume that is part captain planet part superman... if the Wormstars true name turns out o be Martha..
It seems like it would just be a wasted opportunity but if the majority don't want to drain her for fear of some unknowns who could very well trun out to be opposing members of the masked for all we know. Well it's a group story so what ever the majority votes for is what we will do
>could very well turn out to be opposing members of the masked for all we know.

There were quite a few strong narrative hints that they're not.

Different effect on us:
> you find time paused once more. Yet, unlike before, you found yourself unable to move as an invisible, impossible pressure held you in place.

Different voice:
>A voice, different than the Maskeds distorted overlapping of the dead, but singular and audible

Speaks in one language and doesn't appear at all, unlike the Masked on both counts:
>speaks to you in the ancient Wormtongue
>The voice is calm and measured but you are unable to place what species speaks, or even if there was an entity there who spoke

I mean, sure, you can't be sure it's not some super long con, but this doesn't fit the pattern of our past experience with the Masked.

We could take the risk of defying them on the one thing they decided was worth telling us not to do, but they seem even more powerful than the Masked and we don't need to wield the Arc personally in order for it to strengthen the Armada. I just don't see enough benefit to balance the risk personally.

To be fair I've been posting a lot lately, so don't let that skew the apparent popularity of options. Maybe people will feel differently when the time comes. Assuming we don't get completely wrecked.
The red sun rose high in sky over Iti'a'Ropku, the crystalline statues and sculptures placed through the city refracting the light into brilliant sprays of color. Flying Reconstructed are a common sight, gliding from rooftop to rooftop or perching on walls alongside small native flying creatures.

The large colosseum carried the members of the Necrolyte Legion, shielding them from the suns rays as the domes segments slide shut to cast the interior into shadow. Legionnaires and citizens of the city fill the air with the buzz of their conversations as they waited but silence falls as spotlights illuminate the platform you typically resided from that rose up above the stands on one end of the colosseum.

Massive holoscreens project, showing a close shot of the collective standing there. Commander Rethak standing forefront alongside Jor and Rosa with several of the Immortals and other members of the Legions officers, the Harbinger standing near the edge.

On Legion's Home, dozens of newly recruited Legionnaires mostly gained from B'Nan and volunteers from Refuge sat and watched the holoscreens projected for them from the walls of their training facility. Many of them still wore their armors and held training weaponry.

Necromancer Jor took a step forward, the holoscreens zooming in on him in his newly forged armor that resembled the forms of the Immortal behind him. His voice, projected into the colosseum and broadcast through the Deep Rot, speaks out, "Loyal soldiers and citizens of the New Necrotic Armada, many of you know me as First Necromancer Jor. I was the first of Lord Jadyk's servants, there from the day we dug him up from the mines below our very feet. It has been a long and eventful time since I was first inducted into the service of the Wormstar and its champion. A time that I would not have survived if not for the friendship of a person that many of you know and respect.

"The Voidsinger who became Commander after they created the Legion, was my close friend. It was this nameless Voidsinger, a former soldier of the Empire, that convinced Lord Jadyk to create the Necrolyte Legion. It may have been Lord Jadyk that created the Legion, but it was the Commander and his officers that made the Legion what it is today, a force that now fights to protect those that cannot protect themselves."

A sandstorm rages across a continent of Scatters, Necrolytes huddled in their tents and bunkers as they tuned out the howling winds with their faces lit by the holoscreens showing Jor.

"The Necrolyte Legion faced it's greatest challenge during the Refuge Crisis, a crisis that threatened to consume countless innocent lives left to struggle and die alone. I will not say that the Legion did not suffer losses during this crisis but I will say this, that the Legion proved itself more than worthy of the admiration and respect the people of Refuge have shown you."

I love this shit. Never stop Grave.
"I myself walked alongside the Commander in that final mission to seek out and tear the heart of the undead plague that gripped the system. Through a den of nightmares and terror we fought until we came to our final foes. The battles we waged saw us victorious but at a grave cost," Jor says solemnly, casting his gaze down, "In this battle, my close friend the Voidsinger Commander attempted to give his life to save my own and the lives of his soldiers."

Silence gripped the Legion, thousands of soldiers watching from their outposts spread across the stars. Many wipe away building tears of anger and grief, others gripping their weapons tight as they think back on the osjiic soldier who helped break down their walls and rebuild them into the force they were.

Jor lifts his head, his voice rising once more, "But fear not! Through their martyring, we were able to free the people of Refuge from their plight! The heart of the plague of undeath was torn out, the disease left to wither and fade away!" Many of the Legion began to cheer and stomp their feet, the excitement carried through the transmission.

"Be not furious at the passing of your Commander, for death comes to all things, and is it not the way of the Necrolyte Legion? Of the Armada itself?

"To Death, and through it to Eternity!"

Jor turns, lifting a hand to point to the towering osjiic Immortal, "Though the Voidsinger, the one we called Commander when they had no name, has been to Deaths door they have passed through it into Eternity!

"People of the Armada, loyal citizens of the Wormstar, please welcome the First Immortal, Rethak, Commander of the Necrolyte Legion, hero of the Necrotic Armada, the savior of Refuge!" Jor's voice was nearly drowned out by the hundreds of voices rising up and cheering as Rethak stepped forward to take Jor's place.

He stood there as they cheered, hearing as they began to chant his name. Across the sector cheering filled the bunkers, tents and fortresses filled with Necrolytes, stomping their feet as they were whipped up with their zealous excitement.

Finally Rethak lifts his hands and silence comes if reluctantly. He looks out over the crowd for a few moments before his voice, hardly changed from before and relieving to the Legionnaires who doubted this undead's identity, rang out, "That was a more impressive introduction than I thought he'd give," he says with a chuckle and laughter ripples through the crowds.

3 voices
We have 3 powers
The one power we don't have is acting odd in ways nothing has seen before
As far as we know We are the first in the universe to hold more than one power in the same body, so it could be the first time the true source of each power has mixed with each other, like linking the elemental plain of void with the planes of necrotic and solar
The cross over isn't much but it's more than should have ever happened. We are changing the very fundamental markup of the non physical world
What would happen if we add ark and make the powers flow and be one
Flow and be one
Flow and be one
Arc is the connector power too
It's will be like completing a circuit, the power will flow, all will be one
Shaking his head he looks back to the Scourge Reconstructed that carried the holocameras and hovered before him, "What Necromancer Jor said is true. In our attempts to rip out the sickness that infected Refuge, I was taken to the brink of Death. Only through the blessings and charity of Lord Jadyk and the quick thinking of Jor and my soldiers, was I able to be brought back," he motions toward the other Immortals that stood behind him, "I was not the only one that day to meet Death, passing through it for our chance at Eternity.

"We are Immortals, the living granted eternal Undeath. When we joined the Legion, we were all given a choice, serving in life or in death. While this may seem like a cruel choice, many of us now know this choice is more complex than it seems.

"Before I became a servant of Lord Jadyk, I was a soldier of the Osjiic Empire. A nameless Voidsinger among countless others that was nothing more than a tool of my commanders, a commodity for the Empire. For upon our very bones the Empires might is fueled, and when this realization came to me, I accepted death. I accepted that in time my flames and corruption would slay me and I would be rendered down to nothing, dying without a name or a purpose beyond war," he says, lifting a fist above his head that burns with Voidflame.

On Veraga Prime, in the cargo hold of the Wick, the Legionnaires and smugglers watch the demi-Think Tank's broadcast, waiting for the message from the Cartels before they take their new ships.

"When Lord Jadyk pressed me into his service, I thought I would serve as an amusement to this monstrous undead I had the misfortune of running afoul," he chuckles, lowering his fist and the flames fade, "I had no idea the sights I would see, the peoples I would meet, the battles I would face.

"Most of all, I did not expect to find something I never thought I had, let alone lost.

"I found faith, faith in something worthwhile and greater than me. I saw what Lord Jadyk could turn the Armada into, and I decided that I would do my best to ensure it was something that could bring this hope to the rest of the galaxy, a galaxy I had a hand in harming," they look to the camera, "Through the Necrolyte Legion and the Armada, we can and are, spreading something the galaxy desperately needs.


Might even fix our grip on our powers even further as we have to regulate each by using another as a deterrent to it's opposing power. It would be like trying to juggle when certain balls weigh more then others so you really have to focus to keep them all in sync

Maybe having the arc will finally be the balancing force to make it no longer something Jaydk needs to focus on to maintain control
Cheering fills the colosseum once more, Rethak letting it continue for a time until he motions to the rest of those gathered on the platform to step forward with him. Finally he motions for silence once more and the crowd complies as his voice rings out, "Immortality is the highest honor one can attain in the Legion or in service of Lord Jadyk. Legionnaires who serve loyally can serve their allotted time before they can take to a life of peace here in Iti'a'Ropku or Vyi'a'Rthun or any of the future cities of the Armada, free to live their lives as they see fit. You can live out the rest of the days of your life in comfort, satisfied with the knowledge and certainty that you have done great things and made the galaxy a safer place.

"Those that wish to continue their service, who find combat and warfare to be less frightening than peace and calm, may continue to do so, using their talents to serve the Armada and its people," he gives a chuckle and presses a hand to his armored chest, "To be honest, even if my life turned out differently, if I was not chosen to take the corruption of the Void into myself, I likely would have still served the Legion into old age," the laughter echoed by many in the Legion who were lifelong soldiers before their initiations.

"Yet, for those that show true dedication and commitment, those who prove without a doubt they can serve the Legion and Armada past what their fates would entail, shall be granted Immortality. For those who find themselves in moments and confluxes of fate, who struggle to ensure the safety of innocents and the Armada's people even at the cost of their own lives, shall be granted Immortality.

"Do not seek to martyr yourself in search of this lofty prize, for such thoughts are selfish and anathema to the doctrines of the Legion. Give yourselves fully to the Legion, to the Armada, in the name of the Wormstar and Lord Jadyk, and this selflessness will be rewarded eternally."

He salutes, his fist engulfed in Voidflame as he thumps it against his chest, feet snapping together. Those assembled with him repeat the motion as his voice calls out, carried throughout the stars

"We are the Necrolyte Legion. Protected by blessings of the Wormstar. Guided by the teachings of the Necromancers. Led to glory and salvation by Lord Jadyk. By all these and more, we swear to give ourselves and everything that we are and may become, in service of the Legion and the protection of the Necrotic Armada.

"To Death and through it to Eternity!" he shouts and his cry was called out by those in the colosseum, each rising to their feet and salute.

The shout is carried, called out across the stars by thousands of voices, from the desolation of Refuge to the war-torn worlds of B'Nan, from the frozen world of Legion's Home to the cargo bay of a smugglers ship in a bustling mega-city, from Iti'a'Ropku to the city of Vyi'a'Rthun. Even in the distant depths of Calera, wayward Legionnaires trained in harsh caverns under a cruel commander half a galaxy away.

The words chanted and shouted in the voices of a dozen races and you can feel them, their faith and loyalty swelling up like nothing you had felt before

"To Death and through it to Eternity!"
"To Death and through it to Eternity!"
"To Death and through it to Eternity!"
whoops, quite a wall o' text
But a very good wall
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As far as walls go I'd give it a 10
Damn sexy, Grave. Not to spoil the mood, but did anybody ever get their ship orders finalized? I admit I mostly read these after the fact, but I made it tonight and while I don't know enough about all of our ships I know wr need more of them or the snakes might rip us a new asshole.
I'm calling it, the world tree is not on a world, it IS a world, or some other mega structure like an O'Neal cylinder, or even a dyson sphear

And it will wake up when we talk to it or something
Or we recognize something very familiar about it, like it looks like a living wormstar or something

There's "hope" being mentioned prominently again. Interesting.
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I'm assuming pic related is like a normal tree ship then Yggdrasil must be fucking huge
For an unrelated setting I once thought of a tree that spans an entire solar system. Imagine a green disc that was once an asteroid belt, its asteroids entwined or even engulfed completely by the main 'trunk' of the tree, with branches sprouting laterally and with each leaf facing the sun in the middle.

I imagine Yggdrasil to be kinda like that, but instead of an asteroid belt, imagine it taking over an entire solar system, several AUs in radius.
Or we could take in Yggdrasil's multi world aspect and make it one of those hollow world in a hollow world in a hollow world things
Just realised but
>quasiphasic locks
>Find a way to create quantipahsic technology, phasing between dimension
>Can litteraly create incredibly complex and imbricked creation by disturbing their grasp on reallity via rift to other dimensions
>Use to make door lock

We necrontyr now.
We can make super complex dimensional shifting locks but not a missile that can pass through enemy ships armor

Odd that
To be fair, Phasic tech takes a lot of energy

Plus the quasiphasic locks are basically deadbolts that slide into solid matter rather than a slot or cavity. They're actually rather simple when you ignore the reality bending

The Armada does already have quasiphasic harpoons.

Research is always progressing

Also it's a matter of balance. How insanely OP would armor ignoring missiles be?

I'm honestly surprised no one's tried to make or ordered quasiphasic Crit Crawls. They'd be fairly simple to make
Do quasiphasic Dirges work?
Sadly no.

I'm going to cover that with the elemental phasic experiments but so far results from the experiment show that Crystal tech and non-Necrotic elemental energies react...poorly with quasiphasic energy
I blame this development on the wraiths
It's just made me chuckle, like the necron having a technology that allow them to warp things into another micro dimension, and using it to take out the trash.
I did bring up quasiphastic (fuck that name is too long) crit crawls but it was ignored

In terms of balance we could have quasiphastic space weapons but they would have to be expensive and small, and because they usually explode when still phase shifted they do less damage and if they become solid in a wall they usually do nothing

But when they do work (usually only on a crit) they fuck the ship, the ships wife, mother, sister, high school crush, and first grade teacher.
>How insanely OP would armor ignoring missiles be?

Ask the Visari of Sins of a Solar Empire. That's their basic weapon.
A suggestion for shortening the name: q-phase, q-phasic. So q-phasic crit crawls, yeeees. In short, ghost bombs?
That book any good? I need more old sci-fi in my life
Q-phase is the most practical I think
I'd think just plain "phasic" works fine if we need a shorthand. It's not ambiguous.
Well the standard phasic Reconstructed soldier is called a Specter so other Reconstructed when disrupted are called Spectral

Like these would be called Spectral Crit Crawls. They'd act like normal ones by landing on ships hulls by pretending to be simple stellar debris but they'd phase through the armored hulls or into weaponmounts before detonating, dealing much more damage than a surface detonation would cause. A good handful of Spectral Crit Crawls could shred a ships armor better than several dozen or take out a turret by going in and blowing up from the core of it.

Speaking of soldiers using Quasiphasic Disruption, are we agreed that the Legion sector of black-ops that use that armor should be called Phantoms or were there other suggestions?
> Spectral Crit Crawls
Works for me.

No objections, but I'm just one vote and also don't remember any alternatives.
>Speaking of soldiers using Quasiphasic Disruption, are we agreed that the Legion sector of black-ops that use that armor should be called Phantoms or were there other suggestions?

Phantoms sounds good.

Question, was the broadcast with Jor and Rethak open, meaning that other factions could see it?
>other factions could see it?
Oh definitely not. I would've asked for a vote if it was.

It was closed to only Legionnaires and locals of Iti'a'Ropku and Vyi'a'Rthun so literally the only ones who were able to watch would've been loyal members of the Armada. Even visiting Pirates weren't allowed to the Colosseum
Can vote if you'd like to show the Lavafather loyal Stonestar on Bastion.

The Stonestar city under Iti'a'Ropku had it's own broadcasts there for the citizens that weren't in the colosseum above

Oh, okay. I was just curious.
No need to broadcast it to anyone else.
I love this kind of thing. I love the utopian feel to it and the loyalty and happiness of all of Jadyk's citizens.

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