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By Straud

Replies: 13 / 252 days ago

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[google-font https://fonts.googleapis.com/css2?family=Coda]
[left [pic https://i.imgur.com/sx8Nx03.jpg?1]][coda [b L O C A T I O N]
.Tennison Station.
[B M I S S I O N]
.Scout and salvage mining equipment and gear left behind after emergency shut down incident.
[b C R E W]
[http://rp.eliteskills.com/vc.php?c=412274 The Head of Security]
[http://rp.eliteskills.com/vc.php?c=412355 Communications Operator]]


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[left [pic https://i.imgur.com/CYxBw6X.jpg]] [google-font http://fonts.googleapis.com/css?family=Carme]
[Carme Bastian didn't justify Callisto's jeering with a response, and just pushed through as the group moved on forwards. Though, his theory just wouldn't leave his mind, one that would most certainly turn a few against Callisto as Bastian was trustworthy enough with no reason to lie, but was causing an even bigger rift with his most annoying foe worth it? Not today, even with his multi-tool for defence.

Callisto kept her attention on their surroundings, funnily enough, a task that Bastian usually went for, but his puny human ears could never pick up the same sounds a valantiri could. There wasn't much to take note of, the slight rustling of plants and disturbance in the air written off as just the wind, but the subtle feeling of being watched just couldn't be shaken off. Bastian was merely nervous about their surroundings as a whole, having spent most of their time off-planet inside with the comms. He was constantly behind the radios or a computer, his only view of the outside world being the few photos his colleagues would show him or the rare mission that would require his presence for the signals, but that was about it. It was all present in the way he clutched his multi-tool as if his life depended on it. At least Callisto was calm, save for the obvious attitude, but that was about as natural as the hair on her head.

[right [pic https://i.imgur.com/NxPqjB7.jpg]] [b "What's going on?"] He questioned at their stop, his slight anxiety present in his voice. [b "Nothing, Bash, probably just a gear check."] Callisto responded, about as annoyed as you'd expect, but Bastian wasn't convinced at all. The air felt still and tense as if the air itself was anticipating something they couldn't yet see. [b "Would help if we had a functioning signal, but you know."] He muttered beneath his breath, which Callisto had caught onto. [b "Guess we can't have everything."] She replied, but her voice sounded distracted as if her mind was concentrated on other things whilst trying to reply to him. That feeling from earlier, being watched, just wouldn't let up. She wasn't the type to be paranoid or nervous about nothing, but something was amiss, she just couldn't tell what. [b "We should tread lightly. Something feels off about this place."] For once, Bastian could agree, lightly nodding his head in agreement. Despite her exterior, she really didn't want trouble, especially not with locals if there was any, but what had to be done had to be done.
[google-font https://fonts.googleapis.com/css2?family=Coda]
[left [pic https://i.imgur.com/gg2FADy.jpg?1]][coda [b "Children,"] Ailita muttered under her breath. How hard was it for them to put aside their prejudice's for two seconds just to get from point 'A' to point 'B'? She rolled her eye's at Callisto's jeering toward Bastian. Both he and Callisto had the same skill of knowing that base well. Callisto kept it running, and Bastion kept the people talking. Both were unique perspectives on keeping this team running as they traversed through the changing environment to bring the facility back to life.

Regis was there for muscle, but he was also a soldier. Normally, he would follow orders without a second thought, and while Callisto and Bastion might offer some challenge, Regis would back her up. He would have to.

As the group went forward, the rocky shores with sparse foliage slowly changed into a mountainous region. It was as if this island had never had a chance to finish growing, like there might be more building inside. Initial scans didn't mark any volcanos or faults on the landmass, just the minerals, so it made sense to an extent. This wasn't Ailita's first off-world mission, though.
Planets in this shape held some form of life. They had to. Normally, it was akin to mammals, but even the aquatic life on this oceanic planet seemed lacking.

But the initial explorations were not met with any hostility, and the scans of S2 were [i very] promising.
As they neared the entrance to the facility, Ailita noted something off. She held up a hand to halt the group. One mile for the coms. If any group member was more than a mile away, they would go dark. If they were underground, they would have interference. Inside this building, who knew what trouble they could face. And Ailtia knew there would be trouble.

After all, the door was wide open, and the inside was brightly lit.[right [pic https://i.imgur.com/nIPSfQE.jpg?1]] Irin did not have to follow very far. He knew they were returning to their building, the unnatural composition jutting out from the mountain. This wouldn't do. As soon as they passed the only greenery in sight, Irin stopped following and left. He headed along a different path instead, taking him back quietly to the water. He stopped when he was hip deep long enough to glance at the group from afar. By this time, they were so far off he could hardly make out their features.

Two of them were alike in skin and hair, despite their different mannerisms. One seemed closer to what he might see under the waves, but even she was alien to him. The last was a large man that looked as unnatural as the building.
Irin dipped into the sea, easily launching himself far past safety until he could sink himself deep enough to seek out his people. Or, at least, he could find the Envoy and warn them of the intrusion. There would be much at stake if they turned that beastly thing back on.
| Starless | / Straud / 242d ago
[left [pic https://i.imgur.com/CYxBw6X.jpg]] [google-font http://fonts.googleapis.com/css?family=Carme]
[Carme Callisto could feel the growing tension in the room but felt no responsibility for causing it. Bastian could beg to differ, pinning all the blame on Callisto with just his eyes alone, but as per usual, his mouth remained close. He was better at talking over a radio than in person, especially in the face of a growing conflict within the group.

[b "Hey, I'm not the one with the problem here, in fact, I think I just solved one for us."] Callisto said with a tone full of attitude, to which Bastian rolled his eyes and bit back the urge to argue with her further. [b "Yes, ma'm."] He said with little to no enthusiasm at all to Ailita. Nothing against her, if ever, but Callisto always succeeded in souring his mood in some way. It was like trying to swallow vinegar every time they were forced to work together; possible, but grossly unpleasant.

Though, Bastian just couldn't stop pondering on a theory that had been simmering for a while now. If Callisto was that crafty with hacking a small device such as a radio signal, could that possibly graduate to larger mainframes? He thought back to the incident, all of which came from a malfunction, and began to connect the dots. But most of them were pulled from thin air, almost anything to pin the blame on her. He kept his suspicions barely deep inside, his narrowing eyes showing something brewing inside his mind, but again, nothing would pass his lips. At least not until Regis had made his insensitive comment, which Bastian would pull a face at the word 'Moonie', and a small chuckle at the usually well-deserved stomp. [b "She's sure got something."] He half-joked with a side smirk, but his gritted teeth at least hinted towards his animosity. He could never quite take to the specism demonstrated by humans, but even if Bastian was passive-aggressive as hell and an obvious pacifist, Callisto deserved a lot.

[right [pic https://i.imgur.com/NxPqjB7.jpg]] He wasn't about to start anything though, at least not now, and Callisto would surely have something to say, or do if Bastian even hinted towards his conspiracy. Callisto stepped forward, purposely standing in front of Bastian and Regis to obviously annoy him, and would place a single hand on her hip. [b "Come on, let's get this over and done with."] She pushed through towards the overgrowth and turned back momentarily to look at them all. [b "Since I solved our little comm problem, I suppose we don't need little Bas anymore. Cut your losses, you two. Can't have the extra load weighing us down."] All was said to completely antagonize him, but Callisto didn't exactly want them to drop him, not yet. It was almost on par with the Valantiris to test the boundaries of others, Earthlings would never understand.
[left [pic https://i.imgur.com/gg2FADy.jpg?1]][size10 [i Ailita felt a growing migraine. They had barely passed the cramped airlock, and Callisto and Bastion were already close to killing each other. How the [b fuck] was she going to manage these children if they couldn't step away from each other for two seconds and focus on the task at hand? Callisto's antics didn't help anything, either. What if there was an emergency? How would get keep in touch with the shuttle?

There wasn't a lot of time to contemplate this. The door to the outside opened, and Ailita was greeted by a sunny island rich with soil and stone and very little by way of foliage. It would be hard to grow in the midst of the hard dirt ripe with the minerals they so desired. The farther inland, the more rocky and mountainous the terrain too. This was the most stable landmass, and along the eastern side was the main base. Further down to the very base of the major mountain was the opening to one of the first tunnels, a spot never fully explored due to their circumstances.

[b "Both of you can shut up,"] Ailita commanded sternly. [b "It doesn't matter right now anyway. If we make it to the base and turn the systems on, we can guide the shuttle to the landing zone at the mouth of the mine. Then they can start their job and start stripping the equipment and remaining S2. Remember. On task."]
Regis snickered and bumped Bastion with a friendly elbow. [b "Come on. It's not the worst the moonie can do. She's probably got tricks that can make your ears bleed and- Ow!"]

Ailita had stomped hard on Regis' foot. 'Moonie'. The derogatory term coined by humans for any and all extraterrestrial life.
She didn't have to be completely happy with Callisto's single-handed decision to fry the coms. She didn't have to like Bastion's anxious response to pick a fight. She wasn't about to put up with Regis adding to the problems by consuming his foot, fungus and all, without thought.

[b "The base,"] Ailita repeated, pointing to the trail that would take them most of the way through the path that would lead them to the base carved into the mountainside. They would have to pick through a lot of overgrowth to make it there, but Ailita predicted it might take them an hour max if they could stay focused...

[right [pic https://i.imgur.com/nIPSfQE.jpg?1]]So they were back. Asha was right, but Irin wasn't surprised. The dust never settled around this island, and anyone with a tongue could taste it when they swam along the shore. It was bitter, like the sickening oils that their machines pumped out. The air was more acrid, and the mountain had a massive hole. What did these curious creatures want out of their mountain? All of their treasures were in the caverns beneath water, so what was so curious about this place?

Perhaps, if he could find out, Irin would be able to better aid their Priest. The slender, eerily tall creature was tucked away from view, easily blending in to the patch of surviving flora that was thriving at the base of the mountain. He noted how the group squabbled before starting, amused by the childishness of it.
He would need a team, an hour, and the space from this small group. Then, he could begin his plans.
| Starless | / Straud / 248d ago
[left [pic https://i.imgur.com/CYxBw6X.jpg]] [google-font http://fonts.googleapis.com/css?family=Carme]
[Carme Bastian followed almost like an obedient puppy but kept his eye out for anything that could sneak up on them whilst reaching the station. He did use the multi-tool to scan a few of the nodes surrounding the area as they approached their destination, but nothing came up asides from carbon and neon. [b "Junk. Junk. Junk."] He complained quietly to himself. Callisto didn't vocally object to being brought along, but her face showed otherwise. Figures for someone like her, being alone was just her forte. She tailed behind whilst Bastian walked alongside Ailita, and didn't even acknowledge Regis' presence at all. Bastian on the other hand had acknowledged him with the usual friendly smile.

Both of them collectively nodded at the small 'speech' and continued with their business. [b "All system go-"] Bastian lightly grumbled at the cut-off, subtly frustrated at the prospect of being hassled by their captain. But Callisto didn't seem bothered at all and just quietly whistled into the air whilst lifting her left arm towards her face, a small electronic device had been specially built into the suit, and with a few prods at the holographic images that phased into existence above the screen, the communication link would fizzle out and cut off. [b "Silence you old fool."] Callisto had groaned with confidence as if G couldn't hear her at all, which was the truth, for her at least.

[right [pic https://i.imgur.com/NxPqjB7.jpg]] Bastion just stared in disbelief as Callisto stared back and shrugged her shoulders at him. [b "What? Don't tell me you actually [i care] about what that old bastard has to say."] She said in a tone that suggested inward hostility towards Bastian. [b "You - You didn't just EMP the signal, did you? Callisto! You're-"] Callisto rolled her eyes at him.

[b "Gonna get us all killed? Get us in trouble? Please. We're in an old mining tunnel, not the trenches. And you never get in trouble, you're everyone's lap-dog. Now, can we please continue?"] She acted as if this was the usual schtick for an operation like this, and for her, it pretty much was.
[left [pic https://i.imgur.com/gg2FADy.jpg?1]][size10 [i At least he had humor. Perhaps that was why Ailita felt more comfortable asking Bastion to join. It was supposed to be a comfortable scouting mission anyway, something they could easily handle. As soon as Ailita had donned and activated the air for her trek suit, she assembled two others to join them.

She brought along Callisto as well, someone who had been intimately familiar with the facility and the engineer. Once the team made it to the power generator, Callisto could activate it. From there, Ailita could forge ahead with Bastian and another of the former security staff, a man named Regis.
Regis had been her second in command for the last few months of their stay. He had been an old guinea pig of some super-soldier project, and probably one of the precious few cases that made it out of that project alive. The details were classified to Ailita, but she didn't seem to care so long as he did his job.

Ailita turned to face the other three. [b "I don't do speeches,"] she started, [b "But I remember. I remember the shut down, and the fear. Right now, the fear has to take a backseat to the team. Once we get this station up and running again, we'll be all set. Are you guys ready?"] True to her word, Ailita left it at that. A clear objective and a small reassurance that as soon as the power was back on, the oxygen would be too, and the facility can be stripped for all its worth.

Then the next unfortunate group could try their hand at mining this place for all its S2.
[b "Bastion, what's the range on our coms?"] Ailita asked as she entered the small airlock that would seal off the rest of the shuttle.
She implied the communication link between the suits that allowed for sound, but an irritated voice came over their system.

[b "Same gear, girl. It's a strict one mile radius, and it's shit under the dirt, so don't go into the mining tunnels. Got it?"]
Ailita made a face at her team as the airlock sealed around them, shifting the pressure and oxygen levels to match the outside while containing the safely packed crew in the shuttle.
Great. Their crotchety captain would be eves-dropping the whole time. What a treat.
| Starless | / Straud / 250d ago
[left [pic https://i.imgur.com/CYxBw6X.jpg]] [google-font http://fonts.googleapis.com/css?family=Carme]
[Carme He laughed quietly and softly shook his head. [b "Only if you shoot me first."] He joked in a hushed voice to avoid the ears of their lecturer before relaxing into his seat to anticipate their destination.

Tennison. A planet Bastian had heard so much about but had never actually seen aside from a few holographic photographs that his chief factor had relayed to him in preparation for the mission. The oceanic surface had brought back memories of his former workplace, and a slight grimace curled his lips at the memory of the facility's constant stench of rust and sea-salt, and the cold that couldn't even be beaten by their strongest heater. At least he wasn't required to work inside an underwater station this time.

Though the site of the decomposing bodies and the mess that had been left behind, all of which clearly pointed towards an unfortunate tragedy that was no less brutal and traumatizing, almost made him wish to be back inside the communication center. As the ship had been fully docked and the rest of the crew were preparing for their orders, Bastian ruffled his hair out of habit and nerves and was about to head for the communication radios before Ailita had spoken. He was a little taken aback by her request; Bastian's capabilities outside of his work field were rusty and undeveloped, to say the least, but denying the request would just be uncharitable and selfish on his end.

Still, though, the lump that developed in his throat as he was preparing his suit and helmet almost made him turn her away in favor of safety. [b " I, uhm, sure."] He hesitated whilst lifting the dome helmet over his head, all of which had covered everything besides his face, and ran a quick diagnostic on his suit. [b "Just don't count on me to save your life if some sandworm abomination decides we look tasty."] He joked, a little. He quickly left to grab his multi-tool; a tool that barely bassed for a weapon, but had a nifty mining beam that could scan, analyze, and extract a small number of resources from a variety of nodes. And returned with the multi-tool clutched in his hands. [b "Might as well put this old thing to good use. Could even impress G with the number of resources scanned."] He chuckled. [b "Ready when you are, boss."]
[left [pic https://i.imgur.com/gg2FADy.jpg?1]][size10 [i Bastion's attempt at humor was appreciated, even if it didn't do much to sooth her concerns. She was shocked Bastion could joke at all, but not everyone dealt with grief and worry as she did. The sooner she wrestled control of the station, the better she would feel. Things always felt out of control otherwise, and she wouldn't be able to live with another black mark on her record.

Of course, Tennison wasn't her fault necessarily. It was deemed that nobody was at fault save the company itself for "faulty equipment" or some such. For someone who lived on the details to plan her next move, Ailita had been strangely apprehensive with the final statement issued by the company, unwilling to comb through the reports. This, of course, would need to change once they put Tennison back in order, but she would cross that bridge when she got there.
She huffed a breath. [b "Bastion, if I ever get like that when I'm promoted, shoot me."] She smirked as the mission lead finally ended his lecture and reclaimed his own seat.

The shuttle broke the manufactured atmosphere around the main station they had been leaving as they began their ride toward Tennsion.

The planet appeared to have once been primarily an oceanic one. There were only a few land masses, and one had been ripe with S2. The mining facility was stationed on that land mass. It was roughly the size of a small country, but the core of the resources was set up in its center. When the crew was forced to abandon the facility, it lay dormant, shut down of all its power. Meals were left uneaten, shuttles were docked and cold, and as the approaching ship landed, Ailita noted the decomposing bodies that had been unceremoniously left by their station, a grim reminder that not everyone made it to the base before the initial lockdown had started.

[b "Basion,"] Ailita began. [b "You should come with too. I'll need a way to reach back to the shuttle once we get to the command center."]
Ailita stood up from her seat and waited for her companion to do the same so they could suit up. Tennison did not have a sufficient oxygen supply to support human life. Had the initial facility managed a year or two, then there could have been a terraforming project started, but that might never happen now.]]
| Starless | / Straud / 250d ago
[left [pic https://i.imgur.com/CYxBw6X.jpg]] [google-font http://fonts.googleapis.com/css?family=Carme]
[Carme He felt a similar shame being surrounded by the returning members involved in the accident, but that didn't translate into hostility or anything of that nature, Bastian understood that the incident wasn't necessarily anyone's fault. There was no blame for anyone and no failure in his eyes, but most didn't exactly follow his way of thinking. That was more than evident in the subtle expression of guilt in Ailita's face and Bastian shot her a reassuring smile whilst moving to sit beside her.

Sure they weren't terribly close or anything, but Bastian knew her as a good person. That was enough to both solidify a blossoming friendship with him and his faith in her. He turned his head to face her, the smile still creasing his features, an almost permanent expression that never seemed to drop, and just playfully nudged her shoulder lightly with his own. [b "Hey. No need to-"] His words were cut off by the gruff voice of who seemed to be their overseer, and Bastian sunk back into his seat with a small defeated sigh passing through his lips.

Bastian had a way of somehow looking interested whilst simultaneously zoning out completely, as the usual bright light dimmed in his eyes, clearly, Garrek's words were lost on him. Man, at least have some enthusiasm. Bastian just took note of the important stuff and again turned to face Ailita, this time with the actual purpose as the rhythmic vibrations of the shuttle slowly shifted into harsh bumps as they began to reach their destination. [b "I'm [i really] sold out on this mission."] He said with light-hearted sarcasm. [b "But at least everything will be fine, better than last time at least."] He was unsure about that but disguised the uncertainty with false hopefulness as his eyes shifted to glance at a few of the crew members who would no doubt be chosen to scout ahead alongside Ailita, at least in his mind. He didn't particularly see himself being involved with anything that important.
[left [pic https://i.imgur.com/gg2FADy.jpg?1]][size10 [i Ailita kept a more stand-offish demeanor. No need to be friendly with the people she would inevitably just boss around. Of course, one might say you attracted bees with honey and flies with vinegar, but Ailita wasn't keen on attracting any friendliness after the first shut down. Her jaw set as she took her seat on the shuttle toward the back, avoiding eye contact with most of the returning members. It was hard to look them in the eye when so many had depended on her for answers during the initial shut downs.

And she had [b failed] them the first time.

It burned to accept that failure. It burned like bad liquor. When she saw Bastian, she felt a bit of relief. At least she would be working with someone experienced and capable of taking orders. They had initially worked together before, needing to keep in touch due to the nature of their jobs. While Ailita had to run the ship, a lot of her orders needed to be sent through Bastian. Her lines of communication to the whole crew were often dependent on that man.

She waved a hand at him, beckoning him to the single empty seat next to her. If anything, it was nice to have a friendly face near by. She could even start asking him about his objectives. Getting them out in the open meant she could better plan to stay out of his way if need be, or not overload him if she needed extra help. Ailita wasn't beyond delegation, after all.
The pair would have very little time to settle though. A gruff looking man stepped to the front of the shuttle, hair white with his age and belly fat with his "rank".

[b "My name is Garrek Oliander, but you'll address me as 'G',"] he started, sounding as annoyed as he looked. [b "Before we take off, let me go over our objectives. First, we will have our Head of Security scout ahead with two of the crew to restore power to the facility. Then, we will board the facitility and send out the contact signal for Echo Rivers to send over the cargo ships. Then, we will strip the Tennison Mining Facility...."]

By gods! This man could just go on in such a dull tone! Ailita found herself narrowing her eyes at him as she seethed at his bossy behavior, missing entirely how it might reflect her own.
| Starless | / Straud / 250d ago
[left [pic https://i.imgur.com/CYxBw6X.jpg]] [google-font http://fonts.googleapis.com/css?family=Carme]
[Carme Before this, Bastian had been working for another company elsewhere. A research facility located beneath an ocean on an almost barren planet that revolved around space technology, but had been transferred to working on Tennison with the Echo Rivers Company out of pure luck. It wasn't the best job in the world but neither was his current job and really-some time away from a damp communications center in the middle of the sea was too tempting to just let go.

Though Bastian never really took to the idea of colonizing another planet for precious resources they could've easily taken from an inhabited planet instead-but despite his conflicting thoughts, the man never thought to voice his opinions. He just didn't want to start an argument that could just be easily avoided if both parties were tight-lipped, and a row with his employees just didn't sound exciting at all. He was just the outgoing, kind-hearted dispatcher, almost a stereotype if there was one, and used this job to keep away from the bigger discussion.

The disaster that started this whole thing was traumatic to him to say the least, especially when being the one to take all the frantic calls and transmissions, all of which replayed inside his mind every time the space around him went silent, but his spirit just couldn't be shattered by this. Maybe a few of the others didn't need him around, but Bastian wasn't going to abandon the team out of fear even if his own skills didn't quite match the job description. With the shuttle in front of him and the air shifting around him as the others walked straight past him to board it, Bastian couldn't help but feel anxious about the mission in-tow. He could work his way around countless forms of radios and signals, but that was all really-not much to procure the safety of himself and others.

No. There was no room for doubting anymore and certainly no room for last-minute cowardice. He just swallowed his unease and sucked the strength into his gut, ready to face whatever was to come next. After a few greetings and exchanging friendly smiles, Bastian finally boarded the shuttle and tried his best to ease his worries.
[left [pic https://i.imgur.com/gg2FADy.jpg?1]] [size10 [i So. Little. Planning. God damn the Echo Rivers Mining Company. Ailita wouldn't have even taken the job during the first run if the jobs had been more plentiful in their area. She was military trained, university educated, and in fairly good standing with her community. So why had she been suckered into this post on Tennison to begin with?

Among the cache of new, semi-hospitable planets found rich with resources, Tennison had appeared to be the most promising for the resource most similar to the Old Earthen silicone, a stone called silicon.2, often shortened to S2. Operations rose up from the woodwork to lay claim to the first drill into the surface, seeing as the planet appeared to be abandoned.

Echo Rivers was one of those companies, and they began recruitment as soon as they scored the contract. Ailita was one of the many recruited to settle and mine Tennison, ripping it of its resources while building it into a place to begin colonization. Well, the latter half was a mission solely expressed to her. Colonization was a tricky subject among the spacefaring crew these days. Were these planets even there's? Should they even strip them of all of their offerings?

It didn't matter either way. The first attempt was a horrifying disaster. Traumatic for anyone involved, including Ailita herself. She felt her hands shake a little as she boarded the shuttle that would take her and a few others from the station located several hundred miles away to Tennison again. Even if the mission initially failed, there was still a treasure left behind. Old equipment and resources abandoned when Tennison began its impromptu shut down. Echo Rivers had assured the crew all would be well this time, but the woman wasn't so certain.
| Starless | / Straud / 251d ago